An Open Letter From Sean Swain

The following is a letter Rachel Allshiny recently received from Sean Swain, an anarchist prisoner who is behind bars indefinitely, after she sent him a copy of her Suicide Girls blog post on prisoner support work.

11 SEP 13
You-can’t-kill-500,000-children-under-
the-age-of-6-in-10-years-of-sanctions-
without-suffering-the-blowback-day

Allshiny + Everyone –

I got your 28 AUG letter.

As you’ll note from my address, I’m now at Ohio’s super-duper-über-mega-ultra-max. It’s a program for scientifically disassembling human personalities.

I seem to be getting my mail. It seems to be timely too. Here, I’m getting zines and other reading materials. I’ve been here 2 weeks, however, and still do not have a large box of my legal documents + addresses + writings, etc.

Having read your article again just now, I see a pattern. The fascists fear ideas. Ideas on paper. Mark’s. Mine. That speaks to the poverty of their own dysfunctional ideology and the unsustainable system it creates.

Rehabilitation: They kick us in the head until we get dumber. 🙂 Continue reading

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An Open Letter from Mark “Migs” Neiweem of the NATO 5

NOTE: For the past 2 months, we have been promoting call-in campaigns in support of Mark Neiweem, aka Migs, who was put in solitary confinement for his anarchist affiliations. Yesterday we posted the good news that he will be released from prison in December, only one month past his original parole date.

Another young man at the prison was put into solitary confinement under the same “disciplinary violation” of being an anarchist. He is serving time for DUI-related offenses, not political charges, so we did not include him directly in our campaign, although he did receive legal support from the same attorney.

Now that Migs has resolved his own situation and has a release date in sight, he requested that we publish the following letter in support of his comrade. Although not a political prisoner per se, he is still being held wrongfully in solitary confinement for expressing his political beliefs and could use your letters and good wishes.

Migs at Pontiac

Photo of Migs courtesy of the Illinois Department of Corrections

 

Greetings of solidarity, comrades. I sincerely hope this find all of you in the very best of health and highest of spirits.

I have had much difficulty getting this message to individuals because much of my outgoing mail seems to vanish between my cell and their mail boxes – seemingly always the letters which those doing the censoring don’t like, including all attempts to express the message in this open letter. I am now reaching out publicly and hoping not to get retaliated against this time for making a public statement while in prison. We shall see. Continue reading

Open Communiqué by Migs (Mark Neiweem) of the NATO 5

This letter by Mark Neiweem (aka Migs) of the NATO 5 was originally posted at the NATO5support. In it he discusses why he agreed to change his plea, describes his time in maximum security at Cook County Jail, and explains why jail support is so incredibly vital.

Comrade Migs, NATO 5 prisoner

Greetings of solidarity, comrades and friends.

I sincerely hope this communiqué finds all of you in the very best of health and highest of revolutionary spirits.

I am coming to all of you with all the love and admiration in my heart to thank you for the love, compassion, and solidarity you’ve given me since I was captured, along with 4 other comrades and brothers in struggle, in May 2012.

As most of you know by now, I eventually took a non-cooperating plea after deciding trial was not the best option for me. Though some of you may be disappointed I didn’t “prove my innocence” at trial like so many expected me to do, others were relieved to finally have some closure and an end in sight. I feel I should say why I chose what I did, for this is the first time I’ve been able to speak about this case without formal state persecution. Continue reading

Hig (aka w0rmer) Introduces “Hack.ed#” Comic, Solicits Submissions

This week we received a letter from Higinio Ochoa introducing a project he is working on during his prison term called Hack.ed#. Images of the letter are available below, or here is the transcript:

Dear friends and family,

I would like to introduce you to my latest project. Hack.ed# is part comic and part teaching aide. Each volume will contain a great story filled with relateable content along with lessons that both teach and entertain. I will be releasing it in both a free digital copy and a paid bound one. The first volume will be complete in about a month. The main factor being access to resources.

If you would like to contribute to upcoming issues we could really use the help. Mailing in tutorials, ideas, and manual pages from various tools helps us keep it as realistic as possible. If you have a subject you would like explained please let me know. This is after all for the community. Before I go I would like to thank all from freeanons.org and my lovely wife.

I hope I have peaked your curiosity and got you interested in learning.

Author & friend,

hig AKA w0rmer

P.S. Spread the word!

I ❤ OpPenPal!

You can write back to w0rmer here:

Higinio Ochoa #72022-279
Federal Satellite Low Elkton
P.O. Box 10
Lisbon, Ohio 44432

Scanned images of the letter: page 1 | page 2

Letter from John Kiriakou

A letter from incarcerated CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou has been posted on Firedoglake. In it he describes the challenges inherent in prison life, from figuring out where to sit at lunch to guards who try to incite violence between prisoners. Highly recommended.

Read the letter here: Letter From Loretto

You can write to him yourself (he says he writes back to every letter):

John Kiriakou
79637-083
FCI Loretto
P.O. Box 1000
Loretto, PA 15940

Statement from Jeremy Hammond Regarding His Plea

Today I pleaded guilty to one count of violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. This was a very difficult decision. I hope this statement will explain my reasoning. I believe in the power of the truth. In keeping with that, I do not want to hide what I did or to shy away from my actions. This non-cooperating plea agreement frees me to tell the world what I did and why, without exposing any tactics or information to the government and without jeopardizing the lives and well-being of other activists on and offline.

During the past 15 months I have been relatively quiet about the specifics of my case as I worked with my lawyers to review the discovery and figure out the best legal strategy. There were numerous problems with the government’s case, including the credibility of FBI informant Hector Monsegur. However, because prosecutors stacked the charges with inflated damages figures, I was looking at a sentencing guideline range of over 30 years if I lost at trial. I have wonderful lawyers and an amazing community of people on the outside who support me. None of that changes the fact that I was likely to lose at trial. But, even if I was found not guilty at trial, the government claimed that there were eight other outstanding indictments against me from jurisdictions scattered throughout the country. If I had won this trial I would likely have been shipped across the country to face new but similar charges in a different district. The process might have repeated indefinitely. Ultimately I decided that the most practical route was to accept this plea with a maximum of a ten year sentence and immunity from prosecution in every federal court.

Now that I have pleaded guilty it is a relief to be able to say that I did work with Anonymous to hack Stratfor, among other websites. Those others included military and police equipment suppliers, private intelligence and information security firms, and law enforcement agencies. I did this because I believe people have a right to know what governments and corporations are doing behind closed doors. I did what I believe is right.

I have already spent 15 months in prison. For several weeks of that time I have been held in solitary confinement. I have been denied visits and phone calls with my family and friends. This plea agreement spares me, my family, and my community a repeat of this grinding process.

I would like to thank all of my friends and supporters for their amazing and ongoing gestures of solidarity. Today I am glad to shoulder the responsibility for my actions and to move one step closer to daylight.

Jeremy Hammond

[source]

Weev Sends Letter From Solitary Confinement

The following letter from Weev was received by a supporter today. It was originally posted on pastebin.

5/5/2013

How are you doing? How are the chops? I am disgusted to have to write an actual paper letter but they took away all my electronic comms methods and put me in the special housing unit where I am under 24/7 lockdown. All this for the high crime of blogging,despite nation B.O.P. officials having made public statements that what I was doing wasn’t against the rules. Meredith had a conversation with the guy even.

It has been a week of this and I feel completely alone and abandoned. I don’t even have my loved ones or attorney’s address (they took most of my papers and I happened to have your address on a property slip they didn’t toss). and am unsure when or if anyone will find out about my situation.

I refused to consent to a payment plan for the fine levied against me from my commissary funds, so now I can’t buy food I can eat from the prison store anymore. Things are really depressing. Please have people send books. I need them badly in 24/7 lockdown with no library access.

I miss everyone, also food and sunlight. I was hoping people would send m tweets and news articles about me but nobody has. Has the Internet forgotten about me or am I still a hot topic?

Miss you all dearly,
Weev #10378-010

(I really wish my attorney would call, only he can)

Weev needs our support. Show him that the Internet has not and will never forget him.

To donate to his defense fund so his lawyer can visit and work to get better living conditions for Weev: http://cfaadefensefund.com/

To donate to his support fund so his support crew can add to his commissary and send books: http://bit.ly/weevpay

To sign up to send books from his reading list or to tell us about books you have sent: https://oppenpal.wordpress.com/mailing-list/team-weev/

Can’t afford postage? Send a message of support to OpPenPal [at] tormail [dot] org. We will print and send it for you.

Guidelines for sending mail and books: https://oppenpal.wordpress.com/guidelines/