BA_Report 27 June 2012: Re-Open Cointelpro / ATL Plantation Politics / Race Talk Taboo

26 June 2012 — Black Agenda Report News, commentary and analysis from the black left

Black On The Old Plantation

A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon
Metro Atlanta is now the second largest concentration of African-descended people in North America. But with civil rights organizations firmly in corporate pockets, it’s still a spot where the racist corporations like Southern Companies feel free and unashamed to celebrate their history of theft and plunder and future prospects of the same. What does that say about the state of black leadership, about all of us?

Re-Open COINTELPRO Investigation: If the Sioux Can Seek Justice, Why Can’t Blacks?

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
The Pine Ridge, South Dakota, Oglala Sioux have convinced the U.S. Justice Department to re-examine 50 possible political killings, from the mid-Seventies, some of which are surely linked to the FBI’s infamous COINTELPRO. The program registered its biggest body count among African Americans, but Black Misleaders have made “no serious effort to exhume the full body of the program’s crimes, much less prosecute the guilty, or free the framed, or compensate the victims, or rewrite the lies of national history.” 
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Freedom Rider: Racism is the Issue

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley
No matter what the facts say, Blacks are forbidden to blame race for…anything. That’s the meaning of a post-racial society: race is banned from discourse, while racism carries on as usual. Worsening Black unemployment in New York? The New York Times takes note of the numbers, but won’t even consider that racism might be a factor. In the Age of Obama, “pointing out that racism is still very much alive is akin to pointing out that the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes.” It just isn’t done. 

Georgia Prison Hunger Strikers Endure, Call GA Governor at 404-656-1776, and Fast on Monday July 2

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon
Since July 11, at least ten, and possibly more prisoners at Jackson GA have refused food, vowing to fast till death if they cannot receive medical care, visitation and fair, transparent status reviews. The state of Georgia is adamant, reportedly threatening the prisoners with death where they are rather than even hospitalize or closely monitor their deteriorating condition. 
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 A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
Barack Obama’s top African American aide assures Black journalists that the president has “genuine love” for the Black community. It is an insubstantial line of inquiry, the product of “an infantile obsession with the inner world of the Obamas that is wholly disconnected from the real world of economic policy, and of war and peace.” Unfortunately, in the Age of Obama, Steve Harvey, the “professional media ignoramus,” passes for a journalist.

The Real “Obama Effect” – Not the Movie

 A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford
African Americans have lost, by some measures, two generations of gains since the onset of the “Silent Depression” in the early 2000s. So profound is the decline, “nothing but the most wrenching and thorough social transformation – something like a revolution – offers any hope of eventual economic parity with whites.” But the “Obama Effect” convinces many Blacks that, despite the evidence, the African American condition has actually improved under Obama.” It is a fatal delusion.

The GOP’s Tired, Poor Huddled Masses

by Sikivu Hutchinson
Having based much of American exceptionalist mythology on the cult of white immigrant “values” – and the matching slander that African Americans are values-poor – the Right will increasingly “ratchet up classic divide and conquer narratives tied to bootstrapping and a racialized mythos of hard work.” That suits many Latinos just fine. “Despite being of mixed black, Asian, Indian and European ancestry the majority of Latinos in the U.S. identify racially as white.” Plus, “Latino parishioners are fueling a resurgence of Pentecostalism in the U.S. and filling in the gaps of an aging white demographic in decline.” 
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Africa’s Deadly Spy Infestation

by Mark P. Fancher
The expanding U.S. spy infrastructure in Africa, including a network of landing strips to service a fleet of intelligence-gathering aircraft, is inherently hostile to African self-dermination. That’s because “those who dictate U.S. intelligence policy make decisions on the basis of where access to oil and valuable minerals is threatened, or where an African leader has in some way resisted the imperialist program.” Washington is establishing the structures to recolonize Africa, in the guise of anti-terrorism. 
by Jasmyne A. Cannick
Black lives are lost due to a “stigma we have cultivated and seemingly embraced in the Church, our homes, and among our family and friends.” For many of us, fear is stronger than science. 



Starving For Change: Hunger Strike Underway In Georgia’s Jackson State Prison, Day 15

by BAR manging editor Bruce A. Dixon
18 months ago, black, brown and white Georgia prisoners staged a courageous protest demanding wages for work, educational opportunities, transparency in probation reviews and more. State officials unleashed a wave of exemplary brutality that continues to this day, away from the eyes of the public. It’s time to turn our eyes where they belong — at the crimes committed with our money and in our name, in our prisons and jails. And think about a fast on the outside, July 2, in solidarity with the hunter strikers inside Georgia‘s prisons. 


 Abolish – Don’t Tweet – Stop-and-Frisk
As popular anger rises against New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s draconian policing policies, “we must avoid being sidetracked by politicians, preachers or anybody else who might want to lead it into sit-downs and negotiations with the mayor and the police commissioner,” said Carl Dix, a founder of Stop Stop-and-Frisk. “The challenge” is to reject “some surface reform, some tweets, to a racist, illegal policy,” he said. Stop-and-frisk, “a pipeline to mass incarceration,” has to go.
Contemptible: Holder, Obama and the Congress
We can openly admit that this attorney general and this president are Black and the congressmen going after them are a bunch of racists,” and still “condemn abuses of power” by President Obama and Eric Holder,” said David Swanson, publisher of the influential website The House committee that charged Holder with contempt in a gun trafficking scheme acted “hypocritically,” said Swanson. However, “you have a president who has been claiming state secrets powers in courts…to protect himself and his predecessors and their corporate allies, far and away beyond anything Bush or Cheney ever tried.”
A “Human Rights” Approach to Public Schooling
Parents and communities and students must participate in all decisions that affect the right to education,” said Ellen Raider, of ICOPE, the Independent Commission on Public Education, in New York City. High drop-out rates violate the “human right to the full development of each child, to its fullest potential. It’s the new Jim Crow, as Michelle Alexander says.” Charter schools have been “used as a wedge to separate parents in Black and Latino communities,” said Raider. Meanwhile, the Coalition for Public Education has established the Paul Robeson Freedom School, in Brooklyn, to provide “education for liberation,” said spokesman Rodney Deas.
A U.S. Chapter for ILPS
Twenty-eight United States organizations have become the newest country-chapter of the International League of People’s Struggle. “We cannot succeed, either as an anti-war movement or as a movement against injustice in this country, without being united with our sisters and brothers around the world,” said U.S. chapter spokesperson Bill Dores.
Congo President Shares Blame for Genocide
Evidence mounts of Rwandan complicity in violence that has killed six million people in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 1996. However, DRC President Joseph Kabila is also part of the problem, said Jacques Bahati, policy analyst for the Africa Faith and Justice Network, based in Washington. If Congo had an “efficient and effective government, they could set up an army to secure its borders,” said Bahati. Rwanda gets away with destabilizing Congo because “it has a very good army” and is a close ally of the United States.
Western Heads of State, Including Obama, Guilty of High Crimes
The Pan-African Solidarity Hague Committee, comprised of activists from throughout the Diaspora, delivered a petition to the International Criminal Court charging the heads of state of the U.S. and other NATO countries with war crimes and crimes against humanity in Libya, Ivory Coast, Haiti, and in the “targeting and persecution of Black people in the United States,” said human rights lawyer Roger Wareham. “We have no illusions that the ICC is going to take our evidence, which is rock-solid,” said Wareham. “Of the 26 case that are before the Criminal Court, all involve Africans.” The ICC “has become a tool for the West to recolonize Africa.”
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