The Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition issued the following statement Aug. 10. Signers include Mobilization4Mumia, Mumia United Nations Liaison Group, International Concerned Friends and Family of Mumia Abu-Jamal, Friends of Mumia Mexico, Workers World Party, Communist Workers League and Malcolm X Commemoration Committee.
The new government of Niger has been threatened with invasion by the imperialist-backed Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS). U.S., French, German and Italian troops are refusing orders by Niger’s government to leave the country. While its people live in poverty, Niger is rich in mineral resources, including uranium.
In an Aug. 6 statement, Workers World demanded “No U.S/French-backed invasion of Niger!” (workers.org/2023/08/72762/)
Whereas Mumia Abu-Jamal’s writings carry on the revolutionary tradition of the Black Panthers by expressing international solidarity with all Black, Brown, Indigenous peoples and peoples of African descent everywhere, whose sovereign rights are subjugated and violated by an alliance of Western imperialist economic, strategic and military elitist interests;
Whereas the Black Panthers had an embassy in Algiers and in 1969 met with those very anti-colonial and anti-neocolonial liberation movements who often represent the spearhead of independant and Pan-Africanist Africa today;
Whereas we remember the historical lesson of the U.S. use of the former Belgian Congo’s uranium to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki, whereas a few months before his assassination, Patrice Lumumba rightly warned the world that the secession of uranium-rich Katanga was engineered by the West to prevent a strategic mineral from falling into Soviet hands;
Whereas it was at the instigation of Burkina Faso and Iran that the draft of a resolution was written and endorsed by all 54 African member states of the United Nations to protest the 2020 murder of George Floyd and to demand that the United Nations investigate racist police brutality on U.S. soil — and whereas in December 2022 Mumia wrote to thank the group of U.N. states — of which the African states were such an important block — for this historic stand of African solidarity for a milestone episode in the history of our lynchings;
Whereas Kwame Nkrumah wrote “Dark Days In Ghana,” in 1968, a book analyzing the reasons for the military CIA-supported coup d’état that overthrew him, and chose as an epigraph these words Richard Wright had written in an open letter to him in 1954: “I say to you publicly and frankly: The burden of suffering that must be borne, impose it on one generation. Do not with the false kindness of missionaries and businessmen, drag out this agony for another 500 years while your villages rot … Be merciful by being stern! If I lived under your regime, I’d ask for your hardness, this coldness.” (Richard Wright, “Black Power,” 1954);
Africa must be ‘militarized for peace’
And whereas in the same letter to Kwame Nkrumah, Richard Wright added: “African life must be militarized … not for war, but for peace; not for destruction, but for service; not for aggression, but for production; not for despotism, but to free minds from mumbo-jumbo. I am speaking of a militarization of the daily lives of the people.”
Wright continues: “I’m speaking of a temporary discipline that will unite the nation, sweep out the tribal cobwebs and place the feet of the masses upon a basis of reality. What the Europeans failed to do, didn’t want to do because they feared disrupting their own profits and global real estate, you must do.”
Whereas in Africa today more than 60% of the population is under 25 years old and Niger is demographically the youngest country on the planet: 50% of Nigeriens are under the age of 15;
Youth rising up!
And whereas this African neocolonized youth are rising and speaking up, whether it be within “the mother country” from the dirt poor suburbs of Nanterre to the brutally policed cityscape of Marseilles, where rebellions against the militarized police have been unprecedented — or in the Global South’s backyards of the colonial powers, from Burkina Faso, where the president is the youngest head of state in the world and a true heir to Thomas Sankara, but also Mali, Guinea and Niger, where the students have vowed they will resist foreign interference with their bare hands;
Whereas everywhere and increasingly, this awakening of an articulate youth is at the intersection of eco-defense, a demand for monetary and economic sovereignty and political nonaligned independence — from the youth movement resisting the introduction of the carcinogenic pesticide, chlordecone, in Martinique, the native island of Frantz Fanon, to the sons and daughters of the uranium miners of Niger, fired without compensation by the French from mines considered no longer viable as hills of radioactive waste are left to open skies;
Whereas the Russia/Africa Summit in Saint Petersburg witnessed a major contradiction between two Africas — the declining Africa of the past, represented by heads of state “in the pocket of the West,” and the rising Africa of the future, represented by heads of state like Captain Ibrahim Traore of Burkina Faso who quotes Che Guevara and has sought alliances with Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba;
Whereas the official Western narrative about Niger is that it is one of “the poorest countries in the world,” whereas its very wealth in oil, gold and uranium was monopolized by the French companies’ strategy of paying a pittance so that the French could have electricity galore while most of Niger lives in the dark and is reduced to import electricity.
Whereas like Atlanta’s “Cop City’s” ambition to be patented throughout the United States, the USA drone base at Agadez is the biggest USA military airbase in existence, serving American strategic interests in the whole of the Sahel region, where the war against terrorism is a pretext for the maintenance of USA presence in a zone increasingly nonaligned and diversifying its economic choices by turning to Russia and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa).
And whereas the USA and France have been known to keep terrorist activities at a low-intensity level so that the latter can be made to intervene on behalf of Western interests whenever “needed.”
Whereas Victoria Nuland, the U.S. acting deputy secretary of state, whose role in the 2014 pro-American coup d’état in Ukraine was revealed by infamous recordings — traveled to Niger to condemn and reportedly bribe “those guys” out of their coup d’état, was not received by the new government’s higher ups and stated in her press briefing back in the USA: “It is not our desire to go there, but they may push us to that point.” (August 8)
Whereas the stated French military strategy towards Niger is threefold: 1) to isolate 2) to monitor so-called internal dissensions and especially 3) to create those internal dissensions;
Whereas for decades the Free Mumia Abu-Jamal Coalition has been organizing protests for a United States of Africa, an African gold-based currency, the end of the colonial CFA Franc, the abolition of AFRICOM, the end of sanctions against Zimbabwe and the end of arming multiple sides in Libya;
And whereas the people of Niamey, Niger, will demonstrate in front of the French military base on Friday, Aug. 11, 2023;
We, the Coalition to Free Mumia Abu-Jamal, strongly and unequivocally condemn all Western monopoly capitalist and imperialist interference into the free, independent and sovereign affairs of our African brothers — whether it be:
ECONOMIC through the CFA Franc;
POLITICAL through the corruption and seating through so-called democratic elections of pro-Western African elites;
or MILITARY through the violation of airspace and the use of terrorists as mercenaries — or the Trojan horse infiltration of regional regroupings such as ECOWAS.