A story of the African-Indigenous united Front: The Redsticks unite with African slave captives to fight colonization!

Capitalism was born and is sustained by the blood of our peoples. Karl Marx referred the genocide and enslavement of Indigenous and African people as the “rosy dawn” of capitalist accumulation, but for the past 500 years we have fought back against the always ravenous machinery of parasitic capitalism and white power.

Our history is storied by many examples of the revolutionary kinship between Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island and Africans stolen into slavery.

I learned this one about the African and Seminole alliance in so-called Florida from Gord Hill’s “500 Years of Indigenous Resistance” while living and studying as an urban and displaced Menominee north of the artificial settler border, in so-called Canada.

The Seminole were a nation born out of many Indigenous peoples who arrived in Florida to find refuge from the expansion of British and American settler colonialism. This included members of the Apalachicola, Yuchi, Yamasee, Choctaw and Chickasaw Nations.

In Florida they joined with the autonomous, liberated communities of African people who had escaped colonial bondage, known as the Maroons.

An important chapter in this story is that of Redsticks following the Creek War of 1813.

The Redsticks were a faction within the Creek Nation who wished to restore their ancestral practices while others of their Upper Creek kin were assimilating into white settler ways–including “owning” African peoples as slaves.

This conflict exploded into civil war when the Redsticks raided the plantations of the assimilated Upper Creeks, and helped their African kin escape. African people became significant players in the war, siding with the dissident Redsticks.

Following the end of the war, the Redsticks and their African allies withdrew to Florida where they joined with the already growing Seminole nation.

Because of the fierce resistance of this alliance, the U.S. was unable to ever fully dislodge our Seminole–African kin from their territory in Florida. Even after the course of 30 years of conflict—which cost some 1,600 U.S. soldiers their lives, thousands more to injury and upwards of $30 million.

They successfully resisted many attempts at separating Seminole and African kin and dismantling their alliance. During the Second Seminole War, under the leadership of Osceola and Maroon leaders John Caesar and John Horse, the alliance successfully resisted relocation to Oklahoma.

This revolutionary kinship was more than just a defensive alliance. During the second war Seminole-African guerrillas would launch a powerful offensive that ran from Christmas Day, 1835 through to the summer of 1836 in which they destroyed 21 sugar plantations.

Many of the Seminole-African guerrilla fighters would never be subjugated, never surrender their freedom to parasitic white power. We stand today on the shoulders of these mighty ancestors whose spirits are with us still.

As anti-colonialist and anti-imperialist revolutionaries in the 21st Century, it is in the likeness of these ancestors that we continue the 500 year old tradition of the African-Indigenous United Front.

Together like the Redsticks, Seminoles and Maroons of old, we will burn their plantation system to the ground!

African & Indigenous Unite and Fight!

Biskaabiiyang!

Uhuru!

 

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