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Europe

Discussion: Fourth International needs to oppose the war and austerity drive against Ukrainian people

Far-right militia parade openly in Kyiv.

More on developments in Ukraine HERE.

By Roger Annis and Renfrey Clarke

June 27, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- On June 7, the leadership bureau of the Fourth International adopted a statement on the crisis in Ukraine. It was adopted unanimously, with one abstention vote. The text was translated and published in English on June 16, and has also been published without comment in the weekly Presse-toi à gauche (Move Left!) online bulletin in Quebec.

Spanish state: Eruption of Podemos sparks turmoil left and right

By Dick Nichols

July 1, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The five seats (7.9%) won by the platform Podemos (“We Can”) in the May 25 European election was an earthquake in Spanish politics. It stunned all political trends, including Podemos itself.

Ceasefire in Ukraine? The battle of the ‘peacemakers’

A Ukrainian army shell explodes in eastern Ukraine.

By Viktor Shapinov, translated by Renfrey Clarke

"The only chance of peace remains federalisation of Ukraine and a broad degree of self-government, if only for the south-eastern regions. A reconciliation, at least of a sort, might be reached on this basis."

'Broad left parties': Murray Smith replies to Socialist Alternative's Mick Armstrong

Mass rally for Greece’s opposition Syriza party in Athens in May 2014.

By Murray Smith

June 23, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- Mick Armstrong of Socialist Alternative, Australia, has written an article which sets out to criticise what I have written over the last 15 or so years on broad left parties ("A critique of the writings of Murray Smith on broad left partes" (PDF), Marxist Left Review, Summer 2014). I would like to reply to some of the points that he makes.

Discussion: The 'Russia is imperialist' thesis is wrong

See also Chris Slee's "Discussion: Are Russia and China imperialist powers?"

By Roger Annis

June 18, 2014 -- Truthout, posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author's permission -- The violent coming to power of a rightist regime in Kyiv, Ukraine in late February 2014 has opened an exceptionally dangerous political period in Europe. For the first time since World War II, a European government has representatives of fascist parties as ministers. These are the ministers of the armed forces, prosecution service and agriculture, and deputy ministers of national security (police), education and anti-corruption.

“Mainstream” parties alongside the fascists in government, including the elected president, are committed to an austerity project of economic association with Europe that will see much of the manufacturing base of the country further degraded or dismantled. The consequences for agricultural production are also likely to be dire.

Does Ireland need a new left party?

"We have a multiplicity of left parties [in Ireland] of the traditional types... All have maxed out their potential in their present form. Some are still vital, while others have been in decline for some time."

By Helena Sheehan

June 16, 2014 -- Irish Left Review,  posted at Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal with the author's permission -- Does Ireland need a new left party? Yes. Why? We are involved in a colossal class struggle and we are not winning.

We need to confront the very system that is demanding ever more drastic redistribution of wealth from below to above, accelerated accumulation by dispossession, continuing dismantling of the public sphere in favour of private property and commodified culture.

It is not enough to go issue to issue, to oppose cuts, to denounce austerity.

We need to win consent to a counter-narrative to the dominant view of the crisis. We need to break the grip of the belief that there is no alternative.

Ireland: Gerry Adams' radical vision of a 'new republic ... as Wolfe Tone envisioned'

June 15, 2014 -- Sinn Féin -- Sinn Féin Leader Gerry Adams delivered the annual address at the Wolfe Tone commemoration at Bodenstown, County Kildare today (pictured above). In the course of a wide ranging speech Gerry Adams said that Sinn Féin wants to be in government to change Ireland for the better:

We want to tackle disadvantage, unemployment and inequality and improve the quality of life and standards of living for people across Ireland – particularly those people who are today struggling under the burden of austerity. We want to deliver on issues such as housing, health and jobs. Sinn Féin is deeply committed to the peaceful and democratic ending of Partition to a new agreed Ireland.

But Sinn Fein will not do is what the Labour Party has done —go into office to give cover to the agenda of conservative parties, repeating again the failed political history of this State over the past 80 years...

The Sinn Féin Leader concluded his address by saying Sinn Féin is committed to is the radical republican politics of Wolfe Tone:

We are about creating a New Republic, with new politics and a new way of doing things that puts fairness and equality at the heart of how this country is governed.

Boris Kagarlitsky on Ukraine: A country that might have been

A statue of Lenin toppled by pro-EU protesters in Kiev.

By Boris Kagarlitsky, translated by Renfrey Clarke for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

Portugal and Europe after the European elections

Click HERE for more the 2014 European election; more on Portugal HERE.

Statement by Left Bloc (Bloco de Esquerda), Portugal; translated by Federico Fuentes.

June 8, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal, original source http://www.bloco.org/media/resomesa20140601.pdf -- Following the [September 29, 2013] local elections, the Left Bloc developed its European program via a thorough programmatic debate involving many independent activists. That culminated at our February 2014 national conference.

Spanish state: ‘Podemos has won new people over to the left, to oppose neoliberal policies’ -- United Left

Federal coordinator of the United Left in the Spanish state, Cayo Lara. Photo from Público. 

More analysis of politics in the Spanish state.

By Daniel del Pino, Madrid; translated from Público for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal by Federico Fuentes

A class analysis of the Ukrainian crisis

US Republican and Democrat politicians on the stage at the Maidan Square.

More on Ukraine HERE.

By Viktor Shapinov, translated from the Ukrainian website Liva (The Left), translated by Renfrey Clarke for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

June 13, 2014 -- The social and class origins of the Ukrainian crisis have not been well researched. Attention has been focused mainly on the political side of events, and their socio-economic basis has been allowed to drop from sight. What were the class forces behind the overthrow of the Yanukovich regime, the installing of a new regime in Kiev, and the rise of the anti-Maidan and of the movement in the south-east?

Ukraine: New president in Kyiv shells cities in east; NATO ups military threats

US President Barak Obama and European leaders endorsed Ukraine's president-elect Petro Poroshenko at a summit meeting in Warsaw on June 4, 2014.

By Roger Annis

Breaking news: Progressive and anti-war groups from Ukraine, Russia and Belarus held a two-day conference in Minsk, Belarus on June 7 and 8 and issued a call to build a broad-based, antiwar movement to halt the course to civil war of the governing regime in Kyiv and its NATO allies. See below this article for an English translation of the conference statement, or check the Ukrainian website Liva.com (The Left).

Borotba on Ukraine: ‘An alarm bell for pro-democracy and anti-fascist forces’

Ukrainian Svoboda (freedom) party members carry portraits of Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera.

June 12, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The following address was delivered by Andriy Manchuk on April 11, 2014, to a three-day, European-wide anti-fascist meeting in Athens, Greece. He spoke on behalf of Borotba group of Ukraine. Borotba is a significant association of left groups and activists in Ukraine formed in 2011.

The theme of the anti-fascist meeting in Athens was, “From France to the Ukraine, and from Norway to Greece: No Pasaran!” [They shall not pass!]. The following text was first published on the English-language page of Borotba’s website. The original translation has been slightly edited for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal, and published on June 12, 2014.

* * *

By Andriy Manchuk

Las elecciones municipales y europeas en Irlanda: crecimiento de la izquierda

Lynn Boylan, Sinn Fein.

[In English at http://links.org.au/node/3875. Haga clic aquí para más artículos en español.]

Por Henry Silke

Sinpermiso.info -- En los últimos días se ha producido un pequeño terremoto en la política irlandesa. Sinn Fein ha hecho un gran avance, convirtiéndose en una de las fuerzas políticas principales en Irlanda del sur, casi duplicando su voto hasta el 17% a nivel nacional en las municipales (y más del 20% en las elecciones europeas). Y todo ello en paralelo a un importante avance electoral de la izquierda alternativa y los independientes.

En general, en las elecciones municipales en la Republica de Irlanda, que se celebraban al mismo tiempo que las europeas, el Sinn Fein ganó 150 concejales y los partidos de la izquierda alternativa, unos 40.

Spanish king abdicates: circuit breaker or fuse igniter?

By Dick Nichols

June 9, 2014 – Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal, an earlier version of this article appeared at Green Left Weekly -- On Monday, June 2, as news spread of the abdication of the Spanish king, Juan Carlos of Borbon, a strange rustling sound could be heard across Barcelona. Hard to work out at first, it soon became clear what it was. It was the city—the capital of Catalonia—laughing.

In the city’s thousands of bars, people were hooting with glee at the wave of tweets that the king’s decision to abdicate in favour of his son, Felipe, was provoking. One showed a melancholy Prince Charles of Wales emitting the thought bubble: “Even the bloody Spanish do this better than us.”

Spain: Left parties call for referendum on monarchy

The withdrawal by its publishers of the front cover of the latest Jueves, provoked the resignation of the satirical magazine’s most longstanding cartoonists.

Statement to Podemos Circles, Podemos voters and citizens in general following the abdication of Juan Carlos de Borbon

Statement by Podemos, translated by Federico Fuentes for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

June 2, 2014 -- Following the announcement of Juan Carlos de Borbon’s abdication, Podemos, a citizen’s initiative for the recovery of democracy, would like to communicate the following:

We believe that Spanish society is diverse. That is why we recognise that there is no excuse for not allowing citizens to decide on the kind of state they want to live in.

We want democracy in every aspect of our life. We want to decide on the kind of country we want to live in. As citizens, we have the right to discuss and decide the way in which our society is politically and economically organised, as well as all relevant questions that affect us as a country.

Murray Smith: Euro elections take place against background of crisis and social insecurity

For more coverage of the 2014 European elections, click HERE.

By Murray Smith

[Stop Press, June 14: Radical Irish independent MEP Luke "Ming" Flanagan has joined the radical left group of MEPs in the European parliament, the European United Left (GUE.)]

June 6, 2014 – Links international Journal of Socialist Renewal -- The 2014 European elections were the first to have been held since the full extent of the financial and economic crisis and its consequences became apparent.

Netherlands: Deckchairs quietly shuffled in EU poll fizzer

Socialist Party protests against European free trade treaty.

For more coverage of the 2014 European elections, click HERE.

By Will Wroth, Rotterdam

June 5, 2014 -- Rabid anti-foreigner populist Geert Wilders was expected to wipe the floor on the right; the “equally anti-EU” (according to the media image) Socialist Party (SP) would garner a protest vote large enough to put the pro-Brussels traditional left on the back foot; voter turnout would hit an historic low, itself a measure of public anger, disillusionment or disinterest. That was the consensus media guess as to likely Dutch results in the May 25 European election.

Spanish state: ‘We must continue to widen the cracks that have begun to open up’

By Josep Maria Antentas, translated by Federico Fuentes for Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal.

First published in Spanish at Dominio Publico.  More analysis of politics in the Spanish state.

May 26, 2014 -- Six years have passed since the “official” start of the crisis, when Lehman Brothers collapsed in September 2008. Four years since [then president Jose Luis Rodriguez] Zapatero announced the first big package of cuts in May 2010. Three years since 15M (the May 15 Movement) exploded onto the streets. Two years since the large demonstration for independence in Catalonia on September 11, 2012.

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