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Author Topic: Marcus Garvey and Iraq  (Read 707 times)

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Marcus Garvey and Iraq
« on: October 13, 2005, 10:11:43 AM »

Marcus Garvey and Iraq
published: Thursday | October 13, 2005

IN THE preface to The Philosophy & Opinions of Marcus Garvey, his widow, Amy Jacques-Garvey, states her reasons for publishing the book, among them "in order to give the public an opportunity of studying and forming an opinion of him". That was in 1923 and 64 years later, in the preface to the Majority Press centennial edition of the book, Tony Martin writes that "in Garvey's prose there is all the grandeur of the prophet's voice declaiming from the mountaintops".

From The Philosophy & Opinions of Marcus Garvey or 'Africa for the Africans' as it is also known, I have formed an opinion of Marcus Garvey's opinions and, in his prophetic voice, I have seen where his world view was not only forward looking, but also encompassing.

Marcus Garvey, I believe, would have had a strong opinion on the happenings in Iraq and Afghanistan and, at the risk of offending the true Garveyites, I have taken the liberty of applying his words to the situation and people in those countries.

There is resistance to the occupation by the Americans and British, heading up a supposed 'Coalition of the Willing', those two well-rehearsed exploiters calling the legitimate opposition to their illegal, immoral and deadly invasions 'insurgency'. But, as Garvey said, "any sane man, race or nation that desires freedom must first of all think in terms of blood. Why, even the Heavenly Father tells us that "without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins". Then, how in the name of God, with history before us, do we expect to redeem Africa without preparing ourselves - some of us - to die?

As he further puts it, "there can be no peace among men and nations, so long as the strong continues to oppress the weak, so long as injustice is done to other peoples, just so we will have cause for war and a lasting peace is impossibility."

Garvey sweeps aside the worldwide protests that preceded the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq and clearly states the need for force with "the powers opposed to Negro progress will not be influenced in the slightest by mere verbal protests on our part. They realise only too well that protests of this kind contain nothing but the breath expended in making them. They also realise that their success in enslaving and dominating the darker portion of humanity was due solely to the element of 'force' employed (in the majority of cases this was accomplished by force of arms). Pressure of course may assert itself in other forms, but in the last analysis whatever influence is brought to bear against the powers opposed to Negro progress must contain the element of 'force' in order to accomplish its purpose, since it is apparent that this is the only element they recognise."

Long before there were mutterings about searching for weapons of mass destruction, Garvey had this to say, "Present day statesmen are making the biggest blunder of the age if they believe that there can be any peace without equity and justice to all mankind. Any attempt at disarmament when half the world oppresses the other half is but a farce, because the oppressed will make their oppressors get armed, sooner or later."

Garvey may have been looking at Iraqis supposedly voting in an election under an appointed leadership, as well as the subsequent referendum on a constitution, when he wrote: "Within modern times the Negro race has not had any real statesmen, and the masses of our people have always accepted the intentions and actions of the statesmen and leaders of other races as being directed in our interest as a group in conjunction with others. Such a feeling on our part caused us to believe that the Constitution of the United Sates was written for Negroes, as well as the Constit-utions of England, France, Italy, Germany and other countries where Negroes happen to have their current domicile, either as citizens or subjects. As a people, we can expect very little from the present day statesmen of other races, in that their plans, (as far as advantages to be derived therefrom are concerned) are laid only in the interests of their own people."

And finally, as I hear the British complaints that the Iraqi resistance must be getting bomb-making tips from somewhere, with eight British soldiers dead in recent times from improved roadside bombs, as well as the Chinese launching their second manned space mission, I reflect again on Garvey, "The battles of the future, whether they be physical or mental, will be fought on scientific lines, and the race that is able to produce the highest scientific development, is the race that will ultimately rule."

Melville Cooke is a freelance writer.

Source: http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20051013/cleisure/cleisure4.html


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Re: Marcus Garvey and Iraq
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2005, 09:24:29 PM »

Ises for posting such an interesting article.

I read it quickly, but I am not sure I overstand where the author is going.  The article starts out great with wonderful quotes of Garvey mixed with the current events of the middle east, but then it ends with: those with science will rule.

What am i missing?  what is the author's point?  Is there a call to action somewhere that I am missing?  It can't be simply to show he is well read in the words of Garvey . . .  can it?

ONe Love

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