Building anti-imperialist solidarity in the United States: The need for internationalism

“…the U.S. state was born in violence and maintains its existence through brute force and coercion inside the country and abroad.”
Global Research, October 25, 2016

Address delivered to the International League of Peoples Struggle (ILPS) U.S. Chapter Conference

Abayomi Azikiwe Speaks at the International League of Peoples Struggle US Chapter National Conference, Chicago Oct. 22, 2016 (Photo by Danielle Boachie)

There is a fundamental weakness in the peoples’ movement in the United States and that is the necessity for anti-imperialist internationalism.

The struggles against racism, national oppression and class exploitation cannot be separated from the need to end Washington’s and Wall Street’s interference in the internal affairs of most states throughout the world.

In order to win recognition in these monumental struggles it is heavily dependent upon the degree to which we can create widespread awareness of the plight of the people of color communities and the working class in general. There are efforts underway to achieve these objectives although much more work has to be done.

Racist State Violence

International consciousness in regard to the character of the U.S. state is growing immensely. This is in part due to the mass demonstrations and urban rebellions which have sprung up by and large spontaneously in response to the vigilante death of Trayvon Martin in 2012 and the not-guilty verdict handed down in the trial of George Zimmerman. When Zimmerman’s acquittal was announced it did more to turn public opinion domestically and internationally against institutions which devalue African American life and democratic rights. It was during this period that the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter began to trend. Since then there have been efforts to build BLM chapters across the U.S., spreading internationally into the United Kingdom and Latin America.

Later on August 9, 2014, in Ferguson, Missouri, 18-year-old Michael Brown was gunned down by a white police officer. Immediately demonstrations erupted in Ferguson both nonviolent and violent. These manifestations spread nationally bringing attention to the false notion that America had become a so-called “post-racial society” in the period following the election of President Barack Obama in 2008.

Obama, who was forced to address the problems of the “special oppression” of African Americans after the unrest in Ferguson, the situation of African Americans gained international attention prompting editorials in leading periodicals both in the U.S. and internationally questioning this false assertion of post-racialism.

The administration responded in its signature dubious fashion leaning in favor of maintaining the status-quo of national oppression. Obama, of course, gave his view of what “African Americans feel” and in the next instance denounces violence saying it will not accomplish anything. This is a blatant falsehood because the U.S. state was born in violence and maintains its existence through brute force and coercion inside the country and abroad.

What these developments further exposed was the failure of the Obama administration to not only have refused to address the special oppression of African Americans but to also advance a policy of public avoidance in the face of worsening social conditions.

It was the African American masses and other oppressed groups who suffered the brunt of the economic crisis beginning in 2007. Detroit was one of the hardest hit urban areas and when Obama came into office in 2009, there was considerable “false hope” that these difficulties would attract the attention of the White House and the-then majority Democratic House and Senate (2008-2010).

Subsequent rebellions and waves of mass demonstrations in the streets, campuses, and now athletic fields, have stripped the administration of any pretense of political legitimacy. Colin Kapernick and others within professional, college and high school sports settings illustrated that no matter how they are classified as “privileged”, the specter of racist violence remains within their purview. No matter how “privileged” these people are the threats from the armed agents of the state remains with them at all times. Racism is on the increase in the U.S. and the refusal of the ruling class and the capitalist state to advance any reforms in this regard speaks volumes about the current phases of imperialism and its public posture.

The Crisis of U.S. Capitalism and Its Global Implications

The degree to which the capitalist class can claim any semblance of a “recovery” is related to the expansion of low-wage labor and the mega-profits of transnational corporations. This is reinforced by the systematic defunding of public education, municipal services and environmental safeguards.

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Keiser Report: Crisis of capitalism

From Max Keiser.com

(KR942)

We talk to Dmitry Orlov, author of The Collapse Gap, about a “pathway to a different future.” Orlov suggests that “150 strong” can solve many of the problems present in our economies and societies – smaller communities of 150 who can trust each other and work together as a unit during the crisis of capitalism. We also discuss the drumbeat of war and how war is not the answer to the global economic depression.

 

http://www.maxkeiser.com/2016/07/kr942-keiser-report-crisis-of-capitalism/

Why is NATO in Yugoslavia?

Excellent historical perspective on present day problems.

By Sean Gervasi
Global Research, June 22, 2015

Why Is NATO In Yugoslavia?

Editor’s Note

This paper was presented by the late Sean Gervasi at the Conference on the Enlargement of NATO in Eastern Europe and the Mediterrenean, Prague, 13-14 January 1996. It was published on Global Research when the Global Research website was launched on September 9, 2001.

The late Sean Gervasi had tremendous foresight. He understood the process of NATO enlargement several years before it actually unfolded into a formidable military force.  He had also predicted the breakup of Yugoslavia as part of a US-NATO project.

See also Sean Gervasi’s 1993 video interview

Introduction

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization has recently sent a large task force into Yugoslavia, ostensibly to enforce a settlement of the Bosnian war arrived at in Dayton, Ohio at the end of 1995. This task force is said to consist of some 60,000 men, equipped with tanks, armor and artillery. It is backed by formidable air and naval forces. In fact, if one takes account of all the support forces involved, including forces deployed in nearby countries, it is clear that at least two hundred thousand troops are involved. This figure has been confirmed by U. S. defense sources. [ 1 ]

By any standards, the sending of a large Western military force into Central and Eastern Europe is a remarkable enterprise, even in the fluid situation created by the supposed end of the Cold War. The Balkan task force represents not only the first major NATO military operation, but a major operation staged “out of area”, that is, outside the boundaries originally established for NATO military action.

However, the sending of NATO troops into the Balkans is the result of enormous pressure for the general extension of NATO eastwards.

If the Yugoslav enterprise is the first concrete step in the expansion of NATO, others are planned for the near future. Some Western powers want to bring the Visegrad countries into NATO as full members by the end of the century. There was resistance to the pressures for such extension among certain Western countries for some time. However, the recalcitrants have now been bludgeoned into accepting the alleged necessity of extending NATO.

The question is: why are the Western powers pressing for the expansion of NATO? Why is NATO being renewed and extended when the “Soviet threat” has disappeared? There is clearly much more to it than we have so far been told. The enforcement of a precarious peace in Bosnia is only the immediate reason for sending NATO forces into the Balkans.

There are deeper reasons for the dispatch of NATO forces to the Balkans, and especially for the extension of NATO to Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary in the relatively near future. These have to do with an emerging strategy for securing the resources of the Caspian Sea region and for “stabilizing” the countries of Eastern Europe — ultimately for “stabilizing” Russia and the countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States. This is, to put it mildly, an extremely ambitious and potentially selfcontradictory policy. And it is important to pose some basic questions about the reasons being given for pursuing it.

For the idea of “stabilizing” the countries which formerly constituted the Socialist bloc in Europe does not simply mean ensuring political stability there, ensuring that the regimes which replaced Socialism remain in place. It also means ensuring that economic and social conditions remain unchanged. And, since the so-called transition to democracy in the countries affected has in fact led to an incipient deindustrialization and a collapse of living standards for the majority, the question arises whether it is really desirable.

The question is all the more pertinent since “stabilization”, in the sense in which it is used in the West, means reproducing in the former Socialist bloc countries economic and social conditions which are similar to the economic and social conditions currently prevailing in the West. The economies of the Western industrial nations are, in fact, in a state of semi-collapse, although the governments of those countries would never really acknowledge the fact. Nonetheless, any reasonably objective assessment of the economic situation in the West leads to this conclusion. And that conclusion is supported by official statistics and most analyses coming from mainstream economists.

It is also clear, as well, that the attempt to “stabilize” the former Socialist bloc countries is creating considerable tension with Russia, and potentially with other countries. Not a few commentators have made the point that Western actions in extending NATO even raise the risks of nuclear conflict. [2]

It is enough to raise these questions briefly to see that the extension of NATO which has, de facto, begun in Yugoslavia and is being proposed for other countries is to a large extent based on confused and even irrational reasoning. One is tempted to say that it results from the fear and willfulness of certain ruling groups. To put it most bluntly, why should the world see any benefit in the enforced extension to other countries of the economic and social chaos which prevails in the West, and why should it see any benefit in that when the very process itself increases the risks of nuclear war?

The purposes of this paper are to describe what lies behind the current efforts to extend NATO and to raise some basic questions about whether this makes any sense, in both the narrow and deeper meanings of the term.

NATO in Yugoslavia

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was founded in 1949 with the stated purpose of protecting Western Europe from possible military aggression by the Soviet Union and its allies.

With the dissolution of the Communist regimes in the former Socialist bloc in 1990 and 1991, there was no longer any possibility of such aggression, if there ever really had been. The changes in the former Communist countries made NATO redundant. Its raison d’etre had vanished. Yet certain groups within the NATO countries began almost immediately to press for a “renovation” of NATO and even for its extension into Central and Eastern Europe. They began to elaborate new rationales which would permit the continuation of business as usual.

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The Powell memo and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

This memo, written in 1971 by Lewis Powell, an influential member of the corporate legal community, called on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to take a more active and aggressive role in the country in promoting their voice. In it, he detailed the many avenues of influence the Chamber  could take in asserting their influence.

It is a key element to understanding the uniform voice coming from mainstream media, universities, public agencies, government officials — local, state, and federal — and the many “public-private” partnerships.

Lewis Powell became Associate Justice on the Supreme Court the following year, serving on the Supreme Court from 1972 – 1987.

This memo was cited in the Robert Parry article “The Victory of ‘Perception Management'”.

Background information:

From Wikipedia:

Powell was a partner for over a quarter of a century at Hunton, Williams, Gay, Powell and Gibson, a large Virginia law firm, with its primary office in Richmond (now known as Hunton & Williams LLP). Powell practiced primarily in the areas of corporate law (especially in the field of mergers and acquisitions) and in railway litigation law. He had been a board member of Philip Morris from 1964 until his court appointment in 1971 and had acted as a contact point for the tobacco industry with the Virginia Commonwealth University. Through his law firm, Powell represented the Tobacco Institute and various tobacco companies in numerous law cases…

On August 23, 1971, prior to accepting President Nixon’s request to become an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, Powell sent the “Confidential Memorandum” titled “Attack on the American Free Enterprise System.” He argued, “The most disquieting voices joining the chorus of criticism came from perfectly respectable elements of society: from the college campus, the pulpit, the media, the intellectual and literary journals, the arts and sciences, and from politicians.” In the memorandum, Powell advocated “constant surveillance” of textbook and television content, as well as a purge of left-wing elements. He named consumer advocate Ralph Nader as the chief antagonist of American business.[19]

This memo foreshadowed a number of Powell’s court opinions, especially First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, which shifted the direction of First Amendment law by declaring that corporate financial influence of elections through independent expenditures should be protected with the same vigor as individual political speech. Much of the future Court opinion in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission relied on the same arguments raised in Bellotti.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_F._Powell,_Jr.

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What’s really driving the attacks on Russia? Revanchism and russophobia as historical undercurrents

Revanchism: The act of retaliating, especially by a nation or group to regain lost territory or standing; revenge. [1]

And if Russia continues to pursue diplomacy and out-peace the U.S. and the West, will the United States and its allies react with ever-increasing animosity?

From Vineyard of the Saker, March 4, 2015

The situation in the Ukraine is more or less calm right now, and this might be the time to step back from the flow of daily reports and look at the deeper, underlying currents.  The question I want to raise today is one I will readily admit not having an answer to.  What I want to ask is this: could it be that one of the key factors motivating the West’s apparently illogical and self-defeating desire to constantly confront Russia is simply revanchism for WWII?

We are, of course, talking about perceptions here so it is hard to establish anything for sure, but I wonder if the Stalin’s victory against Hitler was really perceived as such by the western elites, or if it was perceived as a victory against somebody FDR could also have called “our son of a bitch“.  After all, there is plenty of evidence that both the US and the UK were key backers of Hitler’s rise to power (read Starikov about that) and that most (continental) Europeans were rather sympathetic to Herr Hitler.  Then, of course and as it often happens, Hitler turned against his masters or, at least, his supporters, and they had to fight against him.  But there is strictly nothing new about that.  This is also what happened with Saddam, Noriega, Gaddafi, al-Qaeda and so many other “bad guy” who began their careers as the AngloZionists’ “good guys”.  Is it that unreasonable to ask whether the western elites were truly happy when the USSR beat Nazi Germany, or if they were rather horrified by what Stalin had done to what was at that time the single most powerful western military – Germany’s?

A few days ago I saw this picture on Colonel Cassad’s blog:

Stalin and his commanders

Looking at that photo I thought that for the western elites, to see these men must have been rather frightening, especially considering that they must have known that their entire war effort was, at most, 20% of what it took to defeat Nazi Germany and that those who had shouldered 80%+ were of an ideology diametrically opposed to capitalism.

Is there any evidence of that fear?

I think there is and I already mentioned them in the past:

Plan Totality (1945): earmarked 20 Soviet cities for obliteration in a first strike: Moscow, Gorki, Kuybyshev, Sverdlovsk, Novosibirsk, Omsk, Saratov, Kazan, Leningrad, Baku, Tashkent, Chelyabinsk, Nizhny Tagil, Magnitogorsk, Molotov, Tbilisi, Stalinsk, Grozny, Irkutsk, and Yaroslavl.

Operation Unthinkable (1945) assumed a surprise attack by up to 47 British and American divisions in the area of Dresden, in the middle of Soviet lines.This represented almost a half of roughly 100 divisions (ca. 2.5 million men) available to the British, American and Canadian headquarters at that time. (…) The majority of any offensive operation would have been undertaken by American and British forces, as well as Polish forces and up to 100,000 German Wehrmacht soldiers.

Operation Dropshot (1949): included mission profiles that would have used 300 nuclear bombs and 29,000 high-explosive bombs on 200 targets in 100 cities and towns to wipe out 85% of the Soviet Union’s industrial potential at a single stroke. Between 75 and 100 of the 300 nuclear weapons were targeted to destroy Soviet combat aircraft on the ground.

But the biggest proof is, I think, the fact that none of these plans was executing, even though at the time the Anglosphere was safely hidden behind its monopoly on nuclear weapons (and have Hiroshima and Nagasaki not been destroyed in part to “scare the Russians”?).

And is it not true that the Anglos did engage in secret negotiations with Hitler’s envoys on several occasions?  (The notion of uniting forces against the “Soviet threat” was in fact contemplated by both Nazi and Anglo officials, but they did not find a way to make that happen.)

So could it be that Hitler was, really, their “son of a bitch”?

More proof?  Okay.

Hitler was most definitely not a Christian.  If anything, he and Himmler were pagans with a strong satanic bend to their dark cult of ancestor worship (Ahnenerbe).  But what about Hitler’s allies such as Petain, Franco, Pavelic – where they not defenders of what they would call the “Christian West”?  Is it not a fact that 70 years after the fall of the Third Reich those who admire Petain, Franco and Pavelic *still* speak of the need to defend the “Christian West”, but this time against the “Islamic threat”?

Furthermore, if the Nazi regime represented an existential threat to European Jewry, a quick survey or articles written by Jewish authors in the US and British press during much of the 20th century clearly shows that most Jews had little to no sympathy not only for pre-Revolutionary Russia, but also for the post-Trotsky USSR and that even though the USSR fully supported the creation of the state of Israel, many if not most US and European Jews felt that the Soviet Union was also a threat to their interests.

I believe that the rabid russophobia (phobia in both the sense of “hate” and “fear”) of the AngloZionist Empire cannot be only explained by pragmatic reasons of great power competition or a struggle of political systems.  The constant propaganda about the “Russian threat” is not only a political tool to dumb down the western people by keeping them in a state of constant fear (of Russia or Islam), but it is also the expression of a deep fear really felt by the 1% plutocracy which rules over the western world.

Finally, the fear of Russia is also a fear of the Russian leaders.  When they are like Eltsin (a drunken imbecile) or his Foreign Minister Kozyrev (the ultimate “yes” man) western politicians feel appropriately superior.  But remember that even mediocre personalities like Krushchev or Brezhnev truly frightened them.  So it is no wonder that strong and smart leaders (like Stalin or Putin) would absolutely terrify them and make them feel inadequate.  The infantile way in which Obama has tried to show that he was smarter and stronger than Putin is a clear indication of how inferior he really felt face to face.  The same, of course, also goes for Kerry and Lavrov.

Everything I have written above fully applies to East European leaders too, only with even more intensity.  We are talking about countries which sometimes had a rather glorious past and who during WWII had no other purpose then being the furniture in the room where the two Big Guys slugged it out.  Worse, they more or less kept that same passive role during the Cold War and now they have hardly become more relevant.  In part, I would argue that this is their own fault, instead of finally making use of their new found freedom to develop some kind of meaningful political identity, all they did was to engage in a brown-nosing competition to see who would become Uncle Sam’s favorite pet (Hungary under Orban being the sole exception to this sad rule).

It is really no wonder that when the Americans overthrew Yanukovich the Europeans felt that now, finally, their “hour had come” and they would show those disrespectful Russians who “is boss” on the Old Continent.  And every time the Russians warned the Eurocretins in Brussels that there were issues linked to the Ukraine which required urgent consultations they were told “that is none of your business, there is nothing to discuss”.  The problem was, of course, that the West European leader had forgotten that in the real world they were just the administrators of the USA’s “EU colony” and that the US leaders truly did not give a damn about them (as Mrs Nuland so lyrically put it in simple words).  As for East European leaders, their irrelevance is simply painful to look at, I almost feel sorry for them and their trampled egos.

I personally think that contrary to the official narrative, there is a strong case to be made that the end of WWII left a lot of people very, very unhappy and that all those who felt wronged or frightened by the Soviet victory in 1945 did join forces in an attempt to correct the wrongs of the outcome of that war.  At the very least, the question of the importance of russophobia and revanchism has to be asked.

It just not make sense to explain away the apparently crazy behavior of the western leaders during the entire Ukrainian crisis by saying that they are simply stupid, naive or ill informed.  What they are doing may appear stupid, naive or ill informed to us, but that does not mean that there is no deep rationale behind the actions of these “elites”.

Most people in the West want to live in peace and are completely unaware of these undercurrents of the war in the Ukraine.  What I describe above is only relevant to various minority groups.  The problem is that taken together and when they act in unison, these minorities end of wielding a lot of power and influence.  The best way to stop them, is to shed a strong light on them and their real motives.

The Saker

http://thesaker.is/revanchism-and-russophobia-the-dark-undercurrents-of-the-war-in-the-Ukraine/
Revanchism and russophobia: the dark undercurrents of the war in the Ukraine

[1] http://www.thefreedictionary.com/revanchism