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The Black Panther Party: Anniversary




The Black Panther Party was founded in Oakland, CA. by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale, on October 1, 1966. The original six members of the Black Panther Party were Elbert “Big Man” Howard, Huey P. Newton (Defense Minister), Sherwin Forte, Bobby Seale (Chairman), (Front Row)
Reggie Forte, and Little Bobby Hutton(Treasurer).

The Black Panther VS. The FBI

On April 5, 1976, FBI documents, released in response to a freedom of information suit, revealed that the government mounted an intensive campaign against civil rights organizations in the sixties. In a letter dated August 25, 1967, the FBI said the government operation, called COINTELPRO, was designed “to expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit or otherwise neutralize the activities of Black nationalists, hate-type groups, their leadership, spokesmen, membership and supporters, and to counter their propensity for violence and civil disorders.” A later telegram specifically named the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference as organizations having “radical and violence prone leaders, members and followers.”
A COINTELPRO document outlining the FBI’s plans to ‘neutralize’ Jean Seberg because of her financial support for the Black Panther Party.

Marshall ” Eddie” Conway: 44 Years Free

Former Black Panther Party leader Marshall “Eddie” Conway was released after serving nearly 44 years in prison. Supporters describe Conway as one of the country’s longest-held political prisoners. He was convicted of killing a Baltimore pol…ice officer in 1970, for which he has always maintained his innocence.
Conway, 67, was freed from prison Tuesday after challenging his conviction in a 1970 shooting that killed Officer Donald Sager and injured another officer. Conway’s case was one of dozens affected by a ruling in which Maryland’s high court said verdicts before 1980 were invalid because of faulty jury instructions.
The shooting occurred at a time when federal and local authorities were infiltrating and disrupting the Black Panthers and other activist groups. At the time of the shooting, the FBI was also monitoring Conway’s actions as part of its counterintelligence program, COINTELPRO. Numerous groups have campaigned for years calling for his release, saying he never received a fair trial and was convicted largely on the basis of testimony from a jailhouse informant.
Conway said that during his trial, the Black Panther Party was being attacked, with many members being jailed. Supporters have said the Black Panthers were being monitored by group of federal and local law enforcement agents whose mission was to “neutralize” organizations deemed subversive.
“My case happened right in the middle of that” climate, Conway said.Despite the fact he felt unfairly targeted, during his four decades in prison, Conway said, he was determined to continue to do positive work for the community.Politically active in prison, Conway founded Friend of a Friend, a group that helps young men, often gang members, resolve conflicts, and published a memoir, “Marshall Law: The Life & Times of a Baltimore Black Panther.”
Now free, he plans to dedicate the next stage of his life to community service.”The whole time I have been incarcerated I have always been trying to continue to do the positive work that I joined the Black Panther Party to do. And that was to feed children, to help educate people, to help organize the community, to help build a better community,” Conway said during a interview Wednesday with Marc Steiner on WEAA FM.

Mark Clark: Happy Birthday!


Mark Clark (June 28, 1947 – December 4, 1969) was a member of the Black Panther Party. He was killed with Fred Hampton during a Chicago police raid on December 4, 1969.

Mark Clark was born on June 28, 1947, in Peoria, Illinois, to Elder William Clark and Fannie Bardley Clark. He became active in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) at an early age and joined in demonstrating against discrimination in employment, housing and education. According to John Gwynn, former President of state and local chapters of the NAACP, Mark Clark and his brothers played a vigorous role in helping keep other teenagers in line.

“He could call for order when older persons or adults could not,” he said of Clark in a December 1969 interview with the Chicago Tribune.[2] In that same Chicago Tribune article, family members are quoted as saying Mark Clark enjoyed reading and art and was good at drawing portraits. He attended Manual High School and Illinois Central Junior College in Peoria.

After reading their literature and the Ten Point Program, Clark joined the Black Panther Party and later decided to organize a local Peoria, Illinois chapter. He went from church to church in an effort to find a building to house a free breakfast program. He was eventually successful when Pastor Blaine Ramsey agreed to allow a free breakfast program. Church members later voted against continuing the breakfast program because of concerns of government monitoring of the Black Panther Party.

Some family members and friends say Mark Clark knew he would be murdered in Chicago.[2] In the pre-dawn hours of December 4, 1969, Chicago Police stormed into the apartment of BPP State Chairman Fred Hampton at 2337 W. Monroe Street, killing both Mark Clark and Fred Hampton, and causing serious bodily harm to Verlina Brewer, Ronald Satchel, Blair Anderson and Brenda Harris.

Fred Hampton and Deborah Johnson, who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant with their child, were sleeping in the south bedroom. Ronald “Doc” Satchel, Blair Anderson and Verlina Brewer were asleep in the north bedroom.

Brenda Harris was sleeping on a bed by the south wall of the living room, and Harold Bell slept on a mattress on the floor in the middle of the room. Louis Truelock was also lying on the bed with Harris. Mark Clark was asleep in a chair in the living room. The first shot hit Mark Clark in the heart.

Clark’s gun went off as he fell, according to Brenda Harris, who watched from the bed in the corner. A federal grand jury determined that the police fired between 82 and 99 shots while most of the occupants lay sleeping. Only one shot was proven to have come from a Panther gun.[

Tommie Smith:Happy Birthday!

tommie smith

Assata Shakur: Public Enemy #1

Assata Shakur Becomes First Woman on Terrorist List.large_chesimard

The FBI has announced that Joanne Chesimard, best known as Assata Shakur, is the first woman on its list of living terrorists. In addition to the designation, the reward for the capture Shakur has been doubled to $2 million dollars.

In a press conference today (May 2), New Jersey State Police Superintendent Col. Rick Fuentes asserted that, “She (Shakur) continues to flaunt her freedom in the face of this horrific crime.”

A member of the Black Liberation Army, Shakur nee Chesimard was convicted in 1977 of the 1973 murder of state trooper Werner Foerster during a routine traffic stop.

The New Jersey State Police maintain that it was Chesimard who shot the trooper twice in the head, killing him. According to the FBI, the Black Liberation Army was responsible for killing over a dozen police officers in the 1970s and 80s; hence the terrorist designation.

Assata Shakur escaped from a New Jersey prison in 1979 and has been living in Cuba since 1984 with political asylum.

According to Special Agent Aaron Ford, Assata Shakur maintains anti-U.S. views in speeches advocating “revolution and terrorism” and may have connections to other international terrorist organizations.

“She is a domestic terrorist who murdered a law enforcement officer execution style,” he said. “And while we can’t right the wrongs of the past, we can and will continue to pursue justice no matter how long it takes.”

Supporters of Assata Shakur maintain that she was an activist and a victim of an over-zealous justice and media system.

Assata Shakur maintains strong support from hip-hop artists and culture. The “Hands Off Assata” Campaign was organized by dream hampton. Common recorded, “A Song for Assata,” on his gold Like Water for Chocolate album. Digable Planets, Public Enemy, X-Clan, and Paris have all recorded songs about her.

Source: Yahoo! News

Angela Davis: The Feminism Movement


Melvin Van Peeples: Sweetback Baadasssss!

Melvin Van Peebles directed, produced, wrote, and starred in his 1971 film Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song.
The musical score was performed by Earth, Wind & Fire. Van Peebles did not have any money for traditional advertising methods, so …he released the soundtrack album prior to the film’s release in order to generate publicity.
Initially, the film was screened only in two theaters and went on to gross $4.1 million at the box office.
Huey P. Newton celebrated and welcomed the film’s revolutionary implications, and Sweetback became required viewing for members of the Black Panther Party.

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