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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.

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Nepal: Bracing for `high noon' after May 1

The New Power

By Jed Brandt, Kathmandu

April 21, 2010 — JedBrandt.net — There are moments when Kathmandu does not feel like a city on the edge of revolution. People go about all the normal business of life. Venders sell vegetables, nail clippers and bootleg Bollywood films from the dirt, cramping the already crowded streets. Uniformed kids tumble out of schools with neat ties in the hot weather. Municipal police loiter at the intersections while traffic ignores them, their armed counterparts patrol in platoons through the city with wood-stocked rifles and dust masks as they have for years. New slogans are painted over the old, almost all in Maoist red. Daily blackouts and dry-season water shortages are normal for Nepal’s primitive infrastructure, not the sign of crisis. Revolutions don’t happen outside of life, like an asteroid from space – but from right up the middle, out of the people themselves.

Bolivia: Australian participants report on World People's Conference on Climate Change

April 23, 2010 -- Several representatives from Australia's climate justice movement attended the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth held in Bolivia, April 19-22, 2010. They included activists from Beyond Zero Emissions, Rising Tide, Socialist Alliance, Climate Emergency Action Network of South Australia and inner city climate action groups Yarra Climate Action Now (Melbourne) and Climate Action Newtown (Sydney). Below Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal collects some of their accounts.

Bolivia people's climate summit: An S.O.S. from Tiquipaya

Cochabamba people's conference. Photo by Reuben McCreanor, Upside Down World.

By Nidia Diaz, translated by Granma International

It would not be exaggerated to state that Tiquipaya, a small locality in unredeemed Cochabamba, is making history. More than 20,000 people, clinging to the final hope of saving the planet, or Mother Earth, are meeting there.

Five heads of state and two Nobel Peace laureates are accompanying them on this noble crusade in which the very existence of today’s world is at stake.

(Updated April 24) Bolivia: Historic people's climate conference winds up -- first reports on outcomes


Democracy Now! -- April 22, 2010. Cormac Cullinan, South African environmental lawyer and an anti-apartheid activist, is co-president of the people's conference Rights of Mother Earth Working Group. He reports on its findings (full transcript of interview below).

[For more coverage of the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, click HERE.]

People’s summit adopts ‘Cochabamba Protocols’

By Brenda Norrell, Cochabamba

(See the end of this article for a link to the People’s Agreement text in Spanish.)

April 23, 2010 — Censored News via Capitalism and Climate — The World Peoples Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth culminated Thursday and released the final declaration, the Agreement of the Peoples, calling for the establishment of an International Climate Court to prosecute polluters, condemning REDD and holding polluters responsible for their climate debt.

Venezuela: `This what democracy looks like'; Alan Woods: The people in arms

Venezuelan students organised in the Bolivarian militia.

Introduction to Alan Woods' article (below) by Stuart Munckton, photos by Kiraz Janicke 

April 22, 2010 -- The Future on Fire -- A common chant around the world when people take to the streets against the crimes of the global capitalist system is: "This is what democracy looks like!"

It is a statement that real democracy is on the streets, in the united action of ordinary people. It is a statement that democracy is more than passive voting once every few years, it is popular power and direct participation.

Voices from Bolivia people's conference: The `most important event in the struggle against climate change'

Nnimmo Bassey interviewed by Democracy Now! (Transcript below).

April 21, 2010 -- Democracy Now!

AMY GOODMAN: Among those who spoke at the opening ceremony for the World Peoples’ Climate Conference was Nnimmo Bassey. He’s the prominent Nigerian environmentalist and chair of Friends of the Earth International. By contrast, at the UN climate summit in Copenhagen in December, his group, along with several other mainstream environmental organisations, was barred from the talks.

Democracy Now! producer Sharif Abdel Kouddous spoke with Nnimmo Bassey outside the conference gates here in Tiquipaya. He began by asking to talk about the significance of the Bolivian summit.

Raúl Castro at Venezuela's bicentenary of independence: `We have only one alternative: unite, fight and overcome'

Bicentenary of Venezuela independence celebrations. Photo from Correo del Orinoco.

Speech by Raúl Castro Ruz, president of Cuba's Councils of State and Ministers, delivered at the 9th ALBA-TCP Summit, Venezuela

April 19, 2010 -- It is very moving for us to be in Venezuelan today, April 19, commemorating the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the independence struggle, which represented the battles for independence in the Spanish colonies in the Americas.

It was the embryo of a first integration process in Latin America, as Simón Bolívar understood the destiny of the peoples of our region very early on. Everything that we do now for the integration of Latin America and the Caribbean began precisely here, on a day like today, two centuries ago.

NZ socialists endorse Bolivia's call for a world referendum on climate change

Socialist Worker-New Zealand statement to the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, in Bolivia April 19-22, 2010

April 19, 2010 -- Socialist Worker-New Zealand agrees with the statement made by Bolivia's President Evo Morales in his invitation to the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth that “climate change is a product of the capitalist system”.

The pursuit of growth and profit is hard-wired into capitalism. Corporations and politicians wedded to capitalism cannot bring about the urgent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions we need to avert catastrophic climate change.

Therefore the transition to societies living in harmony with nature requires fundamental system change. The way we use resources, the way we produce things, the way we live has to change. This is the challenge that climate change, peak oil and other looming global crises place on the shoulders of all of us living today. Yet too many of our leaders are shirking their responsibilities, not only to those they claim to represent, but to future generations.

(Updated April 22) Bolivia: `Capitalism is the main enemy of the Earth', Evo Morales tells people's climate conference


Video report from Democracy Now! (Full transcript of report below)
[For more coverage of the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, click HERE.]

Prensa Latina

April 20, 2010 -- Cochabamba, Bolivia -- Bolivia's President Evo Morales Ayma condemned the capitalist system in the opening session of the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth today.

Morales, speaking at the April 20 conference inauguration, started his speech with a slogan, "Planet or death, we shall overcome". He said that harmony with nature could not exist while 1 per cent of the world's population concentrates more than 50 per cent of the world's riches. Capitalism is the main enemy of the Earth, only looking for profits, to the detriment of nature, and capitalism is a bridge for social  inequality.

Clara Zetkin’s struggle for the united front

Clara Zetkin (left) with Rosa Luxemburg.

* * *

Listen to John Riddell present a workshop on Clara Zetkin at the US International Socialist Organization's Socialism 2009 conference in Chicago:

Honduras: Disappearing truth and justice; Washington covers up repression

US covering up reality in Honduras

April 13, 2010 -- Real News report -- While State Department attempts to sell the world that the inauguration of a new president in Honduras has brought an end to the country's crisis, the continuing assassinations of anti-coup activists and their children stands as sharp evidence to the contrary. Video includes interviews with Father Ismael "Melo" Moreno, director of Honduras' Radio Progreso, and Adrienne Pine, anthropologist from American University and Honduras expert. Produced by Jesse Freeston.

By Annie Bird

Can capitalism fix climate change?

By Simon Butler

April 14, 2010 -- Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. It has taken capitalism about 250 years to generate enough waste and pollution to press dangerously against nature’s limits. With such a damning record, there should be no grounds to expect a different outcome in the future.

Yet the mainstream discussion about how to tackle the climate crisis still assumes that, this time around, capitalism can be made sustainable.

In an April 3 Sydney Morning Herald piece arguing for capitalists to take a leading role in resolving the climate crisis, Paddy Manning said it “was an article of faith for this column” that a free market could respond effectively to the challenge of climate change. But, struggling to come up with Australian capitalists responding positively to the challenge, he was forced to admit: “Faith is needed, because climate change is proof of colossal market failure.”

Malaysia: Najib's flirtation with imperialist US and his support for plot against Iran

By the Socialist Party of Malaysia (Parti Sosialis Malaysia, PSM)

April 19, 2010 -- The bilateral meeting between Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and US President Barack Obama served nothing but the submission of the Malaysian government to the imperialist US as its new foot soldiers of “war on terror” in South-East Asia.

Prime Minister Najib recently attended the two-day Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, which achieved very little in promoting disarmament, but created conditions for stepping up sanctions against Iran, a country in the oil-rich region that has refused to subordinate itself to US Imperialism. It has become clear that Obama's foreign policy is far from breaking with the aggressive expansionist approach under the Bush administration, but is more in line with the imperialist goal of achieving military domination of the world.

Photo essay: `Stop the coal rush!' -- people's blockade halts exports from world's biggest coal port

Ship movements cancelled at the world's biggest coal port, Newcastle (Australia) -- March 28, 2010 from jagath dheerasekara on Vimeo.

Photo essay and story by Jagath Dheerasekara

March 28, 2010 -- Newcastle, Australia -- A mass community protest at the biggest coal port in the world, Newcastle, succeeded in preventing coal ship movements all day. Hundreds of peaceful protesters occupied the harbour from 10 am.

What kind of Palestinian state in 2011?

Palestinian children hold giant keys to represent the homes their families lost.

By Rafeef Ziadah

April 12, 2010 -- The Bullet -- In December 2007, the Palestinian National Authority (PA), in close consultation with donor states and institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank, proposed the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan (PRDP), a program based on “rebuilding the Palestinian national institutions” and “developing the Palestinian public and private sectors.”[1]

Pernyataan Bersama untuk Thailand: Selesaikan Krisis melalui Demokrasi, Bukan Represi

Pernyataan Bersama Regional

Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM); Perhimpunan Rakyat Pekerja (PRP) Indonesia; Partai Rakyat Demokratik (PRD) Indonesia; Turn Left Thailand; Socialist Alliance (Australia); Partido Lakas ng Masa (Philipina); Solidarity (Australia)

April 10, 2010 -- Kami sangat prihatin dengan situasi yang kini terjadi di Thailand, dimana Perdana Menteri yang didukung militer, Ahbisit Vejjajiva telah menyatakan Negara dalam keadaan darurat dan memulai tindakan represi berdarah dalam menghadapi meningkatnya eskalasi protes menuntut pemilihan umum ulang yang bersih.
Keadaan semakin mengkuatirkan karena pemerintah Thailand telah menutup semua media oposisi dan memberikan kekuasaan kepada angkatan bersenjata untuk melakukan tindakan represif terhadap demonstran Red Shirts. Pasukan bersenjata Thai telah mempergunakan persenjataan yang berlebihan termasuk tank dan peluru tajam, dalam menghadapi para demonstran pro demokrasi di Bangkok.

Sudan: US backs election farce

An election rally in Juba, South Sudan. The Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army has withdrawn from the election in the north, but is standing in the south.

By Kerryn Williams

April 15, 2010 -- Hailed as the first “competitive”, “open”, “multi-party” elections in Sudan in 24 years, there was little free, fair or open about the national poll that began on April 11, boycotted by the major opposition parties.

The holding of democratic elections was a key component of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) that ended a two-decade civil war between the Sudanese government in Khartoum — ruled by the National Congress Party (NCP, formerly the National Islamic Front) since it took power in a 1989 military coup — and the South Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A).

Costa Rican election result hides complex reality

Laura Chinchilla.

By Elena Zeledon, Costa Rica

April 16, 2010 -- Costa Ricans have the highest standard of living in Central America including universal free education and health care and a social safety net of workers’ unemployment benefits and pensions that is the the envy of Central America. However, these hard-won gains are threatened by the capitalist crisis, the implementation of the Central American Free Trade Agreement and other pro-capitalist policies of the governing social democratic National Liberation Party. The NLP won re-election in February with Laura Chinchilla succeeding Oscar Arias as president. What does this mean? Will intensified attacks spark social struggles?

The reality of Costa Rican politics is always more complex than can be summed up in a few simple sentences. Such is the case when analysing the results of the February 7, 2010, election in Costa Rica.

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