Hong-Kong: Down with the pro-Beijing regime

More then 1,7 million Chinese workers, students and youth are demonstrating for over 4 months now against the pro-Beijing regime of Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor. She is the voice of the capitalist CCP (Chinese ”Communist” Party) dictatorship in Hong-Kong. Under her rule the CCP regime tried to enforce a law that could deport critics of Xi Jinping to the mainland. The sides are clear in this conflict. Government bureaucrats, capitalists and right-wing nationalists support Carrie Lam, while most ordinary workers, students and leftists oppose her. Beijing is given full support to their Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China!

China is not a socialist society and the Chinese ”Communist” Party (CCP) is not a revolutionary workers party. We known this by the way this political party is ruling the People’s Republic of China. Before the 1980’s, the PRC was a deformed ”workers state”. This means that although the means of production were nationalized, workers did not have any saying in the planning and production. Also there was no political democracy as no criticism of the communist party was (and remains) allowed. It was Deng Xiaoping who made the move towards state-capitalism and opened China up to foreign capitalists. Today many top Chinese capitalists belong to the CCP as members!

The pro-Beijing regime is supported by the HK police, but they have a reactionary mob that is organized to attack and intimidate opponents. The Politihk Social Strategic is a far-right nationalist group, founded in 2016 to support police brutality against the opponents of the Hong-Kong (HK) government. The origins of these ”White Shirts” (named after their white t-shirts) can be traced back to 2014, during the Umbrella Demonstrations. Beijing rallied its nationalist supporters and out of this pro-CCP group came the Politihk Social Strategic. White shirts cheered the election of Carrie Lam in 2017 and act as her Storm-troopers. This we have seen during the recent protests were White Shirts attacked those who openly defy the HK government!

In July, the White Shirts went into the Yuen Long MTR station and assaulted anti-Beijing protesters. 45 were injured including 4 journalists as the gang used metal and bamboo rods to slash out indiscriminately at passengers leaving late night subway trains. The HK Police arrived too late and did not arrest anybody. We know why, because the HK Police is controlled by Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, the pro-Beijing puppet leader. Revolutionary socialists in Hong-Kong understand very well that the police and government will not protect the public and democratic rights against the brutal attacks by the Politihk Social Strategic!

The revolutionary socialist organisation: Socialist Action has draws clear parallels between the fascists of the 1920’s/30’s and these modern ones. Both were controlled by capitalist interests as both Italian and German ruling classes believed they could use the far-right to destroy the workers movement. The Chinese ”Communist” Party also thinks they can destroy the will to fight back, against their brutal capitalist politics. This is why far-right groups are tolerated by the police. They are the shock-troops, the mob that is used to assault and intimidate the 1,7 million Chinese who dare to say NO, to the authoritarian methods of the HK government!

Socialist Action says:

“The vicious gang attack [in Yuen Long] must be answered in the most powerful and decisive way. This is an attack on the whole mass democracy struggle… Self-defence is a human right. But it needs to be organised. It needs to be responsible, not looking to attack, but only to secure the safety of mass protesters and ordinary public…”

The CCP, the HK government and the White Shirts say that the protesters are disrupting the lives of millions. Disruption however is needed, because 1,7 million Chinese workers, students, old and young in Hong-Kong do not want to be ruled over by a puppet regime. Capitalists, nationalists and far-right thugs don’t mind authoritarian rule. But socialists and other democratic minded people care. We want a Hong-Kong that is free and not controlled either by capitalist interests or by bureaucratic state interests. Our alternative is a socialist Hong-Kong under control of the millions, not the millionaires or the members of the right-wing: Chinese ”Communist” Party!

If the HK government is losing control then Beijing might send troops to crush the demonstrations. Back in 1989 they also used force and killed over 2000. Therefore it is vital that there is organization and unity between workers in HK and those in the rest of China. The Chinese media is not free and is broadcasting the propaganda of the government. Socialist Action thinks that the movement against the CCP can be won if there is a political force that can provide a alternative. In the eyes of Socialist Action and Revolutionary Socialist Media, this alternative can only be genuine socialism. The ”Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era” is nothing more but a facade for pro-capitalist nationalism!

There are those within the protest movement who think that western governments would help them. Some even have applied to Donald Trump for support. This comes out of a foolish beleive that the western world cares about human rights. Many in Hong-Kong have this fictional believe that their lives were better under British colonialism. Western propaganda did a good job at indoctrination many. But reality remains that HK was not given independence in 1997, it was turned over to the pro-capitalist PRC. Great Britain demanded that the mainland would not impose its ”socialist system” (state-capitalism) for 50 years. Beijing agreed as the ruling class of HK came to understand that the CCP would support them, if they acted patriotic which many did!

 

The White Terror of the White Shirts.

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Solidarity with workers at Harland & Wolff

Harland & Wolff has gone bankrupt. Few people outside the United Kingdom would know this iconic enterprise. In 2019 it is a heavy industrial company, specializing in ship repair, conversion and offshore construction. However 119 years ago it was the best British shipbuilder. Among its finest creations: the RMS Oceanic (1899), the Big Four liners (Celtic 1901, Cedric 1903, Baltic 1904, Adriatic 1906) and finally the Olympic class ships (Olympic 1911, Titanic 1912, Britannic 1915). Harland & Wolff was nationalized in 1977, however the right-wing government of Thatcher choose to privatize the company in 1989. Now workers demand that Harland & Wolff is re-nationalized to save the last 130 jobs there. London said it would not do that!!

Revolutionary socialists in Northern Ireland stand in solidarity with the last 130 workers who work at Harland & Wolff (H&W). At the time of the Titanic in 1912, over 15.000 workers were busy building ships for companies like the White Star Line. This shipping line had all of her ships build by H&W since 1863. Under this partnership the Irish workers created legendary ocean liners. The most famous of them is by far the Royal Mail Steamer Titanic. Build in 1912, the Titanic was the largest ship in the world. She was the younger sister of the RMS Olympic launched in 1911 as the top ship of White Star!

Titanic sank on 14 April 1912. This resulted in a refit for Olympic and major modifications to be made to the third Olympic class liner: the Britannic. The youngest sister of the Olympic and Titanic was to set sail in 1914, however due to design changes her main voyage was delayed until December that year. By then World War One had started and the unfinished Britannic was not completed until December 1915. She was commissioned into the Royal Navy as a hospital-ship called His Majesty’s Hospital Ship Britannic. In this line of service, the younger sister hit a mine in November 1916 and sank near the Greek island of Kea!

H&W is located in North Ireland, in the city of Belfast. As a Protestant-British loyalist company it often discriminated against Catholic workers. Sectarianism divided the workers movement as union leaders sided with the Protestant majority against the Catholic minority. Revolutionary socialists could not stop the distrust between Protestant and Catholic workers. It was the capitalist class who exploited the sectarianism for their own needs. H&W got support from anti-Catholic union leaders in sacking those Catholics who stood for workers rights!

Still there are stories of workers fighting together against capitalist exploitation at Harland & Wolff. In 1919 many fought side by side (both Protestants and Catholics) for a 40 hour work week. H&W directors and managers rejected this, they said that a eight hour work day would make the company ”less competitive”. 100 years later the capitalists still use this line to attack workers, who call for a 32 hour work week. Back in 1919, the Harland & Wolff owners used the state and its army to crush the strike that paralyzed Belfast. Police brutality against strikers was common and used often as the capitalist state made no attempt to hide their true allegiance!

The lack of a genuine workers party prevented a socialist revolution. Sectarian ideas resurfaced and soon the workers turned on each other again. H&W was also able to fire over 3.000 out of 15.000 who used to work at the company. Among the 3.000 fired workers were the most active strike leaders and socialists of that time. The remaining 12.000 workers were told to resume work and many strike leaders agree with the demands of H&W. Their inability to accept solidarity from other sections of the Belfast working class also helped the capitalists to isolate the strike!

During World War Two, Harland & Wolff build over 131 naval ships and repaired over 22,000 vessels. 35.000 people were working at H&W between 1939 and 1945. After the war and the rise of jet travel, the end of British shipbuilding began. Competition from Japan also resulted in a decline in orders. The last ocean liner build by Harland & Wolff was the Motor Vessel Arlanza for Royal Mail Line in 1960. Workers did finished building another ship called the SS Canberra for P&O, but the MV Arlanza was the last ship build and launched by H&W!

Sectarianism never ceased between Irish Protestants and Irish Catholics. At the height of the Troubles in 1970, H&W fired over 500 workers because they were connected to Irish republicanism. This enforced the already dominating view among Irish-nationalists that H&W was a Protestant Unionist company that discriminated against Catholics. The fear of ending up in bankruptcy, led to the nationalization of the company in 1977. However workers did not control anything. The state appointed H&W bosses who kept their capitalist mentality!

Margret Thatcher came to power in the late 1970’s. She never liked the idea of nationalized enterprises. In her years she destroyed many state owned enterprises and at the end of her reign she did privatized Harland & Wolff. By now the former icon had reoriented itself to  vessels for the offshore oil and gas industry. In 2000, H&W wanted to build the Royal Main Ship Queen Mary 2 for the Cunard Line. However the American owned company choose the French: Chantiers de l’Atlantique over H&W. By the end of the 1990’s only 3.000 people remained employed and this number would fall sharp in the next 20 years!

Despite losing profits in the 21st century, the company that build the Titanic kept itself above water. In 2011, she was given the honor of restoring the SS Normadic, the only remaining White Star Line vessel on this planet. H&W build the Normadic in April 1911 as a tender for the Olympic and later the Titanic. The small vessel gave preferential treatment to first and second class passengers. Third class was forced to a small part of the lower-deck. Despite that the SS Normadic was a tender, it was build with luxury in mind. This is how H&W decided to restore this last icon of a almost forgotten era. SS Normadic was restored in her original White Star colors and can be visited at Belfast Titanic!

In April 2019, it was announced that H&W would go into bankrupcy. This could be the end for the last 130 workers. They have organized themselves into a strike to protest. One of their demands is the nationalization of Harland & Wolff. The British government did this in the late 1970’s, but in today’s neoliberal climate there can be no state owned enterprises. It would go against the very dogma that is mainstream for 30 years now. Big companies like banks will be saved with public money, but H&W is not vital for British capitalism anymore. Revolutionary socialists salute the bravery of the workers who have been on strike for weeks!

We call for the nationalization of all major shipping companies and put them under workers self-management. As the Socialist Party in Northern Ireland says:

Nationalisation should not be a sticking plaster to tide things over until a new buyer is found. To safeguard skills and also to develop an economy that is geared towards the needs of the majority, it is necessary for the shipyard to be nationalized and brought under democratic control permanently, not returned to the hands of private companies whose only concern is their profit margins. The bosses are driven by short-term, immediate profitability, they are unable to plan and develop industry in any sustainable way.

CWI splits with old leadership

The Committee for a Workers International (CWI) has undergone is first major split since 1992. Its sections rejected the old political leadership organized in the International Secretariat (administrative organ). After losing a debate in the CWI’s International Executive Committee (executive organ), the former leadership around Peter Taaffe, formed a faction to represent their ideas. The International Executive Committee decided to debate the issues for 12 months and then gather at a World Congress (deliberative organ) to resolve them. Unfortunate the group around Taaffe decided to ”re-found” the CWI around his faction. Now there are two groups who claim to be the Committee for a Workers International! 

Splits are bad for the revolutionary left. It strengthens the lies of the capitalist media, who always claim that socialists from the anti-Stalinist tradition (mainly Trotskyists) will never be able to unite. The CWI already lost its Latin American sections (the Revolutionary Left in Spain, Mexico and Venezuela) because of the conflict, which started around November 2018. Revolutionary Socialist Media is not part of the Committee for a Workers International, it is a independent website. However RSM has noticed that the CWI is the most active and best organized international of revolutionary socialist groups. It succeed in getting its members elected into the European Parliament (2009, 2011) and Irish Parliament!

The largest section was the Socialist Party in England and Wales (SPEW). Founded in 1997, the Socialist Party in England and Wales is the successor of the Militant group, a revolutionary tendency inside the Labour Party from 1964 until 1991. Militant was not liked by the pro-capitalist leadership of Labour. In the late 1980’s they expelled the revolutionary socialists, which finalized the transformation of British social democracy into a capitalist ideology. After leaving the Labour Party, the group was known under the name Militant Labour until adopting the name: Socialist Party in 1997. With over 2.000 members, the SPEW was until July 2019 the largest section of the Committee for a Workers International!

Losing the SPEW is a major blow for the CWI. Over 100 activists who rejected the decision of Peter Taaffe to set up a ”Committee for a Workers International led by the SPEW”, have been expelled. The party leadership claims that those who hold on to the ”old” (in their eys) CWI tried to enforce a split months ago. Fact remains however that the supporters of the so called ”In Defence of a Working Class Trotskyist CWI” only 25% of all CWI sections behind them in the debate period between November 2018 and July 2019. Their refusal to follow the existing structures and the World Congress to present their ideas, can only point out that they are a minority!

This minority has the control over the CWI’s website (www.socialistworld.net), also it controls the money that all sections (around 40 in total before the split) brought in. This left the majority of sections who do not follow the ”In Defence of a Working Class Trotskyist CWI” faction, with no website and no finances. This is why a Facebook page now serves as the official media organ of the Committee for a Workers International. Those who support Peter Taaffe have already claimed that the majority have placed themselves outside the CWI by forming a new intentional called the ”World Socialist Alternative”. However this is the name of a Facebook page, not a new organization!

The ”In Defence of a Working Class Trotskyist CWI” faction might have had genuine criticisms. They might have had good proposals. However by ignoring the one year debate period and deciding to ”re-found” the CWI on their ideas, means that Peter Taaffe and his supporters are the ones who are leaving. They also take the CWI’s website and money with them. RSM concludes that all these developments are sad and harm the revolutionary left. Now it is up to the provisional International Executive Committee majority to elect new International Secretariat and organize a World Congress in 2020. One thing is clear: the split has weakened the CWI as a international fighting group against capitalism!

By 2020, it is possible that there will be two organizations who claim to be the Committee for a Workers International. One ”re-founded” by the Socialist Party in England and Wales and the other organized by the majority of CWI sections who refused to follow Peter Taaffe. Although the majority has sided with the now provisional International Executive Committee, the German section is deeply divided. The leaders of Socialist Alternative (SAV) stand with the ”In Defence of a Working Class Trotskyist CWI” faction, however it is up to the members to decide what the final position of SAV in Germany will be. Taaffe also has the support of the Workers and Socialist Party in South Africa and the Socialist Party of Nigeria!

Revolutionary Socialist Media has decided that the actions of the Socialist Party in England and Wales are not correct. Even if Peter Taaffe was right in his criticisms, he should not have called to ”re-found” the CWI around him and his supporters. The CWI is not Peter Taaffe nor the SPEW. A genuine international must never be dominated by the largest sections. This is what we saw with the Third International, when the Russian Communist Party used its numbers to dominate the Communist International. Because of the bureaucratic maneuver by the SPEW against the CWI majority, RSM had decided to remove the link to their website. Instead you are directed to the new English and Walsh section!

Those who support the SPEW now isolate themselves in Britain. The CWI majority claims to be strengthened. Time will tell if the Committee for a Workers International is able to recover from not only the lose of its Latin American sections, but also from the lose of the SPEW. The first split of 1992 also had a similar situation. Back then the majority of sections rallied around Peter Taaffe in opposition to CWI leader Ted Grant. He claimed that revolutionary socialists should stay inside the old social democratic parties, who had turned massively to the right-wing in the late 1980’s. Ted Grant and his supporters left the CWI and became a marginal force inside the now capitalist labour parties!

 

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Can the CWI majority overcome its split? Time will tell!

The Republican Party is a racist party

The fact that many Republican members and elected officials support Donald Trump’s racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen, proofs how racist and far-right the ”Grand Old Party” has become. Trump demanded that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna S. Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, should go back to their country of birth. Problem for the idiot president, only Ilhan Omar was not born in the USA. The others are American by birth and even Omar is a U.S citizen. Still a majority of Republicans support the racist remarks by the president and shouted; ”kick them out” at his rallies!

Trump’s racism against these Democratic congresswomen is not only because of their leftism, but also because of their ethnicity. All women belong to ethnic minorities and are not part of his white establishment. Among Republicans the idea stands that white people are superior, not just morally but also culturally. Most conservatives would argue that the USA was build by white workers, ignoring the black workers who got to be exploited and were forced to work for less compared to whites. Republicans are the far-right party of America as of 2019. Donald Trump shows what only a few dared to say: That many conservatives are racist and want the USA to be a white dominated society!

The fact that racism is now openly supported by the ”Grand Old Party” (GOP) shows that American workers need a party of their own. Unfortunately the majority of the left-wing still holds on to this illusion that they can reform the Democratic Party. Even the Democratic Socialists of America with their 60.000 members remain committed to working inside this right-wing neoliberal party, led by politicians who openly say they are capitalist. Most leftists look towards Bernie Sanders as their hope in 2020. Sanders program would be a huge improvement for working class people. However, it will not brake the capitalist system. Bernie Sanders is not a socialist, he is a social democrat who believes in more regulation and less market!

Workers who vote Republican often do so out of ignorance and failure to understand how hypocrite the party is. Many conservatives claim that the USA must ”balance the budget” and that the Democrats are ”overspending”. In fact the GOP only wants to cut spending on projects that help working class people. Senator Rand Paul for example refused to vote YES on a bill that would reauthorize funding for the 9/11 First Responders Fund. He claimed that it would increase the debt of the USA, ”strangely” he and many Republicans only bring this argument up when the state needs to spend money on people. Ran Paul remained silent on the cutting of taxes for the rich and the increase of the military budget!

To defeat the racist Republicans in 2020, the working class needs a candidate that stands against both the GOP and the establishment Democratic elite. Bernie Sanders is their best candidate, but he needs to understand that the Democratic Party cannot become his vehicle to bring change. Obama also claimed he would bring ”Change” in 2008. Millions of voters hoped for an end to the inequality and racism that conservatives spread, but the first black president refused to fight the Republican Party, who had used racism and bigotry against him from day one. Instead Barack Obama tried to compromise with them and the Democrats lost the senate because of it!

Some say that Trump uses racism to force the Democratic Party to move towards the left. Then the far-right president can portray the liberals as ”extreme-left” which is then exploited by the capitalist media. This game is often played by conservatives who say that the Democratic Party has moved so far to the left, that it will never win the support of moderates. Pro-capitalist Democrats claim that the party must remain centrist in order to appeal to a broad voter base. This tactic has already failed in 2016. Hillary Clinton was the centrist candidate and she lost because many leftist voters refused to vote for her. Also many who voted for Obama stayed home out of disappointment!

All anti-racists must support Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna S. Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan against the attacks by Republicans and their White House master. To demand that these congresswomen should leave the country only because they criticize the Trump administration, is clearly undemocratic and an insult to freedom of speech. Although Republicans often cry that they support ”freedom”, in reality the only freedom they support is the freedom to exploit others. The GOP is not a defender of American traditions like multiculturalism, it is a party that drives on white-nationalism and racism as of 2019!

Another racist tactic by the Republican Party is voter suppression. This strategy was also used by southern Democrats, to deny black workers to right to vote. While the Democrats used to be a racist party in the past, today the Republicans know that most black Americans vote for the Democrats. In order to limit this they use voter suppression tricks, like keeping hundreds of voting machines locked in warehouses on election day, creating a shortage at the polls. Also Republican leaders have created strict voter ID laws, because they know that minorities often do not have an ID-card or passport. Voter turnout is much lower in states with these strict laws and a low turn out is always good for the Republican Party. In the last presidential election only 55,7% of all voters came to vote!

Because of the two party system, voter turnout has never been above 60%. Meaning that 40% of all voters in the USA never vote. This is understandable as the capitalist media only gives attention to the candidates of the Republican Party and Democratic Party. Third party candidates are completely ignored, they are not even shown in the polls. Although the USA portrays itself as a democracy, it is more and more a plutocracy. Money is the central element in elections. The more money you have, the more media attention you get. Donald Trump paid his campaign out of his own pocket and used pseudo-populism. Bernie Sanders got less coverage during the 2016 Democratic candidate race, Hillary Clinton got most media attention!

Finally the last example of Republican racism comes from its candidates and elected official themselves. Almost all racist politicians in the USA belong to the ”Grand Old Party”. The Republican Party tolerates their hatred of black people and their believes that the USA is build by whites only. You only need to Google the Internet and you can find enough leading candidates and elected Republican officials who have racist views. Since Donald Trump became president in 2016, the GOP defending his biotry and his racism. This proofs that the Republicans have no moral issues, they are a party of absolute power. It is a sad reality that many vote for capitalist Democrats in order to prevent the far-right GOP from getting power. This lesser of two evils strategy is why the capitalist class will always win elections in the ”Land of the Free”!

 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna S. Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.

How West-Germany released Nazi criminals

It is a silent story of the early Cold War. After the founding of the Federal Republic of Germany, the anticommunist government of Konrad Adenauer choose to release many war criminals. Many of those who were pardoned by the conservative Adenauer, were guilty of crimes against humanity. Yet the West-German justice commuted people like Hermann Reinecke, who was responsible for the creation and implementation of the POW policy that resulted in the deaths of approx. 3.3 million Soviet prisoners of war!

There was a clear ideological reason for this. In many post-war countries, anticommunist governments decided that many Nazi’s and their collaborators ”deserved” an early release from prison. Left-wing groups protested, especially the communist parties. However the anticommunist climate of the 1950’s made their protest marginal. The Red Scare was far more powerful in indoctrinating millions into hating leftists and their ideas. In this hostile climate many high-ranking Nazi’s were set free. They were all welcomed by capitalist companies who employed many. By the end of the 50’s, West-Germany had pardoned most war-criminals who were supposed to spend the rest of their lives in jail!

Here is a list of Nazi war-criminals who were pardoned by Konrad Adenauer in the 1950’s:

Albert Kesselring: General of the Luftwaffe, sentenced to death in 1945 for ordering the murder of 335 Italian civilians and for inciting and commanding his troops to kill civilians in reprisals. Winston Churchill and many allied leaders opposed his sentence. They respected the man who killed 335 Italians as a ”good commander”. Therefore he was released in 1952! 

Hermann Reinecke: Head of the General Office of the Armed Forces, responsible for the creation and implementation of the POW policy that resulted in the deaths of approx. 3.3 million Soviet prisoners of war. Sentenced to life in prison in 1945, released in 1954!!

Walter Warlimont: Deputy Chief of the Operations Staff, responsibility for drafting the Barbarossa Jurisdiction Order, which allowed the murder of civilians on the pretext of counteracting partisan activity. Sentenced to life in prison in 1945, released in 1954!!!

Walter Blume: Mid-ranking SS commander and leader of Sonderkommando 7a. The unit perpetrated the killings of thousands of Jews in Belarus and Russia. Blume was responsible for the deportation of over 46,000 Greek Jews to Auschwitz. Sentenced to life in prison, released in 1955!!!!

Waldemar Klingelhöfer: SS-Sturmbannführer, responsible for the murder of 2,500 Soviet citizens. First sentenced to death in 1948, then life in prison in 1951 and finally released in 1956!!!!!

These people were responsible for the deaths of many innocents. Yet the capitalist government of Adenauer released most of them. Why? Simply: West-Germany was ruled in the first 10 years after the war by the same bureaucrats who governed between 1933-1945 under Hitler. Konrad Adeneaur never purged German society of high ranking Nazi’s. Also during the 1950’s, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) adopted many ex-members of the now banned: National-Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP). Chancellor: Kurt Georg Kiesinger (1966-1969) was a member of the NSDAP for 12 years, before joining the Christian conservative party!

The propaganda of East-Germany was partially correct when it claimed that West-Germany was run by ex-Nazi’s. Although Konrad Adenauer did not joined the Nazi Party, many ex-Nazi’s remained on important functions during his chancellorship (1948-1963). Most of them never abandoned their hatred of communists, leftists and democracy in general. They put up a democratic facade by joining Adenauer’s CDU and supporting the USA. One ex-Nazi who did that was Carl Schmitt, a close friend of Chancellor Kiesinger. Schmitt played the role of crown jurist of the Third Reich. After the war, he supported the Franco dictatorship in Spain and gave many lectures for the Spanish far-right!

Just six years after the war in 1951, a German armed force was set up. It became known as the Bundesgrenzschutz (Federal Border Guards) and its weapons, helmets and uniforms were identical to those of the former Nazi army. Reinhard Gehlen was a specialist for the Wehrmacht military-intelligence on the Eastern Front. After the war, he was allowed by the CIA to set up the Gehlen Organisation. Its members got recruited from former Wehrmacht general staff officers. The Americans had no problems with these officers since most were anticommunist and pro-American. Gehlen created the Bundesnachrichtendienst in 1956, the successor to his CIA group. He served as its leader for 12 years. West-Germany’s army was by all accounts set up by former officers who hailed Adolf Hitler!

Because ex-Nazi’s made up civil society and the new military, it is no surprise that many war-criminals got to be commuted. West-Germany portrayed itself: ”democratic”, yet it banned the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) in 1956, on the grounds that it was a ”undemocratic” party. The KPD was by no means a threat to West-Germany, its Stalinist ideology had turned the West-German communists into a sect of propagandists for the German Democratic Republic (DDR). Yet because of the Red Scare, the Adenauer government choose a witch hunt and banned the KPD. Party members who used to be trialed by Nazi jurists under Hitler, found themselves trialed again by the same people. This is because many state prosecutors and judges had started their careers under the Nazi: People’s Court (1934-1945)!

The western allies did not complained about the release of so many war-criminals. This is because the German far-right gave support to NATO. This is ironic because today the far-right claims to stand against the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. But in the 50’s, most ex-Nazi’s gave their full support to the USA led alliance. There was only one far-right party in Germany who opposed NATO and claimed it would support the USSR. This political party (made up of ex-Nazi’s) got banned by Adenauer, while at the same time many Nazi war-criminals were released from jail. The Socialist Reich Party (SRP) was set up in 1949 and led by Otto Ernst Remer. This neo-Nazi party turned out to be anti-western and pro-Stalin. Why? Because the Soviet-Union was financing the SRP!

Stalin did not gave financial aid to the KPD, instead Moscow gave money to the Socialist Reich Party. Otto Remer never criticized Stalin and said that his supporters would welcome a Soviet invasion of Western Europe. This was something Konrad Adenaeur could not tolerate. He was willing to accept former Nazi’s if they put up a democratic facade, but pro-Stalin Nazi’s could not be tolerated by ”democratic” Germany. The SRP got banned in 1952, four years before the KPD. By the dawn of the 1960’s most high ranking war-criminals were free again. Only the top leaders of the Third Reich remained in jail, this included people like Albert Speer and Karl Dönitz. Out of all Nazi leaders only Rudolf Hess served a true life sentence. He was in prison from 1941 until 1987!

As Hitlers killers were released, the West-German state sentenced many KPD members. Their crime? They were ”antidemocratic” because their party supported the Soviet-Union and the DDR. West-Germany between 1948 and 1969 did not confront itself with the crimes of Nazi Germany. By all accounts, the Federal Republic of Germany (BRD) tolerated ex-Nazi’s as ”ordinary” Germans. 10.000 prison sentences were carried out against West-German communists, who were stigmatized after their release from prison. Even after 63 years it remains painful for the victims of anticommunist hysteria, who have never received an official apology from the BRD!

In the history books of the western world, the BRD is portrayed as a ”free democracy”. East-Germany is portrayed as ”communist” and ”undemocratic”. The reality is not as black and white. Yes, West-Germany was more democratic compared to East-Germany. But under Konrad Adenauer there was a stigma against leftism, while far-right ideas were tolerated. The anticommunist state was very selective over what was ”democratic” and what was ”undemocratic”. In the same year the KPD was banned, the Bundeswehr was set up with many former Wehrmacht officers joining. In the 21st century, it is reported that far-right ideas are part of this ”democratic” Germany Army!

 

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East-German propaganda in the 1950’s about ex-Nazi’s serving in the West-German government. It was partially right!

Unfair and biased: Fox News

Don’t we all love the hypocrisy of the right-wing media? Just look at the American: Fox News channel and how they hated Obama for his willingness to speak to Kim Jong Un, now the same Fox News praises Donald Trump for doing just that: Talking to Kim Jong Un. Another proof of the unfair and biased way of this propaganda network for the Republican Party!

Hungary removes Imre Nagy

In a move to return Hungary to the era of right-wing authoritarianism (1919-1945), the conservative regime of Viktor Orban relocated the statue of Imre Nagy, the communist who stood up to the Soviet-Union in 1956. Imre Nagy and others like Pál Maléter and Miklós Gimes were all communists. At first they were loyal to Moscow and served under the brutal Stalinist government of Mátyás Rákosi. But the cruelty of Hungarian stalinism turned them not only against Rákosi, but also against the very country that had supported their Stalinist coup in 1948!

Hungary today is growing more authoritarian as the conservatives try to rewrite history to favor anticommunists only. What the history books of Viktor Orban and many capitalist countries do not tell is the ironic fact that the ”anticommunist revolution of 1956” was in fact led by communists. Many revolutionary leaders of the Hungarian Revolution belonged to the Hungarian Working People’s Party (Magyar Dolgozók Pártja). A communist party that was set up in 1948 to rule the Hungarian People’s Republic. After 8 years of Stalinist brutality, the working class rose up against the MDP. Mátyás Rákosi was dumped and Imre Nagy selected as the next leader. This was done in a desperation because the workers turned against the MDP and marxism-leninism (stalinism)!

This Imre Nagy was no stranger. He already tried to reform the Stalinist system between 1953 and 1955, when he was prime minister under Rákosi. However the hard-liners were still in control of the party, it was not until the famous anti-Stalin speech of Nikita Khrushchev that the Stalinist-wing of the party was paralyzed. Nagy was not ready to brake with the top-down system at first. But as workers started to demand massive reforms he realized that there were only two choices. Nagy choose to side with the proletariat while the pro-Soviet reformist-wing led by Janos Kadar embraced the moderate Stalinist ideology of Khrushchev. It was decided by both Nagy and Kadar to build a new political party as the MDP had been completely discredited!

Janos Kadar became leader of the new Hungarian Socialist Workers Party (Magyar Szocialista Munkáspárt). This party got the support from Moscow to crush the government of Imre Nagy. The Hungarian People’s Army was in no position to defend the country. On the orders of Moscow, the Hungarian People’s Republic was instructed to arm only 65.000 men. The army was never given an order to attack the invading Soviet armies. This was because army leader Pál Maléter believed he could negotiate with the Soviets. Against all international standards, the Soviet military arrested Maléter as he spoke with them. The Stalinist government of Janos Kadar staged a show trial to legitimize the new regime!

Nagy and his supporters were all found ”guilty” of trying to overthrow the Hungarian People’s Republic. In reality it was the Soviet-Union and their puppet: Janos Kadar, who had overthrown the legitimate government. Imre Nagy tried to appeal to the western world, but his government was overthrown as Soviet troops took control of Budapest. Kadar and his pro-Soviet wing knew that if Nagy was allowed to stay in power, he would have moved Hungary out of the Soviet sphere of control. A huge embarrassment would that have been for the USSR. Nikita Khrushchev wanted Hungary to remain Stalinist and pro-Moscow. Therefore the Soviet Army marched into the country and ended the short period of political freedom!

On 16 June 1958, the puppets of Nikita Khrushchev carried out the execution of Imre Nagy, Pál Maléter and journalist Miklós Gimes. All three were hanged and buried with their faces down in the earth, their hands bounded by iron. The public was only informed 24 hours after the executions had been carried out. It would take 31 years before the government allowed the remains to be buried with respect. At the funeral services on 16 June 1989, a young Viktor Orban spoke. He honored the leaders of the 1956 uprising, but failed to mention their commitment to a more democratic socialism. Nagy and his allies did not call for the return of capitalism, nor did they wanted privatizations and mass inequality that are now common in Hungary!

After gaining full political power after 2010, the Hungarian Civic Alliance (Fidesz – Magyar Polgári Szövetség) started to portray the 1956 uprising as pure anticommunist. As if all Hungarians choose to reject the idea of socialism. This was not the case as the councils of workers and revolutionaries never called for capitalism. In fact it was the government led by the former supporters of Janos Kadar, who kept the austerity and privatizations going after 1994. The Hungarian Socialist Workers Party had transformed itself into the present-day: Hungarian Socialist Party, a pro-capitalist (social-democratic) force that is not socialist, despite calling itself ”socialist”. It was because of the ex-stalinists that the right-wing conservatives were able to take full control after 2010!

Austerity and capitalist barbarism became associated with liberals and social democrats. They were the political parties that embraced the single European market economy and accepted its demands for austerity, deregulation and privatizations. Victor Orban and the FIDESZ party rejected these demands and started to get support from working class Hungarians. Their nationalist propaganda is powerful because many media outlets in Hungary are owned by FIDESZ capitalists. State-media has also spread conservative ideas for over nine years now. Despite all anti-EU rhetoric, Orban has never re-nationalized anything. His capitalist cronies are still free to exploit workers and nothing is done to end mass inequality!

In 1996, the government (led by the ex-stalinists) erected a statue to Imre Nagy with him looking at the Hungarian parliament. For 23 years the face of Nagy kept a close watch on the parliamentary building. Viktor Orban choose to end this, he wants to rebuild a monument that glorified the overthrow of the Hungarian Soviet Republic in 1919. The statue of Nagy had to move to make room for a monument build by the right-wing dictatorship of Miklós Horthy. The monument was destroyed after 1948 by the Stalinist regime. Now after 71 years it is to be rebuild on the spot were Imre Nagy used to stand. A clear message that Orban want to restore the monuments and legacy of the Horthy regime. Miklós Horthy was responsible for the White Terror that killed over 5.000 supporters of the socialist revolution!

It is clear that the right-wing government has a favorable view on the period of the Kingdom of Hungary, the name of the country between 1919 and 1945. Miklós Horthy is directly responsible for the antisemitic climate that came after the Hungarian Soviet Republic was overthrown.The right-wing fueled the anticommunist paranoia it resulted in the fact that many Hungarians aided the fascist Germans in arresting and deporting over 600.000 Jews to the camps in 1944. Today there is still antisemitism as the government promotes the idea that rich ”Jewish” capitalists control the world. George Sorros is often used in antisemitic propaganda as the ”face of rich Jews” that must be opposed!

The removal of the Imre Nagy statue signals that Hungary is moving back. But we cannot trust the official opposition. They are responsible for the rise of Viktor Orban. They carried out austerity and cuts to social services. Because of that a majority of workers today do not trust the liberal opposition. Liberalism is associated with corruption, drop in living standards and capitalist inequality. In Hungary these facts are the outcome of neoliberal governments led by the ex-stalinists. This makes it so ironic. First the Stalinist party split in a reformed democratic wing led by Nagy and a pro-Soviet wing led by Kadar. Then the Nagy wing was destroyed and the Kadar wing ruled for 31 years. After that the pro-capitalist wing took over and carried out a capitalist counterrevolution in the 1990’s together with bourgeois liberals!

Janos Kadar died in July 1989 just a few months before the collapse of his Hungarian People’s Republic. Only a small minority led by Gyula Thürmer remained loyal to the founder of ”Goulash-Stalinism”. Today the Hungarian Socialist Party is no force of resistance. They are the official opposition, but their power is greatly reduced. Despite all the corruption and inequality after nine years of Viktor Orban, the Hungarian Civic Alliance (FIDESZ) won the last election on a platform of ethnic nationalism, antisemitism and anti-migrant hatred. Also there is no socialist alternative. The 1956 uprising is portrayed as a revolution against ” Marxist socialism”. Despite the fact that Imre Nagy, Pál Maléter and Miklós Gimes were not right-wing and would not have supported Orban nor the restoration of capitalism!

True socialism must be build from below. Not by nostalgia towards Janos Kadar and his moderate stalinism. What Hungarians need is a workers party on a socialist program, that exposes the Hungarian Socialist Party as anti-socialist and a tool of capitalism. Also such a party must shown to workers that austerity and deregulation are also enforced by the conservatives. Viktor Orban can be defeated if the wall of lies is brought down. Workers must have zero trust in the state, its institutions nor the media. This is because many newspapers and television networks are owned by supporters of the government. Capitalism rules supreme because all political parties in Hungary support it. Therefore it is time for a workers party to stand up and say: NO!!

 

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The famous statue of Imre Nagy is now removed, to make room for a symbol of White Terror

Stop the American imperialist machine

Donald Trump wanted to attack the Islamic Republic of Iran. The guy who said that he would not be a war-hawk like Hillary Clinton, almost got the USA into a bloody war. The only reason he did not attack is because he choose to listen for a change. This is what saved the world another conflict involving the imperialists of the USA. Iran is already under an embargo since 1979. Like Cuba, the American imperialists did not liked it that their puppet was overthrown. After Trump was elected president, he destroyed the Iran nuclear deal framework. Because the USA does not want normal diplomatic relations with Tehran. They want to overthrow the Shia-Islamic regime in order to install another puppet of Washington DC! 

Revolutionary socialists do not support the theocratic regime of the Ayatollahs. We stand against the conservative dictatorship of ”Supreme Leader” Ali Khamenei. But this does not mean that we support an imperialist attack on the country, in order to install a pro-western government. American (and British) imperialism did that in 1953, when they overthrew the only democratic elected government, the one led by Mohammad Mosaddegh. It took almost 60 years before the USA formally accepted that they organized the destruction of the Iranian democracy. Iran’s anti-imperialism does not give it a blind check. We do not support the regime out of anti-imperialist solidarity as many leftists did/do!

Trump has exposed himself as a tool for the ruling class and their imperialist ambition to command and conquer. The only reason he did not attack Iran is because he listen to right-wing opponents of a military assault. Although they are rare, there are conservatives who reject western imperialism. Trump may have listen to their arguments, while the typical liberal/conservative establishment was ready to defend a war with Iran.  What these Democratic and Republican war-hawks fail to understand is that Iran is not Iraq. A war with the Islamic Republic of Iran would be costly to the United States of America. Unlike the weakened and isolated regime of Saddam Hussein, the theocracy of Ali Khamenei will have the support of the majority of Iranians, should the Americans choose to attack!

There is a sector of the American economy that would profit from a potential war. It has always profited from any military conflict involving the USA. This sector is the Military Industrial Complex. Billions of dollars have been wasted on war material and it made the capitalists who own ”defense-minded” corporations very rich. It is ironic that Dwight D. Eisenhower (who overthrew many democracies in the 1950’s) warned about the power of the Military Industrial Complex. He rightfully said:

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

January 17, 1961

President Eisenhower was by no means a shining example of a ”good president”. He worked very hard to support and build pro-American regimes around the world. Meaning that he supported the fascist regime of Franco in Spain. He armed the totalitarian anticommunist regimes in South Korea, South Vietnam, Thailand, Taiwan and overthrew the democratic governments of Guatemala and Iran. Eisenhower’s final warning maybe a little hypocrite, but he was right on that one issue. The Military Industrial Complex (MIC) in the USA is very powerful and it must be destroyed!

Therefore we revolutionary socialists call for the complete expropriation and nationalization of all weapons manufactures. We want the arms industry to be minimal in a future American socialist democracy. It is likely that the war-hawks of the defense-minded corporations tried to lobby for an attack on Iran. Firing even one missile would cost millions of dollars. This is why the defense budget for 2019 is around $686,074,048,000. Meanwhile there are Americans who die because they do not have access to health care. Also many suffer from low wages (42% of all working Americans earn less then $25.000 dollars a year) and rising poverty, while the capitalists of the MIC belong to the 1%!

The American imperialist machine must be opposed. All the bases of the U.S Empire should be closed and its army/air force/navy withdrew from the world. The United States of America is not the world police and it should not have any bases outside its own territories. But the empire is not stupid, the bases are there to protect U.S supremacy over the world. If China or Russia starts expanding their bases outside their territories, it is called ”aggression” by the American media. The USA has been building bases and outposts in other nations since 1945, never has this been called ”aggression”. A famous American base/concentration camp is Guantanamo Bay (GITMO) in Cuba. Here the empire has put many prisoners captured during their illegal wars!

70% of the world dictators are supported by Washington DC. This includes almost all reactionary Arab monarchies, from Saudi-Arabia to the United Arab Emirates. These feudal regimes are armed with modern weaponry to oppress their own people and to wage wars on others. The criminal Saudi Royal Army is armed with American/European weapons and these are used to commit mass-murder. But the American and European MIC does not care. They never care as weapons-dealers only have one thing in their mind: profits, big profits. War is very profitable for any MIC and to lobby for a conflict could be very rewarding. Due to the long wars in Afghanistan (since 2001) and Iraq (since 2003), billions in profits have been made by the American Military Industrial Complex at the expanse of over a minimum of 200.000 death Iraqi’s!

Revolutionary socialists oppose the United States Empire out of anti-imperialism. But this does not mean that we stand with anybody who says: ”I oppose the USA”. Many leftists however do so out of ”campism”, the idea that the world divided into two camps. This is a leftover from the Cold War, when the world was divided into a ”Free World” (according to the USA) and a ”Socialist World” (according to the USSR). We rejected both as neither free nor socialist. The western world was and remains no beacon of freedom, while the USSR was not socialist. Despite these facts many leftists remain trapped in this idea that they must give political support to any regime that is under attack by the U.S Empire. It results in the fact that leftists give uncritical support to dictators who deserve none!

Right-wing people do not have this problem. This is because they favor authoritarianism and obedience, even in a democracy. During the Cold War, the right-wing used the concept of democracy as a weapon, claiming it would stand for ”individual freedoms”. In reality most conservatives openly supported the most brutal anticommunist regimes and groups. This is why Stalinist communists and social-conservatives have many things in common. It is no surprise to see that many ex-Stalinist leaders of the former Soviet-Union are now supporters of Vladimir Putin, the conservative dictator of Russia. Stalinism also favors authoritarianism and obedience to the state. Trump demanded this as President of the Trump Organisation, long before he entered the White House!

 

American-empire

Sudan: Down with the military junta!

The Sudanese Revolution that toppled dictator Omar Bashir is at a crossroad. If the masses put their trust in capitalist politicians then nothing will change. The country is in need of a revolutionary party, a force that mobilizes the working class. There is a Sudanese Communist Party, but this political party is not revolutionary and remains paralyzed after years of living underground. One thing is clear, the working class does not accept the Transitional Military Council. Massive protests and strikes keep on going. In response the army has set in their violent militia: The Rapid Support Forces. These thugs attack protesters and harm anybody who dares to stand against the army!

The Rapid Support Forces were founded in 2013 by Omar Bashir. He recruited its members mainly from the Janjaweed militias, who fought for the government of Bashir in Dafur. Here they showed their cruelty by raiding none-Arab towns. The Rapid Support Forces are responsible for the Khartoum massacre that killed over 100 people and injured 650. Also RSF forces are said to have raped over 70 women, who participated in the pro-democratic demonstrations in the capital. In response to the killings, the (capitalist) opposition suspended the talks and called for a general strike. This resulted in more death as the RSF went on a rampage!

For three days over 60% to 100% of all workers in Sudan refused to work. This resulted in the fact that the Transitional Military Council (TMC) agreed on freeing political prisoners and resume talks. However revolutionary socialists do not trust the official opposition. We believe that no genuine democracy can be build with the TMC in power. The Committee for a Workers International calls for a revolutionary government to be set up by workers and poor. This government would then force a program that calls for:

  • Convening elections to a revolutionary constituent assembly

  • For the establishment of workers’ tribunals to bring to trial of all those collaborating with the former Bashir regime and Transitional Military Council

  • A purge of the supporters and collaborators of the old regime

  • Disband the Rapid Support Forces

  • For the right to organize political parties, and free and democratic trade unions

  • For a democratic press and media based on public ownership of printing and broadcasting resources and outlet, under democratic control and allocation of press and media facilities, based on support

  • Nationalization of all major companies, banks and multinational corporations under democratic workers’ control and management

  • For massive investment in infrastructure and the economy

  • No to foreign capitalist intervention

  • For a democratic socialist Sudan, with full democratic rights for all minorities, and an international appeal for support and solidarity from the working class of Africa and internationally

It is vital that soldiers are asked to abandoned the TMC and join the revolutionary masses. What is lacking in Sudan is a workers party on a socialist program. The Sudanese Communist Party lacks revolutionary energy and stands on the side lines. They give support to a ”democratic Sudan” and do not call for socialism nor a revolutionary transformation. Meanwhile the TMC knows that the masses won’t obey them. In order to control the media the junta cut off the internet. They wrongfully think that digital information is what drives the people. Although the internet and social media can play an important role during social protests and struggles, it is not a replacement for the need to organize!

Many workers have set up local neighborhood committees. These have become vehicles for organizing and planning. Like the soviets in Russia (1917), the Sudanese committees have the potential to take political power away from the military junta. This can only be done if the masses understand that they have the potential to overthrow the TMC. The (capitalist) opposition does not want decentralize control. They hope for a parliamentary democracy with capitalism intact. Revolutionary socialists hope that the neighborhood committees will develop into genuine power-structures. Because the state bureaucracy needs to go. Its members must be replaced by democratic elected representatives in committees of the working class!

 

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Cutting off the internet will not stop the revolutionary masses!