No 1555 8th May 2017
Dirty dealing Guaidó fascist coup attempt against Caracas’ Bolivarian “revolution” and spread of jihadist terrorism to Africa and Sri Lanka make a mockery of continuing revisionist denunciations of “terrorism” and advocacy of the “parliamentary” path. Both result from capitalism’s desperate plunge into crisis and its Nazi warmongering “solution” trampling over all “democratic niceties” as it prepares for inter-imperialist WW3. Revisionist class war prevarication and fake-“left” moral “condemnation” of Third World attempts to fight back expose their petty bourgeois fear of revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat it needs to establish. Islamist ideology offers no future as such but hatred of Western imperialist tyranny will turn eventually to more rational mass class war understanding as hinted by the Arab Spring – tragically also denounced by revisionist stupidity. Weakness and paralysis of capitalist system grows daily despite its vicious blitzing. Repression and censorship shows its fear of Marxist-Leninist leadership
The latest farcical failure for Washington fascist “coup” theatrics in Venezuela; continuing spread of “jihadist” revolt across Africa and now to Sri Lanka; and the extraordinary meltdown in the British political establishment all variously expose the hopeless brainrot of the fake-“left” in all its “50-shades-of-red” from Stalinist revisionism, to Trot entryists and other “left” Labourism.
Their long ago abandoned revolutionary grasp, and substitution of the fight for proletarian dictatorship with peaceful “pure democracy” notions (supplemented by any amount of “extra parliamentary pressure” for “governments in workers interests”), helps prop up capitalism’s rotten and degenerate order, even as the greatest ever crisis of capitalism tears ruling class confidence apart everywhere in unprecedented bitter recrimination, astounding splits and paralysis.
They all demonstrate a disastrous mis-analysis of world events and failure to see the great movements underway as crisis inexorably deepens into Catastrophic breakdown.
Continuing to insist that a “democratic” path is possible against US subversion in Latin America, or for the gilets-jaunes in France, or for Syria or anywhere else; that chauvinist referendum votes (either way) or any parliamentary voting at all can solve workers’ problems in Britain while capitalism continues; or that the great rebellious “terrorist” upheavals of the Third World are nothing but irredeemable “atrocity mongering” to be condemned as a new kind of “headbanging reaction” or all a CIA organised conspiracy (or both in some cases), plays into imperialism’s hands.
They show a complete inability to grasp or even see the devastating scale of the oncoming capitalist financial collapse despite notional formal lip service to the “crisis” (difficult to ignore even before it breaks completely, very soon) let alone explain the need for the revolutionary consciousness to be built for the class war struggle which alone can end completely this vile warmongering system, the only means to stop its plunge into disaster.
It is all a contemptible retreat from revolutionary responsibility at best and mostly an exposure of their completely academic play acting and posturing at “revolution”.
That goes hand in hand with endless cover-ups and evasions of such misanalysis, opportunistically compounding the problems and further discrediting “communism” and Marxism in the world’s eyes by refusing to confront and polemicise their errors.
The result is to abandon the proletarian masses just when they are in a ferment of revolt but still yet without any leadership.
Instead it simply gives US-dominated imperialism more propaganda tools for the desperate effort to maintain its rotten and degenerate world control by escalated warmongering and threats.
The events in Venezuela underscore the point, as Washington’s overt counter-revolutionary interference in South and central America makes yet further attempts to bring down and overturn the “left tide” of reformism which overtook much of the region under the (misnamed) umbrella of the “Bolivarian revolution”.
After manipulating a stream of “judicial” and “constitutional” coups across the region during the laughably-pretend “liberal” Obama presidency – including the outright violent overturn in Honduras with its subsequent deathsquad and gang warfare repressions, and violent contra-demonstrations in Venezuela and Nicaragua – reactionary Washington has turned its attention once more to the popularly elected and supported Caracas left nationalist government and the Chávism which started things off.
So far into desperation has imperialism been driven by crisis that now it barely bothers to cover up its skulduggery and subversion.
It makes little effort to deny its hand in the obvious sabotage and incitement to violence being used by its Quisling stooge Juan Guaidó to whip up the privileged bourgeois minority under the outrageous upside-down assertion of “a struggle for democracy”, while arranging an “international coalition” of fascist stoogery (Brazil, Colombia and other whipped-in-line Latin countries) and other international imperialism, to “recognise” this sham.
Nor does it hide the criminal and fascist nature of its intervention, deliberately assigning a crew of bullying thugs to the task, from the bellicose warhawk “national security adviser” John Bolton to the infamous war criminal and massacre organiser Elliott Abrams as a “special delegate” for Venezuela.
The deluge of CIA coordinated capitalist media lies poured out around this latest “takeover” stunt (and four months of disruption) has reached a new level of reality inversion, not bothering at all with the most basic demonstrable facts, such as the international verification of the democracy procedures in Venezuela by outside observers, and instead simply using the term “dictator” for the president Nicolás Maduro as if it is incontestable; or ignoring the mass demonstrations in support of the government and hyping up the tiny assemblages of often armed middle-class supporters as a “popular revolt”.
But countering such blanket Big Lie deluges, carried out on a world scale and with an in-your-face chutzpah Goebbels would have marvelled at, by any amount of proof that voting procedures in the country “are among the most transparent in the world” (however free of the trickery, manipulation and “hanging chad” dirty practices of US elections for example or the outright lies, murky funding and secret advertising in the British Referendum), is missing the point.
Capitalism will always find ways to twist and bend any amount of the most honest democracy in the end, and if that fails, will eventually use as much ruthless violence as it can, to suppress and turnover all challenges to its rule, and most of all in its “own back yard” with crackdown massacre butchery, exactly as it has butchered hundreds of thousands before in Latin America in the twentieth century.
Where possible against the Bolivarians (in Venezuela, Nicaragua, and to some extent Brazil) they have already turned to the openly violent provocations of “popular demonstrations”, coordinated with the local middle class (often for bribes and payments) just as they have been used for “colour revolutions” for “democracy” in the Middle East and former Soviet sphere from Georgia to the Ukraine.
These are a foretaste of the utterly barbaric brutality which will be imposed if the US can carry it through.
Just what vicious outcome is possible if the foul bourgeois reactionaries around the snivelling Guaidó should be able to topple left nationalist Nicolás Maduro is already clear in next door Colombia, where the bone-headed and “democracy” addled revisionist advice was taken for the FARC to give up its decades-long heroic and dogged armed revolutionary struggle and rely on peaceful “parliamentary methods” to achieve its aims.
Result? A wave of utterly predictable death-squad assassinations of hundreds of local community activists and former revolutionary fighters and now the tearing up of the most critical provisions of the agonisingly negotiated 2016 peace settlement by Colombia’s President Iván Duque’s fascist regime.
That in turn has fed into the provocations against Venezuela, with Colombia acting as a major Washington stooge just across the border, alongside Brazil’s newly installed “ultra-right populist” (i.e fascist) president Jair Bolsonaro, to denounce and threaten Caracas and provide the jumping off point for the latest round of provocations and stunts, as well as threatened US military intervention.
“Democracy” delusions, leaving the property ownership of the local and multinational bourgeoisie intact, have let these scumbags and their Washington backers try on every dirty legal, constitutional and “popular protest” coup trick in the book for the last decade, combined with economic (and physical) sabotage and sanction siege strangulation.
And it goes on, as the EPSR’s revolutionary theory was able to warn 17 years ago after the first CIA organised coup attempt against then Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez (No 1132 16-04-02):
If the ‘left’ ever did win enough parliamentary influence to bring in ‘socialist’ measures, the imperialist system’s world-wide power of military domination,– acting behind the local permanent bourgeois-monopoly dictatorship in economic, propaganda, social, and state-office influence, would forever relentlessly escalate its counter-revolutionary coup preparations until it eventually DID succeed in bringing down or totally undermining in one way or another the offending ‘socialist’ development.
Despite the CIA’s failure this time, the Chávez regime is now in greater danger than ever before. The most cretinous lesson of all to draw from this coup debacle would be the idiot conclusion that some fake-‘lefts’ will come to that “the strength of democracy and the power of people’s democratic protests proved mightier than the CIA’s big business and military plotters”.
This was exactly the mistake made by the ‘left’ about Allende in Chile, who also survived some initial coup-attempts against him during his ‘socialist’ government of 1970-73, only to be bloodily wiped out when the CIA decided to further escalate its coup preparations regardless of the ever-greater risk of public international exposure.
It will be no different in Venezuela. The only thing the Chávez regime can do is to carry out the measures which Allende foolishly refused to adopt from the Marxist science of proletarian dictatorship, the only possible way for socialism to start to take root anywhere, at any time in history, past, present or future, beginning with totally dismantling all the former capitalist state structures of control and propaganda/information, putting in workers militias and workers production councils in place of the police hierarchy, the military hierarchy, the capitalist press and television monopolies, the judiciary, etc, etc.
The disruption and sabotage does go on and on, grinding down every effort to build better conditions for the working class, and threatening the kind of siege that killed at least a million adults and half a million children in Iraq in the 1990s.
Excellent that the left bourgeois nationalism in Venezuela has survived since 2002 and popular working class support remained strong (despite barely featuring in the bourgeois media) but that reflects far more the weakness, splits and incompetence of the American imperialists than any virtue in the “resilience of democracy” illusions still being elevated by revisionist politics.
Just the opposite, the bungling and misplaced posturing of the disgusting stooge Guaidó underlines more than ever that an entire 800 year long class system, is falling apart.
The lesson that needs to be taken is that it gives far better prospects than ever before for revolutionary politics and the exposure of its hoodwinking “freedom” lies, not yet more cretinous propping up of the hoodwinking parliament rackets.
Still, the imperialist incompetence is scarcely believable as even the vile pretend-“liberal” Guardian, which has been cheerleading the non-stop vilification of the regime was forced to spell out, in a sour piece still reeking with the petty bourgeois hatred and anti-communist poison hype it has always excelled at (“In retrospect”; “Rightful”(!!!); indeed. And López was a prisoner because he is a criminal counter-revolutionary instigating violence):
The video that appeared on Tuesday morning had the appearance of history in the making. In the purple light of dawn, it showed a group of armed men and a military vehicle on a road leading to La Carlota airbase in eastern Caracas.
In the foreground, stood Juan Guaidó – the head of the national assembly recognised by most western countries as the rightful leader of Venezuela – declaring the “final phase of Operation Freedom” with oratory seemingly destined for legend.
“Today, brave soldiers, brave patriots, brave men loyal to the constitution have heard our call. We have finally met on the streets of Venezuela,” Guaidó said.
Behind him, was the country’s most prominent political prisoner, Leopoldo López who had been under house arrest since 2017. The fact that he was free as the uprising was being declared seemed proof that something significant was afoot.
We now know that there was indeed a plan designed to resolve the dangerous standoff in the country between Guaidó’s assembly and the socialist government of Nicolás Maduro, heir to Hugo Chávez’s Bolivarian revolution.
Key members of the security apparatus were to defect. (Christopher Figuera, the head of the secret police, Sebin, had already done so, springing López from house arrest.) That was supposed to be a signal to the armed forces – the key to Venezuela’s future – to flip sides.
Maduro was to fly to Cuba “in dignity”. Everyone else from his regime would keep their jobs while Guaidó became interim president, pending new elections. All of this had been put down in writing, in a 15-point document, according to officials in Washington.
But it is still far from clear whether this plan had any chance of working – or whether some of the would-be defectors were simply laying a trap.
Even if the plan was real, it was already going awry when Guaidó made his speech to camera on Tuesday.
It was a day earlier than planned. Operation Freedom was supposed to reach a climax with mass protests set for Wednesday. And in retrospect it is clear the Tuesday video had been closely cropped to mask the fact that there were only a handful of troops standing with Guaidó.
Vanessa Neumann, who was appointed Guaidó’s envoy to the UK in March, said that his camp had heard reports that Maduro had got wind of the plan and was going to arrest the national assembly president.
“The decision to go on Tuesday rather than Wednesday was an operational decision, taken in reaction to new reports from the ground that we got,” Neumann told the Guardian. “But how it unfolded – in terms of the people, the military and calling on the people to join – that was foreseen.”
Mariana Otero, a young mother of three sons, got the call from a friend who lives near La Carlota: “Come now because the base has fallen.” With a Venezuelan flag draped around her shoulders like a cape, Otero quickly headed out to join thousands of others heeding Guaidó’s call.
“If Leopoldo is out there on the streets, I should be too. I want freedom in my country. The streets are ours and I want my children to be witnesses to the way we have come out to struggle for our liberty.”
She was not alone. As she headed towards Plaza Altamira in the affluent municipality of Chacao in eastern Caracas, hundreds of people were on the street around her.
But there were fewer protesters from poor areas on the city outskirts.
(Fewer!!! or none???)
The troops wore blue ribbons on their arms to show they had defected; one wore a bandanna across his face. López and several members of the opposition-controlled national assembly were also there.
“Valientes, patriotas, sí se puede,” chanted the crowd. “Brave patriots! Yes we can!”
But the momentum was already disappearing. After addressing the crowd, Guaidó and his team melted away – and the crowd which had expected to march on the Miraflores presidential palace were left milling in the square.
Apart from the secret service chief, Figuera, no big names from Maduro’s government had switched sides. One by one, the big fish tweeted out vows of allegiance.
Meanwhile, in downtown Cúcuta, a Colombian border town, a group of Venezuelan army defectors watched news of the uprising in a hotel room TV.
“When we saw our President Guaidó there with our brother soldiers and Leopoldo López, now free, at his side, we immediately coordinated with troops here to see what we could do,” said one defector.
Unarmed and in civilian clothing “out of respect to Colombia”, the defectors gathered by the Simón Bolívar International Bridge that separates the two countries in hopes of an ad hoc invasion. “We were ready to take San Antonio,” one defector said, referring to the town on the Venezuelan side of the bridge. “We were just waiting for the orders to join our brothers in arms on the other side.”
That order never came. Instead, defectors say, they received an order from Guaidó’s team to return to their hotels.
“It was a great letdown,” one soldier said. “We wanted to help free Venezuela.”
In Washington, Trump administration hawks who had hailed a moment of liberation watched in consternation as the uprising fizzled.
It is far from clear whether the US communicated directly with Maduro’s circle in the buildup to Operation Freedom. López, after seeking haven in the Spanish embassy in Caracas, told journalists that the key negotiations took place at his house over the past few weeks, but the claim has been treated by sceptics as grandstanding by an aspiring president anxious not to be outshone by Guaidó.
The Trump administration reacted as if it had been personally betrayed, and took the unexpected step of going public with its version of events, saying out loud the sort of details normally kept secret.
John Bolton, the national security adviser, named the three powerful Venezuelan officials he claimed had been negotiating Maduro’s departure: the defence minister and head of the armed forces, Vladimir Padrino; the chief justice of the supreme court, Maikel Moreno and Iván Hernández, the head of the presidential guard and military intelligence.
Bolton called out the men three times outside the White House – and then again in a bizarre video that was supposed to be an appeal to patriotic Venezuelans but which was entirely in English apart from the single word “libertad”.
The US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, claimed that Maduro’s plane had been on the tarmac waiting for takeoff, but that he had been persuaded not to leave at the last moment by the Russians, a claim the Russians denied.
Donald Trump himself went on Twitter to rail against Cuban support for Maduro. And the US envoy for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, a veteran of Reagan-era US covert operations in Latin America, appeared on a independent (!!!-ed) Venezuelan television channel, giving a detailed account of the 15-point document the defectors were supposed to have signed.
So while the official line was that the uprising was the work of the Venezuelan masses, everything the Trump administration did reinforced the message that it had been made in Washington.
By Tuesday evening, Maduro staged a show of unity and strength for the television cameras surrounded by a phalanx of soldiers, with defence minister Padrino, one of the supposed defectors, at his right shoulder.
... In Washington, Bolton and Pompeo have hinted at the possibility of direct US military intervention to tip the scales to oust Maduro, but have so far been restrained by the Pentagon. The Washington Post reported a confrontation in the White House, between Bolton’s hawks and the vice-chairman of the chiefs of staff, Paul Selva.
As Selva made the case against any risky US escalation, he was repeatedly interrupted by Bolton aides demanding military options, until the normally mild-mannered air force general slammed his hand on the table, and the meeting was adjourned early.
Fulton Armstrong, a former CIA expert on Latin America now at American University, said he was concerned that the generals could not hold out indefinitely against the calls for action.
The Vente Venezuela opposition group, which openly supports the idea of foreign military intervention to unseat Maduro, admitted temporary defeat.
“Of course, the final objective was not accomplished...“Our goal was to have an urgent transition to democracy in Venezuela because this human catastrophe will only stop or start to be solved the moment Maduro and his mafia regime leaves power.”
That would be the kind of “democracy” imposed by bloody coup violence and/or US invasion we assume.
But while the plot has collapsed for the moment, the real lesson is that this kind of subversion will be non-stop while capitalism lasts, as it has been ever since Chávez first was established as president.
Holding off arresting these plotters now is simply soft-headed delusion, not “sensible tactics” which can only demoralise the working class.
There is no guarantee that a full workers state could avoid the monstrous economic strangulation and military intimidation imposed by the giant looming presence of next door US imperialism.
But with its own proletarian state forces and security (yes, including “secret police”) it would be much better placed to prevent the non-stop internal sabotage, subversion and disruption by the vicious local bourgeoisie and by US intelligence and “NGO” subversion which comes in currently through porous “democratic” borders (and which has already toppled “left nationalist reformism” in Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Honduras).
That is precisely the case for the dogged Cuban revolution which has withstood a near-crippling level of economic siege by the US for sixty years and non-stop acts of sabotage, subversion, assassination plots (hundreds on Fidel Castro alone) because its revolution built the dictatorship of the proletariat (within which it can now steadily extend universal consultation and participation).
Establishing such firm workers state control might well be difficult to achieve, but it will not happen by fostering bourgeois democratic illusions and faith in a “peaceful road” (as the now hard pressed FARC were advised).
Tragically, it is partly through the revisionist political illusions still fostered by Havana, despite its own practical example, that such confusion continues (never taken up or polemicised by any of the “left” groups who make a meal out of their “solidarity work” with Cuba, carried out as a kind of political activist charity work, instead of battling for the real solidarity of clarifying revolutionary theory and perspectives (as best they can) for the struggle in Britain and internationally – the best kind of solidarity being the building of the revolutionary struggle where you are and polemic to clarify errors and weaknesses.)
Of course it is “easy to say that” as the petty bourgeois fake-“lefts” love to sneer at meetings though never saying any such thing, least of all putting the crisis and revolution at the heart of things, however “easy” it is, allegedly.
But precisely the fight for revolutionary understanding in the mass working class to build a vanguard (Leninist) party to lead the vital class war overturn of the bourgeoisie, and of the imperialist crisis all around them, would be a far better way to mobilise, motivate and sustain the struggle against Yanqee domination than trusting Allende-style in a potentially flaky bourgeois-nationalist military and its “honour” (which might be severely stretched when bourgeois property is to be appropriated), however much it includes some left reformist Chávista elements.
And this is not a question of “telling the Venezuelans what to do” - of course they make their own decisions - but of fighting for the correct understanding for the working class everywhere as it is plunged towards World War Three.
What needs to be heard is that “democracy” in capitalism has never been anything but a lying fraud, covering up the dictatorship of capital.
And that world dominating dictatorship is in greater trouble than ever in history because of the intractable and unsolvable contradictions of its private profit seeking system always ending in economic breakdown through “overproduction”.
Until the ruling class is completely removed from power, and its historical “possession” of all land, agriculture, finance and industry is taken into common ownership, there can never be an end to its financial bullying and degenerate physical thuggery, counter-revolutionary violence and fascist warmongering which is the constant reality of its tyrannical exploitation of the world even in “boom times”.
And the closer the unstoppable great crisis approaches (inevitable as Marx explained in Capital and Lenin elaborated in Imperialism), the ever more openly crude and vicious the ruling class will become, as it is forced to tear up all pretences of “rule of law”, international human rights, Geneva conventions, “United” nations and justice, even as it continues to insist with ever more absurd and brazen lies, that it is “fighting for freedom and democracy”.
That slide of the whole profit making order towards total economic Catastrophe (already foreshadowed in 2008 and ten years of “austerity” savagery since) is further advanced than at any time in history and about to break into utter chaos once QE credit creation implodes.
But the system will not be ended except by defeats and setbacks for this ruling class, opening the path for its complete class-war revolutionary overturn.
Only building a consciously revolutionary party to lead the mass struggle of ordinary working people, to seize all property, finance and land into common ownership can change the world.
Safeguarded by the dictatorship of the proletariat, vital to prevent endless counter-revolution and sabotage (as witnessed in Venezuela once more) all those resources can be mobilised for the building of planned cooperative socialism, and its extension across the whole world which alone can allow their full rational use.
Then production in balance with nature for human needs and development, and not for grotesquely wasteful and insane mass consumerism, armsrace antagonism and pointless obscene luxury for the few can be worked for, steadily developing a rational society over generations, drawing in more and more of the population until not one single person is left behind or excluded from reaching their full potential.
Completely intertwined with the continuing revisionist illusions in “democratic paths” in Latin America, has been the great retreat of the fake-“left” over the question of “terrorism”, particularly since the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks, the great upheavals of the Middle East and the rise, and then slaughter, of ISIS.
The swamp “left” denunciations of “terrorism”, which has erupted again in the recent Sri Lanka suicide bombings, simply help to sustain or even, shamefully, to join in on occasion, imperialism’s degenerate “war on terror” blitzing and bombing of the Third World, particularly in the Middle East.
The attacks, as many before, are a tragedy for the multiple hapless innocent victims and relatives.
But condemnations across the board, from capitalism’s ruling class, whipping up deliberate reactionary Islamophobia and scapegoating, to fake-“leftist” hand-wash moralising, will do nothing to stop this escalating hatred, driven to a frenzy by world capitalist crisis.
Worse, such declarations of “unacceptability” (for the Gaza Palestinians’ revolt too???) play into the hands of imperialism’s fascist world bullying, all the way to outright massacring devastation, already destroying millions of lives as currently in Yemen, and Libya, previously blitzing Serbia, Iraq and Afghanistan, wiping out huge cities in Syria and Iraq, and killing thousands in eastern Ukraine and now readying threats against Iran, Sudan and others.
They also facilitate ever more draconian capitalist state censorship, policing, imprisonment and humiliating punishments. Prevent, Internet shutdowns, surveillance and umbrella monitoring laws against “extremism” etc etc etc are all obviously intended to include, and in fact are primarily aimed at, communism and left politics.
The Goebbels pretence of “anti-terrorist policing of the world for freedom and democracy” has been a major hypocritical propaganda cover for imperialism’s slide into continuous warmongering which is driven solely by the collapse of capitalism itself and America’s bullying efforts to intimidate all rivals and rebellion, to stay on top despite total bankruptcy.
Apart from causing maximum confusion for the working class everywhere about the revolutionary significance of such upheaval in itself (as discussed below and in many past EPSRs), and thereby leaving them herded behind “popular” “kill-them-all” jingoistic public opinion to sustain the war mood and escalate it, the left “condemnation” also misses the import it has had for Latin America.
As even many bourgeois commentators have pointed out, it has been the diversion of US crisis-driven warmongering attention (and the bulk of its military, financial and political resources) onto Afghanistan’s pointless war and the Middle East failed occupations, which gave a breathing space to the “left” reformist “Bolivarian” movement (along with the crisis economic implosions of 2007-8 also demanding US attention for desperate domestic bailouts and international currency manoeuvres to prevent everything going under).
The difficulties that the Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld White House (and its grovelling Blairite stoogery) got into in the quagmires of those countries allowed the left reformist moves of Lula di Silva (and Dilma Roussef), Christine Kirchner, Evo Morales, and others to flourish a bit longer as the misnamed “Bolivarian Revolution” – and be eulogised across the board by the fake-“left” as the “new way forwards for all the world to follow as its example”.
That has only given a longer lease of life to revisionist mindrot, born of Stalin’s post-war misreading of imperialism’s capacities to expand any further and the conclusion that it would gradually atrophy economically, needing only to have its more dangerous warmongering tendencies reined in by ”peace struggle” as socialism overtook it (see EPSR book Unanswered Polemics against Stalinism).
From that came widespread revisionist notions of class struggle through step-by-step peaceful “progress to socialism” and at best lack of support for class war and armed struggle, and worst, its rejection in case it should “rock the boat” or “provoke” imperialism, ending finally in the Gorbachevite idiocy of liquidating the Soviet Union’s workers state entirely in favour of the “free market”.
While all kinds of diplomatic caution or peace diplomacy are tactically necessary, (and the building of “socialism in one country” for a more or less extended period) the transformation of that into a permanent strategy is disastrous, not least because as quoted above and as Venezuela shows now, they will attack you anyway, however much you demonstrate you are playing “by the rules”.
And they will do that because there is no choice for a system heading for total breakdown – which means not a “recession” or even a Depression but chaos on a revolutionary scale, the “economic nuclear winter” the bourgeoisie panicked about in the wake of 2008 and which, less overtly, all the major economic institutions constantly warn is coming again.
That utter disintegration is the only way to understand the non-stop eruption of jihadism as a symptom of the world upheaval against the crisis, and driven by it, and it is retreat from revolutionary perspectives which sees the entire revisionist “left” (and its even more bilious Trot “opposition”) completely capitulating on the question, bowing to the imperialist denunciations.
It is debilitating defeatism, which saturates all petty bourgeois fake-“leftism”.
But the once easy grip of imperialist dominance on its colonial possessions, (through direct pre-war rule or post-war US neo-colonial monopoly power), and the comfortable life of luxurious privilege and power it upholds, has gone forever.
The entire capitalist world teeters on the edge of an abyss of economic and political meltdown, loss of confidence and turmoil of which attacks like the Sri Lanka incidents are major symptoms.
And that is just what they are, symptoms of world revolt struggling to find a way forwards against centuries of exploitation tyranny and particularly the monstrous horrors and destruction already imposed for the last 30 years by an imperialism which has run into the buffers.
It is the breakdown of the whole monopoly capitalist system, nothing else, which is the root of all world savagery (including the rising conflict against it) using the flimsiest of lying excuses to force through the warmongering destruction it needs to try and wipe out the mountains of “surplus” capital which have brought it to its knees and brought trade war to red heat.
Already, from the first Gulf War and Yugoslavia onwards, imperialism’s devastation far exceeds, by a factor of thousands, anything that attempted jihadism and “terrorist” resistance has done or will ever be able to do (on top of the stream of at least 450 wars, invasions, coups, death squad massacres, genocides and blitzing imposed post-WW2 including the millions butchered in Greece, Malaysia, Indonesia,Vietnam, Korea and Latin America).
And capitalism is about to collapse on a scale never before seen. Even the Great Depression of the 1930s, the last huge capitalist crisis Catastrophe, cannot compare.
The non-stop “austerity” already imposed since 2008 has been brutal enough with callous cutbacks imposed on the weaker sections of the worldwide population, and even into the heart of the Western “rich countries” seeing endless reports on child poverty, crime, food bank despair and homelessness.
It will soon go off the scale.
And so too will world war which will inevitably follow it, as cutthroat inter-imperialist competition turns to all-out conflict, threatening devastation far wider and more deadly than anything in history.
The current upheaval, taking a jihadist form, is clearly not the socialist revolution that can or will eventually end the capitalist system.
The religious ideology that currently leads such struggle, does not answer the world’s problems; often its mumbo-jumbo can be reactionary, trapped in self-defeating sectarianism, and vulnerable to misdirection and sometimes (but only sometimes) manipulation by imperialism.
It is hostile to Marxism, and can get in the way of the battle for rational revolutionary scientific understanding philosophically and physically.
Nor are its seemingly arbitrary anarcho-terror tactics necessarily the best way to achieve the overthrow of the capitalist system, which is the only answer to the endless colonialist oppression imposed by military and financial might for centuries – and now attempting to be re-imposed everywhere with fascist barbarity as the system loses its grip in the greatest, and almost certainly terminal, crisis collapse in history.
But it is firstly a total treachery to turn around on whatever struggles do arise against imperialism and declare them to be inadmissible or to be declared “criminal or atrocities”, which simply plays into the hands of capitalism’s monstrous hypocritical pretences to be “policing the world” and “keeping it safe” etc etc, thereby covering up its sole responsibility for all the barbarity and agony in the world including the resistance spontaneously arising against it.
To declare such revolt to be reactionary or “unacceptable”, as virtually the entire posturing pretend “left” does in one way or another is effectively to line up with imperialism “defending democracy”, facilitating its desperate plunge towards World War Three as an “escape” from the Catastrophic failure its contradictions have brought it to.
It simply feeds the populist petty bourgeois frenzy and jingoistic fascist scapegoating being whipped up by the Western ruling class.
But beyond that, all these “moral” denunciations miss the great significance of this mass upheaval as the early phases of anti-imperialist rebellion.
Not a single word is heard from anyone about what is driving such turmoil and why it is occurring, other than the reactionary demonisation “explanations” that there has been some sudden out-of-the-blue eruption of fanaticism in the world driven by “evil” preachers etc.
But this shallow Islamophobic bigotry does not begin to account for why such upheaval is occurring now, and not in the past, (when the Koran and “radical” preaching was just as widespread) or to see why it is associated with regions of the world which have been oppressed, exploited and bludgeoned by world imperialism for centuries.
It makes a mockery of Marxist materialist understanding to join in with such reactionary claptrap.
Nor will the usual denunciations of such acts as “cowardly” change anything; however fanatical the perpetrators, it makes no sense as a description for suicide bombers who obviously give up their lives to strike a blow against what they see as Westerners and their ideology.
So what then should be the epithet for those sitting in their comfortable control bases, thousands of miles away, safely launching drone carried missiles against wedding parties or mountainside villages on “suspicion” that there “might be” a terrorist there, taking out as many women, children and local men as deemed “acceptable collateral damage” on the off-chance of incinerating a fighter driven to try and fight back using what methods they can????
Or for those pressing the button on “precision” high explosive bombs in planes thousands of metres high to pound and pulverise houses and whole streets, away from retaliation???
Or for those writing the inflammatory front pages and TV reports cynically milking the obviously heart-wrenching agonised emotions of the relatives to inflame yet further the hatred and vengefulness of public opinion to get it behind yet more blitzkrieging, torture, destruction and outright invasion??
Are there daily front page photospreads on the hundreds and hundreds of Palestinians mown down or permanently (and deliberately) maimed every Friday as they protest the near impossible prison camp life imposed on the tiny Gaza enclave and the appalling deprivations of the siege conditions maintained by the Zionist occupation of their land??
Or of the latest round of savage destruction by hi-tech 1000lb bombs because the Gazans dare to resist with what Heath Robinson rockets they can manage to assemble???
Are there thundering editorials against the butchery and turmoil imposed on Libya for the last eight years, or the warcrime monstrosities which have devastated Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria, and which are in preparation for many more, like Iran, Sudan nearby, or Venezuela and other Latin American countries, and against much bigger fish eventually (eg China).
Country after country has already been dismembered, pounded, pulverised and reduced to economic and social misery, including whole cities indiscriminately obliterated, with any reports buried away in the “foreign” news section of the “quality” press (and thereby allowing the pretence of a “free press” while they remain unread by the great majority).
Hundreds of thousands - in fact millions - have been butchered, maimed and bereaved, a large proportion women and children and nearly all of them innocent of any crime except possibly anti-Western anti-imperialist resentment.
Millions more have been made homeless and forced into refugeehood and, right now, face desperation and poverty, or even outright famine, on top of terrifying bombing, shelling, and drone attack, as in Yemen after four years of inhuman war and siege by Washington approved, armed and advised, reactionary Saudi tribalism.
Tens of millions more are bullied and terrorised by the siege “sanctions” and bloodcurdling threats against Iran, Sudan, and Syria again even as Western instigated war rages across Libya once more backed by the murderous Egyptian military dictatorship under “President” General Sisi, with Saudi funding, Russian support, Trumpite encouragement and UAE military participation.
To give proportionate coverage to all of this horror would need the world’s paper supplies and much of the Internet.
But instead it is hidden, (with only the likes of Wikileaks revealing anything at all (and that to be shut down by dirty dealing using the crude injustice and vengeful stitch-up imprisoning Julian Assange - see EPSR last issue)).
And all that is without counting in the nonstop atrocities, massacres, coups and wars which have been routine throughout imperialist history, wiping out or enslaving nation after nation.
Over the centuries of imperialist colonialism, billions have died from avoidable disease, repression, starvation, overwork and slavery, brutality and outright massacre; billions still live lives of misery and gross exploitation (not least on the tea plantations of Sri Lanka, kept in near or actual slave conditions to supply the cheap Western “cuppas” which help sustain the “living standards” of the smugly “moral” Western petty-bourgeoisie).
Small wonder the downtrodden are seething with hate and anger.
This new terrorist outburst and a dozen other jihadist movements across the world, from Iraq to the Philippines, and now all across North Africa, only emphasise that the more the Western “war on terror” blasts and devastates country after country, and even wipes out some of the revolt like the ISIS “caliphate”, the more recruits will join the resistance against it (as every rational bourgeois commentator predicted from the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq onwards).
It will constantly re-arise as the Third World is ever more blitzkrieged, tortured and slaughtered as part of imperialism’s desperate efforts to keep its rule intact.
If it is wiped out in one place, its dragon teeth will spring up in two others.
Such “Islamist” revolt has increasingly taken hold against the West in Mali, Burkino Faso, Somalia, the Sinai desert, southern islands of the Philippines and Nigeria, and continues non-stop from the Palestinians, most of all from those trapped in the desperate and besieged hellhole of the Gaza strip, where the Hamas militancy is dominant, as well as from their Hezbollah allies in Lebanon.
Egypt is a powderkeg too, the lid kept on the mass rising of 2011 only by imposing the most brutal massacring dictatorship through the restored military (massively funded by US imperialism and supported by Zionism), with constant rounds of judicial mass executions and torturing repression against all the opposition (Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and secular).
It erupts right in the heart of the feudal/mafia tribalism of Saudi Arabia too, despite the most horrific repression (using all the gruesome Islamic methods decried by the West but without a murmur to be heard from its politicians, let alone calls to strangle it with sanctions, or even to instantly invade and blitzkrieg Riyadh):
Al-qaeda’s Yemen branch is vowing to avenge victims of a mass execution carried out by Saudi Arabia this week.
The group’s declaration is an indication that some of the 37 Saudis executed on terrorism-related charges were members of the Sunni militant group.
Al Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, as the branch is called, posted a statement on militant-linked websites on Friday, accusing Saudi of offering the blood of the ‘noble children of the nation just to appease America.’
The statement says they will ‘never forget about their blood and we will avenge them’.
US ally Saudi Arabia executed 37 suspects convicted on terrorism-related charges on Tuesday.
Most were believed to be Shiites but at least one was believed to be a Sunni militant.
His body was pinned to a pole in public as a warning to others.
The victims of the mass execution pleaded with judges before being killed, saying that their confessions were false and obtained under torture, trial documents revealed.
Of the 37 men beheaded on Tuesday, many had attempted to convince the courts they had been tortured and even pledged their loyalty to King Salman in desperation.
The body of one of was crucified after his execution and put on public display, according to local media reports.
Some of those executed on terror charges included men who were just teenagers when they were arrested for attending protests.
Court documents obtained by CNN from trials for 34 of the men showed many had repeatedly denied the veracity of their ‘confessions.’
Fourteen were convicted of forming a ‘terror cell’ in the city of Awamiya after anti-government demonstrations in 2011 and 2012.
One of the condemned - Munir al-Adam - is recorded as saying: ‘Those aren’t my words. I didn’t write a letter. This is defamation written by the interrogator with his own hand.’
Al-Adam was just 23 when he was arrested at a government checkpoint in April 2012.
He was beaten on the soles of his feet and had to crawl on his hands and knees for days.
As a five-year-old boy he had lost his hearing in one ear following an accident, but after torture he lost hearing in the other and was left totally deaf. The 27-year-old was executed on Tuesday.
Two of those beheaded were just 16 and 17 when they were arrested - including one who was set to start a new life in the US at Western Michigan University.
Mujtaba al-Sweikat, then 17, was severely beaten all over his body, including on the soles of his feet, before ‘confessing’ to crimes
Abdulkarim al-Hawaj, 21, was the youngest executed, four years after being arrested in the country’s Shia-majority Eastern province for spreading information about protests on WhatsApp.
Under international law, putting to death anyone who was under 18 at the time of the crime is strictly prohibited.
Such is the tangle of confusion the “left” has got into after a decade and half of such moralising, that they now find themselves lined up with the most reactionary crew of all in Libya, where a coalition of the most backward and reactionary forces, from Egypt and Saudi Arabia to the UAE sheikhdoms, is supporting the latest dirty war by the General Haftar “eastern government”, including shelling civilian districts in Tripoli, against the “official” United Nations interim government (itself a Western stooge cover-up of the stinking mess left by the barbaric NATO invasion to topple the “rogue” Colonel Gaddafi government and its anti-imperialist posturing).
The picture is made even murkier by reports of Russian support too for the Haftar coalition, and then by Trump himself now pitching in with a recent phone call supporting the onslaught against the very government which the US-led West has been pretending would “stabilise” the endless warlordist mess unleashed by the 2011 nazi-NATO invasion.
All kinds of US-Europe trade war issues are at stake, not least the alliance Trumpism is strengthening with Saudi Arabia and nazi-Zionism against the Iranians in the region, and through that against European trading relations with both Iran and inside Libya, where most Europeans were supporting the UN “government”.
But it is also about further suppressing the jihadism in Libya too.
The twisted perspectives of revisionism, which declare all “jihadism” to be “reaction” and “mercenaries” have got themselves into real difficulty on this since they therefore find themselves aligned with the wrong side, such as Russia and even Egypt’s Sisi dictatorship.
And this follows from the wooden logic they follow, of step-by-step progress via “somewhat better” regimes, bourgeois nationalism and the “proper” way to struggle, missing completely the import of the rebelliousness in the world.
It has seen them completely on the wrong side as “terrorism” has made the running in the anti-occupation fight in Afghanistan and Iraq, and has then transformed into mass street revolt in Egypt.
Instead of grasping that the Arab Spring was a huge spontaneous uprising against imperialism’s stooge dictators in Egypt and Tunisia, despite the Muslim Brotherhood ideology it borrowed (for want of better Marxist understanding, so discredited for the moment by revisionist stupidity) they have ploughed on, decrying “terrorism” as the main enemy, leaving them virtually cheering the toppling of the Morsi government in 2013.
It is a desperate effort to force world events into the “democratic path” step-by-step box.
The Syrian and Libyan “civil” wars have consolidated this position around attempts by imperialism to stir up sectarianism and pseudo-revolt.
Both were bogusly presented as “extensions of the Arab Spring” but were outright counter-revolutionary stunts (similar to a stream of “colour revolution” pretences) and obviously so, trying to topple regimes hated by Washington rather than the US stooges such as Hosni Mubarak in Egypt where the Spring initially erupted.
Their pathetically thin pretence of “demonstrating crowds”, contrasting sharply with the millions who spontaneously poured onto the boulevards and squares of Cairo and the Tunis streets, and media backing underlined the difference.
In Damascus and against Gaddafi they were calling from the off for Western help and aid – no such pro-imperialist stoogery was volunteered by the Egyptian masses who had learned plenty of lessons about Washington and other imperialist aid during three decades of Sadat and Mubarak dictatorship thuggery and oppression.
Because imperialism’s skulduggery certainly provoked some of the jihadist hostility to Assad’s sectarian bourgeois nationalism in Syria the mechanical brain processes of revisionism have since declared all such revolt to be therefore reactionary.
It fits conveniently with the initial capitulations of the “left” from 9/11 onwards, allowing them to declare that jihadism is nothing but “mercenary” backwardness.
That is wrong on two counts since most of the Syrian uprising rapidly “blew back” against imperialism (needing the creation of completely artificial “good jihadists” groups to keep the anti-Assad plot going), turning into the ISIS revolt across Syria and Iraq.
And it is never explain why the ISIS would have waged such a massive struggle in Iraq, almost bringing down the US sponsored Shia stooge government which Washington managed to instal after years of suppressing the anti-occupation movement.
Revisionist perspectives deliberately focused solely on the Syrian civil war because they never had any explanation for Iraq nor why the US had to invest so hugely in supporting the destruction of ISIS, first in Iraq and finally in Syria too (destroying what was purportedly its own carefully created tool, according to the assorted conspiracy theories).
It is wrong secondly because explaining the rise of jihadism everywhere else (north Africa, Nigeria, Somalia, Philippines, and most of all in leading the anti-Zionist fight in Gaza) as a CIA plot, simply makes no sense.
While the Syrian Assad regime was a hated target for imperialism, for failing to sufficiently toe the line and for its anti-Zionism (which it had to maintain because of the pressure from the Arab street), the regimes in most of these other places are already Western stooges or at least tolerated.
Similarly the Sri Lankans.
Tragically the revisionist line from Havana has gone along with this moral condemnation, to the extent of writing off the whole Arab Spring as nothing but an “imperialist conspiracy”, lumping in the clear manipulations against Muammar Gaddafi and Assad, with the major uprisings in Cairo and Tunis.
The account of imperialist skulduggery against Libya is sound enough and with lessons for Venezuela but its generalisation against Egypt and Tunisia just shines a glaring spotlight on the brain-numbed confusion and mistakes that revisionist “Marxism” foists on the working class:
A well-aimed formula of manipulation, lies and “humanitarian intervention,” designed by the United States government and supported by the European Union (EU), was applied against Libya, which sounds suspiciously familiar given the situation facing the Venezuelan people today.
Opposition forces were armed to fight Libya’s army, a conflict was fabricated in the media that, as is known, had film and television studios as its real setting, with contracted actors and extras, where fighting, massacres, and bombings were filmed, in the best tradition of Hollywood, thus providing the necessary pretext to “justify” the U.S./nato intervention to “protect human lives.”
Invented bloggers emerged, who supposedly wrote in real time from Tripoli about the events. However, months after the staging was completed, it became known that the vast majority of that “citizen journalism” was concocted thousands of miles away from Libyan territory, from the comfort of London, New York, or Berlin.
To sow chaos, the global mass media carried out a “mythification” of the Libyan President, spreading the idea that he ruled by means of extortion and humiliation.
This false image, combined with fake news about the execution of civilians in the confrontation between Gaddafi’s army and militias, was echoed by major right-wing newspapers and publications, which served to further “validate” the reports.
All these lies responded to the simple fact that Libya has the largest oil reserves in Africa, and Western oil companies wanted to seize them. Also, months before Gaddafi had urged African and Muslim countries to adopt a single currency: the gold dinar. This would have threatened the empire’s dollar domination.
But the truth had nothing to do with this story. The media montage, together with the U.S. and nato bombings, not only ended the life of the Libyan leader, but turned that nation into the failed state it remains today.
Libya was an Italian colony until ww2 when, by agreement with the powers Britain and France, and the United Nations, it was administered by these two countries. The British governed the regions of Cyrenaica and Tripolitania, and the French occupied the area of Pezzan, until the nation achieved its independence in 1951.
Until Gaddafi overthrew the monarchy of King Idris in 1969, the people of this country lived in difficult conditions, with low development indices, as is well detailed in the article “Libya according to the UN and the harsh reality,” by French journalist and political activist, Thierry Meyssan, in which he argues, among other elements, that only 250,000 inhabitants of the total 4 million knew how to read and write.
With independence and the subsequent construction of a state characterized by its social achievements, Libya achieved one of the highest human development indices, and the highest gdp (nominal) per capita in Africa.
Several sources note that Gaddafi made his country an example for Africa and the Arab world, uniting the nation and creating institutions and ministries to strengthen institutionality.
The movement launched by the President was known as the “Green Revolution,” and had among its achievements the beginning of an agrarian reform, the promotion of a social security system, making health available to everyone, and ensuring that resources such as oil benefited the people.
To achieve this goal, the Libyan government nationalized the “black gold” industry, using its vast revenues to subsidize minimum human rights such as access to drinking water and education, which were once considered luxuries.
The Libyan state provided agricultural workers with their own land to farm, and supported their efforts. Likewise, housing was promoted as a right of all, as well as access to electricity.
According to teleSUR, loans of any kind had a zero percent interest rate, and the Central Bank of Libya was a sovereign institution at the service of citizens.
Gaddafi worked for the cooperation of African countries through the African Union (AU), founded in May 2001, with the aim of finding a way to strengthen these nations without the intervention of Western powers.
Spanish newspaper El Pais featured many articles portraying Gaddafi as obsessed with power and sex. However, in 2016, five years after his assassination, - the same publication had to accept the truly nightmarish reality in Libya following the intervention.
Libya suffers political instability, with three governments attempting to control the country. Two are based in the capital, where they compete for leadership of the west of the country, while the other is located in Tobruk, which dominates the eastern regions and controls the main oil resources.
Specialist in Libyan issues, Usef Shakir, told Sputnik that “Libya was stable and secure; the state apparatus worked well, the country was developing and growing steadily. And now chaos and fear has reigned for 8 years... We can say that from a sovereign state, Libya has been divided between various forces.”
It should be noted that since 2011, more than 5,000 people have lost their lives, and almost one million have fled their homes due to fear and insecurity. Crude oil exports have fallen by 90% and GDP losses are recorded at around €200bn over the past eight years, according to figures collected by Middle East Monitor.
Women’s rights, respected during the government of the former President, are violated without the slightest remorse. According to Amnesty international, in its 2017/2018 report on the country,
“Women were particularly affected by the ongoing conflict, which disproportionately affected their right to move freely and to participate in political and public life.”
Libya is a very clear example of what United States military intervention means for the world: chaos, political instability, Western transnationals’ seizure of resources, an “oasis” where terrorist groups, local militias and others converge, alongside human trafficking, and the extortion of those who arrive to the country in search of a less dangerous route to Europe across the Mediterranean.
IN CONTEXT: In January 2011, several Middle East countries were shaken by riots, uprisings, protests, and covert interventions, which resulted in a reconfiguration of the region’s political map. The West dubbed these events the ‘Arab Spring.”
It began with the so-called Tunisian Revolution, whose start date is considered December 17, 2010, the day on which 26-year-old street vendor, Mohamed Bouazizi, set himself on fire to protest police corruption, resulting in his death on January 4, 2011
It soon became clear that Western powers, as always, had been behind these uprisings, with the U.S. and France among those countries leading such efforts. A foreign intelligence report, quoted by French journalist and intellectual Thierry Meyssan, noted that on February 4, 2011, nato organized a meeting in Cairo to launch the ‘Arab Spring” in Libya and Syria. According to the report, John McCain chaired the meeting. [Granma 29-03-19].
But the NATO meeting did not include Egypt and Tunis; it was a response to the great upheaval to try and head it off, exactly as the EPSR has said. Even the CIA would have trouble persuading someone to “set fire to themselves”.
It is the loss of all focus on revolution which can simply write off the giant upheaval in the world as “all done by the CIA etc”, and a complacent revisionist excuse which not only betrays the world’s masses but which does not see anything of the richness of unfolding crisis development as said in EPSR 1223 12-02-02):
But this huge ‘Islamic’ revolt against American and Zionist imperialist tyranny over the Middle East is THE major phenomenon of current anti-imperialist developments; and the inability to grasp this and to use Washington’s humiliation to advance the cause of Marxist-Leninist scientific understanding of the necessary communist revolutionary future for mankind is an open admission of petty-bourgeois reluctance to accept all the implications of insoluble monopoly-capitalist economic crisis (which is putting the world into political, social, philosophical and warmongering survival turmoil).
The nonstop fascist blitzkrieging of the Middle East for the last 17 years since, and now buildup of the demented Zionist Nazis and their alliances with the thuggish mafia feudal rulers in Saudi Arabia and the equally vicious and reactionary Gulf state “sheikhdoms” is all to get the world used to the idea of war and devastation again, (after decades of pretended “peaceful development” in the rich countries) while simultaneously trying to suppress growing rebellion by the hundreds of millions who can no longer stand the endless tyrannical exploitation imposed on them for generation after generation, a brutalised slave existence destroying their humanity and leaving them in ignorance, destitution and slum poverty to feed the rapacity and greed of the imperialist powers.
Every defeat for the capitalist ruling class and its rotten degeneracy and fascist repression helps open the way for revolutionary understanding to be built.
Before that can be achieved on a wide scale, it is the crudest of anti-imperialist hatred which is striking most blows against monopoly dominance and tyranny, in all kinds of anarchic, messy and crude ways.
Whether or not they are forms of struggle that Marxism would use or even consider useful in current conditions, they are clearly an expression of the rising revolt against imperialism and have struck telling blows that have had a major impact on its morale – not least the 9/11 WTC New York attack itself which has reverberated ever since, driving the entire dialectical sequence of demented Washington revenge warmongering and subsequent quagmire defeats.
But it is the breakdown of the whole monopoly capitalist system, nothing else, which is the root of all world savagery.
It will soon go off the scale. And so too will world war which will inevitably follow.
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