Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Amnesty International’s report on the Igbo genocide shatters this orchestrated silence


Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe
Denial is the final stage that lasts throughout and always follows a genocide. It is among the surest indicators of further genocidal massacres. The perpetrators of genocide … try to cover up the evidence … They deny that they committed any crimes, and often blame what happened on the victims. They block investigations of the crimes, and continue to govern … with impunity … unless they are captured and a tribunal is established to try them. The response to denial is punishment by an international tribunal or national courts... (Gregory Stanton, president, Genocide Watch; professor in genocide studies and prevention, George Mason University, Virginia)

One of the cruellest tragedies of the aftermath of 400 years of pan-Europe’s enslavement, conquest, unparallelled expropriation and occupation of the African World is that concocted pedestal of “moral authority” that successive West/Euro-American leaders have erected and from which they lecture African presumed leaderships in “post”-(European)conquest Berlin-states and estates on how the latter treat their populations.

The West leaders are expressly contemptuous of these African “leaderships”, understandably, because most have been created or implanted invariably on the African scene by the extant imperium. The West is therefore untiring as it ritualistically lectures its stretch of puppets across Africa: Respect the human rights of your people”; “Stop murdering your people…”; “You are corrupt, very corrupt! You steal your peoples’ money – Stop it! You must be transparent and Accountable!”; “Institute a bill of rights, Respect the rule of law”; “Run free and fair elections! Don’t turn your presidency into a life-long estate as we really don’t want you to deal with our own next generation of leaders, our children’s”…

Hotchpotch

Even then, no truly focussed democrat should be disoriented by this astonishing irony emanating from the West. African “leaderships”, quite often in league with some of their West’s hypocritical traducers, have murdered 15 million Africans across the continent in the past 50 years in appalling spates of genocide, beginning with the Igbo genocide on 29 May 1966, and in other wars in virtually every region of Africa. Even if the devil, itself, were to lecture African “leaderships” to stop murdering their own peoples and, in the process, help prevent just one more African from being annihilated by their depraved overlords, that would be readily welcome. African populations are under siege by brutal regimes replete across Africa especially the genocidist hotchpotch in Nigeria and the Sudan. The peoples here and elsewhere require unremitting support for their right to safeguard their lives and progress from wherever in the world. Not less.

There is of course nothing in these apparent pro-African freedom/liberatory sentiments by West leaders, referred to above, to suggest that the latter really cares about the African humanity they and forebears have spent nearly half of a millennium to obliterate/dehumanise nor do they indeed look forward to the day when they will deal with a democratic Africa where its leaderships are accountable to their own, their home publics. To the contrary, if that were to occur, the West would cease to exercise the stranglehold it currently has on Africa. No responsive leadership ever plays the overseer role which these African regimes engage in.

Crucially, to the score, the West’s singular mission in castigating its African “leaderships” is to continue desperately to cover the tracks of its heinous historical crimes across Africa, to expunge these, if possible, from any form of reckoning and eventual systemised censure. But even in the pursuit of this venture, the West is often highly selective on who or what “leaderships” they wish to focus on – such decisions ultimately rest on the individual West’s state-interest(s) at the time, thus enabling it, for instance, to ignore some “misdeeds” from a client-leadership who is considered “our son of a b****” as Franklin D Roosevelt, a former US president, would colourfully describe it.

Vile genocidist operative

Very recently in London, England, in May 2016, the world witnessed in full public display a classic of this selective choice tinkering of some “misdemeanour” from one of its African “leaderships” which a West leader had wished to focus on for the occasion of a state banquet for the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. Former British Prime Minister David Cameron, who, in March 2015, in collaboration with US President Obama, had imposed Muhammadu Buhari, the vile genocidist operative during the Igbo genocide, as new head of regime in Nigeria, dramatically addressed the Queen in the company of some other influential guests: “[Your Majesty], We’ve got some leaders of some fantastically corrupt countries coming to Britain … Nigeria and Afghanistan, possibly the two most corrupt countries in the world…”

Noticeably, during this entire apparent puppet show, Cameron didn’t mention the gravest attribute in the grim Buhari portfolio spectrum which was key in the former’s joint decision with Obama to install the genocidist operative in power in Nigeria – namely, to continue to wage the genocide against Igbo people, begun 50 years ago. Buhari was pleased with his puppet “massa” for his deft choice from the available range of cv data and the “boy” obliged, accordingly, by acknowledging, also publicly whilst walking next to Patricia Scotland, secretary-general of the Commonwealth, to a reception, that his “country is [indeed] corrupt”.

Buhari has been known to the British for 50 years – since the outbreak of the May 1966 Igbo genocide, the foundational genocide of post-(European)conquest Africa, launched by its client state Nigeria with firm British military, diplomatic and political support. Harold Wilson, the British prime minister then, personally supervised and coordinated the prosecution of the genocide from his London’s No 10 Downing Street residence. During phase-III of the genocide, the invasion of Biafra, July 1967-January 1970, Buhari was commander of a genocidist brigade in north and northcentral Biafra, slaughtering Igbo children, women and men to the hilt. 3.1 million Igbo or 25 per cent of their population were murdered during the 44 months of phases I-III which ended in January 1970. Since his March 2015 Cameron-Obama imposition, Buhari has duly resumed his Igbo slaughtering mission. In response, predictably, both the Cameron administration and its successor Theresa May’s, and the Obama government have all remained deafeningly silent over this catastrophe.

The Amnesty International’s courage in publishing two major reports on this ongoing genocide, one in June 2016 
(https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2016/06/nigeria-killing-of-unarmed-pro-biafra-supporters-by-military-must-be-urgently-investigated/, accessed 10 June 2016) and the second just recently, 24 November 2016
(https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2016/11/peaceful-pro-biafra-activists-killed-in-chilling-crackdown/accessed 23 November 2016), cannot be commended enough. These reports, particularly the latest, shatter an orchestrated silence initiated at the highest levels of government in both Britain and the US to attempt to shield these states’ active involvement in the crime of genocide against Igbo people, this crime against humanity.

Breakthrough

Nigeria and its backers must now know that no force can stop the determined will of a people. No other African peoples have suffered such an extensive and gruesome genocide and incalculable impoverishment in a century as the Igbo. Yet the Igbo have written a stunning essay in the past 50 years on human survival and resilience, a beacon of the resilient spirit of human overcoming of the most desperate, unutterably brutish forces in Nigeria. Genocide, it should be reiterated, is a crime against humanity. There is therefore no statute of limitations in international law for the apprehension and punishment of those responsible for this crime. Igbo seek and will achieve justice for the perpetration of this crime.

The Igbo are primed to restore their sovereignty in their Biafran homeland. This will be one of the most outstanding breakthroughs of the freedom movement of the age.
(Alice Coltrane Quartet, “Lord, help me to be” [personnel: Coltrane, piano; Pharoah Sanders, tenor saxophone;  Jimmy Garrison, bass; Ben Riley, drums; recorded: Coltrane home studio, Dix Hills, New York, US, 29 January 1968]) 
Twitter@HerbertEkweEkwe





Tuesday, 29 November 2016

110th birthday of Akanu Ibiam

(Born 29 November 1906, Unwana, Biafra)
Affable physician, erudite theologian, principled statesperson, works for 30 years in the Church of Scotland/Presbyterian Church rural medical programme in central and east regions of Biafra and who, in 1967, returns to Queen Elizabeth II of England the three insignias of knighthood (OBEKBEKCMG) conferred on him by both her and her father, King George VI,  in protest against the central role being played by Britain in the perpetration of the Igbo genocide, the foundational genocide of post-(European)conquest Africa, when it and its client state Nigeria murder 3.1 million Igbo people, 25 per cent of this nation’s population, between 29 May 1966 and 12 January 1970
(John Coltrane, “Dear Lord” [personnel: Coltrane, tenor saxophone; McCoy Tyner, piano;  Jimmy Garrison, bass; Roy Haynes, drums; recorded: Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, US, 26 May 1965]) 
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101st birthday of Billy Strayhorn

(Born 29 November 1915, Dayton, Ohio, US)
Renowned composer, pianist and arranger whose near 30 years (1938-1967) of collaborative work with composer, pianist and bandleader Duke Ellington has been the focus of expansive recordings, research and publications
(Charles Mingus Sextet, featuring Eric Dolphy, plays the Billy Strayhorn classic composition, “Take the ‘A’ train” [Mingus, bass; Johnny Coles, trumpet; Dolphy, bass clarinet; Clifford Jordan, tenor saxophone; Jaki Byard, piano; Dannie Richmond, drums; recorded: live, University Aula, Oslo, 12 April 1964])
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Sunday, 27 November 2016

74th birthday of Jimi Hendrix

(Born 27 November 1942, Seattle, US)
Arguably the most creative and accomplished guitarist of all time, collaborates with fellow artist Joan Baein a historic concert at Steve Paul’s Scene, Manhattan, New York, 29 August 1968, where they both perform free in a concert of solidarity with the people of Biafra being subjected to the foundational genocide of post-(European)conquest Africa by Nigeria and its suzerain state Britain with Hendrix additionally offering a personal donation of US$500.00 to Biafra, US$3500.00 in today’s value 
(Jimi Hendrix and Joan Baez in hearty conversation during intermission at the special Biafra concertNew York, 29 August 1968)
(The Jimi Hendrix Experience, “Purple haze” [personnel: Hendrix, guitar; Noel Redding, bass; Mitch Mitchell, drums; recorded: De Lane Lea Studios, London, 11 January 1967/Olympic Studios, London 3-5 February 1967])

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Saturday, 26 November 2016

219th birthday of Sojourner Truth

(B ?1797, Rifton, NY, US; dies 26 Nov 1883, Battle Creek, Mich, US)

Celebrated African American freedom exponent and campaigner for gender rights and equality whose historic address at the December 1851 Women’s Convention in Akron, Ohio, entitled “Ain’t I a Woman?”, has been anthologised copiously ever since
(Sonny Rollins Trio, “The freedom suite” [personnel: Rollins, tenor saxophone; Oscar Pettiford, bass; Max Roach, drums; recorded: Riverside Records, New York, US, 7 March 1958])
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Friday, 25 November 2016

211th birthday of Mary Seacole

(Born 23 November 1805, Kingston, Jamaica)
Nurse extraordinaire, pioneering international humanitarian care practitioner in the Caribbean/central America and during the 1854-1856 war in the Crimea, Czarist Russia, author of the classic, The Wonderful Adventures of Mrs Seacole in Many Lands (1857)
(John Coltrane Quartet, “Chim chim cheree” [personnel: Coltrane, soprano saxophone; McCoy Tyner, piano; Jimmy Garrison, bass; Elvin Jones, drums; recorded: Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, US, 17 May 1965])
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47th anniversary of John Lennon’s decision to return MBE knighthood medal to Queen Elizabeth II over Britain’s instrumental role in the perpetration of the Igbo genocide

(Medal is sent back to Buckingham Palace, London, 25 November 1969)
ICONIC BEETLE’s John Lennon sends back the 1965 MBE knighthood medal bestowed on him by Queen Elizabeth II of England over Britain’s instrumental role in the perpetration of the Igbo genocide with its client state Nigeria in which 3.1 million Igbo people or 25 per cent  of this nation’s population are murdered between 29 May 1966 and 12 January 1970 (phases I-III) in this foundational genocide of post-(European)conquest Africa

Twitter @HerbertEkweEkwe