COME AND CELEBRATE THE LIVES OF CLAUDIA JONES AND MALCOLM X
Thursday 21 Feb 2013 marks two important dates in the history of global Afrikan people’s struggle. On this day we celebrate two outstanding political figures of the 20th century: Claudia Jones, born 21st Feb 1925, and Malcolm X who was assassinated on 21st Feb 1965.
Claudia’s and Malcolm’s political trajectories place them firmly in the Pan-Afrikanist, anti-capitalist, and anti-imperialist struggle. Whilst comrade Claudia declared herself to be a revolutionary communist, brother Malcolm X did not. However, he recognised revolutionary socialism is the only solution to Afrikan people’s quest for freedom. He said capitalists were exploiters and went on to say, ‘Show me a capitalist and I show you a blood sucker’. Both recognised and worked for the unity of Afrikan people globally.
They saw that for the struggle of Afrikans to be successful it must be linked with that of other oppressed and working class peoples. Why? Because they recognised oppression has a global character. Comrade Claudia and brother Malcolm were talented and militant organisers who understood the necessity of building a highly disciplined political organisation. Today this is a necessary precondition if we, as Afrikan working class people, are to end centuries old exploitation and oppression. This discipline must be accompanied by a clear political and ideological outlook: Marxism, Leninism, Maoism, under the leadership of the Afrikan working class.
Claudia was born in Trinidad whereas brother Malcolm X was born in the USA. Being the indomitable fighters they were, they inspired millions. Yet in 1950s and 1960s both were targets of the US government counterintelligence (COINTELPRO) the aim of which was to disrupt, harass and, where possible, ‘neutralise’ (kill). Claudia, who had been organising in the USA, was deported
to Britain in 1955. Recognising culture as an important weapon
of struggle she established the political newspaper, The West
Indian Gazette. She also organised carnival events as a unifying
force. Notting Hill Carnival is the outcome of her activism here in Britain.
Malcolm X gained his political experience within Nation of Islam. But he was to reject their narrow nationalism. He saw the national
movement of Afrikan people in the US (civil rights) as integral to
the worldwide fight against capitalist imperialism. Claudia Jones,
plagued by ill health, died in 1964 aged 48. Malcolm X was
assassinated the next year, aged 39.
Join us to visit Claudia Jones’ grave at 1.00 pm Sunday 24th Feb.
Meet at the main gates of Highgate Cemetery, Swains Lane,
Highgate Village, London N6 6PJ (Entry fee £3.00)
Archway Tube Northern Line.