Prison Radio
Mumia Abu-Jamal

The name, Martin Luther King, Jr., has become an American talisman. Politicians, who have spent their entire careers ignoring or attacking the lives, rights or interests of African-Americans, erupt in praise of King, some even using choice quotes to support their positions, as if King would’ve supported any of them.

The truth is Martin Luther King was targeted by the U.S. government; by high officials, and by federal police at the FBI.

One of the highest officials in Edgar Hoover’s FBI called King “The most dangerous…Negro leader in the country” [p.57]

As the nation celebrates King, let us not forget the role of the U.S. government in his destruction. Specifically, let us remember the now forgotten Church Committee Hearings, of winter 1975, when, in open committee, senators and congressional staff members discussed FBI attempts to replace Dr. King, as shown by the following discussion between staff member Mike Epstein and Senator, the Late Walter Mondale, of Minnesota:

Mr. Epstein: I might add, Mr. Chairman, I do not have the document in front of me, but the document that recommended the discrediting of Dr. King and the appointing of a new leader which was in January of 1964, which was the recommendation from Mr. Sullivan, and he was soliciting in that memorandum the Director’s authorization to pursue that possibility further, a recommendation that approval be given for him to explore this whole matter in greater detail, as set forth above, and underneath it is “ok, H.”

And then there is the note from the Director which says, “I am glad to see that light has finally, though dismally delayed, come to the Domestic Intelligence Division. I struggled for months to get over the fact that the Communists were taking over the racial movement, but our experts here couldn’t or wouldn’t see it. H.”

Senator Mondale: That was the memo in which it was proposed that King be destroyed, as a Civil Rights leader, and that the FBI ought to sponsor his replacement, by another person not in the Civil Rights Movement.

Mr. Epstein: That is correct.

Senator Mondale: And Hoover personally appreciated that suggestion; is that correct?

Mr. Epstein: He Ok’d it.

That’s from the U.S. Senate Hearings into Government Operations, popularly known as The Church Committee Hearings, (after Sen. Frank Church, the Committee Chairman from Idaho); Nov 19, 1975;Vol.6, p.59.

Think about that the next time you hear some politician quote Dr. King, or cry crocodile tears over his martyrdom. The U.S. government, at its highest levels, tried to destroy him—and replace him.

Yeah. Happy King Day.