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Anti-Putin protest in Moscow.
[For more by Boris Kagarlitsky, click HERE.]
By Boris Kagarlitsky, translated by Renfrey Clarke
March 30, 2013 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- In Russia, the first two weeks of January are a time when nothing happens. Members of the well-heeled layers, bureaucrats, politicians and the bourgeoisie, set off to spend their holidays abroad, distributing themselves around various locations on the basis of their means, tastes and vanity. Their destinations might range from comparatively cheap hotels in Egypt to ski resorts in France, Austria or Switzerland.
People who cannot afford such things simply drink, and shed their stress in front of the television, at their dachas in the countryside, or in the sauna.
South African troops in the Central African Republic.
By Patrick Bond and Khadija Sharife, Durban
March 27, 2013 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The reach of the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) leaders far into the African continent was palpable this week, not just here in Durban where they are gathering to plan investments and infrastructure, but everywhere up-continent where extraction does extreme damage.
South African President Jacob Zuma and friend.
By Patrick Bond
March 20, 2013 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- “We reaffirm the character of the ANC as a disciplined force of the left, a multi-class mass movement and an internationalist movement with an anti-imperialist outlook” -- so said Jacob Zuma, orating to his masses at the year’s largest African National Congress celebration, in Durban on January 12, 2013.
South Africa: brics-from-below! Civil society gathering during the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa summit
Whose turn to carve?
March 18, 2013 -- In Durban, South Africa, five heads of state meet on March 26-27, 2013, to assure the rest of Africa that their countries’ corporations are better investors in infrastructure, mining, oil and agriculture than the traditional European and US multinationals. The Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) summit will also include 16 heads of state from Africa, including some notorious tyrants. A new $50 billion bank will probably be launched.
How workers rallied to aid the early Soviet republic: International Workers’ Aid for Soviet Russia (+ study guide)
December 29, 2012 -- The following talk on work by the Communist International to gather material aid for the Soviet Republic was given by Suzanne Weiss at the fourth Toronto study session on Toward the United Front, a 1300-page edition the fourth Communist International Congress (1922).
The study session, entitled “The Comintern’s Struggle for Social Hegemony”, surveyed the Comintern's work in unions, cooperatives, education, youth organisations and on material assistance to Soviet Russia. The presentation, taking up a speech by Willi Münzenberg, is followed by a brief biography and a description of the study session. More information on Toward the United Front is available HERE. – John Riddell
President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil, Russian President Dimitry Medvedev, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Chinese President Hu Jintao and President Jacob Zuma of South Africa pose prior to the BRICS summit in New Delhi on March 29, 2012.
By Patrick Bond, Durban
November 22, 2012 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The heads of state of the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) network of governments are coming to Durban, South Africa, in four months, meeting on March 26-27 at the International Convention Centre (ICC), Africa’s largest venue. Given their recent performance, it is reasonable to expect another “1%” summit, wreaking socioeconomic and ecological havoc. And that means it is time for the first BRICS countersummit, to critique top-down “sub-imperialist” bloc formation, and to offer bottom-up alternatives.
After all, we have had some bad experiences at the Durban ICC.
Nina Ivanovna Buzgalina, 1932-2012
Translation and introductory note by Renfrey Clarke
November 18, 2012 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Many members of the international left who have lived in Moscow or visited it during the past few decades will be saddened to learn that Nina Ivanovna Buzgalina, mother of Aleksandr Buzgalin, died on November 9, 2012. Aleksandr has now written this tribute to her.Nina Ivanovna was a proletarian fighter from her teenage years, and a committed, insightful communist. Her remarkable history stands as a testament to the struggles, sacrifices and triumphs of her generation.
* * *
By Aleksandr Buzgalin, Moscow
People don’t write about their mothers in scholarly journals, or post about them on public e-lists. But I’m doing so. I’m doing this because someone has died whose life reflected the best elements in the world of true communists, just as the ocean is reflected in a drop of water.
More than 15,000 protesters marched from Pushkin Square to the Chistye Prudy metro station in Moscow on May 13, in support Occupy Abay. Photograph: Sasha Mordovets/Getty Images.
By Aleksandr Buzgalin in Moscow, translated by Renfrey Clarke
May 30, 2012 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- In Russia, the winter of 2011-2012 was unusually stormy in the political sense. The results of both the parliamentary and presidential elections were clearly worked out in advance, and everything went as foreseen. Both the United Russia party and President Vladimir Putin were confirmed in power. But the meetings and demonstrations of many tens of thousands of people that took place regularly in Moscow and elsewhere over months placed this order and simplicity in doubt.
May 6-7, 2012 -- Real News Network -- Aleksandr Buzgalin, professor of political economy at Moscow State University, editor of the independent democratic left magazine Alternatives, contributor to Links Interantional Journal of Socialist Renewal and coordinator of the Russian social movement Alternatives, spoke to the Real News Network about the nature of the regime of Vladimir Putin and the Russian state and economy today.
Full transcripts are available HERE.
By Aleksandr Buzgalin, translated by Renfrey Clarke
March 8, 2012 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The winter of 2011-2012 saw the rise of a new – and powerful – wave of political activism in Russia, a development which understandably has drawn the attention of most Russians, and of wide circles abroad, to the country’s political processes. What has happened?
Formally at least, the results of the elections are well known. Vladimir Putin received 63.6 per cent of the votes, and became president of the Russian Federation.
His losing rivals achieved the following results:
Massive rally in Moscow in support of honest elections, February 4, 2012.
By Aleksandr Buzgalin and Andrey Kolganov, translated by Renfrey Clarke
February 16, 2012 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- This article was written gradually, as events in Russia unfolded. The first version appeared after the first demonstrations in Moscow in December, on Bolotnaya Square and Sakharov Prospekt. The latest variant is taking shape in the hours following the rallies that took place throughout the Russian capital (and not only there) on February 4.
According to early reports, the united opposition assembled a minimum of 40,000 people and perhaps as many as 120,000 (the estimate of the organisers, and far more realistic). Another demonstration called by the marginal right-wing liberal figures Novodvorskaya and Borovoy attracted barely a hundred supporters. As usual, the right-wing nationalist Zhirinovsky brought out his obedient followers to the number of perhaps a thousand people. Far more serious was the rally by opponents of the opposition actions, the so-called anti-orange rally on Poklonnaya Hill. There, as at the opposition demonstration, somewhere between 30,000 and 100,000 people took part.
By Doug Lorimer
Doug Lorimer is a member of the National Executive of the DSP. This article is based on a report adopted by the 14th National Conference of the DSP, held in Sydney, January 2-6, 1992.
©Resistance Books 1997; first published 1992, second (revised) edition 1997
January 10, 2012 -- Real News Network -- As the Russian protests rocked the plans of President Putin, who, as Boris Kargalitsky wrote, wanted the elections to legitimise decisions that had already been made, these protests, as he said, essentially were led by segments that were more or less neoliberal or nationalist, but not much by what I guess Boris would call the left. And why is that? So now joining us to talk about the state of the left in Russia is Boris Kagarlitsky. He's a sociologist. He was a deputy to the Moscow city soviet between 1990 and '93. And he's currently the director of the Institute of Globalisation and Social Movements in Moscow.
Boris Kagarlitsky interviewed on the Real News Network on December 9, 2011. Click here for transcript.
By the Russian Socialist Movement
Tens of thousands protest in Bolotnaya Square, Moscow, December 10, 2011. Photo by Andrey Kolganov.
By Boris Kagarlitsky
December 21, 2011 -– Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The calls by the “moderate left” for passively following behind the liberals are supposedly based on the need to “work among the people”, to go where the masses are. But how, and with whom, are the forces of the left to set out after these ardently pursued masses? With badly printed leaflets full of abstract slogans?
Bolotnaya Square, Moscow, December 10, 2011. Photo by Andrey Kolganov.
By Andrey Kolganov and Aleksandr Buzgalin reporting from Bolotnaya Square, Moscow, translated by Renfrey Clarke
December 16, 2011 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Why, after many years when street politics in Russia were deep frozen, have citizens again acquired a taste for street actions? After a public rally near Chistie Prudy metro station in inner Moscow drew 6000-7000 people, what caused 10 times as many to then gather on Bolotnaya Square [on December 10]? (See article below.)
Can it be the crisis? The fall in living standards?
When the crisis first hit, nothing took place to remotely match the recent meetings.
By Boris Kagarlitsky, translated from Russian by Renfrey Clarke
November 28, 2011 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- “Turning-points in the history of humanity,” a contributor to the left-wing Algerian newspaper Le Matin observed in the summer of 2001, “are never simple for contemporaries to understand. Rarely are people able fully to assess the significance of these episodes, or their consequences. The developments concerned do not proceed in the manner, or at the time and place, that people expect. The early years of the twenty-first century have seen this rule reaffirmed. During this time, new and increasingly powerful trends have been mingled with the heritage of the past, dragging us back. History, however, operates through these new forces, which gradually but inevitably will succeed in overcoming the inertia of the past.” (1)
Boris Kagarlitsky.[In English at http://www.links.org.au/node/2593.]
Por Boris Kagarlitsky, traducido del inglés para Rebelión por Germán Leyens
El sistema económico internacional que se perfiló después del colapso de la Unión Soviética todavía no está muerto, pero está moribundo. Lo vemos todos los días, no solo en informes sobre la crisis sino también en otras noticias de todo el mundo que cuentan la misma historia: el sistema no funciona.
La verdad es que el sistema nunca ha funcionado para los pobres y las clases trabajadoras. No se diseñó con ese propósito, no importa lo que nos digan todo el tiempo sus propagandistas y diversos intelectuales corruptos. El sistema funcionó para las elites: generó una tremenda redistribución de la riqueza y del poder a favor de los que ya eran ricos y poderosos. Aunque las elites no tienen suficiente coraje para admitirlo, hay que transformar el sistema.
By Boris Kagarlitsky
November 2, 2011 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The international economic system that took shape after the collapse of the Soviet Union is not dead yet, but it is dying. We see that daily, not only in reports on the crisis but also in other news from around the world that tells the same story: the system isn’t working.
The truth is that the system has never worked for the poor and for the toiling classes. It wasn’t designed for that purpose, no matter what its propagandists and various corrupt intellectuals keep telling us. The system did work for the elites; it generated a tremendous redistribution of wealth and power in favour of those already rich and powerful, in favour of the bourgeoisie. But now it no longer delivers even for them. Though the elites aren’t brave enough to admit it, the system has to be transformed.
This is a real systemic crisis, if not for capitalism, then at least for its neoliberal form. And this crisis can’t be overcome until neoliberalism is eliminated. Whether this will also be the end of capitalism will depend on the scale of global struggles and their outcomes.
Estonian Nazis parade on July 30, 2011.
By Rupen Savoulian
August 12, 2011 -- Antipodean Athiest, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author's permission -- Early in August, a major World War II anniversary was marked in Europe; August 1 was the 67th anniversary of the heroic Warsaw uprising by the Polish underground resistance movement against Nazi German occupation forces. I raise this anniversary to highlight the importance of commemorating the courageous struggles by the peoples oppressed by the Nazi regime, and to underscore the importance of historical debate for comprehending the tremendous social forces that have shaped the world today.
My point is not to just go over old historical ground, but to highlight a growing problem; Baltic ultranationalism which has mutated to outright neo-fascism.