The new Netflix documentary “Who Killed Malcolm X ” has shaken up the case. Following its airing, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office has decided to reexamine the case. The documentary reignited beliefs that two of the three men convicted of the assignation of the civil rights leader and former Nation of Islam member were not at the scene, The Daily Mail reported. The documentary began streaming on Netflix on Feb. 7.
While some were impressed by the documentary, Nation of Islam scholar Karl Evanzz, author of “The Judas Factor: The Plot to Kill Malcolm X,” was not — to say the least. He recently wrote an opinion piece on the film for the “Truth Continuum” blog.
According to Evanzz, one of the film’s producers, Shayla Harris, who is African American, reached out to him for an interview and asked him to be involved in the documentary. Evanzz declined. He did send over reference material, which he wrote was basically ignored. Instead, Evanzz said, the documentary tried to claim that Norman Butler was not involved in Malcolm X’s murder. Evanzz insists he was.
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“Despite data I sent to Ark Media via Harris, they chose to go with the erroneous proposition that all of the assassins were from New Jersey and that Butler was framed. They conveniently show the footage of William Bradley fighting to free Hagan, but they omit the footage of Norman Butler at the same scene,” Evanzz wrote.
He added, “I was contacted by Harris of ArkMedia on Jan. 9, 2018, regarding the company’s planned series on Malcolm X. I told her that I could not be part of it, but two days later I sent her … panels from ‘The Black Zapruder Film: They Killed Malcolm X.'”
Evanzz criticized one of the main sources of information of the film, Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, who claims that his obsession with Malcolm X’s murder changed the trajectory of his life.
“The truth is that his life had no trajectory as far as anyone knows. He’s kind of fumbled his way through life until now,” Evanzz chastized.
According to Evanzz, Netflix got it wrong — something he worked to prevent.
“I wanted to make sure that ArkMedia didn’t fall for the bull patties about Butler being innocent of the assassination. Despite this cautionary advice, ArkMedia chose to ignore the only positive proof that Butler was not at home with an injured leg at the time of the assassination. No, he was right there on the front row killing Malcolm X,” Evanzz wrote.
Why does this information keep getting passed on?
“The biggest problem with most scholars is that they have fallen for the lies in a 1977 affidavit written by Thomas Hagan (aka Talmadge Hayer), and another affidavit signed by Benjamin Goodman (Karim),” Evannzz wrote.
According to Evanzz, Hagan lied during the trial.
“I can understand Hagan lying for his misguided brothers in the Nation of Islam, but Benjamin Karim totally dishonored Malcolm X by giving defense lawyers a ludicrous affidavit. Karim notes in the affidavit that Thomas Johnson and Norman Butler could not have been in the Audubon at the time of the assassination, but then admits that he was not an eyewitness to the murder,” Evanzz wrote.
Evanzz says all the evidence that Butler was not involved is there, just ignored. “On February 7, I wrote the attached letter to Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. and his associate, Peter T. Casolaro. I have asked them to review the photos showing a man who I maintain is Norman Butler attempting to view Malcolm’s body. Some scholars, incredulously, claim that the man is a doppelganger. Doppelganger my ass; that’s Norman Butler,” he wrote.
In his letter to Vance and Casolaro, Evanzz wrote: “I am writing as regards the current misguided attempt to “clear the name” of Norman 3X Butler, aka Muhammad Abdul Aziz, one of three Black Muslims who shot Malcolm X to death inside the Audubon Ballroom on February 21, 1965.
“While it is true, as retired detective Anthony V. Bouza noted recently in the New York Times, that the investigation was botched in many ways, it most certainly was not botched in terms of Norman Butler. As the old movie tag goes: ‘[the] Butler did it.’”