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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 1362 31st December 2009

Obama’s “right to invade any country to stop terrorism” declaration, war justifications in the Nobel Peace prize speech and China scapegoating for supposed “global warming” all underline that US imperialism has not changed its fascist spots despite a handsome black president who can “do no wrong”. To the contrary, super-“Camelot” image building is the most cynical Goebbels lie yet, to rebuild national chauvinist unity for Nazi war blitzing being imposed to save US imperialism’s bacon in the rapidly worsening monopoly capitalist crisis. There is only slump and war on offer. Leninist understanding to lead revolution is the way out

The Obama presidency’s visits to Europe for the laughable, failed, Copenhagen climate change conference, and the (superficially) astoundingly misapplied Nobel Peace Prize, have taken the warmongering West’s upside-down white-is-black hypocrisy and scapegoating aggression to new levels of fascistic dissembling.

How is the civilian killing in Afghanistan and Pakistan different to Vietnam Alongside renewed Nigerian “terror” hysteria and moralising sanctimony over Chinese drug-war justice, they are both being used to justify and further whip up aggression and hatred towards an assortment of victim countries and scapegoat communities, while posturing and posing as the hurt innocents.

The true scapegoating and diversionary purpose of West’s intervention in the talks, to set up and then blame an assortment of “rogue states”, workers states and anti-imperialists, supposedly for environmental mess but in reality for the complete economic, political and ecological chaos of capitalism’s crisis, has straightaway become apparent following the breakdown of the farcical Copenhagen circus.

The list of blame targets, immediately hyped up for finger-pointing hatred and frenzied hostility, (with the foul New Labourite stooges taking a leading role) reads like a roll call of anti-imperialism from the major workers state of China, and communist Cuba, to the Latin American left-nationalist movement, led by rebellious Venezuela and Bolivia, which while not communist by a long way, are still a thorn in the side, of the US particularly.

“Rogue state” and Goebbels “genocide” lie propaganda-victim Sudan is there too for having the temerity to point to the West’s wealth and hypocrisy on the issue.

For the moment Iran and Burma are missing – but for how long?

It is no coincidence that this list are all major hate targets for western trade war and demonisation which has been pumped out non-stop as part of the “war on terror” hysteria since the turn of the century, a key part of whipping up an aggressive generalised blitzing atmosphere to prepare for the outright conflict which capitalism’s crisis is rapidly dragging the world back into (just as in 1914 and 1939).

The victims are all demonised as “threats to our way of life” and “obstacles on the road to prosperity and harmony with nature” that trampling, wasteful, greedy, and callously exploitative capitalism outrageously suddenly pretends to be interested in, even as its entire eight centuries long piratical profit-making order crashes into the buffers.

Climate change arm twisting to present the Third World as the villains “obstructing agreement and threatening the human race with doom” is now added to the endless lies and hypocrisy about “democracy, freedom” and the joke “rule of law” which are the constant refrain of the CIA and other Western agencies as they go about their filthy, torturing interference and plotting around the world to install and maintain the most disgusting fascist and gangster dictators like Mubarak and the Saudi regime; like assorted tinpots in Africa; from the corrupt Karzai in Afghanistan itself to the new Honduran coup military and its carefully stitched up, controlled and manipulated election.

The mass of Third World nations and various environmentalists immediately made their outrage clear as the capitalist press is reporting:

But in what threatened to become an international incident, diplomats and environment groups hit back by saying Britain and other countries, including the US and Australia, had dictated the terms of the weak Copenhagen agreement, imposing it on the world’s poor “at the peril of the millions of common masses”.

Muhammed Chowdhury, a lead negotiator of G77 group of 132 developing countries and the 47 least developed countries, said: “The hopes of millions of people from Fiji to Grenada, Bangladesh to Barbados, Sudan to Somalia have been buried. The summit failed to deliver beyond taking note of a watered-down Copenhagen accord reached by some 25 friends of the Danish chair, head of states and governments. They dictated the terms at the peril of the common masses.”

Developing countries were joined in their criticism of the developed nations by international environment groups.

Nnimmo Bassey, chair of Friends of the Earth International, said: “Instead of committing to deep cuts in emissions and putting new, public money on the table to help solve the climate crisis, rich countries have bullied developing nations to accept far less.

“Those most responsible for putting the planet in this mess have not shown the guts required to fix it and have instead acted to protect short-term political interests.”.

In a separate development, senior scientists said tonight that rich countries needed to put up three times as much money and cut emissions more if they were to avoid serious climate change.

True enough. But as Marxist science, the only full scientific philosophy, is clear, this is not simply, or even primarily, to force the costs of climate change mitigation onto those who can least afford it while evading the responsibility for centuries of past pollution and industrialisation in the rich countries, but to whip up hatred in line with the deranged “war on terror” hysteria.

Climate change is real enough and human generated CO2 may be the cause – though the science can only be fully understood once capitalist distortion and bias is removed from the data and the researchers both - but the worked-up near hysterical fears about it are certainly only a convenience for imperialism, and an excuse for the real hatreds and drive to war by a ruling class which is out of time historically and staring total disaster in the face as its profit making system fails utterly.

In the real world, monopoly capitalism’s “overproduction” contradictions and intensifying crisis, are bringing imminently the greatest slump and war cataclysm seen in all history, with blitzing destruction, human devastation and ecological damage pending on a scale far beyond its last world upheaval from 1939-1945, and by far outweighing any short or medium term impact that climate change will have and far, far sooner.

WW2 was far worse than the trench and machine gun slaughter of the “Great” war and the Third World War which capitalism is deliberately and unavoidably driving towards, will be on a much greater scale still, over far more of the world, and using far greater and more deadly weaponry.

It will confirm completely that the entire climate change issue is a diversion, being neither solvable by capitalism nor of any interest to it except to head attention away from its own failure and collapse, and whip up world hatred and trade war tensions.

The capitalists are sure they will have places to go, and the best and most pleasant ones, whatever damage is done to sea-coasts and any marginal concern about the problems is purely to ensure that their production facilities for continuing exploitation remain usable.

Obama’s gobsmacking “peace” award, before he has done anything even in bourgeois terms to “justify” it (except escalating the Afghan war twice over, and sitting back and watching, without protest, the Zionist January 2008 massacre of the Gazan population e.g.), was an even more cynical manipulation, astonishing even the West’s most compliant and loud-mouthed reactionary press commentators, it is so out-of-place and such obviously propagandising bullshit.

His acceptance speech took full advantage, with a Nazi-style self-righteous folksy justification for war that went beyond even Goebbels-level propaganda into the hurt and pained chauvinistic moralising that was the speciality of Hitler himself in his most inflammatory speeches winding up national aggressiveness.

It is further confirmation that far from being a “step forwards reflecting a rejection of Bush neocon bullying” the Obama regime is the sickest expression yet of US might-is-right world tyranny, tapping every wide-eyed piece of “political correctness” and reformist illusion mongering with super Blair-style “down-hominess”.

Only it that sense is it something new as the EPSR objectors have tried to insist.

The panicking ruling class is desperate to justify and mobilise its war plans by (re)-winning national unity, especially capturing back and re-establishing historically disillusioned middle class and some worker support for “democracy” and its warmongering agenda.

So it takes the spin and glitz emptiness of Blairism, itself built on Clintonite Madison Avenue spin and advertising “wholesomeness”, to new levels of lies and hypocrisy, sustaining, like Blair, a new level of depravity and war (which cannot be stopped while capitalist lasts).

Its function is to rebuild the foulest great-national chauvinist feelings and momentum around “this great nation” blah to not only continue the crisis warmongering but extend and escalate it to new victims from Iran to Sudan.

This piece of gushing garbage from Zionist sympathising “left” liberal Jonathan Freedland catches some of the cynical manipulation in the Obama rise, and also its special significance as a new mythology like the “Camelot” Kennedy post-war period, to try and overcome the disastrous failure and dangerous near civil war splits (and potentially revolutionary hostility) caused by the Bush neocon abrasiveness domestically and abroad, and importantly the defeats they have run into around the world.

But the rhetoric soared, the message of a new, less divided politics shone – “There’s not a liberal America and a conservative America,” he said, “there’s the United States of America” – and a phenomenon was born.

When he gave that speech he was a mere state senator from Illinois. A few months later he was a member of the US senate and by early 2006 he was firmly hyped as the man destined to save the Democratic party. By 10 February 2007, the bitterly cold Illinois day on which he announced his candidacy for president, he was trumpeted as the man to rescue the US. Once the 2008 campaign was in full swing, and he had defeated Hillary Clinton in the never-ending trench warfare that was the Democratic primaries, the expectations had gone global. When he appeared before hundreds of thousands of adoring, and mainly young, people in Berlin that summer, the cover of Stern magazine asked if Obama was the “saviour”.

All of which would earn Obama his place as a noughties icon. But there is a deeper connection between him and the decade now fading, one that will stand whether he is re-elected or not – and one that partly explains his extraordinarily rapid rise.

Put simply, Obama emerged as a kind of inverse of everything that had gone before. He was the unBush, a photo negative of the president who had spanned the decade. While George Bush snubbed allies and revelled in America-rules-the-world unilateralism, Obama was a citizen of the world – raised in Indonesia, with roots in Africa and a middle name from Arabia – who saw diplomacy as equally valid as force. Bush derided the United Nations as a talking shop for limp-wristed do-gooders and Euroweenies; Obama treats international institutions with respect. (That last fact alone was, it seems, enough to win him the last Nobel peace prize of the decade, even before he had really done anything.) So if Obama ends the decade as a defining face of the noughties, he does so, in part, by being the chemical opposite of – and a proposed antidote to – the man whose presidency dominated it.

Almost all of this was about Obama himself. He could say of the most vexed foreign policy decision of the age – the invasion of Iraq – that he had opposed it, even when it was popular, calling it a “dumb war”. Where Bush led with his gut and read little, Obama was thoughtful and deliberate, his Nobel prize acceptance speech, according to historian Simon Schama, being on a par with Roosevelt and Churchill and “summoning the spirit of Cicero”.

But there is another parallel too, and this has not been the work of Obama alone. Those crowds in Berlin in 2008 drew instant comparisons with the response that greeted John F Kennedy – and credit for this belongs partly to Michelle Obama. During inauguration week in 2009, there was a brisk street trade in kitsch, oversized earrings depicting the Obamas as a glamour couple. The last presidential duo to have that kind of cachet were John and Jackie.

This is partly because both Barack and Michelle are striking looking. There are campaign photographs of him, emerging from a motorcade in inscrutable shades, that ooze JFK panache. She, meanwhile, is tall, confident and with arms so toned that women don’t know whether to react with awe or envy.

But, on the campaign, no one ever accused Michelle Obama of serving as mere arm candy to her husband. Nor was her role confined to that of the usual political spouse, “rounding out” her husband, proving that he was a genuine, card-carrying human being. (That said, she did play an important role in reassuring African-American voters that a Hawaiian-born son of a Kenyan man and a white woman was, nevertheless, “one of us”: by enfolding him in the Robinson clan of Chicago, she ensured Obama was bound into the African-American, and therefore American, mainstream.)

From the beginning, it was clear that Michelle was not just the devoted wife, looking up, Nancy Reagan-style, to her heroic husband. In the early stages of the campaign, she mocked him in public for his snoring and morning breath – prompting some aides to worry that she might be a liability – but thereby establishing that she was no mere cheerleader. As Obama himself would put it, “I am reminded by every day of my life – if not by events, then by my wife – that I am not a perfect man.”

Instead, they came across as a thoroughly modern couple: until his memoirs became bestsellers, her job as a Chicago hospital administrator brought in the lion’s share of the household income. That marked quite a contrast with Laura Bush, the former librarian and ultra-trad wife, but was not wholly unprecedented: Hillary Clinton had already played the role of career woman turned first lady.

The difference this time was that it was simply much less of an issue. The early 21st-century version somehow seemed to get people less agitated. Perhaps that’s because Michelle has played it safer than Hillary did, taking no political role, reverting to traditional first lady duties – including planting a White House vegetable garden. Or perhaps it’s because photographers simply cannot get enough of her.

Either way, the Obamas are already icons of the age in a way that goes far beyond the Kennedys’ influence on 60s style. Simply put, they express a profound breakthrough: the most powerful couple in the world are black, a fact that many Americans, and many others, never thought would come to pass in their lifetime. Even if they did nothing else, and even if prosaic reality means the Obama presidency fails more often than it succeeds, this has made the Obamas truly iconic for millions of people – their image acting as a kind of votive touchstone, conveying hope for a better world.

Worth noting in this cloying unctuousness are telling comments about the “cool” and “good-looking” aspects of this entire fantasy diversion – exactly the points in recent EPSR analysis which were criticised as untrue by the “objectors” (see past issue polemics) but here not only emphasised but correctly described as taking the myth-making image building to new levels.

It is done deliberately with such Hollywood mechanisms as T-shirts and posters with Obama’s face, an extraordinary application of celebrity cultism applied for the first time to a president (though notably an aspect of Hitlerism). There are even “scrapbooks” of pictures and cutouts to boost the image (and ignore the politics).

Just as telling are the comments about the “realness” of the presidential pair, echoing the way that the most powerful myth in mainstream religion came about precisely when the figure of the God was made “human” ie a Christ figure “who was tempted just like us”. Supernatural explanation is in the end unbelievable as human culture and knowledge increase and move forwards; “human frailty” gives the most credibility to a god figure.

Such comparisons might be declared over the top, but modern imperialist propagandising and political manipulation has tapped every lesson in the book to fool and mislead, and is pulling out all the stops as crisis bites.

The image building is Goebbels-ism at sophisticated and subtle levels never achieved by the crudities of Nazism in Germany. Here and elsewhere Freedland makes the time-dishonoured excuses for such reformism’s total failure to change anything based on the “tragically his hands are tied by the machinery of the US state machine” etc which of course simply begs the question why did he lie about “change we are” and other sub-Starwars pseudo-profundities, and not warn the working class that change for the benefit of the working class within the system is impossible??

Change, it is confirmed, thereby will only be possible by the complete ending of the existing class rule – by revolution.

The entire “democracy” racket has been falling apart steadily everywhere as the world working class has gradually made deep-running experiences (including the great twentieth century war crisis breakdowns) proving that there is not only nothing in it for them, but that it is a total cover for bourgeois dictatorship, with big money alone taking, and benefiting, from all the critical decisions in society.

These are some of the deepest lessons drawn by Marxism and Leninism in teasing apart the reality of class society and how it is controlled by the ruling class (see State & Revolution for example by Lenin).

But such is the depth of philistinism and shallowness in post-war “boomtime” world culture, deliberately cultivated by capitalism’s fashion and celebrity hype to head off all serious thought and leadership in the working class, (and tragically unchallenged by communist ideology because of the great Moscow retreat from revolutionism into revisionist “peace struggle”, “containment” of “non-aggressive” imperialism, and even “the parliamentary road”) that even at this desperate stage in its disintegration and decay, imperialism can create a new spin to the “democracy” wheel.

But even that would be in trouble without the idiocies and opportunism of the fake-“left”’s decades of single-issue campaigning which has given credence to the latest trickery of a moralising, “human” and of course black (and feminist) presidency, which “can do no wrong because now we have a black president and are a cut above the rest of the world.”

These issues, treated as gains in themselves, rather than as issues solvable only by a new kind of society, have helped temporarily fool and mislead some sections of the working class, particularly the (rightly) distrustful black and hispanic workers at the bottom of the heap who have (rightly) never even registered to vote before, seeing nothing in it for them.

Of course there is growing discontent in the US working class, and with a potentially revolutionary pressure in it, from the huge poverty and deprivation which has always existed right in the heart of the most powerful and rich country on the planet, and now on a slide to Depression level unemployment, welfare cuts and universal financial collapse, and much worse. But the Obama presidency’s function is to continue what the ruling class’s direct neocon preference has been unable to do, imposing increasingly challenged US diktat back onto the planet to allow its exploitation and plunder of world labour and resources to continue without let, even though its economy and capabilities are bankrupt.

Such sleight of hand is a critical lesson in the need for Leninist clarity and Marxist scientific understanding, to constantly cut through and challenge the confusing bullshit and idiocies of the fake-”left”’s pacifism, no-to-war ineffectualness, parliamentary opportunism and assorted PC reformist diversions, from feminism and black nationalist “anti-racism” to “gay rights” and environmentalism, which have all opportunistically arisen to fill in the gaps left by soft-brained revisionist retreat from militant revolutionary perspectives, (which not only steadily took hold and worsened from Stalin’s time in Moscow, but which have become the dominant and complacent philosophy in Beijing, Havana, Hanoi and Pyongyang, despite all these the workers states reaching peaks of heroic achievement in their powerful mass revolutionary fights to win power and in much of their economic, social and cultural struggle and giant workers states achievement since).

The same diversionary single-issue campaigning and the whole culture of “left” pressure support for reformist crap, anti-revolutionary Trade Union officialdom and parliamentary game-playing, are gleefully used as a diversion too by the outright Trotskyist hostility which pretends to make a revolutionary challenge to revisionism’s retreats, failings and criminal errors, but which does so as only as a cover for outright hostility to the workers states and proletarian dictatorship discipline.

Its completely idealistic “perfect” revolutionary fantasies, which have never produced any real movement anywhere on the planet, always line up at critical moments with imperialism against the workers states and the difficult firm measures that have been needed to defend their existence (Hungary 1956, Czechoslovakia, shooting down of the 007 airliner, Tibet, etc etc).

Most definitively they, and all the revisionists, lined up after 9/11 with the Western imperialist “condemnation” of the Third World and “terrorism”, and groups like the CPGB continue to feed the demonisation of the entire anti-imperialist upsurge with their priggish petty bourgeois campaigns against Iran and other Muslim insurgency and anti-imperialism – a completely unMarxist capitulation to the “clash of civilisations” hate campaigning and scapegoating which is a key part of imperialism’s decade long war drive.

US imperialism (and the others) have tapped and taken advantage of this rampant and dishonest opportunist diversion from core revolutionary perspectives over decades, adopting or accommodating more or less every single-issue supposedly solving this or that injustice in society, from universal suffrage to feminism and anti-racism, taking them more or less in its stride, at least in the rich nations which can afford it.

Despite the cost, and the grating on the arrogance of a once slave-owning ruling class, of giving way to “upstarts” or “blacks” etc etc, imperialism instinctively knows that not only do these issues not challenge its rule, but provide very useful diversion from the necessary focus on revolutionary understanding and leadership which are urgently needed to solve any and all problems in human society (and which anyway produces the only effective anti-racism, female emancipation, tolerance of unfortunate difference etc there will or can be i.e. the ending of capitalism by its overthrow, and building of planned socialism.)

Where some movement persisted in a revolutionary direction, beginning to reject pacifism as enough of a philosophy, as the Martin Luther King civil rights leadership was doing for example (and which Obama lyingly and deliberately avoids, misrepresenting King as a “pacifist”), capitalism has found other ways to deal with them including the rifle bullet.

But black nationalism, like all single issues that forget the need for a revolutionary perspective, was successfully headed off into a reformist side-alley creating a black middle class within capitalism, which now provides the arch-opportunism of Obama-ism and all the other “successful” state level black politicians absorbed into the slick “fool all of the people all of the time” machinery of bourgeois “democracy”.

The full acceptance of this change has always been held back by white racist arrogance and the instinct of capitalism to keep something in reserve.

But US imperialism has had to play a full hand of single-issue cards now, with Obama, to overcome the humiliation and shame of the Bushite barroom aggression which was brought low by its defeat and setbacks in the Middle East, and by the enormous problems of the unfolding economic contradictions of imperialism which had already brought the US to unrepayable indebtedness and imminent disaster.

It became the most despised US regime in history because of its defeats.

The sick, degenerate and cynically knowing role of single issue reformism in rescuing the US “democracy” and sustaining and extending US warmongering was nowhere more sharply apparent than in the Peace Prize speech.

The Nobel Prize already has a sickening record of bolstering the West’s most monstrous criminal warmongers and anti-communists including Henry Kissinger the mastermind with impeached president Nixon of the Vietnam war and the secret, illegal and total B52 carpet-bombing destruction of Cambodia (which led on to the tragic Pol Pot confusion), the leading intransigent Orange colonialist fascist in occupied Ireland, David Trimble, Nazi occupying Zionists Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin, backward feudal anti-China provocateur, the Dalai Lama, the liquidator of 70 years of Soviet workers state achievement Michael Gorbachev, “dissident” anti-communist Soviet political saboteur Andrei Sakharov, who helped prepare the ground for Gorbachev’s deranged stupidity, pseudo-”trade unionist” Polish Catholic anti-communist turned (or rather revealed to be) fully fledged, reactionary fascist Lech Walesa, and the disgusting anti-communist “holy” Archbishop Desmond Tutu, whose pro-Western “pacifism” undermined the militant ANC and SACP anti-apartheid armed struggle in South Africa and who ever since renders constant service to the West’s demonisation campaigns against “rogue states” selected for warmongering “punishment” and blitzing.

And many more.

Such notionally “good” guys that very occasionally make the list are either notable Western collaborators and colluders from Nelson Mandela to Kenya’s Wangari Muta Maathai or very occasionally indeed, now neutralised and “safe” assassinated martyrs like Martin Luther King.

And just to top off the cynical top 100 is the presence of Al Gore in 2007, given the prize precisely for his contributions in winding up the climate change issue (lavishly funded by the reactionary American political and film industries), and heading everyone off in the wrong direction for understanding the threats to the world, and their revolutionary solution more significantly.

And the very list, including some of the worst warmongers, gives the lie to Obama’s consciously lying claim in his speech to a tradition of supposed “peace” and “upholding global security” and “morality and justice” including the outright lie of maintaining the Geneva conventions, closing Guantánamo, ending torture, all bolstered by a claim to inherit the mantle of such giant figures of true struggle and battle against oppression and hatred as Martin Luther King.

But the acceptance speech takes even this Top 100 reactionariness to a new level of hypocritical moralising.

A child burien in rubble from the Zionist blitzing of Gaza which Obama turned a blind eye toThe Obama acceptance speech is at a level of such unbelievable bogus hurt innocence and moral posturing as to put the German Nazi “pained necessity” of going to war posturing to shame, with its pretence of a shocking and “unexpected attack on the US” as if as 9/11 had come out of the blue; as if the one-off chance success of a bunch of Saudi anti-imperialist terrorists was in anyway comparable to the onslaught of Germany in 1939, the most powerful industrial power in Europe, and six times greater than the USSR it was to turn against; as if the world has no material and human social, class struggle, causes and movement, just the weird religious mysticism of “evil” abroad suddenly deciding to destroy the shining pure citadel of angelic Americans simply going about their own business.

The role of imperialism in constant world oppression and tyrannical exploitation of the vast majority of humankind has disappeared utterly, replaced with a complete fantasy of moral rectitude and painful “duty” which is beyond sickening and vomit inducing piety.

Imperialism, led by dominant US monopoly capitalism, but supported more or less by all the rich and powerful plundering nations of Europe and Japan, has maintained its fabulous wealth and power by the grinding wage slavery of the working class in even the richest countries and even more the sweatshop and plantation exploitation of the billions of the Third World, kept down in poverty, disease, hunger and the crudest and foulest deprivation of basic human conditions, let alone education, and the resources of normal life.

To do it has meant an endless stream of over 400 coups (Chile 1973,e.g.,) all-out deadly wars (Greece, Malaysia, Vietnam, Korea), blitz attacks (Somalia, Sudan, Libya bombings, Iran, much of the 1990s Iraq “no fly zone”), assassinations (Patrice Lumumba, Mohammed Mosaddeq, and many, many others), depositions, stunted up violent and barbaric counter-revolution (Hungary 1956, Czechoslovakia, Angola, Mozambique, the Nicaraguan contra monsters), pseudo ”workers” movements (Solidarnosc reactionaries in Poland, endless fascist restorationist “colour revolutions” in East Europe, always with the insinuation of potential violence as in Ukraine’s orange stunt e.g.), death squad counter-revolution terrorisation (Angola, Guatemala, Colombia, El Salvador, Nicaragua and much of the rest of Latin America, East Timor, and elsewhere), torturing gangster and fascist stooge installation (Pinochet in Chile, Suharto in Indonesia, Saddat and Mubarak in Egypt, Mobutu in the Congo, Idi Amin in Uganda, Saddam Hussein), numerous vicious military regimes (in Nigeria, and many others in Africa, Latin America, Asia), the apartheid era of killing, torture and oppression in South Africa, and countless military governments, in Nigeria, corruption and oppression in Kenya, gung ho civilian casual strafing and blitzing in Somalia, stunted up anti-communist artificial “self-determination” wars in Eritrea, Georgia, and other former USSR regions, blitzkriegs (Iraq, Afghanistan, Serbia, Somalia) massacres (one million CIA “suspected” communists killed in the “year of living dangerously” in Indonesia’s anti-communist anti-nationalist coup in 1965, invasions (Grenada’s little revolution slaughtered and cruelly imprisoned for 30 years) [see EPSR 1160 or 1191 for a list of most of them].

This bloody torturing oppression has been supplemented by the strangling and devastating trade and economic sieges mounted against Cuba for fifty years (which has managed to prosper because of its communist state despite the imposition of crippling shortages), on the defiant anti-imperialism of Zimbabwe, on Burma’s rejection of Western diktat, (the damage always outrageously blamed on the cliché of supposed “mismanagement” or “economic incompetence”, which is especially rich as the bank crisis of imperialism tips the world towards utter disaster).

And of course there is the complete oppression of the resource and oil rich Middle East, supporting and arming the most backward feudal, torturing and primitive societies like Saudi Arabia’s monster royals, (with all interest in “democracy” vanished out of the window); maintaining by bribery and arm twisting other compliant bourgeois stoogery like Jordan, even Syria, etc; installing and maintaining gangster dictators like Saddam (arming him with chemical weapons and encouraging their use, and pushing him into the 10 year carnage of the Iraq-Iran war) or Egypt’s Mubarak; and most of all ripping away the land of the Palestinians to create the most vicious and manic neo-colonialism of all time in the demented Zionist fascists, to constantly smite and blitzkrieg all signs of regional resistance, with the permanent massacring and punishing of the hapless Palestinian Arabs at the core with an endless round of terrorising, blitzing, massacres, imprisonment, (formal, and de facto in the Gaza strip enclosure etc).

And even within Barack Obama’s own short period there has already been the reactionary and murderous Honduran coup, tacitly and covertly supported in its killing violence by the White House (even as it postures and preens about democracy in Iran e.g.) and the build up of American bases and military force on a large scale in stooge Colombia and Peru to intimidate the rising left nationalism.

Just listen to this astonishing reactionary lying nonsense:


And so I come here with an acute sense of the cost of armed conflict filled with difficult questions about the relationship between war and peace, and our effort to replace one with the other.

These questions are not new. War, in one form or another, appeared with the first man. At the dawn of history, its morality was not questioned; it was simply a fact, like drought or disease the manner in which tribes and then civilizations sought power and settled their differences.

Over time, as codes of law sought to control violence within groups, so did philosophers, clerics and statesmen seek to regulate the destructive power of war. The concept of a “just war” emerged, suggesting that war is justified only when it meets certain preconditions: if it is waged as a last resort or in self-defense; if the forced used is proportional; and if, whenever possible, civilians are spared from violence.


Yes, terrible wars have been fought, and atrocities committed. But there has been no Third World War. The Cold War ended with jubilant crowds dismantling a wall. Commerce has stitched much of the world together. Billions have been lifted from poverty. The ideals of liberty, self-determination, equality and the rule of law have haltingly advanced. We are the heirs of the fortitude and foresight of generations past, and it is a legacy for which my own country is rightfully proud.

A decade into a new century, this old architecture is buckling under the weight of new threats. The world may no longer shudder at the prospect of war between two nuclear superpowers, but proliferation may increase the risk of catastrophe. Terrorism has long been a tactic, but modern technology allows a few small men with outsized rage to murder innocents on a horrific scale.

Moreover, wars between nations have increasingly given way to wars within nations. The resurgence of ethnic or sectarian conflicts, the growth of secessionist movements, insurgencies and failed states have increasingly trapped civilians in unending chaos. In today’s wars, many more civilians are killed than soldiers; the seeds of future conflict are sown, economies are wrecked, civil societies torn asunder, refugees amassed and children scarred.


As someone who stands here as a direct consequence of Dr. King’s life’s work, I am living testimony to the moral force of non-violence. I know there is nothing weak, nothing passive, nothing naive in the creed and lives of Gandhi and King.

But as a head of state sworn to protect and defend my nation, I cannot be guided by their examples alone. I face the world as it is, and cannot stand idle in the face of threats to the American people. For make no mistake: Evil does exist in the world. A nonviolent movement could

The United States of America has helped underwrite global security for more than six decades with the blood of our citizens and the strength of our arms. The service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform has promoted peace and prosperity from Germany to Korea, and enabled democracy to take hold in places like the Balkans. We have borne this burden not because we seek to impose our will. We have done so out of enlightened self-interest because we seek a better future for our children and grandchildren, and we believe that their lives will be better if other people’s children and grandchildren can live in freedom and prosperity.

So yes, the instruments of war do have a role to play in preserving the peace.


To begin with, I believe that all nations strong and weak alike must adhere to standards that govern the use of force. I like any head of state reserve the right to act unilaterally if necessary to defend my nation. Nevertheless, I am convinced that adhering to standards strengthens those who do, and isolates and weakens those who don’t.

The world rallied around America after the 9/11 attacks, and continues to support our efforts in Afghanistan, because of the horror of those senseless attacks and the recognized principle of self-defense. Likewise, the world recognized the need to confront Saddam Hussein when he invaded Kuwait a consensus that sent a clear message to all about the cost of aggression.

Furthermore, America cannot insist that others follow the rules of the road if we refuse to follow them ourselves. For when we don’t, our action can appear arbitrary, and undercut the legitimacy of future intervention no matter how justified.


This becomes particularly important when the purpose of military action extends beyond self-defense or the defense of one nation against an aggressor. More and more, we all confront difficult questions about how to prevent the slaughter of civilians by their own government, or to stop a civil war whose violence and suffering can engulf an entire region.

Even as we make difficult decisions about going to war, we must also think clearly about how we fight it. The Nobel Committee recognized this truth in awarding its first prize for peace to Henry Dunant the founder of the Red Cross, and a driving force behind the Geneva Conventions.

Where force is necessary, we have a moral and strategic interest in binding ourselves to certain rules of conduct. And even as we confront a vicious adversary that abides by no rules, I believe that the United States of America must remain a standard bearer in the conduct of war. That is what makes us different from those whom we fight. That is a source of our strength. That is why I prohibited torture. That is why I ordered the prison at Guantánamo Bay closed. And that is why I have reaffirmed America’s commitment to abide by the Geneva Conventions.

This is nothing more than the restatement and revival of the demented and bullying nonsense which the neocon Bushites pumped out non-stop.

The entire speech is cynical lies from top to bottom in specifics, such as the lie that Guantánamo has been closed (still open after one year of Obama and only now simply being transferred to US prisons - and while plenty of other appalling prisons remain open in Iraq and Afghanistan); or that the US holds to the Geneva convention, even as the rendition flights continue and the CIA atrocities etc which feed it - (the same CIA which Obama has absolved from all criminal liability for the Bush period), and as Obama steps up presidential sanction for civilian blitzing and killing drone attacks in Afghanistan and illegally passing into Pakistan territory, or on Yemeni soil or in Somalia.

Its cod philosophy is the worst petty bourgeois philistinism, of the kind which talks of stone age man as a “making a profit” by hunting animals, a completely non-scientific shallowness pretending that society has always been “capitalist” even before money, accumulation, and even primitive barter trade had developed, let alone commodity production, merchant trade, the eventual emergence of capital and mass markets and the modern sophistication of bank and industrial capital intertwined as monopoly finance capitalism, the specific imperialism analysed by Engels in embryo and Lenin, Bukharin and others in detail.

Such comforting nonsense which the cynical ruling class has always put around was ridiculed into shreds by Marx and Engels in virtually every polemic they made and demolished in their great scientific works which analysed and explained the precise specific historical character and phases of economic development and motion.

In just the same way the idiot talk of “war” somehow “always” being with us is torn to shreds by Marx. Lenin and Engels who explain the very class specific nature of war and its causes in the economic interests of various classes, which change enormously according to historic epoch and nature of society, with different characteristics in different epochs, from the skirmishes between hunter gatherers in ancient times, necessary to defend territory, to the organised warfare of slave society (and the taking of slaves which was such crucial part in building the wealth and power of the great slave empires like the Romans, which took human society forwards at the time); to the marauding, and defence against it, which was a feature of feudalism, degenerating eventually into the constant plundering wars of the aristocratic knights and lords which eventually helped make this form of society in turn intolerable, to be replaced by bourgeois capitalist rule and its world colonialist exploitation and eventually the monopoly capitalist inter-imperialist conflicts of the modern times.

Wars in capitalist times have also had specific features from the progressive battles against the old feudalism and its networks of constricting localised allegiances, to fuse people into the great nations of modern times producing the great markets necessary for mass production, and then wars to dominate and exploit the world by conquest and annexation as colonies, or to dominate it economically, in modern times, for shared neo-colonial exploitation (with the biggest share going to the biggest power and its mighty corporations, the USA).

Other wars in the period have been revolutionary, to win independence nationally, and increasingly to throw off this ever more unsustainable burden of tyrannical monopoly capitalist domination, and the corresponding attacks and onslaughts of imperialism to constantly intimidate and re-impose this exploitation, a stream of interventions and wars as detailed above, for the entire post-war period of US domination in particular.

And breaking out eventually and cataclysmically are the great wars of imperialism to carve up and re-carve up the world according to the uneven development of capitalism, constantly changing the relative power and capacity of the various great powers, which throws their “fair shares” of the plunder ever more out of line, creating intolerable imbalances, which come to an explosive need for resolution.

But most of all as a war pressure is the underlying general “overproduction” crisis of capitalism which eventually rules out further expansion (which previously allows some accommodation of the crisis contradictions) and demands a mass conflict to impose the crisis on weaker competitors and force on them a general destruction of capital, insanely “solving” the crisis of “too much stuff” (for profit making - not for human need) by destroying most of it.

As the EPSR has long analysed, the decade long drive to war by imperialism now is part of this process heading the world back to the disastrous conflicts of WW1 and WW2 to escape its greatest ever catastrophic failure and economic, social and cultural disintegration, starting with Serbia, Afghanistan and Iraq.

It has already gone beyond the inter-imperialist collusion of 1918-1939, when Germany was set up as the “aggressive one” (backed and colluded with by all the imperialist powers and their anti-Soviet interests), to get the necessary destructive inter-imperialist sorting out underway.

This time the inevitable crisis of monopoly capitalism has degenerated so far and so fast (after years of constant dollar printing crisis deferral, polluting the entire world trading system with ultimately valueless paper, to maintain the completely artificial Cold War “boomtime”) that the dominant imperialist power itself has had take on the Nazi role, to “shock and awe” an increasingly discontent and rebellious world back into submission and to ride out the terrifying trade-war slump degeneration into all-out inter-imperialist World War.

Obama-ism has done nothing but continue the essence of that degeneration, modified only by the shattering defeats already experienced by imperialism and the failure of the despised Bushism it has caused, alongside the lurch into full-blown crisis.

But this last ditch trickery which the petty bourgeois "lefts" deluded themselves with (even when they pretended to be very knowing about Obama-ism) is already causing mass disillusionment:

A calling to account is not the same as “a lazy cry of betrayal”. There’s nothing lazy about it: since day one of the inauguration, many of us have been shocked to see Obama going into reverse on his campaign pledges faster than Lewis Hamilton in an F1 car.

The president may have failed to protect low- and middle-income Americans from the Wall Street predators who created our financial mess – indeed, they are his closest advisers.

He may have brusquely fired or exiled some of his most progressive staff as unwanted baggage. And his attorney general is starting to act like one of George Bush’s henchmen: attempting to protect the previous administration’s torture enablers, such as the infamous lawyer John Yoo. Obama’s most recent Oslo speech, accepting the Nobel peace prize, on the heels of his caving in to his captor generals in sending 30,000 more soldiers into the Afghan bloodbath, was chilling in its implications, extending a long tradition, going back to Woodrow Wilson, of war-making for liberal, “humanitarian” reasons. No wonder politicians such as Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich and a whole museum-load of neocons welcomed his Oslo “pragmatism” as “hardheaded and pro-American”.

Where Obama is succeeding is in dividing what remains of the American left between a majority of Obama-no-matter-what-he-does partisans and a minority of undeniers like myself.

As I write, Obama is desperate to rally support for the corpse of the health bill he emasculated with the help of pharmaceutical and insurance lobbyists. He’s been dreadful on jobs, neurotically passive where he should be pounding the pulpit, Roosevelt-style, and pouring money into shovel-in-the-ground work.

As president he’s got enormous leverage to whip Congressional “centrists” into line – an off-year election is coming up, and candidates need his party’s money. But Obama in office has turned out to be strangely aloof and distant from people’s real anxieties. We thought we were electing a community organiser in the Saul Alinsky mould and what we have is a Harvard law professor in the line of John Kennedy’s “best and brightest” who dragged us into Vietnam.

My personal breaking point, after months of jaw-dropping astonishment at Obama’s betrayals, was his refusal almost alone of the world’s leaders to ban child-killing landmines and cluster bombs. His state department announced this shameful policy on Thanksgiving eve, as if to hide it from public notice. Obama is continuing Bush’s policy of refusing to honour an international anti-personnel landmine ban – the Ottawa treaty – signed by 158 nations.

It’s so cruel and pointless. Mostly the victims are the rural poor, many of them children of the same age as the president’s two daughters. They die from shock or blood loss far from any hospital; and the survivors suffer amputations and blinding.

I can’t help but imagine my teenage son being blown to pieces because he’s got the curiosity to pick up an enticing yellow-finned cluster bomblet. Why can’t Obama imagine it for his kids? Since the official story is that the United States no longer produces or deploys these horrible weapons, why not ban the things? “National defence needs” is the answer: please.

I voted and worked hard for Obama in 2008, partly because I admired his wonderful mother, Ann Dunham, who like my own mother once survived on food stamps and raised her son in liberal feminist New Deal values. On the campaign trail, and still today, Obama repeatedly invokes his mother as “the dominant figure in my formative years ... the values she taught me continue to be my touchstone …”

If Ann Dunham were alive today she – like Cindy Sheehan, who lost her son to a needless war in Iraq – would camp outside the White House office and demand: “Son, what are you thinking?”

The temptation to say “more fool you and your petty bourgeois illusions (or rather delusions) in ‘liberal feminist New Deal values’ whatever they are supposed to be – and the rest of the single issue panoply of evasions from revolutionary theory” is very strong.

But the real interest of these admissions lies in how the Obama presidency will be part of the huge lessons being taught by the onrushing crisis to the working class and some more thoughtful sections of the intelligentsia and middle class, in just how much they have been fooled in the past.

As Marxism has long explained, 99% of the understanding of the reality of imperialism is eventually taught to the masses by the increasing brutality, chaos and viciousness it is forced to impose in order to try and maintain its rule as crisis accelerates.

The remaining crucial part of understanding must come from the conscious scientific revolutionary perspective of the world which only a constantly evolving Leninist struggle for understanding can achieve, via building a party of a new kind making that task its central work, and thereby being able to give the revolutionary leadership in unity and conflict with the working class to take and hold power, and end capitalism for good.

Build Leninism

Don Hoskins

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Crisis fears of capitalist state breakdown underlies Tory vigilante justice AND petty bourgeois “law and order” calls

Fear of the total breakdown of all society into complete “everyone for themselves” anarchy caused by the now cataclysmic failure of capitalism, which the maniac “quantitative easing” money printing can only hold off for a time, lies behind the Tory support for the vigilante justice meted out in the recent “cricket bat” case.

The reversal of the usual “red-faced colonel” defence of “law and order” and its insistence on the right of the capitalist state to alone rule society shows how close to the surface is bourgeois uncertainty, weakness and fear of societal breakdown.

The ruling class is well aware of the depth of the disastrous failure of its system and how imminent is a return to the terrifying meltdown briefly revealed to the public in the pant-wetting days of bank failure in October 2008.

The kind of complete systems collapse luridly speculated on in TV and film fantasies recently (e.g. Day of the Triffids) was openly and seriously discussed in capitalist circles and the bourgeois press as bank after bank toppled and smaller countries like Iceland faced bankruptcy.

It is still not ruled out at all for many other countries, and particularly Britain, which is one of the most dependent in the world on food and resources imports, which could dry up overnight in the event of currency collapse or credit failure, leaving supermarket shelves empty, fuel stations dry and gas pipes blocked off.

Contrary to the deliberately cynical lying of Gordon Brown and the Labourites about “ten years of prosperity” to come, even bourgeois economic commentators are once again pointing to the British capitalist economy as one of the most vulnerable in the increasingly vicious international trade and currency war climate, especially as further credit implosions have hit Dubai, Greece, and assorted East European former soviet countries, mortgaged to the hilt to the carpet bagging Western credit and bank agencies (which plundered their deluded petty bourgeois anti-communists dry as soon as the dictatorship of the proletariat and their state economies were dismantled after 1989).

All of them are on the brink of total failure and Britain, while much larger, is not far behind, as one of the least competitive major powers.

In such a climate the “right” of property holders to defend their own against marauders, and more particularly perhaps against the possible growing organisation of the “underclasses” to defend themselves and try and survive total collapse, becomes paramount for the bourgeoisie.

It is no coincidence that Munir Hussain and the brother and friends he called upon to chase an intruder and beat him to the ground were relatively well-off businessmen, unlike the dirt poor backwoods farmer Tony Martin who was initially given a life sentence for similar self-defence ten years ago, though in his case within his own home and with no pursuit and street punishment.

In slightly more stable times the primary concern of the mainstream bourgeoisie was to maintain state authority as previously analysed [EPSR 1041 21April 2000]:

Telling victims of lawlessness that it is they who are the biggest threat to the “good name of law and order” is such an obscene joke that the whole country is now jeering derisively at the powers-that-be.

A whipped-up hysteria against “violence as a solution” in these circumstances can only push many closer to the realisation that the capitalist system is already incurably violent anyway, in all that it does.

Forcing the public to take sides between the thieving culture of young tearaways, and the “string ‘em up” reaction of an older generation, has not just imposed anger-making impossible contradictions but has provoked much deeper concern about what is going wrong that leaves these as the only choices, apparently.

Not so, of course. The obvious alternative is to indict the values of private enterprise which encourage a large proportion of disadvantaged young working class to consider illegally getting for themselves things which the more advantaged classes (but just as corrupt) take for granted; and which encourage older less-well-off folk to fear losing what little property or security they do have as though it were life itself.

By lashing out at the ageing fruitfarmer Tony Martin in this incredible way, the capitalist ruling class are showing that the welfare of neither party, caught up in this sad burgled farmhouse clash is the real concern. What the Norwich court was protecting was the system’s own right to rule, unchallenged by vigilantes. Its unexpressed fears were that all laws might soon be flouted if a firm stand was not taken now against people “taking things into their own hands”.

It is the ideology of the whole bourgeoisie which is showing the really serious paranoia, not the eccentric recluse Farmer Martin. The ruling elite sense that the affairs of their profiteering racket are going badly wrong, looking at an imminent crash in the world shares market and terrifyingly signs of galloping trade war about to break out. In such a mood of uncertainty and fear, unbalanced or draconian judgements can increasingly be expected in all spheres, but with particular feverishness in all matters of law and order. In a vague atmosphere of impending collapse, keeping firm control, anyhow, and by any example, will be uppermost in many ruling class minds.

But in lashing out at Tony Martin in this ludicrously misjudged way, the decrepit British bourgeoisie, a bad bet for survival anyway in the forthcoming inter-imperialist holocaust has possibly done itself much more harm than good.

The British imperialist state machinery’ administration of its Norfolk branch affair has deservedly brought the whole system into disrepute with the life sentence on a local farmer for shooting a burglar.

The hoax bourgeois ‘philosophical’ notion about the supposed ‘rule of law’ is risking exposure under this spotlight as being the most hypocritical and vicious nonsense in all of capitalism’s ideological brainwashing.

Sadly, all the indignant commentaries and correspondence have missed the direct challenge this farce poses to the system; of asking what punishment should capitalist society then deserve for creating this all-round mess in the first place?

But the secondary issues of why are urban youth so out-of-control and into robbing; and why are some vulnerable feeling people reduced to hermit-like conditions: and why are the police so useless, all pose searching questions about the incurable anarchy and cultural decadence of the free market, which lead on to querying its whole viability any more.

Martin has been picked on for this demonstration that ‘justice is sovereign’ precisely because a description of his lifestyle and prejudices can be portrayed as ‘extremist’ or of ‘malicious intent’, etc.

But the crucial question is not what can be dredged up from hearsay about his unconsidered mouthings. He was not convicted for being ‘fascist’ or ‘batty’, which would have been impossible to prove anyway, on the evidence. He was convicted for being obsessed about his property being broken into and burgled, and for taking exaggeratedly fearful precautions to deter or prevent this from happening. It was this manic behaviour which set him up to be accused of unreasonable force in shooting the young burglar Fred Barras.

As extremely unsavoury a character as Martin may be, the essence of his preparations and his action had one content only, self-protection, to defend himself and his Bleak House from harm in circumstances where all agree that the police are incapable of offering protection, where the elements in society which can turn a sizeable section of the population into a threat to the security of others, are effectively out of control.

In other words, this society is being told that there is no guarantee from harm at all, up to and including extreme harm. And it is commonly accepted that this means telling the public to expect to have to be vigilant in their own self-defence or self-protection. Certainly few public pronouncements are ever likely to be heard advising people to submit gracefully and quietly to any crime they are threatened with. Just the opposite. Have-a-go heroes are routinely being lauded in the media and in official praise and rewards. Society would look intolerably stupid if it tried recommending anything else.

But in this one-off tragic incident where an ageing resident has actually psyched himself up to have a go, even though faced with a young gang in a terrifying night-time burglary, it is the victim of the intended criminal chaos who is scapegoated for a lifetime prison sentence.

It makes no sense in terms of supposedly encouraging citizen vigilance but then making out a completely artificial case for ‘proving’ that the response by an ageing resident to a frightening night-time gang intrusion was ‘unreasonably’ judged. This has got to be some kind of sick joke. What if Martin is perpetually prone in all his life’s doings to ‘unreasonable judgements’? Does that mean that only people with a qualification in ‘very reasonable’ judgements are allowed to try to protect themselves?? It is nuts. Another agenda is at work here entirely.

The wretched legal influence in this case coming from the heart of the government establishment on such a prominent public issue, has seemingly decided to declare war on any in society who think that the general security of life is in no way satisfactory, and that people should take action themselves to protect their own, their family, and their community interests.

The suspicion is that this wretched system is firing a warning shot across the bows of all who would be willing to spread the social mentality that people should be prepared to impose their own law and order on circumstances which capitalism is incapable of controlling, for any reason. In other words, an attempt is being launched to whip up the more ‘law-abiding’ sections of the population to insist that the biggest catastrophe of all facing the country would be for the notion of ‘taking the law into one’s own hands’ being anything other than viciously suppressed.

But such a hoped for ‘law and order’ brigade are likely to be increasingly asked: ‘What law and order?’

Law and order issues have not gone away, and the bourgeoisie still tries to tread a line between “the law” but increasingly aware of giving its own kind the right to “defend themselves” (where poorer mortals would find less sympathy). But this time it is the middle “liberal” petty bourgeois which is defending the status quo:

Finding Hussain guilty of causing grievous bodily harm with intent, the judge said: “It is somewhat ironic that by reason of the head injuries inflicted upon him he [Walid Salem] was unfit to plead and could not be sentenced to the very long period of imprisonment which would otherwise have been imposed upon him.”

Instead, as was widely reported last week, it was the respectable, rich and formerly law-abiding Mr Hussain and his brother, Tokeer, who both received prison sentences, for 30 and 39 months respectively. Summing up, the judge prophesied that these sentences, lenient in the light of the extreme provocation endured, would yet prove controversial. “It may be that some members of the public or media commentators will assert that the man Salem deserved what happened to him at the hands of you and the two others involved,” the judge told the Hussains, “and that you should not have been prosecuted and need not be punished.”

...However carefully you summarise the case for conviction, pointing out that the antagonist does not even claim to have acted in self-defence, that the attack took place some distance from his house and family, and that a witness who saw the assault – of a man who was running away – likened it to the action of a “pack of animals”, you know that it will make no difference. None of these details will be allowed to weaken the desired narrative: innocent householder jailed, offending scum set free, case for vigilantism resoundingly confirmed.

For many commentators, Mr Hussain’s status as a wealthy and devout family man, who was just back from his prayers when his family was subjected to a terrifying assault, appears to make him a lot more appealing than the solitary, tormented farmer, Tony Martin. Now free, after serving three years for killing a burglar, the farmer has endorsed the BNP, which, in turn, promised a “Tony Martin law” allowing homeowners to defend their property against criminals.

Perhaps the obvious difficulty that the BNP might face in championing the actions of Mr Hussain helps explain why both commentators and bloggers, on the left as well as the right, have been so eager to gloss over the more disturbing aspects of his heroics. That Mr Hussain was unable to explain how a carful of supporters, none of whom had personally been threatened by Salem, should suddenly have materialised to assist with the reprisal, has barely given pause. Instead, Hussain’s vigorous and effective application of old-fashioned retribution, to a point where he may easily have killed his enemy, has been widely cheered as a beacon of justice in a land where faith in law enforcement has all but broken down.

Supporters, in their hundreds, have agreed with commentators who say Hussain’s experience was “every father/man’s worst nightmare”. ...

...male bloggers have shown a rhetorical machismo that makes Hemingway look like a girl. Given a chance, assert these warriors, they would personally kill any scrote, toerag, scumbag or piece of human filth that dared to mess with their families. They shower praise on Hussain, propose that he be given a medal, adduce his feats as an argument for guns and as evidence of contemptible police failure. “If the authorities are incapable of dealing with the human excrement like the type who attacked Mr Hussain,” writes a typical sympathiser, “then they deserve no mercy when the ordinary men and women of this country exact their own brand of justice on the scum that are ruining our lives.”

Yet more provoking for the vigilante posse is that in this case a judge and jury appear to have taken it upon themselves to act as judge and jury. Hussain was not sentenced until 12 bona fide ordinary men and women, having heard the evidence, found him guilty. It is hard, once you have read anything about this case, to imagine how they could have done otherwise. Anyone who thinks Hussain should have been excused punishment is, as the judge suggested, endorsing a brutal free for all in which the rule of law counts for nothing.

If, as may easily have happened, Salem had died in the revenge attack, Hussain’s men would have administered the ultimate punishment on a charge of unlawful imprisonment (curiously, it was not clear that theft motivated the invasion). And even if one forgave Hussain’s actions, given the provocation, how would this precedent serve those of us who, since we can’t run down the street and half-kill our enemies, are forced to rely on conventional justice?

Even though one can’t be sure, given the stimulating influence of blogging anonymity, how many of Hussain’s champions would really like to swap civilisation for the survival of the fittest, the expression, in hundreds of remarkably homogeneous posts, of a general rage against police uselessness, against lenient sentencing and a privileging of criminals’ over victims’ rights, is something that should interest David Cameron, if not the Home Office.

Civilisation!!!! Hardly the word for the blitzing, torturing, civilian killing, Palestine massacring, warmongering, disintegrating, chauvinist, hate-ridden, monopoly capitalist order in which “survival of the fittest” or rather complete dog-eat-dog vicious competitiveness and hatred-inducing antagonism and foot-in-the-face greed, (or even just scrambling for survival) is the only condition for humans, suppressing and destroying all the great potential and genius of the great masses, especially throughout the Third World.

What swap????

It is not the “fittest” who profit but the tiny privileged or occasionally lucky minority, at the expense of the great exploited majority.

It is when the great majority finally decide to take matters into their own hands, organised on a class basis to take power and seize the huge industries and financial resources which capitalism is taking ever closer to destruction on a world scale, because its profit system is historically out of time and failed, that they can “swap” – away from such alienated viciousness.

A fair system of justice and law for the majority, run by the dictatorship of the proletariat initially and eventually by the self-organisation of rationally developed humanity, as the old reactionary pressures die away along with private ownership of the means of production, and communist clarity and understanding becomes universal, is alone what will constitute the real ascent to civilisation.

Its time is rapidly drawing closer as the world learns again just how devastating and destructive imperialism can be, prepared to do anything to keep its sweet power.

It needs revolution to turn it over, only possible by building a Leninist leadership and understanding.

Steven Tudy

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