Stokely Carmichael and SNCC

Stokely Carmichael

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"Hanoi in English to American Servicemen in South Vietnam." October 29, 1967.

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"Hanoi in English to American Servicemen in South Vietnam."

"Hanoi in English to American Servicemen in South Vietnam." 1305 GMT 29 OCT 67 B

(Text) Have colored GI's the right to say no to this war? Well-known leader of colored Americans Stokely Carmichael himself has this to say to the colored GI's who are fighting in South Vietnam. Here is Mr. Carmichael's voice. (Transcribed voice follows—Ed).

The white man and Uncle Toms say that we are unpatriotic when we refuse to fight in the United States (word indistinct). To be patriotic means that you are willing to fight for (? your) country. But maybe the black men ain't got no country, ain't got no kind of country, when the United States was patriotic and writing all its beautiful words about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, they were making us slaves. The very Constitution of the United States today says that we are (several words indistinct).

Where is our country? To be patriotic means you have something to fight for. What country do we have? Where is our country? Voting—we couldn't vote until 1965 OneNineSixFive by paper (as heard). In Louisiana, Mississippi, (Texas), South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, Virginia, and we can't even vote in Washington D.C. today because we outnumber them. What is a country when a man can't vote? And we have to pay to vote. Can you vote in Mississippi? Can you vote in Alabama? Can you vote in Louisiana? Georgia? Texas? North Carolina? South Carolina? Virginia? Tennessee? No! Kentucky? No! You can't vote. If you can't vote, what are you fighting for? How can you be patriotic when you have nothing to be patriotic to?

But the white man says we are unpatriotic because we don't want to fight in his wars. When you fight in a war, to the victors belong the spoils. The United States has won every war it has fought in. What have the black people benefited from its wars? Nothing. The United States is the richest country in the world. We are probably the poorest people in the world. What are we fighting for? Where is our country? The white man calls us nigger whenever he feels like it, spits in our face, shoots us down in the street and goes all unpunished. In the South, Sheriff Rainey can shoot us (words indistinct); Jim Clark can beat us up; Wallace, Lurleen and George, can take their (words indistinct). They don't even come to trial.

The white man in the South shoots a nigger, he don't even come to trial. In the North it's a little bit better. The white man puts on a badge and if he shoots us down he goes to court, and they call it justifiable homicide. Now, who they kidding? What is the country been fighting for? Where is the property we own in the United States? We are a property-less people, and yet the white man says we are unpatriotic. (Sentence indistinct). He says things are getting better in the United States every day. It's a lie! It's a lie! And nothing is getting better.

White men take a black man from the United States (? ten thousand) 10,000 miles to Vietnam, put him in uniform up front, fighting, gets killed (as heard). Let's say he is fighting next to a white boy. Let's say both of them may get out of the war alive. What do they do back home? Can a black man live next to a white man? Hell no! Hell no! We fought in Congress three weeks and (several words indistinct). Some bill claiming that black people can't live where they want to live. Where is a country where you can't live where you want to live. What kind of country do you have?

We ain't got no country. Our country is our color! Our country is our color! We must defend our people wherever we are. Our enemy is not the Vietnamese. They have done absolutely nothing to us. No Vietnamese ever called me nigger. No Vietnamese ever lynched my people. No Vietnamese ever exploited my people. No Vietnamese ever discriminated against me, made me sit in the back of a bus. No Vietnamese ever stopped me from voting. No Vietnamese ever raped my mother. No Vietnamese made my mother or my sister a prostitute. What the hell is a nigger doing in Vietnam? 291300 Steiner AC 29/163SZ OCT

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