Other Group

Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations

Website:

blackisbackcoalition.org/

Location:

St. Petersburg, FL

Type:

Civil Rights Advocacy Group

Formation:

2009

Chairman:

Omali Yeshitela

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The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations is a St. Petersburg, Florida-based radical-left group that primarily opposes U.S. foreign policy and advocates for reparations for black people and other non-whites. The U.S. Justice Department indicted the group’s leader, Omali Yeshitela, for acting as an unregistered foreign agent for Russia in April 2023. 1

The group is associated with the radical-left African People’s Socialist Party, with the two groups sharing the same address and leadership. 2 3

Background

More than 15 Black activists from the African People’s Socialist Party, the NAACP, MOVE, the Green Party, the Black Agenda Report, and other groups founded the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations in September 2009. 4

The group protested the policies of then-President Barack Obama, including his defense spending, “mass incarceration,” Obamacare, lack of relief to Hurricane Katrina survivors in New Orleans, and what it called “predatory” lending. 5

As of October 2023, the group claimed 18 Black-led organizations as members. 6

Political Stances

List of Demands

The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations published a list of 19 demands of the group. 7

The group supports a complete withdrawal of all U.S. troops from the Middle East, especially Iraq and Afghanistan, and an end to U.S. military operations in Pakistan. 8

The group supports an immediate end to U.S. support for what it calls the “illegitimate, white settler colonial government of Israel.” 9

The group supports a Palestinian state and the “right of return” for all Palestinians. 10

The group demands reparations for “hundreds of years of slavery, colonial oppression, exploitation, terror and deprivation” that black people allegedly continue to suffer “to this day.” 11

The group demanded the return of bailout money given to car companies and instead demanded it be given to Black auto workers. 12

The group demands reparations for the “Africans and Mexicans”  who had subprime mortgages and lost their homes through foreclosures. 13

The group opposes state and local budget cuts and supports defunding police, instead wanting those funds to go to “the African community.” The group demands reparations for black Hurricane Katrina survivors. 14

The group demanded the release of Sundiata Acoli, other members of the Black Liberation Army, and other claimed “political prisoners.” 15

The group demands free health care for Black people and reparations for Black farmers. 16

The group demands the prosecution of U.S. government officials for torture and the elimination of both U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Africa Command. 17

The group demands the forgiving of all debt for African countries and the removal of all U.S. troops from Colombia. 18

The group demands an end to the Cuban embargo and the normalization of relations with the country. 19

The group denounced the election of President Barack Obama as “a new face for white power in black face” that did not really represent Black people. 20

2010 Protest of Bill Clinton and Haiti Policy

In November 2010, the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations protested former President Bill Clinton, demanding that he leave Harlem because he was the “poster child of gentrification.” The group also protested U.S. policy in Haiti and accused the Clinton Foundation of “looting” Haiti after it was struck by a devastating earthquake earlier that year. 21

2011 Philadelphia March

In November 2011, the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations marched in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania demanding an end to “the many imperialist wars being carried out against the majority of the world’s people.” The group denounced Native American reservations as “concentration camps” and demanded the release of Mumia Abu Jamal, who was convicted of murdering a police officer, and the MOVE 9, radical-left Philadelphia activists who were convicted of involvement in the murder of a police officer. 22

Protesting 2022 Midterms

In November 2022, the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations held an annual march on the White House and criticized the Democratic Party for allegedly not meeting the interests of Black people at home or abroad. The group denounced the Safer America Plan, which increased law enforcement funding. The associated African People’s Socialist Party accused the U.S. government distracting Black people from advocating for reparations. 23

Yeshitela Indictment

In April 2023, the U.S. Justice Department indicted the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations’ leader, Omali Yeshitela, 24 and others for working as unregistered foreign agents of Russia. 25 The FBI raided his house and the offices of the African People’s Socialist Party, which he also runs, in July 2022. Yeshitela denied the charges, claiming it was an attack on him and his party because he traveled to Russia and opposed U.S. support for Ukraine. 26

Feud With International ANSWER

In October 2023, the Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations published an article attacking the Party for Socialism and Liberation and its associated group International ANSWER for splitting the African and Palestinian protest campaigns by scheduling a pro-Palestinian march the same day as its annual march on the White House. The group attacked International ANSWER for its “white leadership” and for not supporting African liberation movements. 27

Relationship With African People’s Socialist Party

The Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations is associated with the far-left African People’s Socialist Party. The two groups share an address and leadership, and Omali Yeshitela chairs both organizations. 28 29 30

References

  1. Kennedy, Dana. “4 ‘African Socialists’ Charged with Election Meddling for Russia after FBI Raided Their Homes.” New York Post, April 21, 2023. https://nypost.com/2023/04/21/socialists-charged-with-aiding-russia-after-fbi-raids/.
  2. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  3. “Contact .” African People’s Socialist Party. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://apspuhuru.org/contact/.
  4. Mrdaveyd. “The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations.” Hip Hop and Politics, September 25, 2009. https://hiphopandpolitics.com/2009/09/25/the-black-is-back-coalition-for-social-justice-peace-and-reparations/.
  5. Mrdaveyd. “The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations.” Hip Hop and Politics, September 25, 2009. https://hiphopandpolitics.com/2009/09/25/the-black-is-back-coalition-for-social-justice-peace-and-reparations/.
  6. “The Black Is Back Coalition Responds to Answer/PSL: ‘Your Actions Speak so Loudly, We Can’t Hear a Word You Say…’” The Burning Spear, October 26, 2023. https://theburningspear.com/the-black-is-back-coalition-responds-to-answerpsl-your-actions-speak-so-loudly-we-cant-hear-a-word-you-say/.
  7. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  8. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  9. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  10. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  11. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  12. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  13. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  14. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  15. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  16. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  17. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  18.  “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  19. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  20.  “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  21. “Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations Calls for Us out of Haiti; Clinton out of Harlem.” The Burning Spear, October 28, 2010. https://theburningspear.com/black-is-back-coalition-for-social-justice-peace-and-reparations-calls-for-us-out-of-haiti-clinton-out-of-harlem/.
  22. “Black Is Back Coalition to Hold National Rally, March and Town Hall Meeting to Stop Imperialist Wars and Build the Resistance.” Common Dreams, October 26, 2011. https://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2011/10/26/black-back-coalition-hold-national-rally-march-and-town-hall-meeting-stop.
  23. Collins, Sam P.K. “Black Is Back Coalition Marches Days before Midterm Races.” The Washington Informer, November 9, 2022. https://www.washingtoninformer.com/black-is-back-coalition-marches-days-before-midterm-races/.
  24. Mayele, Ekenge. “Not One Step Backwards! FBI Attacks the Black Liberation Movement…Again. Drop the Charges Now!” Black Agenda Report, June 7, 2023. https://www.blackagendareport.com/not-one-step-backwards-fbi-attacks-black-liberation-movementagain-drop-charges-now.
  25. “U.S. Citizens and Russian Intelligence Officers Charged with Conspiring to Use U.S. Citizens as Illegal Agents of the Russian Government.” Office of Public Affairs , April 18, 2023. https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/us-citizens-and-russian-intelligence-officers-charged-conspiring-use-us-citizens-illegal.
  26. Kennedy, Dana. “4 ‘African Socialists’ Charged with Election Meddling for Russia after FBI Raided Their Homes.” New York Post, April 21, 2023. https://nypost.com/2023/04/21/socialists-charged-with-aiding-russia-after-fbi-raids/.
  27. “The Black Is Back Coalition Responds to Answer/PSL: ‘Your Actions Speak so Loudly, We Can’t Hear a Word You Say…’” The Burning Spear, October 26, 2023. https://theburningspear.com/the-black-is-back-coalition-responds-to-answerpsl-your-actions-speak-so-loudly-we-cant-hear-a-word-you-say/.
  28. “Demands.” Black is Back Coalition. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://blackisbackcoalition.org/what-we-do/demands/.
  29. “Contact .” African People’s Socialist Party. Accessed June 10, 2024. https://apspuhuru.org/contact/.
  30. Mayele, Ekenge. “Not One Step Backwards! FBI Attacks the Black Liberation Movement…Again. Drop the Charges Now!” Black Agenda Report, June 7, 2023. https://www.blackagendareport.com/not-one-step-backwards-fbi-attacks-black-liberation-movementagain-drop-charges-now.
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Black is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations

1245 18th Ave. South
St. Petersburg, FL