Upcoming Events

National | Anti-Capitalism

no events match your query!

New Events


no events posted in last week

Blog Feeds



offsite link The Wholesome Photo of the Month Thu May 09, 2024 11:01 | Anti-Empire

offsite link In 3 War Years Russia Will Have Spent $3... Thu May 09, 2024 02:17 | Anti-Empire

offsite link UK Sending Missiles to Be Fired Into Rus... Tue May 07, 2024 14:17 | Marko Marjanović

offsite link US Gives Weapons to Taiwan for Free, The... Fri May 03, 2024 03:55 | Anti-Empire

offsite link Russia Has 17 Percent More Defense Jobs ... Tue Apr 30, 2024 11:56 | Marko Marjanović

Anti-Empire >>

Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

offsite link UN human rights chief calls for priority action ahead of climate summit Sat Oct 30, 2021 17:18 | Human Rights

offsite link 5 Year Anniversary Of Kem Ley?s Death Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:34 | Human Rights

offsite link Poor Living Conditions for Migrants in Southern Italy Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:14 | Human Rights

offsite link Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights

offsite link Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights

Human Rights in Ireland >>

Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link News Round-Up Tue Jul 16, 2024 00:55 | Richard Eldred
A summary of the most interesting stories in the past 24 hours that challenge the prevailing orthodoxy about the ?climate emergency?, public health ?crises? and the supposed moral defects of Western civilisation.
The post News Round-Up appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Why Britain is Not a Failed State Mon Jul 15, 2024 19:19 | Joanna Gray
A bunch of books recently have claimed Britain is a failed state. Sure, the Blob could do with a serious trim, says Joanna Gray. But in the most important ways, Britain is brilliant at tonnes of stuff.
The post Why Britain is Not a Failed State appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link ?Diversity Hire? Secret Service Chief Blamed for Trump Shooting Security Failings Mon Jul 15, 2024 17:16 | Will Jones
A Republican congressman has called the U.S. Secret Service chief a "diversity hire" as he blamed a drive to recruit more female agents for security failings around the attempted assassination of Donald Trump.
The post “Diversity Hire” Secret Service Chief Blamed for Trump Shooting Security Failings appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Immigration Fuels Biggest Population Rise On Record Mon Jul 15, 2024 15:00 | Will Jones
Immigration fuelled the biggest rise in the population in England and Wales for at least 75 years ? almost 610,000 in a year ? the ONS revealed today.
The post Immigration Fuels Biggest Population Rise On Record appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link The Worst Political Word is ?Delivery? Mon Jul 15, 2024 13:00 | James Alexander
The worst political word of our time is ?delivery?, says Prof James Alexander. It's on the lips of every politician, but this "Amazonisation" of politics completely misunderstands what politics is about.
The post The Worst Political Word is ‘Delivery’ appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

Lockdown Skeptics >>

Voltaire Network
Voltaire, international edition

offsite link Netanyahu soon to appear before the US Congress? It will be decisive for the suc... Thu Jul 04, 2024 04:44 | en

offsite link Voltaire, International Newsletter N°93 Fri Jun 28, 2024 14:49 | en

offsite link Will Israel succeed in attacking Lebanon and pushing the United States to nuke I... Fri Jun 28, 2024 14:40 | en

offsite link Will Netanyahu launch tactical nuclear bombs (sic) against Hezbollah, with US su... Thu Jun 27, 2024 12:09 | en

offsite link Will Israel provoke a cataclysm?, by Thierry Meyssan Tue Jun 25, 2024 06:59 | en

Voltaire Network >>

Former Black Panther to Speak in Dublin

category national | anti-capitalism | feature author Monday February 02, 2009 08:50author by Fin Report this post to the editors

featured image
Ashanti Alston

The Anarchist Bookfair 2009 is being held in Liberty Hall on March 7th. This year, the Workers Solidarity Movement are proud to announce US Anarchist Ashanti Alston will be speaking. Ashanti was a member of the Black Panther Party in the 1960's and early 1970's. As a political prisoner he spent over a decade in US prisons. Ashanti has since become an anarchist while still drawing on many of his experiences and ideas that spurred him on as a Black Panther activist. In this interview Ashanti talks about his past, how he came to join the Panthers, what they achieved and how he views the current struggle. Audio links are highlighted and are bold.

Plainfield is a majority African American city in Union County, New Jersey. Growing up in a black neighbourhood in the racist climate of the US in the 1950's Ashanti was shaped and deeply affected by the everyday experience of degradation, humiliation and subjugation that was the black experience in the US. In 1967 the black community of Plainfield rose up against the US state. Using weapons stolen from a local arms factory the community armed itself, fought against the police and only defeated when the State sent in the National Guard who came in and brutalised the area with a vicious wave of repression. This uprising obviously had a massive impact on people in the area. Below Ashanti talks of growing up in the USA in the 1960's and experiencing the Plainfield uprising

featured image
Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale
Ashanti obviously became politicized through his life experience and in his teens became involved in organised politics. He chose to get involved with the Black Panther Party. The Black Panthers had been set up in the 1966 by Bobby Seal and Huey P Newton in Oakland San Francisco. It gained significant influence across working class black communities in the Northern U.S. with its message of Black Nationalism and Socialism. I asked Ashanti why he choose the Panthers above other groups engaged in struggle such as the civil rights orientated organisations inspired by Martin Luther King or the Muslim orientated groups similar to the politics of Malcolm X. Ashanti below talks about what singled out the Panthers as the organisation he felt was going to achieve the change that was needed.Joining the Panthers.

In the late sixties the Black Panther Party achieved a large following. The real support in the communities they organised came from a very serious community programme they had and their willingness to physically confront the US state to defend communities when needed. They became so successful most notably through their breakfast programme – providing free breakfasts to children in African American neighbourhoods, and their willingness to stand up for their communities. They were called the "greatest threat to internal security" of the USA by Chief of the FBI – J.E. Hoover.Here Ashanti talks about the success of their community organising.

Through their successes, the Black Panther Party were not just labelled a threat by the FBI, they were being treated as such. By 1968 they had become the main focus of COINTELPRO (an acronym for Counter Intelligence Program), a secret US state programme co-ordinated by the FBI which stated "maintaining the existing social and political order" as one of its goals. Through COINTELPRO the U.S. State went to war on the Panthers. This war infamously saw the assassination of Chicago Black Panther organiser Fred Hampton Jnr in 1969 whilst asleep in a bed, an attempt to create an internal civil war between Huey P Newton the (Minister for Defence) and Eldridge Cleaver (Minister for Propaganda). It also lead to the deaths of dozens of party activists and the incarceration of hundreds more. COINTELPRO would eventually win out over the Panthers destroying the party as an effective structure by the mid-seventies. Ashanti, when talking about the demise of the Panthers, whilst always laying the blame on the US states door, has noted that some internal problems within the Panthers allowed the FBI to manipulate the movement. Here Ashanti talks about these problems.

Following on from these, Ashanti elaborated on the Panthers Attitude to Gender which was taken more seriously in the Panthers than in many other left wing groups. This is not to say sexism did not affect members. Ashanti talks about the experience of women, and the treatment of gender and sexuality within the Panthers here.

By the early 1970's Ashanti had gone underground with the Black Liberation Army and had been captured and imprisoned by the US State.
During his time in prison Ashanti was exposed to anarchist ideas. During this period there was obviously much reflection on the Black Panthers and the problems they experienced around hierarchy and authoritarianism. The Panthers were an authoritarian organisation dominated by individuals such as Huey P Newton, Bobby Seale and Eldridge Cleaver. Here Ashanti talks about the authoritarian structure - how it depended on horizontal organisation and how in the end the charismatic Huey P Newton became corrupted by power and the prestige of his position as the Black Panther Party Chairman.

The movements of the 1960's and early 1970's can at times make the level of struggle in US and Europe at the moment seem inconsequential. However when I asked Ashanti this question he was incredibly positive about the struggle today and hope for the future.

Finally over the past three months, the topic everyone has been talking about in US politics is Obamamania. For the first time in a decade many people in Europe have a positive attitude to a US President but many on the left have remained skeptical. I was keen to ask Ashanti who is still a community activist in New Jersey what a Black President would do for the situation of Black Americans and the American working class in general.
You can hear his response here.

audio gender.mp3 4.31 Mb

audio hope.mp3 2.18 Mb

audio obamania.mp3 3.79 Mb

author by newsreel fanpublication date Mon Feb 02, 2009 10:38author address author phone Report this post to the editors


Caption: Video Id: axhhXJqJJ-U Type: Youtube Video
Embedded video Youtube Video

author by migrationpublication date Mon Feb 02, 2009 11:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dead Prez on the ball again with samples from Black Panthers

Caption: Video Id: 8c_UdWo4Zek Type: Youtube Video
Embedded video Youtube Video

author by Aragonpublication date Mon Feb 02, 2009 15:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

[My puter wouldnt let me play the interview with Ashanti - Error code C00D11E4].

Noam Chomsky has said that he thought the COINTELPRO campaign was disgracefully neglected by the US media at the time and since. He feels that it was far more important than, for instance, the Watergate farce which he thinks was basically a hoo ha because Nixon upset some powerful corporate types i.e. a squabble about something relatively trivial in comparison to what was being done to the Black Panthers and other groups. Here's Chomsky challenging the BBC's then Senior Political Correspondent, Andrew Marr about it:

"Marr ...moved on to Watergate, generally assumed to be the classic example of how the free press can humble the powers that be. After all, Marr said, "This brought down a president." Chomsky, however, argues that Watergate is a perfect example of just how servile the press is to power. Watergate is, he has said elsewhere, "small potatoes" compared to what the state secret police - the FBI - had long been doing to socialist, black and women's movements under the COINTELPRO programme. "Sorry, you'll have to explain that," Marr chipped in. "Exactly!" Chomsky replied. He had to explain the meaning of COINTELPRO, whereas Marr knew all about Watergate.

What Marr did not know about was a huge campaign of political subversion that went all the way from bugging, theft and sabotage, to political assassination organized by the FBI under four administrations. By comparison, the Republican Watergate shenanigans were a side-show. The reason the latter became headline news was, as Chomsky explained, that one half of US political power started to mess with the other half, and that is not allowed - hence the fall of Nixon and widespread press coverage.

Watergate showed, not that the US has a free press, but that powerful interests in the US are capable of defending themselves against attack. By contrast, when minority movements without power are attacked, there is no way through the propaganda system and the facts go unreported. Thus, once again, in a way completely contrary to the common understanding, Chomsky argued that:

"There couldn't be a more dramatic example of the subordination of educated opinion to power in England, as well as in the United States." "


author by anarcho-syndicalistpublication date Mon Feb 02, 2009 22:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Ashanti is an Anarchist and FORMER Black Panther, check out his website, it is linked to a post above.

author by Tompublication date Wed Feb 11, 2009 13:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors


author by J.publication date Sun Mar 01, 2009 11:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

1pm, Saturday March 7th, Liberty Hall.


Number of comments per page
© 2001-2024 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy