For the last year, the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations has been building for the Black People’s March on the White House on November 4. This year’s march is co-sponsored by the Hands Off Uhuru Fightback Coalition, formed earlier this year with over 40 organizations uniting to participate in building for the 15th Annual Black People’s March on the White House.
This year’s Black People’s March has urgent political objectives including the demand for the U.S. government to drop the charges against African People’s Socialist Party Chairman Omali Yeshitela and two other members of the Uhuru Movement who are facing 15 years in prison on bogus federal charges of being “Russian agents” for opposing the U.S.-led Ukraine war, waging campaigns to demand reparations for African people, and petitioning the United Nations to charge the U.S. government with violation of the crime of genocide against African people.
The indictments of the Uhuru 3 followed the July 29, 2022 FBI military-style raids on seven homes and offices of the Uhuru Movement, using armored vehicles, flash bang grenades, drones, assault weapons, and handcuffing Uhuru Movement leaders.
To broaden the entire struggle for free speech and connect it to the struggle against colonialism, the Hands Off Uhuru Fightback Coalition consolidated more than 40 anti-imperialist organizations spanning the political and ideological spectrum to unite with the demands of the Black People’s March, including an end to attacks on the Uhuru 3, Tampa 5, Stop Cop City, for the release of political prisoners including Leonard Peltier and Mumia Abu Jamal, and for the liberation of Palestine.
The forming of this anti-colonial free speech coalition represents a new and historical development in the anti-imperialist movement in the U.S. For the first time, white left, anti-war and anti-imperialist organizations united to pursue common aims under the leadership of colonized peoples.
It was therefore a shock to learn that the ANSWER Coalition had just days ago announced a contending demonstration on the same date, time and place. However, it is a continuation of a tradition of white left opportunism to split the struggle of colonized peoples and maintain their hegemony over our struggles for liberation that recognize the essential force for the destruction of capitalism and the emergence of a new social system.
This open letter recognizes that this tradition of opportunism has historically undermined struggles by oppressed peoples and workers globally, as exposed by the same colonial stand taken by white leftist attacks on Marcus Garvey in the 1920s and the French left’s solidarity with the French colonial domination of Algeria, other African countries and Vietnam.
The Black People’s March, even before this most recent escalation of colonial terror and violence against the Palestinian people of Gaza, had called for the liberation of the Palestinian people as one of our central demands. The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations makes this explicit statement in our National Black Political Agenda for Self Determination adopted by the Coalition in 2016: “Free Palestine, Down With Israeli Apartheid. We demand recognition of all rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to an independent, sovereign Palestinian State and the right to return for all Palestinian refugees. The U.S. must immediately end all monetary aid, trade relationships and military cooperation with the Apartheid Zionist State of Israel, until that uniquely barbaric affront to human civilization is dismantled and abolished.”
It was therefore duplicitous on the part of the ANSWER Coalition, under the pretense they are doing this to help Palestinians, to attempt to drive a wedge and create an artificial contradiction between the Palestinian struggle and the African Liberation Movement.
Despite all efforts that have been made to unite the entire anti-colonial struggle with the Black People’s March, including invitations repeatedly sent to some of the leaders of ANSWER, we heard nothing from them. The only response we heard from ANSWER about the Black People’s March was their announcement of this contending demonstration on November 4.
We remain committed to the historical unity between the struggles of Palestinians and Africans in the fight against colonialism and call for Palestinian participation in the Black People’s March, which for the past 15 years has called for liberation of the Palestinian people.
We call on Brian Becker and ANSWER to unite with the 15th Annual Black People’s March on the White House, November 4 led by the Black is Back Coalition and to use their resources towards building it. A main focus of the Black People’s March this year is the demand for an end to the slaughter of the Palestinian people and the liberation of Palestine from the clutches of the Zionist colonial-settler state.
Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations
Hands Off Uhuru Fightback Coalition