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Our community report back will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 6:30-9 p.m., at the McClymonds Youth and Family Center (Game Room) located on McClymonds High School’s campus, 2607 Myrtle St., West Oakland. This trip wasn’t just for me or my students; it was for our community. We will show footage of the trip, allow young people to tell their stories, and do a panel so that members of the community can ask questions and learn from our students.
Congratulations to William Rhodes on a successful trip to South Africa, where he took a quilt created by his students at Dr. Charles Drew Elementary School in San Francisco to honor the legacy of an international hero, President Nelson Mandela, and returned with art panels from workshops conducted with youth in various townships and regions from Cape Town to Johannesburg.
My comrade Obi Egbuna’s father, with the same name, recently passed, and it was not until his old man died that I became aware of Senior’s well-documented history in the Pan African Movement. I am honored to salute the life of his father, Obi Egbuna Sr., and to enlighten our readers on some Pan Afrikan history. Here is Obi Egbuna Jr. in his own words ...
In a statement at the White House, President Obama paid tribute to Nelson Mandela who died Dec. 5 at age 95. As the world focuses on the historic handshake between President Obama and Cuban President Raúl Castro, we look back at the pivotal role Cuba played in ending apartheid and why Castro was one of only five world leaders invited to speak at Nelson Mandela’s Dec. 10 memorial in Johannesburg.
Earlier this week, in the northeasternmost province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or DRC, which borders Central African Republic, South Sudan and Uganda, the U.N.’s special combat intervention brigade, which includes South African troops, used South African helicopter gunships to fire on the ADF (Allied Democratic Forces) militia.
In the wake of Nelson Mandela’s death, hosannas continue to be sung to the former ANC leader and South African president from both the left and from the right. But the right’s embrace of Mandela as an anti-racist hero doesn’t ring true. Is there another reason establishment media and mainstream politicians are as Mandela-crazy as the left?
In the 23 years since Nelson Mandela walked from his notorious Robben Island prison cell, leaving behind the rotting corpse of South Africa’s system of racial and economic oppression known as apartheid, a new generation has grown into adulthood there, literally unaware of the cruel exploitation and indignities the tiny White minority population inflicted on the masses of that country’s people.
Nelson Mandela fought for justice, democracy and freedom for all. He did not say that the poor were excluded. He did not say that people from some provinces were excluded. We remain committed to the vision of justice, democracy and freedom for all. We will continue to take Mandela’s struggle forward. Mandela went to jail saying that he stood for a “revolutionary democracy in which poverty, want and insecurity shall be no more.” The struggle for a revolutionary democracy, a democracy in which every person counts, continues.
Nelson Mandela’s passing has drawn responses from throughout the U.S. and the world. To oppressed and working people, Mandela was a symbol and example of self-sacrifice and lifelong commitment to revolutionary change. Although the struggle inside South Africa and throughout the region is by no means complete, the legacy of Mandela through the ANC, SACP, COSATU and other affiliated organizations will live on.
If viewers use a critical eye, they will see that Hip Hop is in fact an aspect of cultural globalization that has infiltrated the barrios, favelas, neighborhoods, board rooms, billboards, closets, hearts, minds, and psyche of young people in diverse locations around the world. Pick a location anywhere on the globe and I will bet that the young people there have been influenced by Hip Hop. For better or worse.
Grahamstown Unemployed People’s Union spokesperson Ayanda Kota had much more to say about this tragedy and its post-apartheid South African context than we were able to report on the KPFA Evening News on Sunday, March 3, 2013. He said that the Black Consciousness Movement founded by Steve Biko, with his call for the restoration of humanity shattered by apartheid, offers the best hope of healing.
Leo Robinson was a Black leader of the longshore union in San Francisco. He died in mid-January. For many of us, he was a lifelong companion, an example of what being an internationalist and a working class activist was all about. When Leo Robinson spoke, he had the full attention of every union member in Local 10’s cavernous waterfront union hall.
Hundreds turned out for Oakland City Council's Public Safety Committee meeting on Jan. 15, 2013, to oppose paying $250,000 to bring “supercop” William Bratton and his "stop and frisk" and other zero tolerance police policies to Oakland. The bid for Bratton’s consult seems to be simply Oakland throwing good money after bad.
“On Aug. 16, police opened fire on striking Marikana workers, killing 34 and wounding 78. The bitter struggle was called off only after the strikers had secured a 22 percent wage increase. The strike wave is now engulfing South Africa’s platinum, gold and coal mining industries and has spread to other sectors. There are more than 100,000 workers on strike across South Africa.”
Two hundred Congolese immigrants, especially activists opposed to the Kabila regime, were, they said, “hounded out of their shops and homes by scores of South African police, then summarily arrested on ludicrous, trumped up charges of ‘public violence.’”
Congo’s Nov. 28 presidential and legislative elections were fraught with tremendous irregularities and widespread charges of fraud. The opposition categorically rejected the results as fraudulent. Nonetheless, Joseph Kabila was sworn into office on Tuesday, Dec. 20.
We, grassroots organizations located in the south of Haiti, call on all people who believe in democracy to help President Aristide return promptly - to make President Titid come back to us healthy and able this week as expected by us.
Nicolas Rossier conducted an exclusive interview with former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in forced exile in Johannesburg. Aristide concludes: "We are poor – worse than poor because we are living in abject poverty and misery. But based on that collective dignity rooted in our forefathers, I do believe we have to continue fighting in a peaceful way for our self-determination, and if we do that, history will pay tribute to our generation." Rally for democracy in Haiti and Aristide's return Wednesday, Nov. 17, 5 p.m., Montgomery & Market, San Francisco.
Twenty years ago, on Feb. 11, 1990, Nelson Mandela walked out of his prison cell and, four years later, a huge majority elected him president. Now, after 16 years of ANC rule, the majority of South Africans are worse off than they were under the white minority regime.
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