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Engraving of Lenin busy studying

Economic and Philosophic Science Review

Only he is a Marxist who extends the recognition of the class struggle to the recognition of the dictatorship of the proletariat. This is the touchstone on which the real understanding and recognition of Marxism is to be tested. V. I. Lenin

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No 1312 16th April 2007

British Navy humiliation is a mark of how badly imperialism’s war drive has been shattered by the rising Third World hostility and resistance (which the fake-“left” continues treacherously to ‘condemn’) . But driving profit system crisis will not let up and imperialism has no choice but to push to war. Goebbels propaganda lies about democracy will be ever more exposed – but will pour out even more

The trousers-off international humiliation of British imperialism over its Iranian caught sailor “hostages”, is a microcosm of how the world historical crisis of the out-of-time capitalist system is getting worse with every flailing, fascist, blitzkrieg attempt it makes to get out of its intractable difficulties.

The once feared “masters of the universe” are a side-splitting laughing stock throughout the Third World as cry babies and wimps who think “Mr Bean” name-calling constitutes “torture”, while their own forces and allies blitz, bludgeon and brutalise across the entire region, bombing, torturing, murdering and arbitrarily ripping apart civilian families and communities, imposing fascist mayhem, terror and destruction.

What a sick exposure of the bully’s cowardice and endless lying shouting about rogue regimes and “axes of evil”.

Imperialism, its desperate lies, shallow degeneracy and philosophically empty, celebrity consumerist distractions, could not inspire a flea. All of it; not simply the British has-beens, but right through to the dominant US ruling class which Britain toadies to, is historically bankrupt.

The fattened, decadent and cowardly ruling class is now almost totally reliant on remote-controlled “risk free” robot weaponry and loyalty-free mercenary “security-company” forces – (just like past dying ruling class orders) - to carry out its dirty work of gun-toting trigger-happy rampaging intimidation, the answer, it desperately hopes, to the overproduction crisis which threatens to implode the entire profit system once again, and to the need to pay back the enormous debt mountain which it has used to stave off disaster for another decade or two, on top of the relentless inflationary boom economics of the post-war period.

Financial press ganging otherwise fills the western military ranks. But joining the navy to “see the sea”, get a training and get away from dead-end home life, does not come with heroism attached or self-sacrifice.

For what? - to defend this sick ruling class and its pointless, arrogant, racist, fatuous drone society with ever increasing wealth differences opening the greatest societal chasms ever, drugs, crime, inequality, and cynicism !?!?!!

And if you are injured, killed or wounded, to be treated like dirt anyway, forgotten and unthanked, and left to rot (just like the working class is to be left, without pensions, housing, a medical system that works, or decent education)?

Small wonder the chance to make a few thousands of easy money for old rope, as the “great and good” do continuously, was seized upon by the released servicemen and women.

But these follow-on disasters, as New Labour attempted to scrape the propaganda shit off its shoes with tabloid newspaper pages, demonstrate even more deeply the severe difficulties that imperialism faces. The spin lie-machine so carefully polished and honed by the lying shallowness of New Labourism to fool the mass that all ideas of socialism can be abandoned and somehow things were “improving” in late capitalism by borrowing money and time, cleverly “proving” that black is “white”, has ground to a halt.

The ruling class had to wheel out the “big guns” of the Tory Establishment like Michael Heseltine and Malcolm Rifkind (usually hidden away carefully after the Thatcherite “hardness” disaster years, while the Tory toffs try to develop their own ridiculously false pseudo-“Blairite” image) – to stop the Labourites digging any deeper into their hole, appalled at the “corrosive” effects on credibility of hyped-for-money sensationalism.

Things were bad enough already with the patently obvious wheeler dealing done to get the sailors released in the first place (releasing a kidnapped Iranian general and giving access to the illegally held five diplomats taken months ago in Iraq by US imperialism) and the rapid climb down from Blair’s posturing bluster against Iran.

The entire world was inclined to ask what arrogant presumption put the British (and American) navy in the Gulf in the first place?

Using the pumped up crudity of the press machine is not the clever way to tell critical international lies was the Tory panic.

Not any more it isn’t. As Marxism has long explained, in the end the trickiest and slickest Goebbels propaganda will fall flat on its face as the reality of ever deepening crisis bites home.

Capitalism has reached the end of the path once again of ever expanding profitable production with the world saturated in sloshing mountains of surplus looking for any desperate opportunity it can to make a profit.

Just as in the run-up to past world wars, the only “solution” it will find is the destruction of all the surplus and the suppression of all the upcoming capitalist rivals (notably Germany and Japan) – in other words total world war. But imposing the warmongering atmosphere means tearing up all the lies about peaceful progress, no more horrors like the Great War and World War Two, continuous steady growth in prosperity, etc – to get the necessary bloody blitzing established.

The reality that “freedom and democracy” has only ever been a giant fraud on the working class at home, and a tool to suppress and exploit the proletarian masses of the rest of the world is increasingly clear.

Only the most relentlessly petty bourgeois elements (sustained by the “peaceful road” inanities of revisionism ) now continue to insist that is has some meaning, desperate to avoid the only rational conclusion, - that the monstrous horrors happening to the world can only be ended by revolution, turning over this disgusting capitalist order for good to build planned socialist progress on an international scale – with the dictatorship of the proletariat to replace the bourgeois dictatorship which is the reality of capitalist society.

But world resistance to the endless tyranny of the neo-colonialist exploitation by modern dollar imperialism is growing anyway. The huge disasters of the disgusting mess created by the nazi onslaughts on Iraq and Afghanistan, and the sticky insurgency quagmire facing US (and sidekick British) storm trooping shock-and-awe occupations and ”surges” lie behind these pantomimes and the utter hollowness revealed in morale and motivation by the hapless sailors.

The stolid Iranian resistance, and its propaganda victory, may be along way yet from the necessary Marxist understanding and leadership required to take the world forwards against the growing depravity of US Empire warmongering and to develop the cooperative socialist world needed to develop society.

But the dignity, maturity and principles of even the barmy religious ideology which currently fills the vacuum left in the world by the long drawn out collapse of communist ideology into the inanities of Moscow revisionism, is a reflection of the growing anti-imperialist sentiment throughout the planet that has been inevitably produced by the system itself, dragging ever wider masses into its globalised wage slavery and resource plundering orbit and educating them in the possibilities and capacities of modern science to transform life for all mankind, while simultaneously denying them any of the fruits of their labour.

An enormous tide of hostility and hatred for the entire international capitalist order rising throughout the planet, has been multiplied a thousandfold by the turn to the international bullying of the ludicrous “war on terror” and the ever more exposed hypocrisies of the “freedom and democracy” Goebbels justifications for lining up a stream of demonised “villains”.

Its resistance is deepening the enormous difficulties for imperialism of getting the next stage of its warmongering going. Serbia, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Lebanese atrocities of the summer now have to be followed through; but the lies and justifications for picking on the next target get ever more glaring.

While the sinister internal harassment and tearing up of civil rights in the western countries includes new laws against “glorifying terrorism”, with provision to be taken away to a network of secret CIA camps around the world without seeing a lawyer, it seems major counter-revolutionary figures like the carpet-bagging Russian “oligarch” Boris Berezovsky can get away with lurid incitement (and funding) to violent counter-revolution against the legally elected Putin (for what the bent Russian elections are worth) in London, with only token “investigation” to be made.

There is plenty to be said about the Bonapartist idiocies of Putin but for sure the west would prefer an out and out compliant capitalist fascist like the opportunist thug Berezovsky, to be running things.

Elsewhere things are not looking good for western stooges either, such as in Ukraine where the carefully organised CIA stunt “Orange Revolution” has disastrously fallen apart as the grubby on-the-make petty bourgeois have fallen out over the spoils, leaving another Bonapartist regime to win through. Viktor Yushchenko’s decree dissolving parliament is clearly seen as a coup attempt, making a mockery of the west’s “democracy”.

And nothing illustrates the west’s fascist interference failures better than the threat of violent upheaval made by the Catholic Bishops in Zimbabwe (obliquely done of course with the old trick of “predicting” that “there will be violence if”), to topple anti-imperialist Mugabe.

It ties in neatly with exactly the same threats made by members of the misnamed Movement for Democratic Change, as the west has tried to get a bogus “democracy” movement going by stirring up the disaffected tribal elements that stooged for imperialism during the bitter and dogged fight to throw off Ian Smiths colonialist brutality in the 1970s and its notoriously brutal Selous Scouts.

But the ongoing demented hysteria against the legally elected ZANU PF regime in Zimbabwe, one of the lesser potential victims for imperialism overall but a thorn in the side of British imperialism for its sustained and stubborn anti-colonialism and confiscation of stolen colonial farmland (all the best land in the country) has fallen flat on its face.

An absolute tide of western press predictions about imminent rebellion, growing mass discontent, economic collapse, splits in the ruling group, palace coups against Robert Mugabe, disowning by other African states and most recently a supposed total general strike, backed up by massive disinformation about supposed torture and violence against the preposterous Movement for Democratic Change, has all proved to be total nonsense:

In a pastoral letter posted on church notice boards during the Easter weekend, the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference said economic hardship and political repression had led to widespread anger, leaving the nation “in extreme danger”.

“The reasons for the anger are many, among them bad governance and corruption,” they said in their strongest attack on Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party in years.

In their letter, the Catholic leaders said black Zimbabweans were fighting for political rights in almost the same way as during British colonial rule and said Mugabe had adopted unjust and oppressive laws inherited at independence in 1980. avert a mass uprising, the nation needs a new people-driven constitution that will guide a democratic leadership chosen in free and fair elections,” they said.

ZANU-PF has already endorsed Mugabe, 83, as its presidential candidate in elections expected to be held next year.

Even the screeching propaganda about the assassination-plotting, western stooge Morgan Tsvangirai having his “skull fractured” has disappeared, along with the ostentatious bandage on his head.

The foul Trotskyist fake-”lefts” of course have gone along with the entire racket swallowing every reactionary provocation and supporting the totally western invented MDC and the corrupted “trade union” leaders.

Now they too are thoroughly exposed as it emerges the whole stunt is US funded:

The US admitted openly for the first time yesterday that it was actively working to undermine Robert Mugabe, the president of Zimbabwe.

Although officially Washington does not support regime change, a US state department report published yesterday acknowledged that it was supporting opposition politicians in the country and others critical of Mr Mugabe.

The state department also admitted sponsoring events aimed at “discrediting” statements made by Mr Mugabe’s government.

The report will be seized on by Mr Mugabe, who has repeatedly claimed that the US and Britain are seeking regime change.

The comments are contained in the state department’s fifth annual Supporting Human Rights and Democracy report. It sets out in detail actions the US government is taking worldwide to promote human rights.

The report has had a troubled history. Three years ago publication had to be hastily delayed when details emerged about US human rights abuses at Abu Ghraib prison outside Baghdad.

The US, compared with the UK, was initially slow to criticise Mr Mugabe, but has since adopted an increasingly critical stance, most recently at the Human Rights Council in Geneva last month.

In an unusual piece of candour, the state department report says: “To encourage greater public debate on restoring good governance in [Zimbabwe], the United States sponsored public events that presented economic and social analyses discrediting the government’s excuses for its failed policies.

“To further strengthen pro-democracy elements, the US government continued to support the efforts of the political opposition, the media and civil society to create and defend democratic space and to support persons who criticised the government.”

The report says that while Zimbabwe is nominally democratic, the government of Mr Mugabe is “now authoritarian”.

By which it means “unwilling to play the western stooge” of course. What a foul joke and a lie the western posturing about “human rights”.

There are plenty of other targets to come, including Burma, and Sudan and the big ones like Russia, China, Brazil etc.

The world is sliding towards total conflict with the biggest fight of all between the major imperialists. Nothing will stop the growing degeneracy except revolutionary clarity which needs ever more urgently to be built.

Don Hoskins

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Resumption of Stormont confirms triumphant course of Irish republicanism against 800 years of imperialism

It takes a particularly distorted and sour view of world developments to turn the astonishing, unprecedented and irreversible spectacle of “Dr NO (SURRENDER)!!” Ian Paisley finally sitting down with Sinn Féin nationalist leaders Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness, into a supposed defeat and “backward step” for the Irish and their 800 year long struggle to end colonialist domination.

But then the fake-”left” Trotskyists (and crypto-Trotskyists like the Weekly Worker’s laughable and pretentious “Communist Party of Great Britain” name hijacking) have got a particularly bent and foul view of world history, the result of incurable petty bourgeois defeatism and deep-seated fear (despite their “r-r-revolutionary” posturing and posing) of genuine struggle and battling against imperialism.

Only such despairing confusion and its underlying anti-communism can make a whingeing pig’s ear “setback” out the silk-purse of victory; the confirmation and formal acceptance that British imperialism is leaving its first and longest colonial domination, finally.

The republicans have come through to a titanic victory which deserves fanfares, trumpets and cheers from the entire proletarian and anti-imperialist masses of the world.

It is, after all, the end result of one of the most sophisticated, determined, bitter, dogged and undefeatable armed struggles on the entire planet against the seemingly overwhelming power of the one-time most dominant imperialism of all, Great Britain which, to maintain its control and exploitation, has used rampaging militarised terror and intimidatory raids; the full surveillance resources of one of the most extensive and reactionary secret police forces in the world (MI5 and the RUC Special Branch); overbearing military watchtower, razor wire, concrete pillbox and heavily armed patrol harassment daily; continuous bent propaganda and disinformation against the Irish struggle; censorship and suppression of nationalist political argument [Thatchers’ ‘denying the oxygen of publicity’]; criminalisation of the political struggle and concentration camp brutality in the H-blocks; the sinister parody of justice pushed through by the twisted and bent jury-free “Diplock courts” to impose, sometimes arbitrary, and always monstrous state “punishment” violence against the nationalist resistance, on a par with nineteenth century “hanging judge” arrogance and oppression; endless street beatings, brutality, houseburnings, pipebomb attacks and outright murders by “loyalist” sectarian hostility against not just nationalist struggle participants but civilian teenagers, women, old people and in the last few years even totally innocent infant school attendees, (a hostility sustained, whenever the colonialists themselves were flagging in their bitterness, by secretly supplied intelligence and hate prompting by sinister hidden sections of the British state); the British state death-squad no-trial executions by SAS and similar assassination squads - Gibraltar e.g.); and continuous torture, collusion and violence by the colonialist state police forces.

Throughout four decades of the most recent phase of struggle the republican cause has stood firm and finally won through to a recognition of its right to fight the political mass struggle, an achievement it has reached by pushing back imperialism, not a concession it has made to some supposed abstract principle of “democracy” as the capitalist state cover-up machine likes to present the issue.

The final stage has been reached of the long drawn out battle to win the island for rule by its own people over centuries and, for most of the 20th century, to complete the job in the north, throwing off both British rule and the apartheid of anti-Catholic oppression by the colonialist Orangemen and its backing by the ruthless exploitation of centuries of British imperialist rule.

For all that the formality of “United Ireland” has yet to be achieved, the long delayed and repeatedly stalled and sabotaged Good Friday Agreement (itself a dramatic retreat and concession by imperialism) has finally reached an end point. The same table meetings of Paisley and the Sinn Féin are irreversible.

Historical momentum cannot be turned backwards by the stubborn reactionaries of the hard-core British imperialist establishment and security structure without glaringly exposing their “democracy” lies and more importantly still without re-launching out and out colonial war.

Nothing is ever totally ruled out, but the already hard pressed British imperialism of the last three decades has far bigger problems on its plate (including the growing humiliation of the Middle East defeats). Other than the possibility of Ireland being swamped in much greater world catastrophe as the entire imperialist system accelerates in its disastrous warmongering slump course, spiralling towards total historic economic and political crisis, the path is set.

Sinn Féin grows with each election, adding another four MPs in the recent vote and will eventually take over as the biggest party in the North.

Crucially it is also relentlessly growing in the existing 26 counties of Eire and already constitutes the main cross-border political force; part of a fusing, politically and economically, which for all the patience and determined political battling required yet, can only continue to complete re-unification and independence.

The seemingly endless dog-in-the-manger foot-stamping tantrums of the Orange colonialists have finally reached the end of the road, and even the most die-hard of the diehards has recognised that there is not another minute of colonialist privilege to be wrung from British Rule, let alone the eternities once demanded by “NEVER-NEVER-NEVER!” and gun certificate waving on the hillsides.

Britain is leaving and one of the greatest burdens on the consciousness of the British working class, the continuing illusions of Great Nation chauvinism and its associated arrogance and racism, which helps block revolutionary development and understanding, is being further lifted.

But there has been hardly a word from the fake-”lefts” of all shades at this triumphant culmination of the snails’ pace retreat from Ireland which British imperialism began decades ago and which has now entered the end game.

Just the opposite – such comment as there is tries to pretend the settlement is a success for imperialism and somehow a capitulation and abandonment of the revolutionary nationalist struggle, exactly what imperialism has been trying to pretend with its long drawn out prevaricating ‘negotiations’ and pointless insistence on “disarmament” etc., hoping to obscure and confuse world understanding of the class withdrawal it is making, in the teeth of determined resistance and under pressure of its own failing system, by pretending that the settlement is the result of “a turn to democracy” and “ending of the armed struggle”.

As if.

Like every other retreat that imperialism has made it was done because of the growing mass struggle – as it was from Empire throughout the 20th century and even, as many recent commentaries have pointed out, even earlier from the slave trade which finally became too rebellious for modern industrial needs.

Of course the republicans suspended and then formally accepted an end to the IRA war – they won at least enough to gain the political space and momentum to make the last stage of the fight without its horrors.

Their patient willingness over ten years to offer compromise after compromise, always tailored to expose further the empty prevarication and hopeless game playing of the diehards, was a sign of strength and a mature understanding that despite swallowing minor humiliation after humiliation (over the PSNI for example or formal temporary acceptance of the six counties), the direction of history is all on their side.

There are compromises and there are compromises as Lenin said, and being able to make smaller ones while understanding the largest picture is crucial.

Imperialism is leaving northern Ireland.

And the negotiation has been a continuous two way affair, quietly conceding ground all the time.

The final childish “deal” of the Paisleyites, to put off the resumption of Stormont for six weeks because “they will not be told what timetable to follow” by the British, is a laughable wispish face-saving “principle” which only underscores the reality. No Carson trail this.

None of this begins to appear in the “left” papers like the CPGB’s crypto-Trotskyist Weekly Worker sheet for example, which chooses instead to repeat the shallow sneering and contradictory carping of the so-called Irish Republican Socialist Party in a ‘guest article’, which not only tries to rubbish Sinn Féin’s huge achievement but re-vomits some of the foulest and most disgusting of the capitalist lie-department created slanders against the republicans in full petty bourgeois counter-revolutionary style (e.g. that the hunger strikes were deliberately contrived to “further the careers” of Sinn Féin’s leadership.)

What disgusting dog turds these elements can be!

The CPGB also slyly avoids having to go back over its own topsy-turvy “hot-spot” theory of the late 1990s whereby the USA imperialist dominance of the planet was supposed to have got all such ‘trouble spots’ sewn up and under the thumb, a theory that looks particularly sick since the bogging down in Iraq and Afghanistan, but was a stinking nonsense even then, applied to Ireland or Palestine or Lebanon etc etc).

The IRSP tries a tepid version of this ‘theory’, to ‘denounce’ a supposed sellout of the Sinn Féin and declare that it has ”handed victory” to Paisley by giving it a larger share of the ministries.

But the Orangemen colonialists always had not just the upper hand but total supremacy, rammed home with 200 years of cocky and intimidatory bowler hatted marches, and the violence and beatings already detailed.

That was what the fight was mainly about!!!

Now they don’t have it. And the structures of the Good Friday Agreement, already at work through a variety of cross border committees and multi-national institutions, are extended, and the political momentum is unstoppable.

The IRSP sneers at “over-emphasising relatively weak cross border bodies” thereby demonstrating only its “absolutely weak” Marxist understanding. The steady unification of economic, agricultural, planning, educational and customs regulations etc, etc, is precisely the work of dissolving the artificially built up Six Counties border, which even the highest bourgeois elements are now in favour of as they eye EU grants and Dublin “tiger” economy subsidies and potential investment into the once prosperous but now de-industrialised run-down north.

Correctly the Sinn Féin offer the colonialists the opportunity to participate in moving peaceably in the Dublin direction – seeing no reason to pointlessly stir old enmities by rubbing faces unnecessarily in republican victory.

But then petty bourgeois Trot defeatism fails utterly to understand that there is a victory, declare the gain in voting share by the Paisleyites to be a “betrayal” by Sinn Féin and a “strengthening” of the colonialists: but the gain the SF made in winning four more seats and hugely increased support of the nationalist masses is declared to be a “weakening” of its position!!! “The more successful it is electorally the weaker it is ideologically” the “socialists” opine, though for some odd reason this logic does not apply to the Paisleyites.

Clearly anyone with principles should be seeking the minimum of mass support then - the only way to stay “pure”!!! This is a whole hair-shirt posturing new take on Lenin’s profound “better fewer but better” philosophy – deliberate rejection of mass support!

What utter bollocks! And what a complete misunderstanding of history and struggle.

And what a misrepresentation of the republicans. As the EPSR has consistently analysed, the Irish movement is by no means a Marxist struggle and has never been so. It simply takes off the agenda one of the major historical blockages to the development of Marxist revolutionary theory through a heroic anti-imperialist struggle.

But the understanding of their own achievement and strength is clear as a typical piece from the An Phoblacht makes clear:

After the latest Assembly election successes, no doubt Irish republicans rightly feel they live in very exciting times! With the advent of elections in the South, there are yet more exciting times on the horizon.

It is good to take stock - to ask just how and why are these times so exciting?

For one thing, the British have clearly recognised the inevitability of a unified All Ireland economy. But what follows on from this inevitability?

The answer lies with the setting up and running of the Six County Executive. No longer will the Taoiseach alone speak on behalf of ‘the people of Ireland’. The Taoiseach will have to share this status and honour with the Office of First and Deputy First Ministers. They too will have a role as spokespeople for the island of Ireland.

But the changes go far deeper. Under the Good Friday Agreement, Ministers from both parts of Ireland will meet together as the North South Ministerial Council, part of a model of All Ireland governance. Four of these ministers will be from Sinn Féin.

The ministers for Health, Agriculture, Education, Environment, Tourism, and Transport will meet jointly in all-Ireland Areas of Co-operation. These ministers are accountable to the elected representatives in both the Assembly and in Leinster House.

The coming elections in the 26 counties will elect that body of TDs whose responsibility will include making those ministers accountable, jointly, for their actual All Ireland governance, through their work to progress the Areas of Co-operation.

These All Ireland institutions have been created by the logic of reunification, and must be driven forward.

The reality is in the logic of events, necessitating an all-Ireland economy, which Peter Hain has been anxious to announce - no doubt in the hope that the All Ireland economy will save the British purse from having to solely fund the infrastructural investment, so long denied to the Six Counties by the Treasury.

But that is only a start. The reality is about the real re-unification of the island.

The election results in the 26 counties will help frame, through the votes for Sinn Fein, and other TDs, the type of Ireland this new dispensation will create.

In voting for Sinn Fein, people across that part of the island will have the opportunity to reject the Ireland of a two tier health system, or of an education system which guarantees private educational privilege, and disadvantages the rest with huge classes, inadequate school buildings and a limited curriculum, a system which denies access to third-level education to half the students in the island

The two parts of Ireland will share services - that is the logic, but now we can strive to make these services work for the whole island of Ireland, based on equality.

Ministers working jointly in co-operation must address rural development and agriculture, to ensure that rural areas west of the Bann, but equally rural areas on the Western seaboard, must share equally in the economic development of the island.

Ministers of tourism must strive to ensure that the huge potential for all Ireland tourism is developed to meet the needs of local communities, which for too long, have been peripheral to the development plans of the two separate governments on the congested Eastern seaboard. ...

Re-unification will not happen of its own accord. It requires shaping a vision of a new united Ireland, based on equality. Sinn Féin cannot deliver this New Ireland without the people, all of the people, engaged in the struggle to achieve it. We are about revolution, not about delivering a 32 county version of the current ‘rip-off Republic of Ireland - one of the richest and most unequal states in the Western world.

The 26 County general elections offers us the opportunity which Connolly made real - of uniting the socialist and nationalist in a common struggle for reunification driven by our vision of a new Ireland — ‘The Cause of Ireland and the Cause of Labour”....

Politics for once is about the chance to progress equality for all and implement all Ireland governance to meet the needs of all of the people. It is the chance we have to build a New Ireland - The Republic.

• Sean Oliver is Co-ordinator of Sinn Fein’s All Ireland Department

It is not clear that the left reformism colour of Sinn Féin’s revolutionary nationalism – or parts of it - will evolve into a revolutionary socialist (Leninist) movement, which growing contradictions of the world imperialist system make ever more urgent and without which there can be no transformation to solve the slide into world slump and warmongering.

Many in its membership studied Marxist books at least and history is pushing that way. But even if not, the triumph (and continuing anti-imperialist motion) of the Irish struggle helps open the way.

Build Leninism. DH

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Understanding confirmed — from issue 1259 epsr

The EPSR is reluctant to count its chickens, but after a 25 year wait, it is beginning to look as if the Orange-fascist-bastardised acceptance that British-imperialist FAILURE and DEFEAT from the sick colonising enterprise of for 800 years trying to subdue Ireland -- is at last being acknowledged and accepted even in the dyest-hard fanatical corners of the Paisleyite imperialist mind.

This confirms what the EPSR has ALONE IN THE WORLD, - with its unique MARXIST understanding, - been explaining since the 1970s, -- namely that British imperialism took a big decision THEN that it was pointless to try to continue maintaining the British-imperialist Industrial Empire via the back door of OCCUPIED IRELAND any longer.

The heavy armaments industry was now hugely loss-making; this role was no longer being played by Britain in the world (of being the major FASCIST “free world warmongering hitman on Earth) - but MOSTLY because the “TERRORISTS” (i.e. armed resistance, prepared to fight for their country, - and in particular to die for it) WOULD NOT BE BEATEN, despite every fascist “shoot-to-kill”, death squad barbarism that the British Empire had perfected (including concentration camps; hostage-taking for judicial slaughter; amateur Orange-NAZI murder squads;) and systematic domestic terrorisation of Republican families.

The EPSR even was able to tell the petty-bourgeois nationalists of Sinn Féin that they had DEFEATED British Imperialism when everyone else was still only talking “continued British-Imperialist intransigence” and “continued permanent domination of Ireland”.

The EPSR even explained in detail to the Republican Movement that the hunger strikes to death in the early 1970s, - exactly the opposite of being a “FAILURE” and a “TRIUMPH” for Thatcher’s and Orange intransigence, - had in fact become the symbol for the whole world of British-Imperialism’s final DEFEAT and TOTAL POLITICAL FAILURE in Ireland.

Sadly, this all had to be confirmed again to Scargill’s incurably anti-communist trade-unionism in 1998 when the EPSR insisted that only the truth of Marxism could now save the world from warmongering destruction.

The Socialist Labour Party was systematically told repeatedly that it was talking petty-bourgeois, Trotskyite, anti-communist gibberish (Scargill included) to keep insisting that “the IRA has surrendered; that Sinn Féin had capitulated; and that Adams had “sold out” for high state office”. Roy Bull – Nov 2004.

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World Revolutionary Socialist Review

(edited extracts from a variety of anti-imperialist struggles).
CROSSMAGLEN SPY POST REMOVED (and more on the way.)

Crowds gathered to capture the moment on camera, mobile phone and camcorder as one of the most hated symbols of British military occupation was removed in South Armagh village Crossmaglen.

The British Army spy post which had towered above the barracks in Crossmaglen for a decade-and-a-half was an ugly, oppressive and instrusive eyesore, long resesented by residents of the strongly republican district.

The demilitarisation of South Armagh and other republican heartlands has been a key demand made by Sinn Féein throughout each stage of negotiations with the British Government

The Sinn Fein MP for Newry and Armagh, Conor Murphy, welcomed the removal of the spy post and sangar.

Conor Murphy said: “ This military post has been a blight on this community for too long.

“Local people will be glad to see the back of this eyesore and those who spied on them from within it”

Although several spy posts have been dismantled in various parts of South Armagh recently, many of those who gathered in Crossmaglen on Tuesday described this particular removal as “highly symbolic”.

Its significance was emphasised by the fact that the spy post’s demolition made news headlines across the world.

Watching the removal, Conor Murphy added: “ Sinn Féin is determined to ensure that all British military forces are removed from our communities. “The land stolen and occupied must be returned to their rightful owners or put to community use.”


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World Revolutionary Socialist Review

(edited extracts from a variety of anti-imperialist struggles).

Fallout continues over collusion report

The fallout following the publication of the Ombudsman’s report into Special Branch collusion with unionist paramilitaries in North Belfast continued last week with a rearguard action by former senior members of Special Branch and the publication of a rebuttal, “How the Police Ombudsman Got it Wrong!”

In a detailed reply to O’Loan’s report, former leading members of Special Branch attempted a root and branch deconstruction of the Ombudsman’s case. Clearly rattled, not only by the report itself, but also the media response to O’Loan’s findings, the rebuttal fine tooth combs the detail, contesting the language, highlighting underlining premises and questioning the status of the evidence presented.

According to the rebuttal, O’Loan’s statement amounted to a “gross injustice” in which “police officers who have served their country and community with integrity and bravery have been vilified in the court of public opinion”.

“The [Ombudsman’s] statement itself is a chaotic mix of errors of fact and judgement, contradictions, illogical conclusions and innuendo,” complained former Special Branch members.

The rebuttal accuses O’Loan of deliberately crafting the investigation to suit a predetermined conclusion. “It is little wonder that the outcome has been such a shambles,” says the author.

The rebuttal relies on four main points to undermine the Ombudsman’s report. It is alleged that the investigating team were inexperienced and didn’t know how to frame the investigation properly.

“The investigation consisted of the wrong people asking the wrong questions of, largely, the wrong people.”

The rebuttal rejects the Ombudsman’s “lack of co-operation” criticism of former senior officers, suggesting that, by their own evaluation, the high status, secret nature of their work barred them from participating “informally” as O’Loan had initially suggested. In other words it was their professional duty to refuse to engage with O’Loan’s team.

The rebuttal also questions the status of the evidence presented by O’Loan and finally rejects the notion of collusion deployed in the analysis.

Of course all this huffing and puffing only serves to confirm the view that the arrogant high regard with which Special Branch held itself rendered officers to believe they were above reproach. Special Branch was not only unaccountable, it believed it had a right, even a duty to be so.

In other words Special Branch really believe they are “special” and that somehow they operate outside the remit of the ordinary. During the Ombudsman’s Omagh investigation the then Chief Constable and former head of Special Branch Ronnie Flanagan had clashed with O’Loan but O’Loan “had not learnt her lesson,” complains the rebuttal.

Ironically Special Branch, the very people who were instrumental in down grading the nature of evidence required to secure thousands of unsafe convictions, are now outraged that, what they claim to be unsubstantiated allegation, is now being deployed against their reputation.

The key complaint in the rebuttal is the inadequacy of the notion of collusion deployed by the Ombudsman. And they are right. But while Special Branch complains O’Loan’s notion of collusion assumes too much, republicans would argue that it acknowledges too little.

At its core O’Loan’s notion of collusion is passive, failure to prevent, failure to investigate, failure to convict are the cornerstones of her findings but she goes significantly further to detail systematic cover up. Special Branch ignored evidence, destroyed evidence, fabricated statements, conducted sham interviews, withheld information, blocked investigations and cancelled the wanted status of suspects.

O’Loan suggests Special Branch handlers were prepared to go to unacceptable lengths to maintain and protect their informants and this sometimes resulted in crimes being committed by agents despite the prior knowledge of Special Branch officers.

All this is a far cry from republican understanding of collusion as a specific British policy that involved the establishment of specific agencies, including Special Branch and fru, and specific chains of command, involving mi5 and the British Cabinet.

Through these mechanisms the British state organised, armed and directed unionist paramilitary gangs as part of a counter insurgency war not just against the ira but against the Irish people, anyone on the island, republicans, unionists, Catholic and Protestant. A war in which British interests were paramount and Irish lives cheap.

The significance of O’Loan’s report goes beyond anything contested in the rebuttal by former members of Special Branch for two very important reasons. First, of those who had been the most sceptical in relation to allegations of collusion, the unionist community, the vast majority now accepted collusion as established fact.

According to the Newsletter over 70% of their readership believed O’Loan to be right. This emerged less as a consequence of the report itself and more in the fact that O’Loan’s account of Special Branch handlers’ relationship with their agents confirmed the lived experience of unionist communities where unionist paramilitaries had been allowed to run amok.

The second most important reason is that the popular perception of collusion has changed. O’Loan’s findings are being judged within a different framework of understanding, an understanding within which Special Branch, and the other agencies of collusion, can exercise less control. The court of public opinion has moved on.

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World Revolutionary Socialist Review

(edited extracts from a variety of anti-imperialist struggles).
The US revival of its torture school should be a warning to the “Bolivarian revolution” of the need for the most robust defence – which can only be trusted to forces of proletarian dictatorship. The South American masses need warning not to trust the existing military as Salvador Allende did in Chile – opening the door to Pinochet’s fascist brutality in 1973. But revisionism is failing to make it clear, even in heroic Cuba’s publications

Will the Condor fly again?

The empire, depressed by so many external and internal defeats, can think of nothing but setting (Operation) Condor to fly again, hoping to utilize — as they did in the 1970s and 80s — Latin American and Caribbean armed forces with the insane purpose that they will once again repress and control that growing popular movement that is doing away with the neoliberal model and Yankee interference itself.

RECENTLY, the U.S. newspaper USA Today reported a decision by the Republican administration of George W. Bush to end the ban on training the armies of 21 Latin American countries, in the belief that the prohibition had caused the U.S. to lose influence in the region and encourage progress - dramatic for Washington - of leftist governments.

Imperial arrogance was the reason why, in 2002, via an executive decree, the practice of training Latin American military forces was abandoned, in reprisal against those nations that refused to grant immunity to Yankee soldiers charged with war crimes or human rights violations.

What they forgot at the time, blinded by arrogance, is that such training, with its accompanying deliveries of all types of weapons and logistics, is essential to them, given that it is an inherent part of what James Petras has called the “military architecture to be able to expand, protect and consolidate large, essential economic interests of the empire,” that range from control over markets to access to raw materials to, fundamentally, energy and water sources.

It is true that the victories of Hugo Chávez in Venezuela, Evo Morales, in Bolivia and Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua, as well as the re-election of Lula in Brazil, are deeply worrying for Washington, and they are not the result of the U.S. government ending its training of armed forces in the region; rather, they are the expression of rejection of a political, social and economic model imposed by the powerful northern neighbor on Latin America, where many nations and their leaders have said “Enough!”

It is no coincidence that the White House has been trying since 1999 to create openings in the Venezuelan armed forces to overthrow the Bolivarian Revolution...

In this effort, it is indisputable that the notorious School of the Americas will play an important role, although surrounded by discredit and almost universal opposition in recent years, for having become a training ground for torturers and criminals.

...the torture and abuse to which Iraqi prisoners were subjected at the hands of their Yankee jailers in Abu Ghraib...they repeatedly harped...that such actions were an exception and not an unpunished norm in the behavior of U.S. troops, a routine method of imperialist repression. At the time, the top members of the U.S. administration affirmed that torture and abuse of Iraqi prisoners were “isolated actions” committed by “rotten apples” among the U.S. forces.

However, torture, abuse of human dignity, intimidation, utilization of blackmail, and pressures against prisoners’ families have been routine methods employed with the goal of breaking down the will to resist. They are methods that continue to be included in the training manuals of the School of the Americas (soa).

The academy also known as the School of Assassins was founded in 1946 in Panama and was then transferred to Fort Benning, Georgia in 1984. It was only 2001 that it changes its name to the euphemistic Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation. Since its doors opened, it has graduated more than 60,000 officers in our hemisphere; some of them became dictators and others, notorious repressors.

Where, if not at the soa, were Hugo Banzer, Efraín Ríos Montt, Roberto D’Aubuis-son and Raoul Cedras, trained, the dictators of Bolivia, Guatemala and Haiti, among others?

A human rights report by the United Nations Truth Commission on several Latin American countries revealed on March 14, 1993, that in the case of El Salvador, two of the three soldiers charged in the murder of Archbishop Arnulfo Romero were graduates of the School of the Americas; as were three of the five charged in the murders of the U.S. nuns; 10 of the 12 accused in the El Mozote massacre, and 19 of the 26 who stood trial for the massacre of the Jesuits. Similar figures were found in Colombia and Guatemala during investigations of significant crimes.

In their desperate attempt to brutally impose a halt to revolutionary and progressive movements on the continent, the Republican administration of George W. Bush will appeal — as its predecessors did - to the use of the armed forces in their role as “guarantors” of the newly-invoked “national security” in our countries, in whose name the military dictatorships were imposed in the 1970s and 80s. Persecution, torture and crime, classes that will be taught to them in the School of the Americas, will be among the methods to be utilized.

They do not realize, however, that the continent is no longer the same. Precisely, press reports note that the so-called Nucleus of Strategic Issues that is overseen by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil, is analyzing and drafting a proposal that would be aimed at creating a single military force in the region, which would have the objectives of preventing foreign intervention, defending the enormous natural resources that we possess and building better relations between the member states themselves.

The geopolitical appetites of the empire are not limited to its interest in politically and economically controlling us, but also of taking over our energy and water sources, essential in today’s world, as well as our riches in biodiversity.

President Chávez had previously referred in similar terms to the need to create a single military force with which Latin America could confront the hegemonic power of the United States, which is looking with aggressive concern on the victories of revolutionary and progressive governments that could put an end to its imperialist domination.

Facing this new reality, we trust that historic experience will put soldiers on the side of these new processes and, as they are now doing in Venezuela, accompany them in the arduous and difficult tasks of ending the hegemonic power of the empire. •

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World Revolutionary Socialist Review

(edited extracts from a variety of anti-imperialist struggles).

Bush’s lies on tour of Latin America

BY NIDIA DIAZ — Granma International staff writer —

NOTHING could be further from “promoting a common agenda for advancing freedom, prosperity and social justice” than the objectives of a planned tour of Latin America by U.S. President George W. Bush from March 8 to 14.

And contrary to what the transnational news corporations would have us believe, it is even further from being evidence that “although late in doing so,” Washington plans to demonstrate that the administration wants to “recover time lost” in the region due to being preoccupied with wars far from its borders.

Let us not be deceived or confused.

It is a lie that Latin America has been low on the ultra-right wing agenda of the current U.S. government. On the contrary, every single budget point passed by Congress at the request of the White House has been more than “generous” with resources for promoting subversion, stigmatizing leftist presidential candidates, fomenting “democratic” opposition, and financing local media campaigns to accompany its plans for intervention, maintaining the undermining role of its proconsuls in South American capitals, and supporting them with all of the coming and going of State Department secretaries and undersecretaries, the real errand boys of the empire.

Plan Colombia, the principal Trojan horse in the region, continues to receive millions under the pretext of fighting drug trafficking and insurgency, and together with U.S. troops in Paraguay, it is the final section in the wall of military bases that surround South America, as the most concrete expression of the fact that the U.S. government has not left any strings loose in our region.

There they are: the Aruba and Curacao bases in the north, those in Colombia, and those of Manta in Ecuador and Iquique in Peru, as a guarantee of Yankee control over the natural resources of a continent that possesses the largest fresh-water resources on the planet. When the time comes, that will give rise to the same military conflicts and genocides that are now stemming from the rich and consumerist North’s need to control oil resources.

To that could be added another element that is not mentioned very much, the Alliance for Security and Prosperity in North America, an idea that was launched on March 23, 2005 during a meeting in Waco, Texas, by the presidents of the United States, Mexico and the Canada, with the objective of legally facilitating Washington’s open

intervention in our countries, going around its own Constitution.

It is a “bonus” for accompanying the free trade agreements in terms of security, and like in the case of Mexico, would permit intervention by U.S. troops among immigration personnel along with monitoring of documents and visas by the fbi and cia, using advanced technology. Not only would fingerprints be checked, but also the irises of individuals and even their dna, comprising a sort of human inventory to use against members of grassroots and anti-neoliberal groups.

What kind of justice and prosperity can be pointed to in a continent that has been pauperized by hegemonic policies benefiting transnational corporations, and thieves of our countries’ and peoples’ resources?

These are elements that refute what the Bush administration’s halberdiers would have us believe, that Iraq and Afghanistan kept them away from their “natural allies,” when actually they were never closer, because their interests have never been more threatened.

So close, in fact, that during the fascist coup against Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez in April 2002, the U.S. military was there with the coup-plotters, with its Navy equipment and the ambassador of the United States.

Only those who do not know them could swallow what they are saying.

We Latin Americans know about such “forgetfulness” and such hypocritical “reconciliation.”

President George W. Bush plans to travel to Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico with a clear goal: to try to divide the current process opened up with the establishment of progressive and revolutionary governments focused on building an alternative political, economic and social model to the single, neoliberal one imposed on us by Washington.

In that context, economic and commercial integration based on solidarity and meeting common interests is a new channel for recovering independence lost to the transnational corporations and the usurious money-lenders of the International Monetary Fund.

Like all emperors, he underestimates his opponents. Even before embarking on his tour, he has sent more than a few messages, like the one revealed by Argentine President Nestor Kirchner, to the effect that he and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula de Silva were asked to “contain” Chávez.

Or like that other message now circulating anonymously in the right-wing Ecuadorian media, even though one would have to be dense not to know who the sender is: that President Rafael Correa should not “copy” Chávez, and should “take his distance” from him; that it is not right to “Venezuela-ize” Ecuador, with the all-too-obvious intention of discouraging the country from joining in the process of change initiated by some of its neighbors.

Or like the message brought by U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns, who, flaunting the traditional policy of divide and conquer, said in Brasilia that “we have a positive agenda with President Uribe. We do not exactly have a relationship with Hugo Chávez, because he decided not to have one. He is trying to create a movement against the United States.”

As the popular saying goes: if it’s yellow and has spikes, it’s a pineapple.

Yankee arrogance, however, prevents them from seeing that President Bush is going to Latin America at the worst moment of his presidency — questioned by his own compatriots, failing in his wars of aggression against Iraq and Afghanistan, exposed in his real intentions for Iran and Venezuela, and with his personal credibility in shreds.

He is also going at a time when national resentment is growing in Guatemala toward U.S. anti-immigrant policies that victimize 1.2 Guatemalans, making Bush a persona non grata.

While in Uruguay, he won’t be able to visit Montevideo, where the workers’ federation and other social and human rights organizations have prepared a mass protest, because they know that he will attempt to convince the country’s administration to sign a free trade agreement and make the country a wedge in mercosur, with the goal of weakening that regional integration organization, recently strengthened by Venezuela’s entry and Bolivia’s possible entry.

In Brazil’s case, along with trying to pit it against its Venezuelan counterpart — something that Washington has never been able to achieve, to its disappointment — the U.S. appears to be focusing its attention on its need to free itself from its dependence on oil.

In this case, Brazil produces half of the world’s biofuels, which are no doubt an alternative to oil. According to press reports, a Brazilian chemical engineer, Expedite Parente, who owns the first patent registered for producing bio-diesel, recently stated: “We have 80 million hectares in the Amazon that are going to become the Saudi Arabia of bio-diesel.” To date, however, the United States has a ban on the entry of those products into its market.

In Bogotá, even while the objective of his visit is to ratify his backing for Plan Colombia with the “aggregate value” of having the military element there to use against grassroots processes in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, he is going at a difficult time for Colombian “democracy,” when high-ranking officials in the administration and legislature are being accused of ties to paramilitaries and drug trafficking. Of course, it is within the policy of double standards that President George W. Bush best operates, and in Colombia, on this occasion, he will be flaunting it.

These are attributes that should come in handy when he steps onto Mexican soil, where the wall of infamy and the criminalization of its emigrants will be his Damocles’ sword for convincing Mexicans of his “good intentions” during the final stretch of his mandate.

However, this trip to be made through five countries in the region with such bad intentions and tourist airs will not be water down the drain.

The generalized opposition of the peoples and, in more than a few cases, the ratification of the fact that sovereignty is no longer negotiable in Latin America, will be elements that President Bush will have to deal with, on this tour that smells like sulfur, and its hosts know it.•

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