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Black Agenda Radio - 11.11.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The Black Is Back Coalition recently marked it’s tenth year of agitation and organizing, with its annual march on the White House and a national conference in Washington DC; and, When did western Europe become wedded to the ideology of white supremacy? A Black scholar says the roots of anti-Blackness go back to the Middle Ages, when Black became synonymous with inferiority and evil in white minds.
Only two years ago, polls showed Senator Bernie Sanders was the most popular politician in the nation. But, these days, if the Democrat-oriented media mention Sanders’ presidential campaign at all, it is to malign and disparage him and his sweeping social and economic proposals. Sander supporters are calling it the “Bernie Blackout.” We spoke with noted political analyst Dr. Anthony Monteiro, a Duboisian scholar who works closely with the Philadelphia Saturday Free School. Monteiro says there’s a direct connection between corporate media treatment of Sanders and the general crisis of legitimacy afflicting late stage capitalism.
The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations recently celebrated its tenth anniversary with its traditional march on the White House, followed by a national conference. One of those who spoke was Jihad Abdulmumit, the chairperson of the National Jericho Movement, which fights for the rights of political prisoners. Abdulmumit is himself a former Black Panther Party political prisoner, and the Jericho Movement is a member organization of the Black Is Back Coalition.
In recent decades, scholars have dug much deeper into the historical roots of white supremacy in western Europe, and its spread throughout the colonized world. Much of that scholarship contends that white supremacy has its roots in the trans-Atlantic slave trade – that a racist ideology was created to justify the plundering of non-white peoples and the enslavement of Africans. But Cord Whitaker, a professor of English at Wellesley College, has written a book that maintains white supremacy goes back to the Middle Ages, centuries before Christopher Columbus. Whitaker’s book is titled, “Black Metaphors: How Modern Racism Emerged from Medieval Race-Thinking.“
|Nov 11, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.04.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Can a Black-Native American alliance bring the white supremacist, conquistador state to an end? An author and educator thinks so. Another writer believes that the climate crisis will create the political conditions that will defeat white supremacy. We’ll hear his theory, as well. And, political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal provides a lesson on the roots of the prison abolition movement.
Blacks have been voting overwhelmingly Democratic for more than two generations. For much of that period, the actual Black economic condition has deteriorated, relative to whites. But Joe Biden is running for president as if the past was great for Black people. We spoke with Malaika Jabali, a public policy attorney, writer, and activist, based in Brooklyn, New York. Jabali says the establishment Democrats are working on the wrong assumptions.
Scholars have written quite a bit about alliances between Blacks and Native Americans, resisting European conquest and enslavement in the Americas. But Tiffany King, an Assistant Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Georgia State University, has written a book that argues that Blacks and Native Americans still pose a threat to what she calls “the conquistador white settler nation.” Tiffany King’s book is titled, “The Black Shoals: Offshore Formations of Black and Native Studies.”
Climate change threatens to make much of life on Earth extinct, including human life. But educator and journalist Nicholas Powers thinks some good can come out of the mobilization to fight climate change. Powers is author of the book, “The Ground Below Zero: 9/11 to Burning Man, New Orleans to Darfur, Haiti to Occupy Wall Street.” Powers is also an associate professor of English at the State University of New York at Old Westbury. In a recent article for Truthout, Powers surmised that the climate crisis may create the political conditions to finally defeat white supremacy.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, presents this report on the roots of the current prison abolition movement.
|Nov 04, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.21.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Gay, lesbian and other LGBTQ persons have garnered more political support than ever. But what does that mean for poor Black and Brown LGBTQ young people who are homeless on the streets of New York? And, peace and national reconciliation may finally be on the horizon in Syria, after eight years of U.S.-regime-change warfare against that country. We’ll hear from Ajamu Baraka, of the Black Alliance for Peace.
There can be little doubt that the U.S. empire is in deep disarray – and it’s not all about Donald Trump. Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Philadelphia-based Duboisian scholar, says U.S. imperialism faces a multitude of crises, at home and abroad. Dr. Monteiro will be one of the speakers at Black Agenda Report’s 13th anniversary celebration, this Saturday, October 26th, at the People’s Forum, in New York City. The title of his talk will be, “Towards a Left that is Worthy of Black People and the Working Class.
Black Alliance for Peace lead organizer Ajamu Baraka will also speak at the Black Agenda Report anniversary affair. Baraka is an editor and columnist at BAR. We asked Baraka for his analysis of the situation in Syria, where the eight year long U.S. regime-change war appears to be unraveling. After years of collaboration with the United States, the Syrian Kurds have now realigned with the national government in Damascus. We asked Baraka if peace and national reconciliation is finally in the cards for Syria.
|Oct 21, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.14.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The struggle for adequate, quality food as an important part of Black self-determination; the fight against mass Black incarceration opens a new front in New York City; and, Venezuela is in an epic battle for socialism and national independence against the almighty Dollar.
The New York Times earned praise, and some criticism, for its recent “1619 Project” – a series of essays on the first Black slaves imported to Virginia, 400 years ago. We spoke with Josh Myers, a Howard University professor of African American Studies who delivered a lecture on the arrival of the first Africans in Jamestown. The question we posed to Myers was: If the arrival of Blacks as slaves in British America is viewed as the beginning of the Black saga, then the European colonial assault on Africa and most of the world is not part of the story. Black American slavery and oppression is depicted out of context.
U.S. sactions against Venezuela are ravaging that country’s economy, and have already caused the deaths of at least 40,000 people, due to shortages of medicine. Millions of Venezuelans have fled the country’s deteriorating economic conditions. Nicholas Evan Ayala is co-editor of Anti-Conquista, a journal that defends the Venezuelan revolution. We began our conversation with Ayala by asking him to translate the publication’s title, “Anti-Conquista.”
Food stores have abandoned Black communities across the United States, forcing residents to eat badly or travel to other neighborhoods to shop. Ashante Reese is a professor of anthropology at Spelman College, in Atlanta. She’s written a book, titled, “Black Food Geopgraphers: Race, Self-Reliance, and Fund Access in Washington, DC.” We asked Professor Reese, How bad is the situation in what some people call “food desert” neighborhoods?
Activists in New York City are trying to prevent the construction of four new prisons in the different boroughs of the city, designed to replace the jail cells that will be lost when the infamous Rikers Island Jail is closed down. The “No New Jails” movement says now is the time to phase out mass incarceration, not replenish it. Ben NDugga-Kabuye is with the Black Alliance for Just Immigration.
Donti Mitchell is a prisoner of the State of New York. In this report for Prison Radio, Mitchell asks the question: “What kind of society are we?”
|Oct 14, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.07.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: U.S. cops act like soldiers and U.S. soldiers think they are the police of the world. A Black activist explains the connection. And, another left activist says this is the year to take on the corporate Democrats on their own turf, and he’s targeted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations is preparing to descend on Washington, on the first weekend in November, as the Coalition has done every year since Barack Obama’s first year in the White House. The arch racist Donald Trump is now the chief executive. But Black Is Back Chairman Omali Yeshitela says the enemy remains the same: U.S. Imperialism and white supremacy.
Mass Shootings, Militarism and Policing Are Chapters in the Same Manifesto.” So says the title of a recent article by Dereka Purnell, a movement lawyer, writer and activist. We asked Purnell how she came to that conclusion.
Another movement lawyer, Shahid Buttar, is running for Congress to unseat Democratic House leader Nancy Pelosi in her home district of San Francisco. Buttar is a lifelong activist and former director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. Until now, he had rejected electoral politics, but this year he sees an opening for the left. Buttar thinks his campaign is doing well.
|Oct 07, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.30.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Donald Trump has made the United States a nightmare destination for poor, non white immigrants, but a Black Canadian activist says her country is no safe haven; Philadelphia celebrates Muhatma Gandhi along with Martin Luther King; and, the leader of a small Caribbean country blasts the United States for its regime change campaign against Venezuela.
One could get the impression, from listening to today’s Black politicians, that African Americans don’t know or care much about what goes on in the rest of the world. We spoke with Professor Paul Ortiz, a professor of history at the University of Florida, and author of the new book, “An African American and Latinx History of the United States.” Ortiz says the struggle for Black liberation in the U.S. has always been international.
Immigration to the United States is way down, this year, as President Trump succeeds in making Coming to America a nightmare experience. Canada takes in even more immigrants, proportionately, than the United States. Black Canadian activist and writer Robyn Maynard is author of the book, “Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present.” She warns that her country is no safe haven for Black newcomers.
All this year, the Philadelphia Saturday Free School has been publicizing the life and philosophy of Muhatma Gandhi, the Indian national liberation leader. On Thursday, October 3rd, the Free School will hold a special program titled, “Mahatma Gandhi and Our Single Garment of Destiny: Our Inescapable Struggle for Peace and Justice.” Philadelphia Free School activist Jahan Choudry says any study of Gandhi must include Dr. Martin Luther King.
Heads of state from all over the planet journeyed to New York City last week to attend the yearly opening session of the United Nations General Assembly. Among them was Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of the tiny Caribbean island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Prime Minister Gonsalves criticized the Global North for polluting and warming planet, denounced the US economic blockade of Venezuela, and celebrated new movement towards unity within the African diaspora.
|Sep 30, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.23.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Lots of African Americans don’t think of immigration as a Black issue. But a large proportion of people seeking to enter the U.S. come from the African Diaspora, and they may be getting the worst treatment of all. And, Black women with guns --- have always been willing to confront the enemy with force.
President Trump has taken weaponization of the dollar to new levels of financial aggression. U.S. economic sanctions use to mean the United States would not trade with a country targeted by Washington. Now it means the targeted country is forbidden to use dollars, the world’s reserve currency, and anybody that spends dollars to trade with the targeted country will also be punished. We spoke with Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Dubosian scholar based in Philadelphia.
There has never been a time when U.S. immigration policy has not been shaped by race. Throughout U.S. history, Blacks have been unwelcome at U.S. borders, unless they arrived in chains. Ben Ndugga Kabuye is on the staff of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration. He says U.S. immigration policy has always been shaped by anti-Blackness.
Jasmine Young is a doctoral fellow at the University of California’s Department of African American Studies, where she’s working on a manuscript titled, “Black Women with Guns: Armed Resistance in the Black Freedom Struggle.” Young says Black women have always been represented in Black people’s armed resistance to the racist powers that be.
|Sep 23, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.16.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black people get the worst health care in the United States, but we’ll talk with a doctor and author who says Blacks also pay more for bad health outcomes; and, a researcher on education says Black and brown students have every right to be outraged at the racist treatment they are subjected to in US schools.
Brazil has long been a killing ground for Black and brown people, but the carnage has increased with the election of far-right president Jair Bolsonaro, who some call the Donald Trump of South America. In just three months, police in Rio de Janeiro killed 434 people, most of them young Black men. We spoke with Joao Costa Vargas, a professor of anthropology at the University of California, at Riverside. Dr. Costa Vargas is from Brazil, and is author of the book, “The Anti-Black City: Police Terror and Black Urban Life in Brazil.” We asked him if Bolsonaro is encouraging police massacres of young Blacks.
We all know that Black folks are disproportionately given subprime loans by banks. But, Dr. Leslie Hinkson says, the same is true in healthcare. Dr. Hinkson is co-editor of the new book, “Subprime Health: Debt and Race in U.S. Medicine.
The corporate media has long been obsessed with violence in urban schools, but they seldom consider the violence that the schools exert against Black and brown students. Dr. Connie Wun is an analyst an researcher who advocates for women and girls of color. Dr. Wun wrote an influential article in The Feminist Wire titled, “Racialized and Gendered Violence Permeates School Discipline.” She begins the article with the plight of Jada Williams, an eighth-grade student in Rochester, New York.
|Sep 16, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.09.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The Green Party will hold a national conference on Eco-Socialism, this month in Chicago; The FBI’s dreaded Watch List is ruled unconstitutional in a federal court; and, we’ll hear about the method behind the madness of the whole arbitrary system of book banning in the U.S. Prison Gulag.
The rapper known as Jay-Z started out as a dope dealer in Brooklyn, went on to become a billionaire in the entertainment business, and was soon hob-nobbing in circles of wealth and power. Jay-Z recently interjected himself into the controversy over football players that refuse to honor the Star Spangled Banner anthem, in protest of police killings of Blacks. We spoke with Louis Jefferson, an activist from San Jose, California, who wrote a poem critical of Jay-Z that appeared in Black Agenda Report. It was titled, “Anthem 4 Rappers Wrapped in the Flag.” Some speculate that Jay-Z cut his deal to advise and provide entertainment services to the National Football League as part of a scheme to eventually own an NFL team. But Jefferson sees a larger political picture.
Green Party is gearing up for a national conference on Eco-Socialism, to be held in Chicago, September 28th. Anita Rios is co-chair of the Green Party National Committee.
Black Agenda Report executive editor Glen Ford says the United States is always making lists of nations to make war against, or people to silence and incarcerate.
Prisons are constantly banning the books and periodicals that inmates are allowed to read, for what seems like the most arbitrary of reasons and often with no explanation at all. Many activists make the comparison with slavery, when it was a crime for enslaved people to read. We spoke with Britanny Friedman, a professor of Sociology at Rutgers University, specializing in criminal justice.
Donte Mitchell is a prisoner of the State of New York. He sees a Great Contradiction in the whole mass incarceration system.
|Sep 09, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.02.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Why are Muslims always part of the story when a mass shooting occurs, even when a white American is the perpetrator? We’ll discuss that question. And, Black women from across the Diaspora have produced an important book on Gender Studies in Africa
A bill that would require all students in the California state university system to pass a course in Ethnic Studies before graduating has been put on hold after meeting fierce opposition. Dr. Gilda Ochoa, a professor of Chicano/Latino Studies at Pomona College, was a key player in pushing for the legislation. Ochoa and her brother Enrique wrote an article calling for passage of the Ethnic Studies bill. She’s not happy that it’s been sidelined.
Most mass shootings in the United States are committed by white men. But Dr. Maha Hilal, co-director of the Justice for Muslims Collective, and an organizer with Witness Against Torture, says even when the perpetrators of mass murder are white, Muslims are somehow brought into the discussion. Dr. Hilal wrote an article for Truthout, titled “Leave Muslims Out of This. Let’s Discuss White Violence on It’s Own Terms.”
Cheryl Rodriquez is co-editor of a fascinating new book, titled “TransAtlantic Feminism: Women and Gender Studies in Africa.” Roderiguez’s co-editors are drawn from a range of countries in the African Diaspora, including Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Ghana, and Uganda. She says Black people are always seen as “the enemy” in the U.S.
|Sep 03, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.26.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Is it Colin Kaepernick versus Jay-Z, or rich capitalists versus a Black movement against racist police killings? And, white supremacist gunmen have slaughtered hundreds of people in the U.S. in recent decades, prompting some to demand extra powers for the FBI. But does the Bureau really want to catch the racist bad guys? We’ll explore that issue.
Three months ago, four U.S. activists were arrested for occupying the Venezuelan embassy in Washington, with the express permission of the Venezuelan government, after the Trump administration recognized the pro-coup politician Juan Guaido as that nation’s leader. The four Americans face up to a year in jail and heavy fines, if convicted. One of them is Kevin Zeese, a co-founder of Popular Resistance. We asked Zeese how the case is going.
Black Twitter has been buzzing about rapper Jay-Z’s recently announced collaboration with the owners of professional football. Jay-Z cut a deal to produce entertainment for the NFL and to consult on League racial policies. The move is widely seen as a betrayal of sidelined player Colin Kaepernick. We spoke with James Hill Jr., a writer and doctoral candidate at Northwestern University, who two years ago wrote an article for Black Agenda Report about Kaepernick and his “take a knee” initiative. Hill has some thoughts on the Jay-Z deal.
The constant drumbeat of mass shootings, many of them carried out by white supremacists, has prompted some people to call for giving enhanced powers to the FBI. But civil liberties activists disagree. Chip Gibbons is with the advocacy group, Defending Human Rights and Dissent. Gibbons says the FBI has plenty of authority to investigate and cause the prosecution of violent white supremacists, but chooses not to do so.
|Aug 26, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.19.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: We’ll take a look at the state of racism in Hollywood, and find out if Atlanta really is the Mecca for Black film-makers. And, When liberals call Donald Trump “un-American,” aren’t they playing the same chauvenist game as he is?
The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations held its national conference in St. Louis, this month. The Coalition was formed ten years ago, during Barack Obama’s first year in the White House. Black Agenda Report executive editor Glen Ford is a co-founder of Black Is Back.
That was BAR executive editor Glen Ford. Omali Yeshitela is chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition, which is made up of a diverse group of radical Black organizations. Yeshitela is also the leader of the African People’s Socialist Party, which has long been intimately involved with the African liberation movement.
President Trump’s rhetoric gets raunchier by the day, as the 2020 election draws near. Some of Trump’s critics seem to think that calling him “un-American” is an effective argument. But political analyst William C. Anderson doesn’t think so. Anderson recently wrote an article for TruthOut titled, “Using Patriotism to Deflect Racism is a Deadly Mistake.”
Hollywood is a lot Blacker than it used to be, but that’s not saying much. Most Hollywood studios still work on the assumption that movies geared to Black audiences don’t make much money. Maryann Erigha is a Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at the University of Georgia. She’s got a new book out, titled “Hollywood Jim Crow: The Racial Politics of the Movie Industry.”
|Aug 19, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.12.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Venezuelans welcome a delegation of Black peace advocates from the United States; we’ll get an assessment on what’s really going on in the strife-torn African nation of Sudan; and, Why are Black women in the U.S. so much more likely to die while giving childbirth?
Slavery in the U.S. wasn’t just a system of exploitation. It was a regime of terror. Kellie Jackson teaches African American Studies at Wellesley College. Jackson’s new book is called “Force and Freedom, Back Abolitionists and the Politics of Violence.” We asked Jackson if the book’s title might raise ‘red flags’ among the powers that be.
A delegation from the Black Alliance for Peace recently returned from Venezuela, where they were honored for helping protect the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington from being handed over to supporters of Juan Guaido, the right-wing politician that was hand-picked as president by the Trump administration. Netfa Freeman was part of the Black Alliance for Peace delegation.
The African nation of Sudan may soon be run by a transitional government made up of both civilians and military leaders. Long-time strongman Omar al-Bashir was ousted from power in a military coup, in April, and hundreds of people demanding democracy were killed by soldiers. We spoke with Akmed Kadouda, a PhD candidate and researcher at George Washington University, and a native of Sudan.
Black women in the United States die in childbirth at three times the rate of white women. Donna Eye-eeen Davis is Director of the Center for the Study of Women and Society at the City University of New York. Davis is author of the book, “Reproductive Injustice: Racism, Pregnancy and Premature Birth”. She says “Black Women’s reprodocution sits a the intersection of medical control and racism.
|Aug 12, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.05.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The Black Alliance for Peace demands that elected officials tell us where they stand on militarism and endless war; a Black scholar defends Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s description of immigrant detention centers as “concentration camps”; and, we’ll examine the changing relationship between African Americans and the Mother Continent.
August 9th marks the 5th anniversary of the day Mike Brown was shot to death by a white policeman in Ferguson, Missouri, setting off national revulsion against killer cops and the criminal injustice system. Activists in cities around the country are commemorating the events that spawned the Black Lives Matter movement. In Newark, New Jersey, the public library will host a day of activities on August 14th, in hopes of spurring renewed social activism. Zayid Muhammad is with N-CAP, Newark Communities for Accountable Policing.
Black office-holders are about to be put on notice, that their support for U.S. imperial crimes around the world goes against the grain of the pro-peace tradition in Black America. Ajamu Baraka, of the Black Alliance for Peace, says both corporate parties try to keep U.S. foreign policy out of the political debate. The Alliance is demanding that elected officials go on record on issues of war and peace.
Freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, known as AOC, came under savage attack when she described detention centers for immigrants as “concentration camps.” But Zoe Samudzi, co-author of the book, “As Black As Resistance,” says AOC is correct in broadening the popular discussion about the various ways that targeted groups are contained and controlled. Samudzi’s latest essay is titled, “Policing the Borders of Suffering.” She says no ethnic group has a monopoly on terms like “genocide” and “concentration camp.”
Nemata Blyden is a professor of History and International Affairs at George Washington University, and author of the book, “African Americans and Africa: A New History.” Blyden has a unique perspective on the subject. She was born in Sierra Leone, West Africa, the descendant of a renowned Pan Africanist and an African American mother. Professor Blyden talks about her book.
|Aug 05, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.29.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Newark, New Jersey throws a party for Mumia Abu Jamal’s latest book; Mumia. The nation’s best known political prisoner, offers his journalistic analysis of Joe Biden’s worthiness for president; and, the Socialist Action Party’s candidate tells us why HE ought to be president.
Dr. Gerald Horne is Professor of History and African American studies at University of Houston, and possibly Black America’s most prolific living political writer. One of his latest books is “US Imperialism and Anti-Communism vs. Liberation of Southern Africa, from Rhodes to Mandela.” Chapter Two is titled, “US Lays the Foundation for Apartheid – 1906 to 1930.” The United State DID create the world’s first totally racially regimented society, in the Jim Crow South. But, did the US lay the “foundation” for South African apartheid? Dr. Horne explains.
At the Source of Knowledge bookstore in Newark, New Jersey, veterans of the Black Panther Party organized a hugely successful roundtable discussion of the new book by Mumia Abu Jamal and his co-author, Steven Vittoria. It’s titled, “Murder Incorporated,” and it’s in three parts. The second volume, with a focus on US imperialism, was just released. One of the speakers at the roundtable was Todd Steven Burroughs, author of a number of books, and co-author of “Correcting Manning Marable’s Malcolm X.” Burroughs is also a biographer of Mumia Abu Jamal.
The nation’s best known political prisoner is a lifelong journalist. Mumia Abu Jamal files this report for Prison Radio. It’s called “Biden his time.”
The Democrats and Republicans, the two corporate parties, aren’t the only ones fielding presidential candidates. Jeff Mackler is running on the Socialist Action Party ticket.
|Jul 29, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.22.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black victims of police lawlessness keep piling up, year after year, yet almost all the officers involved get off with no punishment whatsoever. We’ll talk with an activist about impunity for killer cops. Nellie Bailey gets the real story on why record numbers of Puerto Ricans have been in the streets. And, I’ll have a report on the history of America as a White Man’s Country.
William C. Anderson is a prolific writer, whose latest article in Truthout is titled, “Reparations is One Step in a Long Fight to End Racial Capitalism.” Lots of Democratic presidential candidates have endorsed the principle of Black American Reparations. But they all have different ideas on what shape reparations should take. Anderson says its up to Black people to craft demands for reparations, and the subject is not open to debate. Black people are owed, period.
Why Accountability, New York, is determined to make killer cops accountable for their crimes. Shannon Jones is an activist in Why Accountability. She and others last week marked a host of unpunished deaths at the hands of police, including Sandra Bland, in Texas, four years ago, and Eric Garner, five years ago, in Staten Island, New York. Neither of the cops involved was indicted. Jones talks about impunity and killer cops.Record Breaking Puerto crowds have been demanding the resignation of that island colony’s governor, Ricardo Rosello. To explain why Puerto Ricans are protesting, we spoke with activist Danny Vila, Labor Coordinator, Sisa Patiki Cultures and Labor Center, in Queens, New York. He says Puerto Rican have a multitude of grievances. But what set it of,f was a chat thread
|Jul 22, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.15.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The United States is picking a fight with the two other big powers in the world, China and Russia. But, is the US overplaying its imperial hand? We’ll get an assessment from Dr. Anthony Monteiro. And, two women from the MOVE organization have been released from prison after 41 years behind bars. We’ll have details on their home-coming celebrations.
Reparations is a hot topic in the Democratic presidential race. Although reparations has always been part of the African American agenda, only recently have mainstream white politicians endorsed the concept. The Burning Spear, the newspaper of the African People’s Socialist Party, recently re-released a radio documentary of the 1982 World Tribunal on Reparations to Black People, held in New York City. One of the featured speakers was Afeni Shakur, the former Black Panther and mother of Hip Hop legend, Tupac Shakur. Here’s her testimony, from 37 years ago.
That was Afeni Shakur, the former Black Panther and member of the New York 21. Also speaking at that 1982 World Tribunal on Reparations to Black People, was Job Mashariki, of Black Veterans for Social Justice.
The 1982 World Tribunal on Reparations to Black People was organized by the African People’s Socialist Party, whose chairman-- then, and now -- is Omali Yeshitela. The politics of that era was deeply influenced by Malcolm X and others who urged Blacks to take their case against the United States to an international arena. Omali Yeshitela explains.
Both the Democrats and the Republicans seem intent on waging never-ending hostilities against the two other major powers on the planet: China and Russia, which have responded to US pressures by forming an even closer alliance. For an geopolitical analysis, we turned to Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Duboisian scholar based in Philadelphia.
Two of the MOVE organization’s political prisoners have been released on parole after 41 years of incarceration. Janet Africa and Janine Africa are part of the MOVE 9, imprisoned in the death of a Philadelphia policeman, in 1978. Mumia Abu Jamal, who was also imprisoned in the death of a cop, has helped arrange a New York City welcome for Janet and Janine Africa. Activist Gwen DeBrow gives us some background on the MOVE organization.
Four of the US activists that defended the Venezuelan embassy in Washington from takeover by Donald Trump’s hand-picked puppets, face up to a year in prison. Glen Ford has this report.
|Jul 15, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.08.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. This is one of the most difficult shows we have ever done, coming in the wake of the death of Bruce Dixon, a co-founder of Black Agenda Report. We’ll have comments and commentary by his colleagues. A committee in Congress has been collecting powerful testimony on the need for Reparations for the descendants of enslaved persons in the United States. And, Mumia Abu Jamal confronts the soul-chilling fact that he may be going blind.
Bruce Dixon, the managing editor of Black Agenda Report, was scheduled to speak at a number of panels at the Left Forum, the yearly conference of left-wing activists in New York City. However, Dixon succumbed to blood cancer only days before the event. The entire conference was in mourning for Dixon, the former Black Panther and lifelong activist who co-founded BAR in 2006, and was a key force in the Green Party. BAR executive editor Glen Ford remembered his comrade.
That was BAR executive editor Glen Ford. Margaret Kimberley is an editor and senior columnist of Black Agenda Report. She and Glen Ford co-founded the publication along with Bruce Dixon, 13 years ago. Kimberley paid her respects to Dixon. She also found some comic relief in the antics of New York City mayor Bill De Blasio, who is one of the 20-something Democratic candidates for president. At the debates in Miami, De Blasio seemed to be channeling the ghost of Che Guevera.
Danny Haiphong is a regular contributor to BAR, and co-author of a new book, titled, “American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News, From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror. Haiphong was part of the BAR panel at the Left Forum. He began with some words on the dearly departed Bruce Dixon.
That was BAR contributor Danny Haiphong. BAR executive editor Glen Ford followed Haihong on the panel. He talked about why its necessary to have publications like Black Agenda Report.
Back in 1989, Congressman John Conyers first introduced his bill calling for a study of the question of reparations for the Black descendants of people enslaved in the United States. The HR 40 legislation languished with few co-sponsors for decades. But this year, reparations is an issue in the Democratic presidential race, and co-sponsors are popping up all over the place. Plus, HR 40 now has a companion bill in the U.S. Senate, which means it is finally a serious piece of legislation. Last week, the House committee holding hearings on reparations heard from Katrina Browne, who produced and directed the Emmy-nominated film, “Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North.”
Mumia Abut Jamal, the nations best known political prisoner, has been incarcerated by the state of Pennsylvania for the past 39 years in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. Abu Jamal has suffered a number of health crises due to atrocious medical treatment in prison, including a battle with Hepatitis C contracted in prison and left untreated for years. Now the prolific author and journalist is losing his sight. He files this report for Prison Radio. It’s titled, “Walking in the Dark.”
|Jul 08, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.01.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Lots of mostly Black school districts are returning to local control, after years of state takeovers, but a recent article shows that these public schools are still starved for money; We’ll hear from Howie Hawkins, who wants to run for president on the Green Party ticket; a Move member is finally freed from a Pennsylvania prison; and, a former Black Panther who’s spent 48 years in prison is hoping to be paroled, in September.
Hundreds of left activists and scholars gathered in Brooklyn, New York, this past weekend, for the Left Forum, the biggest annual gathering of leftist activists and scholars in the nation. Black Agenda Report senior columnist Margaret Kimberley was on hand. We asked Kimberley to make sense of the never-ending warfare between the corporate media and president Trump. Trump threatened to attack Iran after that nation shot down a spy drone, but then called off the attack. The corporate media were not pleased, since they only praise Trump when he attacks other countries.
Jeff Bryant is a journalist who has been following the plight of urban school systems for many years. Bryant is senior correspondent for Our Schools, a project of the Independent Media Institute. His latest article is titled, “Why Many Urban School Districts are Being Set Up for Fiscal Failure.” He says that, as schools became more Black and Brown, State governments seized control from local school boards and put appointed consultants in charge. Now many of these school districts are returning to local control. But Bryant says the damage has already been done.
Howie Hawkins is running for the Green Party’s presidential nomination. Hawkins came up with a detailed plan for a massive Green New Deal, nearly a decade ago. The Green Party adopted the Green New Deal as its own. But now Democrats like Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez have put forward their own Green New Deal, and put it before Congress. Hawkins says they’ve watered the Deal down, and made it ineffective.
Eddie Africa, of the MOVE organization, has been released from the Pennsylvania prison system. Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, filed this report for Prison Radio.
Jalil Abdul Muntaqim is a former Black Panther who has been imprisoned for the past 48 years, in the killing of two police officers in 1971. Muntaqim’s co-defendant, Herman Bell, was released on parole last year, despite the loud opposition of the Governor, New York City’s mayor, and of course, the police unions. Jalil Muntaqim has had 10 parole hearing since he became eligible for release in 2002, but has been turned down each time. His next appearance before the parole board is in September. We spoke with a person that has stuck by Jalil Muntaqim every day of nearly half century of incarceration – his mother, 85-year old Billie Bottoms Brown, who lives outside Atlanta, Georgia.
|Jul 01, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.24.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black families have always had to teach their children how to cope in a racist society. But, do white kids also need to be taught how NOT to BE racist? A new book explores that question. And, we talk with an author who says Hip Hop culture provides insights on how to create a NEW kind of society.
The United States overthrew Haiti’s elected government in 2004, but 15 years later, the Haitian people are in the streets demanding that their US-backed president step down. President Juvenal Moise [MO-EESE] is charged with looting the nation’s finances. A delegation from he OAS, the Organization of American States, lectured Haitians to end their street actions and wait for elections. Daoud Andre is a Brooklyn-based radio host, and an activist with the Committee to Mobilize Against Dictatorship in Haiti. He says the OAS has nothing to offer the Haitian people.
How should white parents go about raising children that do not perpetuate white supremacy and privilege? Jennifer Harvey has some ideas on that subject. Harvey is author of a new book, titled “Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America.” We asked Harvey if white kids need SPECIALIZED treatment in a deeply racist society.
Marquis Bey is a PhD candidate in the English department at Cornell University. He thinks the language of Hip Hop provides insights on potential new ways to build societies. Bey is author the new book, “Them GOON Rules: Fugitive Essays on Radical Black Feminism.” But, what does he mean by “Them GOON rules”?
|Jun 24, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.17.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: We’ll hear from a victim of torture at the hands of police in Chicago. He wrote a book about it. And, American Exceptionalism is really just a cover for American crimes around the world, starting with the founding of this Indian-killing, Black people enslaving nation. Black Agenda Report’s Danny Haiphong talks about his new book.
The Black Is Back Coalition is gearing up for its annual conference, in St. Louis, August 10th and 11th. Chairman Omali Yeshitela, explains.
Stanley Howard has been locked up in the Illinois prison system for the past 35 years, ever since he was tortured by Chicago police into confessing to crimes he didn’t commit. Over 100 other Black men were also tortured by Chicago cops. Some, like Howard, wound up on death row, and were later released by the governor. Howard remains in prison on other charges. He’s co-author of a new book, titled, “Tortured By Blue: The Chicago Police Torture Story.” He says, the public needs to hear the truth from the victims of police torture.
Danny Haiphong writes a weekly column for Black Agenda Report. Roberto Sirvent is editor of BAR’s Book Forum. Together, the are authors of a ground-breaking new book, titled “American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: A People’s History of Fake News – From the Revolutionary War to the War on Terror.” Haiphong says Americans are fed a daily diet of lies about nations around the world. What’s worse, almost everything Americans THINK they know about their own history, is fiction
|Jun 17, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.10.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: India will soon be the most populous nation in the world, but what role will it play global affairs, and how has India figured in the African American liberation movement? And, why do preachers figure so highly in the African American freedom struggle? We’ll hear from the author of a new book on social gospel activism.
Reparations has become an issue in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. The main organization that has kept the demand for Black American reparations alive is N’COBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America, which is holding its 30th annual convention in Detroit, June 20th through the 23rd. Kam Howard is the National Male Co-Chair of N’Cobra.
The students, teachers and activists of the Philadelphia Saturday Free School spent much of last year immersing themselves and the entire city in the life and works of the great scholar, WEB DuBois. This time, the Free School is celebrating the “Year of Gandhi,” the Indian activist and philosopher. Dr. Anthony Montiero, the Duboisian scholar, says the Saturday Free School will kick off the year-long activities at Philadelphia’s Church of the Advocate, on June 14th and 15th.
The Black struggle in the United States cannot be understood without an examination of the role of ministers of the “social gospel, personified in modern times by the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Garry Dorrien is a professor of Social Ethics at Union Theological Seminary, in New York City, and author of the book, “Breaking White Supremacy: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Black Social Gospel.” Professor Dorrien says Dr. King’s civil rights work in the Fifties and Sixties was rooted in previous generations of Black social gospel activism.
|Jun 10, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.03.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. This week we are going to dedicate the entire program to the issue of so-called Black Identity Extremists, the term the FBI invented to justify its permanent witch-hunt against Black individuals and organizations that fight for Black people’s rights and interests in the United States. Human rights activists regard the Black Identity Extremist label as the part of the FBI’s attempt to repackage, for the 21st century, its old and discredited Cointelpro dirty war against Black and Left Wing organizers.
Some of those activists recently formed an umbrella group to coordinate the resistance to the FBI’s latest offensive against Black people. It’s called the Black Identity Extremist Abolition Collective. The Collective plans to hold political education and organizing events in cities across the nation. The first session was held at the People’s Forum, in midtown Manhattan, New York City. Five organizers, representing key human rights groups, were unexpectedly joined by Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner. They discussed the threat posed by the FBI’s attempt to demonize and neutralize radical politics in the Black Lives Matter era. Ajamu Sankofa is one of the founders of the Black Identity Extremist Abolition Collective.
Myaisha Hayes is with the Center for Media Justice, which has challenged the FBI’s reincarnation of Cointelpro. Hayes knows all too well that the Bureau’s aim is to turn Black activists into political prisoners.
The New York-based Center for Constitutional Rights has been in the forefront of the resistance to the FBI’s attempts to criminalize political organizing and speech, especially in Black and Muslim communities. Aya Saed represented the Center at the People’s Forum event, in New York.
Fifty years ago, the FBI designated the Black Panther Party the greatest domestic danger to U.S. national security, and tried to destroy the organization through a campaign of assassination and imprisonment. Johanna Fernandez is with the Campaign to Bring Home former Panther Mumia Abu Jamal. She’s also a professor of History and African American Studies at Baruch College. Fernandez provided an historical context to the FBI’s Black Identity Extremist offensive.
|Jun 03, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.27.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Ever wonder why the U.S. has such a close relationship to the countries that are number one in cocaine and heroin? Author Doug Valentine says its because the CIA IS organized crime. And, And, author Tamura Lomax explains how the Black church has labeled Black women and girls, Jezebels.
the nation’s most prolific Black political writer, Dr. Gerald Horne, has released a new book. It’s titled, “White Supremacy Confronted: U.S. Imperialism and Anti-Communism Versus the Liberation of Southern Africa From Rhodes to Mandela.” Horne is a professor of history and African American studies at the University of Houston. He’s written a sprawling, 800-word tour of the African liberation movement and its global supporters and enemies.
Where there is regime change, political murder and subversion, the CIA must be nearby. Douglass Valentine has been studying the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency for decades. He’s author of “The CIA As Organized Crime,” and “The Phoenix Program,” an exploration of the CIA assassination war in Vietnam. The CIA prefers to overthrow governments in secrecy, but President Trump seems to enjoy telling the world who he’s out to get.
The term “Jezebel” has come to be associated with women and girls of easy sex and loose morals. Independent scholar Tamura Lomax is author of the book, “Jezebel Unhinged: Loosing the Black Female Body in Religion and Culture.” Lomax says the Black church has preserved and fostered views of Black female sexuality that are rooted in slavery and racist European concepts, causing Black women and girls to be labeled “Jezebels,” even in their own houses of worship.
|May 27, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.20.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Brazil has the largest concentration of people of African descent in the western hemisphere, but it is a country that slaughters young Black people by the tens of thousands every year. We’ll hear from a member of the Brazilian Black Movement. And, we’ll speak with a writer who has researched the assassination of Black Brazilian politician Marielle Franco.
The death of Black people at the hands of police is a constant flashpoint of U.S. politics. But increasingly, private security guards use lethal force against unarmed Blacks. In Philadelphia, Diop Olugbala, of the Black Is Back Coalition, says private security guards have been empowered to kill with impunity.
Last year, the murder of Black Brazilian politician Marielle Franco focused world attention on the deep racism that permeates Brazilian society. Then, later that year, Jair Bolsonaro, an openly racist right-winger, won election as president. Stephanie Reist is a freelance writer and researcher based in Rio de Janiero. Reist wrote an article for Jacobin magazine, titled “Finding Marielle Franco’s killers.”
Jaime Alves is a member of the Brazilian Black Movement and assistant professor of Anthropology at the College of Staten Island, in New York City. Alves maintains that the racist President Bolsonaro won last year’s election because of deep fears of Black people. Brazil, says professor Alves, is a killing field for Black youth.
|May 20, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.13.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: the stand-off at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, continues; African Liberation Day will be marked by protests against the ongoing sanctions against Zimbabwe; and, we’ll get an African feminist perspective on women’s roles in secessionist movements on the continent.
Lots of people know that Chicago recently elected its first Black woman mayor, but the elections also created a sharp change in the city council. Before the people went to the polls in February, only one alderman out of 50 on the council supported community control of the police. However, community activists take credit for changing that equation at the ballot box. After the election, 17 Chicago council members say they’ll vote to establish CPAC, the Civilian Police Accountability Council. Aislinn Pulley is the founder and Co-leader of Black Lives Matter, Chicago. We asked Pulley what effect the victories in the city council will have on movement strategy.
Activists with Code Pink, the Answer Coalition and Popular Resistance continue to occupy the Venezuelan Embassy, in Washington, keeping it out of the hands of supporters of Juan Gauido, the Venezuelan opposition leader who appointed himself president. The United States has recognized Guaido, and has been confiscating Venezuelan property, in addition to imposing punishing sanctions on the country. The American activists inside the embassy were invited to keep watch on the place by the elected government of Venezuela. Last Friday, we asked Code Pink co-founder Medea Benjamin how she and the others in the embassy are holding up.
African Liberation Day is May 25, and Zimbabwe is o top of the agenda. We spoke with human rights lawyer Roger Wareham, of the Brooklyn New York-based December 12th Movemet.
Not all people in Africa are satisfied with the borders that were drawn around their countries by European colonizers. Jacqueline Bethel-Mougoue is a feminist scholar and professor of history at Baylor University who’s been studying the roles that women play in secessionist movements in Africa.
|May 13, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.06.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a former New York City cop writes a book on why police brutality matters, and what to do about it; the President of The Congo says he faces a threat from ISIS, even though his country has very few Muslims; and, the United States has already succeeded in killing at least 40 thousand Venezuelans, through sanctions.
During the Obama administration, shortly after the Black rebellion in Ferguson, Missouri, federal officials mounted a campaign against what they called “Black Identity Extremists.” Soon, federal agents were also claiming that ISIS was somehow involved in the Black liberation struggle. Some of the best reporting on government political surveillance has been done by Alice Speri, of The Intercept. She says there’s nothing paranoid about Black activists who think Uncle Sam is spying on them.
Former New City cop Joe Ested has written a book, titled “Police Brutality Matters.” Ested says new laws are needed, to rein in the lawmen. He suggests that Congress pass a Bad Cop Bill.
The new president of the Democratic Republic of Congo is asking for United States help for a problem that may not exist. President Félix Tshisekedi fears that ISIS might target his country, which is already beset by internal and foreign-supported armed groups. We spoke with Maurice Carney, of Friends of Congo, in Washington, DC, and asked Carney, How could ISIS be a problem for the Democratic Republic of Congo, where only two percent of the nation is Muslim?
Also in the nation’s capital, a progressive think tank released a study that showed U.S. sanctions against Venezuela have already led to massive deaths, especially among vulnerable groups like dialysis and diabetes patients who are now cut off from adequate treatment. Mark Weisbrot is co-founder of the Center for Economic and Policy Research.
|May 06, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.29.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Mumia Abu Jamal speaks on the U.S. war against fellow political prisoner Julian Assange; a noted writer and anthropologist ponders why so many people that claim to be leftists can’t help bad-mouthing the Wikeleaks founder; and, a Black doctor in Canada says her profession is in denial about racism.
Black women are the fastest-growing part of the U.S. prison population, which gives new meaning to Mothers Day in Black America. In Greenville, South Carolina, the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination is part of a coalition that is raising bail money for Black women and girls facing incarceration. Malcolm X Center director Efia Nwangaza explains.
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is locked away in a British jail, as he prepares to fight extradition to the United States. Assange was recently evicted from his sanctuary in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, where he had spent seven years. Black American political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal has spent 37 years incarcerated in Pennsylvania. He files this report for Prison Radio, titled “The Wars Against Assange.”
Maximilion Forte is a professor of anthropology at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada. In a recent article, Professor Forte wrote that the U.S. campaign against Julian Assange is really a war against free speech. In addition to the U.S government’s vendetta against Assange, lots of Americans that claim to be part of the Left can’t seem to resist expressing their personal disdain for the whistleblower.
Recently on Black Agenda Radio, Black Canadian journalist Eternity Martis said a “health crisis” exists among Black people in Toronto, Canada, and that anti-Black bias in the medical profession is a big part of the problem. One of the doctors quoted in Martis’s article is Onye Nnorom, a community health specialist on the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. Dr. Nnorom says the problem with Canadian health care is that doctors are in denial about racism.
|Apr 29, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.22.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: It’s been a great month for Mumia Abu Jamal. For the first time in decades, there’s a chance for a real legal path to freedom for the nation’s best known political prisoner. We’ll hear from Mumia and leaders of the movement to release him from a Pennsylvania prison.
The Meuller Report has been a disappointment to Democrats and most of the U.S. corporate media. For more than two years, they have been spinning a tale of “collusion” between Wikileaks, the Russian government and the Trump campaign. But Special Counsel Robert Meuller’s verdict was that there was no collusion. Coleen Rowley is a former FBI agent and whistleblower who exposed the Bureau’s failures leading up the 9/11 attacks. Rowley has closely followed the Russiagate saga. Both Meuller and most of the news media continue to accept as Biblical Truth that Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee emails and gave them to Wikileaks. But, Rowley agrees that there’s still no proof that that’s the way it happened.
The prospects for freedom for Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, changed radically this month, 37 years after he was found guilty in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. Larry Krasner, the district attorney of Philadelphia, announced that he would not try to reverse a local court decision allowing Abu Jamal to appeal his conviction. Noelle Hanrahan is a producer and founder of Prison Radio, where Abu Jamal has for decades been a journalist – which was his profession before his arrest in 1982. Hanrahan explains how the legal breakthrough happened.
Johanna Fernandez is a professor of history at Baruch College, in New York, but she spends much of her time as an organizer with the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home. We asked Fernandez if she’s talked with Mumia since the good news arrived.
Abu Jamal was in great spirits even before he got word that the district attorney would not stand in the way of his appeal. Mumia’s supporters held a gala fundraiser in Berkeley, California, featuring Angela Davis, Alice Walker and Judith Ritter. From imprisonment in Pennsylvania, Abu Jamal spoke to the crowd at the Evening for Justice and Freedom.
Pam Africa is with the MOVE organization, in Philadelphia, and a key member of the International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal. She spoke at the gala, in Berkeley, and paid respect to Mumia’s prison-mates.
|Apr 22, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.15.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Howie Hawkins, a possible Green Party presidential candidate, talks about one of his original ideas, the Green New Deal; the Black Is Back Coalition explores the possibilities of electoral politics under late stage, imperial capitalism; and, South Carolina activists pay respect to those killed in a prison disturbance.
It’s taken a while to count all the votes, but it appears that community control of the police has made a giant leap forward, in Chicago. Activists ran a full slate of candidates in support of CPAC, the proposed Civilian Police Accountability Commission. Frank Chapman is with the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. He says community control of the police is now backed by a substantial bloc of new members of the Chicago city council.
The Green New Deal -- a plan to transform the way the nation uses energy while at the same time ensuring adequate incomes for all and addressing the historical wrongs against minorites – has won the support of supermajorities of Democrats, under the sponsorship of New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, commonly called “AOC.” But the Green New Deal originated in the Green Party, more than a decade ago. And a key player in formulating the original Green New Deal was Howie Hawkins, its former candidate for governor of New York. Hawkins is now exploring a bid for the presidency, under the Green Party banner. We asked Hawkins, what’s GOOD about the Democrat’s version of the Green New Deal?
The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations, held the third of its electoral politics schools in St. Petersburg, Florida, earlier this month. Black Is Back chairman Omali Yeshitela greeted the participants.
Nellie Bailey is with Harlem Fight-Back Against War at Home and Abroad. She told the Black Is Back Coalition electoral school that U.S. imperialism’s arsenal of war includes the weaponization of the U.S. dollar.
Ajamu Baraka is a former Green Party vice-presidential candidate and now lead organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace. Baraka was in Venezuela when it was plunged into darkness, last month, by a suspected U.S. cyber weapons attack. He says the Black and brown populations of that country support the socialist government
This weekend, anti-mass Black incarceration activists in South Carolina commemorated the deaths of at least seven inmates during disturbances at the Lee County state prison, a year ago. Efia Nwangaza is Director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination, in Greenville, South Carolina, and a key link between prison inmates and their supporters on the outside.
|Apr 15, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.08.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Canada is possibly best known to those of us who live south of its border as place where everyone has access to single payer health care. However, racism is killing disproportionate numbers of Black Canadians, just like in the U.S; And, we’ll talk with a talented artist and intellectual from Kenya, whose current project is using comic books to help African girls navigate the terrain of sex, health and patriarchy.
Russiagate has consumed the U.S. corporate media for the past two years, but the “no collusion” verdict of the Mueller investigation has caused the once-superheated scandal to finally fizzle. In Philadelphia, Duboisian scholar Anthony Monteiro says the implosion of Russiagate lays bare the deep crisis afflicting U.S. empire.
Eternity Martis, is an award-winning Black journalist from Canada, whose work focuses on issues of race and gender. She’s author of a recent article on The Health Effects of Anti-Black Racism in Canada. Martis says Blacks in Toronto face a variety of health challenge, directly related to race. However, when people in the United States think of Canada at all, it’s often with admiration for their single payer health care system.
Thousands of young girls in Canada are illuminating their own lives through the lens of comic books. Ann Moraa is a writer, editor, and performer who is dedicated to telling compelling stories through an African feminist lens. For the last five years, she’s been developing comics and magazines targeting girls in her east African country.
|Apr 08, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.01.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The whole basis for the millions of words and two maddening years of Russiagate has collapsed, but the near-state of war between the two nuclear superpowers continues; We’ll speak with a reearcher who studies African women at war; and, a Haitian activist explains why the people want their U.S.-backed government to step down.
Anti-war forces have converged on the nation’s capital to denounce the aggressive policies of NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty organization that links the militaries of the United States and Europe. Official Washington is staging an elaborate 70th birthday party for NATO on April 4th. That’s also the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, who more than half a century ago indicted the United States as the greatest purveyor of violence in the world. We spoke with Ajamu Baraka, the lead organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace. Baraka says the NATO birthday party is a celebration of state violence.
David Swanson is an activist with World Beyond War, and publisher of the influential web site “War Is A Crime.” Swanson says Russiagate has dramatically increased tensions between the two nuclear super-powers.
Haiti has been occupied by foreign militaries ever since the United States overthrew its elected government in 2004, and was the victim of several U.S. military invasions and occupations in the 20th century. Haitians have been taking to the streets by the hundreds of thousands, demanding that their U.S.-backed government step down. Daoud Andre is a Brooklyn-based radio host and an activist with the Committee to Organize Against Dictatorship. We spoke with him, last week.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, is also an acclaimed author who has written extensively on the violence inherent in the U.S. State. U.S. warmakers have long had their eyes on Venezuela.
Selinka Makana is a scholar at the Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality at Columbia University. Makana was born in Kenya, and specializes in studying African women at war. She’s author of a recent article titled “Contested Encounters: Towards a 21st Century African Feminist Ethnography.” Dr. Makana says the social science of ethnography must be de-colonized.
|Apr 01, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.25.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to look at the constitutionality of a Jim Crow era law, in Louisiana; the Black Alliance for Peace joins demonstrations in Washington against U.S. war policies; and, Muslim and Jewish activists say white supremacy is behind the campaign to silence Rep. Ilhan Omar.
The Ujima People’s Progress Party is gearing up for a statewide conference, in Baltimore, Maryland. Nnamdi Lumumba is one of the organizers of Ujima, which has chapters throughout the state of Maryland. The theme of the conference is, “Elections and Beyond: Building Independent Solutions for the Black Community.”
Activists from around the nation traveled to New Orleans to join protests against Louisiana’s Jim Crow-era law that allows defendants to be convicted when only 10 of 12 jurors turn in a guilty verdict. The U.S. Supreme Court last week agreed to decide on the constitutionality of the law. We spoke with Belinda Parker Brown, of Louisiana United International, one of the groups demanding that the thousands of people now imprisoned under the 10-2 law be set free.
Anti-war activists from around the country are getting reading to converge on Washington, DC, for a week of protests against U.S. wars. Actions will begin on March 30 and continue to April 4. That’s the anniversary of the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, but instead, official Washington is throwing a big party to celebrate the formation of NATO, the U.S. military alliance with Europe, Netfa Freeman is with the Black Alliance for Peace.
The arrival of two Muslim women in the U.S. Congress has focused unprecedented attention on Israel’s policies towards Palestinians. A recent congressional resolution claimed to denounce all forms of religious and racial bias, but was widely seen as being directed against Muslim congresswoman Ilhan Omar. Suad Abdul Khabeer is an anthropologist, artist and activist who teaches at the University of Michigan. She teamed up with other Muslim and Jewish women to write an article titled, “How Targeting Ilhan Omar Instead of White Supremacy Furthered Both Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.”
One of Khabeer’s co-writers is Asha Noor, a racial justice and human rights activist of Somali descent. Noor emphasizes that white supremacy is the grandfather of all the other religious and racial evils.
The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, has some thoughts on the massacre of Muslims at prayer in New Zealand.
|Mar 25, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.18.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has gone heads up with the Israel lobby, but what kind of dirty tricks do supporters of the apartheid state have in store for her; We’ll tell the story of the rise and demise of a reform school for Black girls in the Jim Crow-era South; and, a Black social worker and activist explains her plans to Ramp Up the struggle for Black disabled people’s rights.
The arrest of seven heavily armed mercenaries outside the Central Bank in the capital of Haiti, during civil unrest in that country last month, has raised questions about the stability of the U.S.-backed regime. The soldiers-for-hire were quickly plucked from confinement by the U.S embassy and flown out of the country, and then released when they landed back in the United States. Haitians of all political stripes have a whole range of theories about what the mercenaries were up to. Jake Johnston, of the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research, traveled to Haiti to investigate the case, and filed an extensive report.
A recent congressional resolution aimed at freshman Representative Ilhan Omar, one of only two Muslims in the U.S. House, has focused national attention on Israel’s unrivaled influence on American government policies. Omar declared that members of Congress should not be compelled to pledge loyalty to a foreign government. She had earlier said that the Israel lobby’s power was “all about the Benjamins” – meaning, the vast amounts of money at its disposal. We spoke with Chris Hedges, the political analyst and former New York Times foreign correspondent.
There was a time, no so long ago, when young Black girls Down South were locked away if they didn’t conform to white people’s wishes, or the codes of behavior favored by upper class Blacks. Lauren Henley is a doctoral student in history at the University of Texas, at Austin. She’s doing a study of Black female criminality in the U.S. south from the Reconstruction Era to World War Two. Henley found an illuminating case study in the poignant history of the founding and demise of a reformatory for Black girls in Jim Crow-era North Carolina. It was called the North Carolina Industrial School for Negro Girls, also referred to as the Efland Home.
When folks say Black Lives Matter, Villisa Thompson wants to make sure they mean Black disabled people’s lives matter, too. Thompson is an activist social worker and writer, and a recognized leader in the struggle for rights of the Black disabled community. She’s the creator of Ramp Your Voice and the hashtag “DisabilityTooWhite.” We asked Thompson how her politics impacts her profession.
|Mar 18, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.11.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A supporter of Muslim Congresswoman Ilhan Omar says Democratic leadership is on a collision course with the party’s voter base; a supporter of sex workers in South Africa talks about the priorities of African feminists; and, we’ll hear from a political activist organizing in the bowels of the U.S. prison gulag.
Advocates for community control of the police in Chicago took the battle to the electoral arena, last month, fielding candidates in each of the city’s 50 city council districts. Before the February 26th election, only one city councilman could be counted on to support C-PAC, the proposed Civilian Police Accoutability Commission. But Frank Chapman, of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, says community control advocates are now a force to be reckoned with.
Ilhan Omar has only represented Minneapolis in the U.S. Congress since January, but Democratic Party leadership has already targeted her with two congressional Resolutions, indirectly charging Omar with anti-Semitism because of her criticism of the Israel lobby. Shahid Buttar is a lawyer and human rights activist, and a former director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. Buttar plans to run against House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the upcoming Democratic primary, in San Francisco. He says Democratic leadership is trying to show leftish members of the party who’s boss.
Women in Africa are reshaping what it means to be a feminist. Nkozo Yingwana is a doctoral student and researcher for the African SexWorker Alliance. Yingwana identifies as an African feminist scholar-activist. She wrote a recent essay on sex work and feminism in Africa, titled, “We Fit in the Society by Force.”
Last month, hundreds of inmates froze for days in their cells when power went out at the infamous Metropolitan Detention Center, or MDC, in Brooklyn, New York. Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with a federal prisoner who is organizing behind the bars with IWOC, the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, and who spent time at MDC and wrote an essay on the power failure. He calls himself John Brown 912.
|Mar 11, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.04.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Both Republicans and Democrats in the US claim it’s alright to threaten Venezuela with invasion, because its not a democracy. But we’ll talk with a veteran Black activist who was an official observer of democracy in action in Venezuela. And, a call for the abolition of poverty, by getting rid of the class that is hoarding all the wealth.
Angela Davis, the human rights activist, was initially disinvited from an event of the Civil Rights Institute in Birmingham, Alabama, Davis’s home town, apparently because of her support for Palestinian rights. The month before, CNN fired Mark Lamont Hill for supporting Palestinians in a speech at the United Nations. We spoke with Michael Fischbach, a professor of history at Randolph-Macon College and author of a new book titled “Black Power and Palestine.” Fischbach says Black American empathy with Palestinians and Arabs is nothing new.
The South American nation of Venezuela has held more elections in the past 20 years than any other nation in the western hemisphere, and maybe the entire world. But the corporate media and both political parties in the United States insist that Venezuela’s socialist government is a dictatorship. President Trump has seized billions in Venezuelan assets, and is threatening military action. In Greenville, South Carolina, Efia Nwangaza is a people’s lawyer and director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination. Nwangaza was among the international observers that have verified all of Venezuela’s elections as free and fair.
The popular backlash against deepening economic inequality gets more intense by the day. William Anderson is co-author of a book titled, “As Black as Resistance: Finding Conditions for Liberation.” In an article in Truthout, Anderson said it’s time to heed Dr. Martin Luther King’s call for the abolition of poverty.
|Mar 04, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.25.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A new book lays out the real relationship between the police and Black America. It’s titled “Your Enemy in Blue”; a new and deeper look at Eleanor Bumpers, the Black grandmother killed by New York City police 34 years ago; and, a grandfather with a radio show speaks up for the common people in Zambia, southern Africa.
Much of the world is appalled at the U.S. attempt to provoke a coup in Venezuela, and to put opposition politician Juan Guaido in the presidency. In New York City, the December 12th Movement demanded that the United Nations condemn Washington’s violations of international law. Roger Wareham is a human rights attorney and a member of D-12.
The Black Alliance for Peace also condemns the Trump administration’s regime change policy in Venezuela as a white supremacist assault disguised as a humanitarian intervention.The police are no friend to the Black community in the United States, says author Kristian Williams, who’s written a new book. It’s titled “Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America.”
Thirty-four years ago, Eleanor Bumpers was killed by police in her public housing apartment in The Bronx, New York. The cops that shot-gunned the grandmother to death claimed she threatened them with a kitchen knife. Bumpers became a symbol of police disregard for Black lives. LaShawn Harris was a child in that Bronx neighborhood when Bumpers was cut down, in 1984. Harris is now an Associate Professor of History at Michigan State University. She recently published a comprehensive study of the life and times of Eleanor Bumpers, in the political journal “Souls.” The article is titled, “Beyond the Shooting: Eleanor Gray Bumpurs, Identity Erasure, and Family Activism Against Police Violence.”
Deep in the countryside of Zambia, in southern Africa, a man in his sixties called “GoGo Breeze” holds forth on one of the country’s most popular radio shows. Harri Englund is a Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. He’s written a book titled “Gogo Breeze: Zambia’s Radio Elder and the Voices of Free Speech.” We asked Professor Englund why an African elder with a radio show rates scholarly attention.
|Feb 25, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.18.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A fellow immigrant comes to the defense of Ilhan Omar, the Black congresswoman who stood up to both the Zionist lobby and former death squad organizer, Elliot Abrams; and, we’ll discuss the Restorative Justice doctrine of the prison abolition movement.
the United States has declared economic war on the socialist government of Venezuela, and seems on the verge of military action. The Trump administration blatantly seized billions of dollars in Venezuelan assets, and has declared its intention to replace Venezuela’s government with a president of Washington’s own choosing. We spoke with Ajamu Baraka, of the Black Alliance for Peace.
The U.S. government, both corporate political parties and the corporate media routinely lie about Venezuela, claiming the Socialist government is a dictatorship. Ron Kovalik is a lawyer and author, who has served as an official observer of Venezuela’s elections process.
Ilhan Omar, the new Black congresswoman from Minnesota, was last week chastised by the top Democrat in Congress, Nancy Pelosi, for saying that congressional support for Israel is “all about the Benjamins, baby” – meaning, it’s all about the huge amounts of money that Zionists wield in the U.S. political process. Congresswoman Omar, who was born in Somalia, also confronted President Trump’s Hit Man on Venezuela, Elliot Abrams, who 40 years ago managed death squads in Latin American for the Regan Administration, and was convicted of lying to Congress. We spoke with Sha-hid Boo-TAR, a lawyer and former head of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. Boo-TAR was born in Pakistan. Last primary season, he ran against Nancy Pelosi, for Congress. Boo-TAR says Congresswoman Omar is a brave and righteous woman.
President Trump surprised lots of people with his support of a recently passed prison reform bill. Trump loudly and proudly campaigned as a law and order candidate. Vincent Lloyd is a professor of Theology and Religious Studies at Villanova University. Lloyd is author, along with Joshua Dubler, of a recent article on “restorative justice” – a philosophy to replace and abolish mass incarceration. We asked Lloyd how prison abolition is faring in the Age of Trump.
|Feb 18, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.11.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Rich people try to make us like them by giving money away, but their philanthropy is all about staying in power; and, feminism looks and sounds different to a landless African women in Uganda than it does to a rich white woman in the United States.
President Donald Trump used his State of the Union address to proclaim that there will never be a socialist government in the United States. We spoke with Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Philadelphia-based Duboisian scholar.
A handful of rich people own more wealth than half of the world’s population, and just three billionaires own more wealth than half the people in the United States. But rich people claim that society is better off because of their wealth. Carl Rhodes disagrees. Rhodes is a professor of Organization Studies at the University of Technology, in Sydney, Australia. He’s co-author of a recent article on the ways that rich people justify their status in society by giving some of their money away.
Lots of people call themselves feminists, but the feminist project looks different, based on history, race and geography. Dr. Alicia Decker is a professor of Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies and African Studies at Pennsylvania State University. She’s also co-director of the African Feminist Initiative, which is currently publishing a new issue of its journal, Meridians.
Dr. Maha Marouan is also part of the African Feminist Initiative, and a professor at Penn State. Dr. Marouan teaches African American Studies and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies. She was born in Morocco. Marouan says Muslim women in the U.S. are especially vulnerable to discrimination and attacks.
|Feb 11, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.04.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The U.S. goes all-out for regime change in Venezuela; A new book challenges the dominant discourse on AIDS; And, what’s taking Bernie Sanders so long to declare himself a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination?
Black activists in Chicago are determined to defeat many members of that city’s 50-person Board of Aldermen, only one of whom supports community control of the police. Last month, Frank Chapman, co-chair of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, predicted that by the end of January the movement would recruit at least 70 candidates who are pledged to support creation of a Civilian Police Accountability Commission. We spoke with Chapman again, this week.
The Trump administration has seized billions of dollars in Venezuela’s holdings in the United States, and signed the money over to a Venezuelan opposition politician named Juan Guaido, who named himself president of the country, last week. The U.S. is attempting to cripple Venezuela’s economy in order to overthrow the socialist government that has repeatedly won free and fair elections over the past twenty years. Joe Emersberger has written frequently on the U.S. campaign for regime in Venezuela.
The Democrats already have a sizeable number of declared presidential candidates. However, Bernie Sanders, the man who almost beat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 primaries, and who polls show is the most popular politician in the country, has yet to declare his candidacy. We spoke with Danny Haiphong, who writes a weekly column for Black Agenda Report.
Darius Bost is a professor of Ethic Studies at the School for Cultural and Social Transformation at the University of Utah. His most recent book was featured in the BAR Books Forum. It’s titled “Evidence of Being: The Black Gay Cultural Renaissance and the Politics of Violence.” Professor Bost says he wants to challenge the dominant queer theoretical discourse, that says the AIDS crisis is over.
|Feb 04, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.28.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Women in business and politics are being praised for acting like cutthroat capitalists and war-mongering men. But, is that feminism? And, a leader of South Africa’s newly-formed Socialist Revolutionary Workers Party explains why workers must take political power in that country.
Dr. Martin Luther King is popularly known as a civil rights leader, but he was also deeply committed to the labor movement. Peter Cole teaches African American history at the University of Western Illinois. Cole is author of the book, "Dockworker Power: Race and Activism in Durban and the San Francisco Bay Area.” He says labor issues were a top priority for Dr. King, who early on saw himself as a kind of socialist.
Women are engaged in all kinds of activities these days, including war, torture and cut-throat corporate business. But, is that progress? Dean Spade is a professor at the Seattle University School of Law, and co-author of a recent article titled, “There’s Nothing Feminist About Imperialism.”
South Africa has been under Black political rule for the past 25 years, since the end of apartheid. But the African National Congress government left control of the economy in the hands of white business interests. The gap between rich and poor has gotten even bigger. After decades of frustration, activists centered in the nation’s largest labor union, NUMSA, the National Union of Metalworkers, last year formed a new political party to fight against white monopoly capitalist rule. Irvin Jim is the leader of NUMSA and a key architect of the new Socialist Revolutionary Workers Party. Last week, he traveled to New York City to speak with American activists at the People’s Forum.
Also on hand at the People’s Forum was Dr. Cosmas Musumali, the General Secretary of the Socialist Party of the southern African nation of Zambia. The ruling party of Zambia has declared the Socialist Party to be a danger to national security, and party members are under constant danger of imprisonment. Dr. Musumali told his New York audience that the imperialist powers have enlisted African governments as collaborators in neocolonialism.
|Jan 28, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.21.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: South Africa has been under Black political rule for a quarter century, but remains the most unequal society in the world. We’ll speak with the author of a book on South Africa’s poor people’s movement. And, the investigation into alleged collusion between Wikileaks, the Trump campaign and the Russian government is going into its third year, but there is still no hard evidence of so-called “collusion.” So, what’s behind all the anti-Russia hysteria?
The celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday is both a national holiday and a political institution. But, Larry Hamm, chairman of the People’s Organization for Progress, headquartered in Newark, New Jersey, points out that Dr. King’s writings have not been incorporated into the nation’s public school curriculums.
South Africa remains the world’s most unequal nation, despite the overthrow of white rule and racial apartheid, 25 years ago. Kerry Chance is an anthropologist at the University of Bergen, in Norway. She’s author of a new book on the millions of poor South Africans that struggle to find homes to raise their families. Dr. Chance’s book is titled, “Living Politics in South Africa’s Urban Shackland.”
Since before the votes were counted in November, 2016, the Democrats and elements of the national security state have charged that Hillary Clinton lost the election because of collusion between the Russians, Wikileaks and the Trump campaign. But, more than two years later, there is still no hard evidence of collusion. We spoke with Ray McGovern, a former CIA analyst and one of the founders of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity.
|Jan 21, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.14.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Marxists have been calling on workers of the world to unite for more than a century and a half. But can workers still change the world. A new book says, Yes. And, Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal urge Philadelphia’s chief prosecutor not to stand in the way of possible pathway to freedom.
The Democrats seem certain to step up their investigations of the Trump administration, now that they are a majority In the U.S. House. That also probably means even more frenzied efforts to link Russia to the Trump presidential campaign. Stephen Cohen is the nation’s best known expert on Russia, having studied that nation’s politics in both the Soviet era, and after Russia became capitalist. Cohen spoke with Black Agenda Report executive editor Glen Ford, who remembers the tail end of anti-Russian hysteria during the McCarty Era. But Ford cannot recall anything during the McCarthy era that was as manic, loud and relentless has today’s hysteria against Russia. Professor Cohen, agrees.
Russia may be capitalist, but socialists around the world still seek the overthrow of the rule of the rich. Michael Yates is an editor with the prestigious left publication, Monthly Review. He’s a longtime labor education and a prolific author. Yates’ latest book is entitled, “Can the Working Class Change the World?” Yates think they can, and must. But, most Americans don’t think of themselves as being in the working class, and very few know that 200 million Indian workers recently staged a two-day, general strike.
Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, rallied in Philadelphia, last week, demanding that the city’s district attorney, Larry Krasner, do nothing to interfere with Abu Jamal’s chance to appeal his conviction in the death of a policeman, 38 years ago. A long list of people took to the microhone, beginning with a high school classmate of Abu Jamal, when Mumia was known as Wesley Cook.
|Jan 14, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.07.19
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The two corporate parties, the Democrats and Republicans, monopolize electoral politics in the United States. But the Black Is Back Coalition says there is still reason to pursue independent Black politics. And, after 37 years behind bars, Mumia Abu Jamal has won the right to another appeal, and a possible new trial – or freedom.
But first -- President Trump’s “trade war” with China sometimes seems destined to escalate into a military confrontation. We spoke with Dr Gerald Horne, the prolific author and professor of history and African American Studies at the University of Houston. Some in the Trump administration have expressed pleasure at reports that China’s economy is slowing down, even though many economists believe that it was only a strong Chinese economy that kept the whole world from being plunged into a depression, following the 2008 Wall Street meltdown. Dr. Horne says the U.S. is shooting itself in the foot with its China policy.
The Democrats are flexing their congressional muscle, having taken over leadership of the U.S. House, this month. But the Democratic Party seems divided into three factions. One faction believes that all they have to do to become a majority party is to run against Donald Trump. Another faction looks forward to collaborating with Trump as much as possible. And the third, more progressive faction believes the only way to win is by putting forward the kind of big programs, like Medicare for All, that large majorities of the public supports. Omali Yeshitela is no Democrat. He’s chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition, which will hold another in its series of electoral politics schools, in St. Louis, in April.
Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal are ecstatic over a Philadelphia judge’s decision that could allow the nation’s best known political prisoner another chance to appeal his conviction in the death of a police officer, 37 years ago. We asked Prof. Johanna Fernandez, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home, if there’s finally a real pathway to freedom for Abu Jamal.
|Jan 07, 2019|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.31.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Mumia Abu Jamal wins a victory in court, and celebrates a legal win for sick inmates in Pennsylvania’s prisons; and a police reform group wants to safeguard mentally ill people from police violence.
a New Year is dawning, and it’s been two years since investigations began into the so-called Russiagate scandal. But Black Agenda Report editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley says, the main charge against President Trump, Wikileaks and the Russian government remains unproven.
If there is an anti-war faction in the Democratic Party, it’s been very quiet in the wake of President Trump’s decision to pull all U.S. troops out of Syria. We spoke with longtime peace activist Sara Flounders, co-director of the International Action Center. Flounders is also active in the Hands Off Syria Campaign. The Democrats are screaming to high heaven with outrage at Trumps plans for a Syria pullout..
A Philadelphia judge has ruled that the nation’s best known political prisoner has the right to present another appeal of his 1982 conviction in the death of a police officer. Mumia Abu Jamal proved his contention that a prosecutor in his case, who went on to become a judge, unconstitutionally influenced Abu Jamal’s previous appeal, which was turned down. Meanwhile, Abu Jamal continues to turn out award-winning journalism for Prison Radio. This week, he reports on another victory for Pennsylvania prison inmates.
Millions of white people live in New York City, but you wouldn’t know that if you visited the courts and jails of the city’s five boroughs. The Police Reform Organizing Project, or PROP, reports that close to 9 out of 10 people facing arraignment in local courts on any given day, are Black or Latino. PROP executive director Robert Gangi says his group’s new project is to change the way mentally ill people are treated in New York.
|Dec 31, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.26.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Is the U.S. empire coming apart at the seams? A Black political analyst says, “Yes, it is.” And, Americans think they are the nicest, most generous people in the world, even as they bomb a great portion of the planet. But a new book shows that American Niceness is a mask, and even a weapon.
President Donald Trump shocked the U.S. military and imperial establishment with his decision to pull all U.S. troops out of Syria and to remove half of American military personnel from Afghanistan. The Black Alliance for Peace welcomed Trump’s withdrawals. Ajamu Baraka, the Green Party 2016 candidate for vice president, is the lead organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace.
The Democrats and others in the U.S. War party act as if Donald Trump is the cause of the U.S. domestic and international crisis. But Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Dubosian scholar based in Philadelphia, says Trump didn’t create the acute crisis that U.S. imperialism is undergoing…that it’s been a long time coming.
Americans, especially white Americans, seem to think that they are among the nicest people in the world, both personally and as a nation. Most of the world does NOT share that opinion. Dr. Carrie BRAY-man, a professor of English at Buffalo State University, in New York, has written a book on the subject. It’s called “American Niceness: A Cultural History.” BRAY-man says smiling faces can be very dangerous.
|Dec 26, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.17.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Students at Seton Hall University say they’ll renew demands for African Policies Studies professors of their own choosing; a new study reveals how much force the police use against civilians in every city and town in New Jersey; and, we’ll talk with the author of a new book on the imperial presidency of George Bush, the Elder
But first – There are some in the Black community that advocate all boys schools for Black males, as a way of combating high rates of drop-out and incarceration, and to install pride among young Black males. Keisha Lindsay has written a book on the subject. Lindsay is an associate professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Wisconsin, at Madison. She’s author of the book, ““In A Classroom of Their Own: The Intersection of Race and Feminist Politics in All-Black Male Schools.” She says there is a long history of Black support for projects that promise Black-oriented education
At Seton Hall University, in South Orange, New Jersey, Black, brown and other minority students have banded together under the banner of the “Concerned 44” to stage a series of protests. Chris Duran is a spokesman for the students, who say they represent the 44 percent of the student population that are members of ethnic or gender minorities. They plan to renew their protests, after the holidays, to push a list of demands
Also in that state, New Jersey Advanced Media released a report documenting how police departments in every city and town in the state used force against civilians. Activists on the ground have found the report very useful in pressing their case against police racism and brutality. Zayid Muhammad is a veteran organizer with the Newark Communities for Accountable Policing, or N-CAP. We asked him if there were any surprises in the New Jersey Advanced Media report
George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st U.S. President and father of president Number 43, was laid to rest two weeks ago, with great pomp and ceremony. We spoke with noted author and professor of politics Anthony DiMaggio, who wrote an article for Counterpunch, titled, “Imperialist in Chief: A Critical History of George H.W. Bush’s War On Iraq.” DiMaggio says all U.S. presidents, of either party, seek to build and defend the American empire
|Dec 17, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.10.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A new book maintains that the real Russiagate conspirators are the CIA and the Deep State, which concocted the allegations in order to destroy any chance of peace with Moscow: Activists fighting for Community Control of the Chicago police have targetted virtually the entire city council for ouster in the next elections; and, the American Public Health Association endorses treating police violence as a national public health issue.
The Southern Human Rights Organizers Conference gathered its forces for a conference in Atlanta, Georgia, this past weekend. Black Agenda Report was there.
The Mueller investigation into the so-called Russiagate scandal is reported to be nearing a conclusion, but after two years, there’s still no hard evidence of collusion between Wikileaks, the Russian government and the Trump election campaign. Dan Kovalik is a longtime activist and author, whose new book is titled, “The Plot to Scapegoat Russia: How the CIA and the Deep State Have Conspired to Vilify Putin.” Kovalik says the spinners of the Russiagate tale are ginning up war fever, trying to destroy any chance that a peace movement will re-emerge in the United States.
Activists in Chicago are building on their unprecedented recent victory, with the murder conviction of the white cop that killed Laquan McDonald. Frank Chapman is a veteran community organizer with the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. He reflects on the state of the movement since the rebellion in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014
Hah-Day Rivera is an activist with Critical Resistance, a group of health professionals and anti-policing organizations that recently got the American Public Health Association to endorse the principle of treating police violence as a public health issue. Ms. Rivera is co-author of the ground-breaking report that convinced the Association that fundamental changes need to be made in how policing is done in the United States.
|Dec 10, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.03.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: After gaining an historic murder conviction of a killer cop, anti-police repression forces in Chicago are gearing up for a massive campaign to change the make-up of the entire city government; and, supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal preparingfor another court hearing in their 37-year long struggle to throw out his conviction in the death of a Philadelphia policeman.
First Senator Bernie Sanders, who is presumed to be getting ready for another run at the Democratic presidential nomination, last month unveiled a ten-point domestic program, full of multi-trillion dollar initiatives for Medicare-for-All health care, a massive remake of U.S. national infrastructure, free college tuition, and a dismantling of the mass incarceration regime. But Sanders has little to say on foreign policy or about reducing the military budget that eats up most of federal tax monies. Frustrated with Sanders, over 100 noted intellectuals and activists sent a letter, calling on the senator to come out against U.S. militarism. David Swanson is a veteran anti-war activist and publisher of the influential web site, War Is A Crime. He was one of the framers of that letter.
Black activists in Chicago plan to build on their recent victory, with the historic murder conviction of the cop that killed Laquan McDonald, by changing the balance of power of the city’s board of alderman. Aislinn Pulley is with Black Lives Matter, Chicago. She says the momentum is on the movement’s side.
Supporters of the nation’s best known political prisoner scrambled to bring as many activists to Philadelphia as possible for another court hearing in Mumia Abu Jamal’s challenge to his life prison sentence in the 1981 death of a police officer. Johanna Fernandez is with the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home. She was interview by Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser.
Pam Africa is part of International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal and Minister of Information for the MOVE organization. MOVE has supported Mumia ever since his arrest in 1981, just as Mumia, as a young radio reporter, was one of the few that provided coverage to the MOVE 9, who were imprisoned in the death of a Philadelphia cop, in 1978. Pam Africa explained why they had to scramble to get to court for the latest hearing.
|Dec 03, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.26.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Russiagate is all Democrats and other members of the War Party want to talk about, but the author of a new book says the whole affair was concocted by the former head of the CIA; a Black activist and writer from Canada cautions that the Great White North has its own history of racial repression and police brutality; and, Mumia Abu Jamal has a requiem for the fading U.S. empire.
Dublin, Ireland, was the site of the world’s First International Conference Against U.S. and NATO military bases. The U.S. has between 800 and 1000 military bases around the world, and a military budget that equals all the other nations on the planet, combined. The United States has taken upon itself the duties of world policeman, waging war by military or economic means with no regard for international law. The U.S. is now the main military power in Africa, with an entire military command centered on the continent. Paul Pumprhey is a veteran Black activist and a founding member of Friends of the Congo. He told the conference in Ireland that the U.S. has been exploiting and causing mass death in the Congo for well over a century.
For more than two years, the Democratic Party and most the U.S. corporate media have been waging a non-stop campaign to blame Russia for the myriad social and political conflicts that plague the United States. They call their conspiracy theory “Russiagate.” Ron Ridenhour is a longtime activist and author, now living in Denmark, whose new book is titled ““The Russian Peace Threat: Pentagon on Alert.” Ridenhour says there is nothing the U.S. military industrial complex fears more than the prospect of world peace. He says the whole Russiagate affair is a misinformation campaign concocted by former CIA director John Brennan to rekindle the Cold War.
Lots of folks in the United States think that Canada is a country of racial tolerance. But Robyn Maynard, a Black activist based in Montreal, Canada, says Don’t believe the Canadian hype. Maynard is author of the new book, “Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present.” She says there’s more to policing and repression of Black Lives than just brutal cops with sticks and guns.
The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, reports for Prison Radio on the Twilight of U.S. Empire.
|Nov 26, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.19.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The world’s biggest corporation has chosen its two new headquarters cities, but some folks want Amazon to go back where it came from; we’ll hear from a Muslim liberation theologian, who says Islam should be on the side of the poor and oppressed; and, Mumia Abu Jamal files a report for Prison Radio
The Republican Party lost control of the U.S. House in the recent elections, but strengthened its hold on the Senate. Historically speaking, President Trump’s party was not beaten as badly as presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama were, in midterm elections. We spoke with Dr. Gerald Horne, the prolific author and activist who teaches History and African American Studies at the University of Houston.
Amazon, the biggest corporation in the world, owned by Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world, has decided to move its second corporate headquarters to the “power” cities of New York and Washington, DC. Cities and states across the country promised Amazon billions of dollars in tax incentives and subsidies if the corporation would bring 50 thousand jobs to town with it. The New York City half of the new headquarters will be located in the Long Island City, Queens neighborhood. But the city’s negotiations with Amazon have been super-secret. Maritza Silva-Farrell is executive director of Align, an alliance of New York community groups and labor organizations. She doesn’t trust Amazon one bit.
When we hear the term “liberation theology,” most of us think of the Christian religion. But there are liberation theologians in the Muslim faith, as well. Shadaab Rahemtulla is a Muslim liberation theologian, who teaches at the University of Jordan. He’s the author of a new book, titled, “Koran of the Oppressed: Liberation Theology and Gender Justice in Islam.” Professor Rahemtulla says a pro-poor, pro-equality, and pro-peace Islam is part of the global Muslim conversation.
The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, has filed a report for Prison Radio. It’s about A Man Who Knew Too Much.
|Nov 19, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.12.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A scholar of Native American and Black U.S. ancestry finds a path to greater unity among the two groups, in Hip Hop; Pan Africanists from the United States and elsewhere in the Diaspora make common cause with townspeople in Sierra Leone, West Africa; and, What role did the CIA play in the election of a fascist as president of Brazil?
An educator who has long studied policing in the United States says efforts to curb law enforcement abuse of Black communities are largely misdirected. Alex Vitale is a professor of sociology at Brooklyn College and coordinator of the college’s Policing and Social Justice Project. Vitale is author of the new book, “The End of Policing.” He says attempts to reform the police simply won’t work.
Kyle Mays teaches at the Department of African American Studies and the Native American Center at the University of California, in Los Angeles. Mays is author of the new book, “Hip Hop Beats, Indigenous Rhymes: Modernity and Hip Hop in North America.” He gives equal attention to the histories of both peoples.
On January 1st, Brazil, the colossus of South America, with the largest Black population outside of Africa, will fall under the rule of Jair Bolsonaro, a racist and fascist, by any definition. Bolsonaro was elected president after a long period of political chaos that saw the legislative overthrow of the left-wing Workers Party government of Dilma Rousseff and the imprisonment of her predecessor, “Lula” da Silva. The United States had long sought to undermine the Workers Party. We spoke with Alexander Main, director of international policy at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington. Main is a longtime observer of Brazilian politics. He says Brazilians suspect the CIA had a hand in the defeat of the Left, and the rise of Bolsonaro.
Foday Ajamu Mansaray is a Black American Pan Africanist, now living in Freetown, the capital of the West African nation of Sierra Leone. Mansaray is executive director of the Black Star Action Network International, which includes many ex-patriots from the Black Diaspora who have chosen to live and work on the continent. The Black Star Network’s latest project is called the “Be Clean” campaign.
|Nov 12, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.05.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a researcher tells how solitary confinement has been used to punish Black prison inmates for political reasons since at least the 1950s; a new book traces the growth of the armed and violent white power movement in the United States; and an international tribunal finds the United States guilty of crimes against the lives and rights of the people of Puerto Rico.
Activists in the prison abolition movement have been assessing the effectiveness of the latest national prison strike, which took place between August 21st and September 9th. Max Parthas is an internationally recognized prison slavery abolition activist, a spoken word artist, and former co-host of the Black Talk Radio program, Abolition Radio. Parthas and other abolitionists say slavery was legalized for prison inmates by the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. He was interviewed by Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser, who asked, How did the latest national prison strike advance the cause of abolition?
A new book shows that, at least as far back as the 1950s prison officials have used solitary confinement as a political punishment against Black inmates. Brittany Friedman is a professor of sociology at Rutgers University, and author of new the book, “Solitary Confinement and the Nation of Islam.”
Kathleen Belew teaches history at the University of Chicago, and is author of a new book that puts the recent killings of Blacks and Jews in historical perspective. Belew’s book is titled. “Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America.”
A people’s international tribunal put the United States government on trial for crimes against the people of Puerto Rico, an island country seized by the U.S. 120 years ago, and which was recently ravaged by a deadly hurricane. The people’s tribunal verdict was read in New York City.
|Nov 05, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.29.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Philadelphia activsts hold a two-day conference on the role central role of Black working people in reshaping U.S. society; and, Haiti is still occupied by foreign soldiers, but its people are in the streets, demanding that the U.S.-backed regime step down.
The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations is gearing up for its annual march on the White House and conference, on November 3rd and 4th. This year the theme is “US Out of Africa.” Omali Yeshitela is chairman of Black Is Back. He says the U.S. military command in Africa, AFRICOM, is there to prop up foreign economic and political control over the continent. But Yeshitela says American global rule is in disarray.
In Philadelphia, activists are gearing up for an examination of the role of the Black worker. The two-day event, November 8th and 9th, is part of a year-long celebration of the life and work of WEB Dubois. Dr. Anthony Monteiro is a Duboisian scholar and activist with the Philadelphia Free School, the organizers of the event on Black workers.
The people of Haiti took to the streets, this month, to protest government corruption and massive hikes in the prices of fuel. In New York City, members of the Committee to Mobilize Against Dictatorship in Haiti have been protesting outside the Haitian consulate, every Thursday, denouncing the Haitian government as a puppet of the United States. Committee spokesperson Daoud Andre says Haitians want an end to the regime.
|Oct 29, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.22.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: It seems that everybody and their momma claims to be for reforming the police, these days. But we’ll speak with an author who says police reform is impossible, because violence is a the center of their contract with the state. And, some of the world’s wealthiest people try to reconcile their vast riches by giving billions to charity. But we’ll speak with an activist who says we need to get rid of charity, by getting rid of poverty
Activists from around the country brought their anti-war message to headquarters of U.S. wars, last Sunday. Black Agenda Report was there, for the Women’s March on the Pentagon.
Police reform is a watchword of Black politics. Most Black officials claim to be in favor of stronger measures to restrain police violence. Micol Seigel, an associate professor of Sociology and Africana Studies at Stony Brook University, has a new book, titled “Violence Work: State Power and the Limits of Police.” She writes that “police reform” can’t work, because the rock-bottom function of the police is to do the work of the state – and the work of the state is violence.
Rich people claim that they make the world a better place by giving a portion of their wealth to charity. But author and activist Julie Wark says rich people’s philanthropy is profoundly self-serving, because the system that makes them rich also creates poor people and the need for charity. Wark lives in Barcelona, Spain, and is author of the new book, “Basic Income: The Material Conditions of Freedom.”
|Oct 22, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.15.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A new book makes the connection between mass Black incarceration, the growing police state apparatus besieging non-white immigrants, and the legacy of slavery in the United States: and, Ajamu Baraka says it’s time for a revival – of the Black American peace movement.
Bobi Wine, the wildly popular Ugandan entertainer and national legislator who was hospitalized in the United States after being viciously beaten by President Yoweri Museveni’s police, plans to hold a giant concert in the central African nation’s capital city, Kampala. Wine says Museveni is “drunk on power” after more than three decades in office, and is worse than former dictator Idi Amin. In Brooklyn, New York, Ugandan native Milton Allimadi, publisher of Black Star News, agrees with Bobi Wine’s assessment.
Four decades ago, Black politicians and grassroots activists could be counted on to at least pay lip-service to the cause of international peace. But nowadays, most Black elected officials behave much like other Democrats on foreign policy issues, and the Black peace movement is in disrepair. Veteran human rights activist Ajamu Baraka, who was the Green Party’s vice presidential candidate in 2016, is trying to revive the Black movement against imperialist wars. Baraka is director of the Black Alliance for Peace.
In the Black Radical Tradition, there is no fine line between foreign and domestic policy. Much the same can be said of the politics of Latin American immigrant activists. Martha Escobar is an associate professor of Chicano Studies at California State University, at Northridge.” She’s author of the new book, “Captivity Beyond Prisons: Criminalization Experiences of Latina Immigrants.” Escobar says the U.S. mass incarceration system can only be understood as an extension of slavery.
|Oct 15, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.08.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The civil rights movement shook American racial apartheid to its foundations, inflicting profound defeats on white supremacy, but the defenders of the old racial regime have turned that history into a feather in the cap of American exceptionalism; and, the Pennsylvania prison system is using a dubious alleged drug-induced health crisis to impose unprecedented restrictions on inmate mail and visitation.
Israel is the only nuclear power on Earth that has not only refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Agreement, but enforces a vow of silence on U.S. presidents from both political parties. The Washington DC-based Institute for Research on Middle Eastern Policy has filed suit in federal court to make public letters that the New Yorker magazine says every president since Bill Clinton has signed, promising to never publicly discuss Israel’s arsenal of nuclear weapons or to pressure Israel to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. We spoke with Grant Smith, director of the Institute, and asked him, How could it be that, for two generations, all discussion of Israeli nukes has been forbidden in official Washington?
The same people who fought the civil rights movement tooth and nail, defending discrimination and segregation, now use the movement’s victories as proof that the United States is an inherently good country, a nation that means well even when it is wrong. As proof, they point to the successes of the U.S. civil rights movement, two generations ago. Jeanne Theoharis is a professor of political science at Brooklyn College at the City University of New York, and author of the new book, “A More Beautiful and Terrible History: The Uses and Misuses of Civil Rights History.” Theoharis says the civil rights movement and its leaders have become props for American exceptionalism.
Pennsylvania’s 25 state prisons all went on lockdown, last month, with no notification to inmates or the public. It eventually emerged that the state was claiming that prison guards and other employees had been poisoned by contraband drugs that were smuggled into prison. Medical experts and others questioned the state’s story. Among the most skeptical parties are the lawyers for the Abolitionist Law Center and the Amistad Law Project, who fight for prisoners’ rights in Pennsylvania. Kris Henderson is with the Amistad Law Project, in Philadelphia.
Dr. Joseph Harris is a former member of the Black Panther Party, and currently the personal physician to Mumia Abu Jamal, the best known political prisoner in the Pennsylvania prison system. Dr. Harris has visited Mumia since the lockdown and shakeup of the state prison system. Harris played a key role in Mumia’s fight to be cured of hepatitis-C, for himself and thousands of other inmates.
|Oct 08, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 10.01.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A critique of the recent national prison strike. A veteran activist says the strike’s organizers failed to consult local people on the ground; a California prisons activist addresses the difference between prison abolition and prison reform; and, we’ll talk to the author of a new book on How to be Less Stupid About Race.
Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s nominee to be the next Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, had a hard time during last week’s Senate confirmation hearings. One of the many Americans that was glued to the television was Kevin Alexander Gray, the activist and author from Columbia, South Carolina. Gray says, even when the subject of contention is women’s rights, the SUBTEXT in America, is race.
Efia Nwangaza is an activist and attorney based in Greenville, South Carolina, where she’s director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination. The center also operates radio station WMXP. Nwangaza has been organizing around prison issues in South Carolina since 1978. She is critical of the leaders of the recent national prison strike, conducted from August 21st to September 9th. Nwangaza says the organizers failed to consult with local activists, inside or outside the prison walls.
Romarilyn Ralston spent 23 years as an inmate of the California prison system. She’s now the Program Coordinator of Project Rebound, at the State University at Fullerton, and serves as Policy Coordinator for the California Coalition for Women Prisoners. It seems that Ralston has been on a mission since the moment she set foot outside the prison walls.
Much of today’s political conversation seems to blame Donald Trump for American racism, sexism and endless wars. That’s not very smart, according to Dr. Crystal Fleming, a professor of sociology and Africana Studies at Stony Brook University, on Long Island, New York. Fleming is author of a new book, titled, “How to Be Less Stupid About Race.” She says, yes, Trump is a white supremacist warmonger, but so was his Democratic predecessor.
|Oct 01, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.24.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A professor of theology says Black folks would do well to return to a time when leadership followed a higher law; Dr. Anthony Monteiro says the U.S. empire is in crisis, largely because Russia and China refuse to buckle under to Washington; and, the President of Cuba will meet this week with community members in New York City.
The author of a new book says sports can never be separated from the racial history of the United States. David Leonard is a professor at Washington State University. His book is titled “Playing While White: Privilege and Power On and Off the Field.” Leonard says, even whites that are involved in mass shootings are treated as redeemable, but Black people who have never been charged with a crime are still marked as dangerous to society.
Another author whose work has recently been the focus of the Black Agenda Book Forum, is Vincent Lloyd, an associate professor of Theology at Villanova University. Professor Lloyd believes that the finest hours of Black political organizing occurred when leaders appealed to a higher law of justice.
Dr. Anthony Monteiro is a Duboisian scholar in Philadelphia, where he works with the Saturday Free School. Monteiro says the world has changed in ways that auger badly for U.S. imperialism.
he president of Cuba, Miguel Diaz-Canel, will be among the many global heads of state that will be in New York City this week for the opening of this year’s session of the United Nations General Assembly. On Wednesday, President Diaz-Canel will speak with community members at New York’s historic Riverside Church. One of the organizers of the event is Gail Walker, executive director of IFCO, the Interreligious Foundation for Community Organizations. Walker was interviewed by Black Agenda Radio Producer Kyle Fraser.
|Sep 24, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.17.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Why did Spike Lee use his movie to make a hero out of a cop that spied on Black activists. We’ll put that question to one of the nation’s most respected Black academics. And, we’ll get an assessment of the impact of the just concluded national prisons strike.
A civil rights organization in Washington, DC, has discovered that the Trump administration has plans to drastically raise the cost of staging protests in the Nation’s Capital. According to Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, of the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund, President Trump’s people want to charge protesters for the cost of police, and to ban demonstrators from the sidewalk in front of the White House.
Spike Lee’s movie, Blackkklansmam. made a hero out of Black former policeman Ron Stallworth, who spied on both the Klu Klux Klan and Black political activists, in the 1970s. Black activist, entertainer and filmmaker Boots Riley wrote an essay, blasting Spike Lee for glorifying the police spy. We spoke with another prominent Black social critic. Robin DG Kelly is a professor of history at UCLA and a prolific author and essayist. The Boots Riley essay on Spike Lee’s movie really sparked Dr. Kelly’s interest.
Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal are optimistic that the nation’s best known political prisoner stands a good chance of winning a new trial. Mumia charges that his conviction in the death of a Philadelphia policeman was obtained through prosecutorial and judicial bias involving former prosecutor and judge Ronald Castille. Those charges were the subject of a court hearing, on August 30th. We spoke with professor Johanna Fernandez, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.
In an essay for Prison Radio, Mumia Abu Jamal says the State of Pennsylvania has put the U.S. Constitution on lockdown.
|Sep 17, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.10.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A killer cop goes on trial in Chicago, claiming he shot Laquan McDonald 16 times because that’s what police are trained to do; and, the U.S. corporate media lies about Venezuela every day, but Facebook shuts down the page of one of the only publications that tells the truth about that country.
Much of the corporate media is talking about the New York Times op-ed piece, supposedly written by a high ranking staffer in the Trump administration who claims to be working to undermine the President’s policies. The writer claims to be part of a “resistance” and wishes to remain Anonymous. We called Dr. Gerald Horne, the professor of history and African American Studies at the University of Houston, to see what he thinks about Mr. Anonymous.
One of the best political journals on Latin America, written in English, is Venezuel-a-nalysis, which keeps track of the ups and downs of the socialist movement in that South American country. Last month, the long, algorithmic arm of Facebook reached out to temporarily shut down the Venezuel-a-nalysis page, for no announced reason. We spoke with Venezeul-a-nalysis reporter Jeanette Charles.
The trial of white former Chicago cop Jason Van Dyke began last week. Back in 2014, Van Dyke fired 16 bullets into the body of 17 year-old Laquan McDonald -- a killing that was captured on video, but the tape was kept hidden for more than a year. When the video was finally released, it caused a political crisis for Mayor Rham Emanuel and his top cops and prosecutors. Paul Street is an historian, an author and political activist from Chicago. He’s keeping a close watch on the trial of the killer cop.
Ramona Africa, the longtime spokesperson for the MOVE Family, is in failing health. The MOVE Family has suffered horribly at the hands of the Philadelphia police. Many MOVE members remain in prison for alleged involvement in the death of a cop, in 1978, and 11 family members were killed – including five children – when police bombed their house, in 1985. Ramona Africa was of the two people that survived the inferno. Ralph Poynter is a human rights activist, the husband of the late people’s lawyer and political prisoner Lynne Stewart. Poynter says the movement must embrace Ramona Africa during her health crisis.
|Sep 10, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 09.03.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: What lessons can today’s Black activists learn from the Black Panther Party? The author of a new book has some answers. And, it’s the second week of the national prisons strike. We’ll speak to some activists in the prisoners support network, and we’ll discuss the role of cellphones in bringing public attention to massive human rights violations behind prison walls.
President Trump had to call off his planned military parade on Veterans’ Day, which means anti-war groups don’t have to hold counter-demonstrations on the streets of Washington. But peace activists do plan a number of activities this autumn. Ajamu Baraka is executive director of the Black Alliance for Peace. He explains how Trump’s parade got cancelled.
Robyn Spencer is the author of a new book on the Black Panther Party for Self Defense. It’s titled, “The Revolution Has Come.” Spencer thinks today’s anti-police violence activists could learn valuable lessons from the Panthers, who began as a kind of cop-watch organization, in Oakland, California.
Inmates at a number of prisons around the country are on strike. They describe the mass incarceration system as slavery by another name. In recent years, prison officials have gone apoplectic over inmate access to cell-phones. We spoke with Nazgol Ghandnoosh, senior research analyst for The Sentencing Project, in Washington DC.
The national prisons strike has been underway since August 21st, and continues through September 9. The Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee is part of the inmate support network OUTSIDE the prison walls. Bruce Terpstra is an activist with the Committee. He put the prisoners strike in historical perspective.
|Sep 03, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.27.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black Agenda Radio this week examines two questions that confront those who want to bring down the 500-year reign of Euro-American colonialism and imperialism: How do people free themselves from the oppressor’s rule without becoming like the colonial master? And, how can the nations of what used to be called the Third World create economies of prosperity while still respecting the environment and the rights of indigenous peoples?
Some news from central Africa. -- Bobi Wine, a wildly popular musician and member of the Ugandan parliament, was arrested and severely beaten by police, along with several other elected officials. The police shot Bobi Wine’s driver dead. Wine and his colleagues are vehemently opposed to the 32-year rule of Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni, one of Washington’s closest military allies on the African continent. We spoke with Milton Allamadi, publisher of Black Start News, in New York City, and a native of Uganda. We asked Allamadi what the arrest and brutalization of Bobi Wine says about the Museveni regime.
The Europe and the United States became great industrial powers through centuries of theft of the labor and land of the colonized people of the planet. In the process, great harm has been inflicted on both the environment and the indigenous peoples of formerly colonized world – destruction that continues, even in those developing countries with left-wing government. Macarena Gomez-Barris is author of, “The Extraction Zone: Social Ecologies and Decolonial Perspectives.” She’s also chair of the Department of Social Sciences and Cultural Studies, at Pratt Institute. Gomez-Barris warns that those activists who claim the Earth has no future are unwittingly allowing the rich to continue spreading their ideology of disposability.
And so was a book by Dr. Julietta Singh, titled “Unthinking Mastery: “Dehumanization and Decolonial Entanglements.” Singh is an associate professor of English at the University of Richmond. She’s deeply concerned that previously oppressed people not internalize the ideology and behavior of the Oppressor. We asked Dr. Singh the question: How do people wage a liberation struggle against ruthless capitalists, or imperial powers like the United States – including armed struggle – and not appear to be behaving like the oppressor, like The Master?
|Aug 27, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.20.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a Black historian reports on how U.S. banks stole the resources and sovereignty of whole nations in the Caribbean and Latin America; a new book explores the political culture spawned by the radical movements of the Sixties and Seventies; and, supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal believe upcoming hearings provide a real chance for freedom for the nation’s best known political prisoner.
The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations recently held a national conference in St. Louis. The theme of the gathering was, “There is No Peace: Africa and Africans are at War.” Black Is Back chairman Omali Yeshitela told the audience
President Donald Trump angered much of the world when he called nations in the Caribbean and Africa “feces-holes.” In an article for Black Agenda Report, historian Peter James Hudson pointed out that U.S. banks played a key role in making countries in the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa into places of poverty and oppression. Hudson is author of the book, “Bankers of Empire: How Wall Street Colonized the Caribbean.”
The radical movements of the 1960s and 70s produced a unique and compelling political culture, according to a new book titled, “Fugitive Life: The Queer Politics of the Prison State,” by Stephen Dillon. The book is featured in the Black Agenda Report Book Forum, edited by Roberto Sirvent. Stephen Dillon’s work is rooted in the writings and actions of the hundreds of activists that tried to stay one step ahead of U.S. law enforcement, four decades ago. Dillon says these activists produced a political culture of “fugitivity.”
This is the month of Black August, which always means increased efforts to free political prisoners in the U.S. The next days and weeks will see a flurry of activity to end the long incarceration of the nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal. Orie Lumumba is a member of the MOVE Family, and of Family and Concerned Friends of Mumia Abu Jamal.
That was prison abolition activist Orie Lumumba. From his place of incarceration in Pennsylvania, Mumia Abu Jamal files this Prison Radio report on the passing one of the Greats of Black American culture.
|Aug 20, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.13.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The Black economic condition has dramatically worsened in the 21st Century, with median Black household wealth on a track to disappearing entirely in the next few decades. However, the author of a new book says there’s not much that Black-owned banks can do to head of the disaster. And, the nation’s best known political prisoner has been behind bars for 35 years, but his supporters are stepping up the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.
Donald Trump’s presidency has seen U.S. prestige in the world hit new lows. But the U.S. had long been regarded as having little respect for international law. Black Agenda Report contributor Danny Haiphong has teamed up with Roberto Sirvent to author an upcoming book, titled, “American Exceptionalism and American Innocence: The Fake News of Wall Street, White Supremacy and the U.S. War Machine.” Haiphong says Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were champions of American exceptionalism.
Danny Haiphong’s co-author, Roberto Sirvent, is the editor of the Black Agenda Book Forum. Last week, the BAR Book Forum featured Mehrsa BaRAdaran, author of “The Color of Money: Black Banks and the Racial Wealth Gap.” BaRAdaran is a law professor at the University of Georgia, specializing in banking law. She says Black banks are useful and should be supported, but they are not the solution to Black economic precariousness and the drastic decline of household Black wealth
This month is known as “Black August” among many Black activists, a month to remember political prisoners and those that have died in service to the Liberation Movement. Mumia Abu Jamal has spent the last 35 years behind bars in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. Hearings resume on his contention that judicial bias led to his wrongful conviction. And, Dr. Johanna Fernandez, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home, says there is photographic evidence of police tampering with evidence. Dr. Fernandez was part of the group that produced the 2010 film, “Justice on Trial,” which is being screened on August 23rd at the Maysles Cinema, In Harlem. She was interviewed by Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser.
|Aug 13, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 08.06.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black political prisoners have been languishing behind bars for half a century, but are have finally gotten some major media attention: and, Are Black people’s individual identities more deeply rooted in the social life and fortunes of the larger Black group. We’ll talk with author of the book, “Consent Not To Be A Single Being.”
Apple has become the first corporation in history to be valued at a trillion dollars. But, what kind of mileston is that? We put that question to Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Dubosian scholar who is active with the Saturday Free School, in Philadelphia.
Black political prisoners in the United States got some much needed publicity, last week, from a British-based newspapers. The Guardian ran a series of articles, written by Ed Pinkington, on the plight of Black political prisoners, most of them former members of the Black Panther Party. Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with Jihad Abdulmumit, chairperson of the Jericho Movement and a former political prisoners, himself.
Several months ago, Black Agenda Report inaugurated a weekly Book Forum, edited by Roberto Sirvent, featuring authors whose works are relevant to the African American condition. One of them is Dr. Fred Moten, a poet and scholar who is currently a professor at New York University. Dr. Moten’s latest book is a trilogy, entitled “Consent Not To Be a Single Being.” Writers and critics have associated Dr. Moten with so-called Black Pessimism, Black Optimism, and even Black Mysticism. But he doesn’t recognize himself in any of those “isms.”
|Aug 06, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.30.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: the U.S. has been trying to overthrow the leftist government in Venezuela ever since it was voted into power, back in 1998, but Trump is threatening to use direct American military force; the Syrian so-called “White Helmets” are treated like Hollywood heroes, but they are really Al-Qaida terrorists, subsidized by Britain and the U.S.; and, Mumia Abu Jamal reviews a book about Black communists organizing in Alabama in the 1930s.
Folks on the Left have a lot to say about the pros and cons of Deocrats like Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, the young woman that won an upset congressional victory against a machine Democrat in New York City. But Black Agenda Report managing editor Bruce Dixon says left activists should concentrate on improving their own organizational skills, if they want to serve the people effectively.
Mark Weisbrot is an economist and co-director of the Washington-based Center for Economic and Policy Research. The center intensely follows U.S. policy in Latin America. Mark Weisbrot hit on a novel way to critique U.S. behavior in Latin America since the turn of the 21 st century. He wrote a totally fictional letter in which Thomas Shannon, a long term U.S. diplomat in Latin America, gives advice to Mike Pompeo, President Trump’s Secretary of State. Weisbrot’s fictitious ambassador Shannon tells Pompeo that President’s Bush and Clinton carried out remarkably similar policies to undermine leftist governments in Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, and elsewhere – and with much success.
The so-called White Helmets are hailed as heroes in the U.S. and Britain, but Syrians say the White Helmets are actually part of the Al Nusra Front, the Al Qaida terrorists in Syria, and are not in the business of rescuing anybody. Vanessa Beeley is a crusading journalist, one of few westerners that actually cover the war in Syria. Beeley has done more than any other reporter to expose the Helmets as a fraud. Now that the Syrian Army is closing in on Al Qaida and the other western-backed jihadists in Syria, Israel is lobbying to allow hundreds of jihadists to escape, through its territory or through Jordan, including those claiming to belong to the White Helmets. Vanessa Beeley was interviewed by Phil Taylor, on his radio program in Toronto, Canada.
The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, has reviewed a book on Black Communists in Alabama, during the Great Depression.
|Jul 30, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.23.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Nearly a million Black people waster away in U.S. prisons, which still house political prisoners from nearly half a century ago. Some young activists have begun a prisoner letter-writing campaign, to let them know that people on the outside are with them. And, is the current anti-Russian hysteria worse than during the cold war. We’ll ask the author of a book on the anti-Russian madness.
The Green Party has watched with interest as a number of Democrats have taken positions well to the left of Democratic Party leadership. In New York, Green Party candidate for governor, Howie Hawkins, says, if you want real social transformation, vote for the Greens. Hawkins and other Green Party members recently announced support for social ownership of the economy, a state public bank, and other radical measures. We asked Howie Hawkins what he means by “social ownership of the economy.”
Democrats and war-hawks reach for ever-higher heights of anti-Russian hysteria, ascribing nearly super-powers to Moscow and its president, Vladimir Putin. All this is déjà vu for many older Americans, who remember the Cold War days when Russians were thought to be under every bed. In a new book, Jeremy Kuzmarov and John Marciana explore the similarities, and differences between, the current anti-Russian madness and the hysteria of two generations ago. The book is titled, “The Russians are Coming, Again: The First Cold War as Tragedy, the Second as Farce.” Kuzmarov explains.
This past weekend, social justice activists in New York City set in motion a letter writing campaign for political prisoners. Marlene Nava Ramos is an organizer with Critical Resistance, and a doctoral candidate in sociology.
|Jul 23, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.16.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: We’ll have a radical analysis of the importance of the the summit meeting between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump, from Dr. Tony Monteiro, who says the U.S. can no longer demand obedience to Washington’s version of how the world should be run; and, rebellion continues to simmer behind the prison walls in South Carolina.
The massive popular rebellion that rocked the streets of most of Haiti’s cities has brought down the prime minister and cabinet of the US-backed regime. The disorder was ignited by the government’s massive hike in the price of kerosene, gasoline and diesel fuel, under orders from the International Monetary Fund. In Brooklyn, New York, we spoke with Dahoud Andre, of the Committee to Mobilize Against Dictatorship in Haiti. Andre is also host of a popular Haitian radio program. He says the people of Haiti want the country’s president to step down, as well.
The summit meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, in Helsinki, Finland, occurs at a time of clear decline of the United States, economically and in terms of influence in the world. For three years, Russia has militarily prevented Washington and its Islamic jihadist proxies from overthrowing the government in Syria, Russia’s longtime ally. And, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, with Russia and China in the lead, is creating an alternative economic and political center on the planet, further diluting the influence of the U.S. and Europe. We spoke with Dubosian scholar and political analyst Dr. Anthony Monteiro. He says the world is quite different than the picture painted by the New York Times and the Washington Post.
South Carolina experienced the world prison violence in many years back in April. There’s very little news from the corporate media and current conditions behind the bars, but activists say the rebellion is still simmering. Efia Nwangaza is a veteran of the struggle against the criminal IN-JUSTICE system. Nwangaza is director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination, and also directs WMXP Radio, in Greenville, South Carolina. She says the revolt against oppression in the state’s prisons has not been quelled.
|Jul 16, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 07.02.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Police in Buffalo, New York are up to the same tricks as were exposed in Ferguson, Missouri, saturating the Black community with police checkpoints to fatten the city treasury; New York City cops use a secret list of 42 thousand alleged gang members to justify mass arrests in Black neighborhoods; and, most people on the planet think it’s a good idea for the U.S. and Russian presidents to have a summit meeting – except for the Democrats and U.S. corporate media.
Cities around the country are going deeply in debt, selling bonds to speculators to pay for judgments and settlements against cops that brutalize their citizens. The Action Center on Race and the Economy did case studies in Chicago, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Cleveland and Lake County Indiana, showing that these so-called “Brutality Bonds” are costing these localities almost 2 BILLION dollars. Angela Peoples is director of the Action Center’s campaign. She’s also with the Washington, DC Chapter of Black Youth Project 100.
Civil rights group have filed suit against the city of Buffalo, New York, charging that, for more than five years, Buffalo cops have been saturating Black neighborhoods with police checkpoints for the purpose of extracting millions in fines. According to the suit, 91 percent of the checkpoints operating in Buffalo are located on the Black side of town. We spoke with Keisha Williams, a staff attorney with the Western New York Law Center. She says what’s going on in Buffalo is very much like the systematic draining of the Black community through over-policing and excessive fines that a U.S. Justice Department report documented in Ferguson, Missouri.
Black and brown activists in New York City are outraged that the police department maintains a data base of more than 42 thousand names of alleged gang members, The cops have used the list to bring conspiracy charges against hundreds of young people caught up in massive sweeps of poor neighborhoods. Shannon Jones is co-founder of the community organization “Why Accountability.” Her statemnt was read into the record at recent hearings of the City Council on policing in New York. Shannon was interviewed by Black Agenda radio producer Kyle Fraser.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump will travel to Helsinki, Finland, July 16, for a summit meeting. Most people in the world think the summit is a good idea, to improve relations between the two nuclear super-powers. But much of the Democratic Party in the United States is negative on the subject. Sara Flounders is with UNAC, the United National Anti-War Coalition. In general, Flounders thinks the summit is a good thing, but she isn’t optimistic about the immediate outcome.
|Jul 02, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.27.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The Poor People’s Campaign organizes demonstrations in cities around the country; community activists try to counter massive police sweeps in New York City; and, the Trump administration tells the United Nations that poverty in the U.S. is not the UN’s business.
The world was surprised, and most people were pleased, with the exception of American Democratic politicians, when Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un agreed to move towards lessening tension on the Korean peninsula. But two fierce war hawks, White House national security advisor John Bolton, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, are still wild cards in the game – as is President Trump, himself. We spoke with Dr. Gerald Horne, the prolific author and political analyst who teaches history and African American Studies at the University of Houston.
The Poor People’s Campaign staged a mass rally in Washington, DC, and companion demonstrations were held in other cities around the country, this weekend. The campaign is intended to reignite the movement for social and economic justice that Dr. Martin Luther King was trying to forge when he was assassinated, 50 years ago. Rev. Graylon Hagler, the senior pastor at the Plymouth United Church of Christ, in Washington, is active in the Poor People’s campaign.
The New York City Council recently held hearings on policing in the nation’s largest city. Black and brown activists attempted to get the Council to curb the NYPD’s massive raids and mass arrests in public housing projects. The police maintain a list containing the names of 42 thousand alleged gang members. That list has grown by 70 percent since Mayor Bill de Blasio took office. One of those that spoke before the City Council was Sadiki “Brother Shep” Olugbala, of the Stop The Raids Coalition. He says the police trotted out their high-ranking Black cops to put the best face on their mass arrest policies.
The United States last week withdrew from the United Nation’s Council on Human Rights. The U.S. pull-out was largely in solidarity with its ally, Israel, but Washington was also embarrassed by a report to the Council on entrenched poverty in the United States. U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said the UN should stick to problems in countries like Rwanda and Burundi. At Sputnik Radio, hosts Brian Becker and John Kariakou discussed the UN Report on Poverty in the U.S. with Ajamu Baraka, of the Black Alliance for Peace, and Aislin Pulley, an organizer with Black Lives Matter, Chicago. Ajamu Baraka said…
|Jun 27, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.18.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The world has changed, at least a little bit, over the past two weeks. In Canada, a meeting of the G7 countries failed to achieve a consensus between the U.S., western Europe and Japan on trade, or on relations with Russia. But, just a few days later, President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un reached the beginnings of an agreement on establishing peace on the Korean peninsula, after nearly 70 years of hair-trigger hostilities and threats of nuclear confrontation. We’ll talk with Duboisian scholar Dr. Anthony Monteiro, Ajamu Baraka, of the Black Alliance for Peace, and Omali Yeshitela, of the Black Is Back Coalition.
we talk with David Swanson, the veteran anti-war activist and director of World Beyond War. The Democratic Party used to be thought of as at least somewhat less warlike that the Republicans. But most Democrats are opposed to Donald Trump making peace with North Korea.
In Philadelphia, Dubosian scholar Dr. Anthony Monteiro sees the Korea talks as a pivotal point in history.
One would think that anyone that is truly interested in avoiding nuclear war would have had a positive response to the agreement between Trump and North Korea. We spoke with Ajamu Baraka, the national organizer for the Black Alliance for Peace.
Before President Trump had his successful meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore, he travelled to Canada to meet with leaders of the United States’ European, Canadian and Japanese allies. Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition, has been closely following the unfolding crisis in U.S. relations with its allies. Trump’s Canada trip was anything but triumphant.
|Jun 18, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.11.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A welfare rights leader rallies to support the poor people of mostly Black Benton Harbor, Michigan; the financial board overseeing Puerto Rico is trying to divert disaster aid money to satisfy a debt to the bankers; a Black book store in Harlem, still standing; and, Mumia Abu Jamal says Donald Trump is crowning himself King.
Kshama Sawant, the Socialist Alternative Party leader who serves on the city council in Seattle, Washington, is being sued for defamation by two city cops. Sawant called the police killing of an unarmed Black man “a brutal murder.” Defending against such suits costs a lot of money. Emerson Johnson is part of the Kshama Solidarity Campaign. He says, the cop’s suit is an effort to silence opponents of police lawlessness.
The powers that control mostly Black Benton Harbor, Michigan, were overjoyed when local activist Rev. Edward Pinkney was sent to prison for 30 months for allegedly tampering with election petitions. But a higher court later exonerated Pinkney of all charges. Within weeks, Pinkney was leading protests against the Whirlpool corporation, which has dominated Benton Harbor’s politics for decades, and Whirlpool’s pet project, the PGA senior golf tournament, which Pinkney said contributes nothing to the Black city. On hand for the protests was Marian Kramer, head of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization and widow of the legendary Detroit activist, General Gordon Baker.
Recently, the world learned that as many as 5,000 Puerto Ricans died in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, far more than originally thought. Now, a new report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, in Washington, shows that the appointed financial board that oversees Puerto Rico’s finances has been trying to divert disaster relief aid to finance the island’s debt. We spoke with Lara Merling, one of the authors of that report.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, says the United States now appears to have a King in charge: Donald The First.
Black book stores are disappearing at an alarming rate. In Harlem, New York, Jenifer Wilson operates the Sister’s Uptown Bookstore and Cultural Center. She told Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Frasier why she opened a book store Black America’s most famous neighborhood.
|Jun 11, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 06.04.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The United States government has been trying to overthrow the government of Venezuela for most of this century. But the ruling socialist party keeps getting elected by the people, in ballots that international observers have repeated said are among the free-est and fairest in the world. Venezuelans last month voted to keep president Nicholas Maduro in office. The Black Alliance for Peace sent human rights activist Efia Nwangaza to observe the election, and we’ll present her full report.
Dictators have come and gone in Africa, but only one of them, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni, has been in power for 32 years. Museveni was Ronald Reagan’s favorite African strongman, and Museveni’s military has been a tool of U.S. policy in Africa, ever since. The Ugandan army has wreaked havoc among its neighbors, destabilizing Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, and intervening in South Sudan’s civil war. Last month, a coalition of Pan Africanist organizations came together with a campaign to expose the Ugandan regime as a menace to Africa. It’s called Stop Museveni. Milton Allimadi, the publisher of New York-based Black Star News, and a native of Uganda, explains.
The U.S. corporate media, acting like mimicks of the U.S. government, has been slandering Venezuela ever since newly elected president Hugo Chavez declared that his country would stop taking orders from Washington, back in 1998. The United States has been trying to overthrow his government ever since. Over the last 20 years, Venezuela has held more elections than any other nation in the hemisphere, possibly the world – all of them certified by global observers as free and fair. But the U.S. corporate media continues to claim that the socialist party government of the current president, Nicholas Maduro, is illegitimate. The Black Alliance for Peace sent an observer, veteran human rights activist Efia Nwangaza, to the latest election in Venezuela, last month. She reported back on a call-in program, last week, hosted by Black Agenda Report’s Margaret Kimberley, who is also part of the Black Alliance for Peace.
|Jun 04, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.28.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a national conference was held in North Carolina, last week, in hopes of revitalizing the Black liberation movement. And, the film “Black Panther” turned Black super-hero images into a worldwide box office smash. We’ll talk with someone who’s been turning out Black superhero comic books for more than 40 years.
Mumia Abu Jamal and his longtime collaborator, Stephen Vittoria, have a new book out. It’s titled “Murder Incorporated: Empire, Genocide and Manifest Destiny – Book One: Dreaming of Empire. The book is a sweeping examination of the white settler and colonial project from Christopher Columbus to the present day. The authors will later release Books Two and Three, covering CIA interventions around the world and perpetual U.S. wars, the mass security and surveillance state, and the delusion of a post-racial America. Six years ago, Stephen Vittoria produced the documentary film, “Long Distance Revolutionary: A journey with Mumia Abu Jamal.” Vittoria explains how he got into the book venture with Mumia.
Black super-hero characters are all the rage in the wake of the huge box office success of the movie “Black Panther.” But the Black comic book hero genre has been out there for many decades, pioneered by people like Professor Turtel Onli, of Onli Studios, in Chicago, producers of a long list of comic book titles. Professor Onli told us how he got started in the Black super-hero business.
In Durham, North Carolina, last week, activists from around the country came together for a National Assembly for Black Liberation, aimed at injecting new life into the Black Freedom Movement. One of those who spoke was Larry Hamm, chairman of the People’s Organization for Progress, based in Newark, New Jersey.
|May 28, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.21.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Israel’s massacre of unarmed Palestinians has once against shocked the sensibilities of the world, unless, of course, you are a U.S. Democrat or Republican, in which case, whatever Israel does is fine; And, the Move 9 have been imprisoned for nearly 40 years, but the struggle to free them, continues.
Rev. Edward Pinkney, the activist from Benton Harbor, Michigan, was exonerated, this month, of election tampering charges that put him prison for two and a half years. Rev. Pinkney is back pursuing his old nemesis, the Whirlpool Corporation, which has dominated the poor, Black town for decades. Rev. Pinkney is set to disrupt Whirlpool’s pet project, the local PGA senior golf tournament.
Israel has once again shocked the world, methodically slaughtering Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza. Scores of Palestinians have been killed by Israeli snipers, and literally hundreds more wounded and maimed, as they demanded the right to return to their ancestral lands that were seized by the apartheid Zionist state. We spoke with journalist and educator Vijay Prashad, and asked him what the Gaza massacres show about Israel.
Protesters inhave been trying in vain to stop the Philadelphia Orchestra from going on trip to Israel. Susan Abulhawa is with the Philly Don’t Orchestrate Apartheid Coalition.
President Donald Trump delighted the Israeli regime, by recognizing Jerusalem as the apartheid state’s capital, in clear violation of international law. But Black Agenda Report’s Bruce Dixon says the Democrats are just as guilty of coddling the Israelis as the Republicans.
Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with Mike Africa Jr, of the Philadelphia MOVE Family, whose father and mother, Mike Africa senior and Debbie Africa, and other MOVE members have been locked up for four decades in the death of a policeman. Supporters of the MOVE 9 have recently been organizing on behalf of Puerto Rican relief, as well as raising money for legal defense. Mike Africa Jr says
|May 21, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.14.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: There has not been one pause in U.S. wars since the invasion of Iraq, and the corporate media has been beating the drums for every one of them, with play-by- play from lying generals and the CIA; a new study shows that three out of four people renters that get evicted would not have been put out of their homes if they’d had a good lawyer; and, Mumia Abu Jamal says farewell to a central figure of Black Liberation theology.
No sooner had President Trump withdrawn from the agreement international agreement with Iran, than Israel launched massive attacks against Iranian and Syrian military targets in Syria. We spoke with Ajamu Baraka, the veteran human rights activist and lead organizer for the Black Alliance for Peace.
Fifteen years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, almost everyone responsible for the attack now admits that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction. Yet, the same voices that spread lies about Iraq are constantly on television and in newspaper op-ed pages, beating the drums for a wider war against Syria and Iran, and demonizing Russia. Jeff Cohen is one of the nation’s foremost critics of corporate media. Cohen is director of the Park Center for Independent Media at Ithica College, in New York. He was a founder of the watch dog group FAIR, Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting. He says military and CIA liars and spies get top bllling in the corporate media.
A new study shows that one of the most effective ways to combat homelessness and neighborhood instability is to strengthen renters’ rights. The report, by the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, is co-authored by Tristia Bauman. She says there is far too little affordable housing to go around, and tenants rights need to be protected.
The nation’s best known political prisoner, Mumia Abu Jamal, marks the passing of the man who became known as the father of Black Liberation Theology.
|May 14, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 05.07.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Inmates at prisons across the nation will go on strike, in August, against slavery behind the bars; the Democratic Party sides with CIA spies and the FBI, in its suit against Wikileaks; and, Winnie Mandela is remembered as a voice against compromise with white corporate power in South Africa.
In a unanimous vote, the Michigan Supreme Court last week exonerated and set free Rev. Edward Pinkney, the Benton Harbor, Michigan, activist who spent two and a half years in prison for allegedly tampering with signatures on an election recoil petition. At his trail before an all-white jury, Rev. Pinkney had argued that the charge was baseless, but it took 30 months in prison for him to get the State Supreme Court to agree with him. Nevertheless, he’s a happy man.
The Democratic National Committee last month brought a multimillion dollar law suit against Wikileaks, the Russian government and the Trump administration, blaming all three for Hillary Clinton’s defeat in the 2016 election. The suit against Wikileaks is especially disturbing, because it could cripple the ability of journalists to report on government wrongdoing in the United States. In Washington, we spoke with Chip Gibbons, of Defending Rights and Dissent.
The South African liberation movement lost one of its most militant advocates with the death of Winnie Mandela, last month. The former wife of Nelson Mandela was a leading figure in the more radical wing of the African National Congress, the party that came to power with the end of apartheid but now rules in close collaboration with white corporate forces. Black Agenda Report editor and columnist Marsha Coleman-Adebayo hosts a radio program titled “What’s At Stake” on Pacifica station WPFW, in Washington DC. Coleman- Adebayo took an in-depth look at Winnie Mandela’s life and struggle, which was sometimes at odds with her former husband and his political allies.
Prison slavery Abolitionists are planning a nationwide prison strike from this coming August 21st to September 9th. The inmates have put forward a list of ten demands, including an end to work without wages behind the bars. Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with two of the organizers. Brother Akin Yele works with the inmate group, Unheard Voices OTCJ, based in South Carolina, where fighting among inmates at the Lee Correctional Facility left seven dead and many injured, last month. Brother Dee is a member of Jailhouse Lawyers Speak.
|May 07, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.30.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a call for a new kind of peace movement, one that cares about the whole of humanity; Mumia Abu Jamal’s lawyers believe they have a good case for ending his long incarcartion; and, the government of Colombia has detained two women activists in the struggle for Black territorial and community rights.
President Trump’s national security advisor, John Bolton, is said to have never seen a war he didn’t like – but, that applies to a lot of Republicans AND Democrats. We spoke with Phyllis Bennis, director of the New International Project at the Institute for Policy Studies, in Washington. Bennis thinks Bolton is an especially dangerous man.
President Trump came into office promising to be tough on China, and he has been pushed by the Democrats to increasingly confront Russia. However, with Asia now, not only the population center of the planet, but also home to the most dynamic economies, the U.S. role in the world seems more and more to be holding back human progress. In Philadelphia, Duboisian scholar and lifelong activist Dr. Anthomy Monteiro says what’s needed in the U.S. is a new kind of peace movement.
Also in Philadelphia, supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, will gather on April 30th for a hearing in a Pennsylvania state court. Lawyers for Abu Jamal believe they have a good case for overturning his conviction or gaining a new trial in the 1981 death of a police officer. Ronald Castille was a top prosecutor at the time. Castille later became a judge, and repeatedly turned down Mumia’s appeals. Gwen DeBrow, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home, says Castille should not have been allowed anywhere near Mumia’s appeals process. She thinks there may be a real path to freedom for Abu Jamal, but you also need big demonstrations to make that happen.
Black Colombian community organizations are demanding the release from detention of two of their leaders, Sara Quiñonez and her mother Tulia Maris Valencia. The women are members of the Black Communities Process, or PCN, which advocates for Black territorial and civil rights in the war torn South American country. Charo Mina-Rojas is a spokesperson for Black Communities Process. She explains what happened to her comrades.
|Apr 30, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.23.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Durham, North Carolina, becomes the first city in the country to prohibit its police force from collaborating with Israel; a prison activist in South Carolina indicts the state for the death of seven inmates in the worst prison violence in a quarter century; and, the Bronx welcomes home two of the 120 young men imprisoned in the biggest police raid in New York City history.
Russia says it will soon move its most sophisticated air defense systems to Syria, so that the west will pay a high price if it repeats this months attack on Syrian forces. We spoke with Dr. Francis Boyle, the renowned professor of international law, at the University of Illinois. There is still no evidence that the government of Syria actually carried out any chemical weapons attack on civilians. But, in a sense, that really isn’t the point, is it, Dr. Boyle?
The city council in Durham, North Carolina, unanimously voted to prohibit its police force from engaging in training or other exchanges with the Israelis. That’s a first for any city in the United States. The ban was pushed by a Coalition of ten organizations, under the heading “Demilitarize Durham to Palestine.” Ajamu Amir Dillahunt, of Black Youth Project 100, explains.
Seven prison inmates were killed and at least 17 injured in violence at a prison in Lee County, South Carolina. Officials call it the worst prison conflict in a quarter century. South Carolina’s governor claims the root cause of the violence is the proliferation of illegal cell phones behind the bars. But Efia Nwangaza, director of the Malcolm X Center for Self-Determination, in Greenville, South Carolina, says the governor’s fixation with cell phones is…nonsensical.
Two years ago, New York City police and federal agents staged a massive raid on five housing complexes in the Soundview section of The Bronx, hauling away 120 young men on conspiracy to commit a whole range of crimes. It was called the largest gang raid in the city’s history. Two years before that, in 2014, cops and federal agents staged a similar raid at two Harlem housing projects, arresting 100 people on conspiracy charges. On Friday, community members and activsts will welcome home two of the men arrested in the 2016 Bronx raid. The “Welcome Home Party,” at the Bronx Social Center, was put together by the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, Black Youth Project 100, Take Back the Bronx, and the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home. Kraig Lewis was doing graduate work in college when he was hauled off in the raid and locked up in the infamous Metropolitan Detention Center, or “MDC,” for almost two years. He spoke with Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser.
|Apr 23, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.09.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a Black activist announces her campaign for the U.S. senate, at a Black is Back Coalition electoral politics school in St. Louis; a Black prosecutor in Virginia explains why its important to make cops accountable when they kill unarmed people; and, Mumia Abu Jamal remembers Winnie Mandela.
Activists took to the streets in cities around the country to protest the Sacramento police killing of Stephon Clark, an unarmed young Black man shot to death in his grandmother’s back yard. Black Agenda Report senior columnist Margaret Kimberley says the burst of protest activity is a good sign.
In St. Louis, Missouri, over the weekend, the Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations held a school on electoral politics to promote transformational change. One of those on hand was Coffee Wright, a longtime activist who is running for the U.S. Senate, from Missouri.
Members of the National Black Caucus of Young Elected Officials Network held a press conference, last week, demanding local and national political reforms in the wake of the police killing of Stephon Clark, in Sacaramento, California. One of the officials on hand was Stephanie Morales, the young Commonwealth’s Attorney for Portsmouth, Virginia, who successfully prosecuted a police officer for killing an unarmed Black man. Morales handled the case, herself.
New York City mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Mario Cuomo are demanding that the state parole board reverse its decision to parole Herman Bell, the former Black Panther who has been in prison for almost four decades in the killing of a police officer. Ralph Poynter is an activist with the New Abolitionist Movement, and the husband of the late people’s lawyer and political prisoner Lynne Stewart. Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio say that no one that kills a cop should ever go free. Ralph Poynter says these two politicians should pay a heavy price for trying to keep Herman Bell in prison.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, spoke on the passing of Winnie Mandela, the widow of the the man who was once the world’s best known political prisoner.
Last week marked the 50 th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, the peace and justice advocate. The week also saw Israeli troops move down nearly a score of unnamed Palestinian protesters, in Gaza. Black Agenda Report managing editor Bruce Dixon has this commentary.
|Apr 09, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 04.02.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The cops in Sacramento, California, shot Stephon Clark in the back in his grandmother’s backyard, sparking protests all across the country, including New York City; and, a New Jersey judge sides with the police union, ruling that a community complaint review board violates the due process rights of cops.
President Trump alarmed lots of people when he appointed the serial warmonger, John Bolton, as his national security advisor. Bolton has urged military attacks on both North Korea and Iran. Sara Flounders, of UNAC, the United National Anti-War Coalition, says the U.S. empire is in a state of disarray, confusion and desperation.
A New Jersey State Supreme Court judge dealt a blow to Newark Mayor Ras Baraka’s effort to establish a Civilian Complaint Review Board with the power to investigate and subpoena the police. The judge sided with the Fraternal Order of Police union in ruling that the board constitutes a violation of police officer’s right to due process. We spoke with Larry Hamm, chairman of POP, the People’s Organization for Progress, which has been fighting police brutality in Northern New Jersey for almost 40 years. Hamm says the judge’s ruling is a serious setback to the struggle against police abuse of the community.
The police killing of Stephon Clark, in Sacramento, California, shocked Black communities across the nation. In New York City, activists clashed with police at demonstrations in Manhattan. Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with Shannon Jones, of Bronxites for NYPD Accountability. Jones says Stephon Clark was the victim of a shoot-the- Black-man- on-sight policy.
|Apr 02, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.26.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The U.S. Senate voted down a bill, sponsored by Bernie Sanders, that would have ended U.S. participation in the war against Yemen: activists gathered, in New York City, to explore ways to end the U.S. governement war against Black people and immigrants; and, and Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz explains why white American men are so committed to keeping their guns.
Ajamu Baraka, the national organizer for the Black Alliance for Peace, recently returned from an historic meeting of representatives of 100 countries in Caracas, Venezuela, in solidarity with the Venezuelan socialist government. Venezuela is set to hold elections in April, but the Trump administration says it won’t recognize the election result as legitimate, and has threatened to take military action. Baraka appeared on the Popular Resistance podcast program, with Kevin Zeese and Dr. Margaret Flowers. He says peace-loving people should stand with Venezuela.
The U.S. Senate last week voted on a bill, sponsored by Bernie Sanders, that would have ended U.S. involvement in the Saudi Arabian-led war against Yemen. The measure was defeated, 55 to 44, but David Swanson, the author and anti-war activist, says that’s actually the closest the Senate has gotten to shutting down a war in a long, long time.
In New York City, activists gathered for a conference designed to bring Blacks and immigrant communities together on issues of mass incarceration and mass deportation. The event was titled, “Breaking Down Walls and Prison Plantations: Mumia, Migrants and Movements for Liberation. One of the speakers was Nyle Fort, a PhD candidate at Princeton University and activist with the Poor People’s Campaign.
This week, we resume our conversation with historian Roxanne Dunbar- Ortiz. Ortiz is author of “An Indigenous People’s History of the United States,” which looks at the establishment of the U.S. through the prism of Native American struggles, and her new book, “Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment,” which explores the role of white militias in waging genocide and maintaining slavery and Jim Crow. Native Americans were also enslaved by the millions, and suffer even higher rates of incarceration than Blacks.
|Mar 26, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.19.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Black and Latino activists come to grips with tensions between the communities over jobs and prejudice. A new report shows that, the way things are going, it will take 75 years to cut the U.S. prison system in half – and even then, it will still be the largest in the world. And, we’ll have a report from the courageous journalist, Eva Bartlett, on Syria.
gun control advocates often despair at matching the political clout of the National Rifle Association, one of the most powerful lobbies in the nation. Historian and acdtivist Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, however, is not surprised at all tht the NRA wields so much influence. She’s author of a new book, titled, “Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment,” which explores the deep roots of U.S. gun violence in the centuries of genocide and slavery. Dunbar-Ortiz deplores the historical ignorance of the corporate media, especially in their coverage of mass shootings. Typically, when the media cite the grim body counts of past mass killings, they ignore the long history of massacres of Blacks and Native Americans.
In Washington, the Sentencing Project has a new report out, summing up the setbacks and the progress that’s been made in prison reform. Nazgol Ghandnoosh is The Sentencing Project’s senior research analyst, and author of the report. She calculates that, at the current pace, it would take 75 years for the U.S. prison population to be cut in half. On average, the national prison population has shrunk since reaching a peak in 2009. We asked Ghandnoosh if she’s encouraged by the numbers.
On this Friday, March 23, some of the strongest currents in the Black and Latino movements will come together at New York City’s Holyrood Episcopal Church. The event is called, “Breaking Down Laws and Prison Plantations: Mumia, Migrants and Movements of Liberation.” Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with one of the organizers, Johanna Fernandez, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.
Eva Bartlett is a courageous Canadian war reporter who, along with British journalist Vanessa Beeley, has exposed the so-called White Helmets of Syria as a public relations unit of al-Qaida. The western corporate media claim the Syrian government is deliberately starving the people of East Ghouta, an al- Qaida occupied neighborhood near Damascus. They said the same thing about Aleppo. But Eva Bartlett covered the battle of Aleppo and visited the liberated town of Madiya, and saw no evidence of Syrian government atrocities. Bartlett spoke with the Global Research News Hour about her time in the town of Madiya.
|Mar 19, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.12.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Activists in New York held a tribunal on ethnic cleansing, another term for the gentrification that is destabilizing Black neighborhoods across the country; and, the organization created by and for U.S. political prisoners gets ready to celebrate its 20 th anniversary.
Dr. Gerald Horne, the prolific Professor of history and African American Studies at the University of Houston, has another book out. It’s titled The Apocalypse of Settler Colonialism: The Roots of Slavery, White Supremacy, and Capitalism in 17 th Century North America and the Caribbean.”
In New York, the December 12 th Movement organized a city-wide Tribunal on Ethnic Cleansing, to identify and denounce the forces behind gentrification of Black neighborhoods. Black Agenda Radio’s Nellie Bailey is a veteran tenants organizer. She was among those that testified before the tribunal.
Activist and Episcopal Priest Father Frank Morales told the tribunal the gentrifiers need to be confronted on the streets of the targeted neighborhoods.
The National Jericho Movement was founded by, and in support of, political prisoners in the United States. The movement is now 20 years old. Black Agenda Radio Producer Kyle Fraser spoke with Jericho co-chair Jihad Abdulmumit.
|Mar 12, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 03.05.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A scholar and activist asks, when does support for prison and police “reform” actually amount to propping up these racist institutions; and, the mayor of New York City claims turnstile jumping has nothing to do with poverty.
Last summer, the voters in Jackson, Mississippi, elected Antar Lumumba mayor of the overwhelmlngly Black city. Antar Lumumba is the son of the late activist Chokwe Lumumba. Some folks are already describing Jackson as “the most radical city in the country” – a very premature assessment. We spoke with Kali Akuno, an activist with Cooperation Jackson, a community self-help organization that is trying to establish cooperative enterprises owned by the local workers.
People that petition and agitate for reform of the police and the mass Black incarceration system may actually be bolstering the power of those racist institutions. Dr. Dylan Rodriguez, a professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the University of California, at Riverside, says “reformers” tend to legitimize the very system they criticize – as opposed to those who would abolish prisons and reinvent the way communities are made secure. Prof. Professor Rodriguez authored an article for Black Agenda Report, titled “Mass Incarceration as Police Endorsement.” He understands that some “reformers” might be insulted at being described as allies of police and prisons.
In New York City, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance says his office will stop prosecuting people for fare beating on New York City subways. But Mayor Bill DiBlasio objects, claiming that that turnstile jumping has nothing to do with poverty. Robert Gangi is executive director of the Police Reform Organizing Project, which monitors a court system where, on any given day, 85 to 90 percent of the defendants are Black and brown – many of them charged with fare beating.
|Mar 05, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.26.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A leading scholar and activist predicts that U.S. imperialism is on a course towards chaos and collapse, and that imperialism’s main currency, the dollar, will precipitate that decline. And, we’ll hear a reading of Assata Shakur’s poem, “Affirmation,” by Black political prisoner Sundiata Acoli.
the City of Philadelphia declared 2018 the Year of W.E.B. Dubois, marking the 150 th anniversary of the birth of the great Black political activist, scholar and social scientist. In 1899, Dubois published his famous sociological study of the Black people in Philadelphia. It was not only the first such study of Black people in the United States, but many consider it to be the first example of sociology based on hard scientific data. The first of many symposium’s on Dubois’s life and work was held last weekend at the historic Church of the Advocate. The crowd heard a special tribute to Dubois from Philadelphia’s most internationally famous son, political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal.
The Church of the Advocate symposium on W.E.B. Dubois was organized by Philadelphia’s Saturday Free School. One of the panel members was Ismael Jimenez, a public school teacher.
That was Ismael Jimenez, speaking at the W.E. B. Dubois symposium at the Church of the Advocate, in Philadelphia. Black Agenda Report executive editor Glen Ford was also on that panel. Ford focused on the political and historical importance of DuBois’ book, “Black Reconstruction.”
The symposium was presented by activists at the Saturday Free School, one of whose organizers is Dr. Anthony Monteiro, the Duboisian scholar and political activist. Dr. Monteiro says U.S. imperialism is bound to fall, and its currency, the dollar, will precipitate imperial decline.
Prison Radio brings the voices of the incarcerated to the outside world, including Mumia Abu Jamal’s essays and commentaries. Prison Nation organized a reading by prisoners of poem, “Affirmation,” by exiled Black Panther and former political prisoner Assata Shakur, who lives in Cuba. One of those that took part in reading the poem was Sundiata Acoli, who was with Assata Shakur when they had a fatal encounter with New Jersey police, in 1973. Acoli remains in prison, and will not be available for parole until the year 2032, when he will be 94 years old.
|Feb 26, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.19.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: A glimmer of hope for some modest reform in the Mass Black Incarceration regime; Mumia Abu Jamal explains why White Supremacy actually means White MALE Supremacy; New York City activists take the fight against police repression underground, into the subways; and, Why do so many liberals, and even some supposed Leftists, seem to be in love with the FBI.
The United States has backed regime change in Venezuela for most of this century. But now Washington appears to be escalating hostilities, threatening military action against the socialist-led country. Ajamu Baraka is lead organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace.
The Senate Judiciary Committee easily passed a bill to give judges more latitude in sentencing, bypassing some mandatory-minimum guidelines and providing a way out of prison for some of those convicted under the old, racist 100-to- 1 crack cocaine laws. The Washington-based Sentencing Project works constantly for criminal justice system reform. Kara Gotsch, the Sentencing Project’s director of Strategic Initiatives, says the Senate Committee action is… a very Big Deal.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, has long been broadcasting essays and commentaries for Prison Radio. He explains why White Supremacy actually means White MALE Supremacy.
Shannon Jones is a veteran organizer with Bronxites for NYPD Accountability. She and her comrades spend lots of time underground, in the New York City subway system, fighting police racism and repression. Jones explained to Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser what the Swipe It Forward campaign is all about.
Ever since Hillary Clinton’s campaign blamed her defeat on the Russians, folks that claim to be people of the left have been having a love affair with the FBI and the CIA. Professor Ward Churchill has some ideas on how that happened. Churchill is co-author of the book, “Agents of Repression,” a study of the FBI’s campaign to destroy Black and Left organizations. He was interviewed by veteran broadcaster Don DeBar, of Community Public Radio News.
|Feb 20, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.12.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: a professor of international law says the U.S. acts like a rogue nation in the world, invading, assassinating and launching unjust wars at will; and, that includes the ultimate threat of nuclear war. We’ll speak with an activist who says the Trump administration is making human extinction more likely.
Public school teachers in cities across the country took part in a Black Lives Matter Week of Action, last week. In Washington, DC, the activities were organized by the DC Area educators for Social Justice, a project of Teaching for Change. We spoke with organizer Deborah Menkart.
U.S. forces attacked and claimed to have killed about 100 Syrian soldiers. Syria and Russia are warning that the U.S. is playing with fire, and has no right to station soldiers on another country’s territory. But the fine points of international law don’t seem to matter to Washington. We called Dr. Francis Boyle, the esteemed professor of international law at the University of Illinois, at Champaign.
The Trump Administration is moving forward with former President Obama’s plans for a trillion-dollar makeover of the U.S. nuclear arsenal. The administration’s views on nuclear war can be discerned in the recently released “Nuclear Posture Review.” Greg Mello, executive director of the anti-nuclear weapons Los Alamos Study Group, has read the document, and he finds it very scary. But Mello notes that it was President Obama who was determined to create an adversarial relationship with the Russians.
Historian Peter Hudson, a professor of African American Studies at the University of California, in Los Angeles, has a new book that explores how U.S. banks destabilized the economies and governments of the Caribbean and Latin America. It’s titled “Bankers and Empire: How Wall Street Colonized the Caribbean.” Dr. Deborah Thomas is a professor of Anthropology and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She was on hand for a coming out event at UCLA for Dr. Hudson’s book.
|Feb 12, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 02.05.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: For the 22 nd year in a row, community activists vow never to stop fighting for the freedom of Black political prisoners, and to reunited their families. And, a noted scholar and activist explains how white supremacy shapes U.S. domestic and foreign policy.
Black Agenda Report Managing Editor Bruce Dixon has caused a big stir in left political circles with his latest article, titled “Intersectionality is a Hole. Afro-Pessimism is a Shovel – We Need to Stop Digging.” Dixon says the term “Intersectionality” has become a tool to pull people away from class-based struggle against the capitalist rulers. Dixon appeared on the long-running and highly influential Chicago radio program, “This is Hell,” hosted by Chuck Mertz.
In his interview with “This is Hell” host Chuck Mertz, Bruce Dixon made reference to Jeffrey B. Perry, the esteemed activist and scholar. Perry has spent decades studying and popularizing the works of Hubert Harrison, the early 20 th century Black socialist, and Theodore Allen, author of “The Invention of the White Race.” Glen Ford spoke with Jeff Perry.
In New York City, last week, the Malcolm X Commemoration Committee held its 22 nd annual dinner in Tribute to Black Political Prisoners and Their Families. Dayqui Kioni Sadiki chairs the committee.
|Feb 05, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.29.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Baltimore police officers are on trial, charged with corruption and abusive of power so massive and blatant, a former police chief compares them to 1930s gangsters; And, one of the former political prisoners known as the Soledad Brothers is fighting for release on parole.
Amazon, one of the world’s largest corporation, has pared down to 20 the list of cities that it is considering for its second world headquarters. The commercial giant claims it will bring $5 billion in investment and 50,000 jobs to the table. The cities and states are, in turn, offering billions of dollars in tax subsidies and other giveaways to Amazon, whose major stockholder, Jeff Bezos, is the world’s richest man. We spoke with Greg LeRoy, of Good Jobs First, an organization that has fought for decades against corporate bullying of cities and workers. LeRoy says cities always lose out in these mega- deals with corporations.
In Baltimore, a trial is underway of police charged with robbing and extorting citizens, drug dealing and other crimes and corruption. The former police chief of Baltimore has described the cops involved as behaving like gangsters from the 1930s. Many believe the case is closely linked to the shooting death of a policeman last year, which led to a multi-day lockdown and siege of an entire neighborhood. Carl Dix is a co-founder, along with Cornel West, of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network. His hometown is Baltimore.
A group of law students at the Southern University Law Center, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has appealed to the United Nations Human Rights Commission on behalf of John Clutchette, a 75-year old California prison inmate who was known in the early 1970s as one of the Soledad Brothers, along with George Jackson and Fleeta Drumgo. The men were charged, but acquitted, in the death of a prison guard. The Southern University law students and their legal advisor, attorney Angela Allen-Bell, say California governor Ed Brown is wrong in trying to reverse the state parole board’s decision to release Clutchette, who’s been serving time on a later murder conviction. They want the Human Rights Commission to consider the long history of state dirty tricks and frame-ups against Black political activists in the U.S. John Clutchette, however, was NOT a political prisoner when he was first locked up, in 1966. Ryan Thompson, one of the authors of the appeal to the UN Human Rights Commission, explains.
For decades, and especially in the last several years, the U.S. corporate media has been full of tales of Russian meddlings and aggressions against the United States. But, much of the world sees a very different picture. Phil Willay to is editor of the Virginia Defender, and a member of the Coalition Against U.S. Foreign Military Bases, which recently held a national conference at the University of Baltimore. Wilayto says all the talk about supposed Russian provocations is a propagandistic distraction from Washington’s long history of attempting to militarily strangle Russia.
|Jan 29, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.22.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The U.S. military has spread its tentacles across the length and breadth of Africa, leading to millions of deaths in the Democratic Republic of Congo. But Margaret Kimberley says the Congressional Black Caucus hasn’t said a peep about Washington’s culpability in the slaughter.
NCOBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America, has written a primer explaining all you need to know about HR 40, the congressional legislation on reparations for the descendants of American slaves that has been sponsored for the past 27 years by Detroit Congressman John Conyers. However, no sooner was the ink dry on the primer for HR 40, than Congressman Conyers announced that he is resigning his seat, in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations. We spoke with one of the authors of the HR 40 primer, NCOBRA legislative director Kamm Howard.
Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, rallied in Philadelphia, hopeful that a legal opening has developed that might lead to a reversal of his 1982 conviction in the death of a policeman. A Pennsylvania state court is looking into the behavior of Ronald Castille, a prosecutor who helped convict Mumia and then went on to become the same judge who rejected Mumia’s appeal. Dr. Johanna Fernandez, a Baruch College history professor with the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home, explained the legal issues involved.
Mumia Abu Jamal’s brother, Kevin Cook, was also on hand at the rally.
Mumia Abu Jamal has dedicated his latest Prison Radio essay to a father and daughter whose names are now inscribed on the lists of martyrs in the Black struggle.
Since the founding of AFRICOM, the U.S. Military Command in Africa, in 2008, U.S. troops have spread across the face of the continent. Black Agenda Report editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley says the Congressional Black Caucus has been glaringly silent on the U.S. militarization of Africa. Kimberley was part of a panel discussion on AFRICOM, at a Baltimore conference of the Coalition Against U.S. Foreign Military Bases.
Also at that conference against U.S. foreign military bases, was Maurice Carney, of Friends of Congo.
|Jan 22, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.15.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Anti-war activists from around the country gathered in Baltimore to agitate for an end to U.S. military bases around the world; Supporters of political prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal will converge on Philadelphia, seeking a reversal of his 36 year-old murder conviction; and, a celebration of three hundred years of Black history in New Orleans.
Dr. Martin Luther King’s life and work has been institutionalized, with commemorations of his birthday occurring this week in virtually every city and town in the nation. Dr. King’s anti-war views are less celebrated by the powers-that- be. King called for a movement to oppose the “triple evils” of racism, militarism and materialism, and indicted the United States as the “greatest purveyor of violence in the world, today.” We spoke with Duboisian scholar Dr. Anthony Monteiro, in Philadelphia.
Like no other empire in all of human history, the United States virtually covers the world with military bases – with servicemen and women in 172 countries, by some counts. At the University of Baltimore, this past weekend, anti-war activists held a conference against U.S. foreign military bases. Among the keynote speakers was Ajamu Baraka, the Green Party’s 2016 vice presidential candidate and lead organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, has spent the last 36 years behind bars in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. Abu Jamal’s supporters see the possibility of overturning his conviction. Ronald Castille, a former prosecutor in Mumia’s case, went on to become a judge, and then wound up ruling against Mumia’s appeal. Castille was also a great friend of the Fraternal Order of Police. Mumia’s lawyers say Castille should have recused himself from the case. A State court judge has repeatedly ordered the District Attorney’s office to turn over all of its records in Mumia’s case. Mumia’s supporters were encouraged when a progressive lawyer named Larry Krasner was elected as the new district attorney for Philadelphia. However, Krasner appointed former prosecutor Ronald Castille to his transition team. That’s not a good sign, said Gwen Debrow, of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home.
The city of New Orleans is celebrating its 300 th birthday this week. A three-day conference on the Black experience in New Orleans is scheduled to begin on January 18 th , under the direction of Dr. Clyde Robertson, director of African and African American Studies at Southern University, New Orleans. The events surrounding Hurricane Katrina, in 2005, are a low mark in the Black historical journey. One hundred thousand Black people were forced into exile after the storm, and Dr. Robertson remembers that much of the white power structure saw the mass removal of Blacks from the city as a good thing – a great opportunity.
|Jan 15, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.08.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Anti-war activists prepare to gather in Baltimore to find ways to halt the spread of U.S. military bases around the world; the job of organizing against corporate power may get a lot more difficult, with the end of internet neutrality; and, the U.S.-backed regime in the Democratic Republic of Congo opens fire on protesters organized by the Catholic Church.
Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition, says reverence for the martyrs of Black struggle – those who have given their lives for Black people – needs to be rekindles.
The United States has as many as one thousand military bases around the world, a far bigger military presence on the planet than any other nation or empire in history. Anti-war activists from around the country will gather at the University of Baltimore, January 12 th through 14 th , to discuss ways to scale back or eliminate the U.S. military grip on the planet. We spoke with anti-war activist and author David Swanson, publisher of the influential web site “War is a Crime.”
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, troops loyal to President Joseph Kabila have killed scores of demonstrators organized by the Catholic Church. Meanwhile, a mysterious army is slaughtering Congolese in the Beni region of the country. The neighboring nations of Uganda and Rwanda are the prime suspects in the mass killings. Kambale Musavuli is an organizers with Friends of Congo, based in Washington.
Political activists are scrambling to find ways to reverse the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to do away with Internet neutrality. Black Agenda Radio producer Kyle Fraser spoke with Nabil Hassein, a technical worker and organizer with the Movement for Black Lives, in New York City. Hassein points out that big corporations already dominated the internet, even before the FCC ruling.
|Jan 08, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 01.02.18
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective.
|Jan 02, 2018|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.18.17
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and
But first – the internet may never be the same again, after the FCC’s
Victor Pickard is an associate professor at the Annenberg School of
Black voters are universally credited with defeating Roy Moore’s bid to
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, has turned
From his place of confinement in the Pennsylvania prison system, Mumia gave
|Dec 18, 2017|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.11.17
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: About one thousand more people are thought to have died in the aftermath of the hurricane in Puerto Rico, than were reported to authorities; an international human rights commission holds hearings on killer cops and impunity in the United States; and, a noted publisher explains why it is no surprise that Black people are being sold at auction in Libya.
A group of Black students at the University of Chicago are demanding that the school own up to its roots in the save system and make reparations to the Black community. The student’s action could have embarrassing impact on Barack and Michelle Obama, who both have deep ties to the University. The students have been working with N’COBRA, the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America. N’COBRA co-chair Kamm Howard says the University of Chicago is in violation of a local law that requires corporations and other institutions to acknowledge to their links to the slave system, or lose any contracts they might have with city government. Kamm Howard explains.
A recent study shows that about 1,000 more people probably died in the aftermath of the hurricane than were officially counted. Puerto Rico has been a colony of the United States for almost 120 years. The island’s finances are in terrible shape, unemployment is high, and people have been leaving for the mainland United States in large numbers in recent years. The hurricane only made the ongoing crisis much worse. Lara Merling is a researcher for the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a Washington think tank. She’s co-author of two recent reports on Puerto Rico, which is still waiting on $5 billion that was promised by the federal government to shore up the island’s finances.
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights held hearings, in Washington, last week, on the lack of accountability for police killing in the United States. The Commission is part of the Organization of American States, representing most of the countries of the Western Hemisphere. Among those that testified at the hearing was Maria Hamilton, mosther of Dontre Hamilton, a mentally challenged Black man who was shot down in a hail of bullets by Milwaukee police, in 2014. Ms. Hamilton told the Commission that her son has still not gotten justice.
Anyone that followed the U.S. and NATO attack on Libya, in 2011, would not be surprised that Black people are being sold as slaves at auction in that North African country, according to Robin Philpot, a Canadian publisher and radio host. Philpot published an influential book on the U.S. war against Libya, written by Maximillion Forte, titled, “Slouching Toward Sirte.” Philpot appeared recently on the “Watching the Hawks” show on RT television. He said the racist nature of much of the armed opposition to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi had long been evident.
Supporters of Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, held a teach-in and protest march in Philadelphia, over the weekend. Abu Jamal has been behind bars for 35 years, following his conviction in the death of a Philadelphia policeman. He had originally been sentenced to death, but now faces life in prison. From behind the walls, Mumia expressed his gratitude to those who have stuck by him all these years.
|Dec 11, 2017|
Black Agenda Radio - 12.04.17
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Why are Americans obsessed with guns? Mumia Abu Jamal explores the genocidal roots of U.S. gun culture; and, a Black radical put one of its own in the mayors office in Jackson, Mississippi. But, does winning elections actually bring power to the people. Not necessarily, says activist Kali Akuno.
But first, much of the world was shocked by reports on CNN that Black Africans are being sold at auction in Libya, where the United States and NATO overthrew the government of Muammar Gaddafi, six years ago. We spoke with Omali Yeshitela, chairman of the Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations.
The Bernie Sanders wing of the Democratic Party is trying to take credit for the election, earlier this year, of Black radical lawyer Antar Lumumba to City Hall in Jackson, Mississippi, the overwhelmingly Black state capital. The new mayor is the son of Chokwe Lumumba, a former activist in the Republic of New Africa and founder of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, who was elected mayor in 2013 but died after only eight months in office. Mayor Antar Lumumba’s name is now closely associated with Bernie Sanders’ “Our Revolution” organizations and its wealthy contributors. Kali Akuno was one of those that first suggested that Black activists in Mississippi run candidates for office. Akuno is a founder of the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement and of Cooperation Jackson, which seeks to form cooperative enterprises in the Black community. He wrote an essay in Black Agenda Report, titled, ““Casting Light: Reflections on the Struggle to Implement the Jackson-Kush Plan.” Akuno Akuno fears that some of his comrades have become too invested in simply winning elections, rather than empowering the people and transforming society.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, has a new essay for Prison Radio. Abu Jamal takes a look at the genocidal roots of the gun culture in the United States.
After six years and half a million deaths, the Syrian government and its Russian, Lebanese, Iraqi, and Iranian allies are finally winning the war against ISIS and other Islamic Jihadist fighters backed by the United States. Only a very few western reporters have actually covered the war on the ground. One of them is Vanessa Beeley, a courageous British journalist who expoed the so-called White Helmets as nothing but a propaganda front organization for al Qaida in Syria. Beeley says the defeat of ISIS, mainly by the Syrians and Russians, has drawn together a “Peace Bloc” in the region, as opposed to the “War Bloc” headed by the United States. Beeley appeared on The Taylor Report, hosted by Phil Taylor, on radio station CIUT, in Toronto, Canada. She said the U.S. is rapidly becoming isolated in the world.
|Dec 04, 2017|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.27.17
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: Donald Trump’s election has sparked dramatic growth in recruitment for left-wing political organizations, including the Workers World Party, which held its national conference in Newark, New Jersey.
The Democratic Party and U.S. corporate media have spent more than a year trying to blame the Russians for the myriad crises that afflict the United States. Anti-Russian hysteria has reached McCarthy-Era levels. Left-wing journalists have been targeted for blacklisting, and accused of spreading “fake news.” Julianne TWEET-EN reports on the intersection of technology and socio- economic issues. She recently wrote an article for In These Times magazine, titled, “How the Fake News Scare is Marginalizing the Left.”
The election of Donald Trump was considered bad news by most folks on the Left. But, radical political organizations have experienced dramatic increases in recruitment since Trump moved into the White House. That’s certainly true for the Workers World Party, which held its national conference in Newark, New Jersey. The conference coincided with the 50 th anniversary of the Newark rebellion of 1967. The Workers World Party was welcomed to Newark by Larry Hamm, chairman of the People’s Organization for Progress, which has been fighting for social justice for more than three decades.
Workers World Party First Secretary Larry Holmes noted that his party has experienced dramatic growth since the election of Donald Trump.
|Nov 28, 2017|
Black Agenda Radio - 11.20.17
Welcome to the radio magazine that brings you news, commentary and analysis from a Black Left perspective. I’m Glen Ford, along with my co-host Nellie Bailey. Coming up: The people of Haiti remember a time when they had a real army, that fought against slavery and foreign oppression; U.S. prosecutors try to put hundreds of demonstrators in prison for breaking the same window; and, Mumia Abu Jamal writes a book that asks the question, “Have Black Lives Ever Mattered?”
But first, Democrats, corporate media and U.S. spy agencies have combined to make Russia the boogeyman for every crisis and failure of the United States. We spoke with Daniel Kovalik, a professor of human rights at the University of Pittsburgh, and author of the book, “The Plot to Scapegoat Russia.” We asked Kovalik, what’s the motive for scapegoating Russia, and who’se behind it?
Police in Haiti violently crushed protests against plans to reactivate the Haitian Army, which was abolished as a force of repression and corruption. However, over the weekend, many Haitians remembered when their country had a real army – one that fought for human liberation. Daoud Andre is a Brooklyn-based radio host and Haitian community activist.
In Washington, hundreds of demonstrators and journalists face long terms in prison for protests on the day in January when Donald Trump was sworn in as president. Chip Gibbons is policy counsel for the group, Defending Rights and Dissent. Gibbons says federal prosecutors seem intent on outlawing protest in the United States.
Also in the nation’s capital, activist Netfa Freeman represented the Black Alliance for Peace at a recent national conference of the Black Is Back Coalition, at Howard University.
Mumia Abu Jamal, the nation’s best known political prisoner, has a new book out. Supporters from around the country held parties to help Mumia launch his book, titled, “Have Black Lives Ever Mattered?”
|Nov 20, 2017|