Black Agenda Report for 4 September 2013: Obama Warlike as Bush, US Chemical Warfare, Obama’s Accomplices

4 September 2013 — Black Agenda Report

This week in Black Agenda Report

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Most of the planet recoils from President Obama’s plans to smash the Syrian state – as do a majority of Americans. “The First Black U.S. President now finds himself more alone in the world than George Bush, and with even less support at home.”

A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by Bruce A. Dixon

How can the US proclamation that it intends to intervene militarily in Syria to protect civilians from chemical warfare be taken seriously, when the US has slaughtered and poisoned hundreds of thousands with chemical weapons itself, in Vietnam, Iraq and elsewhere?

US, the Biggest User of Chemical Weapons in History Asserts “Right To Protect” Syria

A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by Bruce A. Dixon

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

When it comes to Syria, President Obama is no abider of laws foreign or domestic, and no peacemaker either. The US won’t share its supposed evidence of Syrian nerve gas use with anybody, and its threatened US military strikes can only widen and prolong the proxy war. The US may intend to reduce Syria to the same state permanent state of war, chaos and misery as it engineered in Somalia.

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

Inside the U.S. information bubble, the conspiracy of lies about Syria is nearly seamless. “Obama has no reason to fear that his tall tales will be presented as anything other than fact” because corporate media and the two corporate parties speak the same Orwellian language. Assad is the immediate target, but the common enemy is the rule of law, domestic and international.

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Obama’s twisted view of Black people and their history was on full display at the March on Washington anniversary. The president spewed slanders and lies, conjuring up welfare queens, crazed Black militants and his old stand-by, bad Black parents. “To put it bluntly, the First Black President gave a very good standup impression of a racist white man.”

by BAR editor and columnist Ajamu Baraka

So-called “humanitarian” military intervention is nothing more than “a convenient cover for rationalizing and justifying continued Euro-American global hegemony through the use of armed interventions to refashion local realities in line with Western geopolitical interests” – racist, imperial domination by another name. The U.S. has deployed the doctrine to become “the quintessential Rogue State.”

by Paul Street

President Obama offered the crowds at the March on Washington commemoration…nothing, except the fact of a Black presidency. That’s all he’s ever offered. The question is: “What good to black Americans is a first black president who brings them nothing more than the fleeting symbolic satisfaction of his technically black presence in the White House.”

by Dr. Wilmer J. Leon, III

The 1963 and 2013 marches on Washington shared many of the same issues, but took place in very different political contexts. Fifty years ago, a deep and broad movement pressured Congress and presidents to accede to Black demands. President Obama’s speech at last week’s gathering “did not propose any substantive legislative initiatives to address the suffering of today.”

by Mark P. Fancher

Newly re-elected Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe has again defied the imperial wrath of the U.S. and Great Britain, with his announcement “that the government will seize foreign banks and mines and redistribute them to local investors.” Such actions can get killed, but Mugabe is no easy target for the West’s secret services. He has a popular base, and a loyal armed forces.

by Obi Egbuna Jr.

A giant passed into history the day before Dr. Martin Luther King made his “Dream” speech in 1963. W.E.B. Du Bois had broken with a Democratic president 15 years before. “This put Dr. Du Bois in the exact same position that Dr. King was in when he decided losing back door access to Lyndon Johnson’s White House was a small price to pay in order to stand on the side of peace and justice.

by Raymond Nat Turner

Drone Man “tagged” you in a note

He wants you to get out the vote

Like tubes down a “detainee” throat

by Reverend Reynard N. Blake, Jr.

MLK wouldn’t be smiling at him

He’d be crying

Present-day marches

In DC he would not attend

If he had to share a dais with Obama

He would defy the views of Obama

He’d pray for him

Call him a stone-cold killer

UNAC: Stop Obama’s Syria War

“There’s no basis for it, whatsoever: it’s against international law, it’s against UN conventions, it’s illegal, immoral and has to be stopped,” said Marilyn Levin, of the United National Anti-War Coalition, which has organized demonstrations against President Obama’s planned attack on Syria. “What they’re trying to do is regime change, to get a government that is compliant with the United States.”

POP Rallies Against “Re-Run” of Iraq Attack

The People’s Organization for Progress rallied against Obama’s war plans, in Newark, New Jersey. “Our opposition is in line with the Black community, which I am certain would oppose another war,” said POP chairman Larry Hamm. “But, it’s also important to note that a majority of the people in the country oppose it. This whole situation seems to be a re-run of the prelude to the war in Iraq.”

March on Washington Commemoration an “Obscenity”

The 50th anniversary of the March on Washington “was a government-corporate affair, sponsored by Pepsi-Cola, Coca-Cola and everybody that could give Al Sharpton and the people that were organizing that march a check,” said veteran South Carolina activist and writer Kevin Alexander Gray. “It was a farce, it was an obscenity. The people were props. There was no demand on the administration,” said Gray. “Sharpton is the administration’s yard dog.”

Denied Mic, Dream Defender Says Youth are “Ready” to Challenge System

Philip Agnew, a leader of the Dream Defenders occupying Florida’s State Capital, circulated the speech he would have given to the March on Washington crowd if he and other young people had not been cut from the speakers list: “I’d tell you that millions of young people and queer people and poor people and people of color are asking, What do we do with all this anger, this fear, this disappointment? For 50 years we’ve wandered and wondered: Where are the youth? … Peace over profit, revolution over revenue, and all peace and power to the people! Just watch – we’re ready.”

Fast Food Workers Press for Living Wage

Fast food workers held job actions at 1,000 locations in 60 cities last week, demanding a $15 an hour living wage and union representation. “We think that the real people mooching off the system are the corporations,” said Kyle Kordsmeier, an organizer with the Interfaith Workers Network, in Memphis. “If we paid people a living wage, it would save us healthcare costs, welfare, food stamps. Ultimately, what we’re fight for is for them to pick up that tab. They’re the ones who are stealing our money.”

White Power, Black Pain in New Orleans

According to a report by Loyola University law professor Bill Quigley on the state of New Orleans, the city “is whiter than it was when Katrina hit, there’s more renters; there are jobs, but they’ve moved out to the suburbs,” and Teach for America instructors “have taken the jobs of primarily African American teachers whose union was broken and replaced by charter schools.” New Orleans’ city hall, city council and school board are all controlled by whites, although Blacks comprise a “technical” majority of the population, said Quigley, whose report is titled “Katrina Pain Index: New Orleans Eight Years Later.”

Will Banks be Bailed-Out, or Depositors Bailed-in?

British and American banking officials are drawing up plans to treat large depositors in U.S. banks as “investors” whose funds might be seized – “bailed-in” – in a financial crisis. Dodd-Frank legislation prohibits bailouts of banks with taxpayer money. However, Left Business Observer editor Doug Henwood says: “It stretches credulity to think that this government would ever let big investors, big depositors, big bondholders take major hits in a banking crisis. I am utterly convinced they would find some way around this law and save the skins of the well-heeled.”

Tiny Eritrea Maintains Self-Reliance

Zimbabwe and Eritrea, a small country of 6 million people on the Red Sea, are the only nations in Africa that have avoided entanglement with the U.S. Africa Military Command, AFRICOM. Eritrea also refuses so-called foreign “aid” in favor of national self-reliance. “It was critical to build a self-reliant state” after 30 years of war for independence, said Simon Tesfamariam, an Eritrean-American activist and writer, speaking on Your World News. “If you look within your own resources, you’ll find a way to make it. But, all this is impossible without the unity of the Eritrean people.”