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Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal seeks to promote the exchange of information, experience of struggle, theoretical analysis and views of political strategy and tactics within the international left. It is a forum for open and constructive dialogue between active socialists from different political traditions. It seeks to bring together those in the international left who are opposed to neoliberal economic and social policies, and reject the bureaucratic model of "socialism" that arose in the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe and China.

Inspired by the unfolding socialist revolution in Venezuela, as well as the continuing example of socialist Cuba, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal is a journal for "Socialism of the 21st century", and the discussions and debates flowing from that powerful example of socialist renewal.

Links is also proud to be the sister publication of Green Left Weekly, the world's leading red-green newspaper, and we urge readers to visit that site regularly.

Please explore Links and subscribe (click on "Subscribe to Links" or "Follow Links on Twitter" in the left menu). Links welcomes readers' constructive comments (but please read the "Comments policy" above).

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Greece: Astonishing and resounding 'Oxi' (No) to EU austerity

Democracy Now! on July 6, 2015, reports of the Greek rejection of austerity.

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

By Colin Fox

July 5, 2015 -- Colin Fox, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- So much for it being a close vote! The Greek people today delivered a resounding blow to the European Central Bank's plan to implement further hardship and austerity on the Greek people.

More than 61.3% of Greeks voted "No" (38.69% voted Yes). This represents a huge success for Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and an extraordinary vindication of the SYRIZA government and its record since January 25th. Despite falling living standards and increased hardship, epitomised by the enforced "bank holiday" this week which restricted customers to €60 per day, the Greek people have again resoundingly backed their radical left-wing government.

Greece: Vote #OXI -- Alexis Tsipras' speech at the final rally before 'Greferendum' [English]

Posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal on July 4, 2015; translation thanks to ThePressProject

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

Athens -- Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras addressed tens of thousands of people late on July 3, 2015, in the final rally to call for a #OXI (No) vote in the July 5 referendum against the European Union's blackmail and austerity.

* * *

Transcript

Citizens of Athens, citizens of Greece.

Today we are not protesting, today we are not demonstrating–today we are celebrating.

Today we are celebrating democracy.

Democracy is cause for celebration, democracy is cause for joy; democracy is liberation, democracy is a solution.

'Your struggle is our struggle': Asia-Pacific left solidarity with the people of Greece and SYRIZA

July 3, 2015 -- Posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with the people of Greece and the SYRIZA-led government as they prepare for a referendum on July 5, 2015, on whether to accept the continuation of the program of neoliberal austerity or chart a new course free from the debilitating stranglehold of the “troika” — the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank, and the European Commission.

We support the call of SYRIZA for a "no vote" as the only option for the people of Greece, especially the working classes, to assert sovereign control over the country's economy and their own future.

We condemn the “troika” and their allied political institutions, for forcing their policies of neoliberal austerity, privatisation, deregulation and savage cutbacks dismantling the public sector. We, therefore, hold the “troika” responsible for the massive unemployment, increased poverty, greater social inequality and a severe economic depression now being experienced by Greece. The irony of it all is that the huge debts the “troika” is demanding for repayment did not go to Greece but were used to repay private sector creditors such as French and German banks. In other words, these are onerous and illegitimate debts.

Varis Yaroufakis: 'I shall wear the creditors’ loathing with pride'

Wolfgang Schäuble, Germany's finance minister (left), looks daggers at Varis Varoufakis during a news conference in Berlin. 

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

By Varis Yaroufakis, Greece's former minister of finance

July 6, 2015 -- Thoughts on a Post-2008 World, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The referendum of July 5, 2015, will stay in history as a unique moment when a small European nation rose up against debt bondage.

Ireland: Sinn Fein's mayor of Dublin joins those in Belfast, Derry and Cork

mayornidalaigh.jpg

July 4, 2015 -- Irish Republican News, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The election of a first-ever Sinn Fein mayor in Dublin has underlined the party’s progress in city councils across the island ahead of the centennial commemorations of the 1916 Easter Rising.

Long-standing Dublin councillor Criona Ni Dhalaigh (pictured above) was elected mayor with 41 votes from the 63 member city council -- despite a last minute effort by the right-wing parties to wreck a deal which should have guaranteed Sinn Fein the post.

Ni Dhalaigh is the 346th mayor of the city, but only the eighth woman to hold the office.

Sinn Fein became the largest party on the council at last year’s local elections, taking 16 out of the council’s seats.

'US fuelled the rise of ISIS' conspiracy theories a back-handed attack on Syrian uprising

The graphic from Seamus Milne's article.

By Michael Karadjis

June 8, 2015 -- Syrian Revolution Commentary and Analysis, submitted to Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal by the author -- In early June, journalist Seamus Milne penned a piece for the Guardian entitled, "Now the truth emerges how the US fuelled the rise of Isis in Syria and Iraq" (http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jun/03/us-isis-syria-iraq).

Of course, we all wait for “the truth”. The nickname “truth” has been used by every kind of religious organisation for centuries – indeed they all had opposing “truths”. Generations of Americans saw the reflection of their own imperialist leaders in Superman fighting for “truth, justice and the American way”. For decades Soviet citizens were told their leaders spoke only “the truth” in a newspaper by that name.

Milne, in other words, is in good company.

‘But the banks are made of marble...'

"But the banks are made of marble, with a guard at every door, and the vaults are stuffed with silver, that the worker sweated for ..." -- "The Banks are made of Marble" was written circa 1948 by Les Rice and recorded by Pete Seeger among others.

By John Rainford

July 2, 2015 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Across Africa, western Asia and Latin America in the 1980s, the growth of per capita GDP was brought to a halt. This was not a recession, it was a severe depression, and its cause was profligate lending by banks in the 1970s.

In the 1960s, the Eurocurrency (as opposed to the euro) had been invented. US dollars deposited in non-US banks and held there in order to avoid restrictions of US laws became negotiable financial instruments that formed the basis for an unregulated market specialising in short-term loans.

In 1964 the market was estimated at US$14 billion, but by 1978 it was close to $500 billion after it became the chief mechanism for investing the massive oil profits of the Organization of Petrol Exporting Countries (OPEC) cartel, which managed to quadruple oil prices in 1973 and treble them again in the late 1970s. In 1970, the average price for a barrel of oil was US$2.53, in 1980 it was about $41.

Venezuela: Maduro, ALBA express solidarity with Greece, reject 'financial blackmail'

By Lucas Koerner

July 1, 2015  --  Venezuelanalysis.com, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal – Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro voiced solidarity with the Greek government of Alexis Tsipras after the latter refused a payment of $1.8 billion to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“I want to officially express solidarity to Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and the Greek people on behalf of Venezuela”, said the socialist leader on his weekly television program shortly after the IMF deadline late June 30 evening.

Greece’s recently elected leftwing SYRIZA government rejected the harsh terms for a new bailout laid out by the Troika, composed of the IMF, European Commission (EC), and the European Central Bank (ECB), which would have meant a continuation of the severe austerity policies that have devastated the Greek economy over the last five years.

“Fear not, Greek sisters and brothers, the path forward is to break the chains of international financial capital and the IMF, to free yourselves from the yoke that tries to consume the people’s blood, the people’s labor, the wealth of countries, that is the path”, Maduro continued.

Greece: OXI! Vote No! to austerity on July 5

Λέμε ΟΧΙ Για την Ελλάδα της Αξιοπρέπειας, για την Ευρώπη της Δημοκρατίας

Posted by ΣΥ.ΡΙΖ.Α. on Wednesday, July 1, 2015

July 1, 2015 -- Posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- "We say no! For a Greece of dignity, for a Europe of democracy."

Podemos in solidarity with SYRIZA's struggle against austerity

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

By Podemos (Spain)

June 30, 2015 -- Podemos, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- In view of the situation in Greece, and following the breakdown in the negotiations by the Eurogroup, Podemos wishes to communicate the following:

1. Last Monday, the Greek government presented a proposal to the Eurogroup which included important concessions and was unanimously welcomed by the lenders as being reasonable and viable. In the following days, however, the international creditors led by the International Monetary Fund did not accept the Greek government’s proposal to tax the wealthiest sectors of society, restructure the debt and launch an investment plan to revive the economy.

Spain: Huge advance for left in local/regional elections, but 'Spanish SYRIZA' sorely needed

In Barcelona, central St. James Square was packed with chanting, whooping and confetti-throwing supporters of the winning Barcelona Together and its leader, housing rights activist Ada Colau.

By Dick Nichols

July 1, 2015 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- On Saturday, June 13, the squares in front of scores of town halls across the Spanish state were jam-packed with enthusiastic crowds: tens of thousands were gathering to celebrate the inauguration of the progressive administrations created by the leftward swing in the May 24 local government elections for the country’s 8122 councils.

Georg Lukacs: Lessons for struggle today

Doug Enaa Greene's lecture on Hungarian Marxist Georg Lukacs (1885-1971) and the lessons we can use for today's struggles. The work of Lukacs, who was one of the preeminent communist philosophers of the last century, offers valuable insight on how revolutionaries understand the nature of capitalism, political organising and strategy. Presented to the Center for Marxist Education.

By Doug Enaa Greene

Greece: Tsipras slams EU's 'blackmail' and its attempt to 'hinder democratic processes'

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

By Alexis Tsipras, prime minister of Greece

June 28, 2015 -- Prime Minister of Greece, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Yesterday’s Eurogroup decision to not approve the Greek government’s request for a few days’ extension of the program -- to give the Greek people a chance to decide by referendum on the institutions’ ultimatum -- constitutes an unprecedented challenge to European affairs, an action that seeks to bar the right of a sovereign people to exercise their democratic prerogative.

Venezuela: Millions vote in socialist party primaries

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro at the campaign close for primary elections for the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, June 26, 2015. Photo: AVN.

June 28, 2015 -- TeleSUR English, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Millions of members of the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) hit the ballot box on June 28 to vote for the left-wing party’s candidates for parliamentary elections to be held in December. "Here are these candidates, they are men and women who come from the people, they were nominated by the grassroots (of the party), now it is up to you to choose,” stated Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on June 26 during an event to celebrate the close of campaign.

Cuba 'will always be ready to help sister nations', says ICAP president

A Cuban literacy program operating in an Aboriginal community in Wilcannia, NSW.

June 15, 2015 -- Green Left Weekly, post at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Kenia Serrano, president of the Cuban Institute for Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP) and a member of Cuba's National Assembly, attended the recent national consultation of the Australia-Cuba Friendship Society. Green Left Weekly's Denis Rogatyuk spoke with her about recent developments of the Cuban Revolution.

* * *

Cuba has just been removed from the list of state-sponsors of terrorism. How do you think this will affect Cuba’s relations with the United States?

First of all, there is no reason to have Cuba on such a list. We should have never been there. However, the US decided to do this back in 1992. On May 29, the removal was approved.

We consider this a very positive step in eliminating the different obstacles to forging stable bilateral relations with the US.

Armenia: What has sparked #ElectricYerevan?

By Sergei Markedonov

June 24, 2015 -- New Cold War, first published in Russian on politcom.ru, and translated and published in English on Open Democracy; posted at Links international Journal of Socialist Renewal --  Fresh protests in Yerevan have their roots in a number of deep-rooted domestic issues in Armenian politics. But we make comparisons to other protest movements at our peril.

On June 23, some 6000 people marched towards President Serzh Sargsyan’s residence in Yerevan. Water cannons against protesters have been used against participants in what has already been dubbed #ElectricYerevan, in reference to the cause of the protests: rising energy prices.

The initial mass protest against hikes in electricity tariffs, and the authorities’ reaction against them, have had a noticeable effect on the country’s political situation. According to the Armenian police, 237 people were arrested on June 23 and, in total, 29 people suffered injuries, including 11 police officers. But while this situation has already begun to provoke comparisons with recent events in Ukraine, these protests have a domestic trajectory which should not be ignored.

Greece: 'To authoritarianism and austerity, we respond with democracy' -- SYRIZA calls referendum on EU austerity

Posted by George Sophie Flourentzou on Monday, June 29, 2015

Massive protest against austerity, Athens, June 29, 2015.

For more analysis and discussion on SYRIZA's struggle against austerity, click HERE

Speech by Alexis Tsipras, prime minister of Greece; translation by Stathis Kouvelakis

June 26, 2015 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal, first posted at Kouvelakis' Facebook page

* * *

Fellow Greeks,

Balance de elecciones y resistencia en México

Contingente OPT-PYME en un desfile de protesta por la desaparición de los 43 estudiantes.

Haga clic aquí para más información sobre México.

Por Nevin Siders Vogt, corrección de estilo de Ayla Huerta Miranda

22 de junio 2015 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- A la luz de las recientes elecciones a la mitad del sexenio y la creciente coyuntura entre las campañas de justicia por los 43 desaparecidos, los movimientos de resistencia luchan firmes contra la privatización de recursos naturales y las industrias nacionalizadas.

Mexico: President and his party re-elected; left divided and defeated

 Mexico's President Enrique Peña Nieto.

Click the following links for more by Dan La Botz, and more on Mexico.

By Dan La Botz

June 15, 2015 -- New Politics, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author's permission -- Despite widespread disillusionment with the political system, an organised attempt to prevent the election from taking place in a few states and continuing economic doldrums, President Enrique Peña Nieto and his Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) were the big winners in Mexico's June 7 election, followed by the conservative National Action Party (PAN). Both parties are committed to continuing the deepening of the country's neoliberal, free-market economic reforms.

Syria: Nusra’s massacre of Druze villagers condemned

Members of the Druze minority wave the Druze flag.

By Michael Karadjis

June 15, 2015 -- Syrian Revolution Commentary and Analysis, submitted to Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal by the author -- The second week of June witnessed two major events concerning the relationship between the Druze religious minority and the Syrian revolution.

In northern Idlib province, where Druze have taken an active part in the recent liberation of the capital and from the Assad regime and the other string of stunning rebel victories, a provocation against a Druze house by a unit of the Sunni-jihadist group Jabhat al-Nusra – aligned to the main rebel groups in the province – led to a massacre of over 20 Druze villagers.

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