Black Agenda Report for July 3, 2013: MHP, Joy-Ann Reid vs Wikileaks & the Constitution, Obama & Mandela: Dangerous Mythology

3 July 2013 — Black Agenda Report

This week in Black Agenda Report

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Gandhi once said that western civilization would be “a good idea.” So would black journalism. One white TV talking head said he was ready to arrest Glen Greenwald. Not to be outdone, MSNBC’s black talking heads too, are ready to personally scalp Wikileaks and put the cuffs on Edward Snowden. Public opinion, which favored Snowden early, has to be pushed in the administration’s direction. A dirty job, but somebody’s gotta do it.

By BAR Editor & Senior Columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Obamas’ visit to South Africa, for people of color on both sides of the Atlantic, is heavy on symbolism and photo-ops, but devoid of any substance for those who hunger and thirst for justice. The ANC won the flag at the end of apartheid, but South Africa’s white elite kept the land and the money, after allowing a few well-connected black faces into high places.

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

It should now be clear to everyone that “the advent of al-Qaida did not give rise to the U.S. surveillance regime.” 9/11 was merely a pretext for American state lawlessness. “The U.S. was already treating the whole planet as if it were occupied by enemy peoples.”

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Obama sees no irony in making a pilgrimage to Nelson Mandela’s place of political imprisonment, while holding 80,000 human beings in solitary confinement. “Racist South Africa’s treatment of Mandela and his co-revolutionists was downright benign and enlightened, compared to fate of U.S. prisoners who are deemed a threat to the prevailing order.”

by Ezili Dantò

When the U.S. overthrew Haiti’s government in 2004, Washington proclaimed the invasion a “humanitarian” enterprise. Now it turns out that Haiti’s earth and waters are filled with gold and oil. The U.S.-controlled World Bank has volunteered to help rewrite the Haitian constitution, to allow easier access for foreign extraction corporations. Haitians must, as always, “look out for themselves.”

by Raymond Nat Turner

Black South Carolina Congressman James Clyburn is angry about the NSA mass spying revelations – but not at the government. Clyburn thinks it’s all a conspiracy to “embarrass” the First Black President. “Baysicklee, he jus’ anotha white house hoe…”

Capitalism IS the Crisis, Part 3 of 4: Environmental Devastation

by Asad Ismi and Kristen Schwartz

For 500 years, capitalism has subjected the planet and its peoples to slavery, peonage, engineered famines, colonialism, recurrent economic crises, environmental devastation and unending wars.  Capitalism has killed more than a billion people, making it the greatest catastrophe humans have yet inflicted on each other and the planet.  30 minutes audio

by Courtenay Barnett

The recent British monetary settlement with elderly Kenyan survivors of British colonial repression sets a precedent for reparations to all of the Empire’s victims. “The Caribbean has a very strong case to be brought for reparations for the Atlantic African Slave Trade.”

Zimmerman Defense Engages in “Racist Bullying”

“They’re trying to put together a scenario that paints Trayvon as the aggressor” the night that George Zimmerman shot the teenager dead, said Carl Dix, of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network. The defense in the televised murder trial, in Sanford, Florida, has engaged in “a certain white supremacist condescension and bullying” of witness Rachel Jeantel, the young woman who was on the phone with Trayvon Martin during his fatal encounter with Zimmerman. “They’re playing into a certain white dislike and fear of an angry Black person, where the sister had a right to be angry, because she was being mistreated on the stand,” said Dix.

Lynne Stewart: Keep Up the Pressure

People’s lawyer Lynne Stewart, battling Stage Four breast cancer in her fourth year of a ten-year prison sentence for zealously defending her client in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, vows to continue her fight for compassionate release. The head of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons rejected her plea, claiming Stewart’s health was “improving.” “They are lying,” said Ralph Poynter, Stewart’s husband and comrade in activism. “There as been no improvement in the cancer in her lungs. They didn’t talk about her diabetes, they didn’t talk about her inability to move around” and her low white blood cell count. Poynter will lead demonstrations in New York and resume a vigil, in Washington. “I’m going to start building a fire in front of this White House,” he vowed – in line with Stewart’s wishes.

Snowden’s Gift to the World

If Ecuador or another country grants NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden asylum, “the whole world will benefit, because some of the revelations are that the U.S. is spying on civilians all over the world,” said Mark Weisbrot, co-director of the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research. “Snowden is fleeing political persecution, and Ecuador takes that very seriously.” Might the U.S. try to seize Snowden from sanctuary? “No, I don’t think so,” said Weisbrot. “There’s a lot of public support for what he did here in the United States, and most of the world sees him as a hero.”

U.S. Revs Up for Another Mideast War

Citing an “Emergency situation,” the United National Anti-War Coalition, UNAC, has called for National Days of Action against U.S, NATO and Israeli attacks on Syria, from now through July 17. “We need to keep working to keep the United States from starting a whole new war,” said UNAC’s Marilyn Levin. Washington is attempting to stage a replay of the “humanitarian” attack on Libya and the WMD-justified war on Iraq. “This is just phony,” said Levin, referring to U.S. claims that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons. “They always have to have a pretext.”

The West’s Crusade Against Mugabe

The U.S. is unrelentingly hostile to President Robert Mugabe’s government in Zimbabwe because Washington “opposes the very idea of political and economic independence in Africa,” said political analyst Eric Draitser, founder of the web site Mugabe and his ZANU-PF party “have really begun to exercise this independence” with a land redistribution program that has replaced 6,000 white landholders with 245,000 Black farmers, he said. Zimbabwe hold elections at the end of July. The West backs Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change, which Draiter called “the mouthpiece of the United States and the British,” the former colonial ruler.

Obama Finally Names Special Africa Envoy

Back in 2006, then-Senator Barack Obama won passage of his only significant piece of legislation, to prevent further destabilization of eastern Congo by its neighbors. The bill called for the appointment, within 60 days, of a U.S. Special Representative for the Great Lakes Region and the Democratic Republic of Congo. But President Obama only last month got around to naming former Democratic senator Russ Feingold to fill the job. “Although it is overdue, we are pleased that he has finally appointed this individual,” said Jacques Bahati, of the Africa Faith and Justice Network, in Washington, DC. “I suspect that the “Rwandan lobby” and “special interests” cause the delay, said Bahati.

Listen to this 55 minute radio show at Black Agenda Report…

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