With hate crimes, anti-Semitism, racism and anti-immigrant xenophobia on the rise, Israel’s “Jewish nation-state” law and fascism brewing globally, we excerpt two pieces addressing roots of these phenomena in capitalism’s crises.
China: protests against Hong Kong repression, border push into Bhutan vs. India, repression of Uyghurs.
Lesbian feminist Azza Sultan’s Bedayaa and Mesahat Foundation for Sexual and Gender Diversity fights for Queer rights in Egypt and Sudan; LGBT federal workers and senior citizens face rollback of their rights by President Trump; straight male politicians of The Netherlands solidarize with a Gay couple who were assaulted; Chechnya is arresting, detaining in concentration camps and killing men who are suspected of having a “nontraditional sexual orientation.”
A roundup of women’s actions including: Feminists in Chile demanded access to abortion by participating in International Day of Action for Women’s Heath events; Immigrant women in detention at Pennsylvania’s Berks County Residential Center on hunger strike protesting both the Department of Homeland Security’s lies and terrible living conditions; women prisoners in Egypt including lawyer Mahieour El-Massry join Basma Refaat in her hunger strike to demand visitations with her children; women throughout Peru march protesting violence against women and the light sentences given to perpetrators; feminist station Radio Shaista, in Kunduzu, Afghanistan, returns to the air after the Taliban burned it to the ground.
A view of what the failed coup in Turkey has wrought, including mass arrests of teachers, trade unionists, doctors, medical personnel, and others as Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, makes a grab for total power.
Terry Moon explores how the rape of a woman by a Stanford University student can become a turning point, rather than a stopping point, in the struggle to end rape culture, and the necessity for revolution to be total from the start and to be permanent.
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.
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.
Part V of the Draft Perspectives 2016: Together with the depths of counter-revolution, the passion for philosophy points to both the need for and the potential for totally new beginnings in the transformation of society, for new banners of freedom as a polarizing force.
Part II of the Draft Perspectives 2016: The worldwide war against women includes attacks on abortion rights, counter-revolution in Egypt, attacks on women by UN troops. Women celebrated International Women’s day in Turkey and other countries.
At the crux of the world refugee crisis is a demand for new human relations. The will to deny any responsibility for centuries of exploitation of Latin America and Africa is at the root of inhuman attitudes toward refugees, and it becomes an opening for the most reactionary politicians.
The United Arab Emirates, a Gulf state ally of the U.S. and Saudi Arabia, is the perfect model of a two-tier society.
Official Call for national gathering of News and Letters Committees to work out Marxist-Humanist perspectives for 2016-2017
Since overthrowing the Muslim Brotherhood government of Mohamed Morsi in 2013, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has surpassed former dictator Hosni Mubarak. Despite this, the U.S. has resumed military aid.
Black lives as Subject; Russia in crisis; Nothing about us without us; Homelessness in L.A.; Central Canada Alliance; Perspectives and philosophy; Elderly to the streets?; Women and Yemen half-peace; Labor and climate justice; Dialectic and women’s liberation; Voices from behind the bars
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.
In the absence of successful social revolution, today’s total crisis is shown in a world capitalist order that is falling apart economically, politically, environmentally, and in thought. That does not mean that we can wait for capitalism to collapse and step aside for a new society. On the contrary. Its desperation makes it that much more vicious, and it threatens to doom all of humanity with it.
The late Syrian writer Alisar Iram, for one, saw where IS/Daesh were heading, long before they took their hammers into the Mosul Museum.
From Ferguson to Staten Island; Revolutionary Rojava; Youth Protest; Violence Against Women; Detroit Solidarity; Paris March; Recalling Mary Jo
The formal end of the U.S. war in Afghanistan at the end of 2014 was just in time for post-war wars to begin in Afghanistan itself, as well as in Iraq, Syria, Pakistan and Yemen.
Newark high school protests; Egypt bans student movements; students and teachers defy Colorado school board brainwashing; Yemen youths’ political graffiti; Philadelphia high school students strike to support teachers.
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.
The loss of lives and vast destruction visited In Israel’s war on Gaza has surpassed the horror of 2008’s “Operation Cast Lead.” Over 2,000 Palestinians have been killed to date, mostly civilians, including hundreds of children…
The war crimes being committed by the Israeli government in its current assault on Gaza are reminiscent of 2008’s brutal “Operation Cast Lead.” The bombing has not spared hospitals, UN compounds, schools or homes for the disabled. A huge percentage of the dead and injured are children. This is collective punishment on a vast, criminal [=>]
Oppression of women in tech industry; El Salvador demonstrations over miscarriage jailings; Brazilian Stop the Catcalls project.
LABOR AND IMMIGRATION
On April 8, about 100 people, the majority young Latinas/os, gathered in front of Los Angeles City Hall to protest the deportation of immigrants. Obama’s administration has aggressively deported 2,000,000 immigrants. We held signs reading: “Not Even One More!” and “No Separation of Family!” Separation of family members has serious adverse effects [=>]
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.
Readers’ Views from the March-April 2014 issue of News & Letters, part 1.
“Creative Dissent: Arts of the Arab World Uprisings” is an exhibit which magnificently captures the voices, images and revolutionary ideas of participants in the Arab Spring.
Workers in the state-controlled textile industry, mostly women workers, and public transport workers, sanitation workers, office workers, doctors, and even policemen launched a wave of strikes that caused Egypt’s Prime Minister and his entire cabinet to resign.
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.
News and Letters Committees has posted its
OFFICIAL CALL FOR CONVENTION
to Work Out Marxist-Humanist Perspectives for 2014-2015
February 23, 2014
To All Members of News and Letters Committees
The sharpness of revolution and counter-revolution contending now, while the prolonged global capitalist economic crisis refuses to end, cries out for a philosophical [=>]
Readers’ Views from the Nov.-Dec. 2013 N&L: SYRIA AND WORLD POLITICS; WARS PAST AND PRESENT; PHILOSOPHY AND MASSES; PRISONERS READ & SPEAK
Readers’ Views from Nov.-Dec. 2013 N&L: U.S. RACISM AND BLACK AND LATINO STRUGGLES; LABOR UNDER ATTACK; CTA vs. THE HOMELESS; DISABILITY AND HUMANITY; ABORTION IS A HUMAN NEED; EGYPT’S CONTRADICTIONS; DETROIT CRISIS; NUCLEAR PERIL; WHY A NEWSPAPER LIKE N&L?
On Aug. 21 the genocidal regime of Bashar al-Assad murdered over a thousand civilians, mostly women and children, with sarin gas in the Damascus suburbs of Eastern Ghouta. It committed this crime in full view of the world—images of hundreds of murdered children, still in pajamas, laid out in temporary morgues, shocked viewers across the world.
Since April 2011 the world has looked on as over 115,000 Syrians have been killed, and over 7.2 million have been made refugees. When Assad’s regime resorted to illegal chemical weapons, it seemed to many that this would change. It seemed that the images of so many murdered innocents might compel some action.
Readers’ Views, September-October 2013, Part I
Women Worldwide: Turkey anti-fundamentalist demonstrations; Egypt sexual violence; California in vitro fertilization; Saudi Arabia segregation.
For Egyptian women to experience freedom, the revolution has to continue, and for that to happen the revolutionaries have to oppose both Morsi and Sisi’s bloodthirsty military and fight for the vision of a new society that sustained them in Tahrir Square.
The horrific events taking place in Egypt today show the dead end of all alternatives to revolution. The military, led by Deputy Prime Minister General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, has been all too happy to retake power and impose capitalist “stability” once again.
Did humanity shudder? At 3 AM on Aug. 21, the genocidal regime of Bashar al-Assad attacked the Damascus suburbs with deadly chemical weapons. Over 1,300 people, mainly women and children, died.
The new September-October 2013 issue of News & Letters is online.
News & Letters, Vol. 58, No. 5
Racism and the fight against it take center stage in the U.S.
Nationwide protests erupted immediately after the outrageous July 13 acquittal of George Zimmerman for murdering 17-year-old African-American high school student Trayvon Martin last year. Within three days, thousands [=>]
The persisting economic crisis has spurred new interest in Karl Marx including “Communization Theory” which projects Marx’s dialectic as a total break with capitalism but without posing a need for dialectical mediation beyond capitalism.
The mass demonstrations that forced the removal of President Mohamed Morsi on July 3 were a call to continue and deepen the Egyptian revolution. Millions of people took to the streets in opposition to Morsi’s rule in demonstrations even larger than those that ousted former dictator Hosni Mubarak. They were a measure of the detestation the Egyptian people had come to feel at the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood through Morsi and his Freedom and Justice Party. It was this that forced the Egyptian generals to act, once again removing a president.
The mass protests in Turkey, the presidential election in Iran and, above all, the continuing struggle for the Syrian revolution express the depth of today’s social crisis. These crises are interpenetrated and inseparable. The stakes are high.
We are living in contradictory times, especially when it comes to women’s struggle for freedom. On the one hand you have a Women’s Liberation Movement that has never been more radical, unified and global. On the other hand there is more repression, and the violence is more brutal and deadly than ever before.
Tunisia, Syria and Egypt show the determination of the masses to continue their revolutions in the face of vicious counter-revolution.
News & Letters, Vol. 58, No. 3
May – June 2013
Draft for Marxist-Humanist Perspectives, 2013-2014
Capitalism’s violence, masses’ revolt show need for total view
The world today is riven between the creativity of masses in revolt and the violent degeneracy of counter-revolution, whose destructiveness even extends to the revived specter of nuclear war two decades after the collapse [=>]
AT THE CROSSROADS OF HISTORY
When the Green Movement started in Iran over the 2009 election, the so-called leaders were part of the government who were against Ahmadinejad. The growth of the movement of women and youth got so big it became “out of control” by the so-called leaders. The government leaders got scared because [=>]
Women’s struggle for freedom has continued to develop into a worldwide movement with revolutionary content (see page 1). Unfortunately, much of the Left seems unable to hear this radical dimension of women’s struggles. A recent example is Sharon Smith’s essay,