Turkey’s Erdoğan – the pious dictator

September 7, 2016

A view of what the failed coup in Turkey has wrought, including mass arrests of teachers, trade unionists, doctors, medical personnel, and others as Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, makes a grab for total power.

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Workshop Talks: Why allow Assad to kill the sick?

Healthcare worker Htun Lin takes up the relationship between workers in healthcare in the U.S. who are told “not everyone can be saved,” and what is happening in Syria where the Syrian government, Russia and Iran are bombing civilians including–or especially–hospitals and healthcare workers.

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‘We defend the earth’

July 6, 2016

Indigenous people, mostly women, respond to a video about their community, the ejido of Tila, which struggled against the government who tried to take their land and are now an independent community.

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Members of New Voices for Reproductive Justice, an organization dedicated to the health and well-being of women and girls of color, say they are “in the house and we say to #SCOTUS #StoptheSham & #TrustBlackWomen! @BlackWomensRJ #BlackGirlMagic.” 
Photo: twitter.com/NewVoices4RJ

Women battle war, terrorism and anti-abortion fanatics

March 8, 2016

Foregrounding the new formal solidarity between Trust Black Women with Black Lives Matter, we explore the thought and actions of women worldwide, including the struggle for reproductive justice in the U.S.; women fighting war and terrorism in places like South Sudan and Syria, the successful fight of domestic workers to organize, and the need to make the revolutionary content of such actions explicit.

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Use of prolonged restraints at Casa Esperanza in Mexico. The picture is from the  Disability Rights International report.

Handicap This! September-October 2015

September 6, 2015

A roundup of the situation of people with disabilities and how they are fighting for their rights including in Mexico, a prison in Carlisle, Penn., outrage against the shackling of two young students with disabilities in Covington, KY, the banning of a child with cerebral palsy and autism in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, and disabled people in Iraq who face neglect and isolation.

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rm 18 archÌv - Na snÌmke bez udania d·tumu, ktor˙ poskytol Washington Post 21.aprÌla 2004, americk˝ vojak drûÌ psa pred irack˝m v‰zÚom vo v‰znici Ab˙ Ghraib. Washington Post ˙dajne zÌskal stovky fotografiÌ a kr·tkych digit·lnych videoz·znamov, doteraz nezverejnen˝ch, na ktor˝ch americkÌ vojaci na jeseÚ 2003 citovo a telesne zneuûÌvaj˙ irack˝ch v‰zÚov vo v‰znici Ab˙ Ghraib z·padne od Bagdadu. TASR/AP
This undated still photo made available by The Washington Post on Friday May 21, 2004, shows a U.S. soldier holding a dog in front an Iraqi detainee at Abu Ghraib prison on the outskirts of Baghdad. The Washington Post has obtained what it says are hundreds of photographs and short digital videos - as of yet officially unreleased - depicting U.S. soldiers physically and emotionally abusing detainees last fall in the Abu Ghraib prison. (AP Photo/The Washington Post) ** MANDATORY CREDIT: THE WASHINGTON POST ** INTERNET OUT, NO SALES **

Philip Zimbardo and Marx’s Humanism

August 30, 2015

A discussion with Philip Zimbardo followed the San Francisco premiere of “The Stanford Prison Experiment,” a movie based on his notorious 1971 experiment. It raises questions about the meaning of being human, which for Marx turned on needing human beings as free beings whose self-determining, free, conscious activity is not a mere means but the first necessity of life.

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South Africa bloodies Black workers

April 30, 2015

Durban, South Africa—On April 8 Abahlali baseMjondolo supported a march against xenophobia organized by our comrades in the Congolese Solidarity Campaign together with the Somali Association of South Africa and other migrant organizations. There was a permit for the march and yet the police would not allow it to go ahead.

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“Trapped, Isolated” – Art: Roger “Rab” Moore, G-02296, HDSP Z-168, P.O. Box 3030, Susanville CA 96127

What solitary means

January 30, 2015

Nothing can prepare you for entering the Security Housing Unit (SHU). It’s a world unto itself where cold, quiet and emptiness come together, seeping into your bones, then eventually the mind.

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“Trapped, Isolated” – Art: Roger “Rab” Moore, G-02296, HDSP Z-168, P.O. Box 3030, Susanville CA 96127

Being in the SHU

November 24, 2014

Crescent City, Calif.—The physical and emotional toll of being in the SHU (prisons’ “Secure Housing Unit”): • Manic guards off their meds. • That last good photograph stamped with a boot. • Classification hearings postponed for potlucks. • The daughter whose eyes fill when you ask innocently, who are you?…

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Photo by Urszula Wislanka for News & Letters.

Prison hunger strike commemorated

From the November-December 2014 issue of News & Letters

Oakland, Calif.—On Sept. 6 about 100 people in Mosswood Park commemorated one year since the suspension of the historic 60-day hunger strike, the third of its kind, by California prisoners opposing the torture of solitary confinement. The Security Housing Units (SHU) prisoners’ unprecedented cross-race [=>]

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From the Oakland People’s Climate March, Sept. 21. (See p. 11 for New York march coverage.) As inadequate as Obama’s climate measures are, Republicans vowed after the election to destroy them. Photo by Urszula Wislanka for News & Letters

Racist election deepens reactionary direction of U.S.

November 20, 2014

The U.S. government took an ominous, reactionary political turn in the 2014 midterm elections, with Republicans taking control of the Senate. Extreme pro-war Senators like Joni Ernst in Iowa and Tom Cotton in Arkansas join veterans like Senator “Bomb, Bomb, Bomb Iran” John McCain, who will now control the Armed Services Committee and is hell-bent for new “boots on the ground” in Syria and Iraq. The whole Republican campaign—including these pro-war, pro-fossil-fuel, pro-“fetus is a person” candidates—ran on a cynically deceptive anti-Obama mantra….

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Art by Michael Russell, Pelican Bay SHU

No rehabilitation

July 7, 2014

From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters

Oakland, Calif.—On June 14 Critical Resistance (CR), an organization working for the abolition of the prison system, held a community forum on California Department of Corrections and rehabilitation (CDCr). (Prisoners refuse to capitalize the “R” because there is no “rehabilitation.”)

The forum took up new [=>]

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Readers’ Views, July-August 2014, Part 1

From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters

RESPONSES TO MARXIST-HUMANIST PERSPECTIVES

The Marxist-Humanist Perspectives (N&L, May-June 2014) give a critical assessment of the polarization between the oppressive forces of capital’s social relations and humanity’s efforts to realize human dignity. It shows humans are not just passive victims of capital. First [=>]

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Solidarity with Guantanamo hunger strikers, Part 2

March 5, 2014

“My decision to go on hunger strike points to the need for new forces to defend the idea of universal human rights. Although the number of inmates refusing to take food at Guantanamo has recently declined substantially, solidarity remains a vitally important factor.”

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Solidarity with Guantanamo hunger strikers, Part 1

December 10, 2013

From the November-December 2013 issue of News & Letters:

Solidarity with Guantanamo hunger strikers

London, England—Some found it strange that a man voluntarily stopped eating for over 20 days. I found it hard. After all, I like to eat as much as anyone else. Yet my decision to go on hunger strike in support of Guantanamo Bay [=>]

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Maroon the Implacable

December 6, 2013

Faruq, a prisoner at Pelican Bay State Prison in California, reviews “Maroon the Implacable: The Collected Writings of Russell Maroon Shoatz” (PM Press, 2013), written by a revolutionary theorist forced to endure the psychological and physical torture of solitary confinement for the past 40 years.

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Pelican Bay prisoners suspend their hunger strike

November 19, 2013

The PBSP-SHU, Short Corridor Collective Representatives hereby serve notice upon all concerned parties that after nine weeks we have collectively decided to suspend our third hunger strike action on Sept. 5, 2013. To be clear, our Peaceful Protest of Resistance to our continuous subjection to decades of systemic state-sanctioned torture via the system’s solitary confinement units is far from over. Our decision to suspend our third hunger strike in two years does not come lightly. This decision is especially difficult considering that most of our demands have not been met (despite nearly universal agreement that they are reasonable).

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Support striking prisoners!

July 4, 2013

Since February, prisoners at Guantanamo Bay have carried on a massive hunger strike to protest indefinite detention in abusive conditions with no end in sight…. On July 8th California prisoners being held in solitary confinement at the Pelican Bay “security housing unit” (SHU) for indeterminate periods will resume their hunger strike.

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Escape from Camp 14

April 10, 2013

Escape from Camp 14 is the story of Shin Dong-hyuk, the only person born in a North Korean slave labor camp to escape, doing so at the age of 23 in 2005. Shin’s life is testament to the putrid essence of that militarized, state-capitalist totalitarian society.

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California hearings on prison torture

March 24, 2013

From the new March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters:

California hearings on prison torture

Sacramento, Calif.–On Feb. 25, around 100 people, mostly family members of prisoners organized as California Families Against Solitary Confinement (CFASC), gathered on the state capitol steps. They shared their stories before a historic second legislative hearing on California Department of Corrections and [=>]

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State of the U.S. wars

March 19, 2013

From the new March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters:

Editorial
State of the U.S. wars

The opening of Barack Obama’s second term made it clear that, despite all talk of ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, there is to be no end to the state of permanent war either abroad or at home.

President Obama promises to [=>]

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March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters is available on the web

March 16, 2013

The March-April 2013 issue of News & Letters is available on the web.

News & Letters, Vol. 58, No. 2
March – April 2013

Lead

From India to Egypt to U.S., women fighting for freedom

Two recent events have shown the deep and seemingly intractable worldwide oppression of women and, at the same time, revealed women’s militancy and determination to [=>]

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Close Guantanamo

February 24, 2013

From the January-February 2013 issue of News & Letters:

Close Guantanamo

Los Angeles—On Jan. 10, 150 activists gathered outside the downtown Federal Building to protest the ongoing torture and indefinite detentions of Muslim prisoners for a decade, without charges. The press conference was sponsored by Amnesty International, Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace, and Immigrant [=>]

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Pelican Bay prisoners aim to end hostilities

December 11, 2012

From the November-December 2012 issue of News & Letters

Pelican Bay prisoners aim to end hostilities

Hunger strike unity logo created by a Pelican Bay prisoner

Agreement to End Hostilities

(NOTE: All names and the statement must be verbatim when used and posted on any website or media, or non-media, publications)

August 12, 2012

To whom it may [=>]

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Reverse convictions by tortured confessions

February 23, 2012

From the January-February 2012 issue of News & Letters:

Reverse convictions by tortured confessions

Chicago—Twenty-four Black men are still in jail almost 40 years after the first allegations of torture were brought against the Chicago Police Department.

In every case, their confessions were obtained illegally through torture.

On Nov. 5, 30 people, including the mother of Javan Deloney and [=>]

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The wars at home

May 8, 2011

From the new issue of NEWS & LETTERS, May-June 2011

Part II of

Draft for Marxist-Humanist Perspectives, 2011-2012
Revolution and counter-revolution take world stage

Contents:

  • I. The Arab Spring
  • II. The wars at home
  • III. Japan: earthquake, tsunami and meltdown
  • IV. Revolution, organization and philosophy
  • V. Marxist-Humanist Tasks

(Part I was posted yesterday.  Parts III through V to come in the next few days)

II. The [=>]

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Torturer Jon Burge’s reign of terror

April 5, 2011

From the March-April 2011 issue of News & Letters:

Torturer Jon Burge’s reign of terror

Editor’s note: Mark Clements spent 28 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. He was one of many tortured under former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge’s reign of terror. Clements is now Chairman of the Wrongful Convictions Committee of [=>]

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Readers’ Views (Jan.-Feb. 2011)

February 28, 2011

From the Jan.-Feb. 2011 issue of News & Letters:

Readers’ Views

THE OPPOSITE OF WAR IS NOT PEACE BUT REVOLUTION

Your Statement, “War threat over Korea,” issued on your website on Dec. 9 had it just right! “The continuing threat of war on the Korean Peninsula underscores the urgency of the Marxist-Humanist perspective that the opposite of war is [=>]

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Stop the culture of torture

November 18, 2010

From the Nov.-Dec. 2010 issue of News & Letters:

Forum: Stop the culture of torture

Chicago–At the end of September the Illinois Coalition Against Torture gave venue to torture victims and their primary lawyer at “Jon Burge GUILTY–beyond the trial.” The event featured Mary L. Johnson, mother of a still-imprisoned torture victim; Flint Taylor, battling lawyer for [=>]

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