The Flint Chess Game: The Politics of the Battlefield

by BAR editor and columnist Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo

So far, only a few pawns have been sacrificed, and one minor knight has fallen, in the Machiavellian chessboard game that is being played with the lives of thousands who were poisoned by the water in Flint, Michigan. Governor Rick Snyder has not even been question by state or federal prosecutors. “It will only be through political activism and unrelenting protest that the actual political players will be charged and held accountable.”

Why Solidarity in the 21st Century Means Understanding Race and Class as One Entity, not Two

by Danny Haiphong

Capitalism is the scourge of the planet. “The basis of solidarity, then, should ultimately derive from an internationalist perspective. It means mutually working together with the peoples of the world in the struggle against the common enemy of imperialism.” Malcolm X understood that Vietnamese and Algerian freedom fighters provided “a great service to Black people in the US by weakening the international influence of the US capitalist state.”

Black Lives Don’t Matter, Black Votes Do: the Racial Hypocrisy of Hillary and Bill Clinton

by Richard W. Behan

Seldom have a people given such huge support to a more duplicitous couple. Bill and Hillary Clinton have grown rich and powerful, largely on the strength of the Black vote. Yet, the Clintons are responsible for increased poverty and incarceration and much of Wall Street’s global and domestic predations. That’s why “the big bankers love Clinton, and by and large they want her to be president” – and why Blacks should shun them like the plague.

Hillary Clinton’s Support Base as Bogus as US Democracy

by Eric Draitser

As some very perceptive men have written, the rich rule largely by “manufactured consent.” It turns out that much of Hillary Clinton’s consenting base of support is fictional: “the majority of her Twitter fans, and indeed her social media following in general, are completely fake.” The same was true of Barack Obama’s twitter following: 53 percent fake accounts. Election results and the causes of war and economic crises are also mainly bogus.

Some Thoughts on Cuban Resistance to US Ideological/Political War

by Arnold August

What does it mean when American flags appear on the streets of Havana? Is President Obama winning his war against Cuban socialism by non-military means? “Obama confirmed once again that the US is dispensing with openly antagonistic tactics, in favor of diplomatic tactics that he hopes will attain the goal of snuffing out the Cuban Revolution.” The Cuban people, themselves, are engaged in a great debate about their future – and ours.

Ecocide in the Niger Delta

by Peter Donatus

The majority of refugees come from war and conflict zones, illegitimate states, areas of natural disasters and economically weak countries. In many cases, companies from the West destroy people’s livelihoods by acting ruthlessly. In Nigeria, the oil extraction and production has devastating consequences for the people living in the Niger Delta. But the Geneva Convention on Refugees is not effective in this case.

Rwanda: Genocide Included Hutus Massacred by Kagame Forces

Ann Garrison's picture

by Ann Garrison 

The Rwandan Genocide is commemorated in Rwanda and at the United Nations as “the genocide against the Tutsi.” However, there is ample evidence that hundreds of thousands of Hutus, as well as Tutsis, died in the Rwandan massacres.

Black Agenda Radio for Week of April 25, 2016

Charter Schools: Bad for Education

“On the whole, charter schools do not perform better than public schools, even though public school are being defunded and demonized all the time,” said Dr. Shawgi Tell, professor of education at Nazareth College, Rochester, New York, and author of Charter School Report Card. Whether test scores improve or not, charter schools are bad schooling policy because “they represent privatization and marketization of education.”

Youth Incarceration Down, But Racial Disparities Increase

In the past decade, overall rates of youth incarceration have been cut in half, but disparity in Black youth incarceration has gone up by 15 percent, according to Josh Rovner, of The Sentencing Project. Rovner is an author of the new report, “Racial Disparities in Youth Arrests and Commitments.” He said young people are committing less crime. “There’s fewer kids being driven into the system in the first place,” said Rovner. However, Black teenagers are still more likely to be detained, prosecuted and committed to juvenile facilities than whites.

Million Student March Against Massive Debt

“Just last year, a million students defaulted on their student loan payments,” said Darletta Scruggs, an activist with the Million Students March and a member of the Socialist Alternative Party. “You can’t file bankruptcy on it, and our government will start garnishing your wages after a certain time. There are people whose Social Security checks are being garnished because of past student debt,” said Scruggs, speaking to host Solomon Comissiong, of Your World Report.

Global Rich Play “Shell Games” with Wealth

The now infamous “Panama Papers” revealed how elites from around the world hide their money in offshore tax havens. Americans were conspicuous by their relative absence because the U.S. provides lots of hiding places for ill-gotten gains. “The United States is a tax haven for global wealth,” said Chuck Collins, senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies and author of the article, “Panama Papers Expose the Hidden Wealth of the World’s Super-Rich.” Said Collins: “If you’re a small business in the U.S. and you have to compete against a global company that’s playing these shell games, and you’re paying your fair share of taxes and they’re not, that’s an unlevel playing field.”

Hillary’s Conspiracies Against Democracy in the Americas

Back in 2009, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton “pretended it wasn’t a coup” when the Honduran military overthrew the country’s elected president, said Mark Weisbrot, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. Clinton’s charade “helped the coup government dictatorship consolidate itself.” The U.S. has encouraged the “silent coup” in Brazil, where corporatist lawmakers are trying to impeach the left-wing  president. “We know that the United States has always wanted to get rid of the left governments” in the region, said Weisbrot.

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The Sandernista Journey: An Epic Confrontation with Corporate Power, or a Slow Fade

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Will Bernie Sanders’ supporters “collapse from demoralization, or resolve to confront the corporate beast with ferocity” in Philadelphia and beyond? The real battle of 2016 is about the duopoly, which tells Blacks there is “no contradiction in being in the same party as the former president who put more Blacks in prison than any other,” and urges staunch unionists to support the clique that has exported their jobs. Sanders and Trump are mere players in the larger drama.

Will Bernie's Burnout Lead To A New Movement? Maybe, Maybe Not.

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

Will there be a new movement born from the ashes of Bernie Sanders' failed campaign? Some think so, citing the broad popularity of his issues and the growing numbers of his core demographic. But few of those imagining new political formations outside the two capitalist parties talk much about how such movements and parties will be financed or led.

 
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Freedom Rider: Not Feeling the Bern

by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Democratic Party liberals that have rallied around Bernie Sanders see awesome meaning and world-shaking significance in their champion’s most mundane actions and mealy-mouth statements. It’s easy to root for anyone that runs against Clinton, one of America’s least-liked personalities. “Her presence creates mass revulsion, and first Obama and now Sanders moved up in voter preference when given an opportunity to make a case before the public.”

There’s Only One Cure for Chicago Police Lawlessness: Black Community Control

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by executive editor Glen Ford

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel thinks he can squelch Black rage against the police by appointing a Black cop as superintendent. But the new top cop climbed the ranks of a force that has “no regard for the sanctity of life when it comes to people of color.” He’s part of the problem, not the solution. Young activists demand nothing less than community control of the police.

 
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Was Libya a Mistake or a Planned Imperialist Catastrophe?

by Danny Haiphong

The U.S.-led regime change in Libya failed to create a new regime, but did succeed in killing thousands of people and destroying the economy and infrastructure of Africa’s most prosperous society. “Imperialism’s Libya debacle ignited chaos throughout the region that it can no longer control.” Obama’s “mistake” was his failure to harness the events he set in motion. “Obama wasn't regretful because it happened, but because he got caught.”

Libya: Hillary’s War, the Empire’s Mistake

by Farooque Chowdhury

There is no question that Hillary Clinton was the main culprit in the destruction of Libya. However, it was the Empire’s war, not Hillary’s. She was simply the chief instigator in the Obama regime. One can also identify the Libya aggression as a part of Obama’s Africa War, which has claimed millions of lives. Obama blames his allies and his advisors, but the Libya disaster shows the Empire – while still horribly lethal – is in a state of decay.

Hundreds Arrested in Washington’s “Democracy Spring”

by Chris Hedges

The corporate media has staged a blackout of massive protests against the rule of the rich, involving “the largest number of arrests at the Capitol in decades” – just one more example that the nation is in the grips of a “corporate coup d’état.” This “Democracy Spring” sets the stage for a summer of popular discontent. “It is imperative to protest in Cleveland and Philadelphia during the Republican and Democratic conventions later this year.”

Denying Discrimination: Clintonian Political Calculus and the Culture of Hooey

by Linn Washington Jr.

Bill Clinton has been talking B.S. – “hooey” – about race his entire career. At every political juncture, from his days as governor of Arkansas through his two terms as president and including his more recent “apologies” for his mass Black incarceration policies, “Slick Willie” has ignored pleas for criminal justice reform.

Can Cuban Medicine Help Solve American Inequality?

by Sam Loewenberg and Allison Shelley

Cuba, despite its poverty, has achieved its goal of becoming a medical superpower and a model for the world to follow. To date, 134 U.S. citizens have graduated from Cuban medical schools, with 50 more currently in residency.  They get a free, humanitarian education. As one said: “Here, students learn to be both a doctor of science and a doctor of conscience.”

Black Agenda Radio for Week of April 18, 2016

Elections are a “Distraction” – Take it to the Streets

A spokesperson for the group that confronted Bill Clinton on his mass Black incarceration and anti-welfare policies, provoking a 13-minute tirade by the former president, said Bernie Sanders’ campaign is “another distraction, another cop-out from getting in the streets to demand justice.” Megan Malachi, of the Philly Coalition for Racial, Economic and Legal (REAL) Justice, told BAR: “As a coalition, we will not and have not endorsed any candidates, because we believe that electoral politics will not liberate the Black and poor communities. But, we definitely want to take the politicians to task for constantly and consistently betraying the aspirations of poor people.”

“Renounce and Reject” the Black Misleadership Class

Pennsylvania holds its primary election on April 26. Veteran activist and scholar Dr. Anthony Monteiro, a co-founder of the Philadelphia-based Black Radical Organizing Committee (BROC), calls it a contest between “Hillary Clinton versus the people.” Monteiro is “convinced that Black people in Philadelphia will express their opposition, not only to Hillary and her corporate 1% backers and her war plans, but they will renounce and reject the Black Misleadership Class.”

Coalition Will Craft a National Black Agenda

The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations “intends to move our general struggle forward by initiating an independent Black agenda for self-determination,” said chairman Omali Yeshitela, speaking at a Coalition conference in New York’s Harlem. The process will “culminate with our traditional November rally, march on the White House and national conference, where we will unveil our own agenda, created independent of the participation and wishes of either of the bourgeois political parties.”

One of the Coalition’s principal demands is Black community control of the police. “There has clearly been an intensification of oppression of African people since the Ferguson rebellion, and since Baltimore,” said Diop Olugbala, of the African People’s Socialist Party, a coalition member organization. “Marching, demonstrating, protesting is extremely important,” but not “if it is separated from strategic goals and demands.”

Nellie Bailey, longtime tenants activist and co-host of Black Agenda Radio, told the conference that “housing activists are engaged in class warfare with finance capital for living space. We have to build a national movement that is a broad tent, that will bring in progressive forces” that can unite around principles of unity.

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Bill Clinton Insults Blacks in Order to Build Hillary’s “Big Tent” Party

by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

Bill Clinton’s premeditated assault on Black Lives Matter was part of the strategy to woo White Republican voters to his wife’s “big tent” campaign, in November. Bill jumped the gun, itchy for the Democrats to make their classic rightward shift. He and Hillary share the same political brain. “At some point in the campaign, she was bound to stage a dramatic display of ‘independence’ from Black Lives Matter – or have her husband do it.”

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