By Cara Cranford

Have you ever wondered how Black Lives Matter got its start as an activist organization?

Looking into the history of Black  Lives Matter, the organization claims that it is a loosely put together  group of people who have come together to help better the lives of  African American communities and to stamp out systemic racism in the  United States. United News Channel has found, however, that the BLM  movement actually has its foundation grounded in the BDS Palestinian  movement, a movement closely allied with the terrorist organization  Hamas. Furthermore, two of the founders of Black Lives Matter movement  are self-proclaimed trained Marxists.

Black Lives Matter was founded by  Alicia Garza, Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors when Garza created the  hashtag on social media after the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the  Trayvon Martin case in 2013. The movement gained further momentum in  2014 with the Ferguson riots. Ferguson, Missouri exploded after Michael  Brown was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson in August  2014. What happened in Missouri was a precursor to the riots we are  seeing erupt across the country today.

Garza and Cullors met at an activist  conference and have known each other for over 10 years. Tometi saw their  hashtag on social media and reached out to Garza to get involved.  Tometi is a Nigerian-American activist who has spent her career working  in human rights, and has served as the executive director of BAJA, the  Black Alliance for Just Immigration. Cullors said she got involved after  her brother was abused in prison.

The three founders state the  organization was created in order to change the very fiber of the  dysfunction in America’s society and to call attention to the systemic  racism and police brutality nationwide. However, the organization has a  deep, disturbing history.

After the riots in Ferguson catapulted  the Black Lives Matter movement into the mainstream, it was endorsed by  President Obama, Beyoncé and scores of celebrities and athletes in a  manner which seems outwardly legitimate.

So how did a movement that was supposedly grassroots take off like wildfire?

In examining Cullors’ background more  closely, the reasoning for the formation of Black Lives Matter becomes  more revealing. She grew up in a low-income community in the San  Fernando Valley. Her family were devout Jehovah’s Witnesses and she was  forced out of her home at age 16 after coming out to her parents as gay.  She soon developed an interest in the Nigerian religion, Ifa which  bases its teachings on a type of divination in which the Grand Priest  prophesizes about the future. Ifa is a practice also found in the  Caribbean Voodoo religion. Cullors has incorporated her religious  practice into her political activism.

On June 2, 2020 Black Lives Matter  activists performed an Ifa ceremony outside Los Angeles Mayor, Eric  Garccetti’s home. According to an article in JSTOR, the Ifa  preacher was able to conjure up the spirit of Ezell Ford, the mentally  ill black man killed by the LA police, and transfer it to the group.  Cullors talks about this ceremony in an article for Religious News.

In another article at JSTOR the ceremony was described as:

“We did an Ifa ceremony in front of  his house,” DPN organizer Evan Bunch recalled later. “The preacher…was  able to conjure up Ezell Ford’s spirit and kind of transfer it to the  group. And it was evident through the participants that they were  feeling something that was not of the temporal world.”

Cullors became an activist early on  when she joined the Bus Riders Union as a teenager. She majored in  religion and philosophy at UCLA. She also is a performance artist. In  2012 she founded the nonprofit Dignity and Power Now which organizes to  end sheriff violence and stop jail construction in Los Angeles. She  currently teaches Masters Art in Social Justice and Community Organizing  at Prescott College.

In an interview with Real News about Black Lives Matter, Cullors told Jared Ball that she and Garza were trained Marxists.

Patrisse Cullors states (from the show  transcript): “The first thing, I think, is that we actually do have an  ideological frame. Myself and Alicia in particular are trained  organizers. We are trained Marxists. We are super-versed on, sort of,  ideological theories. And I think that what we really tried to do is  build a movement that could be utilized by many, many black folk. We  don't necessarily want to be the vanguard of this movement. I think  we've tried to put out a political frame that's about centering who we  think are the most vulnerable amongst the black community, to really  fight for all of our lives.”

In an interview with Laura Flanders,  Cullors talked about her trip to Palestine in support and solidarity of  the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions). BDS likens their cause to  that of Apartheid, in that their mission is to fight against military’s  abuse of the Palestinians and to pressure Israel to relinquish control  of Palestinian land.

Cullors also served on the board of  the Ella Baker Center, an organization co-founded by CNN contributor Van  Jones. Politically, Cullors threw her support behind Democratic  candidates Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, both lost to 2020  presumptive nominee Joe Biden.

Is there an agenda behind the Black  Lives Matter Movement, other than what is apparent?  United News Channel  will continue to investigate this story.

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Photo Credit:  John Lucia,