Inmates go to bat for Aref and Hossain
Carl Strock can be reached at 395-3085 or by e-mail at
Here is something I have never seen before jail inmates writing letters in support of
fellow inmates, endorsing them and vouching for their good character and benign
It happened at the Rensselaer County Jail, where men confined
to the protective custody unit, also known as solitary confinement, have lately
been let out of their cells for much of the day and allowed to mix with each
They have gotten together and written letters in support of
Yassin Aref and Mohammed Hossain, the two Albany Muslims who were set up by the
FBI, convicted of supporting terrorism and recently sentenced to 15 years in
The two are in the jail awaiting transfer to federal prisons.
Yassin has been there for 17 months, Mohammed for five months.
I have copies of the letters, which were delivered into the
hands of one of Yassins lawyers, unsolicited, and I herewith quote excerpts
from them, preserving the original spelling and punctuation so you may have
them in their full flavor.
At the same time, as a token of my impartiality, I invite the
FBI or the U.S. attorneys office to provide me with copies of any letters
written in support of Malik, the Pakistani sleazebag they employed to trick
Yassin and Mohammed into a money exchange that could be used against them, and
I offer to print excerpts of those letters also. I believe they would make an
instructive contrast, if indeed there are any.
I omit the names of the authors of these letters to protect
them from possible retaliation.
I am an inmate in R.C.J. [Rensselaer County Jail] who has had
the privilege of getting to know Yassin Aref and Mohammed Hossain. I have spent
the past 6 weeks with them in Rensselaer County Jail and have gotten to know
them fairly well. I dont believe these two men have the heart to harm any one
or any thing.
I remember when I first came to R.C.J. I had nothing to eat,
no health care products and no writing materials. I had only my jail uniform.
Yassins cell is next to mine and Mohammeds cell is two cells
over on the other side. Yassin gave me any thing and everything that I needed
and wanted. On a daily basis Ive seen Yassin give all of his good food away to
others so they may be full as he eats the other food that no one else wants.
This godly act is only done out of love and never out of fear.
As for Mohammed, I dont believe this man would ever think of
hurting anyone. This man spends a great part of his day, every day just about,
helping others find thier way in life and faith. He is always helping me to
better my spirit and get closer to God.
After getting to know these two men I can say that I would
never fear them in any situation. I am not defending these two men based on
lies or to stabilize my position in life or my position with God but, because
they are great men who are true to heart.
We should be honored to have such wonderful people in our
These are men of peace and love, not of hate and murder.
I learned a lot from these two wonderful men also they gave
me lots of tips on life. I hope they get out real soon so they can be with ther
familys where they belong they are innocence. Yes INNOCENCE.
Aref and Hossain have taught me how to live right and I
appreciate them of doing that even when they was facing there situation at
hand. So I hope that God will be with them were ever they go. I am glad to have
known these men. I dont believe that these two men have the heart to harm
anyone or anything. It is a shame that two good men can be entrapped targeted
and persecuted to help the government save face in the face of the media.
The case against imam Yassin and preacher Mohammed is a blaten
showing of the severe miscarriage of justice the government is capable of
inflicting upon us knowing being to witch theyve been used as an escape goat.
Its disgusting to know liberty and justice can be stripped from an individual
for such purposes in shah allah alls well that ends well. God bless these men.
I believe they didnt get justice, and they should be back
with their famileys.
I have been blessed to know these two men for almost 1 year
now. I too am Muslim and know for a fact that any act of terror is against
everything we believe in. This plot by our government to entrap these men is a
disgrace. They are peaceful law abiding citizens and deserve to be trusted as
I am in RCJ with both of these men they are my brothers and I
believe theyre not guilty.
I believe these men are being persecuted because of their
nationality and did not receive the fairness given to the United States laws
and statures of this country their rights for fairness have been violated and
they should be reconsidered for fairness given by our constitution.
And so on. Sixteen notes and letters in all, in fractured
English but bell-clear in tone and sentiment. If anyone knows of an equivalent
situation, Id be happy to hear about it.