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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/6/19

Reminder: Leonard Peltier is Still a Political Prisoner of the United States

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Even a former prison guard says that Leonard Peltier is innocent.

Wrongfully-convicted, this Native American has been a political prisoner for over forty years. Don't political prisoners tend to be released or traded well before this kind of time frame? Apparently, the stakes are different if they are political prisoners in the U.S. and if they symbolize the federal government's hatred towards the Native American. It is a combined result that, along with Leonard Peltier's failing health, the U.S. government has been using as weaponry. Obama was supposed to be better than this. The FBI was supposed to be more honest than this.

Amy Goodman, of Democracy Now!, interviewed Leonard Peltier by phone in December of 2012. During the interview, when Amy asked Leonard what he wanted, the first thing he said was that Obama should "stop the wars" (Obama had started or helped prolong). Peltier went on to describe many of the judicial tactics that have led to his illegal (length of) incarceration (It was not, officially, supposed to be for forty-plus years.) and how the authorities changed the charge (while he has been in prison), because they knew that Leonard had not killed anyone and they have been determined to keep him locked up. Whatever label they wanted to charge Leonard with, none called for a forty-plus-year prison term. Again, political prisoners, in other countries, tend to be released sooner. Why is he (still) in prison? Someone had to pay for the disruption of the government agents' disruption of life at Pine Ridge in the 1970's. Peltier stated that the government agents who stormed Pine Ridge ought to be the ones doing time. This part of the song, of course, started before Leonard's incarceration and continues to play on too many streets, in too many homes and on too many lawns in the U.S., inclusive of what has been done to the African-American. It was softer to the ear, for a while. It is back to blasting.

A very, very sick prisoner who is not getting medical attention, Peltier has suggested that, at least, with house arrest, he could see a doctor. Throughout his (and others') description of how the justice system has treated his case, it is, damningly, clear that the system is, willfully, trampling over sensibility. It seems much less about the charges and much more about the time. And the government appears eager to let Peltier's failing health do its (and the government's) work. Why, exactly, did Obama refuse to grant clemency for Leonard Peltier? If he had a legitimate reason, did he state it? At this point, Peltier's extended incarceration lands on the list of Obama's crimes against humanity.

Of all the extended prison sentences that have reached the public's ear, few are as, blatantly, manipulated and manufactured by the accumulated effort of combined authorities. During Amy Goodman's interview with Leonard, he stated a desire. Either give him his freedom" or give him a doctor. That was in 2012.

For more information, visit: https://www.whoisleonardpeltier.info/

(Article changed on March 6, 2019 at 15:32)

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Raechel Gladstone-Gelman Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Raechel's poetry, short stories, commentary, articles and interviews have appeared in print and online. Much of her work has, previously, appeared under the name, Rachel Gladstone-Gelman.

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