Category: Syria
What’s Behind US Statement on Damascus’ ‘Plans of Chemical Attack’
| June 27, 2017 | 8:36 pm | Donald Trump, Iran, Russia, Syria | No comments

Anti-war protesters shout slogans against US President Donald Trump during a demonstration in front of the Trump Tower in New York on April 7, 2017, to protest the US air strike in Syria

© AFP 2017/ Jewel SAMAD

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While the White House claims that Damascus is preparing for a “new chemical attack,” referring to the Idlib incident of April 4, American investigative journalist Seymour M. Hersh insists that the US military on the ground in Syria were aware that the alleged gas strike never took place.

A lot of controversy is surrounding the White House’s recent statement regarding the “possibility” of Damascus launching “yet another” chemical attack against its civilians.

“The United States has identified potential preparations for another chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime… The activities are similar to preparations the regime made before its April 4, 2017 chemical weapons attack,” White House spokesperson Sean Spicer said Tuesday.

Dropping no hint where such an idea could have come from, Spicer added that “if… Mr. Assad conducts another mass murder attack using chemical weapons he and his military will pay a heavy price.”

Meanwhile, BuzzFeed News drew attention to a peculiar detail related to the statement: “many officials across the Pentagon did not know what the White House was referring to until Tuesday morning.”

“Usually such statements are coordinated across the national security agencies and departments before they are released,” the media outlet highlighted, citing five US defense officials including one US Central Command official.

The media outlet added that the officials said that they had no idea where the potential chemical attack would come from, although the White House insisted that “that all relevant agencies, including State, DoD, CIA and ODNI,” were aware of the issue “from the beginning.”Amid the confusion sparked by the White House’s statement, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley not only rushed to lambast the Assad government for “further attacks” but also pointed the finger at Russia and Iran.

“Any further attacks done to the people of Syria will be blamed on Assad, but also on Russia & Iran who support him killing his own people,” Haley tweeted.

Still, the problem is that there is no evidence that the April 4 chemical incident in the Khan Sheikhoun area of Idlib province was the Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) “attack.”

Quite the contrary, according to Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Seymour M. Hersh, the American military personnel on the ground in Syria were aware that the alleged chemical strike never took place.

The American investigative journalist shed new light on the incident providing Welt Am Sonntag newspaper with an alleged “chat protocol of a security advisor and an active American soldier on duty at a key base” in Syria concerning the alleged attack on Khan Sheikhoun.

“We KNOW that there was no chemical attack. The Syrians struck a weapons cache (a legitimate military target) and there was collateral damage. That’s it. They did not conduct any sort of a chemical attack,” the American soldier wrote.

“There has been a hidden agenda all along. This is about trying to ultimately go after Iran. What the people around Trump do not understand is that the Russians are not a paper tiger and that they have more robust military capability than we do,” the security adviser answered.The American personnel expressed concerns over potential retaliation on the part of Russia after the Trump administration authorized a Tomahawk strike on the Shayrat Airfield, used by the SAA to launch air attacks against Daesh (ISIS/ISIL) and Al-Nusra Front, on April 7.

“Russians are being extremely reasonable.  Despite what the news is reporting they are still trying to deconflict and coordinate the air campaign… They’re showing amazing restraint and been unbelievably calm.  They seem mostly interested in de-escalating everything.  They don’t want to lose our support in the help with destroying Isis,” the American soldier wrote on April 8.

The two military servicemen also raised the question whether President Trump had been familiar with the intelligence on the matter before he authorized the strike.

“What happened? Is it Trump ignoring the Intel and going to try to hit the Syrians? And that we’re pissing on the Russians?… You may not have seen Trump’s press conference yesterday. He’s bought into the media story without asking to see the Intel,” the security adviser underscored.

The body of a plane burned as a result of the US missile attack on an air base in Syria
© Sputnik/ Mikhail Voskresenskiy
The body of a plane burned as a result of the US missile attack on an air base in Syria

The White House statement prompts concerns whether the US is preparing for yet another strike against the SAA.

“In any case, it is Washington that looks very unsavory in this story: they either know about the upcoming attack and are not trying to prevent it, but knowingly put the uncomfortable Syrian leader in the wrong for that… Or the United States is preparing its own preemptive strike on Syrian troops and appeals to the topic that is already ‘famous’ on a global level and will definitely justify any preventive action,” Konstantin Kosachev, the chairman of the upper house of the Russian parliament’s international affairs committee, said.

Previously, the US-led coalition has conducted at least four attacks against the pro-Damascus forces in Syria including the Syrian Su-22 fighter bomber shot down by an American F18 Super Hornet on June 18.The reference to the Idlib chemical incident on the part of the White House evokes strong memories of Colin Powell’s UN speech ahead of the Bush administration’s invasion of Iraq.

On April 4, the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces said the Syrian government had carried out a chemical weapons attack in the Khan Sheikhoun area of Idlib province.

For its part, Damascus denied any involvement in the incident referring to the fact that the SAA does not possess any chemical weapons as they had been destroyed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). The incident was used by the United States as pretext for a missile strike against a Syrian military airbase on April 7.

Israelis Launch Aggression Against Syria as Army Battles IDF-Paid ‘Rebels’
| June 24, 2017 | 7:23 pm | Israel, Middle East, political struggle, Syria | No comments

http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Israelis-Launch-Aggression-Against-Syria-as-Army-Battles-IDF-Paid-Rebels-20170624-0020.html

Israelis Launch Aggression Against Syria as Army Battles IDF-Paid ‘Rebels’

  • The attack came as rebel factions, including known Islamist extremists, battled Syria Army forces Saturday in the Quneitra province bordering the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

    The attack came as rebel factions, including known Islamist extremists, battled Syria Army forces Saturday in the Quneitra province bordering the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. | Photo: AFP – Reuters

Syria accuses the Israeli military of hitting a residential building and supporting jihadists who admit to receiving direct financing from Israelis.

In the latest act of aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic, Israeli occupation forces have targeted Syrian military outposts after 10 shells landed in the illegally-occupied Golan Heights. However, military sources in Syria have accused the Israelis of killing civilians and attempting to prop up rebels who recently admitted that they were receiving direct financing from the settler-colonial Israeli state.

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The attack came as rebel factions, including known Islamist extremists, battled Syria Army forces Saturday in the Quneitra province bordering the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, according to Syrian state media and a Western-backed war monitor.

The Israelis launched their attacks on positions held by what it calls the “Syrian regime” after 10 projectiles landed in the illegally-held Syrian region. According to the Israeli military, the alleged position from which the projectiles were fired came under attack, while two army tanks belonging to the Syrian army also were bombed.

Syria’s military described the shellfire into the Israeli-held territory as errant fire and called it an “unacceptable breach” of sovereignty. Stray fire from fighting between the forces of Syria’s legitimate government and rebel factions are not uncommon in the contested Golan Heights.

Syrian military sources also said Israeli rocket fire had hit a residential building, causing a number of deaths and damage. The source did not mention Syrian fire into Israel but did note that the Israeli strike was in support of jihadist rebels.

Israeli seized 500 square miles of the Golan from Syria during its colonialist military campaigns of 1967 and later annexed it. The move was never recognized by the international community, yet it unofficially backed by imperialist powers, first and foremost its financiers within the United States.

Groups like the Quneitra-based 400-strong Fursan al-Joulan, or the Knights of the Golan, recently admitted that they have been receiving payment from the Israeli occupiers, who hope to create a buffer of “friendly forces” between the occupation and the Syrian government, the Wall Street Journal reported this week. The group is not backed by other U.S.-led coalition or Arab countries.

“Israel stood by our side in a heroic way,” group spokesman Moatasem al-Golani told the Journal. “We wouldn’t have survived without Israel’s assistance.” The cooperation began when the Israelis began assisting Syrian fighters, including alleged “Islamist extremists,” through medical care at Israeli hospitals, in a relationship that soon led to direct funding for fighters for salaries, ammunition and weapons.

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In January 2016, former Israeli military Chief of Staff Moshe Yaalon noted his preference for the Islamic State group, telling an audience “if the choice is between Iran and the Islamic State (group), I choose the Islamic State.” The former military official Yaalon last month told reporters that the Islamic State group had also recently apologized to Israeli military forces after unintentionally attacking them along the Syrian border.

According to the Wall Street Journal report, under Yaalon’s tenure as defense minister in 2013, the Golan rebels began receiving direct monetary support.

Western-funded NGO the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the rebel groups of Quneitra had launched an assault and were storming army positions near Baath City.

The Israelis have launched several unprovoked acts of aggression against Syria throughout the conflict, including assassinations and assaults on targets such as alleged “weapons caches” belonging to Lebanese Hezbollah, who are fighting alongside the Syrian government at the latter’s invitation. The Syrian Arab Republic and the Israelis remain technically at war.

Syrian Air Incident: How Trump’s ‘Non-Interference’ Talk Turned Out to Be Cheap
Syrian Air Force base in Homs province

Syrian Air Incident: How Trump’s ‘Non-Interference’ Talk Turned Out to Be Cheap

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US-Led Coalition Shoots Down Syrian Jet in Raqqa (15)
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Russia should use tougher language with Washington following the air incident in southern Raqqa, Colonel General Leonid Ivashov told RIA Novosti, adding that it seems that the US-led coalition deliberately gets in the way of the Syrian Arab Army’s efforts to defeat Daesh (ISIS/ISIL).

Moscow may adopt a tougher position in Russo-American dialogue on Syria after a Syrian army Su-22 was shot down by the US-led coalition over northern Syria, Colonel General Leonid Ivashov, president of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, believes.

“Probably, we [Russia] need to talk tougher with the Americans,” Ivashov told RIA Novosti. “These agreements on the coordination of military operations should be turned into reality. They [Washington] do not react to [our] diplomatic protests and continue to behave impudently, not entering into any commitments and acting only in their own interests.”

On June 18 the US-led coalition’s F-18A fighter jet brought down the Syrian Arab Army’s Su-22 southwest of Raqqa.The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) specified that its aircraft was shot down while conducting a counterterrorism mission against Daesh (ISIS/ISIL).

For its part, the Pentagon confirmed that it hit the warplane of the Syrian Air Force, claiming that the Su-22 was attacking positions held by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

The US-led coalition qualified the attack as “collective self-defense” and reported that it contacted the Russian military to de-escalate the situation after the strike.

The incident has become the fourth time the US-led coalition has attacked the SAA and pro-government forces in Syria.

The Russian Defense Ministry denounced the “cynical” US airstrike against the Syrian government forces, adding that it could be considered an “act of aggression.”

“The destruction of the Syrian Air Force aircraft by US aviation in Syrian airspace is a cynical violation of the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic,” the Russian Defense Ministry stressed.

“The repeated hostilities of US aviation against the legitimate armed forces of a UN member state under the guise of ‘combating terrorism’ are a gross violation of international law and de facto a military aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic,” the ministry’s statement said.

Russia's Su-25 aircraft take off from Hmeimim airbase escorted by Syria's MiG-29 fighter jets. (File)
© Photo: Russian Defense Ministry
Russia’s Su-25 aircraft take off from Hmeimim airbase escorted by Syria’s MiG-29 fighter jets. (File)

Commenting on the strike Ivashov pointed out that US President Donald Trump de facto continues his predecessor Barack Obama’s policy in Syria.

“He talked [a lot] about non-interference, then he gave the Central Intelligence Agency and the Pentagon the task of restoring America’s control over the entire Middle East, and then he voiced the need to overthrow the president of the Syrian Arab Republic, Bashar al-Assad,” Ivashov emphasized, adding that it has become clear that Washington’s Syria policy will bring no good to the region.

To complicate matters further, it appears that the US-led coalition is deliberately throwing sand in the SAA’s gears to hinder Damascus’s progress against Daesh.Ivashov stressed that it was the US who contributed to the emergence of Islamist terror groups in the Middle Eastern region due to its irresponsible foreign policies.

According to the expert, Washington turned a blind eye to the rise of the “Islamic State” — later known as Daesh — back in the 2000s. Today, the US appears to have become an indirect facilitator of the terrorist group in Syria, he added.

“The US does not wage any real war on terror in the region,” Ivashov underscored.

Russian Senator Viktor Ozerov, chairman of the Council of the Federation Committee on Defense and Security, shares Ivashov’s concerns regarding the US-led coalition’s strikes on Syrian government forces.

“The US [coalition’s] actions are lawless and criminal, this behavior can endanger not only our [Russian] aircraft but, more importantly, the life of our servicemen [on the ground],” Ozerov told RIA Novosti, referring to the recent air incident in southern Raqqa.

“We will take all measures to ensure the security of our aircraft during their combat and other tasks by all air defense and aviation assets, both from the ground and from the air, including the S-300 and S-400,” the Russian senator emphasized.Meanwhile, the Russian Defense Ministry announced Monday that it halts all interactions with the US within the framework on the memorandum of incident prevention in Syrian skies.

Furthermore, Russian missile defense systems will intercept any aircraft in the area of operations of the Russian Aerospace Forces in Syria.

“In areas where Russian aviation is conducting combat missions in the Syrian skies, any flying objects, including jets and unmanned aerial vehicles of the international coalition discovered west of the Euphrates River will be followed by Russian air and ground defenses as air targets,” the Russian Defense Ministry’s statement said.

The ministry slammed the US-led coalition for not using the deconfliction channel with Russia to prevent the incident in southern Raqqa.

“We consider such actions of the US command as an intentional violation of its obligations in the framework of the memo on avoiding incidents and the safety of aviation flights during operations in Syria signed on October 20, 2015,” the statement read.

Statement of the CC of the KKE regarding the latest dangerous developments in the Middle East

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Statement of the CC of the KKE regarding the latest dangerous developments in the Middle East

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/06/statement-of-cc-of-kke-regarding-latest.html
Source: 902.gr / Translation: In Defense of Communism.
 
In a statement regarding the latest developments in the Middle East, the Press Office of the CC of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) stresses the following:
 
“Yesterday’s US bombings against forces of the Syrian army, combined with the diplomatic crisis in Qatar and today’s attack in Iran’s Parliament, consist a dangerous escalation of the imperialist interventions and competitions in the region of Eastern Mediterranean, the Middle East and the Persian Gulf.
 
Precisely these interventions of the USA-NATO-EU, in their antagonism with other powers in the broader region, such as Russia, are the ones which led to the dismemberment and destabilization of countries, the support of jihadist groups like ISIS, aiming at the control of the natural resources and energy routes of the region.
The SYRIZA-ANEL government bears huge responsibility for Greece’s involvement in this carnage, under the pretext of the country’s “geostrategic upgrade”, which is in fact related with the participation of the domestic capital in the war’s prey. 
 
For the Greek people and the other peoples of the region, the dangers are immense and for that reason, the disengagement of the country from the imperialist plans must become a popular demand of struggle.”
The 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) declares 2017 as the year of Socialism

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) declares 2017 as the year of Socialism

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/05/the-12th-congress-of-communist-party-of.html
The Communist Party of Turkey’s (TKP) 12th Congress was held in Istanbul on May 27-28 with the slogan, ‘to empower the socialist alternative’. The Congress unanimously approved six basic documents, and declared 2017 as ‘the year of socialism’. The Congress has also announced that TKP will hold a ‘festival of socialism’ during the anniversary of the Great October Revolution.
Many important resolutions were taken during the conference sessions, in which 383 delegates from all party organisations participated, including 14 delegates from abroad.
The conference started with the opening speech of Kemal Okuyan, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Turkey.
Party member poet Nihat Behram’s salutation message was also read during the conference. Nihat Behram has donated the revenues of his book to TKP. Communist poet’s bookmarks the 50th year of his poetry.
‘THE YEAR OF SOCIALISM’
 
Many delegates took part in discussions and made contributions during the 2-day countrywide conference of TKP. The delegates unanimously approved such documents as “The Preface of the Party Programme”, “On the Party and Party life”, “Our Road is the Road of Revolution at the 100th Year of the Great October Socialist Revolution”, “Theses of 2017 on Imperialism Regarding Russia and China”, “Theses on the Party History”, “The Political and Organizational Goals, June 2017-June 2018”.
The Conference that was held with the slogan, “to empower the socialist alternative”, declared the existing working period as “the year of Socialism”, and decided to hold a grand “Festival of Socialism” during the anniversary of the October Revolution.
Apart from various documents and the report on the political and organisational goals, which were approved by the Congress delegation, some political resolutions were also put on the agenda.
TKP’s 12th Congress-Turkey Conference ended with the closing speech by Kemal Okuyan.
POLITICAL RESOLUTIONS OF TKP’s 12th CONGRESS
 
The Communist Party of Turkey’s 12th Congress approved and declared seven political resolutions.
The first resolution, “On the anniversary of the June Resistance”, echoes the fourth anniversary of Turkey’s mass anti-governmental protests and rallies in 2013, which attracted millions of people across the country, particularly in İstanbul’s iconic Taksim Square. 8 people were murdered by the police force of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) during the protests.
Indicating to the secularist position of the patriotic people in June 2013, TKP has declared that the people could not fit in the counterrevolution of AKP. TKP enthusiastically commemorates the fourth anniversary of the June Resistance in 2013, and bows respectfully before the memory of the people who lost their lives.
TKP’s 12th Congress has pointed out to the importance of the June Resistance and the role of the Party: “This mass movement, sustained by millions of compatriots for months, was a unique action in the history of our country. The Communist Party of Turkey took its part in the front lines of the resistance during the months of summer in 2013, made significant contributions in respect of militant struggles and also made critical interventions in the political character of the movement.”
TKP has also underlined the liberal and liquidationist attacks within the left: “The June Resistance could not gain continuity as a dynamic of the mass struggle because of insufficiencies in this very second aspect. It is not a coincidence that after 2013, a liberal political restoration and liquidation of the left was intended. The hegemonic powers tried to take revenge of the resistance by not only imposing nefarious policies of pressure but also intercepting the left.”
Following this political resolution, TKP has promised to bring the AKP power to account for all the crimes committed against Turkey’s people.
‘LOOTERS WILL BE BROUGHT TO ACCOUNT’
 
The second political resolution of the Congress, “On ‘the power of the rich’”, states: “A capitalist dictatorship reigns in Turkey. The capitalist dictatorship is run by deputy politicians in the name of bosses.”
For the struggle against ‘the power of the rich’, TKP has declared: “12th Congress of the Communist Party of Turkey emphasises that this is a robbery that deprives our working people, who are getting poorer day by day, of all their rights. It represents the gravest attack against the dignity of our people. Our Congress declares that the working class will bring this humiliation to account.”
The third political resolution underlines the Party’s solidarity with the glass workers, whose strike was banned by the AKP government under the pretext of “a threat to national security”.
Announcing that the working class will not yield, this resolution has also described the recent situation of the working people in Turkey: “It has been a custom for the AKP government, which does not hesitate to attack the most fundamental rights of the working class, to ban strikes and to justify it with concerns of national security. Recently they also intended to ban the strike of the metal workers, which was frustrated with the actual struggle of workers. Now our sister and brother workers are defending their labour against the ban on strike declared in facilities of Şişecam [Turkey’s biggest glassware enterprise]. The unyielding glass workers are leading this resistance not only for their own rights but also on the name of our people as a whole.”
Upon the Congress resolution, TKP has declared that it will continue with all might its solidarity with the workers’ resistance and called all pro-labour forces to be part of the resistance.
‘ON THE POLICIES OF THE STATE OF EMERGENCY’
 
TKP’s 12th Congress has also pointed out to the unlawful implementations of the government that sacked tens of thousands of labourers during the existing long-termed state of emergency in Turkey. TKP, therefore, has declared that Nuriye Gülmen and Semih Özakça should be set free. The two educators in question were sacked by the government, started a hunger strike for over 2 months for their right to work, and finally were arrested by the government.
TKP has clearly pointed out: “Finally, the arrest of Nuriye Gülmen and Semih Özakça, the education workers who chose to resist with the hunger strike for their right to work, with fabricated reasons has blatantly shown the inhumane and labour-enemy character of the reactionary capitalist government. The Communist Party of Turkey categorically protests that and demands the liberation of Gülmen and Özakça and immediate restitution of their jobs.”
‘UNITED STRUGGLE OF THE PEOPLES OF THE REGION FOR SOCIALISM’
 
12th Congress of the Communist Party of Turkey has taken a fifth political resolution regarding the foreign affairs of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). TKP has particularly indicated to the notorious role of AKP in Syria, Cyprus and the Middle East:
“The foreign policy of AKP against the neighbouring countries as being totally irrelevant to the historical values of our people. AKP government is primarily liable of the current war and the bloodshed in Syria. AKP government initiates provocation against Greece and tries to antagonise our people, whenever it needs to manipulate the domestic or foreign political agenda. AKP government prefers to keep the Cyprus issue unsolved to be able to blackmail all the people of the Island. AKP government has been threatening the peoples of the regions and involving military activity implicitly and explicitly at times in the Middle East at others in the Black Sea. Those policies are amongst the primary reasons of the lost lives of thousands of immigrants, wars and bloodshed in our region.”
TKP has shown its fraternal solidarity with the neighbouring peoples in the region, emphasising that peace and justice could be achieved only with the struggle for socialism.
‘THE VENEZUELAN REVOLUTION WILL NOT SURRENDER’
 
The sixth political resolution of TKP’s 12th Congress has pointed out to the imperialist-led intervention in Venezuela: “Venezuela is being a scene of a nefarious scenario of counter-revolution by imperialism and its collaborators. The purpose of the provocation of the right-wing opposition, the smear campaigns waged by international bourgeois media, and the violent counter-revolutionary actions, which caused lives of tens of people, is to drag the Bolivarian government into chaos and pay the way for counter-revolution.”
In addition to its message of solidarity with the people of Venezuela, TKP has also stated its support to the Venezuelan Communists: “The Communist Party of Turkey salutes enthusiastically the strategic preference and policies of the Communist Party of Venezuela to deepen the revolution to protect it and, through the Communist Party of Venezuela, conveys its message of solidarity with the people of Venezuela.”
‘WE SALUTE SOCIALIST CUBA’
 
The seventh political resolution of TKP’s 12th Congress has saluted Socialist Cuba, which has been targeted by imperialism, particularly the US imperialism, for long decades.
Declaring its solidarity with Cuba, TKP has underlined that the Cuban people have proved repeatedly that they would never retreat from the gains of socialism and the merits of patriotism.
In conclusion, TKP has shown solidarity with the Cuban people and their vanguard the Communist Party of Cuba, saluting Raul Castro as the comrade and leader of Cuban socialism.
Held with a slogan to empower the socialist alternative in Turkey and reinforced the decisive stance of TKP, 12th Congress of the Communist of Turkey received so many greetings and solidarity messages from the communist and workers’ parties around the whole world.
European Communist Parties honored the Great Antifascist Peoples Victory in Berlin – Speech by the KKE Politburo Member Giorgos Marinos

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/05/european-communist-parties-honored.html

European Communist Parties honored the Great Antifascist Peoples Victory in Berlin – Speech by the KKE Politburo Member Giorgos Marinos

An important internationalist event was organized by the European Communist Initiative in Berlin on Sunday 7/5, with as its theme: «May 9, 72 years after the Great Antifascist Victory of the Peoples: we are inspired and continue the struggle against the distortion of history by the EU-capital. For the overthrow of the rotten capitalist system that creates crises, wars, fascism.”
 
The event was supported by the Party Organization of the KKE in Germany and Party Organization of the CP of Turkey in Germany. The programme of the event included interventions from the representatives of the CPs that participate in the “Initiative” and a concert with songs of the Red Army and other revolutionary songs.
The following 15 Parties participated in the eventPole of Communist Revival in France, Communist Revolutionary Party of France, Communist Party of Greece, Workers’ Party of Ireland, Communist Party, Italy, Communist Party of the Peoples of Spain, Socialist Workers Party of Croatia, Belarusian Communist Party of Workers-Section of the CPSU, Communist Party of Norway, Hungarian Workers’ Party, Communist Party of Poland, Russian Communist Workers’ Party, Communist Party of Sweden, Communist Party of Turkey
A representative of the German CP also attended the event.
Below is the speech by the representative of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and member of its Political Bureau, Giorgos Marinos:
Dear comrades,
From here, from Berlin, we salute the Victory of the Peoples against the fascist, imperialist monster in the 2nd World War, with the Soviet Union and the heroic Red Army as the protagonists.
 
The great country of socialism, the Soviet Union and the Red Army had the strength to repel the Nazi assault, to overcome the intrigues of US and British imperialism and contribute decisively to the victory of the peoples, liberating a large part of Europe, raising the red flag over the Reichstag, in the heart of Berlin on 30 April, leading to the surrender of Nazi Germany on May 9 of 1945.
 
It paid a heavy price for the victory. 20 million dead,10 million wounded and enormous material damage, in a war that cost the lives of 50 million people.

We honour the militant men and women who gave their lives, the thousands of martyrs of Dachau, Buchenwald and the other fascist concentration camps. We bow to the heroism of comrade Ernst Thalmann who was murdered in August 1944 by the Nazis.

We honour the liberation movements in every country, the struggle of the National Liberation Front (EAM) and the People’s Army (ELAS) in Greece.

The Communist and Workers Parties, and amongst them the KKE, acquired in very harsh conditions a leading role and emerged as the organizers, guides and heart and soul of the struggle of the peoples.

We are inspired and we intensify our struggles for the just cause of the working class, for socialism, we denounce anti-communism, we respond decisively to the anti-communist mechanisms of the European Union and the bourgeois governments, to every kind of bourgeois and opportunist historical revisionist, the dangerous organizations that equate communism with the fascist monster.

Whatever they do, they cannot diminish the role of the communists, of the class struggle, of the Soviet Union, of socialism in social progress. They cannot conceal that fascism is the child of capitalism and the struggle against it is consistent when it aims to abolish its root cause.

Comrades, 

The 2nd World War, just as the First (1914-1918), was born from the womb of the capitalist system and was a result of the sharpening of the inter-imperialist contradictions and antagonisms for the redivision of the world, the control of the markets. This has historically marked the exploitative system which is guilty of hundreds of other local and regional wars.

The quest for profits and the inter-imperialist competition over the natural resources and the energy pipelines are to be found behind the imperialist wars that are under way today in Syria, Iraq, Libya, Ukraine. The interests of the monopolies are to be found behind the flashpoints in many regions of the planet and the danger of a more general military conflict.
 
The USA, NATO, the EU are ruthless enemies of the peoples.

At the NATO Summit on the 25th of May in Brussels, new, very dangerous plans will be set in motion. The inter-capitalist competition with Russia and China is sharpening. Concern is not enough. The task of the communists is to reinforce the struggle against imperialist war, the emancipation of the working class by the bourgeois classes in every country and the preparation of the peoples with the direction of concentrating forces to eradicate the causes of imperialist wars and interventions.

War is the continuation of the anti-people political line with military means, is defined by the interests and goals of the bourgeois classes. The character of war in our era is imperialist. The revolutionary war to abolish the exploitation of man by man is just.

With the interests of the working class and popular strata as its criteria, the struggle for the defense of the borders, territorial integrity, is a part of the struggle for the overthrow of capital, of capitalism that creates wars, crises, poverty, unemployment, refugees.

Comrades,

Many heroic events are a source of inspiration of communists in order to strengthen the antimonopoly-anticapitalist struggle but the Great October Socialist Revolution, which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, stands out.

The historic mission of the working class was realized in the October Revolution. The great strength of the class struggle was highlighted as the motor force of social development and the importance and decisive character of the vanguard role of the communist party for the victory of the revolution and socialist construction was demonstrated.

The October Socialist Revolution demonstrated that the exploitative capitalist system is not invincible, that the working class with its allies can construct a society without the exploitation of man by man, that socialism can eradicate unemployment and safeguard the right to work for all, to increase free time, to provide free, high quality education, health, sports, culture, to satisfy the people’s needs and to activate the people’s strength in the construction of the new society.

The counterrevolutions have painful consequences for the peoples.

The temporary defeat teaches us how dangerous the opportunist deviations and violations of the laws of socialist construction. The political power of the working class, the socialization of the means of production, central scientific planning and workers’-social control are absolute prerequisites for the construction of the new society.

The class struggle continues, historical progress does not stop.

Capitalism is in its highest, final stage. It has decayed and the character of our era expresses the necessity of the passage from the exploitative system to a superior system, socialism-communism, on the basis of the irrefutable conclusion that the material preconditions have matured for the new socialist organization of production and society.

The intermediate, the transitional stages, the so-called left governments operate within the framework of capitalism and perpetuate the power of the monopolies, the exploitation of the working class. Capitalism cannot be humanized.

Comrades,

The European Communist Initiative has spread its wings. Last year it organized the Anti-NATO event in Warsaw, this year we in Berlin we honour the Anti-fascist victory of the peoples and the forces of the “Communist Initiative” will take part in the mobilizations against the NATO Summit in Brussels. We combine these important events with the stable annual meetings, the regular and precise interventions on the problems of the workers and youth, more general serious political issues, supporting, developing, the ideological struggle against the bourgeois classes, the exploitative capitalist system, the EU, the inter-state imperialist union in Europe.

We will continue with this experience to fight against the difficulties, to contribute more to the development of the class struggle, to weaken opportunism, strengthening the efforts for the unity and revolutionary regroupment of the communist movement, the struggle for socialism.
Trump Wants to Talk. But Can He Think?
US President Donald Trump speaks to staffers setting up for the Commander in Chief's trophy presentation in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, US, May 2, 2017.

Trump Wants to Talk. But Can He Think?

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Finian Cunningham
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Tentatively, it’s a good sign that US President Donald Trump had a productive phone call – again – with Russian leader Vladimir Putin this week, vowing to push for a diplomatic settlement in war-torn Syria.

At least the two leaders appear to be talking to each other – not at each other. Businessman-turned-politician Trump seems to have a refreshingly pragmatic way of respecting Putin as a potential partner, not viewing the Russian president with preconceived notions of Cold War-type hostility.

Another tentatively positive development this week was Trump’s Secretary of State Rex Tillerson giving a major speech to the US State Department on priorities for foreign policy. Tillerson called for cooperation with Russia and reminded his audience of a meeting last month held in Moscow with President Putin in which both of them acknowledged that there was an all-time low in US-Russian relations which urgently needed improvement.

So, admittedly, there appears to be a willingness in the Trump presidency for at least engaging in mutual dialogue with Moscow, as opposed to adopting an imperious attitude of lecturing Russia on alleged wrongdoings, which was all-too evident under the previous Obama administrations.

A willingness to talk is a welcome place to start building trust between the world’s two military superpowers. Nevertheless, the next and more difficult problem is: talk about what exactly?

Can agreement be found if one party to dialogue possesses such a thoroughly misguided understanding of international relations and conflicts?

The US political leadership in Washington, whether Republican or Democrat, seems to be so bereft of realistic understanding about the world. It is cocooned in a bubble of self-deluding hubris and propaganda about American power and the nature of many pressing world conflicts.

Rex Tillerson told his State Department staff that in order to improve US-Russia relations he has instructed his top policy staff to carry out a study on how to “remove irritants” between Washington and Moscow. The US chief foreign policy official went on in the same breath to accuse Russia of “behaving badly” in Ukraine.It’s rather daunting to hear that Washington needs to conduct a high-powered investigation into finding out how to “remove irritants” in relations with Russia.

How about the US and its 28-member NATO military alliance beginning to de-escalate the unprecedented build-up of offensive forces along Russia’s border? If Tillerson can’t see how that threatening military encirclement of Russia is a major irritant then the prospects of a productive conservation are hampered from the outset.

Or how about Washington and its European allies letting go of their unfounded mantra accusing Moscow of destabilizing Ukraine? To anyone with an open mind there are ample grounds to argue that Ukraine has in fact been destabilized by US and European illegal meddling in its internal affairs. Washington and Brussels are living in denial if they cannot acknowledge that an illegal coup d’état took place in Kiev back in February 2014.Subsequent American and NATO military support for a dubious regime in Kiev that is flagrantly violating international law from its offensive campaign on eastern Ukraine is a far more brazen manifestation of actual Western interference than is presumed about Russia.

Getting back to President Trump. He says he now wants to work with Russia to bring peace to Syria. One additional good sign was that for the first time this week, the US sent an official delegate to the peace talks that were held in Astana, Kazakhstan. There, a breakthrough was brokered by Russia, Turkey and Iran on creating “de-escalation zones” to help towards implementing a broader ceasefire.

However, the deal worked out in Astana was immediately undermined by hardline anti-government militant factions who objected to the role being played by Iran in brokering any agreement. The US and Saudi Arabia also rowed in behind the militants, making provocative disparagement of Iran’s role as a “supporter of terrorists”.The irony, of course, is that the militants opposed to the Astana process and their Saudi and US state sponsors are the main practitioners of terrorism in Syria and beyond.

In his first overseas official trip as president, Trump is to visit Israel and Saudi Arabia later this month. The White House says Trump will seek to strengthen the “cause of fighting terrorism, reining in Iran and uniting the world against intolerance.”

The Financial Times this week reported: “US president plans to unite a coalition against Islamist terrorism and Iran.”

It’s hard to imagine a worldview so divorced from reality than that. Saudi Arabia uniting the world against intolerance and terrorism? This despotic feudal kingdom has unleashed jihadist terrorism all over the world, from the Russian Caucasus to Europe, across the entire Middle East to as far as North and West Africa. Saudi oil money along with CIA “expertise” has been the engine of global terrorism since the 1980s.

For Trump to say that he is going to Israel and Saudi Arabia to form an anti-terror coalition really shows that this president is totally clueless about the world. The people actually fighting terrorism are Russia, Iran and Syria, terrorism which has in large part been fomented and fueled by the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel.

As we began earlier, it is a welcome sign that the Trump White House is at least prepared to talk with Russia on a basis of partnership and respect. Trump and his top diplomat Rex Tillerson have both this week intimated that this kind of engagement should be the way forward to improve badly frayed relations.But that is only a tentative beginning. Far more serious is the obstacle of American delusions and downright ignorance about the real state of the world and the destructive role of American power.

If Trump and his team can’t see that NATO’s military forces pointing into Russia’s face is an outrageous provocation, or if they think that Saudi Arabia can be a reliable partner to fight terrorism, then that does not bode well for resolving problems.

Besides, an additional, perhaps ultimate, problem is that Trump and his officials have limited control over US foreign policy and power. Trump might want to talk and even be prepared to learn a new concept of world relations (which is doubtful).

But the shadowy, unelected forces that actually run American power – the Pentagon, CIA and corporate elite – are the real players behind the throne. Their track record is one of belligerence, militarism and hegemony – not one of peaceful resolutions.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.