This is an archive of the former website of the Maoist Internationalist Movement, which was run by the now defunct Maoist Internationalist Party - Amerika. The MIM now consists of many independent cells, many of which have their own indendendent organs both online and off. MIM(Prisons) serves these documents as a service to and reference for the anti-imperialist movement worldwide.
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THE MAOIST INTERNATIONALIST MOVEMENT
MIM Notes 90 July, 1994
MIM Notes speaks to and from the viewpoint of the
world's oppressed majority, and against the
imperialist-patriarchy. Pick it up and wield it in
the service of the people. support it, struggle
with it and write for it.
IN THIS ISSUE:
1. ZAPATISTAS REJECT FALSE PEACE
3. MIM TAKES HEAT FOR REVOLUTIONARY FEMINISM
4. MILITANT GRASSROOTS ORGANIZING STOPS
PLANS FOR MED-WASTE INCINERATOR
6. SEND CLINTON TO A JAIL-HOUSE SWEATSHOP
7. INDIAN COPS KILL MAOISTS
8. BULLIES AND BLACKLISTS
9. YOUNG STUDENTS LIKE MIM
10. CONGRESS MUTILATES GENITALS AND PEOPLE
11. NEW GROCERY-SHELF BATTLES: BOURGEOISIE
FLOUNDERS IN ATTACKS ON FEMINISM
12. CIA OPERATIVE MANAGING PERUVIAN STATE
13. HAITI UNDER THE GUN: CLINTON EYES ISLAND ATTACK
14. REVIEW: NEVERTHELESS
15. REVIEW: SCREW SERIAL MOM, WE WANT MATERIAL MOM
16. SMOOTH, NO CHUNKS!
(BOBBY SEALE MELTS DOWN BPP MILITANCE)
17. REVIEW: INDIGENOUS WOMAN
18. UNDER LOCK AND KEY: NEWS FROM PRISONS AND PRIOSONERS
WHAT IS MIM?
The Maoist Internationalist Movement (MIM) is a
revolutionary communist party that upholds
Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, comprising the collection
of existing or emerging Maoist internationalist
parties in the English-speaking imperialist
countries and their English-speaking internal
semi-colonies, as well as the existing or emerging
Spanish-speaking Maoist internationalist parties
of Aztlan, Puerto Rico and other territories of
the U.S. Empire. MIM Notes is the newspaper of
MIM. Notas Rojas is the newspaper of the Spanish-
speaking parties or emerging parties of MIM.
MIM is an internationalist organization that works
from the vantage point of the Third World
proletariat; thus, its members are not Amerikans,
but world citizens.
MIM struggles to end the oppression of all groups
over other groups: classes, genders, nations. MIM
knows this is only possible by building public
opinion to seize power through armed struggle.
Revolution is a reality for North America as the
military becomes over-extended in the government's
attempts to maintain world hegemony.
MIM differs from other communist parties on three
main questions: (1) MIM holds that after the
proletariat seizes power in socialist revolution,
the potential exists for capitalist restoration
under the leadership of a new bourgeoisie within
the communist party itself. In the case of the
USSR, the bourgeoisie seized power after the death
of Stalin in 1953; in China, it was after Mao's
death and the overthrow of the "Gang of Four" in
1976. (2) MIM upholds the Chinese Cultural
Revolution as the farthest advance of communism in
human history. (3) MIM believes the North American
white-working-class is primarily a non-
revolutionary worker-elite at this time; thus, it
is not the principal vehicle to advance Maoism in
MIM accepts people as members who agree on these
basic principles and accept democratic centralism,
the system of majority rule, on other questions of
"The theory of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin is
universally applicable. We should regard it not as
dogma, but as a guide to action. Studying it is
not merely a matter of learning terms and phrases,
but of learning Marxism-Leninism as the science of
-- Mao Zedong, Selected Works, Vol. II, p. 208
* * *
CONTINUING THE FIGHT FOR TRUE LIBERTY AND DEMOCRACY:
The Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) recently ended peace
talks with the Mexican government. Throughout the negotiations,
the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) government tried to
convince the EZLN to lay down its arms by offering reforms in
response to some of the Zapatistas' demands. At the same time, the
PRI received U.S. supplies and troops. The Zapatistas have been
addressing Amerikan audiences--publicizing the support the U.S.
government gives to Mexico and calling on the Amerikan people to
take responsibility for their government's actions.
"With the help that you the people and government of North America
have given to the Mexican federal government, you are staining
your hands with blood. Our dream and desire is that of all people
of the world: true liberty and democracy. And for this dream we
are willing to give our lives. Do not stain your hands with our
blood by allowing yourselves to be the accomplices of the Mexican
MIM agrees with the Zapatistas that it is the responsibility of
Amerikans to build public opinion in the United States in favor of
the EZLN. People in the United States who support the Mexican
people's right to self-determination should organize and oppose
all forms of U.S. intervention in Mexico.
The "peace settlement" and the elections
On June 11, following consultation with peasant communities in
liberated territories, the EZLN announced its decision to reject
the government's proposed peace settlement.(12) The Zapatistas
have contacted democratic forces across Mexico, beginning in late
January when the cease-fire went into effect and throughout the
negotiations. They surveyed the countryside "in order to hear the
voice of the people," and have met with campesino unions from
around the nation and encouraged them to carry on the fight.(4)
Subcommandante Marcos, the most prominent EZLN spokesperson, said,
"We have no confidence in either the political parties or the
electoral system... In this movement, the Indians that form part
of the Zapatista army want in the first place to dialog with their
own people. They are the true interlocutors."(1)
The government offered rural electrification, health care and
schools, and demanded that the Zapatistas lay down their weapons.
But the proposal did not address the EZLN's central demands, like
the demand for the resignation of the PRI, which the EZLN says
holds illegitimate power as a result of electoral fraud.
"In exchange for unconditional surrender, the government offers
what it always offers: an internal adjusting of accounts, a
package of declarations, promises, and more bureaucratic
dependencies... National and Latin American history teaches us
that he who lays down his arms believing in the forgiveness of his
persecutor ends his days shot full of holes wherever the death
squads of the government can find him. How can we think that would
not occur in this country?"(2)
During peace negotiations, the EZLN exhorted the Mexican people to
form "Committees to Protect the Will of the People," to guarantee
clean elections. At the same time the Zapatistas reminded people
that "voice alone does not change nations."(4) Peasants from
Chiapas and across Mexico, inspired and supported by the EZLN, are
seizing land and replacing local governments with traditional
Land struggles intensify
Since the middle of January, peasants in Chiapas have seized over
450,000 acres of land (the government reports only 70,000 acres
seized). This does not include the territory liberated by the EZLN
in the jungles of Chiapas, which is larger than many countries in
These seizures are widely attributed to the example of the EZLN.
One Chiapan peasant said, "By grace, the Zapatistas have opened
our eyes. We do not know them, but we must thank them. Before, we
did not have the valor to do this."(7)
Large landlords have organized para-military Guardia Blancas
(white guards) to violently evict peasant squatters. The Mexican
military extra-legally arms these thugs with U.S weapons. The EZLN
has pledged to defend the peasant land seizures.(4) Early this
year the Zapatistas' clashes with the judiciales, the state
police, met with widespread popular approval. One writer overheard
the following on a Mexico City subway: "The judiciales aren't
decent people; they aren't even people."(8)
Municipal governments toppled; women step up
Several towns in Chiapas have removed municipal governments
instituted by the central government and replaced them with
traditional ruling councils. These councils involve the active
participation of women, which the old governments did not.
Residents of Teopisca demanded that government officials visiting
the town audit the town's finances and remove the mayor from
office. When the officials balked, one of the women from the town
yelled, "Let's tie them up! If you men won't do it, we women
will!" The mayor was deposed and the audit began the next day.
When one of the officials said "We've seen that this place is
ungovernable," the people cheered.(10)
U.S. increases military involvement
The U.S. government supplies the repressive Mexican army with over
90% of its equipment. Since the Zapatista uprising, the United
States has beefed up its military presence in the Mexico and
Central America. U.S. helicopters have attacked the Zapatistas.(3)
The United States has sent over 1,000 armed vehicles to Mexico,
and 6,000 U.S. reserves and national guards were stationed on the
Guatemalan border in mid-April.(4)
Much of this military aid comes under the guise of combating drug
traffickers. But the Zapatistas point out that "[U.S.] troops,
airplanes, helicopters, radar, communications equipment, arms and
military paraphernalia are being used now not to fight drug
traders and the big capos of the drug trade, but to repress the
just struggles of the people of Mexico and of the Indians of
U.S. Congressperson Toricelli, a Latin America specialist,
recently visited Mexico to build support for NAFTA. He went to
Chiapas and sent the Zapatistas a letter to see if he could meet
with them. According to a leftist Mexican novelist, the Zapatistas
burned the letter. Toricelli claims they didn't literally burn it,
they just didn't have time to meet with him, what with the peace
talks and all.(6) MIM thinks they burned the letter.
The EZLN refers to NAFTA as "a death sentence" for the indigenous
Mexican peasants.(1) NAFTA ensures that Amerikan producers will be
able to under-sell the peasants, forcing them to sell their land
and leaving them without work.
The Zapatistas address the Amerikan people
At a recent talk given by a representative of the EZLN's legal arm
in Detroit, MI, audience members asked what U.S. trade unions
should do to support the Zapatistas. Some people implied that
repealing NAFTA would be the best way to help the EZLN and the
Mexican people. The representative replied that the Amerikan
people are the only ones who can stop arms shipments from the
United States, and encouraged those present to creatively apply
themselves to this task.
The Amerikan anti-NAFTA movement is geared toward protecting
Amerikan privilege and has little to do with liberating the
Mexican people from imperialist exploitation.(11) A movement that
genuinely supports the Zapatistas goals must be thoroughly anti-
imperialist. Ultimately, the best way to stop U.S. intervention is
to build a Maoist party and overthrow the Amerikan government.
1. Covert Action, Spring 1994, p. 36.
2. Covert Action, Spring 1994, p. 35.
3. Covert Action, Spring 1994, p. 48.
4. Pedro Castillo, representative of the official legal arm of the
EZLN, at a talk on 5/16/94 in Detroit.
5. Covert Action, Spring 1994, p. 34, emphasis added.
6. National Public Radio, All Things Considered, 6/3/94.
7. New York Times, 2/8/94.
8. The Nation, 3/28/94, p. 406.
9. Covert Action, Spring 1994, p. 39.
10. National Public Radio, Morning Edition, 2/10/94.
11. MIM Notes 79, 8/93, p. 5.
12. NYT 6/13/93, p. 1.
* * *
Maoists clash with reactionaries over Tibet
***On April 23 1994, the infamous Dalai Lama spoke at the Hill
Auditorium in Ann Arbor, Michigan to a sold-out audience of 4,000
people who paid $25 each to hear him.
Some Maoists [unaffiliated with any party] put together a flyer
consisting of excerpts from the recent series published in the
Revolutionary Worker newspaper exposing the Dalai Lama from a
Maoist perspective and revealing what life was like for slaves in
Tibet. They distributed these flyers to the huge crowd gathered
outside the auditorium before the doors opened.
The following are some accounts of discussions that went on with
people about Tibet:
[An] Amerikkkan woman was speaking negatively about the Chinese
'invasion' in 1959 and the rights of the people to their religion
and culture. [The Maoists] pointed out that education had been
unavailable to the masses, that the first graduating class of high
school students in all of Tibet, in all of history, was in 1964
during the revolutionary period.
In this group were also 2 really reactionary young Tibetan men,
who though very vocal, were not very articulate. They had been
harassing the Maoists, trying to get them to stop "attacking his
holiness" by passing out these flyers. One of them wore a leather
jacket with a big U.S. flag patch and a bunch of other military
insignia. He shook his finger at the comrade's face as she was
struggling with a group of people. He wouldn't listen to a thing
she said or even acknowledge her, even when she said she upheld
the right of Tibet to overthrow the Chinese regime and secede from
China, or when she upheld the right of people to believe in
religion, even though she personally was an atheist. He just kept
thrusting his finger in her face and incoherently babbling some
nonsense, almost frothing at the mouth. The Tibetan woman
distanced herself from this nut, saying "I don't even know this
person!" laughing as if to make a point.
The other really reactionary Tibetan was wearing a "Free Tibet"
button and a "Support the Troops" T-shirt with a big ugly U.S.
Flag on it. At one point he pointed to a Mao button worn by the
comrade, and he shrieked, "You support this man? He killed many
people!" So the Maoist exposed his hypocrisy by pointing to the
"Support the Troops" T-shirt and shouting, "Look at you! Wearing a
'Support the Troops' T-shirt and a 'Free Tibet' button! You
support the troops that slaughtered over 200,000 people in Iraq!
You want freedom for the people of Tibet, and at the same time you
celebrate the mass murder of the people in Iraq!"
The reactionary's tone immediately changed and he began pleading
quietly, "Please, you are creating a public disturbance," as he
buttoned up his jacket so no-one could see his shirt of shame.
"Please," he begged, "I am requesting you not to distribute these
"Well, request denied!" and the comrade proceeded to give them out
again. The reactionary ran ahead of him shouting, "Do not take
these flyers! They are unfair to his holiness! They are not true!"
This just worked to make people more interested than ever, and
people were telling him, "We want to see for ourselves." Others
said "Even if they are untrue, we want to see for ourselves. We
can make our own judgment." Reacto-man then would reply, "Well,
you can take his flyer, but do not believe a word of it."
It seemed very significant that the two most reactionary and
fanatical defenders of the Dalai Lama were both wearing the hated
flag of U.S. imperialism. There were other negative responses this
day, but were feeble in comparison to these bootlickers.
One of the best lines heard that day--there was this one asshole
who said, "Sure, I'll take one of those flyers. I believe in
fantasy and a good joke!" To which the Maoist replied, "I know you
do! That's why you're here today to see the Dalai Lama!"
--From a reader in the Midwest
MIM TAKES HEAT FOR REVOLUTIONARY FEMINISM
MIM's articles about women in the CIA and the pro-police women's
center in Cambridge drew fire from pseudo-feminist critics on the
Internet this month.
In MIM Notes 88 (May 1994), p. 4, MIM wrote: "When women
participate in the international rape and plunder of the world's
oppressed people, a patriarchal project overseen by the CIA, MIM
argues that they are 'women' in biological anatomy only. Their
objective social position--like that of anyone else who
participates in and benefits from patriarchy--is that of gender-
men. This is so even though they are relatively subordinated by
their biologically-male CIA bosses."
Critic 1 replied: "I read the above ... several times, and find
MIM's conclusions more astonishing each time. I hold no brief for
the CIA, but it is a bureaucracy like any other and ought to be
subject to the same rules as other bureaucracies. Whatever we may
think of women who work for the CIA, they remain women.
"The assumption that somehow women ought to be aloof from the rape
and plunder of the world's oppressed people (that is to say, that
they are innately more progressive than men) is both absurd and
ahistorical. Women's views, actions, beliefs, commitments and so
on are as divided on political lines as men's.
"The fact that a relatively privileged group is trying to break
down barriers above it might suggest, to anyone but MIM, that a
step (small indeed, but still a step) towards the final breakdown
of privilege and deference as we know them was occurring."
MIM replies: MIM's definition of "women" is not purely biological.
Gender is a social relation. People who work to bolster a system
of gender oppression are therefore, socially men, to that extent.
MIM never asserts anywhere that women are "innately more
progressive than men." The article in question shows we believe
that integrity is not biologically based. The critic apparently
thinks women getting equality within the CIA is part of the "final
breakdown of privilege and deference." MIM does not agree. If the
integration of women into the CIA means a stronger, more efficient
CIA, then it will mean the opposite, since the CIA works to
protect "privilege and deference" for Amerikan men and women all
over the world.
Critic 1 also took issue with another article in MN88 on page 5,
in which MIM reported that: "Inside the paper on the resources
page, the first resource listed under 'Violence' is 'Cambridge
Police, Emergency-911.' MIM will try to remember to call the
Cambridge Police next time it needs a resource for 'Violence.'"
Critic 1 wrote: "MIM should see some statistics on domestic
violence rather than waxing satirical about the police--and in the
process skimming right past the real problem."
MIM replies: MIM has seen lots of statistics on domestic violence,
and written about them extensively, in MIM Theory 2/3 in depth, as
well as in many MIM Notes articles. A recurring theme we have seen
is that police arrests do not reduce violence against women. They
do increase police repression of whole communities, men and women.
Critic 2 also chimed in: "No. MIM has made it clear that rape,
domestic violence etc. will be solved 'after the revolution.' In
the meantime, MIM recommends that women stay only in monogamous
relationships (ideally with mates chosen by the vanguard party)
and learn self-defense. Any dependence on the government to fight
rape or domestic violence is seen by MIM as counter-revolutionary.
"This position of MIM is one of their most vile, since it assumes
that women should choose the violence of private abuse over the
violence of the state. No one will say this is a wonderful choice,
but MIM's reductionist didacticism on this is truly obnoxious. If
they want to advocate self-reliance, that's all to their member's
virtue, but for them to attack hard-fought for rape crisis centers
and special squads of the police designed to respond to domestic
violence--I call that seriously counter-revolutionary."
MIM replies: Critic 2 first misstates MIM's line--without
reference--and then denigrates all women. First, MIM does not say
gender oppression will be solved "after the revolution." The
process of "solving" this oppression, like any other, is a
dialectical one that happens *through* a revolutionary process.
Along the way, many problems are "solved." Second, MIM does
advocate monogamy (crucially, for men as well as women), but
explicitly says the party should *not* choose sexual partners for
people. Third, the critic offers a false alternative. If
"dependence on the government" helped reduce gender oppression,
MIM would support it, at least tactically. But dependence does not
reduce oppression, as we have demonstrated.
The critic reveals paternalism toward women when s/he says MIM
wants women to choose one form of oppression over another. MIM
says women don't have to choose any oppression--they can organize
to fight all oppression and put a stop to it. But the critic is
more interested in who will take care of women than in what women
can do to help themselves. And again, those "hard-fought for rape
crisis centers and special squads"--while they do "respond" to
violence against women--don't do anything to end it. Prove to us
that they do something to reduce the overall level of violence and
we can talk about it. Until then, this amounts to patronizing
women by denigrating real efforts to end gender oppression, and
pumping up the state in its systematic oppression of women and
* * *
MILITANT GRASSROOTS ORGANIZING STOPS PLANS FOR MED-WASTE
Protesters' chants of "the people-UNITED-CAN NEVER BE DEFEATED!"
echoed through St. Louis city hall on May 6 when that city's Board
of Aldermen met. The group of neighborhood residents and
environmentalists opposed the construction of a medical waste
incinerator with potential for health problems associated with
dioxins and other emissions.
The Hospital Association of Metropolitan St. Louis planned to
build a $6 million-plus medical waste incinerator in a low-income
neighborhood where the majority of residents are Black. Alderman
Joseph D. Roddy of the 17th ward, who "represents" those
residents, supported the incinerator despite repeated protests
from residents and environmentalists. The incinerator would burn
medical waste from the St. Louis Metropolitan area at 4,000
degrees, endangering the health of both nearby residents and
people for miles around.
Concerned residents called upon Association of Community
Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) to help organize opposition
to stop the construction of the incinerator. Along with the
Gateway Green Alliance, a locally based militant environmental
group, the coalition was able to educate, agitate, mobilize and
At an informational meeting at a local Lutheran church, organizers
informed people about how the incinerator would work and how it
would affect the environment and people's health. Speakers from
the Gateway Green Alliance said that there were alternatives to
the incinerator used in other places such as microwaving which has
proven to be much safer. This process burns at 500 degrees instead
After a question-and-answer period, people decided that the next
step would be to demonstrate at the offices of the Hospital
Association confronting them face to face. Later that month, 30
people jammed the office of Stephen Dorn, President of the
Hospital Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. Don Fitz,
spokesperson for the Gateway Green Alliance, told Dorn that people
wanted the incinerator stopped because of health and environmental
hazards. Dorn replied that the incinerator would be safe and asked
Fitz if he'd like to see the plans. Fitz reminded him that "We
asked to see the plans, you refused to show them to us!"
On May 6, 40 protesters demonstrated in the rotunda of the city
hall before the St Louis Board of Aldermen met. Catching
everyone's attention with picket signs and shouting slogans, they
heckled the city's political elite. Demonstrators approached the
aldermen from the various wards, informing them of their
opposition to the proposed incinerator and calling on them to stop
it. Several days after the demonstration, the Hospital Association
of Metropolitan St. Louis announced that it intended to drop its
plans to build the med-waste incinerator. Sandra Kolde, senior
vice-president of the Hospital Association says, "We plan on
taking a look at alternative technology, to go back and restudy
Alderman Roddy, who supported the incinerator's construction,
revealed typical bourgeois democratic thinking after the demo at
city hall: "I don't claim to run my ward as a dictatorship. We
were listening to the different arguments down there. I certainly
don't mind discussing things with reasonable people. But I'm not
going to deal with people like that." (Of course: Black people,
poor people--who would want to deal with them?)
The persistence and determination of oppressed peoples can win
important struggles as this. MIM wants all oppressed people to
realize the necessity of uniting with the international
proletariat led by a revolutionary communist party. Then the
oppressed will seize control from the capitalists who use our
communities as dumping grounds.
Notes: The Riverfront Times 5/18 - 5/24/94, p. 15.
* * *
SEND CLINTON TO A JAIL-HOUSE SWEATSHOP
On May 26, Bill Clinton announced that China's most-favored nation
(MFN) trade status would be extended for another year.(1) Clinton
also stated that China's "human rights" policies would no longer
be a factor in qualifying for MFN status. Previously, Clinton
attempted to use his power over MFN status to convince China to
adopt liberal human rights policies.
China has been under fire from Congress and human-rights
organizations for the 1989 Tiananmen massacre, repression of
dissidents, and for using prison labor to make products for
export. China's use of prison labor has been recently visible in
the U.S. media.
MIM does not defend the current regime in China. Deng Xiao-ping
was part of the revisionist clique which seized power after the
death of Mao in 1976 and arrested the so-called "Gang of Four."
Certainly the fact that the Dengist regime exploits prisoners for
profit is more evidence that the PRC is not socialist. Yet we are
eager to expose hypocrisy when we see it: The U.S. criticizes
China for political repression and prison labor practices, but the
U.S. does the same thing as China!
One need only look at the FBI harassment and eventual destruction
of the Black Panther Party for Amerika's position on "dissent".
Our government interferes with non-revolutionary dissent as well,
such as its surveillance and disruption of Central America
solidarity groups in the 1980s.
As for prison labor, Amerika is guilty again. The prison pages of
MIM Notes regularly feature articles about forced labor at slave
wages (5) building death row facilities,(4) or as firefighters.(3)
What MIM didn't know until recently is that U.S. prison labor is
now in direct competition with Chinese forced labor. The
California Department of Corrections (DOC) has a line of clothing
being marketed in Asia in direct competition with its state
capitalist opponent. The California prisoners are paid between 35
cents and $1 an hour.(2)
"The 'Prison Blues' brand of clothes, made by prisoners in the
Oregon DOC, boasts projected sales of over $1.2 million in export
revenues." Real wages for the Oregon prisoners are between $1.20
and $1.80 an hour.(2)
If anything, the Chinese revisionists are not as bad as the
Amerikan state for using prison labor: China has announced a ban
on the export of prisoner-made goods, whereas the U.S. is
increasing such exports.(2)
1. Reuters, 5/26/94.
2. Prison Legal News 5/94, p. 15. PLN cites Seattle Times 3/18/94.
available for $12 a year from PLN, PO Box
1684, Lake Worth, FL 33460.
3. MIM Notes 89 6/94, p. 11.
4. MIM Notes 84 1/94, p. 11.
5. MIM Notes 75 4/93, p. 11.
* * *
INDIAN COPS KILL MAOISTS
"PATNA--People's Union of Civil Liberties, a non-government civil
liberties organization, has indicted the state police of Bihar for
'killing in cold blood' 11 supporters of the outlawed Maoist
Communist Center in a 'fake encounter' at Matgarha village in Gaya
1. Reuters in L.A. India Journal, 5/13/94, p. 15.
* * *
BULLIES AND BLACKLISTS
In compliance with Indonesia's request, Philippine President
General Fidel Ramos barred foreign delegates from attending an
international conference on East Timor at the University of the
Philippines, May 31-June 4. Forty blacklisted delegates, including
Nobel peace prize laureate Mairead Maguire, were expelled or
denied entry visas. Ramos's explanation was that his government
supports Indonesia's "territorial integrity."
The conference was held to focus world attention on the East
Timorese national independence movement and Indonesia's ongoing
genocidal attack on the East Timorese masses. Trained and armed by
the United States, the Indonesian army invaded East Timor in 1975
and annexed it as Indonesia's 27th province. The invasion has
resulted in the slaughter of 200,000 East Timorese.
The Suharto dictatorship has been defying various UN resolutions
that call for Indonesian withdrawal from the small country. Weeks
before the conference, Indonesia had been pressuring the Ramos
government to cancel the conference. Jakarta withdrew its
participation from the East Asian Growth Area (EAGA) which
Indonesian investors were tp attend; refused to continue hosting
the second round of talks last May between the Philippine
government and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF); canceled
a delegation of Indonesian students to a Harvard-sponsored
conference; and threatened the Philippines with 'retaliatory
In a forum held by BAYAN (Bagong Alyansang Makabayan) on May 27,
indigenous people belonging to the alliance KAMP, and the
Cordillera People's Alliance assailed both the Ramos and Suharto
governments for 'employing dictatorial tactics to silence our
protests." The educational forum was also a celebration of the
20th anniversary of FRETILIN (Revolutionary Front for the
Independence of East Timor), the sole representative of the
peoples of East Timor in their 'life-and-death struggle against
BAYAN said: "If [Ramos's government] can be cowed by a small bully
like Indonesia, how then can it stand up to its master, the
superpower that is the United States of America?" The statement
called on Filipino people to build a "sovereign and self-reliant
country [that] will earn the respect of all countries, including a
small bully like Indonesia." Since 1987, BAYAN and its member-
organizations have been picketing the Indonesian embassy and
organizing forums for FRETILIN representatives to Manila.
Notes: Press statements from NDF, BAYAN, wire service extracts
* * *
YOUNG STUDENTS LIKE MIM
In June, MIM spent several days distributing MIM Notes to new
students at the orientation program of a large East Coast
university. The students were remarkably open-minded and eager to
discuss communism. MIM was also able to gauge the success of its
distribution efforts as students from around the country reported
having seen MIM Notes.
Some of the administrators behind the orientation program were a
little upset and asked us to leave. Apparently they want to keep
the incoming students cloistered until their minds close up a bit.
Lucky for the young students, the administrators haven't come up
with a convincing argument for MIM to leave yet.
Write to MIM about receiving bundles of papers to distribute in
your campus or neighborhood. Help us open the hearts and minds of
progressive Amerika before the University pigs can shut them down.
* * *
CONGRESS MUTILATES GENITALS AND PEOPLE
The movement against female genital mutilation gained a surprising
ally in March when a U.S. House of Representatives committee
approved a bill by Rep. Pat Schroeder (D-Colorado) making the
procedure illegal within the U.S.(1) U.S. opposition to genital
mutilation is a purely diversionary strategy. When the U.S
government targets Africa and Africans--as in the "humanitarian"
invasion of Somalia--the result is expanded imperialism. The U.S.
government does not care about female genital mutilation.
The procedure ranges from a mild form--similar to male
circumcision--where the foreskin of the clitoris is removed. A
more advanced form removes the clitoris and surrounding area. "In
the most radical form, known as infibulation, the clitoris and all
external genital parts are removed. The two sides of the genital
area are sewn together, closing off the vagina, and a small hole
is left for the passage of urine and menstrual fluid."(2)
It is estimated that some form of female genital mutilation
affects up to 100 million women and girls worldwide, predominately
in Africa. In addition to the loss in sexual feeling, infection
from the often unsanitary procedure can lead to death or future
sexual or childbirth problems.(2)
These procedures are clearly patriarchal and should be opposed.
The relevant question is one of strategy: How can we attack
patriarchy in a way that will get us to a society without
patriarchy, capitalism, and imperialism?
Some opponents of the Schroeder bill argue that the procedure is
part of African culture, and to attack the procedure is to attack
the culture. There are good reasons for revolutionaries to defend
the culture of the oppressed. Franz Fanon pointed out that the
imperialists constantly try to stamp out this culture, because it
can be a unifying force. But this doesn't mean that the "Defend
the culture!" line is correct in all cases. For example, all
nations of the world currently live under patriarchy, so their
culture is patriarchal. Revolutionaries struggle to eliminate
patriarchy even in oppressed cultures.
The focus of the anti-genital mutilation movement is anti-Third
World. This is why it can have allies in the U.S. congress, which
has no interest in abolishing patriarchy; only in continuing the
imperialist domination of the oppressed. Like the French
manipulation of the Algerian veil,(3) Amerika hopes to buy the
allegiance of African women against relatively powerless African
The white pseudo-feminists who have jumped to condemn African
culture as "patriarchal" fail to condemn either Amerikan
patriarchy or Amerika's role in African reality. Theirs is not an
anti-patriarchy position, but rather a pro-imperialist position
and a prop for the Amerikan patriarchy.
The biggest enemy of African women is not genital mutilation or
the people who perform the operation. That enemy is imperialism.
By destroying U.S. domination over the Third World, African women
can begin to change their own conditions.(4)
1. Star Tribune 3/17/94, p. 2B.
2. NPR 3/23/94.
3. Franz Fanon, A Dying Colonialism, New York: Monthly
Review Press, 1965.
4. See MIM Notes 54 July 1991 articles on Eritrean women's
participation in and conditions under the revolutionary
* * *
NEW GROCERY-SHELF BATTLES: BOURGEOISIE FLOUNDERS IN ATTACKS ON
A trip to the grocery store reveals an intensified concern of the
powers-that-be with the difference between feminism and pseudo-
feminism. The bourgeoisie needs to understand the difference so
that it can attack the real feminists. But with the subject on the
cover of several publications, it is clear that the press still
has no idea what is genuine and what is pseudo-feminism. MIM
celebrates this confusion among the enemy, and strives to put
forward a clear line on the difference between real feminism and
the assorted weak imitations.
Genuine feminism must address gender from the perspective of the
Third World proletariat. The assorted lines discussed below all
work from a First World perspective--they do not address the needs
of the world's most oppressed people.
It appears that the mass media is gearing up ideologically for the
release of about half a dozen books on feminism from major
capitalist publishing houses this summer. In Boston, two heavy-
weights are entering the fray, the Boston Phoenix and the Boston
The Boston Phoenix cover story reads "The Evolved Male."(1) This
story is about how men under 35 are different from older men, who
the Phoenix says are increasingly opposing women's liberation in
the media. The front-page photo is of an attractive male model
with a pink pin sporting half of the feminist symbol MIM displays
on its masthead.
MIM agrees with the main point of the article: young people
inherit a rotting structure of gender relations that has failed to
keep pace with a changing world. Young men have been raised in an
environment where a majority of women work. Yet there is still
little day-care, and hence no answers to the questions of how
people will raise their families with most parents working.
Domestic violence, sexual harassment and other gender issues also
The liberal pseudo-feminist response to these contradictions is to
look for change in arenas that are totally superficial to the
structures of gender oppression. This impulse comes out in
insistence on "politically correct" language, and in advice to
women on how to meet sensitive men. Faced with a changing world,
the pseudo-feminists try to leave basically unequal gender systems
intact while making cosmetic changes.
The traditional patriarchal reaction--both to the real changes of
more women working, and to the strawperson changes like "femi-
nazi" insistence on correct language--has been to say women should
leave their jobs and go back home to raise the kids. This approach
is both unrealistic and unfair. Any fascist movement in power that
tries to enforce this regression will only speed up the demise of
this dying system, by proving to women the necessity of
In its own front-page offensive, the Boston Globe attempted to
attack genuine feminism, but was unable to hit its target:
"They say they are fed up with hearing feminism equated with
theories that all sex is rape or that eating red meat symbolizes
"And so, a growing number of women in academic, legal and
political circles have been banding together in a bid to reclaim
the mantle of feminism from what they call a radical faction, one
that no longer speaks for most women."(2) The Boston Globe targets
Gloria Steinem, Catharine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin as speaking
for the Old Guard of feminism.
Including Steinem in this list indicates the Boston Globe's utter
confusion. Steinem was the original Amerikan incarnation of
pseudo-feminism, and was instrumental in stealing the mantle of
feminism from more radical feminists of the 1960s like the
Redstockings. Steinem claimed that sex would improve between men
and women if women were liberated.(3) This was just an earlier
version of the current P.C. drive to change the way people talk
about sex. Both versions focus on the superficial tensions in
relations among First World people. Neither threatens to touch the
underlying structures of oppression.
Women like MacKinnon and Dworkin have tried to keep radical
feminism alive by opposing the patriarchy even at the expense of
comfortable relations between men and women. But even MacKinnon
has found herself unable to stand up for what her own writings and
the writings of Andrea Dworkin say. MacKinnon claims lately not to
believe all sex is rape: probably because her legal-reformist
practice could not stand the implications of her own theoretical
work. MacKinnon's work centers on outlawing some extreme forms of
sexual oppression like violent rape and pornography. If she were
to admit that there can be no such thing as consensual sex in the
context of this type of coercion, she would not be able to defend
Without recognizing her allies in the Third World proletariat and
without a vanguard organization, MacKinnon finds it necessary to
compromise feminism for the sake of reformist expediency. By
contrast, MIM is the only organization or person that MIM is aware
of that is willing to stand up and state plainly that all sex is
rape. Women never got a chance to consent to gender inequality,
and would not have consented if given the chance. The only
solution is revolution, not outlawing more sex as "bad sex"
through legal reformist battles while preserving some sex as "good
The Globe gets closer to the truth, noting that there is an
upsurge of feminists and pseudo-feminists saying that "women are
not victims." The psychiatry, psychology and domestic violence and
rape counseling wing of the movement has always feathered its own
nest by making a political line out of telling women they are
victims who need elaborate psychiatric and legal counseling. MIM
does not support this kind of "victimization" pseudo-feminism.
Part of the ideology of gender oppression is the role of women as
the supposedly "weaker sex." The only way to combat this is to
demonstrate to women that it is possible for them to seize power
from their oppressors. Refining the experience of gender
oppression through counseling only sets back the progress of
Rikki Klieman of the Women's Freedom Network claims to oppose
victimization pseudo-feminism: "Men are not the enemy... We treat
each other as equals. This idea of victimization and powerlessness
is just abhorrent."(3) Wrong again. Klieman's line takes the
correct idea that playing the victim is bad for women and turns it
into the incorrect one that men and women are already equals. This
is indistinguishable from the Christian position that men and
women are equal in the eyes of God but given different sacred
roles in the family. In case Klieman hasn't noticed, women and men
do have different roles in our society, and the female role here
and internationally is the role with less power. These roles are
not equal anymore than they are sacred.
MIM's work on gender picks a path through all these incorrect
lines to find the only consistent theory for women's liberation.
1. Boston Phoenix 5/27-6/2/94, p. 1.
2. Boston Globe 5/29/94, p. 1.
3. MIM reviews Steinem's work in MIM Theory 2/3, Gender and
* * *
CIA OPERATIVE MANAGING PERUVIAN STATE
The infamous Vladimir Montesinos, commonly referred to as Peruvian
President Alberto Fujimori's closest advisor and second-in-command
of the Peruvian government, has long-standing ties to the U.S.
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Montesinos' official role is as
Fujimori's senior advisor on military and intelligence affairs,(1)
but he is known to head the National Intelligence Service (SIN),
to be in charge of top-level judicial appointments and military
promotions and as a principal architect of Fujimori's self-coup of
A recent law authored by the Fujimori clique gives the power of
military promotion to the civilian government rather than to the
military itself.(1) This gives Montesinos extraordinary powers to
fend off the ever-present threat of a military coup against
Fujimori by exclusively appointing loyal officers.(3)
Amerikans should study Montesinos' links with and subservience to
the CIA. The U.S. government and military have tried to hide their
active opposition to the Communist Party of Peru under the banner
of the war on drugs. The staying power and depth of their
relationship with Montesinos demonstrates thatthe U.S. interest in
Peru is imperialism, not concern over chemical dependency.
Amerikan progressives should investigate their government's
connections in Peru and oppose U.S. military intervention there.
Long History of Work with the CIA
The earliest evidence of Montesinos' connections to the CIA stem
from the unglamorous termination of his military career: "A former
army captain, he was cashiered in the 1970's  for passing
information to the U.S. government on the Peruvian military's
purchase of Soviet arms... Although never convicted of espionage,
he was banned from military installations."(6) Another source
confirms that Montesinos was dismissed from the army "for copying
and passing on information to the U.S. Central Intelligence
During the 1970s, Peru was governed by a populist, anti-CIA
military dictatorship. Yet the charges against Montesinos were
dropped.(2) So why did the government fail to formally court-
martial Montesinos when they had the chance? The former head of
the armed forces, Salinas, explains: "It was not attempted to
prove the charge of treason to the fatherland, because the Army
did not agree to taking apart the intelligence system that a
neighboring country possessed, and the only way to convict him
involved making the issue public. Then they preffered--since this
man at that time was not important--not to dismantle an entire
system of intelligence that was valuable for the interests of
Peru.."(7) Evidently the Cold War interests of the military
government overrode its desire to eliminate Montesinos, who has
now returned as the military's overseer.
Presumably after some hiatus, "the CIA recently renewed old ties
with Montesinos."(10) Gustavo Gorriti, a journalist of the legal-
left opposition in Peru, was arrested immediately after the self-
coup of April 1992. Gorriti was poised to print an article that
would directly compromise Montesinos. Gorriti reports that the
Colina Group "death squad itself was an offshoot of the
intelligence services that under Montesinos' direction had
benefitted from CIA training."(11) According to Gorriti's account
of his abduction, after he, his computer, and his hard-disk had
been taken from his apartment: "Upon exiting, I saw the vehicle
that was to be expected: a Cherokee van, without distinguishing
license plates or symbols, with polarized lights, from those
recently given by the CIA to the SIN and the SIE; and I realized
that the situation was serious."(12) Another source reports that
Vladimiro Montesinos is "said even by Fujimori to be close to the
Central Intelligence Agency."(14) There is little reason to
doubt that the CIA, through Montesinos, is playing a leading role
in managing the fragile Peruvian state and its counterinsurgency
Montesinos--Death Squads, Drugs, Counterinsurgency
Readers of MIM Notes w suspected Communist Party of Peru (PCP)
sympathizers and operatives. Robles alleged that Montesinos was
the principal organizer of and perhaps even a participant in
Colina operill remember our reports on dissenting Peruvian General
Robles' denunciation of the "Colina Group," a death squad that has
carried out numerous high-profile massacres ofations. A kangaroo
military tribunal "forbade" Montesinos to testify in the eventual
trials of the Colina assassins, who kidnapped and killed nine
students and a professor at La Cantuta University. Thus the top
leadership was insulated from answering to human rights
charges.(4) To this day only a few pawns have been convicted, and
families of the victims are attempting to take the case to a human
rights tribunal in order to convict Montesinos and other top
Montesinos is also the leader of the faction of the Peruvian
military which openly advocates the most brazen terrorization of
the Peruvian people in the name of "counter-insurgency." (5) The
Peruvian military's documented human rights abuses, stemming from
its policy of "kill fifty random peasants, and you are sure to
have killed some PCP operatives," are well-known.
MIM rejects the "good-cop, bad-cop" distinction, as both the
liberal and conservative wings of the military share the pro-
capitalist, anti-communist ideology which justifies wholesale
repression against the Peruvian revolution. Case in point: the
aforementioned renegade general Robles, an example of a"good cop,"
says that he ratted on the Colina Group because "Most of us are
fighting a clean fight against terrorism."(18) There is no "clean
fight" against the PCP, Montesinos and Robles represent two
counterrevolutionary factions of the military fighting a dirty war
against a correct and popular revolution.
Montesinos defended narcos until 1982, and his law firm has
continued to do the same.(16) Fujimori and Montesinos' working
relationship began when Montesinos defended Fujimori against
accusations of fraudulent real estate dealings during the 1990
elections. At that time, Montesinos "counted several known drug
traffickers among his clients,"(17) while his client, the Peruvian
regime, upheld an official anti-drug posture. One source describes
Montesinos as "A long time lawyer for drug traffickers [who] has
represented Evaristo Porras Ardila, one of Pablo Escobar's right-
hand men."(8) The close ties between the Peruvian military and the
cocaine traffickers, combined with Montesinos' advocacy for many
high-level drug traffickers, has led some to assert that the
cocaine establishment exercises powerful influence even in
Fujimori's cabinet through Montesinos.(13)
U.S. OUT OF PERU! POPULAR JUSTICE FOR THE ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE!
1. Financial Times Limited 9/29/93.
2. Christian Science Monitor 5/18/93.
3. San Francisco Chronicle 5/24/93: "In November ,
Montesinos helped uncover a coup plot against Fujimori planned by
renegade officers." Montesinos evidently plays a key role in
managing the Fujimori regime's relations with the fractious
Peruvian military. Miami Herald 11/8/93 describes Montesinos as
"Fujimori's eyes and ears in the military."
4. Miami Herald 7/22/93.
5. El Nuevo Herald 6/23/93: "Yoshiyama is good cop. The part of
the bad cop is played, indisputably, by the de facto head of
Peru's Intelligence Service, Vladimir Montesinos."
6. Miami Herald 6/10/93.
7. Caretas 12/3/92; Salinas' reference to "falsification of
documents" probably means that the army officially denies buying
arms from the Soviet Union.
8. Washington Post 2/28/93.
9. Miami Herald 11/8/93.
10. Nicaragua Solidarity Network Bulletin 4/27/92.
11. Miami Herald 5/23/93.
12. Caretas 4/10/92, p. 19.
13. Houston Chronicle 4/19/93.
14. Reuters 11/20/92.
15. Miami Herald 2/23/94.
16. Caretas 5/4/92.
17. Christian Science Monitor 5/14/92.
18. New York Times 5/12/93.
* * *
HAITI UNDER THE GUN: CLINTON EYES ISLAND ATTACK
New diplomatic moves and recent public evidence suggest a U.S.
invasion of Haiti may be imminent. The United States wants to
invade Haiti to restore President Jean Bertrand Aristide to power,
more than two years after the popular leader was ousted in a
military coup. The United States is preparing ideologically for
the invasion with talk of restoring democracy to Haiti. But true
democracy cannot be enforced under U.S. guns any more than it can
be under the guns of the Haitian military dictatorship.
Preparations for the invasion
On June 10 the Clinton administration announced new sanctions on
commercial air travel and financial transactions--a move widely
interpreted as an attempt to buy time to prepare the ground for an
invasion. The new sanctions are supposed to shift the burden from
Haiti's poor to the rich. But they are not likely to persuade the
military to leave. The ban on financial transactions was announced
far enough in advance to allow people to shift money around before
it took effect. The United States also admits that it will still
be possible to transfer money from U.S. accounts to Switzerland,
and from there to Haiti, bypassing the embargo. The U.S.
government and "non-governmental" organizations, which dominate
much of the Haitian economy, are exempt from the sanctions.(1)
Other evidence of possible invasion includes press reports about
Pentagon planning and a sudden hype about drug dealing by Haiti's
military leaders, many of whom are former or current CIA
stooges.(2) Haiti's generals recently consulted with Manuel
Noriega's lawyers, in apparent preparation for a Panama Solution--
invasion and show-trial--by the Amerikans.(3)
These signs taken together point to a U.S. invasion following a
"good faith" effort at "letting sanctions work" to "restore
democracy." Then, a "peacekeeping" force would control the island
until President Jean Bertrand Aristide's term as president expires
next year, at which time the United States could control the
island enough to get election results it can live with.
The purpose of the peacekeeping force "would be to prevent anarchy
or civil war if the international community succeeds in forcing
Haiti's military rulers from power."(4) Duties would include
policing, government and other internal security.
The United States has several interests in Haiti. U.S. business
profits from Haitian labor and resources rely on social control.
Social control is also essential to keep Haitian refugees out of
the United States, were they threaten to cause significant
political problems. Finally, an invasion of Haiti would serve as a
threat to other U.S. stooges who create image problems for the
United States; the invasion would also bolster President Clinton's
sagging political image.
Following up on Clinton's May 8 promise to stop repatriating
Haitian refugees without hearings, the United States announced the
opening of facilities to hear cases for political asylum in mid-
June.(5) But Haitian solidarity groups say the new process won't
help anyway, because the courts will rush through claims in two
days. One advocate said: "The process is designed to keep people
out, not to give them a fair chance to make their claims."(4)
Oppose the invasion: support self-determination
Anti-imperialist movements must oppose any U.S. military
intervention, however oppressive the alternative. Haiti's worst
rulers have ruled with the blessing and support of the United
States; there is no reason to think future leaders will be
different. The United States does not oppose Haiti's military
government for "humanitarian" or "democratic" reasons, but because
it does not march to U.S. orders. Restoring President Aristide to
power is only a convenient vehicle for legitimizing U.S. influence
in Haiti as being in the interests of the Haitian people.
Although Aristide was democratically elected and represented to a
large degree the will of the Haitian people, his subsequent
overthrow has reduced him to a feather in the U.S. foreign-policy
cap. Self-determination requires integrity of territory and
leadership. Aristide's reinstatement under the barrel of an
Amerikan gun precludes this possibility. The United States cannot
"make" Haiti free, or cause Haiti's elections to be magically
democratic. With or without Aristide, the Haitian people need
genuine self-determination, not further intervention from Amerikan
1. New York Times 6/11/94, p. A1.
2. Covert Action Spring 1994, p. 6-7.
3. NYT 6/8/94, p. A15.
4. Washington Post 6/8/94, p. A1, A30.
5. C-SPAN 6/11/94, CNN 6/16/94.
* * *
Nevertheless screams about capitalism and the high price of what
passes for freedom. The band condemns Amerikan settlerism,
addiction and violence. By distributing its records at $3 each,
Nevertheless is trying to break through the scam of the Amerikan
culture industry and spread some truth about this country.
"Columbus Day" calls out the brutality of settlerism and the way
Amerika has re-written its history to erase Indigenous people's
claims. Nevertheless recognizes the inherent contradiction between
the oppressor white nation and Indigenous people's nationalist
"Heritage trivialized and treated extinct
Culture freeze-dried for your entertainment
Celebrate Apartheid in America
Celebrate genocide is a spectator sport...
But a truth in history is missing from the classroom
A country's history written on the backs of its natives
Homeless minorities in their own homeland
Forced to live on reservations
Reserved for dying"
"House of mirrors" is the weakest song on the album; it fails to
hold up a real mirror to gender oppression in Amerika. "House of
mirrors" recycles the pseudo-feminist fixation on the bedroom as
the center of gender oppression, ignoring the broader structures
of gender oppression that shape and reinforce relations in the
"And you'll serve them with bruised hands and chipped plates
You'll make that bed again today that violates you in the name of
But you'll grit your teeth and bear it
One more time tonight."
The focus on "bruised hands and chipped plates" obscures the fact
that Amerikan women do not need to be married to survive. MIM
recognizes that many Amerikans choose marriage over single life
for a variety of reasons having to do with personal taste and
lifestyle, and that sexual relationships within the confines of
the patriarchy can be ugly and dangerous. The existence of
violent rape, pornography, sexual harassment and other coercive
pressures on sexuality preclude the possibility of truly
"consensual" sex. But the fact remains that many First World women
who "grit their teeth and bear it" choose this over the other
options available to them.
MIM advocates forever monogamy, with explicit agreement about the
terms of the relationship spelled out, as the closest thing to
consent under patriarchy.
Nevertheless is preaching a lesbian-separatist approach to
feminism. If women are really trapped in these relationships with
abusive men, then feminists should tell women to rid themselves of
men and be involved only with other women, or be asexual.
Nevertheless points out that reactionary culture tries to hide the
possibility of women living independent of men: "Roles played
inferior portrayed/ If they'd only tell you how strong you really
are." It is not the job of a revolutionary culture to bemoan the
fact that reactionaries hide women's real strength; revolutionary
artists should challenge women to stand up and refuse to listen to
"I'll buy the bullets" describes how Amerikan youth are driven to
drug addiction and suicide to escape the empty decadence of
capitalism. "Lullabies from loudspeakers" talks about how the
media desensitizes people toward genocide and violence.
MIM likes Nevertheless's approach: distributing political music as
cheaply as possible so people can listen to it. We'd like to see
more political direction from this band--some ideas about what
progressive people should do to help destroy this disgusting
system. We want people to get angry enough to help us build public
opinion, in opposition to the mountain of propaganda the
bourgeoisie pumps out daily. Nevertheless forms a good critique of
capitalism and decadence; let's use that critique to create a
culture that's a manifestation of truth not a perpetuation of
Nevertheless can be reached at:
P.O. Box 599
Dorchester, MA 02124
* * *
SCREW SERIAL MOM, WE WANT MATERIAL MOM
The humorous premise of Serial Mom is that under the veneer of
white suburban middle-class normalcy lies the will to commit
brutal murder. The other thing that makes it funny is that you
believe all the people sunny blonde Serial Mom kills deserve to
die. Or is that just a warped commie perspective on life? We don't
think so. It makes the average movie-goer confront their inane
lives in Amerika's great white nation.
Take the moustachioed Math teacher, for instance, who gets off on
telling Black mothers that their sons are "not college material."
Turner runs him over with her blue station wagon. Cool. OK,
perhaps reeducation might have been preferable but hey, this is
the movies. Or the guy who stands up Serial Mom's overweight
daughter so he can go out with a tall slim blonde chick who better
conforms to the capitalist ideal of the female body. Stabbed
through the heart with a poker in a men's room. Yes. Then there's
the far-too-well-fed neighbors, gorging themselves on chicken and
chocolate cake and watching "Wheel of Fortune" on their big TV,
subsidized with Third World labor like everything else in their
lives. Scissors in the gut. Oomph.
Serial Mom's victims are all parasites sucking blood from the
world's oppressed majority, and they show no proclivity whatsoever
toward class, nation or gender suicide. Their deaths will not
matter. Their lives do not matter. What makes Serial Mom
reactionary is that she doesn't kill for those reasons. She kills
to protect her family's reputation; to patch up perceived cracks
in the suburban ideal. Like the juror wearing white shoes after
Labor Day. Can't have that in our fashionable white suburb now can
we? Pow, in the jaw with a phone receiver.
The movie is valuable in that it shows how the culture of
imperialism disturbs and distorts the soul of the white nation.
They are anesthetized against their own perversions--material
comforts have that effect. Once in a while the emptiness of their
lives crowds in and they break out of their memorized complacency.
They murder. They commit suicide. They slam dance to angry,
discordant music, as represented by the youth culture in the film
which briefly welcomes Serial Mom as an ally in rejectionism.
This is all good, but ultimately unproductive. People like Serial
Mom should find a better place to channel their deranged
disillusionment. MIM's advice to her is: get out of suburbia, get
a materialist analysis, join a revolutionary party, and focus your
anger for systemic change. You'll be quite an asset when the time
* * *
SMOOTH, NO CHUNKS!
(Bobby Seale melts down BPP militance)
Ben & Jerry, Amerika's "politically correct" ice-cream
manufacturers, have a hip new ad campaign featuring political
activists enjoying assorted new ice-cream flavors, with no
chunks.(1) Former Black Panther Party (BPP) Chairperson Bobby
Seale is pictured grinning like an idiot, defiling the BPP's
trademark black beret, giving the Black Power salute with one hand
and holding a tub of VANILLA ice-cream in the other.(2)
MIM was already disgusted by Ben & Jerry's Peace Pop--a popsicle
whose proceeds are shared between profits for the hippie
corporation (95%)and donations to some reformist peacenik
organization (5%). (Anti-militarism through capitalism? We don't
think so.) This ad is available as a poster, and the proceeds from
poster sales benefit the Children's Defense Fund (CDF). But there
is no mention in the ad of what the CDF does.(2)
We are not surprised by Ben & Jerry's; it is a capitalist
corporation like any other. But Seale was once a Maoist. In 1966,
he co-authored the BPP's Ten-Point Platform and Program with Huey
Newton, taking elements from Mao Zedong, Franz Fanon, Che Guevara
and Ho Chi Minh.(3) The Panthers used the close-fisted salute to
signify national liberation struggle against imperialism. Now,
after spending a couple of years on the lecture circuit lying
about BPP history,(4) Seale is using the Panthers' image to sell
ice-cream for a hippie social-democratic corporation. We'd rather
blow chunks than take Bobby's "no chunks".
1. Chunky ice-cream was Ben & Jerry's big selling point when they
started selling ice-cream.
2. Ben & Jerry's ad, NYT Sunday magazine, May Day 1994, p. 33.
3. Bobby Seale, Seize the Time Random House, NY, 1968.
4. MIM Notes 75 4/93, p. 8.
* * *
Vol. I, No. IV, $4
IWN, P.O. Box 174
Lake Elmo, MN 5042
Indigenous Woman (IW) is the official publication of the
Indigenous Women's Network, an international organization focusing
on improving the economic and social conditions of all indigenous
groups. IW addresses many of the problems indigenous groups face
and points to First World intervention in Third World countries as
the principal cause of these problems.
This issue of IW covers issues ranging from women entering
traditionally male professions and leadership positions, to the
use of traditional health remedies with an emphasis on community-
organized primary health care. Several of the articles focus on
indigenous groups' need for self-sufficiency. One of the articles
documents the Hopi nation's resistance to an outside electric
company's plans to wire one of their villages, which would
compromise their sovereignty by enforcing dependence on resources
outside of their control. As an alternative, a Hopi woman engineer
has begun to install small solar panels which generate electricity
for individual houses.
Indigenous Woman focuses on change through existing imperialist
governmental and social institutions, but it does address other
options for change.
IW supports the fallacy of reform through government by asking its
readers to write to the presidents of Brazil and Peru to encourage
them to stop the abuses of indigenous peoples which occur in their
countries. This strategy ignores the fact that these governments
are responsible for the majority of the abuses of indigenous
people within their borders. Appealing to these governments also
legitimates repression as retaliation. The Brazilian and Peruvian
militaries can point to progressives' calls to "stop human rights
violations" as their reason for attacking political dissidents and
the masses in general.
IW takes an active stance against the one revolutionary group it
does mention. IW blames the Communist Party of Peru (PCP) for an
attack on the Ashaninka Indians. The magazine also falls into the
imperialist trap of referring to the PCP as a guerrilla group.
[The PCP is a Maoist party leading a People's War against the
reactionary Peruvian regime. Much of its military strategy is
guerrilla warfare, but the party is much more than simply a
"guerrilla group." --MC45] This accusation ignores the fact that
the PCP is composed primarily of Indigenous people and has done
much to protect the indigenous groups of Peru from governmental
oppression.(See page 6 for discussion of Peruvian military
philosophy on the Indigenous).
--A friend in the east
* * *
UNDER LOCK AND KEY:
NEWS FROM PRISONS AND FROM PRISONERS
Attica censors MIM Notes
I am referring the following material to the Media Committee for
review: MIM Notes April 1994 #87
Reason I believe this publication to violate Attica's guidelines:
--from an Attica (NY) prisoncrat's report, 5/3/94
MC49 notes: Censorship was one of the grievances which led Attica
prisoners to rise up in 1971. As the state's response was
massacre, beatings and torture, Attica prisoncrats should know a
thing or two about violence.
Ohio to build super-max prison
In the wake of the April 1993 rebellion at the Southern Ohio
Correctional Facility (SOCF) which left 10 dead, Ohio prisoners
and prison activists had hoped the state would examine its
policies which resulted in Ohio having the highest level of
overcrowding in the nation at 178%. The state's response has been
one of more repression.
The state has announced plans to build a super-max prison similar
to the facilities at Pelican Bay in California and the federal
penitentiary at Marion, IL. These super-max prisons have prisoners
locked in their cells 23 hours a day, deprived of human contact
and virtually all communication with the outside world. These
prisons have been criticized by human rights groups and are the
focus of extensive litigation concerning both conditions of
confinement and brutality that occurs within them.
The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC) has
formed a committee to develop plans and recommend a site for the
new super-max prison. If the general assembly approves the funds,
the prison will have 550 beds. Since Marion became a lockdown
prison in 1983, some 37 states have built super-max prisons. This
trend is now reaching Ohio which already has a super-max control
unit at Lucasville.
--reprinted from Prison Legal News, 3/94
Stop the Ohio super-max!
...To put a stop to the construction of a super-max prison in
Ohio, and to suggest that taxpayers' money be allotted to
rehabilitative programs instead, write the chairman of the Ohio
General Assembly and any or all of the below:
Ohio General Assembly
c/o The Chairman
State Office Tower
Columbus, OH 43215
Reginald Wilkinson, Director
Ohio Dept. of Rehab. & Corr.
1050 Freeway Dr. North
Columbus, OH 43229
Governor's Chief of Staff
State Office Tower
Columbus, OH 43215
--Prison Legal News, 4/94
Captive in Scioto KKKounty
Situated in the southernmost tip of Ohio, in Scioto (Klan)
KKKounty, rural, all-white Lucasville Village sits as a grim
reminder of Alabama, Mississippi, and other parts of the United
States of Amerikkka of many years past when Jim Crow masqueraded
as righteous law, and cowards hiding under bedsheets as its
There is little difference in the people of here and now. As the
Dayton Daily News reports, "The most cited example of racism here
is the 1986 departure of Dr. James Mullins, a black physician."(1)
A Lucasville resident comments that Dr. Mullins "was a fine doctor
and a fine gentleman... [T]his was a racist white community and
they wouldn't accept him."(1) Another resident states, "Niggers
aren't welcome in this town. We let [Dr. Mullins] know that."(1)
Dr. Mullins was forced to move.
Scioto KKKounty is also the site of Ohio's Maximum Security prison
kamp, Southern Ohio Correctional [sic] Facility (SOCF), which
opened its cage doors for captives (prisoners) in 1972. In a
depressed area, the prison was a savior for many and a financial
windfall for others in Scioto KKKounty. And greedy whites wanted
the whole hog.
Blacks were barred from employment. "Because correctional officer
jobs, with good pay and benefits, are among the most coveted in
this village, experts say black prison guards would be
particularly unlikely to be made welcome."(1)
Those Blacks in surrounding areas lucky enough to get hired were
met on the roads leading in and out of the parking lot, and told
in no uncertain terms to seek employment elsewhere--"niggers ain't
wanted here--git the hell gone." Threats and intimidation. Slashed
tires and broken windshields convinced the more stubborn--or
desperate--to leave and not return.
The greedy got greedier and along with racial hatred, they peddled
everything from drugs, sex and alcohol to guns and other weapons.
During the early and mid-1980's, a few "token Blacks" were hired
and allowed to remain--after pressures came from "up north on
high." On the inside for the prisoners, 70% of whom were Black,
there were no significant changes. Those early years were the
foundation upon which Lucasville prison was built--corruption and
White supremacy and racial hatred at Lucasville prison are not
merely practiced, promoted, and supported, but are deeply
ingrained into the mores and customs of the people--a way of life
for Scioto Klan KKKounty residents--who flatly refuse to change.
Black prisoners have been routinely beaten, several murdered--some
beaten to death by racist guards, some murdered by white prisoners
paid or programmed by guards. A white prisoner coming to
Lucasville for the first time is immediately targeted for
recruitment into the white bigot school of hate. Guards tell them,
"Stay away from niggers; don't cell with no niggers," then proudly
display their badges/brands of honor--racist tattoos which
identify their membership in a white supremacist group. They then
encourage the white prisoner to brand himself and be a part of the
"bro's." Guards supply the "bro's" with drugs, tattoo materials,
racist literature--and weapons.
Racial tensions and violence have escalated over the years. As
more Blacks were hired, the promotion of racism and white
supremacy increased at an even greater rate. Blacks began to move
into supervisory positions in the late 80's and into management at
the onset of the 90's. This curbed the routine beatings somewhat,
slackened the invidious discrimination against both Black
prisoners and employees, toppled state-employed drug kings, and
sent others into hiding--for a time.
It wasn't enough, however, to change "a way of life." The bigots
stepped up their campaign of white supremacy and racial hatred
until "race war" was inevitable--and imminent, or so it seemed.
The years of cumulative hate-mongering, corruption and oppression
culminated in an explosion of rebellion--ending in lost lives and
millions of dollars of destruction.
Scioto KKKounty residents and prison kamp guards experienced a
rude awakening--the beast they created and thought was totally in
their control proved to be the monster of their worst nightmares.
As throughout the country, they seek the current "fads" in
penology that existed in the colonial and plantation eras when
punishments for crimes and sport ranged from public whippings,
branding and mutilations--to gory executions.
Thus far they have coerced the state government into spending 35
million dollars to reconstruct Lucasville prison into a Supermax--
wasteful spending that could have been better spent on housing for
the poor and homeless, on education--or even on true and
productive rehabilitation for prisoners.
Along with this multi-million dollar cosmetic facelift, they have
implemented a permanent lockdown, special goon squad units, and
sadistic chained bondage for all movement outside of cells/cages,
while political puppets and other agents of oppression step up the
campaign to eradicate all incentives and tools for self-
improvement and elevation within Lucasville and other prisons
throughout the country. A legal, deliberate oppression.
This will allay their fears somewhat; appease their lust for blood
and revenge for a time, and provide a measure of safety against
another uprising--perhaps--for a time. But what are they creating
this time that they will eventually have to unleash upon society?
Blinded by bloodlust, hate and bigotry, they do not perceive this
as their problem, but why should they care, since they live in
Scioto KKKounty, in the southernmost tip of Ohio, while 99% of the
prisoners will be released hundreds of miles north in parts away
from Lucasville Village. It is not their problem.
The prisoners in Ohio's system must eliminate divisions and
conflicts amongst themselves, oppose the propagation of "self-
hatred," and come together in solidarity for progressive change.
Recognize your true enemies and their manipulation of your self-
destruction. We must enjoin families, friends and relatives in
supportive alliance in our struggles against those who plant the
foot on our necks. We have a common cause, a common goal and a
--an Ohio prisoner, 4/20/94
P.S. I would like to be placed on your mailing list to receive MIM
Notes and other materials. Thank you.
1. Dayton Daily News, 4/15/93
Prisoner peace proposal
For over three years now, the Mexican prisoners at Pelican Bay
State Prison have been trying to forge a "Peace Accord" among
their many barrio and regional factions.
These efforts began with a letter to Gov. Pete Wilson, which was
never answered. The Peace attempts have been foiled at every stage
by the administration at Pelican Bay and at the Correctional
Department in Sacramento. The prisoners have been asking only to
be allowed to meet with each other under any security arrangements
the prison cares to implement. The recognized "prisoners of
influence" within the prison feel that they can help to stop the
random violence that most often happens because of lack of mutual
understanding, suspicion bred in that environment, and lack of an
available forum for communication.
Such a meeting would greatly help to clear up long-standing
differences and misunderstandings among various groups within the
system. Such positive influences allowed to express themselves
within the prison will be felt throughout the correctional system
as other prisoners come to understand that Pelican Bay prisoners
are taking a lead role in trying to create a factional truce and
spread harmony up and down California.
There is no reason to believe that violence cannot be drastically
diminished and even halted to a large degree if the authorities
will only encourage it and provide a forum for prisoners to work
out their problems--problems and differences that many times are
not even fully known or understood by the prisoners themselves, as
most prisoner violence is a reactionary response from mutual fear
We feel that an atmosphere of peace among prisoners is attainable.
Yet we understand that such an atmosphere is not in the best
interest of the present prison regime. This regime is intent on
perpetuating the myth that "uncontrollable gangs" are held
indefinitely in the SHU because of the potential for violence.
That is not true at all. Prisoners on the front of the effort say:
"Why not allow us to initiate talks among ourselves and to reach a
peace settlement that we can tell others within the system about?"
Once again we ask the Governor of the State of California to lend
his influence to have his prison administrators look into the
matter in the best interest of justice and order within this area
of state government.
--from the Pelican Bay Prison Express (PBPE), 5/94. PBPE is
published by the Pelican Bay Information Project, 2489 Mission St.
#28, San Francisco, CA 94110, (415) 821-6545.
Maryland prisoner assaulted while in chains
You have my deep and earnest apology; I had intended to write
before now. I have been very busy here on this front in a battle
with the prison officials at this Maryland "Super Mess." I was
recently assaulted while in chains by two of this Super House of
Doom's prison guards; all I was able to do was to spit in one of
I did nothing to provoke said attack other than to speak out
against the cruel and inhumane way that we are being treated here
in MCAC and to file several suits in the state and United States
Federal Courts, United States Supreme Court included; I guess they
don't like me very much. But I couldn't care less!...
--a Maryland prisoner, 5/4/94
Slave labor in Florida
...The reason why I am writing to you is in Florida, we prisoners
work and don't get paid for the work we do. And there are many
inmates that don't have any money to buy the things we need while
in prison. Could you let someone know about this? Thank you very
--a Florida prisoner, 2/1/94, in the Coalition for Prisoners'
Rights Newsletter (CPRN), 3/94. CPRN can be reached at P.O. Box
1911, Santa Fe, NM 87504-1911.
No money, no medicine
Effective immediately, all offenders must purchase over-the-
counter medications through the commissary. The DOC will not
provide any more over-the-counter medications for offenders. This
includes medications for colds, ulcers, flu, hemorrhoids, etc. The
DOC will not provide shampoo, toothpaste, etc. Offenders are
expected to purchase these items out of their state pay of $12.50
per month. But the DOC fails to pay about 30% of the offender
--a Westville, Indiana prisoner, 11/25/93, in the 1/94 Coalition
for Prisoners' Rights Newsletter
Aux prisonniers politiques...
Dans le but d'e'tendre a' l'ensemble des prisonniers politiques
communistes, anti-impe'rialistes, anti-facistes, le be'ne'fice du
travail d'information re'alise' par l'Association des Parents et
Amis des Prisonniers Communistes au profit des prisonniers des
Cellules Communistes Combattantes, l'APAPC met a' la disposition
de tous les camarades emprisonne's un bulletin d'information
mensuel en langue franc'aise comprenant un dossier de presse, une
revue des revues militantes et des documents politiques annexes.
Ce bulletin sera envoye' aux camarades emprisonne's qui en feront
la demande a' l'adresse suivante:
B.P.6; Saint-Gilles 1; B-1060 Bruxelles; BELGIQUE.
--Association des Parents et Amis des Prisonniers Communistes
Pelican Bay: "The same, only worse"
...Prisoners from each of the four facilities investigated
reported that the level of daily harassment and abuse has
continued despite the dramatic public testimony in the Madrid v.
Gomez civil rights trial. The brutal cell-extraction procedure is
carried out twice a week on average. This is the same frequency
that was criticized as grossly excessive during the trial.
Cell extractions are still being carried out for trivial reasons
such as talking back to a guard, kicking the cell door in protest
of a severe cold draft in the pod, or refusing to exit the cell
for even an optional hearing. The extraction team is used
routinely against prisoners with mental disabilities who are
Prisoners gave multiple reports of separate incidents when men
fully shackled and restrained were beaten by guards and men in
full restraint chains were thrown down the tier stairs. One
prisoner was shot at point-blank range with the gas gun that fires
rubber bullets 1 1/2 inches wide. Then he was rushed and beaten
unconscious with truncheons and boots by the "goon squad" dressed
in body armor and helmets--the 21st-century version of Nazi Storm
Guards push and pull prisoners during the walks outside the
living-unit pods. Prisoners are fully shackled with handcuffs
attached to waist chains and hobble chain connecting the ankles.
Guards grab on the chains and move the prisoner around just to
show who is the boss and deliver a little humiliation.
Prisoners continue to be hogtied and left for hours in such a
state, despite recent testimony by the Attorney General's office
that hogtying had stopped at Pelican Bay. The hogtied prisoner is
first shackled with handcuffs and anklecuffs. Then the chains
between the cuffs are attached to each other, drawing the hands
and feet together. Prisoners have recently been hogtied (hands and
feet in front) in a stand up holding cell, causing the prisoner to
be sitting for hours on the floor of the cell with hands and feet
upward in a V position.
Other men report being "suitcased." During suitcasing a prisoner
is hogtied face down with hands and feet behind. The chain used to
attach the hand to the ankle is then used as the suitcase handle
to lift and carry the prisoner, causing extreme pain as his legs
and arms bent backward supporting his weight.
Also continuing unchecked is the frequent use of lethal force by
guards at Pelican Bay. Prisoners hear the order to lay down on the
ground in the A and B Yards on an almost daily basis as the threat
of dum-dum bullets being fired at them from the towers becomes the
horror of Pelican Bay's lethal excess.
Less dramatic, but just as brutal, is the daily, petty harassment
by the custody, administrative, and health care staff. Guards
hassle the prisoners over the details of daily life, especially in
the Security Housing Unit (SHU). A prisoner might need more toilet
paper or have a question about canteen items or have a legitimate
complaint he wants heard. The guard will stall and put the
prisoner off each day by saying, "OK, I'll do it" and finally ask
the prisoner to remind him "when I get back from my days off."
Guards verbally abuse the prisoners and taunt them, using racial
slurs and even loud-talking about confidential information
concerning the prisoner's crime or prison history. False rumors
are started by guards in attempts to soil a prisoner's reputation
or create hostility among prisoners. Jailhouse lawyers and convict
leaders are commonly slandered in such a manner. Prisoners who
complain about the conditions are labeled troublemakers by staff
and given especially brutal treatment. Many times they are moved
to another cell with a violent or crazy person.
One of the prisoners who was a named plaintiff in the civil rights
suit had a bucket of cleaning solution thrown in his face while he
was standing in a holding cell.
Mentally ill prisoners continue to fill the SHU. These disabled
men suffer more verbal and physical abuse than others, including
more frequent cell extraction. The denial of medical care for
ongoing illness, with 6-8 week waits for regular doctor visits,
continues, as brought up in the testimony of medical experts in
Madrid v. Gomez. Delays in dental care are three months long....
Pelican Bay prisoners continue to flood the courts with legal
protests over their conditions of confinement and classification.
The intense jailhouse legal effort is accomplished through
communal action among prisoners of all races and backgrounds....
But such activities have harsh consequences, as the lead witness
in the Madrid trial found out. On his return to prison from the
courtroom, his TV and property were "lost" for more than two
weeks. His single cell status was rescinded. Finally, while cuffed
behind his back, he was bodyslammed into his cell door and shoved
around during a very unusual procedure for obtaining nailclipper
While being shoved, he slipped and fell on the floor, which had
been made wet by the flooding caused by a mentally ill prisoner on
the tier above. The escort guard fell on top of him and charged
him with assault on staff and took him to the Behavioral Control
This old timer spent nine of the most horrible days of his life in
a strip cell listening to the screams of the men around him. He
had no eating utensils for three days and no comb, towel, or
shower for five days. The cell floor was always wet from the
flooding and contaminated with the excrement of the insane men
housed in BCU. Such is the price of protest at Pelican Bay State
Yet protest continues, and the men of Pelican Bay endure the
abuses of their confinement with dignity, perseverance and honor.
--from the Pelican Bay Prison Express (PBPE), 5/94.
The "war on gangs" is a war on the people
...You know how the system loves to use terms of classism, racism,
sexism to try and classify all people? The Texas Department of
Criminal Justice-Institutional Division (TDCJ-ID) now has me
classified as a Texas gang member! All because TDCJ-ID's
classification administration bureau doesn't have a classification
for someone who is a political prisoner and/or a revolutionary....
--a Texas prisoner, 4/12/94
Ohio targets activists as "gang members"
The Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections (DORC) has
instituted a regulation prohibiting "gang related activity." This
was implemented to fall in line with their overall intention to
follow in the footsteps of California, Texas, Illinois and other
states which have built "Super Max" prisons and focused on alleged
"gangs" and "gang leaders" in prison. Ohio has gone so far as to
manufacture gang members.
The DORC's latest tactic has been to target political activists
and jailhouse lawyers for "gang related" charges when prisoners
engage in lobbying the legislature. X, a political and prison
activist working toward prison reform by lawful means such as
lobbying the state legislature was charged with the infraction of
"gang related activity" for advocating an Ohio Prisoners' Rights
Union and receiving American Corrections Association material from
Citizens United for the Rehabilitiation of Errants.
X was placed in Local Control, six months of solitary confinement,
for this at the Madison Correctional Facility. He began a
hungerstrike in protest and after 38 days was transferred to
Lebanon Correctional Institution.
We have drafted a citizens lobby letter protesting the
implementation of a Supermax prison in Ohio along with a fact
sheet. Copies of these were made and sent, along with ABC
proposals, to X at Lebanon. These items were confiscated and X was
again infracted for "gang related activities" and placed in
segregation. X again began a hunger strike and as of February 11,
1994, had 14 days on it. He will refuse to eat until he is
released from segregation.
The blatant political repression by use of a "gang related
activity" rule infraction must be stopped. Litigation is pending,
but we call on all activists, inside and out, to take the time to
write a protest letter regarding the distorted use of this rule
and X's treatment.
Protest letters should be sent to:
Governor George Voinavitch
Vern Riffe Center
77 South High St.
Columbus, OH 43215
1050 Freeway Drive N.
Columbus, OH 43229
--an Ohio prisoner in Prison Legal News, 4/94
Vegan prisoner goes on hunger strike
A friend of mine suggested I write your newspaper concerning my
illegal and inhumane treatment while being incarcerated in the
Tazewell County Jail in Virginia.
Briefly, I am a strict vegetarian--what is referred to as "vegan."
This means I do not eat any animal products and this includes
animal flesh as well as fowl eggs and dairy products. I have been
imprisoned for almost 9 1/2 months on charges of possessing and
distributing LSD and psilocybin. During this time, I have tried to
impress upon the jail staff the importance of receiving an
adequate vegan diet. But this has been to no avail.
Much of my food is cooked with meat or meat products (fatback,
lard, gelatin, et. al.) as well as often containing eggs or dairy
products. Not only that, but my meals are nutritionally deficient,
and I often get served less food than the meat-eaters here.
Usually, the only attempt they make at serving me a vegetarian
diet is to take the meat entree off of my tray. They make no
substitution for this and just serve me what is left.
I receive next to no fresh fruit or vegetables and absolutely no
whole grains--the staple of a vegan diet--unless one counts
oatmeal, which is served about once a month for breakfast. My
breakfast usually consists of Corn Flakes or Rice Krispies with
dairy milk, which of course I don't eat.
I have done everything I can think of to correct this situation.
I've filed grievances, written the sheriff and even written the
Department of Corrections, all to no avail. My last step on this
matter has been to file a 1983 form, which is essentially an
inmate civil suit. I have yet to hear from the federal courts over
this, but I hope to win.
I have carefully documented the food I have been served as well as
the food the meat-eating inmates have been offered. I have gotten
records of my grievances and the responses I have gotten. It may
be of interest that on one of my first complaints to the Nurse on
my substandard diet, I was locked in a "side cell"--essentially
solitary confinement--for around a week.
As I have been vegetarian for the last 15 years and strictly vegan
for the last 8 years, this situation is creating a lot of
emotional distress on my part. Frankly, I feel it is immoral,
unhealthy and downright disgusting to eat dead animals. You might
say vegetarianism forms the basis of my "religious" beliefs. And
as the First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees the right to
practice the religion of my choice, so I feel my treatment here is
illegal. And I hope the federal courts uphold this.
While I am waiting for the courts to resolve this issue and since
nothing else has seemed to work, I have begun a hunger strike. My
intention is to stay on this strike until this institution
provides me with an adequate vegan menu or moves me to an
institution which will provide me with such a menu. Today is the
13th day of my hunger strike, but the only response I have
received from the jail is that they are not going to meet my
demands and that they feel it is unreasonable of me to demand a
special diet. I am enclosing a list of my hunger strike demands
for your information.
I can provide you with more information on my diet, on my
religious beliefs, or on my treatment here, if you request it. For
now, note that I am a member of a legally-recognized vegetarian
religion--The Church of the Sacred Mother--which is essentially
founded on vegetarianism and respect for the Earth.
I may be moved to a state prison anytime in the next 2-3 months.
If I am, I'll write and let you know my new address, as well as
how the new conditions are. I'll also keep you informed on my
--a Virginia prisoner, 1/24/94
Coalition Against Indiana Control Units and Prison Abuse
The Coalition Against Indiana Control Units and Prison Abuse
(CAICUAPA) has been monitoring and documenting the patterns of
abuse and torture at the Maximum Control Complex (MCC)
Westville...Since the MCC within Indiana's Westville Correctional
Center opened in 1991, the running of the high-tech dungeon has
violated international law, international human rights treaties,
the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (forbidding cruel
and unusual punishment), and the humanity of anyone with a
The structure of the Maximum Control Complex at Westville
Correctional Center is built around abuse and torture. CAICUAPA
believes the only way to restore the human rights of the prisoners
held within the MCC is to close this prison-within-a-prison...
For more information, contact:
Coalition Against Control Units
P.O. Box 14075
Chicago, IL 60614-0075
--reprinted from Coalition for Prisoners' Rights Newsletter, 3/94
MC49 adds: According to the April 1994 Prison Legal News, CAICUAPA
has issued a report titled "Human Rights Violations and Torture on
the Rise at the Maximum Control Complex at Westville, IN: Profile
of a Supermax." Write to the above address for info.
Guards spray prisoner thirty times for not making his bed
This letter is to inform the public that prisoners at MCC are
subject to lead poisoning, no matter how many times the officials
say that we prisoners are not subject to lead poisoning. This
matter should be investigated to determine if such facts are true.
Let us reflect on two different occasions where two MCC prisoners
suffered chronic heart attacks. They could not receive appropriate
attention inside. This institution cannot or will not handle
emergency situations such as heart attacks.
I can't say if these incidents are related, but we prisoners at
this institution face the serious problem of highly contaminated
Before I forget, there is something else that needs to be
expressed. Since this institution opened, incidents involving
"pepper gas" have become common at this institution. One brother
was sprayed 30 times with this chemical agent as if it were some
type of toy, all because he would not make his bed. Would you get
a load of these guys? Sad.
We will continue, regardless. We will never stop struggling. We
become stronger while they become weaker. This is one reason they
fear us as a whole. Again, my beloved comrades, stay strong.
--an Indiana prisoner, 3/21/94
In the spirit of Crazy Horse
On December 14, 1993, I was released from Pelican Bay State
Prison's Security Housing Unit (SHU) lock-up, where I had been
sent from San Quentin's Death Row, after having been resentenced
to Life Without Possibility of Parole. During my transfer from the
SHU to the A-Facility Mainline Housing, I walked on grass for the
first time in fifteen years--an overwhelming experience!
Within the first days of my release, I found my way to the chapel
area to make my first contact with the Native American Community--
the Chapel Clerk of the Sacred Mountain Religious Group (SMRG) in
the group's office. The office is a rather small room, set off to
the side, just a little larger than my prison cell, and shared by
both the Native American and the Catholic Chapel Clerk.
I quickly noticed that the Protestant Chaplain's office is a good
four times larger. I also observed the extreme disparity between
the Protestant Chaplain's office resources and supplies, as well
as the Catholic's, in comparison to the meager resources and
supplies for the Native American Spiritual Group, the obvious
differences being the overabundance (three large wall bookshelves)
of books, boxes of cassette tapes and videos, as well as other
office supplies, most notably two computers, two printers and a
laptop computer. The SMRG's office materials and supplies consist
of a desk, a typewriter, a small, almost bare bookshelf and a
small wooden box for storing herbs and other items.
To date, I have spent most of my "free movement" time at the
Native American Chapel office, participating in discussions with
other Native American Brothers and attending our group's spiritual
meetings and ceremonies. Thus I have come to know the serious
dedication of our group as a "Rainbow Society" to spiritual and
Self-teaching spiritual classes are held each Monday afternoon and
coordinated mainly by the SMRG's Clerk. I have found these classes
invaluable, enriching in spirit, and well-conducted. The main
theme is spiritual sanctity and tradition. Yet the entire group
agrees that "outside guidance and involvement" is much needed. So
we are seeking outside assistance to overcome a few very simple,
but serious, needs. These are as follows:
1. Because various members of our group are denied their tribe's
specific, authorized religious items and the group is denied its
ceremonial drum, we need letters of support sent to the Warden,
Associate Warden, Program Administrator, and Chaplain, 5905 Lake
Earl Drive, Crescent City, CA 95531.
2. A Medicine Man is needed to bless and consecrate our group's
ceremonial pipe (a priority) and family pipe in order for us to
properly exercise our ceremonies and prayers.
3. Visits from spiritual leaders or any other concerned Native
American willing to extend support in spiritual fellowship and
cultural teachings to the group, regardless of tribal affiliation.
4. Contacts, donations, and assistance in obtaining such religious
items as medicine bags, a drum, buffalo skull, feathers, rattles,
firewood, etc. The group's efforts to obtain and possess a
ceremonial drum within the institution has been denied for some
time by the prison administration with such excuses as "Due to the
security and control of," or "Control and safety of." We need a
drum--the heartbeat of our people!
These things are crucial to our spiritual group because we respect
the ways and teachings of our ancestors, our elders, our leaders,
and we honor the "Declaration of War" recently issued by our
Lakota, Dakota and Nakota Brothers concerning their spirituality,
the type of sweatlodge and pipe authorized within the California
Department of Corrections prisons.
In addition to writing those mentioned above, if you are concerned
with our rights and needs to exercise our Native American religion
and want to be approved for a visit, to be a sponsor, or to
properly donate needed items, write or call the Sacred Mountain
Religious Group, c/o R.G. Bliesner, 5905 Lake Earl Drive, Crescent
City, CA 95531, (707) 465-1000, ext. 7910.
In the spirit of Crazy Horse!
--a California prisoner in North Coast Xpress, 4/94
Southport prisoners on the level
My comrades in the struggle to cease oppression,
I have recently become aware of your newspaper. I would like to
bring to your attention what takes place behind the walls of
Southport Maxi-Max Concentration Facility. This United Snakes of
Amerikkka and its institutions are full of cold-blooded racism and
capitalism! There is just a curtain over the wickedness and
brutality that exist within society and the prison system that the
oppressor tries to camouflage from the masses of people to make
his savage behavior justifiable.
This particular prison, Southport, is designed to repress those
who rebel against their so-called rules of rehabilitation in
general population. Southport is a 23-hour solitary confinement
dungeon. The whole structure of Southport functions on a level
When you first arrive at Southport, you are placed on Level 1
status in "B-Block," which is known as reception. According to
their rules, you are to stay on Level 1 until you have completed
30 days without a misbehavior report. After you have completed 30
days without a misbehavior report, you move up to Level 2. Once on
Level 2, you're supposed to do 60 days before you are moved to
Level 3. The directive states 60 days, but being that the pig is a
scum-dog and don't follow his own rules, you end up doing 90 days
on Level 2.
The only benefit on Level 2 is that the full restraints come off
once outside in the one-man dog cages. On Level 3, the only
benefit is that we are allowed to make a phone call to our family
once every two months for five minutes, and we are automatically
disconnected before five minutes of conversation is up. We are not
allowed to have watches, so we are cut off in the process of
speaking to our loved ones.
The whole level nonsense is a game that the enemy plays to pacify
us with materialistic items in order to maintain control.
--a New York prisoner, 3/20/94
Dead end drug strategy
...Over the last ten years, the number of prisoners more than
doubled, and the percentage of those sent to prison for certain
kinds of drug offenses has skyrocketed. The effect of recent
changes in sentencing laws for these activities is extremely
racist. For example, in New York state, in 1980, 11% of those sent
to prison were sent for drug convictions. In 1992, 44% were for
drug convictions. Although the majority of drug users and sellers
are white, African-Americans make up over 47% of New York state
prisoners with drug convictions, Latinos over 45% and whites 6.3%.
White prisoners in New York state have 47% of state-funded drug
treatment slots, although they make up less than 7% of prisoners
doing time for drug convictions. Of 78 treatment programs in New
York City in 1990, 54% excluded all pregnant women, 67% excluded
pregnant women on Medicaid and 87% refused to treat crack-addicted
pregnant women on Medicaid.
Altogether, treatment is available for fewer than 15% of the 5.5
million drug users in the U.S., unless they can afford private
programs. In 1992, the federal government reported that only 20%
of the more than 500,000 state prisoners needing drug treatment
--from Coalition for Prisoners' Rights Newsletter, 1/94.
Three bucks a month--soap not included
Dear MIM Notes,
What's up, comrades?... I'm really tight on my monies. I get $3.00
every month, and I have to buy my hygiene supplies with that....
--an Iowa prisoner, 2/22/94