Voice of Liberation
Jalil Muntaqim –
Voice of Liberation
A video production in VHS and DVD
Jalil Abdul Muntaqim (formerly Anthony Bottom) was 19 years old when he was arrested. He is a former member of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army, and is one of the longest held political prisoners in the world.
This documentary is a unique opportunity to visit and hear Jalil's story.
Jalil was born October 18, 1951, in Oakland, CA. His early years were spent in San Francisco. Jalil participated in NAACP youth organizing during the civil rights movement. In high school, he became a leading member of the Black Student Union, often touring in "speak-outs."
After the assassination of Dr. King, Jalil began to believe a more militant response to racism and injustice was necessary. He began to look towards the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense for leadership and was recruited into the BPP by school friends who had since become Panthers.
Two months shy of his 20th birthday, Jalil was captured along with Albert “Nuh” Washington in a midnight shoot-out with San Francisco police. When Jalil was arrested, he was a high school graduate and employed as a social worker.
While in San Quentin prison in California in 1976, Jalil launched the National Prisoners Campaign to Petition the United Nations to recognize the existence of political prisoners in the United States. Progressives nationwide joined this effort, and the petition was submitted in Geneva, Switzerland. This led to Lennox Hinds and the National Conference of Black Lawyers having the UN International Commission of Jurists tour U.S. prisons and speak with specific political prisoners. The International Commission of Jurists then reported that political prisoners did in fact exist in the United States.
In 1997 Jalil initiated the Jericho Movement. Over 6,000 supporters gathered in the Jericho '98 march in Washington DC and the Bay Area to demand amnesty for US political prisoners on the basis of international law. The Jericho Amnesty Movement aims to gain the recognition by the U.S. government and the United Nations that political prisoners exist in this country, and that on the basis of international law, they should be granted amnesty because of the political nature of their cases.
Jalil has filed numerous lawsuits on behalf of prisoners. After many years of being denied the opportunity to attend college, Jalil graduated with a BS in Psychology and a BA in Sociology in 1994.
During his imprisonment, Jalil has become a father and a grandfather. Jalil has worked as an educator of other inmates and practices organizing and advocacy whenever possible to ensure the most adequate, humane treatment for all people. He has been repeatedly punished for these activities, through physical abuse, formal discipline, and numerous prison transfers.