Written by By Susan Idzikowski
(CNN) — In 1963, when black nationalist Malcolm X died in New York’s Bellevue Hospital, Marcus Garvey Park — on the other side of the Atlantic — stood a mere 5 miles away on its notorious, police-protected, hair-trigger Brooklyn Bridge.
In New York, the four-lane bridge was routinely rigged with bombs. One detonated on New Year’s Eve, 11 days before the funeral in 1963, this one in front of the building that would become the Malcolm X Mosque in Harlem.
A police bomb squad could easily intercept or even seize a bomb on the side of the East River where it could get free.
“To get a bomb across that bridge was very easy for them,” Oscar Ligon said in a recent interview.
Ligon, 81, is the head of an organization called the Wounded Knee Riders, the last remaining group of misfits who tried to stop the state’s program of march and kill in its many “tests” against Native Americans in the late ’60s and early ’70s.
Asked his opinion of the current militant wing of the Muslim community, he said his experience and those of others from his generation has given him “a heart of stone.”