Did Revolutionary Editor John Mitchell Jr Prophesized The Demise of Confederate Statues

John Mitchell Jr., the crusading African-American editor of the Richmond Planet and a member of the city’s Board of Aldermen, objected to monument’s symbolism.
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“The men who talk most about the valor of LEE, and the blood of the brave Confederate dead are those who never smelt powder or engaged in the battle,” he wrote in 1890. “Most of them were at a table, either on top or under it when the war was going on.” The proliferation of Lost Cause adornments throughout Richmond angered Mitchell, who was born into slavery. He insisted that a Lee statue would bequeath to the future a “legacy of treason and blood.” In a further wrinkle, African-American laborers helped build the pedestal and place the massive statue upon the base. Mitchell suggested that the black men who put up the statue should, if that time came, be present to take it down.
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His words reverberate today throughout the country, and their echoes could be heard in Stoney’s presentation. Though his delivery was passionate, he didn’t go far as Mitchell. He noted how Monument Avenue developed around the Lee statue as a means to sell real estate. (A national financial collapse delayed much of the building until about 1905, however.)

Source Ref:

http://richmondmagazine.com/news/news/the-real-story-of-our-monuments/

Haki Kweli Shakur 8-17-52 ADM August Third Collective NAPLA NAIM MOI

 

George Jackson University and the Millions for Prisoners Human Rights March Black August 19 2017 – Abdul Olugbala Shakur

George Jackson University and the Millions for Prisoners Human Rights March

Listen to GJU Radio every Wednesday, 5-7 p.m., at 347-826-7332 or blogtalkradio.com/georgejacksonradio

by Abdul Olugbala Shakur, Vice-Chancellor and Founder of George Jackson University

The most powerful weapon in our arsenal that has the inherent power to impede and eradicate legalized slavery in Amerikkka is our brain. Our brain for the most part has been re­strained by the shackles of psychological slavery, producing a collective mentality that has enslaved our people to the ills of a racist, fascist and kapitalistic society – the ills of cultural ignorance, self-hate, materialism, drug and alcohol abuse, criminal-minded recidivism, individualism. We have young New Afrikan brothas who admire the sick mind of Al Capone, but yet have no knowledge of our revolutionary forefathers, such as David Walker, Denmark Vesey, Martin Delaney, Gabriel and Nanny Prosser, Harriet Tubman, Nat Turner or Marcus Garvey.

It is knowing who we truly are as a people that is going to break the chains of psychological slavery and facilitate our capacity to abolish legalized slavery in Amerikkka.

The George Jackson University (GJU) is on the front-line in this battle over the minds of our people. One of our primary goals is to transform the entire Prison Industrial Slave Complex (PISC) into the largest progressive university in the country, if not the world, that is design­ed to transform the New Afrikan criminal gangster mentality into a New Afrikan consciousness in the service of the New Afrikan community!

Instead of the Prison Industrial Slave Complex paroling individuals with degrees in recidivism, the GJU will be graduating New Afrikan Bro­thas and Sistas with degrees in knowledge of self, community organizing, revolutionary science, scientific socialism, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics and New Afrikan entrepreneurism, just to name a few. More importantly, our graduates will be dedicated towards serving and build­ing our communities.

It is knowing who we truly are as a people that is going to break the chains of psychological slavery and facilitate our capacity to abolish legalized slavery in Amerikkka. The George Jackson University is on the front-line in this battle over the minds of our people.

We cannot talk or march our way out of slavery, nor can the politicians – the overseers of legalized slavery in Amerikkka – legislate our freedom. True freedom is fought for, died for and lived for. I survived 32 years in solitary confinement isolation because both my mind and spirit were free, and I fought daily to guarantee their emancipation.

I end this brief statement by reminding the people, we are all enslaved by a kapitalistic system, not just us within the Prison Industrial Slave Complex, but all of you out here in society, especially the poor, the New Afrikan in particular. Our struggle for human rights must go beyond this march on Aug. 19; our words and lessons must manifest into concrete action in the service of true freedom.

We cannot talk or march our way out of slavery, nor can the politicians – the overseers of legalized slavery in Amerikkka – legislate our freedom. True freedom is fought for, died for and lived for.

The George Jackson University (GJU) will continue to serve as a living example. We encourage you all to join our collective as we forge forward with a clear path towards victory!

George Jackson University leadership:

Chancellor Akili Mwalimu Shakur
Vice Chancellor and Founder Abdul Olugbala Shakur
Executive Coordinator Kilaika Baruti-Shakur
Board Members Bomani Jihad Uhuru Shakur and Joka Heshima Jinsai
GJU Collective
Recommended links:

http://www.georgejacksonuniversity.com
concreteandsteelcoe.wordpress.com
insurrectionistsartcollective.com
sfbayview.com
naafra.org
freespeechsociety.org
amendthe13th.org
http://www.bpppress.com
http://www.facebook.com/james.e.harvey.96.
Send our brother some love and light: Abdul Olugbala Shakur (James Harvey), C-48884, KVSP B2-117, P.0.Box 5102, Delano CA 93216. Abdul closes with this message: Support and subscribe to the San Francisco Bay View newspaper.

Subtext Of The Siege In Charlottesville: Virginia Makes $24 Billion Off Racial History

African American men, women and children pick cotton in a cotton field and place it in straw bushel baskets, circa 1890. (Photo by Lightfoot/Getty Images)

White supremacists clashing with anti-racism activists in Virginia has taken place in a city that has a history steeped in Civil War and civil rights, a place that profits greatly from people obsessed with landmarks and milestones that Charlottesville both symbolizes and markets.

As a nexus of both the Civil War, the slave trade and the civil rights movement, Charlottesville makes $1 billion dollars annually on tourism. Many other places in Virginia and elsewhere in the South have profited enormously from their history, however dubious.

What Triggered This Violence?
The Charlottesville city council voted to sell off a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and rename the park where it stood from “Lee Park” to “Emancipation Park.”

The removal of Confederate flags and statues of rebel icons across the South illustrates the great divide between a dwindling, working-class white demographic and everybody else, which the campaign of President Donald Trump played upon to win election.

How Much Does Money Play In Protests?
Virginia, a swing state that borders the nation’s capital and elected the nation’s first black governor, has played a historic role not just in the establishment of the United States, but in the history of the Civil War and race relations. And there is big money in history.

Virginia’s tourism revenue reached $24 billion in 2016, a 3.3 percent increase over 2015, outpacing the national growth rate of 2.7 percent. It supported 230,000 jobs. Virginia gets more than 45 million tourists from around the world.

Here are just a few ways that Virginia cities have sought to use that history to boost their economy:

Appomattox
Site of a National Historical Park that recreates the small village where Lee’s army surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant. National parks fees are generally $10, but the real money is in concessions and hotels. Tourism revenues drive the regional economy.

Fredericksburg
Scene of the Confederate Army’s greatest victory against the Union Army of the Potomac, the place has become a holy shrine to people enamored with the rebel side of the war. Fredericksburg National Cemetery is the final resting place of thousands of Union soldiers.

Shenandoah Valley
The area that was the site of some of the most brutal Civil War battles. This is a big-money venue for Civil War-reenactment aficionados, who often choose sides depending on how they feel about race.

Charlottesville
Even before Martin Luther King Jr.’s landmark “I Have A Dream Speech” in 1963, the city engaged in protests against widespread racism. The riots of today are reminiscent of what went before and after the day President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, a bill that seems to many to have achieved little progress.

Charlottesville, where history and race and racism and the vestiges of slavery intersect in the street fights exploding today, may very well be a symbol of more to come.

SOURCE: https://www.benzinga.com/author/mark-fritz

“Subtext Of The Siege In Charlottesville: Virginia Makes $24 Billion Off Racial History”
https://www.benzinga.com/news/17/08/9921831/subtext-of-the-siege-in-charlottesville-virginia-makes-24-billion-off-of-racial-h

Also …

https://d.adroll.com/cm/aol/outhttps://d.adroll.com/cm/index/outhttps://d.adroll.com/cm/n/out
Video: Car Rams Crowd Protesting White Nationalists In Virginia by Evan Hen/Facebook
https://www.rferl.org/a/viriginia-charlottesville-protest-ramming/28673822.html

Mother of woman killed during Charlottesville attack says her daughter was destined to be ‘a focal point for change’
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/va-paralegal-killed-protest-white-supremacist-rally-article-1.3407863

=-=-=-=-=-=
“If you do not understand White Supremacy (Racism) — what it is, and how it works — everything else that you understand, will only confuse you.” — Neely Fuller Jr.

“I say self-respect is more powerful than a nuclear weapon.” – Frances Cress Welsing, M.D.

“The Negro cannot win … if he is willing to sell the future of his children for his personal and immediate comfort and safety.” – Dr. Martin L. King, Jr.

“If we don’t tell their stories, then the ancestors get no glory!!!” – R2C2H2 Tha Artivist

“I’m looking for freedom. Full freedom. Not some inferior brand.” – Paul Robeson

“The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.” – Frederick Douglass
=-=-=-=-=-=

Hugo Pinell & San Quentin Six Tribute ( Abolish Solitary Confinement )

Hugo Pinell, friend and comrade of Black Panther Georges Jackson, was murdered on the 12th of August 2015 at California State Prison, Sacramento, a maximum-security prison adjacent to the notorious Folsom State Prison. Hugo Pinell was imprisoned for 51 years of which 45 years in solitary confinement in San Quentin, Folsom and Corcoran, and the last 24 years in the infamous Pelican Bay SHU (Security Housing Unit from 1990 – 2014).

Pinell was the sole member of the San Quentin Six still in prison.

“Hugo Pinell was assassinated at new Folsom State Prison. This is another example of the racism people of color inside those prisons are confronted with on a daily basis. Like Comrade George, Hugo has been in the cross hairs of the system for years. His assassination exemplify how racists working in conjunction with prison authorities commit murderous acts like this. We saw it on the yard at Soledad in 1970 and we see it again on the yard at Folsom in 2015.

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His life was a living hell. We witness the brutality inflicted on him by prison guards as they made every effort to break him. He endured more than fifty years of sensory deprivation, for decades he was denied being able to touch his family or another human being, as well as attempts on his life. This is cruel and unusual punishment!
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Hugo is not the monster that is being portrayed in social media / news media. The CDC is the real monster. During the six trial we really got to know Hugo. He was as we all were under a lot of stress. His stress was heavier than mine because he had the additional load of being beaten on regular occasions. We saw the strength of his of his spirit, and through it all he managed to smile. We mourn the loss of our comrade brother, yogi.

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We have been hit with a crushing blow that will take some time to recover from. We must expose those who under the cover of law orchestrated and allowed this murderous act to take place. The prisoners who did it acted as agents of the state. It comes at a time when prisoners are collectively trying to end decades of internal strife.
Those who took his life have done a disservice to our movement. Their actions served the cause of the same oppressor we fought against,No longer do you have to endure the hatred of people who didn’t even know you and never dared to love you. You have represented George & Che well, and we salute you!”

SAN QUENTIN SIX
David General Giap Johnson
Luis Bato Talamantez
Willie Sundiata Tate

Slaying casts pall on plan to reduce solitary confinement
August 14, 2015 By DON THOMPSON, Associated Press

Black August 19-20 Millions For Prisoners Human Rights March & Honoring 41 Years of SF BayView , George Jackson University

#BlackAugust August 19- 20 DC Millions For Prisoners Human Rights March ( END PRISON SLAVERY ) & The 41 Years Honoring SF BayView Paper Be There!!! #BlackAugust
#newafrikan77wordpress
#georgejacksonuniversity
#rbgcommuniversity
#newafrikanpoliticalprisoners
#BAB
#BAOC
#georgejackson
#wlnolen
#Soledadbrothers
#bloodinmyeye
#soledadbrother
#study
#fast
#train
#fight
#millionsforprisonersmarch
#millionsforprisoners
#DMV
#washingtondc
#amendthe13th
#abolish21stcenturyslavery
#sfbayview
#sfbayviewnewspaper

Free The Move 9 August 8 1978 Attacked By Philadelphia Police #BlackAugust

MOVE 9
Chuck Africa
Debbie Africa
Delbert Africa
Eddie Africa
Janet Africa
Janine Africa
Merle Africa
Mike Africa
Phil Africa
JOHN AFRICA
MUMIA
RAMONA AFRICA

The MOVE 9 are innocent men and women who have been in prison since August 8, 1978, following a massive police attack on us at our home in the Powelton Village neighborhood of Philadelphia. This was seven years before the government dropped a bomb on MOVE, killing 11 people, including 5 babies.
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The August 8, 1978, police attack on MOVE followed years of police brutality against MOVE and was a major military operation carried out by the Philadelphia police department under orders of then-mayor, Frank Rizzo. Mayor Rizzo’s reputation for racism and brutality was and is well known–it followed him up through the ranks of the police department to the police commissioner’s office to the mayor’s office.
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During this attack, heavy equipment was used to tear down the fence surrounding our home, and cops filled our home with enough tear gas to kill us and our babies, while SWAT teams covered every possible exit. We were all in the basement of our home, where we had 10 thousand pounds of water pressure per minute directed at us from 4 fire department water cannons (for a total of 40 thousand pounds of water pressure per minute). As the basement filled with nearly six feet of water we had to hold our babies and animals above the rising water so they wouldn’t drown. Suddenly shots rang out (news reporters and others know the shots came from a house at 33rd and Baring Street, not our home, because they actually saw the man shooting) and bullets immediately filled the air as police throughout the area opened fire on us. Officer James Ramp, who was standing above us on street-level and facing our home, was killed by a single bullet that struck him on a downward angle. This alone makes it impossible for MOVE to have killed Ramp, since we were below street level, in the basement.
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MOVE adults came out of the house carrying our children through clouds of tear gas, we were beaten and arrested. Television cameras actually filmed the vicious beating of our brother Delbert Africa (3 of the 4 cops that beat Delbert went to trial on minor charges). Despite the photographic evidence, the trial judge (Stanley Kubacki) refused to let the jury render a verdict and himself acquitted the cops by directed order. Nine of us were charged with murder and related charges for the death of James Ramp. Within a few hours of our arrest, our home (which is supposed to be the “scene of the crime” and therefore evidence) was deliberately destroyed, demolished, by city officials when they were legally obligated to preserve all evidence, but we were held for trial anyway. We went to trial before Judge Edward Malmed who convicted all nine of us of third-degree murder (while admitting that he didn’t have “the faintest idea” who killed Ramp) and sentenced each of us to 30 – 100 years in prison.

 

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Free the MOVE 9! Judge Malmed also stated that MOVE people said we are a family so he sentenced us as a family; we were supposed to be on trial for murder, not for being a family. It is clear that the MOVE 9 are in prison for being committed MOVE members, not for any accusation of crime. Three other adults that were in the house on August 8th did not get the same treatment as those that this government knows are committed MOVE members. One had all charges dismissed against her in September of 1978 with the judge saying that there was no evidence that she was a committed MOVE member when the issue was supposed to be murder.
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The second one was held for trial but released on bail; she was acquitted. The third one was held for trial with no bail, convicted of conspiracy and given 10-23 years; she was paroled in 1994. It is obvious that everything depended on whether or not the courts thought it was dealing with a committed MOVE member, court decisions had nothing to do with the accusation of murder. It has been 40 years since the August 8, 1978, police attack on MOVE, 25 years of unjust of imprisonment, but despite the hardship of being separated from family members, despite the grief over the murder of family members (including babies), the MOVE 9 remain strong and loyal to our Belief, our Belief in Life, the Teaching of our Founder, JOHN AFRICA. We have an uncompromising commitment to our Belief, which is what makes us a strong unified family, despite all that this government has done to break us up and ultimately try to exterminate us.
It will take a massive amount of public pressure to force this rotten corrupt government to release the MOVE 9 and all political prisoners–What can YOU do to add to the pressure?
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WRITE THE MOVE 9 AT THE FOLLOWING ADDRESSES
Debbie Sims Africa #006307; Janet Hollaway Africa #006308; Janine Phillips Africa #6309 451 Fullerton Ave.
Cambridge Springs, PA 16403-1238
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Delbert Orr Africa #AM 4985
1000 Follies Rd.
Dallas, PA 18612
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Michael Davis Africa #AM 4973; Charles Sims Africa #AM 4975 P.O. Box 244 Graterford, PA 19426-0246
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Edward Goodman Africa #AM 4974
301 Morea Rd. Frackville, PA. 17932
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CONTACT US THROUGH ANY OF THE FOLLOWING:
THE MOVE ORGANIZATION
P.O. Box 19709
Philadelphia, PA 19143
(215) 386-1165.
onamovellja@aol.com
http://onamove.com
https://move9parole.blogspot.com/
“Justice For The Move 9” on Facebook

Ruchell Magee 54 Years Longest Held Political Prisoner August 7, 1970 Courthouse Slave Rebellion!

 

Ruchell Magee Address #A92051–B3-138 California Men’s Colony State Prison
P.O. Box 8101
San Luis Obispo,, CA 93409-8101
United States

Ruchell is the longest held political prisoner in the U.S., having been locked up since 1963. Politicized in prison, he later participated in the Marin County Courthouse Rebellion, the attempted liberation of political prisoner George Jackson. Ruchell Magee pled guilty to the charge of aggravated kidnapping for his part in the assault. In return for his plea, the Attorney General asked the Court to dismiss the charge of murder (Magee being the shooter of Judge Haley). Magee later attempted unsuccessfully to withdraw his plea, and was sentenced in 1975 to life in prison. He has lost numerous bids for parole. He has also worked tirelessly as a jailhouse lawyer, working on his own case and helping many other prisoners win their freedom.

He had been in L.A. for 6 months when he and his cousin Leroy got in a fight over a $10 bag of marijuana. In court, the two ended up with trumped up charges of kidnapping and robbery and he was given life in prison.

While in prison Ruchell began learning the long and rich history of Black liberation history. He adopted the middle name of Cinque, after the enslaved African who led the takeover of the slave ship Amistad, which eventually lead to the freedom of all the slaves on board. He began petitioning his unjust sentence to no avail. Although critically wounded on August 7, 1970, Magee was the sole survivor among the four brave Black men who conducted the courthouse slave rebellion, leaving him to be charged with everything they could throw at him.

The Marin Courthouse Incident – “All right gentlemen, hold it right there. We’re taking over!”

 

Armed to the teeth, Jonathan Jackson, 17, George’s, younger brother, had raided the Marin Courtroom and tossed guns to prisoners William Christmas and James McClain, who in turn invited Ruchell to join them. Ru seized the hour spontaneously as they attempted to escape by taking a judge, assistant district attorney and three jurors as hostages in that audacious move to expose to the public the brutally racist prison conditions and free the Soledad Brothers (John Clutchette, Fleeta Drumgo, and George Jackson).

McClain was on trial for assaulting a guard in the wake of Black prisoner Fred Billingsley’s murder by prison officials in San Quentin in February, 1970. With only four months before a parole hearing, Magee had appeared in the courtroom to testify for McClain.

The four revolutionaries successfully commandeered the group to the waiting van and were about to pull out of the parking lot when Marin County Police and San Quentin guards opened fire. When the shooting stopped, Judge Harold Haley, Jackson, Christmas, and McClain lay dead; Magee was unconscious (See photo)and seriously wounded as was the prosecutor. A juror suffered a minor injury. In a chain of events leading to August 7, on January 13, 1970, a month before the Billingsley slaughter, a tower guard at Soledad State Prison had shot and killed three Black captives on the yard, leaving them unattended to bleed to death — Cleveland Edwards, “Sweet Jugs” Miller, and the venerable revolutionary leader, W. L. Nolen, all active resisters in the Black Liberation Movement (BLM) behind the walls. (Others included George Jackson, Jeffrey Gauldin (Khatari), Hugo L.A. Pinell (Yogi Bear), Steve Simmons (Kumasi), Howard Tole, and the late Warren Wells.).

 

 

After the common verdict of “justifiable homicide” was returned and the killer guard exonerated at Soledad, another white-racist guard was beaten and thrown from a tier to his death. Three prisoners, leeta Drumgo, John Clutchette, and Jackson were charged with his murder precipitating the case of The Soledad Brothers and a campaign to free them led by college professor and avowed Communist, Angela Davis, and Jonathan Jackson.

Magee had already spent at least seven years studying law and deluging the courts with petitions and lawsuits to contest his own illegal conviction in two fraudulent trials. As he put it, the judicial system “used fraud to hide fraud” in his second case after the first conviction was overturned on an appeal based on a falsified transcript. His strategy, therefore, centered on proving that he was a slave, denied his constitutional rights and held involuntarily.

Therefore, he had the legal right to escape slavery as established in the case of the African slave, Cinque, who had escaped the slave ship, Armistad, and won freedom in a Connecticut trial. Thus, Magee had to first prove he’d been illegally and unjustly incarcerated for over seven years. He also wanted the case moved to the Federal Courts and the right to represent himself.

Moreover, Magee wanted to conduct a trial that would bring to light the racist and brutal oppression of Black prisoners throughout the state. “My fight is to expose the entire system, judicial and prison system, a system of slavery.. This will cause benefit not just to myself but to all those who at this time are being criminally oppressed or enslaved by this system.”

On the other hand, Angela Davis, his co-defendant, charged with buying the guns used in the raid, conspiracy, etc., was innocent of any wrongdoing because the gun purchases were perfectly legal and she was not part of the original plan. Davis’ lawyers wanted an expedient trial to prove her innocence on trumped up charges. This conflict in strategy resulted in the trials being separated. Davis was acquitted of all charges and released in June of 1972.

 

Ruchell fought on alone, losing much of the support attending the Davis trial. After dismissing five attorneys and five judges, he won the right to defend himself. The murder charges had been dropped, and Magee faced two kidnap charges. He was ultimately convicted of PC 207, simple kidnap, but the more serious charge of PC 209, kidnap for purposes of extortion, resulted in a disputed verdict. According to one of the juror’s sworn affidavit, the jury voted for acquittal on the PC 209 and Magee continues to this day to challenge the denial and cover-up of that acquittal.

Richmond Photo’s of Black Businesses and Workers 1899-1900

The African American community in 1900 was riddled with oppression thanks the recent 1898 Supreme Court Ruling “Plessy v. Fergusen” in which he supreme court declared segreation to be legal. The facilities must be “separate, but equal.” That was not the case. Despite these harsh Jim Crow laws, the African-American community was doing a great job of persevering and even thriving. Many African-American businesses came about to serve this separated community.

Many worked in the tobacco warehouses and factories of Richmond. See that kid there? This was a time before child labor laws.

Haki Kweli Shakur 5-4-52 ADM 2017 MOI / August Third Collective / NAPLA NAIM / Gabriel Prosserville District

The following photos are pictures of the offices of the Richmond Planet. The number one newspaper in the African-American community in Richmond in the late-19th and early-20th centuries. The editor was one of my personal favorite Richmonders, John Mitchell Jr. Him and his newspaper will be subject of a later post. Firebrand Publisher John Mitchell Jr. who was actually a City Alderman at one point, didn’t shy away from letting his thoughts on the Jim Crow segregation laws be known.

Mutulu Shakur: On The History Of The Use Of Acupuncture By Revolutionary Health Workers To Treat Drug Addiction, And US Government Attacks Under The Cover Of The CounterIntelligence Program (COINTELPRO)

Mutulu Shakur: On The History Of The Use Of Acupuncture By Revolutionary Health Workers To Treat Drug Addiction, And US Government Attacks Under The Cover Of The CounterIntelligence Program (COINTELPRO)

Announcer:But, it seems like things have straightened themselves out right about now. We are on. . .we have on the line with us a Brother, Mutulu Shakur, from the. . .who is currently being held in Lompoc Prison.

Let me tell you something about Brother Mutulu Shakur. Brother Mutulu Shakur is a doctor of acupuncture. As an acupuncturist and healthcare worker, Brother Shakur worked from 1971 to ‘78 for the Lincoln Hospital Detoxification Program in the Bronx in New York. Then, from 1978 to 1982 Dr. Shakur was the co-founder and co-director of the Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North America, also known as BAAANA and the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture.

At the Lincoln Detox Center, Dr. Shakur lead a program which used acupuncture to assist in the detoxification of thousands of drug addicts. The Lincoln Detox program was recognized as the largest and most effective of its kind by the National Institute of Drug Abuse, the National Acupuncture Research Society and the World Academic Society of Acupuncture.

Further, at BAAANA, Dr. Shakur continued his remarkable work against drug addiction. He also treated and/or supervised the treatment of thousands of elderly and poor patients who otherwise would have received no treatment of this kind. Patients were able to receive quality healthcare at reasonable prices. Moreover, the clinic at BAAANA served on a regular basis many community leaders, political activists, lawyers, doctors and various international dignitaries. At BAAANA, Dr. Shakur and his co-founder, Dr. Richard Delaney, trained over 100 students in the medical sciences of acupuncture. Some of the trainees at the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture were already medical doctors licensed by various states in the United States.

Also in the late 1970s, just to tell you a little bit about this brother’s proficiency in his field, Dr. Shakur traveled with Dr. Mario Wexu, Director of Education at the International Association of Traditional Chinese Acupuncture in Montreal to the People’s Republic of China, where he observed and studied acupuncture applied as the primary form of medical care. We are not just talking about someone who, you know, dibbles and dabbles in his field, but he does some serious research, know what I’m saying.

Brother Shakur also worked with the Revolutionary Action Movement, RAM, in his early years. This was a revolutionary Black Nationalist organization which struggled for black self-determination and socialist change in America. Brother Dr. Shakur has furthermore been a dedicated worker and champion in the struggle against political imprisonment and political convictions of black activists in America.

He has also been a leader in the struggle against illegal United States and local American law enforcement programs designed to destroy the black movement in America and has worked to expose and stop the secret American war against its black colony. Brother Shakur served on the committee to defend Herman Ferguson, a leading black political activist and educator charged with conspiracy in the RAM conspiracy case of the 1960s. Dr. Shakur was a member of the National Committee to Free Political Prisoners. He has worked to legally defend and support political prisoners and prisoners of war like Imari Obadele, Ph.D. and the RNA-11, Reverend Ben Chavis and the Wilmington 10, Geronimo Pratt of the Black Panther Party, Assata Shakur of the Black Liberation Army, Sundiata Acoli also of the Black Liberation Army.

 

Haki Kweli Shakur : Who Are New Afrikan Political Prisoners via RBG Street Scholar

He contributed to the development of a petition to the United Nations by the National Conference of Black Lawyers and others. As a matter of fact, that petition is now documented in the book “Illusions of Justice” by Lennox Hinds. He used to also work with the National Conference of Black Lawyers on developing defense committees for numerous political prisoners and prisoners of war.

In addition, and I’m running out of breath with this Brother’s accomplishments, Brother Shakur was most importantly a co-founder and director of the National Task Force for COINTELPRO Litigation and Research which investigated, exposed and instigated suits against the FBI and other American law agencies for criminal acts, domestic spying, dirty tricks, repression, and low intensity warfare maneuvers against the New African independence struggle and others struggling against oppression in America.

Now, having given you this amazing biography, one thing I do have to say before I begin this program is that everything you hear on this show is not necessarily, you may be surprised to know, not necessarily the opinion of the University of Chicago or the University of Chicago’s Board of Trustees. But having said that I would like to bring on the air Brother Shakur. Brother Shakur are you with us?

MS: Hello.

Announcer: Hello Brother Shakur.

MS: How you doing. Free the land, Brother.

Announcer: All right, free the land. Now, Brother Shakur, I just read over some of the things that you been doing. You been a busy Brother even now that you’re incarcerated and I’d just like to inquiry as to when we look at your accomplishments and we look at what you are doing with acupuncture a lot of people think first off think Ahmm acupuncturist hmmm…How is somebody with acupuncture going to serve in a struggle etc. etc. doesn’t usually strike one as the freedom fighter type of thing to do. So could you explain to us how acupuncture fed into your struggle for black liberation.

MS: Yes, Brother Tyehimba, first of all I would like to thank you and the University for allowing me to talk to the south side of Chicago, people I have not had many opportunities to speak to since I’ve been incarcerated or since I’ve come up from being clandestine. It’s important for us to understand that the struggle for our liberation is a complete process, Brother, and which requires of us to be prepared to address the causes of our oppression. From that context I have to say that in the ’60s we had the pleasure of feeling like we were going to be free in ‘73, you know. That used to be a slogan we would say.

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: And as the upheavals and the outrage and the rebellion of the ’60s was waged and the struggle between intellectual participation in the movement and the grassroots organized and the new movement began to formulate two lines of the approach to the struggle, some of us were caught in the period of looking at the community being attacked by chemical warfare.

Announcer: Right.

MS: And chemical warfare began to change the shape and the attitude of the brothers and sisters who participated in the, what we called then, the revolution. Whether it be the civil rights aspect of integrating into or assimilating into America or whether it be the revolutionary nationalist aspect of fighting for, in this context and in that period, self-determination and/or liberation by nationhood. So from that point of view the ability to fight chemical warfare was a significant contribution that many organizations gave to the liberation movement because it was at least a physical participation in fighting the ills that the community could still come to the liberation movement for assistance.

For example, the Nation of Islam was very instrumental in fighting drug, heroin addiction by having homes and clean up houses and sweat-out houses all around the country where they could take members of the community who are addicted to drugs and help them cold-turkey. So a lot of the nationalist formations and the grassroots formations began to do the same thing.

A lot of brothers coming out of the penitentiary, cause the penitentiary movement was important. Ex-cons was not what it was today. An ex-con was an individual who gave character, who established a code of conduct in the community. So they began to set up houses, cold-turkey houses and the like to help deal with the problem of drug addiction.

So from the mid’60s to the ’70s the ability to fight heroin and other addictions that were being pushed in our community, that ability to do that with the assistance of the liberation formations or organizations became an important material aid to the community.

In view of that, in New York in particular and nationally, the National Drug Abuse Conference and Richard Nixon with Rockefeller implemented into the black community an experiment that they had been experiment. . . a drug that they had experimented on for a long period of time in Kentucky which they had a Lexington, Kentucky experiment program. They implemented what they called a Methadone Maintenance Intervention Program. Now Methadone Maintenance is a drug that was used allegedly, theoretically, to get a person off of heroin but onto methadone monitored by methadone clinics and allegedly its intentions were to detoxify a person addicted to chemical warfare off the methadone.

We seen that as a clear, clear process of taking from the revolutionary movement and the grassroots movement an ability to stay in touch with the community and to render aid and an ability and a setting for a person to demonstrate their love for their brother and sister by spending time, working with that brother or sister through that terrible period of cold-turkey.

Announcer: Well it sounds like we need some of that out here today with all this crack out here. You know.

MS: No question….this is why the Methadone Maintenance Move was a sickness it can move. What happened is Rockefeller….the history of methadone is a very interesting one. I don’t know how much time we have and I’m going to try to cut it short. But the Methadone Maintenance came into the community as a requirement for aid to dependent children, a requirement if you wanted to get on welfare, a requirement for parole and requirement for probation. It was called the Rockefeller Program in New York. At the time that Jimmy Carter was Governor of Atlanta, under him was the man named Peter Borne. Peter Borne was the National Drug Abuse Counsel Coordinator for Richard Nixon. They brought methadone into the community. In New York City, 60 percent of the illegal drugs on the street during the early ’70s was methadone. So we could not blame drug addiction at that time on Turkey or Afghanistan or the rest of that triangle.

Announcer: It was the United States government and Rockefeller.

MS: It was coming in through Eli Lily and the Brinks trucks that was delivering the drugs to the various methadone clinics around the country. And instead of people being detoxified off of methadone, they were being increased in dosages. So acupuncture, in the hands of revolutionary thinking, Puerto Rican, Blacks, Progressive White people, was an intervention that the government was not willing to accept at the time because it attacked and exposed the intention of the government to impose a chemical warfare on a certain segment of the community. And it exposed the fact that the government wanted to control the flow of drugs into the community. So our. . . hello. . .

Announcer: Yes.

MS: . . .our ability to get involved with acupuncture and to learn it, and to learn it from a very fundamental basis was an important contribution to that struggle. So we became victims of counter intelligence not in the classical sense based upon the Hoover documents of stopping the rise of the black messiah or stopping the development of black nationalist hate groups that showed that famous ‘67 document. We became targets because we were intervening into the chemical war process here ?? was being dealt with by illegal drugs and was being moved into the phase of legal drugs.

Announcer: Well, that was when you were starting to get active with the Lincoln Detox program and could you tell us about some of the development that happened there and the development of BAAANA.

MS: Okay. The Lincoln Detox program was started by the Black Panther Party, the Young Lords Party and a white group called White Lightening. This group began to take over aspects of Lincoln Hospital in order to provide space and treatment care. . .hello?

Announcer: Yeah, we’re still here.

MS: . . .for people

Operator: Are you done with your call?

Announcer: No. Hello? Hello?. . .So ladies and gentleman, that’s where we left last week or I should say two weeks ago, that was October 4th, where there was just an interruption by the prison telephone operator. And well, you know, as they say the struggle must continue and so we’re going to continue on with Brother Mutulu. So, welcoming you back to WHBK, welcome back, Brother Mutulu.

MS: Free the land, Brother.

Announcer: All right, so it’s good to have you back.

MS: Yeah, well it’s all like you say a struggle always continues, you know, we just have to prepare for the unexpected. It’s our ability to handle the strain and allow for us to win anyway. You know.

Announcer: Right. Okay, so now you had been talking about. . . two weeks ago you were talking about the influx of drugs into the country and into the African community. . . the New African community and I was wondering if you could kind of pick up the pieces from where you were two weeks ago.

MS: Yeah,. . . hello? I hear someone messing with the phone so bear with me.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: This here conversation has been approved by the warden and the captain. Okay, so I should be able to continue the conversation. All right?

Announcer: I sure hope so.

MS: Okay. I was trying to illustrate how the liberation movements and the civil rights movement and the black. . .

Announcer: Can you speak up a little, Brother.

MS: Hello?

Announcer: Can you speak up a little?

MS: Sure. I was trying to illustrate how the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Nationalist movement was very fundamental to us in the early ’60s, late mid ’60s and ’70s. And that one of the ways that the organization becomes fundamental, respected and appreciated from the masses is that we as organizational members or organization forms provide some type of material aid to the ails of our community and to the needs of our community.

And so the drug program in Lincoln Hospital that was developed, as I said before by the Black Panther Party, the Young Lords Party and another formation called White Lightening of ex-drug victims. This became a center for revolutionary, political change in the methodology and treatment modality of drug addiction because the method was not only medical but it was also political. And I think that was the continuing from the independent basis that the various formations had prior to the’70s, various organizations as I mentioned the Nation of Islam, RAM and SNCC and other formations dealing with the problems themselves.

So the Lincoln Detox became not only recognized by the community as a political formation but its work in developing and saving men and women of the third world inside of the oppressed communities, resuscitating these brothers and sisters and putting them into some form of healing process within the community we became a threat to the city of New York and consequently with the development of the barefoot doctor acupuncture cadre, we began to move around the country and educate various other communities instead of schools and orientations around acupuncture drug withdrawal and the strategy of methadone and the teaching the brothers and sisters the fundamentals of acupuncture to serious acupuncture, how it was used in the revolutionary context in China and in Vietnam and how we were able to use it in the South Bronx and our success. Primarily because we had a love for our people and we had a commitment to our people, we started very rudimentary.

We started with just finger pressure point and as we began to continue and search for the truth the information came to us, we went to China, we went to Montreal, we went around in England and Switzerland and various parts of the world to understand the theory and the application of acupuncture to drug withdrawal. So we became predictable, we became the base of acupuncturists who were revolutionaries in this country. Most of us belonged to various political formations and we were a part of a cadre of men and women who were not licensed western doctors but we were acupuncturists and oriental medicine and so therefore we opened up a whole avenue of the standards and the oppression of American Medical Association (AMA)against oriental medicine and the whole line of struggle. So acupuncture and Lincoln Detox together was a political and medical threat to the theory of legalized chemical warfare within our community.

Announcer: Now that’s deep ’cause the more I find out about, you know, how to take care of one’s body, how to get medical treatment, there seems like there was some many concepts involved in what you were doing. The AMA involved and the concept of western medicine and pumping drugs into your system and the toxification of the community, the chemical warfare. This is a part of our history that, I guess, very few of us have had access to. Now, I wonder if you could also tell us a little bit about your case and exactly how things came to a head and how you wound up in prison.

MS: One of the things that’s got to be clear is that I am a part of a movement. I have been a part of the movement most of my life and when I became involved in the Lincoln Detox process, I had already been in the Republic of New Afrika, the black caucus, I have been the supporter of the RAM cases in Queens, New York. I had also been involved in the National Black Political Convention. I was already a political animal. When we all hooked up to Lincoln Detox there was major leadership of the Young Lords Party that was a part of what we called the Lincoln Detox Collective. We were also a part of the National Committee for the Defense of Political Prisoners. Some of us were a part. . . North Americans were a part of the Midnight Special. The Sister of Bernadine Dohrn was there, Jennifer Dohrn, was a part of the Lincoln Detox Collective. So we had a number of politically conscience people involved in carrying out the fundamental process of dealing with the needs of the community. You follow me?

Announcer: Uh huh.

MS: And seeing that there was too powerful of a access. . . too powerful access for the revolutionary community to have specially as we were moving into 1973 and the oil embargo and third-world nations emerging around the world, revolutionary struggle, the anti-imperialist struggle, struggle for national identity that was happening all over the world. The concept of self-determination within the minimum context of community control and control of one’s own health, was too much of a significant barometer for our community to see the potential of freedom, the potential of self-determination, so we became the target.

Announcer: So, it sounds like you’re talking about a whole type of medical wing of the liberation movement, almost. Like the various collectives that you were talking about. And I know here in Chicago they had a brother who was involved in starting up a health clinic etc. A whole new concept of medicine, medical care and how care should be provided.

MS: Really the principal of providing medical care wasn’t new because if you remember the Black Panther Party publicized people’s health clinics. They publicized it from the ’60s to the early ’70s. But, and I mean, the media publicized it. Other formations in the Libya movement in Cleveland and various nationalist formations in New York and Chicago and Mid West and South, were doing certain type of healthcare. And the voter registration campaign, they were doing certain things. But the significant part about this was that we had also caught them red-handedly providing a chemical addiction to a people that they alleged were trying to detoxify, to clean up the drugs. So it wasn’t only that we were providing medical care, we were providing medical care and exposing chemical warfare. We were not only providing medical care and exposing chemical warfare, we were challenging western occidental medicine to eastern medicine and natural healing. So all the fads and the health foods stores and all of the reflexology clinics and all of these things that allow to function today would not exist if revolutionary men and women did not fight tooth and nail to spread the possibilities of another form of healthcare system to the third world grassroots community.

Announcer: As you were saying before, a lot of us are familiar somewhat with the history of the FBI and the CIA, COINTELPRO operations, and the various search and destroy missions of various police departments across the country and in New York it was particularly fierce from what I understand.

MS: Oh it was very significant, it was very significant. A lot of the . . . the thing that you have to understand is people must read the COINTELPROl document directive clearly. And aspects of it talk about misdirecting, discrediting, taking off track, taking away credibility, preventing good work from looking like good work in the community. Fundamental stuff. And that is strategic as opposed to overt. You follow me. And so federally they were beginning to. . .they couldn’t come at us direct because it would be hard to explain. If men and women are trying to do something good, why are you attacking them. So, therefore, the misdirection and the discrediting and the media’s collaboration by refusing to announce to the community and to the readers what was going on, allowed for the Lincoln Detox Program to be targeted as if it was poverty pimps going on up there. At the time that we were moving there was a group called the National Caucus of Labor Committees.

They began to attack us. Now that we have seen their covert operations and understand them to be destabilizing and working for different forms all over the world, we realize that they were part of the covert action. We attached by Charles Schuman now a Congressman in Washington. He was a Congressman in Brooklyn. He lead an assembly evaluation of all the so-called third-party programs, which were a residential communities where you could keep people in over a certain length of time and try to heal. He felt that we had too much control, that men and women had too much control over brothers and sisters without them being certified, and you know certified men politicized to the Right Wing element. So, Mayor Koch who became the Mayor at the time, was the head of the New York City Board of Estimates. And so he lead, he won his campaign on attacking drug programs and anti-poverty programs in New York City.

So, during the end stages after they had murdered many BLA members, after they had tremendous trials and the Lincoln Detox community, the Lincoln Detox patients, the Lincoln Detox workers, the Lincoln Detox supporters were always in the eye of the storm when it came down to supporting revolutionary causes, positive issues, we’ve struck when the gypsy cabs went on strike, we struck with the workers. . . the healthcare workers in the hospital, we demanded better healthcare, we fought in the welfare department for proper treatment of welfare recipients, we had a legal defense fund and helped indigenous people who couldn’t afford legal services. These are the kinds of people services that were developed out of a revolutionary context from Lincoln Detox Drug Program as a result of politicizing victims of drug addiction and educating the community about chemical warfare, we were able to provide these types of community service, therefore, as the COINTELPRO and the media said that the liberation, they had broke the back of the liberation movement here in the South Bronx under a different banner, under a health banner we had cadres of men and women…in the community out there spreading the word of self-determination and liberation.

Announcer: So this is between the years in Lincoln Detox that’s from the years of 1971-78. Is that right?

MS: Yes.

Announcer: And now, eventually was Lincoln disbanded or what?

MS: The day that I was fired they sent 200 policemen up to the clinic, surrounded the clinic. . .

Announcer: 200 policemen!

MS: Yes. . . and just controlled the whole thing and fired all of us or told us that we were to be sent to other hospitals. Right now today you can go into New York City and in those municipal hospitals within the community, with the black and Puerto Rican and poor communities, a municipal hospital, not the private hospital, but the municipal hospitals, you can now receive acupuncture treatment for drug withdrawal as an alternative method of treatment. And that exists today because many men and women were put in jail, shot and killed, had mental disorder, all the things that go with on going low intensity warfare, all the suffering that can be attributed to that is for ??. The reason why men and women now can go get acupuncture and alternative healthcare has to do with that cadre of men and women. And they need to be praised and that situation needs to be correctly analyzed. Because if we do not analyze it. . .

[break in tape]

Announcer: You were involved with BAAANA, right?

MS: BAAANA was the Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North America. We went into Harlem and we bought a home in Strivers Row and opened it as an acupuncture clinic in Harlem. And that clinic began to teach brothers and sisters and others the skill of acupuncture to spread around the country in various segments of the population. And we began to certify them internationally, under . . . we were opened under the International Association of Acupuncture and the World Health Organization.

Because I have always been a revolutionary, I have always been a supporter and a member of the liberation movement. Nothing changes. The acupuncture clinic was a clinic and BAAANA was built on a similar structure as Lincoln Hospital. It must be political and any person who was going to learn from our clinic had to be somewhat socially conscience and committed to fighting the ills of the community. And so acupuncture. . . BAAANA became a target just like Lincoln Detox. The only difference is that it was easier to focus on BAAANA, to isolate BAAANA in order for them to deal with this raid on BAAANA that happened in March of 1982.

BAAANA became a target in a RICO conspiracy. What they allege is that because BAAANA was providing this kind of healthcare and the insurance companies were not giving money to BAAANA because they were a part of another counter-intelligence strategy to try to close us down by refusing to pay rightfully due insurance bills to the clinic, they alleged that the clinic was being kept alive by the Black Liberation Army. And they alleged that the Black Liberation Army was robbing armored trucks in order to keep the acupuncture clinic alive as well as other organizations and facilities in the black nation. And so I became a target of an investigation, March 20th, 1982 I was indicted for the liberation of Assata Shakur because I was her legal assistant on many of her cases during the ’70s. They target me with her liberation, I was targeted as part of the liberation of freedom fighters as well as the expropriation of 9 or 10 armored trucks during the course of ‘76 to ‘81.

So I went underground in 1981. I knew I was a target, Mtayari Shabaka was murdered. A great revolutionary by the name of Sekou Odinga who had been a part of the Panther 21 case, who had been a childhood friend of mine, who was a leader of the Black Panther Party, who went to Algiers and opened up the international section. Was captured at the time Mtayari was murdered and he was indicted for being one of the leaders of the clandestine formation of the Black Liberation Army, New African Freedom Fighters. Many other brothers and sisters, Kwasi Balagoon, Chui Ferguson-El, Assata Shakur, Nehanda Abiodun, great sister who was a part of the aboveground structure, who is still underground, who is still being hunted by the law, the FBI, CIA, Interpol, she was a sister who helped start BAAANA on 129th Street between 7th and 8th Avenue in Harlem. She was a great sister, she was a part of the Republic of New Afrika’s cadre and was one of the first organizers of the New African People’s Organization. Many people know of Assata Shakur and they should but there is another sister named Nehanda Abiodun that they have been hunting and trying to catch ever since we went underground and she is a great comrade, a great sister and all sisters need to know about her. She is a very important contributor to the development of acupuncture and drug withdrawal in the black community, New African community.

So, we felt the wrath of COINTELPRO. We were also, prior to and during the time of the Lincoln Detox Process, my political work was the National Committee for the Defense of Political Prisoners and the National Committee for COINTELPRO Litigation and Research Committee. Now that formation was made up of various political formations and organizations who had suffered during the decline of the revolutionary movement, who were . . . these formations were victims of counter intelligence and COINTELPRO and low intensity warfare. We came together to try to find out why we, political formations such as the African People’s Party, the Republic of New Africa, All African People’s Revolutionary Party, segments of the Black Panther Party, segments of the Houses ??. How come we could not sit down and unite and further the struggle for human rights of New African people in America and socialist development of our struggle. And that discussion and those people coming together made us realize that we had not thoroughly understood and accepted low intensity warfare and counter intelligence in relationship to the ideological struggles that we were having so-called petty contradictions between ourselves. So that committee became the National Committee for COINTELPRO Litigation and Research. And what we did was begin to go out and look at issues that were dividing us. . .

Announcer: Excuse me, Brother. Give us an idea of what time period you are talking about.

MS: Now we’re talking between ‘73 and ‘77.

Announcer: Okay. I just wanted to get that.

MS: Right. We’re talking about after Assata Shakur was captured and Zayd Malik Shakur was killed and Sundiata Acoli was captured. Okay. Because between ‘70 and ‘73 there was complete assassination of BLA members. There was assassination of potential organizers within aboveground formations. There was also false charges ??. All over the country men and women were falling to all kinds of various situations. No this happened somewhat different then to ‘67 to, well let’s say ‘66 ’cause we have to put in Ahmed Evans and what happened in Cleveland, from the ‘66 to ‘70 period the consensus of the police and the FBI and the white community was that direct attacks against visible fronts of the black liberation movement was legal and proper. Do you follow me?

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: So that many organizations who had store fronts who were providing various care and office open to the community were being militarily attacked. Do you follow me?

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: And those attacks began to kill the momentum of the visibility of liberation formations within the community. So after they confronted us in that fashion, from ‘70 to ‘71, the low intensity hunt and destroy method was the second phase of COINTELPRO and us killing each other.

Announcer: A lot of people, I think a lot of people in the audience wonder what low intensity warfare is, but in terms of clearing it up, it’s the same tactics that the United States government used against Chile, used against El Salvador and uses around the world to destabilize governments and here, in the United States, to destabilize the African community, the Native American communities, the island of Puerto Rico, etc., etc., etc.

MS: Nothing spooky about it. I think a lot of times we put titles on things to cut the explanation and where we need to put the explanation, make the explanation more clear. Low intensity warfare very simply put, is the play on the weaknesses and uncovered flanks of organizations or formations that are a threat, to the powers that be or to your adversary. As it relates to us and the United States government and military government, we, the liberation movements, were infiltrated with agents, money was stolen and we were beginning to accuse each other, work that we were doing to educate and propagate to the community was being subverted and converted ’cause we did not control the media process. Our own egos were being used against us very fundamentally. Your mail was being stolen when you expected the mail to come for this, that or the other. Shoestring budgets were being stretched to the limits so we would fail to make certain deadlines. So we began to feel inconsistent, impotent, incompetent and we felt that the things were falling apart. So our morale began to weaken. So with a weak morale and a vicious military attack, an assassination of key leader, or a car accident driving him off the road, or an addiction or a supporter or something, anything that can breakdown the fundamental structure and the spirit of a formation is low intensity warfare. Where you’re being attacked everyday but it’s not the clear line that you anticipate. And it’s not haphazard attack. It’s a very fundamental, thought out, programmatic attack at the weaknesses that have been reported by the agent to the superior.

Announcer: Okay. Now, you experienced a lot of that as you were just saying in BAAANA and in the Detox, the Lincoln Detox, and as a matter of fact, one of your fellow doctors was killed or died on this scene.

MS: Well, Lincoln Detox was hot-bed for COINTELPRO. During the time from ‘71, ‘70 to ‘77 we had suffered at least 3 or 4 assassinations. The most notable assassination, if you will remember we were talking about the fact that we had. . . we were unlicensed in Western medicine but licensed in Eastern medicine?

Announcer: Yes.

MS: Well, during the time that we were licensed in Eastern medicine and practicing acupuncture, the only way that we were able to maintain and continue was that we had a western doctor to support the work program. He was the sign-off person.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: This person was not necessary have to be an acupuncturist, matter of fact they prefer he not be, or she not be. And during the course from ‘70 to ‘73 initially it was the man by the name. . . one was Steve Levine was the first doctor at Lincoln Hospital but he was not an acupuncturist. A man by the name of Frank Atfeld, M.D. was one of the first western medicine doctors working with the cadre, we evolved the acupuncture collectively together. He left and there was a man by the name of . . . his name was Richard Taft. Now Richard Taft was the grandson of President Taft, or the great grandson of President Taft. When Frank Atfeld left, Richard Taft was the resident doctor okaying the western. . .the eastern treatment modality. You follow me?

Announcer: Yes.

MS: And so therefore, he was essential to us in terms of continuing treatment.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: The day he was murdered, two days before he was murdered Charles Schumer and the National Caucus of Labor Committees created an attack, a verbal media attack as well as a mass rally to create a diversion of energy from the Lincoln Detox program. The day he was killed, the night he was killed, they had just attacked our clinic, physically. And anyone in the historical period would know that a National Caucus of Labor Committees had … tight tactics. They would just jump on the people, would beat them with nunchakus. That was their modus operandi. And so the day that Richard Taft was killed Peter Borne who was Reagan’s . . . I mean. . . I’m sorry. . . Carter’s East Coast Regional Campaign Manager, and the survey of the International Acupuncture availability for drug addiction, came to the clinic. He was the one. . . he was there was Richard Taft’s body was found. You want to know who Richard Borne was, I mean . . . Borne, his father was the person in Grenada who owned the American Medical University over there, who called in the troops saying that the Americans were under attack. So his son was there the same day that. . . Richard Taft was murdered. Now the murder was he was shot up with drugs in the back of the auditorium. That’s how he died. So that was to discredit the Acupuncture clinic as if the doctors of the clinic was drug addicts.

Announcer: Right, right. That he O.D.’ed

MS: And now, even if you accept the fact that he used drugs, which we don’t, why would he use it in the back of the auditorium. And die. Very shaky circumstances. Another great man that was killed, associated with the Lincoln Detox program was a man by the name of Stanley Cohen. A fantastic lawyer. This man had won every case that we had from Lincoln Detox. BLA cases, cases dealing with rights of the welfare clients, workers rights. He had defended Assata Shakur from three major trials. He was getting ready to go into Jersey for the last and final trial, because Assata Shakur was never convicted of the things that they allegedly were looking for her for. She was convicted for defending herself against an assassination plot on the New Jersey Turnpike which killed my brother Zayd Shakur and imprisoned Sundiata Coli. That last trial, just before we were going into that last trial, they found Stanley Cohen O.D.’ed on cocaine. He was the best attorney that the clinic had and that the revolutionaries had at that time, not famous like the rest of them.

Announcer: Okay. Now, we’ve covered so much. It’s been so fascinating.

MS: The reason why I’m covering all of this is because when you read about me and the Big Dance or you read about my POW position in the courts and the stand I take on international laws relates to our struggle. When I say that I’m a prisoner of war, I’m talking about low intensity warfare. I’m talking about a warfare that has been sanctioned as legitimate war by Protocols 1 and 2 of the International UN Convention. You follow me?

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: And I’m saying that we have to recognize that our suffering cannot be passed off as criminal. Follow me?. . .violation. I am part of a liberation movement. I accept that. I accept the fact that the United States government has waged war on us as a people and I believed in my actions are part of resistance to that war. Consequently, I am catching as a prisoner of war. Do you follow me?

Announcer: Yes.

MS: And so when I tell you what the war was like. When I talk to you about acupuncture, and I talk to about healing and I talk to you about legal work, and I talk to you about welfare work, that work is work that must be considered war work. Do you follow me?

Announcer: Right.

MS: Because if we are to save ourselves, we must be clear about what we’re dealing with. The lack of clarity creates the confusion. Do you follow me?

Announcer: Right.

MS: And so I give you this whole background because when you read about me or when they say things. . . I mean most of the time they don’t like talking about me because they can’t make me a classic criminal. They can’t make me a petty thief. You see. They have to deal with the whole, you can’t deal with the part. And so when we talk about all the ??, Abdul Majid of the Queens Two and Bashir Hameed. These men worked on housing. They worked for better housing in areas like Chicago and New York and Detroit and Philadelphia and Boston. We know what it is to have cold water flats. We know what it is to have rats and roaches and the landlord not coming taking care of that. More tropical areas might not understand the significance of fighting landlords and slumlords. You follow me?

Announcer: Uh huh.

MS: But these brothers, that’s the work they did in the community. And so now they are in jail fighting for a new trial for allegedly killing the policemen. You got Mumia in Philadelphia who was a radio personality, a person who dealt with the media, who gave the news, who dealt with the arts of African people, New African people. He’s getting ready. They are trying to execute him for defending himself against a policeman. Now how can you execute a political prisoner, a prisoner of war. You can’t do that and not violate the treaties of war. When you look at what’s going on with African National Congress (ANC) and the Pretoria government right now. The release of prisoners, the phases of release of prisoners. And this is why we must save Mumia, because if we allow him. . . allow them to kill Mumia, execute Mumia all of our future will be executed in pursuant of political struggle. When in other countries, prisoners of war are put in detention camps and saved until the negotiation happens.

Announcer: Well I find that in this country most people say Aprisoners of war, well you must be talking about those people that Ross Perot is talking about or something like there aren’t any prisoners of war or political prisoners in this country. I think that’s probably the myth that we have to dispel.

MS: Well it’s a myth because our movement, our people who deal with the media, do not our interpret our situations properly. So sure, if there’s only one war that people know about, the war against Saddam Hussein, then that’s the only war they’re going refer to. The war against drugs, Noriega. Then that’s the only war they’re going to refer to. So, we have to understand and we can’t charge genocide, we can’t demand reparations if we don’t realize that we can’t say at the same time that the existence of New African people is a war-like existence inside an oppressive colonized situation.

Announcer: Yes. You know that it seems to me along with the concept of being in war is the concept of nationhood. And when we talk about the concept of nationhood, in context of black people, New African people, we’re talking about a land base on this country. I wonder if you will tell us. . . if you could just elaborate for me how through your struggle you came to become a New African. What compelled you, what were the things that compelled you to identify yourself as such.

MS: Let me just say. You can’t put the cart before the horse.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: Right?

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: The issue is, are we at a state of conflict. If we are at a state of conflict, what is going to be the solution.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: You have to first accept there is a conflict. If you don’t accept there is a conflict, then you can’t fathom a separate nation. And if you do, it’s egotistical. Well I want my own. It’s without basis. But if you understand that we do not coexist in a vacuum, that we are in a life and death struggle. That the history of us being brought here and how we are treated since we’ve been here, demands that we come up with some formula to resolve this contradiction or else our condition, our condition and our circumstances might be the cause of the fall of all humanity on the planet earth. Because we must be free. Now, everybody doesn’t agree with that scenario. You follow me?

Announcer:Yeah that’s true.

MS: Some people believe that we can formulate a better living and life condition by participating in an integrated political and economic cultural system. Now, I do not say that they’re not revolutionaries. If they are hell bent on changing and changing the rights of people and forcing this government and developing a new government that integrates everybody into an equal formation and rights for everybody, well then all praises due to Allah. Fine. It still does not deal with the question: where do we find ourselves as New African people brought here as slaves. Okay?

Announcer: Right.

MS: But even in that society I will co-exist because you allow me to have my own culture or at least try to find where I’m going. You follow me?

Announcer: Yes.

MS: But, I contend that Utopia or that possibility for the last 150 years has not come to be. And in the process, we have been dying, dying, dying, dying, dying. And in order for us to understand what it is that we were fighting for, we must label what we’re for, and I’m fighting for a nation. A nation of New African people, not exclusively, but conclusively our nation that develops a culture that deals with our experience and that a culture that will allow the exercise, creativity, the potential of every man, woman and child that enters our nation. So, I come to that because I understood that I have to know why I’m fighting and might die. Why I sacrifice.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: People come to it for different reasons. You follow me?

Announcer: Yeah.

MS: And so we can intellectualize it. We can talk about what Malcolm talked about that all struggle is fought for land. The Turkish struggle, the struggle that you see in Europe and in the Soviet Union is a struggle for national identity. The different nations in the Soviet Union feel that they must have their own land base, they must make their own decisions, and formulate their own policies as it relates to other peoples in the world. And that was the mighty Soviet Union. So are you saying that that is not possible in America? And if it is possible, it’s going to be a war of Armageddon. Well I might agree with you. But it does not take away from the fact that you must know why your fighting and why you’re sacrificing and why you might die. You can’t be vague about that. ‘Cause what we’re struggling for is the control of the natural resources. And what you saw in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq was a struggle to take a piece of the natural resources that has escaped the U.S. Imperialist’s powers because the emergence of territory nationalism.

Announcer: Okay. Now, let me ask you this, I’ve heard about the Shakur family. I mean, I’ve heard a lot of beautiful, positive things about. I wonder if you could tell me a little bit about how that. . . what that family is or that connection is. Could you?

MS: Yeah.

Announcer: I mean, it’s out of curiosity. I just heard a little bit about it.

MS: The Shakur family extends from a man by the name of Aba Saladin Shakur. Aba Saladin Shakur was responsible for fathering ?? Shakur, Zayd Malik Shakur, myself, Assata Shakur, Sekou Odinga, Abdul Majid, Malika Majid and many other New Africans who were part of the Republic of New Africa and the Black Panther Party and we were of the Shakur tribe. A very . . . Abba Shakur was one of the loyal members of the OAU and the Muslim Mosque Incorporated and a close associate of Brother Macolm Shabazz.

Announcer: Okay. Now, I understand your brother Tupac Shakur is . . . raises some consciousness through his records. As a matter of fact, I heard his last record. It was great.

MS: Yeah. Tupac is my son.

Announcer: Wow, Great, no kidding.

MS: He is being attacked by the powers that be because of his own individuality, his own message and ways of demonstrating how our lives, the absence of his extended family, me, Lumumba, Zayd, his mother a great woman, Afeni, one of the only two women in the Panther 21 case, who defended herself during the Panther 21 case and won. She was also a very key figure in the national COINTELPRO Litigation and Research formulation. A fantastic worker in housing and one of the key supporters of political prisoners and prisoners of war during the 1970’s. We understand that our children and a lot of things that men. . . you know it’s interesting that up, ’cause we just been talking in the family about how we’re going to handle the ?? confrontation. Let us be very clear, it is always admirable to have your children believe what you believe. It is always the legacy you like to continue. You feel like you commit yourself, your sacrifices so that they will know, and we have many children. Many of our children, the X-Clan is Sonny Carson’s son brother Lumumba. A great comrade. We grew all . . . this is all our family. But they all have seen what low intensity war means. My other son, little Mutulu is involved . . . was involved in the Toni Toni Toni thing, now him and his brother are together.

Announcer: Okay.

MS: Yeah. But we see is that many of our children suffer in ways that is yet to be analyzed from the intensity of the war that we have been struggling against. And because our community has not accepted that as a reality and because we are in jail. We are not able to give our family what you might give, not you personally, but they might be able to do in the confines of their home and in founding the culture and in going back to the Egyptology and the history of the Nile and the great cultural lessons that our children are getting. They always seem to forget to give the real, or research the struggle, the contemporary struggle that a major part of our people played a part in, in the ’50s, ‘60, ’70s and ’80s and ’90s. And because we forget that our children who are directly connected to the intensity of the war are constantly evaluating the consequences.

Announcer: I see.

MS: And the way that they respond to the repression, oppression, sometimes might not be what we want them to do. But we, we have begun to understand what the residue of war means. Just like the people, the fathers and mothers in Angola who’s children have been shooting their mothers and shooting their fathers at the orders of Savimbi. Just like in South Africa where necklaces was required to rid the townships of informers. Just like the killings and beatings of young kids that are in the ANC and PAC. We will have to see in another generation how that has affected ?? ??, how that affected the masses of people. Are we immune to life and death. Does that mean we lose our passion for living. Is that why we see the killing of old ladies and the drive by shootings of innocent children and the lyrics. . . you know, explaining phenomena heretofore not connected to the principals of our community. We must make that analysis and when you make that analysis I think that the audience will agree that we have a serious problem and you cannot call it genetic like their trying to evaluate our children and say that we are violence prone. And if we allow that you going to allow the gas chambers. If you allow every child to be fingerprinted and foot printed, you’re going to allow the gas chambers. If you do not understand that the Tuskegee experiment about the sex allowing men to walk around with syphilis for 30 and 40 years and then we come up with AIDS. If you don’t see it, I mean, you know. . .

Announcer: Yeah, what can you say?

MS: It’s nothing. . .so you know we all go to the next level with a different understanding. So yeah, those are our children and, you know, KRS1 and MC Light and all of the Rappers, brother Prince and all of these people are yelling out what they see as a political reality. But for lack of a structure and you have to accept the fact that Minister Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam are overtly courting and supporting Ice T and Ice Cube and rightfully they should, they should. And say you got to admire that, but we must do the same. Not we meaning separate from the Nation of Islam but a non-religious formation must purely embrace and support and protect the ?? of the youth of today.

Announcer: Wow. It’s been just fantastic having you on the air. I really hope we can do this again sometime. It has been. . . you know we talk. . . I talk about it on the air, the history that you didn’t get from Eyes on the Prize.

MS: Oh no question.

Announcer: You know what I’m saying.

MS: But it’s a good foundation. It’s a good foundation. I think what is missing from Eyes on the Prize is the filler. How did Willy Ricks get to. . .you know. . .Black Power. And how did the struggle between SNCC develop and. . . you know. . .how did the love that you see between Martin and Kwame even though they disagreed practically.

Announcer: Yeah. yeah.

MS: I think it’s important to see that when the Deacons for Defense were securing the men and women marching from Montgomery to Mississippi that they were being protected by the Deacons for Defense. That was a capitulation on Martin’s behalf that security was needed at some point. So everybody was growing. You know. It’s an evolutionary process. And we have to analyze that. One of the things that it made clear is that we had to clearly define what it is we want. Non-violence cannot be an objective, it can be a strategy but it can’t be an objective.

Announcer: Okay, Brother. We’re about to sign off right now ’cause I’m about to run out of time in about 2 minutes. If there is any final message that you like to shout out the Chicago land audience and who ever else this may go out to.

MS: Yes. I’d just like to say that I’ve met some great men that have come out of Chicago, that have been in prison. This is my first time in prison. I think that we need . . . all the communities need to come closer together. I think we have to realize that we must support our political prisoners. We must internationalize our support for our political prisoners. We must make that a requirement for our support for other causes because all other causes support their political prisoners. It is not suspicion for the whole half of America to raise up for Nelson Mandela and not raise up for Sekou Odinga and Mumia Abu Jamal and Geronimo Pratt. We must see our struggle in its proper context and we must see the severity of it. And we must have more love for each other. And we must stop being afraid to be in the community offering the solution and deal with it completely and decisively.

Announcer:, All right, Brother. It’s been good having you on the air.

MS: Okay.

Announcer: Free the land.

MS: Free the land and the man.

Announcer: Okay. Bye bye. All right brothers and sisters, that was sure inspirational. Man, some type of history, huh. I’m going to be clearing the airways here…

The July 26th Movement Cuba 🇨🇺 Long Live The Revolucion

Fidel Castro is seen here wearing a 26-7-53 arm band which is the symbol for the July 26 Movement, the date of the Moncada Barracks attack.

The date of the Moncada Barracks attack, July 26, 1953, would give Fidel Castro the name of his organization, the 26th of July movement, and would become the most sacred date of communist Cuba. And, speaking of sacredness, why did Fidel Castro choose the 26th of July for the commencement of his Revolution? Sources tell us Fidel chose July 26 because the patron saint of the city of Santiago de Cuba was the Apostle James the Elder. In medieval Spanish tradition he was resurrected as Santiago the Moorslayer, the avenging angel of the Spanish knights during the Reconquista, as well as the charging fury that led the indomitable conquistadores of Hernán Cortes when battling the Aztecs of Mexico.

The saint was honored every July 25, which also coincided with the end of the sugar harvest, hence the day of the most joyous celebration in Santiago de Cuba. Fidel Castro, “the new Moorslayer, would destroy Batista.” Indeed, Fidel had told his Ortodoxo friend, José Pardo Llada, after Batistas bloodless March 10, 1952 coup d’état in which Batista had seized the government, “We have got to kill that Negro.”

It is of interest that Fidel has admitted in moments of candor that the Moncada attack was carried out for sensationalism to stir up the public and to begin his Revolution with a splash. The fact is that despite the infamous Batista coup of March 10, 1952, Cuba was and remained prosperous and at peace. There was no popular protests or public outcry, except for the measured protests by the intellectuals chiefly in Havana. Fidel, then, had to do something spectacular to get the people’s attention and rally them against Batista. In Fidel’s view, the Moncada Barracks attack was “a gesture which would set an example for the people of Cuba.”

 

Haki Kweli Shakur 7-26-52 ADM Talks Scientific Socialism ATC- NAPLA NAIM MOI

 

On July 26, 1953, Fidel Castro, along with his brother Raúl, led an attack on a remote outpost, the Moncada Barracks, in Oriente province, the easternmost province of Cuba. As discussed above, the fortuitous day was chosen after a major celebration in Santiago de Cuba. He expected Batista’s soldiers to be drunk and stuporous when his band of revolutionaries would surprise them at the crack of dawn. He had 160 men, which included as mentioned, his brother Raúl, Abel and Haydée Santamaría, and several others like Juan Almeida, who would become better known as the Revolution unfolded. Fidel Castro and the principal group of assailants were to attack the main post in the barracks.

In the meantime, the doctor in the group with Abel Santamaría and the two women, Haydée Santamaría and Melba Hernández, were to secure the infirmary. But everything went wrong. In the lead vehicle, Ramiro Valdés encountered one of the guards and smashed his face in with the butt of his rifle. The vanguard of the group surprised the sentries, who, nevertheless, were able to warn the garrison. They suffered eight deaths in the ensuing gunfight. Fidel Castro did not even enter the compound. In the infirmary, the small group viciously killed the sleeping soldiers, accounting for the majority of the 22 enemy casualties.

Abel and the women were captured by Batista forces, and the soldiers, upon discovering the slaughter of their sick and wounded comrades in the infirmary, retaliated. Abel was tortured and brutally killed while in police custody. He would later become an icon of the Revolution. In the chaos that followed, 56 revolutionaries were killed, the majority of them after their capture, in retaliation for the infirmary massacre.

Years later, Abels sister Haydée, a member of the ruling nomenklatura, would commit suicide while working in Castro’s communist government as director of the States official publishing house, Casa de las Américas. She had become disillusioned, it seemed, with the course of the Revolution and her equally failed marriage with playboy and compañero Armando Hart, Minister of Culture.

Comandantes Juan Almeida and Ramiro Valdés would remain in Fidel’s revolutionary hierarchy for decades(Almeida as Communist Party apparatchik and Valdés working in the dreaded internal State security apparatus). Valdés, along with the dissolute quartet of Osmony Cienfuegos, Sergio del Valle, José Abrantes, and Manuel Piñeiro (“Red Beard”), would put Batista police and military chiefs such as the Salas Cañizares, the Masferrers, the Mirabales, and Estéban Ventura to shame in using effective repressive tactics to squelch opposition and spread terror.

And yet, Batista forces in that remote outpost fought back and defeated Fidel and his ragtag band. Fidel, who stayed safely behind during the attack, was also protected after his arrest and apprehension by the Archbishop of Santiago de Cuba, Mons. Enrique Pérez Serantes. Fidel and the members of his band were rounded up, tried, and convicted. Fidel’s failed legal defense of himself at his trial on October 16, 1953 became a major revolutionary document, History will absolve me. While in prison, Fidel accused his wife Mirta Diaz Balart, who he abandoned along with their infant son, of collaborating with the dictator’s Internal Ministry. Mirta would be forced to divorce Fidel.

Interestingly, before the Moncada Barracks attack, Fidel had visited Batista at his palatial home at least twice. On one occasion, accompanied by his brother-in-law, Rafael Diaz Balart, Fidel had promised the dictator that he would support his government. Before that, when Fidel and Mirta went on their honeymoon in 1949 to the Bronx, New York, they had both received a $500 bill from Senator Batista as a wedding present.

For his part, Batista, the corrupt and vengeful dictator, released Fidel Castro and his men from prison in 1955 as a gesture of national reconciliation in a general amnesty release. Fidel and his men had been treated exceptionally well. While Fidel and his conspirators were sentenced by the presiding judge specifically to be incarcerated in the dreaded old fortress prison of La Cabaña to serve his sentence of fifteen years, the Cuban Minister of the Interior, Ramón Hermida, ordered them, instead, sent to the newest Modelo Prison on Isla de Pinos. There, they were classified as political prisoners, and rather than being treated harshly and inhumanely, they were treated with the same respect and special privileges that Batista gave to “political prisoners” at the time. As we shall see, when the tables are turned and Fidel is doing the incarcerating, things would be totally different.

Yes, the Moncada assailants who survived the attack and the immediate vengeful aftermath were treated favorably with special privileges following their prosecution and conviction. While in prison, Fidel and his conspirators were given books and magazines and were allowed to keep subversive political literature, including books of Marx, Lenin, and other revolutionary subversives.

Quirk notes that while at the modern Modelo Prison, Fidel was more influenced by Nikolai Ostrovskis How the Steel Was Tempered and Hewlett Johnson’s (the “Red Dean” of Canterbury), The Secret of Soviet Strength, than by the more lengthy and soporific works of Marx and Lenin. Thus, Fidel had ample time to expand his egalitarian, collectivist sentiments and transform them into solid, communist ideology. Quirk sees Fidel and his writings and speeches as being those of an idealist egalitarian who admired FDR’s New Deal and who only later, after the Revolution, pragmatically or for personal reasons, became a socialist. “Because,” writes Quirk, “he was open to the moral, if not intellectual appeal of Marxism.”

Any careful study of Fidel Castros pronouncements during his years in prison in 1953-1954 and his actions thereafter, 1955-1958, reveal that the young autocratic revolutionary was carefully adding details to his elitist mentality and collectivist frame of mind. He was becoming an authoritarian, whether fascist or communist, only time would tell, but by the 1950s, fascism was certainly on the decline, whereas communism was on the rise.

In addition to the works of communist authors, Fidel Castro treasured Benito Mussolini’s volumes and avidly read the works of Spanish Falangist José Antonio Primo de Rivera, both of whom are said to be on the far right side of the political spectrum. Let me explain.

Since the turbulent days of the early 1790s, when the Jacobins and Girondins held the raging debates at the National Convention during the French Revolution, the meaning of “right” and “left” which was dictated by the seating arrangement of the delegates, has changed considerably. Then, it was moderate versus radical in the ideological political spectrum. Today, it supposedly separates liberal from conservative.

As Fidel’s choice of political books demonstrates, collectivist writings appeal to authoritarians because birds of a feather tend to flock together. All forms of authoritarianism and collectivism – whether national socialism (Nazism), communism, or their seemingly milder cousins, corporativism and fascism – are, in reality, all nuances of the same ideology of the left side of the political spectrum, where the collective power of the State becomes all powerful and supreme over the individual.

On the other end of the spectrum, we find anarchy, the extreme condition of having no government at all, which occupies the far, extreme right. Imagine then, a horseshoe with an accentuated bend, the ends almost meeting at the extreme right and left. The gap, a narrow one, can be easily traversed from one side to the other by the extremisms of a police State on the one hand or rampant terrorism and chaos on the other. The end result is anarcho-tyranny. Anarchy, tyranny, or their confluence are neither conducive to economic prosperity nor political freedom.

In the stable middle of the horseshoe where the bend occurs, lay the blessings of constitutional rule, as is the case in the United States and was the case, to some extent, in Cuba with the constitutions of 1901 and 1940. Restoration of the Constitution of 1940 is what Fidel promised the Cuban people, but never delivered, and never intended to deliver.

Whether Fidel’s Marxism was inchoate or inveterate in 1955 or 1958, or even 1959 or 1961, in the final analysis, becomes moot. In the end it does not matter for how long he deceived the Cuban people. The reality is that he betrayed the Cuban people and did not reveal his Fidel Castro enters Santa Clara, CubaMarxism-Leninism until he was fully entrenched in power with his State Security apparatus equally and firmly in place. No matter how much the United States had tried to appease him, tolerated his insults, or even forgiven the nationalization of U.S. properties (i.e., expropriations without compensation), in the end, Fidel would have turned to the Soviets. Deep inside, he had become, like Raúl and Ché, a dedicated communist.

Communism allows autocrats to maintain power over the individual citizens. It is a symbiotic relationship. Fidel Castro needed communist tactics to seize power, and the communists needed a populist autocrat to accomplish their objective. They worked hand in glove and wanted similar ends totalitarianism and collectivism while crushing individual freedoms and holding onto power.

To camouflage his true intentions, Fidel allied himself to Cuban politicians and personalities as long as they were useful to him to make himself more acceptable, to emanate, to effuse the aura of respectability he had always yearned for and desired. For example, after the Revolution, there was Manuel Urrutia, who had been a judge voting favorably at the trial of Granma survivors captured by Batistas soldiers, and Prime Minister José Miro Cardona, a former law professor at the University of Havana. After Fidel took power, he would force Miro Cardona out of office as Prime Minister, and the good judge, Urrutia, out of the presidency. Fidel would eventually assume the duties and capacities of both of these offices. Before that, he allied with and took money from former foes, like Justo Carrillo and even mortal enemies like Prío Socarrás, in his quest for power. And he never kept any accounting of the monies received.

The truth is the Cuban people did not know Fidel, and what they (and the world) learned came mostly from the image Herbert Matthews created after he visited the Sierra Maestra, and the articles he wrote for The New York Times and faithfully reprinted in Bohemia, Cuba’s popular and largest circulation weekly magazine, as well as the photographs of Matthews and Castro jovially conversing in the Sierra Maestra. To the very end, until it was too late, Cuba’s and America’s major magazines and newspapers kept the Cuban people benighted about Fidel’s intentions, his past shenanigans, and his authoritarian proclivities. The fact is Fidel was always an autocrat, and he became more so as the years passed, although he was careful to conceal it from the Cuban people.

After their imprisonment, Fidel and his comrades were kept in the hospital wing of the Modelo Prison away from common criminals. There, Fidel was permitted to organize and conduct a school for his fellow insurgents where political economy, philosophy, and history were taught. Not until the audacious prisoners insulted President Batista on an official State visit to the Isla de Pinos prison did the situation change, and their privileges were withdrawn. By then, Fidel and his prison conspirators would have less than eight months left to spend in prison. Moreover, while incarcerated, Fidel continued to have friends in the press and on the radio air waves who helped to keep his name alive with the populace – friends like Luis Conte Agüero and José Pardo Llado, and in Bohemia, writers like Jorge Mañach and Ernesto Montaner, as well as the magazines influential chief editor, Miguel Angel Quevedo.

And, of course, there was ex-communist Carlos Franqui, who helped Fidel Castro as a journalist and radio broadcaster beginning in 1955 and who would later head clandestine Radio Rebelde from the Sierra Maestra. After the triumph of the Revolution, Franqui would also edit the official organ Revolución. All of these capable journalists would later see the light and be forced into exile.

In 1955, when Ramón Hermida, Batistas Minister of the Interior, found that Fidel was despondent in prison because of the break up of his marriage with Mirta Balart, he went to see young Castro to cheer him up. Fidel had found that Mirta had a sinecure job with his Ministry, and this was not only an embarrassment to Castro but also an actual “betrayal.” Hermida reassured him saying, “Don’t be impatient. Youre still a young man. Keep calm. Everything will pass.” Could you imagine the sanguinary and dissolute Ramiro Valdés or José Abrantes or any of Fidel’s henchmen in the Ministry of the Interior, visiting a prison cell to give hope and encouragement to a gusano (worm), serving time in Castros jails after leading a counterrevolutionary insurrection?

What a difference from the way Castros jails treat thousands of political prisoners today! Allow me to digress and mention here the barbaric and ghastly treatment of Cuban physician, Oscar Elias Biscet, a prisoner of conscience who only protested human rights abuses in Cuba. He pleaded for Castro’s communist regime to honor the U.N. Charter of Human Rights. He was thrown in jail after a sham trial. Requiring medical attention, he has been denied medical care, tortured, and kept in solitary confinement.

Dr. Biscet completed his sentence in 2002 (incarcerated from November 3, 1999 October 31, 2002) only to be rearrested and incarcerated on December 6, 2002, in another of Castros waves of repression. In April 2003, Dr. Biscet was one of 75 dissidents given long prison sentences (25 years) for engaging in what the communist dictator called “an attempt to undermine the social order.” His brutal treatment and suffering continues, but he remains unbroken.

This article is extracted from Cuba in Revolution: Escape From a Lost Paradise (2002) by Dr. Miguel Faria.

Dr. Faria is a former professor of Surgery (Neurosurgery) and Adjunct Professor of Medical History at Mercer University School of Medicine. He is the author of Vandals at the Gates of Medicine (1995), Medical Warrior: Fighting Corporate Socialized Medicine (1997), and Cuba in Revolution: Escape From a Lost Paradise (2002). His books are available at http://www.haciendapub.com.

This article may be cited as: Faria MA. Fidel Castro and the 26th of July Movement. Newsmax media. July 27, 2004. Available from: http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/fidel-castro-and-26th-july-movement