We will assemble at 45th & Kingsessing Ave. at 12:00pm, August 11 in Philly
For transportation from NYC, call (212)330-8029
HISTORY OF THE MOVE 9
This August 8th will mark the 29th anniversary of the 1978 confrontation in Philadelphia that was completely provoked and carried out by the Philadelphia police. Over 600 heavily armed police officers came out to MOVE headquarters to serve an eviction order to MOVE members, charging them with failure to leave their Powelton Village headquarters in supposed violation of an earlier agreement. With their concocted story to justify a military invasion, public officials and the media blamed MOVE for the deadly assault that followed.
On the morning of August 8, 1978. police fired over 1,000 rounds of ammunition into a basement that was filled with MOVE men, women, children, and animals. The police flooded the basement in an attempt to drown MOVE members. They fired tear gas knowing full well that MOVE babies would be gassed. In their bloodthirsty frenzy to kill MOVE members, the police killed one of their own fellow officers. As MOVE members came out of their house, mothers had their babies snatched out of their arms and were shackled. MOVE men were savagely beaten and shackled.
The police, rather than admitting that they had killed one of their own, charged nine MOVE members with the murder of the one police officer, James Ramp. The nine were, as in the case of Mumia, tried and convicted for the murder of the police officer. Each member was sentenced to 30-100 years in prison. The trial judge admitted, when questioned by then still unimprisoned journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal, that he did not have the faintest idea as to who shot the cop. He said he had sentenced the MOVE members as a family because they insisted that they were a family!
It was partly because of Mumia’s extensive and fair reporting on MOVE, rare among Philadelphia journalists, covering all the events that led to August 8th as well as the trial and conditions of imprisonment for the MOVE 9, that he was later framed. Mayor Rizzo specifically threatened Mumia for what he defined as biased reporting.
That was 29 years ago. MOVE members are still in prison today. Merle Africa died in prison under mysterious circumstances after doing 20 years. August 1978 led directly to the infamous bombing of MOVE on May 13, 1985, as MOVE would not stop protesting the incarceration of their nine sisters and brothers.
We cannot allow one more freedom fighter to die in Amerika’s dungeons! A year from now the MOVE 9 will go before the parole board for the very first time. Interviews will begin in the next few months. Join us in a campaign of massive steady public pressure to bring our freedom fighters home. The struggle to parole the MOVE 9 is key to reinstating the right to parole for all prisoners.
NO EXCUSES! NOW IS THE TIME TO PAROLE THE MOVE 9!
Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition, NYC