Home     Writers     Op/Ed     Book Reviews     News     Bookstore     Photoshops     Submit     Search     Contact Us     Advertise  
  You are here: 





The clock ticks ever faster for Leonard Peltier
Friday, 14 August 2009 04:29
by Harvey Wasserman

By Tuesday, August 18, the four sitting members of the Federal Parole Commission must decide whether they will let Leonard Peltier rejoin his family.

Leonard has been in prison for a staggering 33 years, six more than Nelson Mandela. When he was locked up, Three Mile Island was three years away, and Ronald Reagan had barely begun to run for President.

Leonard has great-grandchildren he has never held.

His most recent hearing was June 28. According to his lawyer, Eric Seitz, it went very well. The Parole Commission had 21 days from then to issue its decision.
We are now in the final week.

All those familiar with the case agree that a positive political climate can affect the decision. Calls to politicians (202-224-3121) could make all the difference, as could overnight letters to the Parole Commission.

Below are two draft letters the attorney has termed "a little melodramatic but otherwise ok." Your own versions are more than welcome.

Leonard’s release would do much to begin the healing process between the native community and the US government. He has handled himself through this torturous third of a century with astonishing dignity, grace and eloquence.

Please do not let this moment go by without doing SOMETHING.


Dear Commissioners,

Isaac Fulwood, Jr., Cranston Mitchell, Edward Reilly and Patricia Cushware

Leonard Peltier is a man of deep sensitivities and compassion. It's no accident he has become a figure of tremendous empathy and personal pain all over the world.

For 33 years he has maintained his dignity and composure under incredibly difficult circumstances. He is now approaching the age of 65, and suffers from a wide range of ailments that threaten his continued existence. He has grandchildren and great-grandchildren he has never seen.

Leonard has a community of relations and supporters desperately awaiting his return. His freedom will come as a huge boost to our country's standing in the world. It will begin a desperately-needed healing process between our government and the native peoples of our own country and around the globe.

I urge you to look into your hearts at this man who has spent more than half his life behind bars and reunite him at last with his family.

Thank you,

Known and very popular cialis coupon which gives all the chance to receive a discount for a preparation which has to be available and exactly cialis coupons has been found in the distant room of this big house about which wood-grouses in the houses tell.


To: US Parole Commission

Commissioners Isaac Fulwood, Jr., Cranston Mitchell, Edward Reilly and Patricia Cushware

Dear Commissioners

It is in your power to right a great wrong, to grant a man and his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren the right to live the rest of their lives together in peace, and to remove a great stain from the global reputation of the American justice system.

For more than half his life, Leonard Peltier has been held in prison for a crime millions of people worldwide do not believe he committed.

Throughout his imprisonment, Mr. Peltier has conducted himself with extraordinary dignity and grace. His behavior has become an inspiration to countless citizens within the United States and virtually everywhere else on Earth.

Leonard Peltier’s time in prison now exceeds that of Nelson Mandela by six years. Yet he is viewed with much the same reverence and respect as the man who went from a jail cell to the presidency of the nation that put him there. When Mandela was finally set free, the system of racial hatred and separation that plagued South Africa began to crumble, to the betterment of all.

Leonard Peltier was a young man when he entered the prison system; he is now nearly 65. He is plagued with diabetes and a range of other serious illnesses that make it highly possible further imprisonment could result in his death, an outcome of horrific personal and political implications for all Americans. We would all have his blood on our hands.

To follow the history of the legal proceedings that put Leonard Peltier in prison is to journey enter a nightmare of missing documents, perjured testimony, implausible accusations and an impossible conviction.

It is not our intent here to reproduce the massive record surrounding this case. But we would be remiss to say any thing other than this incarceration is viewed throughout the world as a blight on the reputation of American jurisprudence.

We believe that 33 years of imprisonment meets the standard of cruel and unusual punishment set out in the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Its drafters would have freed Leonard Peltier long ago. Indeed, we do not believe great legal thinkers such as James Madison, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams would have put Mr. Peltier in prison in the first place.

Every day Leonard Peltier is kept behind bars drives a wedge that grows deeper between this nation’s government and its native population. His time in jail is viewed with great antipathy by native populations, and their supporters, throughout the world.

This is a five-century wound that can only begin to heal when Leonard Peltier is released. We ask that you bring to yourselves and the rest of this nation the great relief that will accompany Leonard Peltier’s return to his family.

Thank you,
For more information see www.leonardpeltier.net.
More from this author:
Nukes are Back & So Are We (3689 Hits)
by Harvey Wasserman The nuclear power industry is back to where it always goes when it wants to build new reactors — the taxpayer trough. ...
Two critical (but tentative) green victories hang in the balance (3937 Hits)
by Harvey Wasserman The eyes of the world are now on the US Senate. Our oil-endangered species anxiously awaits even a tiny American step toward...
Bush/McCain's gas price scam is an Enron re-run (4413 Hits)
by  Harvey Wasserman The Bush/McCain gas price escalation is an Enron Re-Run. It is Chapter 2 of the scam Bush crony "Kenny...
Al Gore inches toward Solartopia (4269 Hits)
by Harvey Wasserman Bit by bit, Al Gore seems to be inching toward a Solartopian view of a future that must be completely sustainable in green...
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission Says the Reactor Revival is NOT Ready for Prime Time (4192 Hits)
by Harvey Wasserman A devastating blow to the much-hyped revival of atomic power has been delivered by an unlikely source — the Nuclear...
Related Articles:
The Ticking Clock (5260 Hits)
by Tom Chartier I think the fate not only of our own civilization, but I think the fate of world and the future of the human race, is...
Work & Exploitation: Same As It Ever Was (5777 Hits)
by Edward Strong Neoliberal Ideology: How modern management techniques are really about getting us to work harder and longer. It's the same old...
Tomasky on Impeachment: The Dumbest Advice the Democrats Ever Got (6431 Hits)
by Dave Lindorff Over 15 months after publishing our “indignant” book on the reasons that President George W. Bush has to be impeached...
My Best Eid Ever in America (5203 Hits)
by Mahmoud El-Yousseph "If you think you are too small to be effective, you have never been in bed with a mosquito." Italian Peot -...
Is Doing the Right Thing Ever the Wrong Thing? (2823 Hits)
by Stephen P. Pizzo I'm having a bipolar moment. Suddenly there's two "me's" and they're at each other's throat in my head. The...

Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Comments (1)add comment

Peter A. Falvey said:

Peter A. Falvey
Leonard Peltier
When I taught college I required students to read, Prison Writings by Leonard Peltier. If not for the the part of the introduction written by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, I think most of the students would have believed that Peltier's treatment by the justice system was a total fabrication. I found this state of affairs to be black mark against American education. How it will ever be possible to maintain a democracy when it's citizens have so little knowledge of how our system actually works is beyond me. Thanks for the article and for keeping the Peltier issue before the public.
August 25, 2009 | url
Votes: +0

Write comment
smaller | bigger



Top 123