Black Agenda Radio for Week of May 4, 2016

Min. Farrakhan Should Join Anti-Police Terror Movement – and Stop Flirting with Trump

Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan has said there are some things he likes about Donald Trump. What’s to like? asks Carl Dix, co-founder of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network. Trump’s campaign statements “drip with racism and misogyny,” and “anybody with progressive inclinations shouldn’t be seeing things they like in him.” Dix noted that Farrakhan spoke under the banner of “Justice or Else” at a giant rally, last year. “But, there has been no justice; the police continue to brutalize and murder people. So – where’s the ‘or else?’ I don’t see the Nation of Islam in the streets saying: ‘This must stop,’” said Dix.

Both Clintons Neck Deep in African Blood

Bill and Hillary Clinton are deeply implicated in the death of six million Congolese, said Claude Gatebuke, a Rwandan genocide survivor and co-founder of the African Great Lakes Action Network. Bill Clinton’s Rwanda policies put dictator Paul Kagame in power “in spite of the overwhelming evidence of the massacres Kagame committed” and his role “in the death of more than six million people in the Congo and other millions of people in the region.” Hillary Clinton, as secretary of state under President Obama, tried to suppress a United Nations report that documented Rwanda’s culpability in the ongoing Congolese bloodbath – the worst genocide since World War Two.

Black Colombians Block Highway in Land Fight

Thousands of Colombians of African descent blockaded the Pan American Highway, demanding respect for Black people’s ancestral land rights. Millions of Black Colombians have been displaced by seizure of their lands by multinational corporations, said activist Charo Mina-Rojas. Afro-Colombians also fear that FARC guerillas covet Black territories as part of a peace deal being negotiated in Havana, Cuba. “We are concerned that we are not sitting at that table,” said Mina-Rojas. “We know that FARC has an interest in areas where Black people are located. This is a territorial control issue.”

Woodfox: Recidivism Begins in the State Legislature

Albert Woodfox, the former political prisoner who served 44 years in Angola’s notorious Angola prison, most of it in solitary confinement, has some ideas on crime prevention. He agrees that nobody wants to be victimized by crime. “But, if you don’t want to be a victim of crime, stop letting these politicians pass these laws that make it impossible for an ex-felon to get out and survive unless he commits a crime.” Woodfox spoke at a University of Pittsburgh Law School symposium  on solitary confinement.

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Sanders Prepares to Bow Down to Hillary, But Many of His Supporters Won’t

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Bernie Sanders has endorsed President Obama’s troop escalation in Syria, once again showing that “he is no more ‘progressive’ than Obama on foreign policy, and just as dishonest – a true Democrat. Sanders will ultimately bow to Hillary Clinton, while still claiming that the Democratic Party can be transformed from the inside. However, millions will have witnessed that the campaign proves exactly the opposite – and will seek alternatives.

Freedom Rider: Honoring Harriet Tubman

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The U.S. government sullies the name of the great freedom fighter Harriet Tubman by putting her picture on its foul currency. “Not only has her name been ruined by a dubious connection with the dollar that kept her captive, but she will share this ‘honor’ with Andrew Jackson, enslaver and Indian killer.” No Black person should feel affirmed by this sacrilege. “Our story is a deeply sacred responsibility and must never be granted to anyone else.”

Obama’s Legacy: al-Qaida’s Protector-in-Chief

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

President Obama is caught in a trap of his own making in Syria. Actually, the trap was laid long ago, when the U.S. and Saudi Arabia partnered to create something the world had never seen: an international jihadist network. Now that network is facing defeat at the hands of Russia and the Syrian government, and must be saved by U.S. “boots on the ground.”

 
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The Flint Chess Game: The Politics of the Battlefield

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo

So far, only a few pawns have been sacrificed, and one minor knight has fallen, in the Machiavellian chessboard game that is being played with the lives of thousands who were poisoned by the water in Flint, Michigan. Governor Rick Snyder has not even been question by state or federal prosecutors. “It will only be through political activism and unrelenting protest that the actual political players will be charged and held accountable.”

Why Solidarity in the 21st Century Means Understanding Race and Class as One Entity, not Two

by Danny Haiphong

Capitalism is the scourge of the planet. “The basis of solidarity, then, should ultimately derive from an internationalist perspective. It means mutually working together with the peoples of the world in the struggle against the common enemy of imperialism.” Malcolm X understood that Vietnamese and Algerian freedom fighters provided “a great service to Black people in the US by weakening the international influence of the US capitalist state.”

Black Lives Don’t Matter, Black Votes Do: the Racial Hypocrisy of Hillary and Bill Clinton

by Richard W. Behan

Seldom have a people given such huge support to a more duplicitous couple. Bill and Hillary Clinton have grown rich and powerful, largely on the strength of the Black vote. Yet, the Clintons are responsible for increased poverty and incarceration and much of Wall Street’s global and domestic predations. That’s why “the big bankers love Clinton, and by and large they want her to be president” – and why Blacks should shun them like the plague.

Hillary Clinton’s Support Base as Bogus as US Democracy

by Eric Draitser

As some very perceptive men have written, the rich rule largely by “manufactured consent.” It turns out that much of Hillary Clinton’s consenting base of support is fictional: “the majority of her Twitter fans, and indeed her social media following in general, are completely fake.” The same was true of Barack Obama’s twitter following: 53 percent fake accounts. Election results and the causes of war and economic crises are also mainly bogus.

Some Thoughts on Cuban Resistance to US Ideological/Political War

by Arnold August

What does it mean when American flags appear on the streets of Havana? Is President Obama winning his war against Cuban socialism by non-military means? “Obama confirmed once again that the US is dispensing with openly antagonistic tactics, in favor of diplomatic tactics that he hopes will attain the goal of snuffing out the Cuban Revolution.” The Cuban people, themselves, are engaged in a great debate about their future – and ours.

Ecocide in the Niger Delta

by Peter Donatus

The majority of refugees come from war and conflict zones, illegitimate states, areas of natural disasters and economically weak countries. In many cases, companies from the West destroy people’s livelihoods by acting ruthlessly. In Nigeria, the oil extraction and production has devastating consequences for the people living in the Niger Delta. But the Geneva Convention on Refugees is not effective in this case.

Rwanda: Genocide Included Hutus Massacred by Kagame Forces

Ann Garrison's picture

by Ann Garrison 

The Rwandan Genocide is commemorated in Rwanda and at the United Nations as “the genocide against the Tutsi.” However, there is ample evidence that hundreds of thousands of Hutus, as well as Tutsis, died in the Rwandan massacres.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of April 25, 2016

Charter Schools: Bad for Education

“On the whole, charter schools do not perform better than public schools, even though public school are being defunded and demonized all the time,” said Dr. Shawgi Tell, professor of education at Nazareth College, Rochester, New York, and author of Charter School Report Card. Whether test scores improve or not, charter schools are bad schooling policy because “they represent privatization and marketization of education.”

Youth Incarceration Down, But Racial Disparities Increase

In the past decade, overall rates of youth incarceration have been cut in half, but disparity in Black youth incarceration has gone up by 15 percent, according to Josh Rovner, of The Sentencing Project. Rovner is an author of the new report, “Racial Disparities in Youth Arrests and Commitments.” He said young people are committing less crime. “There’s fewer kids being driven into the system in the first place,” said Rovner. However, Black teenagers are still more likely to be detained, prosecuted and committed to juvenile facilities than whites.

Million Student March Against Massive Debt

“Just last year, a million students defaulted on their student loan payments,” said Darletta Scruggs, an activist with the Million Students March and a member of the Socialist Alternative Party. “You can’t file bankruptcy on it, and our government will start garnishing your wages after a certain time. There are people whose Social Security checks are being garnished because of past student debt,” said Scruggs, speaking to host Solomon Comissiong, of Your World Report.

Global Rich Play “Shell Games” with Wealth

The now infamous “Panama Papers” revealed how elites from around the world hide their money in offshore tax havens. Americans were conspicuous by their relative absence because the U.S. provides lots of hiding places for ill-gotten gains. “The United States is a tax haven for global wealth,” said Chuck Collins, senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies and author of the article, “Panama Papers Expose the Hidden Wealth of the World’s Super-Rich.” Said Collins: “If you’re a small business in the U.S. and you have to compete against a global company that’s playing these shell games, and you’re paying your fair share of taxes and they’re not, that’s an unlevel playing field.”

Hillary’s Conspiracies Against Democracy in the Americas

Back in 2009, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton “pretended it wasn’t a coup” when the Honduran military overthrew the country’s elected president, said Mark Weisbrot, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. Clinton’s charade “helped the coup government dictatorship consolidate itself.” The U.S. has encouraged the “silent coup” in Brazil, where corporatist lawmakers are trying to impeach the left-wing  president. “We know that the United States has always wanted to get rid of the left governments” in the region, said Weisbrot.

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The Sandernista Journey: An Epic Confrontation with Corporate Power, or a Slow Fade

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Will Bernie Sanders’ supporters “collapse from demoralization, or resolve to confront the corporate beast with ferocity” in Philadelphia and beyond? The real battle of 2016 is about the duopoly, which tells Blacks there is “no contradiction in being in the same party as the former president who put more Blacks in prison than any other,” and urges staunch unionists to support the clique that has exported their jobs. Sanders and Trump are mere players in the larger drama.

Will Bernie's Burnout Lead To A New Movement? Maybe, Maybe Not.

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Will there be a new movement born from the ashes of Bernie Sanders' failed campaign? Some think so, citing the broad popularity of his issues and the growing numbers of his core demographic. But few of those imagining new political formations outside the two capitalist parties talk much about how such movements and parties will be financed or led.

 
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Freedom Rider: Not Feeling the Bern

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Democratic Party liberals that have rallied around Bernie Sanders see awesome meaning and world-shaking significance in their champion’s most mundane actions and mealy-mouth statements. It’s easy to root for anyone that runs against Clinton, one of America’s least-liked personalities. “Her presence creates mass revulsion, and first Obama and now Sanders moved up in voter preference when given an opportunity to make a case before the public.”

There’s Only One Cure for Chicago Police Lawlessness: Black Community Control

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel thinks he can squelch Black rage against the police by appointing a Black cop as superintendent. But the new top cop climbed the ranks of a force that has “no regard for the sanctity of life when it comes to people of color.” He’s part of the problem, not the solution. Young activists demand nothing less than community control of the police.

 
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Was Libya a Mistake or a Planned Imperialist Catastrophe?

by Danny Haiphong

The U.S.-led regime change in Libya failed to create a new regime, but did succeed in killing thousands of people and destroying the economy and infrastructure of Africa’s most prosperous society. “Imperialism’s Libya debacle ignited chaos throughout the region that it can no longer control.” Obama’s “mistake” was his failure to harness the events he set in motion. “Obama wasn't regretful because it happened, but because he got caught.”

Libya: Hillary’s War, the Empire’s Mistake

by Farooque Chowdhury

There is no question that Hillary Clinton was the main culprit in the destruction of Libya. However, it was the Empire’s war, not Hillary’s. She was simply the chief instigator in the Obama regime. One can also identify the Libya aggression as a part of Obama’s Africa War, which has claimed millions of lives. Obama blames his allies and his advisors, but the Libya disaster shows the Empire – while still horribly lethal – is in a state of decay.

Hundreds Arrested in Washington’s “Democracy Spring”

by Chris Hedges

The corporate media has staged a blackout of massive protests against the rule of the rich, involving “the largest number of arrests at the Capitol in decades” – just one more example that the nation is in the grips of a “corporate coup d’état.” This “Democracy Spring” sets the stage for a summer of popular discontent. “It is imperative to protest in Cleveland and Philadelphia during the Republican and Democratic conventions later this year.”

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