The Voice of the Anti-Imperialist Movement from

Under Lock & Key

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[Rhymes/Poetry] [Utah]
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Firing Squad

I've seen them walk in with the bleach
Goose stepping out with the rifles
Bloody fragments and bone in blonde hair
Brand new Casio watch, new shoes, clean underwear
The traces of the dead man's Prozac
Ulcer medications and ibuprophins
Mingle loosely with the trigger mens viagra
with their cocaine and caffeine grins
Where you off to now Mr. Executioners?
After you've lynched in the most disgusting way
you are off to your grandchild's christening
to her prom night or school play
my sweat drips on to the cold concrete and I chant, i say, "you can't stop us,
it's inevitable. Soon all you know will fall."
Tattered socks scrape and squeak as I motion
I raise my arms and tap my chest, "ten"
counting out the sets and counting down the days
here's a promise that I believe the people support
we won't blindfold you, we'll allow you to watch
you'll need to see the ones now holding the rifles
are the very same you've oppressed, starved and stifled
and we will pull the trigger out of social conscience
not out of your racism, greed or chauvinistic pride
and it will not be a secret, the world can watch
nothing will need to be hidden or secret
because we'll explain why, to our children we'll teach it
that the reason we kill you pig isn't out of hate
it's that food you stockpiled that the starving masses never ate

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[Environmentalism] [ULK Issue 15]
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Gulf oil spill: It's capitalism, stupid!

Hands across Amerika, what a wonderful, heart-warming concept. From Santa Monica, California to the beaches of Alabama, Amerikans united in an attempt to show their disappointment and anger at the British Petroleum oil company (BP) as well as their love for the environment, specifically the Gulf Coast.

It's been over two months since BP caused the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf Coast region of the United Snakes, and still the imperialists and big capitalists are at a loss for how to stop one of the most destructive environmental disasters in humyn history. Amerikans are mad! One of the things Amerikans hate to see most is when the evils of imperialism touch "their" shores. What a huge financial hit for all those people living on and near the Gulf Coast, not to mention all that poor defenseless marine life - how dare that BP come here and impose their careless, maniacal ways on Amerikkka - have they no shame? Amerikans didn't want that oil anyway, right?

Actually, Amerikans do want BP drilling for oil. Being the parasites on humynity and the globe that they are, they definitely wanted BP drilling for oil in the Gulf Coast no matter what they say. They're thirsty for oil like ticks for blood. It's partly why they installed the Shah of Iran back in the day. It's why they invaded Kuwait and attacked Iraq during the Gulf War, which led to record-breaking marine oil spills at that time polluting wetlands in Iraq (BP has far surpassed those records now).(1) It's why Amerika invaded Iraq a second time and hung Saddam. And it's partly why they now have their sights set on Iran for regime change. So please, to all you oil thirsty piggish Amerikans, spare us your sentiments. You wanted that oil just as much, if not more than your big capitalists and energy corporations did.

It's not as if BP is some foreign entity completely alien to Amerika which somehow just muscled or manipulated the western hemisphere's only superpower and began drilling at will. You wanted that oil when you decided to get rid of that tired old Chevy and upgrade to a decadently sprawled out 2010 all terrain SUV. You wanted that oil when you decided to keep your home at a comfy 73 degrees year round even though you live in California. You want that oil every time you purchase all of the other pointless, unnecessary crap that you don't need which requires oil for manufacturing, packaging, shipping, etc. And finally, you prove that you want that oil every time one of your boys and girls comes back from overseas in a body bag, or subject the Third World to your yoke of oppression, death and destruction.

Everything's fine and dandy when the oil spill happens somewhere else, in some country you're too lazy to even try to pronounce right. Nigerians have been living among oil spills for over 50 years, amounting to over 550 million gallons spilled, thanks to foreign oil companies supplying Amerikans and other rich nations.(2) Fifty years, and still nothing has been done about the destroyed ecosystems or humyn livelihoods. And for those who are campaigning to end off shore oil drilling in the United $tates without seriously restricting First World consumption: that will only translate into more pollution and destruction in Nigeria, the Sudan and all over the Middle East where humyn lives and ecosystems are deemed less worthy by the chauvinists screaming "not in my backyard!"

The oil spill wasn't BP's fault alone and it wasn't Obama's fault alone, either. It's capitalism stupid, and the sooner you begin to understand that and start to do something to ensure that oil spills like in the Gulf Coast don't happen again, like say helping to bring imperialism down, the better off we'll all be.

This type of disaster would have had a very small to nil chance of happening in the former Soviet Union (1917-1953) or the socialist People's Republic of China (1949-1976), because those communist countries wouldn't have had to do the extensive drilling that the First World seems so caught up with. Why? It is exactly because the communist countries implement something called "planned economics," to meet humyn needs. With today's knowledge of capitalism's effects on Earth's ecology, a socialist form of production would only approve the production of necessary amounts of what's needed for their people, such as food, clothing, shelter, medical supplies and other necessities for trade and sale. These planned economies would be updated quarterly, yearly or as needed. But today, Amerikans demand more and they want it cheap. And the imperialists must produce more than is needed in order to continue to profit.

In a Maoist economic system, since production is for need and not profit, safety suddenly becomes "affordable." Under capitalism, cutting corners increases profits, while threatening humyn lives. While many Amerikans are legitimately angry, they feel helpless to do anything. The BP officials seem untouchable, yet in a Maoist planned socialist economy, those in charge of potentially life-threatening operations are held to the greatest accountability, including the death penalty. While BP officials are millionaires, communist officials in socialist China made much less than intellectuals, while bearing much more responsibility. Allowing the few to profit off of the destruction of the planet that all life depends on will be the most lasting legacy of capitalism that future generations will scratch their heads at.

We can expect many more environmental disasters to hit Amerika (as they've already been hitting the Third World for decades) in the years to come as the imperialists get more desperate to exploit the earth for its material resources and leave all qualms aside when it comes to tapping more and more into the U.$. minerals and fossil fuel reserves. The insatiable appetites of consumption of the First World must be stopped in order to maintain a planet worth building socialism on.

Notes:
(1)Threats to the environment posed by war in Iraq. Science in Africa, March 2003.
(2)Jon Gambrell. Gulf spill a familiar story in oil-soaked Nigeria. Associated Press, July 5, 2010.

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[Organizing] [Clinton Correctional Facility] [Downstate Correctional Facility] [New York]
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Find Your Strength

I cried pure tears of regret, pain, and sympathy for the numerous soldiers who are being targeted and abused because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

I share the same oppression of barbaric treatment, by the devilish regime that deprives millions of their constitutional rights of freedom of liberty. I'm incarcerated in Clinton Correctional Facility in the New York State, where the inmates have gotten relaxed without having a voice to speak against the guards racism, beatings, and rural area practices of not having an inclination of how to communicate with people of color or know exactly how to relate with cultural beliefs and religion. I have witnessed guards beat inmates and spray inmates with chemical agents for fun or to impress fellow subordinates in showing their co-workers the extent of power they have, while prisoners are shackled.

I myself have been a victim of such torturous actions of torment in Downstate Correctional Facility in New York State because I wrote the inspector General's office because of the abuse of another prisoner's righteous actions. In this state and especially this facility, it's repeatedly exercised that guards get cousins, brothers, sisters, uncles, mothers and even their elderly of kin hired to participate in the slavery monopoly of mistreatment of the prisoners. We are being given violations written by the connection of a family member, then being taken in from of another associate or relative to be found guilty. Without ever having our voices heard because the case workers have found us guilty based on their blood-line theory of truth.

So when I read about Missouri, Utah, California, Florida, Georgia prison systems, and all others that carry the same racist prototype in their regimes, I pray for all my comrade brothers and comrade sisters who have been trampled over and continue to get run over by foul acts of criminal activity. I want them all to know to love yourself and search for dependency on truth, because no matter what the pigs take away from us all, they can never take away the greatest love of all, and that's knowing that we are a reflection of each other.

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[Abuse] [National Oppression] [Clinton Correctional Facility] [New York]
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Assaults and Brutality in New York

I must promptly apologize for not writing in a while. These pigs here are opening my letters to you and destroying the contents inside. I've also been helping the brothers (Black and Brown) here at the notorious Clinton max.

Since the new superintendent took over back in April 2010 there's been a slew of assaults by corruption officers on the Black and Brown. Keep in mind this superintendent was once an officer, sgt, capt, and deputy. Back in April a pig broke his nightstick over a brother's shoulder after the individual was laid out on the yard grounds. In May a young Muslim brother who was wearing sweatpants to the yard was assaulted by several dastardly pigs so badly that the brother defecated on himself. Of course you know they charge the prisoner with assault so that they can justify using force that is extremely excessive with impunity.

Also in May an older Mexican brother who doesn't speak much english, nor does he understand it, was told to place his hands on the wall, only the pig motioned with his finger. He didn't understand so he put both hands on top of his head, he was then assaulted. This same brother was assaulted again when he was being escorted back to his cell. He was punched in his ribs and hit by a nightstick in his kidney area along with his wrist being twisted and bruised. This brother is 119 pounds soaking wet. He was also denied food. He's a diabetic and has mental issues and was spitting up blood.

The next day I saw him in the yard and a few Mexican brothers told me what happened and I was furious! As a brother and a member of the Inmate Liaison Committee(ILC) I took the prisoner, who was still spitting up blood, to the COs post and explained his need for medical attention. He did receive medical treatment, and x-rays and reports showed that he had fractured ribs, photos of bruises and a twisted wrist. After I translated a grievance form from Spanish to English about the abuse, he was threatened by more abuse if he didn't "sign off" the grievance. He didn't sign off and because of that he was retaliated on while coming back from commissary. He was picked out of line an put on the wall, while everyone else locked in. He was then handcuffed and a plastic bag was put on his head until he passed out. He woke up in a daze (still shackled) and now wet from the waist down from urinating on himself. The coward ass pig hurled racial slurs at him, and that's when brothers started yelling "leave him the fuck alone!" He left for a so-called hospital trip in June and he hasn't been seen since. I have all of this information first hand from the prisoner.

In May a brother was accosted in E-Block (SHU) by two pigs who jumped on him. There was blood high on the walls. After handcuffing they swing you like a pendulum high against the wall and watch you drop on your face, head, body, etc. There was so much blood that it ended up underneath the E-block door. I personally know the brother who did the clean up and he told me "It looked like something out of CSI."

Two years ago, then Supt Artus issued a memo after numerous complaints by ILC and individuals throughout the population. He issued one on "use of force" and another on "professional demeanor." These memos have been and continue to be blatantly disregarded just like many complaints and grievances. The administration speaks with the same rhetoric "staff abuse will not be tolerated" but as you can see nothing has changed. The roughshod is becoming more and more like the practices at Gitmo!

Today, while in the yard, there was friction between the Muslims and the LOs. Yesterday got real ugly between the two, resulting in brothers being scared for their lives. As they met in the center of the yard, the pigs were well prepared with rifles in hand and nightsticks. As they recorded the yard I could see it in their eyes that they were anticipating "tribalism." Many brothers couldn't see what was about to take place. Although the beef was squashed (thanks to the Muslim brothers), I just can't see how we don't recognize who our true enemy is!

In hindsight, almost 40 years ago when troopers entered into the notorious Attica prison on a "murderous rampage" killing 29 prisoners and 10 of their own, they also used "dum dum" bullets which explode on impact. I'm forgetting to mention it was against Geneva codes back then as it is now. There's also footage that shows caucasians (COs) yelling "white power" after the gunshots rang out. Even now, almost 40 years later, a plaque still remains in front of Attica honoring the co-called bravery of the 10 pigs who they killed. Autopsy showed they died from ground shot wounds. It doesn't show any type of condolences for us prisoners who were murdered. This shows that 1) These pigs will not only kill the Black and Brown with impunity but also kill their own and call it bravery, friendly fire, etc. 2) I personally feel that there should be only 2 gangs: us and them!

In conclusion, prisons are the Alma Mater of terrorism with quasi-torture tactics! Think about it, how else can a small group of people (COs) maintain and rule a much greater number of people (prisoners)? Stop reading this article and actually think about that. The most concise answer is by "terror"! We are all victims of the Amerikan social order. Violence is an Amerikan tradition, it's citizens thrive off it, and are addicted to it and enchanted by it. We have been so desensitized that we fall victim so easily to Willie Lynch syndrome, this modern day even. Bottom line is we need more solidarity between the Black and Brown!" It seems that my efforts are becoming useless due to the hostility I get when I confront my brothers involved in these Lumpen Organizations. The leaders especially insist on dismissing me as "stuck in the 60s mentality." So now the mentality of the masses is "thuggery" and "gangsterism."


MIM(Prisons) adds: Too many people are brainwashed by BET and XXL into thinking self-hatred and individualism is something new and trendy. We join this prisoner in calling for a United Front for Peace of all Lumpen Organizations active in prison and on the streets. We are currently drafting a statement of unity for this United Front and will look to leading LOs to sign and propagate it behind bars. Write to us to get involved in this project.

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[Control Units] [California State Prison, Sacramento] [California]
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Unlock the Box in New Folsom ASU

I'm writing in response to your Unlock the Box survey. in my 22 years of incarceration in California prisons I've spent over 13 years in control units.

While I cannot provide accurate statistical analysis that you request, or much historical background concerning some of these control units, I can at least tell you my personal observations from first hand experience.

California State Prison - Sacramento (aka New Folsom) Administrative Segregation Unit (ASU): I was first placed in this ASU in September 1991 for "inciting" (i.e. participation in an institution food strike protest by writing to the ACLU). The ASU back then consisted of A-facility, housing units 5,6, and 7 (with 8 sometimes used as overflow), with 64 cells in each unit at double cell capacity (except in isolated cases of "single cell" status).

I would say at least 50% of the control unit was, and usually is in any control unit, Latino, the other 50% is divided by varying degrees between Afrikans and Europeans, with a small percentage of "others" (i.e. Native American, Asian, Pacific Islander, etc.). The most common reasons for ASU placement include assault on other inmates or staff, drug possession or trafficking, gang affiliation, enemy or safety concerns, weapons possession, or conspiracy investigations. Sometimes inmates are sent to ASU based on bogus confidential information or some other fabricated reason as a form of retaliation by prison officials.

As far as I know, this unit was first opened in 1985 or 86 as a Security Housing Unit (SHU) during the statewide crackdown on prison gangs. It has since been expanded to include a psychiatric Services Unit (PSU) in housing units 1-4 and a stand alone ASU building behind B-facility, with ASU-EOP in A-5, and ASU-CCCMS in B-4.

The state has recently implemented new control units in some prisons called the Behavioral Modification Unit (BMU), which I don't have much information on at this time. Additionally, most level 4 prisons have built separate "stand alone ASU" facilities which are modeled after Pelican Bay SHU to impose maximum sensory deprivation. In fact, these control units are worse than Pelican Bay SHU because of the deprivation of inmates televisions.

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[Theory] [Organizing] [ULK Issue 14]
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On strategy: breaking thru defenses

[In ULK 13, we printed some definitions that came from studying MIM Theory 5: Diet for a Small Red Planet, which focuses on line, strategy and tactics. In this article, we summarize some of the ways we applied those concepts to real world examples while discussing the rest of the articles in MIM Theory 5.]

There are basically two ways we can make errors in our political work. We can make rightist errors or ultra-left errors. How we avoid these errors depends on our ability to assess our material conditions, because what is left and what is right changes as conditions change. For example, we spent time discussing focoism and opposing it as ultra-leftist because it calls for armed struggle in the First World. Yet, we recognize that armed struggle is a necessity to overthrow imperialism when we reach that stage.

Looking left

While focoism was the main example, we tried to define ultra-leftism in a more broad sense. Ultra-leftism in general means giving the appearance of being to the left of the political spectrum to the point of moral purity. In practice, however, it's really so far to the left that it's useless to real revolutionaries because it makes us seek unrealistic goals. Ultra-leftism denies our material reality and replaces it with idealism. A second example of ultra-leftism might be spending all one's time attacking other revolutionaries for not being perfect.

Ultra-leftists hurt the Third World because every time a comrade has to pull one of these cats over and pull their coats, they take away time, energy and resources that can be used for the development of the Third World nations. Take the approach that one prisoner wrote in to ULK on commissary for example. S/he writes that instead of everybody buying store and keeping our stomachs from touching our backs when our oppressors are feeding us like we're children, we should send all our money home. Not to our brothas and sistas in the Third World, or the institutions established by comradz in the U.$. that truthfully provide for them. But send all the money home. And then what?

This is an example of ultra-leftism because, to some, this may seem revolutionary and rebellious but in reality it is irrational thinking. The idea is based in purity rather than a strategy with the objective goal of overthrowing imperialism. You can tell that the motivation is purity because the question is how do we not contribute to the system rather than how do we contribute to something that will change or end the system. This ignores material reality because you can't take the food from prisoners; then we'll really underdevelop our situation.

Looking right

When looking at rightism, the main problem we face is "revolutionaries" that want to organize the majority of the people in the United $tates. By catering to the majority in a First World country a party's politics are inevitably watered down - because the majority (in a First World country) are not oppressed. They put out a right opportunist line and get just whoever comes along. Basically, if you're an organization in the First World and have a large following you stand for bourgeois ideals. Once a person understands this you can pretty much place your bets on the small underdog movement for the correct line/vanguard status.

While we must defend against right opportunism within our ranks, we might ally with those who are openly reformist and therefore to the right of us. Revolutionaries work on reforms because some do improve the lives of people on a small scale, but ultimately we do it to show the people that reforms do not work in the end and what they really need is full-scale revolution. Trying to get some resources that will help advance the revolutionary's goals is a winnable battle worth fighting.

An example of a reform that can help a small percentage of the oppressed and could be used as a tactic in a larger strategy is limiting the number of people going into these torturous control units. Doing that work exposes the United $tates' cruelty, disregard for international law, brutality, etc. Hence it may help to work on SMUs, IMU, MCC, Ad-MAX, etc. struggles and inhumanities because as Mao said about public opinion. "The task of communists is to expose the fallacies of the reactionaries. . . and so accelerate the transformation of things and achieve the goal of revolution."

While we may unite with and lead reformist battles, revolutionaries should not join liberal mass organizations because they will eventually be forced to water down their politics for the sake of the single issue organization or risk alienation. Also, by working within a single issue organization, revolutionaries may inadvertently be holding it back by disempowering potential recruits, thereby disempowering the group. One way they do this is by alienating potential new recruits with their more worked out politics, leaving the potential recruits feeling as if they have nothing to offer.

Mass organizations and single issue work are good ways for the middle class to contribute to the anti-imperialist cause. We need to be looking to build alliances with them when it genuinely serves the international proletariat. In addition, we need to pay close attention to mass organizations because a lot of people are brought into politics through them. And we need to be there to challenge them to struggle for the real solution of humyn beings, communism.

Find the opening

In addition to reading MIM Theory 5, we studied two articles from the Black Panther newspaper entitled "In Defense of Self-Defense" and "The Correct Handling of a Revolution." In the latter article, Huey P. Newton wrote that, "the party must engage in activities that will teach the people." In our discussion of how to do this, one comrade discussed what s/he coined "MIM(Prisons) University of Thought," which includes the various study and discussion groups MIM(Prisons) facilitates. Through this institution, individuals have the opportunity to learn through study: the Party, its line and its history. Individuals can study the organization of movements through out our struggle for communist leadership by the proletariat and learn not only its victories and successes, but also its stagnation and failures.

Another related activity would be a campaign for the creation of giving (books, postal stamps, money, art, music, etc) by comrades that have to give. And everyone has something to give. An institution should be established that allows prisoners to send donated books to the cause, as well as funds. MIM(Prisons) has the lit project to distribute literature. This same institution can be used for prisoners who either have to send their books home due to excessiveness, or going to a control unit, or who want to just contribute to the cause. Some might wonder why not recycle them on the yards? But only at small levels can this be effective activity in educating the prison mass. If we want to become internationally unified, we must then think internationally.

Such a project not only progresses our efforts to receive the favor of the masses, but it also gives us an institution to counter the bourgeois-imperialist propaganda that is spread throughout this U.$. capitalist imperialist society.

Part of Huey's point was to teach through action. So not only are people learning from the books, but they are learning from the sharing and coordinating of materials as a collective group outside of a for-profit/business structure. Even an illiterate comrade could learn from the example of the program. Other activities mentioned that can teach the people were breakfast programs, community rehab on parks and other resources and lawsuits to fight censorship.

In addition to this summary, our study and discussions are reflected in a number of articles composed by comrades that appear in this issue and will appear in the future. We also added to and further developed the study guide for this topic (Strategy & Tactics), which we encourage all serious comrades to study when they get the chance.

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[Organizing] [California] [ULK Issue 14]
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Regarding security in prisons

I want to comment on something I read in the March/April 2010 ULK 13. I note that the SNYs [Special Needs Yards prisoners] are complaining about how the picklesuits are doing an excellent job of keeping prisoners in California at each others' throats. I doubt that there is a prisoner in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) that hates/resists petty over-authoritated power as much as I do. But so many prisoners at the drop of a hat go SNY/PC(Protective Custody) that it created a mad rush for police defense for not just those who may need it for the few real reasons that may exist.

I'm in general population (GP) and I would stay in the hole before I would allow the pig to twist me up into that SNY/PC nonsense. I heard people in Administrative Segregation (Ad-seg) and the Security Housing Units (SHU) when I was there be proud to say in front of the pig that they are active this or that which is in effect volunteering intelligence to the pig. Then you got those seeking to gather intelligence to provide the pig and that is both in and out of SNY. While SNY may outnumber general population 3 to 1 it is clear to me that one's condition in prison will not in reality become much (if any) better. Seeking the easy way out creates a moral quandary in that the reality of prison in California has not changed and the exodus to SNY has provided the pigs with more leverage to abuse and play nationalities against each other to the detriment of the whole.

I do not sympathize with SNY conditions nor do I sympathize with the conditions of GP. The fact that so many have to run to SNY has made the Green Wall stronger, since you in SNY have run away from your responsibilities. There are some very sorry so-called men in these prisons nowadays and I personally can do my time on the line or in the SHU as I will never allow the pig to turn me into a passive submissive subjugated sheep.

Sun Tzu's Art of War emphasized knowing one's enemy and I believe that a SNY's own worst enemy is one's self. There's still a lot of so-called hard core gang members on the line that say "I don't want to go here or there cause I got enemies." What ever happened to dealing with an issue on sight or leaving the matter alone? Particularly when there is no real substance to the basis in which one claims enemies. I do not have any prisoner enemies; this is silly and to claim such to a pig is sheer stupidity as it is to tell the pig you are a gang member. However, this seems to have become the custom. Wherever you are, grow up and be a man and take responsibility for your actions and quit depending on others to fight your battles. Simply educate yourself on how to use real strategies and tactics in order to learn how to be brave, fortuitous enough to gravitate to those who have a selfless desire to make a difference for all of our brothers. Bias and prejudice exuded by those around you only works against you in the long run. Until one learns to unite for the true cause and quit telling on self or others, the nonsense will continue. It's easy to spot agent provocateurs and quislings, and observation will expose the creeps for who they are. Prisoners are an open book and if you use your brain you can find out accurate facts and there is an old navy saying that "loose lips sink ships." It's a fact, people who think, do not follow, they cooperate for mutual benefit.

MIM(Prisons) responds: The snitching discussion has brought a lot of interest from readers and is integral to a discussion of organizing strategy. Another important question for those under state supervision is creating space for organizing. The purpose of control units is to elminate the space within the prison system where study and agitation can occur.

We warn against an ultra-left stance that leads one to accept years in a torture cell with no access to other people and limited access to mail and literature just so you can toughly say, "I never submitted." Comrades in control units have a hard time doing work, which is the whole reason the SHU was invented. Comrades also suffer mentally and physically in ways that can affect their ability to be productive even after release. So telling people to take SHU should not be done lightly and SHU should not be taken as one's "duty" to the cause when you are really just setting the struggle back.

Certainly, this writer makes correct points about working with the state and how that plays into the overall oppression of oppressed nations. And certainly, there are cases where submitting to torture in a control unit is the best thing for the struggle. But as we pointed out in ULK 13, many are finding themselves in a situation where those who promised to serve their people are doing the state's dirty work themselves. As this comrade recognizes, conditions in GP in California aren't more commendable than what's going on in SNY. It was the lumpen organizations following CDCR leadership that made SNY possible by what they did in GP. They pushed people so far that they were willing to snitch on something they were once willing to die for. This is the reality of the situation now that we must deal with. And in that reality, we find comrades on both sides of the SNY/GP wall. If we do it right this time and eliminate all this fighting between the oppressed then we will start to deal with the problem of snitching in a material way. This comrade gets it right when he says it is silly for prisoners to claim they are enemies for no reason.

Finally, we disagree with the claim that agent provocateurs and quislings are easy to spot. It may seem that way when you are surrounded by lazy, self-interested people, but that is not always true, and the most dangerous agents are hardest to spot.

For more on the morality of snitching, see our accompanying article discussing "The situational ethics of snitching."

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[Civil Liberties] [Arizona] [ULK Issue 14]
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No to SB1070!

Them good ol' boys are at it again. As much as Amerikan pre$ident Barack Obama would like us to believe that we have reached a new stage in Amerikkkan society, in the form of a "post-racial Amerikkka," which is an oxymoron by the way, state sanctioned racism raises its ugly head yet again. This time it is in the form of Arizona's racist and illegal Senate Bill 1070. Racist, because it obviously gives Arizona's occupational forces (law enforcement) the right to stop or pull people over solely for the color of their skin.

Reactionaries in high places as well as other proponents of SB1070 argue that the power to stop and card people will only be called for with "probable cause," and that this power to card people for their citizenship papers is wholly sanctioned by the 4th Amendment of the constitution. However, we from the oppressed communities know full well that "probable cause" is a very loose and flexible term as applied by occupation forces. "Probable cause" can range from "gang attire" and looking "suspicious" to being seen by pigs in the wrong neighborhood. We from the oppressed communities recognize at a glance the obvious implications of "probable cause" such as "driving while Black." Only a fool or a racist would think this oppressive tool, SB1070, is right in any way.

Although the Amerikan judicial system has given occupation forces and the kangaroo court system wide berth and due deference when it comes to the way that they apply "probable cause," we must note that technically the way in which probable cause is actually applied is illegal. So it is no surprise that many people have expressed outrage at the idea of this racist and illegal law.

While "probable cause" has hystorically been directed at the lumpen class within the U.$., SB1070 now gives the state of Arizona the power to not just target the destructive side of oppressed nations, but the power to further oppress, harass, detain and deport whole nations of people within their jurisdiction, not to mention the authority that Arizona will now have to incarcerate people.

Just days before the signing of SB1070 into law, piece-of-shit republican senator Hunter of California appeared before news cameras touting the excellence and morality of the racist law. He then took it one step further however, when the good senator began advocating that the 14th Amendment be repealed to deny children born in the United $tates citizenship status if their parents are undocumented.(1) This further drives home that being Amerikkkan is about the fictional concept of race and not about where one is born, raised and pays taxes.

A week later, following the huge May Day protests that took place across the U.$., we saw the reactionaries and their allies attempt to push back with their meager show of support for the newly signed law by organizing counter-protests in bands of tens and twenties. These counter-protests were largely made up of the most backward Euro-Amerikkkans, however they did have some interesting mouthpieces at the front.

First, we heard from an openly gay man about how all "illegal aliens" should just go back to Mexico because all they brought to the table was crime, drugs, etc.(2) Then we heard from an African-Amerikkkan who was participating in the counter protests in a show of solidarity with his fellow Amerikkkans as well as claiming to represent a sell out organization called "Black Shield." He spoke of how Black people could no longer find good jobs or decent middle class jobs because Mexicans, and other "illegal aliens" were stealing them all.(3) It wasn't Mexicans who threatened to kill Blacks every time they tried to work in an Amerikan factory or study at an Amerikan school over the last 400 years.

Last, but certainly not least, we heard from a seemingly orthodox Jewish man, indeed he spewed the most vile hatred towards immigrants. Among other things this man said that there was nothing wrong with having to present proper identification to law enforcement officials if you appeared to be "illegal." He stated that this was a constitutionally protected right and just couldn't understand what all the fuss was about. (4) Ugh, what? Weren't the enactment of similar laws in Nazi Germany preludes to the forced display of Stars of David by Jewish people and eventually the dispersal of the Jewish peoples across Europe into concentration camps and genocide?

Days later at a candlelight vigil in support of immigrant rights, the reverend Al Sharpton addressed the Black nation, perhaps as an answer to Black people who might of been asking themselves and each other, as well as the Rev. Sharpton, why they should support immigrant rights and oppose SB1070. The Reverend answered, "… because at night, we all look Latino."

Notes:
(1) ABC 7 News, Los Angeles. 25 April 2010.
(2), (3), (4) Noticiero Telemundo 52. 3 May 2010.

This article referenced in:
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[Theory] [California]
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On Paper Tigers

Not long after the end of World War II, Comrade Mao Zedong put forward his famous thesis, "All reactionaries are paper tigers."(1) This thesis armed the people of China ideologically, strengthened their confidence in victory and played an exceedingly great role in the People's War of Liberation. This thesis is still relevant today and we would be wise to heed its message.

Comrade Mao Zedong regarded imperialism and all reactionaries as paper tigers. This thesis is a fundamental strategic concept for the revolutionary people. Since the Second Revolutionary War, Mao Zedong repeatedly pointed out: "Strategically, with regard to the whole, revolutionaries must despise the enemy, dare to struggle against him and dare to seize victory, at the same time tactically with regard to each part, each specific struggle, they must take the enemy seriously, be prudent, carefully study and perfect the art of struggle and adopt forms of struggle suited to different times, places and conditions in order to isolate and wipe out the enemy, step-by-step."(1)

Year's later, comrade Mao stated that: "Just as there is not a single thing in the world without a dual nature (this is the law of the unity of opposites), so imperialism and all reactionaries have a dual nature - they are real tigers and paper tigers at the same time. In past history, before they won state power and for some time afterwards, the slave owning class the feudal landlord class and the bourgeoisie were vigorous, revolutionary and progressive, they were real tigers. But with the lapse of time, because their opposites - the slave class, the peasant class and the proletariat - grew in strength step-by-step struggled against them more and more fiercely these ruling classes changed step-by-step into the reverse, changed into reactionaries, changed into backward people, changed into paper tigers. And eventually they were overthrown or will be overthrown by the people. Even in the face of the last decisive struggles waged by the people, the reactionary, backward, decaying classes retained this dual nature. On the one hand they were real tigers, they devoured people by the millions and tens of millions. The cause of the peoples struggle went thru a period of difficulties and hardships and along the path there were many twists and turns. To destroy the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism in China took the Chinese people more than a hundred years and cost them tens of millions of lives before the victory of 1949. Look! Were these not living tigers, iron tigers, real tigers? But in the end they changed into paper tigers, dead tigers, bean curd tigers. These are historical facts."(2)

So there you have it. Comrade Mao all those many years ago held that the Chinese people would be victorious in their war of liberation. This wasn't hopeful idealism on Mao's behalf, it wasn't that the Chinese people and Mao really, really, really wanted liberation for themselves, that they just knew if only they kept on struggling they'd someday achieve liberation. No! It was through the correct practice of dialectical materialism that the Chinese people were able to finally cast the yoke of imperialism off into the sea. This is something that many bourgeois scholars just can't grasp. Dialectical materialism is something the bourgeoisie either doesn't correctly understand or they don't want to understand exactly how Mao and the CCP were able to lead the Chinese people to victory against insurmountable odds or how comrade Mao was able to become such a brilliant military strategist.

However, for us to really get the full understanding of the "paper tiger" thesis put forward by Mao, and in order to see how it is still relevant today, we must dive head first into the subject of dialectical materialism.

When comrade Mao stated "just as there is not a single thing in the world without a dual nature,"(3) he was referring to the law of the unity of opposites. The law of the unity of opposites, that is the law of contradiction in things, is the basic law of materialist dialectics. Dialectics in the proper sense is the study of contradiction in the very essence of objects. Dialectical materialists hold that a thing is made up of its being and of its opposite, this means that no contradictory aspect can exist in isolation. The basic meaning of this would be, for example, that from its very inception and all through its existence where there is light there is also darkness, because without the darkness there can be no light, because they are both mutually dependent, and in order for one to exist its opposite must also be.

So the persyn who is "good" or who does what is morally right can also be "bad" and do what is considered morally wrong. This is another example of the unity of opposites, nothing in this world is immutable.

So now that we know what the basic meaning of the law of the unity of opposites is we know exactly what Mao was talking about when he said, "Just as there is not a single thing in the world without a dual nature, so imperialism and all reactionaries have a dual nature." What he meant by this is that even though the imperialists, and the reactionaries were strong and terrible looking at one point in hystory, they were also weak and vacillated in another point in hystory, and furthermore it was our job (the people's) by our will and our struggle to form the correct strategic point of view to see the imperialists and reactionaries as paper tigers and know that we can defeat them in the end. However, because of this paper tiger's dual nature, we must also be aware that this tiger can also be a real tiger and can defeat us if we don't respect him tactically.

Now some of you who are familiar and experienced with materialist dialectics will right away say, "wait a minute, the law of contradiction says that the motive force of a thing is internal and not external." Yes, this certainly is true. The condition of change is internal and not external, however the law of contradiction also shows us that there is antagonism inherent in things, which basically means that from its very inception antagonism exists as the struggle of opposites, as contradiction, but not until the contradiction develops into open antagonism in a thing does it push development forward and resolve itself. So first however we must find the principal contradiction, and only by finding the fundamental contradiction can we find the principal contradiction and get along with the business of resolving it.

We already know that the fundamental contradiction on a global scale is the bourgeoisie vs. the proletariat, and that the principal contradiction on the international level is imperialism vs. the Third World. In Amerika the principal contradiction is the oppressor vs. oppressed nations. So how do we resolve the principal contradiction in the united $tates? Once again, this is possible by a things dual nature (society), and if society has a dual nature then it has to have two opposing, yet equally dependent, aspects. In this case it would be the oppressor nation (euro-Amerikkkans) vs. the oppressed nations (Brown, Black, etc). So how do we resolve the principal contradictions in the united $tates? Just as the imperialists and the oppressor nation has their tiger, we too can have a tiger and defeat theirs. However, this is once again only possible when the struggle of opposites reaches its point of open antagonism, and to know when this happens we must take careful watch of the situation and always keep the concrete analysis of concrete conditions acutely in mind.

At this point in hystory our so-called "tiger" is non-existent — it is neither a real tiger nor a paper tiger. It is a dead tiger. What is meant by this is that we as a collective (Brown, Black, etc.) have been continuously colonized and oppressed by capitalism/imperialism and we are almost helpless to stop it from destroying us and our cultures. Yet, hystory teaches us that imperialism and the ruling classes have never been able to completely wipe out all traces of a nation or its people, even though it has come pretty damn close and continues to advance.

Therefore our only choice, if we are to survive the anarchy and destruction of capitalist construction, is to get to constructing ourselves. We must build this "People's Tiger", and the first step to building this internal force which will push development forward will be in the unification of the people. This means building a united front for a united struggle against the oppressors.

Unity evolves from the inside out. This begins with the revolutionization of our consciousness, our minds. First we change the way we think, then we apply this to our material conditions and in the way we interact with others, this is how we change our surroundings. This applies to all peoples of all societies, especially that society within a society, that society separated by the rest of the people, separated by concrete and steel - This is unity from the inside out in all its glory.

Power to the People!
Long live the Maoist Internationalist Movement!
Long live the United Soldiers from Within!

Notes:
1. "Talk with the American Correspondent Anna Louise Strong" August, 1946, Selected Readings from the Works of Mao Tsetung, Foreign Language Press: Peking, 1971, p.345.
2. Ibid. p. 346.
3. Mao Zedong. On Contradiction.

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[Organizing] [Legal] [Campaigns] [California] [ULK Issue 14]
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Address Our Grievances! Campaign Spreads

In Under Lock & Key issue 13, we published an article announcing a campaign about the improper handling of grievances by prison staff. Below is an update from the California comrade who originally turned us on to the campaign.

I initially mailed out my own petition to the CDCR Director Level back in Nov./Dec. of '09 as part of the first wave of petitions. This was done under the auspice of its originator. However some time after the first wave went out, the persyn who devised this plan was subsequently taken to the hole. It was rumored that it was exactly because of this persyn's legal maneuvering that he was sent to the hole. Anyway, back in January '10 I received a response. As it turns out, these petitions were never investigated or even looked into as we requested. The Appeals Coordinator at the Director Level simply re-routed my petition back to the Warden's office here at this institution, at which time the warden here implied that the appeals which I had pending were screened back to me because I basically failed to comply with inmate appeal regulations. This is of course total bullshit! The "W." pretty much just issued me a de facto "695 Screen Out Form" without ever really looking into the matter, thereby sweeping the matter back under the rug.

I then decided that someone needed to step up to the plate and pick up where this petition's originator left off. I began by tracking down as many people as I could find who'd participate in the legal action. I tracked down about eighteen people, of which only three others besides myself received responses. As it turned out, we all got the same document with seemingly no other action taken.

I then proceeded to make as many copies of the original petition as I could obtain. I was only able to make 20. Of these 20 I only had twelve more people agree to mail the petitions out. As of today nobody's received any responses.

I contacted the Ca. Prison Law Office, useless. The Ombudsman, useless, no response, and a few other organizations claiming to offer inmates assistance (Critical Resistance? critically useless). I didn't bother with Internal Affairs or the Inspector General as they are both connected to CDCR and seemingly cover their asses. The DOJ is a different story. However, they will only take action if it can be proven that civil rights abuses are taking place en masse. Since only four of us received responses, the DOJ will not take action.

So it hasn't turned out as we hoped [with an investigation into the failed CDCR grievance system]. I suppose it wasn't a total failure, though, as we have proved yet again that the inmate appeals procedure in the Ca. Dept. of Corruption is nothing but an obstacle placed in front of prisoners' path to the U.$. judicial system.

MIM(Prisons) adds: This comrade's initiative to pick up a worthwhile project, after state repression stopped the original leader, is commendable. Others who have this kind of initiative should be working with the United Struggle from Within, the MIM(Prisons)-led anti-imperialist prisoner organization. Comrades have been working diligently to expand the scope of the campaign and we now have petitions prepared for CA, MO, OK and TX. If you are filing grievances about any issue and they aren't being handled properly by staff, consider becoming a part of this campaign and spread it to your people inside.

This comrade's analysis of the success of the campaign is completely accurate. We can hope for an investigation into the corrupt grievance system, but if it doesn't happen, then we have instead successfully exposed yet another flaw in the Amerikkkan "justice" system. It is important to not give up even if we feel like nothing will happen because these exposures are agitational points that we can rally people around. Also, like this comrade pointed out, if we send in enough petitions to the DOJ s/he believes that they may respond. So continue to send in your grievance petitions and get with MIM(Prisons) to get involved!

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