Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Kevin Cooper and other US hypocrisies (Amnesty and More)

Amnesty has issued several releases calling for Kevin Cooper's Death Sentence to be Commuted:

GO here
and here

Regardless of Cooper's Innocence, where are the safeguards built into our US justice system which supposedly protects the Innocent until PROVEN guilty?

In a recent article by Stephen Lendman:

...Kevin Cooper's case is ... disturbing:

A Black American citizen, he was framed and wrongfully convicted of four June 1983 murders. Evidence proved him innocence, yet he's languished on death row ever since, and faces execution without gubernatorial clemency, pardon, or commutation of his sentence to life.

On December 23, the Los Angeles was supportive in its editorial headlined, "Governor, save inmate's life," saying:

"Even supporters of capital punishment should object to the execution of someone whose guilt is in serious doubt." Since judicial action didn't save him, "the burden is on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger...."

California has 717 inmates on death row. With near certainty, many there are as innocent as Cooper. However, no one intervenes on their behalf because they're poor, Black or Latino - throwaway people out of sight and mind until lethal injections painfully kill them.

"Much of the evidence against Cooper has been seriously questioned, most comprehensively in an opinion by Judge William A. Fletcher of the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, who dissented from a decision not to hear" Cooper's appeal. The above link covers his dissent in detail and his belief that Cooper is innocent, saying:

Based on convincing evidence, Cooper "is probably innocent of the crimes for which the state of California is about to execute him."

The LA Times "opposes the death penalty under any circumstances, and....wouldn't object if the governor commuted" all 717 death row inmates. "But execution is especially outrageous when the prisoner may be innocent. Gov. Schwarzenegger should commute Cooper's sentence."

In fact, Schwarzenegger should pardon him (and others wrongfully convicted), make full restitution for nearly three decades of injustice, and provide substantial aid to help him readjust in society, free at last and fully exonerated.


The International Justice Network's Executive Director, Tina Foster, reported the following - showing ongoing US injustices and inconsistencies in judicial matters affecting the ruin of many lives with imprisonments which amount to living death:

ACLU's Melissa Goodman said:

"Despite concerns that Bagram has become the new Guantanamo, the public remains in the dark when it comes to basic facts about the facility and whom our military is holding in indefinite military detention there. The public has a right to know...." No transparency "is even more disturbing considering the possibility that the US will continue holding and interrogating prisoners at Bagram well into the future."

Stephen Lendman continues in his latest OP Ed:

The ... US District Court for the Southern District of New York went along, violating international and US law, including provisions of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions prohibiting:

* -- "violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;
* -- outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment;
* -- the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized people;" and
* -- requiring humane treatment under all circumstances.

It's well known that Pentagon/CIA prisoners at Bagram, Guantanamo, and other American torture prisons are brutalized, at times murdered, and denied all basic rights under international law that automatically is US law under the Constitution's Supremacy Clause, Article VI, Clause 2. It states:

"This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary, notwithstanding."

Others have also written recently on Cooper's behalf - GO here

Here's Tina Foster's Report from Lahore, Pakistan (Tina Foster Continues with International Justice Network)

On December 22, The International News ( headlined, "Counsel urges unity to bring to bring Aafia home," saying:

Tina Foster said Muslims get second class justice in America, and unless Pakistan pressures Washington to send Aafia home, all Pakistanis will be at risk.

Others as well everywhere, including American citizens at home or abroad. Washington's extremism is so out-of-control that US and international laws don't matter, nor do those of other countries violated with impunity on their territory.

At the Lahore Press Club, Foster said Aafia's court-appointed attorneys would appeal her sentence, challenging both her conviction and 86 year imprisonment. If all Pakistanis and political parties were united on her behalf, she said, Washington might listen.

"The United States claims to have arrested Aafia in Pakistan (so America) should have sent her (there). But instead, they took a Pakistani sister and illegally transferred her all the way to the US," after torturing her for years at Bagram.

Foster added that Washington claims the right to imprison Aafia for life far from home and family. If Pakistan lets this "stand, the US government would have a green light to hold any Pakistani citizen traveling abroad and illegally send them to the United States, a country where Muslims get second class justice. If Pakistanis don't stand up for Aafia, no one will be able to stand up for other Pakistanis at their hour of need."

FOR URLS to the above and Related Items:
GO here

While I do believe we should network across national boundaries to speak against inhumanity, injustice, death penalty and such threats wherever we find it, the following makes some hard to debate points about US inconsistencies:

GO here for December 30, 2010 article: Western double standards
By Yvonne Ridley

Also see an outspoken activists who's seeking to right wrongs toward women (and particularly the case of a victim who faces hanging in Pakistan):

Marvi Sirmed Columnist / Independent Blogger,Founder Editor of Baaghi:
GO here

Note find more on all the above issue in posts below/in archives and also at the following blogsites:

No More Crusades

One Heart for Peace

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