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Issue 53 of
Red Banner: a magazine of socialist ideas
is available now from bookshops or from the address above for €2 / £1.50 read full story / add a comment
international / anti-war / imperialism / other press Dé Sathairn Meán Fómhair 21, 2013 13:48 byJohn Cornford 1 comment (last - dé domhnaigh meán fómhair 22, 2013 13:20)
As well as covering the latest Syrian developments, Yassamine Mather writes on the effects of sanctions in Iran.
The events we are now witnessing in the Middle East, the “United States’ accidental diplomacy” regarding Syria1 and renewed talk of the resolution of Iran’s nuclear programme were unexpected a few weeks ago. Having declared that the use of chemical weapons was the “red line” the Syrian leadership should not cross, the US has now accepted Russian proposals for a ‘diplomatic solution’ read full story / add a comment
international / anti-war / imperialism / other press Dé Máirt Meán Fómhair 17, 2013 19:06 byTuring 4 comments (last - déardaoin meán fómhair 19, 2013 12:47)
Tariq Ali looks at the various "revolutions" in the Middle East and writes: The idea that the Saudis, Qatar, and Turkey backed by NATO are going to create a revolutionary democracy or even a democratic set-up is challenged by what is happening elsewhere in the Arab world. Full text at link.
Ever since the beginning of the Arab Spring there has been much talk of revolutions. Not from me. I’ve argued against the position that mass uprisings on their own constitute a revolution, i.e., a transfer of power from one social class (or even a layer) to another that leads to fundamental change. The actual size of the crowd is not a determinant—members of a crowd become a revolution only when they have, in their majority, a clear set of social and political aims. If they do not, they will always be outflanked by those who do, or by the state that will recapture lost ground very rapidly. read full story / add a comment
On this anniversary of Sept 11th 1973 when a US backup coup took place that overthrew the democratically elected leader of Chile and replaced by the dictator Pinochet who proceeded to murder thousands of innocent people with full US backing and knowledge, Mint Press carry this report to reflect on the 40 years that have past and the search for justice.
Perhaps some people will remember the television pictures from the day after the coup, Sept 12th when things changed dramatically where thousands of people including teachers and students were taken to the Chile Stadium-over night pressed into service as a detention center - and many were subsequently attacked and killed.
"The Chile Stadium was no joke. We saw them kill people right in front of us, we saw how people went crazy from that terrible, tense situation. Torture is not only when the torturers are in front of you, abusing you directly, destroying you, but that atmosphere was also torture."
("Chile. La Memoria Prohibida" read full story / add a comment
national / disability issues / other press Dé Luain Meán Fómhair 02, 2013 06:29 byoldhack 1 comment (last - dé luain meán fómhair 02, 2013 11:47)
I have spent over 30 years working in journalism as a chief reporter and as news editor.
In May 2012 I suffered permanent damage to my eyesight following an assault. One year later, in May 2013, the Department of Social Protection awarded me a disability allowance on the basis of the hospital surgeon's medical report regarding my condition, backdated to the date of my injury in 2012. read full story / add a comment
This morning I received the attached letter from AIB requesting that I provide 'proof' of my identity. read full story / add a comment
Few industrial accidents can match the severity of the Seveso disaster of 1976. Despite the resulting long-term health problems and environmental risks, however, the accidental release of gases including TCDD -- a form of cancer-causing dioxin -- into a residential area of Italy had some positive legacies, including the creation of tighter environmental regulations and health protections throughout Europe. read full story / add a comment
international / anti-war / imperialism / other press Dé Céadaoin Lúnasa 21, 2013 12:54 byTuring 2 comments (last - dé céadaoin meán fómhair 04, 2013 21:28)
Several hundred Iranian political and human rights activists, academics, and students inside and outside Iran wrote a letter this week to US President Barack Obama asking him to engage with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to “work towards the elimination of sanctions and the lowering of tensions between Iran and the United States.” The letter also expresses support for the 55 Iranian political prisoners who wrote a separate letter to President Obama about the impact of sanctions on Iranians.
“Economic sanctions, particularly those imposed unilaterally by the United States, have taken a terrible toll on the Iranian people’s standard of living,” the group writes. They add, “We are concerned that the constant pressure applied by Congress to encourage a policy of confrontation will have negative repercussions on the nuclear negotiations.”
These letters join many others that have support from civil society both within and outside Iran, including from journalists, activists, and intellectuals well known for criticizing the Iranian government, urging the removal of crippling sanctions.
The full text of the letter is below. read full story / add a comment
international / anti-capitalism / other press Dé Luain Lúnasa 19, 2013 23:04 byTuring 6 comments (last - dé haoine lúnasa 23, 2013 10:25) 1 image 1 video file 1 audio file
This article by the Revolutionary Socialists of Egypt is directed to their supporters, explaining in detail the principled stance they have taken. No to the Military Junta and No to Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. Full text at link.
Terrible massacres and violent repression, a huge escalation in attacks on Egyptian Christians and churches, the consolidation of the repressive military state continues apace. These are the momentous political developments we have experienced during the last few weeks.
They pose enormous challenges to the revolution, but they also contain opportunities toprepare for the coming waves of the revolution, which the Revolutionary Socialists can use effectively to build the movement, provided that we develop tactics capable of dealing with changing circumstances. read full story / add a comment
international / anti-war / imperialism / other press Dé Domhnaigh Lúnasa 18, 2013 01:38 byTuring 2 comments (last - dé luain lúnasa 26, 2013 12:19)
Franklin Lamb gives an eyewitness report on the immediate aftermath of the bombing. Full text at link.
I stood for more than an hour just inside a women’s shoe store sometimes moving along the sidewalk, which front had been blown off and wanting to stay out of the way, just watching and grimacing as emergency vehicles began to arrive and thousands, not hundreds, of Hezbollah security and supporters, many armed, arrived and directed the fire trucks and ambulance, helped wounded neighbors among much shouting and emotion. Grown men crying, women praying, and before long a group of young men beating their chests in defiance, chanting “Haidar, Haidar, Haidar’ and Shia ritual meant to identify with the events of Karba in 680 when Hussein bin Ali, the grandson of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) sacrificed himself in defense of Islam. read full story / add a comment
The despotic House of Saud scatters its money around, causing mayhem throughout the Arab World. Money that is stolen from ordinary Saudis by the parasitic royal family. Finian Cunningham explains what is really going on. Full text at link.
If Saudi rulers had more brains, they might be formidably dangerous. Even with lackluster intelligence assets, they are already causing enough havoc and bloodshed across the Middle East and North Africa regions, pouring millions-of-dollars-worth of weaponry into Al Qaeda and other Takfiri networks that are destroying once proud civilizations in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Libya through nihilistic sectarianism.
And if the Saudi paymasters of terrorism could have it all their way, they would salivate at the chance of extending this destruction to Iran - the Shia power that they fear as their nemesis.
Fortunately, the Saudi rulers’ agenda of covert terrorism - an agenda that serves its Western masters - is not well concealed. This is because “Saudi state intelligence” is something of an oxymoron and leaves a trail of self-incriminating clues wherever it goes read full story / add a comment
This won't please the US, they will now have to find some other ruse to didrupt the UN process. Full text at link.
The Syrian government has accepted the ‘essential modalities’ under which the UN was ready to investigate whether chemical weapons had been used in the country, the body has announced, signalling that experts will shortly be travelling to Syria.
"The departure of the team is now imminent," UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement. “As agreed with the Government of Syria, the team will remain in the country to conduct its activities, including on-site visits, for a period of up to 14 days, extendable upon mutual consent.”
The Secretary-General has expressed his appreciation to the Syrian government for accepting “the modalities essential for cooperation to ensure the proper, safe and efficient conduct of the Mission.”
The statement also reminded that the use of chemical weapons “by any side under any circumstances” would constitute an “outrageous crime.
read full story / add a comment
Critique started in May 1973. It was announced at the first national conference at Imperial College, a conference addressed among others by Ernest Mandel, Ralph Miliband and Hillel Ticktin. Some 500 people attended. The first issue had a print run of 2500 which quickly sold out. The issues of the 70s used to sell around 4-5000 copies very largely in bookshops in the UK, the Continent of Europe and the USA. As the USSR began to mutate the focus of the journal changed to a critique of capitalism. Throughout its focus remained on political economy and the need to reinvigorate Marxism given its Stalinist degradation.
As the first Virtual Special Issue of Critique, we have selected articles which have either formed the basis of the work of the journal or which complement it. In the first instance Critique sought to develop a more credible modern Marxist theory of the USSR and of the Cold War. With that it needed to update the theory of a socialist/Communist society. In turn, the journal turned to a critique of existing Marxist theory of capitalism and so to the question of decline and to finance capitalism. read full story / add a comment
The story of an attempted frame-up. read full story / add a comment
Sanctions grow more severe, even publication in academic journals isout for Iranians. Yassamine Mather discusses the limitations of Hassan Rowhani.
Iran’s new president, Hassan Rowhani, will take office on August 3. He faces major internal as well as international problems. It will be interesting to see how a man who describes himself as a ‘centrist’ will try to reconcile the warring factions of the Islamic Republic, but also the increasing divide between ordinary Iranians - victims of sanctions, poor economic management, as well political repression - with an increasingly paranoid religious dictatorship. read full story / add a comment
international / rights, freedoms and repression / other press Dé Céadaoin Iúil 31, 2013 14:00 byTuring 1 comment (last - dé céadaoin iúil 31, 2013 18:13) 1 image
What is Obama going to do about this?
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia - The editor of a Saudi Arabian social website has been sentenced to seven years in prison and 600 lashes for founding an Internet forum that violates Islamic values and propagates liberal thought, Saudi media reported on Tuesday.
Raif Badawi, who started the "Free Saudi Liberals" website to discuss the role of religion in Saudi Arabia, has been held since June 2012 on charges of cyber crime and disobeying his father - a crime in the conservative kingdom and top U.S. ally.
Al-Watan newspaper said the judge had also ordered the closure of the website.
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This interesting article from the WSM was sparked by the recent protest against the G8 in June in Fermanagh but makes a broad analysis of the anti-globalisation / anti-captialism movement of the past 15 years from Seattle where Indymedia was born up to the present day and an analysis of the Arab Spring and the protest in places like Spain, Greece and Turkey. read full story / add a comment
international / anti-capitalism / other press Dé Domhnaigh Iúil 21, 2013 00:51 byJohn Cornford 1 image
The latest edition of the Weekly Worker is now available on the CPGB website at www.cpgb.org.uk/home/weekly-worker/971
In this week's issue:
SWP: HOW DID THIS BLOODY MESS COME TO PASS? Marxism, the annual school of the SWP, saw a revamped opposition, reports Mark Fischer
DEMOCRATIC CENTRALISM: THE GENIE AND THE BOTTLE If you can loosen SWP restrictions on free debate on one occasion, asks Peter Manson, why not do so permanently? read full story / add a comment
Bradley Manning has deservedly been awarded the Sean McBride peace prize. He has also been nominated for the Nobel peace prize this year and the petition to award him the prize currently stands at 88,000 signatures read full story / add a comment
national / rights, freedoms and repression / other press Dé Céadaoin Iúil 17, 2013 19:59 byciara 9 comments (last - déardaoin iúil 18, 2013 15:52)
The Irish Independent reports today: ' Every household in the country will be hit with a new Public Service Broadcasting Charge to replace the television licence fee next year.
Nobody will be able to refuse to pay the charge because it will apply regardless of whether you have a television, computer or any other device that can pick up public information.
The new universal charge will be collected in a way that tackles the current very high evasion rates of the TV licence fee - suggesting the payment mechanism could be modelled on the new property tax.
Currently nearly one in five households does not pay the TV licence fee and this is costing the government €30m a year in lost revenue.
read full story / add a comment