29 March 2020

International Viewpoint

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International Viewpoint, the monthly English-language magazine of the Fourth International, is a window to radical alternatives world-wide, carrying reports, analysis and debates from all corners of the globe. Correspondents in over 50 countries report on popular struggles, and the debates that are shaping the left of tomorrow.
Updated: 55 min 25 sec ago

Neither Washington Nor Beijing: Socialists, Inter-Imperial Rivalry, and Hong Kong

Fri, 03/06/2020 - 08:19

Democratic socialists need an internationalist anti-imperialism that builds solidarity from below with progressive currents in Hong Kong and mainland China.

- IV542 - March 2020 / , , ,

Rosa Luxemburg and debt as an imperialist instrument - Part 1

Thu, 03/05/2020 - 12:55

In her book titled The Accumulation of Capital, [1] published in 1913, Rosa Luxemburg [2] devoted an entire chapter to international loans [3] in order to show how the great capitalist powers of the time used the credits granted by their bankers to the countries of the periphery to exercise economic, military and political domination on the latter. She sought to analyse the indebtedness of the newly independent states of Latin America, particularly, following the wars of independence in the 1820s, as well as the indebtedness of Egypt and Turkey during the 19th century, without forgetting China.

- Economic and debt crisis / , ,

Coronavirus is not responsible for the fall of stock prices

Thu, 03/05/2020 - 06:38

We are witnessing a big crisis in the stock markets of the Wall Street, Europe, Japan and Shanghai, and many blame the coronavirus for it. In the last week of February 2020, the worst week since October 2008, the Dow Jones fell 12.4%, the S&P 500 fell 11.5% and the Nasdaq Composite fell 10.5%. The scenario is similar in Europe and Asia for the corresponding period. On the London Stock Exchange, the FTSE-100 fell by 11.32%, in Paris the CAC 40 fell by 12%, in Frankfurt the DAX lost 12.44%, on the Tokyo Stock Exchange the Nikkei fell by 9.6%, the Chinese stock exchanges (Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hong Kong) also fell. On Monday, March 2, following (promises of) massive interventions by central banks to support the stock markets, most of the indices went up again. For how long?

- IV542 - March 2020 /

We Need to Learn Lessons From Labour's “Antisemitism Crisis”

Wed, 03/04/2020 - 08:57

The British Labour Party botched its response to false allegations of rampant antisemitism among the party membership. Left-wing movements in other countries can't make the same mistake.

- IV542 - March 2020 / ,

In honour of Comrade Lal Khan

Tue, 03/03/2020 - 17:11

It was with great sorrow that we learned that our comrade Lal Khan was no more.

- In Memoriam - Obituaries and appreciations / ,

Canada Lays Bare the Lie it Calls “Reconciliation”

Tue, 03/03/2020 - 07:01

The Canadian state today is in the throes of a historic crisis of its own making, as it stands off against the Wet'suwet'en Nation, an Indigenous nation in northern British Columbia (BC) that is blocking construction of the Coastal GasLink (CGL) pipeline through their land (called the Yintah). The CGL pipeline would bring fracked gas from northwestern British Columbia to a planned LNG Canada liquid natural gas terminal on the BC coast at Kitimat that is to be built by an international fossil fuel consortium. Condensate, a byproduct of the fracking, will also be used as diluent needed to send tar sands oil through another planned pipeline, the TransMountain Expansion pipeline.

- IV542 - March 2020 / ,

“The bell is tolling” on Heathrow expansion

Mon, 03/02/2020 - 09:18

In the biggest victory ever won by environmental campaigners in Britain the court of appeal yesterday declared that the long disputed third runway at Heathrow is illegal. The government had failed to adequately consider its own commitments to tackle the climate crisis and the pledges it made to the Paris climate agreement – which is to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050,

- IV542 - March 2020 / ,

Macron forces through pension reform, step up the mobilization!

Sun, 03/01/2020 - 19:26

On Saturday 29 February Emmanuel Macron called an emergency cabinet meeting, allegedly to discuss the Coronavirus emergency. However he also used it to decide that parliamentary debate on the much-contested pension reform would be cut short by using the constitutional clause “49-3” thereby meaning the reform would be adopted without a vote.

- News from around the world /

The Importance of Being Lal

Sun, 03/01/2020 - 08:43

Yasrab Tanvir Gondal, popularly known as Lal Khan, was laid to rest on February 22 in his native village Bhaun, district Chakwal. Like his eventful life, his funeral also became a revolutionary event. He would have been amused his burial ceremony, had he been able to witness it.

- In Memoriam - Obituaries and appreciations / ,

From the crisis of progressivism to the progress of the crisis

Sun, 03/01/2020 - 07:45

In recent years, debates in the international Left on Latin America have tended to focus on countries with governments that, in different ways and at different tempos, separated themselves somewhat from their nations' traditional oligarchies (sometimes more discursively than really): Venezuela, Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, Ecuador. In general, without downplaying their political and economic importance, but as the situation dictated, the emphasis has been on Venezuela, Brazil, or Argentina. Even Ecuador seemed to be an add-on to the “progressive axis” in international analyses. Then we saw, one-by-one, the progressive experiments fall, wear out, and enter into crisis. Debates revolved around the “end of the cycle” and the menacing Right coming for revenge. There were urgent calls to stop the enemy, and for unity.

- IV542 - March 2020 / , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“The financial economy prevents people from deciding”

Sat, 02/29/2020 - 07:28

Francisco Louçã is an economist especially known for being one of the founders and leaders of Bloco de Esquerda (Left Bloc) in Portugal. He is the author, with Michael Ash, of Shadow Networks: Financial Disorder and the System that Caused Crisis, Oxford: OUP, 2018.

While visiting Madrid and Barcelona to promote the Spanish edition of the book, he was interviewed by Jorge O. Maldonado for Público. The interview was published on 4 February 2020.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

“To all of them we say – Rule out coalition with Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael! – Sinn Féin should seek to lead an alternative minority government”

Fri, 02/28/2020 - 07:20

“At a time when left parties in Europe have been losing ground to their rivals on the Right and center, the Irish election bucked the trend. Whatever Sinn Féin does next, this was clearly a left-wing vote. The exit poll showed that health and housing were by far the most important issues for voters. Two-thirds wanted investment in public services to be prioritized over tax cuts. 31 percent agreed with the statement that Ireland ‘needs a radical change in direction'.

“It's possible that this opportunity for change will be squandered. But right now, the momentum in Irish politics is with the Left, and the traditional conservative parties are on the back foot. An election that was supposed to call time on the political turbulence of the last decade has had the opposite effect.” [Daniel Finn “Ireland's Left Turn”.]

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Chile: The debate on the Constituent Assembly

Thu, 02/27/2020 - 07:24

Throughout these sixty days of mobilisation, the popular revolt in Chile has advanced three fundamental demands: a social agenda to immediately fight against the precariousness of life; a new Constitution through a constituent assembly; and justice and the punishment of human rights violations. These demands have been advanced both in the spaces formed in the heat of the struggle such as the territorial assemblies and in the social spaces organised before the explosion of 18 October.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Opposition to pensions counter-reform weakens Macron

Wed, 02/26/2020 - 06:10

Since late January, the social and political situation in France has remained marked by popular opposition to the government's counter-reform targeting the pension system. And, even if it has weakened in recent weeks, the mobilization has had a direct political effect of weakening and destabilizing President Emmanuel Macron and his party, “La République en Marche” (LREM).

- IV541 - February 2020 /

The long month of October - the class struggle returns

Tue, 02/25/2020 - 08:38

Chilean president Sebastián Piñera declared on television on 8 October 2019 that “Chile is a real oasis in a convulsed Latin America”. In fact, Chile has been presented to the world for almost thirty years as a model to be exported and an example of neoliberal stability. The key to “success” was the commitment of all parties, whether for or against Pinochet, to the management of the institutions and the economic model set up during the dictatorship (1973-1990). This “oasis”, based on a programme of crushing and super-exploitation of the working class, exploded ten days later, dramatically highlighting the increasingly unbearable living conditions of large sections of the population. The immediate result of this uprising was to break the conspiracy of the democratic transition, supported by the left and the right, against the class struggle. The class struggle came back to the fore in earthshaking force of which October was only the first attempt.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Palestine: The “deal of the century” or a new attempt to liquidate the Palestinian question

Mon, 02/24/2020 - 07:15

On January 28 in Washington, a so-called Middle East peace plan was presented by US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and in the notable absence of the Palestinian side. The outlines of the project were put together by Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump's son-in-law and advisor. He is also a big supporter of Israel and a defender of the Israeli colonial settlements, for which he even funded “educational institutions”. This plan constitutes a veritable program for a new attempt to liquidate the Palestinian question, and is in violation of all the international resolutions passed by the United Nations and of international law.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Algeria: did the presidential election take place?

Sun, 02/23/2020 - 12:06

13 December, 2019, 43rd Friday of mobilisation: during the presidential election, dozens of demonstrators parade through the streets of Algiers, noses covered with flour – an allusion to the trafficking of cocaine and money laundering alleged against the son of the new president Abdeldmadjid Tebboune in 2018, who has since been in temporary detention.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Farewell Comrade Lal Khan

Sun, 02/23/2020 - 12:03

Lal Khan, whose name needs no introduction in the revolutionary politics of not only Pakistan but world over, breathed his last today on 21st February at 7:00 PM in Lahore. He had been fighting cancer for the last one and a half year. He was 64.

- In Memoriam - Obituaries and appreciations / , ,

The following statement is from Anticapitalistas,

Fri, 02/21/2020 - 09:42

The following statement is from Anticapitalistas, an organization of revolutionary socialists who helped initiate Podemos in the Spanish state. This statement was originally published at Anticapitalistas, translated by No Borders News.

- IV541 - February 2020 /

Open Letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres

Thu, 02/20/2020 - 20:31

This open Letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres was sent by Nazneen Habib and Jahan Ara, sisters of Baba Jan, on the eve of his visit to Lahore.

- News from around the world /