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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 11/20/09

The Arrest and Torture of Syed Hashmi --an interview with Jeanne Theoharis

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Jeanne Theoharis is the author of an April, 2009 article in The Nation, entitled "Guantanamo At Home," which focuses on the arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment of US citizen Syed Hashmi in a New York City prison with Guantanamo-like conditions. Theoharis holds the endowed chair in women's studies and is an associate professor of political science at Brooklyn College, CUNY.

Syed Hashmi's trial will begin in New York City on December 1. The website www.freefahad.com explains that: "Syed Hashmi, known to his family and friends as Fahad, was born in Karachi, Pakistan in 1980, the second child of Syed Anwar Hashmi and Arifa Hashmi. Fahad immigrated with his family to America when he was three years old. His father said 'We knew there would be many opportunities for us here in the United States. We came here to find the American dream.' The large Hashmi family settled in Flushing, New York and soon developed deep roots throughout the tri-state area. Fahad graduated from Robert F.Wagner High School in 1998 and attended SUNY Stonybrook University. He transferred to Brooklyn College, where he earned a bachelor's degree in political science in 2003. A devout Muslim, through the years Fahad established a reputation as an activist and advocate. In 2003, Fahad enrolled in London Metropolitan University in England to pursue a master's degree in international relations, which he received in 2006.

On June 6, 2006, Fahad was arrested in London Heathrow airport by British police based on an American indictment charging him with material support of Al Qaida. He was subsequently held in Belmarsh Prison, Britain's most notorious jail." For more information on the Hashmi case, also visit: www.educatorsforcivilliberties.org.



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Angola 3 News: Can you please give us background on the arrest and prosecution of Syed Hashmi? For example, what are the charges against him? What is their evidence?



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Over 40 years ago in Louisiana, 3 young black men were silenced for trying to expose continued segregation, systematic corruption, and horrific abuse in the biggest prison in the US, an 18,000-acre former slave plantation called Angola. In 1972 and (more...)
 
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