Category: About the CPUSA
“Clinton makes History”: CPUSA’s opportunist transformation

Thursday, June 9, 2016

“Clinton makes History”: CPUSA’s opportunist transformation

 http://communismgr.blogspot.com/2016/06/clinton-makes-history-cpusas.html
COMMENTARY
 
The transformation of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA) into an opportunist political organisation has been a long process. Since 1988, the CPUSA endorses the candidates of the bourgeois Democratic Party: Dukakis (1988), Clinton (1992, 1996), Gore (2000), Kerry (2004), Obama (2008, 2012). In an article published yesterday on ‘People’s World’, the presidential nomination of Hillary Clinton is presented as “a major milestone in the fight for women’s rights”. Once again, CPUSA endorses a political representative of the U.S. monopoly capital and a war criminal. What a shame really for a party with such a long, significant history and close ties with the U.S labour movement.
 
Hillary Clinton, like Donald Trump, is a choice of the U.S. monopoly capital, of the country’s bourgeois class, for the position of the President. Mrs.Clinton’s service as Obama government’s Foreign Secretary is known and has been proved disastrous: Libya, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Syria, Yemen. The people of these countries know, better than anyone, what Imperialism means and what was Clinton’s contribution in war crimes. 
However, we aren’t surprised by the choice of CPUSA to become a ‘left’ wing of the bourgeois Democratic Party. Despite it’s self-identification as a party devoted to the principles of Marxism-Leninism (CPUSA Program, 19 May 2006), the CPUSA has actually abandoned scientific socialism, thus being transformed into a social-democratic political organisation. What kind of ‘communist’ would endorse Obama or Clinton? What kind of ‘marxist-leninist’ would accept to participate in a game of choice between Scylla (Democrats) and Charybdis (Republicans)? Does it make any fundamental difference for the U.S. working class if Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump become President of the country?
 
The CPUSA leadership’s policy fosters illusions and disorientate the U.S. working class from the real aim which must be the struggle for Socialism. Furthermore, the entrapment of the U.S. working class in a choice between “Democrats and Republicans” or “Clinton and Sanders”, consist a clear betrayal of the Marxist-Leninist principles and an opportunistic demagogy which works in favor of the bourgeois establishment. 
 
We strongly denounce the CPUSA endorsement of Hillary Clinton and call the working class, the low-income people of the United States to avoid being trapped in the bipolarism of “Democrats vs Republicans”. The only choice of the U.S. labour movement is to reject opportunism and move towards the revival of the Marxist-Leninist ideals, for a society without exploitation, for the final victory of the American people over capitalist barbarity.
 
In Defense of Communism, 9 June 2016.
THE POSITION OF KKE ON THE WEBB’S PLATFORM AND THE DEVELOPMENTS IN THE CPUSA.
Rizospastis, 17 April 2011 / inter.kke.gr.
Athens, 13 April 2011.
To the members and cadre of the CPUSA,
To the workers that struggle in the USA
To the communist and workers parties
Dear comrades,
In February 2011 the chairperson of the CPUSA, Sam Webb, published an article in Political Affairs, the electronic publication of the CPUSA, entitled “A Party of Socialism in the 21st Century: What It Looks Like, What It Says, and What It Does”. Even if the specific article is accompanied by an editorial note which claims that “The following article represents the views of its author alone. It doesn’t necessarily reflect the official views of any organization or collective.”, it is obvious to us that the public position of the head of a Communist Party concerning such an important issue requires special attention.
On 16th February we received a letter from the editorial team of Political Affairs which invited us to send in our opinion.
Our party, after studying this article and the reactions it has provoked within the ranks of communists both in the USA and internationally, considers it necessary to take a public position through this letter, as is required by its responsibility as a part of the international communist movement.
Our assessment is that we are dealing with a comprehensive liquidationist platform of 29 theses which has been placed before the international communist movement and proposes the total revision of the principles and revolutionary traditions of the communist movement.
The KKE, as a section of the international communist movement, considers as its duty the refutation of this platform, which questions the need for the existence of a party of the working class in the USA, and in general is directed against the revolutionary and anti-imperialist movement internationally. The 18th Congress of our party stressed that “the battle against social-democratisation tendencies in Communist Parties – through the intervention of imperialist mechanisms, anti-communism and the bourgeois media – must be fought firmly and consistently by defending the historic role of the working class and its organised vanguard, the principles of Marxism-Leninism and of socialism. This task takes on even greater significance in face of the growing anti-communist offensive in the EU and internationally.”
Dear comrades,
The platform that has been presented today, through the article of the chairperson of the CPUSA, constitutes the culmination of a course of “adjustment” in the last decade as the author himself points out. There have already been developments in this intervening period which communists in Greece, as well as in the USA and other countries have followed with concern, such as:
• The handing over of the Party’s archives to the imperialists, the bourgeois state of the USA in 2007.
• The closure of the print publication of the newspaper (People’s Weekly World) and the journal Political Affairs, with the simultaneous alteration of its character.
• The organizational shrinkage and dislocation of the party.
• The political “tailing”, behind one of the two pillars of the bourgeois political system of the USA, that is to say behind the Democratic Party.
• The stance in relation to the ambitions of US imperialism ( e.g. rejection of the demand for the immediate withdrawal from Iraq)
• The blocking of the Joint Statement of the Extraordinary Meeting of the Communist and Workers’ Parties in Damascus, because in the final text there was the position for the withdrawal of the imperialist occupation forces from Iraq.
These elements intensified after the 29th Congress of the CPUSA. It was not by chance that immediately after the congress, an article was published in Political Affairs which called into question not only the need to maintain the name of the party, but the possibility and even the necessity of a Communist Party’s existence in the USA today.
Today the Webb platform comes as the culmination of this course and openly propagandises the abandonment of the Marxist-Leninist worldview, the abolition of democratic centralism, and the undermining of the principles of the party of a new type.
We would like to draw your attention to the following basic aspects of this platform:
ON THE QUESTION OF THE THEORY OF THE PARTY:
It proposes the replacement of our theory by an eclectic hotchpotch which does not go beyond the limits of liberal bourgeois ideology. It attacks Marxism-Leninism directly, which constitutes one of the central laws of the existence and activity of the party of the new type, as V.I.Lenin pointed out: “Without revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary movement… the role of vanguard fighter can be fulfilled only by a party that is guided by the most advanced theory.” In this specific platform various extremely old opportunist positions are promoted as new (e.g. Marxism-Leninism is foreign, anti-democratic, it is a distortion of Marxism by Stalin etc.), these are positions which disarm the labour movement and surrender it, without theoretical tools, to the claws of the exploitative system.
ON THE QUESTION OF THE POLITICAL PROPOSAL OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY:
It promotes the view that there can be solutions in favour of the working class within the framework of capitalism. In this way, it promotes as an alternative solution the line of the so-called “green” capitalist restructurings. In addition, the Webbplatform considers the characterisation of the crisis as a capitalist crisis of overproduction insufficient. It distorts the essence of the over-accumulation of capital as it associates it with…. A lack of investment opportunities. It states characteristically: “Short of a new New Green Deal on a global level, it is hard to see where the dynamism for a sustained upswing, let alone a long boom, is going to come from.”
These views “recycle” social-democratic and opportunist theories on economic recession and development which whitewash capitalism and conceal its class essence, leading the Communist Party to give up on its strategic goal and support political proposals, which have as their goal the acquisition of new super-profits by the capitalists, in the name of “ecology”, at the same time when they are turning nature and natural wealth into commodities, and destroying the planet in various ways.
THE QUESTION OF THE SOCIALIST PERSPECTIVE:
It renounces the struggle for socialism. The notion of revolution is entirely absent. It proposes an endless process of successive stages, in which the alliances will be formed not on the basis of the character of the era and the class interests of the working class. Webb proposes working for “- the balance of forces is to shift in a progressive direction”. This view condemns the party to submit itself to the temporary circumstances and not to work with a strategy for the overthrow of capitalism through the concentration of forces.
Nevertheless, it is obvious to us, that the tactics of a Communist Party must serve its strategy, which is the overthrow of capitalism and the construction of a socialist-communist society. The position of Webb in practice abolishes the strategic goal of the Communist Party, and finally aims to shake the very character of the Communist Party. Socialism is in any case on the agenda, since we live in the era of imperialism, the highest and final stage of capitalism. The timeliness and necessity of socialism-communism is projected by the impasses of capitalism, the imperialist wars, the economic crises, the huge social, economic, environmental, ecological and other problems which capitalist society breeds. A Communist Party must form tactics and alliances which facilitate the concentration of forces, the class unity of the working class and the social alliance with the popular strata, with the aim of maturing the subjective factor for the acquisition of power by the working class, and not to be trapped in alliances and stages, which will lead it to struggle under a “foreign flag” in the logic of managing capitalism.
ON THE QUESTION OF THE FORMATION OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY
The Webb platform proposes moving beyond the Communist Parties. It says that “A party of socialism in the 21st century embraces Marxism, understood as a broad theoretical tradition that reaches beyond the communist movement.” “A party that does not struggle for the interests of the working class but “fights for the interests of the entire nation.”
This position denies the necessity of the existence of the Communist Party in the USA and indeed in the entire world. The KKE successfully dealt with similar views, when they emerged in our party 20 years ago under the influence of “Gorbachevist” theories. The communists of Greece fought hard to repel these opportunist views, for the preservation of the KKE, for the preservation and strengthening of its revolutionary, class and internationalist character. Today, 20 years later, the communists not only in Greece but all over the world can judge the positive results that the outcome of this battle had for the KKE. The KKE was able to stand on its feet, to elaborate serious theoretical and political issues, without deviating from the principles of Marxism-Leninism. It approved its new programme and came to important conclusions concerning the causes of the overthrow of socialism, enriching its perception of socialism. It has taken significant initiatives for the unity of the communist movement at a regional and international level. It strengthened its bonds with the working class and the other popular strata. The influence of its positions and its reputation has been strengthened as it plays the leading role in the regrouping and development of the class-oriented labour-trade union movement and in the tough strike mobilizations of the workers in our country.
None of the above would have been achieved, if opportunism had prevailed 20 years ago in the KKE. The KKE would have gone down the road of dissolution and the labour-popular movement would have lost its basic pillar of support.
ON IDEOLOGICAL STRUGGLE :
The Webb platform renounces the struggle against bourgeois ideology and opportunism. The party which Webb describes surrenders from the ideological struggle. He writes “A party of socialism in the 21st century doesn’t turn – liberals, advocates of identity politics, single issue movements, centrist and progressive leaders of major social organizations, social democrats, community based non-profits, NGOs, unreliable allies, and the “people” (according to some, a classless category concealing class, racial, and gender oppression) – into enemies.”
But can a Communist Party enlighten the working class, the other popular strata, if it does not have an ideological front against views which present capitalism as the only way, which simply promote different types of management of the exploitative system? The answer of the KKE to this is that it is impossible for the struggle of the people to develop without a firm and consistent ideological front against unscientific bourgeois and opportunist theories. This is especially true in today’s conditions, when the role of the various NGOs has become obvious, which are connected financially and in other ways with the imperialist organizations. In conditions when social-democracy has been in government and has demonstrated in practice that is a pillar of support for the bourgeois political system. In these conditions the communists not only must not give up on ideological work and struggle, but they must intensify the struggle even further against these forces.
ORGANIZATIONAL OPPORTUNISM
Webb rejects the Leninist organization, the organization of the vanguard of the working class which corresponds to the needs of the class struggle for the abolition of exploitation. He rejects the Leninist organization because he rejects the struggle for socialism and has taken sides with the bourgeois class for the perpetuation of capitalism.
So, a state machine which is both experienced and powerful will be opposed by a “party”, according to him, based on the Internet, with an open door policy for new members as an organizational principle: “Joining should be no more difficult than joining other social organizations”.
Thus we can see that not only does he reject the tried and tested organizational principles of the Communist Party of a new type, which were established in the era of Lenin, but he promotes the idea of a party of an NGO type, which corresponds to the content which he himself proposes and is in the direction of a “Communist Party” assimilated into the bourgeois system, which will work for the salvation and “correction” of capitalism and not for its overthrow.
A PARTY OF REVOLUTION OR REFORM?
Reform is the answer given by Webb to this fundamental question, which was posed a hundred years ago. His view denies that the party is the vanguard of the working class and subordinates its activity to the lowest level of class consciousness (“A party of socialism in the 21st century takes as its point of departure the issues that masses (relative term) are ready to fight for”). Of course a reformist line is proposed as well as the prioritization of the intervention in the institutionsof the bourgeois state. The struggle for reforms within imperialism is acclaimed not only as a “means” buts an end for this “new” party.
In reality, when has the path of reforming the capitalist system ever led to the abolition of the exploitation of man by man and the vindication of the workers’ desires? The “recipe” of reforms has been tested by the peoples through various social-democratic and centre-left governments, which in practice have been proved to be the main vehicles for the imposition of anti-people and anti-worker measures, and as pillars of support for the imperialist organizations and wars.
“MARXISM”…WITHOUT MARX
Webb calls the class nature of bourgeois democracy into question. As he writes: “what I’m challenging is the notion that everything is subordinate to class and class struggle no matter what the circumstances.” He questions the class nature of the bourgeois state, that is to say the dictatorship of the US monopolies and claims that “thus the nature of the struggle isn’t simply the people against the state, but the people winning positions and influence in the state and then utilizing them to make changes (within and outside of the state)”.
This is an old opportunist position which Marx had already rejected in his era, and was revived by the bankrupt eurocommunist current. And this alone would be enough for us to come to the conclusion that the “Marxism”, which is mentioned as being the theoretical basis of the “party of the 21st century”, has nothing to do with Marx but aims at its vulgar distortion, the burying of revolutionary theory, and the deception of the workers.
ILLUSIONS CONCERNING THE ROLE OF THE US GOVERNMENT AND THE MONOPOLIES:
The Webb platform fosters illusions and works for the submission of the people to the government of the USA, that is to say the world’s leading imperialist power: “The point isn’t for the U.S. government to simply to crawl into a national shell, but to reinsert itself into world affairs on the basis of cooperation, peace, equality, and mutual benefits…”
At the same time he fosters illusions concerning a “humanized” version of the monopolies: “big sections of the transnational corporate class have pulled the plug on the American people, economy, and state…the commitment of major sections of the transnational elite to a people-friendly public sector, a vibrant domestic economy and a modern society has waned…”
As the Chairperson of the CPUSA has given up on a class approach to society, the abovementioned positions are to be expected. These are positions which not only have nothing to do with the history and struggles of the party he represents, but they bear no relation to reality either. The continuing occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, the new imperialist war in Libya demonstrate what kind of activity the US government has developed outside its “national shell”. And it conducts similar anti-people activity for the defence of the interests of the monopolies inside its own country.
ESCALATION OF THE LINE OF “TAILING” CAPITAL AND THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY:
The strengthening of political reaction which is intrinsic to imperialism and is intensifying in the conditions of crisis is interpreted as “ultra-right extremism”. This leads to conclusions which violate the truth and reality, such as “the election victory in 2008 cracked opened the door for another “burst of freedom””, “we say too definitively that the independent forces stand no chance whatsoever of taking over the Democratic Party. That still may be the case, but it is a mistake to rule it out completely at this point.” The equation of the working class and its movement with the trade union bureaucracy of the AFL-CIO is consistent with the political line of alliance with sections of capital.
TURN TO ANTICOMMUNISM:
Webb’s article marks an overt siding with the class enemy and a complete alignment with contemporary state-level anticommunism. It calls for “an unequivocal break with Stalin” and lines up with the slanderous assault on socialist construction which offered so much to the Soviet peoples and played the decisive role in the anti-fascist victory of the peoples. In essence, these positions attempt to conceal the reality, the complex problems of the class struggle in the USSR and the tough confrontation of working class power with the bourgeois class in the countryside, the kulaks.
It adopts, in essence, every kind of slanderous simplification of complex problems, such as the sharpening of the class struggle in the USSR. The article goes a step further and joins up with Havel, Walesa and all the reactionary anticommunists of the EU who talk of “crimes against humanity”. It lines up with the tendency that attempts to criminalise the Communist Parties and the defence of socialism: “τo describe these atrocities as a mistake is a mistake – criminal”.
As is well known the opportunist current in Europe that forms the so called Party of the European Left (ELP) holds a similar anti-historical position.
Dear comrades of the CPUSA,
Members, friends and cadre of the CPUSA,
Conscious Workers of the US,
At this very critical moment for your party the KKE calls on you to take into account that the ideological attack against the Party of a New Type focusing on its identity, its character and its organisational principles was unleashed from the very first moment of its existence. The revisionists have always supported the dissolution of the party of the working class; they have always been a pillar of support for the bourgeoisie. The bourgeois class and its supporters understood from the very first moment the role of the party in the political emancipation of the working class and its movement. The ideological attack which was unleashed continues up to the present day as is demonstrated by Webb’s article.
We call on you to take into account the fact that the party can only fulfil the role of the proletarian vanguard on the condition that it is equipped with unity of will, unity of action, and unity of strict discipline; wages a ceaseless struggle against opportunism and bourgeois ideology; Its internationalist character stems from its nature; it constitutes an integral part of the world communist movement.
Experience confirms and practice which is the yardstick of truth proves that the revolutionary line of struggle not only does not restrict mass work but it reinforces it. It strengthens the expectations of the working people, it provides a way-out and a perspective, it contributes to the change of the correlation of forces. The independent action of the party is a prerequisite for the formation of a policy of alliances that will be subordinated to and serve the strategy for the overthrow of capitalism.
In addition, we consider it necessary to take into account that the necessity of the socialist revolution and the construction of the new communist socio-economic formation is not determined by the correlation of forces, which is shaped at the various historical junctures, but by the historical need to resolve the basic contradiction between capital and labour. The counterrevolutions in the USSR and the other socialist countries have not altered the character of our era which is an era of transition from capitalism to socialism which is timely and necessary as shown by the tragedy of the millions of workers and unemployed who suffer from exploitation and the intensification of the problems that the exploitative system causes.
We believe that the replacement of the principles of Marxism Leninism by revisionist approaches in the name of national peculiarities caused a great deal of damage to the communist movement and continues to do so. No national peculiarity can negate the necessity for the revolutionary overthrow of capitalism, the necessity for the conquest of political power by the working class, for the socialisation of production and central planning. The economic crisis that broke out in the capitalist world and the intensification of the inter-imperialist contradictions further highlight the timeliness of socialism. Under these conditions the driving back of the new wave of state anticommunism, the defence of the socialism we knew, of its great contribution to the world working class, of the identity and the revolutionary traditions of the communist movement acquire a special importance.
Dear comrades,
Historical experience, the developments themselves have refuted the views that spoke of “the end of history”, the “obsolescence of Marxism-Leninism” and the “end of the Communist Parties”. On the contrary, today there is a stronger need for the existence of Communist Parties that have roots in the working class and the workplaces, which believe in Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism. The labour movement must consciously act and rise to the challenge to ensure the existence of a revolutionary party of the working class. This is a crucial duty and a challenge for the most advanced workers and for communists in all the countries of the world and of course above all in the USA.
The consistent confrontation with and rejection of this opportunist-liquidationist platform is a requirement which springs from the historical traditions the labour and communist movement in the USA, it is a condition for the revival of revolutionary communist ideals in the US labour movement and society.
The International Relations Section of the CC of KKE.
New York Fire Department Confirms 26 Injured in Massive Explosion in Manhattan
| September 17, 2016 | 10:13 pm | About the CPUSA | 1 Comment
04:10 18.09.2016(updated 05:52 18.09.2016)
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Reports of an explosion in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan came through social media just before 8:30pm. The explosion has been confirmed by the New York Fire Department. Some 25 people have been injured, according to the New York Fire Department. On Saturday, a massive explosion rattled the Chelsea area of Manhattan. People reported hearing the large blast on social media with the New York Fire Department subsequently confirming that an explosion had occurred. New York City issued an emergency alert telling people to expect traffic delays in the area. At least 25 people have gotten light injuries, according to the New York Fire Department. At least three people were hospitalized. Multiple injuries reported, according to local Pix11 news, from the massive blast that occurred at 135 23rd St. in downtown Manhattan between 6th and 7th avenue. The explosion comes after a pipe bomb was planted near the starting line of a marathon in nearby New Jersey. People have been advised to stay away from the area. The blast has not impacted the city’s subway and train system at this time. Fox 15 news reports that at least 25 people were injured in the blast but the severity of their injuries remain unknown at the present moment. It also is unknown whether the explosion was caused by an act of terror or some natural cause. One social media user under the handle @Shield1631 claims to have uncovered an IED explosive device that was placed in a garbage can in a manner similar to the explosion that occurred at the New Jersey marathon earlier on Saturday. The identification of the device as the cause of the explosion has not been confirmed by authorities, however. The New York Fire Department’s bomb squad has arrived on the scene to inspect the damage and determine whether there remains any not yet exploded devices in the vicinity according to local reports.​​ The Daily Mail reports that it is believed that the structure at 135 23rd St. may have collapsed following the major explosion with reports on social media that the blast shook the entire neighborhood. The NYPD Counterterrorism Unit has been dispatched to the scene with eyewitness reports that police are conducting searches in the vicinity of the explosion, checking for additional explosive devices in the area. So far it is known that the blast was caused by an improvised explosive device placed in a dumpster — similar to the explosion Saturday morning at a marathon in New Jersey — and that at least 25 people have been injured by the explosion. The FBI, ATF, and bomb squad are on the scene. The New York Police Department’s Counterterrorism Chief James Waters acknowledges that the unit is responding to the explosion in Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan and that more details are to follow. The video below shows what is believed to be the garbage can that the explosive device was placed into near the scene of the explosion being looked at by New York City fire fighters. Law enforcement authorities are considering that the explosion could be accidently caused by construction explosives, an unnamed official close to the investigation said. The White House spokesperson said that President Barack Obama has been informed about the explosion, adding that the cause of the incident is still under investigation.

Read more: https://sputniknews.com/news/20160918/1045422950/manhattan-explosion-bomb-blast-terror.html

US-Iran naval encounter ‘very dangerous’

https://www.rt.com/op-edge/357321-iran-vessel-us-navy/

Arleigh Burke Class guided-missile destroyer USS Nitze. © MC3 J. Alexander DELGADO / Navy Media Content Operations (NMCO)
A US warship in Iranian territorial waters could have little to do with innocent passage and Iran had every right to try to chase it away feeling its security threatened, said independent researcher and writer Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich.

A US Navy ship reportedly fired warning shots at an Iranian military vessel which sailed too close in the Persian Gulf.

RT: The US fired warning shots at Iranian ships near Iranian waters? A bit of a funny situation, isn’t it?

Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich: Well, yes. According to [Stars and] Stripes, the American military magazine, they were actually inside Iran’s territorial waters. I think it is very important to make that very clear – they were inside Iran’s territorial waters. In fact, the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea stipulates that it allows the innocent passage of vessels, and that costal states should not impede this passage. However, two things to bear in mind here: first, neither the US, nor Iran has ratified this treaty. Secondly, even if we disregard the fact that they are not signatories – innocent passage here stipulates what is very important, because what it means is that if a costal state feels that its peace, good order, or security is being threatened by vessel, it has every right to stop the passing of that vessel.

I think that anybody would agree that a US warship does not sit well with innocent passage, or with the securing of peace. So it can be understandable why, with the given hostilities of the two nations, Iran would want to chase it away. Importantly we have to bear in mind that these US warships in that tiny stretch of water not only threaten the security of Iran as a sovereign nation…In fact, a few years ago they collided with the Japanese oil tanker. It is really fortunate that there wasn’t a loss of life, or that the oil spill didn’t damage the environment. It is very important to point out that it was inside Iran’s territorial waters, and that Iran acted within its right in kind of chasing away the US warships.

RT: Earlier on Thursday, the US was making a fuss about the previous naval encounter which saw several Iranian ships allegedly coming “dangerously close” to American vessels. If these incidents keep carrying on and we see some escalation here, could we see some major diplomatic or some other international scandal?

SS-U: Absolutely. I think what’s happening here is very dangerous. In fact, it had been mentioned on several websites, one of them an Israeli website, that the hope was to provoke Iran into reacting. The hope was that the US would manage to provoke Iran, so that Iran would attack …

I think it is very important to understand that the US has designs on all the major waters around the world. We see what it is doing in the South China Sea. We know that it is arming, training, and giving guidance to Saudi Arabia and that coalition to attack Yemen, so that it can control the Bab al-Mandab Strait.

In fact, a 19th century strategist, Admiral Alfred Mahan had said that the control of the waves would enable you to control the world. Now with everything that the humans have invented it would seem that it… no longer applies, but clearly America doesn’t feel that way, because it does want to control the maritime choke points around the world, and does control. It is not just a passage of oil – that is also passage of finished goods and food. So its acts are so provocative and so dangerous, that if we did have a proper UN, I am sure they would have something to say about it. But unfortunately the US is the biggest financial supporter of the UN…

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Interview with Pável Blanco Cabrera, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Mexico (PCM)

Σάββατο, 20 Αυγούστου 2016

Interview with Pável Blanco Cabrera, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Mexico (PCM)

Interview of Pavel Blanco, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Mexico (Partido Comunista Mexicano, PCM), to the International Communist Press / August 20, 2016.
http://communismgr.blogspot.com/2016/08/interview-with-pavel-blanco-cabrera.html
 
ICP: In the recent years, violence in Mexico, both related to drug trafficking groups, or as a part of a clearly paramilitary activity against the progressive forces, organizations and people and especially the communists has been on the rise. Your Party, PCM has also suffered attacks of these paramilitary forces. What are the causes of this wave of violence and what will be the consequences of this situation in the context of the class struggle? Can you also comment on the relation of this situation with the U.S. imperialism that never ceased to mark its presence in Mexico?
 
Pavel Blanco: First of all, I would like to send my brotherly greetings to the Communist Party of Turkey, with whom we share the same line in the revolutionary regrouping of the international communist movement. We will do everything to reiterate our solidarity on the face of the political events that violently convulse the class struggle there.
In Mexico it is possible to literally observe the face of capitalism that Marx was speaking of. It drips mud and blood from all its pores. The wave of violence that shakes us with more than 200,000 dead in 10 years is not a system failure. Rather, it is the logical consequence of capitalism that consists of barbarianism, terror, uncertainties, hunger and death. The so-called war of narco-trafficking, in which the Mexican state is directly involved, is a process of re-accommodation of markets, routes and stakeholders in order to control this business, which is laundered rapidly through financial investments, and sectors such as the real estate and production. Here we don’t only refer to the agricultural industry but also to the branches such as metals, mechanics, iron and steel and extractivism. So, it is a process of amplification of accumulation and a new economic branch that rapidly generates consequences for politics. The money buys the political parties, candidates, elected state officers, mayors, MPs, senators and governors, all of which strongly influence the presidency of the republic.
In this context, it is necessary to plant terror, demobilize and immobilize the people in order to prevent any kind of possibility of protest and opposition to the plundering of the country. It is imperative to avoid the popular or syndical organizations that would prevent the processes of overexploitation.
It is very striking that they force displacement of populations that decimate cities such as Ciudad Juarez or desolate towns and territories such as in Tamaulipas. Paradoxically, after the expulsion of the inhabitants and destruction of their houses and lands, they found oil wells and mine zones in these places.
The popular organizations are under the threat of state terror. For example, look at the class-based demands of the educational workers, or the Federation of the Socialist Peasant Students of Mexico, 43 of which disappeared in Ayotzinapa, and of course the Communist Party of Mexico. Five of our comrades including Raymundo Velazquez, who was the political secretary of the party in that region, were assassinated in Guerrero because they were opposing the Canadian mines there. Moreover, Enrique Lopez, who is a member of our Central Committee, has disappeared in Tamaulipas. In addition to a number of prisoners, we also have comrades passing through judicial processes. We would like to clarify that this is the consequence of having a specific position in the class struggle, in other words, fighting for the revolution. Only those who do nothing are at the margin of the possibility of suffering these strikes.
It is true that the North American imperialism has big interests and that since the late 1970s they promoted the narcotic operations on Mexico. They did it in collaboration with Colombian groups to finance their fight against the insurgent movements in Nicaragua and in other Central American countries. This is not a secret. Moreover, we should underline the presence of the Chinese capital in the important harbor of Lázaro Cárdenas in Michoacán, where they exchange steel with the chemicals used in the production of the raw material of a number of drugs.
At this point we would like to stop and think about this theoretical and practical question: In Mexico and for sure in almost all Latin America imperialism is identified with North America, and this position constantly creates deep political errors and strategic problems. The Communist Party of Mexico has the idea that imperialism as the actual phase of capitalism and characterized by monopoly capitalism also means that imperialism is not only an exterior but also an interior phenomena.  Speaking of the North American imperialism shouldn’t make one forget about the fight against the EU as an imperialist center or the inter-imperialist pact between Russia and China. Neither can other pacts between states or between capitalist economies such as MERCOSUR can be considered with sympathy. For us, the anti-imperialist fight is not an anti-North American fight. Rather, it is a fight against monopolies and we fight by confronting the monopolies in our country and in any other imperialist core. There is no “less bad” imperialism, all mean exploitation, pillage, plundering, war and death
 
ICP: There are millions of Mexican citizens and descendants of Mexicans in the United States, whose vast majority is part of the working class in this country. U.S. has never been an example of integration and acceptance but in the recent years the xenophobia and racism have increased even further and Mexicans, as the largest immigrant group, are one of the primary targets of xenophobia and racism. What is your opinion on the presence and role of Mexican workers in the struggle waged by the U.S. working class and the class character of the xenophobia?
 
PB: There are about 20 million Mexican or of Mexican origin workers in the US, and the number increases day by day, and year by year; it is our duty to contribute to raise awareness and organization of this population; during the bourgeois democratic revolutionary process in the last century, the Mexican workers of the USA were a stronghold of the anti-dictatorship fight which politically and financially supported the revolutionary forces of our country; phenomenon of migration peaked with the Second World War, and depending on the need for workforce, the North American border and the anti-immigrant mechanisms become more flexible or more harsh. The xenophobia and racism has been raging, not only against the Mexican workers but also workers of all nationalities who risk their lives in pursuit of employment there. It is PCM’s duty to fight to organize the Mexican workers to support the revolutionary process in our country and also to intervene in the class struggle for their rights and claims along with the North American workers and workers of other nationalities, who are exploited in the US. This happens by having a party organization at the borders, with which we’re moving forward, and for starting to have PCM cells among the Mexican workers in the US. It is clear that the class character of racism is one of the ideological pillars of the imperialist domination, which attacks all the workers.
 
ICP: Donald Trump is now officially the Republican candidate for the presidential elections, He is known for its anti-immigrant, anti-worker and racist rhetoric, towards the Mexicans in particular. What awaits the Mexican workers in the U.S. if Donald Trump is elected? The question can be asked for the working class in Mexico.
 
PB: Whoever wins the elections, may it be Mrs. Clinton or Trump, the loosing side will be the North American workers and the workers from other nationalities that shape the immigrant labor force. Trump resembles a scarecrow that is destined to express: “vote the lesser evil, vote the democrats”, which we consider to be a very dangerous position. Democrats or Republicans, the bourgeois parties of the USA do politics that are functional to imperialism. We already saw the fall of the myth, which claimed that it was a system only for the white; and the Obama administration turned out to be such an aggressive warmonger that it has no reason to envy Obama’s predecessor Bush. Now we will see how the myth, which claims that with a woman leading the USA, the world would go in a better direction, also crushes and falls. This is delusion, purely delusion.
No to Clinton and No to Trump, and we lament the wrongful politics done by CPUSA that navigates the opportunist flag of choosing a lesser evil. Whoever wins, will be a sworn enemy of the workers of the USA and the peoples of the world.
 
ICP: As the violence and repression increases in Mexico, the resistance of progressive forces and communists intensifies in response. We realize there is a revolutionary potential in the objective conditions in Mexico. What are the challenges, opportunities and the potential of revolutionary politics in Mexico?”
 
PB: That is true, the class struggle intensifies and the class conflict is present and evident. The labor-capital antagonism crystalizes especially wit the so-called structural reforms applied by the Mexican State, which embrace measures that devalue the labor and seek stability in the middle of the economic crisis.
 
We consider that the conditions are mature for a revolutionary process that according to our evaluation will be an anti-capitalist and anti-monopolist one with the goal of socialism-communism. We believe that a major obstacle at the moment is the mismatch between the objective bases, the limits of capitalism and subjective conditions of the moment, which are delaying; that is why since the V. Congress of PCM we are working to resolve this issue in two directions: building a strong, class-based workers and syndical movement on the one hand; and the development of the party itself in the principal strategic areas of the economy.
 
We are aware of the fact that without a strong communist party no revolutionary process would have any possibility to be successful.
 
Where are other revolutionary or anti-capitalist forces in Mexico, but none of them puts the proletariat in the center of their activity; in PCM we insist that the working class will be the epicenter of the revolutionary transformation; that is our advantage. Some words about an ingredient that is necessary for the revolutionary processes: the unity. We do not see it as a mere unification of organizations but as the unity of the class, we work exactly for that every day in every single work place.
Review: Adam Hochschild’s ‘Spain in Our Hearts,’ About a Strangely Literary Conflict

Credit Sonny Figueroa/The New York Times

The Spanish Civil War (1936-39) was not a splendid little war. It was an especially vicious one. Some 500,000 people died, most in combat or by political execution. A right-wing coup, led by Francisco Franco and backed by Hitler and Mussolini, toppled a democratically elected government.

It was, though, a strangely literary little war. We remember it today through classic accounts like Hemingway’s novel “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and Orwell’s memoir “Homage to Catalonia.” So many other significant writers and journalists poured into Spain, as observers or participants, it’s hard to keep track of them.

The French novelist André Malraux organized a squadron of volunteer pilots for the anti-Fascist resistance. The aviator and author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry reported for a Paris daily. Hemingway’s suite at the Hotel Floridain Madrid was a boozy hangout for a revolving rat pack of well-groomed foreign correspondents, including Martha Gellhorn, with whom he’d begun an affair. Dorothy Parker, Theodore Dreiser, Langston Hughes and W. H. Auden toured the fighting.

The war resonates visually as well. Robert Capa’s combat photographs are milestones; Picasso’s “Guernica,” painted after the carpet-bombing of that city, is among the most important artworks of our time.

Adam Hochschild’s excellent and involving new book, “Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939,” is not primarily a literary or cultural history. It’s about the moral appeal of the war, about the anti-Fascist and frequently pro-Communist idealism that made so many volunteers from the United States and other countries flood into Spain.

Yet in telling this story, Mr. Hochschild can’t help leaning heavily on the best-written accounts: books, letters, journals. Indeed, his title comes from Albert Camus. “Men of my generation have had Spain in our hearts,” Camus wrote. “It was there that they learned … that one can be right and yet be beaten, that force can vanquish spirit and that there are times when courage is not rewarded.”

What makes his book so intimate and moving is its human scale. Mr. Hochschild follows the paths of a handful or two of American (and occasionally English) volunteers, as well as journalists, and tells the larger story of the war through their tribulations.

These stories are not, in today’s parlance, of the first-person-shooter variety. The resistance was mostly too hapless, too ragtag. We might call these stories first-person shot-at. Orwell’s war ended when he took a bullet in the neck; he stood a towering 6 foot 3, and his head too easily poked over the parapet.

The Spanish Civil War was a forerunner, in a variety of ways, of World War II. Hitler introduced and honed in Spain many weapons the Allies would come to fear, like the German Stuka Ju-87 dive bomber, terrifying for its accuracy and for the dementing sound made by its wind-driven sirens.

World War II has pushed aside the Spanish Civil War in our memories. But Mr. Hochschild reminds us how riveted the world was. “While the fighting lasted, from mid-1936 to early 1939, The New York Times ran more than 1,000 front-page headlines about the war in Spain,” he writes, “outnumbering those on any other single topic, including President Roosevelt, the rise of Nazi Germany or the calamitous toll of the Great Depression.”

Roosevelt refused to involve the United States in this war, later calling its arms embargo a mistake. But some 2,800 Americans went to fight anyway. About 750 of them died there, a higher percentage of participants’ deaths than the United States military suffered in any of its 20th-century wars.

Adam Hochschild Credit Spark Media

The politics of the Spanish Civil War were, and remain, thorny. The appeal of resisting a coup backed by Hitler and Mussolini was apparent. But the defenders of the Republic, because the United States and other countries would not step in, took military aid from the Soviet Union.

This was at a moment when capitalism was in crisis, and disillusion with the Soviet Union, and Stalin, hadn’t fully set in; the Soviet Union’s economic success made it seem like a beacon of hope. Most of the American volunteers in Spain were Communists or Communist sympathizers.

For them, the war in Spain wasn’t merely a chance to rebuff Fascism. It was an opportunity to stand with Spain’s recently elected government, under which workers had taken over hundreds of factories. “Word of such events thrilled radicals abroad,” Mr. Hochschild writes. “Wasn’t this what they had long dreamed of: the people at last seizing the means of production?”

The moral problem, he notes, is that the defenders of the Republic were, in embracing the Soviet Union, “fighting for one of the finest of causes beside one of the nastiest of allies.” He asks: “If you’re in a desperate battle for survival, do you have the luxury of worrying about who your allies are?”

Orwell and Hemingway come alive in this volume. So do the two New York Times reporters, Herbert L. Matthews and William P. Carney, who reported from — and, Mr. Hochschild suggests, sympathized with — opposite sides (Mr. Matthews, the Republic, and Mr. Carney, Franco).

More than a few reporters made no pretense of objectivity. The British journalist Claud Cockburn wrote a fake article about an imaginary battle to make the Republic’s side look stronger than it was. About this trickery, Mr. Hochschild comments, “It worked.”

Mr. Hochschild, a founder of Mother Jones magazine, is the author of seven previous books, including “King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa” (1998), which was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award.

He’s a generally sympathetic observer of this conflict’s journalists, but he can also be stern. He criticizes the herd mentality that led journalists to miss one of the war’s biggest stories — how Franco’s side was propped up with oil delivered by Texaco, at the behest of an executive with Nazi sympathies.

The best stories in “Spain in Our Hearts” tend to be the smaller ones, which the author patiently teases out. We follow a Swarthmore College senior who becomes the first American casualty in the battle for Madrid, for example, and a 19-year-old woman from Kentucky who heads for Spain while on her honeymoon. Details of woe pile up.

These Americans tended to be a bookish lot. Two of them had to buy special gas masks to bring to Spain, Mr. Hochschild writes, the kind that fit over horn-rimmed glasses.

The CPUSA should put its money where its mouth is

by James Thompson

Many people have noted that the leadership of the CPUSA currently is obviously bent on liquidating the party. The tactic that leadership has employed to these ends is to transform the Communist Party into the Democratic Party, thus alienating the membership. What would happen if Pope Francis announced that the Catholic Church would no longer be Catholic and instead would be Baptist? Of course, Catholics would either overthrow the Pope or bail out of the church and form a new church.

Working people are not fools and the CPUSA leadership should not attempt to fool workers in a play to abscond with party resources.

Why not try honesty for a change? Of course, this would be a novel concept to CPUSA leadership.

CPUSA leadership has been blowing out a lot of hot air about organizing mass movements. Anyone who has followed the party over the last 10 years knows that this is pure balderdash.

Now that leadership has jettisoned many party assets such as historical documents, books and other records of party achievements prior to the chairmanship of Sam Webb, advocated dropping communism, socialism and Marxism Leninism from party discussion and advocated the uncritical stance towards the Democratic Party, why not put your money where your mouth is?

The CPUSA has been posting articles very favorable to the Bernie Sanders campaign. If they want to be Democrats, let them be Democrats.

When Billy Bragg rewrote “The International”, he sang “Don’t hold so tight to your possessions because you’ve got nothing if you’ve got no rights!”

CPUSA leadership: “Don’t hang on so tightly to the party resources because you’ve got nothing if you have no credibility!” Don’t fret and worry about your pensions and how much money Elena Mora will need to go shopping and buy new hats! Liberate yourself from your ill-gotten gains! Instead of taking the money and running, give it to a real people’s movement! Donate all of the worker’s money that you clutch so tightly to the Bernie Sanders campaign. Turn over all party property to the campaign. Offer up your lavish, but unused offices in New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles to the Bernie Sanders campaign.

You’ll feel better in the morning if you do this because you can be sure he won’t squander these precious worker’s resources as you have done.

 

Bernie Sanders Drops A Bomb On Politics As Usual As He Celebrates An Iowa Win

 

Source: Politicus

Bernie Sanders could have used his speech after the Iowa caucuses to take a victory lap after he virtually tied Hillary Clinton, instead Sanders took aim at politics as usual and used his speech to spread his message.

Bernie Sanders Drops A Bomb On Politics As Usual As He Celebrates An Iowa Win

 

Bernie Sanders could have used his speech after the Iowa caucuses to take a victory lap after he virtually tied Hillary Clinton. Instead, Sanders took aim at politics as usual and used his speech to spread his message.

Sanders said, “As I think about what happened tonight, I think the people of Iowa have sent a very profound message to the political establishment, to the economic establishment, and by the way to the media establishment. And that is given the enormous crisis facing our country, it is just too late for establishment politics and establishment economics.”

Sanders called out the greed, recklessness, and illegal behavior of Wall Street. He said the American people bailed out Wall Street; now it is time for Wall Street to help the American people. Much of the speech was the standard Sanders talking points and stump speech, but he gave Iowa credit for launching the political revolution.

The Sanders speech was a victory speech. For Bernie Sanders, a tie is a win. This speech was all about Bernie Sanders spreading his message while the entire national media was broadcasting live. Sanders earned the large national platform for his message with an outstanding performance.

Sen. Sanders came into Iowa and went toe to toe with a very good Clinton organization. Bernie Sanders took aim at politics as usual and transformed his online support and network of small donors into a potential win in Iowa. Even after everything has been counted and recounted, what people are going to remember most about the 2016 Democratic caucus is that Bernie Sanders made his political revolution a reality in Iowa.