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ASSATA SHAKUR:

- Assata Shakur / Die Tradition
- Assata Shakur Biography
- HOA - Hands Off Assata!

www.assatashakur.org
www.handsoffassata.org

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Assata Shakur:

DIE TRADITION

Setze sie fort - jetzt.
Setze sie fort.

Setze sie fort - jetzt.
Setze sie fort.

Setze die Tradition fort.

Seit dem Anbeginn der Zeit gab es schwarze Menschen,
die sie fortgesetzt haben.
Ob in Ghana oder Mali oder Timbuktu,
wir haben sie fortgesetzt.

Wir setzten die Tradition fort.

Wir versteckten uns im Busch,
als die Sklavenjäger kamen,
in den Händen die Speere.
Und im richtigen Moment
sprangen wir hervor und ließen das Lebensblut
dieser Möchtegern-Herren verströmen.

Wir setzten die Tradition fort.

Stürzten uns selbst
von den Sklavenschiffen herab ins Meer.
Schnitten unseren Fängern die Kehlen durch.
Nahmen ihre Peitschen.
Und ihre Schiffe.
Blut strömte in den Atlantik -
und es kam nicht allein von uns.

Wir setzten die Tradition fort.

Fütterten Missy mit Arsenapfelkuchen.
Stahlen die Beile aus den Schuppen.
Gingen los und schlugen Master den Kopf ab.

Wir liefen weg. Wir kämpften.
Wir organisierten Fluchtwege und Unterschlupf.
Und den Untergrund.

Wir setzten die Tradition fort.

In Zeitungen. Auf Veranstaltungen.
In Diskussionen und Straßenkämpfen.
Wir setzten sie fort.

In Geschichten für unsere Kinder.
In Liedem und Balladen.
In Gedichten und Bluessongs
und im Schrei des Saxophons
wir setzten sie fort.

In Klassenzimmern. In Kirchen.
In Gerichtssälen. In Gefängnissen.
Wir setzten sie fort.

Beim Redenhalten und Streikpostenstehen.
Beim Stellunghalten im Wohlfahrtsamt, im Arbeitsamt. Beim Stellunghalten im Kampf
setzten wir sie fort.

Bei Sit-ins und Pray-ins,
bei March-ins und Die-ins,
wir setzten sie fort.

In kalten Nächten am Missouri
richteten wir dem Lynchmob die Gewehre entgegen.
Auf brennenden Straßen in Brooklyn
warfen wir Steine gegen Gewehre.

Wir setzten sie fort.

Gegen Wasserwerfer und Bullenhunde.
Gegen Gummiknüppel und Kugeln.
Gegen Panzer und Tränengas.
Nadeln und Schlingen.
Bomben und Geburtenkontrolle.
Wir setzten sie fort.

In Selma und San Juan.
Mozambique und Mississippi.
In Brasilien und in Boston,
wir setzten sie fort.

Durch die Lügen und den Ausverkauf.
Die Fehler und den Irrsinn.
Durch Schmerz und Hunger und Frust,
wir setzten sie fort.

Setzten sie fort, die Tradition.

Eine starke Tradition.

Eine stolze Tradition.

Eine schwarze Tradition.

Setzt sie fort.


Gebt sie weiter an die Kinder.
Gebt sie weiter.
Setzt sie fort.
Setzt sie fort - jetzt.
Setzt sie fort
BIS ZUR FREIHEIT!


Aus dem Buch:
Assata Shakur / Assata -Eine Autobiographie aus dem schwarzen Widerstand
Atlantik-Verlag - www.atlantik-verlag.de

”Assata Shakur ist eine der bekanntesten Persönlichkeiten der schwarzen Bewegung der 70er Jahre in den USA. In ihrer Autobiographie zeichnet sie den Lebensweg einer ebenso ungewöhnlichen wie bemerkenswerten schwarzen Frau nach. Da ist das Mädchen vom Lande mit Elvis-Anstecker, die rotzfreche Göre, die sich in Harlem herumtreibt und gegen den Vietnam-Krieg demonstriert, ebenso wie die junge Frau, die sich in der Black Panther Party organisiert, und die politische Gefangene, der ihr in der Haft geborenes Kind genommen wird. Nach der Flucht aus dem Gefängnis lebt sie heute im politischen Asyl auf Kuba. Ein beeindruckendes Buch, das inzwischen in der 3. Auflage erschienen ist. Die Autobiographie ist nicht nur eine Rückschau auf das bisherige Leben der Autorin, es ist zugleich ein beeindruckendes Zeugnis über das Lebensgefühl schwarzer Frauen in den USA in den 60er und 70er Jahren.” (Atlantik-Verlag)

Dank an den Atlantik-Verlg.

------------

ASSATA SHAKUR

Assata Shakur has been living in Cuba since 1986, after escaping from prison where she was serving a life sentence imposed in a highly disputed trial. Assata was a Black Panther then a Black Liberation Army (BLA) leader in the early '70s, so she was a target of the FBI's COINTELPRO operation. Assata was captured in a shoot-out resulting from resistance to yet another "driving while black" police action in 1973 on the New Jersey State Turnpike. This time a State Trooper was killed. Zayd Shakur, traveling in the car with Assata, was also killed.

The third person in the car, Sundiata Acoli, is still serving time over 20 years later and has recently been denied parole for another 20 years. According to one of Sundiata' attorney, Joan P. Gibbs, "Assata, at the time of her arrest, was 'wanted' on federal and state charges in New York, all of which juries subsequently found her not guilty of or were dismissed." COINTELPRO...

Assata was the subject of a 1997 documentary, "Eyes of the Rainbow," by AfroCuban film maker Gloria Rolando, who toured the US in October '99 to show it.

The following passage is excerpted from Assata: An Autobiography by Assata Shakur and was originally delivered by Assata Shakur as part of her opening statement while acting as co-counsel in her own defense for charges stemming fromthe New Jersey Turnpike incident where she was critically wounded and then tortured at the hands of the State Police Nazis (no hyperbole here, they were WWII Nazis brought to America). Assata Shakur was ultimately convicted in 1977, but had already served four years in prison. Before her daring escape from prison in 1979, Assata Shakur served a total of six years behind bars where she would also give birth to her daughter Kakuya.

"The idea of the Black Liberation Army emerged from conditions in Black communities: conditions of poverty, indecent housing, massive unemployment, poor medical care, and inferior education. The idea came about because Black people are not free or equal in this country. Because ninety percent of the men and women in this country's prisons are Black and Third World. Because ten-year-old children are shot down in our streets. Because dope has saturated our communities, preying on the disillusionment and frustrations of our children. The concept of the BLA arose because of the political, social, and economic oppression of Black people in this country. And where there is oppression, there will be resistance. The BLA is part of that resistance movement. The Black Liberation Army stands for freedom and justice for all people. "

More Info on Assata: AfroCubaWeb

---------------------

HOA - HANDS OFF ASSATA!

What Is The Hands Off Assata Campaign?

The Hands Off Assata Campaign is a coming together of organizations and individuals who are outraged by the heightened attempts by the Congress of the United States and the State of New Jersey to illegally force a return of Assata Shakur from Cuba to the United States.

We believe that Assata Shakur is a bona fide political exile living in the island nation of Cuba. She was persecuted for her political beliefs and tortured while in prison. We support the international human rights and Geneva conventions, which enabled her to seek and secure political asylum in Cuba, and we support the right of the Cuban people to grant it to her. We are shocked by the actions of New Jersey's Governor Christine Todd-Whitman, who has issued a $100,000 bounty/reward on head of Assata Shakur. Doing such a thing is tantamount to a call to "soldiers of fortune" to kidnap and kill Ms. Shakur and for them to engage in international espionage against the sovereign nation of Cuba. We are shocked by the activities of the United States House of Representatives, which in September 1998 passed House Resolution 254, calling on the Cuban Government to extradite Assata Shakur. Given that there is no binding extradition treaty between Cuba and the United States, such a request is outside the context of international law. In addition, we call on the Congress of the United States to hold public hearings on the past and current impact of FBI's Counter Intelligence Program known as COINTELPRO. Given that Assata Shakur was not the only one politically persecuted for her political beliefs, we demand that a full airing take place on that program. And finally are calling on the United States end its hostility towards the tiny nation of Cuba by normalizing relations with the Island and ending the US economic blockade


Assata Shakur: Radical, Woman, Exile, Mother

ASSATA SHAKUR is an African-American woman. She is a social justice activist, a poet, a mother and a grandmother. She has lived in Cuba since the early 1980s. During the heady days of the 1960s and 1970s, she found herself a victim of both racial profiling and political targeting. After being spotted on the New Jersey turnpike on May 2, 1973, because she is black, it was discovered that she and her two companions were known members of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army. Like Martin Luther King, Jr. Malcolm X, Leonard Peltier and many members of the Civil Rights and American Indian Movements, Assata and her companions had been watched, their phones tapped, their families monitored, their organizations infiltrated, and widespread disinformation campaigns waged against them. They were like many activists of the day --targets of the FBI's Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO). In fact, Assata was wanted, not for anything she had actually done, but for a variety of crimes that government and state officials were trying to pin on her. This was common in the 1970s: discredit the voice of activists by painting them as criminals, trumping up indictments, tying them up in courts and if possible jailing them. In the mid 1970s, The Church Committee of the Senate Select Committee to Study Government Operations and the Domestic Intelligence Subcommittee, headed by Senator Walter Mondale, provided incontrovertible documentation of a government sponsored conspiracy against the civil and human rights of all sorts of political activists.

THUS ON THAT DAY IN MAY, Assata was a marked woman. And after police stopped them, a shoot out occurred. When the smoke cleared one police officer, and one of Assata's companions, Zayd Shakur lay dead. Assata, shot in the back and dragged from the car, lay wounded. Only belatedly taken to the hospital, Assata was then chained to her bed, tortured and questioned while injured. In fact, she never received adequate medical attention even though she had a broken clavicle and a paralyzed arm. Nonetheless, she was quickly jailed, prosecuted and incarcerated over the next few years for the series of trumped up cases. Interestingly, in five separate trials, and with largely white juries, charges were dismissed because of lack of evidence or she was acquitted of all charges ranging from bank robbery to murder. As the manager of one bank said at trial - she is just not the one who robbed my bank. Only in the final trial in 1977, where she was charged with the Turnpike killings, was she found guilty. This even though forensic evidence taken that day showed that she had not fired a weapon. She was sentenced to life + 33 years in prison. In 1979, and after nearly six years behind bars, she escaped from Clinton Correctional Facility for Women in New Jersey and some time later emerged in Cuba where she applied for and received political asylum. Since being in Cuba, she has continued her college education, published an autobiography, and writes on global issues facing women, youth, and people of color.

DURING THE 1990S, rightist politicians and police bodies - this time in conjunction with conservative members of the Cuban-American community - reinvigorated their attempts to pursue Assata Shakur. They did this even though Assata has not tried to re-enter the United States and is, according to international law, a political exile who should be left alone. Linking "fear of crime" rhetoric with anti-Cuban sentiment, New Jersey governor Christine Todd-Whitman issued a bounty which is now up to $100,000, on the head of Assata Shakur. She even went as far as to announce her bounty on Radio Marti, the US government radio station which beams anti-Castro propaganda into the Caribbean. To do such a thing put Assata in danger because it is tantamount to encouraging any opportunists to kidnap and/or kill her for pay. In addition, in 1998, Congressmen Franks and Menendez from New Jersey and Ros-Lehtinen and Diaz-Balart of Florida introduced and got passed - House Resolution 254 - which calls for the Cuban government to extradite Assata Shakur as a condition to normalizing US-Cuba relations. Interestingly, while Assata and Cuba are portrayed as "criminal", a terrorist bombing campaign - thought to be sponsored by ultra-rightist forces in the United States - has been launched against Cuba, killing and injuring Cuban citizens and foreign tourists alike.

Steering Committee (in formation): Adjoa Aiyetoro, Baye Adofo, Vera Beaty, Lisa Brock, Kedar Coleman, Otis Cunningham, Beryl Fitzpatrick, Cheryl Harris, Robin Hayes, Rosemari Mealy, Kamaria Ngozi, Ahmed Obefemi, Barbara Ransby, Walter Turner, Gail Walker

Endorsers (in formation): Black Radical Congress, Global Exchange, Jericho, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, National Conference of Black Lawyers, IfCO/Pastors for Peace, Venceremos Brigade, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom

Any questions, contact us: athoa@afrocubaweb.com / www.handsoffassata.org





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