CHIEF CRAIG INTENSIFIES DETROIT POLICE STATE; MARCH MON. OCT. 21 @ 9 AM AS TRIAL OF AIYANA JONES’ FATHER OPENS IN FRANK MURPHY, TO NEW DPD HQ

Top cops have alleged history of murder, brutality, frame-ups, perjury

Craig extols LAPD, Cincinnati, known for police crimes, federal oversight 

March Oct. 21 on eve of 18th Anniversary national marches by October 22nd Coalition to End Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation

Police-Chief-James-Craig-too-expensiveBy Diane Bukowski

October 14, 2013

DETROIT – Despite Detroit Police Chief James Craig’s assurances that 43 officers he hand-picked for promotions into his “All-Star Team” had been thoroughly vetted, many including Craig appear deeply embedded in a long-standing culture of murder, brutality and corruption.

Craig announced his “All-Star Team” Oct. 8 during a press conference at the Detroit Police Department’s new headquarters.

“We used a competitive process, including an exhaustive review of the officers’ work history, education, and other factors,” Craig said. “. . . The Detroit Police Department will be one of the top police agencies in this country. I have had the good fortune to work in great departments, including Los Angeles and Cincinnati, and I will put any of these folks side by side with anyone there. They are the absolute best.”

Deputy Chief Vicki Yost (l) with Police Chief Craig (center) and Asst. Chiefs at press conference Oct. 8, 2013.

Deputy Chief Vicki Yost (l) with Police Chief Craig (center) and Asst. Chiefs at press conference Oct. 8, 2013.

The promotions were not approved by the Detroit Board of Police Commissioners as is standard practice, and were not done according to union contract provisions. Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who directly appointed Craig, gave him free reign independent of City Charter and other provisions.

In a statement responding to this article, Chief Craig reiterated his support for the officers, saying, “Each of the newly promoted Executives and Command Officers promotions were based on merit, prior performance, work history, education and specialized training among many other factors. Each candidate was fully vetted and interviewed prior to being selected.”

Craig’s comments about each of the top staff members will be included with VOD’s summary of our research of their records.

ASSISTANT CHIEF ERIC JONES

Assistant Police Chief Eric Jones

Assistant Police Chief Eric Jones

Among them are Assistant Chief Eric Jones, sued at least seven times in federal court since 1995 by Detroiters alleging assault and other charges, according to documents on the federal court website. (VOD has not yet researched state files on Jones and other officers included in this story.)

The first suit involved the killing of Michael Landon Hill, 21, on July 11, 1994 on Detroit’s southwest side.

“He shot my son five times but he got away with it and got promoted later,” Hill’s mother Edith Namyslowski alleged. “He shot him in the leg, in the arm, and the palm of his hand while he had his hands up, then he shot him in the chest. He didn’t have to kill him like a dog. My son was target practicing in a friend’s backyard. When the cops got called, he ran away, but Eric Jones pinned him in between two garages with a seven-foot wall behind him. His partner said he saw my son’s gun lying next door in the yard when he was shot. Eric Jones testified at the trial that my son’s last words to him were, ‘Why did you do it? I didn’t even have a gun.”

Michael Landon Hill gravesite. Dead at the hands of Asst. Chief Eric Jones.

Michael Landon Hill gravesite. Dead at the hands of Asst. Chief Eric Jones.

She said Hill “wasn’t a bad kid. He had been on probation for being in a stolen car, and he went to boot camp. He had just got started in a new job where his dad worked. He was my baby, the last of two boys, and I loved him dearly.”

The federal jury, however, ruled against Namyslowski, who said none of its members were from Detroit.

Several of the suits against Jones cite as co-defendants notorious cops William “Robocop” Melendez, Matthew “Spike” Zani and others among 18 Third and Fourth Precinct cops. They were indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2003 for numerous crime, an indictment that did not include Jones.

Attorney Mark Ernst brought a separate lawsuit against Jones, Melendez, Zani, Jeffrey Weiss, Troy Bradley, Jeffrey Weiss, Timothy Gilbert, Mark Diaz, Jerrod Willis, Chris Guinn, Ricardo Villaruel, John McLeod, John Watkins and Oscar Garza, in the case of Clifton White, a chief witness against the officers in the federal indictment. All the officers except Jones were indicted by the Feds in the earlier case.

RobocopThe lawsuit alleges Jones played a key role in years of harassment and frame-ups targeted at White.

“The Defendant officers acting in concert, have, for at least the past 10 years, targeted young African-American men living in or around the 4th Precinct and conspired to assault them, plant drugs and/or guns on them, steal from them, file false police reports against them, and, if necessary, perjure themselves in court proceedings in efforts to cover-up the conspiracy,” says the suit.

Former Wayne County Prosecutor Mike Duggan’s top lieutenant Kevin Simowski and others interfered in the case, claiming the feds were “conned by a network of career criminals,” according to a Detroit Free Press article. U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Collins responded, “I will tell you this: In general, when we indict any case, we do so because the evidence indicates guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Mike Duggan as Wayne County Prosecutor in 2002.

Mike Duggan as Wayne County Prosecutor in 2002.

Three frame-up cases against White were dropped along with cases against other victims in the federal indictment.

In what Ernst called a “nullification verdict,” a jury acquitted eight officers in that case in 2004, despite testimony against them by 17 other police officers, a historic break in “the blue wall of silence.”

Settlements of various amounts were reached against Jones in cases including the White case (see links below story).

Notorious “Booty Boy” cop Michael Parish praised Jones in a 2011 article in the Legal News.

“Sgt. Michael Parish has worked with Jones for 10 years, and was there when Judge Gerald Rosen swore him in to federal practice as a lawyer last week,” said the article.

“Parish called Jones ‘the most enthusiastic, energetic and honorable cop I know.’

"Booty Boy" cops Michael Parish and Michael Osman were never disciplined, but instead promoted.

“Booty Boy” cops Michael Parish and Michael Osman were never disciplined, but instead promoted.

Dozens of Black men on Detroit’s southwest side testified at City Council and in court that Michael Parish and Michael Osman became known as the “Booty Boys” literally raping many, under the guise of illegal anal cavity searches in broad daylight, on the public streets. They were sued multiple times, with several suits eliciting settlements.

Chief Craig said regarding Jones, “A.C. Eric Jones has received a Juris Doctorate degree from Wayne State University and while commanding the most problematic district in the city was able to significantly reduce crime in that area. A.C. Jones has a vast experience and knowledge base in pro-active policing strategies.”

DEPUTY CHIEF VICKI YOST

Inspector Vicki Yost, now promoted to Deputy Chief.

Inspector Vicki Yost, now promoted to Deputy Chief.

Stepping down to the next level of command, two Deputy Chiefs have had questionable “work histories” as well.

Deputy Chief Vicki Yost partnered with notorious three-time killer cop Eugene Brown in what forensic pathologist Werner Spitz called the “execution” of Lamar Grable, 20, in 1996.

During a civil trial, the two claimed Grable was armed and shot at Brown, who returned fire, shooting Grable eight times, including three times in the chest. Attorney David Robinson, who saw an internal police review of the case known as the “Shoulders Report,” said it showed that the last shots took place as Grable lay on the ground.

Yost stood over Grable as he lay dying, and admitted to taking home the gun that allegedly belonged to him before turning it in to the crime lab. She then backed up Brown’s testimony at trial. Grable’s family and other witnesses who testified said he had no gun.

Rodrick Carrington, Lamar Grable, Darren Miller, killed by Eugene Brown in three separate cases; Brown shot a total of nine people but is still on the force.

Rodrick Carrington, Lamar Grable, Darren Miller, killed by Eugene Brown in three separate cases; Brown shot a total of nine people but is still on the force.

The jury awarded Grable’s family $4 million in the case on Aug. 6, 2003.

“We’re very grateful that the jury did their job and listened to the evidence,” said the plaintiff’s attorney David Robinson after the verdict. “The bullet holes in Brown’s shirt and the bullet holes in Lamar’s body contradicted the sworn testimony of Brown and his partner, Vicki Yost.”

“I’m glad the conspiracy of silence, between Brown, Yost and the other officers who winked at their behavior, has been broken by the community in the form of the jury,” said Robinson’s co-counsel, Melissa El. “Given time, the truth will always prevail.”

Three-time killer cop Eugene Brown after promotion to sergeant, as fellow cops cheered him. He is still on the force.

Three-time killer cop Eugene Brown after promotion to sergeant, as fellow cops cheered him. He is still on the force.

Brown’s own testimony that he “could have” shot Grable as he lay on the ground led an Appeals Court and the Michigan Supreme court to uphold the verdict.

Grable’s father Herman Vallery, a co-founder with Grable’s mother Arnetta Grable of the Original Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, commented on Yost’s promotion.

“I don’t think she should be promoted because of her involvement in my only child’s death,” Vallery said. “To this day, I still question whether she herself fired some of the bullets, because Lamar was shot first in the back, and she drove her car up on him from the back.”

Yost has been sued several times, chiefly in relation to complaints involving nightclubs while she was with the vice squad.

Members of the Original Detroit Coalition against Police Brutality, including Herman Vallery (2nd from left) and Arnetta Grable (6th from left), outside Frank Murphy Hall.
Members of the Original Detroit Coalition against Police Brutality, including Herman Vallery (2nd from left) and Arnetta Grable (6th from left), outside Frank Murphy Hall.

One lawsuit, filed by the prominent law firm of Posner, Posner and Posner in the case of Lewis Hall III and Bangone Thengkham, alleged that Inspector Yost and three other officers, Sheron Johnson, Tryone Gray, and Charles Turner, assaulted and beat the plaintiffs inside the Plan B nightclub in 2009. The lawsuit was later settled out of court for an unknown amount. It says that Yost and other vice squad officers were eventually suspended for their actions in that and other cases.

Not only police officers, but guards at Plan B assaulted and even killed patrons, including Perry Freeman, shown with his child Pierre. Freeman was shot in the back with a hollow point bullet by a guard, against whom no charges were brought. A settlement in the civil case ensued.

Not only police officers, but guards at Plan B assaulted and even killed patrons, including Perry Freeman, shown with his child Pierre. Freeman was shot in the back with a hollow point bullet by a guard, against whom no charges were brought. His crime: dancing on a table. A settlement in the civil case ensued.

“The Vice Squad and the individual defendant police officers . . . have engaged in a pattern and practice of excessive and unwarranted raids upon nightclubs and other retail establishments, harassment and intimidation of club owners and customers of the establishments, assaults upon and intimidation of those customers, false arrests and ticketing of customers of the establishments, as well as of the establishments themselves, and filing false police reports and committing perjury, as well as other unconstitutional conduct in reckless disregard of constitutional rights. . . .The Vice Squad and its officers were corrupt, and the pattern and practice of the misconduct of the Vice Squad officers, including the defendant officers, was widespread and well known in the community and to the defendant City of Detroit, but the City failed to stop the practice.”

The suit alleges the Vice Squad’s purpose was to shut down the establishments without cause, and “to facilitate graft, shakedowns and bribes.”

Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit

Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit

Yost also led a raid on the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit (CAID) in 2008, which a federal judge later ruled unconstitutional after the ACLU sued.

In a release, the ACLU said, “A federal judge yesterday ruled unconstitutional the 2008 Detroit police raid of the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit in which 130 innocent CAID patrons were detained and their cars impounded. Police had no evidence that the patrons had broken the law and no illegal drugs or weapons were uncovered during the raid. . . .

“In a free country, the police may not conduct commando-style raids on innocent people and seize their property without justification,” said Dan Korobkin, ACLU of Michigan staff attorney. “We hope this case will put a stop to the Motor City shakedowns we’ve seen across the city – the practice of arresting innocent people, seizing their cars, and refusing to return them unless they pay a $900 ransom.”

Former Detroit police chief Warren Evans in anti-crime press conference in affluent Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood with federal, state, county police officials, June, 2010 Photo by Diane Bukowski

Former Detroit police chief Warren Evans in anti-crime press conference in affluent Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood with federal, state, county police officials, June, 2010. The press conference targeted youths, alleging a rash of break-ins. Photo by Diane Bukowski

Chief Craig said regarding Yost, “D.C. Vicki Yost is a highly decorated 19 year DPD veteran who has been responsible for overseeing many successful operations within the DPD, including Vice Enforcement, Tactical Support, Major Crimes, and the 8th Precinct. D.C. Yost was instrumental in establishing effective community relations efforts particularly in SW with the Hispanic community, as well as overseeing a Home Invasion reduction strategy in the Grandmont Rosedale Neighborhood. D.C. Yost was also responsible for conducting investigations that ultimately lead to the closure of problematic nightclubs were violence and underage dancing was prevalent.”

DEPUTY CHIEF DAVID LEVALLEY

William "Robocop" Melendez leaving court during federal trial of 18 officers from 3rd and 4th precincts.

William “Robocop” Melendez leaving court during federal trial of 18 officers from 3rd and 4th precincts.

Deputy Chief David LeValley also has a past. He was involved with notorious William “Robocop” Melendez in the frame-up of anti-police brutality activist Cornell Squires’ son in 2000. Squires’ son, 18, was arrested by the two, who worked undercover on the narcotics squad with Robert Feld. Feld beat Squires, Sr. the previous year, calling him a “n—–,” throwing him through a door, and threatening to kill him.

Squires, Sr.’s father, saw the beating and experienced a heart attack that eventually killed him. Feld was finally forced to retire from the force after numerous other brutality lawsuits and a videotaped beating of a driver.

LeValley and Melendez claimed Squires’ son pulled a gun on them and tried to carjack them. No gun was ever found. A jury acquitted the son of carjacking but convicted him of “assault with intent to rob armed.” Judge Kym Worthy would not allow the defense to present evidence that Melendez was convicted earlier of falsifying a police report.

LeValley and other officers were sued in federal court in several cases, including the beating and denial of medical care to a young man in Hart Plaza, and the set-up of a young man for soliciting an undercover cop as a prostitute and the seizure of his car. That took place during a rash of such set-ups from which both the prosecutor’s office and the police department profited.

David LeValley is at left in this photo with former interim police chief Chester Logan.

David LeValley is at left in this photo with former interim police chief Chester Logan.

Another lawsuit said LeValley and other officers illegally arrested Joseph Gray, and did “beat, strike, kick and assault plaintiff about his body . . .including beating him in the head, beating him until he was unconscious, beating him so badly that hospitalization was required . . .causing serious and permanent injuries .” Several complaints were settled with monetary agreements.

Chief Craig’s comment on LeValley: “D.C. David LeValley is also a highly decorated 19 year DPD veteran who has been the commanding officer of the department’s Training Section and Task Force Administration Section. D.C. LeValley most recently served as the adjutant Lieutenant to Chief Craig and was directly responsible for developing a comprehensive plan to equally deploy manpower citywide, ensuring the proper staffing levels based on population, calls for service and overall crime.”

A rung further down on the promotional ladder is Second Deputy Chief James Fleming.

He has at least one federal lawsuit, on record alleging that he and other officers refused to provide medical assistance to a man shot four times by Officer Barry Howard and permanently paralyzed from the waist down.

Craig said of Fleming, “Director James Fleming is a 30 year DPD police officer who retired honorably as a lieutenant. Following his retirement he worked in Dispatch. With both experiences he brought a unique blending of experiences. Prior to being hired he was loaned over from the State with purpose of comparing the State and DPD dispatch and service delivery protocol. Also to make assessments on call prioritization and lack (or refusal) of providing service.”

VOD is further investigating the federal and state lawsuit records of all 43 officers promoted.

Craig’s choice of the LA and Cincinnati Police Departments as examples of “great departments” raised eyebrows among many anti-police brutality activists.

Cincinnati men killed by police prior to murder of Timothy Thomas in 2011 and subsequent rebellion.

Cincinnati men killed by police prior to murder of Timothy Thomas in 2011 and subsequent rebellion.

Craig was with the Cincinnati Police Department only a short time, but prior to his tenure, that department was under federal oversight for eight years beginning in 2001, after the police murder of Timothy Thomas and subsequent rebellion.

Rampart CRASHCraig spent 28 years with the LAPD, from 1981 to 2009, in command positions beginning in 1983. In June, 2013, the LAPD emerged from 13 years of federal oversight sparked by the 1996-99 Ramparts scandal, which exposed the division’s anti-gang unit C.R.A.S.H. (Community Resources against Street Hoodlums). (Click on James Craig resume with LAPD details for resume.)

C.R.A.S.H. cops were found to have murdered, maimed and framed individuals with abandon, while selling drugs and robbing banks themselves.

 

LAPD CRASH-style police arrest and search an alleged gang member in 2012, 13 years after the Ramparts scandal involving such tactics.

LAPD CRASH-style police arrest and search an alleged gang member in 2012, 13 years after the Ramparts scandal involving such tactics.

Craig served on the internal “Board of Inquiry” into Ramparts which essentially whitewashed and minimalized the incidents, before the U.S. Department of Justice intervened. Craig himself served in a C.R.A.S.H. unit in the Central District in 1983.

The Ramparts scandal followed the notorious Rodney King beating and subsequent rebellion of 1992, and was succeeded by vicious police attacks on protesters during the Democratic Convention of 2000. Prior to the King beating, and since the Los Angeles Coalition against Police Abuse, founded by a member of the Black Panthers, has fought rampant police brutality in the city, which continues unabated despite federal intervention.

In recent announcements, Craig appears to be repeating LAPD’s patterns and practices.

“I’m looking to bring back a gang suppression unit really quickly,” Craig told the Detroit News Aug. 8, despite the vicious experiences the LAPD had with its gang squad unit. “I’m not sure what form it’ll take right now, but we will have a unit in place soon.”

Detroit Police Gang Squad prior to its dissolution. National Geographic photo

Detroit Police Gang Squad prior to its dissolution. National Geographic photo

Craig said he does not intend to call the unit the “Gang Squad,” which was disbanded by Interim Police Chief Chester Logan in March after numerous complaints of brutality raised by citizens at Police Commission meetings and elsewhere.

Craig is working with the private Detroit Crime Commission, headed by Andrew Arena, who led the Detroit FBI office until recently on the gang issue.

Imam Luqman Abdullah, assassinated by FBI and Detroit and Dearborn police in 2009.

Imam Luqman Abdullah, assassinated by FBI and Detroit and Dearborn police in 2009.

During Arena’s tenure, the FBI, in concert with Dearborn and Detroit police, assassinated Imam Luqman Abdullah in a set-up at a Dearborn warehouse. Federal complaints filed earlier against Abdullah and members of his mosque, located in one of Detroit’s poorest Black neighborhoods, were based largely on hearsay evidence provided by “confidential informants.”

News reports say Arena claims there are at least 2500 “gang members” in Detroit.

“That’s not counting all the girlfriends, little brothers and hangers-on,” Arena told the Detroit Free Press. “When I was with the FBI, I used to work organized crime, and you’d have 150 Gambino family soldiers; but for every main guy, you’d have 10 wannabes, which compounds the problem. It’s the same thing with gangs.”

Andrew Arena, formerly head of Detroit FBI, now heads private Detroit Crime Commission.

Andrew Arena, formerly head of Detroit FBI, now heads private Detroit Crime Commission.

The Detroit Crime Commission (DCC) represents the consolidation and privatization of police forces in Detroit. They are able to get and give grants from the federal government and elsewhere, and administer their programs without governmental checks and balances. They are similar to Kroll International, which oversees the U.S. Department of Justice consent decree in Detroit, and also participates in U.S. wars across the world as a mercenary arm of the government. At least one of the DCC’s top officers has experience in the war on Iraq.

“The mission of the Detroit Crime Commission is to lessen the burdens of government and the citizens of the southeast Michigan area by facilitating the prevention, investigation and prosecution of crime,” the group says on its website.

An example of Detroit individuals working with Crime Commission has posted sign in his neighorhood comparing crack addicts to roaches, ignoring the fact that the crack epidemic across the U.S. has been sponsored by CIA-related forces.

An example of Detroit individuals working with Crime Commission has posted sign in his neighorhood comparing crack addicts to roaches, ignoring the fact that the crack epidemic across the U.S. has been sponsored by CIA-related forces.

“A special emphasis will be placed on criminal enterprises that prey upon the citizens of the metropolitan Detroit area. The Detroit Crime Commission will conduct research, assist in investigations, disseminate information to the public, and help coordinate crime reduction activities between business, the public, government and law enforcement. The Commission will also assist in law enforcement training, and make grants to governmental entities to fund law enforcement activities. The Detroit Crime Commission is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization as defined by the Internal Revenue Code.

Craig has other plans up his sleeve, including the introduction of tasers, which according to the website Electronic Village have caused the deaths of over 500 people in the U.S. since 2001.

Israel Hernandez-Llach, renowned 18-year-old artist from Colombia, tasered to death by Miami Beach police Aug. 8, 2013.

Israel Hernandez-Llach, renowned 18-year-old artist from Colombia, tasered to death by Miami Beach police Aug. 8, 2013.

The Detroit Free Press reported July 28, “In what emergency manager Kevyn Orr called just one significant example of improvements headed for the city’s basic public services, the Detroit Police Department will soon get 50 new squad cars, replacement bulletproof vests and two new devices Motor City cops have never had: electric stun guns and on-body video cameras.”

There are currently repeated protests happening in Miami Beach, Florida against the taser death of 18-year-old renowned local artist Israel Hernandez-Llach. (See link to stories below.)

LIST OF DETROIT POLICE PERSONNEL PROMOTED BY CHIEF JAMES CRAIG

Assistant Chief Eric Jones lawsuits:

EJones Clifton White complaint Melendez et al

EJones James Otis complaint

EJones Rayfield Ferrell complaint

EJones Reginald Durham complaint

Deputy Chief Vicki Yost info and lawsuits

Serial Killer Kop and other stories MC

Yost Plan B assault complaint

Yost Plan B settlement yost suspension

Yost CAID raid complaint

Yost McPhee Platinum complaint

Yost Andrew Huston All Stars bar complaint

Deputy Chief David LeValley info and complaints

Squires Melendez MC

Police Prosecution threatens to jail witnesses in Squires trial

LeValley complaint 2003

LeValley complaint Preston 1999

LeValley complaint 2002 Bates sting

SECOND DEPUTY CHIEF FLEMING

JFleming Bradford Erving complaint

JFleming Chenault consolidation

(List of  related stories coming)_________________________________________________________________
Police state 4

To print copy of flier, click on RALLY AGAINST DETROIT POLICE STATE.

Route of march from Frank Murpy Hall to new police headquarters, where Chief Craig has his office.

Route of march from Frank Murpy Hall to new police headquarters, where Chief Craig has his office.

Arnetta Grable and Herman Vallery, the parents of Lamar Grable, and others with the Original Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality passed out 600 of the fliers above at the J. Cole concert Oct. 10, 2013, since his video “Crooked Smile” is dedicated to Aiyana. There will be a VOD story forthcoming shortly regarding the killer cop allies Craig appointed.


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PROTEST ORR’S $350 MILLION LOAN “DEAL” TO PAY OFF BANKS WITH ASSETS, INCOME AND CASINO TAXES MON. OCT. 21 @ 1 PM CAYMC; WED. OCT 23 @ 8 AM FED BLDG.

Protest at CAYMC July 25, 2013.

Protest at CAYMC July 25, 2013.

PROTEST EMERGENCY MANAGER ORR’S $350 MILLION “DEAL” TO MORTGAGE CITY TAXES AND ASSETS TO PAY OFF THE BANKS

MONDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2013 — 1:00 PM

COLEMAN A. YOUNG MUNICIPAL BUILDING, WOODWARD AND JEFFERSON, DETROIT

UBS 1Banksters of AmericaAFTERWARDS WE WILL GO UP TO THE 2:00 PM CITY COUNCIL MEETING TO DEMAND COUNCIL REJECT THIS GIVEAWAY TO THE BANKS

DETROIT — Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr is seeking City Council approval of a $350 million short term loan. $250 million of the proceeds of the loan are to pay Bank of America and UBS termination fees on interest rate swaps. This is in addition to the over $250 million these banks have already netted on these swaps based on the city paying the banks hedging derivatives amounting to 6.3% interest on bonds where the actual interest on the bonds was only 0.5 to 1.0%.

Barclays, UBS, BOA all major players in global LIBOR interest-rate rigging scandal

Barclays, UBS, BOA all major players in global LIBOR interest-rate rigging scandal

This new $350 million loan, which must be paid back in no longer than 3 years, is secured by a first lien of the city’s casino tax dollars, a second lien on income tax revenues and a lien on all other city assets worth more than $10 million if the other liens are insufficient. The bank being paid to service the loan is Barclays, which admitted to fraudulent conduct in the LIBOR scandal. Incredibly, the short term loan is tied to the LIBOR index.

The Emergency Manager negotiated a deal with the banks to try keep the interest rate swaps out of the bankruptcy proceeding, instead of challenging the swaps as potentially fraudulent instruments within the bankruptcy and arguing that the swaps should be liquidated. In fact, both Bank of America and UBS, on top of being subject to numerous investigations and even criminal convictions for their conduct in the municipal bond market, are also two of the most notorious subprime mortgage lenders whose practices contributed to over 100,000 foreclosures in a 5 year period in Detroit.

Jones Day managing partner Stephen Brogan and his lackey Detroit EM Kevyn Orr.

Bank of America and UBS are both clients of Jones Day, the Emergency Manager’s “former” employer and the so-called lawyers for the emergency manager in the bankruptcy. No wonder that rather than go after these banks, he is trying to award them this sweetheart deal.

Demand City Council reject this deal. The banks owe the people of Detroit billions of dollars for the destruction they caused to our communities.

Contact Moratorium Now! Coalition and Detroiters Resisting Emergency Management — 313-671-3715

AND REMINDER — DEMONSTRATE WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2013, BEGINNING AT 8:00 AM, OUSIDE THE BANKRUTPCY ELIGIBILITY TRIAL AT 231 W. LAFAYETTE, DETROIT — STOP THE LOOTING OF DETROIT — DEFEND CITY SERVICES, ASSETS AND PENSIONS.

Bankruptcy protesters outside federal building Aug. 19, 2013.

Bankruptcy protesters outside federal building Aug. 19, 2013.

 


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PROTESTERS DEMAND ARREST OF FLA. COP IN TASER DEATH OF ISRAEL HERNANDEZ-LLACH, 18

On Oct. 8, protesters demand cop arrest in taser death of graffiti artist Israel Hernandez  in Miami Beach, Fla./Reuters photo
On Oct. 6, protesters demand cop arrest in taser death of graffiti artist Israel Hernandez in Miami Beach, Fla./Reuters photo

ReutersMIAMI BEACH, Fla. — More than 200 people marched through Miami Beach on Sunday, Oct. 6, clogging tourist-filled sidewalks to demand the arrest of a policeman who fired a stun gun at a graffiti artist who died in police custody on Aug. 6.

The protesters alleged that Officer Jorge Mercado used excessive force when he used a Taser on Israel Hernandez-Llach, 18, during an arrest attempt in August.

Israel Hernandez-Llach, 18, dead after being tased by Florida cop Jorge Mercado Aug. 6, 2013.

Israel Hernandez-Llach, 18, dead after being tased by Florida cop Jorge Mercado Aug. 6, 2013.

“He was sentenced like a prisoner when he goes before a firing squad,” Hernandez-Llach’s father, Israel Hernandez Bandera, said on the steps of Miami Beach City Hall.

Friends, family and supporters carried signs reading “Paint is temporary, death is forever” and chanted “No justice, no peace” in English and Spanish.

Hernandez-Llach was prolific graffiti artist nicknamed “Reefa,” and the march was led by the Justice for Reefa Committee and the American Community Council. Marchers asked that Mercado be fired and arrested and that the Miami Beach Police Department change its policy regarding use of stun guns.

Police discovered Colombian-born Hernandez-Llach spray-painting the wall of an abandoned McDonald’s early on the morning of Aug. 6. The teenager fled, evading police for several minutes before he was cornered and stunned with the Taser.

Father, Israel Hernandez Romera and sister, Offir Hernandez, of Israel Hernandez-Llach console each other after his death.

Father and sister of Israel Hernandez-Llach console each other after his death.

He died shortly afterward and friends who were with him said they heard and saw officers celebrating and high fiving while the young man’s body lay on the ground.

Medical examiners have yet to release a toxicology report or cause of death. Miami Beach Police have declined to comment pending an ongoing investigation.

The teenager’s father submitted a letter late last month to the U.S. Department of Justice and President Barack Obama alleging that police used excessive force and refused to provide him with information regarding the incident.

“I’m not an investigator, just a broken father who wants answers,” he wrote.

Teen's mother Jacqueline Llach, with flower to face, sobs at funeral.

Teen’s mother Jacqueline Llach, with flower to face, sobs at funeral.

He said his son’s body showed signs of mistreatment, including an injury to the forehead, after it was turned over to the family for the funeral.

“My biggest concern is was it due to the Taser or was it from blows (by police),” said his father.

Hernandez-Llach’s sister, Offir Hernandez, disputed speculation that her brother was on drugs at the time of the incident, but said that according to friends he had smoked marijuana that morning.

“He took care of himself,” she said. “He was very healthy and wouldn’t even drink sodas and ate salads and fish. He’d never put acid in his body.”

Hernandez-Llach’s family has also filed a lawsuit in Miami-Dade County Circuit Court against the Miami Beach Police Department and Mercado, seeking an undisclosed amount for damages and alleging the police used “unnecessary, excessive and unconstitutional force.”

The Colombian-born artist was slightly built and unarmed, and “officers had no reasonable basis to fear for their own safety or the safety of the public,” the lawsuit said.

Mercado was named in several prior complaints according to police Internal Affairs reports obtained by Reuters. He was disciplined for failing a drug test in 2011 but was exonerated in several other cases, including punching a man in the face during an off-duty fight in a men’s room in 2007.

Facebook:  www.Facebook.com/JusticeforIsraelHernandez

Protest for Israel Hernandez-Llach Oct. 8, 2013. Reuters photo

Protest for Israel Hernandez-Llach Oct. 8, 2013. Reuters photo

DEATH OF MIAMI BEACH TEEN REKINDLES DEBATE ON TASER SAFETY

By Kevin Gray of Reuters

October 14, 2013 

MIAMI — When police spotted Israel Hernandez Llach spray painting a shut-down McDonald’s in August, the Miami teenager decided to make a run for it.

Moments later the unarmed, 18-year-old graffiti artist was dead. He had been struck in the chest by a police stun gun.

Justice for Reefa art exhibitThe Florida Department of Law Enforcement is still investigating what caused the Aug. 6 death of the Colombian-born teenager. His death in Miami Beach, where police conduct has come under intense scrutiny in recent years, has triggered protests calling for a change in the way officers use the stun guns known as Tasers.

It has also reignited a debate about whether the electrical shock the Taser delivers can sometimes trigger a cardiac arrest when fired at the chest area.

“The fact that he was shot in the chest is something we are analyzing,” said Jose J. Rodriguez, a lawyer for Hernandez Llach’s family. “We’re working with the assumption for now that the Taser caused his death.”

Tasers, used by police officers in the United States and globally, have been the target of criticism from advocacy groups like Amnesty International and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which argue they can be lethal and have called for more stringent rules on their use. Continue reading


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BELLE ISLE: FLAGSHIP OF PRIVATIZATION: COUNCIL TO VOTE MON. OCT. 14 — 3 P.M.

Monica Patrick speaks at rally to save Belle Isle Sept. 22, 2012.

Monica Patrick speaks at rally to save Belle Isle Sept. 22, 2012.

By Jean Vortkamp 

October 12, 2013

Jean Vortkamp

Jean Vortkamp

DETROIT — I went to the City Council meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 8 about Belle Isle. No vote was cast. As I understand the vote is moved to Monday Oct. 14 at 3 p.m. I want to share what I understand from the meeting. The lease that is signed by SnydOrr is for 30 years with two 15 year extensions if the state wants it. A man from the city staff, I think a lawyer, said that the way the lease is worded is more like a sale. Um…yikes. 

I do not believe SnydOrr could possibly have the good of the island, Detroiters or other Michiganders at heart. So I have been looking into it. 

Roger Penske at Mackinac Policy Center conference. Penske profits greatly every year from the Grand Prix event on Belle Isle.

Roger Penske at Mackinac Policy Center conference. Penske profits greatly every year from the Grand Prix event on Belle Isle.

Most of what you see happening to Detroit is openly a part of the Mackinac Policy Center’s plans. These people plan long term and sneaky. Think low down, disrespectful, greedy, mentally unbalanced and bam! You get it. We take the everyday Detroit kindness for granted and think others are like us. This is a fatal error. 

A developer from Bingham Farms named Rodney Lockwood has a plan for The Commonwealth of Belle Isle. http://www.commonwealthofbelleisle.com/  http://www.mackinac.org/18159

He wants to make it like Puerto Rico (a commonwealth) but tax free for the super rich who pay a fee to live there on top of the cost of their condos built around the big fountain. Lockwood was the president of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and is on the Mackinac Policy Center board http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/mackinac-center-public-policy.  

Koch Brothers

Koch Brothers

The Mackinac Policy Center is funded by groups such as the Walmart clan – the Waltons, and the Koch borthers. So far all their plans for Detroit – privatizing the public lighting, privatizing garbage can be found on their website and are currently in action.

Asset sales  http://www.mackinac.org/3153

Water Dept. Privatization http://www.mackinac.org/3162

Public Lighting http://www.mackinac.org/4149 

Members of the Walton family who founded Wal-Mart, from left to right, Jim Walton, John T. Walton, Rob Walton, and mother Helen Walton. The Waltons are the richest family in the world, with the Koch Brothers second.

Members of the Walton family who founded Wal-Mart, from left to right, Jim Walton, John T. Walton, Rob Walton, and mother Helen Walton. The Waltons are the richest family in the world, with the Koch Brothers second.

Do you really think this could NOT be a part of that? They want Belle Isle to be their showpiece of privatization. Here is their piece “For whom the private belle tolls.” http://www.mackinac.org/3156. JACKALS!

That is a direct smack to Detroit and the US. This is not just about this park, this is about a symbolic destruction of publicly owned assets, of the dismantling of government by a group of far right wing psychopaths. 

Read the lease. http://www.freep.com/assets/freep/pdf/C4212687101.PDF  Detroit gets no money. No I do not know how they plan to shift the ownership, but I am sure they already have a plan. 

Rev. Edward Pinkney speaks at rally in Benton Harbor: Jean Klock Park is not for sale!

Rev. Edward Pinkney speaks at rally in Benton Harbor: Jean Klock Park is not for sale!

And keep your eyes on that conservancy which has 5 Detroiters out of 19 people on it. To sell Jean Klock Park in EM-run Benton Harbor, they shimmied the park to their Conservancy to dump it into private hands. http://www.belleisleconservancy.org /.

The Belle Isle Conservancy is governed by a 19-member board of directors, including five appointees from the City of Detroit: a seat appointed by the Mayor, one by the City Council, representatives from the Recreation Department and General Services Department, and the manager of Belle Isle in the Recreation Department.”                                                                                                                                                                      

Family picnics on Belle Isle.

Family picnics on Belle Isle.

Jean Klock Park beach on Lake Michigan.

Jean Klock Park beach on Lake Michigan.

 

Related articles and documents:

City Council special session Belle Isle 10 14 13

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/10/02/state-rapes-detroit-again-with-free-belle-isle-lease/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/26/boycott-detroits-belle-isle-grand-prix-and-its-bankster-sponsors/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/03/bing-will-hurt-detroit-kids-shutting-parks-to-retaliate-for-belle-isle-lease-failure/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/27/people-rise-up-against-lease-of-belle-isle-committee-votes-no-council-still-to-meet-mon-jan-28-2-pm-tues-jan-29-9-am/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/27/city-council-reject-the-unfunded-proposal-the-lease-of-belle-isle/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/26/belle-isle-is-black-land/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/23/bing-and-detroit-council-set-to-give-belle-isle-to-state-let-the-people-vote-council-meets-jan-24-1-p-m-jan-28-29/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/10/17/council-sabotages-oct-18-public-hearing-on-belle-isle-lease/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/10/17/city-council-members-favorable-to-revised-lease-sept-25/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/27/peoples-rally-hands-off-belle-isle-council-hearing-thurs-oct-4-1-pm/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/18/councilwoman-watson-hears-citizens-on-belle-isle-rally-at-belle-isle-casino-sat-sept-22-12-noon-council-hearing-tues-sept-25-1-pm/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/15/90-yr-belle-isle-lease-entry-fees-go-to-state-fedstate-cops-to-patrol-council-hearing-mon-sept/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/14/belle-isle-in-detroit-is-our-last-dance/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/08/05/save-belle-isle-save-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/30/occupy-belle-isle-stop-the-takeover-of-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/30/belle-isle-belongs-to-us-2/


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CONSTITUTIONAL, CIVIL, HUMAN RIGHTS BEFORE DETROIT BANKRUPTCY, GROUPS SAY; PROTEST TUES. OCT. 15 10 AM

Some of the hundreds who marched in downtown Detroit with the International People's Assembly Oct. 5 and 6. Instead of bankruptcy proceedings, they demand cancellation of Detroit's debt.

Some of the hundreds who marched in downtown Detroit with the International People’s Assembly Oct. 5 and 6. Instead of bankruptcy proceedings, they demand cancellation of Detroit’s debt.

Judge Rhodes denies Retirees Committee motion for move to higher court

Arguments held on NAACP motion Oct. 2; no ruling yet

Unions, local officials, pastors  filed Sept. 23, hearing not yet scheduled

Next protest against bankruptcy: Tues. Oct 15, 10 a.m. 321 W. Lafayette, downtown Detroit federal court 

By Diane Bukowski 

October 9, 2013 

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes leads forum on EM's and Chapter 9 bankruptcy Oct. 10, 2012.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes leads forum on EM’s and Chapter 9 bankruptcy Oct. 10, 2012.

DETROIT – Three major coalitions representing Detroit and Michigan residents want U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven W. Rhodes to allow questions including the constitutionality of Public 436, the state’s “Emergency Manager” law, the right to vote, and civil rights issues to be heard in U.S. District Court, prior to resolution of the Detroit bankruptcy case.  

They are the Official Retirees Committee (joined by the Detroit Retired City Employees and Retired Detroit Police and Fire Fighters Association), the NAACP et al, and Phillips et al.  

Glen Ford“Rhodes will decide whether the imposition of an unelected dictatorship in Detroit represents a ‘Constitutional crisis’ that should be addressed before the process of cutting pensions and selling off assets should begin,” Black Agenda Report executive editor Glen Ford said in a recent commentary. “Certainly, the cancellation of white people’s voting rights, to be followed by confiscation of their personal and collective property, would merit Constitutional scrutiny on a priority basis. But, for African Americans, it is an open question.” 

Under PA 436, over 51 percent of Michigan’s African-Americans now have no right to vote for elected officials with real power to represent them. Nine majority-Black cities and school districts have emergency managers appointed by Gov. Rick Snyder, with tiny Royal Oak Township outside Detroit about to face the same fate. Snyder and State Treasurer Andy Dillon recently granted a reprieve to the East Detroit Public School district, based in Eastpointe, which has a 75 percent white population. 

U>S>

U.S. District Court Judge George Caram Steeh

The last two groups have cases challenging the constitutionality of PA 436 pending in U.S. District Court Judge George Caram Steeh’s courtroom, instituted well before Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr/Jones Day filed for bankruptcy. Their cases are currently administratively stayed pending further notice, based on Rhodes’ order barring legal action against state as well as city officials. Known as the “extended stay,” it is taken virtually verbatim from Orr/Jones Day’s original motion. 

Rhodes rules against his own Retirees’ Committee

Dd

Protest at Orr’s “public meeting” at Wayne State University June 10, 2013.

On Sept. 26, Judge Rhodes ruled against the Retirees Committee strongly worded motion to “withdraw the reference.” The Committee said, “. . . if Chapter 9 is as broad as the Emergency Manager [Kevyn Orr] contends, then Chapter 9 is unconstitutional and the City cannot be a debtor in Chapter 9.” 

Ironically, the Committee was set up by Rhodes’ order at Orr’s request. Orr boasted he would do so to limit the role of the city’s elected pension fund trustees in defending their members. 

Kevyn Orr at WSU meeting June 10, 2013.

Kevyn Orr at WSU meeting June 10, 2013.

Rhodes said in his ruling, “Specifically, the Court finds that: 1. The Committee is not likely to succeed on the merits of its motion to withdraw the reference. 2. The Committee will not suffer any harm, let alone irreparable harm, if the stay is denied. 3. The City will suffer substantial harm if the stay is granted. 4. The public interest would not be served by granting the stay.” 

In his commentary, Ford noted, “Bankruptcy Judge Rhodes’ agenda has so far been in sync with bankruptcy lawyer Orr’s strategy: to keep the battle for Detroit in the realm of corporate law rather than the arena of civil, human and Constitutional rights.” 

Attorneys for the Retirees Committee have not yet responded to an Oct. 4 email regarding whether they plan to appeal Rhodes’ order  to the District Court or other avenue. 

(See link below for VOD story on Official Retirees Committee filings.) 

NAACP motion to allow case challenging PA 436 to go forward heard Oct. 2

Attorneys Nabih Ayad and Melvin Hollowell (at podium) with plaintiffs announce lawsuit against PA 436 May 13, 2013.

Attorneys Nabih Ayad and Melvin Hollowell (at podium) with plaintiffs announce lawsuit against PA 436 May 13, 2013.

On Oct. 2, attorneys Melvin Butch Hollowell and Nabih Ayad argued that the separate NAACP lawsuit in Steeh’s court must be allowed to proceed.  Plaintiffs in that case, filed in May, 2013, are the Detroit Branch of the NAACP, the Michigan State Conference of the NAACP, Donnell R. White, Thomas Stallworth III,  Rashida Tlaib, and Maureen Taylor. Defendants are Snyder, State Treasurer Andy Dillon, and Secretary of State Ruth Johnson. 

Rhodes’ demeanor during the attorneys’ arguments was not friendly. 

“The substance of our case is not about debtor-creditor issues, but about voter law,” Hollowell, the Michigan NAACP’s in-house counsel, said. “PA 436 creates two classes of voters, a superior class of voters with elected officials with full power and duties, and an inferior class of voters. It violates the 7th and 14th Amendments and therefore does fundamental and irreparable harm. Now, since the law took effect, 50.4 percent of all Michigan’s African-Americans are under emergency managers vs. 1.3 percent of whites.” 

Prop 1 signHollowell noted further that Public Act 4, the predecessor to PA 436, was rejected by 53 percent of voters across the state in a referendum, but then replaced during a lame duck session of the Michigan legislature. He argued that Rhodes does not have the authority to prevent a case which involves the entire NAACP membership across the state from going forward. 

Rhodes told Ayad during his presentation that people in EM-controlled constituencies still have the right to vote. 

“That is an insult to our intelligence,” Ayad replied. “I can vote for a bird, but that doesn’t mean that the bird can do anything. Inherent in every vote is that I want you to represent me as a constituent of this region of the state. If your power is no good, that is no real vote.” 

Proteteste

Protesters at State Bldg. in Detroit June 28,2013; their action forced state supreme court to put PA 4 on ballot.

Rhodes countered,  “What about the state’s argument that the people who made the decision to substitute the emergency manager for the Mayor and the City Council were elected? . . . Is there a constitutional right to have legislators only enact laws that people agree with? . . . . The fact that people supported or didn’t support PA 436 is irrelevant.” 

Bill-of-Rights-scrollAyad replied, “They shoved this thing down our throat. The state Supreme Court ruled to put it on the ballot. The people, the majority of whom were not African-Americans, voted that they don’t want PA 436. The people do have the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the fundamental right to vote. That trumps everything else. . . .What is a democratic society without the ability to vote—what is more fundamental?” 

Hollowell and Ayad said they have not filed an objection to bankruptcy eligibility because their case in Steeh’s court is solely about voting rights. They said they would stipulate that they would not file an eligibility objection if Rhodes grants their request for relief, noting that the bankruptcy case could still proceed under Detroit’s elected officials if PA 436 is ruled unconstitutional. 

Rhodes has not yet ruled on their motion and arguments. 

Phillips et. al. motion still awaiting hearing

Still awaiting a hearing is a motion for relief from the extended stay by parties in the Phillips et al case, filed in U.S. District Court March 27, 2013. Lead plaintiffs are Michigan AFSCME Council 25 staff representative Catherine Phillips and Joseph Valenti of the Teamsters, who are co-chief negotiators with the Coalition of Unions of the City of Detroit. 

Slavemaster Rick Snyder goes after Michigan's Black-majority cities.

Slavemaster Rick Snyder goes after Michigan’s Black-majority cities.

Also included are Russ Bellant, President of the Detroit Library Commission; Tawanna Simpson, Lamar Lemmons, and Elena Herrada, Detroit Public Schools Board Members; Donald Watkins and Kermit Williams, Pontiac City Council Members, Duane Seats, Dennis Knowles, Juanita Henry, and Mary Alice Adams, Benton Harbor Commissioners, William “Scott” Kincaid, Flint City Council President, and pastors representing Rainbow PUSH, the National Action Network, and the Council of Baptist Pastors. 

Their motion and brief was filed in Rhodes’ court Sept. 23, 2013 by local attorneys William Goodman, Julie Hurwitz, Herbert Sanders, John Philo, Richard Mack, Cynthia Heenan, and Hugh Davis. Darius Chaney and Gita Schwartz from the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York City are also included. 

The brief says that even Orr/Jones Day did not ask for such a broad stay extension in the debtor’s motion. 

Edith Lee Payne, a plaintiff in earlier lawsuit against PA4, speaks at press conference announcing filing. That suit was stymied when Gov. Snyder diverted it to the Michigan Supreme Court, which never heard it.

Edith Lee Payne, a plaintiff in earlier lawsuit against PA4, speaks at press conference announcing filing. That suit was stymied when Gov. Snyder diverted it to the Michigan Supreme Court, which never heard it.

“In its current form and breadth, the Extended Stay Order provides that ‘the Chapter 9 stay hereby is extended to apply in all respects (to the extent not otherwise applicable) to the State Entities. . . .’ the Extended Stay Order therefore not only fails to limit its application in the way requested by Debtor, but instead encourages the broadest possible reading, as evidenced by the words of United States District Court, Honorable George Steeh in his Order Regarding Notice of Pendency of Bankruptcy Case and Application of the Automatic Stay . . .staying Petitioners’ declaratory/injunctive relief civil rights actionthat is the subject of this Motion:

“Although it is not apparent that any interests of the City of Detroit bankruptcy proceedings are implicated in the case, the plain language of the stay order would apply to this lawsuit. In accordance with the broadly worded Extension Order issued by the bankruptcy court, this court will abide by the stay unless and until such time as an order issues lifting or modifying the stay to permit the captioned matter to proceed.” (Emphasis added in Phillips brief).

The Phillips attorneys argue that Rhodes “extended stay” order violates numerous provisions of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

“But there is nothing in the Code that provides for staying actions against non-debtor third parties such as the State defendants in the Phillips case,” they say. “Indeed . . . the Sixth Circuit has noted that ‘said provision facially stays proceedings ‘against the debtor’ and fails to intimate, even tangentially, that the stay could be interpreted as including any defendant other than the debtor.’”

kkk-act-of-1871-and-hearings-source

They cite profound violations of the U.S. Constitution with regard to due process and equal protection guaranteed in the Fourteenth Amendment, implicit in Rhodes’ extended stay.  They go back to the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871, codified in 1874, intended to cement provisions of the Fourteenth Amendment, then cite the Civil Rights Act of 1983.

“The Supreme Court has broadly described the primary purpose of § 1983 as follows:

‘As a result of the new structure of law that emerged in the post-Civil War era—and especially of the Fourteenth Amendment, which was its centerpiece—the role of the Federal Government as the guarantor of basic federal rights against state power was clearly established. Section 1983 opened the federal courts to private citizens, offering a uniquely federal remedy against incursions under the claimed authority of state law upon rights secured by the Constitution and laws of the Nation . . .

fourteenth_amendment

“The very purpose of section 1983 was to interpose the federal courts between the States and the people, as guardians of the people’s federal rights—to protect the people from unconstitutional action under color of state law . . . Throughout our nation’s history, therefore, the right of our citizens to enforce their rights under the U.S. Constitution in a United States District Court has been a bulwark of democratic principles. Taking away that right should not be taken lightly.”

Further protests planned, beginning Oct 15

The Michigan chapter of the National Action Network has announced a broad protest outside the U.S. Federal Court building at 321 W. Lafayette, where the bankruptcy case is being heard, for Tues. Oct. 15, 2013. Further actions, including during the bankruptcy eligibility trial set to begin Wed. Oct. 23, were planned during the International People’s Assembly against the Banks and Against Austerity, held in downtown Detroit on Oct. 5-6. Story is forthcoming on that.

NAN-bankruptcy-protest-10-15-13

Related Documents:

NAACP-EM-436-Complaint-

PA 436 lawsuit Phillips et al

DB Phillips et al motion for relief from order extension

Phillips et al stay brief

Related articles: 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/10/09/detroit-as-bantustan-wall-streets-black-goons/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/10/09/detroit-as-bantustan-wall-streets-black-goons/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/23/detroit-retirees-residents-committee-blast-bankruptcy-filing-at-court-hearings/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/17/official-retirees-committee-in-detroit-bankruptcy-blasts-em-orr-gov-snyder-asks-for-stay-pending-higher-court-ruling-what-will-judge-rhodes-do-sept-19/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/11/dennis-archer-former-consultant-to-detroit-lender-ubs-ag-meets-with-top-obama-aides-execs/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/11/detroit-billionaires-get-arena-help-as-bankrupt-city-suffers/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/09/illitch-plans-881-million-red-wings-stadium-project-with-public-funds-despite-detroit-bankruptcy-filing/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/09/detroit-bankruptcy-filing-slows-michigan-bond-sales-84-high-interest-rates-cited/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/27/secrecy-of-detroit-bankruptcy-docs-release-of-casino-taxes-swaps-retirees-committee-at-issue/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/20/detroit-bankruptcy-objections-raise-possible-bank-crimes-related-to-poc-debt-and-casino-tax-deal-hundreds-protest-banks-in-downtown-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/20/detroit-schools-set-to-pay-hefty-rates-on-92-million-bond-due-to-city-bankruptcy-filing/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/16/state-stays-lawsuits-vs-em-law-pa-436-citing-detroit-chapter-9-bankruptcy-filing/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/16/no-banker-left-behind-in-detroit-bankruptcy-case/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/14/swaps-probe-finds-banks-including-detroit-creditors-rigged-rate-at-expense-of-retirees/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/12/rush-to-detroit-bankruptcy-judge-sides-with-em-orr-aug-2-approves-retirees-committee-prematurely-sets-breakneck-deadlines/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/12/detroits-pension-funds-within-accepted-standards-experts-say-contradicting-em-orr/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/07/detroits-woes-solutions-dont-stop-at-city-limits/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/31/orr-wants-detroit-bankruptcy-judge-to-replace-elected-pension-boards-with-appointed-retirees-committee-hearing-aug-2-10-a-m-protest-9-am/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/29/war-retirees-workers-residents-v-wall-street-in-detroit-bankruptcy-judge-throws-out-state-claims/

AND MORE—Just put “bankruptcy” in VOD search engine.

 

 


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DETROIT AS BANTUSTAN: WALL STREET’S BLACK GOONS

Protesters outside bankruptcy court Aug. 2, 2013

Protesters outside bankruptcy court Aug. 2, 2013

By BAR executive editor Glen Ford 

September 25, 2013

BAR logo 2“The exercise of arbitrary power allows the ‘Stephens’ of the Black Misleadership Class to feel more a part of the oligarchy they serve.”

Judge Rhodes will decide whether the imposition of an unelected dictatorship in Detroit represents a ‘Constitutional crisis’ or not.”

Django-Unchained-208x300Detroit’s Emergency Financial Manager (EFM) dictatorship runs the city the way Samuel L. Jackson’s “Stephen” character ran the white man’s plantation in Django. Without warning, and just to let the niggras know who’s boss, Chief Compliance Officer Gary Brown shut off the electricity to much of the public infrastructure in the downtown area on Friday, September 11th – of all days! – stranding numerous frightened people in elevators in 90-degree-plus heat, resulting in a least one injury. Asked why he had given no warning to the thousands affected before pulling the switch, Brown smiled like a bad cop who had just beat the hell out of a street kid (he’s a former deputy chief of police). 

“We did start calling our customers prior to taking them down and asking them to turn off air conditioners, but they weren’t responding as fast as we would like them to so we had to send them a strong message by turning the power off.” Who’s The Man? Me and my boss are The Man! 

Gary Brown, appointed Detroit COO by unelected EM Kevyn Orr.

Gary Brown, appointed Detroit COO by unelected EM Kevyn Orr.

Brown handles the day-to-day overseer duties for EFM Kevyn Orr, the bankruptcy lawyer whose mission is to strip Detroit of its assets and privatize its services for the benefit of Wall Street banks. The power shut-off was a voluntary initiative by Brown in response to problems with the power grid on an unseasonably warm day. Brown’s gratuitous display of disregard for the people and the public servants of the Black metropolis served two purposes: 1) It dramatized deficiencies in the city’s infrastructure at a time when a judge is deciding whether Detroit should be allowed to handle its own affairs, thus enhancing the prospects for privatization of services, and 2) the exercise of arbitrary power allows the “Stephens” of the Black Misleadership Class (he’s also a former City Council president pro-tem) to feel more a part of the oligarchy they are pleased to serve. 

The appointed Bantustan administrators behave as they do because their antics are sanctioned by White Power.” 

Detroit EM Kevyn Orr, with spokesman Bill Nowling, from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder's office, at his left.

Detroit EM Kevyn Orr, with spokesman Bill Nowling, from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder’s office, at his left. Freep photo: Mandi Wright

Under the New American Apartheid, Detroit has been reduced to a South Africa-style Bantustan, administered by hired Black goons in the interests of multinational capital. Just as American slavery cannot be fully comprehended without an understanding of the roles played by the “Stephens,” so the evisceration of “home rule” in Black urban America requires the active collaboration of the Orrs and Browns. In the struggle for self-determination, they are the enemies within who eagerly throw themselves into the buffer zone between the people and their tormentors – for a fee, and the privilege of lording it over the Bantustan. (Brown resigned from his $75,000 a year City Council position to sign on as Orr’s lieutenant for $225,000 – and, of course, an inside track in the corporate looting that will accompany Detroit’s fiscal dissolution.) 

Bantustans of South Africa

Bantustans of South Africa under apartheid.

The appointed Bantustan administrators behave as they do because their antics are sanctioned by White Power – not just by the predators of Wall Street, who are keenly aware that racism allows them to use Detroit as the model for the next stage of “austerity” mega-thefts, but by white society in general. How else to explain why Boston’s “wildly popular” five-term mayor, Tom Menino, could casually declare that, if he were running Detroit, he’d “blow up the place and start all over.” You could be seized by Homeland Security for mouthing the words “blow up” in connection with any mostly white city in America, but 85 percent Black Detroit is fair game. The worst elements among the strivers of Black America know exactly how to please Bwana. (That’s also why President Obama cannot help but insult Black people, even at the March on Washington anniversary; it’s for white people’s consumption.) 

Let My People Go, Please Massa 

Judge Steven Rhodes with Ponzi Scheme book.

Judge Steven Rhodes with Ponzi Scheme book.

It was like a scene from a bygone world. Nearly 50 citizens lined up to appeal to Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes to safeguard their democratic and paid-for pension rights. Rhodes will decide whether the imposition of an unelected dictatorship in Detroit represents a “Constitutional crisis” that should be addressed before the process of cutting pensions and selling off assets should begin. Certainly, the cancellation of white people’s voting rights, to be followed by confiscation of their personal and collective property, would merit Constitutional scrutiny on a priority basis. But, for African Americans, it is an open question.

Detroit resident Bill Hickey objected to bankruptcy at hearing.

Detroit resident Bill Hickey objected to bankruptcy at hearing.

“This [Emergency Financial Manager] law has been applied in cities and school districts where the majority population is African American, and I find this to be racist in both its aims, and its application,” Bill Hickey, a 50-year resident of the city, told the judge. Indeed, more than half of Michigan’s Black population has been disenfranchised, a shocking state of affairs that is generally treated as a non-event – or, maybe, in the popular consciousness, it is the world as it should be. 

Judge Rhodes responded sympathetically to the pleas of pensioners who feared destitution in their old age. However, people’s advocates worry that Rhodes will reason that the best way to allay pensioners’ anxieties is to forge ahead with bankruptcy – in effect, using one set of victims’ fears as an excuse to crush the rights of all Detroiters. Rhodes sees himself as a practitioner of “compassionate” bankruptcy – much like “humanitarian” military intervention. 

The cancellation of white people’s voting rights would merit Constitutional scrutiny on a priority basis.”

Malcolm X, also known as "Detroit Red:" the ballot or the bullet

Malcolm X, also known as “Detroit Red”

On October 2, he’ll hold a hearing on the NAACP’s bid to proceed with its challenge to the Constitutionality of Wall Street’s rule-by-proxy through Kevyn Orr. The thrust of Rhodes’ decisions to date has been to smack down, as disruptive, any legal obstacle in the sprint to bankruptcy – full steam ahead. 

Bankruptcy Judge Rhodes’ agenda has so far been in sync with bankruptcy lawyer Orr’s strategy: to keep the battle for Detroit in the realm of corporate law rather than the arena of civil, human and Constitutional rights

Last November, a large majority of Detroiters and 53 percent of Michigan voters rejected the Emergency Manager legislation, but Republican governor Rick Snyder rammed it through the legislature, anyway. A new survey shows 75 percent of Detroit residents don’t want any cuts in public employee’s pensions, and 78 percent oppose selling any of the precious works at the Detroit Institute of Art. The people of Detroit did not choose bankruptcy – which is an option, not a mandate – and cannot legally be imposed against the city’s will unless the voters have been disenfranchised to more effectively enshrine the rule of capital. 

A brother who they used to call Detroit “Red” coined a formula for this predicament: The ballot or the bullet. The applicability of his words in the current situation shows that we have regressed further than we have overcome. 

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.


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U.S. COMMANDOS INVADE SOMALIA AND LIBYA; KENYA SHOPPING MALL ATTACK RELATED TO U.S. – KENYAN OCCUPATION OF SOMALIA

U.S. Launches Raids In Somalia And Libya

By ABDI GULED and JASON STRAZIUSO and KIMBERLY DOZIER

OCTOBER 5, 2013

This image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi. Gunmen in a three-car convoy seized Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, known by his alias Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaeda leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the U.S. for more than a decade outside his house Saturday in the Libyan capital, his relatives said. (AP Photo/FBI)

This image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi. Gunmen in a three-car convoy seized Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, known by his alias Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaeda leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the U.S. for more than a decade outside his house Saturday in the Libyan capital, his relatives said. (AP Photo/FBI)

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — In a stealthy seaside assault in Somalia and in a raid in Libya’s capital, U.S. special forces on Saturday struck out against Islamic extremists who have carried out terrorist attacks in East Africa, snatching a Libyan al-Qaida leader allegedly involved in the bombings of U.S. embassies 15 years ago but aborting a mission to capture a terrorist suspect linked to last month’s Nairobi shopping mall attack after a fierce firefight.

A U.S. Navy SEAL team swam ashore near a town in southern Somalia before militants of the al-Qaida-linked terrorist group al-Shabab rose for dawn prayers, U.S. and Somali officials told The Associated Press. The raid on a house in the town of Barawe targeted a specific al-Qaida suspect related to the mall attack, but the operation did not get its target, one current and one former U.S. military official told AP.

Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the raid publicly.

In Washington, Pentagon spokesman George Little confirmed that U.S. military personnel had been involved in a counterterrorism operation against a known al-Shabab terrorist in Somalia, but did not provide details.

U.S. officials said there were no U.S. casualties in either the Somali or Libyan operation.

seal-team-62-1024x768

Navy Seals encountered “heavier resistance than expected” and aborted mission.

The Somali raid was carried out by members of SEAL Team Six, the same unit that killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in his Pakistan hideout in 2011, another senior U.S. military official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to speak publicly.

But this time, SEAL Team Six members encountered fiercer resistance than expected so after a 15-20 minute firefight, the unit leader decided to abort the mission and they swam away, the official said. SEAL Team Six has responsibility for counterterrorism activities in the Horn of Africa.

Delta Force team also assassinated Osama Bin Laden and dumped his body at sea.

Delta Force team also assassinated Osama Bin Laden and dumped his body at sea.

 Within hours of the Somalia attack, the U.S. Army’s Delta Force carried out a raid in Libya’s capital, Tripoli, to seize a Libyan al-Qaida leader wanted for the 1998 bombings of the U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania that killed more than 220 people, the military official said. Delta Force carries out counterterrorism operations in North Africa.

The Pentagon identified the captured al-Qaida leader as Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, known by his alias Anas al-Libi, who has been on the FBI’s most wanted terrorists list since it was introduced shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. 

Al-Libi “is currently lawfully detained by the U.S. military in a secure location outside of Libya,” Pentagon spokesman Little said.

Somalians downed U.S. Blackhawk helicopters during previous invasion of Libya in 1993 "Black Hawk Down" invasion. Eighteen U.S. soliders were killed, and the bodies of several were dragged through the streets of Mogadishu.

Somalians downed U.S. Blackhawk helicopters during previous invasion of Libya in 1993 “Black Hawk Down” invasion. Eighteen U.S. soliders were killed, and the bodies of several were dragged through the streets of Mogadishu.

Saturday’s raid in Somalia occurred 20 years after the famous “Black Hawk Down” battle in Mogadishu in which a mission to capture Somali warlords in the capital went awry after militiamen shot down two U.S. helicopters. Eighteen 18 U.S. soldiers were killed in the battle, and it marked the beginning of the end of that U.S. military mission to bring stability to the Horn of Africa nation. Since then, U.S. military intervention has been limited to missile attacks and lightning operations by special forces.

A resident of Barawe — a seaside town 240 kilometers (150 miles) south of Mogadishu — said by telephone that heavy gunfire woke up residents before dawn prayers.

Al Shabaab fighter attends rally in Somalia.

Al Shabaab fighter attends rally in Somalia.

The U.S. forces attacked a two-story beachside house in Barawe where foreign fighters lived, battling their way inside, said an al-Shabab fighter who gave his name as Abu Mohamed and who said he had visited the scene. Al-Shabab has a formal alliance with al-Qaida, and hundreds of men from the U.S., Britain and Middle Eastern countries fight alongside Somali members of al-Shabab.

A separate U.S. official described the action in Barawe as a capture operation against a high-value target. The official said U.S. forces engaged al-Shabab militants and sought to avoid civilian casualties. The U.S. forces disengaged after inflicting some casualties on fighters, said the official, who was not authorized to speak by name and insisted on anonymity.

Map of Somalia on the African continent.

Map of Somalia on the African continent.

The leader of al-Shabab, Mukhtar Abu Zubeyr, also known as Ahmed Godane, claimed responsibility for the attack on the upscale mall in Nairobi, Kenya, a four-day terrorist siege that began on Sept. 21 and killed at least 67 people. A Somali intelligence official said the al-Shabab leader was the target of Saturday’s raid.

An al-Shabab official, Sheikh Abdiaziz Abu Musab, said in an audio message that the raid failed to achieve its goals.

Al-Shabab and al-Qaida have flourished in Somalia for years. Some of the plotters of the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania hid out there.

Barawe has seen Navy SEALs before. In September 2009 a daylight commando raid in Barawe killed six people, including Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, one of the most-wanted al-Qaida operatives in the region and an alleged plotter in the 1998 embassy bombings.

Libya map 2The Libyan al-Qaida leader also wanted for the bombings, al-Libi, is believed to have returned to Libya during the 2011 civil war that led to the ouster and killing of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.

His brother, Nabih, said al-Libi was parking outside his house early Saturday after dawn prayers when a convoy of three vehicles encircled his car. Armed gunmen smashed the car’s window and seized al-Libi’s gun before grabbing him and taking him away. The brother said al-Libi’s wife saw the kidnapping from her window and described the abductors as foreign-looking armed “commandos.”

Al-Libi, who was believed to be a computer specialist for al-Qaida, is on the FBI’s most-wanted list with a $5 million bounty on his head. He was indicted by a federal court in the Southern District of New York, for his alleged role in the bombings of the U.S. Embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya, on August 7, 1998.

Libyan officials did not return calls seeking comment on al-Libi’s abduction.

U.S. equipment left behind after aborted Somalia raid.

U.S. equipment left behind after aborted Somalia raid.

In Somalia, a resident of Barawe who gave his name as Mohamed Bile said militants closed down the town in the hours after the assault, and that all traffic and movements have been restricted. Militants were carrying out house-to-house searches, likely to find evidence that a spy had given intelligence to a foreign power used to launch the attack, he said.

“We woke up to find al-Shabab fighters had sealed off the area and their hospital is also inaccessible,” Bile told The Associated Press by phone. “The town is in a tense mood.”

Al-Shabab later posted pictures on the Internet of what it said was U.S. military gear left behind in the raid. Two former U.S. military officers identified the gear as the kind U.S. troops carry. Pictures showed items including bullets, an ammunition magazine, a military GPS device and a smoke and flash-bang grenade used to clear rooms. The officials could not confirm if those items had come from the raid.

Kenya's Westgate mall.

Kenya’s Westgate mall.

In Kenya, military spokesman Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir on Saturday gave the names of four fighters implicated in the Westgate Mall attack as Abu Baara al-Sudani, Omar Nabhan, Khattab al-Kene and Umayr, names that were first broadcast by a local Kenyan television station.

Matt Bryden, the former head of the U.N. Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea, said via email that al-Kene and Umayr are known members of al-Hijra, the Kenyan arm of al-Shabab. He added that Nabhan may be a relative of Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, the target of the 2009 Navy SEALs raid in Barawe.

The identities of the four men from the mall attack came as a Nairobi station obtained and broadcast the closed circuit television footage from Westgate. The footage shows four attackers calmly walking through a storeroom inside the complex, holding machine guns. One of the men’s pant legs appears to be stained with blood, though he is not limping. It is unclear if the blood is his, or that of his victims’.

Government statements shortly after the four-day siege began on Sept. 21 indicated between 10 to 15 attackers were involved, but indications since then are that fewer attackers took part, though the footage may not show all of the assailants

Straziuso reported from Nairobi, Kenya, and Dozier from Charlotte, North Carolina. Associated Press writers Rukmini Callimachi in Nairobi and Matthew Lee in Bali, Indonesia, also contributed to this report.

CBS/AP/ October 6, 2013, 2:03 PM

 

Attack on Kenya’s mall related to U.S.-backed invasion of Somalia

workers world logoBy Abayomi Azikiwe September 24, 2013

Sept. 23 — Billows of smoke emanated from the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya, on the third day of a standoff among Kenyan, Israeli and U.S. FBI forces against members of the Al-Shabaab Islamic resistance movement based in Somalia, which had seized the mall. Reports indicated that at least 62 people have been killed since the incident began on Sept. 21, most of them civilian mall shoppers..

"Kenya Defense Forces" have occupied southern Somalia.

“Kenya Defense Forces” have occupied southern Somalia.

Many news sources reported that members of Al-Shabaab said their operation was in response to the ongoing occupation by approximately 2,500 Kenyan Defense Forces troops of southern Somalia.

The attack on the Westgate Mall is being portrayed by the corporate and pro-imperialist media in the U.S. and Europe as a new episode in the so-called “war on terrorism.” But there has been little news with background about the incident or of the significant role of U.S. imperialism in creating instability in the region.

U.S. Pres. Barack Obama with Kenyan President

U.S. Pres. Barack Obama with Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki

Kenya, which shares a border with Somalia, sent its army into the troubled Horn of Africa state in October 2011 with U.S. blessing. President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga, close allies of the U.S. administration, led the Kenyan government then.

KDF forces bombed the strategic port city at Kismayo in the early phase of the operation. The city was a financial base for Al-Shabaab, which controlled lucrative charcoal exports from the country.

Since the intervention of Kenya into Somalia, resistance has continued in the country’s south and has been escalating outside Kismayo, where Al-Shabaab fighters battle KDF occupation troops daily.

U.S. role in the Somalia crisis

U.S. imperialism has attempted to influence politics in Somalia for decades. In the late 1970s, the Jimmy Carter administration armed Somalian leader Mohamed Siad Barre against revolutionary Ethiopia, then in alliance with the Soviet Union and Cuba.

As a result Somalia was plunged into a disastrous war with Ethiopia over the Ogaden region. Somalia’s defeat began a decade-long political crisis. By early 1991, the Barre regime had collapsed, leaving a vast security and political vacuum. U.S. troops went into Somalia in a phony “humanitarian” intervention until military casualties caused them to leave in 1994.

Mengistu Haile Mariam, President of People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia from 1987-91, driven out of power by U.S. and Somalia.

Mengistu Haile Mariam, President of People’s Democratic Republic of Ethiopia from 1987-91, driven out of power by U.S. and Somalia.

After Ethiopia’s socialist-oriented government was driven out in 1991, Washington used its new clients in that country to gain more influence in the region. The George W. Bush administration encouraged Ethiopia to invade Somalia in 2006 in order to displace the Islamic Courts Union government that had begun to consolidate its influence and stabilize the country.

With Somalia facing a grave famine, Ethiopian military forces withdrew in early 2009 and sections of the Islamic Courts were won over to a Washington-backed Transitional Federal Government. A youth wing of the Islamic Courts arose known as Al-Shabaab (Youth) and began to wage war against the TFG, demanding that all foreign forces be withdrawn from Somalia.

Beginning in 2007, the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) was formed. The bulk of its forces were from the U.S.-allied Ugandan government. U.S. and British bombing operations have been carried out against alleged Al-Shabaab and Al-Qaeda bases in Somalia. The country is also a base of operations for U.S. drone programs, and Mogadishu is home to a major CIA field station.

AMISON forces.

AMISON forces.

The combined AMISOM forces, now consisting of some 17,500 troops, receive training and funding from Washington.

The U.S.’s Somalia operation is part and parcel of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM), which was formally started in 2008 under Bush but has been strengthened and enhanced by the Obama administration.

Kenya’s intervention in southern Somalia in October 2011 had been planned for at least two years. The release of WikiLeak’s cables in 2010 documented the plans and the role of the State Department.

In addition to U.S. involvement in Somalia and Kenya, the state of Israel has close ties with the government in Nairobi.

U.S. and British warships in Gulf of Aden, 2011.

U.S. and British warships in Gulf of Aden, 2011.

Developments in Kenya and throughout the entire region of East Africa must be viewed in the context of U.S. economic and strategic interests in partnership with its NATO allies and the state of Israel. In recent years flotillas of U.S. and European Union warships have been occupying the Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia with the pretext of fighting piracy.

Both Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Vice President William Ruto are under indictment by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, accused of human rights violations following elections in 2007. Not only the Kenyan government but the entire 54-member nations in the African Union have rejected the ICC, which has almost exclusively focused its charges on Africa’s leaders.

While Washington did not favor the government of President Kenyatta during the March elections, it is likely the U.S. will try to take advantage of the mall attack to increase its already strong presence in Kenya.

Related WW articles:      


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INTERNATIONAL PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY AGAINST BANKS, AUSTERITY SAT. OCT. 5 AND SUN. OCT. 6 IN DOWNTOWN DETROIT

Former city worker Derek Grigsby and his family demand cancellation of Detroit debt to the banks. Photo: Derek Grigsby Facebook

Former city worker Derek Grigsby and his family demand cancellation of Detroit debt to the banks. Photo: Derek Grigsby Facebook

IPAThe International Peoples Assembly against the Banks and Against Austerity will convene Saturday and Sunday, October 5 and 5, at Grand Circus Park in Detroit, at Woodward and Adams.  The Assembly will convene Saturday at 11:00 am, continue to 9:00 pm, and reconvene Sunday morning. 

The People’s Assembly will target the role of the major banks in creating the financial crisis in Detroit, placing 73% of Detroiters in sub-prime predatory mortgage loans that led to over 100,000 foreclosures and destroyed Detroit’s communities and tax base. 

These same banks then placed the city into predatory loans, such as the interest rate swaps which have cost the city over hundreds of millions dollars already, and will net them hundreds of millions of more if Orr and Snyder have their way. 

PREDATORY $1.5 BILLION PENSION OBLIGATION CERTIFICATES (POC) LOAN FROM UBS AND SIEBERT, BRANDFORD & SHANK PRESSED AT CITY COUNCIL JAN. 31, 2005 BY (l to r) DETROIT CFO SEAN WERDLOW, JOE O'KEEFE OF FITCH RATINGS, STEPHEN MURPHY OF STANDARD AND POOR'S, DEPUTY MAYOR ANTHONY ADAMS. WERDLOW GOT A TOB JOB WITH SIEBERT IN NOV. 2005 AND WAS THERE WHEN LOAN WAS RENEGOTIATED FOR 30 YRS. IN 2006. UBS AG PAID A $1.5 BILLION FINE FOR FRAUD TO USDOJ, S & P IS BEING SUED FOR $5 BILLION BY U.S.; UBS, RATINGS AGENCIES SUBJECT OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL ACTIONS ACROSS THE WORLD. Photo: DIANE BUKOWSKI

PREDATORY $1.5 BILLION PENSION OBLIGATION CERTIFICATES (POC) LOAN FROM UBS AND SIEBERT, BRANDFORD & SHANK PRESSED AT CITY COUNCIL JAN. 31, 2005 BY (l to r) DETROIT CFO SEAN WERDLOW, JOE O’KEEFE OF FITCH RATINGS, STEPHEN MURPHY OF STANDARD AND POOR’S, DEPUTY MAYOR ANTHONY ADAMS. WERDLOW GOT A TOB JOB WITH SIEBERT IN NOV. 2005 AND WAS THERE WHEN LOAN WAS RENEGOTIATED FOR 30 YRS. IN 2006. UBS AG PAID A $1.5 BILLION FINE FOR FRAUD TO USDOJ, S & P IS BEING SUED FOR $5 BILLION BY U.S.; UBS, RATINGS AGENCIES SUBJECT OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL ACTIONS ACROSS THE WORLD. Photo: DIANE BUKOWSKI

Banks like UBS and Bank of America have had their executives prosecuted and even jailed in the case of UBS for municipal bond fraud.  They have been subject to countless judgments for predatory mortgage lending.  They have been investigated for LIBOR manipulation and municipal bond rigging.  Yet, despite being paid $62 million from Detroit taxpayer dollars, Orr, Jones Day, and the other “consultants” have refused to investigate the role of the banks in Detroit’s crisis.  

Statements from France, Brazil, the Philippines Spain and many other countries, as well as speakers from across the U.S. will be introduced at the International Peoples Assembly.  Their message is that Detroit is not alone.  The working class across the globe, fighting similar austerity imposed by the world banks, stands in solidarity Detroit’s pensioners, workers and residents. 

For more information and to view the International Peoples Assembly program visit www.internationalpeoplesassembly.org. or call 313-319-0870

City retirees protest outside bankruptcy hearing Aug. 19, 2013

City retirees protest outside bankruptcy hearing Aug. 19, 2013

 To download program, click on PROGRAM FOR THE INTERNATIONAL PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY 

SELECTED RELATED ARTICLES FROM VOICE OF DETROIT, IN REVERSE CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER BACK TO OCT. 2011; MORE BEFORE THAT 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/28/nan-to-protest-detroit-bankruptcy-filing-tues-oct-15-10-am-fights-police-brutality-in-ohio/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/26/protest-at-obama-administration-meeting-with-snyder-and-orr-fri-sept-27/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/23/detroit-retirees-residents-committee-blast-bankruptcy-filing-at-court-hearings/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/17/official-retirees-committee-in-detroit-bankruptcy-blasts-em-orr-gov-snyder-asks-for-stay-pending-higher-court-ruling-what-will-judge-rhodes-do-sept-19/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/11/dennis-archer-former-consultant-to-detroit-lender-ubs-ag-meets-with-top-obama-aides-execs/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/09/02/save-our-schools-save-detroits-oakman-and-school-of-the-arts/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/27/secrecy-of-detroit-bankruptcy-docs-release-of-casino-taxes-swaps-retirees-committee-at-issue/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/20/detroit-bankruptcy-objections-raise-possible-bank-crimes-related-to-poc-debt-and-casino-tax-deal-hundreds-protest-banks-in-downtown-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/20/detroit-schools-set-to-pay-hefty-rates-on-92-million-bond-due-to-city-bankruptcy-filing/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/16/no-banker-left-behind-in-detroit-bankruptcy-case/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/14/swaps-probe-finds-banks-including-detroit-creditors-rigged-rate-at-expense-of-retirees/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/12/rush-to-detroit-bankruptcy-judge-sides-with-em-orr-aug-2-approves-retirees-committee-prematurely-sets-breakneck-deadlines/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/10/baxter-jones-disabled-in-accident-loses-case-to-avoid-eviction-from-dream-home/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/07/em-kevyn-orr-defames-detroiters-and-detroit-community-leaders-react/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/08/05/no-to-duggan-napoleon-and-other-gangsta-politicians-take-it-to-the-streets-to-save-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/29/war-retirees-workers-residents-v-wall-street-in-detroit-bankruptcy-judge-throws-out-state-claims/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/23/detroit-bankruptcy-snyder-orr-want-retirees-suits-dumped-while-creditor-ubs-announces-high-profits-hearing-wed-july-24-10-a-m-judge-rhodes/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/21/orr-jones-day-aim-bankruptcy-gun-at-detroit-retirees-let-wall-street-off-hearing-mon-july-22-9am/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/07/july-4-protest-demands-independence-for-detroit-other-cities-and-schools-eviction-of-kevyn-orr/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/06/orrs-phony-victory-on-casino-taxes-and-u-s-bank-na/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/03/sign-petition-to-request-us-doj-fraud-investigation-of-ubs-re-predatory-1-5-billion-detroit-loan/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/01/deutsche-banks-servicers-to-pay-for-los-angeles-10-million-accord/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/07/01/while-detroit-em-orr-attacks-pension-board-travel-consultant-milliman-inc-luxuriates-in-dubai-at-worlds-most-expensive-hotel/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/06/20/em-orrs-plan-for-detroit-phony-debt-moratorium-theft-of-city-assets-including-water-belle-isle-pensions/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/06/13/tell-orr-detroit-creditors-stop-debt-service-to-banks-rally-fri-june-14-9-a-m/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/06/09/people-rise-up-against-em-kevyn-orr-and-bank-takeover-of-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/06/08/jpmorgan-chase-faces-full-court-press-of-federal-investigations/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/26/boycott-detroits-belle-isle-grand-prix-and-its-bankster-sponsors/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/24/why-are-the-feds-destroying-our-hoods-feds-cancel-appearance-at-detroit-hearing/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/16/detroit-em-orrs-report-envisions-a-nightmare-future/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/11/detroit-fast-food-workers-strike-demand-15hr/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/02/make-the-banks-pay-detroit-rally-sat-may-4-2013-1-pm/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/20/detroit-city-council-grovels-to-power-inflicts-further-harm-on-city/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/18/detroit-city-council-says-yes-to-banks-in-jones-day-vote-people-say-no/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/14/is-jones-day-sh-t-or-shinola-detroiters-blast-bankers-takeover-council-to-vote-april-16/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/08/costly-jones-day-em-contract-faces-council-vote-tues-apr-9-come-at-9-am/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/08/only-wall-street-wins-in-detroit-crisis-reaping-474-million-fee/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/08/reek-general-strike-battled-imf-austerity-measures-em-to-bring-same-to-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/02/better-exiled-than-captive-in-the-promised-land/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/04/01/afscme-local-457-called-for-moratorium-on-debt-to-banks-in-1992/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/31/detroit-council-to-vote-on-jones-day-contract-firm-represents-criminal-banks-holding-citys-debt/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/27/throw-out-detroits-em-power-to-the-people-not-the-banks/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/27/detroiters-march-in-cleveland-tell-jones-day-and-banks-get-out/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/26/vampire-capitalism-comes-to-detroit-mi-and-dekalb-county-ga/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/24/from-detroit-to-cyprus-banksters-in-search-of-prey/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/20/banks-behind-detroit-emergency-manager-takeover/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/19/wall-street-v-woodward-ave-will-detroit-em-address-predatory-interest-rate-swaps/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/17/detroit-efms-law-firm-advises-worlds-biggest-crooks-including-libor-banks/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/12/grand-theft-of-detroits-water-dept-imminent-water-board-mtg-wed-march-13-2pm/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/09/war-declared-on-black-detroit-next-protest-sun-march-10-12-noon-dte/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/03/05/say-no-to-snyder-and-detroit-efm-mass-rally-wed-march-6-4-pm-caymc/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/27/detroit-financial-review-a-wall-street-takeover-black-cities-must-fight-back-by-any-means-necessary/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/27/detroit-financial-review-team-represents-global-banksters/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/24/u-s-banks-scrutinized-in-libor-scandal-probe/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/19/stop-government-foreclosures-of-our-homes-hurricane-fannie-freddie-pack-hearing-wed-feb-20-2pm-u-s-judge-nancy-edmunds/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/17/group-sues-for-detroits-debt-documents-state-review-team-leaks-negative-findings/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/06/usdoj-slams-standard-poors-with-5-billion-fraud-lawsuit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/22/workers-youths-including-gm-colombian-hunger-striker-besiege-2013-detroit-auto-show/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/18/the-gang-rape-of-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/14/banks-bailed-out-people-sold-out-in-u-s-settlements/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/12/28/detroit-city-council-6-collaborators-in-war-on-people/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/12/23/councils-craven-cave-in-brings-new-assault-on-detroit-state-declares-new-financial-review/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/12/19/ubs-admits-fraud-in-1-5-billion-libor-rigging-settlement/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/12/10/state-blitzkriegs-detroit-to-get-deal-with-wall-street-will-council-stand-up-at-meeting-dec-11/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/12/03/wall-street-state-intensify-attacks-on-detroit-mayor-says-people-not-entitled-to-jobs-to-appear-at-council-tues-dec-4-10-a-m/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/11/25/detroiters-storm-council-nov-20-to-stop-takeovers-bing-plots-to-reconsider-contracts-mon-nov-26-1-p-m/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/11/19/detroiters-outraged-over-top-council-members-complicity-in-ema-water-dept-takeover-hearings-tues-nov-20/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/11/15/detroiters-demand-fab-step-down-in-wake-of-pa4-repeal-make-banks-bleed/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/11/11/michigan-dictator-law-pa-4-goes-down-detroiters-ecstatic/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/10/25/u-s-sues-bank-of-america-for-brazen-mortgage-fraud/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/27/detroit-dwsd-debt-shows-wall-street-never-loses-on-bad-swaps/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/26/spain-protesters-storm-parliament-to-stop-banks-austerity-measures/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/04/dps-advocates-tell-obama-stop-destruction-of-public-education/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/08/26/naacp-wells-fargo-and-the-road-less-traveled/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/08/13/detroiters-fight-snyderbing-banks-to-end-pa4-consent-agreement-save-city/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/08/06/pa-4-on-ballot-organizers-plan-battle-on-two-fronts-to-strike-it-down/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/23/detroit-cut-2-billion-pension-bond-deal-with-ubs-one-of-banks-sued-by-baltimore-others-in-libor-scandal/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/20/libor-scandal-could-turn-ugly-as-cities-begin-to-sue-banks/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/18/war-on-city-workers-wrong-dirty-and-low-down/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/12/fannie-mae-stop-eviction-of-jennifer-britt-let-her-pay-actual-value-of-home/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/11/spanish-miners-people-rise-up-against-banks-austerity-measures/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/07/crittendon-intervenors-fight-dictatorship-of-banks/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/03/banks-profit-from-drug-running-as-cities-destroyed-link-to-fast-and-furious/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/06/14/fitch-downgrades-detroit-over-bond-payment-worries/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/05/14/no-consent-not-one-cent-cancel-the-debt-detroiters-say-on-boa-day/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/05/07/investors-fret-after-greek-french-elections-u-s-jobs-report/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/04/09/banks-state-take-control-of-detroit-council-assassinates-city-in-5-4-consent-vote/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/03/24/no-consent-agreement-or-em-make-the-banks-pay/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/03/24/detroit-faces-racist-takeover-engineered-by-wall-street/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/01/31/garretts-occupy-detroit-moratorium-now-bamn-stop-eviction/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/01/06/stop-state-takeover-of-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2011/12/28/snyder-dillon-ignore-banks-escalate-pa-4-war-on-detroit/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2011/11/30/bloomberg-news-reveals-fed-reserve-kept-7-77-trillion-in-loans-to-banks-secret/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2011/11/23/banks-financing-drug-cartels-admitted-in-wells-fargo-deal/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2011/11/21/city%e2%80%99s-top-criminals-ernst-young-cook-the-books/

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2011/10/09/michigan-budget-70-billion-to-the-banks-1-billion-tax-cut-for-corporations/

 


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STATE ‘RAPES’ DETROIT AGAIN WITH FREE BELLE ISLE ‘LEASE’

Detroit family enjoys summer day on Belle Isle beach.

Detroit family enjoys summer day on Belle Isle beach.

Council Pres. Jenkins supports illegal “done deal”

Councilwoman Watson cites “rape” of city

Belle Isle costs $6 million/yr; bankruptcy consultants cost $62 million in last 7 months: Councilwoman Jones 

Mich. Gov. Rick Snyder and kept man Detroit EM Kevyn Orr at press conference on bankruptcy July 19, 2013.

Mich. Gov. Rick Snyder and kept man Detroit EM Kevyn Orr at press conference on bankruptcy July 19, 2013.

By Diane Bukowski

 Oct. 2, 2013

 DETROIT – Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and his kept man,* Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, along with other state officials, signed a 60-year free deal to take over Belle Isle, the largest public island park in the U.S., owned by Detroit and its residents since 1876, on Sept. 30, 2013.

Except for a few minor changes, the lease is identical to that the state took off the table in January. The City Council failed to vote on it then due to broad public opposition citing the lack of any benefit to Detroiters, including the loss of millions in federal, state and private revenues, and resident jobs and contracts.

One interesting change: the state says it will post “No Beach Guard” signs on Belle Isle beach, per state park beach rules. Apparently they don’t care if a patron drowns.

(Link to current signed lease is below article; see box below for key points.)

BI-lease box

“This is unfathomable; it’s as if Central Park was leased away from New York City,” said Councilwoman JoAnn Watson during the body’s regular session Oct. 1. “The City paid for Belle Isle. It is an asset of Detroit. All assets are supposed to be frozen during bankruptcy proceedings. Two federal lawsuits challenging the authority of the Emergency Manager are still pending.  Over 2.3 million Michigan residents voted to  repeal EM rule in Nov. 2012. Instead of the state helping us, this is a rape, a disgrace before God.”

Councilwoman JoAnn Watson at meeting Oct. 1, 2013 denounces Belle Isle takeover.

Councilwoman JoAnn Watson at meeting Oct. 1, 2013 denounces Belle Isle takeover.

The Snyder/Orr action appears to violate Public Act 436 on its face. The law (MCL 141.1559 Sec. 9) requires the EM to submit proposed actions to the “governing body of the local government” first. It says the governing body then has 10 days to take action. If it disapproves it, it must submit a plan to to the local emergency financial assistance board to save an equivalent amount of funds, in this case six million dollars.

Councilwoman Brenda Jones came up with such a plan during the discussion Oct. 1.

“This is true disrespect for someone to come in on the pretense of saving money when they have spent $62 million on bankruptcy consultants in the last seven months,” Jones said. “It only takes the city six to seven million dollars a year to take care of Belle Isle. If this had happened in the ‘50’s or the ‘60’s the city would be shut down.”

Councilwoman Brenda Jones talks to reporters after Oct. 1 meeting.

Councilwoman Brenda Jones talks to reporters after Oct. 1 meeting.

The Public Act 4 “Consent Agreement” which the City Council approved 5-4 April 4, 2012 included a state lease of Belle Isle among other plans.

“I voted against that agreement,” Jones told reporters later. “I think the Council majority opened the door to a whole lot with it. It was supposed to stop the Emergency Manager from coming, but bingo he’s here. I have told the Emergency Manager I have a concern not only with Belle Isle, but also with the Water and Public Lighting Departments when it comes to assets being sold under the State Constitution. But the EM said he would do what he needed to do under Public Act 436. This is complete disrespect for the people of Detroit.”

A meeting focused on regionalizing the Detroit Water and Sewerage Dept. is allegedly set for Sept. 7, according to news sources.

Council Pres. Saunteel Jenkins talks to media after Oct. 1 meeting.

Council Pres. Saunteel Jenkins talks to media after Oct. 1 meeting.

Most Council members said they knew nothing of the deal until late the night before, after it was already signed.

Council President Saunteel Jenkins told reporters afterwards that Watson’s remarks were “inflammatory.”

She that Orr called her personally and she emailed other members. Council members said Oct. 1 that they had no copy of the “lease,” but Jenkins’ remarks after the meeting seemed to show broad familiarity with its terms, as well as approval.

Jenkins, along with Councilman James Tate, who recently proposed setting goats and sheep loose in the city’s neighborhoods to trim the grass, and Gary Brown, now Orr’s Chief Operating Officer, voted for the Council to bring the deal to its full session at the beginning of this year.

The Council voted down an earlier lease in Sept. 2012.

Councilman James Tate at meeting Oct. 1, 2013.

Councilman James Tate at meeting Oct. 1, 2013.

"Let them eat grass"--Tate

Asked whether the Council should have more input and hold a public hearing on the “lease,” Jenkins said, “If this is the lease that was before the Council in January, then we have had plenty of input. . . . I certainly think Belle Isle is important enough with the citizens of Detroit to let them know [how the lease will affect them].”

Jenkins is running for re-election this September.

Councilwoman Brenda Jones makes a point as Councilmen Kenneth Cockrel, Jr. and Andre Spivey listen doubtfully.

Councilwoman Brenda Jones makes a point as Councilmen Kenneth Cockrel, Jr. and Andre Spivey listen doubtfully.

Councilmen James Tate, Kenneth Cockrel, Jr., and Andre Spivey said they would have to see the lease before expressing their opinion. Spivey claimed Detroiters who said they would volunteer to help clean up the island during earlier discussions had not done so.

Belle Isle had a city maintenance staff including grass cutters, foresters, and building attendants prior to a series of repeated cutbacks. President Phyllis McMillon, of AFSCME Local 452, who represents city workers on Belle Isle, said at a rally in Sept. 2012, “Bing told a lie when he said we have 36 workers here. There are only four permanent workers, the rest are seasonal from April to September. The seasonals are being laid off Sept. 23, and the four permanent workers have been re-assigned even though the lease deal is not approved.”

AFSCME Local 542 Pres. Phyllis McMillon addresses rally to save Belle Isle Sept. 22, 2012.

AFSCME Local 542 Pres. Phyllis McMillon addresses rally to save Belle Isle Sept. 22, 2012.

(*Snyder is paying the costs of Orr’s residency in the Westin Book-Cadillac during his EM term.)

Click on Bellie Isle lease 9 30 13 for complete copy of Sept. 30 lease signed by Snyder, Orr, other state officials

Related VOD articles on Belle Isle:

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/05/26/boycott-detroits-belle-isle-grand-prix-and-its-bankster-sponsors/  

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/02/03/bing-will-hurt-detroit-kids-shutting-parks-to-retaliate-for-belle-isle-lease-failure/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/27/people-rise-up-against-lease-of-belle-isle-committee-votes-no-council-still-to-meet-mon-jan-28-2-pm-tues-jan-29-9-am/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/27/city-council-reject-the-unfunded-proposal-the-lease-of-belle-isle/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/26/belle-isle-is-black-land/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2013/01/23/bing-and-detroit-council-set-to-give-belle-isle-to-state-let-the-people-vote-council-meets-jan-24-1-p-m-jan-28-29/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/10/17/council-sabotages-oct-18-public-hearing-on-belle-isle-lease/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/10/17/city-council-members-favorable-to-revised-lease-sept-25/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/27/peoples-rally-hands-off-belle-isle-council-hearing-thurs-oct-4-1-pm/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/18/councilwoman-watson-hears-citizens-on-belle-isle-rally-at-belle-isle-casino-sat-sept-22-12-noon-council-hearing-tues-sept-25-1-pm/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/15/90-yr-belle-isle-lease-entry-fees-go-to-state-fedstate-cops-to-patrol-council-hearing-mon-sept/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/09/14/belle-isle-in-detroit-is-our-last-dance/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/08/05/save-belle-isle-save-detroit/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/30/occupy-belle-isle-stop-the-takeover-of-detroit/ 

http://voiceofdetroit.net/2012/07/30/belle-isle-belongs-to-us-2/


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