Interview with Elaine Brown

Can you talk about some of the times you spoke, the sense of the alliances with White radical organizations, and some events?


Well, of course, ah, clearly Eldridge Cleaver was the main, ah, main, ah, person who supported this notion of, of alliance with White radical organizations. I mean, he coined the phrase Mother Country Radicals. And this was something that, that went in, was really in line with our thinking anyway. Because in general the party, as I say, was not a nationalist group. So we saw the interconnection between the various struggles. Many of the White radical groups, of course, were populated by more middle class, ah, in some cases, even upper class, if that term could be used, ah, Whites, but nevertheless they had sincere hearts and commitment at the time to support our struggle. So we had two kinds of White groups that we coalesced with. One, the, ah, peace and freedom types, ah, pe--ah, various groups who we worked with on a day to day basis. And there were others who were support groups. Ah, there were many Panther, White Panther support groups, White groups of people, groups of White people who supported the Black Panther party. And so, um, ah, not only financially, but also politically and in their own communities. They did work within White communities, or they supported the work that we did in the Black community. Or they were in coalition with us on specific issues. For example, I remember we had a United Front against Fascism conference in which the Peace and Freedom was a co-sponsor of. And ah, we saw this as keeping in line with our position that the oppression of Black people was directly connected to capitalism and not to the question of, ah, nationalism or racism.