Speaking to the people gathered in the church’s pews, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder called Sutton “one of the nation’s true heroes.”
“I admired, respected and worked for him,” Holder said of Sutton, who died on December 26, 2009 in Manhattan at the age of 89. “The opportunities given to my generation were paid for by his… Without him, there would be no me.”
Holder, a native New Yorker, continued, saying, “Generations of other African American lawyers stand on his strong, broad shoulders.”
He then read a statement from President Barack Obama, who called Sutton’s death “an enormous loss.”
“Percy’s passion for justice began at an early age and never wavered,” Obama said in a statement, recounting an incident when Sutton was beaten at age 13 for passing out NAACP leaflets in a white neighborhood. “It was an experience that gave him strength and determination to stand up for what he believed in.”
Both men, Obama and Holder, indeed owe a debt to Percy Sutton. Holder, a young black radical who put on a suit and tie to penetrate the establishment, no doubt owed Sutton for advice. After all, Sutton had tread the same path.
Obama owed Sutton at least partially for the education, without which he almost certainly never would have risen to the heights he has.
In a televised interview in 2008 on New York’s all news cable channel, NY1, Percy Sutton, a former borough president of Manhattan and a credible mayoral candidate in 1977, made some interesting revelations about his links to the young Obama.
Sutton told NY1 reporter Dominic Carter on the show “Inside City Hall”: “I was introduced to (Obama) by a friend who was raising money for him.” He asked Sutton to write a letter in support of Obama’s application to Harvard Law School.
“The friend’s name is Dr. Khalid al-Mansour, (formerly Donald Warden, mentor of Black Panther Party founder Huey Newton and his associate, Bobby Seale) from Texas,” Sutton said. “He is the principal adviser to one of the world’s richest men. He told me about Obama.” The man Al-Mansour was referring to was Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal.
Sutton recalled that al-Mansour said that “there is a young man that has applied to Harvard. I know that you have a few friends up there because you used to go up there to speak. Would you please write a letter in support of him?” Sutton did.
The story is given credibility by a November 1979 column by Chicago Tribune columnist Vernon Jarrett with the title: “Will Arabs Back Ties To Blacks With Cash?”
The late Vernon Jarrett was the father-in-law of Valerie Jarrett, who would go on to become Barack Obama’s closest friend and White House adviser. Mr. Jarrett was was a former Chicago communist and a colleague of Frank Marshall Davis, the former Chicago journalist and Communist Party activist who moved to Hawaii in the late 1940s and years later befriended Stanley and Madelyn Dunham and their daughter Stanley Ann, mother of Barack Obama.
Davis is known to have taken an active role in the rearing of young Obama from the age of 10 until he turned 18 and left Hawaii for his first year at Occidental College in Los Angeles in 1979. That was the same year al-Mansour was seeking Arab financial support for students such as Obama.
Vernon Jarrett’s column details how al-Mansour told him about a proposal he made to OPEC Secretary-General Rene Ortiz regarding a program to spend “$20 million per year for 10 years to aid 10,000 minority students each year, including blacks, Arabs, Hispanics, Asians and native Americans.”
These minority students would then migrate through the political system promoting Palestinian and radical Islamist causes. Al-Mansour told Jarrett that the program had been endorsed by Ortiz and other OPEC administrators.
The Obama/Frank Marshall Davis connection was first revealed during an event at the Tamiment Library in New York where the archives of the Communist Party USA were put on display. These remarks were delivered by Communist Party connected historian Gerald Horne (then publicized by this writer) on March 23, 2007.
Interestingly, Sutton’s own communist connections were revealed also at the Tamiment Library at an October 28, 2006 event entitled: “James and Esther Jackson, the American Left and the Origins of the Modern Civil Rights Movement.”
Three panels of academics and activists delivered papers illuminating the lives of Black Communist Party leaders James Jackson and his wife Esther Jackson, “their co-workers and the struggles in which they participated that helped shape developments in the United States from the late 1930s to the present.”
Though New York based, the Jacksons spent much of their youth agitating among Black communities in the South, including with several well known Civil rights activists such as Rosa Parks of “Montgomery Bus Boycott” fame.
Communists, or former communists, Angela Davis, Pete Seeger, Maurice Jackson and Charlene Mitchell delivered papers and spoke at the event. Communist Party leaders Sam Webb, Debbie Amis Bell and Daniel Rubin were also among the attendees.
Percy Sutton also gave a paper on the Jacksons:
Percy Sutton, former Manhattan borough president, took the floor and spoke of his long association with and appreciation of the Jacksons. This began in Texas where Sutton grew up in a family of 12, half of whom became Communists.
It wasn’t revealed which half of the family Percy Sutton belonged to, but his future activities are certainly a strong indication.
Before he became a Manhattan businessman and politician, Sutton was a Tuskegee Airman and intelligence officer during World War II, a man “pushed north by the Jim Crow diaspora, a civil rights activist jailed in the prisons of the South and a lawyer to Malcolm X”.
After moving to New York, Sutton became a “grandee in the most sophisticated and influential black political club in New York City.”
He also became a millionaire, owner of what were at one time the city’s two most influential black radio stations, the WBLS hit-maker on FM (107.5) and the “intensely, incessantly political,” WLIB (1190 AM).
While a rising star in Democratic Party politics in Harlem, Percy Sutton never forgot his far left roots.
Sutton was among the first voices raised against the Vietnam War, surrendering his delegate’s seat at the 1968 Democratic convention in protest and supporting anti-war candidate George McGovern four years later against incumbent President Richard Nixon.
On April 16, 1975, Percy Sutton, Manhattan Borough president, was on the Current List of Sponsors of the Communist Party front National Coalition to Fight Inflation and Unemployment.
A brochure announcing a National Conference for a Drastic Cutback in Military Spending, to be held on April 5-6, 1975, at the LaSalle Hotel, Chicago, was printed by the National Conference on military Spending Organizing Committee Military Spending Organizing Committee, of 156 Fifth Avenue, Room 716, NYC, NY, 10010. The printing bug was that of the Communist Party’s Prompt Press, 209.
Sponsors of the event included Percy E. Sutton, Manhattan Borough President.
Future New York Mayor David Dinkins rose through the Democratic Party organization in Harlem and became part of an influential group of Black politicians who included Basil Paterson, Denny Farrell, Charles Rangel and Percy Sutton. This tight knit group was to dominate Harlem politics for decades.
Of the five, David Dinkins and Denny Farrell, a prominent New York state legislator, were long time members of the U.S.’s largest Marxist organization Democratic Socialists off America.
Basil Paterson was a founding member of the National Conference of Black Lawyers, a far left group, self-described as the “legal arm of the black revolution” and directly affiliated with the Soviet front International Association of Democratic Lawyers.
Basil Paterson’s son David Paterson, who was briefly Governor of New York, is a veteran of events such as the 1985 “Conference on Socialism and Activism” and a 1998 Communist Party sponsored event celebrating the centennial of the birth of Communist Party member Paul Robeson – who reportedly advised his friend and comrade Frank Marshall Davis to move to Hawaii.
Charles Rangel, a long serving Democratic Congressman, was also a founding member of the National Conference of Black Lawyers. He has a history of supporting Communist Party causes going back decades and in the 1970s and was associated with the Soviet front World Peace Council.
There has obviously been a long term program by pro-Soviet communists to promote sympathetic politicians to positions of power in the Democratic Party.
Percy Sutton was clearly connected to that program and possibly to a similar, possibly interrelated program run by Saudi/Islamic interests. Both the Soviets/Russians and the Saudis have long both supported the anti-Israel, pro-Palestine cause, so Saudi/Soviet cooperation in attempting to influence U.S. politics would not be improbable.
Percy Sutton’s role in the rise of both Barack Obama and Eric Holder deserves much deeper scrutiny.