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.
Maoist Internationalist Movement

I N T E R N E T ' S  M A O I S T  BI-M O N T H L Y

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 

     XX XX  XXX  XX XX   X   X  XXX  XXX  XXX  XXX
     X X X   X   X X X   XX  X  X X   X   X    X
     X V X   X   X V X   X X X  X X   X   XX   XXX
     X   X   X   X   X   X  XX  X X   X   X      X
     X   X  XXX  X   X   X   V  XXX   X   XXX  XXX

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


  MIM Notes 158                  March 15, 1998

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.


* * *


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 
this country.

MIM accepts people as members who agree on these 
basic principles and accept democratic centralism, 
the system of majority rule, on other questions of 
party line.

"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

* * *


by Ann Arbor RAIL
25 February, 1998

In December, 1997, 38 prisoners from Jackson, MI were 
transferred to a Federal Prison in Morgantown, W. Virginia. 
The prisoners were transferred in violation of 
MCL.791.211.83, a Michigan statute which prohibits shipping 
prisoners out of state unless the prisoners volunteer for 
the transfer. 

The state lied to the media and the public in December, 
saying that all the prisoners who were transferred had 
volunteered to be moved, but this was a lie. Prisoners who 
were transferred were bullied into accepting the transfers. 
All of the prisoners sent were non-violent offenders, and 
were in prison for short terms. They were transferred under 
threat of being messed up with the parole board and other 
such nonsense harassment. The state of Michigan violated its 
own laws in forcibly sending prisoners out of state, and 
then lied to cover up its abusive actions in transferring 
these prisoners.

Prison Legal Services of Michigan, Inc. has filed a motion 
to show cause, and hopes that the courts will give them a 
hearing soon. Prison Legal Services opposed the initial 
transfers and is hoping to prevent future transfers of 
Michigan prisoners out of state. RAIL has been gathering 
petition signatures to oppose the transfers which have 
already taken place and any additional transfers. We wish 
Prison Legal Services success in getting the transfers 
stopped and in exposing the reactionary lies of the DOC.

RAIL opposes transfers of Michigan prisoners out of state 
for several reasons. The increased distance from friends, 
families and attorneys create an unfair burden on prisoners 
who are transferred. Even in this society which relies so 
heavily on locking people up and chooses repression over 
education, it is cruel to push prisoners farther away from 
their means of support. 

Governor John Engler has justified the transfers saying that 
it is necessary to house some prisoners out of state while 
Michigan builds five new prisons to keep the population 
locked up. RAIL points to the fact that prisoners in 
Michigan are very disproportionately Black and argues that 
prisons are not the vital component of "public safety" Mr. 
Engler makes them out to be. Rather, prisons are a tool of 
repression aimed specifically at the Black nation. RAIL 
opposes the transfers as we oppose all schemes to build 
additional gulags for locking up the oppressed.

Today, the Department of Corrections is stalling its plans 
to send an additional 470 prisoners to a private prison in 
Oklahoma. According to an employee at Prison Legal Services 
the Michigan state legislature will likely try to rewrite 
the statute on transfers so that prisoners can legally be 
sent out of state against their will. State shenanigans like 
these are the reason RAIL opposes the prison system 

RAIL is glad to see groups like Prison Legal Services 
keeping watch and making life difficult for the so-called 
Department of Corrections. It is important that there be 
some progressive lawyers and paralegals to do legal work on 
prisoners' behalf and to point out where the state is 
violating even its own standards of treatment of prisoners. 
RAIL seeks to work with groups like the Prison Legal 
Services, and also to raise awareness about the fact that 
the criminal INjustice system is thoroughly corrupt.

Under imperialism, the role of prisons as an apparatus of 
repression will not be reformed. A system which first makes 
people poor and then locks them away to treat their poverty 
will not be turned into something productive. RAIL works for 
the long term -- for an end to imperialism and to prisons as 
we know them today. Contact RAIL at one of the addresses on 
page two to find out how you can help us expose the 
injustice of Amerika's criminal system.

* * *


Amerika has been waging a war against Iraq for years. The 
Gulf War was not over when u.s. troops stopped bombing Iraqi 
people. The on-going warfare waged through the economic 
blockade and continuing military threat has lead to the 
death and suffering of thousands of Iraqi people. Military 
invasion will lead to even more of these deaths and must be 
opposed by all anti-imperialists. But even if a "diplomatic" 
solution is found to the current u.s. demands for total 
control over Iraq, the gulf war will not end until the 
imperialists withdraw military and economic control and 
allow the people self-determination to choose their own 

As February drew to a close, the United Snakes was moving 
closer and closer to launching another shooting war against 
Iraq. On February 16, Defense Secretary William Cohen said 
he "was sending 5,000 to 6,000 more troops to Kuwait", bring 
the total number of troops in the region to 9,700-10,000.(1)

The 3rd largest weapons contractor, Raytheon, is licking 
it's chops at the chance for another real test for it's 
weapons. Raytheon claims to support a diplomatic solution, 
but a spokeperson erased those words with: "Let's be 
practical. No matter what happens, the actual battlefield is 
the ultimate test, isn't it?"(2) Besides the test on flesh 
and blood that shoots back, Raytheon benefits through 
replacement sales as well as the advertising to other 
governments that the media coverage will generate. 

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan appears to have negotiated a 
settlement to the stalemate. Iraq's government-controlled 
media correctly "expressed concern that Annan arrived with a 
'prepared script from the United States.'"(3) The U.$ didn't 
want Annan to go to Iraq, and delayed his trip arguing 
within the Security Council over the terms to be presented 
to Iraq. Annan's draft proposal does not create a timetable 
for the ending of sanctions against Iraq. So even if a 
diplomatic solution can prevent a shooting war, it will not 
stop the brutal economic war against the Iraqi people.

Truth not an impediment to war machine

On Feb 17, Clinton tried to explain to the Amerikan people 
why Hussein's presidential palaces were so important to 
inspect. He said that one of the palaces was "about the size 
of Washington, D.C." or 62.5 square miles. "He did not 
identify the palace, ... but his national security advisor 
made the same comparison and identified the site as the 
Thathar Palace compound." A recent team of surveyors sent by 
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan reports that Thathar covers 
1 square mile.(4)

The United Snakes claims that it wants to bomb Iraq to 
protect the Iraqi people and Iraq's neighbors from 
biological weapons. Furthermore, Clinton says "We want to 
seriously reduce his capacity to threaten his neighbors." 
but all of Iraq's neighbors with the exception of Kuwait 
oppose an attack upon Iraq.(6)

1. Boston Globe 17 February 1998, p. A1.
2. Boston Globe 18 February 1998, p. A7.
3. Boston Globe 21 February 1998, p. A1.
4. Boston Globe 20 February 1998, p. A15.
5. Boston Globe 20 February 1998, p. A17.
6. Boston Globe 18 February 1998, p. A8.

* * *



I would like to take exception to some of your comments 
regarding the Amerikan welfare system ("New welfare cuts 
take effect, leaving immigrants hungry," #155, p. 3).

I stand with you in deploring the Welfare Deform Act, but I 
question your understanding of its meaning. MIM wrote: "Its 
[welfare] purpose is to keep the people from fighting for 
more." Having welfare does not prevent people from demanding 
more; in fact, one would think that having housing, health 
care, and food would make it easier to fight for more. I am 
by no means suggesting that welfare is an "easy life," but 
if there was no welfare at all and you had to spend last 
minute searching out income, it would be pretty hard to 
organize! I've received food stamps before, but it didn't 
make me passive because I was already educated. If I hadn't 
been educated, food stamps wouldn't necessarily keep me 

In a related sentence, MIM wrote: "When charity 
organizations step in and fill the holes left by government 
pulling out of welfare programs, they do a disservice to the 
people. The money spent by charity groups only helps to keep 
the people passive when it is not coupled with political 
education and organizing work. MIM does not wish to see 
anyone go hungry or without shelter but we know that 
offering a few meals to a few people is not going to change 
the system that creates this hunger and homelessness." First 
of all, what is true of welfare is true of charity - having 
it does not prevent one from demanding more. I would agree 
that charity ought to be coupled with political education 
and organizing work, and the best "charity" agencies do this 
(any example I can name would give away my location). But 
charity without ed/org is not a disservice; it's just not 
"full service." Full stomach and still ignorant is better 
than empty stomach and still Ignorant. Finally, you insult 
volunteer/paid social work by depreciating it to "a few 
meals and a few mouths.', Neither charity nor welfare have 
ever, alone or in conjunction, met all Amerikans needs, but 
they were/are both widespread and doing a lot.

These are minor points but they have important theoretical 
meaning for effective action. Charity will not "change the 
system," but it does feed, clothe, shelter many. I accept 
that MIM genuinely does not want to see people go hungry or 
without shelter, but I sometimes think that MIM is so 
concerned with "changing the system" that MIM would be 
willing to risk thousands of people's starvation for an 
uncertain chance at revolution. I don't mean this to sound 
as harsh as it sounds, but since you don't participate in 
electoral politics, how did you expect to prevent the 
passage of the Welfare Deform Act?

Furthermore, I question whether or not your position is 
truly Marxist. It may be true to the rhetoric of some black 
nationalists (Rev. Louis Farrakhan, for example) , but I 
don't think Marx was interested in making sure things "got 
worse" (human suffering) so that they'd get better 
(revolution) - See the "Communist Manifesto" were he wrote 
"The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest, 
by degrees, all capital from the bourgeoisie ... " He went 
on to make a list of a few changes that would occur "on the 
conditions of bourgeois production," one of which was "a 
heavy and progressive income tax." What would this money be 
spent on if not, at least in part, a temporary and partial 
downward redistribution of wealth? These reformist measures 
were not, as we know, all Marx had in mind, as they would 
prove to be "insufficient and untenable." Marx wrote that 
the "organization of the proletariat ... into a political 
party... compels legislative recognition of particular 
interests of the workers, by taking advantage of the 
divisions among the bourgeoisie itself."

Despite the fact that Amerikan workers did not have their 
own party, they had nonetheless exercised their numerical 
strength in the 1930s-60s within one of the bourgeois 
parties to gain a degree of economic security.

So, finally, let me relate this to praxis. MIM wrote: "Those 
truly interested in ending hunger should be working with MIM 
to develop serve the people programs that provide for the 
needs of the oppressed in the context of building a 
revolutionary movement to overthrow imperialism." Given the 
wealth of charitable organizations and the U.S. gov't, MIM's 
"serve the people" programs will never be able to compete 
with welfare or charity. So, I suggest that if MIM wants to 
reach its constituency, then MIM members ought to volunteer 
in homeless shelters, food pantries, etc. , and ed/org 
within these institutions rather than creating ineffective, 
parallel institutions. The people want results, not 

In struggle,

 --a reader in the midwest

MIM responds:  This reader is correct that some reforms 
under capitalism are progressive. And although such reforms 
will not bring about revolution, they can allow people more 
freedom to organize against imperialism. For this reason, we 
do fight for some reforms within imperialism while 
organizing people for the larger fight against imperialism. 
The key is to figure out which reforms are progressive and 
which do not serve the people.

MIM does not denounce those volunteers who work to provide 
free food and shelter to the hungry and homeless. But we 
will struggle with these people to put their time into more 
effective work. There are many people willing to hand out 
food and offer this Band-Aid to cover up the inadequacies of 
capitalism. But this service work will only ever be a Band-
Aid and it will never address the underlying problem which 
is the cause of hunger and homelessness. What we need are 
more committed revolutionaries working to overthrow the 
system which perpetuates these problems.

It is not just rhetoric to say that historically the 
progress of feeding the most people, housing the most 
people, and saving the most lives from starvation has come 
from revolutions. Food pantries and other hand outs, both 
governmental and non-governmental, may help a few 
individuals survive or be healthy a little longer but they 
have never done more than this.

A better example of combining reformism with revolutionary 
work comes from the Black Panther Party which started Serve 
the People programs like its Free Breakfast for Children 
program. These programs combined the work of providing for 
the people's needs with the work of educating and organizing 
the people to overthrow imperialism. MIM already has some of 
these programs in place in the prison work that we do as 
well as the educational programs we offer. As we grow we 
expect to take on more and more such work.

The letter writer raises the question of how MIM expects to 
influence things like the Welfare Deform Act if we don't 
participate in electoral politics. We know from history that 
it is very possible to influence the system from the 
outside. It was not just the reformists like MLK that won 
civil rights gains for Blacks: it was the fear the 
government had of the independent revolutionaries like the 
Black Panther Party that sent them running into the arms of 
MLK, willing to do whatever he wanted if it might pacify the 
BPP and its supporters.

It is precisely because the independent power of the 
proletariat can be so strong that the government is forced 
to take extraordinary measures to attack it. The COINTELPRO 
attacks on activists have always focused on the most radical 
organizations, those which tend to be much smaller than the 
reformist groups this writer champions, but groups which are 
correctly viewed as a much bigger threat by the government. 

The key to responding to this entire letter is the study of 
history and so we offer our readers references from the 
Black Panther Party on our web site 
( as well as books such as Black 
Panthers Speak ($10) and an extensive literature list of 
books that cover many other aspects of relevant history. 
Send $1 for a copy of the literature list.

* * *


from a Michigan Prisoner

Jesse [Bourgeoisie] Jackson, leader of the Rainbow/PUSH 
Coalition, held a conference to "beg" and "shuffle" for Wall 
Street to include Afrikan Amerikans and other peoples of 
color in its investment of kapital and training for better 
paying jobs. The three-day event was held in New York 
starting January 15.

It is said that this conference drew a who's who of Wall 
Street investors and top government officials. People such a 
Alan Greenspan, head of the Federal Reserve Board, and 
powerful insurance company representatives, and financiers 
from investment and brokerage firms such as Lehman Brothers, 
Merril Lynch, Solomon Smith Barney, Discovery, Morgan 
Stanley and Dean Witter. President [K]linton was also 
reportedly, in attendance at this conference.

Jackson laid out three main objectives at the conference 
calling for: (1) to establish consumer education programs in 
about 50 cities; (2) to set up a Rainbow/PUSH trade bureau 
that would track the progress of the 400 biggest U.$. 
corporations in reaching out to "minority" communities and 
(3) an intense effort to lobby elected officials to use 
pension-fund dollars to revamp the U.$. infrastructure.

Jackson's bootlicking appeal to the racist Wall Street 
kapitalist is an insult to Afrikan Amerikans and other 
peoples of color for it is these kapitalist racists on Wall 
Street who are responsible for poverty, unemployment, 
homelessness, disenfranchisement, prison construction, slave 
and sweatshop labor and all the other social deprivations 
that exist in Amerikkka and globally with the help of the 
International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB).

Further, Jackson has no authority to attempt representing 
Afrikan Amerikans or any person of color for he is not 
calling for the same agenda, but who is begging for 
assimilation and crumbs for from "massahs" plate.

These vultures who sit on Wall Street are responsible for 
the aggression (military aggression) against members of the 
Third World for kapitalist expansion and imperialist rule by 
creating neo-colonies of human suffrage and displacement. 
They are responsible for the police brutality that abounds 
in Amerikkka; for the racist attacks and divisions among the 
working class; the continuing assault against First Nations 
and their right to sovereignty; for hate crimes against the 
lesbian/gay/bi/tans community; immigrants and those who 
adhere to the teachings of al-Islam Muslims.

The pirates of Wall Street cannot and will not offer a 
solution to the problems facing working and unemployed 
people. Wall Street manufactures and orchestrates these 
problems in their greed for more kapital, power, influence 
and sadistic domination of the world.

Jesse [Bourgeoisie] Jackson only serves the rich by 
reporting to them what Wall Street needs to do to continue 
its acts of vileness by mere fact of him crawling for help.

This is not a time to crawl, beg scratch or accept the 
brutality of corporate Amerikkka, its banking and investment 
systems. Nor is it feasible to seek assimilating into the 
kapitalist world of business. However, it is the time and 
the season for the total dismantling of kapitalism, 
imperialism and neo-colonialism.

We must build our own system, our own politics, our own way 
of distributing the wealth to the people, and seek 
diligently for ways to dismantle Wall Street, the IMF, the 
WB, and all other extensions of oppression.

MIM responds:  We agree with the author's assessment of 
Jesse Jackson's pleas to the bourgeoisie. But unlike the 
author, we would not blame the imperialists "for the racist 
attacks and divisions among the working class." We can see 
that, as Engels predicted, under imperialism there is a 
split in the working class and in imperialist countries like 
the u.s., the majority of the working class is a labor 
aristocracy bribed with the profits of exploitation of the 
oppressed nations so that they have a material interest in 
imperialism. It is not racism that divides the working class 
but national oppression. The oppressed nations have an 
interest in throwing off the chains of imperialism in their 
fight for self-determination but the white nation has an 
interest in defending imperialism and the benefits it gets 
from this system of chauvinist national oppression.

* * *


[Note: The print version of this article said there was no 
minimum wage in Puerto Rico. This was incorrect and was 
corrected in MIM Notes 160. In fact, U.S. companies in 
Puerto Rico do have to pay the minimum wage of $5.15. The 
rest of Puerto Rico is required by Puerto Rico to pay 

Pedro Rossello', governor of Puerto Rico and willing lackey 
of u.s. colonialism, spoke at Harvard University in mid-
February. A graduate of Yale medical school who later went 
on to finish his medical training at Harvard, Rossello' was 
elected chair of the New Progressive Party, a pro-statehood 
party, in 1991. He was then elected Governor in 1992 and 
reelected in 1996 by a large margin. He was at Harvard to 
commemorate Puerto Rico's "100 years of solitude" (100 years 
of colonialism). It was 100 years ago in 1998 that the u.s. 
invaded Puerto Rico and took over as its colonial master.

At times Rossello' sounds almost radical in his opposition 
to the current status of Puerto Rico which he correctly 
labels colonialism while calling for self-determination. But 
this radical rhetoric is just a cover that helps him sell a 
referendum on statehood as self-determination for the Puerto 
Rican people. As a "Freely associated state" or 
commonwealth, the Puerto Rican people have u.s. citizenship 
but if they live in Puerto Rico they can not vote on u.s. 
ballots. Puerto Rican's can and are expected to fight in 
u.s. wars, and Rossello' pointed out that Puerto Ricans 
sustain combat causalities in u.s. wars in numbers far 
exceeding their proportion in the population. Rossello''s 
goal, like that of other colonial lackeys who desire greater 
access to their master's wealth and privilege, is to gain 
full statehood for Puerto Rico as the 51st state.

Congressman Young from Alaska has proposed a bill in the 
u.s. congress, now referred to as the Young bill or HR856, 
which calls for a political status referendum in Puerto 
Rico. Rossello' refers to this as the "self determination 
process," an "orderly method" which would allow the people 
of Puerto Rico to decide what they want with all the 
definitions spelled out clearly for them. But this so-called 
self determination is not real democracy. It is not possible 
to talk about the Puerto Rican people exercising their right 
to self determination with u.s. troops occupying their 
island and the u.s. government controlling the country.

The referendum would offer the Puerto Rican people three 
options:  current commonwealth status, statehood, or status 
as an independent republic. One of the reasons Rossello' is 
such a supporter of this referendum is that in similar 
previous referendums Puerto Ricans have supported statehood 
in large numbers so the chance that it would win is high. In 
Puerto Rico's last country-wide vote on status in 1993, 
48.6% voted to remain a u.s. commonwealth, 46.3% for 
statehood and 4.4% percent for independence. [Note that MIM 
in no way sees this as truly representative of the people of 
Puerto Rico.] Commonwealth status, which dates back to 1952, 
means that Puerto Ricans are legally u.s. citizens and may 
serve in the armed forces. But they pay no federal taxes and 
cannot vote for president.

Rossello' said "the Puerto Rican electorate should be given 
the right to end colonialism." But MIM agrees with the 
representative from the National Committee to Free Puerto 
Rican POWs and Political Prisoners who asked during the 
question and answer period: "How can you speak about self 
determination without the withdrawal of u.s. troops from 
Puerto Rico?" Self determination is not possible for an 
occupied people. Any referendum held under such conditions 
does not offer the people real power and real freedom of 

Several Puerto Rican activists protested outside the talk 
before it began shouting "Piti Yanqui go to Hell, Puerto 
Rico not for Sale." Those who spoke during the question 
period in favor of independence got loud applause but only 
from a minority in the audience: most of the Puerto Ricans 
in the crowd were Rossello' supporters who cheered loudly 
when he gave the stupid response to one question about the 
national oppression of Puerto Rican people in this country 
"You have a choice, you can go back to Puerto Rico." As if 
in Puerto Rico the people are all living free from national 
oppression because they are not in the minority. This 
demonstrates Rossello' 's total lack of understanding of the 
concept of colonialism and makes it clear that he only uses 
the term as rhetoric to appease the Puerto Rican peoples 
genuine desire for self determination. 

A Puerto Rican activist with Latinos for Social Change 
pointed out that in 1917 u.s. citizenship was imposed on 
Puerto Rico after the Puerto Rican legislature voted against 
it. And in both Puerto Rico and the united states they have 
criminalized the struggle for independence. He pointed out 
that resolution 1514 in the United Nations states that every 
colonial country has a right to self determination and can 
use every means necessary to struggle for independence. When 
Rossello' tried to respond to him by also suggesting he go 
back to Puerto Rico he pointed out that 60% of Puerto Ricans 
on the island live off of food stamps, 13% of the island is 
occupied by the u.s. military and unemployment is 19%. MIM 
would add to this that Rossello' himself said that as many 
Puerto Ricans live in the u.s. as on the island (where the 
population is 3.8 million) so carrying out the struggle for 
self-determination for Puerto Rican people within u.s. 
borders is an important part of the national liberation 

After he had spoke for about a minute both Rossello' and the 
Harvard moderator tried to shut up this activist, telling 
him he could only ask a question and could not state his 
opinion. They threatened to call security when he went on 
for another sentence. And rather than respond to the 
activist's statements, Rossello' said "you have demonstrated 
what system you would impose on the Puerto Rican people by 
your actions here tonight." This is ironic considering that 
the pro-colonialism view is given hours of free speaking 
time but when the pro-independence view attempts to speak 
for a minute (less time than several of the other pro-
statehood questions), the speaker is threatened with arrest.

As we commemorate the 100 years of u.s. imperialism in 
Puerto Rico MIM fights for genuine self determination for 
the Puerto Rican people. In the united states, within the 
belly of the beast, we organize again u.s. military and 
political control over the island. At the same time, both in 
Puerto Rico and the u.s., we organize the people for the 
national liberation struggle that will overthrow imperialism 
and allow the Puerto Rican people to finally exercise their 
right to self-determination. Commemorate the 100 year 
anniversary of Puerto Rican colonialism by joining MIM in 
the fight to overthrow imperialism.

* * *


Workers at G.H. Bass & Co. shoe company factory in Puerto 
Rico will inherit 350 jobs when Bass' Maine plant closes. 
The jobs are being moved to Manati, about 40 miles south of 
San Juan, because it is cheaper for the company. The factory 
currently employs about 400 workers and Puerto Ricans fear 
that their jobs will also be moved somewhere even cheaper. 

Workers in Puerto Rico make $5-$6 an hour while the average 
hourly wage for a worker in Maine is more than $9. The 
difference is even greater when benefits are added in. 
Leather workers in the Dominican Republic earn $1.50 an 
hour. The move to make manufacturing even cheaper may lead 
Bass to move business there or to other Third World 
countries where costs are even cheaper. 

Last year in Puerto Rico 63 manufacturing plants closed, 
although the total number of jobs declined only slightly 
because some plants were expanded. In Manati, pharmaceutical 
companies Hoechst-Marion Roessel and Hoffman-LaRoche & Co. 
announced earlier this month they will close their plants.

While manufacturing jobs are leaving the united states, this 
does not mean a drop in the standard of living for the white 
nation. In fact, most of these workers are shuffled into 
equal or higher paying paper pushing or equivalent parasitic 
positions. (See MIM Theory, issues #1, #7, and #10 for the 
arguments and statistics backing this up.)

Unemployment is already close to 20% in Puerto Rico. Aside 
from the usual reasons for underemployment in a capitalist 
economy (the anarchy of production, the need for a relative 
surplus population, etc.), the competition between exploited 
workers and super-exploited workers is causing job loss for 
the Puerto Rican proletariat. As a u.s. colony of particular 
use to the imperialists, Puerto Rico has special status as a 
"freely associated state" which, along with the u.s. dollar 
and investments has raised the economy of the island to a 
position where the standard of living is higher than in most 
Third World countries. 

But even with the economic incentives the u.s. offers the 
Puerto Rican people in an attempt to tame resistance to 
colonization, the U.$. puppet regime in Puerto Rico still 
does not allow unionization of workers.

Note: Associated Press, 22 February 1998.

* * *


by a comrade

Hundreds of protestors marched through Washington, D.C. 
streets on February 21, in opposition to a U.$. attack on 
Iraq. The protest was cosponsored by a number of groups from 
Workers World front groups to Mumia activists, Catholic 
Worker, and the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee. 
A large portion of the protestors was immigrants and 
sojourners from the Middle East. The Washington Post 
estimated about 2,000 marchers.

Most people chanted slogans such as "1-2-3-4, we don't want 
your racist war!" or "No war -- peace!" One contingent had 
big models of Clinton and a large dog, and they chanted 
things like "Monica says, 'make love, not war!'" In 
Lafayette Park, across from the White House, a speaker from 
the Workers World's International Action Center described 
conditions in Iraq under economic sanctions. A good 
proportion of participants was interested in MIM Notes, 
whether seeing it for the first time or just glad to get the 
February 15 issue.

As with the protests against the 1990-1991 war against Iraq, 
the message of the rally was confused by many people who 
supported Clinton and the U.$. but just didn't want a 
bombing campaign. So some signs had slogans like "Negotiate 
harder," or, "Kill the tyrants, not the children." Another 
set of signs declared that "sanctions are weapons of mass 
destruction." MIM argues that any U.$. intervention in the 
Middle East, whether in the form of war, sanctions, or even 
in the form of "normal" trade, is really a weapon of mass 
destruction against the oppressed and their land and 
resources. While MIM has nothing good to say against the 
Iraqi government, support for any U.$. intervention at all 
ends up as bottom-line support for imperialism.

In WTOP radio's news reporting after the event, one 
protestor condemned the un-Amerikan practices of other 
protestors, insisting that they were really all patriotic. 
This pro-Amerikan attitude is one of the things that 
weakened the anti-war movement in 1991, and it operates 
again today. MIM thinks it's good for anyone to oppose 
imperialist bombing for any reason, but a movement that does 
that while supporting imperialism in general will have much 
less lasting impact than one that uses anti-war sentiment to 
organize for genuine long-term anti-imperialist work.

* * *


The Maoist Internationalist Movement (MIM) salutes the 
rising tide of anti-war activism in North America, most 
visible on the college campuses. Students at Ohio state 
brought national attention in their disruption of a Clinton 
Administration propaganda event on Feb 19. Surely the 
Amerikan regime will have to be much more careful as to 
which part of "town" is allowed into future "town meetings" 
on the question.

This tide is rising quickly and perhaps it's rise will pass 
that of the Clinton propaganda machine. In order to be 
successful and sustainable, however, it must resolve some of 
it's internal contradictions as to leadership. A significant 
portion of the anti-war leadership is coming from 
Congressional Republicans who see military strikes as 
ineffective at forcing change upon the Saddam Hussein 
regime. Other reactionaries want the CIA to kill Saddam 
Hussein, as if whoever is 2nd in command in the Ba'ath Party 
in Iraq would be significantly different that Hussein's 
leadership. Then there is also the ultra-yahoo element that 
wants a ground invasion to occupy Baghdad and install a 
puppet regime more loyal to the United Snakes. 

These are not the portions of the "anti-war" movement that 
MIM addresses here, although the question of how to lead 
these elements in a way so as to avoid the resumption of a 
shooting war in Iraq is an important question to be 
addressed elsewhere.

The movement against the Gulf War in 1990 and 1991 split 
along the line of sanctions. One side wanted to "Give 
sanctions more time." Some of these people honestly 
preferred a different brand of imperialist oppression than 
the military style of the Bush Administration. The rest just 
took the opportunist line of supporting sanctions (economic 
war) to avoid a shooting war. 

The correct side of the split opposed sanctions as an act of 
war and called for the United Snakes to keep its hands off 
Iraq. When the Gulf War ended, sanctions were kept on, and 
the results of sanctions are now clearly shown to be just as 
murderous as a shooting war. 

Analogous to the movement's split in 1990 and 1991, the 
issue of on what basis to oppose war in Iraq threatens to 
prevent effective resistance to the on going Amerikan policy 
that has killed 1.4 million Iraqis. 

Most speakers at rallies and teach-ins attended by MIM start 
off with a condemnation of Saddam Hussein. This misses the 
point and in fact plays into the imperialist war machine. If 
the oppressiveness of a country's leader or government is 
the reason to oppose it, then it must be Amerika which 
should be opposed first and for most. 

The only country to use nuclear weapons? The U.$. The only 
country to have been proven to have used biological and 
chemical weapons in the Gulf War? The U.$. The country that 
used banned biological defoliants? The U.$. in Vietnam. The 
country whose police and corrections officers use banned 
biological weapons? The U.$.

Some people may respond that "Saddam Hussein is still bad, 
so we have to stop him" regardless of the U.$. motives or 
purity. Hussein's "badness" never stopped Amerika before, as 
he was installed by the CIA in 1963 and was a loyal ally 
until the Gulf War. "Badness" doesn't stop Amerika from 
supporting oppressive regimes around the world, so to 
support Amerikan action against Iraq allows the U.$. 
imperialism to continue the system of using puppet regimes 
to suppress the people, and then changing the top leaders 
when they become too much of a liability.

In order to most effectively stop oppression, we must do so 
on a clearly anti-imperialist basis. We need to cut through 
all of the confusion propagated by the enemy and those in 
our own camp in order to deal concrete blows against 

* * *


One of the latest documents of the Communist Party of Peru 
is entitled:  "Overcome the Bend in the Road Developing the 
People's War." This text is dated September 1995, and it 
contains an excellent report on the current situation in the 
People's War.

The document reaffirms again that Chairman Gonzalo is the 
leader and guide of the Peruvian revolution. The document 
has been received with great elation by all the political 
organisations and support groups that for many years 
continue to render indefatigable support to the armed 
struggle in Peru.

There are various extremely important elements in this Party 
document. In this brief note we want to deal with only two 
aspects: The first is the reaffirmation of the good 
situation of the armed struggle in Peru, which implies the 
defeat of the Fujimori armed forces.

The second aspect relates to the fidelity that the PCP 
expresses towards Chairman Gonzalo. This latter factor, 
deals a heavy blow to the capitulators, traffickers and 
bogus friends of the Peruvian revolution, who -- using 
various ruses -- have attempted to slander the leader and 
guide of the revolution, portraying him as a vulgar 
capitulator and as the author of the "peace letters."

The document says: "Take everything Chairman Gonzalo and the 
Central Committee have said before as the political 
foundation, particularly the documents of the III Plenary 
Session, and those of the Working Sessions of the Central 
Committee, as well as the document "Against the Mass 
Murderers and Quislings Dictatorship, Persist with the 
People's War."

It is worth noting that everything that Chairman Gonzalo has 
said before refers to his political documents, military 
instructions, speeches, scientific thesis on the national 
and international situation, that, as a sum total, 
constitute Gonzalo Thought.

This great theoretical legacy, is the ideological, political 
and military basis upon which the PCP and the Peruvian 
communists sustain themselves.

"Everything Chairman Gonzalo has said before" must be 
understood within the historical process developing from the 
sixties until his speech of September of 1992, when he was 
already a captive of the Peruvian dictatorship.

The title of this document by itself, constitutes an homage 
to Chairman Gonzalo. It raises as a banner of the revolution 
his famous speech of September 1992, when surrounded by a 
mob of policemen, snitches, and mercenary hacks from the 
reactionary media, Chairman Gonzalo proclaimed that his 
arrest was "merely a bend, nothing more. A bend in the road. 
The road is long but we shall arrive and win victory. You 
shall see it!"

In this same document we are commenting on -- and as if to 
leave no doubt regarding the love and respect of the Party 
towards the leader of the revolution -- militants, 
sympathisers and masses are called forth to mobilise for the 
coming December 3, and celebrate Chairman Gonzalo's birthday 
and the Day of the People's Liberation Army.

In this context it is worth asking: What do the leaders of 
the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM) and of the 
Revolutionary Communist Party USA (RCP-USA) -- those who 
never tire of asserting and spreading the idea that Chairman 
Gonzalo is the author of the "peace letters" -- say now?

It is evident that the issuing of the last document of PCP 
once again unmasks the dirty game of the RIM and RCP-USA 

It is now clear that this Yankee mafia of bogus "Maoists" 
are trafficking with their feigned support for the People's 
War and for the PCP. Today, no one can any longer hold the 
slightest doubt that these individuals are openly opposed 
and antagonistic towards the line of the Communist Party of 
Peru, and are dire and overt enemies of Chairman Gonzalo and 
his Thought.

El Diario Internacional No. 41 - September 1997

* * *


The Senate is currently considering a piece of legislation 
known as the "juvenile crime bill," mirroring similar 
legislation passed last year by the House. Packed with 
provisions for school expulsions for minor offenses, the end 
of confidentiality of juvenile arrest and conviction 
records, and the blackmailing of states with block grant 
money to prosecute and incarcerate juveniles as adults(1), 
the proposed Senate bill would make an already oppressive 
reality far more draconian. MIM believes that youth are the 
vanguard of the white nation in Amerika. In solidarity with 
oppressed nation youth with whom they share this impending 
threat, white youth should oppose not just these particular 
bills -- but the whole capitalist system that wants to 
stifle their creative potential and throw away the key.

The juvenile INjustice system varies greatly among states, 
including different definitions of juvenile (with some 
states cutting it off at 16 and others 18), and different 
restrictions on prosecutors and judges on where they can try 
cases against youth. And although there are currently 
federal restrictions on where youth can be held in custody, 
that might change with this new legislation. The bottom line 
is, youth are facing an INjustice system that wants to 
restrict what civil "rights" they have with a wave of new 
curfews and laws governing their sex lives, and at the same 
time treat them as adults when it comes to locking them up.

In contrast to current federal laws restricting the 
detention of status offenders (so-called because the crime 
is only a crime because it was committed by a young person, 
such as curfew violation, running away or truancy), the new 
Senate bill "permits the detention of most status offenders 
for up to 24 hours and runaways for up to two weeks."(1)

And, as with the House bill, "14 year old children who 
allegedly commit a serious violent felony . . . or, a 
specified drug offense, . . . including conspiracy or 
attempts to commit the offense, must be tried in adult 
federal court." In some cases under this new bill, thirteen 
year olds may be tried as adults, according to the whim of 
the prosecutor.(2)

And prosecutorial discretion, in contrast to judicial or 
statutory waiver, is probably the most subjective and 
dangerous route to adult (or criminal) court for youth. 
According to the ACLU, "Minority youth are 
disproportionately transferred into adult court under 
mandatory or prosecutorial discretion transfer systems. 
Native Americans account for over 60% of the children 
prosecuted in the adult federal system."(2)

The House bill also "mandates states to eliminate 
confidentiality for juvenile records or proceedings: states 
must also eliminate the confidentiality of juvenile court 
records or proceedings in order to receive federal criminal 
justice funds."(2) Being tried as an adult, under the Senate 
bill, means that fingerprints and photographs taken of youth 
"shall be made available in the same manner as is applicable 
to an adult defendant."(3) Again, these are more examples of 
the rank hypocrisy of treating youth differently under one 
paternalistic legal standard (like locking them up for 
running away from home), and punishing them as if they were 
adults in another.

MIM calls on all youth to organize against the oppression of 
groups over groups, to fight the capitalist system that both 
patronizes and vilifies them. Work with RAIL to build public 
opinion against imperialism and for a just society.

1. Washington Post 8 February 1998.
2. ACLU Fact Sheet On H.R.
3 "The Juvenile Crime Control Act Of 1997" 3. S 10.

* * *


by a RAIL comrade

Gail Dines is touring the country to promote her new book 
called Pornography: The Production and Consumption of 
Inequality. On February 11 at the New Words Bookstore in 
Cambridge, Massachusetts, Gail Dines read from her book and 
spoke about the evolution of pornography in the United 
Snakes as a growth industry. She discussed pornography as a 
systematic form of oppressing wimmin through violence and 

Dines introduced her discussion of pornography as a growth 
industry by explaining that she approaches this topic from a 
Marxist point of view. Since MIM has not yet read Gail 
Dines' book, we cannot confirm that Dines is a true Marxist 
or only a bourgeoisie perversion of Marxism. However, many 
things that Dines said make sense in the Marxist 
understanding of oppression within the state. She traces the 
beginnings of main stream pornography back to the first 
publication of Playboy in 1954 and discusses the drastic 
changes in pornography since the fifties.

Dines analyses the marketing techniques used by 
pornographers in order to create a class consciousness in 
reference to pornography. Playboy was sold to the middle 
class with an upper class image to it. Since Hustler 
magazine came out in the seventies, Playboy sales have gone 
down. Hustler is disguised as a magazine for the working 
class, when its "readers" are actually middle-class. This 
strategy is used because as Gail Dines says "Nobody wants to 
see themselves as a Hustler subscriber". Therefore Hustler 
magazine claims to be produced for the working class, who 
are seen as being beneath the standards of the middle-class. 
This allows the middle-class male to buy Hustler without 
feeling beneath the standards of his class, because this 
magazine is not really made for him. MIM would argue that 
another reason this kind of advertising approach is feasible 
is because there really is no working class in the United 
Snakes. The working class has withered away into people who 
work in previously designated working class positions but 
receive middle-class wages, and those who are unemployed or 
not permanently employed.

Like Catherine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin, Gail Dines 
discusses the fact of pornography as oppressive within a 
social and political context. She brings to attention the 
fact that the pornography industry has made more money over 
the last few years than the film and music industries 
combined. She points out that the majority of this 
pornographic material is heterosexual pornography where the 
wimmin are being dominated by the men. As pornography has 
become more and more main stream, it has become more and 
more explicit and violent. Dines claims that the average 
contemporary pornographic film requires wimmin being 
penetrated in three orifices at once by three different men. 
Snuff films are becoming more and more popular, where wimmin 
are murdered and the murder is part of the sexual thrill for 
the consumer. Many of these films have involved actual 
murder for the making of the film. Dines described a film 
called "Cherry Poppers" which is basically a step by step 
instructional video on how to lure and rape a young girl. 
This film has been at the top 10% of the highest selling 
pornography films for the last three  years

MIM agrees with Gail Dines that pornography is a facet of 
oppression in Amerika, however we disagree with her 
conclusion about this subject as stated at her talk in 
Cambridge. Dines, does what so many feminists and pseudo-
feminists do when they are looking for a way to help end 
oppression. She looks to reformism in the form of 
legislation to curve the effects of oppression. MIM believes 
that some reforms are good and can help the people in their 
struggles to achieve overall freedom from oppression. Yet if 
a reform gives more power to an already corrupt system like 
the United Snakes government, what good will this do. We see 
the discussion of a civil rights law against pornography as 
an interesting approach to a worthwhile issue, but official 
legislation to censor pornography will not free wimmin from 
oppression. We urge those concerned about the growing 
industry of pornography to organize and direct their energy 
toward a socialist revolution where the oppressed will rise 
up and fight for true freedom. 

* * *


In mid-February several of Mumia Abu Jamal's friends and 
political supporters visited him on death row at SCI Greene, 
Waynesburg, PA. Mumia has been framed and convicted for 
killing a cop and is facing the death penalty for the crime 
of being a political activist who opposes the Amerikan 
imperialist government. The harassment the visitors faced 
was just one small example of the injustice rampant in the 
criminal injustice system.

The visitors were subjected to a metal detector and then an 
IONSCAN which is a detector for determining the presence of 
drugs. It is supposed to detect the smallest amount of drugs 
on a persons clothing or skin. One of the visitors was 
turned away from the visit for failing the IONSCAN. The 
prisoncrats claimed to have found "residue". The visitor 
asked that guards search him for drugs as he had no drugs or 
drug residue on him (unless the guards placed some on him). 
Although they had no evidence of any drugs and this person 
had walked past a drug detecting dog with no problem, the 
guards used this excuse to turn away one of Mumia's visitors 
and ban him from the prison.

The visitor later learned that many other people have had 
similar experiences with the IONSCAN. The government is 
using this device for political ends. MIM demands freedom 
for Mumia Abu Jamal and an end to the entire criminal 
injustice system.

NOTES: Press release from [email protected] 2/23/98

* * *


Paul Robeson, communist, football star, lawyer, singer, 
actor and scholar, was awarded a posthumous Grammy lifetime 
achievement award twenty two years after his death. 
Robeson's activism destroyed his career. This recognition by 
the bourgeois culture for his achievements can be taken as 
an indication that the imperialists no longer consider 
Robeson dangerous. Communists must use this opportunity to 
let people know about Paul Robeson's ideological and 
practical support for Lenin and Stalin and the world 
revolutionary struggle. 

A son of a slave, Robeson became a supporter of the 
Socialist Soviet Union while fighting for civil rights in 
the u.s., singing for Amerikans battling fascism in Spain 
and supporting other progressive struggles in this country. 
Robeson understood that national oppression meant that 
Blacks are not a part of the u.s. and should not be fighting 
to defend imperialism. He once said that Blacks in the u.s. 
should not "go to war on behalf of those who have oppressed 
us for generations."

Robeson lost his U.S. passport for his ideological support 
of the Soviet Union. When questioned by the House Un-
American Activities Committee, during the McCarthy era he 
refused to say whether or not he was a communist. He 
accepted the International Stalin Peace Prize in 1953. 
The sacrifices Robeson made, giving up his very successful 
career to devote his life to the struggle against 
imperialism and for socialism, are an example for all who 
live within u.s. borders.

Note: Associated Press, 25 February 1998.

* * *


SANTA BARBARA -- Former Black Panther Party leader and 
former political prisoner Geronimo Ji Jaga (Pratt) spoke to 
about one thousand people at the University of California 
here on February 11. While MIM has important differences 
with some of Geronimo's speech, we are happy to report that 
Geronimo upheld the revolutionary legacy of the Black 
Panther Party.

In his speech, Geronimo advocated liberation and self-
determination for the Black Nation; he made no apologies for 
the Panthers' belief that true liberation requires armed 
struggle; and he emphasized the importance of study and 
theory for the revolutionary movement. MIM wholeheartedly 
agrees with all of these points.

Geronimo was a leader in the Southern California chapter of 
the Black Panther Party. He was targeted by the FBI's 
counter-intelligence activities and convicted in 1972 of a 
Santa Monica murder he did not commit. The FBI's own 
surveillance records prove that he was in Oakland the night 
of the murder. Despite mounting evidence that Geronimo did 
not commit the Santa Monica murder, Geronimo was not granted 
a re-trial or even parole for over twenty years. The parole 
board rejected his parole explicitly because "he remain[ed] 
a revolutionary man."(1)

Geronimo's conviction was overturned just last year by the 
bourgeois courts, because - unknown to the jury and 
Geronimo's defense at the time - the main witness against 
Geronimo was a paid FBI informant. Geronimo is still charged 
with the Santa Monica murder, however, and the Los Angeles 
County District Attorney recently appealed the decision to 
overturn Geronimo's conviction. 

The bogus legal harassment and imprisonment of Geronimo Ji 
Jaga are more evidence that Amerikan courts and police are 
tools of the Amerikan bourgeoisie, that Amerikan democracy 
is hypocrisy.

"Check and cross-check"

In his speech, Geronimo repeatedly stressed the importance 
of studying revolutionary history and theory. He quoted Sun 
Tzu, the Chinese military philosopher often cited by Mao: 
"Know your enemy and know yourself, and you will win a 
thousand battles." You must also study the roots of 
oppression in order to combat it effectively. As a RAIL 
representative said when s/he addressed the audience before 
the speech, "Theory without practice ain't shit, but 
practice without theory is blind." 

Of note, Geronimo opposed reductionism, saying, "It's not 
race, not class, not gender alone." This is a significant 
position. Those who talk about class to the exclusion of 
nation and gender, those who talk about (their) nation to 
the exclusion of class and gender, etc., are often looking 
to cut a deal for their narrow group, be it the labor 
aristocracy, the gender aristocracy, or the national 
bourgeoisie. MIM adds that while we must oppose all three 
forms of oppression (nation, class, and gender), we must 
also decide what the principal contradiction is and focus 
our work on that. Right now, the contradiction between 
imperialism and the oppressed nations is principal - in 
other words, the class and gender contradictions in both 
oppressed and oppressor nations cannot be resolved before 
the oppressed nations win their liberation and exercise true 

In the question and answer period, Geronimo clearly stated 
that the Panthers studied the works of Marx, Lenin, and Mao. 
He said that much of the Panthers' time was taken up with 
study and theoretical struggle. A typical day at the Panther 
office might look like this: Make breakfast for the children 
in the morning, patrol the police at night, and study, 
study, study, during the day.

Geronimo briefly lamented that current activists are 
theoretically illiterate compared to the activists of his 
day. Books such as Mao's "Little Red Book" and Fanon's 
"Wretched of the Earth" were universal reference points. MIM 
strives to raise revolutionary literacy levels, so it 
distributes these books, as well other Marxist classics and 
important non-Marxist books (write to the address on p. 2 
for a literature list).

Geronimo encouraged people to study the history of the 
Amerikan government's psy-war and counterintelligence 
programs against the Panthers and other activists of the 
60s. The Panthers and others had a faint idea of what they 
were up against; we can learn from their experiences and be 
better prepared this time. When studying the history of 
these counterintelligence operations - as when studying 
anything - Geronimo encouraged his audience to "check and 
cross-check" their sources. 

Geronimo also advocated study as a tool to expose "false 
panthers" - people who distort the true history of the 
Panthers and what they stood for. MIM agrees completely. 
That is why MIM distributes articles from the Black Panther 
newspaper ( has a section devoted 
to archiving the Black Panther's literature), and books like 
"The Black Panthers Speak" and "To Die for the People." Some 
ex-Panther sell-outs like Bobby Seale have gone so far as to 
suggest that the Panthers were about electoralism and 
reformism from the beginning.(2) Geronimo made it clear that 
the Panthers were leading a revolutionary struggle for the 
liberation of the Black nation, and that they were preparing 
for armed struggle as a necessary step towards liberation. 
Indeed, thanks to the many provocative attacks on the 
Panthers by the FBI and other Amerikan military 
organizations, the Panthers were actually engaged in armed 

On several occasions, however, Geronimo made vague favorable 
references to revisionists or reformists, more or less 
because they used to be or appear down with the struggle. 
For example, he hailed some former Trotskyists for "applying 
the theory of Leon Trotsky." MIM knows that the "theories" 
particular to Trotsky amount to a negation of the 
revolutionary nationalist struggle. Indeed, Trotskyist 
parties like to Sparticist league or crypto-Trotskyists like 
the Progressive Labor Party denounce the Panthers as narrow 
nationalists and uphold the pernicious and incorrect slogan, 
"All nationalism is reactionary." Geronimo also voiced his 
approval of former Panther Bobby Rush, without clarifying 
that Rush is now a bourgeois politician. These errors only 
serve to emphasize that when we evaluate leaders of the past 
(and the present), we need to do so based on a thorough 
study of their line and practice, not based on their 

Armed struggle

Geronimo made no secret of the fact that the Panthers 
believed armed struggle was a necessary part of the struggle 
for liberation. Geronimo himself helped train Panthers in 
the tactics of armed struggle, and his tactics are credited 
with saving his life and the lives of other Panthers during 
police assaults.

At the same time, he emphasized that armed struggle serves a 
political line, not the other way around. When one audience 
member asked Geronimo to suggest where s/he could learn 
military tactics, Geronimo told the audience member to 
mobilize people politically. As for military tactics, 
Geronimo said when the time came you can learn that in a 
snap. MIM agrees. If we do a good job building political 
support now, then learning how to build Molotov cocktails or 
where to buy guns etc. will be easy - the masses will know 
and learn these things. On the other hand, if we are 
technically competent but lack a mass base, armed actions 
will pose little threat to the Amerikan military and we will 
be easily isolated, and imprisoned or killed.

Geronimo emphasized that armed struggle is not a game to be 
taken lightly, and said that he constantly had to guard 
against ultraleftism when he was training Panthers in self-
defense tactics. "You had to be careful what you taught 
people, because they might hurt themselves or hurt others." 

While MIM believes that armed struggle will ultimately be 
necessary for the overthrow of u.$. imperialism, we believe 
that now is not the time to wage armed struggle, since we 
are too weak and our enemy is too strong. Instead, we seek 
to build public opinion in support of revolutionary armed 
struggle and hasten the day when the Amerikan bourgeoisie 
will become truly helpless.

All prisoners are political prisoners

Geronimo agrees with MIM that "all prisoners are political 
prisoners," for identical reasons: The definition of what is 
and is not a crime, sentencing regulations, and enforcement 
are all political (Why can the CIA kill and run drugs with 
impunity, while more and more oppressed nation people are 
imprisoned for petty drug offenses?). Geronimo also 
criticized Amnesty International for bourgeois hypocrisy on 
the question of political prisoners, saying "You cannot be a 
revolutionary unless you act based on your consciousness." 
Amnesty does not recognize those who have committed "crimes" 
(as defined by reactionary states) in the name of their 
politics to be political prisoners.

MIM is happy to report that Geronimo confirmed that MIM's 
Books for Prisoners Program is successfully getting 
revolutionary literature to our comrades behind bars. When a 
MIM supporter approached Geronimo with an issue of MIM 
Theory with an article on the Black Panthers in it, Geronimo 
recognized it and said that he had read it.

Geronimo's speech was organized by Asian Sisters (and 
Brothers) for Ideas in Action Now! (ASIAN), a mass 
organization of progressives and anti-imperialists 
unaffiliated with either MIM or RAIL. 

1. MIM Theory 11, pp. 78-79.
2. Seale releases this noxious fart in "All Power to the 

* * *


In the past six months, MIM has made great strides promoting 
our Free Books for Prisoners program in Michigan prison 
libraries. RAIL has shown tremendous success in raising both 
money and books to send to prisoners. Michigan prisoners 
have shown their appreciation for RAIL's and MIM's work by 
helping to pull these books inside the prison walls.

Successful book drives on the University of Michigan campus, 
and contact with the Overseas Development Network and 
Student Book Exchange on the campus in Ann Arbor have been a 
boon to RAIL's work for Free Books for Prisoners. ODN and 
SBE have contributed boxes of books left over from their own 
work and it is now RAIL's task to work with MIM and get 
these books to Michigan prisoners. 

To consolidate some costs of getting political, historical 
and legal books to prisoners in Michigan, it is MIM's goal 
to get Michigan prison libraries to accept donations from 
us. Sending donations en masse will allow us to get more 
books to more prisoners for less money. The libraries may 
also be able to receive books which the prison mail policies 
would keep from prisoners.

Students, progressives and activists can help with this 
work, as can prisoners. People on the outside: contact RAIL 
to donate your labor to the large task of getting in touch 
with prison officials around the state. We do not want to 
waste books or money, so we need approval from these 
officials before we send books into the prisons. Prisoners: 
if your institution's library has not yet received a 
donation from MIM's Free Books for Prisoners program, try to 
find out why. Is the librarian willing to accept donations? 
Does s/he know that our program exists and that prisoners 
are interested in getting more quality books into the 

While legal, political and historical books are the most 
frequently requested, we do also receive donations of 
politically relevant fiction (Richard Wright, Chinua Achebe, 
etc.) and academic theory on topics like race and ethnicity 
theories and sociology. Prison librarians in Michigan who 
wish to receive donations should contact MIM at the address 
on page two. Please let us know if you have a preference for 
the type of books you would like to have.

* * *


Wimmin at Framingham prison in Massachusetts won a lawsuit 
against the Department of Corrections for brutalizing and 
harassing the inmates. On September 1995 masked prison 
guards dressed in black forced 112 inmates and pretrial 
detainees from their beds and publicly strip-searched 
(including vaginal and anal searches) 16 of them as a part 
of a training exercise. This month the DOC settled the suit 
by agreeing never again to use such techniques and paying 
the wimmin $80,000 in damages. The DOC still insists it did 
not break any laws.

During this raid the guards destroyed prisoner's property 
while searching their cells, denied wimmin medical care when 
they requested it, and refused to tell the wimmin the 
purpose of the whole "training exercise." After hours of 
detention in common areas the prisoners returned to beds and 
clothing covered with officer's boot prints.

The DOC promised not to unnecessarily humiliate or subject 
its charges to severe emotional distress. Their promises 

Correction officers will not conduct searches in garments 
that conceal their identities.

Guards will refrain from deliberate actions that inflict 
emotional distress on inmates.

Random urine tests will no longer be conducted between 11pm 
and 7am.
Inmates who request medical attention during raids will be 
grated the attention in a timely fashion.

Strip searches will be done in relative privacy and with as 
much dignity as possible. The searches will not be conducted 
by members of the opposite gender or in the presence of 
people not conducting the search.
Correction officers will not unnecessarily destroy or 
disrupt inmates' property.

These rules of behavior would be a huge step forward for the 
Massachusetts Department of Corrections if they were applied 
to the prisons in the state. Currently both men and wimmin 
in prison in Massachusetts face regular brutality and 
negligence at the hands of the guards. This legal victory 
lays the groundwork for future lawsuits from other inmates 
experiencing similar harassment. Forcing the MDOC to pay 
damages is a strategy that could force improvements in the 
conditions in prisons if we can make it costly for the 
guards to brutalize the inmates. 

MIM agrees with the strategy of pursuing these winnable 
legal battles both as a way to expose the criminal injustice 
system and to win small gains within the system. But this 
strategy must be coupled with the fight to overthrow the 
entire system. Only by eliminating imperialism will we be 
able to establish a just system where poverty, national 
origin and political activism are not crimes.

Note: Boston Globe 2 February 1998.

* * *


The Ann Arbor Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist League 
regularly holds revolutionary educational events and has 
been slowly and steadily building opposition to Amerikkka's 
crazed proliferation of prisons. Here we sum up two recent 
events for the readers of MIM Notes because many of our 
brothers and sisters are under lock and key are do not have 
the freedom to organize as we do on the outside. To those 
comrades: work with us on future events and help us to 
continue to get your words out to intensify opposition to 
national oppression and social control and specifically 
Amerikkkan prisons.

On January 23rd, our scheduled event to have Big Black speak 
at the UM campus was canceled because he was very sick and 
unable to come. But half of the initial crowd, about 60 
people, stayed and heard speeches from RAIL, from a local 
progressive lawyer, and from a Black man who had been 
incarcerated for 16 years in Amerika's gulags. Many left 
saying that they learned a lot and some were turned on to 
doing work with RAIL in support of prisoners' struggles. 
Even people with fundamental disagreements with RAIL helped 
out writing letters to prisoners and generally getting the 
word out.

We outlined the main reasons that we oppose the Amerikan 
prison system and specifically talked about Engler's ploy to 
increase public support for the proliferation of prisons in 
Michigan by sending prisoners out of state. RAIL also 
outlined the case of Michigan prisoner Steve Wilcox who has 
faced punishment because he filed charges against a prison 
guard who raped him.

Generally RAIL and MIM oppose the current prison system 
because it is one of the most fascistic elements of Amerikan 
society and serves as a tool to intensify the settler 
nation's war against oppressed nations within the 
illegitimate borders of the United Snakes of Imperialism. 
RAIL emphasized the need to intensify opposition to 
disproportionate imprisonment of oppressed nationals, 
continuous brutality faced by prisoners, censorship in 
prisons and all of Amerika's oppressive tactics used to 
corral the oppressed into the gulags. But as we emphasized 
during the events, we can work to lessen some oppressive 
tactics or free up some organizing space used against the 
oppressed, but fundamentally, this system which breeds on 
exploitation and brutality cannot be changed without 

Ad-hoc event builds support

The local progressive lawyer explained how the current way 
that plea bargaining is done only results in longer 
sentences for prisoners. He also emphasized support for 
public viewing areas in prisons so that people are able to 
see how prisoners are treated.
Gary Fareed explained his experience of becoming politically 
conscious while under lock and key for 16 years. While 
incarcerated in about 20 different Illinois kkkoncentration 
kkkamps, Fareed became political in part because of the 
influence of groups like the Black Panther Party and also 
because of his continuous transfers and repeated problems 
with filing grievances.

Reading from RAIL's anti-prison pamphlet, Fareed exclaimed 
"The Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist League - now that's 
hip!" He emphasized to students, and in particular Black 
students, that it is necessary to reassess strategy if anti-
imperialism is not part of their program.

Fareed also explained how the military-style structure of 
prisons reinforces the fact that prisoners are thoroughly 
controlled by their captures. He added that the way that 
prisoners are treated strips them of skills necessary to be 
successfully independent after release.

Black womyn leader advocates for prisoners

RAIL rescheduled the panel with Big Black for February 20th 
and Cindy Owens, a local activist, discussed the Michigan 
prison system as a part of the panel. RAIL had little 
disagreement with what she said so we print some of it here. 

"I'm specifically going to talk about the prisons in 
Michigan because I visit many of the prisons here in the 
state. I am an advocate for the men locked up, predominantly 
Black men - over 50%. I am an advocate because I am a mother 
of a son who is 30 years old and his chances of going to 
prison are very great. So I speak for those who cannot speak 
up for themselves and I speak for those who are locked 
behind the prison bars. And I visit many of the prisons 
throughout the state and hear the problems and concerns and 
I do assist and try to aid as much as I can regarding many 
problems we do have in the state of Michigan.

"We have a governor here who is driven somehow by whatever 
forces to build more prisons in the state. Well, my position 
is to educate versus incarcerate. Give people an education 
and if you give people a sense of self, people will not 
commit criminal activity

"I wanted to make sure I drive the point home to let all of 
us know the problems that exist in the prisons here in the 
state of Michigan and the reasons behind why the governor 
wants to build more prisons.

"Michigan prison population is at a staggering total of 
43,000 and rising as we speak. There are 42 prisons in the 
state of Michigan with five new prisons being built by the 
year 2000 - which will total 47 prisons in the state. 
Governor Engler has proposed a total of 10 prisons by the 
year 2010. Please note that for 42 prisons with 43,000 
inmates, 50.3% are Black men. White males make up 41.9%. 
Black men make up half of the population in the state 
prisons in Michigan.

"Let's compare the percentages of females incarcerated in 
the state prisons. Black wimmin total 430 which is 4.3% 
compared with white wimmin which totaled 346 or 3.4%.(1)

"Why are there more Black men and wimmin in prison in the 
state of Michigan? The Black population is approximately 14% 
of Michigan's 8 million total population. Yet over 50% of 
Blacks are locked up in what many inmates call koncentration 
kamps, with a k - a modern day slave system.

"Crime does pay"

"Why did I start my speech with these statistical facts? I 
cite these numbers first because in all of the many prisons 
that I visit, I see predominantly Black men. I cite these 
facts because they are real and the old adage that crime 
does not pay is a lie. Crime does pay. Crime pays billions 
of dollars to contractual companies and businesses who make 
millions of dollars perpetuating and embellishing criminal 

"With the proliferation of drugs, guns, longer and unfair 
prison sentences, how ethical is it for private corporations 
to run prisons when they have so much to gain by keeping 
them full - particularly of Black men?

"Yes. Crime does pay. Aramark a so-called correction 
facility service, the first business in this country that 
contracts with prisons to take care of their mechanical 
system And yes, it also pays big salaries. Aramark also 
contracts to take care of the electronic system They make 
billions of dollars each year. 'The founders and managers of 
Aramark Correctional Facilities Services bring to the firm a 
history in criminal justice planning and design - over three 
billion dollars worth .'

"Crime pays Correctional Corporations of America (CCA) - a 
multi-million dollar corporation that has seized the 
dominant market share of private prison industry and has 
fueled a historic rise in stock value. CCA now has 30,000 
beds operating in 47 facilities in 11 states. [Also in 
Puerto Rico, England and Australia.] In 1995, the [CCA 
stock] soared from $8 a share to $37 a share. CCA is one of 
the corporations on the cutting edge of prison businesses in 
this country and the privatization revolution currently 
sweeping the prison business in much of the United States.

"Ten years ago the country had barely 1,000 private prison 
beds, today there are as many as 70,000 inmates incarcerated 
in 104 private facilities in 19 states. In the last five 
years, the prison industry has grown at an aggregated rate 
of 34%. 

"Because of the mindset that has spawned a new global 
industry, corporations and powerful corporate players who 
seek to make money off a new enslaved system has hatched a 
new species of consultants, lobbyists, investment bankers, 
stock analysts, and industry academics.

"The prison industry pays big bucks to the Wackenhut 
corporation - that is poised alongside so-called Corrections 
Corporations of America. Many companies are competing to 
capture a lion's share of the growing market for private 
prison beds. 

"Nation-wide spending on prisons is the fastest growing item 
in America and in Michigan. The prison industry is shifting 
priorities from social programs and education, building more 
prisons to warehouse more people. 

Don't believe the hype: The criminals are in Lansing

"The state of Michigan has a governor who refuses to fund 
schools. He refuses to fund welfare to feed the poor. [He] 
recently closed Highland Park Community College that 
provided educational opportunities for those who could not 
attend the higher institutions. The state and other 
officials saw fit to close the school yet they have proposed 
to build ten new prisons by the year 2010 - building five 
new prisons as we speak. Wonder where you'll get all those 
people from!

"Feeding the prison industrial complex and driving the 
current tidal wave of privatization are two forces. 1) 
Feeding the public with the fear of crime 2) So-called 
criminals for the pursuit of profit. The so-called war on 
poverty became a war on poor Blacks and poor whites. 

Cindy Owens continued and stated that politicians use the 
hyped up myth of Black street crime to win their campaigns. 
Owens noted Bush's use of the Willie Horton case as an 
example. "So many politicians won elections by talking about 
building more prisons and crime. "

"I ask you: Who is more criminal those bureaucrats who sit 
and plan criminal activity? Like the CIA who allegedly put 
crack cocaine in the inner cities of America. It has been in 
the best interests of many politicians to enforce 
conservative law. 

"The deterioration of the inner cities and the so-called war 
on drugs has put far too many men and women in many prisons 
throughout the state. The unfair and inhuman 650-lifers law 
is a law where low level drug dealers are put in prison for 
life. It's an unfair, unjust law. 

Owens continued and explained how the felony murder law 
unnecessarily imprisons more people for longer periods of 
time. Currently there are at least 260 men and wimmin locked 
up under the felony murder law. The Michigan Supreme Court 
ruled that this law was unconstitutional in 1980. But the 
law was not applied retroactively. So the men who were 
convicted before the court's ruling are still locked up.

Owens talked about her regular visits to Michigan prisoners 
and said, "I go because there are people there that need us. 
I go because they are locked up and many of their rights 
have been taken from them. So we have to speak up for those 
who cannot speak for themselves."

"Black men are stopped by police more than white. Livonia, 
Michigan for example, a predominantly white community 
arrests over 50% Blacks in that city when Blacks only make 
up less than 1%."

"So that's why I go. Because of the vast injustices, the 
lack of education, high unemployment and other systemic 
social forces that can lead to criminal activity. At the 
prisons that I visit I see predominantly Black men."

* * *


"Black men are now denied minimum educational opportunities 
in the prisons. They have discontinued GEDs in many of the 
prisons in the state of Michigan."

"They work from 8 to 10 hours a day Cleaning the facilities 
making furniture and cleaning land, even in the northern 
region of the state. You've got people out there cleaning 
the land - for snowmobilers, for hunters. Prisoners out 
there cleaning the land, but there's no education for them.

"There used to be several prisons in the state that offered 
college courses. They've discontinued that. Now there are 
only one or two that you can take college courses from. So 
there's no correctional system in the prisons. They're just 
warehousing people.

"I go to see them to keep abreast of what's going on behind 
those bars. I want to know what is going on. The inhumane 
treatments that are taking place, the rape that occurs daily 
in prisons Putting the guys in the holes without clothing, 
food, water. I go to have first hand knowledge of the many 
crimes committed by the prison officials.

"As a society we pay more and more tax dollars to lock folks 
up than to spend educational dollars to stand folks up in 
life. We cannot reduce the very complex issues of crime to 
political expedience and good old boy popularity. Owens 
talked about the need to examine the history of oppression 
against the Black nation. "America, too, must learn from its 
hard past and the injustices that have been perpetuated on a 

Isolation of prisoners

Owens then talked about the problems faced by prisoners' 
visitors. "Because Michigan's prison population has grown, 
so too has the number of people visiting the state 
correctional facilities. Currently about 2,300 people a day 
visit Michigan prisons that's about 820,000 visits per year. 
The volume of visitors has brought much concern to the 
Michigan Department of Corrections. Therefore, the MDOC 
director, Mr. McGinnis, has put in place obstacles to 
disallow visitors - particularly children. The MDOC belief 
is that more people visiting escalates the ability to bring 
in drugs. "

Owens explained the ridiculous nature of this alleged fear 
considering the intense security at MDOC facilities. She 
explained that the MDOC just does not want people visiting 
the prisoners. "What they are trying to do is isolate the 
men from their loved ones. And once they isolate them, they 
begin to experiment on them. And once they experiment on 
them, extermination is next. That is the order of the day."

"We need to be aware of the horrors that are going on behind 
those bars. They want to ship a lot of the people out of the 
state." Cindy then told the story of a young 16 year old who 
was in a juvenile center and then shipped out of the state. 
"They shipped her out in the middle of the night, her mother 
got a call saying that she was in the hospital and that they 
had to take her kidney. Her kidney was taken from her - and 
was given to someone else. That's what happened."

"She was only 16 years old and they took her kidney and gave 
it to someone else." After this case, Michigan stopped 
transferring juveniles out of state, but currently Michigan 
is maneuvering to ship 500 adult prisoners out of state.

Owens warned of the privatization of prisoner medical care. 
She warned that there are no controls to protect prisoners 
from experimentation - and Amerika has experimented on Black 
men and Third World wimmin before. Owens quoted from a 
bourgeois source, "'Michigan tax payers could save 10 
million dollars a year on a contract that turns much of the 
state prison system's medical care management over to United 
Correctional Management Care - a private company in Anaheim, 
California. The cost-cutting move by the Michigan Department 
of Corrections is among the first steps toward fully 
privatizing health care in the prison system.' So they're 
going to privatize the medical inside the prisons and a lot 
of experimentation will go on."

Owens reported that revolutionaries and radical men are 
being experimented on with implants. She stated that an IBM 
chip is implanted that allows the captures to put these men 
to sleep at random. She also stated that she has seen young 
men go into prison healthy and then in a short time they are 
sitting in wheel chairs needing kidney dialysis without 
clear explanation. Whether or not these specific experiments 
can be verified, we know that Amerika has knowingly 
experimented on Third World people inside and outside the 
United Snakes and there is no reason to think that Amerika 
has discontinued using the oppressed as guinea pigs.

The audience and speaker got into a heated debate about the 
ways in which drugs get onto the streets. Owens and other 
audience members agreed that the government is responsible 
for this and that Amerika is not spending the necessary 
money to help people stop using drugs. Owens also talked 
about an upcoming announcement of activists in Detroit 
filing a suit against the CIA for bringing drugs into 
Amerika. [For more history on this topic, help RAIL hold a 
showing of "Guns, Drugs, and the CIA" in your area.]

Cindy ended her speech by saying that Engler must go. RAIL 
adds that Engler's plans for prisoner transfers, prison 
construction are particularly hideous, but ultimately any 
man or womyn sitting in his chair will make little 
difference. Only the liberation of the Black nation and all 
oppressed nations will completely end the Amerikan Lockdown.

In closing, she read a poem inspired after visiting many 
prisoners held in Michigan's gulags:

Brilliant Black Men Born Free
Held captive in America
		for the world to see.
Broken spirits. Broken wills.
Locked in Prisons
		where thousands live.
Like wingless birds that cannot fly
The Black mother womb
		weeps and cries
			For Brilliant Black Men Born Free Held 

NOTE: 1. Corrections Management Information System (CMIS) 
1996-1997. Pick up the next issue of MIM Notes for coverage 
of Frank "Big Black" Smith's lecture on the University of 
Michigan campus.

* * *


Long-time revisionist Fidel Castro was elected to a fifth 
term as Cuban president on February 24th. Castro was the 
only presidential candidate. Cuba's 601 member parliament 
was elected in January and it opened its five-year term by 
re-electing Castro and other top members of the council of 
State, which works in conjunction with the Cabinet.

While MIM supports Cuba in its fight against u.s. 
imperialism, we do not consider Cuba socialist. The country 
entered into a dependent economic relationship with the 
Soviet Union almost immediately after the revolution in 
1959. The Soviet Union, having turned to state capitalism 
under Kruschev's leadership, took advantage of Cuba by 
forcing it to produce sugar as its principal crop rather 
than diversifying and working towards self-sufficiency. 
Kruschev forced Cuba to send troops to fight on the side of 
social imperialism in Ethiopia and elsewhere. Cuba's 
dependent relationship on the Soviet Union made it into a 

In his speech to parliament Castro denounced a proposal 
before the u.s. congress to distribute limited aid through 
u.s. charitable organization as "humiliating." "We accept 
with dignity that any country wants to help us," he said. 
"But we are not disposed to play the role of beggars." 
Unfortunately this was not true with Castro's relationship 
to the Soviet Union and it was this relationship that 
resulted in Cuba's failure to achieve self-sufficiency. 
Furthermore, recent "reforms" aimed at luring foreign 
currency to Cuba go beyond the realm of necessary compromise 
and are in fact clear departures from the principle of self-
reliance and other basic principles of Marxism-Leninism.

The advances achieved after the revolution in Cuba were 
undeniably progress over the colonial position Cuba faced 
prior to 1959. But progress alone does not make socialism. 
Neither the economic dependency nor the political 
development which left out the essential cultural revolution 
(the only possible way to prevent bourgeois takeover under 
socialism) are socialist. 

Notes: Associated Press, Feb 25, 1998. For more information 
on Cuba's relationship to the Soviet Union send MIM $2 for a 
copy of Kosmas Tsokas' essay "The Political Economy of Cuban 
Dependence on the Soviet Union."

* * *



I must bring to your attention that today, one of our 
comrades was assaulted, and beaten unconscious and was near 
death whenever these pigs sent him to the Hospital on "Life 
Flight," via Emergency Air Ambulance.

Our comrade was beaten merely because he requested knowledge 
as to why his MIM Notes were taken from his cell.

Other comrades came to the warden for an answer as to the 
reason why comrade "X" was assaulted, because he merely 
asked a sadistic pig guard why his MIM Notes were taken.

 -- A Texas Prisoner, 5 January 1998


...I have a personal library which is used by a large 
majority of the prisoner population here. I keep track of 
the conditions of the books, who has them, and when they are 
returned, which is 9 to 14 days from the day checked out and 
can be re-checked out after inspection of the un-kept 
condition of the materials. 

The prison library here is greatly insufficient and will not 
stock revolutionary, nationalist books, literature, or 
materials. So I have started through donated materials a 
library of my own which is run by myself and several other 
revolutionary warriors of our cause rather efficiently. 

But I am an orphan and also what is considered a "Lifer" in 
prisons. This is my life now, but many of the men here are 
going to be back in the free world and so I imbibe the cause 
not only into their ideals but also into daily lives and 
living values.

I am vastly in need of all types of materials such as MIM 
Notes, MIM Theory, Notas Rojas and other revolutionary 
literature. We have very limited to no real access to 
educational activities and resources. It is primarily up to 
us prisoners to educate ourselves as the supposed justice 
system just locks us away and then forgets about us. They 
don't have any money to spare on us, but they expect a 
change in us. Although they don't even try to supply us with 
the abilities and courses or programs to make a change.

Here in this letter [from MIM], it was stated that "some 
prisoners in Texas start out making 24 cents an hour..." 
Well in all T.D.C.J. -I.D. prisons, there are no wages paid 
for any type of labor done, no matter how simple or how 
great that labor may be.

The T.D.C.J.-I.D. systems have revoked the college course 
programs and there is only limited access to GED classes and 
the prisoner must pay for half of the costs required.

The Legal Law Library has recently made a new policy that 
states, "Prisoners who are in need of legal materials must 
give an active case 'cause number and must submit a copy of 
the order from the court stating that such is required. 
There will be no books checked out to prisoners in any other 
matters (i.e., just to educate yourself to the law...)."

We are allowed both hardbound books, paperbacks, (plastic) 
spiral bound, copies of literature, photocopied literature, 
pamphlets and literature on loose paper, newspapers. All 
materials must be sent from a bookstore, an organization, or 
an address, which is typed under a heading of such a place.

I am in the process of getting statements, testimonials, and 
explanations of what is going on, on the inside and being 
hidden or covered up and not made known to the public.

At this time, this unit has been on a total lockdown and 
there is no movement by prisoners. We are fed 3 meals a day 
which consist of at breakfast, 1 boiled grade A egg, 1 small 
biscuit made of flour with a teaspoon of diluted peanut 
butter, 1 small box of cereal. No beverages are served.

Then at lunch we are served one sandwich which consists of 2 
slices of white bread and 1 slice of cheese, or 1 teaspoon 
of peanut butter and 1 sandwich which is either 2 slices of 
bread with 1 slice of bologna or 1 slice of salami, or 1 
sandwich which consists of 1 hotdog bun and 1 uncooked 
hotdog. The same lunch is served at last chow meals. No 
beverages are served. We must drink water from the tap.

These harsh meals have been going on for 17 days now and we 
are informed that this is going to be this way for 90 days 
total because of lack of funds. And because some of the 
prisoners on this unit have been writing grievances on the 
unit administration offices and those offices' employees. 
This is also going on because the unit is under 
investigation by the Texas Prison Board.

We must, in order to be fed, get off of our bunks and kneel 
with our backs to the door, ankles crossed and hands on top 
of our heads. The meals have no assigned times to be served 
an hour or two apart or all at once; it's up to the whim of 
the officer. It is his or her decision as to how they want 
to do it personally.

...We need the help of our brothers and sisters in the free 
world.... We need a lot of books in all the aforementioned 
topics and subjects as our library now consists of 56 books 
and is greatly inadequate to our group which has 387 members 
at this month's count and is still growing....

Always in Struggle, A Clenched Fist Salute to All Comrades 
and Revolutionaries!

 -- A Texas Prisoner, 30 December 1997


...I am having serious problems getting adequate medical 
attention from the medical staff here at the Cross Roads 
Correctional Center. I am having problems swallowing. My 
throat stays sore all the time and this infection is causing 
my tongue to have sores on it. I have serious nose bleeding 
due to the fact that whatever is stuck in my throat is also 
effect my nasal passages. 

I have put in several medical requests concerning this 
problem. I have even gone to the extent of filing a 
grievance about my medical problem, but nothing is being don 
for me in the medical department. Every time I go to the 
doctor's office for an examination the doctor just looks 
into my mouth and nose with a flashlight. And then tells me 
that nothing is wrong with me. This routine is frustrating 
and depressing to me because I am in constant pain. I am 
suffering and can not get any medical attention from the 
medical staff here.

I know for a fact that I am being discriminated against 
because of my race and the fact that I am a revolutionary. 
They know I am a revolutionary from my politics and my 
reading material. I am very aware of what I am dealing with 
in this concentration camp. I know the history of how these 
prisons use their medical staff to murder certain political 
prisoners who have power and influence among the masses of 

I am being held in maximum security lockdown. I am isolated 
from the general population. So whatever happens to me back 
here in isolation is hidden from the eyesight of the rest of 
the prisoners in general population. For all of you comrades 
who are locked up in Administrative Segregation at any 
prison, I am sure that you can identify with my plight.

All of this is political, my comrades. The prisoncrats are 
keeping the money, which the taxpayers are giving them for 
our medical care. The prisoncrats receive $50,000 a year for 
each inmate they hold in the system. [We could not verify 
this -- MIM] No wonder why the prisoncrats, the modern day 
slave holders, are crying for more prisons to be built in 
the United Snakes. The Imperialists and Capitalists are 
getting fat off our captivity and enslavement, while we are 
suffering and dying in these prisons by the thousands.

This is just a business for the white power structure. We 
can't look for any mercy or expect any sympathy from the 
ruling class in these prison systems. They are like hungry 
lions feeding off the blood and guts of the lambs and sheep. 
We are nothing to them except a meal ticket. They don't care 
about our medical care. They don't care a thing about our 
pain and suffering. They only care about their own greedy 
capitalist interest. 

We must build a strong united front to work for our own 
common interest. We must fight against Imperialism and all 
forms of oppression. We prisoners have to come together all 
over the world and design a think tank to combat all the 
injustices toward us.

I am need in support... I need comrades to put pressure on 
the prisoncrats to give me the medical attention that I 
need. My throat is hurting me to the point where I am having 
severe headaches. It's difficult for me to sleep at night 
because the pain is almost unbearable. My complaint is not a 
joke or a prank. I am in need of some serious medial 

Please address your letters and phone calls to the people 

Governor, Mel Cornahan, State Capital Building, Jefferson 
City, MO 65102, (314) 751-3222

Prison Director, Dora Schrino, 2729 Plaza Drive, PO Box 236, 
Jefferson City, MO (314) 751-2398

Medical Director, Dr. Rhonda Almanza, Missouri Department of 
Corrections, Cross Roads Correctional Center, Cameron, MO 

 -- A Missouri Prisoner, 26 December 1997


Greetings from the Gulag. In way of an introduction I am a 
man twenty-four, (24) years imprisoned as a result of a plea 
bargain made UNDER PROTEST, (in open court) after spending 
nearly four months in 4-point restraints, and medicated with 
huge doses of psychotropic medications. I am now in federal 
court litigating that conviction, but am up against 
tremendous odds....

I am a man of simple but compelling truths, (from essay) who 
wants to join the struggle.

P.S. "If a law or policy is wrong, we are bound to oppose it 
with the same will it acts to thwart. If any plot exist 
which might deprive us of our humanity, then the plotters 
shall feel the full weight of our solidarity..."

 -- A California Prisoner, 30 December 1997


Peace and Revolutionary Greetings MIM,  ...This shit-uation 
that's been going on here in Trenton has been that of 
harassment and repression. The New Jersey Department of 
KKKorrections has considered, categorized and labeled Five 
Percenters as a "Gang" (Security Threat Group [STG]). As it 
stands now, they have compiled a so-called "STG" list of 
anyone who associates with Five Percenters or has any of 
their literature in their possession. They have been placed 
on this STG list and shipped to Northern State which has a 
control unit specifically for so-called "gang members". They 
claim that prisons throughout New Jersey are infested with 
gangs and violence.

Nevertheless, this move is an attempt to isolate political 
and conscious prisoners by lumping them together under the 
banner of security measures. Prisoners in New Jersey are 
beginning to re-awaken and are re-organizing. The Department 
of KKKorrections is fully aware and they are frightened 
because the oppressed are seeing the contradictions between 
the oppressors and the oppressed. Once we prisoners organize 
and build public opinion against Amerikkka's KKKriminal 
injustice system and replace it with proletarian justice, 
the bourgeois injustice system will collapse.

I am, I remain, In struggle,

 -- A New Jersey Prisoner, 4 January 1998


I've received your publication about a week ago. It arrived 
almost a month late. Hmm, i wonder was holding my mail.

...i am flat broke! And the Devils are stopping pay come 
Jan. 1, 1998. As you know all hell is going to break loose 
down here in Klanolina!

I'm still on a Security Detention Unit (A new term for lock-
up) since April 28th 1995. For being a security threat, a 
5%er or member of the Nation of Gods and Earth. 

The sad part is that legally The System is winning. Right 
now our lawyer... is appealing to the Supreme Courts, which 
will take another year (?) to get a damn answer! And Black 
so-called helpful organizations don't struggle with us! We 
are DEAD down here! At least MIM speaks with us from time to 
time. What about the organizations we represent? 

This jive is enough to make me give up! I can see why many 
revolutionaries quit struggling. How can you fight a monster 
when everyone is against you or running in fear?! Yet I will 
continue to fight regardless of no support.

The 5% is in the Struggle,

 -- A South Carolina Prisoner, 30 December 1997


Greetings,  I am a young Asiatic Black youth who is in 
search of a lot of things. I am incarcerated at Odom 
Correctional Facility, which is located in Jackson, North 

At the present moment, I am separated from general 
population for a variety of infractions. These came about 
because a sergeant was trying to take a ring that I 
constructed at the wood shop. They asked me for it stating 
it was contraband. I refused. The pigs also asked for my tam 
[Rasta Cap]. This time I replied, "No Devil." The remark got 
the sergeant radiated and I was maced and jumped on by three 

Well I want to start a movement within the system to put an 
end to how they treat us. Before I was separated, I was 
working or getting brothers to stop doing slave work in the 
fields, kitchens and various places. 

...I am twenty-two years of age, and I know that all it 
takes is unity and results can happen. I will get long term 
but that's no problem as long as I study and read things 
that may benefit the brothers here or within North Carolina 
that are downpressed daily.... I'll be trying to teach 
prisoners what's going on....

Peace and Love,

 -- A North Carolina Prisoner, 25 December 1997


The struggle goes on! At this time I'm still on segregation. 
I've passed our publication [MIM Notes] around to a few 
like-minded comrades on lock-down. The publication has been 
received with a warm welcome and dialogue has been 
transformed. We speak of the oppression our people are 
under, in particular the education institution.

... At this particular time the DOC [Department of 
Corruptions] has intensified their oppression of their 
captives. The adjustment procedures have drastically been 
changed. Comrades are being held on segregation for weeks 
without an adjustment hearing. And visits are being 
terminated indefinitely in an attempt to cut off all outside 
and family support. The climate is being set for 
revolutionary reaction.

The struggle intensifies! Psychological liberation is 
desperately needed.

Your Comrade,

 -- A Maryland Prisoner, 3 January 1998


Yesterday, I was under the impression that my captors were 
keeping my subscription of MIM Notes from me, and filed a 
grievance against my oppressors, and as I just mentioned 
comrades, today I was given my Nov 1, 1997 and Nov. 15, 1997 
issues of MIM Notes.

But my oppressors, as a result of me filing a grievance 
against them, have taken my radio, typewriter, coffeepot, 
etc. as a form of harassment.

One pig guard even went on to say that it was behind me 
receiving revolutionary literature. I told the pig guard 
that by them harassing me and confiscating my property, that 
it only enforced what I already know. That is, that a pig 
will always do whatever he can to down a revolutionary 
comrade in the struggle. 

I also informed this same pig guard that my comrade brothers 
and sisters of the Maoist Internationalist Movement firmly 
support their comrades in the unjust prison system in 
Amerika, and are in solidarity with me in fighting against 
the brutalities and inhumane conditions in the prisons. ... 
And in the end...justice will win! 

I know that this pig guard did not really understand what I 
was pointing out to him, because justice is something he 
don't understand....

Your Comrade in Struggle,

 -- A Texas Prisoner, 2 January 1998


MIM, Comrades Hotep,  Here at Smithfield Prison Camp in 
Pennsylvania, the Klan is no longer hiding. There has always 
been common knowledge that the KKK and the more elite Aryan 
Brotherhood has filtered into the PA prison system, and 
other prisons across the country disguised as Correctional 
Officers, Counselors, and into the Medial Department.

Because in the Prison Camps they don't have to plan their 
clandestine move against Blacks and other oppressed POW's, 
--They can be their good old boy self and practice their 
kicks, swing and biological warfare and lying skills without 

Smithfield is so vicious and brutal that anyone who has 
stoop up for his basic prison right, has been beat down and 
locked down in solitary for 60 to 120 days. Until the Klan 
Staff feel you have learned your lesson which is to keep 
your head down, And go along with their program -- NKYP 
(Nigger Know Your Place).

This is the only state institution in Pennsylvania to make 
up their own SHU (Special Housing Unit). Where they continue 
their harassment of all willful POW's who stand on their 
principles. As the warrior knows principles are what we live 
by and sometimes die for.

Anyone can look around any of the three holes at Smithfield. 
You will see they are only trying to break the Black and 
Brown prisoners.

We want our Comrades and Supporters to know that our enemies 
who control Smithfield are throwing spitballs at battleships 
trying to break out spirits. We still recognize that we need 
the people out there to combat this ongoing racial treatment 
by Smithfield pigs.

We are in a corner, and we who are in the intestine of this 
beast at Smithfield ain't going down without a fight. The 
battlefield is any place you say enough is enough. And we 
had enough. Here our cry.

 -- A Pennsylvania 1 December 1997

P.S. ...We both know what Mao meant when he said: As the 
wind blow change We must learn to build a windmill And 
direct it.

I'm in the hole... and I thank you for reaching out to all 
the dragons who are left behind these walls, bars, and 
breathing fresh air underneath our wings....


"FDOC Policy = Get Tough on Families" "Cut out the 
middleman, Allow Prisoners to Keep Their Property and We'll 
send our money directly to Lawton Chiles" "Stop the FDOC 
Monopoly" "FDOC Profit Statement: Inmate Canteens, Inmate 
Telephones More Inmates!"

These were just a few of the slogans that appeared on poster 
signs in a citizen demonstration in front of the capitol 
building in Tallahassee on October 15, 1997. Several family 
members and friends of Florida prisoners travel to 
Tallahassee to participate in the rally that included 
carrying signs, talking with and distributing flyers and 
information to pedestrians and motorist about the Florida 
Department of Corrections (FDOC's) price gouging and 
monopolistic practices toward prisoners' families and 

The demonstrators, consisting of men, women, and children, 
were surprisingly well received and encouraged by numerous 
supportive comments from the public and capital employees. 
This was the first of what is hoped to be a series of 
demonstrations that are intended to challenge the FDOC's 
policies and practices. These policies are artificially 
creating the appearance of "getting tough on prisoners" but 
in reality only financially punish and double-tax prisoners' 
families and friends. 

This demonstration was initially proposed by staff from 
Florida Prison Legal Perspective (FPLP) at a recent Florida 
Prison Action Network meeting, which consists of Florida 
based groups that include: FPLP, Families with Loved ones in 
Prison (FLIP), Florida Institutional Legal Services, and the 
Parole Elimination Network (PEN). 

The intention was to raise awareness of the growing 
financial burdens being imposed against Prisoners' families, 
friends and all state taxpayers by the FDOC. Our approach 
was to organize and hold a demonstration in the state's 
capital to raise the awareness of the public, our state 
legislators, and other elected officials.

The first issue expressed in this demonstration was the 
FDOC's plan to take all Florida Prisoners' personal property 
on January 1, 1998. But allow their families to send them 
money to replace the property with identical or similar 
property to be purchased from the prison canteen at recently 
inflated prices. The second topic was the monopoly and 
gouging that is occurring against prisoners' families and 
friends with the exorbitant collect telephone scheme being 
operated by the FDOC.

...Thank you, to those who showed up and participated [in 
the demonstration]. Your participation was important and 
greatly appreciated. I think we all had a good time and 
learned a lot. ... Widespread notice will be given on the 
future demonstrations that are to occur so that everyone 
will have the opportunity to participate.

In other news, another Florida Prison Action Network meeting 
was held on November 2, 1997. It went very well. These 
important meetings, to which everyone is invited, are being 
well attended and strengthening the voice of Florida 
prisoners, their families, friends and associates. Attend 
these meetings to learn about what efforts are being taken 
to change and improve our criminal justice and correctional 
system in Florida....

 -- A Florida Prisoner, 30 December 1997

 [About]  [Contact]  [Home]  [Art]  [Movies]  [Black Panthers]  [News]  [RAIL]