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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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February 10, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Veteran CPIML Liberation leader Comrade Srilata Swaminathan passed away in Udaipur (Rajasthan) in the early morning of February 5. She was 74. Comrade Srilata had suffered a brain stroke on the night of January 28 and was rushed to a hospital in Udaipur where she breathed her last breath following a cardiac arrest.
Alongside the Battle of Madrid, the Battle of Jarama is commonly associated with the participation of the International Brigades — volunteers, often organised by Communist parties, who travelled from around the world to Spain to join the anti-fascist fight in defence of the 1931-39 Spanish Republic.
Following Franco’s failure to take Madrid in October-November 1936, the fascist forces attempted a military offensive in February 1937 on the western flank of the Spanish Republic forces, alongside the river Jarama. While the offensive failed, and the counter-offensives by the Republican forces effectively turned the battle into a stalemate, the battle itself became synonymous with the military, political and moral contribution of the International Brigades to the anti-fascist struggle.
Holding the frontline at Jarama were thousands of volunteers from Britain, Ireland, United States, Italy, France, Belgium and many others who came from around the world to defend Spanish democracy against Franco, Hitler and Mussolini.
Among a handful of surviving International Brigadiers remaining today is José Almudéver Mateu.
February 9, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Working people need to confront racism, sexism and anti-immigrant prejudice if we are to be successful in uniting our class sufficiently to take on the huge power of the one percent – the super-rich owners of most productive wealth in society.
By International Strategy Center
February 8, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from International Strategy Center with permission — Sitting in Gwanghwamun square on December 31, the screen rapidly dialled up to 10,000,000 as it added up the number of participants in the past ten candlelight protests. Every Saturday evening for the last two months of 2016, people had come out in the streets calling for impeachment. A few weeks prior, an impeachment motion had been passed in the National Assembly by an overwhelming vote. We were saying goodbye to the year with a candlelight protest on New Year’s Eve complete with Christmas jingles about impeachment.
1917: The View from the Streets: Leaflets of the Russian revolution #3 – ‘Only a provisional gov't can bring freedom and peace'
February 6, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal / John Riddell's Marxist Essays and Commentary website — 100 years ago today, on February 6 (January 24), 1917, a Menshevik-influenced workers’ group within the Central War Industry Committee issued the following appeal for a demonstration calling for a provisional government.
By Marta Harnecker, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal
1. One hundred and fifty years ago, Karl Marx published his book Capital, an intellectual effort of great breath, with the aim of revealing the logic of capitalist production and providing workers with theoretical instruments for their liberation. Having discovering the logic of the system, he was able to foresee with great anticipation much of what is happening in the world capitalist economy today. But, we cannot mechanically apply what is outlined in Capital to the current reality of Latin America.
By John Bellamy Foster
February 5, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Monthly Review — The alarm bells are ringing. The climate-change denialism of the Trump administration, coupled with its goal of maximizing fossil-fuel extraction and consumption at all costs, constitutes, in the words of Noam Chomsky, “almost a death knell for the human species.” As noted climatologist Michael E. Mann has declared, “I fear that this may be game over for the climate.”
By Dick Nichols
February 3, 2017 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal – On January 21, in Bilbao’s hyper-modern Euskalduna Conference Centre, the Basque left pro-independence party Sortu concluded its refoundation congress by finalising the election of its 29-member national council.
The congress had brought together Sortu members from all parts of the divided Basque Country: its four southern districts in the Spanish state, presently covered by the regional administrations of Navarra and the Basque Autonomous Community (Euskadi) and its three northern districts in the French coastal department of Pyrénées-Atlantiques.
February 1, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Verso Books with the author's permission — Karl Marx claimed that Louis-Auguste Blanqui was the “man whom I have always regarded as the brains and inspiration of the proletarian party in France.” Although largely forgotten today, there was a time when revolutionaries throughout the world viewed this nineteenth century French political prisoner as a central figure and hero of revolutionary socialism. In this time of so much political backsliding and compromise, it is worth looking at the life of Blanqui.
By Hawzhin Azeez
February 2, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Kurdish Question — Zahra Shexo bends over her sewing machine and meticulously, but expertly allows the course material to run through her fingers and under the pointed needle of the machine. The sound of over a dozen women’s laughter and conversation intermixes with the repetitive mechanical sounds of the sewing machines in the large room. The sewing room is a Kaleidoscope of different coloured materials, samples, threads and other necessary sewing items. Zahra is the current administrator of the textile cooperative Amargi in Kobane city.
Pakistan: Awami Workers Party condemns Trump's travel ban on citizens and residents of 7 Muslim-majority countries
By Farooq Tariq
January 29, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The Awami Workers Party condemns the travel ban on citizens and residents of 7 Muslim-majority countries instituted by the administration of President Donald Trump. While the ban has been instituted in the name of securing the United States from terrorism, the order is in effect, a collective ban on a particular religious community from those countries – Muslims – including legal residents of the United States, from entering the United States. It is also painfully ironic that the bulk of the countries affected by the ban – including Iraq, Yemen, Syria, and Libya – are those that the US and its allies, including Saudi Arabia, have invaded or bombed in recent years, creating thousands of refugees in the process.
By Teressa Rose Ezell
Januar 31, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — A Lakota prophecy tells of a mythic Black Snake that will move underground and bring destruction to the Earth. The “seventh sign” in Hopi prophecy involves the ocean turning black and bringing death to many sea-dwelling creatures. It doesn’t take an over-active imagination to make a connection between these images and oil pipelines and spills.
It’s troubling enough that the growing “Black Snake” has branched out at an alarming rate, forming a massive subterranean coast-to-coast web. But to make matters worse, the nefarious reptile seems to suffer from leaky gut syndrome, so that it functions as a toxic underground sprinkler system, spreading gas, oil, and poisonous by-products everywhere it goes—including into waterways and drinking water sources.
By Cat Moir
“After one has enjoyed the first taste of Marxist criticism, one will never again be able to stand ideological hogwash.” – Ernst Bloch, Spirit of Utopia, 1918
January 30, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Red Wedge with the author's permission — The relationship between art and society has always been a central question for artists, thinkers and activists on the Left. In the twentieth century, it was commonplace to believe that art has the power to change the world. It was this conviction that motivated Georg Lukács to defend the literary realism of writers like Thomas Mann over the stylistic innovations of a James Joyce. For Lukács (1977: 33), literature was “a particular form by means of which objective reality is reflected,” and as such it was “of crucial importance for it to grasp that reality as it truly is.” By displaying social reality in all its contradictory complexity, Lukács believed, art could serve the interests of class struggle and social emancipation.
Michael Lebowitz: If you don’t understand the second product, you understand nothing about Marx's Capital
Presentation by Michael A. Lebowitz
January 29, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The following talk was given at the International conference "150 years Karl Marx’s Capital - Reflections for the 21st century" held in Athens, Greece on January 14-15, 2017. Organised by the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung - Athens Office in cooperation with Theseis, the conference discussed the actuality of Marx’s theoretical system of the critique of political economy 150 years on from the publication of Capital Volume I.
By Ashley Fataar
January 28, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Pambazuka News — The relatively recent history of Zimbabwe’s working class and its supporters is very rich and provides answers to the challenges for the future. The working class as a whole provided inspiration to the fights against unemployment and oppression. It is worth re-looking that history to provide some answers.
By Rajni Lallah
January 28, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Pambazuka News — The last general election in December 2014 brought an unexpected landslide victory for the Peoples’ Alliance of the Mauritian Socialist Movement (MSM) – Mauritian Social Democratic Party (PMSD) - Liberating Party (ML, split from the Mauritian Militant Movement), cobbled together in haste just before the Labour Party Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam dissolved parliament in preparation for the general elections. Since then, in the space of 18 months, no less than three finance ministers in turn have been appointed, removed and replaced by the new Prime Minister Aneerood Jugnauth. The new government in the space of two years has become more and more unpopular as its inability to come up with the “economic miracle” it pledged to bring during the 2014 electoral campaign becomes clear. The 86-year-old Aneerood Jugnauth is due to retire as Prime Minister and to be replaced by another minister, his son, who is the leader of the MSM, the largest party in the Alliance. This situation has generated conflict between the two men as leaders, as father and son, between clans in the MSM organised around the two leaders, and between different parties within the government Alliance.
January 27, 2017 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — The following interview with Marta Harnecker was conducted by journalist Tassos Tsakiroglou for the Greek newspaper Efimerida ton Syntakton prior to Harnecker's participation in the international conference "150 years Karl Marx's Capital: Reflections for the 21st Century", held in Athens, Greece, January 14-15, 2017. Links is making available the original English version of the interview.
Reviewed by Doug Enaa Greene
October 1917 – Workers in Power.
Paul Le Blanc, Ernest Mandel, David Mandel, François Vercammen, and contemporary texts by Rosa Luxemburg, Lenin, Leon Trotsky.
Edited by Fred Leplat and Alex de Jong
London: Merlin Press, the IIRE and Resistance Books, 2016. 256 pages
By Ian Angus
January 26, 2017 –– Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Climate & Capitalism –– About 11,700 years ago, the last ice age of the Pleistocene ended and a new time of relative warmth and climate stability began, an epoch that geologists call the Holocene. Now, a large body of scientific evidence shows that “the Earth has been pushed out of the Holocene Epoch by human activities.” A new and unprecedented time of sweeping global change, the Anthropocene, is now underway.