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Burning Spear News

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Pacifist Desmond Tutu calls for use of force against Mugabe’s regime 

Desmond Tutu — the Archbishop of Cape Town, South Africa who all of his life opposed violence to be used against the brutal apartheid regime there — is now calling for the use of military force to topple Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe. According to the December 24 issue of the Evening Standard, Tutu “said his own country was losing the moral high ground, and force should be an option to get rid of Zimbabwe’s president.”

What is striking is that this is a man who never advocated the use of violence against white settlers who even now still occupy 87 percent of the land in South Africa. Tutu is a pacifist when he is facing direct white power, but he is for violence when he is forwarding imperialism’s agenda against the African president Robert Mugabe. In fact, Tutu is silent on sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe by the U.S. and Britain that is the cause of poverty and suffering in Zimbabwe today.

This is typical of the African petty bourgeoisie. Whenever they are forwarding the imperialists agendas against the African workers, factions of the African bourgeoisie or against other colonized peoples, they are as violent as white power itself.

A few years ago, white rulers gave Tutu a Nobel Peace Prize. They know they can rely on him whenever they want to give their attack on Africa a black face.

The African Socialist International agrees that Mugabe’s regime is a failure, but not for the reasons advocated by Tutu and his imperialists masters. The latter two want a regime that would be personified by Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leaders, who are nothing but bootlickers of the white imperialists. Mugabe today may prefer Chinese capitalists in Zimbabwe, whilst Tutu sides with the North American and British capitalists. What the African workers and peasants should not forget is that Mugabe and Tutu do not disagree with capitalism as a system of exploitation of African workers and peasants.

Although Mugabe is correct in taking the land back in Zimbabwe, His regime is still a failure because he has not worked to unite African people worldwide into a single African nation. He has failed to fight for the removal of borders which are shackles around the lives of African people.

He has failed to create an African economy, which requires the Africa be free from imperialism and the colonial borders. Lastly, Mugabe has failed to fight neocolonialism in order to complete the black revolution in Zimbabwe and throughout Africa. He is a member of the African Union, which is one of the centers of all African leaders who stand for the status quo.

The African Socialist International is calling for One Africa! One Nation! African workers and peasants of South Africa and Zimbabwe must unite against imperialism and the sell out African petty bourgeoisie! The land to the peasants, the power in the hands of workers in Zimbabwe! US and British hands off Zimbabwe!

East Africa socialist conference records mass registration 

The upcoming eastern Africa regional conference of the African Socialist International (ASI) is recording an astonishing mass registration from revolutionary groups and individuals expressing desires and interest to attend one of the single most historic events to occur in East Africa in recent times.

The conference is scheduled to take place in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi from March 15-18, 2009 and expected to be the largest gathering of African revolutionaries in East Africa since the 1960s.

ASI’s Director of Organization, Chernoh Alpha M. Bah says the conference will be "the most significant revolutionary event to happen in Kenya since the defeat of the Mau Mau movement by the British colonial administration in the 1950s."

The conference, the second in a series of regional gatherings scheduled to be held in Africa during the course of this year, aims at bringing together African revolutionaries, progressives, individuals and groups involved in struggle for a free, united Africa to discuss and adopt the strategy and tactics of African internationalism.

“It is part of an ongoing international effort to unite and consolidate the separate efforts of African revolutionary movements and organizations engaged in struggle for African unity and socialism into an international process and organization capable of providing the tactics and strategies necessary to surmount the challenges confronting African unity and liberation,” a statement issued by the African Socialist International states.

The African Socialist International says the gathering will also examine the question of multinational corporate exploitation in Africa, the challenges of the colonial borders, African identity, the growing Chinese influence in Africa and its implications, the ongoing crisis of imperialism, the dangers of neocolonialism, reparations and the right of return for Africans dispersed around the world due to slavery, colonialism and other accompanying assaults, and other questions related to the struggle for African unity and liberation. “The conference will advance concrete recommendations to forward the uncompromising liberation and unification of Africa and African people around the world and adopt a comprehensive Plan of Action for the building and consolidation of the African Socialist International (ASI) in Africa and other places,” the organization states. The East Africa conference is expected to bring together representatives from Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Sudan, Congo, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Cameroon, Liberia, Ghana, Guinea-Conakry, Equatorial Guinea, Mali, Senegal, Ivory Coast, South Africa, England, United States of America, Nicaragua, Jamaica, Venezuela, Honduras, and other parts of the world.

The conference will mark the launch of the African Socialist International (ASI) in East Africa and establish a formidable regional structure or bureau to carry out the administrative and organizing work and activities of the ASI in the region and formalize its operations in Eastern Africa.

Tribunal finds Philadelphia Mayor, Police Commissioner and District Attorney guilty 

The following is the verdict released by the 26th Session of the World Tribunal on Reparations to African People held on December 13, 2008.

On this day Dec 13th, 2008, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter [defendant], Police Commissioner [defendant], District Attorney Lynne Abraham [defendant] have been found guilty at the Philadelphia convening of the 26th session of the World Tribunal for Reparations to African People. The defendants are guilty of the crime of genocide, willfully causing and continuing conditions to bring about the destruction of African people. Defendants are guilty of related charges conspiracy to commit genocide and failure to assist genocide victims.

Defendant Michael Nutter sentenced to the following:

It is ordered that defendant:

1. Recognize the African Community Controlled Investigation and Review Board with the power to hire and fire Philadelphia Police Department and City of Philadelphia staff and administration as well as subpoena power.

2. Pay reparations to the poor and oppressed African community. Twenty-five percent of the $4 billion Philadelphia budget, which is currently being spent on the public policy of police containment and criminalization of the African community, must be turned over to the African community for the purpose of economic development. Such development would include but would not be limited to:

a. Developing the Philadelphia public schools to serve the interests of African students

b. Allocate resources to provide free and genuine healthcare for the African community

c. Payback to Africans forced from their homes by parasitic city taxes and anti-African bank loans

d. Payback to all victims and families of victims of police terror, intimidation and violence. Of special importance to the court are the recent assassinations, government sponsored homicide of these beloved Africans:

i. Shareef Lee Jones, murdered by PPD on August 24, 2008

ii. Daniel Giddings, murdered by PPD on September 23, 2008

iii. Michael “Butchie” Johnston, murdered by PPD in October, 2008

iv. Lamont Norman, murdered by PPD in November, 2008

Defendant Charles Ramsey sentenced to the following:

It is ordered that the defendant:

1. Immediately make public the name, rank, badge number and district of any police officer who is accused of violating the rights and physical safety of any African in the City of Philadelphia. Such violations include shootings, beatings, unjust arrests and verbal harassment by police officer of African people. The identity must be revealed within 24 hours of the time at which the charge was filed with the Community Controlled Investigation Board.

2. Immediately end the anti-democratic, anti-African Stop and Frisk Program

Defendant Lynne Abraham sentenced to the following:

It is ordered that the defendant:

1. Release all Africans currently held and locked down in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania prisons.

2. Immediately arrest and incarceration all police who have violated the rights and physical safety of any African.

3. Immediately call for the death penalty for all police officers who have murdered African people.

InPDUM Publicly Summons Philadelphia Mayor to Appear at December 13 Tribunal for Reparations to African People! 

Philadelphia , PA – On Wednesday, December 10, an International People's Democratic Uhuru Movement contingent intervened in a townhall meeting that was organized by the neo-colonial (white power in black face) administration of Mayor Michael Nutter to discuss the recently imposed cuts on the City's budget. The purpose of InPDUM's presence, however, was not to lend any credence to the mockery that was this townhall meeting. Although the Mayor said he was calling the townhall meeting to allow the people to express our concerns about the recent budget cuts, it was really nothing more than a lip service session from City politicians and other representatives of Philadelphia 's ruling class who had no meaningful solutions to the impoverished conditions experienced by the African community of Philadelphia.

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Local Philadelphia InPDUM organizer Kenneth Williams demands real solutions from the city

http://www.uhurufiles.org/image-library/uhuru-movement/inpdum/philly-townhall-20081210/072dpi/20081210_diopservesnutter_400w.jpg width="200" height="133"> International Organizer, Diop Olugbala serves People's Subpoeanas to Nutter and police chief Charles Ramsey

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People's Subpoena

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InPDUM leads mass demonstration outside of Philadelphia townhall meeting

The fact is the real significance of the townhall meeting had nothing to do with the original purpose Nutter and his cronies had established for it. This is because InPDUM transformed the townhall meeting into a townhall hearing--where we indicted the mayor and his Uncle Tom administration for committing crimes of genocide against the African community. Wearing t-shirts that state, “Jail the Killer Cops, the DA and the Mayor," InPDUM took control of the question and answer period. One by one InPDUM and Uhuru Solidarity members blasted Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, exposing their budget cuts as a strategy to funnel more resources into the police containment of the African community. This stance influenced members of the community who attended the meeting, as more and more people began to attack Nutter for sanctioning a military occupation of the African community by the police.

The struggle InPDUM led against Nutter and company was climaxed with the serving of the People’s Subpoenas. InPDUM International Organizer Diop Olugbala served Mayor Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey with the People's Subpoena to appear in the Philadelphia Tribunal for Reparations to African People - a court organized by InPDUM to serve the interests of the African working class and to put the City of Philadelphia on trial for crimes committed against the African community. The Tribunal is to be held on Saturday, December 13, 2008 in downtown Philadelphia.

In his statement before serving the subpoeana, Olugbala stated of Nutter, “We have no confidence in this process. We have no regard for this process. It is our belief that when the ones who are supposed to uphold the law act like criminals, we have a responsibility to stop them. We are putting YOU on trial for crimes committed against African people.” Olugbala then walked up to Nutter and Ramsey and served them each a People’s Subpoena.

The people from the community who attended the townhall meeting united with this call, and showed their appreciation by standing up and cheering loudly. InPDUM then led a chant, “Jail the Killers Cops Now!” as they militantly marched out of the building to hold the demonstration.

The Tribunal will expose how the City of Philadelphia, not unlike any other city in the U.S., is a predator of African people. It is the city with the highest incarceration in the U.S. and where the overwhelming majority of the people sent to prison are African. More than 40% of all people in prison in the state of Pennsylvania come from Philadelphia . The economic conditions are equally hostile to African people. Forty percent of African workers in the city live beneath the poverty level, the unemployment rate of African people is twice that of whites, and 50% of all African men below the age of 35 are unemployed. This entire parasitic political economy within the city of Philadelphia is maintained by the gun--through death squads, known as the Philadelphia Police Department, that reigns terror over the entire African community.

Despite his claims of economic crisis for the City, Nutter has managed to keep the police who occupy our community like an army very well funded. During the townhall meeting it was revealed that 24% (one quarter) of the City’s budget is permanently reserved for “criminal justice” (i.e., police, jails, courts, etc.). However, this is just code language for saying that the City invests 24% of its budget in the industry of criminalizing African people and locking us up behind bars!

In the real world, this parasitic relationship between the City of Philadelphia and the African community manifests itself as a heavy-handed style of policing the African community. Every year, dozens of Africans (young men in particular) are murdered by the police in Philadelphia alone. Since August of this year, the Philadelphia Police Department has killed one African per month, earning for this autumn season the title of the “Fall of Blood." The first victim was Shareef Lee Jones, a 14-year-old boy from the Frankfurt section of Philadelphia. Shareef was shot on August 24 by an ex-cop; he then bled to death in back of a Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) squad car while the cops drove him past a nearby hospital at least 3 times. Shareef’s death was then followed by the September 23 assassination of Denill Giddings of North Philadelphia. Giddings, who was trying to rebuild his life, was the target of constant police harassment that at one point resulted in police going to his home. October came with the murder of Michael “Butchie” Johnson on the 22nd day, followed by the November PPD slaying of Norman, who grew up with Denill Giddings and was murdered by the police only blocks away from where Denill was killed.

In the face of these sharp attacks being made by the City of Philadelphia against the African community, InPDUM has determined that our only real defense is to get power in our hands. We have been organizing to expose the U.S. government and all of its state, local, and federal agencies as part of a criminal entity responsible for the poverty, misery, and death of oppressed peoples around the world. InPDUM is determined to get power in the hands of African people so we may bring the U.S. government to justice. Thus, we have been organizing Tribunals (courts) around the world--to put the State on trial for crimes committed against us.

At the Philadelphia Tribunal, there will be testimony provided by various members of the community who have had first-hand experience with the terror imposed on our community by the State. We will hear from family members of police murder victims, as well as expert testimonials from people who have witnessed attacks by the State through the gentrification, foster care, and education systems.

The Philadelphia Tribunal for Reparations to African People comes at a time when the U.S. economy is suffering a deep crisis. African people have the responsibility to deepen the crisis of an economy and government that were built out of our oppression. There can be no path to economic prosperity for anybody on a path paved on the graves of young Africans and resting on the jail cells stuffed with our people. There can be no shelter for this economy in the homes literally stolen from African people. The City of Philadelphia must be exposed as a criminal force that has stolen everything it has from African people, a force that intends to use those stolen resources to facilitate our ongoing oppression. InPDUM says no! InPDUM says that change is long overdue. Real change can only be found in reparations to the African community. Real change can only be found in the real criminals being brought to justice.

Build the Philadelphia Tribunal for Reparations to African People!

Build the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement!