Liberation Cinema!

The Brothers’ Quarterly presents:

Liberation Cinema!


A film by Ian Inaba


Friday, July 1, 2016


Doors Open at 6:30 PM; program begins at 7:00 PM

Free: donations accepted

5730 Crenshaw Blvd., Los Angeles

Off-street parking Next to building available

(Liberation Cinema! is a Third Cinema project).


Sign the Petition!


The International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement is in the midst of a petition campaign and encampment tour to hold the United States government responsible for crimes against humanity committed against the U.S. African population historically and continuously up to the present moment.  The drive to internationalize the movement for justice and liberation for the Black people in the U.S. has a long and storied history since the Abolitionist Movement of the late Eighteenth and the Nineteenth Centuries. From Frederick Douglass to Malcolm X, progressive African leadership has recognized the value of international solidarity.  The United States promotes itself as the principal defender of human rights in the world, the indispensable nation keeping the world from sliding definitively into barbarism.  What is more barbaric than empire building?  Murder by police, murder by private citizens, toxic water in Flint, water deprivation in Detroit, food deserts in South Los Angeles, engineering the crack cocaine economy, routine displacement of African communities, hyper school suspension rates and push-out rates, mass incarceration, benign neglect, malignant attention, these constitute only some of the most contemporary and quotidian aspects of   The African bodies and minds, among so many others, cry out for justice and point their scarred and broken fingers at the perpetrator of the crimes against them, the United States government and civil society. Read the petition linked below, and if you can unite with it in a principled solidarity, sign it and share it. Even if you don’t sign it, share it. The INPDUM winter encampments are in Chicago, IL, Jackson, MI, New York, NY, and Washington, DC.  We charge Genocide!

For Dedon








For twenty-three years I listened to Dedon keep revolutionary Pan-Africanism on the air and in the conversation. I listened to Dedon survive the Wednesday Night Massacre in the mid Nineties, when the bloc of African hosts were removed from KPFK’s airwaves. I listened to Freedom Now survive moving air times. Because I listened to Dedon, I was able to attend numerous cultural and political events around Los Angeles, able to meet like-minded fellow travelers, comrades and allies. Dedon remained steadfast, a rock against the muting and erasure of radical African political thought and practice, unapologetically Pan-Africanist and revolutionary when reformist solutions monopolize the discourse on the progressive left, and KPFK had begun to sound more like the voice of the unchurched left wing of the U.S. Democratic Party. Dedon kept the African world, the colonized and neo-colonized world, the anti-imperialist international, informed about revolutionary processes locally and globally, with transnational content committed to principled solidarity: Cuba, Ireland, Libya, New York, Palestine, Venezuela, South Los Angeles. But more than that, the chance to know Dedon, to be in his company and talk politics and culture with him, hear his stories of solidarity work and emancipatory journalism in the countries so regularly under attack from the U.S.’s military, economic, and media apparatus, and hear him talk about surfing was to be enriched, educated and uplifted. The first time I met Dedon, I had just started teaching at Santa Monica College. Dedon had brought a sister from the U.K. to speak to the Pan African Student Union. I was so excited to meet the man whose radio show I had been listening to throughout the 90s. He was gracious, gregarious, and just a good brother. He was just an incredible brother, and an elder of depth and integrity. When we had Dedon, we had a treasure, our brother dedicated to our freedom and to a free and just world, and now that we no longer have him with us in this flesh, we are left with a hole that we all must fill because we owe it to him. Mojuba, Baba Dedon!


Modern Revolutions and the African- Our Agency, Our Centrality, Our Outcomes: A Survey of Modern Revolutions and Reform






















Below is a link to a PowerPoint presentation (Joko Teach-In: Modern Revolutions) and the bullet points that expand on some of the slides.  I gave the presentation a member of the JOKO Collective, a grassroots, community based  brain trust/think tank/study circle/discussion group.

“In the Yoruba language the word JOKO means “sit”. To “have a JOKO” is to have a “sit down”, or gathering for the purpose of resolving conflict — by uncovering the truth of the matter…JOKO is not a space where all information is created equal. It’s a space where information is scrutinized through universal rules of logic and inquiry, source quality and corroborative data, and sound, replicable methods of analysis…Thus, our agenda statement currently reads: ‘JOKO At The AFIBA is a panel/group discussion series that provides a space for the exercise of critical thinking. For practice in the art of sustained, critical dialogue, we treat selected topics for several sessions and in this way, we construct in-depth understandings of the topics, and their relationship to African People’s bid for empowerment.'” (from “Welcome to JOKO, a Grassroots Braintrust” by Tasha Thomas, posted at, August 5, 2014)

Joko Teach-In Modern Revolutions

A July Joko Two Day Teach-in:

“Modern Revolutions and the African World”


Saturday, July 11, 2015, 4-6 PM “A Survey of Modern Revolutions”

  • We must define Revolution and Reform.
  • 1649 The Commonwealth of England
  • Cromwell and Rump Parliament execute King Charles I and attempt to create an English republic.
  • Republicanism becomes the primary form of the modern, bourgeois, liberal state.
  • The class controlling the state controls the economy, the colonies, and the trade routes, to all of which Africans were central.
  • 1775-1783 The American War of Independence
  • The North American settlers wage an anti-royalist war for reform. They assume management of the system, and retain property and social relations. Independence insures that the U.S. can maintain slavery as the foundation of the national wealth.
  • 1789-1815 The French Revolution
  • Radical break with the Old Regime: Royalty, Aristocracy, and the Church.
  • Under pressure from men of color in the French National Assembly, slavery is abolished and then reinstated by Napoleon.
  • 1791 -1804 The Haitian Revolution
  • History of African resistance
  • From Caribbean front of French Revolution to Haitian Revolution.
  • Haiti shakes the security of all other slaveholding states and colonies in the Americas.
  • Spanish American Wars of Independence
  • Africans & Afro-Mestizos central to conflicts
  • 1808-1821 Bolivar and Gran Colombia
  • 1810-1821 The Mexican War of Independence
  • 1862-1898 Cuban Wars of Independence
  • 1848 Revolution in Europe
  • Primarily middles classes and organized workers seeking reform and/or asserting nationalist claims
  • Within a year, royalists and reactionaries reassert control.
  • Socialist ideas and principles spread and grow in popularity.
  • 1910-1920 The Mexican Revolution
  • Land reform was a key issue.
  • 1917-1918 The Russian Revolution
  • Bolsheviks come to power, execute royal family, and dismantle the Czarist state.
  • 1949 The Chinese Revolution
  • China goes from a nationalist liberation struggle to communist revolution with a primarily peasant army.
  • 1959 The Cuban Revolution
  • Under U.S. control since 1898 and the U.S. intervention in the Cuban struggle, Cubans make several attempts to overthrow foreign rule and the local collaborators.
  • July 26 Movement finally achieves victory.
  • Cuba embodies the propaganda problem of a successful revolutionary example.
  • 1945-1992 “Third World” Revolution
  • Africa
  • Americas
  • East and South Asia
  • The Pacific
  • Western Asia




Fifty Years Since They Took Malcolm


Today, fifty years ago, Malcolm X fell, a target in the centuries long war against African people.  In recent years, elite institutions have worked hard to revise Malcolm’s life and work to make him more amenable to a middle of the road, pro-business, civil rights, multi-cultural politics suitable to maintaining empire.  Malcolm left life as a revolutionary, a Black nationalist, a Pan-Africanist, an internationalist, and a critic of capitalism moving toward socialism.  His enduring popularity and the saliency of his critique of American racism, western imperialism and global white supremacy require the rulers to domesticate him, even now, so as to insure the rest of us remain domesticated. Malcolm was clear about our relationship to the U.S. state and we need his clarity, especially now in this moment of renewed energy in the Black Freedom Movement around the issues of police violence and mass incarceration.  Thank you, Brother Malcolm, El Hajj Malik El Shabazz.

Thirty Years Since We Lost Grenada

Grenadaflag This posting is late. It is nearly 3 months late. I don’t care. I still want to mark the 30 years since the attack on the Grenadian Revolution.  That October in 1983, when the U.S. assessed its ability openly to attack a sovereign nation in the midst of a revolutionary process, with its own troops, helped lay the groundwork for current U.S. imperial adventures. The Grenada invasion tested the U.S. general public’s support of U.S. military action after their defeat in Vietnam. The U.S. public, and the U.S. media, passed brilliantly. We now live with open U.S military aggression as a way of life.  The revolution in Grenada was a shining moment for the Caribbean, for the African revolution worldwide, for people’s revolution worldwide.  The Grenadian Revolution was a popular revolution.  We must study its strengths and its weaknesses, its organizational triumphs and its internal contradictions and continue to raise the name and the ideas of its martyred Prime Minister and leader of the New Jewel Movement, Maurice Bishop. Mauricebishop

Below are four clips from a documentary from the era. It provides a glimpse of what kind of grassroots motion the revolution was attempting to make real, a version of direct democracy and socialist re-organization.  Grenada was the sort of problem the U.S. cannot abide, the problem of a Good Example, exacerbated by the fact of being a primarily English-speaking African decent population with ties to U.S. Africans. This was the slowing of a revolutionary momentum in that era, and the reassertion of Reactionary politics and open imperialism. The Empire did indeed strike back.  Nonetheless, the spirit of revolution lives, in part because of the great examples in our histories, like Grenada and the New Jewel movement.

New Jewel Movement Billboard
New Jewel Movement Billboard