Friday, 6 January 2017


November 1972: John wins the Booker prize and throws it back in the face of Booker- McConnell Ltd, the sugar barons, in the most creative way possible: half the prize money to go to his work on the exploited and rootless migrant workers of Europe, and the other half to go to the British Black Panther Party’s fight against racism.

April 1972: flashback – the staff of the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) in Jermyn Street (!), the first and only race think-tank in Europe, after a protracted struggle to retain the Institute’s independence from government influence and big business interference, overthrows the Board of Management and its chairman, the chairman of Booker-McConnell, who resign en bloc, taking their money with them. The Institute and its library, with what is left of its staff, move to the basement of an old warehouse in the precincts of Pentonville.

1973: John begins work with photographer Jean Mohr to create A Seventh Man (every seventh worker in Europe being a migrant) while we at the new IRR begin working with migrant workers’ organisations across Europe to create the first Congress of Migrant Workers for migrant workers.

1974: John - accompanied by Beverly (editor at Penguin of A Seventh Man) who knows about the IRR’s struggles and troubles - comes to see us and with his characteristic generosity, and in solidarity, offers us an excerpt from the forthcoming book for publication in our journal (in the throes of being transformed from the academic Race to the activist Race & Class).

Of such common threads of nay-saying are struggles woven.

John and I meet again as fellow Fellows of the Transnational Institute in Amsterdam (an affiliate of the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington DC) under the aegis of Eqbal Ahmad, renowned anti-war activist and scholar, who is getting together a group of scholar-activists from across Europe and the Third World to study, compare and support radical initiatives and socialist movements in their areas. And between seminars and workshops, John conducts us through the art galleries of Amsterdam, giving us eyes to see with, not just life through art but lives as lived around us. I knew then what Keats meant when he wrote of ‘the holiness of the heart’s affection and the truth of the imagination’.

That is the thing about John: his driven search for the truth. It shows when he talks, it’s all over his face – that is how he got those leonine lines. It is there in his gestures: that pouting of his fingers as though he is holding the precious seed of a thought about to burst into flower. It is there in his writings: his stories, poems, plays, scripts, essays – in his essays particularly, where the raw process of the search for truth is beaten out like in the hammering in the Egmont Overture or the Fifth Symphony.

Which evokes the question: how is it that this polymath has not written on music? Or has he? When my back was turned? But then he hears the jagged music of the world (the cliché is fitting). He hears people, he hears pain, he hears the music of art. ‘The moment at which a piece of music begins provides a clue to the nature of all art’, he writes.

And that is the other thing about John: he makes a daring pronouncement like that as though it is a given, and then goes on to elaborate on it, embroiders it, runs a ring of metaphors around it that you are so taken up with the arabesque that you forget to question the original premise. No wonder John likes Walter Benjamin: he also makes what appears to be an ex cathedra statement and then goes on to illustrate it so intricately that its meaning is clear, its premise proven. It is a sort of inverted dialectic. And John is a brilliant dialectician.

He finds movement, conflict, change even in stone. The dialectic in him is a felt sensibility.
And it is that quality that he brings to his personal relationships. He sees people in their totality, contradictions and all: he does not judge them, though he would certainly ‘judge’ their work, their deeds, of which he might be an excoriating critic, but is never ad hominem.

Equally, John is only too willing to assist those who seek his help. And in that he is not just a source but a confluent passing you on to others who might be able to help you on in your journey. Above all, he gives of himself.

And that is where I come in - as debtor par excellence. I was in the throes of writing my first novel when I approached John. I had written short stories (published here and there) and half a novel (abandoned for fear of rejection). It was not as though I had been to creative writing classes or had connections in the publishing world or could afford a ‘broker’. Quite simply I was not qualified. But something John said to me about writing over a beer in a Kings Cross pub, persuaded me that I might well be a story-teller, and story-tellers, I told myself, were born not made. And the story I was aching to tell was the broken story of my beautiful country before it descended into the barbarism of race war. I sent John the manuscript, and he was not merely encouraging but exhortatory, urging me through phone call and letter to finish it and send it off to publishers, whatever the result. The result was twenty-one rejections, before a small publisher, Arcadia, under Gary Pulsifer, who coincidentally happened to be a friend of John’s from their days in the Writers and Readers Cooperative, decided to publish the book – (and subsequently felt his judgement justified when it won a couple of prizes and, more, a flattering review by John in the Guardian).

But the owing doesn’t end there. John, despite the workload he carries on his peasant back, continues as a member of the Race & Class Editorial Working Committee, to be involved in the Institute’s work, shows solidarity with its causes, appearing on its platforms from time to time, contributing to the journal from time to time – though present all the time, like a conscience.

A. Sivanandan, Director Emeritus Institute of Race Relations, founding editor Race & Class and author of the novel When Memory Dies.


Many thanks to and with permission from for this extract: Chandan, Amarjit, Gunaratnam, Yasmin (Eds. 2016). A Jar of Wild Flowers: Essays in Celebration of John Berger, London: Zed.


In a pocket of the earth
I buried all the accents of my mother tongue

There they lie
like needles of pine
assembled by ants

one day the stumbling cry

of another wanderer
may set them alight

then warm and comforted

he will hear all night
the truth as lullaby

- John Berger, 'Migrant Words', 1980.


Saturday, 31 December 2016


This is a well established foreign affairs journo at the daily mail. This has been one of the only articles in the imperialist mainstream media that has questioned anything of western reporting on Syria of late. The imperialists can afford to have this article out there, as its the only one and it helps to create a atmosphere that there is a critical conversation about these things when there clearly isnt one, and the publication of such an article indicates that the imperialist lies are so bad, that they have to put this out. - Sons of Malcolm

...the old cliche ‘the first casualty of war is truth’ is absolutely right, and should be displayed in letters of fire over every TV and newspaper report of conflict, for ever.

Almost nothing can be checked. You become totally reliant on the people you are with, and you identify with them.

If you can find a working phone, you will feel justified in shouting whatever you have got into the mouthpiece – as simple and unqualified as possible. And your office will feel justified in putting it on the front page (if you are lucky).

And that is when you are actually there, which is a sort of excuse for bending the rules.

In the past few days we have been bombarded with colourful reports of events in eastern Aleppo, written or transmitted by people in Beirut (180 miles away and in another country), or even London (2,105 miles away and in another world). There have, we are told, been massacres of women and children, people have been burned alive.

The sources for these reports are so-called ‘activists’. Who are they? As far as I know, there was not one single staff reporter for any Western news organisation in eastern Aleppo last week. Not one.

This is for the very good reason that they would have been kidnapped and probably murdered. The zone was ruled without mercy by heavily armed Osama Bin Laden sympathisers, who were bombarding the west of the city with powerful artillery (they frequently killed innocent civilians and struck hospitals, since you ask). That is why you never see pictures of armed males in eastern Aleppo, just beautifully composed photographs of handsome young unarmed men lifting wounded children from the rubble, with the light just right.

The women are all but invisible, segregated and shrouded in black, just as in the IS areas, as we saw when they let them out.

For reasons that I find it increasingly hard to understand or excuse, much of the British media refer to these Al Qaeda types coyly as ‘rebels’ (David Cameron used to call them ‘moderates’). But if they were in any other place in the world, including Birmingham or Belmarsh, they would call them extremists, jihadis, terrorists and fanatics. One of them, Abu Sakkar, famously cut out and sank his teeth into the heart of a fallen enemy, while his comrades cheered. This is a checked and verified fact, by the way.

Sakkar later confirmed it to the BBC, when Western journalists still had contact with these people, and there is film of it if you care to watch. There is also film of a Syrian ‘rebel’ group,
Nour al-din al Zenki, beheading a 12-year-old boy called Abdullah Issa. They smirk a lot. It is on the behalf of these ‘moderates’ that MPs staged a wholly one-sided debate last week, and on their behalf that so many people have been emoting equally one-sidedly over alleged massacres and supposed war crimes by Syrian and Russian troops – for which I have yet to see a single piece of independent, checkable evidence.


Sons of Malcolm’s New Year Message: Prepare and ACT to Combat New Fascism in the ‘West’ Destroying our Homelands

(Sons of Malcolm's New Year message a year ago)

“Everyone had had enough of the brits, and the brits have had enough of everyone else”

“The growth of New Fascism is directly related to the destruction of Libya in 2011, just as the rise of European Fascism in the 1920s and 30s was predicated on the colonial occupation of Ethiopia (Abyssinia) and Libya.”

“Imperialism is terrified of China, China is the number one state and country for imperialism to destroy.”

“The corruption of the entire left is so deep that it is unfit for anything other than posture and fakery with the use of much radical rhetoric.”

“The westerners are scared, they are feeling the loss of all the goodies a spoilt child has from its father: colonialism.”

“The means to resolve these contradictions is to negate the whole system, and there is only one proven way to do so: decolonial anti-imperialist socialism”


Everyone has felt a collapse of morale and hope this last year. Everyone. Colonial delusions and illusions are being burnt to the ground, incinerated into vapour. The comfortable old order in the West (always predicated on colonial genocide in our Homelands) is clearly seeing the beginning of the end. The colonial social democratic parties are exposed and useless – Labour Party and Corbyn, Democrats and Bernie/Hilary/Obama, Syriza etc. Failed. They cannot do anything; they are too tied to the system. The old centre-right colonial parties. Finished. The New Fascist revolution is seeing the beginning of the start of its historical rise, and is burning everything in front of it. The New Fascism relies heavily on growing imperialist wars and the racist propaganda and terrorist acts that it facilitates. Every single terrorist act in London and France and further beyond shows clearly the state were watching the perpetrators very closely, this is all clearly established, and I have written extensively on this for the RT website and Counterpunch as well as my countless TV appearances.

2016 started on the heels of the so-called and racist named ‘refugee crisis’, actually a crisis of imperialism collapsing into fascism that has continued its export of fascism and societal collapse of the last 500 years and more recently against Somalia, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and Syria etc. THIS is what has caused the movement of our peoples, we come to the West not for the weather and welcoming parties, but cos you took all our shit and killed all our people. We coming to get ours.

This year started with the great constructed fear engulfing the masses, the dominant sections of Western states are clearly looking to New Fascism attempting to divide and distract people from the culpability of the system and to try and ensure people don’t want to overthrow this system and put in place a decolonial anti-imperialist system, otherwise and also known as socialism (not the western colonial kind, but the Cuban kind for example).

Our masses traversing to the West was played up by the intelligence services (the leading political and organizational factions of the state) through their propaganda arms (the mainstream media), the fascist revolution continued to intensify. Generations of Western white’s colonial brainwashing, never challenged by the similarly colonially-brainwashed western left, and the Black radical movements failures to develop anything strategic for many generations has meant that whites and increasing amounts of non-whites in the West have gone into New Fascism as an ‘answer’ to their woes and fears. It must be stated very clearly, although non-white people in the West are being corrupted into loyalty to the West, still the great majority of them in the West are in opposition to New Fascism, and remain they along with migrants from East Europe, remain the main communities that are more than any other are in a position where they increasingly have to push back.

2016 also saw the total humiliation of the Brits, especially the English in Europe. Their response to this historical humiliation was to tell Europe that they are out, and they are going on a extreme UK state project of fascism – Brexit. The humiliation of the brits was that the great symbols of Britishness and the royal personified, the pop-bellied, sun burnt, pint swigging, rapey and racist ‘lads’ of their proud nation got smacked-silly all over and across France. Everyone had had enough of the brits, and the brits have had enough of everyone else. The Brexit/Leave camp, by default the brits especially the English want us (migrants and non-whites) to ‘Leave’ to ‘exit’, we are not going to, so the confrontation is set: the state and the racists vs the unorganized migrants and non-whites.

The internal increasing and irresolvable contradictions of his colonial-imperialist-capitalist system are intensifying, the root contradiction is that this system is global and social in scope and organization, but despite its social structure, the distribution of wealth goes to fewer and fewer hands and the poverty of the masses grows as a result. The system also has an irresolvable contradiction between the colonial centre and the rest of the world, the colonial centre is only such as its based on increasing genocide and exploitation of the rest of the world. And as Resistance has increased this last 500 years, and as the Global South led by China contracts the space for imperialism in the world, the imperialists go to war and destruction as a ‘logic’ and ‘rationale’ of the survival of their own system. THESE are the basic simplified reasons for all the strife and conflict and upset in the world.

The growth of New Fascism is directly related to the destruction of Libya in 2011, just as the rise of European Fascism in the 1920s and 30s was predicated on the colonial occupation of Ethiopia (Abyssinia) and Libya. If European fascism was stopped in Africa, it would not have spread and grown in Europe. The western left championed the Nato destruction of Libya, that export of fascism was making European fascism grow.

The means to resolve these contradictions is to negate the whole system, and there is only one proven way to do so: decolonial anti-imperialist socialism, and the evidence to its great successes are all the experience of the socialist countries that massively increased the liberation of our peoples, and the current examples of China where ALL the people are seeing a rise in their living and infrastructure based on a socialist state that is using a mixed economy to advance the cause.
Imperialism is terrified of China, China is the number one state and country for imperialism to destroy.

We now have the most vicious and unstable leaderships in leading western countries with Brexit and Trump, and with a mob of other fascists about to come to leadership in Western political systems. We are facing clearly intensified imperialist wars of destructions, every few years we see another one of our Homelands destroyed by imperialism and its proxies supported by the Western left. Next for destruction are Iran, Cuba, Korea, and then the final big one: China. Or are they just going to ‘cut to the chase’ and go for China a lot sooner? Indications are that. We will continue to see the destruction of our Homelands in general with exceptional moments of small victories, as our Homelands do not have the things in place to defeat such attacks, and the central thing is that we do not have multi-lateral (between many of our countries) agreements of mutual military defence pacts, ie., if one of us are attacked, we all come to the defence of them. Without China, Russia, India, SADC and much of the rest of Asia and Africa uniting on a MILITARY level, we are all subject to be destroyed one by one, and that’s what we are seeing.

As New Fascism emerges in the West, we see no resistance, no strategic resistance. A lot of middle class and lefty moaning and hand wringing, but the period from June 24 until now has shown that England will see no strategic Resistance, the corruption of the entire left is so deep that it is unfit for anything other than posture and fakery with the use of much radical rhetoric. The migrant and non-white communities are seeing no movement forward, no galvanization, just worry, anxieties and growing isolation and loss of political clout potentially and actually as New Fascism develops. Africans and Asians will continue and are continuing to arrive here, but they are arriving in a collapsing and defeating trajectory, they are coming here with no organization but for the presence of their growing communities.

The challenges are simply these:

1, Defend our Homelands! Oppose and advocate for the defeat of every imperialist provocation.

2, Develop the grassroots in the West to defend our Homelands and unite peoples!

3, Develop understanding the ideological decolonial, anti-imperialist socialist theories.

4, Gather together, show commitment, discipline, courage and determination, work with on things you agree on, discuss the differences constructively, and ACT and BUILD.

The reasons why we are seeing no growth of the Resistance in the West is because of the colonial corruption that is clearly evident in the left too, but its also because people are waking up to the fact that the entire world of the West has been a colonial bubble, a colonial fantasy built on bloodied sand, people are realizing it’s the start of the ending of that and are horrified they have to start to deal with the realities the people of the rest of the non-western world have had to deal with for centuries. The westerners are scared, they are feeling the loss of all the goodies a spoilt child has from its father: colonialism.

History shows, tragically and horrifically, that people only move with righteous ethics through total slaughter and collapse such as that in the first and second world wars. Those who are from and loyal to the Global South cause wish westerners would see what has happened to us and act before they are slaughtered like in the world wars, but we know these people, and know that they are unable to move other than for their own imperialist interests and desires. Somewhere through all this collapse, a new decolonial anti-imperialist resistance might emerge. It might not. It doesn’t matter; it never has really mattered, as the world is centered not in the west but in the rest of the world. And that’s what has to be the focus.



""How is the policy of the United States going to change in relation to Russia, Ukraine and China after Donald Trump takes office as President?"

"I know what America is like, especially on the level of common people, with whom I have to communicate a lot. No one can answer the question of what is going to happen in the United States in the near future. There are many speculations on the subject and many hopes, but no one wants to make any serious predictions.

"One may hear many experts saying that USA's foreign policy is impulsive, that the Americans get involved in a fight to see what is going to happen afterwards. This point of view is wrong. In fact, the US-led foreign policy is more targeted, and their ruling class is much more rational. They know what they want. They can make a lot of mistakes along the way, and they do make them, and we do point that out. At the same time, the US always follows global goals.

"In the past, the Americans had a global goal to achieve - to destroy their main rival, the Soviet Union. It took them several decades to make it happen. The United States has very long-term goals.

"What long-term and global goals does the United States have now? We can already see them. Today, America's geopolitical rival No. 1 is China. The biggest problem that the United States has to deal with now is the absence of ways to besiege China. The Americans may crop China's feathers a little, but they can not remove China as a competitor. There is only one "clever way" for the USA to go at this point.

"It is an open secret that Ukraine does not pose any interest for the United States. Ukraine is not a part of America's geopolitical interests. Why did the Americans pay so much attention to Ukraine, including financially? Why did they achieve so much influence there?

Brzezinski used to say that one needs to set Slavic nations against each other. They set Ukraine against Russia. Now they need Ukraine to put external pressure on Moscow. Today, the Americans need Russia the way Russia exists today.

Previously, they wanted to dismember Russia. Now they do not want to do it, because in this case, the Far East and Siberia will go to China, and China will become stronger than ever before. Brzezinski's chessboard is now history.

"To put pressure on China, the Americans can block China's main sea routes and oil transportation routes, but this is not important. The biggest danger for the USA is China's intention to build the new Silk Road. China wants to replace its economic cooperation with America. China needs Europe instead. China will be able to reach Europe via the new Silk Road. Therefore, the overland route to the continent is a threat to the States.

To curb China's development, the USA will need to make Russia and China enemies. They have done this with Ukraine, and now they want to do the same with China. They need today's Russia with its strong arms and everything. The only change the Americans need is a new leader in the Kremlin. They need to change Russia's president, while everything else will remain the same."

"Do they want the new leader to be more compliant?"

"Of course, they do. They want to plant "their own" president in Russia, like they did in Ukraine. They control the Kiev authorities from outside. If they succeed in setting Russia against China, the Americans will be on top of the world again.

"Trump has already made it clear: America's prime enemy is China, but not Russia. Trump may try to convince Russia to twist China's arms.""

Sunday, 25 December 2016


When Barf is not Barfi / nightmares of a white supremacist xmas

Sukant Chandan
Sons of Malcolm
25 Dec 2016

Like many if not most, I struggle hard to get through the english winter, especially coming from what seems like the constant blue skies and sunshine (and MONSOONS!) and orange glow (thats just what I remember my Homeland before I was brought here at the age of 4). Many of our peoples actually have a problem with sunshine, as we get too much of it and its too hot, hence the obsessions with water, shade, and the love of many of our people of grey skies and rain! I remember in Tripoli, Libya in the summer of 2011 that a massive winter-like storm broke out, the temperature dropped suddenly and the skies darkened, but people were so happy and walking and enjoying the storm in the open.

Growing up in the 1980s in london as a young Indian boy was very weird, especially when it came to winter and xmas. I left Chandigarh, a really beautiful and organised city of my birth, to Southall, West London. Southall is like an extension of Punjab (massive amounts of Paistani and Indian Punjabis, mostly Indian there) / India / Pakistan (now also Somalia and East Europe), its the biggest concentration of South Asians outside of of South Asia in the world. So in *some* ways it wasnt so different from Home, however, it was clearly very different from home. One of the many first smacks to my system that this was ajeeb sa juggha (strange kinda place) was when the winter I arrived, one of the coldest in the last 40 odd years, that the land was covered by  a layer of very pretty white fluffy stuff - snow - that we call 'Barf', but the word for Indian sweets is 'Barfi', so I conflated the two, thinking this land was literally covered in sweets: but every time I went to try what seemed to be this loely sweet stuff, as soon as it touched my tongue a shock went through my system that this was some disgusting tasting yuck. That, perhaps, was a metaphor for my entire life in this country.

Winter was bleak in this country. What on earth is this? Darkness. Very cold. None of my extended family are around for me to run off with and be naughty and have fun. Where's my paternal Uncle (Mamaji) who used to pretend to give me the ends of his cigarettes that I pretended to smoke and drink whiskey and have pretend fights, cos my 'hero' was Amitabh Bachan, and this rebel without a cause neo-liberal individualist whiskey drinking street fighting singing dancing charming film star was mine and million of other South Asian, and Russian, and African children's hero who I acted out in my imaginary play, including in the aisles in the cinema, with everyone smiling and laughing at this 2/3yr old playing Amitabh with full vigour. No, those days were behind me, I was thrown into the middle of the enemy territory, carrying on inside me the lives of both my grandfathers who fought the people who run this new land I was in, they fought them in two continents: Africa (Kenya) and Asia (unidivided India), and I had come to the continent of Europe to carry on the family tradition.

Southall was a forward base of India in Britain, and it still is, with further additions and spreading of Asian people who have basically taken over the whole of the western regions of London, and further afield like Slough, Reading, Luton etc. Going to primary school there was kinda normal to me, but there were these white women who were teaching us in another language, apart from that we were all Indian kids apart from one white kid. Xmas just wasnt on our radar, we didn't really notice it. Probably the primary school tried to brainwash into a western colonial xmas, but it didnt register. I didnt watch TV, I lived in an Indian community, and the strange things was the darkness and cold in the winter and it why does everything look so grey?!

The other thing that made me kinda surprised and perhaps some kind of excitement as it was a bit of a spectacle was spotting a white person when usually my Father took me to the high street to shop at the grocery stores and the Muslim butcher. I always gawped at the head of the goat in the display cabinet at the butchers. This is one of my favourite memories, going with my Father to the shops, often it was dark, but the fruit and vegetables were all laid out spreading onto the pavement, the Indian music playing and the sounds of the languages and the smells just made me feel like I was in India. A lovely homely memory. But I was still in enemy territory, little did my very young child mind realise. My younger Brother and my only real actual sibling arrived within one year of my arrival in London. I remember being very loving and caring towards him, in the hospital after he was born I wouldnt let anyone else touch him or go near him as he was 'mine'. I still have a picture of my leaning over his hospital crib protectively with my tired but elated mother watching on.

By around 1987 we moved to Ealing Broadway, we got a little two bedroom flat on a beautiful road. I moved into a local primary school, best years of my life, but this was half white and half non white, and a mix of working class and middle class kids. I have never known middle class people until this time in my life. The school I suppose reflected London broadly at that time. And I had now entered into the mainstream of colonial London. We had a TV that I seemed to watch more. I got brainwashed into coca cola, michael jackson, madonna, hollywood bullshit colonial culture. It became what I wanted to be, it became a means of denying myself, despite my parents always trying to do their best to keep my pride up of who were are, especially my Mother always reminding me that we are from a people of ancient civilised histories, that we are nothing less than the people over here, that they have no real culture. It didnt kick in any of this until my political awakening at 15yrs old, and then again at around 23 yrs old. At 15 and then 23 Black Power was increasingly blasting out from my inner zone of life.

But as a child as you grow and your system starts to absorb more and you act out what you absorb. Xmas was a massive propaganda project as it still is. What was Xmas to my child's mind? It was the most important celebration of people in this country. It was when the children got presents from this old white guy with a white beard from somewhere in even colder up in north europe. It was about families gathering together. And it was a very english white tradition and event. ie., nothing to do with me! All my family I was close to were back in India. When you get the feeling families are getting together and you don't do that, it makes you feel like you are something less. It was just a very alien festival that you felt you had to be a part of. But I wasnt. We never had a xmas tree, I wanted one, maybe I nagged for it. I demanded and nagged xmas presents, so kindly and generously my Mother fed my spoilt nagging. She shouldn't have, it isnt wasnt ours to celebrate, to waste money on, but more important perhaps she shouldnt have inadvertently fed my growing inferiority complexes by allowing me to indulge in this.

You have to remember, this was in the 1980s, Indian and non-white people who werent Christian didnt really develop any assimilation into this festival at all, I am not saying they should and those that do are not without problems, they are. But these days I think non-white people have in massive numbers adapted a kind of xmas to suit them, many of us do the xmas roast etc. Back then, we did our thing, they did theirs, and we slowly started to interact and fuse the things together, not all of us but many of us.

Recently I was at a really nice 'stay and play' xmas party in south London, there were some hundred young working class mothers with their children (three fathers including me), and it was so interesting to see the Asian and African mothers really trying to sing along to hymns and carols and songs about xmas that they didnt know, but they were so keen in trying to involve their children into something that is so alien to them but that it is the host colonial nations culture and festival. It made me sad and happy, happy cos mothers love their children and children were happy at this singing together and the free good food and free wrapped presents for every child, however it made me sad that our people are so keen to give into the culture pressure of pushing their children into a culture that they needn't and perhaps shouldn't assimilate into. Can we decolonise xmas?

As I have grown older, winters became harder and harder, the colonial commercial crassness of xmas, the dark and cold was just very hard for me. Once I started really focusing on my healthy eating and exercise in my mid 20s, things started to improve through winter and xmas, but its still very hard. I started to appreciate the change of the seasons, the last leaves on the trees. The first blossoms in the spring, and the period of hell that lies in between the two. I started to appreciate that for all its nonsense xmas lights are an attempt at bringing light to where there's darkness. But still the lights look so pathetic, it always feels and looks like the darkness always wins over the light in this country!

Xmas is bad for you. Those who indulge in it one would like to think we make of it the best we can, focus it on family and gathering together through the dark to make the children happy. That's wonderful and beautiful. But there is a sharp and intense viciousness to it as well, a viciousness that creates a lot of pain and hurt in many ways and for many people, including white english working and middle class people. But if you are non-white, its a really vicious thing. One thing I think I would like to see more and I will be doing is the coming Christmas, to promote and celebrate the ways our people from our southern continents have made this celebration their own in many ways. I know Christians in Ethiopia and Eritrea, in Palestine and Syria and Lebanon, in India and Pakistan, in the Andes have Christmas of a kind that people here know nothing about, our songs, dress for Christmas is something people in the west know nothing about. Christianity is a religion of the East, not of europe! The religion has been colonially occupied and is awaiting liberation, a process that is in or hands.

Wishing our children all the happiness and liberation that we adults and parents can provide. I won't ever fail them. Merry Christmas and the very best for health, happiness and liberation to you and yours.