Crack Cocaine and Corruption: the C.I.a's Involvement with the Fall of the Black Panther Party and Black Community

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Crack Cocaine and Corruption: The C.I.A’s involvement with the fall of the Black Panther Party and the African American Community

LA Shelle E. Daisy

History 97E
Professor Hernandez
November 13, 2012

The Black Panther Party was founded in Oakland, California by Huey Newton and Bobby Seale on October 15, 1966, and was dissolved in 1982 due to a crack cocaine epidemic of the African American community. The Central Intelligence Agency (C.I.A.) involvement with the smuggling of crack cocaine into poor communities with heavily populated African Americans helped to dissolve the Black Panther Organization. The C.I.A’s involvement illustrates the length to which an individual or group can exercise their first Amendment as well as the United States government’s corruption. What and who were the Black Panthers? The Black Panther Party arose in a time of civil rights, summer of love, the Vietnam War, and the Watts riots. The political party stood for “revolutionary inter-communalism” which consisted of: peace, equality for African Americans, better housing and health care for African Americans, against police brutality towards African Americans, and knowledge of the mass within the African American community by the African American community. The party spoke out against the government and questioned the government publicly on numerous occasions. The Black Panther Party was founded in Oakland, California by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale the party consisted of African American males when it originally started; shortly after the start African American females started to join the cause. The party grew all over the state from cities such as: Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, and Los Angeles…… this caught the attention of many in political people and offices. The creation and spread of the party helped to keep the Federal Bureau’s Investigation (F.B.I) operation “counter intelligence program” (cointelpro) going. What was “counter intelligence program” and how was it related to the Black Panthers? Cointelpro was created by the F.B.I in August 1956 till 1971 as a covert operation to intervene and disrupt any communist parties within the United States. The operation according to the F.B.I’s database states “in the 1960s cointelpro was expanded to include a number of other domestic groups such as: the Ku Klux Klan, the socialist workers party, and the Black Panther Party.” The F.B.I was trying to keep what they thought as radical or hate groups under a microscope. The F.B.I database later states “Cointelpro was later rightfully criticized by Congress and the American people for abridging first amendment rights and for other reasons [3].” The operation would and did discredit anything the Black Panther Party would say or do. The operation would wrongfully imprison members of the party due to protesting against the government. According to the West’s Encyclopedia of Law 2005 in 1971 the F.B.I had a break –into their building resulting in the theft of documents pertaining to the operation which caused for the operation to end on April 29, 1971 to cover their tracks. [2] What was John Edgar Hoover’s Role in this ciaos? John Edgar Hoover was the director of the Federal Bureau Investigation (F.B.I) from May 10, 1924 till May 2, 1972 when he died. He created the Communist Control Act of 1954 which was “aiming to strip the rights, privileges, and immunities attendants upon legal bodies created under the jurisdiction of the law of the United States” according to Hoover. Hoover later created an operation under the act called cointelpro which he then furthered his scope toward the Black Panther Party in mid to late 1960s to early 1970s due to the party gaining so much support. He feared that the Black Panther Party was more than what they said they were; that they were a Black national hate group of communist. According to West’s...
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