Submitted by Ras Jahaziel
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At this epoch of Mankind’s evolution, where democracy and respect for human rights are being immortalized as indispensible virtues which every society must possess and are universal yardsticks by which the actions of governments are measured, it is almost inconceivable that there are still those who continue to reject the idea of reparations for descendants of African slaves. Recently, a book on the subject by Professor Sir Hilary McD. Beckles, pro-vice chancellor at the UWI Cave Hill campus a leading activist and economic historian was published. Entitled Britain Black Debt: Reparations for Caribbean Slavery and Native Genocide, it sets out a compelling case for Reparations from Britain which cannot be counteracted by any of the sophisms and specious reasons posited by cynical detractors.
Chapter 1: Introspection
Chapter 2: Liberation Day
Caribbean people have long been at the forefront of African liberation and empowerment. From political giants like Sir Walter Rodney, Marcus Garvey and George Padmore, to more recent stalwarts in the vanguard like Bob Marley, Sir Hilary Beckles and Eddie Grant, out of the geographically tiny islands of the Caribbean have come the towering intellectual raison d’être of African emancipation, black power and Pan Africanism.
Today, as a second “scramble for Africa” ensues around the globe, Barbados along with the rest of the Caribbean has an opportunity to leverage our history of leadership on the frontlines of African unity, now that that same passionate engagement is needed in order to consolidate the economic transformation currently taking place on the African continent. However, while in the past Africa reaped the benefits of efforts of its stolen tribes in the middle of the Atlantic sea, in the midst of the worst economic crisis in living experience, the advantage is not just one way but a potential win-win for Continent as well as the Diaspora in the Caribbean.
Do you remember the slave castles on the west coast of Africa?
Any people that can lock a living soul in solitary confinement for 40 years are identical in spirit to those Satans that locked away naked Africans in dark sweltering dungeons downstairs while holding prayer meetings upstairs. It is the exact same thing that they did in those dungeons of yesteryear.
So what’s going on in South Africa? Eighteen years after the election of a Black Government comes the news that the South African Police have killed 34 miners who were in the midst of an industrial dispute and were seeking a wage increase. These killings hearken back to the worst days of apartheid under the former white Government.
The miners worked at a platinum mine and this dispute was a relatively short one (one week) but there were ongoing clashes between rival trade unions which claimed the lives of 10 people including two policemen.
How could a demonstration provoke such a harsh response from Policemen who presumably have been trained to handle crowds given that South Africa recently hosted the World Cup?
The video makes for interesting viewing. What is sure is that mainstream media will not give this news the coverage it deserves.
We know of Bussa as a Barbados “hero” an accolade bestowed on only a select few of our sons/daughters. A statue to represent him in all its nakedness and strength, has been erected on the busy Haggatt Hall highway in Barbados, to remind us of our past.
What do we know of Bussa? It is well documented that he was of African lineage and it is also believed he came to Barbados as an adult slave. He led a slave rebellion in 1816 at Bayleys Plantation in the parish of St Philip and was killed in the ensuing battle. He like some of those who were involved in the rebellion paid the ultimate price for the insurrection. Bussa’s life post the slave rebellion is part of Barbados’ history but I will – with much conjecture – in this short submission retrace his steps before Barbados. A tall order because of the lack of specific information that relates directly to Bussa.
It is best to tell you where I am heading, before you are taken on this short journey. I believe he, “Bussa” came from the village of Bussa which is between Birni Yauri and Jessao on the Niger River. Before you ask. It is not simply a matter of choosing a place in Africa with the name of Bussa and supposing he came from there. So a few feasible pointers are required to support my conjecture.
A few weeks ago Sir Roy Trotman set off a wild debate in the country with his ‘Egyptian Jew’ comment directed at Jacob Hassid, the CEO of Diamond International (DI). The unnecessary taut served to bring to the fore the latent racial tension which continues to seethe below the surface of Barbados society. I
n response to the comment by Sir Roy the CEO of DI raised the ‘fearing for the limb of he and family’. Bear in mind Barbados has demonstrated that it is one of the most tolerant – some say docile – countries in the world.
After watching the following videos of Jews openly and vehemently demonstrating against immigrants, particularly African, one is left to wonder.
Europe is in serious crisis. Greece, a culture that has abandoned hard work and resents paying taxes, goes to the polls in the middle of next month to vote for its economic future. The decision voters in that southern European nation – the home of democracy – have to decide is if they remain in the 17-member Eurozone, or get out. Damned they do, damned if they don’t. The truth is that an economy which makes up only two per cent of the Eurozone could not, in normal times, be such a destructive threat to the single currency area, farless the global economy, but these are not normal times. Remember how a single wholesale bank, Lehman Brothers, disrupted the system? Banks in the other southern European economies – Italy, Spain, Portugal – and Ireland are also under enormous pressure, and the massive exposure of French and UK banks to the area also make them vulnerable.
But it is the German hugely successful economy that is in real danger, since, like the history of capitalism, German prosperity is build on exports – mainly to southern Europe. While this drama is being played out in Brussels and Frankfurt, most Barbadians would rightly ask what has all this to do with them. Well, the answer is far more than at first meets the eye. First, while global leaders, from China to the US, hold their breath, it should be remembered that the Greek tentacles stretch throughout Europe and across the Atlantic to the US, through the hidden workings of the global banking system. Also, unlike 2007/8, when China rescued the world, the world’s second strongest economy is also itself in trouble.
More important, Britain, our main tourism market, although it is outside the Eurozone, the 17-member economic union is its main trading bloc, with massive banking exposure to the markets. Already there is enormous capital flight from Athens, first corporates and the wealthy moved lots of cash out of the jurisdiction, corporates to bank elsewhere and rich individuals to buy property in Britain and other ‘safe’ havens.
In its column in the Weekend Nation edition of Friday, March 30, 2012, the PEP is seen making the case for reparations for what it calls, “the plundering of the tax revenues of Barbados by the British Monarchy between the years 1663 and 1838”.
But, while the PDC is entirely supportive of those local and international efforts aimed at making sure that many of those Western countries and corporations, which would have taken part in, or benefitted, from the enslavement of Black Africans by White Europeans and Americans in many parts of this Western Hemisphere from the 16th to the 19th Century, pay political material financial reparations to the descendants of such African peoples, and while the PDC do make its own calls for present day African countries to pay reparations to the said present and future generations of African peoples on account of some of their ancestors roles in helping to put many millions of Africans into European enslavement, this party does not support the call that the PEP is currently making with regard to asking for reparations for Barbados as a result of “the plundering of the TAX revenues of Barbados by the British Monarchy between the said years 1663 and 1838”.
Now, let us make it crystal clear to the BU family why we do not support such a call.
… I am talking about is the fact that THE SAME COLONIAL POWERS that invaded Africa and put Black people in slavery and took away their lands, and their language, and their names, and their culture and impoverished them are now trying to go further in IMPOSING THEIR GRECO-ROMAN WORLD VIEW ON AFRICANS.
See what Mugabe is saying – Mugabe to Cameron on calls to respect gay rights: ‘To hell with you’. ALL AFRICAN COUNTRIES PLUS THE CARIBBEAN, that means Black people throughout the world are being PRESSURED to follow the MAN MARRYING MAN CULTURE. WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THE FUTURE OF YOUR CHILDREN that we always talk like we are so concerned about?
This is a step by step thing. Your children will soon be taught that if boys feel like girls there is something normal with that, and if they feel that they should come to school in dresses, there is something normal with that. Cant you all see how THE WHORE OF BABYLON is trying to make all nations drunk with her abominations?