Part of a speech by Malcolm X on February 14, 1965. The players have changed but the game is still the same — outsiders in cahoots with corporate media outlets that function as enablers continue to exploit Congo’s resources and cause untold deaths.
Today, Rwanda, Uganda and M23 play the roles of Moise Tshombe and South African mercenaries. The more things change, the more they remain the same.
Note how Malcolm talks of corporate media ignoring atrocities against Congolese just like today’s crimes by Rwanda and Uganda had been ignored for a long time. Malcolm X cared deeply about Africa.
When you begin to start thinking for yourself, you frighten them, and they try and block your getting to the public, for fear that if the public listens to you, then the public won’t listen to them anymore.
And they’ve got certain Negroes whom they have to keep blowing up in the papers to make them look like leaders. So that the people will keep on following them, no matter how many knocks they get on their heads following him. This is how the man does it, and if you don’t wake up and find out how he does it, I tell you, they’ll be building gas chambers and gas ovens pretty soon — I don’t mean those kind you’ve got at home in your kitchen.
Another example at the international level of how skillfully they use this trickery was in the Congo. In the Congo, airplanes were dropping bombs on African villages. African villages don’t have a defense against bombs. And the pilot can’t tell who the bomb is being dropped upon.
When a bomb hits a village, everything goes. And these pilots, flying planes filled with bombs, dropping these bombs on African villages, were destroying women, were destroying children, were destroying babies. You never heard any outcry over here about that.
And it had started way back in June. They would drop bombs on African villages that would blow that village apart and everything in it — man, woman, child, and baby. No outcry, no sympathy, no support, no concern, because the press didn’t project it in such a way that it would be designed to get your sympathy.
They know how to put something so that you’ll sympathize with it, and they know how to put it so you’ll be against it. I’m telling you, they are masters at it. And if you don’t develop the analytical ability to read between the lines in what they’re saying, I’m telling you again — they’ll be building gas ovens, and before you wake up you’ll be in one of them, just like the Jews ended up in gas ovens over there in Germany. You’re in a society that’s just as capable of building gas ovens for Black people as Hitler’s society was.
This was mass murder in the Congo, of women and children and babies. But there was no outcry even from the White liberals, even from your “friends.” Why? Because they made it appear that it was a humanitarian project. They said that the planes were being flown by “American-trained anti-Castro Cuban pilots.”
This is propaganda, too. Soon as you hear that it’s American-trained, you say, “Oh that’s all right, that’s us.” And the anti-Castro Cubans, “Oh that’s all right too, ’cause if they’re against Castro, whoever else they’re against that’s good, ’cause Castro is a monster.” But you see how step-by-step they grab your mind?
And these pilots are hired, their salaries are paid by the United States government. They’re called mercenaries, these pilots are. And a mercenary is not someone who kills you because he’s patriotic. He kills you for blood money, he’s a hired killer. This is what a mercenary means.
And they’re able to take these hired killers, put them in American planes, with American bombs, and drop them on African villages, blowing to bits Black men, Black women, Black children, Black babies, and you Black people sitting over here cool like it doesn’t even involve you. You’re a fool. They’ll do it to them today, and do it to you tomorrow. Because you and I and they are all the same.
They call it a humanitarian project and that they’re doing it in the name of freedom. And all of this, these glorious terms, are used to pave the way in your mind for what they’re going to do.
Then they take Tshombe. You’ve heard of Tshombe. He’s the worst African that was ever born. The lowest type that was ever born. He’s a murderer himself. He’s the murderer of Lumumba, the former prime minister of — the first and only rightful prime minister of the Congo. He’s an international — he’s a murderer with an international stature as a murderer. Yet the United States government went and got Tshombe in Spain, and put him as the head of the Congolese government.
This is criminal! Here’s a man who’s a murderer, so the United States takes him, puts him over the Congo, and supports his government with your tax dollars. Now — they hired him to occupy the position as head of state over the Congo — a killer! He is a hired killer himself! His salary’s paid by the United States government. And he turns — his first move is to bring in South Africans, who hate everything in sight. He hires those South Africans to come and kill his own Congolese people. And the United States, again, pays their salary.
You know, it’s something to think about. How do you think you would feel right now if some Congolese brothers walked up to you — and they look just like you, don’t think you don’t look Congolese. You look as much Congolese as a Congolese does. They got all kinds of Congolese over there. How would you feel if one of them walked up to you and asked you about what your government is doing in the Congo. I was asked that when I was over there.
But they don’t have to come to me like that, ’cause they know where I stand automatically. And for one time I’m thankful to the press, for letting everybody know where I stand. They — but you have no explanation. Your tongue stays in your mouth. And then you have to become — you have to go to the extreme to convince them that you don’t go along with what the United States government is doing in the Congo.
And they justify the usage of Tshombe as the present head of state by saying that he’s the only African who can unite — or bring unity to the Congo. Has he brought unity to the Congo? But, see, this is their game! And their real reason for wanting Tshombe there was so that Tshombe could invite them to come in. Now, what African head of state would have dared to invite outside powers? So they put Tshombe there, and as soon as Tshombe got there he invited them to bring paratroopers from Belgium in the United States’ transport planes to try and recapture Congo.
This is all a cold-blooded act on the part of your Western powers, namely the Western powers here in the United States — interests in the United States, in England, and France, and Belgium and so forth. They want the wealth of the Congo, plus its strategic geographic position.
The step-by-step process that was used by the press: First they fanned the flame in such a manner to create hysteria in the mind of the public. And then they shift gears and fan the flame in a manner designed to get the sympathy of the public. And once they go from hysteria to sympathy, their next step is to get the public to support them in whatever act they’re getting ready to go down with. You’re dealing with a cold calculating international machine, that’s so criminal in its objectives and motives that it has the seeds of its own destruction, right within.