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07.19 Trump administration won't ban pesticide tied to childhood brain damage [There is no truth to the persistent rumor that chlorpyrifos pesticide was heavily used at Trump's childhood home in Queens]

07.19 'Unprecedented' Decline of Plants and Animals as Global 'Red List' Reveals Nearly One-Third of Assessed Species Under Threat

07.17 ‘Off-the-charts’ heat to affect millions in U.S. in coming decades

07.17 Planned Parenthood president Leana Wen forced out by board [Given that states have lost abortion rights on political grounds recently, Wen's philosophical approach to protect abortion rights based on ‘health care’ was smarter – therefore it was that smarter strategy that was killed at the secret meeting.]

07.17 Billions of air pollution particles found in hearts of city dwellers

07.17 What is happening in America's Cancertown is tragic, immoral and evil [Niggardly white government policies could change to produce better students, better jobs and net revenue instead of costs. But it seems they enjoy more cruelty—like Trump.]

07.16 US aid cuts to UN agency will hurt vulnerable women and children, critics say

07.16 Trump abortion restrictions in effect for taxpayer-funded clinics

07.15 The response to DRC’s Ebola crisis isn’t working. Here’s what we need to do

07.15 Extinction Rebellion protests block traffic in five UK cities [Non-corporate human animals make their annoying bleating sounds...]

07.14 A Glacier the Size of Florida Is Becoming Unstable. It Has Dire Implications for Global Sea Levels [The willfully ignorant needn't read more, Trump]

07.13 'Climate Despair' Is Making People Give Up on Life [Willfully ignorant governments—having fired many of their best scientists—have made themselves too stupid to despair]

07.13 Trump administration to approve pesticide that may harm bees [The worst government money can buy!]

07.12 These solar panels don’t just generate power—they produce drinking water

07.12 David Attenborough: polluting planet may become as reviled as slavery [1:34 video]

07.10 Plastic Has A Big Carbon Footprint — But That Isn't The Whole Story [Fixing our world begins by educating your consciousness with the best truth from trustworthy news sources—so you'll then insist truly bad things will get fixed. But if instead you are educated by untrustworthy news sources—then your consciousness could be warped to where you are hating and fighting with your best friends. Clue: untrustworthy news sources never seriously report news about the world's most critical emergency—Global warming.]

07.10 Molly Scott Cato: ‘It’s the wealthy who are causing climate change’

07.09 Judge reinstates Madrid's low emissions zone [Yeh!]

07.07 How Solar Panels Work (And Why They're Taking Over the World) [Hope they leave space between panels for wild flowers to grow so birds and butterflies can flourish!]

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07.19 The 51 most outrageous lines from Donald Trump's repugnant North Carolina rally

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07.18 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Breaking up Homeland Security

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07.18 This Republican's Case for Medicare for All [A well-informed Republican is rare, so let's hold him in the light so others may learn]

07.18 Trump rally crowd chants 'send her back' after president attacks Ilhan Omar [1:03 video shows Trump pandering to his ignorant idolaters, and together they're making America a greater shit-hole country]

07.18 "Can't Change a Corrupt System by Taking Its Money": Sanders Urges All 2020 Democrats to Reject Insurance, Big Pharma Cash [49:02 video w/ lousy sound]

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07.17 Here's the real reason Trump is attacking 'the squad': he's scared of their politics

07.17 'Good,' Says Elizabeth Warren, After Billionaire Right-Winger Peter Thiel Says She's 2020 Democrat He Is 'Most Scared By'

07.17 The American Right Defines Patriotism As Complacency About Racism

07.17 This is what today's America looks like. The squad is us

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07.19 UN urged to act over 'purge' of Turkey's lawyers by Erdogan

07.19 DOJ Releases Strong Evidence of Trump’s Campaign Finance Violations But No Explanation of No Charges [The statement]

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07.15 Australia 'deeply concerned' about China's treatment of Uighur people [What are the reasons, exactly, that justify harsh imprisonment of a million people?]

07.15 Zuma tells South Africa corruption inquiry he is victim of foreign plot [Unaccountable corrupt governments are so in fashion these days...]

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07.19 Conscientious objectors of first world war – their untold tales [The record proves they were morally right by avoiding violent early deaths of their cousins and themselves]

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07.18 Corporate tax cuts blocked at least 15,000 affordable homes in California. Here’s how

07.15 China’s Economic Growth Hits 27-Year Low as Trade War Stings

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07.19 U.N.'s Bachelet says Congresswomen opposing Trump are 'fantastic'

07.19 Iran makes 'substantial' nuclear offer in return for US lifting sanctions [Was barbaric Saudi Arabia—whose citizens were more involved in the 9-11 attacks—the wrong ally all along?]

07.19 “The Task Ahead Is Enormous, and There Is Not Much Time” [Read this and learn. Or read Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) | Twitter and/or President Trump (@POTUS) | Twitter. Are you serious? Or are you in hideously criminal denial?]

07.18 Foreign purchases of American homes plunge 36% as Chinese buyers flee the market

07.18 There are 16 million slaves around the world making our stuff

07.18 ‘No rioters, only a tyrannical regime’: Thousands of Hong Kong seniors march in support of young extradition law protesters [Most people around the world have more in common with these Hong Kong Chinese protestors than with the ignorant people at Trump rallies]

07.18 Dozens Arrested as Over 1,000 Jewish Activists and Allies Shut Down Entrances to ICE Headquarters Demanding Closure of Trump Detention Camps [Obviously these are not the immoral and less educated right-wing jews who support Netanyahu, Trump and ICE, and who slowly exterminate Palestinians when no one is looking]

07.17 Trump Murdered the Iran Deal—And Europe Isn’t Too Happy About It [Only psychopathic Saudi Arabia and Russia are U.S. ’allies’ now...]

07.17 Trump’s Unlawful Asylum Policy Is a Jab at Mexico

07.16 Trump’s race fantasy is clear: the US as home for whites fleeing Europe [1:09 video]

07.15 India’s Terrifying Water Crisis

07.15 Australia now has the highest minimum wage in the world [From 1960 to 2018 – the U.S. has fallen from 1st place to below the tenth place and off the chart]

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  Print view: New Hearing Set for Sami Al-Arian
A PATTERN OF INJUSTICE IN THE U.S.:

New Hearing Set for Sami Al-Arian

by Stephen Lendman
Saturday, 16 October 2010
Al-Arian was targeted for his ethnicity, prominence, activism, and for being Muslim at the wrong time in America. Washington's police state harshness makes everyone just as vulnerable.

Earlier articles explained his ordeal, a man Bush administration prosecutors hounded, persecuted, and imprisoned on bogus charges. Articles on him can be accessed through the following links:

Though free on bail, Al-Arian remains politically imprisoned like many hundreds of others behind bars. Because of his faith, ethnicity, prominence and political activism, he was accused of supporting "terrorism" and other outrageous charges.

In fact, he's a Palestinian refugee, a distinguished professor, scholar, community leader, and civil activist, a man deserving honor, not incarceration doing hard time until released after five and half years of brutal treatment, including solitary confinement in rat and roach-infested cells.

He was denied religious services, got no watch or clock, and was kept in windowless cells with artificial lights kept on round the clock. Whenever outside his cell, he was also shackled hands behind back and ankles. In protest, he staged hunger strikes, long enough to endanger is life.

A Brief Timeline of His Case

FBI investigations hounded him for 11 years, spending millions of dollars for half a million phone wiretaps, searches and other forms of harassment.

Events came to a head at 5AM on February 20, 2003 when FBI agents and Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) officers stormed his home guns drawn. They arrested him and three others separately on spurious charges of supporting terrorism, conspiracy to commit murder, racketeering, giving material support to an outlawed group, extortion, perjury, and other offenses proved bogus in court.

On February 27, University of South Florida president Judy Genshaft fired him, acting as a Bush administration stooge.

At his four day March bail hearing, prosecutors provided no evidence, witnesses, or any reason to hold him. Nonetheless, he and co-defendant Sameeh Hammoudeh were denied bail.

On March 27, he was incarcerated at maximum security federal penitentiary, Coleman, FL after initially held in jail. Later he was transferred repeatedly to other federal prisons.

In June 2005, his trial began. It was a witch-hunt travesty with phony evidence, the kind prosecutors use when they have none. Despite spending around $50 million for years of investigations and six months of trial, jurors exonerated him on eight serious charges, remaining deadlocked 10 - 2 for acquittal on nine lesser ones.

On March 2, 2006, fearing retrial, he agreed to plead guilty to one minor charge, be freed, then reunited with his family and deported. But it didn't end there.

Assistant prosecutor Gordon Kromberg ordered him before a grand jury, violating terms of his plea bargain. Fearing entrapment, he refused, was held in contempt, again imprisoned, and sentenced to 18 months without mitigation - a clear effort to keep hounding and imprison him.

At the time, his attorney, Professor Jonathan Turley, called the Justice Department's ploy "a classic perjury trap used repeatedly by the government to punish those individuals who could not be convicted before an American jury."

Al-Arian appealed and remained imprisoned until released on bail on September 2, 2008 under house arrest, pending trial for criminal contempt. For the first time in over five years, he was reunited with his family, but his ordeal continues.

On October 29, 2010, a new hearing will be held before federal Judge Leonie Brinkema of the Eastern District of Virginia to decide whether criminal contempt charges will be pursued or dropped.

Under Obama, prosecutors are as ruthlessly corrupted as their predecessors, using every trick in the book to convict, whether guilty or innocent, and when trials are politically motivated, intensifying pressure even more. The Justice Department thus filed a motion to deny a defense one, filed 18 months earlier to dismiss criminal contempt charges. Three previous DOJ motions were rejected. This time, Holder prosecutors not only requested denying the defense's dismissal request, but asked Judge Brinkema to reverse her earlier decision letting Al-Arian's attorneys present evidence in case of trial.

In March 2009, she backed the defense's request to file a motion to dismiss Al-Arian's charges, saying she'd rule later at further hearings, and expressing concern over government "bait and switch" tactics:

"where Dr. Al-Arian and his counsel were assured that, if he agreed to plead guilty (to one minor charge), he would not be subject to any further involvement with the Justice Department beyond his deportation following the completion of his sentence." Bush prosecutors reneged on the agreement, Obama ones as contemptuous.

Like earlier departments under Ashcroft, Gonzales, and Mukasey, Holder shows equal contempt for the law and judicial fairness, presenting a challenge for the most competent defense lawyers. Al-Arian, however, is well represented, his team led by Professor Jonathan Turley, a recognized legal scholar who's written extensively on constitutional and tort law as well as legal theory and other topics. With him are attorneys William E. Olsen and Philip J. Meitl.

On October 29, at 8:30AM, Al-Arian's hearing will be held at the

Albert V. Bryan US Courthouse
401 Courthouse Square
Alexandria, VA 22314

The freesamialarian site calls it his "most important" one so far, more than others up to now. His freedom and future depend on the outcome.

Some Final Comments

In July 2003, Amnesty International (AI) wrote US prosecutors, "calling for a review of the pre-trial detention conditions of Dr. Sami Al-Arian, aspects of which it said appeared to be 'gratuitously punitive,' " and a breach of international standards.

In December 2005, AI sought fair procedures to resolve his case after jurors acquitted him of terrorist and other serious charges. AI noted his harsh solitary confinement, calling it "unnecessarily punitive."

In August 2008, Howard Zinn said:

"I thought that (Al-Arian's case) was an outrageous violation of human rights, both from a constitutional point of view and as a simple test of justice."

His former appeals attorney, Professor Peter Erlinder and former National Lawyers Guild president said:

"The prosecution of Dr. Sami Al-Arian was a blatant attempt to silence political speech and dissent in the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy. The nature of the political persecution of this case has been demonstrated throughout all its aspects, not only during the trial and the never-ending right-wing media onslaught, but also after the stunning defeat of the government in 2005, and its ill-advised abuse of the grand jury system thereafter."

Throughout his ordeal, many other individuals and organizations expressed support, demanding justice and an end to prosecutorial ruthlessness, false imprisonment, and contempt for the rule of law.

In 2007, Norwegian filmmakers produced a documentary titled, USA v. Al-Arian. An updated 2009 version is now available, click here to order.

Al-Arian was targeted for his ethnicity, prominence, activism, and for being Muslim at the wrong time in America. Washington's police state harshness makes everyone just as vulnerable.


Stephen Lendman

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on October 16, 2010.
 



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