What is America doing in the South China Sea?

by Cynthia McKinney

Washington gives endless lip service to notions of democracy and the rule of law, while relentlessly pursuing global domination. “The US has embarked upon a strategy of containing the rise of Russia and China, rolling back any gains made by states friendly with them and willing to go against the neoliberal grain, and doing this by alternative means without overt or ‘hot’ war.”

Public Defender Meltdown in Louisiana

by Bill Quigley 

Equal justice under the law is a mere abstraction, or a cruel joke, if you’re a captive of the State and don’t have a lawyer. Louisiana’s public defender offices are broke, unable to provide the most elementary protections of defendants’ rights. “The constitutional guarantee of speedy trial is gone and death penalty cases are grinding to a halt.”

Oppose Massive Land Grabbing, Human Rights Abuses by Ethiopian Government

by International League of Peoples’ Struggle Commission No. 6

The regime has killed over 140 students, teachers and farmers since last November. This is part of a crackdown on anti-government protests by farmers who are demanding to stop the implementation of the Addis Ababa Integrated Master Plan, which will displace people from their ancestral land.

The US Extends Its Drone War Deeper Into Africa With Secretive Base

by Joshua Hammer

The explosive growth of Boko Haram, the Nigeria-based Islamic jihadists that surged across the region after NATO’s war of regime change in Libya, has been a boon for the U.S. Africa Command, AFRICOM. The once-sleepy airport at “Garoua represents the newest expansion of America’s stealth war against jihad in Africa,” a theater of operations that stretches across Cameroon, Nigeria, Chad, Niger, and Benin.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of February 29, 2016

Sanders, Trump Campaigns May Crash Both Parties

“The Bernie Sanders movement might break out into a major conflict at the convention in Philadelphia if the Sanders people feel that they’re being cheated, being swindled out of votes,” said Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Dubois scholar and veteran activist who helped pull together a national conference on the Black Radical Tradition, in January. “The Republican Party might also collapse under the pressure of the ‘angry’ white men and women” supporting Donald Trump, said Dr. Monteiro. “The situation is so dynamic and unlike anything that we have experienced since the Civil War and Reconstruction.”

Detroit Teachers Move Towards City-Wide Strike

Steven Conn, the elected leader of the Detroit teachers union who was deposed by the union’s national leadership, said a city-wide strike is the only way to save the public schools from the machinations of Gov. Rick Snyder and his appointed emergency managers. Snyder wants to divide the Detroit’s public schools into two districts: one heavily indebted, the other debt-free. Conn said that’s a scheme “to allow the charter school operators to take over the schools without having to make any payback to the school district of the huge amount of debt that the State of Michigan has run up since its control of the district for the last 16 years.”

Teach For America’s Job Protection Racket

A new study of Teach for America contracts showed TFA collects hefty “finders’ fees” to place its neophyte teachers in classrooms in Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans and New York. Jameson Brewer, who led the study, said TFA contracts provide broad protection for its members’ jobs, while veteran traditional teachers are laid off. “Parents don’t know that their children are being taught by novice educators who’ve had two and a half days of training,” said Brewer.

Few Jobs After Jail

A n Alliance for a Just Society study documents more than 6,000 prohibitions on employment of convicted felons in states across the nation. “A lot of people know that it’s difficult for someone who comes out of jail to find a job,” said Allyson Fredericksen, an author of the report, “Jobs After Jail.” But most people don’t know that “there are laws on the books in every state in the country that ban people with felony records from specific types of employment.” Louisiana tops the list, with restrictions on 389 separate types of jobs.

Seize the Time, for Peace

Most of the people described in media as foreign policy experts “are not looking for peace; they’re looking for gain, monetary gains on some investments or something they can bank on. This is a Wall Street motive,” said lifelong activist, journalist and educator Dr. Charles Simmons, speaking at a meeting on Black Men in Unions at the Institute for Labor and Community Studies, in Detroit. “It’s going to take the little people, trade union folks, the rank and file, to come together and think about what needs to be done for peace,” said Simmons.


The Bogus Power of the Black Vote Within the Confines of the Democratic Party

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

"Black Power" has been turned on its head on the electoral front, put at the service of corporatists like Hillary Clinton. "Paralyzed by fear of the White Man's Party, Black voters find a false sense of power in clustering around the perceived 'winners'" on the Democratic Party menu. "The mantra is, effectively, 'All Power to the Democratic Party!'" – brokered, of course, by the Black Misleadership Class.

Freedom Rider: Obama Forever and Ever

by BAR editor and columnist Margaret Kimberley

Obama is supposed to be a lame duck, but we are seeing a resurgence of his propaganda juggernaut. With the help of phony revolutionary Russell Simmons and shameless opportunist Van Jones, the Obama brand will be marketed in perpetuity. Obama enlists the young and the old to cry and dance for his benefit, so that he can "build libraries, make money and dispense patronage" ad infinitum, in service to the interests of the corporate and financial classes.

Black Lives Matter Take Note: Apartheid Israel Targeting Everyone that Questions Its 'Legitimacy'

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

It is a given that the U.S. national security state is engaged in surveillance, infiltration and disruption of the emerging Black Lives Matter movement, but they have doubtless been joined by the Israelis, who have launched a global digital war against supporters of the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement. "The Israelis have already targeted, and made to disappear, web pages that are linked to BDS websites."


How the Corporate Media Uses Beyoncé to Co-opt the Black Radical Movement

by Reggie E. and edited by Danny Haiphong

"Beyoncé’s latest work has been described as 'subversive' and 'unapologetically Black,'"” when in reality it is 'both anti-black liberation and counter-revolutionary." She is a Black capitalist, and "there is no market in this industry for radical black thought, self-love, and liberation." Her Pantheresque imagery attempts to co-opt a movement. "The revolution will not be televised, but the corporate media will certainly make it into a product."

No More Poisoned Babies: People Power vs. Corporate Emergency Managers

by Shea Howell

The corporate privatizers played the anti-Black race card to justify shutting off water to tens of thousands of poor Detroiters. But they can't play that game in Flint, Michigan, where the suffering cannot be denied or "explained away by easy racial stereotypes." Flint has stripped away "all the corporate efforts to claim emergency managers are necessary." But it took the poisoning of babies to make the point.

Why DeRay Mckesson's Baltimore Campaign Looks Like It Comes Right Out of Teach for America's Playbook

by Drew Franklin 

Twitterist and Campaign Zero honcho DeRay McKesson’s mayoral campaign platform for the Baltimore public schools “seems modeled in part on corporate education reforms under big-city mayors like Rahm Emanuel and Michael Bloomberg." Teach for America alums like McKesson typically oppose community-based school reforms, and favor "partnerships" with big business. "Cultivating relationships with tech giants has become a ‘major tactic’ of Campaign Zero."

The New Global Financial Cold War

A Bonnie Faulkner interview with Michael Hudson

When it comes to political economy, Dr. Michael Hudson is one of the most influential voices on the U.S. left. He warns that U.S. strategists have embarked on "a new Cold War with Russia," a war in which Washington trashes all the rules of global trade. The idea is to wall Russia off from participation in international commerce by smashing "their economic linkages and communications."

Haiti Rises: A Time for Solidarity

by Nia Imara and Robert Roth

The Haitian people forced the cancellation of yet another U.S.-imposed electoral fraud. A transitional government promises to hold another round of elections sometime in the future. But, "How can elections proceed to a second round if the first round was hopelessly illegitimate?" If there is a full investigation of the last bogus election, as grassroots organizations are demanding, Dr. Maryse Narcisse, of Fanmi Lavalas, might sweep the field.

South Africa: An Interview with 'Red Ronnie' Kasrils

by Janet Smith

In 2013, Ronnie Kasrils, a former commander of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the once-outlawed African National Congress who also served as minister of intelligence in the ANC government, declared that the post-apartheid ANC had 'sold out' the poor in a 'Faustian pact' with international capital. In a recent interview, Kasrils warns that South Africa cannot fully vanquish racism unless it tackles the root causes.

The Coup Against Nkrumah and the Role of African Americans in the African Revolution

by Abayomi Azikiwe

African American political organizations played a key role in influencing Kwame Nkrumah from the 1930s, until his removal from power in 1966 and beyond. Although the coup was designed by the U.S. to halt the advance of the African Revolution and the internationalization of the struggle of African Americans, solidarity efforts accelerated from the late 1960s through the 1990s when the last vestiges of white-minority rule were eliminated in South Africa and Namibia.

AFRICOM: Protecting US Interests Disguised as 'Military Partnerships'

by Ebrahim Shabbir Deen

AFRICOM, the U.S. military command in Africa, has subverted African militaries and enmeshed the continent in Washington's 'war on terror.' It is a one-side partnership. "In many instances, these partnerships involve African militaries ceding operational command to AFRICOM." The 'scramble for Africa' could intensify. Indeed, AFRICOM is part and parcel of that 'scramble.'

Sanders Hits a Brick Wall with the Black Vote

by The Real News Network

Bernie Sanders is about to hit a wall. Polls show that the black vote in South Carolina, and across Black America is heavily skewed against him. The fearful lesser-evilism that pervades black politics will doom the Sanders candidacy long before the Democratic convention in July.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of February 22, 2016

When Paul Robeson Denounced a President to His Face

Dr. Gerald Horne, the prolific professor of history and African American Studies at the University of Houston, has turned out another book. Paul Robeson: The Artist as Revolutionary, explores the career and politics of the actor, singer, athlete, linguist, author, public intellectual and human rights activist who was, at one time, probably the most famous American in the world, yet died in state-enforced obscurity in Philadelphia. Dr Horne recounts how, at the White House, Robeson 'got in Harry Truman's face and wagged his finger and castigated and denounced the U.S. president for his lethargy in prosecuting lynchers' of Black soldiers 'at the same time that the Truman administration was vigorously prosecuting Nazi war criminals at Nuremburg.'

White and Black Joblessness: Two Separate Worlds

The lowest Black state unemployment rate (Virginia) is equal to the highest white state unemployment rate (West Virginia), at 6.7 percent, according to an analysis of employment statistics by Dr. Valerie Wilson, of the Economic Policy Institute. "When you put that in the broadest context, that 6.7 percent is the worst that whites are doing in the country, you more fully understand just how unacceptable rates of Black unemployment are," said Dr. Wilson.

Turkey Tries to Wag U.S. Dog Into Wider War

Turkish President Recep Erdogan is threatening to invade Syria, in league with Saudi Arabian military forces. "Erdogan is trying to use a tail-wagging-the-dog situation where he can force the United States and NATO into a confrontation" with Russia, said political analyst Eric Draitser, speaking on Russia Today’s "Cross Talk" program. Erdogan wants to 'double-down' in order to save his failed Syria regime change strategy, said Draitser, publisher of StopImperialism.org.

Definition of Disaster: Hillary Clinton, Commander-in-Chief

A Hillary Clinton presidency 'would be a real disaster,' said Dr. Stephen Zunes, professor of International Studies at San Francisco University. "In many ways, her thinking parallels the neoconservatives," he said. President Obama "is going to come off as downright enlightened and moderate compared to what we're going to see under a Clinton administration."

Beyoncé Video is Capitalist-Minded

In her "Formation" video, Beyoncé "talks about being a 'Black Bill Gates in the making,' clearly a reference to the hegemony and importance of a capitalist value framework," said Ajamu Baraka, BAR editor and co-founder of the U.S. Human Rights Network. She tells oppressed people to "seek revenge through accumulating 'paper,' meaning money. These messages are quite conservative, quite accommodationist," said Baraka, speaking on Jared Ball's "I Mix What I Like" program on The Real News Network.

Kathleen Cleaver: Origins of a Panther

Former Black Panther Kathleen Cleaver, honored at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, in Detroit, recounted how she was drawn to the Black movement in 1963 when, as a high school student, she saw a photo of three Black girls in the back of a paddy wagon, singing on their way to jail for protesting racial injustice in Georgia. "I wanted to be like them, I wanted to be in that organization," she said. Three years later, Cleaver joined the Black Power-era SNCC, and met her future husband, Eldridge Cleaver, a top leader in the Black Panther Party.

Mumia Plugs Angela Davis Book

The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, gave a boost to former political prisoner Angela Davis’ new book, Freedom is a Constant Struggle. “At times history lesson, political education, world studies and gender theories, Angela Y. Davis gives us all a lot to ponder,” said Abu Jamal, in a Prison Radio commentary.

The Movement Needs Dragons

Khalil Bennet, one of several thousand prison inmates sentenced to life for offenses committed when they were juveniles, said many of his comrades “have been detained since the late 1970s, “raised and trained by the best revolutionaries in the worst conditions that America produced.” Many are now eligible for release in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that such sentences are cruel and unusual punishment. The former “juvenile lifers” could become the cadre for an emerging movement. “When the prison gates open,” said Bennet, “the real dragons fly out.”


“Vanguard of the Revolution” is Liberal History, Strips and Omits Socialism from History of the Black Panther Party

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Stanley Nelson's documentary on the BPP is "history" by and for lazy American liberals. He turns the BPP into a pop culture icon a T-shirt. Nelson mentions guns hundreds of times, big naturals and swagger a few dozen times but not the word “socialism” once in 2 hours. The BPP described its Breakfast For Children and Free Medical Clinics every day as "socialism" in person and in our newspaper, to each other and to the neighborhoods we served.

There’s Nothing "Transformative" About Bernie Sanders (He’s Just Not Hillary)

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Bernie Sanders’ domestic policies more clearly match Black America’s left-leaning politics – but they will still reject him in favor of Hillary Clinton, who Blacks think has a better chance against the Republicans. At any rate, Sanders is no prize. He is "incapable of challenging his own party and president on domestic economic policy, and has no substantive objections to Obama or Clinton on foreign policy."


Subscribe to Black Agenda Report  RSS