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International Socialism, November 1975


C.R. Williams

Blood In My Eye


From International Socialism, No.83, November 1975, pp.??.
Transcribed & marked up by by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


Blood In My Eye
George Jackson
Penguin, 50p.

George Jackson, author of Blood In My Eye wrote with conviction of destiny, indeed imminent destruction. One cannot fail to notice the blood congealing, dripping not from one eye only -but both eyes, ears, hands, feet, brains and the heart. He had managed to smuggle out his manuscript only just a few days before his assassination in San Quentin jail on August 21, 1971. He leaps to defend his kid brother Jonathan, an avowed communist revolutionary whose days were also cut short when a lad of merely 17 years. George in the earliest pages of the book spread bare the soldier’s heart of Jonathan by the letters which he had written to his peer George as prison epistles, a true soliloquy of the Soledad Brothers and Sisters. One cannot escape Jonathan’s loyalty for the movement and all it stands for as he utters threats of violence and bitterness for his enemies; his keen awareness for organisation, his absorption for the revolutionary ideology of the Black Panther for which he and George so prematurely sacrificed their lives – Black martyrs of the people’s oppressed cause. Injustices of society especially law and order when applied to the black man are constantly exposed and resisted by the writer and his brother in several pages of the book.

Their rebellion is an insight of what is going on inside the imprisoned minds of the unfortunate blacks not only of the USA, but as happens in South Africa, Rhodesia, Portugal, Latin America, Britain and indeed wherever the capitalists or as the author sometimes labels them – the fascist pigs – exist. A yearning desire of the author to liberate his comrades instantly comes through in page after page: take the reference to one of his attempts to defend himself inside the prison system – the moment he attacked Anglo-Saxon law – he was abandoned by the black lawyers of Amerikkka.

Here are a few quotes that are so irresistible:

‘The blacks are confused in an honest way, they do not understand economic and political subtleties of the fascists ... The westernize black right wing puppets,’ claim the author, ‘are governed by two ways; either hierarchy the ruling class and the egalitarianism which is the people’s government.’

‘Governments and economics,’ argues George, ‘is socialism dialectical and materialistic.’

‘Some people,’ say the author, ‘argue that Africa will invent something unique, it won’t be Socialism, Communism or Capitalism.’ George dismisses this as a despondent cliche. The great majority of black people reject racism! There is no doubt where the blood flows from the author.

‘As a slave the social phenomenon engages my whole consciousness this is of course revolution – The slave and revolution are born to a premature death, a menial subsistence wage-worker, odd job man, the cleaner, the caught, the men under hatches without bail ... that’s me ... The colonial victim, anyone who passed the civil service examination yesterday can kill me today with complete immunity, I will also add with impunity.’

You must read his witty and crisp definitions of the various shades of revolutions, in the context of our modern capitalist society, the one per cent who hold control and manipulate the remaining 99 per cent. He believes ownership and resources must be broken up and transferred to the 99 per cent of the have-nots. The cry for blood has now evolved with a call from the grave a message for all blacks now alive which George addresses as the nation of slaves whose wealth consists of some ‘worn’ clothes perhaps a worthless car, a roof of sorts over their heads ... but who have been conditioned to feel rich, or at least contented ... The task of the revolutionary is to manufacture revolution.

A string of ideas are expounded in depth like: What is consciousness? What are the various types of repression; the politics of leaders and organisers inside history, the recruitment tests; the communes, the shock of guerrilla warfare – with full insights of the martial arts; infiltration and education of the vanguard army and the proletariat ...

The plastic typewriter of the author pounded the doctrine of the People’s Army, crimes against the black victims inside foul and dirty jails the indictment of society to repression and injustices generally, the various class enemies, the lumpen men vs the authoritarian syndrome, the various elements of human pigs and their mentality, the petit bourgeois or mini-middle-class professionals and students.

Would you like to know who are the subversive force to the workers’ movement? Is it the unions or the bureaucratic agents? The cyclic functionaries who live and function in cycles only these and the foregoing types are in need of either conversion or possibly termination.

Bouquets are given to: Angela Davis, Jess B Simple, Lenin, Guevara, Fanon, Ho Chi Minh, Chairman Mao, Nkrumah, Lumumba, Toure, Castro, and fellow comrades Greg, Bobby Seale, Ericka Huggins, Ruchell Magee, James Carr, John and Huey P. Newton. You must read the book to find out why the author, his brother and some of the old faithfuls met untimely and brutal deaths ... My answer is axiomatic ... What will be yours?

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