Monday, 17 September 2007

A COMMENT ON "REPARATIONS FOR SLAVERY"*


"I have mixed feelings about reparations, as I live extremely focused in the 'possibilities of the moment'. I am not one of those Africans born in America that is still laden with chains and bound to the misery of 200 years of slavery imposed upon my people. 200 years is a scant nothing in the continuum of Life, and especially when for most of those eons, people of my color and from my continent ruled, provided the dominant impetus for knowledge, and understanding of the cosmic, spiritual and natural world.

Many people here wave the flag of reparations as they sing their "The white man is the source of all our problems" blues/anthem. So I have not given it much serious attention. That is not to say however, that I don't support more being definitely done to atone for the loss, pain and suffering slavery caused. Saying you are sorry, and trying to show it in material ways could be a part of a healing process. But in my heart, I know that giving money, and land alone....will not be the answer.

Another issue to me is who should the reparations be paid to? The individuals here? How about the nations themselves that suffered the lose of some of the strongest and best of their population?

Reparations from this dominant culture are a tricky game. Many things have to be in place for the deliverance and transfer of wealth that we're talking about. And those elements just aren't present today.

I've studied Jews for years, and their dazzling feat of extracting more wealth from the nations of the world, rounding up much of their lost valuable art, and even winning damages against German industries for their 'slave' labor during WWII was awesome. But from my analysis, it was the result of long planning and covert moves, to place Jews in strategic places in the government and society, so that at every needed step of the process, someone was there to carry the ball and smooze the dominant group into acquiescence.

In my research, I once found a website that delineated how many Jews Clinton had in his administration. Because a man like Clinton being the President at the time, was pertinent to the process. In fact, it was his own, that's right, the U. S. Asst. Secretary of State, Stuart Eisenstadt, that negotiated the fund the compensated Jews. He was the most powerful of those positioned to accomplish this objective.Check this excerpt from a Salon article about how he used his position.

"Between 1996 and 1999, Under Secretary of State Stuart Eisenstadt pressed the CIA to release material regarding looted Jewish assets. This was when the topic gained international attention with the disclosures about gold stolen by the Nazis that eventually wound up in Swiss banks. "All we could pry loose were a few files and that was with the State Department leaning on them," recalls one person familiar with the process."

So you see Jews were in position in all branches of the government. You also had a president that would go along. The economy was strong, and Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan was seen as responsible for that. It was a wonderful coming together of synergistic forces that allowed the response to be Yes. And the Jews took it...and ran with it, knowing that it was simply a window of opportunity that might shut very quickly, and never open again. The media did not even 'lay on it' as it does on other provocative and controversial issues. Why not?....because they control the major media and news outlets in the U.S.

Does a similar united and coordinated thrust to recover the wealth and resources already legislated as ours exist within the American African community today? Not hardly. I don't even think that Obama could pull it off.

What do you think of what I've said here? Please feel free to say, Rubbish, or Bullshit!

Last point......I don't see my family story as a reparations issue. I see it as an inheritance claim, as I know the ancestor, and his son would be my great grandmother's half brother. So I (in a perfect world) would be seeking my portion of the family wealth.

In truth I don't think much about reparations.

I know that my wealth is within me, and that like the diamonds and oil of Angola, all I have to do is dig deep, and keep my focus internally directed. Out of what I Am and I've been given as qualities, talents and abilities....if I am grateful, and polish and refine my gifts, surely they will provide well for me."

Kentke

....did I say 'just a quick note?

My Life is so Rich, and so is my world.
Love~Gratitude~Love
***

This comment, fully published in the post below, is from Kentke, a sister of Malgache ancestry who leaves in LA, where she established close ties with Angolan friends (in fact she is a founding member of the Los Angeles U.S-Angolan Friendship Society), including such greats as the internationally acclaimed Angolan artist Antonio Ole, who studied there.
When I received an email from her about this blog the other day, I was so marvelled at the richness of her story, including that of her ancestors from Madagascar who were purchased by William Duke, the father of the founder of Duke University - the same Dukes of immense tobacco wealth, that I asked her to give a thought at the idea of talking about it here in the blog, as part of the "reparations" debate. And so she did... I'm so grateful!

***
{Please click on the picture above to access sources on the Reparations Debate}

"I have mixed feelings about reparations, as I live extremely focused in the 'possibilities of the moment'. I am not one of those Africans born in America that is still laden with chains and bound to the misery of 200 years of slavery imposed upon my people. 200 years is a scant nothing in the continuum of Life, and especially when for most of those eons, people of my color and from my continent ruled, provided the dominant impetus for knowledge, and understanding of the cosmic, spiritual and natural world.

Many people here wave the flag of reparations as they sing their "The white man is the source of all our problems" blues/anthem. So I have not given it much serious attention. That is not to say however, that I don't support more being definitely done to atone for the loss, pain and suffering slavery caused. Saying you are sorry, and trying to show it in material ways could be a part of a healing process. But in my heart, I know that giving money, and land alone....will not be the answer.

Another issue to me is who should the reparations be paid to? The individuals here? How about the nations themselves that suffered the lose of some of the strongest and best of their population?

Reparations from this dominant culture are a tricky game. Many things have to be in place for the deliverance and transfer of wealth that we're talking about. And those elements just aren't present today.

I've studied Jews for years, and their dazzling feat of extracting more wealth from the nations of the world, rounding up much of their lost valuable art, and even winning damages against German industries for their 'slave' labor during WWII was awesome. But from my analysis, it was the result of long planning and covert moves, to place Jews in strategic places in the government and society, so that at every needed step of the process, someone was there to carry the ball and smooze the dominant group into acquiescence.

In my research, I once found a website that delineated how many Jews Clinton had in his administration. Because a man like Clinton being the President at the time, was pertinent to the process. In fact, it was his own, that's right, the U. S. Asst. Secretary of State, Stuart Eisenstadt, that negotiated the fund the compensated Jews. He was the most powerful of those positioned to accomplish this objective.Check this excerpt from a Salon article about how he used his position.

"Between 1996 and 1999, Under Secretary of State Stuart Eisenstadt pressed the CIA to release material regarding looted Jewish assets. This was when the topic gained international attention with the disclosures about gold stolen by the Nazis that eventually wound up in Swiss banks. "All we could pry loose were a few files and that was with the State Department leaning on them," recalls one person familiar with the process."

So you see Jews were in position in all branches of the government. You also had a president that would go along. The economy was strong, and Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan was seen as responsible for that. It was a wonderful coming together of synergistic forces that allowed the response to be Yes. And the Jews took it...and ran with it, knowing that it was simply a window of opportunity that might shut very quickly, and never open again. The media did not even 'lay on it' as it does on other provocative and controversial issues. Why not?....because they control the major media and news outlets in the U.S.

Does a similar united and coordinated thrust to recover the wealth and resources already legislated as ours exist within the American African community today? Not hardly. I don't even think that Obama could pull it off.

What do you think of what I've said here? Please feel free to say, Rubbish, or Bullshit!

Last point......I don't see my family story as a reparations issue. I see it as an inheritance claim, as I know the ancestor, and his son would be my great grandmother's half brother. So I (in a perfect world) would be seeking my portion of the family wealth.

In truth I don't think much about reparations.

I know that my wealth is within me, and that like the diamonds and oil of Angola, all I have to do is dig deep, and keep my focus internally directed. Out of what I Am and I've been given as qualities, talents and abilities....if I am grateful, and polish and refine my gifts, surely they will provide well for me."

Kentke

....did I say 'just a quick note?

My Life is so Rich, and so is my world.
Love~Gratitude~Love
***

This comment, fully published in the post below, is from Kentke, a sister of Malgache ancestry who leaves in LA, where she established close ties with Angolan friends (in fact she is a founding member of the Los Angeles U.S-Angolan Friendship Society), including such greats as the internationally acclaimed Angolan artist Antonio Ole, who studied there.
When I received an email from her about this blog the other day, I was so marvelled at the richness of her story, including that of her ancestors from Madagascar who were purchased by William Duke, the father of the founder of Duke University - the same Dukes of immense tobacco wealth, that I asked her to give a thought at the idea of talking about it here in the blog, as part of the "reparations" debate. And so she did... I'm so grateful!

***
{Please click on the picture above to access sources on the Reparations Debate}

3 comments:

Koluki said...

Dear Sister,

Thanks so much for having taken the time to comment at length and with so much insight on this issue. I've replied to your other questions in the post below.
I won't say neither rubbish nor bullshit to your opinion because I find it very thoughtful and well researched and, once again thanks a lot for it.
As for my own opinion, I thought that the best way to express it would be to translate and transcribe here extracts from the last few comments on this post: http://koluki.blogspot.com/2007/03/abolition-of-slave-trade-200-years-on.html

Canadiano said...
(…) In relation to the holocaust – another aspect that has been talked about only timidly are the reparations for the slavery. I find it a huge injustice that reparations are paid to the Jews whereas when it comes to the Africans – “stop there”! Whats your opinion?

Koluki said...
(…) The issue of reparations is too complex, but it’s clear that, in comparison with the victims of the holocaust, there are double standards as you say. That in my opinion results from the influence and financial power of the Jews in the West, whom with their very strong lobbies managed to obtain not only all the support that Israel has been getting, but also legislation that has enabled the condemnation of the said denialist…
Now, as far as reparations for slavery are concerned, the only black community in the diaspora with the political influence to win that claim is the American. However, they are far from having the financial clout Jews have. Therefore, only the African states could win that battle. However, several among them, starting with the biggest continental power, South Africa, have demonstrated themselves, if not openly against, at least reticent to show support to that cause…
But the issue is not dead and continues being pushed on by various grassroots movements in all the diaspora.
Personally I’m in favour of reparations.


luis said...
(…) One question: in what way could the so-called "overseas development aid" to Africa be seen as “reparations”?

Koluki said...
(…)
1. Although when asked on which side of the debate I am, I answer that, formally and ethically, I’m in favour of reparations, intimately I think that there not any possible reparations for slavery apart from those the victims and their descendents themselves can spiritually provide to themselves… And that’s in fact what has been happening since the abolition;

2. In relation to the ODI, I would say that if it can be viewed as reparation for anything it would be at most for the colonization… But I strongly recommend that you see this podcast of ‘my heroin’ Ngozi: http://www.africanpath.com/p_blogEntry.cfm?blogEntryID=2089

Kentke said...

My Goodness~
Thank you Koluki for such an honor to appear on your blog, as my introduction to the Blogging world. Your blog and our communication has been a fruitful inspiration, as yesterday (9/16/07), I launched my own blog (smile).

My first post includes the blog on your page, but it is preceeded by a call to celebrate today September 17th, the birth date of Agostinho Neto. It's entitled 'Celebrating the Life of one of Africa's greatest Leaders.'

I hope you and your readers will check the "Knewz from Meroe West",
at http://knewzfrommeroewest.blogspot.com/
and share from the Heart. So many of Angola's children are now called (African-)Americans....it's only natural and perfect that we talk, ....get reacquainted...and ultimately, see what we come up with. Dr. Neto would be quite pleased.

Koluki said...

WELCOME TO THE BLOGOSPHERE KENTKE!