Contemporary political events in Palestine and the United States have drawn renewed interest in the long history of militant Black-Palestinian solidarity. Although many historical accounts typically begin in the post-1967 Arab-Israeli War moment with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Black Panthers in Algiers, this article traces a foundational period of Black radical coalition building with Palestine through Malcolm X and the Nation of Islam. In doing so, it privileges systems of intergenerational exchange and emphasizes the ways in which broader political developments, from Egyptian anti-imperialism to the birth of the Third World project, helped establish the basis for the Black Power movement’s identification with Palestine. The article argues that the Nation of Islam and Malcolm X’s border crossing and concomitant efforts to forge ties with Arab-world liberation movements explicitly rendered Palestine a referent of the Black Radical Tradition.

Did the Zionists have the legal or moral right to invade Arab Palestine, uproot its Arab citizens from their homes and seize all Arab property for themselves just based on the “religious” claim that their forefathers lived there thousands of years ago? Only a thousand years ago the Moors lived in Spain. Would this give the Moors of today the legal and moral right to invade the Iberian Peninsula, drive out its Spanish citizens, and then set up a new Moroccan nation . . . where Spain used to be, as the European Zionists have done to our Arab brothers and sisters in Palestine?

—Malcolm X, “Zionist Logic” (1964)

But there can be little doubt that figures like [James] Baldwin and Malcolm X define the kind of work that has most influenced my own representations of the intellectual’s consciousness. It is a spirit in opposition, rather than in accommodation, that grips me because the romance, the interest, the challenge of intellectual life is to be found in dissent against the status quo at a time when the struggle on behalf of underrepresented and disadvantaged groups seems so unfairly weighted against them.

—Edward Said, Representations of the Intellectual

Following a two-day sojourn to Gaza in early September 1964, Malcolm X (El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz) began penning a critique of the Israeli political project. His trip to the refugee camp in Khan Yunis (site of a 1956 massacre), meetings with Gazan religious leaders, and a chance encounter with poet Harun Hashim Rashid provided the impetus for his forthcoming statement. Within two weeks, on September 17, “Zionist Logic” appeared in the pages of the Egyptian Gazette, a Cairo-based English-language newspaper. The essay supported Palestinian struggles for liberation and condemned Israeli Zionism as a “new form of colonialism.” Malcolm argued that the State of Israel, with its geographic position in the eastern Mediterranean, was “more firmly entrenched even, than that of the former European Colonial Powers.” Moreover, he denounced the Israeli government’s “friendly offers of economic ‘aid,’ and other tempting gifts, that they dangle in front of the newly-independent African nations, whose economies are experiencing great difficulties.”1 The now oft-cited essay, written during Malcolm’s wide-ranging 1964 tour of Africa and the Middle East, intervened in a longstanding debate over Israel’s subject position in the age of global decolonization.

“Zionist Logic” turned on its head the parallels that activists and intellectuals like W. E. B. Du Bois and Martin Luther King Jr. had previously drawn between the “Jewish question” via Zionist nationalism and the Black freedom movement in the United States. While figures such as Du Bois, King, Marcus Garvey, and Paul Robeson had all looked to the Zionist movement as a paradigm of self-determination, Malcolm X’s experiences within the Nation of Islam (NOI) and his firsthand experience in Gaza compelled him to conceive alternative political imaginaries. His opprobrium read Israeli state formation through the lens of settler colonialism and its structural determinants. Thus, compared to eighteenth-century European metropole colonialism, Zionism differed “only in form and method, but never in motive or objective.”2 According to Malcolm, a central objective, alongside conquest and settlement, was to divide the nonaligned “darker nations” of Africa and Asia.3

Curiously, Malcolm X’s autobiography—written in collaboration with novelist Alex Haley and published posthumously—makes no mention of “Zionist Logic,” the trip to Gaza, or his pro-Palestine politics. This omission gestures to a broader set of issues, as the book offers very little in the way of historical and sociopolitical context: the sections on his travels to the Middle East and Africa are heavily truncated, and as coauthor and curator, Haley ultimately obfuscates the imbricated Black revolutionary internationalist and collectivist political impulses that animated Malcolm X’s worldview. As a result, readers are often left without adequate grounding in the times or in how Malcolm’s political and social thought shifted dialectically across the 1950s and mid-1960s and particularly between March 1964 and February 1965. Similarly, it is difficult to extract meaning from more recent biographical treatments like Manning Marable’s Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention. Marable offers a largely descriptive analysis and dismisses Malcolm’s anti-Zionist stance as little more than political opportunism: “Soliciting the support of the government of Gamal ‘Abd al-Nasser for his activities on behalf of orthodox Islam in the United States may have made it necessary to adopt Nasser’s political positions, such as fierce opposition to Israel.”4 Such interpretations obscure the transnational political ideology that Malcolm X increasingly operationalized during the final years of his life.

Malcolm had long seen Black mobilization in the United States as part of a seething global rebellion against the structures of racism and imperialism, a “tidal wave of color” from his early days in the NOI while incarcerated at the Norfolk Prison Colony and Charlestown State Prison through his 1954–64 appointment as minister of Harlem’s Temple No. 7—where he invoked the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya (1952), the Viet Minh victory at Dien Bien Phu (1954), and the 1955 Afro-Asian Conference in Bandung as durable symbols of political awakening.5 Accordingly, his relationship to Palestine—and his political philosophy itself—must be examined within and through the historical contexts and theoretical paradigms of Black radicalism, Third World anticolonial struggle, and Islamic liberation theology. Following his split with the NOI in March 1964, Malcolm spent a combined six months in the Middle East and Africa. There, he befriended various intellectuals and artists, including Abd al-Rahman Azzam, first secretary-general of the Arab League (1945–52), and committed himself to courses of study under rival Al-Azhar and Muslim World League institutions. At the same time, he became immersed in the political affairs of the global South, establishing relations with several postcolonial leaders and revolutionaries. As he saw it, such interactions worked to further deterritorialize the US Black freedom struggle and tethered demands for Black economic, political, and social autonomy to the examples of approximately thirty countries that declared formal independence from colonial rule in the 1950s and early 1960s.

His attention to Palestine marked African Americans and Palestinians as constituents within this global ecology, actors engaged in a far-flung assault on empire. Moreover, Malcolm X’s border crossing and concomitant efforts to shed light on Arab-world liberation movements explicitly rendered Palestine a geographic referent of the Black Radical Tradition.6 In the decades following his fateful 1964 travels, Israel/Palestine would assume a more central point of critique among African Ameri-can activists and intellectuals. Malcolm X’s view proved prescient, as biting criticism of Israel emerged stateside following the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, out of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, the Black Panther Party, the Combahee River Collective, and the Third World Women’s Alliance.7 Further, his personal encounters with Palestinians on the ground set a precedent and signaled the beginning of a generative intellectual relationship between African American and Palestinian revolutionaries that would span the Cold War and post-Cold War eras: from Eldridge Cleaver’s embrace of Black September–style external guerrilla operations and Huey Newton’s politics of “intercommunalism” in the late 1960s and early 1970s to June Jordan’s relational poetics in the wake of the 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre in Beirut.8 More recent iterations of Black-Palestinian political solidarity have consistently invoked these historical legacies. This includes the flurry of exchanges between Black and Palestinian activists during the summer of 2014 in the wake of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza and the uprising in Ferguson, Missouri, following the police shooting of Michael Brown.9

Although many accounts of Black-Palestinian solidarity typically begin in the post-1967 era with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Black Panther Party, this article traces a foundational period of Black radical coalition building with Palestine through Malcolm X and the NOI. In doing so, it privileges systems of intergenerational exchange and emphasizes the ways in which broader political developments, from Egyptian anti-imperialism to the birth of the Third World project, helped establish the basis for the Black Power movement’s identification with Palestine.10

Afro-Zionism at Midcentury

Black coalition building with Palestine was never predetermined. In fact, Malcolm X and the NOI’s support for Palestinian liberation, articulated most clearly in the organization’s official news organ, Muhammad Speaks, marked a radical departure from the previous intellectual tradition. Historically, most African Americans identified not with Palestinian anti-colonialism but with the allure of minority state formation that the Zionist project symbolized. A shared conviction in the pursuit of self-sovereignty—buttressed by “the biblical language of exodus”—would define Black internationalists’ identification with Zionism in the decades before Israel’s founding.11 During the first half of the twentieth century, and particularly in the aftermath of the 1917 Balfour Declaration, numerous US-based organizations and activist-intellectuals were emphatic in their advocacy for a Jewish state. This contingent included the likes of A. Phillip Randolph, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Martin Luther King Jr. All drew parallels between Zionist nationalism and Black struggles for self-determination.12 This stream of thought produced relational analytics that linked contextually specific “historical formations, ideological concepts, or geographies” as in “the ‘likeness’ or ‘parallel’ of Zionism and Pan-Africanism, Warsaw and Watts, . . . the Holocaust and racial slavery, the wandering Jew and the Black diaspora.”13

Borne out of the rise in European anti-Semitism in the late nineteenth century, the Zionist enterprise was heralded as a solution to the “Jewish problem.” Widespread pogroms across Tsar Alexander III’s Imperial Russia, coupled with the draw of a potent new nationalist ideology in political Zionism, sent thousands of eastern European and Russian Jews in search of refuge. The First Aliyah, or wave of Jewish settlers, reached Ottoman Palestine in the early 1880s.14 In 1896, Austro-Hungarian writer Theodore Herzl helped formalize the call for an independent Jewish state in Palestine with the publication of Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State). Over a period of sixty-six years—between 1882 and 1948—approximately 522,000 Jewish immigrants made their way to Palestine. A considerable percentage of settlers arrived in the three years between the end of World War II in May 1945 and Israel’s founding in May 1948.15

Following World War II, support for political Zionism increased as Black intellectuals outlined consistencies between Nazism and white supremacy. Du Bois contended in “Prospect of a World without Racial Conflict” that the ideological scaffolding of the Holocaust lay in the white supremacist racial structure of Great Britain and the United States.16 In Toward the African Revolution, Frantz Fanon described the Third Reich as “a colonial system in the very heart of Europe.”17 Similarly, the pursuit of a Jewish state also came to be seen and represented as explicitly anticolonial and antiracist.18 As Keith P. Feldman observes, following the genocide in Nazi Germany and across German-occupied territories during the war, “the enmeshment of an internationalist Black imaginary and Zionist commitments to a Jewish state became even tighter.”19 Accordingly, Zionism held promise for radicals, liberals, and conservatives alike. In 1947, the executive secretary of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Walter White, urged African states to vote in favor of UN General Assembly Resolution 181—a partition plan to carve Palestine into Arab and Jewish territories.20 The following year, the NAACP passed a resolution in support, stating, “The valiant struggle of the people of Israel serves as an inspiration for all persecuted people throughout the world.”21

Du Bois’s 1948 essay “The Ethics of the Problem of Palestine,” renamed “The Case for the Jews” by the editorial staff at the Chicago Star, went further.22 “Palestine is a land largely of plateaus, mountains, and deserts, sparsely inhabited, and could easily maintain millions more people than the two million it has today,” wrote Du Bois. His essay not only valorized Jewish settlement and Israeli statehood but also deployed well-worn orientalist tropes by reimagining the indigenous Arab population as antimodern, suffering from “widespread ignorance, poverty and disease and fanatic belief in the Mohammedean religion, which makes these people suspicious of other peoples and other religions.”23

“The Ethics of the Problem of Palestine” ultimately locates advancement on the heels of Zionist settlement. Unlike the Arabs, the Zionists were “young and forward-thinking Jews bringing a new civilization to an old land.”24 Du Bois’s analysis here evinced his sustained engagement with the idea of Jewish sovereignty in the lead-up to Israeli statehood, previously made manifest across a slew of essays in his column for the New York Amsterdam News, and what he interpreted as the socioeconomic realities of early twentieth-century Zionist agricultural settlements, specifically those following the second (1904–13) and third (1918–23) aliyahs. Du Bois’s admiration for these settlements, and Zionist labor policy in general, likely stemmed from the fact that second- and third-wave settlers brought with them a socialist, back-to-the-land sociopolitical philosophy, one that expressed itself through two popular slogans: “conquest of land” and “conquest of labor.” The Second Aliyah rejected the first phase of Zionist colonization (1882–1903), which had been patterned after the ethnic plantation colony model of French Algeria, in favor of a “pure settlement colony.” Influenced by theorists such as Russian-born Marxist Dov Ber Borochov, Labor Zionists would initiate a series of development projects, some of which still exist, including the establishment of a trade union federation called the Histadrut and communal farms (kibbutzim) to better “tame the wilderness.”25

As historian Robin D. G. Kelley notes, Black intellectuals and activists like Du Bois who saw Israel as a “model of national liberation were not dupes, nor were they acting out of some obligatory commitment to a Black-Jewish alliance. Rather, they failed to see Israel as a colonial project founded on the subjugation of indigenous people.”26 This had much to do with how the Zionist project represented itself at midcentury: a nationalist movement born from racist and religious persecution. The story of a Zionist anticolonial uprising at the very end of the Mandate period against the British—who became the ruling force in Palestine after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire—facilitated both erasure and mythmaking. Israel’s founding in May 1948 entailed the ethnic cleansing of over 750,000 Palestinians, approximately half of Palestine’s Arab population, and the destruction of some 500 towns and villages during the 1948 Palestine war.27 Kelley underscores, “Israel comes into being as a nation identified as victims of colonial/racist violence, through armed insurrection against British imperialism. It is a narrative that renders invisible the core violence of ethnic cleansing . . . [this narrative] convinced even the most anti-colonial intellectuals to link Israel’s independence with African independence and Third World liberation.”28

The Nation of Islam’s Third World Eschatology

Malcolm X’s break from the Afro-Zionist tradition owes much to the NOI’s cultivation of a “double political space” across the late 1950s and early 1960s, one in which critique of the US state and its allies, and allegiance to the “Bandung spirit” and nonwhite assertiveness were possible.29 Established in the early 1930s as the Temple of Islam, the NOI started out as a small, Detroit-based religious movement under the enigmatic W. D. Fard. At the height of the Cold War and the global North-South divide, the NOI’s doctrine articulated an “Afro-Asiatic” spatial imaginary through which Black Americans could claim counter-citizenship—“an identity that challenged black incorporation into the dominant discourse of Judeo-Christian American-ness”—and argued that Black history and metaphysics ran straight through the ambit of post-Enlightenment Western episteme.30 Fard envisioned a psychic remapping project that tied Black ontology to the “symbolic and material universe” of Mecca and to a nonwhite global majority dispersed across Africa and Asia.31 According to Fard and his successor, Elijah Muhammad, African Americans constituted a long-lost Asiatic tribe: “We are descendants of the Asian black nation . . . the rich Nile Valley of Egypt and the present seat of the Holy City, Mecca, Arabia.”32

And as the NOI saw it, the rising tide of postwar anti-imperial movements, from the Mau Mau rebellion of the Kikuyu Land and Freedom Army against British colonialism in Kenya to the revolutions in China, Algeria, and Cuba, signaled the death knell of white supremacy. This belief in the apocalyptic destruction of the white world order was further emboldened following the 1955 Asian-African conference in Bandung, Indonesia, and the rise of its attendant Non-Aligned Movement in 1961. Organized by newly independent African and Asian governments, the conference ostensibly sought to establish an infrastructure for economic and diplomatic cooperation, free from the influence of the US and Soviet power blocs (a “third way”), and offered support to select anticolonial movements in this nonaligned Third World.

Malcolm X’s most celebrated speech, “Message to the Grassroots,” delivered at the Northern Negro Grass Roots Leadership Conference in Detroit in November 1963, demonstrates the degree to which Bandung figured into the NOI’s political imaginary: “Once you study what happened at the Bandung conference . . . it actually serves as a model for the same procedure you and I can use to get our problems solved. At Bandung . . . there were dark nations from Africa and Asia. . . . Despite their economic and political differences, they came together. All of them were black, brown, red, or yellow.” Moreover, all had been involved in linked struggles against white supremacy: “The same man that was colonizing our people in Kenya was colonizing our people in the Congo. The same one in the Congo was colonizing our people in South Africa, and in Southern Rhodesia, and in Burma, and in India, and in Afghanistan, and in Pakistan.”33

“Message to the Grassroots” articulated a Cold War–driven internationalist sensibility that had become familiar within Black radical circles, particularly in the urban North and West: civic action programs and legislative victories would not trigger a radical reconstruction of the existing social order. And despite the significant threat posed by the state, African Americans too constituted a formidable power bloc with the capacity to effect deep structural transformation. Malcolm’s emphasis on Bandung prefigured a line of thought that he fleshed out further in 1964–65: as he saw it, the efforts of Third World nationalist movements were the most pressing analogs for Black liberation in the United States. In this frame, Black peoples constituted a decentralized colony within the “mother country” and were struggling against labor exploitation, racialized violence, and occupation like their counterparts in the global South. This theory retooled an older internal-colony model made popular at the Communist Party International’s Sixth Congress in 1928, which argued that Black peoples inhabiting the Black Belt counties of the US South—the majority of whom were sharecroppers and agricultural workers—were an oppressed nation with the right to self-determination.34

As Sohail Daulatzai notes, Malcolm X frequently used Bandung as “the dominant frame for his wide-ranging and penetrating critique of U.S. nationalism, Black radicalism, and decolonization.”35 In his diatribe against the mainstream civil rights establishment, whom he referred to as “house Negroes,” Malcolm envisioned an upsurge that moved beyond the restraints of American civic virtue and racial liberalism. For him, the March on Washington had been a “picnic” and a “circus” that worked to domesticate the Black freedom struggle. By contrast, he looked to the “bloody . . . hostile” revolutions of Algeria, China, and Cuba for impetus.36 Thus, from this viewpoint, Third Worldism was not a coherent ideology but a relational-conceptual framework in constant flux. Political leaders and activists facing increasingly globalized structures of power used this framework to translate, internationalize, and connect their respective freedom struggles and politics. And with regard to Palestine, it certainly opened channels for association and political-cultural translation between Palestinian and Black American leftists by the early 1960s.

Engaging the intellectual currents of Third Worldism, Black internationalism, and global Islam, the NOI was the first US-based Black organization to offer a sustained critique of Israeli settler colonialism and to champion the Non-Aligned Movement’s call for “Afro-Arab solidarity.” Although the dominant interpretation suggests that the NOI, like most Black Nationalist and Pan-Africanist groups at the time, embraced Zionism and Israel, deeper inspection reveals a more complicated position.37 As we shall see, the “NOI’s stance” would in fact cement “anti-Zionism as the litmus test by which Black Power activists would be measured on international affairs.” Historian Garrett Felber argues that while the organization used Israel “in a discourse of reparations . . . throughout the 1950s, the NOI [subsequently] developed an anti-Zionist language to understand the relationship of Israel to the Arab world.” Citing sociologist C. Eric Lincoln’s hand-written notes for his dissertation on the NOI, Felber determined that an anti-Zionist consensus embedded itself in the “overall temple propaganda. [Egyptian attaché to the United Nations, Ahmad Zaki El] Borai and Bashir are working closely with Malcolm X on a long-term project including the importation of a group of dark-skinned Arab-propagandists. Arabs are frequently in touch with E[lijah] in Chicago.”38

Palestinian Muslims such as Jamil Shakir Diab and Ali Baghdadi regularly taught Arabic at NOI schools in Chicago.39 Diab, who immigrated in 1948, served as principal and instructor at the University of Islam run by Temple No. 2.40 As a journalist, Baghdadi would also go on to write for the NOI’s primary news publication.41 It appears that increased personal contact with Palestinians stateside and the NOI’s ties to an ascendant Non-Aligned Movement—of which Egypt’s Nasser was a leading figure—greatly contributed to the organization’s anti-Zionist ethos. Black radicals of the Old Left hailed Nasser as an anti-imperialist icon. Following his decision to nationalize the Suez Canal Company, British, French, and Israeli forces attacked the Sinai Peninsula on October 29, 1956, thereby further exposing the cracks in Israel’s anticolonial integument. During the Suez crisis, the Israeli military invaded southern Gaza and killed Palestinians at Khan Yunis, Rafah, and the village of Kafr Qasim.42 Longtime Zionist supporters like Du Bois broke with Israel over its role in the “witches’ brew” of the tripartite aggression and sided with Nasser instead.43

Nasser’s political writings and speeches—disseminated via the Cairo-based Sawt al ‘Arab (Voice of the Arabs) radio program—cast the Suez War as part of a broader social and political revolution against the parasitic forces of imperial sovereignty. By exercising control over the Suez Canal Company and using its revenue to build the Aswan High Dam, he believed that Egypt could simultaneously combat Israel (a “Trojan Horse” of Western imperialism), resist British and US “dollar dictatorship,” and redress past injustices: “We dug the canal with our lives, our skulls, our bones, our blood, but instead of the Canal being dug for Egypt, Egypt became the property of the Canal! . . . We shall build the High Dam and we shall gain our usurped rights.”44 From Nasser’s position, nationalization instantiated the principle of Siyadat al Sha’ab (popular sovereignty).45

The years 1955–56 saw Nasser emerge as “the most important leader of the Arab world and as one of the major figures” of the first wave of postcolonial nationalists—the so-called Bandung Generation. Alongside “Castro in Cuba and Kwame Nkrumah in Ghana, Nasser represented an emotionally explosive convergence of anticolonial defiance and postcolonial global consciousness.” At the same time, “as the leader of Egypt, [he] also represented a particular connection between black and Arab anticolonialism,” and the Suez War incited members of movements such as the Ahmadiyya and the NOI to cultivate ties with the Egyptian government.46 When Egypt hosted the Afro-Asian People’s Solidarity Conference in Cairo in 1957, NOI leader Elijah Muhammad wired the Egyptian president a message of support, stating, “Freedom, justice and equality for all Africans and Asians is of far-reaching importance, not only to you of the East, but also to over 17,000,000 of your long-lost brothers of African-Asian descent here in the West.”47

As the NOI’s official news organ, Muhammad Speaks conveyed its orientation in similar terms, placing local and national stories of antiracist mobilization alongside and in conversation with political developments in the decolonizing Third World, a schema that succeeding Black radical publications like the Inner City Voice, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)-affiliated Movement newspaper, and The Black Panther would emulate.48 News coverage of Egypt, Algeria, and Palestine appeared frequently. For instance, a July 1962 issue carrying a photograph of Nasser on the front page was framed as a “Salute to Modern Egypt and the United Arab Republic.” The issue’s leading story, “The Revolution That Broke the Back of Bigots and Colonists,” enthusiastically supported the 1952 Free Officers’ overthrow of the monarchical system, the drive for industrialization, and Nasser’s stated mission to “establish a democratic, socialist, and co-operative society.”49 The paper also kept close track of developments in Algeria as the revolution waged on into the early 1960s, highlighting the rise in incidents of French settler violence in the northwest and the Afro-Asian bloc’s support for the Front de Libération Nationale and the exiled Government Provisionel de la République Algérienne.50 On Palestine, Muhammad Speaks covered a number of topics, from Zionist influence over US government officials to the ongoing Palestinian refugee crisis in the early 1960s and Afro-Asian People’s Solidarity delegations to Gaza.51

The NOI’s focused attention to the Arab world, and Palestine in particular, was significant because it introduced new ideological frameworks to an audience that extended far beyond its membership. First, by the early 1960s the organization ran one of the highest-circulating Black newspapers in the country. By the 1970s, Muhammad Speaks would command a circulation between 650,000 and 950,000.52 Its coverage influenced subsequent generations of Black activists who championed Palestinian liberation, including Black Power activist and SNCC chairman Stokely Carmichael, who later credited Muhammad Speaks as his first news source on Palestine: “It was the early sixties before I encountered—in the pages of Muhammad Speaks—any discussion of Palestinian rights and resistance. This was before there was any mention on the American left of the injustices being done to the people.”53 As SNCC chairman, Carmichael had also been involved in a reading group on Israel/Palestine organized by SNCC communications director and former NOI member Ethel Minor. As Carmichael recounts, after studying Middle East history and Latin American politics in college, Minor befriended “Palestinians [living as exiles in South America] . . . [and] began to investigate the issue.” She would return to the United States and join the NOI, and subsequently Malcolm X’s Organization of Afro-American Unity. “After his assassination, the sister joined SNCC, where she organized a study group on the question.”54

Although SNCC was the first civil rights organization to deviate from the established, mainstream viewpoint on Palestine, its political position owed a debt to the precedent set by the NOI and its members. SNCC’s study group—organized following Malcolm X’s death in February 1965—read one text each month over a period of two years. According to Carmichael, its syllabus detailed “not just pro-Palestinian or anti-Zionist materials” but “Jewish writers who, from the perspective of the moral traditions of Jewish thought,” produced some of the most incisive critiques of Zionism and Israeli military expansion. Learning about the “close military, economic, and political alliance” between Israel and the apartheid regime in South Africa taught an important lesson in colonial circuits of knowledge and power. In his memoir, Carmichael credits “his disciplined study of Zionism” to Minor.55

Minor and Carmichael are often cited as the chief architects of a controversial article in SNCC’s June–July 1967 newsletter that drew the indignation of many liberal Zionists and mainstream civil rights leaders and was subsequently “condemned for participating in the tragic fracture of the so-called black-Jewish civil rights alliance.”56 Titled “Third World Roundup: The Palestine Problem: Test Your Knowledge,” the short article informed readers on the linkages between US imperialism and Israeli militarism in the wake of the 1967 Arab-Israeli War and implicated Zionism within a global system of racialized capitalism and empire. Of note, the article featured photographs of Arab casualties during the massacre at Khan Yunis in Gaza, armed Zionist settlers, and a cartoon portrait—courtesy of SNCC artist Kofi Bailey—featuring a hand with a Star of David and an American dollar sign, grasping a rope around the necks of Nasser and US heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali.57 As Kelley notes, due in large part to SNCC’s statement, “Black identification with Zionism as a striving for land and self-determination gave way to a radical critique of Zionism as a form of settler colonialism akin to American racism and South African apartheid.”58 At the same time, the piece demonstrates the centrality of collective historical consciousness and sys tems of intergenerational exchange that linked the NOI, Organization of Afro-American Unity, and SNCC.

“Fly like Egyptian Musk”: Meditations from Cairo

Malcolm X’s support for Palestinian liberation signified his commitment to Black internationalism, antiracism, and the Third World anticolonial struggle. This internationalist political perspective was articulated in public as early as April 7, 1958, when at the Third Pakistan Republic Day conference in Hollywood, California, Malcolm X affirmed ties between Black people in the United States and “the Arabs, as a colored people,” and chastised the “aggressive Zionists” and the US government for “subsidiz[ing]” the Israeli state. Over the ensuing years, he increasingly framed connections between Black Americans and Arabs through the modality of color.59 This outlook rejected US legal classifications of Arab immigrants which, since at least the 1950s, had marked them as “white.” As Melani McAlister observes, “The NOI had quite consciously appropriated Arabs as part of the definition of a multicontinent ‘black man,’ but that definition itself presented a world in which ‘blackness’ included Arabness but did not replace it.”60

Following his split with the NOI in March 1964, Malcolm X would spend a total of six months in the Middle East and Africa, where, like his first trip in July 1959, he immersed himself in global South politics and cultivated relationships with a bevy of postcolonial leaders and activists, including Abd al-Rahman Azzam of the Arab League, Ahmed Sékou Touré of Guinea, Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Gamal ‘Abd al-Nasser of Egypt, and Ahmed al-Shuqairy of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), and with Black American expats like Shirley Graham Du Bois, Maya Angelou, and Alice Windom, among others.61 In seeking the support of international organizations like the Organization of African Unity, Malcolm tethered demands for US Black economic, political, and social autonomy to successive waves of mobilization against colonial and racial violence across Asia, Africa, and Latin America—“the worldwide black revolution!”

Mainstream representations such as Spike Lee’s 1992 film Malcolm X, cowritten by Arnold Pearl, have cast Malcolm X’s travels in the Middle East as a moment in which he embraced an Islamic variation of color-blind universal humanism; however, in his post-NOI, post-hajj period, he increasingly centered the historical legacies of race and slavery, Euro-pean imperialism, and US militarism in his analysis of global power, all alongside the tribute to global Islam. Moreover, between March 1964 and February 1965, his political thought continued to draw upon the symbolic and material capital of Third Worldism. “We are living in an era of Revolution,” he declared, “and the revolt of the American Negro is part of the rebellion against the oppression and colonialism which has characterized this era.” He felt that it was “incorrect to classify the revolt of the Negro as simply a racial conflict of Black against white, or as a purely American problem.” “Rather,” he contended, “we are today seeing a global rebellion of the oppressed against the oppressor, the exploited against the exploiter.”62 Rather than embrace a colorblind analysis that abandoned race as an analytic, Malcolm reached for a more historical-materialist critique of white supremacy and imperial subjection that foregrounded worldwide movements for popular sovereignty.

Even in the spiritual realm, Malcolm developed a view of piety that privileged revolutionary praxis—that is, a consonance between the Qur’anic principles of ‘ilm (knowledge) and ‘amal (practice, action). Accordingly, he extolled those figures he admired as “true Muslims,” such as Egypt’s Nasser, a “militant leader in the struggle against oppression” whose “concept of Islam forces him to fight for the liberation of all oppressed people, whether they are Muslims or otherwise, because Islam teaches us that all of humanity comes from Allah.”63 As Maytha Alhassen notes, during his residency in Cairo Malcolm would go on to call Nasser “my president” on numerous occasions, seemingly drawing the ire of American observers in the process.64 From his perspective, allegiances to a globalized Muslim imaginary (ummah) and to Third World leaders like Nasser or Algeria’s Ahmed Ben Bella, were deeply political acts in themselves—a transgression of the state’s Cold War–era racial-liberal doctrine that sought to circumscribe internationalist impulses through the nominal incorporation of Black peoples into the American body politic via legislative measures like the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965.65

In Cairo, Malcolm engaged international forums such as the Organization of African Unity as an observer and representative of his newly formed Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU). On July 17 he distributed an eight-page memorandum and addressed the assembly, imploring African leaders to reject the triumphalist narratives of domestic race relations propagated by the US Information Agency and the State Department, and to hold the US government accountable before the UN Commission on Human Rights: “Your problems will never be fully solved until and unless ours are solved. . . . Don’t escape from European colonialism only to become even more enslaved by deceitful, ‘friendly’ American dollarism.”66 In addition to his work on behalf of the OAAU, Malcolm X used his time in Egypt as an opportunity to study under clerics with the Supreme Council on Islamic Affairs. Founded in 1960 by the United Arab Republic—a short-lived union between Egypt and Syria—the council was the Nasser government’s attempt to counter threats posed by groups like the Muslim Brotherhood and Saudi-funded missionary activity. Malcolm’s studies would culminate in a final examination under the Grand Imam, Sheikh Hassan Maa’moun, rector of Al-Azhar University. Sheikh Hassan awarded him written certification as a da‘iy, Muslim revivalist, in the United States.67

Indeed, the residency in Cairo proved fruitful on a variety of fronts, as the city had also become a center for Black internationalism in the 1960s. Malcolm often met with American expats, including Elijah Muhammad’s son Akbar, who was studying Islamic theology at Al-Azhar, and author Shirley Graham Du Bois and her son David, a journalist with the Egyptian Gazette and the Middle East News and Features Service Agency and future editor-in-chief of the Black Panther Intercommunal News Service.68 During his tenure with the Gazette, David Graham Du Bois’s pieces would consider a wide range of topics, from urban rebellions and access to the ballot in the United States to Black Power politics.69 As editor of the Black Panther, he would maintain this transnational perspective through an emphasis on African and Arab politics, highlighting developments such as the 1973 Arab-Israeli War and US complicity in Israeli military campaigns in Africa. Du Bois would also have a hand in crafting the Black Panther Party’s well-known 1974 “Position Paper on the Middle East.”70 During Malcolm X’s 1964 visit the two developed a friendship. Du Bois not only arranged reprints of his speech from the Organization of African Unity “African Summit” in Egyptian dailies but also helped publicize his subsequent written work. “Zionist Logic” was one such piece.

Gaza

On the morning of September 5, Malcolm X embarked on a brief but formative two-day sojourn to Palestine following the opening of the second Arab League summit in Alexandria. The summit—historic for numerous reasons—would go on to officially welcome the PLO and approve the establishment of the Palestinian Liberation Army as its military arm. From Alexandria, Malcolm was escorted to Aswan in the south of Egypt and then to the Gaza Strip. At the time of his visit Gaza was under Egyptian oversight, which allowed access and freer movement within the region.71 Egypt had controlled the Gaza Strip since 1948 and would continue to do so until the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. Upon crossing the border—what he called “no man’s land”—he visited the refugee camp at Khan Yunis and a local hospital. In the afternoon he dined with Gazan religious leaders and Mustafa Khafaqa, assistant to the governor of the Aswan Province.72

Later that evening, Malcolm sat with Gazan poet Harun Hashim Rashid, listening intently to his story of escape from Khan Yunis nearly a decade earlier.73 On November 3, 1956, during the Suez War, Israeli military forces invaded the city and carried out a series of executions. Many Palestinians were killed in their homes and at the camp; others were lined up in the city’s central square and shot en masse. By day’s end, Israeli forces had killed 275 unarmed civilians. Following the attack, bodies lined the streets, and a curfew prohibited immediate burial.74 Rashid’s claims of memory, particularly his own recollection of the massacre, left a stark impression on Malcolm. In the coming weeks it would surely serve as one of the primary sources of inspiration behind his anti-Zionist discourse. To this end, Malcolm X’s travel diaries unearth another key source from his political wellspring: a poem written by Rashid, sutured by the refrain of return, which he copied into the diary:

We must return
No boundaries should exist
No obstacles can stop us
Cry out refugees: “We shall return”
Tell the Mts: “We shall return”
Tell the alley: “We shall return”
We are going back to our youth
Palestine calls us to arm ourselves
And we are armed and are going to fight
We must return75

Marable’s Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention overlooks Malcolm’s meeting with Rashid and paints the visit to Gaza in broad strokes, rendering its finer details illegible. Instead, he registers Malcolm’s support for Palestine as little more than political opportunism: a strategy to secure diplomatic and financial support from Arab leaders like Nasser.76 From this perspective, to effectively navigate the turbulent political waters of the Arab world it was necessary for Malcolm to shift his allegiances as needed. His “newfound hostility” toward Israel could be explained only by an intuitive trickster/hustler mentality (à la Detroit Red), not a shift in his political thought. On the contrary, I argue that Malcolm’s lived experiences brought him to a deeper personal and intellectual understanding of Palestinian liberation. His alliances likely developed out of a change in his thinking; his “newfound hostility” arose from firsthand observations.

After his meeting with Rashid, Malcolm attended Isha prayer at a local mosque. He prayed alongside several of Gaza’s religious leaders, noting in his diary that the “spirit of Allah was strong.”77 His night in Gaza ended at the parliament building, where he held a press conference: “There they showered gifts upon me (including a picture of the High Dam) which the Col. [Khafaqa] ordered them to take from the wall of the chamber.” Malcolm left Palestine the following afternoon. He would subsequently split his time between Cairo and Medina, studying under Sheikh Muhammad Sarur al-Sabban of the Saudi-funded Muslim World League.78

In the coming months, Palestine frequently emerged as a topic of personal and public conversation for him. For instance, in an interview with the Egyptian periodical Minbar al-Islam, Malcolm alluded to Palestine’s symbolic and historical significance: this time, as the focal point of Muslim victories over European crusaders in the twelfth century. He cited the military campaign of Salahuddin Ayyubi (Saladin) against European Crusader states in the Levant as a powerful example of Muslim “strength and dignity.” Malcolm affirmed that from his early days in prison he perceived Islam as a leading force in the battle against Western imperialism.79 In his mind’s eye, Islamic tradition shared a proud history with the “darker races” across Africa and Asia, while Christianity embodied whiteness via Europe and the United States. In this frame, Salahuddin’s conquest over Jerusalem figured prominently in his historical memory: a symbol of political and military success over European civilization.

On September 15, at the Shepard’s Hotel in downtown Cairo, he met Ahmed al-Shuqairy, president of the newly formed PLO.80 In subsequent years, the organization would rise to prominence alongside Algeria, Vietnam, and Cuba as a leading force on the Third World political stage and as a model for decentralized urban and rural guerrilla warfare.81 Although the details of Malcolm’s meeting remain sparse, it seems that he became acquainted with the group’s charter. The PLO’s demands, including a “reliance on self-organizing” and willingness to cooperate “with friendly international forces,” mirrored the OAAU’s platform as a political organization.82 Its struggle for global recognition—as a collection of nonstate actors, no less—undoubtedly resonated with him. The meeting also marked the beginning of a postwar revolutionary practice that witnessed exchanges between Black American and Palestinian radicals: from Eldridge Cleaver’s interest in Black September–style external guerrilla warfare and Huey Newton’s theory of “intercommunalism” in the late 1960s and early 1970s to June Jordan’s relational poetics in the wake of the 1982 Sabra and Shatila massacre in Beirut.

During his exile as head of the International Section of the Black Panther Party in Algiers between 1969 and 1972, Cleaver would gravitate toward the transnational insurgency models of more militant PLO factions like Black September and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, whose operations included assassinations, bombings, sabotage, and hijackings. In the struggle against the Euro-American “international pig power structure,” he grew particularly interested in skyjackings and the exploitation of weak spots in the global system.83 As Cleaver looked to this global insurgency model for inspiration, the leadership in Oakland embraced Palestinian liberation through a politics of what Huey Newton termed “revolutionary intercommunalism.”84 This strategy focused on local grassroots activism, rejected urban guerrilla warfare in the United States as unrealistic, and bypassed entanglements in Cold War geopolitics that defined the International Section’s workings. In February 1971, these divergent perspectives, coupled with the FBI’s COINTELPRO forged-letter campaign to further exacerbate tensions among the Black Panthers, led to a very decisive and public break between the two factions. In the 1980s, Black feminist writer and poet June Jordan’s news reporting on Palestinian refugees for the Independent and cultural production, including her 1982 poem “Moving towards Home,” with its oft-cited lines,

I was born a Black woman
And now
I am become a Palestinian,
would continue to bring African Americans and Palestinians into discursive and historical proximity.85

Zionist Logic

On September 17, 1964, two days after the meeting with Ahmed al-Shuqairy, “Zionist Logic” appeared in the pages of the Cairo-based Egyptian Gazette. Malcolm’s essay supported Palestinian struggles for self-determination and condemned Israeli Zionism as a “new form of colonialism.” He argued that the State of Israel, with its geographic position in the eastern Mediterranean, was “more firmly entrenched even, than that of the former European Colonial Powers.” He denounced the Israeli government’s “friendly offers of economic ‘aid,’ and other tempting gifts, that they dangle in front of the newly-independent African nations, whose economies are experiencing great difficulties.” Moreover, “Israel’s occupation of Arab Palestine has forced the Arab world to waste billions of dollars on armaments, making it impossible for these newly independent nations to concentrate on strengthening economies of their countries and elevate the living standard of their people.”86

Though the essay drew heavily on Malcolm’s own internationalist political orientation, his engagement with various Muslim, Arab, and African communities across three tours of the Middle East and Africa had profoundly shaped his critique. Further, Malcolm’s diary entries elaborate on the terms through which he understood Jewish settlement in historic Palestine. In what reads like an early, bare-bones sketch of the essay, he likens the Israeli-Palestinian relationship to that of “America-Indians.” Further down the page, he writes: “Arabs—indigenous to Palestine,” and “Israelis—from Europe.” His conclusion: Zionism equals racism.87

Compared to eighteenth-century European metropole colonialism, Zionism differed “only in form and method, but never in motive or objective.” According to Malcolm X, the objective, alongside conquest and settlement, was to divide the nonaligned “darker nations” of Africa and Asia. As a strong proponent of Nasser, he echoed the Egyptian president’s call for an African-Arab alliance under the banner of socialism. From his perspective, Israel was an outgrowth of European imperial expansion. Israelis and European imperialists were closely aligned, and Israel’s investment in newly independent African nations effectively served Western interests. “Dollarism,” he argued, was the “modern 20th century weapon of neo-imperialism.” And the Zionists “had mastered the science of dollarism: the ability to come posing as a friend and benefactor bearing gifts and all other forms of economic aid.” Geopolitically, Europe had its proxy “wisely placed.”88

Malcolm also denounced Black liberal internationalist Ralph Bunche, who, as the UN head mediator in Palestine, helped craft a partition plan in light of Israel’s unilateral declaration of independence in May 1948, thereby relinquishing his previous investments in the idea of a binational state. Bunche would go on to broker a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt in 1949 and became the first African American to win a Nobel Peace Prize in 1950.89 “Is Ralph Bunche the messiah of Zionism?” Malcolm asked. “It was Ralph Bunche who ‘negotiated’ the Zionists into possession of Occupied Palestine!”90

At the center of his analysis lay an interrogation of how the settler polity’s axiomatic coherence as a bounded collective entity—structured through the concept of return—facilitated the elimination of indigenous territoriality. Indeed, “Zionist Logic” concludes by taking aim at Israel’s ethical-religious pretext for colonial settlement as a “return” to the homeland:

Did the Zionists have the legal or moral right to invade Arab Palestine, uproot its Arab citizens from their homes and seize all Arab property for themselves just based on the ‘religious’ claim that their forefathers lived there thousands of years ago? Only a thousand years ago the Moors lived in Spain. Would this give the Moors of today the legal and moral right to invade the Iberian Peninsula, drive out its Spanish citizens, and then set up a new Moroccan nation . . . where Spain used to be, as the European Zionists have done to our Arab brothers and sisters in Palestine?91

Malcolm X’s essay closes with these parting questions, having situated Israel/Palestine in a broader analysis of political economy, discourse, and empire. In this frame, his description of a European-bred Israeli settler society echoes the work of Palestinian scholars like Fayez Sayegh, whose historical monograph Zionist Colonialism in Palestine would appear a year later, courtesy of the PLO Research Center in Beirut.92

Conclusion

Recent iterations of Black-Palestinian political solidarity, from transnational exchanges between African American and Palestinian activists in the summer of 2014 to Dream Defenders delegations to Palestine, have consistently invoked the historical legacies of Black Power, of Malcolm X, Ethel Minor, SNCC, and the Black Panthers. Considering the long and tangled history of Black activists’ relationship to Israel/Palestine across the twentieth century, Malcolm X’s and the NOI’s critique of Zionism certainly constituted a radical intellectual shift. As an organic intellectual whose ideology evolved in expanding global frames, Malcolm’s identification with Palestine sought to produce, to borrow Cynthia A. Young’s words, “a time-space compression that helped bridge geographic, ideological, and experiential gaps” between Black and Third World revolutionaries.93 Thus, the publication of “Zionist Logic” and Malcolm X’s concomitant border crossing in 1964 marked a critical period in the trajectory of Black internationalism, signaling the embrace of a decolonial, Third Worldist politics that implicated Zionism within a global system of racial capitalism, settler colonialism, and empire and established Palestine as a reference point for Black radical politics.

Moreover, centering this earlier era of Black-Palestinian coalition building deepens a history that often begins in the post-1967 Arab-Israeli War moment with SNCC and the Black Panther Party. As Alex Lubin reminds us in Geographies of Liberation: The Making of an Afro-Arab Political Imaginary, SNCC was the first civil rights organization to express “a break from the mainstream black freedom movement on the question of Palestine.”94 However, considering Malcolm X’s itinerant culture work, within the NOI and outside of it, complicates this historical genealogy and introduces spiritual as well as political motivation to help flesh out his place in a broad constellation of actors. Anticipating the subversive positions of SNCC and the Black Panthers, his support for Palestine ran counter to the opinions of conservatives, moderates, and radicals alike, from Walter White and Ralph Bunche to A. Phillip Randolph and W. E. B. Du Bois.

Ultimately, these histories of decolonization-era border crossing broaden our understanding of the Black Radical Tradition and of the Palestinian Revolution, emphasizing the importance of transnational cultural traffic and intergenerational exchange. They ask us to consider the diverse ways in which Black and Palestinian activists saw one another as constituents within a global radical community, actors engaged in a far-flung assault on empire.

At the same time, moving beyond the romantic veneer of revolution is the task that lies ahead of us. We find that these projects of political solidarity didn’t assume a kind of transhistorical permanence; they were ephemeral and made in the context of struggle. They featured schisms, moments of misunderstanding, and points of contention. Thus, in the present, we might critically engage both their potentialities and their limits. For activists and scholars working to chart a new way forward against the specters of state violence, racial capitalism, and settler sovereignty in the United States and Israel, a critical deconstruction of shared pasts is imperative.

I thank Glenda Gilmore and Robin Kelley for their valuable comments on earlier drafts of this article. I am also grateful to the anonymous readers at Social Text for their feedback.

Notes

3

On the historical genealogy of the 1955 Afro-Asian Conference and its attendant Non-Aligned Movement, see Prashad, Darker Nations.

6

Robinson, Black Marxism. I consider the ways in which border crossing and intellectual exchange during the era of decolonization extend our understanding of what Cedric Robinson calls the Black Radical Tradition.

9

See, e.g., Bailey, “Dream Defenders; Kane, “Growing Ties”; Black Solidarity with Palestine, “2015 Black Solidarity Statement with Palestine”; and Schotten, “Analysis.” 

10

Drawing largely on personal papers and news publications, this article locates the question of Palestine within the orbit of Malcolm X’s political imagination and contextualizes his role in the larger history of African American and Arab coalition building. Eschewing readings that reproduce a domesticated interpretation of Malcolm X in the post-NOI period of his life (March-1964–February 1965), I situate him in a multidirectional, global context and examine his 1964 trips to the Middle East and North Africa, including his stay in Cairo and his brief but formative sojourn to Palestine. I build on a growing body of scholarship that demonstrates how intellectual production by Black Power activists tied Palestine to Black liberation and implicated Zionism within a global system of racial capitalism and empire. See, e.g., Lubin, Geographies of Liberation; McAlister, Epic Encounters; and Feldman, Shadow over Palestine. As opposed to the dominant historical record, most recently Marable’s Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, which registers Malcolm X’s support for Palestine as an act of political opportunism, it is my contention that his advocacy was borne out of a shift in his political and social thought.

12

See McAlister, Epic Encounters; Schneier, Shared Dreams; and Anderson, A. Phillip Randolph.

16

Du Bois, “Prospect of a World without Racial Conflict,” 98. See also Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism. Aimé Césaire writes that the Holocaust was indeed an expression of colonial violence: Hitler “applied to Europe the colonial practices that had previously been applied only to the Arabs of Algeria, the coolies of India and the Negroes of Africa” (20).

29

Gambino, “Transgression of a Laborer.” According to Ferruccio Gambino’s concept of “double political space,” the rerouting of Black ontology through an Afro-Asian “symbolic and material universe” enabled a sociopolitical self-location that transgressed the “ideological discipline of the state” (8–9).

50

See, e.g., the following articles in 1962 issues of Muhammad Speaks: “Algerian Premier Charges France with Genocide” (January), “UN’s Afro-Asians Condemn Continued Brutality by French to Algerian Rebels (February), “UN Supports Independence Efforts of Algerian People” (March), and “Ben Bella Brands Colonial ism as Major Threat to Peace of World: Admires Civil Rights Fighters in America” (October 31).

51

See, e.g., the following articles in 1962 issues of Muhammad Speaks: “Arab Mayor Says Zionists Sway U.S. Thinking” (January), “Afro-Asians Review Arab Refugee Problems in East” (March), and “India Rejects Israeli Ties; O.K. Algeria” (July 15).

65

For an excellent historical analysis of US Cold War racial liberalism, see Dudziak, Cold War Civil Rights.

81

For an international history of the PLO, see Chamberlin, Global Offensive.

84

For a focused study of Black Panther Party revolutionary intercommunalism vis-à-vis Palestine, see Lubin, Geographies of Liberation, 111–41.

88

Malcolm X, “Zionist Logic.” The Palestinian liberation struggle would remain a marginal issue among states south of the Sahara for the next few years. Following the June War in 1967, however, things would shift dramatically. The Organization of African Unity would take up the issue, as would the Conference of Nonaligned States. African nations came to see consistencies between Jewish territorial expansion and nationalism and the apartheid system in South Africa.

91

Malcolm X, “Zionist Logic.” On “elimination” as the “primary logic” of settler colonialism, see Wolfe, Settler Colonialism and the Transformation of Anthropology. As Wolfe writes, “Settler colonies were (are) premised on the elimination of native societies. The split tensing reflects a determinate feature of settler colonization. The colonizers come to stay—invasion is a structure not an event” (1–2).

92

For an excellent meditation on Sayegh’s work, see Feldman, Shadow over Palestine, 23–58.

References

Achcar, Gilbert.
The Arabs and the Holocaust: The Arab-Israeli War of Narratives
.
New York
:
Metropolitan Books
,
2010
.
Alhassen, Maytha. “
The ‘Three Circles’ Construction: Reading Black Atlantic Islam through Malcolm X’s Words and Friendships
.”
Journal of Africana Religions
3
, no.
1
(
2015
):
1
17
.
Alhassen, Maytha. “
To Tell What the Eye Beholds: A Post 1945 Transnational History of Afro-Arab ‘Solidarity Politics.’
PhD diss.
,
University of Southern California
,
2017
.
Anderson, Jervis.
A. Phillip Randolph: A Biographical Portrait
.
Berkeley
:
University of California Press
,
1986
.
Baghdadi, Ali. “
Students Mastering Arabic
.”
Muhammad Speaks
,
April
28
,
1972
.
Bailey, Kristian Davis. “
Dream Defenders, Black Lives Matter, and Ferguson Reps Take Historic Trip to Palestine
.”
Ebony
,
January
9
,
2015
.
Ben-Dror, Elad. “
Ralph Bunche and the Establishment of Israel
.”
Israel Affairs
14
, no.
3
(
2008
):
519
37
.
Black Solidarity with Palestine
. “
2015 Black Solidarity Statement with Palestine
.” (accessed July 10, 2018).
Carmichael, Stokely; Thelwell, Ekwueme Michael,
Ready for Revolution: The Life and Struggles of Stokely Carmichael (Kwame Ture)
.
New York
:
Scribner
,
2003
.
Césaire, Aimé.
Discourse on Colonialism
.
New York
:
Monthly Review Press
,
1972
.
Chamberlin, Paul Thomas.
The Global Offensive: The United States, the Palestine Liberation Organization, and the Making of the Post-Cold War Order
.
New York
:
Oxford University Press
,
2012
.
Curtis, Edward E.
Black Muslim Religion in the Nation of Islam
,
1960
1975
.
Chapel Hill
:
University of North Carolina Press
,
2006
.
Curtis, Edward E.
‘My Heart Is in Cairo’: Malcolm X, the Arab Cold War, and the Making of Islamic Liberation Ethics
.”
Journal of American History
102
, no.
3
(
2015
):
775
98
.
Daulatzai, Sohail.
Black Star
,
Crescent Moon: The Muslim International and Black Freedom beyond America
.
Minneapolis
:
University of Minnesota Press
,
2012
.
DeCaro, LouisA.Jr.,
On the Side of My People: A Religious Life of Malcolm X
.
New York
:
New York University Press
,
1996
.
Bois Du, W. E.B.
Case The for the Jews
.”
Chicago Star
,
May
8
,
1948
;
repr. in
Writings by W. E. B. Du Bois in Periodicals Edited by Others, Volume 4: 1945–1961
, compiled and edited by Aptheker, Herbert,
56
58
.
Millwood, NY
:
Kraus-Thomson Organization
,
1982
.
Bois Du, W.E.B.
Prospect of a World without Racial Conflict
.” In
The Social Theory of W.E.B. Du Bois
, edited by Zuckerman, Phil,
98
102
.
Thousand Oaks, CA
:
Pine Forge
,
2004
.
Dudziak, Mary L.
Cold War Civil Rights: Race and the Image of American Democracy
.
Princeton, NJ
:
Princeton University Press
,
2011
.
Fanon, Frantz.
Toward the African Revolution: Political Essays
.
New York
:
Monthly Review Press
,
1964
.
Felber, Garrett. “
‘Those Who Say Don’t Know and Those Who Know Don’t Say’: The Nation of Islam and the Politics of Black Nationalism, 1930–1975
.”
PhD diss.
,
University of Michigan
,
2017
.
Feldman, Keith P.
Representing Permanent War: Black Power’s Palestine and the End(s) of Civil Rights
.”
New Centennial Review
8
, no.
2
(
2008
):
210
21
.
Feldman, Keith P.
A Shadow over Palestine: The Imperial Life of Race in America
.
Minneapolis
:
University of Minnesota Press
,
2015
.
Filiu, Jean-Pierre.
Gaza: A History
.
New York
:
Oxford University Press
,
2014
.
Fischbach, Michael R.
Black Power and Palestine: Transnational Countries of Color
.
Stanford, CA
:
Stanford University Press
,
2018
.
Gaines, Kevin.
American Africans in Ghana: Black Expatriates and the Civil Rights Era
.
Chapel Hill
:
University of North Carolina Press
,
2008
.
Gambino, Ferruccio. “
The Transgression of a Laborer: Malcolm X in the Wilderness of America
.”
Radical History Review
, no.
55
(
1993
):
7
31
.
Gelvin, James L.
The Modern Middle East: A History
.
New York
:
Oxford University Press
,
2016
.
Grewal, Zareena.
Islam Is a Foreign Country: American Muslims and the Global Crisis of Authority
.
New York
:
New York University Press
,
2013
.
Kane, Alex. “
The Growing Ties between #BlackLivesMatter and Palestine
.”
Mondoweiss
,
January
26
,
2015
. .
Kelley, Robin D.G.
Africa Speaks, America Answers: Modern Jazz in Revolutionary Times
.
Cambridge, MA
:
Harvard University Press
,
2012
.
Kelley, Robin D.G.
A Poetics of Anticolonialism
.”
Monthly Review
51
, no.
6
(
1999
):
1
21
.
Kelley, Robin D.G.
Yes, I Said, National Liberation
.” In
Letters to Palestine: Writers Respond to War and Occupation
, edited by Prashad, Vijay,
139
53
.
London
:
Verso
Books
,
2015
.
Lubin, Alex. “
Between the Secular and the Sectarian: Malcolm X’s Afro-Arab Political Imaginary
.”
Journal of Africana Religions
3
, no.
1
(
2015
):
83
95
.
Lubin, Alex.
Geographies of Liberation: The Making of an Afro-Arab Political Imaginary
.
Chapel Hill
:
University of North Carolina Press
,
2014
.
Makalani, Minkah.
In the Cause of Freedom: Radical Black Internationalism from Harlem to London
,
1917
-
1939
.
Chapel Hill
:
University of North Carolina Press
,
2011
.
Malcolm, X.
February 1965: The Final Speeches
.
New York
:
Pathfinder
,
1992
.
Malcolm, X.
Malcolm X Speaks: Selected Speeches and Statements
. Edited by Breitman, George,
New York
:
Grove Press
,
1990
.
Malcolm, X. “
Zionist Logic
.”
Egyptian Gazette
,
September
17
,
1964
.
Malloy, Sean L.
Out of Oakland: Black Panther Party Internationalism during the Cold War
.
Ithaca, NY
:
Cornell University Press
,
2017
.
Malloy, Sean L.
Uptight in Babylon: Eldridge Cleaver’s Cold War
.”
Diplomatic History
37
, no.
3
(
2013
):
538
71
.
Marable, Manning.
Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention
.
New York
:
Viking Press
,
2011
.
Masalha, Nur.
The Palestine Nakba: Decolonising History, Narrating the Subaltern, Reclaiming Memory
.
London
:
Zed Books
,
2012
.
McAlister, Melani.
Epic Encounters: Culture, Media, and U.S
.
Interests in the Middle East
,
1945
2000
.
Berkeley
:
University of California Press
,
2005
.
McAlister, Melani. “
One Black Allah: The Middle East in the Cultural Politics of African American Liberation, 1955–1970
.”
American Quarterly
51
, no.
3
(
1999
):
622
56
.
Meital, Yoram. “
The Aswan High Dam and Revolutionary Symbolism in Egypt
.” In
The Nile: Histories, Cultures, Myths
, edited by Erlich, Haggai; Gershoni, Israel,
219
26
.
London
:
Lynne Rienner Publishers
,
1999
.
Morris, Benny.
Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict, 1881–1998
.
New York
:
Vintage Books
,
2001
.
Muhammad, Elijah.
Message to the Blackman in America
.
Chicago
:
Muhammad Mosque of Islam
No.
2
,
1965
.
Muhammad, Herbert. “
Revolution That Broke the Back of Bigots and Colonists
.”
Muhammad Speaks
,
July
31
,
1962
.
Pittsburgh, Courier. “
Mister Muhammad’s Message to African-Asian Conference!
January
18
,
1958
.
Prashad, Vijay.
The Darker Nations: A People’s History of the Third World
.
New York
:
New Press
,
2008
.
Radwan, M Ramzy. “
Why I Chose Islam: Malcolm X, Who Has Become Haj Malek El-Shabazz
.”
Minbar al-Islam
(
November
1964
):
55
57
.
Robinson, Cedric.
Black Marxism: The Making of the Black Radical Tradition
.
Chapel Hill
:
University of North Carolina Press
,
2001
.
Rogan, Eugene.
The Arabs: A History
.
New York
:
Basic Books
,
2009
.
Said, Edward W.
Representations of the Intellectual: The 1993 Reith Lectures
.
New York
:
Vintage Books
,
1996
.
Sayegh, Fayez.
Zionist Colonialism in Palestine
.
Beirut
:
Palestine Liberation Organization Research Center
,
1965
.
Schneier, Marc.
Shared Dreams: Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Jewish Community
.
Woodstock, VT
:
Jewish Lights
,
1999
.
Schotten, Heike. “
Analysis: Racism and Rhetoric from Ferguson to Palestine
.”
Ma’an News Agency
,
January
22
,
2015
. .
Shafir, Gershon.
Land, Labor, and the Origins of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, 1882–1914
.
Berkeley
:
University of California Press
,
1996
.
Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee
. “
Third World Round-up: The Palestine Problem: Test Your Knowledge
.”
SNCC Newsletter
1
, no.
2
(
1967
):
5
6
.
Takriti, Abdel Razzaq.
Monsoon Revolution: Republicans, Sultans, and Empires in Oman 1965–1976
.
Oxford
:
Oxford University Press
,
2016
.
Wolfe, Patrick.
Settler Colonialism and the Transformation of Anthropology: The Politics and Poetics of an Ethnographic Event
.
London
:
Cassell
,
1999
.
Young, Cynthia A.
Soul Power: Culture, Radicalism, and the Making of the U.S. Third World Left
.
Durham, NC
:
Duke University Press
,
2006
.