2021 Latin America and the Caribbean in Review: The Pink Tide Rises Again

Photo: Bill Hackwell

Source: Internationalist 360

January 1 2022

By Roger D. Harris

US policy towards Latin America and the Caribbean continued in a seamless transition from Trump to Biden, but the terrain over which it operated shifted left. The balance between the US drive to dominate its “backyard” and its counterpart, the Bolivarian cause of regional independence and integration, continued to tip portside in 2021 with major popular electoral victories in Chile, Honduras, and Peru. These follow the previous year’s reversal of the coup in Bolivia.

Central has been the struggle of the ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America) countries – particularly Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua – against the asphyxiating US blockade and other regime-change measures. Presidential candidate Biden pledged to review Trump’s policy of US sanctions against a third of humanity. The presumptive intention of the review was to ameliorate the human suffering caused by these unilateral coercive measures, considered illegal under international law. Following the review, Biden has instead tightened the screws, more effectively weaponizing the COVID crisis.

Andean Nations

The unrelenting US regime-change campaign against Venezuela has had a corrosive effect on Venezuela’s attempt to build socialism. With the economy de facto dollarized, among those hardest hit are government workers, the informal sector, and those without access to dollar remittances from abroad.

Nonetheless, Venezuela’s resistance to the continued US “maximum pressure” hybrid warfare is a triumph in itself. Recent economic indicators have shown an upturn with significant growth in national food and oil production and an end to hyperinflationFurther, the government has built 3.7 million housing units, distributed food to 7 million through the CLAP program, and adroitly handled the COVID pandemic.

When Trump recognized Juan Guaidó as president of Venezuela in 2019, the then 35-year-old US security asset had never run for a nationwide office and was unknown to over 80% of the Venezuelans. Back then some 50 of the US’s closest allies recognized Guaidó; now barely a dozen does so. Contrary to campaign trail inuendoes that Biden would enter into dialogue with the democratically elected president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, Biden has continued the embarrassing Guaidó charade.

The November 21 municipal and regional elections were a double triumph for Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution: the ruling Socialist Party (PSUV) won significantly while the extreme right opposition (including Guaidó’s party) was compelled to participate, implicitly recognizing the Maduro government.

Venezuelan special envoy Alex Saab was extradited – really kidnapped – to the US on October 16 on the vague and difficult to disprove charge of “conspiracy” to money launder. Swiss authorities, after an exhaustive 3-year investigation, had found no evidence of money laundering. Saab’s real “crime” was trying to bring humanitarian aid to Venezuela via legal international trade but circumventing the illegal US blockade. This egregious example of US extra-territorial judicial overreach is being contested by Saab’s legal defense because, as a diplomat, he has absolute immunity from arrest under the Vienna Convention. His case has become a major cause in Venezuela and internationally.

Meanwhile, Colombia, chief regional US client state, the biggest recipient of US military aid in the hemisphere,  and the largest world source of cocaine, is a staging point for paramilitary attacks on Venezuela. President Iván Duque continues to disregard the 2016 peace agreement with the guerrilla FARC as Colombia endures a pandemic of rightwing violence especially against human rights defenders and former guerillas.

On April 28, Duque’s proposed neoliberal tax bill precipitated a national strike mobilizing a broad coalition of unions, members of indigenous and Afro-descendent communities, social activists, and campesinos. They carried out sustained actions across the country for nearly two months, followed by a renewed national strike wave, starting on August 26. The approaching 2022 presidential election could portend a sea change for the popular movement where leftist Senator Gustavo Petro is leading in the polls.

In Ecuador, Andrés Arauz won the first-round presidential election on February 7 with a 13-point lead over Guillermo Lasso, but short of the 40% or more needed to avoid the April 13 runoff, which he lost. A victim of a massive disinformation campaign, Arauz was a successor of former President Rafael Correa’s leftist Citizen Revolution, which still holds the largest bloc in the National Assembly. The “NGO left,” funded by the US and its European allies, contributed to the electoral reversal. Elements of the indigenous Pachakutik party have allied with the new president, a wealthy banker, to implement a neo-liberal agenda.

In Peru, Pedro Castillo, a rural school teacher and a Marxist, won the presidency in a June 6 runoff against hard-right Keiko Fujimori, daughter of now imprisoned and former president Alberto Fujimori. Castillo won by the slimmest of margins and now faces rightwing lawfare and the possibility of a coup. Just a few weeks into his presidency, he was forced to replace his leftist foreign Minister, Hector Béjar, with someone more favorable to the rightwing opposition and the military.

In Bolivia, a US-backed coup deposed leftist President Evo Morales in 2019 and temporarily installed a rightist. Evo’s Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) party successor, Luis Arce, took back the presidency last year in a landslide election. With the rightwing still threatening, a massive weeklong March for the Homeland of Bolivian workers, campesinos, and indigenous rallied in support of the government in late November.

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Bridges of Love delivers Biden petition against blockade against Cuba

Source: The Cuban Handshake

Date: July 29 2021

by Anthony Brenner

The Bridges of Love solidarity project delivered the United States Government a petition supported by more than 27,000 signatures to urge that President Joseph Biden lifts the blockade against Cuba.

Carlos Lazo, main coordinator of the initiative, told Prensa Latina that when he took the request to lift the sanctions against the island, he talked with Emily Mendrala, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs at US Department of State.

We explained the official the necessity to reopen the Washington Embassy in Havana, normalize consular services and resume the family reunification program, the activist said in exclusive statements to this news agency.

Resuming flights from the United States to all Cuban provinces

We also highlight the importance of resuming flights from the United States to all Cuban provinces, eliminating restrictions that prevent US citizens from visiting the island, and facilitating unlimited remittances to the Caribbean nation, he added.

According to Lazo, respect prevailed during the meeting and they reflected on the political cost the strategy of trying to convince those who voted against Biden in the presidential elections could have to now join to the Democrats’ side prior to the 2022 mid-term legislative elections.

Solidarity actions such as those of Bridges of Love arise while the northern nation takes advantage of the complex economic situation in Cuba caused by the Washington siege and the health situation due to Covid-19 to promote a destabilization campaign, Cuban authorities denounce.

Marchers head from Miami to DC, say ‘End US embargo on Cuba!’

Carlos Lazo, center, in Miami on first day of march to Washington, D.C. Join protesters at rally near White House July 25, or at caravans at cities across the United States.

Source: The Militant

by BY SETH GALINSKY

An RV-load of protesters against the U.S. economic war on Cuba are walking more than 1,000 miles over the next month to win support for ending Washington’s embargo.

Carlos Lazo, a Cuban American high school teacher from Seattle and founder of Puentes de Amor (Bridges of Love), which seeks to knock down barriers between working people in Cuba and the U.S., kicked off the trip in Coral Gables, in suburban Miami, June 27. The protest will end with a July 25 rally in Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House, in Washington, D.C. The group plans to hand over petitions with more than 25,000 signatures calling for an end to the U.S. embargo.

Lazo has also helped sponsor monthly caravans against the U.S. sanctions in cities across the country and around the world. If you can’t make it to Washington, D.C., there are car caravans scheduled in Seattle, San Francisco, Milwaukee, Dallas and a number of other cities.

Coral Gables Mayor Vicente Lago falsely called the group a bunch of communists and paid agents of Cuba. He told the press “anyone who wants to peacefully oppose these opportunists is welcome.” But his call fell flat.

“We outnumbered the few dozen supporters of the sanctions who turned up,” Lazo told the Militant by phone. “There were 300 of us, dancing and singing.

A diverse group

“The Cuban Americans and others who participate are a diverse group with different religious beliefs and ideologies. Some are anti-communist but they say ‘enough already’ of the embargo. Others are leftists,” Lazo added. “But everyone believes that the sanctions against Cuba should be lifted.”

While once portrayed as monolithic supporters of the embargo, it’s been true for many years that most Cuban Americans in Florida oppose the U.S. sanctions.

The June 27 car caravan that kicked off the “pilgrimage,” as Lazo calls it, drove down Calle Ocho, a commercial center and gathering place in the heart of Miami’s Cuban community. They got a good response from passersby, Lazo said. “Some people yelled out to us to keep up the fight.”

Later that day, Lazo said, they rallied at the Toussaint L’Ouverture monument in Miami where they were welcomed by Haitian American residents. “We have a lot in common,” Lazo said. After the revolt by slaves in Haiti won independence from French colonial rule in 1804, the French government forced Haiti to pay “reparations.”

The U.S. government won’t accept that the Cuban people overthrew the Batista dictatorship in 1959 and “refuse to get down on their knees,” Lazo said. The U.S. sanctions have been aimed from the start at “causing hunger to try to get people to rebel against the government.”

Lazo and six young Cuban Americans are taking turns walking 20 miles at a time, and then riding in the RV. Local opponents of the embargo join them as they pass through cities and towns on the way north. They are also holding meetings and building support for their efforts along the way. In St. Augustine and Jacksonville, Florida, they met with activists in the fight against police brutality and other social struggles.

Many who see the marchers and the RV, stop and ask what it’s about. “We tell them that as a result of measures taken by President Donald Trump, there’s no Western Union service so we can’t send money to our families in the middle of a pandemic,” Lazo said. “Our family members in Cuba can’t come visit here, even if we have a family member who is dying of cancer because the U.S. Embassy isn’t handling visa applications.”

Opponents of U.S. economic war against Cuba at statue of Haitian independence fighter Toussaint L’Ouverture in Miami, part of send-off rally June 27 for participants in more than 1,000-mile walk to Washington, D.C., organized by Carlos Lazo and Puentes de Amor.
PUENTES DE AMOROpponents of U.S. economic war against Cuba at statue of Haitian independence fighter Toussaint L’Ouverture in Miami, part of send-off rally June 27 for participants in more than 1,000-mile walk to Washington, D.C., organized by Carlos Lazo and Puentes de Amor.

During the 2020 election campaign, “President Biden promised he would reverse the measures that Trump imposed,” Lazo said. “But so far he has done nothing.”

The crippling sanctions have been kept in place by every U.S. administration since 1960.

Not only can’t Cuba get medicines and equipment it needs, “Cuba’s medical advances, like its vaccine against COVID and a vaccine it developed against lung cancer, are not accessible to Americans because of the sanctions,” Lazo said. “A lot of people are surprised to hear all this.”

Among the group’s demands are — reopen the U.S. Embassy in Havana to allow the normal issuing of visas, restore the Cuban Family Reunification Parole Program, remove all limits on remittances to families in Cuba, allow free travel to Cuba by U.S. citizens, permit and encourage financial and commercial relations between the U.S. and Cuba as well as scientific and cultural exchanges.

Meeting with Black farmer

The group was invited to visit the farm of Willie Head, a Black farmer who lives in Pavo, Georgia, and has been to Cuba. Their GPS directed them to what they thought was Head’s house July 5.

Lazo explained they were going to Washington to demand the U.S. government end the sanctions against the Cuban people. They were invited in and offered lunch.

When Lazo asked the man he thought was Head about his trip to Cuba, the man replied, “Actually I’ve never been there, but I’d like to go.” That’s when they realized they were at the wrong house!

Head found them and took Lazo and Roberto Yis to his farm. He told them that visiting Cuba and seeing what the revolution made possible for farmers there changed his life. “I’m a different person,” Head said. “I’m confident and hopeful because of the revolution.”

They learned from Head about the denial of credit to Black farmers over decades. “He is denied credit by the U.S. and we are denied credit by the U.S. He is blockaded in his own country!” Yis said.

“The visit with Willie Head was one of the most extraordinary experiences of our journey,” said Lazo.

The next day Lazo was interviewed by Kweku Lumumba, host of a weekly program, “What Good is a Song?” on WRFG radio in Atlanta. The interview took place at Havana Cigars, a shop owned by Cuban Americans Heather and Rafa Ramirez, who have been active in the monthly car caravans against the embargo.

The group from Puentes de Amor also met with the Federation of Southern Cooperatives in East Point, Georgia, July 7.

Then their itinerary includes Greenville, South Carolina; Charlotte and Greensboro, North Carolina; and Norfolk, Virginia.

Lazo said the group is willing to make more side trips to anywhere opponents of the embargo can set up meetings with church groups and community organizations and anywhere they can speak to win more support for ending the embargo. If you would like to organize an event for Lazo and Puentes de Amor, write him at porcuba1@yahoo.com.

To join the protest in Washington, D.C., contact the DC Metro Committee in Solidarity with the Cuban Revolution at dcmetrocoalitionforcuba@gmail.com or (202) 503-9465.

Rachele Fruit in Atlanta contributed to this article.

Cuban FM: America is directly involved in organizing unrest

Source: en.ypagency.net

SANAA, Jul. 14 (YPA) – Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez accused the United States of being directly involved in organizing the protests and unrest in Cuba since last Sunday.

Bruno Rodriguez

Rodriguez stressed that “Washington bears great responsibility for the events” in which those who said they “receive funding and instructions from abroad, and who travel in cars with diplomatic status, and who meet with American diplomats” participated.

An unconventional war in which social networks promote destabilization in Cuba

The Cuban minister stressed that his country is exposed to the effects of an unconventional war, in which social networks are used to promote destabilization operations in Cuba, explaining in this context that “Washington funded a campaign to promote riots on the Caribbean island, through the Twitter application, which is based in California.” .

Bruno Rodriguez also pointed out that this strategy “includes calls for violence, attacking the authorities, assassinations and promoting the flow of irregular migration between the two countries,” stressing that “these actions are promoted from the accounts of groups and companies based in the United States, and funded with government funds.”

Rodriguez revealed that one of the accounts is located abroad, which posted more than a thousand messages on Twitter, on July 10 and 11.

“Through the use of social media and the media machine, the United States has sought to create chaos and instability to break the constitutional order, social consensus and harmony that pervades the Caribbean island,” the Cuban foreign minister said.

Listen to the international community

The Cuban foreign minister rejected the statements of US President Joe Biden, in which the latter expressed his concern about the recent unrest in Cuba without referring to the impact of the embargo, noting that “the American president can ease the policy of this blockade towards the island instead of keeping it amid the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.” “.

“Biden should listen to his fellow citizens who speak mostly against the embargo and the possibility of traveling around the world,” he said, and called on the White House chief to listen to the international community who rejects the embargo policy against Cuba.

On Monday, Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel accused the United States of “following a policy of economic strangulation to foment social unrest” on the island and “regime change” there.

This was preceded by Díaz-Canel’s call for Cuban revolutionaries to take to the streets to confront “foreign-backed attempts to destabilize Cuba”.

He considered that “the measures taken by the United States of America against Havana are aimed at stifling the economy to open the country to foreign interference that ends with military intervention.”

The Cuban Ministry of the Interior announced on Tuesday that the demonstrations and disturbances that erupted on Sunday in a suburb of the capital resulted in the death of a man who “was participating in them.”

The ministry said it “regrets the death of this person” in the Guinera neighborhood of the capital’s suburbs, the official Cuban News Agency reported.

Earlier on Sunday, the US president’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, said that “Washington supports freedom of expression and demonstration throughout Cuba.”

It is noteworthy that Cuba has been subject to an American embargo for nearly 60 years, which has prevented humanitarian aid from reaching the country during the epidemic, which has led to a deterioration in the economic situation in the recent period.

The Cuban government had denounced calls from abroad to stir up chaos and civil disobedience, and to take advantage of the difficult situation on the Caribbean island as a result of the outbreak of the epidemic and the intensification of the American blockade

Black Alliance for Peace Demands of Candidate and Elected Officials

Source: Black Agenda Report

October 22 2020

by Glen Ford

Black Alliance for Peace Demands of Candidate and Elected Officials

The Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) has determined climate change and the interlocking issues of war, militarism, and the now-normalized and still illegal U.S. interventionism pose the greatest threats to humanity.

That is why we have launched a campaign demanding all 2020 candidates for local, state and federal offices in the United States take a position on U.S. interventionism (read our official statement ).

BAP’s campaign has been making the connection between U.S. foreign interventions and the domestic war on African people and other oppressed groups (see No Compromise, No Retreat: Defeat the War Against African/Black People in the U.S. and Abroad ).

DEMAND ALL 2020 CANDIDATES TAKE A STAND AGAINST WAR, MILITARISM AND REPRESSION

ALL CANDIDATES AND ELECTED OFFICIALS MUST:

  • Oppose the militarization of U.S. police through the Department of Defense’s 1033 program
  • Oppose Israeli training of U.S. police forces
  • Call for and work for the closure of the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM)
  • Advocate for the closure of 800+ U.S. foreign military bases
  • Oppose Trump’s “Operation Relentless Pursuit”
  • Commit to opposing all military, economic (including sanctions and blockades) and political interventions 
  • Advocate for an end to U.S. participation in NATO
  • Support efforts to cut the U.S. military budget by 50%
  • Demand the U.S. Department of Justice document and investigate the use of lethal force by domestic police officers
  • Commit to passing resolutions that commit the U.S. to uphold international law and the U.N. Charter
  • Sponsor legislation and/or resolutions to support the U.N. resolution on the complete global abolition of nuclear weapons
  • See our social media campaign @blackallianceforpeace  on Instagram.
  • Please encourage organizations you work with to endorse the pledge at BlackAllianceforPeace.com/candidate . There, orgs and individuals can also download and distribute the candidate pledge.
  • To help you mobilize any organizations you are involved with, find the campaign social media resources, an example email, and the candidate pledge attached below. Please share our 2020 Candidate Accountability Pledge with any aligned organizations or individuals to demand that our representatives oppose global militarism, imperialism and repression and tag us in any photos you share!

Black Is Back Coalition National Black Political Agenda for Self-determination

19 Points

  1. Black Women. With this National Black Political Agenda for Self-determination, the entire black or African nation declares our commitment to facilitate the elevation of African women to full, equal partnership in our struggle to create a new world of freedom and socialist democracy for a united black community and a world shorn forever of bosses and workers and slaves and masters and where African women will share the power to guarantee that African women are adequately empowered as equal architects of our new world.
  2. The Black Family. We demand an immediate halt to attacks on the Black family, a genocidal campaign rooted in the Atlantic Slave Trade and embedded in U.S. public and private policy. The United States has waged ceaseless war on the Black family: from the slaveholder that sold Africans as units of private property with no claims to family ties that he was bound to respect; to the denial of adult Black people the human right to protect our families. To the deliberate exclusion of heads of Black households from employment sufficient to provide for our families’ needs. To the systemic undermining of Black family structures through public “welfare” programs, such as the foster care system, in which Black children are disproportionately taken away from families and in which parental rights are being stripped from Black parents at an alarming rate. To the criminalization of all Black adults and children by the current mass Black incarceration regime. These intentionally-inflicted harms can only be repaired through the achievement of Black self-determination.
  3. Black Community Control Of The Police. We demand the immediate withdrawal of all domestic military occupation forces from Black communities. This democratic demand assumes the ability of Black people to mobilize for our own security and to redefine the role of the police so that it no longer functions as an agency imposed on us from the outside.
  4. Free All Political Prisoners. This includes “politicized” prisoners who may have originally been imprisoned for non-political reasons, but whose achieved political consciousness after imprisonment resulted in political acts or statements that were punished by specialized treatment and, sometimes, additional prison time. The definition of political prisoners is also extended to all those activists and militants who have been detained, or arrested during the most recent wave or resistance in places like Ferguson, Missouri; Baltimore, Maryland; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We reject the authority of the U.S. State to imprison persons whose imprisonment is rooted in their defense of Black people’s democratic and self-determination rights. Black people ourselves have the right and responsibility to designate those individuals and categories of prisoners to be immediately released from U.S. confinement and control.
  5. Roll Back and End Mass Black Incarceration. The U.S. mass Black incarceration regime is designed to contain, terrorize and criminalize an entire people, with the result that one out of eight prison inmates on the planet is a Black person in the U.S. As a minimal demand, every U.S. incarcerating authority must take immediate steps to roll back the national prison and jail population to 1972 levels, resulting in the release of four out of five current inmates in a process overseen by representatives of the imprisoned peoples’ communities––primarily people of color. As a maximum demand, all Africans must be immediately released from U.S. prisons and jails and our community given the democratic right to determine their fate.
  6. Reparations. We demand reparations consistent with international norms regarding redress for crimes against humanity. This includes the enslavement, colonialism and apartheid from which we suffer up to today. The totality of the repair, according to international law, must include policies, programs and projects that cease ongoing racial crimes; offer restitution and return us to wholeness; provide compensation that allows for a quality standard of life as well as individual and collective wealth creation; ensure satisfaction that returns our dignity and achieves rehabilitation for the heart, mind, body and spirit injuries resulting from the centuries of trauma and abuse.
  7. Self-defense. We declare our human right to armed self-defense from the violent attacks by white citizens and the assaults and murders by the domestic military occupation forces that include various police organizations. We fully recognize that in a struggle for self-determination any act of resistance by the oppressed is an act of self-defense.
  8. Nationalize the Banks And End Forever The Rule Of Capital, which has been central to the enslavement, extermination, colonization and denial of self-determination to peoples, worldwide. The process must begin with creation of a National Development Bank as the primary engine of commerce and development, and a Black-directed public bank to finance developmental paths chosen by Black communities.
  9. Full Employment and A National Minimum Income. We demand that the U.S. government ensure the provision of living wage jobs for all, and a guaranteed minimum income sufficient to support a life with dignity for every household and individual. This goal is immediately achievable and is intended not only to totally eliminate poverty––beginning with historically super-exploited and deprived communities––but to provide families and individuals with the resources and free time to fully contribute to our community’s social, cultural, economic and political development. This minimum demand for full employment and a national minimum income is not a concession to the existing system of capitalist economic domination, it is not an assumption of the permanence of the worker-boss relationship that helps to define capitalist exploitation. Our ultimate aim continues to be total black self-determination and socialist democracy that empowers the workers at the expense of the capitalist class.
  10. Right to Housing that is safe, secure, habitable and affordable, with freedom from forced eviction and the process of red lining, traditionally used to deny housing to black people. In addition, we demand reparations for the loss of billions of dollars in Black wealth due to home foreclosures stemming from the U.S. government-supported subprime mortgage scam. Just as the financial institutions that perpetrated the scam were rescued through the massive infusion of federal dollars, so too must the victims of this crime be made whole through a reparations process overseen by representatives of the families and communities that were most grievously harmed.
  11. Halt Gentrification through the empowerment, stabilization and restoration of traditional Black neighborhoods. Black people have the right to develop, plan and preserve our own communities. No project shall be considered “development” that does not serve the interests of the impacted population, nor should any people-displacing or otherwise disruptive project be allowed to proceed without the permission of that population. Peoples that have been displaced from our communities by public or private development schemes have the right to return to our communities, from New Orleans to Harlem.
  12. Black Business Must Be Nurtured by public development banks and protected from strangulation by corporate chains and monopolies. Black community planning agencies must protect and give preferential access to local entrepreneurs and cooperatives willing to operate in harmony with the community’s developmental plans, with a special emphasis on agriculture. Accordingly, we demand immediate reparations for Black farmers and an end to the land theft and discriminatory laws and practices used against Black farmers in the U.S.
  13. Right To Free Education Through Post-graduate Level. Public schools must meet the highest standards of excellence, under the supervision of educational boards directly elected by the communities they serve. We oppose both for-profit schooling and philosophies of teaching that put profit over human development, and we support democratic educational values and strategies that empower students and their communities to determine their own destinies. In the immediate term, Black people in the U.S. need education that facilitates our liberation from white supremacy and corporate hegemony.
  14. Free, Universal, Quality Healthcare For All by a public system that serves the health needs of entire communities, as well as individuals. Given that group health outcomes are closely linked to group political and economic status, past and present, a universal healthcare policy must provide both equal care to all, regardless of social and financial circumstances, and restorative care to historically oppressed communities, which require political self-determination to achieve social and biological wellness.
  15. Voting Rights. We believe the right to vote, to effectively express a preference for political candidates, parties or social policies, is an inalienable right, the deprival of which results in a kind of social death. In this sense, the vote belongs to communities and peoples, as much as to individuals. Therefore, in addition to an irrevocable right to vote, we demand the use of proportional representation voting systems that more effectively reflect Black people’s political aspirations and opinion. Winner-takes-all voting, as practiced in the U.S., is inherently undemocratic and incompatible with Black people’s right to self-determination.
  16. U.S. Out of Africa, Asia And Latin America, where U.S. imperialism and support for European colonialism has caused tens of millions of deaths and vast social and physical destruction. In addition to U.S. military withdrawal to within its own currently-recognized borders, we demand an end to U.S. proxy wars, drone attacks and political subversion of governments and people’s movements around the globe. Given that the U.S. was the first nuclear power, is the only country to have used nuclear weapons, and has never renounced First Strike, we demand U.S. nuclear disarmament without preconditions––unilaterally, if necessary.
  17. The West Must Pay Its Debt To Africa and Its Descendants Africa and the rest of the colonized world owes nothing to European and U.S. governments or financial institutions. Rather, reparations should be flowing in the other direction as payback for half a millennium of slavery, colonialism and imperialist underdevelopment. We reject the suggestion that debt “forgiveness” or “relief” should be considered as reparations. We demand the U.S. immediately drop all debt claims against the formerly-colonized regions of Africa, the Caribbean, Latin America, Asia and the Pacific, and begin negotiations for restitution to those countries.
  18. 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.
  19. Climate Change and Toxic Pollution Created By Capitalism Must End. We demand that the capitalist countries take responsibility for the destruction of the environment through policies based on the parasitic profit motive. We recognize that capitalist-induced climate change for our brothers and sisters on the continent of Africa is a matter of life and death due to the resulting drought, death, famine and starvation. We recognize that capitalist pollution and toxic waste dumps in Africa as well as in our communities throughout the U.S. endangers the health of African people everywhere. We recognize that the same system that built itself through colonial occupation, genocide and enslavement has no regard for the safety of the planet and the health of our communities.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com .

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