Obi Egbuna Jnr Simunye
Whenever Africans everywhere reflect on the impact and legacy of Malcolm X, only those amongst our ranks who have never made a distinction between Democrats and Republicans fondly remember the eloquence and sophistication of his remarks about the assassination of former US president John F. Kennedy.
It must not be forgotten how so-called African Americans reacted to Brother Malcolm’s characterisation of what virtually every political pundit of the day considered the greatest political tragedy since the assassination of Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth at the Ford Theatre in Washington, DC.
Brother Malcolm’s chickens coming home to roost analogy hit home not only because it forced so-called African Americans to acknowledge that President Kennedy was a master at textbook manipulation of our people, but also that many of us appeared to be more upset about the loss of Kennedy than the horrific assassinations of our own fearless frontline warriors, Medgar Evers in Mississippi or Patrice Lumumba in the Congo.
The irony of this historical period is that after the assassinations of Brother Malcolm and Dr King by the FBI and CIA, many so-called African Americans shed more tears for President Kennedy and his brother former US Attorney- General and presidential hopeful Robert Kennedy when their assassin’s bullets sent them to the cemetery.
Some of our artistically gifted painters even had the audacity to paint pictures of Brother Malcolm and Dr King next to JFK and RFK, which aggressively suggests the loss of two Caucasian wealthy pro-imperialist Catholics who were sons of a billionaire bootlegger, had the same impact as losing the most important voices of our movement at the tender age of 39.
These paintings were an artistic litmus test for those many years later that juxtaposed former US president Barack Obama next to Brother Malcolm and Dr King that implied President Obama was just as committed to our people’s liberation. We even remember the brilliant comedian Paul Mooney saying President Obama looked like Brother Malcolm but sounded just like Dr King.
It is fact that too often comedians have a tendency to make social commentary that clearly illustrates they should stick to telling jokes, because their insights and analyses of political and historical developments are more laughable than their comedic material.
While so-called African Americans feel culturally obligated to rush to Washington, DC and visit the newly erected National Museum of African American History and Culture, perhaps a request can be made by the former US Secretary of State and US Joint of Staff General Colin Powell, who is on the museum’s board, to have each and every bug that Robert Kennedy gave former FBI director and war criminal J. Edgar Hoover the approval to place on Dr King’s telephones showcased for all visitors to observe and digest.
Since General Powell has been parading around the country as a born-again liberal he shouldn’t be offended when asked to carefully consider the historical significance of a request of this magnitude.
What we are witnessing from so-called African Americans in the political arena is arguably the most deceitful and opportunistic spin on US presidential politics, since we began expressing ourselves concerning our predicament in the mother tongue of our former enslavers and colonisers.
Because our undying loyalty to the Democratic Party can neither be refuted or denied, we might as well make membership not only compulsory but part of our children’s baptisms, after their heads have been dipped in the water, their parents can arrange for the party’s emblem, which is a donkey, to be branded on the baby’s bottom.
Every civil/human rights spokesperson without exception is guilty of propagating the notion that life for so-called African Americans under the first few months of US President Donald Trump’s administration, is far worse than the last eight years under the first president of African ancestry Barack Obama, meaning that the outcome of an election has graver consequences than living under US capitalism and imperialism on a daily basis.
This prevents President Obama and his family from having Africans tell him that in the final analysis, our disappointment in him is equivalent to our brothers who dated the former president of the NAACP chapter in Spokane, Washington, Rachel Dolezal, because they thought she was a light-skinned daughter of Africa, only to discover her biological parents were of Czech, German and Swedish origin. Unfortunately, Ms Dolezal may be more genuinely concerned about the welfare of African people than ex-president Obama ever could be.
We have been thoroughly entertained by the Democratic machine in the African community, formerly known as the civil rights movement bashing the government of Russia concerning interference in US presidential elections, that the imperialists feel propelled by President Trump to victory over former US Secretary of State and senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Because the civil/human rights movement has always opted for the path of political domestication, meaning their primary focus are the issues so-called African Americans confront within the geographical boundaries and parameters inside US borders, perhaps they may not realise the danger of sounding like punch drunk political pundits that still feel the aftershocks of barrages of cold war propaganda.
They must be reminded that two of our brightest minds in the 1950s – W.E.B. DuBois and Paul Robinson – had their passports confiscated due to their involvement in the Council of African Affairs. Dr DuBois really pushed the envelope by helping the Peace Information Centre distribute the Stockholm Petition which generated 500 million signatures opposing nuclear warfare, both of these organised formations were considered pawns of the Soviet Union.
This gives us the chance to accept that it might have been premature to anoint Jackie Robinson a civil rights icon when we remember he testified against Paul Robinson before the House of Un-American Activities Committee because our comrade let it be known that Africans should not participate if US imperialism went to war with the Soviet Union.
Mr Robinson also was the first one in our community to condemn Muhammad Ali for refusing to go to Vietnam and was in Harlem when we were awaiting the arrival of our favourite American president, Commandante Fidel Castro, at the Hotel Theresa parroting the rhetoric of his master that the Commandante shouldn’t receive a hero’s welcome.
We should be rejoicing at this latest propaganda slant for two reasons: the first, how can US imperialism cry wolf about sabotaging elections anywhere? The second, is US imperialism prepared to compare their Africa and foreign policy to that of the Kremlin?
This is not to say that our engagement with the former Soviet Union was all peaches and cream but in comparison to the Democrats and Republicans Africans certainly like those apples.
The argument can be made that the assassinations of Comrades like Lumumba, Mohammed Mossadeq of Iran, Felix Moumie of the Cameroon, Amilcar Cabral of Guinea-Bissau, Maurice Bishop of Grenada and Thomas Sankara of Burkina Faso are all a by-product of the Cold War when the itchy trigger finger of US-EU imperialism was on full display.
Should President Mugabe and Zanu-PF remind US-EU imperialism that in 2008 Russia and China vetoed their cowardly and feeble attempt to persuade the UN Security Council to impose additional sanctions on Zimbabwe because the election results didn’t go according to plan, which meant their regime change agenda remained a political fantasy.
It is also extremely laughable to watch so-called African Americans bash US presidential hopeful and current Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson call our ancestors immigrants, when they know President Obama echoed those exact sentiments who said in a naturalisation ceremony in 2015; “It wasn’t always easy for new immigrants. Certainly it wasn’t easy for those of African heritage who had not come voluntarily, and yet in their own way were immigrants themselves.” We must thank the South African anti-Zimbabwe lapdog Trevor Noah whose attacks on President Mugabe expedited his immigration paperwork for exposing this recently.
Lastly, because Zimbabweans are known for their sculptures worldwide President Mugabe and Zanu-PF can remind the imperialists how crafting, moulding and inventing former Zimbabwean prime minister and MDC founder Morgan Tsvangirai blew up in their faces.
- Obi Egbuna Jnr is the US correspondent to The Herald and External Relations Officer to the Zimbabwe Cuba Friendship Association(ZICUFA). His email is [email protected]