It’s Time for an African Politics of Resistance and Solidarity

by Yash Tandon

The Trump phenomenon points to a civilizational shift; namely, the slow, painful demise of the Western Empire. If this shift breaks down the European Union, dismantles NATO, weakens the Empire’s financial control over the global South, and opens a space for a new moral and political order to emerge, then it is an opportunity all revolutionary forces must seize.

Canada Out of NATO! Québec City Murders of Muslims Rooted in War on Terror

by Ann Garrison

Canadians demonstrated in Ontario, to expressed both their revulsion to the private terror of the man that murdered six Muslims in Quebec City and their opposition to Canada’s complicity in U.S. state terror against the Muslim world. These U.S.-led wars are designed to steal targeted nations’ “energy resources and to further encircle those countries that the U.S. deems its competitors on the global chessboard, including Russia, China, and Iran.”

Obama & Trump/Democrats & Republicans: Exposing the Similarities to Break Dependence on the Corporate Political Parties

by Solomon Comissiong

“Many who voted for Hillary Clinton, and who are now protesting, would have never protested her actual imperialist legacy, had she been elected.” The same goes for Obama supporters. Democrats and Republicans are joined in their subservience to corporate masters, and to imperialist wars. “It is imperative that the connections between Democrats and Republicans be made, especially regarding foreign policy. 

Black Agenda Radio for Week of February 6, 2017

Protests in Dixie Against Trump’s “White Supremacist Government”

Hundreds gathered in Columbia, South Carolina, to protest President Trump’s ban on refugees and visitors from seven mostly Muslim countries. “We’ve got to put pressure on Republican legislators who support Trump, and the business people that support this rightward movement that’s happening in this country,” said author and activist Kevin Alexander Gray. “The whole idea of having a white supremacist government -- which, in South Carolina, we now a lot about, because this is the ideological home of white supremacy in America.”

One Out of 9 U.S. Inmates Serving Life

Despite “modest” reductions of about 5 percent in the overall U.S. prison population since 2009, the number and proportion of inmates serving life sentences continues to increase. A new study by The Sentencing Project, titled “Delaying a Second Chance: The Declining Prospects for Parole on Life Sentences,” puts much of the blame on politicians and parole boards. “Legislatures have increased minimum sentence requirements that people have to serve before a parole board can even review someone for parole eligibility,” said study author Dr. Nazgol Ghandnoosh. Back in the 1980s, a person sentenced to life for murder could expect to get out in about 11 and a half years, but someone similarly sentenced in the 21st century would be likely to spend more than 23 years -- twice as long -- behind bars. “Parole boards are granting fewer paroles or refusing to increase them, even though they’re seeing people so much later in their sentence,” said Ghandnoosh. Longer actual terms for lifers results in longer sentences for everyone else, she said. More than 160,000 U.S. prison inmates are serving life sentences, 50,000 of them with no possibility of parole.

“Collective Punishment” of Prisoners

Kerry “Shakaboona” Marshall is one of the thousands of lifers sentenced for crimes committed when they were juveniles. Marshall has already spent a quarter century behind bars. He edits a prison magazine and is a correspondent for Prison Radio, but could not reach his editors on the outside because of a lockdown following a fight among a few inmates at Rockview prison, in Pennsylvania. Such “collective punishment,” he told Prison Radio’s Noelle Hanrahan, cuts prisoners off from their support structures. “Without family bonds, it’s hard to return to society, and it’s hard for prisoners to maintain connection with their lawyers to present a proper defense for their legal appeals,” he said.

Mumia Interviews Eddie Africa, of Move

The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, introduced his worldwide audience to fellow inmate Eddie Africa, sentenced, along with eight other members of the Move organization, to 30 to 100 years in the 1978 death of a Philadelphia police officer. Nearing 70, Eddie Africa urges young fathers in prison to maintain close contact with their children. “Use this time to talk to them, write to them, so they don’t go the path their parents went,” running with gangs.

A Plan for Community Control of NYC Police

The Campaign for Community Control Over the Police, a coalition of 26 anti-police terror organizations, will hold the first of several “Open House Conferences” on February 18, at Manhattan’s All Souls Unitarian Church. The coalition has developed a four-tier proposal to rein in the cops, beginning with mandatory residency in the precinct in which they work. “That way, they have a vested interest in the community, their children go to the same schools, they shop in the same stores, and they will actually care about the community, rather than act as an occupying army,” said Campaign outreach chairperson, Bro. Shep Olugbala, in an interview with Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser. Precinct commanders would be elected by the neighborhood, just as “you have sheriffs who are elected by the community” in smaller towns. An elected Community Police Control Board would have subpoena powers and the right to hire and fire police, and an elected special prosecutor, “totally independent of the district attorney’s office,” would “investigate and prosecute allegations of serious criminal conduct by police officers,” said Olugbala.

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.
 
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If Americans Truly Cared About Muslims, They Would Stop Killing Them by the Millions

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Americans welcome only token numbers of people from countries devastated by U.S. wars of aggression. Donald Trump’s current ban on travelers affects nations that were already targeted by President Obama, “a perfect example of the continuity of U.S. imperial policy in the region.” The memo from State Department “dissenters” contains “not a word of support for world peace, nor a hint of respect for the national sovereignty of other peoples.”

#ProgressiveHypocrite of the Month for February 2017: Former Clinton-era Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

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

Former Clinton UN Ambassador & Secretary of State and current global corporate consigliere Madeleine Albright championed the 1990s US blockade of Iraq which killed half a million Iraqi children. Now she says the Statue of Liberty has tears in its eyes, and vows to “register as a Muslim” to protest the evil policies of Donald Trump. Albright should register as an Iraqi toddler in 1995. She’s our #ProgressiveHypocrite of the month for Feburary 2017.

 
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Freedom Rider: Trump is the Less Effective Evil

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Donald Trump’s predecessors, Bush and Obama, paved the way for President Chito’s persecution of people from Syria, Libya, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia, Iran, and Iraq, all of which “have been attacked with military action, proxy wars and sanctions.” Trump simply continues a U.S. policy that “makes countries unlivable and then tells fleeing victims that the door is shut.” Anti-Trumpism is grossly inadequate. The whole system is evil -- Democrats included.

Why White Folks Love Hidden Figures

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Marsha Adebayo

Hidden Figures is based on a vintage Hollywood formula of uncomplaining black victims and white saviors. “The idea of glamorizing the fact that these women didn’t complain plays into the narrative that ‘free will’ was involved in their decision,” when, in fact, raw white state power dictated the terms of racial interaction. “What is missing is the power of the resistance movement in the 1960’s, the invisible hand moving behind the benevolence.”

Inauguration Amnesia: The Context of Obama's Failure to Pardon US Political Prisoners

by Danny Haiphong

Barack Obama commuted the sentences of a few political prisoners, but pardoned none, leaving countless activists behind bars on trumped up federal charges. The very existence of political prisoners is not only a crime, but also a product the “rise of the mass incarceration state and the non-profit industrial complex, permanent austerity and joblessness, the growth of a new class of Black misleaders to soil the political waters,” and endless war.

Democrats, Including Bernie Sanders, Won’t Fight for Medicare for All

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

If there is one political project that commands overwhelming support among Democrats -- plus large minorities of Republicans – it is Medicare for All. But Democratic leaders insist that all their energies should be directed at salvaging bits and pieces of Obamacare. The truth is, the party bosses oppose single payer health care -- which is why they have backed fraudulent, bait-and-switch schemes based on private insurers.

 
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Democrats Manipulate the Movement that Should Leave Them Behind

by Ann Garrison

Much of what passes for the Left in the U.S. is either an extension of the Democratic Party or a project of non-profit organizations funded by the One Percent. As BAR’s Bruce Dixon told author Ann Garrison, the genuine left needs “to create a movement that will not be hijacked by Democrats and will not just be warming up the crowds for Cory Booker or whoever the Democratic sheepdog and corporate candidate is in 2020.”

The State of Revolutionary Movements and Marxism in South Africa

by Patrick Bond

In South Africa, even the neoliberal Black ruling party, the African National Congress (ANC), speaks the rhetorical language of Marxism. The ANC is challenged by NUMSA, the continent’s biggest union, which vows to launch a United Front for genuine socialism, while the Economic Freedom Fighters party has made steady electoral gains. However, South Africa’s “far left has failed to attract working-class membership, much less leadership.”

A Lesson on Peace in our Troubled Trump Times from W.E.B. DuBois

by Werner Lange

In the last chapter of his brilliant life, W.E.B. DuBois was a leading anti-war activist. At the height of McCarthyism, DuBois and his comrades in the Peace Information Center were denounced as “traitors” and “anti-American” for declaring that first-use of nuclear weapons is a crime against humanity.

An Afar Wedding in Eritrea

by Thomas C. Mountain

Eritrea, a small African nation on the Red Sea, is surrounded by sectarian religious strife, yet maintains a remarkable amity and unity among its various peoples. Roughly half Christian and half Muslim, Eritrea shuns military alliances and economic dependency on the West. To keep the peace, the government makes sure that “no Da'esh or Pat Robertson ‘born again’ foreign funded religious centers are allowed.”

Black Agenda Radio for Week of January 30, 2017

Obamacare is Doomed; It’s Time for Single Payer

Instead of attempting to salvage the doomed and fatally flawed Affordable Healthcare Act, progressives should seize the time and push for single payer health care, said pediatrician and political activist Dr. Margaret Flowers. “Eighty percent of Democratic voters want a single payer health care system, and now polls are showing that even Republicans, particularly those with lower incomes, are moving into majority support for National Improved Medicare for All.” The push, however, must come from the people, not the Democrats. “Even Sen. Sanders has backed down and is saying, Let’s protect the Affordable Care Act now and we’ll fight for single payer later,” said Flowers. The HOPE campaign -- “Health Over Profit for Everyone” -- begins February 1.

On Reparations, It’s Not a Question of “If,” but “How”

There’s been a substantive change in H.R. 40, the Reparations legislation Rep. John Conyers has introduced every year since 1989. Originally, the bill called for a study of whether Black Americans had been injured by slavery and Jim Crow. But now, according to Kamm Howard, chairman of the legislative committee of N’COBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America, the bill “begins with the focus that reparations are due, and how does this government engage in reparative initiatives.” He said the 2001 United Nations World Conference on Racism, in Durban, South Africa, made clear the enslaving nations’ “obligation to make repairs” to descendants of the victims. Howard helped Rep. Conyers’ staff reframe the legislation.

Will Democrats Help Trump Renegotiate NAFTA?

“If President Trump wants to enact a renegotiated NAFTA, he’s going to have to work with the Democrats to figure out how to build a majority” on Capitol Hill, “which will be comprised of most of the Democrats and a handful of Republicans,” said Lori Wallach, director of Global Trade Watch for Public Citizen. President Bill Clinton pushed the NAFTA corporate trade deal through Congress against the wishes of majorities of Democrats. “The reality is, you will never get a majority of the Republicans in Congress to change the old NAFTA,” said Wallach. NAFTA might not end in a renegotiation. “If President Trump continues to be so disrespectful to other world leaders,” Mexico or the U.S. might simply withdraw from NAFTA.

Courtrooms as Political Forums

Veteran Black activist Efia Nwangaza had been looking forward to a jury trial on charges of blocking a Greenville, South Carolina, intersection two years ago to protest a Missouri grand jury’s failure to indict the cop that killed Michael Brown, in Ferguson. However, Greenville authorities dropped the charges the day before her trial, depriving Nwangaza of the opportunity to put on a political defense. “The purpose of the demonstration was to call attention to police impunity and their slaughtering of us from one end of the country to the other,” said Nwangaza, director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination and a leader of the state’s Stop Mass Incarceration Network. With the courtroom venue no longer available, Nwangaza and her defense team will now bring the issues before a people’s tribunal and “strengthen the cause that has been advanced by the Uhuru Movement for Black community control of the police.”

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.
 
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Cory Booker, Corporate Hooker: The Perfect Establishment Opposition to Donald Trump

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

After losing the White House to the most unpopular president in history, Democrats have lots to say, but even more to avoid saying, lest they expose themselves as every bit as much corporate tools as their Republican foes. New Jersey Senator Cory Booker is their ideal spokesperson, a cynical, photogenic and utterly dependable corporate whore who can be counted on to keep the anti-Trump rabble safely inside the Democrats' big stinky tent.

Trump Will Probably Dump Police Department “Consent Decrees”

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Donald Trump is unlikely to approve of any more “consent decrees” to “reform” police departments. But this will be no great loss. As practiced, “the scheme very much resembles former Attorney General Holder’s coddling of criminal banks, under which the offending institutions were fined, but not criminally charged or compelled to admit guilt.” In most cities, police killings of Blacks actually increased or stayed the same after federal intervention.

Freedom Rider: Democrats Attack Trump from the Right

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Democratic Party has devolved into complete irrationality and irrelevance, sucking its Black followers into the idiotic abyss. “Years of capitulation to corporate interests and to Barack Obama have killed black politics,” and turned the Congressional Black Caucus into mindless CIA groupies who “use the phrase ‘intelligence community’ as if they were hypnotized cult members. Democrats carry signs that threaten war, and call it “protest.”

Imagine a Women’s March Against Black Genocide and the Struggle of Tennie White

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Marsha Adebayo

The myth of Barack Obama’s concern for Black people masks the reality of his administration’s cynical service to corporate criminals. Tennie White, a heroic whistleblower, was railroaded to prison by Obama’s EPA for defending her community from environmental racism. Her persecution “must be seen as a part of a pattern and practice of criminalizing people who challenge corporate power.”

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