A Memo to Glenn Beck…From: Jackie Muhammad
Recently you and your staff writer Billy Hallowell launched both a verbal and a written rant in which you ridiculed the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s call for the Black community to unify in order to address the myriad of ills that are plaguing our community. In his three-hour Saviours’ Day speech the Minister addressed the problems of poor spending habits, lax dietary habits, high unemployment, soaring dropout rates, inordinate consumption of illegal drugs and cigarettes, and our addiction to alcohol.
You erroneously charged the Minister with recruiting gang members “to ask them for assistance in protecting the Nation of Islam’s interests.” Your writer proceeded to quote a DNAinfo.com reporter, who wrote, “Farrakhan said he planned to contact the city’s (Chicago) gang leaders to recruit gang members to ‘protect’ any land the Nation of Islam might buy in the future.”
First, you have misconstrued the Minister’s language. The Minister’s call was for a unity meeting with the leadership of the entire Black community. He said, “Either we are interested in creating a future for our people or we are not. And the only way we can create a future, a real future for our people, is possessing sufficient land from which we can build that future.” Further, he said, “I am now free to call on the pastors, the reverends, the business leaders, the politicians, the educators, the military men and women, the gang bangers, and all in leadership positions; it demands that we come together to produce this renewal of our people’s minds and cleaning our people up from the moral condition that disavows an effective economic program to be established.”
In your rush to judge Minister Farrakhan and depict him in as negative a light as possible, you conveniently left out the entirety of his words, which call for the entire Black community to assume a role in our renewal—land acquisition was one aspect of our need to control our own future.
The role of gang members was only one component of the leadership cadre the Minister introduced.
But for the sake of argument, what if he did do what you falsely and sensationally accused him of doing? Are you not aware of the crucial role gangs have played in the formation of nations, protecting citizens, coordinating and collaborating with sovereign governments to fight their common enemies, providing jobs to citizens, and in general helping to spur economic development in societies around the word?
For example, the notorious Stern Gang and the Irgun Gang were murderous, extremist, terrorist groups who helped to establish the Zionist Nation of Israel. The Jewish Stern Gang invited the aid of the Axis Powers (Germany, Japan, and Italy, the coalition of forces that opposed the Allied Powers in WWII), and sought to form an alliance with the Nazis. Among the more notorious acts of the Stern gang was the assassination of Lord Moyne, the British minister of state in the Middle East; the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, which killed over 90 people, and the Deir Yassin Massacre, where 260 innocent Palestinian men, women, and children were slaughtered in their peaceful Arab village of Deir Yassin. The leader of the Stern Gang was the well-known terrorist Manachem Begin. Mr. Begin later became the Prime Minister of Israel and a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.
The Irgun Gang, under the leadership of Yitzhak Shamir, was even more vicious and notorious than its scion. The U.N.-and U.S.-appointed Arab-Israeli diplomat Count Folke Bernadotte of Sweden was assassinated by members of the Irgun Gang. Mr. Shamir was later elected the two-term Prime Minister of Israel.
Two of America’s most famous and notorious organized crime leaders were Jewish American gangster Meyer Lansky and the leader of the Italian Mafia Charles “Lucky” Luciano.
Meyer Lansky, known as the “banker” of organized crime, was an ardent supporter of Zionism. Profits gained from his illegal activities went to the support of the state of Israel. Mr. Lansky and his protégé, Bugsy Siegel, were identified as the Mob’s kingpins behind the establishment of Las Vegas as the gambling capital of the world. They were immortalized in the movie The Godfather.
Luciano, Mr. Lansky’s close friend and associate, was purported to have ordered the sinking of the SS Normandy, a French luxury liner converted into a ship to transport troops. From his jail cell in New York state, Mr. Luciano had his gang sink the Normandy and blame the sinking on the Germans. This “false flag” operation was staged according to Luciano in his book The Last Testimony of Lucky Luciano: his men sank the Normandy to send the message to the U.S. government that the New York harbor (which the Mafia controlled) could be compromised at any time without their assistance and to show the U.S. government it needed the cooperation of the Mafia.
According to Luciano the Mafia agreed to work with the government to spy on the docks and report any security issues that might arise. The records show that Luciano was paroled shortly thereafter and deported to Italy, where he continued to maintain his criminal activities. He had served only 10 years of a 50- year sentence. The relationship between Mr. Lansky, Mr. Luciano and the Navy intelligence unit of the U.S. government is detailed in The Upper World and the Underworld: Case Studies of Racketeering and Business Infiltrations in the United States, by Robert J. Kelly.
Another American gangland kingpin with significant government ties was Sam Giancana. Giancana, head of the Chicago Mob in the 60s, had close ties to senator, then President, John F. Kennedy. The ties that bound the two men together were a paramour they had in common by the name of Judith Exner. Exner was introduced to both men by Frank Sinatra. Besides exposing this tripartite relationship publicly in television interviews, Ms. Exner also wrote a book, Judith Exner: My Story. She revealed her role as a courier between the two men. Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter and author Seymour Hersh in The Dark Side of Camelot also documented the relationship between Kennedy, the Mafia, and Kennedy and Giancana’s mutual paramour.
The gangland kingpin was also known as a CIA and FBI collaborator. The CIA was known to have worked with Giancana and his gangland cohorts in the government to attempt, on several occasions, to assassinate Fidel Castro.
Giancana and his associates in the underworld have also surfaced in the mystery surrounding the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. That mystery was solved with the publication of an earth-shattering book by William Pepper called Orders to Kill. Pepper, an associate of Dr. King and a barrister, provided detailed, documented evidence revealing the role the U.S. government and organized crime both played in the murder of Dr. King. Some of that evidence led members of the King family as well as the Rev. Jesse Jackson to come to the conclusion that James Earl Ray was innocent of the assassination of Dr. King.
Finally, sir, let me remind you of the relationship that was nurtured between the Irish Mafi a and the government that resulted in organized crime successfully taking control of city governments and offering patronage jobs to members of the Irish American community. Does Tammany Hall ring a bell? Tammany Hall was a political machine that ran New York City through a system of political patronage, and it was the epitome of corrupt politics in the 1800s. The Irish Mob significantly influenced the government in New York City, and through a system of patronage they held sway over who was hired as police officers. That’s why the police department was known as an enclave for Irish men. The 1928 book The Gangs of New York and the recent movie by the same name illustrate some of this history, as does the Time magazine article, Sachems and Sinners: An Informal History of Tammany Hall.
To ridicule the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan for calling for a unity meeting with all of the members of our community to jointly tackle the problems plaguing Blacks in America is hypocritical at best, and deceitful and dishonest at worst. Gang members have a viable role to play in the empowerment of our community; however, they and other members of our family will be enlisted not to engage in illegal or nefarious or violent behavior, but to “serve and protect” a community that’s seeking and striving for a better quality of life. Who knows, some of the gang members who are seen as incorrigible gang bangers today may be tomorrow’s political leaders or Noble Peace Prize winners.
But unlike others in the past, they will be undergirded by a strong spiritual and moral underpinning—thanks to the guidance and wisdom of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan.
(Jackie Muhammad is a former presidential appointee, member of the Oxford round table, educator, youth-trainer and businessman and member of the Nation of Islam Research Group. Visit them online at http://www.noirg.org and join the conversation on FaceBook.com/NOIResearch and Twitter @ NOIResearch. He can be reached at jacrb519@ aol.com.)