Skip to content
View Featured Image

The Revolutionary Potential Of The Abandon Biden Initiatives

Above photo: Abandon Biden campaign press conference in Dearborn, where organizers said the president shouldn’t “show his face” in Michigan until a ceasefire is called between Israel and Palestine. Screenshot from a video provided by by Associated Press.

It is prudent for Black people to join in coalition with the Arab and Muslim people collectively refusing to support President Biden.

And connect the struggle for Palestinian liberation to the struggle for the liberation of oppressed people globally.

This week, the neoliberal, war-mongering machine known as the Democratic party held its presidential primary in Michigan – a key state that will play a major role in the outcome of the general election in November. Michigan is home to Detroit, one of the largest Black cities and the largest Arab population in the nation, including the state’s majority Arab city of Dearborn, roughly nine miles from Detroit. Both the Black and Arab populations are critical voting blocs that both corporate political parties are looking to for electoral success, the Democrats much more so than the Republicans.

The State of Israel’s brutal occupation and genocide of Gaza, that’s murdered nearly 30,000 Palestinians, the majority of them women and children, and gravely injured over 60,000, has become a thorn in the side of President Biden’s re-election bid. Adding to the pressure is the Abandon Biden initiative  that commenced last December when Arab and Muslim leaders from Michigan, Minnesota, Arizona, Wisconsin, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, and Pennsylvania pledged to withdraw support from the president due to his refusal to facilitate a permanent ceasefire. And, earlier this month, a group of Democrats in Michigan launched the Listen to Michigan  initiative, which is urging voters to select the “uncommitted” option when they vote in the state’s primary on February 27th.

Africans and Black people of consciousness support principled efforts that demonstrate solidarity with our Palestinian comrades and siblings, and we have for decades.  While the principled efforts of the Arab community in the US to refuse to support Joe Biden, who recently compounded his proud declaration of being a zionist, and the Democratic party in the upcoming primary are strategically important as they pose a grave and immediate threat to the Democratic Party’s fortunes in the upcoming presidential election, revolutionary Africans and others must look beyond these groundbreaking actions and consider how we take this campaign for the end of genocide and the establishment of human rights, dignity, and self-determination for Palestinians.

Additionally, we must connect the struggle for Palestinian liberation to the struggles of oppressed people in the US and around the world. To this end, we must not agitate only for a ceasefire in Gaza, but also the following:  

  • A permanent cessation of the occupation;
  • Dismantling of Israel’s apartheid pogrom;
  • Establishment of Palestinians’ right of return,
  • Establishment of one independent and secular state that guarantees equal rights for all residents, including Jews from Ethiopia and other African nations;
  • Ending the flow of weapons and military aid to Israel; and
  • Dismantling of U.S. imperialism in every country it exists and represses people

Combining the organizing and voting power of Michigan’s Black, Arab, and Muslim communities is an axiomatic tactic that should be utilized to the fullest extent in an effort to confront and dismantle all instances of settler colonialism and accompanying white “supremacy” ideology that continues to dehumanize, sacrifice, and extract from oppressed and colonized people the world over. Moreover, it’s clear that combining principled efforts of Black, Arab, and other marginalized populations in Michigan represents the potential for a larger and sustained campaign for power building that could reach every state in this country, and reach out in solidarity and collaboration with similarly situated communities internationally who are in the crosshairs of this government. The reality is that while voting itself is important, it is one tool in a deep arsenal of tactics needed to effect deep and lasting society-level change, which is also something the masses need to be guided to understand.

Political and popular education must continue beyond the electoral cycle to keep these issues at the forefront of people’s consciousness and remove them from simply an election-year issue. If this tactic is successful and either Joe Biden is forced to change course on Israel before the presidential elections in November OR he does not and loses the election in November, organizers of the Abandon Biden strategy can claim a decisive victory, but should not abandon continuing to organize and build coalitions and collaborate with Black Michiganders and other Black people of conscience to indict the duopoly in order to collectively engage our respective communities to chart a path forward to mapping out the kind of society we want to build.

This is critical because the end result of organizing is not to elect another “lesser evil” candidate who will only do the same evil things the previous figurehead did, just with a folksy smile this time. Instead, the end result of organizing is the empowerment of the masses to challenge and dismantle this corrupt and anti-human system of capitalist dictatorship at home,  imperialist dictatorship abroad, and brutal militarism to keep the oppressed in line, so that that system can be replaced by the people with representatives and a system that puts the power in the hands of the people. A long-term collaborative outreach, education, and organizing effort to that end between Black, Arab, and Muslim organizers could produce a tidal wave of enlightenment and interest among our people.

This will not be an easy task, and it is a level of collaboration and solidarity that will not go unpunished by the system and its proponents who are desperately holding onto power by ramping up our oppression. For example, It has come to our attention that certain Black operatives representing neoliberal forces are attempting to temper Black solidarity with Palestine. For instance, writer Coleman Hughes who desires a “colorblind America” recently uttered, “The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians bears little resemblance to the African American quest for civil rights in the U.S., or South Africa’s system of apartheid.” And renowned bootlicker, Bakari Sellers, aligned with this sentiment when he decried the interruption of Joe Biden’s speech at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church (Emanuel) in Charleston, SC, and declared, “[it’s] hard to see the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as a “parallel struggle” with any social justice movement in the U.S.”

Both languorous offerings are in part informed by the so-called Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), where one in three members embrace the zionist-led American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and accept their financial support, including CBC Chairman, Steven Horsford, as well as other holders of the Black Misleadership Class such as Hakeem Jeffries, James Clyburn, and Gregory Meeks. All who are also adamant supporters of the notorious Deadly Exchange program between Israel and the United States, where the brutal Israeli military that occupies, oppresses, imprisons, and wantonly murders Palestinians trains US police forces at every level, including Border Patrol, ICE, and the FBI.

Operating under the white supremacist settler colonial logic that violently suppressing “undesirable” populations will create safety and security for the dominant and settler colonial occupying population, amid the current genocide being carried out in Gaza, Jewish lobby groups are decrying the criticism of the Deadly Exchange program as anti-Semitic because ”Accusing Israel or Zionists (see Zionists) of complicity in the murder of Black people is malicious, perpetuates antisemitism, and blames Jews for societal ills .”  But they do not deny that both countries practice repressive tactics against specific populations in their respective countries, and they indeed exchange tactics on how to subvert, suppress, and control those populations. So Bakari Sellers simply refuses to acknowledge the similarity in struggles against oppression among Black people in the US and Palestinians in their own country. Coleman Hughes simply refuses to see the connections between the struggles of the two peoples, which directly contradicts how revolutionary Africans and Palestinians see our struggle as connected. Then again, “colorblind society” is a lie, too.

It’s unfortunate that far too many agents of the petit bourgeois guild, these negroes for hire, consistently allow themselves to be used as props and dangled in front of liberal and conservative audiences, as well as other forces that maintain and upkeep settler colonialism and the larger system of white “supremacy” ideology. Worse, these bootlicking backstabbers of the people are paraded in front of us as the first line of defense for the empire in quieting the dissent that is clearly growing among Black people against the continued injustice, brutality, and oppression we live under here. Many of our people are now more attuned to the international arm of US imperialism as they see the same state apparatus that does us such a vile disservice in this country open its coffers wide in shipping weapons to the Apartheid State of Israel, just as the U.S. and Israel did in arming Apartheid South Africa. Our people can plainly see the types of tactics used by the Israeli army against Palestinians because they look horrifically familiar to the way U.S. police brutalize us.

And while there may still be deep imperialist propaganda and misinformation at work in attempting to keep our people silent and unengaged in this fiendish crisis in Gaza, we should be clear that these bootlicking operatives of the State do not speak for or represent revolutionary African people in the US and the world over. The vast majority of principled Black folk and African peoples hold and exercise inexorable and ubiquitous solidarity with our Palestinian comrades and siblings because we are clear that our struggle is similar because our enemy is the same. Even the corporate and liberal outlet New York Times recently conducted a poll that revealed  Black voters are more likely than their white and “Hispanic” counterparts to sympathize with Palestine’s struggle  against the State of Israel’s myriad transgressions and draconian campaign against Gaza.

This support continues a historic solidarity Black folk have held with Palestine that dates back to the 1960’s Civil Rights epoch. As Michael Fischbach wrote in his book, Black Power and Palestine, “…it was the Black Power movement in the 1960s that issued the first significant pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel viewpoints ever to reach a large American audience outside the hard Left.” He adds, “Black militants latched on to the Palestinian cause as another liberation struggle waged by a people of color deserving their support. They saw themselves and the Palestinians as kindred peoples of color waging a revolution against a global system of oppression”

Revolutionary Black people and organizations celebrate the continuation of this legacy of solidarity as other principled Black-led formations including, but not limited to, Black for Palestine who released their “Black Solidarity with Gaza – #CeasefireNow” statement  that was signed by over 6,000 Black activists, artists, scholars, students and over 225 organizations including The Dream Defenders, Movement for Black Lives, and Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. We concur with the statement made by Free Palestine Charleston and Black Lives Matter Charleston, who righteously disrupted Joe Biden during his speech at Emanuel, “As residents and community members of Charleston, we know that all struggles for liberation are intertwined. Atrocities committed against Black folks in the U.S. and Palestinians in Gaza have always belonged to the same system of violence.”

To this end, we reiterate support for all principled efforts that demonstrate solidarity with Palestine and those that seek to seize power from both corporate legacy political parties, and otherwise allow for poor, working class, and oppressed people to confront and dismantle agents of the U.S. empire. Black people of conscience should closely examine the efforts in Michigan and elsewhere that bring Genocide Joe Biden to task for decades of unmitigated support for the settler colonial experiment of Israel and the white “supremacy” ideology associated with Zionism and apply those tactics and others to expose his role in perpetuating crimes against African people in the forms of domestic mass incarceration and international imperialism as demonstrated through interventionism in the Revolutionary Republic of Haiti and the expansion of AFRICOM’s operations on the continent, as well as the role of both Israel and the US in the ongoing genocide in Congo, and other atrocities and denial of the human rights and self-determination of Africans on the continent and throughout the diaspora.

The current crises experienced simultaneously by Africans in the US, Africans in the Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Burkina Faso, Haiti, and Palestine, as well as the repression of working class and poor people under capitalist dictatorship all over the world, connects all of us in what Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. called a single garment of destiny that we are all wrapped in together. Creating peace and justice, equality and human rights and dignity for all people requires nothing less than unbreakable solidarity, deep and purposeful organization, and unending resistance to every instance of oppression that will ultimately lead to the dismantling of this brutal empire so the people of the world can finally live in peace. Compare this sentiment to that of the Black Misleadership Class, who are currently preparing to embrace massa Joe Biden on the hallowed grounds of Selma for the annual commemoration of Bloody Sunday.

The opportunism of the CBC and other members of the petit bourgeois guild is an embarrassment for Black people,  and we must not allow ourselves to be ensorcelled or hoodwinked by this forthcoming minstrel show produced and funded by the Democratic Party. Instead, as noted earlier, we must accentuate and extend the valiant efforts of our Arab and Muslim comrades and the fervor of our white accomplices like our departed comrade Aaron Bushnell, who showed more courage and principle in one act than the CBC has since being bought by zionists, the fossil fuel industry and other agents of white “supremacy” ideology.

Regardless of the outcome of the Abandon Biden/Listen to Michigan initiative, our Arab and Muslim comrades and their accomplices in Michigan have achieved much to be celebrated. They have made their initiative a national story and, in doing so, continued the larger discussion on Israel’s genocidal pogrom in Gaza and illegal occupation of Palestine writ large. Their efforts also sent a message to all presidential hopefuls that replication of, or being adjacent to, the junior varsity and misguided foreign policy of Joe Biden will fail to galvanize the larger left, including principled Black folk who are paying close attention to positions and statements on Palestine, Russia/Ukraine, the many issues on the Continent, and the fate of true and righteous political prisoners as we see all of these issues as an interlinked entity.

Sign Up To Our Daily Digest

Independent media outlets are being suppressed and dropped by corporations like Google, Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for our daily email digest before it’s too late so you don’t miss the latest movement news.