Nuclear Resister #153, May 1, 2009
CMU Prisoner Seeks Support
Jack & Felice Cohen-Joppa, editors

Dr. Rafil Dhafir's email and telephone privileges were restored March 12 and then revoked again for another month on March 16, for reasons unknown. Authorities also then notified his wife that they had canceled her scheduled visit. The special Communication Management Units (CMUs) established by the Bureau of Prisons for predominantly Muslim prisoners at the U.S. Penitentiaries in Terre Haute, Indiana, where Dr. Dhafir is jailed, and in Marion, Illinois, are now the subject of several critical investigations and civil suits filed on behalf of prisoners held there. The Center for Constitutional Rights, the ACLU, and the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation are all involved, charging a violation of administrative procedures to create the special units, and abusive, biased treatment of Muslim prisoners held there. The special units are increasingly known as "America's Guantanamo Bays," in part because prisoners are sent to the CMUs for no specific reason and have no administrative path towards release from the CMUs.

Dhafir wrote to the Nuclear Resister in late February that the men in Terre Haute CMU, "were served [such] rotten, spoiled, foul smelling food that even the officers here were appalled and couldn't stand the smell. They did it twice..." Writing to a supporter in early April, Dhafir noted "the warden, who is about to move to another place, no longer has interest in our daily issues. Rules are broken and laws violated blatantly. Nowhere to turn for help because we are completely isolated. Any mail they don't like will be blocked. You will be lucky to get this one..."

The Dr. Dhafir Support Committee asks that respectful letters be sent to:
Warden Helen Marberry, USP Terre Haute, 4700 Bureau Road South, Terre Haute, IN 47802.
She has recently replaced the previous Warden, B.R. Jett. Let her know that you are aware of the disproportionate number of Muslims held in the CMUs and the prisoners' concerns about poor medical attention and food. Ask that she look into the management of the CMU and address these concerns. You may receive a perfunctory, dismissive reply, but your letter will alert the bureaucracy to increasing public awareness about the CMUs, if nothing else.

Letters of support should also be sent to
Rafil Dhafir #11921-052
FCI Terre Haute
POB 33
Terre Haute, IN
47808