Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Workers Viewpoint Organization

All Out for African Liberation Day!

First Published: Workers Viewpoint, Vol. 2, No. 5, June 1977.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
Copyright: This work is in the Public Domain under the Creative Commons Common Deed. You can freely copy, distribute and display this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line as your source, include the url to this work, and note any of the transcribers, editors & proofreaders above.

On 125th Street in Harlem, the masses remember and love African Liberation Day (ALD). Passing out literature about this year’s ALD, and talking with the masses as they stop for information, many respond, “Oh yeah, brother, I remember that. I’ll be in Washington, D.C. Where can I sign up for a bus ride?” And African Liberation Support Committee workers are getting this kind of response all over the country.

On May 28, hundreds and thousands of people from all over the United States will converge on Washington, D.C. to demonstrate their support for the struggles of the southern African people against the white minority regimes, U.S. imperialism, and Soviet Social Imperialism. Under the leadership of the ALSC, workers of all nationalities, particularly Afro-American, and people from all four corners of the U.S. are actively building for this year’s African Liberation Day demonstration and march.

Under the leadership of the ALSC, thousands of Afro-American and peoples of all nationalities since 1972, have come out annually to show their solidarity for the liberation movements in southern Africa. The very first ALD was a tremendous success, as over 80,000 people in the U.S., Canada, and Caribbean marched and rallied in support of the liberation struggles in Angola, Mozambique, and Guinea-Bissau against Portuguese colonialism, and in support of the struggles of the peoples of Azania (South Africa) , Zimbabwe (Rhodesia), and Namibia (South-west Africa), against illegal white minority regimes. This firm demonstration of proletarian internationalism by the U.S. multi-national working class and oppressed peoples laid the basis for ALD to become an annual event organized by the ALSC. In 1973, the mobilizations were decentralized to provide for more initiative by local ALSC chapters. Seventy-five to eighty thousand people, mainly Afro-American, marched and demonstrated in over thirty cities in the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean, as it too was a resounding show of solidarity. In 1972 and 1973, the ALSC mainly carried out work in support of the liberation movements in Africa, but In 1973-74, the ALSC began to actively take up issues that affected people and the entire working class in the U.S., as the ALSC adopted a domestic program. During that period the ALSC took up the issues of police repression, welfare, the energy crisis rip-off, the Watergate corruption, etc., broadened its base and expanded to over 50 chapters in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean. In 1974, the march and demonstration were again centered in Washington, D.C., as the ALSC organized the historic conference “Which Way for the Black Liberation Movement?”, to facilitate a higher level of clarity on some of the burning questions which emerged out of the practical work of the ALSC. Fifteen thousand marched in Washington, D.C., and many participated in the conference, culminating a weekend of solidarity with the African people, and unity and struggle over the task of workers and oppressed people in the U.S.

The historic 1974 conference was organized to debate the questions that were emerging inside the ALSC and throughout the entire Black Liberation Movement. ALSC was one of the first mass organizations that was able to unite just about all the various forces inside the Black Liberation Movement into a national organization, and consequently many different views emerged as to how to carry out support work around the liberation movements. Some wanted to limit ALSC’s work to support for African struggles only, and were against ALSC’s supporting and taking up struggles in the U.S. , or taking positions on the struggles of other people like the Palestinian or Southeast Asian people’s struggle against imperialism. These more backward forces were also saying that the enemy of the Afro-American and African peoples were all white (European) peoples, which obviously meant that ALSC’s work could not be taken out amongst white workers, and other oppressed people in the U.S. In the Conference, the backward Pan-Africanist views represented by forces like Stokely CarmichaeI were soundly defeated and rejected by the progressive forces who were trying to “turn the corner” from Pan-Africanism to Marxism and struggling to base the program of ALSC firmly in the concrete reality of the U.S., and unite with peoples all over the world struggling against imperialism.

In 1975, once again local marches and demonstrations were held in numerous cities across the U.S. as ALSC continued to carry out its program of linking the struggles of the southern African peoples with the struggles of the working class and oppressed in the U.S. In 1975, the ALD demonstrations were clearly multi- national.

In 1976, opportunists tried to wreck and split ALSC, and prevent it from carrying out its program and continuing to mobilize thousands in support of the liberation movements and against imperialism. Very little work toward the annual mobilization was carried out, as the ALSC was racked by internal differences and the attempts of some groups to wreck and split the ALSC.

Last year, groups such as the All African Peoples Revolutionary Party (AAPRP) led by Stokely Carmichael attempted to take advantage of the temporary setback in the work of the ALSC by organizing their own ALD’s to spread confusion and incorrect ideas amongst the Afro- American and U.S. people. For example, with no ALSC leading the way in 1976, Carmichael’s group called an ALD demonstration in Washington, D.C. in the same park that the ALSC had traditionally used. Over 5,000 people spontaneously responded, as many thought that the march and demonstration was the one annually organized by the ALSC. But when people got there, they were served Carmichael’s bourgeois nationalist trash, that all white people were the enemy of Afro-American people , that ALD was for Afro- American people only, and that the main struggle for the Afro-American in the U.S. should be the liberation of Africa and not against our own U.S. exploiting and ruling class. This was precisely the trash that the overwhelming majority of Afro-American activists and revolutionaries had rejected at the historic conference in 1974. Not surprisingly, many progressive people were completely turned off by the event organized by Carmichael, and his attempt to “pimp off” the historically good work of the ALSC.

But in 1977, the ALSC has weathered the attempts to split and wreck it, and to prevent it from leading the U.S. people in supporting the liberation struggles in southern Africa. Today, the ALSC is healthy, vigorous , growing , and leading the U.S. people in showing their solidarity with the liberation struggles, and in making ALD a day that will continue to sink deep in the hearts and minds of the Afro-American and entire working class and oppressed people. All Out for ALD; under the leadership of the ALSC!

Southern African Peoples Struggle on Rise

1976 and 1977 have been years of victorious advance for the liberation struggles in southern Africa. A forefront of struggle against white settler colonialism and against U.S. and Soviet social-imperialism, the struggles of the southern African people have dealt these reactionaries serious setbacks and have provided lessons and inspiration for workers’ and oppressed people the world over.

In Azania, the African masses rose up to deal telling blows to the fascist white-minority regime. In June, 1976, the township of Soweto exploded, as African students and workers continued their decades-long resistance to the brutal apartheid system. Continuing until today, a new wave of militance and rebellion by the Azanian masses has shaken the very foundations of the illegal Vorster regime. Wave upon wave, African students and workers have fought against the pitifully low wages, the denial of even the most elementary democratic rights, the brutal pass-laws system which allows Africans to be arrested without trial or hearing if they do not have their pass-book on them at all times. Fighting against the system that splits up families for years at a time in order to ensure a cheap labor supply for the white-minority regime, the African majority has fought heroically for political rule over their own country.

In Zimbabwe, the main liberation organizations have stepped up guerilla warfare against the illegal Smith white-minority regime, signaling its inevitable doom. Faced with defeat, the two superpowers have stepped up their meddling in the affairs of the Zimbabwean people in a desperate attempt to sabotage the coming victory of the liberation struggle. But the liberation organizations posed a common front against the Smith regime, the Kissinger plan and all attempts to sabotage their unity in struggle against the Smith regime and superpower interference. The unity of the liberation organizations thoroughly exposed the maneuvering of the Smith regime and the US imperialists and further demonstrated that the victory of the Zimbabwean people would only come through self-reliance and armed struggle.

In Namibia, the African masses have rejected the plans of the Vorster regime to carry out a sham independence scheme by turning over Namibia to a puppet government that would leave Namibia firmly in the hands of the white-minority. The designs of the Vorster regime were thoroughly exposed in Azania itself, as the fascist regime carried out its sham plan of independence for the Transkei, the infamous separate development program. Extremely poor land, economically and politically dependent on South Africa, and key positions such as heads of the army, police, etc., recruited and staffed by the fascists, the Transkei sham independence plan was rejected by the Azanian masses and condemned by the revolutionary people throughout the world. With such clear examples of the treachery of the white-minority regimes, is it any wonder that the Namibian masses have resolved to fight to the very end for independence and liberation.

1976-77 has been a great year of advancement for the liberation struggles of the southern African peoples. African men, women and children have united more firmly in their determined struggle to win liberation through self-reliance and armed struggle. Their struggle will surely triumph!


In 1972, when Harvard University refused to divest itself of its shares in Gulf Oil stock, Afro-American and other students seized Massachusetts Hall, a top level Harvard administration building. Aware that Gulf Oil’s holdings in the oil rich Cabinda province in Angola provided the Portuguese regime with 50 of the revenue needed to continue its colonial wars of oppression against the African people in Angola, Mozambique and Guinea-Bissau, the students moved on Harvard and chanted slogans such as “US out of South East Asia, Harvard out of Gulf!” Afro-American and white longshoremen refused to unload chrome from Zimbabwe in solidarity with the struggles of the African workers; Afro-American and white workers rallied against the Southern Georgia Utility Company because it attempted to import cheaper coal from South Africa and condemned the Southern Georgia Co. for attacking the jobs of US workers and participating in the super-exploitation of African workers. Auto workers in the US demonstrated and rallied against Chrysler, Ford and General Motors plants in South Africa that exploit the labor of their class brothers and sisters. Polaroid workers condemned the Polaroid Company for making the pass cards used by the South African white-minority regime to maintain its fascist system.

The US working class has always condemned and struggled against US imperialist exploitation and oppression of the southern African peoples. This is the reason why the main objectives of the 1973 ALD were to raise funds for the liberation movements and raise the question of the US’s involvement and participation in relation to Africa. In 1974, the ALSC chairperson said at the annual ALD demonstration that “We can take pride in our ability to link up the struggles against imperialism and colonialism in Africa, with those against monopoly capitalism and racism within the USA and North America.”

It is the rising consciousness of the US workers and oppressed peoples themselves, along with the developing revolutionary struggles in southern Africa, and the US imperialists’ contention with the Soviet Social-imperialists, that have forced the US imperialists to attempt to change their tactics. Parading as friends of the liberation struggles and seeking a “just settlement” and “majority rule”, the US imperialists have pushed the likes of Andrew Young to the fore to carry their mantle for them. But the “outspoken” Young can neither fool the African, nor US peoples, as they know that only self-reliance and armed struggle will carry them onto the road of genuine liberation and independence.

Expose Soviet Social-ImperiaIism

The fierce liberation struggles in southern Africa have been part and parcel of the exposure and defeat of U.S. imperialism by the people of the entire world, such that today, U.S. imperialism is no longer the undisputed, top dog, imperialist power in the world, but instead, a declining imperialist power.

While the US imperialists are being kicked out and have been exposed in southern Africa, the Soviet Social-imperialists have tried to sneak in the back door. Operating under the sign-board of socialism, this once mighty socialist country which has turned capitalist, is trying to spread its influence in southern Africa. The Soviet Social-Imperialists are the main danger to the independence and liberation struggles of the African peoples. Because they are a new rising and more aggressive imperialist power, they today are the main source of world war. The Soviet Social-imperialists, after the Angolan people dealt the Portuguese colonialists a severe defeat, instigated a split among the various liberation groups, incited a civil war in Angola, imported Cuban mercenaries, and proved to all that they are in no way “friends of national liberation struggles”, but in fact a new superpower colonialist and war mongerer. Trying to establish a base in southern Africa so that it too can exploit the African peoples and contend with US imperialism, the Soviet Social imperialists have armed mercenaries to invade and undermine the sovereignty of Zaire, and in general “opened a front” on the African continent. Trying to step into the shoes of the US imperialists, the more dangerous Soviet Social-imperialists will only suffer the same fate – exposure and defeat.

It is this superpower contention that is the root cause of intranquility on the African continent, and the cause of the danger of a new world war today. The African peoples and the peoples of the entire world must combat both super-powers and their preparations for a new world war. This is why one of the major themes for this year’s ALD demonstration in support of the liberation struggles will be to “oppose superpower war preparations”.


Opportunists of all stripes are going all out to try to spread as much confusion as possible around ALD. One such group is the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP). This group has formed a bogus ALD coalition which is also sponsoring a demonstration in Washington, DC on May 28th. Unleashing a barrage of slander against the ALSC and the WVO, the RCP is only continuing to expose themselves as splitters and wreckers, as a thoroughly opportunist petty-bourgeois trend.

This is the same RCP, formerly the Revolutionary Union (RU), which opposed the ALSC in the beginning (1972), calling it bourgeois nationalist. The RU’s chauvinism blinded them to the tremendous potential and revolutionary role that ALSC could play (and which it has demonstrated) in building a powerful anti-imperialist support movement for the liberation struggles in southern Africa, while at the same time raising the political understanding of US workers, particularly Afro-Americans. It was only after the ALSC was able to mobilize thousands of people to demonstrate against US imperialism and in support of the liberation struggles, and only after the developing revolutionary forces in ALSC began to lead the struggle for greater clarity around the correct way to support the liberation struggles, that the RU then said that “this is something we’d better get hip to”.

The stand of the RU was no different than that of the CPUSA (Communist Party USA) who also condemned ALSC as being bourgeois nationalist. After ALSC was able to mobilize thousands, the CPUSA dressed up their “star” Angela Davis, sent her to Africa to get some credentials as a supporter of the liberation struggles, and tried to push her forward with a bogus liberation support committee, which the masses rejected.

Ever since the formation of the ALSC, the RU-RCP has done absolutely nothing toward building it, but instead has “hung around”, waiting for an opportunity to ride on the mass movement that only the ALSC was able to build. Is there any wonder why in the last year the RCP-RSB has suddenly sponsored a rash of demonstrations and conferences around southern Africa? Is there any other reason than that the RCP has seen this as the chance to ride on the revolutionary sentiment of the masses, in order to spread their poison? Of course not!

The WVO exposed how the RCP was attempting to take over the ALSC through their front group the Revolutionary Workers Congress (RWC). And they now stand naked in their philistine fear of struggle, and opportunism, exposed to everyone. In the ALSC National Steering Committee the RWC maneuvered a steering committee member off, obstructed the work at every turn, and changed the original ALSC principles of unity (reversing the verdict on Soviet Social imperialism) in order to push ALSC into the “jive” ALD coalition led by the RCP. The WVO member fought their maneuvering at every turn, but always upheld the decisions of the Steering Committee until a national conference could be held to let the membership decide once and for all which line is the correct line to lead ALSC. After the RWC majority bloc began to disintegrate as their opportunist maneuvering became more and more arrogant, and other steering committee members were able to keep the RWC from paving the way for an RCP take over, the majority of steering committee members rejected all of the proposals pushed through by the RWC. But what did the RWC opportunists do? Rather than uphold the decisions of the National Steering Committee, and struggle out the lines at the National Conference, they joined the RCP ALD coalition and had the audacity to put the names of ALSC chapters on the list of endorsers of the coalition. This was concrete proof that the RCP had only one intention – to split and wreck the ALSC. When the RWC steering committee members were told that the support for a counter-demonstration was in violation of the National Steering Committee, and that they had to choose one or the other, they chose to go with the RCP. Consequently, they were purged. This is the actual explanation of what went down. One Steering Committee member who had historically voted along with, and still supported the position of the RWC, but who also rejected the maneuverings of the RWC and RCP, voted to uphold the decisions of the Steering Committee as binding, since they were upheld when the RWC temporarily dominated the line and policy of the ALSC.

Now the RCP is going around spreading that it is the real ALSC and that it has the majority of “active” ALSC chapters, which anyone who knows anything about ALSC knows that the chapters that have endorsed the RCP coalition are those inactive chapters of the RWC. Going all out to mobilize for the event the RCP may be able to bring its same motley crew to Washington, the UWOC (Unemployed Workers Organizing Committee), RSB-RCP, etc., and may be able to confuse a few honest people momentarily; but the masses will surely reject this attempt to ride on the mass movement and sentiment that the ALSC did so much to mobilize.

Another group that is sponsoring an ALD march in Washington, DC on the 28th is the All African Peoples Revolutionary Party (AAPRP), led by Stokely “come-back” Carmichael. A much more significant danger than the RCP, particularly among the Afro-American people, Carmichael is using the ALD demonstration to make a comeback. Once a leading Black Power advocate and progressive force in the Black Liberation Movement, Carmichael was unable to “turn the corner” and keep up with the developing revolutionary movement of the Afro-American people. As the revolutionary struggle of the Afro-American people developed, it became increasingly clear to the more conscious forces in that movement that the main enemy of the Afro-American people is the U.S. monopoly capitalist ruling class and not, as Carmichael says, all white people in general; that the overwhelming majority of the Afro-American people are workers and that they are part of a single U.S. multi-national working class, and not, as Carmichael says, Africans in America who just happen to not be at home in Africa; that white workers are part of the single U.S. multinational working class, the only revolutionary class in the U.S., and not, as Carmichael says, an appendage of the capitalist class and just as much the enemy of Afro-American people; that the main struggle of the Afro-American people is to make socialist revolution in the U.S., instead of, as Carmichael says, the main struggle for Afro-American people being focused in Africa. This is the trash that Carmichael is promoting and organizing his ALD around. This is the same trash that was defeated in the 1974 ALSC Conference in which Carmichael’s line was rejected.

Trying to lead the Afro-American people backward and promote his own career, Carmichael has called a demonstration for Afro-Americans only, and openly in support of Soviet social-imperialism, one of the two main enemies of the people of the entire world today, claiming that it is a friend of the African peoples. Stooping to such low tactics, Carmichael is even saying that it was he who started the original ALD.

Both these opportunists, the RCP and the AAPRP, are staking their ALD’s on confusing the masses. The RCP is attempting to wear the mantle of ALSC and listing endorsements of Afro-Americans to give it the appearance of having some influence in the Afro- American movement. Stokely’s AAPRP is hoping that the masses will not know the difference between the bogus ALD sponsored by him and the ALD sponsored by the ALSC. Both are attempting to ride on the history, tradition, and confidence in the ALD built up in their hearts and minds by the ALSC. Confusion is in their interests, but clarity is in the interests of the masses and ALSC.

The U.S. masses have taken a clear stand against imperialist exploitation and oppression, as shown by the massive demonstrations against U.S. imperialist aggression against the Vietnamese and entire S.E. Asian peoples, and by the mobilizations in support of the liberation movements in southern Africa. Once again, on ALD 1977, the masses under the leadership of the ALSC will show their solidarity with the struggles of the southern African peoples, and their opposition to both super-powers.