Category Archives: War

World War Due to Syria?

If there is one thing that the civil war in Syria has shown the world is that when the bosses have a disagreement, it is the workers who do the dying. For a quick rundown of who is fighting whom in Syria, click on this link.

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Hundreds of thousands of workers in Syria have been murdered by the bosses’ bombs, due to their rotten ideology, their sectarian divisions manufactured by their borders, and the millions of bullets that they have made billions in selling. PLP has pointed out that this civil war in Syria has been a proxy war between the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, and other Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) nations in order to loosen Russia’s natural gas grip over Europe, control the natural gas mega field in the Eastern Mediterranean, and block Iran’s influence in the area. The millions of refugees created by this imperialist adventure are now being used as a political lever by Turkey as Erdogan does his best Gollum impersonation over his precious neo-Ottoman empire expansion into Syria using hoards and hoards of Islamist, mostly Al Qaeda aligned, rebel groups. He is tired of his nation being the ottoman of Europe.

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Over 60% of Europe’s natural gas market is dominated by Russia, and the US is desperate to break this stranglehold that keeps them from absolute economic sanctions against Russia. This civil war is a classic example of category of dialectical imperialism known as appearance and essence. It appears to be, and is manipulated to look like by the bosses’ media, a civil war between a tin pot dictator and rebels trying to overthrow him, but it is really an imperialist proxy war between different major nations that is now spinning out of control.

 

Basically, the US supported Kurdish and Arab Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are now getting Russian Close Air Support (CAS) to fight the CIA vetted and armed moderate opposition that are also tactically aligned with both Al Qaeda and Turkey after the Assad Regime seized territory in northern Syria to cut off the supply lines that the CIA and Turkey were using to pump weapons and jihadis into the conflict. Turkey played a dangerous game and is now in the process of losing it. The worst moment in the history of France was when Germany formed out of the Germanic tribes that Europe had enjoyed using mercenaries in their militaries since the Roman Empire. When Germany rose, it was an existential threat to the social order where England and France’s military might vied to be the preeminent power in Northern Europe.

 

As Germany rose, it challenged the already divided world and its ambitions led to the conflagration that was supposed to be the Great War to end all wars, but is now just reduced to World War I. Turkey is now staring down that historical moment. An autonomous Kurdish zone, colloquially known as “Rojava”, has formed just south of Turkey’s border as the leftist People’s Protection Units (YPG), the group that is the heart of the SDF, whipped the snot out of the Daesh (Islamic State, ISIS, ISIL) fascists who were hoping to massacre them. Though there are progressive aspects of the YPG that PLP does support such as fighting against patriarchy, they are not Communist and will not be able to sustain a revolution that will transform social relationships through the transformation of the economic relationships. The YPG illustrates the contradiction that unless there is a proper political line fighting directly for Communism, they will eventually end up back in the pit of capitalist ideology and relationships. Just as the PLP did not unreservedly support the brave workers who fought imperialism in Vietnam, we will not uncritically support the YPG and their Rojava project. We will point out that their struggle is just as doomed to the quagmire of capitalism as Vietnam’s left-led struggle National Liberation.

 

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As Kurdish Rojava rises to their southern border, Turkey sees them as more of a threat than the Daesh’s genocidal death cult and has actually embedded their special forces in with the Jihadi groups now infiltrating into Northern Syria as they are just wantonly firing artillery into the Kurdish controlled areas as the Kurds are fighting the “moderate” CIA vetted rebels that have no problem wiping out whole villages of Shia and Al Awari that don’t worship their deity the way that they want to in the name of their Sunni sectarianism.

 

We are at a historical moment now where the imperialists can either take their losses and leave Syria to a Russian victory – a Russian victory that is going to allow them to take on the mantle of being the army that has defeated Jihadi forces in the Middle East, that has helped to shove a massive thorn into the side of Turkey, and that will allow for them to keep an expanding military presence in an area of the world that is strategically vital to the US’s empire. Turkey and SA have threatened to invade Syria to ostensibly fight Daesh, but this excuse will be a military excursion in order to keep Rojava from uniting across the entirety of Turkey’s border. The US has been arming and funding the YPG in their fight against the Daesh death cult, now Russia is providing CAS, and the regime’s forces are not engaging them as they have worked out some type of de facto non-aggression pact.

 

When the “Arab Spring” happened, PLP pointed out that none of the groups fighting against their own tin pot dictators had the correct political line of fighting directly for communism and that the struggle would be hijacked. Well, once again we were right as the struggle in Syria led to the rebels making tactical alliances with Islamicists that have now rendered any secular struggle within the Western-backed rebels impotent. Since the rebellion in Syria did not have the correct goals at the outset, it’s now fully apparent that they have betrayed the working class in Syria and now Turkey is trying to stave off the endgame of them being crushed. They have been complaining about being abandoned by their Western backers like the US, but they have also aligned themselves with groups like Jabhat al Nusra, al Qaeda in Syria.

 

The Western backed rebels aren’t the first group of rebels trying to overthrow a tyrant that became tyrants as they made opportunist errors based on their incorrect political line. They made a deal with the devil, and now they are paying the price as they have basically not only lost the rebellion, but, even more importantly for a rebellion, they have lost the support of the people. Masses of workers are now meeting their former tyrant’s forces that are aligned with that despot Putin in Russia as well as the oppressive fascists in Iran with massive celebrations in the street. They are full of joy at being liberated from the liberators by their former exploiters!

 

PLP will continue to maintain a principled left position and will not be opportunist. We recognize the historical moment that is now occurring within Syria. We see the balance of forces moving in the direction opposed to the dominant US Empire and allies. We know that the US needs to create a Sunni state to block Iran’s influence and to eject Russia’s growing military might out of the area.

 

Turkey wants to expand, and as it expands, since it is a member of NATO, US power is also expanded. The issue now occurring is that Turkey has now overplayed its hand. It is now firing artillery into SDF controlled Syria, has tens of thousands of troops along the Syrian border ready to invade, and does not want the US armed and backed SDF to wipe out the US armed and backed rebels and Daesh that now control its southern border. The US is caught as two of the sides that they have supported in Syria are now at war, so they may be able to pull out some kind of diplomatic victory, but Turkey has gone all in on toppling Assad’s regime. If Turkey is unable to topple Assad, that’s bad, but if they not only don’t topple Assad, but are then stuck with a Kurdish autonomous zone along their southern border while they continue to fight a war with the secessionist Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) in their south then it can be easy to foresee a time when Syria facilitates the Kurds in their armed struggle against Turkey.  This would be a catastrophe for Turkey and entail a major rollback of NATO, and by association, US power in the geostrategic region.

 

Turkey is now trying to get the US to say that the YPG is a terrorist organization just like the PKK is. It would not have been prudent, to say the least, if the US had admitted to arming, funding, and providing CAS to a terrorist organization, so they have officially said that the YPG are not a terrorist organization – much to the chagrin of their NATO ally. Turkey considers the revisionist YPG to be more of a danger than Daesh’s genocidal death cult!

 

It is historical moments like this where seemingly small wars can turn into massive world wars as imperialist rivals have the choice of either throwing in their hands and letting their rivals take all of the chips or doubling down and entering the fray themselves. Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, and, most importantly, Russia have said that if Turkey or SA were to invade it would be a violation of Syria’s sovereignty and they would be going home in body bags. This is not an empty threat. Turkey shot down a Russian plane that was bombing its Islamist proxy forces in northern Syria, and Russia has not forgotten. It will, in all probability, attack any columns of troops entering into Syria. Turkey may not be able to invoke the NATO defensive pact since it would be an offensive operation. SA would use an army made up of many of its allies including Pakistan and Indonesia, who, ironically, have both said that they don’t want to invade, but may be obligated to due to signed defense pacts. If Russia were to vaporize the Turkish troops that invaded, this could be quite the spark.

 

The bosses are seeing the weakness the US has right now, a weakness where they don’t have the mass army that they need to confront their current world rivals, don’t have the patriotism necessary to induce their army to fight, and, most importantly, don’t have their own ruling class unity won to the necessary economic sacrifices necessary for such a massive war.

 

Aspirant warmongers like Bernie Sanders would prove to be quite the boon to the US ruling class as he already is saying that he wants the rich to pay more taxes. He or Hillary would be just what the dominant liberal wing of the US ruling class needs to convince its working class to wage a really big war. So, whichever Repubulocrat or Demopublican, Trump or Sanders, that wins the US presidential election will have to carry out the needs of a US empire in decline. PLP knows that imperialist bloodbaths have lead to Communist revolution in the past and knows that, as we continue to build in over 25 countries on 5 continents, we have a world to win and nothing to lose but our chains. The bosses will attempt to destroy this world, but workers built it, run it, and can build it again even better. We know that this capitalist system will not last forever. The bosses can keep conspiring again and again, but only a Communist revolution led by PLP can end these wars once and for all.

 

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Women Continue To Feel the Brunt of Fascism

As the world’s working class continues to feel the brunt of living in the new dark ages if late capitalism, the special oppression of women intensifies. The bombs falling in Gaza do not discriminate. The hundreds of dead children attest to that. The Islamic State just made female genital mutilation (FGM also called female circumcision) mandatory in the territory that they conquered. Obama is getting ready to send back thousands to potential sex work and violence directly or indirectly financially benefiting US capitalism. It is getting more and more clear every day that a mass communist movement led by PLP is needed.

An international communist movement of millions organized and led by the Progressive Labor Party would have seized state power in one area of the world. Like the communist lead USSR’s example in Spain, we would organize hundreds of thousands of volunteers to engage in armed struggle internationally. We would build and organize to build ties with the working class in dangerous areas like Islamic State. We would make sure that those fascists got exactly what they deserved.

Instead, the US may use this latest information to create a basis for their humanitarian imperialist intervention. Islamic State and the sectarian war now raging in Iraq would never have happened without the US invasion of Iraq and destabilization of and support for the jihadist saturated rebels struggling against the butcher Assad. In fact, the US may not even want to challenge Islamic State too much since they are also the enemies of its enemies: Iran’s puppet Iraq’s Prime Minister Malaki, Iran, and Iran’s other proxy, the butcher Assad. The US may be using the threat of and extreme violence of Islamic State as leverage against Malaki and Assad. If Islamic State takes Baghdad and begins to seriously threaten Saudi Arabia, then the US might intervene immediately, but, right now, it is only the working class, primarily women, suffering under extreme violence. Either way, PLP would not play politics, but, instead, organize to smash the special oppression of women and the religious ideology that fuels it by replacing it with a dialectical materialist outlook that shows a future where the needs of all are met by all and the working class will be the human race.

In Gaza, instead of Hamas’ rotten Islamist ideology whose logical outcome is seen in organizations such as Islamic State, we would fight sexism and seek to unify the working class against all of the bosses’ rotten ideology. The role of nationalism is that it attacks both the Palestinian and Israeli workers who don’t see each other as human, but as Israelis or Palestinians. Both of these nationalist ideologies blur the class nature of the conflict and makes the working class think they have more in common with their respective ruling classes than with their fellow workers. Netanyahu has no problem sending working class youth to murder other workers in Gaza from the safety of his post. Hamas has no problem burying their tunnels under homes of workers that will be targeted by the IDF. Again, PLP in Israel organizes against both Palestinian and Israeli nationalism. We do not support national liberation, oppressed nationalism, or lesser evils like Hamas. We know the answer to the national question: death for workers and reversal of all gains after the struggle for national liberation and the consolidation of power by the local bourgeoisie.

The same racism that allows bombs to fall in Gaza and for Obama to deport millions is the same that allows the racist pigs in the NYPD to murder black workers. The same sexism that allows for pornography to be a multi-billion dollar a year industry, countries to function as locations for sex tourism, and for women to be raped in India with impunity is, in content and essence, the same special oppression of women that Islamic State uses to justify their brutal mutilation of female genitalia. Only a communist revolution led by PLP for the total transformation of the economic base and cultural superstructure can end these rotten ideologies once and for all.

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A Typhoon Destroys the Philippines

 

As capitalism continues to destroy the Earth’s environment, the working class continues to suffer. Over 10,000 dead workers in the Philippines, and the survivors scrounging for food, desperate for help, are a sight that we’ve seen before way too often: Natural disasters’ destruction exponentially increased due to the inequalities of capitalism. Nature will have disasters and will whip up superstorms, but it is the racist systemic inequality of the profit system that causes so many to die and the survivors to be in such a desperate situation. How many of those that were the most affected came from the working class and how many came from the Philippines’ local bourgeoisie?

Some might question the validity of blaming Capitalism’s overconsumption and placing of profits before the environment, yet capitalism’s wanton destruction has significantly contributed to the superstorms. Let’s not forget that the largest polluter is the U.S. military. The U.S. military pollutes the planet with its radioactive depleted uranium bombs and uses vast amounts of petroleum — think how many gallons it takes to move a battleship just one mile! This pollution causes greenhouse gasses and global warming.

This same U.S. military has been trying to engage with Asia and encircle China strategically. There is potentially more oil in The East China Sea than the Middle East. Now, it may not be as easy to acquire, and profitable, as the light sweet crude in Libya just bubbling below the surface, but China is hungry for oil and the U.S. has no intention of letting a major rival have unfettered access to development. The U.S. is sending 9 warships, one being an aircraft carrier, to the strategic area of the Philippines. Once they are there, there’s little chance that those imperialist parasites are leaving. The U.S. didn’t want to leave in the late 19th century when they inflicted genocide on the workers there. The U.S. has a long history of imperialist brutality on the workers in the Philippines, and it wouldn’t be surprising if they took advantage of the devastation to improve their geo-strategic position.

Problems with access to areas affected by the typhoon should not be a bother to a super power that’s had a decade of experience fighting in harsh mountainous conditions. How many high tech stealth helicopters do the U.S. bosses have that can drop on a dime? The desperate workers in there are not their priority. Killing and slaughtering families by remote control is their priority. Wars for oil and domination are their priorities. Where’s the profit in mobilizing millions and millions of workers and shipping them to the to help those affected?

Under communism, the world’s working class would directly organize to meet the needs of those affected by the disaster. Instead of the priority being the continuation of wars without end, there would be help provided, not just amphibious warships and aircraft carriers! A massive rebuilding effort would accompany the massive supplies of food that would be freely given to the affected workers, not the cash loans the World Bank (WB) is hungering to lend the workers in the Philippines. The WB claims it is looking to make only a modest profit from the massive amount of rebuilding that’s going to be needed. Whatever they claim, even if they give the money away, it will not emancipate the working class; it will possibly rebuild some of the houses, but what about the next greenhouse gas accelerated superstorm?

The Philippines has revisionist parties that have been fighting for various strains of socialism for decades. Hundreds of thousands have grasped the ideas of Marxism and the need for revolution. They need Communism. There is a long Red tradition in the Philippines, from the Huks up until today. The only way of truly rebuilding in the Philippines is to build The Progressive Labor Party there. The masses of workers joining PLP will be a superstorm for capitalism sweeping away exploitation and its irrational destruction away with it. The struggle for Communism is paramount to ending the misery and desperation of workers in the Philippines and all over the world. 

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Capitalism Is Holding Us Back: The Stars Should Be Ours

Each year brings more advances in science that shed light upon how much capitalism is retarding the development of the human race and acting as a chain on our potential. The god particle was discovered. A substance that repels water was discovered. Water was found in the polar regions of Mercury. Yup, Mercury has Polar Regions.

The whole universe beckons to us. The stars would be ours already if it were not for the limits that profit places on human development. Marx said that war is like taking all of the productive capabilities of a society and then dumping it in the ocean. We have the technology today due to advances in Nano technology to begin to build mining operations in space, to begin constructing things that seem far out and fanciful — like a moon bridge or space elevator.

Instead, the capitalists are more concerned with funding terrorism in Syria (either the butcher Al Assad or Al Qaeda); assaulting our ozone and environment with the Keystone pipeline; destroying the working class’ access to quality education by the Troika in Greece or Obama’s Race to the Top in the US; or outright murdering us as factories kill us by the thousands in Cambodia and Bangladesh. The need for capitalism to increase the profitability of capital through maximum exploitation of humanity and the Earth is now plowing ahead with a full head of steam towards World War 3 and our possible annihilation instead of taking ourselves to the unlimited resources that we could have from the Solar System around us.

Instead of designing and building floating cities in Venus, we’re designing weapons to destroy cities and kill innocent workers. Instead of building massive coral reefs as a counterbalance to Global warming, Obama and company are getting ready to build a pipeline that will wreck environmental havoc on our world, as if superstorms like Hurricane Sandy are not enough. What was once only dreamed of in science fiction is quickly becoming scientific fact, yet our ruling masters would rather kill each other, and get us to kill each other in their interests, rather than allow us to achieve our historical moment.

The revolution just can not come soon enough for us to throw off the yoke of their exploitation driving us to slave for our annihilation. These parasites, the capitalist bosses, inhuman garbage that they are, need to be thrown off of the proletariat’s back. A world that is sustainable, green, healing, feeding us and clothing us all, meeting the needs of all, can only be built by a Communist Revolution led by the Progressive Labor Party. Our advanced line of fighting directly for Communism, a society based on meeting the needs of the working class by our class struggling together, will break the shackles on our development. We will inherit the Earth and the stars, the ability for us to feed every human being 20 times over and educate every worker to be a leader, the death of exploitation, sexism, nationalism, ideology, and racism with the ascendancy of scientific thought based on the power of Dialectical Materialism.

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Capitalism is so broken it can’t be fixed

Capitalism is so broken it can’t be fixed is the headline from The Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch.  The bosses’ pundit Paul B. Farrell, no friend of Communism, is pointing out that nothing that the bosses are currently trying to do can solve the broken system of capitalism.  He even points out that the inter-imperialist rivalry that PLP has correctly pointed out as the primary contradiction determining world events is an important determinant.  He points out that what Marx called the tendency for the capitalists to hoard their capital as they search for maximum profitability is also a major facet of broken capitalism.  The capitalists hoard their “capital” that  “sits unused on the balance sheets of corporations, and languishes inert in private equity funds.”’ because they use it to speculate, generating Abstract and Fictitious Capital to generate their profit returns as opposed to investing it in infrastructure and other elements of Concrete Capital that are actually needed to support their place as the world’s hegemon.  In other words, the US bourgeoisie use their money to make money not the roads, rails, and factories that are needed to make actual products and preserve their level of production.  This tendency of capital is mitigated by attacking the working class to extract more profit and, as Lenin pointed out in Imperialism, exporting capital to other undeveloped areas of the globe in order to produce at the highest profit possible.  The problem of exporting capital is that other capitalists in other countries want to do this as well.

 

The ruling class has to protect their economic investment, and they use the working class to fight their wars.  The workers who have been part of the economic draft to become US soldiers are now having Moral Injuries that tear their psyches apart.  They have nightmares and have trouble living with themselves because of the atrocities that they do for the sake of profit based on the timeworn lies of god and country. “ A moral injury tortures the conscience; symptoms include deep shame, guilt and rage. It’s not a medical problem, and it’s unclear how to treat it, says retired Col. Elspeth Ritchie, former psychiatry consultant to the Army surgeon general.”

Ritchie’s comments echo the torturers in Franz Fanon’s Wretched Of The Earth who felt uncomfortable psychological trauma from brutalizing the guerillas and didn’t want to stop torturing and killing, but wanted their psyches to be healed nonetheless.  The way to treat these nightmares is to stop these imperialist oil and resource wars and begin a rectification campaign where the US imperialists and the soldiers who killed on their behalf apologize and rebuild.  This will never ever happen under capitalism.  Only a Communist revolution can begin the healing process and rectification necessary for those who are guilty of the most brutal crimes against humanity in the name of profit can heal themselves. 

 

So while the working class soldiers live with guilt, the professional mercenary scum in Blackwater get all of their charges completely dropped.  Poof.  Vanished. It cost them a few million, made some rich people a bit richer, and reaffirmed that the US needs their thugs to kill kill kill!  The war on the black and Hispanic working class under the veneer of the war on drugs continues unabated with felonies handed out like party favors, yet when the thugs who murder and kill for the bosses get tried in their courts, the capitalists use their courts to preserve their power.

 

Meanwhile, in the Syrian arena, the Free Syrian Army, stooges of US Imperialism, have begun to bomb Hezbollah, stooges of Russian and Chinese imperialism and Iranian hegemony, in Beirut and Lebanon. The escalation of this war threatens the stability of the whole Levant, yet the US looks on with delight as they can get profitable pipelines and check their rivals.  The “Arab Spring” has turned into the Winter of Jihadism and reaction as Islamic Parties and other reactionary groups have filled the power vacuum that deposing dictators creates.  Without a Communist Party ready to seize state power and begin the revolutionary transformation of society under the dictatorship of the working class, there can be no fundamental systemic change.  Capitalism is fundamentally broken when it comes to meeting the needs of the working class.  It needs to go. 

 

The working class is trapped in the prison of false consciousness.  For example, thousands of workers in Bangladesh are fighting for false consciousness as they attack the police and rally in defense of Islam.  They are angry at “atheist blogs”.  This reactionary rally is a tragedy for the working class as religion is a weapon that the ruling class uses to divide the working class and get us to pay attention to the next world instead of this one.  The working class is divided by race, class, gender, and cultural structures such as religion – Christian vs Jew, Sunni vs Shiite, Muslim vs Hindu, etc.  The list goes on and on and on.  Communism is needed to wash away all of the social constructs that act as the bars in the prison of false consciousness that we live in.  The friends of PLP in Bangladesh will continue to struggle against the violent reactionaries and continue to organize for a revolution that will end the ability for religious leaders to command thousands of workers to kill. 

 

The fact that Capitalism is broken is inaccurate though.  Capitalism is working fine.  It is making the wealthy wealthier, concentrating power in fewer and fewer hands, facilitating the growth of fascism as the bosses need to prevent their power from flowing out of their hands and into the hands of their rivals.  Capitalism works for the capitalists.  They can maintain their state power through any natural or economic disaster.  Capitalism is a resilient system with only one fatal weakness – Communist revolution.  A Communist Party of millions, armed with Red ideas, Dialectics, and the determination to wipe capitalism off of the world once and for all is the only that thing that will break capitalism.  Capitalism will not end because of some massive crisis.  No, only we, the working class under the leadership of PLP, can end it.      

 

 

 

 

 

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What will stop the attacks on Gaza and the West Bank?

ONE STATE, TWO STATES or A COMMUNIST STATE?

Once again the Israeli Zionist rulers are launching a full-scale murderous military attack against the Palestinian civilians – men, women and children – in Gaza, just as they did with the brutal Cast Lead massacre in 2008-2009. They claim that this is in retaliation for and to stop the rockets fired from Gaza into Israel. This is a big lie! The current murders are simply the latest step in the constant fascist attempts to “ethnically cleanse all of Palestine.

*There is no doubt that the 2nd attack on Gaza is a war crime and that the military occupation of Palestine by Israel is wrong and unsustainable. At 44 years, it is one of the longest occupations in history and violates every precept of international law. Not only are Palestinians reduced to living on 22% of their former land, but they have been deprived of much of their water, farmland, employment, and freedom of movement. Continuous warfare afflicts not only the region but fuels world conflict. No one demonstrating here today disagrees with any of this.
*The much more difficult question is what should we be fighting for? Is it enough to demand that siege of Gaza and the occupation end, the settlements be dismantled, or a “Palestinian state” be established? This issue cannot be addressed without considering the role of racism and nationalism in the history of Israel and the current struggle between Israel and Palestine.

The influx of Jews into Palestine was a response to their racist persecution in Europe and the nationalist impulses of the late 19th century. The massive increase in immigration after the Holocaust also largely reflected the refusal of Western nations to accept Jewish refugees. In addition, the US and Britain were glad to have an enclave of people with Western capitalist values and ties in the Middle East, which was rapidly gaining importance as the major source of oil.
Instead of going to “a land without people for a people without land”, the Jews arrived in a densely populated area. In 1948, the UN gave 55% of the land to the Jews, when they comprised only one third of the population and owned only 6% of the land. 750, 000 Palestinians, 6/7 of the population, were brutally expelled from their homes. In the 1967 war, Israel began the occupation of Palestinian land and took total control over 46% of the West Bank. Now the Wall, the checkpoints, the ban against Palestinians working in Israel and other indignities have reduced Palestinians to a state of desperation.

*None of this would have been possible if the Zionists were not themselves guilty of racism. Instead of learning from centuries of anti-Semitism that racism is the father of genocide and divides poor peoples against one another, they used the same ideology to suppress other people. Meanwhile, now as throughout history, the wealthy and the rulers use these ethnic divides to their own advantage. The US arms Israel to the teeth, not out of love for Judaism, but to maintain bully-power over the oil rich nations and their potential allies in the area. Ordinary Israelis suffer the costs of occupation in lives lost, morality destroyed, and social services cut to finance the military, all tolerated only because of anti-Arab racism.

Despite the fortitude displayed by Palestinians in surviving the occupation, many are now focused on the strife which continues between the corrupt Fatah movement, and fundamentalist, nationalist Hamas, neither of which promises social equality for Palestinians, or leads to an effective resistance. Palestine, like Israel, is a class society, and needs a mass anti-racist movement of workers for a society in their own interests. Jewish and Arab workers. from the river to the sea. must unite to fight the capitalist rulers.

*So we come to the question, what do we ask for now? It is not good enough to ask for equal civil rights and look to South Africa for inspiration, as do many activists. For although apartheid is gone, the condition of the majority poor black population in SA remains abysmal. As long as the same capitalist system, the same corporations are running the country, poor workers are no better off – maybe worse, having lost the activism of the anti-apartheid movement. From India to El Salvador, throwing off colonialism but not capitalism, has not improved the lot of workers.

That is why, while we march against the attack on Gaza and the evil of occupation, we should also march for an egalitarian, anti-racist, anti-sexist struggle and a communist society in Israel–Palestine, History provides many examples of struggles uniting Arabs, Jews and others in the region against common exploiters. Without a fight for communism in the Middle East and the US, global inter-imperialist wars, fought by workers taught to hate and fear one another, will destroy us all.

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MAY DAY!!! Fight For Communism!

May Day’s Communist Roots Belie Rulers’ Reform Sham

Wednesday, April 25, 2012 at 11:56AM

May Day has always had two sides to it: one that demands reforms, and the revolutionary side that organizes to destroy capitalism. May Day commemorates a massive strike wave in the U.S., and the particular battle in Chicago’s Haymarket Square in 1886. The movement’s leaders demanded an 8-hour day, but also advocated the “abolition of the wage system.” Six of them were hung by the rulers for their allegiance to the working class and defiance of capitalism. Then and now the capitalists feared this revolutionary side to May Day.

In 1848, Marx and Engels wrote in the Communist Manifesto, “A specter is haunting Europe, the specter of Communism.” By 1886, the rulers of Chicago saw this specter. “The newspapers and industrialists were increasingly declaring that May 1, 1886 was in reality the date for a Communist working-class insurrection modeled on the Paris Commune. According to Melville E. Stone, Head of the Chicago Daily News…a ‘repetition of the Paris Communal riots was freely predicted’ for May 1, 1886” (Page 90, “Labor’s Untold Story,” Boyer and Morais).

In December 1886, San Francisco transit workers joined this rising strike wave. They demanded a workday reduction from 13-15 hours to 12 hours (then 7 days a week), and for a pay increase from $2.25 to $2.50 a day. “Strike-breakers were hired, and there was a great deal of violence. Cars were damaged, strike-breakers were beaten, and one person was killed.” Newspapers reported eight instances of the use of dynamite by the striking workers. In March 1887, the Governor signed a bill “limiting gripmen, drivers, and conductors to a 12-hour day.” (“Transit In San Francisco” published by SF MUNI RR Communications Department.)

In the 1880’s the early leaders of the American Federation of Labor were somewhat radical — it was actually an AFL delegate’s report to the Marxist-led International Workingmen’s Association that led to the call for the first May Day.

But by the 1920’s the pro-capitalist AFL leadership, fearing the growth of communist ideas in the working class, collaborated with the U.S. government to subvert May Day. At the 1928 AFL Convention, the Executive Council supported a Congressional resolution to make May 1 “Child Health Day.” They said, “May 1 will no longer be known as either strike day or communist labor day.”

The revolutionary side of May Day dominated when the communist movement was strong. During the peak of the communist organizing of the CIO’s industrial unions in the 1930’s and ‘40s, May Day was celebrated in the U.S. As many as 250,000 would march to New York’s Union Square. However, with the advent of the Cold War, and U.S. imperialism’s launching of a worldwide anti-communist offensive, the bosses’ government in Washington helped oust communists from union leadership by making it illegal for them to hold union office. With the triumph of business unionism and anti-communism, organized labor discarded May Day and recognized Labor Day in September.

However, in 1971 PLP resurrected the annual May Day march from its abandonment by the old U.S. Communist Party. PLP has marched in many cities every year since.

From the Haymarket battle in 1886, revolutionary workers spread May Day around the globe. But history is written by the conquerors, and many workers born here know nothing of the contribution that the U.S. working class, with the support of the international working class and communist movement, made to the development of this revolutionary holiday. Today May Day is the official Labor Day in most countries, but the leadership of these marches demand reforms, and stress the “common goals” of labor and capital.

PLP has learned from the triumphs of the communist movement in the USSR and China, and from their failure to fight directly for communism. We advocate “Abolish the Wage System” as part of changing the relationship of workers and work in a new communist society.

The abolition of money, of production for sale and profit and of the wage system is absolutely necessary to establish communism. When the international working class wins and holds control over all economic, political and cultural institutions of society, it will unleash a creative power that will propel the human race to its highest accomplishments in all fields of endeavor. We call this the dictatorship of the proletariat. We need a mass revolutionary communist party to achieve this. The capitalists will use every means — including mass, fascist terror and war — to prevent it.

For the last several years some groups now want to “Reclaim May Day.” They want to reform the “evils” of capitalism, but disconnect May Day from its communist roots. PLP seeks to keep May Day as a revolutionary international working-class holiday; to advance and popularize communist production for need as the future of the human race; to develop a strong and healthy class hatred that will destroy wage slavery and fascism everywhere.

Long live the 1st of May, the revolutionary, international, working class holiday! Fight for communism!

plp.org

Students, Parents, Teachers Unite: Fight Fascist Attacks in U.S. Education

The bosses’ assault against students and teachers in the United States has reached epic proportions. The capitalists are using standardized curricula and tests to assert more direct control over what is taught. They are attacking wages and conditions for school workers even as they blame teachers for the system’s decay. In large and overcrowded urban districts, where student populations are predominantly black and Latino, dress codes, rigid discipline, and metal detectors are the norm. Students are treated like criminals, with no time off for good behavior.

These racist attacks serve two related purposes for the ruling class. First, they enable the bosses to lay an ideological foundation for intensified fascism. Second, they make it easier to intimidate and militarize youth for the inevitable broader wars against the bosses’ surging imperialist rivals, such as China. The U.S. rulers need to use the schools to protect their profits and shore up their dominant — but declining — position in an increasingly competitive world economy.

Trillions for War, Zero for Schools

In the current period, the bosses’ economic crisis and the trillions sunk into Afghanistan and Iraq have led to a wave of racist budget cuts and layoffs in public schools throughout the U.S. The results have been devastating. In New York City — the graduation rate hovers around 60 percent — and most graduates require remedial work before they can take college-level courses. In Philadelphia, where the schools had floundered under state stewardship for nearly a decade, district officials estimated it would take until the year 2123 to get all students up to grade level in reading and math. In February, after decades of local mismanagement, the state board of education revoked its accreditation for the entire Kansas City, Missouri school system. Even by the bosses’ own low standards, the public schools are broken.

To distract workers from the real causes of why and how schools are designed to fail, the capitalists push one reform after another. Supported by billionaires like Bill Gates and Eli Broad, these range from the small-school movement to the charter school phenomenon to the bosses’ current vogue, an all-out emphasis on “teacher quality.” By using data-driven teacher evaluations, the bosses claim to have found an objective way to improve substandard schools and weed out unqualified instructors.

Useless Tests A Bosses’ Tool

In fact, these evaluations are based significantly on student performance in standardized testing, where the margin of error is so high that they are statistically useless. But as a political tool for the bosses, the evaluations are invaluable. They give the rulers easy scapegoats for the failure of their schools: “bad teachers” and the unions that “protect” them.

Many of the headlines in the teacher-bashing campaign have been seized by Republicans like Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker or by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, or by capitalists like David and Charles Koch. But the main leadership for this attack comes from the dominant liberal wing of U.S. finance capitalism and its loyal servants: mainstream media like The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and the Democratic administration of Barack (“Race to the Top”) Obama.

These rulers do have disagreements. Some of their factions on the right, like the Koch brothers, advocate the gutting of collective bargaining rights and even the abolishing of unions altogether. More dangerous, however, are the liberals who want to use the unions to mislead teachers into thinking their interests are best served by the latest reform. Both the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers, the major teacher unions — containing 30 percent of U.S. union members — have willingly collaborated with the bosses in the new evaluation systems. The leaders of these organizations are loyal to the bosses, not to the workers. More insidious are new reformist groups like Educators for Excellence, which has enlisted broad support among young teachers in its reactionary fight against tenure.

In any case, the political fallout is the same. Under increased pressure, teachers tend to become more controllable. Some workers get caught up in the blame game, with teachers blaming students and parents blaming teachers when the evaluation numbers fall short.

In a desperate effort by principals and teachers to keep their jobs, some schools focus their attention on students who are relatively close to grade level, triaging the ones who are further behind. As one New York City high school guidance counselor recently told the school’s staff, “Don’t waste your time on them.” The children he was throwing overboard amounted to nearly one-fourth of the student population!

As always, the school reform’s primary targets — and victims — are the students.

There never was a “golden age” of U.S. public education. While government funding has fluctuated over the past century, the schools’ purpose was always to reinforce capitalist values and the profit system. The overwhelming majority of children are trained for low-paying, subordinate tasks in the rulers’ factories, infrastructure, support services, and military. More than ever, U.S. capitalism requires a politically reliable, highly regimented education system to feed a military that will secure its threatened interests worldwide. It’s no coincidence that Obama’s education reform agenda includes the re-opening of Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) programs at a number of colleges.

To meet the rulers’ needs, the schools infect children with capitalist ideology: racism, sexism, individualism, and incessant competition for the best grades and test scores and then jobs, all against a backdrop of extreme racist and sexist inequalities. Rigid discipline and arbitrary rules nurture passive followers. Gross distortions of history — the “bravery” and “heroism” of genocidal monster Christopher Columbus, the “compassion” of white supremacist Abraham Lincoln — rob students of the ability to understand the world. Regimented teaching-to-the-test saps their creativity and analytical thinking. Daily doses of anti-communism steer them away from the one force that can change the world to meet the needs of the working class.

Graduating to Communism

If the situation sounds bleak, it’s crucial to point out that it’s only one side of the story. As the bosses make their plans, so too must the workers. In New York, for example, masses of furious parents, teachers, and students have routinely disrupted the Panel for Educational Policy (the rubber-stamp body that does Mayor Bloomberg’s bidding) with standing-room-only crowds and deafening chants. Rising anger among teachers has led to fresh attempts to form a serious opposition caucus to the sellout union leadership in New York.

But while this anger itself is positive, and the Party must be immersed in these struggles, no reform will help students get the learning they need. It’s our job to point to the systemic failures of education under capitalism and to win teachers, students and parents to fight for communism and join PLP. To truly educate our children, we must abolish the profit system. We need to create a new society to serve the needs of workers, not the tiny, parasitic minority of bosses. Forward to May Day!

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Obama Rescues Bosses’ Profits

The bosses’ attack against teachers has a precedent in their systematic dismantling of the standard of living of industrial workers in steel and auto, which was won through generations of class struggle. As in the schools, this attack was carried out with the express support of the leadership of the unions.

In his State of the Union address in January, President Obama claimed victory for “rescuing” the auto industry: “We got workers and automakers to settle their differences.” What he really meant was that the bosses forced the workers to accept a two-tier wage system, with new hires making $14 an hour, or half the wages of their previous hires. This give-back was achieved with the active support of the United Auto Workers union leadership. For the bosses, “settling differences” always means protecting bosses’ profits and attacking workers.

www.plp.org

INTER-IMPERIALIST RIVALRY

ROGRESSIVE LABOR PARTY VIEWPOINT

In the decades since the defeat of the first communist revolutions, the major imperialist powers have sharpened their attacks on each other. This rivalry between imperialists underlies and drives world events and will do so until the working class, under communist leadership, again takes the world stage to fight exploitation and racism and make revolution.

Capitalism

Capitalist society is an unstable tension between two great opposed social classes: the tiny capitalist class that owns everything important and runs the government and the huge international working class, whose members survive by selling their labor to a capitalist for a wage. Capitalists and workers constantly struggle over wage and social benefits versus profits; they are locked together in a class society until revolution destroys the bosses. This fundamental tension between unity and conflict in a class society is a contradiction, a unity of opposites that is by its very nature unstable.

Contradictions don’t stay the same. They drive development, turn one thing into another, and get resolved. The contradiction in our class society gets on the side of unity in boss-worker relations, if workers are willing to take the class struggle only so far, if our unified ability to struggle is blunted and diverted by racist ideology or other pro-boss ideas. In that case capitalist society continues with all its horrors, because workers, however reluctantly, still accept capitalism because they feel they simply aren’t strong enough to “fight city hall” or have no vision of an alternative to the capitalist snake pit.

The contradiction can get resolved on the side of the workers, on the side of conflict in boss-worker relations, with revolution to abolish the class of bosses, the racist divisions among the workers, and the entire exploitative system.

Today, unity between the two opposed classes prevails and capitalism continues despite its constant wars, racism, financial crises, and all our efforts for change. But conflict between the two classes will re-emerge and sharpen. Workers with communist leadership can resolve the contradiction in favor of the working class and all humanity by abolishing capital itself and its many harsh conditions including poverty, racism, brutality, and war for profit, as our predecessors did for many decades in the Russian and Chinese revolutions.

Communist Revolution: Resolve the Contradiction

Communist revolution means that we workers form a new kind of government and use our new state power to abolish the capitalist class, the wage-and-profit system, and all aspects of racism, from material differences to ideology. Revolution abolishes capitalists and transforms the working class from the slaves to a wage into the creative producers of all social value building a new society of egalitarian communist sharing where all can contribute mightily to each other.

It may seem that capitalism will go on forever and survive every crisis. But the secret of class contradiction is that its resolution depends mainly not on the capitalist class but on us, the working class. The capitalist class is dominant now, but the working class, and only our class, does have the ability to break their grip and transform society. We do have a future without capitalism, “a world to win.” We will have to pass through the fires of war and revolution to get there. We will have to make conflict with the bosses primary over unity with them. But if we succeed in winning millions of workers to this communist vision, we will have that future.

Imperialist Bosses Fight among Themselves

Right now we are a long way from our revolutionary goal because the working class is weak and disarmed, having lost much of its communist leadership and party organization when the Soviet and Chinese revolutions turned back to capitalism. The basic overall contradiction in capitalist society—bosses v. workers—has temporarily faded as the main thing driving world events. Now, the battle among the imperialists for profit and power (using workers for cannon fodder in their wars) has become the main contradiction in the world. Capitalists always compete (GM fights Ford). But what is really determining events now is the contradiction between the major capitalist countries (Ford/U.S. fight Toyota/Japan). That is inter-imperialist rivalry. Major capitalist powers became imperialists over 100 years ago as they extended their power and control far beyond their own national borders seeking profits, markets, and sites for investment, dividing up the entire world into competing spheres of interest. They used to call these zones their colonies and empires (British, French, Japanese, or Russian). Now imperialists dominate whole economies and governments without making them into colonies, but it’s the same thing: the biggest capitalists use their corporations, armies, and governments to win away from other capitalists as much of the world’s resources, markets, and labor as they can. Workers won’t remain quiet forever, but for now, the battle among imperialists conditions all world events.

Inter-Imperialist Rivalry Means World War

Imperialists try to limit their conflicts to economics and politics (e.g., through the UN and bilateral negotiations), but military conflict—all-out war to resolve their differences and redivide the world—is on the rise. The many wars being fought today mean that the major imperialists are more and more resorting to military means to secure their empires. It is likely that there will be a world-wide war with major groups of imperialists and their allies on opposing sides, just as happened in the 20th century. Such a third world war would end with yet another capitalist “new world order” if we workers fail to rearm ourselves with the international revolutionary communist party, PLP. But, if workers build the PLP internationally, a third world war will also see another great wave of the communist revolutionary movement, ending capitalism altogether. The end of the story of inter-imperialist rivalry therefore depends on us, on the working class rising again, restoring the primacy of that main contradiction in capitalist class society—workers’ conflict with bosses—and resolving it by revolution.

The World of Imperialism—and How to Change It

The U.S. has been top dog among imperialists since they came out stronger than the others after World War II, and since communist anti-imperialism ended with Russia and China’s return to capitalism. By 1999 the U.S. ruling class faced the fact that they were declining relative to their major rivals. The bipartisan Hart-Rudman Commission that year foresaw a 9/11-type attack and advised the ruling class to use it to build patriotism and support for permanent war and a centralized police state. The U.S. military budget, with 700 bases in 130 countries, is still more than that of the rest of the world combined. But though still top dog militarily, the U.S. is weakening rapidly, its military forces stretched thin without a draft and its economic power being challenged throughout the globe by the EU, China, Russia, Japan, and lesser opponents including Iran and Venezuela. The EU and NATO are no longer automatic supporters of U.S. imperialism. China and Russia have formed an alliance called the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which in 2001 linked them to four Central Asian states (and more in line to join), challenging U.S. and its allies’ power in the oil-rich region. Capitalist states including Iran, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, India, South Africa, Australia, Argentina, and Pakistan, can now try to play one imperialist power or alliance off against another to their own advantage. Venezuela is beginning to sell more oil to China instead of to the U.S., and the EU, Japan, and China are rapidly increasing investment in South America at the expense of U.S. market share. Not so long ago, the U.S. might already have invaded Venezuela or changed its regime as they used to do all over South America as they did in Chile in 1973, for example, but they simply cannot take military action yet against Iran or Venezuela because they are too weak. Australia withdrew its tiny military support of the U.S. in Iraq and is growing ever more closely tied to China economically. South Africa has increased ties to China and India at the expense of the U.S. and the EU. Pakistan no longer automatically dances to the tune of the U.S. military. Saudi Arabia refuses to help out the U.S. by increasing oil supplies. This brief glance yields the same picture as our look at the major imperialists: an unstable, shifting, dangerous moment in history, when the U.S. is being driven back and will have to take desperate drastic action to stay on top.

The capitalist future is bleak, especially for the international working class, which suffers the brunt of war, racism, and economic crisis. So we return to the burning need of the moment. We must strengthen the working class side of the class contradiction by joining and building the PLP, fighting racism, struggling against the bosses, and heating the class struggle to a white hot intensity so that we can overthrow capitalism and create a communist world that meets the needs of our class.

Contact the Progressive Labor Party at desafio.challenge@gmail.com,

http://www.plp.org

PO Box 808, Brooklyn, NY 11202

718.630.9440.

Right Opportunism in The Trayvon Martin Tragedy

There is a constelation of contradictions intertwined within the Trayvon tragedy. It is a case that is laying bare the growth of fascism in the US and its assault on the working class. Due to the racist nature of US capitalism, Black workers bear the brunt of any intensification of state violence first. It should be of no surprise that a scared Black male teenager was murdered by a paramilitary extension of the state apparatus paradin about as a “neighborhood watch”. This type of organization divides the working class as it organizes one group of workers to help the state apparatus oppress other workers.

Community control of the police department was one of the central myths of the Black Nationalist movement. It is not possible for those who are brutally oppressed to control the agentso of the state that oppresses us. It is absurd to think otherwise. With Obama and his tears jumping on board the Trayvon Martin tragedy, a moment of objectivity must be sought.

Obama is a deadly enemy of the working class who specializes in betraying us to his capitalist masters. When he shows his sympathy, then something truly murderous is afoot. Why is it that he didn’t say that Ramarly could have been the son that he never had? There are many examples of young Black males in their youth being murdered by this nation’s finest killing machine. Why didn’t Obama have a public outpouring with Ramarly like he did with Trayvon? Could it be that one was done by a worker who is expandable, whereas the others were done by a police officer and the US needs to deflect criticism of the police and rehabilitate Obama’s image. In one fell opportunist swoop, the US ruling class is beginning to create a public outcry that is distracting the working class from the murderous rampage in Afghanistan and the brutal police murders.

Would convicting that fascist dog Zimmerman really bring justice, or would a group of angry workers led by Trayvon’s parents with some pitchforks, knives, and flames getting medieval on him? The capitalist injustice system is not dedicated to solving racist inequality and police brutality. They have no interest in stopping the stop and frisk law that cost Ramarly his life. No. They are interested in co-opting this movement into carefully managed avenues of discontent while creating sympathy for the murderer and casting doubt on the victim.

PLP recognized the injustice of these attacks from when they first happened, participating in and organizing marches and rallies, and, most importantly, pointing out the need for an armed revolution where we will make the pigs and their assistants pay, but we will not misled into the bosses’ camp by the liar in thief.  We know capitalism is in crisis and will use any opportunity to mislead the working class.  There is no end to the political opportunism of the capitalist class.

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