Statement by the International Workers Unity-Fourth International (IWU_FI)
The murder of two more black men, Philando Castile (32, teacher, in Minnesota) and Alton Sterling (37 years, CD seller, Louisiana) by the American racist police sparked large protests in the United States, which reverberated in Europe. The murders were filmed and broadcast on social networks, helping to visualise the enormous racist brutality. In both cases, there was no resistance against the action of police who were allegedly acting on minor infractions (Castile had a broken headlight of his car and was killed because the police “suspected” he could draw a weapon).
That is, these are typical racist murders that have made infamous the United States and its police.
Just days later, another black man, David Brown, a veteran of the invasion of Afghanistan, killed five white police officers, as part of a march of blacks, Latinos and whites against the killings of Minnesota and Louisiana. Before he was killed, he could state he did not belong to any terrorist organization, and just wanted to kill white cops.
A desperate reaction to so much racist violence, but wrong and which is used by the US government for greater repression, to unify the racist police, and for “bad” Bush and “good” Obama to appear united and holding hands at the funeral of the dead policemen in Dallas. The road ahead is to expand the demonstrations that broke out in many cities in the US.
The United States has experienced several episodes full of racial tension since more than one year ago, especially since the death in the city of Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014, of unarmed young black Michael Brown at the hands of a white cop who was later exonerated of all charges.
The numbers of those killed by police are chilling. In total 519 people have been reported killed by police in 2016, of which 23 percent were black (i.e. double the proportion of the black population). Also, the “Latino” youth (i.e. all Latin Americans or their children) are victims of this racist violence. The United States is also the country with the most prisoners in relation to its population and this proportion grows threefold in blacks compared to whites. Blacks and Hispanics are 60 percent of prisoners, despite being only 30 percent of the population.
Because of this situation, a new civil rights movement has emerged in the US, called Black Lives Matter, which demands an end to racist police violence. The right, with assistance from the bourgeois press, calls to prosecute activists of the organisation Black Lives Matter and accuse them of “violent”. They are creating a climate of fear to repress the African-American community, the workers, and all progressive movements.
From the IWU–FI we join the demands of the black population to put an end to racist violence, an end to police impunity and judicial protection to police, punishment, and expulsion from the service of all police perpetrators.
Extending the mobilization in the United States itself and international solidarity are essential to stop these attacks. We call on the democratic organisations of workers and students, to speak out in solidarity with the American black people and for an end to racist violence.
International Workers Unity–Fourth International (IWU–FI)
13 July 2016