The Bay View is serializing the introduction to “Annotated Tears, Vol. 2,” by Talib Williams, who is currently incarcerated in Soledad, California, and has written the history of that storied place. In the spirit of Sankofa, we learn the past to build the future. Part 2 begins with the continuation of a letter written by George Jackson to his lawyer, Kay Stender, from his book, “Soledad Brother.”
This is a clarion call for us to set an example and take our struggle to the next level for our nation’s leadership, making this trip about more than speaking on a panel and educating the local community on our policy – it’s about the connection and face to face dialogue before and after the assembly with other cadre. A nation needs to develop solidarity and a collective mastery of the restoration of nationhood to its people.
As we honor the 75th birthday of our beloved Comrade George Jackson, field marshal of the Black Panther Party behind prison walls, may we remember his revolutionary ideas and practice, his mentors and his sacrifice. Author of two books, “Soledad Brother: The Prison Letters of George Jackson,” a 1970 bestseller reprinted three times and translated into several languages, and “Blood in My Eye,” published posthumously and recently reprinted.
Revolutionaries throughout the Americas and the Caribbean owe a great debt to Hugo Chavez. His selfless struggle for the advancement of the masses of poor and oppressed occupied him 24/7. It was with sheer determination and a lifetime of struggle that this great champion of the oppressed, Comandante Hugo Chavez, led a revolution that provides us with a working example of what he termed “21st century socialism,” where people of all ethnicities have a place under the sun.
Richard Aoki lived a full life, as dictated by the four winds and the revolutionary party that he served. He was indeed a revolutionary in every sense of the word. Well done, Field Marshal Richard Aoki. Please ride the four winds in dashing splendor, as only you can, so that young people will breathe in the essence of your courage.
Nothing is more dangerous to a system that depends on misinformation than a voice that obeys its own dictates and has the courage to speak out. George Jackson’s imprisonment and further isolation within the prison system were clearly a function of the state’s response to his outspoken opposition to the capitalist structure. George was one of the brilliant minds of the 20th century, passionately involved with liberating not only himself, but all of us.
Most people do not know enough about the Black Panther Party, which was founded at Merritt College in Oakland in October of 1966 by Minister of Defense Huey P. Newton and Chairman Bobby Seale. This happening is important to Black history nationally and worldwide because the Panthers were and are an example of Black people fighting for self-determination no matter the cost.
Comrade was an exceptional individual and driven by his passion for revolution. The immense amount of knowledge he had acquired prior to our meeting he had honed to be as sharp as a samurai sword. While in prison, he studied economics, history and philosophy, transforming himself into a political theoretician and strategist.
There is no possibility of understanding what is happening in Libya within a Eurocentric framework. Libya’s system and the battle now taking place on its soil stands completely outside of the Western imagination. The battle that is being waged in Libya is fundamentally a battle between pan-African forces on the one hand, who are dedicated to the realization of Qaddafi’s vision of a united Africa, and Libyan Arab forces who look toward Europe and the Arab world for Libya’s future.
Black August is a month of great significance for Africans throughout the Diaspora, but particularly here in the U.S. where it originated. “August,” as Mumia Abu-Jamal noted, “is a month of meaning, of repression and radical resistance, of injustice and divine justice; of repression and righteous rebellion; of individual and collective efforts to free the slaves and break the chains that bind us.”