African Liberation Day

May 25th this Saturday is African Liberation Day Events to mark the occasion are being held around the globe including many in occupied North America Building on the legacy of 20th century national liberation struggles, African Liberation Day seeks to advance the struggle against neo-colonialism and an imperialist system which continues to pillage Africa ALD was founded in 1958 when Kwame Nkrumah convened the First Conference of Independent States held in Accra, Ghana and attended by eight independent African states The 15th of April was declared “African Freedom Day,” to mark each year the onward progress of the liberation movement and to symbolize the determination of the people of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation Between 1958 and 1963 the nation/class struggle intensified in Africa and the world Seventeen countries in Africa won their independence and 1960 was proclaimed the Year of Africa Further advances were made with the defeat of U.S. imperialism in Asia and the Caribbean Imperialism responded to this tide of victories by assassinating revolutionary leaders and sending U.S. troops to Viet Nam On the 25th of May 1963, thirty-one African Heads of state convened a summit meeting to found the Organization of African Unity (OAU) They renamed African Freedom Day “African Liberation Day” and changed its date to May 25th Since then the world has witnessed the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah, the US invasion of Cuba, the US move to crush liberation movements in Asia, Egypt, Syria, and Jordan; the overthrow of the Democratic Party of Guinea, the US invasion of Grenada, the US bombing of Libya and the overthrow of Thomas Sankara in Burkina Faso This period had marked a temporary setback for the Pan-African movement and since 1966, was characterized by a lull in ALD activities Neo-colonialism was imposed upon the people as the new stage of the capitalist, imperialist strategy in Africa
Out of the intensification of the nation/class struggle a new generation of African youth emerged and reaffirmed their African personality, history and their Pan-African objectives This youth was the product of Malcolm X, Sister M’balia Camara, Patrice Lumumba, Frantz Fanon and the countless generations before them. Links were made and maintained with Kwame Nkrumah. Understanding the need for clear and precise ideological and organizational direction for the Pan-African movement Nkrumah published Consciencism: Philosophy and Ideology for Decolonization (1963) Handbook of Revolutionary Warfare (1968), and Class Struggle in Africa (1970) The ideas of Nkrumah infused the Black Power Movement (1960-1972) Nkrumah taught us The total liberation and unification of Africa under an All-African Socialist Government must be the primary objective of all Black revolutionaries throughout the world. It is an objective which when achieved will bring about the fulfillment of the aspirations of Africans and people of African descent everywhere It will at the same time advance the triumph of the international socialist revolution In 1970 the Pan-African Secretariat of Guyana made the call for the celebration of ALD in the western hemisphere In response, a large demonstration was held in Georgetown Guyana and smaller celebrations in the U.S., Canada, and Europe The Pan-African movement was once again on the verge of taking a mass revolutionary character and educating and organizing the people By 1971 Pan-Africanism had become the dominant discussion in every factory, home, school and church in the African world In the 1990 as a result of the people struggle we have witnessed the defeat of apartheid the heroic decision of the OAU to break UN sanctions against Libya and the Congo victory by pro-African forces over imperialist proxy forces making an advance toward Nkrumah call for an African High Command and representing a healthy day in line with the African Union The African Union and Africa’s first continental holiday Africa Day are clear signs that the struggle for African Unity will not stop until victory is achieved Today African Liberation Day is a permanent mass institution in the world-wide Pan-African movement As an institution it is stronger today because the masses of African people are stronger and ALD is their day As a day of work in the area of political education and organization it reflects the fact that we have not obtained our freedom and thus it is a day to reaffirm our commitment to Pan-Africanism the total liberation and unification of Africa under scientific socialism At ALD we also deepen our understanding of other just struggles and affirm our role in the world socialist revolution ALD has but one direction forward to a unified socialist Africa It is growing as the level of awareness about Pan-Africanism and the primacy of Africa grows. It is growing as progressive and revolutionary organizations grow And lastly it is growing as the masses make increasing victories against capitalism, neo-colonialism, racism, and zionism The struggle for a united socialist Africa is part of a global united front against imperialism In order for a unified socialist Africa to succeed, US-led imperialism must die As long as capitalist-imperialism remains, any future united socialist Africa will remain in peril
As pointed out by the Maoist International Movement of Prisons, the struggle against US-led imperialism is one which unites the material class interest of 80% of humanity While the movement for a united socialist Africa is hugely significant in the modern era its main significance is as part of a strong, united, proletarian-led united front against imperialism The early Chinese Communist Li Dazhoa noted that imperialist exploitation turned some countries into proletarian nations. In such countries, broad progressive class-alliances could be formed against foreign oppressors
Less spoken of but certainly implied is the embourgeoisment of populations in leading imperialist countries The United States is a country deeply dependent on exploiting the vast majority of the world’s workers. The overwhelming majority of USians including those nationally oppressed within its borders but especially so for the oppressor White nation support US-led imperialism due the material benefits they receive from it We are little surprised that the same people and organizations which deny the structural divisions of the modern world also deny the importance of African Liberation Day and the movement for the socialist unification of Africa Many of the same organizations go to such extremes as to propagandize for further divisions of Africa under the guise of democracy and human rights
For these reasons it is all the more important that proletarian-oriented organizations unify for the liberation of oppressed people and for the revolutionary defeat of imperialist powers


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