From: radman (resist@best.com)
Date: Tue Jun 19 2001 - 16:05:59 EDT

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    From: Oread Daily June 14, 2001


     From Freedom Road Magazine

    On January 20, Bill Clinton commuted the sentences of Linda Evans and Susan
    Rosenberg, anti-imperialist political prisoners incarcerated for nearly 16
    years. Linda has hit the ground running. She lives in California and is an
    activist for the freedom of the remaining political prisoners.

    FR: What were the specific charges that led to your incarceration?

    LE: I had five trials altogether. In Louisiana I was convicted of making
    false statements to purchase otherwise legal weapons. I received a 40-year
    sentence, reduced on appeal to 30. In New York I received two years for
    being a felon in possession of a gun and three for harboring a fugitive. In
    Connecticut all charges were dropped because of FBI misconduct, including
    the charge of harboring my comrade, Marilyn Buck.

    FR: As a political prisoner, you and your co-defendants were identified as
    anti-imperialists. What did that mean to you when you were on trial, and
    what does it mean to you now?

    LE: It's important to understand that US imperialism is on a continuum, and
    that it has now transformed itself into what we call globalization. In the
    1960s and '70s Third World peoples identified US imperialism as the primary
    enemy of national liberation. By joining the struggle against imperialism,
    North Americans were taking a stand for self-determination for all
    oppressed people. We in particular supported anti-colonial struggles inside
    the US by oppressed nations the Puerto Rican Independence Movement, the
    Black Liberation Movement and the Chicano/Mexicano struggle as well as
    national liberation struggles in Latin America, Africa, and Asia,
    particularly in Vietnam. Now many countries have achieved flag independence
    but not self-determination. A tool of US imperialism today is the debt and
    structural adjustment conditions imposed by structures such as the World
    Bank and the International Monetary Fund as well as the threat of trade
    sanctions and the World Trade Organization. The forms of domination have
    become more complex because of the centralization of economic and political
    power in transnational corporations. The role of national governments has
    changed, although the state still plays the central role in imperialism.

    FR: You're out. What tasks do you see for radical and revolutionary

    LE: I've been locked up for so long that I wouldn't want to tell people
    what to do. I have much to learn from those who have been out here working
    for the last fifteen years.
    I do see a few things that are important. White activists must fight white
    supremacy and racism in all its manifestations, which include everything
    from the genocidal incarceration of black and brown people, police
    brutality, the death penalty and other aspects of the prison-industrial
    complex, to gentrification. Activists must unite grassroots efforts to
    control resources and against environmental racism and takeover of
    communities of color by real estate developers. Another aspect of the
    battle against racism is fighting the growth of the white supremacist
    movement, racist paramilitary organizations and their public covers such as
    religious fundamentalists. Anti-globalization activists need to recognize
    how structural adjustment manifests itself inside the US, including the
    growth of the police state as a tool of social control. Domestic structural
    adjustment, which includes cutbacks in housing, hospitals, education, and
    welfare, most strongly impact communities of color.
    It is important to have an analysis and strategy that brings together
    fragmented, single-issue work and unites diverse communities in the
    resistance struggle. Gay men and lesbians, young people, anti-globalization
    and anti-prison activists and people of color need to be working together
    to achieve the changes we all need.

    FR: Why is the movement to free the remaining political prisoners so

    LE: One, support for freedom fighters and those who resist is a way to
    support militancy, seriousness and dedication in our struggle. To win
    revolutionary change, risks must be taken. Our willingness to support the
    political prisoners and POWs actually defines the nature of the movement
    that we are building.
    Second, supporting political prisoners is a human rights struggle. So many
    comrades have been in for more than two or three decades, and the
    conditions under which they live are incredibly inhumane. It also unites us
    with an international movement for the freedom of political prisoners.
    There are increasing numbers of political prisoners all over the world
    jailed for resistance to globalization. Third, we must fight repression and
    the hegemony of the police state. All prisoners are victims of political
    circumstances, particularly racism and its intersection with the criminal
    injustice system. However, political prisoners took affirmative action to
    confront oppression and win liberation, coming up against extreme state
    repression. Specific counter-insurgency programs, like COINTELPRO, often
    framed activists, who became political prisoners. Those programs continue
    to exist today.

    FR: What are some particular cases today?

    LE: People must support Jamil Al-Amin (H. Rap Brown), who has been set up
    by the government and is on trial for his life in Atlanta. Sarah Jane Olson
    is also on trial in Los Angeles. I would also urge people to discover the
    many political prisoners who have disappeared into the prison-industrial
    complex, Black Panthers and other freedom fighters. They should become a
    part of our daily lives and we should be thinking about supporting them in
    their daily struggle to survive. We should work for the release of
    political prisoners, and help them live inside-by waging medical campaigns,
    writing to them, sending books, and developing relationships. We must fight
    against the isolation, because that is how the state wins.

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