The United States has many political prisoners. Here’s a list

The US government holds many political prisoners, including journalists; national security state whistleblowers; Black, Indigenous, and Latino revolutionaries; foreign diplomats; Muslims detained without trial; women who defended themselves from attacks; and environmental activists.

Stansfield Smith

Multipolarista | August 9, 2022

Just a few of the political prisoners in the United States (from top-left to bottom-right): Mumia Abu-Jamal, Julian Assange, Alex Saab, Leonard Peltier, Joy Powell, Veronza Bowers

The United States constantly accuses its adversaries of holding political prisoners, while insisting it has none of its own. But for its entire history, the US government has used incarceration of its political opponents as a tool to crush dissent and advance the interests of economic elites.

Well-known cases are those entrapped or framed in US national security state sting operations, or imprisoned with extreme sentences for a minor offense because of their political activism, such as Black revolutionary George Jackson.

Each period of struggle by the working class and oppressed peoples against ruling-class control results in some activists locked up for their revolutionary work. “Political prisoner” has often meant those revolutionaries jailed for fighting their national oppression, as is the case with a great number of Black Panthers.

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‘It’s Time We Speak up For Each Other’: Farmers’ Group Supports Political Prisoners

The Wire | December 08, 2020

Bahadurgarh (Haryana): A day after farmers’ unions rejected an elaborate proposal by the Union government to address multiple concerns related to the three contentious farm laws, the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta-Ugrahan), the biggest group among the 32 organisations, marked Human Rights Day by demanding the release of several democratic rights activists and intellectuals who are lodged in prison.

In an indication that the group may only intensify its protests against the Centre by espousing a broad-based agenda, the BKU (Ugrahan), which is camped near Delhi’s Tikri border at Bahadurgarh, hosted a function to show its solidarity with other democratic and human rights movements. In a full-fledged attack on what it called an “authoritarian” Central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the farmer leaders asserted that it was time to stand with different democratic movements of the country, as their larger struggle was against “corporatisation” of Indian agriculture, and not merely against the contentious farm laws.Read More »

Iranian communists appeal for support for political prisoners

by Steve Sweeny

Morning Star | January 09, 2018

IRANIAN communists appealed for international support today to secure the release of thousands detained in a government crackdown.

The Tudeh Party of Iran released a statement calling on “all the freedom-loving and progressive forces of Iran and the world” to do all they can to establish the whereabouts of those held by the Iranian regime.Read More »

Interview with Oscar López Rivera: “Fighting is not a Futile Exercise”

The Dawn | May 17, 2017

Oscar-lopez-300x230.png (300×230)

Photo: Resumen-english

By: Mari Narváez / Source: Claridad – Translation: Resumen Latinoamericano, North American Bureau / The Dawn News / May 17, 2017

While many of us could hardly concentrate on everyday matters as we thought obsessively about the fragile and unfortunate fate of Oscar López Rivera, the former political prisoner painted peacefully in the prison in Terre Haute Indiana.

Then on January 17, at 3:30 pm a guard called him to let him know that he had a call from his lawyer Jan Susler who gave him the news. “Oscar, President Obama just commuted your sentence”. Lopez Rivera stayed quiet. “How do you feel, Oscar?  Aren’t you happy?” “I feel the same as yesterday, the same as always,” he replied.Read More »

From Mumia to Peltier, US Political Prisoners Still Locked Up

telesur | 17 January, 2017

Black activist Mumia Abu-Jamal and Indigenous activist Leonard Peltier

Black activist Mumia Abu-Jamal and Indigenous activist Leonard Peltier | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

In the wake of U.S. President Barack Obama commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning and Oscar Lopez Rivera, teleSUR takes a look at some of the more prominent political prisoners who remain behind bars for their activism and fight for justice.

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