Houston Riots (1917) – the Racist Executions and Imprisonment of Black Soldiers in the US!

13 Black Soldiers Hanged for Mutiny – Texas – 11.12.1917

The United States, is of course, an inherently ‘racist’ country. It is the product of European (White) settlers appropriating a non-White country, and in the process committing genocide, War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity. On August 23rd, 1917, around 156 Black soldiers serving in the segregated units of the US Army rose-up against the racial apartheid that was routine to the White people of Texas. Whilst protecting themselves (and the local Black population) from police brutality and White mob violence, these Black troops heroically clashed with the White Authorities – a confrontation which ended in the deaths of four soldiers, five police officers and eleven civilians. Twenty Black soldiers were subsequently sentended to Death by Hanging – with one committing suicide before the sentence was carried-out. President Woodrow Wilson confirmed the ‘justness’ of these Court Martials – stating that all the procedures had been carried-out properly and these men deserved to ‘die’ for terrorising the White community – but said absolutely ‘nothing’ about the institutional racism these men were subjected to – or the brave way in which they met their deaths as brave soldiers. It was clear from the Revolutionary events unfolding in Russia that White (bourgeois) power in the US was under threat, and President Wilson commuted ten further Death Sentences to Life Imprisonment. At no point in this sorry affair was the anti-Black racism acknowledged as a factor in the uprising and even today – 102 years later – the families of these men are still waiting for justice!

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