The Secret Struggle Against Apartheid

A book review by Peter Cole

In the 1960s, a group of leftists risked everything to revive the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. These international activists who embraced a working-class radicalism that was internationalist, cosmopolitan, anti-imperialist, and anti-capitalist -- and most important, steadfastly opposed to legalized racial oppression in South Africa.

Black Agenda Report for Week of Oct 3, 2016

Reparations a Necessity to Correct America’s Crimes

The United Nations panel of experts that blasted the U.S. for its “legacy of colonial history, enslavement, racial subordination and segregation, racial terrorism and racial inequality” had no choice but to call for reparations for people of African descent, said Kamm Howard, of NCOBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America. “The international community recognizes that reparations is pretty much mandatory when a state has committed those types of crimes,” said Howard. “You have to repair the injury, you have to make the people whole, because these types of injuries are long term and, generally, self-perpetuating.”

Ajamu Baraka: Bush and Obama Backed Jihadist Forces

“This country and the world is more dangerous as a consequence of the rampage the U.S. has been involved in in the so-called Middle East,” said Green Party vice presidential candidate Ajamu Baraka. Speaking on Democracy Now!’s “Expanded Debates,” Baraka said both Republicans and Democrats are responsible for the rise of Islamic jihadism. “Under the Bush administration, there was a conscious decision to utilize jihadist forces to advance U.S. policies,” he said. “That policy was continued under the Obama administration. We see the blowback happening across the world.”

Crying Wolf on Fascism

“This notion that we’re going to have a white nationalist fascist takeover in this election, and that we all need to go running to this rightwing fanatic, this arch-corporatist, this lying neoliberal warmonger” -- Hillary Clinton – “is not sticking with a lot of people on the Left,” said historian and political analyst Paul Street. Part of the reason is that “Clinton has such a long and unambiguous track record of really vanguard neoliberalism,” said Street. The Clintons “led the way for the rightward drift of the Democratic Party.”

Nat Turner as Revolutionary Organizer

The slave revolt that swept through Southampton County, Virginia, in 1831, in which about 60 whites were killed and hundreds of Blacks were hanged or murdered in retaliation, was “far more than an impulsive lashing out against mistreatment,” said Dr. Melvin Peters, associate professor of African American Studies at the University of Eastern Michigan. Turner was a man of “unparalleled leadership,” said Peters. “When Turner called out to the recruits, his six men grew to at least 60, maybe 80 freedom fighters, including free Blacks.” Slave insurrections also broke out “all around the Dismal Swamp, even down to Wilmington, North Carolina, in the same time period --- so much so, that they appeared to be coordinated.”

Black Colombians Favored Peace Deal

“The majority of the ‘Yes’ vote came from Afro-descended territories and from those territories where war has hit most strongly at communities,” said Afro-Colombian human rights activist Charo Mina-Rojas. The agreement that would have ended the half-century-long war between FARC guerillas and the Colombian government was narrowly defeated in a referendum, last month. The conflict has killed hundreds of thousands and left more than five million homeless, the majority of them Black. Mina-Rojas called the vote a victory for “the elite.” “We were not shocked,” she said.

Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:00am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.

CBC Report Card 2016: Why the Congressional Black Caucus Can’t Lead Black America

by Glen Ford with Patrice Johnson for CBC Monitor

The 41 full-voting Black Democratic members of the U.S. House scored higher than last year on the new CBC Monitor Report Card, but that’s mostly because there were far fewer controversial bills crossing their desks in a presidential election season. However, some Caucus members’ names seem to forever live in infamy: Terri Sewell, Marc Veasey, Sanford Bishop and David Scott. None of the Caucus is excellent, but there’s plenty of good, bad and ugly.

Freedom Rider: Ignoring Angela Davis

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

How low the icon has fallen. Angela Davis diminished herself and denounced her own history when she endorsed Barack Obama in 2008 and in 2012, claiming the corporate imperial Democrat was part of the “black radical tradition.” Davis now signals she’s in Clinton’s corner, and smears independent voters as “narcissists.” Who will “Free Angela” from her shameful servitude to the Democratic Party?

Emails, Hugs, and the Coming Revision of the Obama Swan Song

by Danny Haiphong

It’s not a pretty picture: Michelle Obama hugging George Bush. But her husband has been politically intimate with Republicans all along – and now we learn that he knew about Hillary Clinton’s illegal email system, too. Lesson: the Repubs and Dems “are unified in their service to the ruling class.” The duopoly system is rotting from within, providing an “opportunity to build a movement based on principles rather than corporate party affiliations.”

Man Who Filmed Eric Garner's Death Begins Prison Term

by Anealla Safdar

The NYPD did not forgive Ramsey Orta for showing the world how cops choked the life out of Eric Garner. “After filming Garner's death, he was increasingly harassed and targeted by police and was arrested at least eight times in fewer than two years.” The cops finally got their revenge, sending Orta to prison for four years on drug and weapons charges. “I'm praying that I can come right out and continue my life as an activist," he says.

Eighteen Examples of Racism in Criminal Legal System

by Bill Quigley

How may we imprison you? Let us count the ways. The U.S. criminal justice system seems designed primarily for one purpose: “to incarcerate as many black and brown people as possible.” The author lists 18 ways America makes prison a much more likely destination for Blacks and browns than for whites.

U.S. Cops Kill Unarmed African; U.S. Media Mangle His Homeland’s History

Ann Garrison's picture

by Ann Garrison

Police in El Cajon, California, answered Alfred Olongo’s sister’s call for help for her disturbed, but unarmed, brother -- and promptly shot him dead. Learning that Olongo was a Ugandan immigrant, U.S. media immediately spun background tales revolving around the guerilla leader, Joseph Kony. But, the Olongos hadn’t fled from Kony; his family left Uganda because President Yoweri Museveni, a U.S. ally, “threatened to kill the whole family.”

Clinton or Trump: Who is better for Africa?

by Yash Tandon

Clinton is part of the Establishment. “It is part of her inheritance to provoke wars and control the world in league with global corporations.” Nobody knows what lies behind Trump’s mask. Maybe he wants to “knock the shit” out of the Establishment. Maybe he is a “narcissist character” seeking reward in the short run. But no one who seriously cares about Africa’s liberation from Empire would support Clinton.

Examining International Sanctions: The Case of Eritrea

by Dr. Fikrejesus Amahazion

Under U.S. pressure, the United Nations refuses to lift an embargo against the tiny nation of Eritrea, while ignoring constant aggressions by its huge neighbor, Ethiopia. The pretexts for the sanctions “are nonexistent,” yet “Eritrea is doubly punished since the sanctions effectively mean it is restricted in defending itself.” The UN has abrogated its responsibility to uphold international law – and, instead, coddles Washington’s military ally.

Making Violence Visible: From #BlackLivesMatter to #StoptheBleeding Africa

by Emily Williams and William Minter

The violence plaguing Africa remains far too invisible to most Americans and the world. Unlike the pillage of Africa in earlier periods of the slave trade and colonial rule, illicit financial transactions are most often hidden from public view. They happen through fraudulent invoicing of trade, "creative accounting" by multinational corporations, tax giveaways by African governments, and the use of shell companies based in tax havens around the world.

Black Agenda Report for Week of October 3, 2016

Clinton is Far More Anti-Crime Than Pro-Justice

When Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton clashed over stop-and-frisk at their first televised debate, Clinton only weakly addressed “the idea of racial justice,” but instead “went immediately to the idea of effectiveness” of stop-and-frisk as a crime-fighting tool. “If a program infringes on civil liberties and violates the Constitution, it doesn’t matter at all if it’s effective or ineffective,” said Chip Gibbons, policy and legislative counsel for the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. If, however, the purpose of a policy is “to terrorize people of color, then I supposed you can make an argument that stop-and-frisk is effective in doing that,” said Gibbons.

Trump Not the Only Neo-Fascist Running for President

Hillary Clinton’s “worldview and her policies are just as dangerous as Donald Trump’s,” said Ajamu Baraka, the Green Party’s vice presidential candidate. Lots of folks “talk about the coming of neo-fascism under Donald Trump, but don’t understand that the foundation for neo-fascism has already been created under the Obama administration -- and for some of us, in our communities, we have already been subjected to neo-fascist repression.” In Syria, both Clinton and Trump “are committed to the use of military force to advance the interests of the U.S,” said Baraka.

Candidates “Tone-Deaf” to Inner City Demands

“Our big concern was that the presidential candidates were tone-deaf to the avalanche of organizing and fightback against corporate education interventions that are targeting Black and brown neighborhoods all over the United States,” said Jitu Brown, of the Journey for Justice Alliance, representing 40,000 activists in community organizations in 24 cities. The Alliance demands “real, comprehensive equality in education” and a national moratorium on school charters. “We will not give folks the pass that President Obama got,” said Brown.

Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network is hosted by Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey. A new edition of the program airs every Monday at 11:00am ET on PRN. Length: one hour.

The Great Debate That Never Was

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

If the Green Party’s Jill Stein had been allowed in this week’s presidential debate, it would have transformed the discussion and altered the race. That’s why Democrats and Republicans kept it a duopoly-only affair. “The only circumstances in which either Trump or Clinton can muster a minimally compelling argument, is against each other.” Thanks to Democracy Now!, we got a glimpse at what a real debate might be like. Clinton and Trump would lose.

Hundreds of Cops Divert and Foil Thousands of Protesters Outside NY Presidential Debate

By BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

While inside the debate moderator Lester Holt failed to ask questions about joblessness, medical care, student loans, police murder or mass incarceration, New York police outside the debate showed the world how to suppress free speech with a soft hand, diverting more than two thousand protesters into "free speech zones" long lines and checkpoints and spaces artfully designed to prevent groups from concentrating in one place or finding each other.

Freedom Rider: Vote Green

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

A vote for the Green Party is not a protest gesture -- it is a vote for a platform of peace, social justice and a livable planet, and against the Parties of Lies. The Democrats “continue to be seen as the antiwar party even as they use regime change more successfully than George W. Bush ever dreamed.” Trump is a scarecrow for political children, but Clinton is a real, live, proven monster. Vote Green – boldly! -- for civlization, and against death.

Winnie Mandela Turns 80, Vows to lead Marikana Campaign

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Marsha Adebayo

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the indomitable heroine of the South African freedom struggle, celebrated her 80th birthday surrounded by friends and enemies, including the once-revolutionary, now-capitalist Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who was complicit in the massacre of Black miners at Marikana. She promptly demanded that he fund a campaign for the miners’ widows and orphans. “Critics underestimate Winnie Mandela at their peril.”

Debate Moderator Lester Holt Asks Zero Questions About Poverty, Abortion, Climate Change

by Adam Johnson

This Monday showed there were multiple ways to fix a crooked presidential debate.  The first way is to exclude everyone but the representatives of the two capitalist parties.  A second way explored elsewhere in this issue was outside crowd control, and a third, as FAIR's Adam Johnson explained, was to let the crooks decide what questions they'd be asked.

System Meltdown: How US Imperialism is Whitewashing Crisis on Multiple Fronts

by Danny Haiphong

The fantastically-timed new Census figures showing large income advances, based on recently altered measuring sticks, cannot mask the deep crisis afflicting capitalism and its political parties: the Republicans and Democrats. The decaying economic order produces gross inequalities, mass insecurity, extinction-threatening wars and climate instability, and deepening moral turpitude within the ruling circles. It’s called system meltdown.

The Roots are in the System: Charlotte and Beyond

by Paul Street

Police violence provides the “spark” that draws crowds instantly to the streets, but apartheid and inequality are the “underlying tinder that fuels the fires of rage across Black America today.” It may also have “sunk in with millions of Black Americans that the symbolic election of a technically First Black President is nothing compared to the deep structurally and institutionally entrenched racism of the American System.”


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