The recent uprisings in Iran start where the 2009 revolt left off. This analysis focuses on the rebellious working-class youth as well as the interconnections to the Arab Spring, Vladimir Putin’s interference, Donald Trump’s racist agenda, and the philosophic-historic significance of the Bosnian and Syrian struggles against genocide.
At least 358 civilians were killed and over 400 wounded in a truck bombing by al-Shabaab in Mogadishu, Somalia, Oct. 14, 2017.
The maneuvering of imperial powers to carve up Syria amid the regime’s ongoing bloodbath reveals the logic that results when the masses are not allowed their self-activity. .
Following long negotiations, the fundamentalist cult Boko Haram released 82 Chibok schoolgirls it kidnapped in 2014, but questions and deep divisions in Nigerian society remain.
The people’s revolutionary struggles form the ground for approaching developments including Trump’s attack on a Syrian military base. The human-to-human communication found in places like Kafranbel has been a form of theory in itself. The deadliest weapon of mass destruction in the Syrian conflict has been the lie that there is “no good alternative” to Assad, echoing the bourgeoisie’s “no alternative” to capitalism. The state of Europe today illustrates the central importance of revolutionary solidarity.
Reader’s Views on Women vs. Reaction; Women and Philosophy; Syria and Humanity; Support Trans Children!; Animals and Us; Repression vs. Justice; Why Read “N&L”; Voices from Behind the Bars
Movement du Nid’s fake escort service raises awareness of violence against women; Argentinian feminist collective Ni Una Menos organized the first regionwide Latin American march against femicide; Russia’s new law reduces first-time domestic violence assaults to civil offenses; huge outcry of Arab-Israeli women against fundamentalist Muslims’ claims that 19-year-old Arab-Israeli Lian Zaher Nasser deserved to be murdered for celebrating a Christian holiday with men where alcohol was served.
Readers’ Views on Trumpism and the many facets of resistance; Fear of immigrants; Specters of internment; War on Queers; Women Fight Back; Women´s Liberation Debates.
Chelsea Manning received a Presidential commutation but deserves much more. She is owed a pardon, compensation and an apology
Women’s Liberationist Terry Moon writes about the revolutionary force and reason of Syrian women including those in Raqqa fighting ISIS, in East Aleppo fighting Bashar al-Assad, in Salamiya and Daraya–documenting the forms they chose to fight for freedom.
Editorial taking up the present situation in Syria where the smoke of destroyed East Aleppo, of ravaged Free Idlib, East Ghouta, Wadi Barada, and other revolutionary communities raises Trump’s fascist banner. While President Obama is no friend to the Syrian Revolution, Trump delivered: surrender or death.
A look at the situation in the Middle East in light of Donald Trump’s election that takes up Syria, Yemen and the arming by the U.S. of varying forces–some of whom are fighting each other.
As the big powers push toward their desired “settlement” in Syria, the world is witnessing the most vicious war crimes and there are calls to end the dehumanization that allows this genocide to become accepted as “inevitable.”
The author is reminded of Arab poet Al-Ma’arri as the inspiring Syrian revolutionaries in Maarat al-Numaan keep up their struggle for freedom against the Assad regime, despite the world ignoring them .
Domestic terrorist Omar Mateen’s killing and injuring of Queer people in Orlando exposes racist and anti-Muslim sentiments but also, in reaction to his act, solidarity with the Queer community worldwide. The challenge is whether humanity will create a truly human society where Queer people are considered human.
In West Auckland, New Zealand, Massey High School students and their parents petition for weather-appropriate summer uniforms; 82 Huntsville, Alabama, Grissom High School students defy the dress code for girls because the code endorses rape culture and violates Title IX rights; across the USA Muslim youth are harassed in a variety of ways making them feel unsafe, so much so that the majority of Muslim youth believe that reporting the harassment won’t make a difference.
Stanford University students protest the light sentence given to the rapist of a woman student; Nepalese girls and the charity WaterAid create a photo exhibit documenting unjust restrictions during menstruation and childbirth; Amina Zioual and her feminist organization, The Voice of the Amazigh Woman, fight against patriarchal customs and sharia law.
With Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, the Far Right has been emboldened worldwide. As the economic and social crisis deepens, so does the brutality, while the Right seeks scapegoats for the results of capitalism’s objective laws, which only have force as long as humanity’s struggle to be free is not yet complete. The only solid ground for opposing this latest stage of reactionary retrogression is that of revolution in permanence.
We stand in solidarity with those murdered and wounded in the attack on a Gay Florida nightclub, and their families and communities. The struggle for LGBTQI freedom must continue unabated. A response requires developing, practically and philosophically, the uncompromising assertion of human freedom and dignity common to the Black Lives Matter movement, the Arab Spring and the Syrian Revolution, which has long struggled against ISIS and its related ideologies. It means uncompromising solidarity with the LGBTQI community, the target of reactionary attacks across the world, from Trump’s America to Putin’s Russia to ISIS’s “caliphate.”
Part IV of the Draft Perspectives 2016: The renewal of Syrian demonstrations for freedom refuted the state powers’ belief that the idea of revolution can be destroyed by bombs, and highlighted a civilizational crisis and the need for international solidarity.
Contents: Introduction; I. Discontent, revolt and reaction in the U.S.; II. The worldwide war against women; III. Chinese labor in revolt; IV. Counter-revolution and revolution in the Middle East and North Africa; V. Toward organizational new beginnings. The fact that the old, crumbling order will not go away quietly explains why we print the Marxist-Humanist Draft Perspectives in the pages of the paper of News and Letters Committees. It is an open window onto the needed philosophy of revolution, without which all revolutions and freedom movements remain incomplete.
On the challenges facing the Syrian Revolution, the lie of the current ceasefire, the forces lined up against the Revolution including Russia and Iran, and the insufficiencies of much of the international Left when it comes to supporting a genuine revolution and comprehending revolution in permanence.
Foregrounding the new formal solidarity between Trust Black Women with Black Lives Matter, we explore the thought and actions of women worldwide, including the struggle for reproductive justice in the U.S.; women fighting war and terrorism in places like South Sudan and Syria, the successful fight of domestic workers to organize, and the need to make the revolutionary content of such actions explicit.
Russian airstrikes create havoc in Syria, embodying a philosophy of unfreedom. Revolutionary unity in Syria isn’t just a tactical issue, but a philosophic question, on the revolution’s ground of freedom and dignity, needing philosophic as well as material solidarity.
Eyewitness report of a trip to Rojava in Syria in mid-2015.
The fascist terror attacks in Paris herald further reaction. Syria and its tortured twin, Iraq, have become the umbilical cord connecting ISIS to the bourgeois imperialism that is its model.
The Syrian Revolution has brought forward a generation of citizen journalists who risk everything to report the truth, like the late Ruqia Hassan.
California prisoners battle barbaric ‘justice’ system; Against ISIS attacks; Women under attack; Support Maati Monjib; The Burmese Way; Race, class & politics.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s slaughter of Kurdish civilians and activists is viewed in the context of world revolution and counter-revolution.
Kurds protest at Chicago’s Turkish consulate against recent massacre in Ankara
Behind the bombing that killed over 100 peace marchers in Ankara, the state equated the Kurdistan Workers Party with ISIS despite the heroic struggle to defend Kobane.
Putin found a formula: to participate in genocide while claiming to be fighting “terrorism.” This says everything about the nature of his retrogressive rule, and about the hypocrisy of the U.S. and Europe
From the signing of a nuclear weapons agreement by the U.S. and Iran, to the ongoing war in Syria including the roles of Turkey and of the Left, this wide-ranging article delves into the Middle East situation with an emphasis on the forces fighting for genuine freedom and a multi-ethnic society.
Syrian revolutionary Yassin al-Haj Saleh summarized the role that the Iranian government and spoke of the responsibility of revolutionaries to criticize their own government’s imperialism.
Worldwide, the refugee crisis is unprecedented and is fueled by war, terrorism and climate change. The worldwide response is paltry with country after country turning away or deporting frantic and desperate people in search of a safe haven.
Under the control of religious armed militias, Yemenis live a humiliating life and die in insulting ways! Now death is the closest thing to Yemenis, whereas our dreams have become impossible.
The late Syrian writer Alisar Iram, for one, saw where IS/Daesh were heading, long before they took their hammers into the Mosul Museum.
Another savage sexual assault and murder—this time in Turkey—brought forth thousands of demonstrators, mostly women, throughout the country and beyond. Özgecan Aslan was a student taking a bus home. Worldwide, women are not only railing against sexism and challenging men to change what is often deadly behavior and when not deadly, deeply oppressive; they are as well explicitly extending their critique to the state itself.
A correspondent writes: For years now Rojava (“Syrian Kurdistan”) has been making perhaps the most advanced revolution we will see anywhere in our lifetimes practically alone.
From the September-October 2014 News & Letters
THE FREE SPEECH MOVEMENT AND THE BLACK REVOLUTION
I am in the movement still because of the Free Speech Movement (FSM)—it turned my life around. I studied everything about the New Left. I came to Berkeley and decided this is where I needed to be. [=>]
The explosive advances of the army of the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS), crossing from Syria into northern and central Iraq, have brought deeper miseries to the Iraqi people who might have expected they had already endured the worst, including the effects of U.S. imperialist policy. Atrocities from mass shootings and beheadings to systematic kidnapping and rapes of women—that the world and U.S. foreign policy ignored when IS carried them out against anti-Assad revolutionaries in Syria—in Iraq no longer remained hidden.
A lightning offensive saw Iraq’s second largest city, Mosul, fall to the insurgents. The pattern extended itself to Tikrit, farther south, then Samarra, and the battle spread to the oil refining center of Baiji. Most of this was first attributed to ISIS. The question was asked, then: Why and how could a well-armed force of 20,000 Iraqi troops, armed and trained by the U.S., dissolve in the face of 800 terrorists?
Revolution and counter-revolution contend now, while the prolonged global capitalist economic crisis refuses to end. The question arises: where is the needed banner of total uprooting of the system and creation of new human relations as the goal? This objective need is present in every struggle from outright revolution in the Middle East to movements in the U.S. Beset by attacks and contradictions, they have in turn sparked counter-revolutions.
In Ukraine, an unexpected eruption of mass struggle led to the overthrow of Ukraine’s corrupt, oligarchic, and ultimately murderous President Viktor Yanukovych. In Bosnia, at the same time, massive, nationwide discontent with the corrupt system left in place when the 1995 Dayton Accords partitioned the country has led to the equally unexpected creation of new forms of democratic organization.
While experiences in the squares of the Arab Spring, in Turkey’s Gezi Park, in the streets of Spain and Greece, and in the U.S. Occupy Movements have revealed moments of what new human relations between women and men could look like, those moments of hope and exhilaration have been followed by devastating reaction and retrogression.
“If there was no revolution in Syria, I almost feel like there would be no reason for me to exist. You don’t get tired of it. Revolution is what brought us together, as Syrians, for the first time.”