On May 26, 1995, in response to the growing issue of modern-day black slavery in Africa in the black press, black TV talk show host Tony Brown interviewed the trio of journalist Sam Cotton, an associate of the American Anti-Slavery Group who had written a number of powerful articles about slavery, Sheikh Anwar McKeen, a black Nubian Muslim leader and descendant of the last Nubian king before the Arab conquest of the Sudan, and Abdul Akbar Muhammad, Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan’s personal spokesman. Muhammad, Farrakhan, and the Nation of Islam had inserted themselves into the controversy because — for reasons not revealed in the national press until the following year — shamefully, the Nation of Islam had a major financial stake in protecting the reputations of Arab regimes like Libya and Sudan, and they were willing to deny the facts of slavery in order to preserve their support from those very black slaves’ Arab owners. During the segment, Cotton and Muhammad sparred over the issue of slavery in Sudan, which Muhammad, in classic NOI fashion, blamed on the supposedly malefic influence of Dr. Jacobs (a Jew). Muhammad continued to push his conspiracy theories even in the face of footage Brown played of a human rights investigation conducted by Dr. Kevin Vigilante, formerly a physician at Brown University, in the Sudan earlier that year, depicting the inhumane treatment of black slaves by their Arab masters.
This segment aired on June 17, 1995.
After that interview, Muhammad complained to Brown that he had not been given “equal time” to promote the Nation of Islam’s version of the facts. Brown accommodated Muhammad, and agreed to a solo interview not long afterward in which Brown politely challenged Muhammad’s callous and warped denial of slavery in Sudan.
See more video from Dr. Vigilante’s investigation: youtube.com/watch?v=2rMbRiD2noQ.
Copyright © 1995 Tony Brown Productions.