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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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Back issue

No 1389 28th June 2011

Lurching Greek debt collapse confirms again that capitalist catastrophic collapse has not only NOT stopped and (lyingly) become “recovery” but nor can it. It spirals ever faster into total chaos and war everywhere. Slump savagery and class war “cuts” imposed on all because of monopoly capitalism’s shaming incompetence and greed, have lifted mass consciousness everywhere to a new level of revolt against exploitation tyranny. But it remains hamstrung by the lack of revolutionary consciousness which is not only not developed by dozens of fake-“lefts” but headed off by their capitulation to bourgeois war lies and “democracy” frauds, feeding the Goebbels victimisation of Libya, Syria etc, deliberately started counter-revolutions to confuse and suppress the Arab Spring. Trots the most poisonous but Eurocommunist remnants too. Museum Stalinists keep feeding out pacifist idiocies that disarmed workers for decades and cover-up mistakes. Leninism alone is the vital answer

The obvious paralysing unsolvability of the Greek debt crisis, the stomach-churning panic of “debt contagion” and increasingly insane, life-destroying, demented, vicious (and expensive) NATO war blitzing and torture are the twin aspects of a class-rule system which has hit the buffers.

And the answer it demands is just as obvious – the ending of a capitalist system which has left the world in catastrophic failure, spiralling ever faster into utter disaster and an eventual worldwide scale of destruction, the world war “solution” (exceeding even 1914 and 1939) of a moribund ruling class.

Like some inherited-debt bond-slave in Calcutta (a barbaric practice still engaged in by the alleged “freedom and democracy” running India, and in plenty more of the Third World) there is no escape for the Greek masses who face only ever deeper deprivation and euphemistic “austerity” (poverty and misery).

Just as there is no escape for the Irish, the Portuguese shortly, the Spanish and the bankrupted British economy too, in fact, and plenty more to follow.

The harder they work the deeper into debt they will go, sucked dry by the parasitic and ruthless demands of the international financiers, speculators, hedge-funds and traders.

And, as any cursory understanding of economics will show, the same applies to the working class everywhere else in the monopoly capitalist world and its interlinked, interpenetrated “free market” world exploitation system.

As the panicky bourgeois journalists have been writing, the entire European and even world banking system could be toppled overnight by a failure in Greece, threatening even worse immediate chaos than in the autumn of 2008.

So fearful is the bourgeoisie that the normally impassive “authority” of the Bank of England has even cracked:

The crisis enveloping the eurozone is a “mess” that poses the “most serious and immediate” risk to the UK banking system, Sir Mervyn King warned on Friday as he called for banks to provide more information on their exposures in the region.

In his new role of chairman of the financial policy committee (FPC), the new “guardian of the resilience of the UK financial system”, King also warned that banks may be providing a “misleading picture of their financial health” if they were not making big enough provisions for borrowers having difficulty repaying loans. So-called forbearance has taken place in up to 12% of mortgages, including 30-80% in the commercial property sector.

Bank shares led the FTSE 100 index lower amid fears of new bad debt losses in the sector, and after King called on banks to build up more capital when financial conditions allowed rather than pay out dividends to shareholders or bonuses to staff.

“In good times, banks should retain more of those earnings rather than distribute them to shareholders or as compensation,” King said.

King was asked whether the crisis gripping the markets – caused by fears that Greece may default – could spark a meltdown on the scale of the one caused by the Lehman Brothers collapse. He replied: “I am not sure that the sovereign crisis now and what happened in the case of Lehman Brothers have much in common, other than the fact that it is a mess.”

UK banks’ exposure to Greece directly was “remarkably small”, he said, but he warned that the bigger risk was a “crisis of confidence”.

“There is always uncertainty about the scale of exposures... which counter-parties out there are the ones which are heavily exposed,” he said. “That uncertainty can lead at various points for funders of banks... to draw back, and there can be a crisis of confidence in sentiment.”

The ruling class is not going to give away too much to the working class about how serious the problems are, particularly as it always places very heavy weight on its class “confidence”.

But even if the desperate moves to prop up the Greek economy with yet more paper credit (and stepped up exploitation) should manage to put off the next lurch in the disaster for the moment, it will not stave off the unrolling of the crisis.

There was and is no “recovery” possible anywhere.

Only Leninist science has constantly and consistently warned the working class of this for over three decades when none of the fake-“left” said a word about, or even understood Marxist crisis, and simply mocked the idea as “barmy catastrophism” and “out-of-date unsophisticated dogma”.

But now the entire monopoly system has hit the wall, its long accumulated contradictions stifling and choking all production (see economics box on page 6).

The great heart-stopping bank failures of 2008 when this overproduction failure broke through the smug complacency, lies and pretences, and all developments since, vindicate and confirm the Marxist view and disprove all the bourgeois professorial theories and explanations however many Nobel prizes their authors have won.

Every desperate move by capitalism now can only make matters worse.

Decades of post-war dollar printing by dominant US imperialism has continually put off the ever present “overproduction” crisis of the system by pumping worthless paper and credit into the world trade system (and bribing dozens of tinpot little fascist regimes with it to keep things smooth).

But it could only ever defer the day of reckoning, of inevitable and unstoppable collapse, while simultaneously intensifying and widening the impact of the eventual collapse to an unprecedented level.

The implosions of 2008 were hours from collapsing world trade overnight shutting down cash machines, payments, loans, and everything else in unimaginable chaos.

The quantitative easing (reckless printing of surreal trillions of even more worthless dollars) used to “solve” the pants-wetting panic of three years ago has changed nothing, only extending the disaster even further and itself feeding in rampant inflation which threatens to go out of control at any minute on top of the credit disasters taking out country after country.

“Debt reduction” too is savaging millions of lives (except among the bankers and other parts of the tiny ruling class) in Slump cuts and even imminent starvation in the Third World.

Bailouts of whole countries are only generalising the banking failures.

Waves of Stock Market and other financial panics are the foreshocks of yet more giant disasters to come.

The whole capitalist structure is dust-rotten to the centre, eaten away by the contradictions of too much stuff being produced (that can be sold for profit) and ready to disintegrate.

However much the working class twists and turns within this disaster it faces the same ruling class imposed “logic” of desperate Slump deprivation and speed-up, (pushed down to levels the ruthlessly exploited Third World has endured for decade after decade, even in “boom times”), as the monstrously unfair “rights” demanded by the fabulously wealthy private owners of capital to slice off an enormous share of all the value produced in the world (which labour alone creates) are asserted come what may, even though this parasitic distortion has once more strangled the world economy and brought it to total debt meltdown.

Greece cannot go forwards because of the giant millstone of debts around its neck imposed by the bigger capitalists, relentlessly demanding their pound of flesh, and the more so as the crisis of the capitalist system drives the big monopolist combines and corporations into greater and greater desperation and cutthroat competition to survive.

If it pays it suffers, and the workers are pushed into penury; if it does not pay, it can borrow no more and it suffers just the same.

And even if it could “independently” carry on as a capitalist power it would still face disaster in the desperate cutthroat struggle for declining markets which capitalist “overproduction” has once again brought things to (producing a vast “surplus” of goods which are urgently needed everywhere but which cannot be sold at a profit).

The obvious answer to all this is to cut through the Gordian knot – seizing the industries, banks, farms and factories under working class control, taking them into common ownership to allow a new start, under a completely new way of organising society for planned, rational production in harmony with nature and natural resources, with all the value produced (by workers’ efforts) being used fairly and equally for peoples’ needs (actual needs, not advertising-forced wasteful consumerism), rather than the all-consuming profit demands of privately held capital.

But this simple answer is still not being put before the working class.

Not even the most vociferously “left” of the alleged “workers movement” declares this to be the real practical task now for the working class (rather than some academic postulate for the distant never-reached future set out in long turgid “theoretical” articles).

If it is mentioned in passing, it is only as the “ultimate” aim for when “conditions are ripe”, while other invariably reformist, pacifist and protest politics are to be followed “in the meantime”.

In such academic discussions conditions are always those of the “meantime”, and the actual lead given always is just more of the same old opportunist reformism and parliament effectively, however “radical” the particular candidate being supported.

Even at the last election not one of the fake-“lefts” explained the Leninist tactic of using the parliamentary platform for one purpose only – to denounce parliament and the democracy racket in order to expand revolutionary understanding.

In practice all the fine words about revolution were abandoned.

But it is not as if the world is not ready.

So glaring is the disaster being imposed on the whole world by the putrefying and historically bankrupt capitalist class rule and exploitation that tens of thousands, and hundreds of thousands, and tens of hundreds of thousands of people have already been driven onto the streets to challenge the destructive insanity of a profit-driven world.

This unprecedented and spreading rebellion goes way beyond the seething ferment of anti-imperialist hatred and hostility which has long fought back against to the endless exploitation imposed on the Third World and the degeneracy of the capitalist “culture” it supports (for the rich).

Growing and irreversible maturing of the world’s once cowed masses, formerly awed by capitalist sophistication and firepower, has already expressed itself for over three decades in assorted isolated “terrorist” attacks, national insurgencies and struggles, anti-imperialist intransigence in various “rogue” states and dogged liberation fights, above all in the heroic Palestinian intifada.

Its resistance in Afghanistan and Iraq, if not totally defeating imperialism has paralysed and bled-white its “shock and awe” renewed colonialism to the point of stalemate.

But the piecemeal struggles, under often contradictorily backward ideologies, are being overtaken (though they may continue for some time yet here and there).

There is a qualitative revolutionary jump forwards into mass rebellion.

The savagery of the unemployment, wage and social cuts being imposed on workers everywhere in even the richest of countries and the increasingly ludicrous lies and stories being pumped out by Western Goebbels propaganda to keep its faltering wars and counter-revolutions going in the Middle East and elsewhere (to head off rebellion and distract attention from capitalist incompetence and indifference) will add tens of millions more to their ranks as the crisis spirals ever faster into complete chaos.

Even the least “political” of minds numbed by philistine Hollywood culture and consumerist shallowness, and stranded by the post-war failure of revisionist politics, are beginning to ask where it will all stop and how savage it can become.

Revolutionary theory is the vital missing element.

Marxism was built for this giant debate, the scientific grasp of the world that can give the great masses the framework to see and understand the depths of the devastating crisis in front of them, so that they themselves can develop the struggle for the only possible way out of it, a fight to the finish of eight centuries of bourgeois class rule and establishment of the working class in power.

But from the fake-“lefts” of all shades who have postured and pretended to be “revolutionaries” for decades throughout the long artificially sustained post-war “boom”, nothing emerges but the old opportunist manoeuvring around the parliamentary system.

It is combined with pacifist protest at best, hedged round with limited “war for oil” perspectives and incorrect support for confusion like Gaddafi – or foul complicity and collusion with imperialism’s “war on terror” and Nazi counter-revolutions at worst.

None of them begin to see the world revolutionary transformation taking place before their eyes because their grasp of reality was long ago dulled and blunted either by revisionist illusions in “peace struggle” and the idiotic notion that capitalism was just a “paper tiger” to be “contained” by peace pressure until it just faded away, or even more foul petty bourgeois Trotskyist hatred for the disciplined reality of the workers states.

For all their claims to be “communists” etc there is still no leadership in practice from the any of the dozens of fake-“left” parties which posture and preen in ever expanding onion layers of reformist “leftism” and pretend r-r-revolutionism.

The great mass is left running round after pointless illusions in “democracy”, in Egypt for example (where the struggle will be hijacked by capitalist parliamentary manipulation and fraud without deeper revolutionary leadership), or of pacifist pleading in the “advanced” countries to “Stop the War”, the same ineffectual, disarming and misleading garbage that has paralysed the world class struggle for the last six decades in “peaceful roads” and “parliamentary ways”, ignoring all the lessons of history from Chilean coups to Pentagon “endless” warmongering.

What the workers and others opposing imperialism do not hear is any explanation of the class dictatorship (fascist) essence of bourgeois class rule which is coming ever more openly to the surface as its grip on history and the domination of the planet’s wealth and labour power is loosened and the boss class becomes more fearful and more desperate.

And they hear nothing of the only possible counter to this increasingly bloody, torturing intimidation and repression which is being imposed everywhere as the slump deepens and threatens to stir the masses into terrifying (for the ruling class) action – the dictatorship of the proletariat.

That alone can impose a working class order on the world which will allow the development and building of socialism to be worked out by the ordinary people, free of exploitation (and free therefore of the contradictions which lead to market crashes etc etc).

But all this is “premature” say the fake-“lefts” and would just lead to provocations allowing the ruling class to clamp down.

To which the answer is firstly try stopping the great masses from pouring onto the streets anyway as the crisis bites harder and harder.

And look to the clamping down that the ruling class has already been instigating (from bombing and blitzing wars to torture and giant prison camps, escalating domestic surveillance and police repression) and will carry through anyway as material conditions drive the turmoil towards ever more intense class war.

Secondly the only reason things might be “premature” is because the vital perspective and understanding of the full scale of the struggle facing them has not been presented to workers.

And thirdly such gloomy defeatism reflects the small petty bourgeois class view of all such groups which are always completely in thrall to capitalism, in awe of the ruling class and for all their posing, unable to comprehend the finish and ending of the capitalist world authority.

That is the criminal failure of the “lefts” always tying workers to protest and “reforms”.

The understanding that this capitalist private ownership is the contradiction driving the world into failure, collapse and back to World War has been around for 150 years, since the gigantic talents of Karl Marx, Friederich Engels, Vladimir Lenin and many others first analysed the problems scientifically to lead the world socialist revolutionary movement.

So too is the understanding that no amount of reforms will stop it reverting to ever worse disaster.

And so too has been the understanding of the need to end it via the dictatorship of the working class which was first developed in the preface to the Communist Manifesto (still excellent, profound and necessary reading) after the first great attempt to establish socialism, the Paris Commune had been drowned in blood, shot down by the thousands by the bourgeoisie in 1871.

It was explained even more clearly in Lenin’s State and Revolution.

This perspective is what needs to be fed into the great rising ferment of debate and questions to stimulate crucial understanding of the revolutionary nature of the world and the need for the relentless class war struggle to take matters to a historic end.

The unbelievable indolence, power and luxury which the tiny (a couple of million out of the 6000 million human population) capitalist ruling class wallows in, like so many Roman Emperors (but on a fabulously indulgent scale which would leave Tiberius or Caligula gobsmacked), is not going to be given up willingly.

Constant counter-revolution, subversion, disruption, sabotage and all-out war blitzkrieg has been visited on every attempt of the working class and anti-colonialist masses to fight back and seriously change the world, starting with the great Soviet Revolution from day one when it took power in 1917 to end the horrific slaughter of capitalism’s first Great War crisis disaster.

Three years of bombing, shelling and invasion by a dozen foreign powers backed local civil war White Russian fascist reactionaries (as Washington, London and Tel Aviv now back counter-revolutionaries in Libya and Syria) to try and suppress Lenin’s revolution immediately (on top of the four years of trench slaughter already suffered).

Then came the twenty-year rise of Nazism and the Hitlerite invasion (tacitly supported by all the imperialist powers) which wiped out half the Soviet Union, everything it had built and 30 million lives, with permanent encirclement by even more terrifying nuclear bombers ever after (which the US had already shown in Japan it was prepared to use – the only nation ever to do so).

The idiot Gorbachevite letting go of the need to maintain the siege discipline of the workers’ state dictatorship (KGB etc), because of revisionist philosophical stupidity and illusions in the “free market”, has only underlined the point as the oligarchic carpet-bagging plunder of working class achievements has driven the Russian working class back into deprivation and has tied post-Soviet Moscow into the spiralling crisis collapse of capitalist debt finance.

And throughout the Cold War and since, there has a been a nonstop stream of hundreds of massacres, murders, coups, invasions, full out wars, counter-revolutionary provocations and torture through CIA subversion, stooge fascist dictators and “international community” (Nazi NATO) invasions, not to mentions the slow daily violence of lack of housing, nonexistent sanitation, educational deprivation, disease, poverty and starvation killing tens of millions annually (including millions of small children) and leaving tens of millions more in agony and want.

The long developing US-dominated world capitalist crisis failure got only the smallest of breathing spaces from the (temporary) setback of USSR liquidation, reverting to currency collapses, trade war and regular market meltdowns ever since, partially in South America, in permanently stagnating Japan, in the Asian “Tiger” currency meltdowns.

But that has only intensified the Goebbels frenzy replacing the Cold War fantasy “communist menace” with the even more ludicrous “war on terror” excuses to step up generalised “shock and awe” terrorising by Washington dominance (and its outrider monopoly capitalist powers).

War is the only way out for the ruling class just as it was in 1914 and 1939, to distract mass attention from the disasters and to try and push the burdens onto the rest of the world, while destroying as much of the “over-produced” capital (financial, physical and output goods) as possible.

So why is all this not ringing out?

Because it would raise 1001 revolutionary questions which the entire fake-“left” wants to avoid, is the simple answer.

Because it would expose the degenerate opportunism of the reformist “Labour” “democrats”, up to their necks in warmongering collusion with imperialism (which they run for it when the ruling class Tories are facing too much hostility); expose the smug petty bourgeois comfort of the Trotskyist pretend-revolutionaries who hate the reality of the workers states, and in practice prop up the Labourite racket with endless “left pressure” calls and “conditional support” humbug; and expose the philosophical degeneration and cover-ups of the Stalinist revisionists, who also prop up the existing order with their parliamentarianism, their pacifist “Stop the War - Stop the Cuts” ineffectuality and in-practice reformism (despite revolutionary pretences and posturing from some).

Even worse, most of the fake-“left” feed the monstrous warmongering of capitalism being used to evade and escape its responsibility for the crisis by diverting attention to alleged “enemies” and blaming them for the crisis, and to deal with its “overproduction” by destroying the “surplus” and the capitalist rivals controlling it.

The foul opportunism of the Labourites and their official TUC backers of course sickeningly, chauvinistically and “loyally” (to the capitalist class) trooped through the lobbies to “vote for war” in the continuing pretence that this represents the will of ordinary people despite the almost total lack of votes any of them got in the ever falling and laughable election turnouts of a discredited, pocket-lining corrupt and hated parliamentary system.

It simply extends their long history of running capitalism for the capitalists, the century and a half of treachery and opportunism which has reflected the corruption and super-profit bribery of layers and layers of the working class in the richest imperialist countries at the expense of the permanent and ruthless suppression and exploitation of the tyrannised Third World.

In crisis it becomes the most disgusting betrayal, with a supine refusal to fight (in over a year of Coalition class war managing one carefully choreographed and safe “demonstration”) and deliberate heading off of growing militancy.

And such few “left” abstainers or “rebels” as there are simply give this disgusting mess a slightly more pleasant odour while keeping the whole thing going by their presence and overall “party loyalty” instead of truthful denunciation.

The Trotskyist play an equally disgusting role pouring out their shallow two-pennyworth of poison against every demonised alleged “dictator” going.

Their petty bourgeois, ahistorical credulity has been exposed recently, along with the willing gullibility of the even more reactionary capitalist press, by the revelations of the hoax “Lesbian” blogger in Damascus and the nonexistent “defection” of the Syrian ambassador in Paris.

Both these incidents, quickly brushed under the carpet, demonstrate the vile Goebbels lying of the more-than-hypocritical Western ruling class.

Its shallow pretence of being for “freedom” and the “rule of law” is more obviously than ever a sick sham as it wages more vicious torture, “hang’em high” vigilantism and war blitzing destruction against selected victims to get out of its catastrophic crisis.

Even better it has helped further expose the entire spectrum of fake- “lefts” who have mostly eagerly joined in the tide of lying denunciations and hate campaigns against Muammar Gaddafi, the Damascus regime, Tehran, the Sudanese, Zimbabwe and the Serbs among divers alleged “rogue states” (and continuing workers states like Cuba and North Korea).

Already smeared in philosophical filth by their shameful collusion with ruling class warmongering after the 9/11 “terrorist” attacks, and a long decade of “condemning terrorism” which has played into the hands of the US ruling class led barbarism, destruction and murderous bombing, shelling and drone-ing of Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and others, killing hundreds of thousands and destroying millions more lives, they now parrot every demented Goebbels lie pumped out by the West to keep its diversionary war drive going.

Instead of denouncing and exposing the Monty Python level idiocies, such as “precision rape squads” etc supposedly carrying out “synchronised, officer-commanded Viagra-fed attacks for Gaddafi”, and now “coincidentally” suddenly emerging as an equally ludicrous allegation against the hated anti-imperialist Iranian regime’s prisons, the fake-“left” swallow and regurgitate every slander and lie just as they always did when they were poured out against the workers state during the Cold War.

The long abandonment of Marxist science by all of them in favour of various shadings of individualistic moralising and campaigns for reforms on single issues (political “correctness” – and not always so correct at that on some matters like “gay normality”) has left them wide open to be duped.

So they are caught out by the bogus bloggers, glibly passing on these nonsenses just like the Western media machine which is happily manipulated by the CIA/MI6 etc fed conspiracy (via both formal D-notices and 101 informal and covert story placings and controls) to provoke counter-revolutionary civil wars in Libya and Syria so that it can head off the genuine Arab spring revolt.

Checking facts, or even rational balanced reporting goes out of the window when the ruling class demands the stampeding of the world into vengeful and brutal war “punishment” to divert the blame elsewhere for the disastrous debt disintegration and Slump collapse its “enterprise” profit-plundering system has brought the world to again.

“Babies stuck with bayonets in Belgium” or “thrown out of hospital incubators in Kuwait” were equally absurd and demented hatred stirring lies among many more used against the Germans in 1914, and the Iraqis in the 1990 first Gulf War, with the solemnly sworn anti-Saddam “weapons of mass destruction intelligence and aerial pictures” the most notorious of the “sexed-up” modern BIG LIES along with the nonexistent Gulf of Tonkin “attack on US ships by North Vietnam” and the “Racek massacre” in Yugoslavia in 1998.

And quite consciously done as just further revealed:

The senior intelligence official responsible for Tony Blair’s notorious dossier on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction proposed using the document to mislead the public about the significance of Iraq’s banned weapons.

Sir John Scarlett, who as head of the Joint Intelligence Committee was placed “in charge” of writing the September 2002 dossier, sent a memo to Blair’s foreign affairs adviser referring to “the benefit of obscuring the fact that in terms of WMD Iraq is not that exceptional”.

The memo, released under the Freedom of Information Act, has been described as one of the most significant documents on the dossier yet published.

The disclosure supports the evidence of the former intelligence official Michael Laurie, who told the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war that it was widely understood that the dossier was intended to make a case for war and misrepresented intelligence to this particular end.

The role of the Joint Intelligence Committee is to present impartial intelligence-based advice to ministers. Alastair Campbell, Blair’s director of communications, told Scarlett that the dossier’s credibility depended on it being seen to be the work of Scarlett and his team of experts.

But the 2004 Butler review found that the published dossier had presented a more certain case on Iraq’s weapons than was set out in the committee’s reports. In spite of this, Scarlett went on to be head of MI6.

Scarlett’s memo was sent to Sir David Manning, Blair’s chief foreign policy adviser, in March 2002 after an early draft of the dossier had been drawn up covering four countries with “WMD programmes of concern”: Iraq, Iran, Libya and North Korea.

Jack Straw, then foreign secretary, had commented that the paper “has to show why there is an exceptional threat from Iraq. It does not quite do this yet.” In response, Scarlett suggested that the dossier could make more impact if it only covered Iraq. “This would have the benefit of obscuring the fact that in terms of WMD Iraq is not that exceptional,” he wrote.

Clare Short, the Labour cabinet minister who resigned after the war had started, said: “Those words show that John Scarlett was in on the deception from the beginning and was being duplicitous deliberately.”

Even this is a deception, blaming a single person and hiding the much greater and more deliberate setting of an atmosphere which goes on nonstop.

Joseph Goebbels’ made the whole thing into an art form in the 1930s with calculated film propaganda demonising Jews, communists, gypsies, homosexuals and other victims (and offering light entertainment distractions at the same time) but it has become a lot slicker in the media-sophisticated US Hollywood and TV dominated post-war imperialist period.

Any convenient nonsense will do to keep feeding the sanctimonious self-righteousness of the petty bourgeoisie and the more backward chauvinist layers of the working class in the rich countries, poisoned by decades of imperialist “privilege”.

But even the petty-bourgeois reactionary “even-handed liberal pacifists” at Amnesty International have finally stepped back:

Human rights organisations have cast doubt on claims of mass rape and other abuses perpetrated by forces loyal to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, which have been widely used to justify Nato’s war in Libya.

Nato leaders, opposition groups and the media have produced a stream of stories since the start of the insurrection on 15 February, claiming the Gaddafi regime has ordered mass rapes, used foreign mercenaries and employed helicopters against civilian protesters.

An investigation by Amnesty International has failed to find evidence for these human rights violations and in many cases has discredited or cast doubt on them. It also found indications that on several occasions the rebels in Benghazi appeared to have knowingly made false claims or manufactured evidence.

The findings by the investigators appear to be at odds with the views of the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, who two weeks ago told a press conference that “we have information that there was a policy to rape in Libya those who were against the government. Apparently he [Colonel Gaddafi] used it to punish people.”

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last week said she was “deeply concerned” that Gaddafi’s troops were participating in widespread rape in Libya. “Rape, physical intimidation, sexual harassment, and even so-called ‘virginity tests’ have taken place in countries throughout the region,” she said.

Donatella Rovera, senior crisis response adviser for Amnesty, who was in Libya for three months after the start of the uprising, says that “we have not found any evidence or a single victim of rape or a doctor who knew about somebody being raped”.

Liesel Gerntholtz, head of women’s rights at Human Rights Watch, which also investigated the charge of mass rape, said: “We have not been able to find evidence.”

In one instance two captured pro-Gaddafi soldiers presented to the international media by the rebels claimed their officers, and later themselves, had raped a family with four daughters. Ms Rovera says that when she and a colleague, both fluent in Arabic, interviewed the two detainees, one 17 years old and one 21, alone and in separate rooms, they changed their stories and gave differing accounts of what had happened. “They both said they had not participated in the rape and just heard about it,” she said. “They told different stories about whether or not the girls’ hands were tied, whether their parents were present and about how they were dressed.”

Seemingly the strongest evidence for mass rape appeared to come from a Libyan psychologist, Dr Seham Sergewa, who says she distributed 70,000 questionnaires in rebel-controlled areas and along the Tunisian border, of which over 60,000 were returned. Some 259 women volunteered that they had been raped, of whom Dr Sergewa said she interviewed 140 victims.

Asked by Diana Eltahawy, Amnesty International’s specialist on Libya, if it would be possible to meet any of these women, Dr Sergewa replied that “she had lost contact with them” and was unable to provide documentary evidence.

The accusation that Viagra had been distributed to Gaddafi’s troops to encourage them to rape women in rebel areas first surfaced in March after Nato had destroyed tanks advancing on Benghazi. Ms Rovera says that rebels dealing with the foreign media in Benghazi started showing journalists packets of Viagra, claiming they came from burned-out tanks, though it is unclear why the packets were not charred.

Rebels have repeatedly charged that mercenary troops from Central and West Africa have been used against them. The Amnesty investigation found there was no evidence for this. “Those shown to journalists as foreign mercenaries were later quietly released,” says Ms Rovera. “Most were sub-Saharan migrants working in Libya without documents.”

Others were not so lucky and were lynched or executed. Ms Rovera found two bodies of migrants in the Benghazi morgue and others were dumped on the outskirts of the city. She says: “The politicians kept talking about mercenaries, which inflamed public opinion and the myth has continued because they were released without publicity.”

Amateur videos show some captured Gaddafi supporters being shot dead and eight badly charred bodies were found in the remains of the military headquarters in Benghazi, which may be those of local boys who disappeared at that time.

There is no evidence that aircraft or heavy anti-aircraft machine guns were used against crowds. Spent cartridges picked up after protesters were shot at came from Kalashnikovs or similar calibre weapons.

The Amnesty findings confirm a recent report by the authoritative International Crisis Group, which found that while the Gaddafi regime had a history of brutally repressing opponents, there was no question of “genocide”.

The report adds that “much Western media coverage has from the outset presented a very one-sided view of the logic of events, portraying the protest movement as entirely peaceful and repeatedly suggesting that the regime’s security forces were unaccountably massacring unarmed demonstrators who presented no security challenge”.

This recantation, which hardly gets the lurid headlines of the original lies, comes long after the event of course when the Western onslaught has already got the civil war momentum going and the “details” are no longer remembered it is hoped, just as with many other lurid made-up “genocide” and “massacre” stories against selected scapegoated victims.

It is almost part of the whole mechanism, so that later on the sham of an “objective” and “balanced” account can be pretended.

But whether or not any particular story is too wild, the fake-“lefts” continue to swallow the Western “monstrous dictator” garbage heedless of what they are and their past history and their form and position within the world class struggle.

A Mubarak gangster sustained by US $billions year on year to suppress the Arab struggle is vastly different to a Mugabe, leading and doggedly sticking to an anti-colonialist struggle with land reform and defiance of siege sanctions which cost Zimbabwe billions.

The Trots swallow any vacuous shouting of “freedom” by any tiny bunch of CIA paid “demonstrators” just as they always swallowed every sour nonsense from petty bourgeois anti-communist dissidents in the Soviet Union throughout the Cold War, or the wave of CIA/Vatican sponsored “revolutions” in East Europe by the likes of Solidarnosc, the Pilsudski loving anti-communists, who restored capitalism and the current fascist degeneracy in Poland and the rest of the former workers states.

So bilious is their deep down fear of the rough and ready world revolution that some of them even run campaigns adding in a few more slanders for good measure like the disgusting crypto-Trot CPGB Weekly Workerites and its poisonous “reactionary Islam” HOPI movement setting up the Iran regime for slaughter.

So even as the panic of the bourgeoisie at the rising world revolution drives out ever more crudity in these lies, the poison of petty bourgeois opportunism steps in to give the whole thing a fake-“left” seasoning and additional “credibility” to hoodwink workers, helping drive the world to war.

The few “left” groupings who have avoided the most obvious collusion with imperialism on the warmongering, are little better.

The Lalkar/Proletarian (CPGB-ML) to its credit has correctly denounced the imperialist lies on Libya and on Syria and even gives some good details (worth reproducing) of the social and egalitarian achievements of Gaddafi’s 40 year old national bourgeois revolution inside the country and anti-imperialist struggle support outside it.

Ditto for the more partial achievements of bourgeois nationalist Damascus.

But all this is topped off by a completely misleading picture of both the nature of the attacks and the responses to them demanded by the working class.

Everything is upside down.

Instead of calling for the defeat of imperialism it demands victory to the Libyans “and their leader Colonel Gaddafi”.

This just a piece of silly bravado to pretend that the Lalkarites are “more committed” to anti-imperialism than everyone is.

It also serves to distract attention from some very awkward questions about China and Beijing’s deluded abstention on the UN Security Council motion for a no-fly zone against Libya, of which more below.

But it is wrong.

To begin with, the “victory” slogan is missing the point in a big way.

Gaddafi is no Leninist or Marxist (and is at times hostile to communism) and it is completely misleading to shout about winning ”under Gaddafi’s leadership” either for the Libyan masses or general understanding.

Gaddafi may not be an imperialist thug turned anti-Washington renegade like Panama’s Noriega or Saddam Hussein were (another piece of pointless and confusing “support” given by Lalkar, along with many other errors like backing the revisionist nationalist Milocevic) – but he is not a communist either.

His bizarre and individualist “Green Book” musings may have had some socialist-like elements in them but they are a thousand light years from the scientific perspectives of world crisis which are needed inside Libya or everywhere else.

And whatever positive and egalitarian things may have been done in Libya by the bourgeois nationalist regime they are still, firstly, a long way from communist society, and secondly anyway, nothing but reforms.

Calling for the Libyans to win so that they can simply get on with doing more of these nice things is pure reformism.

It is not necessary to support anything Gaddafi does because the issue is to DEFEAT imperialism.

Leninism would be quite happy to see him do so if that is how it pans out.

The Marxist understanding is that the point is to see imperialism defeated and the victory of communism which that will bring closer.

It is only by defeat of imperialist world oppression that there is any prospect of the working class being able to take power.

This is not some tiresome splitting of hairs but a crucial philosophical understanding.

It is a million miles from the pretence of revolution that Lalkar likes to posture with.

It is a million miles from what is needed.

And it is a joke anyway to pretend that if the Libyans were left alone (by defeating or ending the fascist NATO blitzkrieg) they could carry on where they left off.

The attack now is part of a degeneration into world war crisis that is irreversible outside of the complete overturn of imperialism.

To present the issue as one of victory to Libya (with the patronising “support and solidarity” of the Western workers which that implies) is to head attention away from this overall crisis facing everyone.

It is to evade the question of defeat for imperialism which is a worldwide question directly facing everyone.

The British working class need to understand Libya not because that is an injustice (though it is) but because they too are up against the most disastrous catastrophe in all history.

Bar the exhaustion of the US imperialists, (and that is hinted at in Afghanistan where the Taliban resistance has bogged down tens of thousands of troops at enormous cost,) capitalism has no other path than World War devastation.

And it would be a major mistake to over-estimate that “exhaustion” or the under-estimate the devastation that increasing desperation will drive the ruling class to, as it drove Nazism.

The imperialist attack on Libya is being made for much larger purposes than to attack Gaddafi, however much it might satisfy the more vicious of the ruling class to see this anti-imperialist thorn in their side get his “come-uppance”.

It is certainly being made for much grander purposes than to “seize the oil” in Libya, the other shallow “explanation” given by the Brarite theories which declares this, along with anti-Gaddafi vengeance, to be the “main purpose” of a “predatory” war.

It is not a “predatory” war.

No denying that the CIA/Pentagon/neocon network is constantly laying subversion plans and particularly against the “irritations” like Gaddafi, or Mugabe, or even to some extent the Ba’athists in Syria, with at least some past anti-imperialist credentials.

And no denying that it will always try to seize what resources it can.

But if anything this is a defensive war by an imperialism which is pole-axed by the titanic depths (Titanic depths???) of its intractable economic crisis and the explosive changes in mass consciousness it has caused throughout the region which it wants to head off, confuse and intimidate as much as possible.

Libya is conveniently in the middle of Tunisia and Egypt.

The Marxist emphasis has to be imperialism’s general warmongering weakness and the turn to more and more overtly fascist intimidation of the planet, which is the US Empire’s central hope for escaping its desperate bankruptcy by bullying the entire world into paying for its failures and keeping it fed with the lion’s share of the world’s wealth,

Of course imperialism needs to dominate, and is entirely built around its world domination and exploitation, but the warmongering purpose now is to hold onto its slipping historical position, not extend its rule.

Even a Brarite polemic against the craven CPB capitulators gets it wrong in the course of denouncing their poisonous anti-Gaddfi-ism which continues even while doing an about turn on the NATO attacks because the CPB’s anti-war credentials have been so badly exposed.

Without repeating the whole item, take this part:

“War is a continuation of politics by other means. Since he claims to be a Marxist Comrade Murray should have kept this famous dictum in mind”

declares Lalkar, in the middle of a bold sally, continuing by declaring that imperialist policy towards Libya over the last four decades not just the past few weeks had to be examined,

“along with the character of the Libyan regime and its external and internal policy.”

Which is of course, part of the story, and important for understanding the current events.

But so too should the character of the current imperialist crisis and the “policy” of imperialism across the broadest sweep of the planet be examined.

Otherwise looking just at Libya over 40 years without seeing the giant changes of the world crisis, or Libya’s place in the world, is at least as narrow an analysis as they accuse others of.

This is not a story just about Libya and its achievements.

It is one about the raging crisis disaster of capitalism considered both as a cause and partly increased as a result of the blitzkrieg.

Without seeing events as a dialectical whole, in breadth across the whole world and its class struggle, and in depth and length of time historically, nothing can be understood.

How would that be for a “dictum” Lalkar/Proletarian??

But apart from a sideways mention, the towering disaster at the heart of all world events barely gets a look in despite the reams and reams of long winded analysis from Lalkar and Proletarian, let alone informing every word.

Like everything else, Lalkar examines all phenomena separately and not as interconnected aspects of a complete world revolutionary view.

Elsewhere for example (in another paper) it might, it does, make an economic analysis resoundingly declaring that there is no answer to the sliding economic crisis other than to end capitalism.

Bold stuff.

But this is kept entirely separate (and has only belatedly started appearing since the obvious 2008 credit-crunch anyway).

Its rip-roaring conclusion that there is no solution to the crisis, and only overturn of capitalism will do, is good as far as it goes.

But it informs nothing else.

The “only solution is revolution” rhymed conclusion mysteriously does not pop up in the Libyan articles.

Just the opposite.

What crops up in practice is all the old Stalinist pacifism and a number of reformist conclusions.

How about this for a parallel analysis of the genuine upheavals in the Arab Spring which are crying out for revolutionary grasp:

If the Arab revolutions are to be extinguished, however, whether in Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt of Tunisia etc, significant concessions will need to be made by imperialism to the popular masses. At the very least there would have to be democratisation, but more importantly economic issues would have to be addressed. Measures would have to be taken to protect the people from hunger – and in the political sphere at the very least the Palestinian state would have to be conceded.


But that is another word for reforms.


But that is a complete lying fraud under capitalism as Lenin wrote reams about (see EPSR polemics against Lalkar in many issues but especially 1190,1191,1192, 1195,1196 and 1245 – all never responded to let alone taken up polemically (as the Brarites are so keen to take up the tame CPB etc)).

Address economic issues!!!!

But surely the analysis so boldly made elsewhere is telling workers that the crisis is intractable – what economic issues can be addressed in the middle of such a credit collapse HURRICANE????

What upsets the Lalkarites about the Trots and the assorted CP splinters which it so vigorously assaults in its polemics is not their lack of revolutionism anyway, it is that they are “spoiling the work of the ’Stop the War’ movement”!!!!!!!!

“Ever since the present Libyan crisis emerged

(so presumably all was hunky-dory and on course before that in the pacifist world)

the conduct of the Stop the War Coalition has been nothing short of shameful and scandalous. While the counter-revolutionary rebellion...and the imperialist butchers sharpened their knives in readiness for a massive assault on Libya, the disgraceful coterie of counter-revolutionary Trots and revisions renegades who run the StWC was to organise a demonstration - not against imperialism and its paid agents and mercenaries in Benghazi, but against the Gaddafi Government!”

Shameful indeed but it is even more “shameful and scandalous” that a party which is currently making much of a quote it has found from Stalin, urging revolution as a solution to workers problems, “boldly” putting it on the banner it is carrying on slump protest and strike marches, is still punting out this deadly and disarming “peace struggle” gobshite.

And this is not just “one way to struggle” or an “aspect of the revolutionary struggle” but the condensation of the entire revisionist philosophy which followed Joseph Stalin’s 1953 Economic Problems analysis claiming that, following the Second World War, imperialism, while still sporadically dangerous and warmongering, was fatally hamstrung and could be contained (see EPSR’s above) by “peace struggle”.

Contained as in destroying millions of lives from Vietnam and Korea to the modern day in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya????

“Just a paper tiger” as the Proletarian also asserts with a long quote from Mao Tse Dung????

This evasive and utterly unMarxist, un-revolutionary, rubbish is only disarming the working class right at the moment when it faces the most disastrous fascist warmongering in history by a ruling class more powerfully armed and vicious than ever before.

It is criminally irresponsible.

In the spirit of getting a whole view it would be Marxist to examine much more of the Lalkar’s pretences and cover-ups which have a bearing on Libya, and more generally, and this will be done shortly.

But there is another aspect to consider of its dishonesty and opportunism around Libya – China’s shameful role in firstly voting on the UN Security Council for sanctions against Libya, and then in abstaining in the vote on “no fly zones” (which everyone knew was an invitation to fullscale assassination blitzkrieg).

Abstaining is more important than it seems because China can cast a VETO against any Security Council motion, stopping it dead.

For decades a key plank of Lalkar’s posturing and posing has been to constantly and uncritically tail-end everything Beijing does with numerous sycophantic reports, constantly “hailing” the Chinese CP leadership, enjoying “fraternal visits” there, and otherwise uncritically lauding the philosophy of Beijing.

It holds a special China evening once a year in London.

This tailending is a disaster.

Leninism has nothing against declaring China to be still a workers state, since it is, and to tell the world about its giant development achievements and gains.

With enough space it would happily reproduce some of Lalkar’s and its friends’ factual details and figures on China’s massive material,cultural, scientific and industrial progress.

But the disastrous non-revolutionary perspectives of Beijing’s revisionism are as disastrous as any of those of the retreats by Stalin and his successors to Gorbachev, which eventually liquidated the Soviet Union (stupidly and unnecessarily since its planned economy and social structure were still capable of steady growth, far from the “collapse” the Western propaganda ascribes to it even after Gorbachevite confusion had set in).

And the best revolutionary defence of China’s workers state has always been to take up this political failing in open polemical Leninist debate and discussion.

Unconditional support of communism does not mean unthinking and uncritical acceptance of philosophical nonsense.

One of the most important aspects is to constantly battle with the notion that the world is going to develop by containing capitalism, and that if only the socialist areas can “prevent war” they can grow sufficiently to eventually squeeze imperialism out of existence.

This Stalinist notion par exellence seems highly visible in Beijing’s thinking.

And the “tactic” of “not confronting” imperialism in the UN Security Council has led directly to the sacrifice of Libya.

And not just Libya but the Arab Spring, and not just the Arab Spring but the revolutionary momentum everywhere.

That momentum, once it learns and develops Leninism and revolutionary parties, will alone end warmongering the only way it can be ended, by ending capitalism.

And until it does, China too will be in the firing line eventually (as the constant anti-Chinese trade war mutterings in the US indicate).

Lalkar uneasily recognises that it has been thoroughly caught out by the Chinese tactics which have exposed not just a “bad decision” from Beijing but an entire wrong philosophical framework of thought which traces its antecedents directly back to Lalkar’s “hero” Stalin.

So does Lalkar “‘fess up”???

Of course not. In best Stalinist tradition, it covers-up.

China vanishes from the radar.

But Lalkar/Proletarian knows that it cannot avoid talking about the monstrous herding of the United Nations behind a figleaf war Resolution.

So it writes that the war has long been prepared and:

only the feeble-minded Troto-revisionist fraternity and such-like cretins could believe otherwise.

Resolution 1973, passed by the UNSC on 17 March, authorising member states to use “all necessary measures” (a euphemism for use of armed force), allegedly to “help protect civilians”, did no more than provide an ex post facto legal fig leaf for the imperialist war of aggression against the Libyan people which had started well before the UNSC resolution was passed.

All the same, to its eternal shame, the UNSC in passing this resolution has become an accomplice of this predatory war, while meaninglessly professing “its strong commitment to the sovereignty, territorial integrity and national unity of the Libyan people”. How can the UNSC talk about its commitment to “sovereignty” and “territorial integrity”, while at the same time giving the green light to the imperialist powers to violate most blatantly Libya’s sovereignty and territorial integrity with a massive armed onslaught? How can it pontificate about the “unity of the Libyan people”, while legitimising the actions of imperialism to detach the eastern part of the country from the rest of it? That part of the resolution which excludes “a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory”, is practically useless in view of the “all necessary measures” that the interventionist powers have been granted by the same resolution to “help protect civilians”.

When introducing boots on the ground, the imperialist gentry are not going to admit that their soldiery had become an army of occupation. Heaven forbid, on the contrary they are bound to claim to be acting as the “protectors” and “ liberators” of the Libyan people. No one who has not as yet been certified could believe otherwise. Those members of the UNSC who abstained on the resolution, in the belief that the provision concerning the exclusion of “a foreign occupation force” from Libyan territory would act as a deterrent to imperialism sending in an army of occupation, must have either suspended their judgement, or forgotten the characteristics and history of imperialism or indulged in wishful thinking, or simply decided for narrow selfish reasons simply to look the other way.

Either way, in passing this resolution, the UNSC has furnished the latest proof of what we have repeatedly said, namely, that since the demise of the Soviet Union and the eastern Central European socialist countries, the UN has become the colonial office of imperialism, with its Secretary-General officiating as the chief civil servant running errands on behalf, and at the the no-fly zone with a savage bombardment of Libya. On the very first night, that of Saturday 19 March, the US and Britain unleashed well over a hundred Tomahawk cruise missiles, which targeted military and civilian sites alike, killing scores of innocent people - all, of course, in the interests of “protecting civilians”! During several weeks of relentless bombing, Libyan infrastructure - airports, harbours, fuel storage depots, bridges and roads - has been destroyed or badly damaged. Even a heart clinic was not spared.

Strong stuff, supposedly.

But not strong enough for Lalkar to NAME the abstainers it so vociferously lambasts.

Proletarian might argue that it did at least name China in the previous month. But this time it was done entirely in passing with none of the fiery invective, and still no analysis of Beijing’s dire revisionist philosophy which led it to this. And two months later, the latest issue ignores the question completely. This is April/May:

This onslaught occurred just two days after the United Nations Security Council, by 10 votes to nil, with five abstentions, namely Russia, China, Brazil, India and Germany, had passed Resolution 1973, authorising member states to use “all necessary measures”, the customary code words for military action, supposedly to ‘”help protect civilians”.

The resolution, although it certainly amounts to gross interference in Libya’s internal affairs, and despite the fact that even a small child ought to be able to realise that its sole purpose is to provide a legalistic fig leaf for a massive imperialist onslaught on a small Third World nation^ nauseatingly couched itself in humanitarian tones, claiming that a ‘no fly zone’ would constitute a “decisive step for the cessation of hostilities in Libya” (emphasis added).

It hypocritically reaffirmed “a strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.” It talked about “facilitating dialogue to lead to the political reforms necessary to find a peaceful and sustainable solution”.

And the resolution affirmed that it was “excluding a foreign occupation force of any form on any part of Libyan territory”.

Yet, despite all these sanctimonious words, the leaders of France, Britain and the Unite States, Sarkozy, Cameron and Obama, Hillary Clinton, William Hague, Liam Fox and others, war criminals to a man and woman have made no secret of the fact that their aim is so-called regime change’. “Gaddafi must go” has been their mantra sine the first demonstrations were reported in Libya in February.

Are the Beijing leaders then colluders with war crimes????

The cover-up goes on.

Because to name and take on Beijing would undermine everything the Lalkarites have postured and posed about, for their reflected glory and opportunist “status” as “real” socialists, built on the foundation of totally avoiding all philosophical examination of Stalin and the Moscow revisionism that has had such a stifling effect on world revolution.

Beijing’s discrediting has the double whammy for them of also knocking away their main “explanation” of the Soviet collapse which is borrowed entirely from the Maoist (Beijing) theory of a sudden revisionist conspiracy under Khruschev in the mid-1950s.

This nonsensical scapegoating has been examined depth before by EPSR (see issues numbered above) though as always without any answer by the Lalkerite traditions of avoidance, evasion, and cover-up, cover-up, cover-up.

Real socialists - “hard-nut Stalinist”??

Real deceivers more like and with such chutzpah in the denunciations of “lack of integrity”.

Lalkar/Proletarian needs no lessons in “lack of integrity”.

They practice it.

There is more to be said and it will be.

But it is clear even further that the lessons the world does need are in building the open polemical Leninist struggle for the development of revolutionary theory and revolutionary parties.

Don Hoskins


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