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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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Thailand: Growing resistance to coup smashes political myths

For more on Thailand, click HERE.

By Giles Ji Ungpakorn

May 26, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The most striking thing about the latest coup d'etat in Thailand is the speed and size of the anti-coup protests. For the last three days, immediately following the coup, mass protests of ordinary people have simultaneously erupted in many areas of Bangkok but also in Chiangmai and other towns. This is history in the making.

Britain: UKIP leads race to the gutter

By Liam Mac Uaid

May 24, 2014 -- Socialist Resistance -- From the coverage of the English local election results and the relentless Nigel Farage mania you would think that the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) had romped to first place with the Conservative Party (Tories) a close second. You’d also be forgiven for thinking that the Labour Party had received a hammering and the Liberal Democrats (Lib Dems) don’t exist. The main story in most of the press, from the BBC to the Daily Telegraph, is that Labour is in crisis as a result of the election.

Yet what actually happened was that it was the two parties of Britain's coalition government -- the Tories and the Liberal Democrats -- that have been hammered. Labour’s result reflects the party’s polling figures over the last few months. It would have made them the largest party in parliament if repeated in a general election, though just short on an overall majority.

Denmark: Fresh openings for Red-Green Alliance as it marks 25 years

For more on Denmark's Red-Green Alliance, click HERE.

By Liam Flenady

May 24, 2014 -- Green Left Weekly -- Denmark's Red-Green Alliance (RGA) marked 25 years since its founding at a national conference on May 16 to 18, 2014. A radical left unity project marking 25 years in existence is itself a cause for celebration, but this conference was able to celebrate much more. After about 20 years as a fringe party in Danish politics, the RGA has recently emerged as a significant force.

In elections in 2011, the party tripled its presence in parliament from four seats to 12, jumping from 2.2% to 6.7% of the vote. In last year’s municipal elections, the RGA hugely expanded its presence, winning representatives in almost all municipality and regional councils.

And the RGA is set to expand further in parliamentary elections in September. It is polling at about 11%, making it potentially the fourth-largest force in Danish politics.

With the growth in influence, scope and members, this year’s congress was largely focused on making steps to become a mass party of the left.

Crimea: Be wary of attempts to use rights of Tatars to justify violence and war

A Crimean Tatar protester holds a flag with the Crimean Tatar symbol.

Click for more analysis on developments in Ukraine and Crimea.

By Roger Annis

May 24, 2014 -- A Socialist in Canada, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with permission -- The situation of the Tatar population of the Crimea peninsula is being cited to discredit the decision in March by the people of the Crimea region to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. This article looks at some of the history of the Tatars and also at the real situation today as best it can be discerned from afar.

Boris Kagarlitsky sur l'Ukraine orientale : la logique d'une révolte

[English at http://links.org.au/node/3838.]

Par Boris Kagarlitsky, traduit par Renfrey Clarke, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal ; retraduit Vers le français par Gabriel Stollsteiner

25 mai 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Les bureaucrates russes ont été sincèrement surpris de la réaction de l'Occident officiel – ils ne s'attendaient pas à une telle colère ni à une condamnation aussi unanime. Les politiciens européens sont transportés de furie. La presse majoritaire relate à ses lecteurs l'histoire lamentable de l'agression russe contre l'Ukraine. Les émissions télévisées diffusent des interviews avec des ministres et députés de Kiev, qui implorent la larme à l’œil l'Europe de sauver leur pays de l'ours enragé.

Ukraine: 'Socialist prospects in south-eastern Ukraine'

Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal has published several views from the left on
developments in Ukraine HERE
.

May 25, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal is translating and posting the following article in the interests of providing information and promoting discussion. It is provides an important contribution to understanding the character and direction of the popular rebellion against austerity that has arisen in eastern Ukraine following the overthrow of the Ukraine government and President Viktor Yanukovych in late February 2014.

A rightist governing regime came into power in Kyiv [Kiev] following that overthrow. The regime includes significant representation from fascist and other far-right groups. It has launched a civil war against eastern Ukraine and is severely curtailing political freedom in the rest of the country, including through the use of violence against left and progressive political movement. The regime is wholly committed to a pro-austerity program that the US and European powers are seeking to impose on the people of Ukraine.

(Updated May 28) Asia-Pacific socialists, progressive activists: 'No to another coup in Thailand!'

To add your group's name to this statement please email: int.psm@gmail.com, cc international@socialist-alliance.org

For more on Thailand, click HERE.

May 23, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal --We, the undersigned organisations, strongly condemn the latest coup d’état staged by Thai military under the leadership of Prayuth Chan-ocha.

The current coup, which took place almost eight years after 2006 coup, will do nothing to enhance democracy and social justice in Thailand, instead it will only tighten the grip of dictatorial rule and attempt to crush any democratic institution that exist. The army has already started its crackdown on media and the internet, and has arrested people who oppose the coup.

The coup is set to protect the interests of the section of Thai ruling class who want to reduce the democratic space in order to consolidate its power. The military junta in Thailand has no interest in bringing about free and fair elections to solve the political crisis, and certainly will not protect freedom of expression, which it sees as a threat to its rule.

Sonny Melencio: Asia needs ALBA-style regionalism not US 'pivot' and 'ASEAN integration'

Peter Boyle interviews Sonny Melencio

May 22, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal/Green Left Weekly -- Sonny Melencio is chairperson of the Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM, Party of the Labouring Masses). At its recent national convention, the PLM launched a discussion about Bayanihan Socialism, which drawing on lessons from the Latin American experience links the egalitarian principles of socialism with national and Indigenous historical experiences and traditions, as a means to popularise the ideas of socialism to a mass audience in the Philippines. Melencio is also involved in a new coalition against the established "political dynasties" in the Philippines, called Alliance for Truth, Integrity and Nationalism (ATIN).

Melencio will be one of several international guest speakers at the Socialist Alliance 10th national conference in Sydney, June 7-9, where he will be part of the one-day public seminar on People's Power In the “Asian Century” . You can find out more about the conference, and how to register, HERE.

India: Modi 'promised the moon' but his real agenda will emerge -- Kavita Krishnan

Kavita Krishnan.

Peter Boyle interviews Kavita Krishnan

May 21, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal/Green Left Weekly -- Kavita Krishnan has become a well-known international spokesperson for the movement against sexual violence in India that grew after an horrific gang rape of a student in Delhi in 2012. She is also a national leader of the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation, which won more than a million votes but failed to win any seats in the general election in India, which the right-wing Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), led by Narendra Modi, won by a landslide.

Krishnan will soon embark on a speaking tour of Australia. Details of her public meetings around Australia can be found here. She will also be one of several international guest speakers at the Socialist Alliance 10th national conference in Sydney, June 7-9 where she will present a keynote speech on “Capitalism, Misogyny and Sexual Violence”. You can find out more about this conference, and how to register, here.

Weighing the legacy of Lenin’s Comintern: John Riddell replies to Paul Kellogg

Lenin A
For more discussion on the Communist International, click HERE. Click for more by or about John Riddell and Paul Kellogg.

By John Riddell

May 15, 2014 -- Johnriddell.wordpress.com, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with permission -- Paul Kellogg’s review in Socialist Studies of my edition of the Communist International’s 1922 world congress raises two probing questions regarding the legacy of the Communist International (Comintern) in Lenin’s time.[1]

First, he questions a long-held conception that the Bolshevik leaders initiated all the Comintern’s major steps in policy development. Second, he challenges the belief that the Lenin-era International represents a model or template for program and strategy in our time.

Deadly consequences of continued production of industrial chemicals

By Coral Wynter

The central problem of our age has therefore become the contamination of man’s total environment with such substances of incredible potential for harm—substances that accumulate in the tissue of plants and animals and even penetrate the germ cells to shatter or alter the very material of heredity upon which the shape of the future depends. -- Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, 1962

May 22, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- There is an epidemic of diseases now sweeping the industrialised countries. These include obesity, diabetes type 2, high infertility rates affecting both men and women, high blood pressure, thyroid and central nervous system as well as cancers, mainly breast and prostate cancers. In addition to all of this, immune deficiencies.

Thailand: Smells like a coup, tastes like a coup, looks like a coup

For more on Thailand, click HERE.

By Giles Ji Ungpakorn

May 20, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Today Thai army general Prayut Chanocha declared martial law without consulting the caretaker government or any other elected representatives. Troops took over all radio and TV stations and are positioned along major road intersections in Bangkok.

Despite the fact that he claimed that “this is not a coup”, Prayut’s actions smell, taste and look like a coup. This is from a man who has blood on his hands. Four years ago to the day Prayut oversaw the shooting down in the streets of almost 90 Red Shirt pro-democracy demonstrators. Before the elections in the following year he made public statements against the Pheu Thai Party. He had previously been a key figure in manoeuvring the (anti-)Democrat Party into an unelected government in 2008. He has never been brought to court for his crimes and was on the list of those who would be given total amnesty in Yingluck Shinawatra’s abortive amnesty bill.

South America: How ‘anti-extractivism’ misses the forest for the trees

Thousands of indigenous peoples led by CONAIE (Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador) converge on Quito in March 2012 after a 15-day march demanding an end to open pit mining and new oil concessions.

By Federico Fuentes

May 20, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal, a shorter verson of this article appeared in Green Left Weekly -- A recent spate of high-profile campaigns against projects based on extracting raw materials has opened up an important new dynamic within the broad processes of change sweeping South America. Understanding their nature and significance is crucial to grasping the complexities involved in bringing about social change and how best to build solidarity with peoples’ struggles.

Britain: Left Unity moving in the right direction

For more on Left Unity, click HERE.

By Dave Kellaway

May 10, 2014 -- Socialist Resistance -- Several hundred members joining in a week after a Ken Loach Guardian article and a Salman Shaheen appearance on the Daily Politics show … new branches opening up every week and a well-attended national policy conference in Manchester … a dozen or more candidates baptising our electoral intervention in the May local elections.

This is Left Unity (LU) only six months after its founding conference. Who would have thought a new broad party of the left launched by an internet appeal and sustained through a Ken Loach cinema documentary would still be around a year later with nearly 2000 members and more than 50 branches? Occasionally on the left we need to acknowledge that we have done something right. Even in a very difficult period where we have suffered a series of defeats it is possible in a small way to build something to the left of the Labour Party that has the potential to draw in wider layers than the revolutionary left normally engages with.

Breaking a path for the '60s radicalisation: John Riddell reviews Ernest Tate's 'Revolutionary Activism'

Revolutionary Activism in the 1950s & 60s: A Memoir
By Ernest Tate
Volume 1, Canada 1955-1965
Vol. 1: ISBN 978-0-902869-69-1; EAN: 9780902869691
Vol. 2: ISBN 978-0-902869-60-8; EAN: 9780902869608
Resistance Books, London, 2014

Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal readers can read an excerpt HERE. To order a copy, email terryconway@tiscali.co.uk.

Review by John Riddell

Discussion: The political rebellion in eastern Ukraine

Voters line up in Donetsk to vote in the autonomy plebiscite on May 11, 2014.

By Roger Annis

May 17, 2014 -- A Socialist in Canada, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with permission -- There are sketchy and misleading reports in mainstream press that steelworkers in eastern Ukraine have mobilised, including into street patrols, to rebuff the political movement for autonomy in eastern Ukraine. On May 11, successful plebiscites were held in the southeast regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in which the big majority of those who cast ballots opted for political sovereignty from Ukraine.

Aleksandr Buzgalin discusses eastern Ukraine: 'This is a revolution in some aspects'

The following interview was conducted on May 13, 2014, by the Real News Network.

For more analysis on developments in Ukraine, click HERE.

* * *

Anton Woronczuk: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Anton Woronczuk in Baltimore.

A referendum for independence was held in the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Lugansk a couple of days ago. The organizers of the referendum have declared the region independent and reportedly issued calls to join the Russian Federation.

Here to give us an update on what's going on in Ukraine is Aleksandr Buzgalin. Aleksandr is a professor of political economy at Moscow State University. He is also editor of the independent democratic left magazine Alternatives, coordinator of the Russian social movement Alternatives, author of more than 20 books and hundreds of articles, translated into English, German and many other languages.

Thanks for joining us, Aleksandr.

Quebec election: A seismic shift within the independence movement?

An election poster for Québec Solidaire.

For more on Quebec, click HERE.

By Richard Fidler

May 13, 2014 – Life on the Left, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author’s permission -- The defeat of the Parti Québécois and the election of a federalist Liberal Party government in the Quebec general election of April 7, 2014, raises important questions about the future of the Quebec movement for sovereignty and political independence. And it poses some major challenges to the left party Québec Solidaire, as it seeks to position itself in the developing struggle for the direction and programmatic content of the Québécois national movement.

Behind Malaysia's biggest May Day rally since independence

S. Arutchelvan (Arul), secretary general the Socialist Party of Malaysia.

By Peter Boyle

May 14, 2014 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The 2014 May Day rally in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, was the biggest in the country since 1947 when the British colonial authorities violently repressed the labour movement, which had become one of the most strongly organised in Asia, having organised the majority of the workforce.

Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal spoke to S. Arutchelvan (Arul), secretary general the Socialist Party of Malaysia. He was also spokesperson for the May 1 Committee. Arul will be one of the international guest speaker in the People's Power in the “Asian Century” seminar to be held in conjunction with the 10th national conference of the Socialist Alliance, in Sydney June 7-9, 2014.

For more details of the Socialist Alliance conference and to register see HERE.

For more on the Socialist Party of Malaysia, click HERE.

* * *

The May Day protest in Kuala Lumpur looked very big? What is your estimate of the size and was this the biggest ever May day?

Ukraine: Popular rebellion deepens in the east and south

Voters cast ballots in eastern Ukraine's autonomy referendum on May 11, 2014.

For more on developments in Ukraine, click HERE

By Roger Annis

May 13, 2014 – Truthout, via A Socialist in Canada, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author’s permission -- A political crisis over the future of Ukraine has exploded in the past two months. It's being driven by the longstanding efforts of the big imperialist countries to assert economic and military domination over the republics of the former Soviet Union and to weaken and marginalise rival Russia.

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