Muslim agitator Sekou Odinga spoke recently at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice at City University of New York, a place where students presumably go to learn about American law and order based on the U.S. Constitution.
But Odinga brought another message.
The community organizer received applause at several points during his speech titled “Minorities and immigrant communities in the U.S. have a right to armed struggle and self-determination.”
Odinga, born Nathanial Burns, joined the Black Panthers in the 1960s and later the Black Liberation Army. He was convicted in a 1984 trial of attempted murder of six police officers related to his role in the deadly Brinks Armored Car robbery in New York. He was released from federal prison in November 2014 after serving 30 years of a 40-year federal and 50-year state sentence.
The Marxist newspaper Workers World published an article in February 2015 celebrating Odinga’s release, stating: “He was unjustly framed on six counts of attempted murder of police for ‘fighting for the freedom of Black people and the building of the Republic of New Africa.’”
Odinga, 73, now travels around speaking and radicalizing young Americans, describing himself as a “former U.S. political prisoner.”
On the campus at CUNY on June 2, he told his audience of mostly Marxist professors and students that the United States was built by “settler colonialism” based upon “fundamental injustices.”
He inadvertently admitted that the generous U.S. immigration system has helped create nations within a nation of unassimilated, “oppressed nations.” These are the people he believes will help spark a revolution to take down the government and replace it with something more “just.”
“The internally oppressed nations, the indigenous people, New Africans, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, Hawaiians, etc., have the right to freedom and self-determination,” he said. “They have a right to struggle, using whatever tactics and strategies, armed and otherwise, for their self-defense and liberation.”
Odinga was speaking at the opening plenary session of the annual Left Forum convention.
The following clip was captured by Middle East Media Research Insitute, also alled MEMRI:
Mass incarceration has been used to “repress, control and destroy black self-determination,” Odinga said.
“This is the same way the war on terror and the xenophobic war on immigrants is being used to control and repress Muslims and immigrant communities today,” he explained. “These are strategies of war, meant to dismantle, disrupt, and otherwise neutralize poor working-class families and communities. They are meant to prevent self-determination and the potential for militant resistance.
“It is the responsibility of the left to educate, agitate and organize the people, especially young people, to resist the oppressor state by any and all means.”
Robert Spencer, author of several best-selling books about Islam, said it’s telling that there were no protests against Odinga’s appearance on the campus at CUNY.
“The very claim that Muslims and the other groups that Odinga names are oppressed in the United States is hysterical, baseless, and designed to foster a sense of grievance that will result in the armed insurrection Odinga wants,” Spencer writes at Jihad Watch.
A Muslim leader calls for armed insurrection by Muslims and others at CUNY, and I am sure he got a rousing ovation and many affirmations of support. But a counter-jihadist at CUNY, if one were ever to be invited at all, would be treated as if Jack the Ripper were coming to campus. There would be protests, petitions, and he or she would have to come with heavy security or risk being physically attacked. Sekou Odinga and the other Leftists speaking at CUNY had no such worries; nor should they have. College campuses ought to be places where ideas can be freely expressed and discussed on their merits. But if you express a point of view that dissents from the hard-Left line on a campus today, you’re risking academic suicide if you’re a student, and physical injury.
Odinga was imprisoned for actions with the Black Liberation Army in the 1960s and 1970s.
Odinga has eight children and 18 grandchildren. He is the father of late rapper Yaki Kadafi.
He is not the only Muslim to call for violence against the government recently.
Muslim pro-Shariah activist Linda Sarsour made similar comments at the 54th annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America on July 1 when she urged her Muslim audience not to assimilate into American society and to wage jihad against the Trump administration.
Sarsour, on the prime-time stage of the nation’s largest Islamist organization, gave a fiery speech in which she told her audience not to assimilate into American culture.
If they are not constantly in a state of rage against the Trump administration, she said, they are traitors to Allah.
“Why sisters and brothers, why are we so unprepared? Why are we so afraid of this administration and the potential chaos that they will ensue on our community?” she asked. “I hope that when we stand up to those who oppress our communities, that Allah accepts from us that as a form of jihad.”
The theme of the June 30-July 3 ISNA convention was “Hope and Guidance through the Quran.”
After her statements elicited a sea-wave of backlash she tried to explain away the comments by saying she was referring to the internal, spiritual type of jihad, not the violent kind.
Khalilah Sabra is another Muslim-American activist who has pushed the envelope in calling for jihad in America.
During her comments at the Muslim American Society convention on Dec. 28, 2015, she encouraged an Arab Spring-like uprising, telling her Muslim audience: “You are the new black people of America. … We are the community that staged a revolution across the world. If we can do that, why can’t we have that revolution in America?”
Also causing a stir recently was the Egyptian-born California imam Ammar Shahin, who was caught on video last month offering a prayer for Allah to “annihilate” all Jews and “liberate al-Aqsa from their filth … annihilate them down to the very last one, not sparing any of them.”
He was citing the oft-quoted hadith, one of the favorites of Islamic preachers worldwide, that says, “Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.”
Shahin is typical of America imams, about 85 percent of whom are foreign-born imports from some of the most radical factories of Middle Eastern jihadism. He earned a B.A. in Islamic studies from Al-Ahzar University in Cairo, traveled in 1999 to the U.S., where he obtained a degree in computer engineering. He is now an instructor of the Zidni Islamic Institute, a California-based organization that teaches Sunni Islam in the West.