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Home News Organizing Updates Support Our Prisoners!
Support Our Prisoners! PDF Print E-mail
On Sunday, November 18, 2012, while thousands stood vigil at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia, Nashua Chantal crossed over the fence onto the military base to protest the continued training of soldiers at the School of the Americas.

On March 13, Nashua was sentenced to 6 months in federal prison by Judge Stephen Hyles, highlighting the political nature of the trials with the imposition of the maximum allowable sentence. We will continue to speak out for justice, and return to the gates of Fort Benning from November 22-24, 2013!

Nash has been transferred, this time to FCI Jesup in his home state of Georgia.

His mailing address is:

Robert Chantal #92461-020
FCI Jesup
Federal Correctional Institution
2680 301 South
Jesup, GA 31599


Here are some tips for writing to SOA Watch Prisoners of Conscience:
http://www.soaw.org/about-us/pocs/150-articles/3578-tips-for-writing-to-prisoners

Nashua expects to remain in Jesup until his release date of September 11, 2013. He is in good spirits and has much better access to outdoor facilities. He again is asking for letters and reading material and will be very grateful for whatever you can send. Paperback books can be sent to him, but only if sent directly from the publisher or booksellers (AKPress.org, etc.). Nashua is also hoping that folks living nearby can visit him. The application procedures to be approved for the “inmate visiting list” at Jesup FCI are available on the Bureau of Prisons website. Go to www.bop.gov and click on the map, go to Jesup FCI and then scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “FCI Jesup Visiting Regulations.


The former SOA Watch Prisoners of Conscience Michael Walli and Megan Rice, together with their co-defendant Greg Boertje-Obed are currently in the Irwin County Detention Facility in Ocilla, GA, awaiting their sentencing on September 23, 2013. The three were found guilty by a jury in Tennessee in May for engaging in a nonviolent direct action against nuclear weapons. Michael (63), Megan (83) and Greg (57), succeeded in a disarmament action at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Nuclear facility before dawn on July 28, 2012. Calling themselves Transform Now Plowshares, they hammered on the cornerstone of the newly built Highly-Enriched Uranium Manufacturing Facility (HEUMF), splashed human blood and left four spray painted tags on the recent construction which read: Woe to the empire of blood; The fruit of justice is peace; Work for peace not for war; and Plowshares please Isaiah.

There are two things you can do to support Michael, Megan and Greg.

One is to send letters to them. Here are the addresses:

Gregory Boertje-Obed 22090
Irwin County Detention Center
132 Cotton Drive
Ocilla GA 31774

***

Michael Walli 4444
Irwin County Detention Center
132 Cotton Drive
Ocilla GA 31774

***

Megan Rice 22100
Irwin County Detention Center
132 Cotton Drive
Ocilla GA 31774

You must make sure to include your entire return address on the outside of the envelope. No staples or paperclips can be included in your mail; no oversized envelopes. Magazines and books must be sent directly from the publisher or bookstore/Amazon. Photocopies of brief articles are likely to be permitted (based on our past experience). If you include inappropriate material or fail to comply with these rules, your mail will not get through—it will be returned to you.

The second thing you can do is send a letter to Judge Thapar. We have suggested guidelines for your letter, and we are asking people to send their letter to Bill Quigley, lawyer for Mike Walli (address below), so they can be collected and delivered to the judge. If you want to send a copy of your letter to us, that would be great—our address is also below.

• Invite Judge Thapar to think about sentencing in light of the fact that this was an act of nonviolent civil disobedience intended to awaken the conscience of the nation, and no evidence was presented that it was an act of terrorism meant to harm anyone. You could write that you share the court’s concern that Congress would write a law that wouldn’t allow a judge to distinguish between peace activists and terrorists, and are disturbed that the government defines the crime they stand convicted of as a violent “crime of terrorism”.

http://blogs.knoxnews.com/munger/2013/05/judge-rules-convicted-y-12-pro.html As testimony of the defendants showed during trial, they carried out their action in a spirit of nonviolence and hope.

• Without making it the focus of the letter, you could mention that the action was carried out with the clear understanding of the illegality and immorality of nuclear weapons, and intent to uphold higher laws. Read some of Ramsey Clark’s testimony at a pre-trial hearing re: the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and international law: http://transformnowplowshares.wordpress.com/2013/04/29/ramsey-clark-on-nuclear-weapons-and-update-on-charges/

• Encourage him to consider downward departures from the high guidelines for the charges, and to use his discretion at sentencing to bring more justice into the situation by recognizing that the defendants are NOT violent terrorists as the government has implied through its interpretation of the crime; and remind him of the intentions of the three nonviolent activists: to follow the words of the prophet Isaiah to beat swords into plowshares, and build a safer and more secure world for all.

Our purpose with these letters is not to reargue the case, nor is it to condemn nuclear weapons production—the judge is not engaging those issues at this time. Our purpose is to address the legal system’s distortion of the nonviolent action of the TNP resisters and to provide support to the judge for a sentencing decision that takes into account the nature of their action and their nonviolent behavior throughout their action.

Letters should be sent to:

US District Judge Amul R Thapar
c/o Professor Bill Quigley
Loyola Law Clinic and Center for Social Justice
7214 St. Charles Avenue
Campus Box 902
New Orleans, LA 70118

If you care to send a copy to OREPA that would also be appreciated:

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or

OREPA
P O Box 5743
Oak Ridge, TN 37831
 

Contact us

SOA Watch
733 Euclid Street NW
Washington, DC 20001

phone: 202-234-3440
email: info@soaw.org