10 episodes

In 1985, police dropped a bomb in a Philadelphia neighborhood. Their target? A family of Black radicals known as ‘MOVE,’ who found themselves ensnared in a city — and nation’s — domestic war on Black Liberation. Over seven episodes, host Matthew Amha investigates the events that culminated in the MOVE bombing, and the long afterlife of a forgotten American tragedy.

All episodes are available ad-free on the CBC True Crime Premium channel.

The Africas VS. America CBC True Crime

    • True Crime
    • 4.0 • 91 Ratings

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

In 1985, police dropped a bomb in a Philadelphia neighborhood. Their target? A family of Black radicals known as ‘MOVE,’ who found themselves ensnared in a city — and nation’s — domestic war on Black Liberation. Over seven episodes, host Matthew Amha investigates the events that culminated in the MOVE bombing, and the long afterlife of a forgotten American tragedy.

All episodes are available ad-free on the CBC True Crime Premium channel.

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

    Mother’s Day

    Mother’s Day

    In the early hours of May 13, 1985, police direct residents of Osage Avenue in West Philadelphia to leave their homes, and not return for 24 hours. It’s Mother’s Day, and authorities have come to resolve a years-long conflict with a family of local revolutionaries — the Africas, collectively known as MOVE. There are 13 people in the Africa home that morning. Six of them are children. By the end of the day, most will be dead, and a neighbourhood will lie in ruins. Artwork by Yannick Lowery.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 52 min
    The Making of John Africa (GI John)

    The Making of John Africa (GI John)

    A quiet and reclusive young man is conscripted to war in Korea and returns having been made anew. Vincent Leaphart becomes the enigmatic John Africa, whose revolutionary vision will prove irresistible to followers seeking a new way of living. But what begins as a movement concerned with the protection of all life, will gradually turn to nonviolent direct action and large-scale civil disobedience in reaction to the state. This is the origin story of John Africa, leader of what will soon become known as MOVE.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 53 min
    The Toughest Cop in America

    The Toughest Cop in America

    By the 1970s, both local and federal law enforcement have perfected a system to subvert and neutralize Black liberation movements across the United States. The civil rights movement has been uprooted, and Black Power is now here. In Philadelphia, the most famous police officer in America is elected mayor. Frank Rizzo’s objective is to turn the city into centre stage in the nationwide fight against Black liberation activists. His power and influence will have deep implications for MOVE.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 51 min
    The Commissioner’s Gambit

    The Commissioner’s Gambit

    Complaints from neighbours about MOVE’s lifestyle lead to increasingly violent clashes with police. One confrontation turns deadly, and by 1978, relations between MOVE and city authorities have reached a crisis point. The MOVE home in residential Powelton Village becomes the scene of a two-months-long starvation blockade, and the site of a stand-off with police that will end in blood, gunfire, and the arrest of nine members of MOVE, collectively charged with murder for the death of an officer.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 57 min
    MOVE on Trial

    MOVE on Trial

    The MOVE 9 are catapulted into the international spotlight, facing more than 900 years between them for the death of Officer James Ramp — a crime for which they maintain their innocence. Central to the case is a former Black Panther and Vietnam vet named Delbert Africa, who will become a symbol of police brutality in Philadelphia. As all of this is happening, MOVE’s mysterious leader John Africa is on the run from local and federal authorities. When he’s finally found and brought up on charges, John Africa opts to represent himself in court, and an old friend takes the stand against him.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 58 min
    Hellfire

    Hellfire

    In 1983, the City of Philadelphia elects its first Black mayor as successor to Frank Rizzo. Woodrow Wilson Goode inherits Rizzo’s fight against MOVE, but he also represents a moment of hope for Black Philadelphians who believe his election could be a harbinger of progress for a city beset with racial strife. Instead, Mayor Goode’s administration unleashes a torrent of violence never before seen in American history in an effort to neutralize MOVE once and for all.

    For transcripts of this series, please visit here.

    • 1 hr 6 min

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5
91 Ratings

91 Ratings

sunyberry ,

Wow! Great!!!

The storytelling and research that went into this was excellent! It was captivating and Information all the way through. Highly recommend!

Kymme3 ,

Garbage

Sounds like a woke tool

Misanthropic1 ,

Only one episode in…

And I’m RIVETED! This is the best new podcast I’ve stumbled upon in years! Thank you!

Top Podcasts In True Crime

Drowning Creek
Wavland
Dateline NBC
NBC News
Crime Junkie
audiochuck
Lost Hills: Dark Canyon
Western Sound and Pushkin Industries
Morbid
Morbid Network | Wondery
Smoke Screen: My Friend, the Serial Killer
Sony Music Entertainment

You Might Also Like

Pretendians
Canadaland
On Our Watch
KQED
Chameleon: Dr. Miracle
Sony Music Entertainment / Campside Media
The Godmother
iHeartPodcasts
You Didn't See Nothin
USG Audio
Uncover
CBC