Blogs

Freedom Rider: Nancy Pelosi Sends Democrats Over a Cliff

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Democrats can’t serve their Black and working class base because they get their money from the 1%. “Their allegiance to global elites prevents them from making even small changes.” Democratic House Leader Nancy Pelosi brags that no change is coming because “we’re capitalist.” But Pelosi’s fund-raising power “won’t bring victory to a party that has been thoroughly discredited.”

Urban Shield: A Federal Protection Racket

by Ann Garrison

“Police repression is big business, heavily subsidized by the U.S. government, and promoted by “war games” enterprises like Urban Shield. “Israel, Bahrain, Qatar, and China have all sent police to learn about how to subdue their own populations.” Activists at a city council meeting in Berkeley, California, “unfurled a banner that read ‘Stop Urban Shield, End the Militarization of Our Communities” – and were promptly roughed up and arrested.

The Ghosts of Grenfell: Genocide in the Mainland of Capitalism

by Danny Haiphong

The fire that killed an unknown number of mainly Black and Asian Londoners has plunged Britain’s right-wing government deeper into crisis. Brits are connecting the capitalist dots. “Parliament has spent years enforcing austerity cuts on every public service that exists as a safety net for poor and working people,” leaving housing projects like Grenfell unsafe and unsound.

CARICOM Deals a Blow to US Plans for Regime Change in Venezuela

by Gerald A. Perreira

The US uses the Organization of American States to recruit Latin American allies for its campaign to overthrow the government of Venezuela. However, the Caribbean Community of nations rejected Washington’s regime change offensive, effectively telling the diplomats: “Your country and its government is no way fit to point the finger at anyone when it comes to infringement of democracy, democratic values and human rights.”

Cuba Will Not Bow to Trump’s Threats

by Minister Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla

In a retreat back into self-isolation, President Trump partially reversed his predecessor’s “opening” to Cuba. Surrounded by anti-Castro exiles, Trump claimed to act on behalf of human rights in Cuba. But the author, Cuba’s top diplomat, says his country will not be intimidated. “The United States government has no moral authority...there are numerous and systematic murders, brutality, and abuses by police, particularly against Afro-Americans.”

Herstory: The Soweto Uprising and the Erasure of Black Women

by Thando Sipuye

There are many distortions in the dominant narratives around the 1976 students’ uprising. One of the most critical of these is the persistent, subtle projection of that uprising as the exclusive initiative of young men, to the complete exclusion and erasure of the invaluable contributions and sacrifices of young women. This constitutes epistemic violence against Black women.

If You Embrace Assata, You Must Fight the Black Misleadership Class

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Donald Trump’s lynch party seeking the extradition of Assata Shakur from Cuba includes every U.S. president -- most especially Barack Obama, who doubled the bounty on her head and demanded “that a home-grown Black revolutionary and escaped political prisoner be returned to captivity.” As for the Congressional Black Caucus, there is “no chance that the CBC as a body will protest either Trump’s persecution of Shakur or his general policy on Cuba.”

Freedom Rider: UNAC Brings Power to the People

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The United National Anti-War Coalition, which held a national conference last weekend in Richmond, Virginia, “does not change its organizing principles based on who controls Congress or who sits in the White House Oval Office.” All oppressions are intertwined. “The fight for a living minimum wage and the fight against interventions abroad must therefore be addressed together because they are in fact part of a whole.”

Philando Castile, Charleena Lyles: The Body Count in the U.S. War against Black People Continues

by BAR editor and columnist Ajamu Baraka

Add the name of Charleena Lyles, a pregnant woman from Seattle, to the list of victims of the U.S. State. Her name will soon move down the column, since killer cops “are inherent in the logic of repression that has always characterized the relationship between the U.S. racist settler-state and black people.” Killing Black people comes easily, especially at this stage of capitalism in which their labor is no longer needed.

Capitalism Kills, Socialism Heals

by Danny Haiphong

Death is a for-profit enterprise. In defense of capitalism, the ruling classes are prepared to kill on a staggering scale. “It is estimated that since World War II, US wars have murdered between 20-30 million people worldwide.” The rich wage economic and political warfare against public health systems in every country under their control. In contrast, Cuban “life expectancy has gone up decades” since the 1959 revolution.

Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party, and the UK’s Socialist Surge

by Ann Garrison

The resurgence of a more genuinely “left” Labor Party under Jeremy Corbyn has lefty Americans wondering if the magic can be exported. It’s not likely, as long as the Democrats can sucker almost everyone to the left of Citibank. The UK may have a leftist prime minister before the U.S. gets a real left party. New elections could be called late this year, “which raises the possibility of Jeremy Corbyn becoming Prime Minister sooner rather than later.”

Mayor-elect Lumumba: Jackson “to be the Most Radical City on the Planet”

by Anna Wolfe

Chokwe Antar Lumumba and his supporters won a second chance to make Jackson, Mississippi, the city that tests the limits of what can be accomplished in a mostly Black city under U.S. bourgeois democracy. Like his father, who died less than a year before capturing city hall, the young Lumumba embraces the radical label. “We all need to be prepared to be as radical as the circumstances dictate we should be."

A Case for Reparations at the University of Chicago

by Ashley Finigan, Caine Jordan, Guy Emerson Mount, Kai Parker

The University of Chicago, the famous center of laissez-fair capitalist economics on the city’s South Side, was endowed by one of Mississippi’s worst slaveholders. Reparations are in order, but the process must be “a function of what black communities demand as payment to forgive an unforgivable debt.” The thief does not have the right to choose the method of restitution.

Trump Cuba Policy: What Will Happen in Coming Months?

by Arnold August

Donald Trump’s position on Cuba flies in the face not only of national and world opinion, but also the wishes of the U.S. corporate class, which generally wants more trade with the island. For example, “the powerful accommodations-networking firm Airbnb is not expected to take this lying down, nor are the major U.S. airlines companies or the giant online travel company Expedia.”

Ethiopia: Collective Punishment by Internet Clampdown

by Alemayehu G. Mariam

Shutting down and criminalizing use of the internet has become a weapon in the government’s cyber warfare strategy against the Ethiopian people, particularly the youth. The internet is making it exceedingly difficult for dictatorships to cling to power and rule tyrannically. It has created a walless, borderless, wireless, seamless, restless and fearless world.

Why Bernie Sanders is an Imperialist Pig

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Leftish Democrats insist they can reform the corporate-run, Russia-obsessed Democratic Party from the inside, but most pay little attention to war. However, “War is not a side issue in the United States; it is the central political issue, on which all the others turn.” Some think Bernie Sanders should run with the Peoples Party. But, “Sanders is a warmonger, not merely by association, but by virtue of his own positions.”

Freedom Rider: Under the Democrats’ Bus

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Democrats continue their decades-long lurch to the right. The party funds right-wing congressional candidates in hopes of appealing to Trump voters, but resists its own supporters’ calls for single payer health care and other reforms. The treachery provokes hardly a peep of complaint from Black politicians, who are busy searching for lurking Russians. Meanwhile, Barack Obama has been “hanging out with royalty in the United Kingdom.”

What is "the Resistance," Anyway?

by Danny Haiphong

Who is “resisting” what, and on whose behalf? Among folks that claim to be leftists, resistance has become a catch-all term that is “useless” – or worse – “without definition.” Much of the so-called resistance owes allegiance to Hillary Clinton, a true champion of the One Percent. The War Party’s troops also claim to be “resisters” -- resisting the very idea of peaceful coexistence with Russia and an end to U.S. regime-change wars.

Victory for the Black Struggle in Buenaventura, Colombia

A Report from the Black Alliance for Peace

The three-week strike in Buenaventura was a collective human rights struggle which challenged neoliberalism head on. “The strike involved 117 social organizations, from cargo boat operators, to taxi drivers, to business people, evangelical churches, women’s groups, young people’s and student groups and national and local organizations dedicated to the defense of the ethno-territorial rights of Afro-descendant and indigenous communities.”

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