On November 15, three FBI agents came to the Chicago home of an international solidarity
(CHICAGO 12/22/2010) – The American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) strongly condemns the newest round of federal grand jury subpoenas issued to Palestinian solidarity activists in Chicago and Minnesota on Tuesday. In total, 23 social justice and anti-war activists have been targeted by the FBI since Sept. 24, 2010.
These repressive tactics are being used to intimidate and silence all those who are working to raise awareness about the United State’s support of Israel’s occupation of Palestine and the resulting human rights abuses suffered by Palestinians on a daily basis as well as those who oppose the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. U.S. tax dollars unconditionally support the Israeli military – the enforcer of the brutal siege on Gaza and racist apartheid policies throughout the region.
Furthermore, grand jury proceedings are not held up to the same constitutionally guaranteed standards as are criminal and civil trials. They are held in secret without a judge present and defense lawyers are not allowed into the room. Grand juries historically have been used by the government to stifle dissent and to gather information on political movements and to disrupt those movements by causing fear and mistrust.
AMP stands strongly in support of our First Amendment rights to the freedom of speech and the freedom of assembly, which includes rallies and demonstrations protesting U.S. support of Israel and its occupation of Palestine. We are outraged at the use of a grand jury investigation in so much that ordinary citizens may become afraid to speak out against unjust U.S. policies for fear of this kind of retribution. AMP urges its supporters to stand strong and to hold fast to all rights guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights.
AMP is an American organization working in America for Americans. The Constitution gives all Americans the right to speak freely and to gather in assemblies. We contend it is possible to assert these rights while at the same time acting within the parameters of U.S. laws.
It is AMP's position that the targeting of these activists should not and cannot be viewed as a statement as to any wrongdoing by those individuals. Rather, as a nation built on laws and justice it is paramount that we recall that all people are innocent until proven guilty. That presumption of innocence is more far reaching than any FBI warrant or search.
For more information, to donate or to learn how you can help, go to www.stopfbi.net.
The American Muslims for Palestine is a national, grassroots organization, whose mission is to educate the American people about issues related to Palestine and its rich, cultural heritage. For more information, go to www.ampalestine.org, call 888.404.4AMP, or email [email protected].