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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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The voice for change – On Hong Kong’s 2016 Legislative Council election results

 

 

Nathan Law was one of five candidates who ran for election advocating self-determination and were elected on this basis.
By Au Loong-Yu

 

September 23 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Europe Solidaire Sans Frontières — The 2016 LegCo election results show a strong call for change. Although politically and socially divided among themselves, it was the first time in Hong Kong history that five candidates ran for election advocating self-determination and were elected on this basis. If we take into consideration that a further two elected legislators proposed a weaker version of self-determination, then we must recognize that there is a sea change in Hong Kong’s political landscape. In total the candidates who ran on the platform of demanding for self-determination garnered 22.2% of the vote (including those who lost the election) – the vote here only means the regional direct election votes; it excludes the functional constituency vote and the super district board vote.

 

Catalonia and Spanish state: million-strong rally brings showdown closer

 

 

By Dick Nichols

 

September 22, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — On September 11, Catalonia’s national day (the Diada), between 870,000 and a million-plus came out to show their support for Catalan sovereignty and—for the majority of those present—for Catalan independence from the Spanish state.

 

The fifth annual mass mobilisation for Catalan statehood since 2012, again organised by the Catalan National Assembly (ANC) and the Catalan cultural association Òmnium Cultural, confirmed that this social movement remains by far the largest in Europe.

 

It continues to pose a threat to the Spanish state and will also become an increasingly critical issue for a European Union that continues to reel under the blows of Brexit, its brutal handling of refugees and economic stagnation in many major regions.

 

1916: Use workers’ power to end the war

 

 

By Käte Duncker, introduction by John Riddell

 

September 21, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal/John Riddell: Marxist Essays and Commentaries — 100 years ago today, a leading antiwar socialist in Germany explained the need for revolution to end the First World War. Her audience was delegates to the last unified national conference of the Social-Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), held in Berlin on September 21-23, 1916.

 

Pakistan: Awami Workers Party second congress finance appeal

 

 

September 20, 2016 — Awami Workers Party — Dear friends, well-wishers and all those who struggle for a better world!

 

In less than four years, the Awami Workers Party (AWP) has emerged as Pakistan's preeminent left-wing political force, reinvigorating the progressive political tradition after many years in the wilderness.

 

As many of you will know, to run a leftist organization in Pakistan is as challenging a task as any in the world. This is a country that has long been a 'frontline state' of imperialism, run by a venal elite including a praetorian army, and overwhelmed by a brand of right-wing religious militancy that has eroded an already fragile social fabric.

 

The AWP represents an attempt to bring together the best traditions of left politics in the 20th century with a new generation of activists politicized by the anti-globalization and anti-war movements of the early 21st century.

 

Trotsky and Gramsci on revolutionary strategy

 

 

Gramsci and Trotsky: Strategy for the Revolution in the West
Emilio Albamonte and Matías Maiello
Argentina: Left Voice, 2016
158 pages

 

Review by Doug Enaa Greene

 

Ideas for the struggle #4 - Should we reject bureaucratic centralism and simply use consensus?

 

 

By Marta Harnecker, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

 

1. For a long time, left-wing parties operated along authoritarian lines. The usual practice was that of bureaucratic centralism, influenced by the practice of Soviet socialism. Most decisions regarding principles, tasks, initiatives, and the course of political action to take were restricted to the party elite, without the participation or debate of the membership who were limited to following orders that they never got to discuss and in many cases did not understand. For most people, these practices are every day becoming increasingly more intolerable.

 

Oppose little Brexit Britain – Defend free movement

 

 

We need to campaign actively against little Brexit Britain and the stripping away of our rights, and chief among those campaigns must be to defend the right to free movement.

 

US Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein on why "lesser evilism" is a loser


 

 

September 17, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Against the Current — Against the Current interviews Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate for president in 2016.

 

The Communist Manifesto: A weapon of war

 

 

By Doug Enaa Greene

 

September 16, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — With the exception of the Bible, no other work in history has been more praised and denounced, analyzed and criticized, both seriously and superficially, than the Communist Manifesto.

Northern nastiness: Far right becomes second party in German chancellor Merkel's home state

 

 

By Victor Grossman

 

September 15, 2016
 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from The Left Berlin — Old German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck once said – or so goes the legend: “If the world ever perishes I’d want to be in Mecklenburg where everything happens fifty years late.” The alarm bells are now loudly ringing, warning that this once feudally most backward part of Germany between Berlin and the Baltic Sea may prove something like the opposite!

 

The elections on Sunday (Sept. 4) were an unmitigated disaster! The Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), running for the first time, rang up an amazing 21.9 % of the vote, putting it in second place behind the Social Democrats and beating out Angela Merkel in her own home state!

The best homage we can pay Fidel: look outward together in the same direction

 

 

By Marta Harnecker

 

September 14, 2016 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Over half a century ago, as Latin American households were celebrating the start of a new year, some good news arrived from Cuba: a guerrilla army with a social base among the peasantry triumphed on the Caribbean island, liberating the country from the tyrannical Batista regime. A political process began that not only aimed to overthrow a dictator, but sought to follow a consistently revolutionary line: genuinely transform society for the benefit of the great majority.

 

A Tate Gallery for the New Left: Portraits, Landscapes, and Abstracts in the Revolutionary Activism of the 1950s and 1960s

 

Revolutionary Workers Party national secretary Ross Dowson,
campaigning to become Mayor of Toronto, Canada, 1948.

 

Ernest Tate, Revolutionary Activism in the 1950s and 60s: A Memoir – Volume 1, Canada 1955–1965 (London: Resistance Books, 2014)

 

Ernest Tate, Revolutionary Activism in the 1950s and 60s: A Memoir – Volume 2, Britain 1965–1970 (London: Resistance Books, 2014)

 

By Bryan D. Palmer

 

Working class power & feminism: An interview with Alia Amirali (Awami Workers Party, Pakistan)

 

 

Alia Amirali speaking at a Awami Workers Party rally in Hunza in support of jailed activist Baba Jan.

 

September 13, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Tanqeed — Writer and labor organizer, Sara Jaffri, and left-wing political worker and the Punjab Deputy General Secretary of the Awami Workers Party, Alia Amirali talk organizing, feminism and class in Pakistan.

 

Struggle over the Cuban press intensifies

 

 

By Marce Cameron[1]

 

September 12, 2016 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Cuba's Socialist Renewal -- On June 28, 37-year-old Karina Marron, the deputy editor of Granma, the Cuban Communist Party (PCC) daily, made some candid remarks at a closed-door meeting of the Cuban Journalists Union (UPEC). The Cuban media reported on the event, but airbrushed out of their coverage Marron’s more incendiary and newsworthy comments. That selectivity was a case of either actual censorship or self-censorship on the part of Cuban journalists and editors.

 

Ideas for the struggle #3 - To be at the service of popular movements, not replace them

 

 

By Marta Harnecker, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

 

1. We have previously stated that politics is the art of constructing a social and political force capable of changing the balance of forces in order to make possible tomorrow that which today appears to be impossible. But to be able to construct a social force political organizations must demonstrate a great respect for grassroots movements, and contribute to their autonomous development, leaving behind all attempts at manipulation. They must take as their starting point the fact that they are not the only ones with ideas and proposals; on the contrary, grassroots movements have much to offer us, because through their daily struggles they have also learned things, discovered new paths, found solutions and invented methods which can be of great value.

 

Bolivia’s government sides with workers in conflict with bosses in mining cooperatives

 

 

Introduction by Richard Fidler

 

September 10, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Life on the Left — The articles below describe and analyze a major confrontation in Bolivia in recent months that ended tragically in several deaths and blew up an uneasy alliance between the Movement Toward Socialism (MAS) government headed by Evo Morales and an incipient bourgeoisie in the mining industry. The government responded to the crisis by strengthening its alliance with the proletarian forces in the mining industry and taking further steps to regain state control over the industry.

How Spain and Portugal dodged EU sanctions (for now)

 

 

Sign at anti-austerity rally in Portugal reads 
"Their fortune, my crisis" and "Without food, there will be no peace"

 

By Dick Nichols

 

September 10, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — A month ago, on August 8, it became official—the high school governors agreed that the headmaster had acted correctly in not caning the two miscreant schoolkids.

 

The schoolkids are Spain and Portugal; their misdemeanour was to keep missing the public sector deficit reduction targets that are set under the European Union’s “excessive deficit procedure”; the headmaster is the European Commission, headed by president Jean-Claude Juncker; and the school governors are the finance and economy ministers of the EU’s 27 member states (who meet as the Ecofin committee).

 

Bolivia VP Alvaro Garcia Linera on the ebbing Latin American tide

 

 

Extracts of vive-president Garcia Linera's address at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Buenos Aires (May, 27, 2016).

 

September 9, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Open Democracy — We are facing a historical turning point in Latin America. Some are talking about a throwback, about restorers moving forward. The truth is that in the last twelve months, after ten years of intense progress, of territorial diffusion of the progressive and revolutionary governments in the continent, this progress has stalled, in some cases it has given ground, and in some other cases its continuity is in doubt. Wherever conservative forces have succeeded, an accelerated process of reconstitution of the old elites of the 80s and 90s, which seek to take control of the management of the state, is under way.

 

“Dialectical materialism,” ideology and revisionism

 

 

By Jason Devine

September 9, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — As I have extensively argued elsewhere, “dialectical materialism” as the philosophy of Marxism does not exist.[1] Indeed, when Marx listed in his famous letter to Joseph Weydemeyer what he felt and understood to be his scientific contributions, dialectical materialism as a name, concept, and system was conspicuously missing.[2] Further, when Engels spoke at Marx’s graveside he mentioned Marx’s scientific discoveries, but at no point did he mention dialectical materialism as a name, concept, or system.[3] This is no surprise as the phrase “dialectical materialism” was never used by Marx or Engels and hence appears nowhere in their entire oeuvre, either published or unpublished. Indeed, Marx developed a new scientific method, not a system.[4]

 

Bolivia’s ‘process of change’ needs a change in course – Pablo Solón

 

 

Introduction and translation by Richard Fidler

 

September 8, 2016 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Life on the Left with permission — The global drop in commodity prices has been detrimental to the development strategy of many Latin American governments, some of which had used the new income from increased exports of largely unprocessed resources, accompanied by higher royalties and taxes, during the last decade to reduce poverty levels and reinforce and institute new social programs, while attempting to create new industries oriented to the domestic market or adding value to their exports.

 

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