[News] “Operation Ghetto Storm”: The New Face of U.S. Fascism

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Fri Apr 19 11:38:04 EDT 2013


  “Operation Ghetto Storm”: The New Face of U.S. Fascism

Tue, 04/16/2013 - 17:48
http://www.blackagendareport.com/content/%E2%80%9Coperation-ghetto-storm%E2%80%9D-new-face-us-fascism

*by Ajamu Baraka*

The pace quickens in the killing of Black people in the U.S. /Operation 
Ghetto Storm/, a new report by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, clocks 
the rate of extrajudicial executions of African Americans at one every 
28 hours – up from last year’s report titled /Every Thirty-Six Hours/. 
The murder of Blacks is integral to “the government’s overall strategy 
of containing the Black community in a state of perpetual colonial 
subjugation and exploitation.”

“*Operation Ghetto Storm”: The New Face of U.S. Fascism** *

*by Ajamu Baraka*

“/The MXGM reports exposes the massive human rights violations that take 
place in the U.S. and contradicts U.S. efforts to project itself as a 
champion of human rights.”/

The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM) has just released a follow-up 
to its controversial report _/Every Thirty-six Hours/ 
<http://mxgm.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/07_24_Report_all_rev_protected.pdf> 
[4]_, published last year, which was a gruesome compilation of killings 
of Black people in the U.S. MXGM characterized these killings, which 
took place in streets, houses, gated-communities and alley-ways across 
the country at a pace of one every thirty-six hours as “extra-judicial 
executions.” The new report, _/Operation Ghetto Storm/ 
<http://mxgm.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Operation-Ghetto-Storm.pdf> 
[5]_, updates this figure, saying that Black people are now being killed 
by some representative of the state or a paramilitary vigilante at a 
rate of one every twenty-eight hours.* *

Even though /Every Thirty-six Hours/ was widely disseminated through 
social media and received some coverage from a few alternative news 
outlets, both reports have failed to generate much interest, moral 
outrage or comment from mainstream news outlets, human rights 
organizations or even the self-elected “leaders of the black community.”

The silence of liberals, both black and white, is understandable. After 
all, allegations that the police are murdering Black people across the 
country with little, if any, concern by relevant federal bodies such as 
the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division – all during the 
administration of the country’s first Black President – must be 
difficult and embarrassing to explain. And for an administration that 
relies on “soft-power” rhetoric in support of human rights and democracy 
as an integral part of its strategy to maintain and advance U.S. global 
hegemony, I am sure that the administrations calculation is that the 
less attention to racial oppression in the U.S. the better. The 
administration prefers that attention is given to more “important” and 
human rights violations taking place in whatever nation/state it is 
currently targeting for destabilization, such as Syria, Iran and now 
North Korea.

“/Black people are now being killed by some representative of the state 
or a paramilitary vigilante at a rate of one every twenty-eight hours.”/

But for those of us who have to live the nightmare of systematic 
domestic repression and build opposition to it, silence is a luxury we 
cannot afford. The MXGM reports exposes the massive human rights 
violations that take place in the U.S. and contradicts U.S. efforts to 
project itself as a champion of human rights, even as it subverts 
governments around the world, engages in high-tech State terrorism 
through its’ Drone warfare, and its intelligence and police agencies 
infiltrate, monitor and disrupt lawful domestic oppositional groups and 
kills its own citizens.

In the introduction to the report Kali Akuno, National Coordinator of 
MXGM, offers an explanation as to why there has been an escalation of 
state sponsored violence in black communities and the relative 
acceptance of that violence by the broader society.

“What Operation Ghetto Storm reveals is that the practice of executing 
Black people without pretense of a trial, jury, or judge is an integral 
part of the government’s current overall strategy of containing the 
Black community in a state of perpetual colonial subjugation and 
exploitation.”

Akuno’s explanation is right on point. There is an edifice of control 
and domination that has been built in the U.S. which functions by 
criminalizing whole sectors of society it deems to be “dangerous” or 
“undesirable” – in particular our young people. But Kali raises an even 
more ominous point. He suggests that the targeting of Black people, as a 
vulnerable but potentially significant oppositional force to the 
prevailing U.S. political elite, is part of a broader strategy of 
repression that is slowly permeating all aspects of life in the U.S.

“The United States settler-colonial government has built the most 
full-spectrum network of repressive enforcement structures in human 
history. They include the Police, Sheriff’s, Rangers, Customs, FBI, 
Homeland Security (including INS), CIA, Secret Service, prison guards, 
as well as the numerous private security and other protective services. 
It has also created the largest and most invasive surveillance system in 
human history. This system includes everything from satellites, police, 
FBI, and DHS operated surveillance drones, and electronic tracking and 
monitoring via our cell phones, computers, tablets, email, Facebook, 
Twitter, and chip-filled passports, driver’s licenses, and 
identification cards.”

“/The targeting of Black people is part of a broader strategy of 
repression that is slowly permeating all aspects of life in the U.S.”/

What Kali is describing here are the developing tactics of a post-modern 
fascism in the U.S. The essential point that both reports emphasize is 
that the escalation of brutal police violence is not an aberration, the 
circumstantial result of particularly vicious policing or bad apples on 
the police forces, but a systemic response to a social crisis and a 
surplus population in which the control and containment of that 
population is the main concern for state forces.

The historical antecedent for this development is clear. African 
Americans have been the most consistent force for social justice 
throughout the history of this country and since fascism is a particular 
response to capitalist crisis there is a certain perverse logic in the 
fact that African Americans would be the initial targets of an incipient 
new fascist practice.

Neoliberal restructuring of the domestic economy had a devastating 
impact on the African American working class. The intense contradictions 
of global capitalism that exploded as the current crisis that began in 
2008 for the broader population, only magnified an ongoing economic 
crisis of more than four decades for African American workers. With the 
completion of the transformation of African Americans from a rural, land 
based labor force to an urban based labor force that was completely 
dependent on capitalist wage labor by the 1970s, African American wages 
have stagnated or declined, depending on the sector, for more than 40 
years. When broken down by gender, the plight of African American women, 
also burdened with the economic reality of being the sole provider for 
children, has been nothing less than tragic.

But it is not just stagnate and declining wages that confront African 
Americans. Today the current reality facing African Americans is that 
black, unskilled and semi-skilled, low wage labor is superfluous, 
redundant, not needed, making our very physical existence a social 
problem in which draconian control methods and mass incarceration has 
emerged as viable solutions with tacit support from the broader U.S. 
society. Criminalization of our people and the continued militarization 
of the spaces where we are confined is an essential component of the 
containment strategy.

“/Black, unskilled and semi-skilled, low wage labor is superfluous, 
redundant, not needed, making our very physical existence a social 
problem.”/

The open season on black bodies and the lack of interest from the 
broader society, silence from liberals and even many leftists, is 
graphic testimony to the precarious situation in which we find 
ourselves. But more insidiously, what we are experiencing in our 
communities appears to be the harbinger of a new white, cross-class 
hegemonic racial bloc that is now unacknowledged but yet is the basis of 
support for U.S. war-making abroad and the relative silence on domestic 
racial repression. The essential ideological glue for this new racial 
bloc has a familiar historical basis in the unearned material privileges 
of white supremacy. Its essential recognition is that in order to secure 
and maintain white privilege, certain populations must be controlled and 
subordinated nationally and globally. Could this be why it appears that 
very few are moved by the MXGM report?

It is important to make clear for folks still looking for the “brown 
shirts” to emerge that fascism in the U.S. is not taking the same form 
as “classical fascism” that emerged in the particular circumstances of 
Europe gripped in the capitalist crisis of the 30s. That is why so many, 
and even many on the left, are sleeping while the foundations and actual 
practices of a particular “American” form of fascism is developing. A 
fascism that with its ability to selectively repress dangerous 
populations – African Americans, in particular African American males, 
inner city Latinos, undocumented migrants, Arab and Muslims and radical 
elements that have not surrendered – while also adhering to the 
requirements and practices of a liberal “democratic society” for the 
rest of the society, is a new form that will be particular to the 
political, ideological and institutional context of the U.S.

“/In order to secure and maintain white privilege, certain populations 
must be controlled and subordinated nationally and globally.”/

The killings and beating of black people, black mass incarceration, the 
terrorism of targeted repression of migrant workers from Central and 
South America and Muslim and Arab communities by the national security 
apparatus are the canaries in the cage for U.S. fascism. While the 
particular class forces have not yet congealed and the social policies 
and legal framework are not in place or consolidated for a new American 
fascism, /Every Thirty-Six Hours/ and /Operation Ghetto Storm/ should be 
dramatic reminders of what we face if progressive forces fail to 
recognize the historical writing on the wall and come to terms with the 
war that is being waged against all of us.* *

As African American revolutionaries MXGM has taken up its responsibility 
to educate, organize and build resistance. And even in the social 
context of the U.S. where the marginalization of “Blackness” and Black 
people has become normalized and Black human rights defenders find 
ourselves in the cross-sights of the repressive apparatus, we will 
follow MXGM’s lead and continue to raise the contradictions and call for 
a new kind of revolutionary politics to meet the challenges and 
opportunities the contemporary situation offers.

And as we observe liberal and left forces in this country continually 
falling prey to the subtle but pervasive influences of Eurocentric white 
supremacy and U.S. exceptionalism that results in many of those elements 
finding themselves on the same side with U.S. imperialism from Libya to 
Venezuela, we understand our tasks as Black revolutionaries in defense 
of our communities as having a historical urgency and importance that is 
unique to this period of capitalist/colonialist decline.

So for us, we will continue resisting and struggling, because we still 
have a decolonized vision for this territory called the United States 
and also because we know that if we don’t build an effective movement 
collectively, the technology of control and terror that this State can 
deploy will make Dante’s inferno seem like a desirable alternative.

/Ajamu Baraka is a long-time human rights activist and veteran of the 
Black Liberation, anti-war, anti-apartheid and Central American 
solidarity Movements in the United States. He is currently a fellow at 
the Institute for Policy Studies. Baraka is currently living in Cali, 
Colombia. Go to his site at www. Ajamubaraka.com./

------------------------------------------------------------------------
*Source URL:* 
http://www.blackagendareport.com/content/%E2%80%9Coperation-ghetto-storm%E2%80%9D-new-face-us-fascism
*Links:*
[1] 
http://www.blackagendareport.com/category/african-america/racially-selective-policing
[2] http://www.blackagendareport.com/category/us-politics/mass-incarceration
[3] 
http://www.blackagendareport.com/sites/www.blackagendareport.com/files/operation_ghetto_storm.jpg
[4] 
http://mxgm.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/07_24_Report_all_rev_protected.pdf
[5] http://mxgm.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Operation-Ghetto-Storm.pdf
[6] 
http://www.addtoany.com/share_save?linkurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.blackagendareport.com%2Fcontent%2F%25E2%2580%259Coperation-ghetto-storm%25E2%2580%259D-new-face-us-fascism&linkname=%E2%80%9COperation%20Ghetto%20Storm%E2%80%9D%3A%20The%20New%20Face%20of%20U.S.%20Fascism%20 

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