Disaster has struck my home. A month ago my son, Dima Litvinov, who is 51, was jailed in Murmansk, Russia, north of the Arctic Circle. Dima has the sad distinction of possibly becoming the third generation of political prisoners in our family.

The photos of him handcuffed and then in a steel cage were seen worldwide. He is a part of Arctic 30, a group of Greenpeace activists that is composed of two journalists, a doctor, a cook and other members of the crew of the Arctic Sunrise icebreaker. They represent 18 countries. Dima and the ship's captain, Pete Willcox, are the only Americans.

Dima was born in Russia and, at age 6, joined me in a Siberian mining village where I was sentenced to exile and labor. He spent four years there with me. After that, we were forced to emigrate from Russia, and Dima grew up in America. He graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in anthropology from Wesleyan University. In the 1980s, he joined the environmental organization Greenpeace.