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latest news

 Video
Interview with a Greek socialist

28/03/2015: The Syriza government and the Troika and building the Greek Left

  Greece, Video

South Africa
NUMSA & WASP discuss international experiences of new workers’ parties

27/03/2015: South Africa’s metalworkers union in discussion with WASP and CWI

  Africa, South Africa

Obituary
Harald Mahrer (1974-2015)

27/03/2015: An active, critical and inspiring comrade

  Obituary

 Video
Dave Nellist on Russia Today TV

26/03/2015: Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) standing throughout Britain in May elections

  Britain, Video

Norway
Lessons of the pilots’ strike

25/03/2015: A struggle against outsourcing

  Norway

Israel
Netanyahu mobilises far right to win election

25/03/2015: New coalition will face unresolved crises and bitter struggles

  Israel / Palestine

China
Demand release of arrested women activists

24/03/2015: Has the commemoration of International Women’s Day also now been outlawed in China?

  China

Italy
The instability of domestic capitalism

24/03/2015: Political vacuum pushes FIOM to take initiative

  Italy

Sweden
Central bank rates cut "panic measure"

23/03/2015: Eurozone’s QE intensifies currency wars

  Sweden

Greece
Varoufakis’ “erratic Marxism” is not the answer

23/03/2015: Necessary to clarify ideas upon which successful struggles of European working class will be conducted

  Greece

Tunisia
Twenty three killed in terrorist attack

20/03/2015: Down with terror! Down with capitalism!

  Tunisia

Belgium
No agreement reached between unions and government over austerity

20/03/2015: New action plan against right wing government takes off

  Belgium

Ukraine
Conflict unresolved after ’Minsk-2’ agreement

18/03/2015: Only independent working-class mass movement can remove the region’s authoritarian rulers

  Ukraine

Ireland North
Public sector workers strike against austerity

18/03/2015: For a second day of strike action in the run-up to the May general election!

  Ireland North

 North Cyprus
New strike wave against cuts

17/03/2015: Workers determined to stop austerity

  Cyprus, Solidarity

 Brazil
Urgent solidarity protests needed

17/03/2015: Faced with lack of water for the people, Sao Paulo water company SABESP cuts costs, sacks more than 500 workers and victimises trade union activists

  Brazil, Solidarity

 Scotland
Socialist Party Scotland (CWI) leaves Solidarity

16/03/2015: Tommy Sheridan departs from principled socialist position with call for “lending vote" to cuts-making SNP

  CWI, Scotland

Britain
What lies behind UKIP?

14/03/2015: Its Tory-oriented anti-immigration, anti-EU rhetoric has been adapted to a right-wing populism aimed at winning voters fed up with the political establishment

  Britain

Ireland North
Massive public sector strike against austerity

13/03/2015: Socialist MPs in Southern Ireland Parliament send message of support to strikers

  Ireland North, Ireland Republic

Ireland South
Marriage equality referendum set for May

12/03/2015: Poisonous bigotry must be challenged

  Ireland Republic

Ireland North
Stormont government crisis on eve of public sector strike

11/03/2015: Struggle can force politicians back from austerity measures

  Ireland North, Ireland Republic

Iran
Independent workers’ organizations statement about minimum wage

11/03/2015: Increasing demands for a living wage

  Iran

Ireland North
13 March public sector strike against austerity

10/03/2015: Dead-end of rightwing, sectarian politics - new anti-sectarian party which fights for working class needed

  Ireland North

  Video
Dublin ROSA demonstration on International Women’s Day

10/03/2015: Ruth Coppinger, Socialist Party TD (MP) speaks along with other activists

  Ireland Republic, Video, Women

 International Women’s Day 2015

09/03/2015: Articles from CWI sections celebrating IWD

  Women

Greece
Syriza’s first months in power

07/03/2015: The working class and social movements must enter the struggle for their rights

  Greece

Netherlands
Wave of student protests

05/03/2015: For democratic reforms and end to budget cuts

  Netherlands

Austria
The year starts with antifascism

05/03/2015: Right-wing Ball events, PEGIDA, and neo-nazi Violence: A Month of Intense and Successful anti-fascism in Austria

  Austria, Venezuela

 Greece
Vodafone strike declared “illegal”

04/03/2015: “None of this will intimidate us - we will struggle until we win collective bargaining”

  Greece, Solidarity

Russia
50,000 march in Moscow after shooting of Boris Nemtsov

03/03/2015: As economic crisis deepens, social explosions loom

  Russia

Quebec
Towards a hot spring

02/03/2015: Disrupt them like they disrupt us!

  Quebec

Greece
“Yes there was a different choice!”

02/03/2015: Socialist policies needed, not deals with the Troika

  Germany, Greece

Scotland
Why Tommy is wrong to call for a vote for the SNP in May

27/02/2015: Philip Stott Socialist Party Scotland

  Scotland

Greece showdown

26/02/2015: Niall Mulholland interviewed NICOS ANASTASIADES, of Xekinima (CWI Greece), just as Syriza leaders agreed a four-month bail-out extension with the EU.

  Greece

Libya
War-torn country becoming new hub for IS activities

25/02/2015: Libyan people bearing the brunt of NATO’s fiasco

  Libya

US

Global capitalism fueling poverty and immigration

www.socialistworld.net, 01/05/2006
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

System change needed

Greg Beiter, Socialist Alternative, US

Recent years have seen a massive wave of immigration to the United States from the “Third world,” especially Latin America. Politicians and corporate media personalities like CNN’s Lou Dobbs continually attack these undocumented workers as “illegal aliens” and “criminals.”

The real criminals, however, are not immigrant workers, but the corporate chieftains and politicians who, in their insatiable lust for profits, plunder the natural resources of poor countries, set up sweatshops, and wage wars for oil and empire. It is their policies that create the grinding poverty and social breakdown throughout the neo-colonial world which forces millions to flee their home countries in search of work here.

While U.S. corporations earn record profits, 128 million people in Latin America live on less than $2 per day (USAID.org). More than 130 million have no access to safe drinking water, and only one in six persons enjoy adequate sanitation service (NACLA.org).

Big business sets up shop in all corners of the world, searching for the cheapest labor and slackest environmental regulations. They argue that in a globalised world we need “free trade” and capital should be free to pick up and move to any country with the best market conditions - yet they oppose the rights of workers to move to countries with more favorable labor markets.

The passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994, under Democratic President Bill Clinton, allowed U.S. companies to massively step up their assault on working people by laying-off unionized workers in the U.S. and setting up sweatshops across the Mexican border.

NAFTA has spelled a complete disaster for workers in Canada, the U.S., and Mexico. U.S. workers have lost around 395,000 jobs, while their new jobs pay on average 23% less. Simultaneously, poverty has exploded in Mexico, with two-thirds of the population now living on less than $3 per day.

Millions of poor Mexican farmers have been driven into bankruptcy after being forced to compete with subsidized U.S. agribusiness (which relies on the cheap labor of Mexican immigrants, who are often paid less than minimum wage).

Most immigrant workers don’t want to leave their country of origin. They would prefer to stay with their families, where they know the language and culture. The risks they face coming to the U.S. are many: death in the desert, suffocation and starvation in shipping containers, or kidnapping and exploitation by smugglers.

Immigrants only come to the U.S. out of dire economic necessity. They come hoping to make a better life for themselves and their families – a goal they share in common with U.S. workers. However, this goal comes in direct conflict with the logic of capitalism and the desire of big business to maximize profits.

We can’t allow borders and nationality to divide us. In reality, workers of all countries have more in common with each other than we do with the bosses in our own countries. Although a U.S. worker and Bill Gates are both U.S. citizens, their lives are worlds apart. A U.S. worker and an immigrant worker are both likely living paycheck-to-paycheck, struggling to get by, while Mr. Gates has billions of dollars to live in luxury.

Our struggle is international, a struggle against corporations that seek to increase profits by pitting workers in different countries against one another in a race to the bottom. If corporations can push down wages in Mexico and China - or among immigrant workers in the U.S. - they are in a stronger position to demand U.S. workers make similar concessions in order to “compete.” We see this playing out daily, from the auto industry to software development.

On the other hand, if workers in Mexico or China win higher wages and benefits, U.S. workers will be in a stronger economic position to demand better wages and benefits here.

Build the Latin American Labor Movement

As long as massive poverty is the norm in the “Third world,” no matter how many fences are built and laws are passed, millions of desperate workers will find a way into the U.S. and other industrialized countries in search of a better life, and multinational corporations will want to outsource as many jobs as possible to take advantage of cheap labor in poor countries.

The only viable answer to this situation is building the labor movement in Mexico and throughout Latin America to fight for decent jobs and living conditions. The U.S. labor movement needs an internationalist outlook, with a policy of mobilizing its massive resources – financial, human, and political – to help build the strongest possible workers’ movement in Mexico and Latin America.

A fighting workers’ movement in Latin America will very quickly come up against the narrow limits of capitalism in the neo-colonial world and the resistance of U.S. imperialism, as has happened again and again.

That is why the workers’ movement needs to be armed with a clear programme and strategy for overthrowing capitalism and replacing it with socialism, where working people have democratic control of their workplaces and the resources of their society.

Rather than U.S. corporations exploiting their labor and resources to make mega-profits for their owners, the workers of Latin America could use this wealth to create jobs, schools, hospitals, public services, and infrastructure.

The potential impact of such policies can be seen now in Venezuela, where the left-wing government of Hugo Chavez has used Venezuela’s oil revenue to benefit ordinary workers and peasants instead of enriching the elite, as was the tradition. However, the Venezuelan revolution has unfortunately not yet gone all the way in decisively toppling capitalism and instituting democratic socialism, which means these reforms are limited and precarious, as the Venezuelan capitalists and U.S. imperialism prepare for a counter-revolution.

International Socialism is the Solution

While some claim that globalization is rendering the nation-state obsolete, the reality is that capitalism needs national borders and nation-states. Corporate America uses the U.S. government to assert its interests - that’s why they spend so much money on lobbying and funding corporate politicians!

Big business needs its own nation-state and military to pursue its interests internationally against competitors, because it is in direct competition for the world’s markets and resources.

For example, U.S. capitalists engaged in a bitter dispute with their competitors in France, Germany, Russia, and China over the invasion of Iraq. U.S. imperialism out-muscled these countries, and used its military might to topple Saddam’s regime in an attempt to grab Iraq’s oil and assert its power over the Middle East. Today we see sharpening trade tensions between the U.S. and China and Europe.

Simultaneously, big business needs a state apparatus – police, military, courts, jails, etc. - to prevent the working class and oppressed at home from rising up. Just look at the racist “war on drugs” that has criminalized a generation of black and Latino youth, or the brutal state repression of the civil rights movement in the 1960s.

The nation-state, which at one point in history played a progressive role in developing the economy and society, has now become a tremendous obstacle to the further development of society. With the development of global capitalism, our society and economy are increasingly globally integrated. Problems such as poverty, war, and global warming are international and cannot be solved on a narrow national basis. International coordination and planning is desperately needed.

However, with capitalist nations constantly divided by ruthless competition, genuine global cooperation is not possible. But there is a social force whose material interests compel it to organize together on an international plane - the working class. The working class is economically and socially bound together globally by capitalism. It is an international class that is united by common interests and faces a common enemy.

In taking power, the working class would be able to free the economy and society from the artificial confines of the national boundaries capitalism has established. Instead, a democratic socialist plan would link together the U.S., Canada, and Mexico with the rest of Latin America in a voluntary socialist confederation of the Americas to share our resources, knowledge, and technology.

A socialist confederation of the Americas would lay the foundation for decent living standards for working people across both continents, while protecting our environment. People would no longer be forced to leave their homeland for economic reasons, and free movement across borders would no longer be something to fear.

Only through fighting for a socialist world can we end this brutal capitalist system that pits workers against each other, seeks to take away our rights, and drives our living standards into the ground. When the workers of the world unite, the only thing we have to lose is our chains.



Europe

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NEWS

Video: Interview with a Greek socialist
28/03/2015, Nicos Anastasiades of Xekinima (CWI Greece):
The Syriza government and the Troika and building the Greek Left

South Africa: NUMSA & WASP discuss international experiences of new workers’ parties
27/03/2015, socialistworld.net:
South Africa’s metalworkers union in discussion with WASP and CWI

Obituary: Harald Mahrer (1974-2015)
27/03/2015, Sozialistische LinksPartei (CWI Austria) Reporters:
An active, critical and inspiring comrade

Video: Dave Nellist on Russia Today TV
26/03/2015, socialistworld.net:
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) standing throughout Britain in May elections

Norway: Lessons of the pilots’ strike
25/03/2015, Elin Gauffin, Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI Sweden):
A struggle against outsourcing

China: Demand release of arrested women activists
24/03/2015, Sally Tang Mei-Ching, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong):
Has the commemoration of International Women’s Day also now been outlawed in China?

Sweden: Central bank rates cut "panic measure"
23/03/2015, Per-Åke Westerlund, Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI Sweden):
Eurozone’s QE intensifies currency wars

Tunisia: Twenty three killed in terrorist attack
20/03/2015, Statement by CWI-Tunisia:
Down with terror! Down with capitalism!

Ireland North: Public sector workers strike against austerity
18/03/2015, Kevin Henry, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast:
For a second day of strike action in the run-up to the May general election!

North Cyprus: New strike wave against cuts
17/03/2015, Özgür İnsanoğlu and Bahtiyar Girne, North Cyprus:
Workers determined to stop austerity

Brazil: Urgent solidarity protests needed
17/03/2015, Translation of a solidarity appeal from the LSR (CWI in Brazil):
Faced with lack of water for the people, Sao Paulo water company SABESP cuts costs, sacks more than 500 workers and victimises trade union activists

Scotland: Socialist Party Scotland (CWI) leaves Solidarity
16/03/2015, Statement from Socialist Party Scotland Executive Committee:
Tommy Sheridan departs from principled socialist position with call for “lending vote" to cuts-making SNP

Britain: What lies behind UKIP?
14/03/2015, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Its Tory-oriented anti-immigration, anti-EU rhetoric has been adapted to a right-wing populism aimed at winning voters fed up with the political establishment

Ireland North: Massive public sector strike against austerity
13/03/2015, Socialistworld.net:
Socialist MPs in Southern Ireland Parliament send message of support to strikers

Ireland South: Marriage equality referendum set for May
12/03/2015, Helen Redwood, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland):
Poisonous bigotry must be challenged

Ireland North: Stormont government crisis on eve of public sector strike
11/03/2015, Kevin Henry, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast:
Struggle can force politicians back from austerity measures

Iran: Independent workers’ organizations statement about minimum wage
11/03/2015, Statement by six Iranian workers’ organizations:
Increasing demands for a living wage

Ireland North: 13 March public sector strike against austerity
10/03/2015, Text of Socialist Party (CWI Ireland) leaflet, Belfast:
Dead-end of rightwing, sectarian politics - new anti-sectarian party which fights for working class needed

Video: Dublin ROSA demonstration on International Women’s Day
10/03/2015, socialistworld.net:
Ruth Coppinger, Socialist Party TD (MP) speaks along with other activists

International Women’s Day 2015
09/03/2015, socialistworld.net:
Articles from CWI sections celebrating IWD

Netherlands: Wave of student protests
05/03/2015, Bas de Ruiter, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Netherlands):
For democratic reforms and end to budget cuts

Austria: The year starts with antifascism
05/03/2015, Stefan Gredler, SLP (CWI in Austria):
Right-wing Ball events, PEGIDA, and neo-nazi Violence: A Month of Intense and Successful anti-fascism in Austria

Greece: Vodafone strike declared “illegal”
04/03/2015, Jacqueline Gorou, President, Panhellenic Trade Union Vodafone-Panafone:
“None of this will intimidate us - we will struggle until we win collective bargaining”

Russia: 50,000 march in Moscow after shooting of Boris Nemtsov
03/03/2015, Rob Jones, CWI, Moscow:
As economic crisis deepens, social explosions loom

Greece: “Yes there was a different choice!”
02/03/2015, Interview with Nikos Kanellis, Volos City Councilor (Xekinima/ CWI Greece) by Sascha Stanicic (SAV’/CWI Germany):
Socialist policies needed, not deals with the Troika

Scotland: Why Tommy is wrong to call for a vote for the SNP in May
27/02/2015, Clear anti-austerity alternative necessary:
Philip Stott Socialist Party Scotland

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

Israel: Netanyahu mobilises far right to win election
25/03/2015, Yasha Marmer, Socialist Struggle Movement, Israel-Palestine:
New coalition will face unresolved crises and bitter struggles

Italy: The instability of domestic capitalism
24/03/2015, Marco Veruggio, ControCorrente (CWI Italy):
Political vacuum pushes FIOM to take initiative

Greece: Varoufakis’ “erratic Marxism” is not the answer
23/03/2015, Peter Taaffe, from Socialism Today (monthly magazine of the Socialist Party, England & Wales):
Necessary to clarify ideas upon which successful struggles of European working class will be conducted

Belgium: No agreement reached between unions and government over austerity
20/03/2015, Eric Byl, LSP/PSL (Belgian section of the CWI), Brussels:
New action plan against right wing government takes off

Ukraine: Conflict unresolved after ’Minsk-2’ agreement
18/03/2015, Rob Jones, CWI, Moscow:
Only independent working-class mass movement can remove the region’s authoritarian rulers

Greece: Syriza’s first months in power
07/03/2015, Andreas Payiatsos, from Xekinima (newspaper of the CWI Greece):
The working class and social movements must enter the struggle for their rights

Quebec: Towards a hot spring
02/03/2015, Deirdre and Bruno, Socialist Alternative (CWI Quebec):
Disrupt them like they disrupt us!

Greece showdown
26/02/2015, Article to be published in the March issue of Socialism Today (magazine of the Socialist Party, CWI in England and Wales):
Niall Mulholland interviewed NICOS ANASTASIADES, of Xekinima (CWI Greece), just as Syriza leaders agreed a four-month bail-out extension with the EU.

Libya: War-torn country becoming new hub for IS activities
25/02/2015, Serge Jordan (CWI):
Libyan people bearing the brunt of NATO’s fiasco

Europe: Eurozone time-bomb
25/02/2015, Lynn Walsh, article from Socialism Today (magazine of the Socialist Party of England and Wales):
Mired in recession, the eurozone is haunted by the spectre of stagnation

Greece: Syriza retreats under Troika threats
24/02/2015, Nicos Anastasiades, Xekinima (CWI Greece), Thessaloniki:
Popular mood shows anti-austerity, socialist policies would win huge support

History: The political legacy of Malcolm X
21/02/2015, Eljeer Hawkins, Socialist Alternative:
50 years after his assassination

Spain: Is ‘Podemos’ the Spanish Syriza?
16/02/2015, Danny Byrne, CWI:
Dangers of “moderation” and domestication

Egypt: Regime brutality on fourth anniversary of revolution
10/02/2015, David Johnson, Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales):
Masses will regain confidence and willingness to fight

Greece: Not a single step back!
08/02/2015, Statement by the Editorial Board of Xekinima (CWI Greece):
Conflict between SYRIZA government and EU escalates

Kurdistan: ‘Islamic State’ driven out of Kobanê
02/02/2015, Serge Jordan, CWI:
Will the end of Kobanê’s siege turn the tide against IS?

Greece: Why did Syriza and the KKE fail to reach agreement?
29/01/2015, Article from Xekhinima (CWI Greece) website [dated 26 January 2015] translated and slightly edited:
For socialist policies to end austerity nightmare!

Greece: Syriza comes to power, as old ruling parties collapse
27/01/2015, Niall Mulholland, socialistworld.net, interviews Andros Payiatsos, from Xekinima (CWI Greece):
Left parties fail to form government - Syriza goes into coalition with populist right Independent Greeks

Cuba: Diplomatic relations with US restored, embargo eased
24/01/2015, Tony Saunois, CWI:
Threat of capitalist restoration accelerates

Russia/Ukraine: Facing a turbulent 2015
21/01/2015, Rob Jones, CWI, Moscow:
As death toll rises, economies plunge into freefall

Greece: Prospect of Syriza victory raises workers’ hopes
20/01/2015, Interview with Andros Payiatsos, from Xekinima (CWI in Greece):
Mass intervention of working class to struggle for socialist policies is vital

Nigeria: The Massacre in Baga
19/01/2015, H.T Soweto, DSM (CWI in Nigeria):
Socialism or Barbarism

Germany: What is behind the ‘PEGIDA’ anti-immigrant demonstrations?
13/01/2015, Wolfram Klein, Socialist Alternative (SAV- CWI Germany):
Unions and Left must organise against racism and for jobs and decent living standards for all

Greece: Towards a Syriza government?
08/01/2015, Interview with Andros Payiatsos, Xekinima (CWI in Greece):
General elections on 25 January