Day 4 Of Countdown To Launch: Ajamu Baraka

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On December 10, 2017, Popular Resistance is beginning a new phase.

As we count down to that date, we are featuring some of the people behind Popular Resistance.

Ajamu Baraka is an internationally recognized human rights defender who comes from the Black Liberation Movement. He founded the U.S. Human Rights Network, which brought 400 organizations together to apply the United Nations International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination to the United States. Ajamu ran for Vice President in 2016 on the Green Party ballot. He is currently the national coordinator for the Black Alliance for Peace and writes for Black Agenda Report.

The Black Alliance for Peace is a new organization, which “seeks to recapture and redevelop the historic anti-war, anti-imperialist, and pro-peace positions of the radical black movement.” It makes connections between militarization and repression abroad and at home. Read the Principles of Unity here. They are currently fundraising to increase their capacity and host their first conference in 2018. Click here to donate.

Ajamu is an active member of the United National Antiwar Coalition and a keynote speaker at the 2017 conference. He also spoke at the Divest From the War Machine launch in September and he is one of the organizers of the Conference on U.S. Foreign Military Bases to be held in Baltimore, MD in January. He frequently travels around the U.S. speaking about peace and human rights and he is active in the peace negotiations in Colombia. Ajamu’s partner, Charo Mina Rojás, is a leader in the struggle for the rights of women and black Colombians.

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Ajamu states:

“This is indeed a moment for resistance, for popular resistance. Basically, what we are facing today are opportunities for advancement but also real threats to our existence, real threats to social change. And what we have to have in order to advance our forces, to help us to realize our dreams is a community where we can find information, where we can network, where we can organize and strategize, and Popular Resistance is that network, is that community, is that instrument that we have today.

So, as we go forward, my friends, understand what we have available to us. Popular Resistance is one of the most effective instruments we have today. So, we are going to utilize this weapon, this Popular Resistance network, to advance our forces, to realize our dreams, and to demonstrate to ourselves and to the world that we have a responsibility to the Earth, a responsibility to the people and a responsibility to ourselves to make sure that we never succumb to the forces of oppression”

Opposition to war and empire is a major issue for Popular Resistance. Co-director, Kevin Zeese, has been active for a long time in the peace movement. In fact, the occupation of Freedom Plaza was born from the marriage of the anti-war and anti-austerity movements. The organizing of that came out of follow up meetings after a major anti-war action at the White House on December 16, 2010. Consequently, that was the same day that a bread vendor set himself on fire in Tunisia, which sparked the Arab Spring. The date for the occupation was chosen because it was the anniversary of the attack on Afghanistan.

On October 6, 2011, almost 200 organizations came together from across the country for a prolonged action to challenge the system and to link the wars abroad and at home, militarism and austerity. That work continues today as Popular Resistance.

Veterans for Peace marchers arrive in Freedom Plaza on October 6, 2011.

Veterans for Peace marchers arrive in Freedom Plaza on October 6, 2011.