24 April 2019

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.
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Against the Davos of the Rich: For a Davos of the Peoples!

21/01/2019 - 09:17

The World Economic Forum at Davos of capitalists, managers of capital, and rulers of the richest countries of the global north takes place at a time of accelerated attacks against mass standards of living, our unions, women's rights, LGBT rights, and especially attacks against immigrants. It comes at a time when our planet is dangerously approaching the point where irreversible damage will threaten the earth and all human, animal and plant forms.

- IV528 - January 2019

Put Labour at the head of the anti-Brexit movement

19/01/2019 - 09:34

On 15 January, after two-and-a-half years of negotiations, British Prime Minister Theresa May presented her proposed withdrawal agreement from the European Union to a vote in the Westminster parliament. It was resoundingly defeated as was inevitable given the balance of forces in the parliament - which has already shown itself to be for a "soft” Brexit if not "Remain”. Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour Party, immediately tabled a motion of no confidence in the government. If a motion of no confidence wins a simple majority a new government has to be formed and win a confidence vote within fourteen days, if not a general election is automatically called.

- IV528 - January 2019 / ,

Québec solidaire reviews the election and maps campaign on climate crisis

18/01/2019 - 11:48

Québec solidaire will make climate change the party's main political campaign issue in the coming year, both in and outside the National Assembly. The campaign will build on the major proposals in the QS economic transition plan featured in the recent Quebec general election.

- IV528 - January 2019 /

Here's What a Real Strike Looks Like: 150 Million Say No to Despotism in India

17/01/2019 - 17:13

If a new trade union law goes into effect, India will essentially abandon any commitment to workplace democracy

- IV528 - January 2019 / ,

Women and the Nation

16/01/2019 - 18:59

In Turkey, nationalist dogma and women's subordination go hand in hand.

- 3. Sexual politics / ,

Bolsheviks and Feminists: In Cooperation and Conflict

16/01/2019 - 17:28
Marxist attempts at integrating gender in the class-struggle framework was uneven in the Russian revolutionary movement. A class reductionism often held back the Bolsheviks, but contests with the liberal feminists, as well as the objective reality of more women entering the labour force, led to changes. Women activists took the lead in this. The Revolution of 1917 saw a much greater degree of women's involvement. Women workers provided leadership in the early stages of the February (...) - 3. Sexual politics / , , ,

“We Are The Lions, Mr. Manager”

16/01/2019 - 16:59

On the 20th of August in 1976, a group of Asian immigrants in London began a strike that would define an era.

- 4. Features / , , ,

Solidarity with the popular uprising in Sudan

16/01/2019 - 04:50

We the Alliance of Middle East Socialists support the ongoing uprising which erupted across Sudan starting December 19th, 2018. The protests were set off by the lifting of subsidies on bread, wheat, and electricity as well as spiking inflation. The United Nations Development Program has estimated that nearly half of the population, i.e. 20 million, live below the poverty line. However, their demands go much deeper and call for the downfall of the regime of Omar al-Bashir because of its decades of economic, political, and social repression. The dictator al-Bashir was also on the verge of obtaining constitutional amendments allowing him to run in the presidential election in 2020.

- IV528 - January 2019 /

Order Prevails in the Arab World

15/01/2019 - 21:08

Through butchery and sectarianism, the autocracies of the Arab world have survived this round. But in the long run, any order dependent on murder and bloodshed is doomed to collapse.

- IV528 - January 2019 / , , , , ,

DSA Two Years Later: Where Are We At? Where Are We Headed?

15/01/2019 - 17:27

It has been two years since the explosive surge of the Democratic Socialists of America, now the largest socialist organization in the United States and the largest since the 1940s. And DSA has had some remarkable successes. Today as the country turns its attention to the presidential election of 2020, we ask: How DSA is doing? What is it accomplishing? And where is it going? What do the various caucuses and political tendencies within DSA propose as a future direction for the group? Is there a genuine left wing of DSA, and if not, what is the alternative?

- 4. Features /

Arrest of trade union leaders highlights continued repression

15/01/2019 - 08:57

Although this article was published last November it is part of the current context. At least two people have been killed in protests over fuel price hikes, after the doubling of prices. President Mnangagwa isnt in the country - he is currently visiting Russia. This has been roundly criticised by the opposition. [IV]

- IV528 - January 2019 / ,

Europe's Political Turmoil — Part II

14/01/2019 - 17:41

We have already seen examples of the havoc that the far right in power could wreak — against immigrants and refugees, against civil liberties, against vulnerable populations even within the limits of constitutional rule. But given Europe's history, the question inevitably arises: would the far right in power stay within constitutional limits? Could further advances for the far right ultimately lead once more to the establishment of fascist regimes in Europe?

- IV528 - January 2019 / , ,

Water as a Form of Social Control

13/01/2019 - 12:45

From Detroit and Flint, Michigan to Gaza and the West Bank in Palestine, those struggling against institutionalized racism and apartheid are no strangers to water struggles.

- 4. Features / , ,

Nationalism, Patriotism, Hate Crimes

13/01/2019 - 08:21

French President Emmanuel Macron's November 11, 2018 speech, during the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, called rising nationalism across Europe a “betrayal of patriotism” and warned against “old demons coming back to wreak chaos and death.”

- IV528 - January 2019 / , ,

Yellow Jackets and labour movement at a crossroads

12/01/2019 - 06:41

A look back at the year 2018. The emergence of the Yellow Jackets was first and foremost an expression of the rejection of tax injustice, crystallized in the rejection of the new fuel tax, which everyone has since understood was intended only to finance the compensation in the 2019 budget for employer social security contribution exemptions.

- IV528 - January 2019 /

Building A Global Democratic Movement to Counter Authoritarianism

11/01/2019 - 16:13

Bernie Sanders has so far received little attention for his internationalist positions, even though he spoke out and voted against the war in Iraq, proposed a drastic reduction in US military spending, strongly criticised the coups d'état organised in Latin America by the CIA and opposed US support for the Saudi offensive in Yemen. The US left generally considers that in foreign policy he has not deviated from the consensus between Democrats and Republicans, criticizes him for his lack of involvement in the BDS movement (boycott, disinvestment, sanctions) and recalls that during the decades he has been in the Senate he has sometimes voted in favour of military intervention or spoken of the need to preserve US power. Even if in his youth he applied to be a conscientious objector during the war in Vietnam, he went to Cuba after the revolution and organized diplomatic meetings with the Sandinist revolutionaries, since he has been in the Senate his dissent in the Democratic Party has been limited to domestic political issues, with few exceptions.

It is also true that since the end of the Vietnam war, there has not been a strong left-wing internationalist current in the United States and that many of those who, on the margins, within the radical left, identify as such, are at the same time bogged down in an alignment with so-called "socialist states" or at least with the "enemies" of American imperialism. Bernie Sanders was therefore not isolated by not promoting internationalist solidarity.

Since his campaign for the Democratic primaries two years ago - during which he also abstained taking any notable internationalist positions - and with the resurgence of a new left, however, the construction of mass internationalism in the United States seems necessary. Especially since Donald Trump is taking a caricatural chauvinism forward at a great rate. And that on a global scale the dangerous resident of the White House serves as an example for the resurgence of state authoritarianism and a kind of neo-fascism. Bolsonaro's victory in Brazil is only the most recent example of this danger.

It was precisely in the aftermath of the neo-fascist candidate's success in the first round of the Brazilian presidential election that Bernie Sanders delivered a speech in Washington calling for "building a global democratic movement against authoritarianism". He picked up and built on what he wrote on 13 September 2018 in an editorial published by the Guardian, where he stated that "It should be clear by now that Donald Trump and the rightwing movement that supports him is not a phenomenon unique to the United States," and that "All around the world, in Europe, in Russia, in the Middle East, in Asia and elsewhere we are seeing movements led by demagogues who exploit people's fears, prejudices and grievances to achieve and hold on to power."

Sanders' proposal to the global left deserves to be taken seriously. Today, internationalism is not on the rise and the fact that a world-renowned personality is calling for the reconstruction of bonds of solidarity to fight authoritarianism together can have an impact. Faced with the multiplication of authoritarian regimes and the rise of extreme right-wing movements, the resurgence of an internationalist movement is the task of the moment. As Bernie Sanders says in his speech "We need a movement that unites people all over the world who don't just seek to return to a romanticized past, a past that did not work for so many, but who strive for something better,"; that it is not enough to defend what has been achieved but that we must "reconceptualize a genuinely progressive global order based on human solidarity," and "reach out to those in every corner of the world who share these values, and who are fighting for a better world." It is a good basis for opening the discussion on how to build an international movement. Jan Malewski

- 4. Features / ,

On the managed and farcical national election in Bangladesh

11/01/2019 - 08:26

The 11th National Election in Bangladesh was held on 30 December 2018.

- IV528 - January 2019 /

The far right: A global phenomenon

10/01/2019 - 08:30

In recent years, the reactionary, authoritarian and/or fascist extreme right wing has been in the ascendant all over the world: it already governs half of the world's countries. Among the best-known examples are: Trump (United States), Modi (India), Orbán (Hungary), Erdoğan (Turkey), Daesh (Islamic State), Salvini (Italy), Duterte (Philippines), and now Bolsonaro (Brazil). But in several other countries we have governments close to this trend, even if they do not have such an explicit definition: Russia (Putin), Israel (Netanyahu), Japan (Shinzō Abe), Austria, Poland, Burma, Colombia and so on. In fact, the distinction between these two groups is completely relative.

- IV528 - January 2019 /

The language of capitalism isn't just annoying, it's dangerous

10/01/2019 - 08:00

A new book argues that words like “innovation” are doing more than telling you who to avoid at parties.

- 7. Reviews section /

BDS: Repression and Progress

09/01/2019 - 11:20

It wouldn't be surprising for, let's say, Fox News to fire a commentator for expressing support for the Palestinian struggle. But some fans of CNN, known for its 24/7 denunciations of all things Trump, might be taken aback that a “liberal” media outlet would take such action.

- 2. News from around the world