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Scotland
RISE - launch of a politically unclear left alliance

02/09/2015: Clear 100% anti-austerity and socialist platform essential steps towards new mass workers’ party

  Scotland

Britain
Council cuts and the Corbyn campaign

01/09/2015: Potential to resist if follow 80’s Liverpool Council example

  Britain

Kurdistan
Democratic autonomy or socialism?

29/08/2015: Articles on Öcalan’s ideas and Rojava, originally published in sozialismus.info, the quaterly magazine of SAV (German section of the CWI)

  Kurdistan, Syria, Turkey

Greece
What does “Popular Unity” stand for?

28/08/2015: New Left force launched following Tsipras’ betrayal

  Greece

Sri Lanka
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27/08/2015: Working class struggle top priority for socialists

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Britain
The Corbyn insurgency

27/08/2015: Whatever the outcome of the contest, Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign has already transformed the political situation in Britain

  Britain

Lebanon
‘Garbage protests’ shake the ruling class

25/08/2015: Interview with Tamer Mahdi, CWI member in Lebanon

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World economy
China crisis triggers panic on global markets

25/08/2015: More than $5 trillion wiped off global stock markets in two weeks since Chinese devaluation

  China, World Economy

Sri Lanka
Election sees Rajapaksa fail to make a come-back

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Gulf War
25 years since invasion of Kuwait

22/08/2015: ’Unfinished business’ remains today

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History
Anniversary of Trotsky’s assassination

21/08/2015: Coming mass revolts will see workers and youth look to Trotsky’s ideas

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Scotland and the Jeremy Corbyn campaign

20/08/2015: The response to Corbyn’s campaign has parallels with the outpouring of class anger that was seen during the independence referendum

  Scotland

Thailand
Bomb in Bangkok kills 20

19/08/2015: Country plagued by military junta and economic downturn

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Socialism
Past or future?

18/08/2015: Review of ‘PostCapitalism: a guide to our future’ by Paul Mason

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Greece and the latest phase of the EU crisis

18/08/2015: Alexis Tsipras and the Syriza leadership have pushed through parliament the third bailout – and further deep cuts – although only with the help of right-wing parties. However, the crises in Greece, the eurozone and wider EU are far from over…

  Greece

Britain
Corbyn challenge - a very welcome political upheaval

17/08/2015: The Labour Party’s right-wing leaders have been astonished and horrified at the over-flowing rallies for Jeremy Corbyn around the UK over the last few weeks

  Britain

Northern Ireland
Left Challenge for Largest Union’s Leadership

15/08/2015: CWI member, Patrick Mulholland, leads Left campaign for leadership of NIPSA union

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Ireland
Paul Murphy and 22 activists to be charged over peaceful protest

14/08/2015: Socialist MP to be charged with false imprisonment for protesting against water charges

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Technology
Will robots end capitalism?

14/08/2015: Technological developments, the threat to jobs, and perspectives for the struggle against capitalism and for the future of humanity

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 CWI School 2015
New Left formations

13/08/2015: Report of discussion on New Workers’ Parties, Left Populism and the ideas and programme of PODEMOS, SYRIZA

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China
Devaluation of yuan jolts global markets

12/08/2015: Sudden reversal of Beijing’s exchange rate policy underlines seriousness of China’s economic woes

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France/Britain
Human tragedy of Calais crisis

07/08/2015: Tories have no solutions

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Kurdistan
PYD leaders call for partnership with Bashar al-Assad’s regime

06/08/2015: No faith in authoritarian rulers and Western powers!

  Kurdistan, Syria, Turkey

Japan
70th anniversary of Hiroshima atomic bomb

06/08/2015: Can a future nuclear conflict be avoided?

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Building the CWI

06/08/2015: Introductory video to the plenary session on ‘Building the CWI’ shown at the 2015 CWI Summer School, featuring the work of our International across the world

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Britain
Jeremy Corbyn – thousands rally to anti-austerity appeal

05/08/2015: Large attendances at Corbyn rallies across country

  Britain

US
Kshama Sawant leads primary elections count on 50%

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Greece
‘The working class showed it will return to struggle’

04/08/2015: After Syriza capitulates, taking first steps towards building a new mass Left alternative to austerity and capitalism

  Greece

 CWI School 2015
World crisis continues amid horrific consequences

03/08/2015: Report of World Perspectives discussion at the 2015 CWI Summer School

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03/08/2015: Life and death struggle with the process of counter-revolution.

  Africa, CWI, Tunisia

US
Over 1,000 attend housing debate hosted by Socialist councillor Kshama Sawant

31/07/2015: Kshama Sawant, Seattle’s socialist councillor defending seat in primary elections on 4 August

  US

 CWI School
Social and political turmoil in Ireland

30/07/2015: Socialists play key role in rapidly changing situation

  CWI, Ireland Republic

Britain
Corbyn’s Labour leadership bid shows anti-austerity message popular

29/07/2015: Militant Tendency held up as bogeyman by Labour right and media - What’s the real history?

  Britain

Greece

‘Initiative 1000’ – An ambitious move on the Greek Left

www.socialistworld.net, 31/12/2012
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

Build a united front of Left forces on a programme to end capitalist crisis!

Andros Payiatsos, Xekinima (CWI Greece)

Xekinima (CWI Greece) plays a central role in an initiative to bring together different forces from the Greek Left to fight for a united front, based primarily around SYRIZA, (radical left coalition party) the highest polling opposition Left party, on a programme that decisively breaks with capitalism.

The initiative is known as ‘Initiative 1000’ due to the number of individuals who signed the original ‘Declaration of the initiative’.

The ‘Initiative’ had its first public meeting on 29 November 2012 in Athens. Despite heavy rain, 600 people attended the very successful launch. Meetings have taken place in many other areas in Greece to set up local committees of the Initiative.

What follows is an edited translation of an article by Andros Payiatsos, from Xekinima (CWI Greece), published soon after a press conference at which the Initiative 1000 was formally launched in November.

Socialistworld.net

On Monday 5 November 2012, members of different Greek Left organisations and independent activists launched ‘Initiative 1000’ which takes its name from the 1000 or so individuals signed an initial declaration.

This ambitious launch comes at a time of unprecedented attacks on the standard of living and rights and lives of millions of Greeks, who are driven to despair by the policies of the ruling elite and the Troika [EU, IMF and IMF]. With society in a state of flux, rapid turns and changes, the Left is confronted with huge tasks and challenges.

Workers and youth openly public about the extent to which the Greek Left provides adequate answers to the crisis. The Initiative 1000 is set to intervene in this debate, not like “another party” just trying to recruit members in competition with the rest of the Left (SYRIZA, KKE, ANTARSYA, etc) and leading to further fragmentation of the Left. The Initiative calls for cooperation on the basis of a programme that provides a way out of the catastrophic crisis, a programme based on the need to defend the interests of the working class and the oppressed.

Initiative 1000 - The fundamental points

As the Declaration of the Initiative 1000 states, the fundamental points of agreement are summed up as follows:

All the undersigned:

·         Believe that any solution to the social and economic implosion taking place in Greece in this period can only be found on the basis of breaking with the present capitalist system.

·         Such a solution can only be found on the basis of a united front of Left forces and on the basis of a programme that calls for the ending of crisis engulfing the working masses and for the overthrow of the present capitalist regime.

·         The crisis is international and European-wide. We fight for a revolutionary change in Greece that can act as a trigger to similar /processes internationally.  Thus we strive for the widest possible coordination and common struggle of the mass movements that develop internationally.

·          We support the greatest possible cooperation and unity in action of all the Greek Left, on the basis of such a radical political programme, but also in the common daily struggle for the people’s survival and for solidarity actions for those most severely hit by the crisis.

·         We support the prospect of a government of the Left (in the present conditions identified mainly with SYRIZA) knowing however that such a development is not the “end of the road”, but the beginning of mass struggles.

·         The Left must seek the widest possible cooperation of its forces in the fight against the Memoranda, the Troika and the Greek ruling class, starting from the demand of ‘No Sacrifices for the Euro!’

·         We appeal to all Left forces and fighters (including non-party individuals) who agree with the ideas represented by this Initiative, independently of which party (or political trend) they may belong, to support and widely campaign for the above aims and tasks.

Unity

A central feature of the Initiative 1000 is that it aims for unity, transcending the divisive ‘Chinese Wall’ of the various political parties that historically have become, particularly in Greece, an almost insurmountable obstacle for the different forces of the Left to effectively communicate. 

This Initiative has been made by:

· Aristeri Paremvasi, ARAN (a tendency inside ARAN – Left Renewal and ANTARSYA, the Anti-capitalist Alliance)

· Kommunistiki Ananeosi (Communist Refoundation – one of the constituent organisations making up ANTARSYA)

· Paremvasi (a new Left organisation set up by those expelled from KOE, a Maoist organisation working inside SYRIZA, in the beginning of 2012 and who participate in MAA, the formation created by the ex-leader of SYRIZA, Alekos Alavanos)

· and Xekinima (CWI section in Greece)

Very soon after its initiation, a large number of ‘independents’ (I.e. not belonging to any Left party) expressed their support for the Initiative and signed its Declaration.

The agreement of so many comrades from different Left political trajectories on the basis of such an advanced common framework – both political and tactical – is something that we have never seen before!

This certainly creates some difficulties, as well as doubts about its prospects. But the dominant issue for all those who are involved in the Initiative 1000 is the common understanding of the historical tasks confronting the Left in Greece

The programme

Some of the key points of the political programme that Initiative 1000 is fighting for are the following (excerpts from the founding text of the Initiative).

. Non-recognition of the debt and immediate cessation of its payment

·         Abolition of all Memoranda and all implementation legislation

·         Abrogation of all neo-colonial loan contracts/agreements

·         Nationalisation of the banking system

·         Drastic debt relief for all working class households, small businesses, small to medium-sized working farmers and for all those who have been hit by the crisis

·         Heavy taxation on capital, the end of bank secrecy for big depositors and a massive reduction of arms expenditures

·         Nationalisation of all the strategic economic sectors and strategic enterprises

·         Real democracy, with the institutionalisation of social and workers’ control and management, across the entire spectrum of economic activity

·         The creation, on the above basis, of a progressive plan to reconstruct the economy for the benefit and in the interest of the working masses and the people

Only through such a programme can Greek society avert the economic and social disaster in which we are lead by the Greek ruling class, the EU and the IMF.  Only in this way can workers’ salaries, pensions, and social welfare gains, like free Health and Education, and industrial relations and basic democratic rights, be rescued.

Initiative 1000 and the rest of the Left

The advanced political programme, defended by Initiative 1000 and referred to in brief above, distinguishes the Initiative from the policies expressed by the majority inside the leadership of SYRIZA(radical left coalition party).

Raising the need of co-operation of the Left and for a ‘United Front’ distinguishes the Initiative from the sectarianism and isolationism of the KKE (the Greek communist party ) and ANTARSYA (the Anti-capitalist Alliance).  

The Initiative 1000 does not raise its programme in competition with the existing forces of the Left in the sense of trying to recruit members away from the present parties, but attempts to intervene and influence the intense political debates that are already taking place in the ranks of the Left and throughout the whole of the Left.

It wants to assist and join forces with individuals and currents of ideas, inside the present parties and formations of the Left, who are fighting for ideas similar to those of the Initiative.

The Initiative 1000 has already gained many supporters but, also, quite a number of ‘enemies‘. The ideas of the Initiative are already being attacked inside SYRIZA, inside ANTARSYA (where expulsions have already been threatened to scare people away from signing the Initiative’s Declaration) and elsewhere.

We are asking all those comrades who are have rushed to attack the Initiative to try to keep an open mind and to allow the free expression and exchange of ideas among party members so that they can make up their own mind about the issues. They must show trust and confidence to the ability of ordinary members and cadres of organizations and parties of the Left to be able to judge for themselves. Even more, they should show confidence to the ability of ordinary workers to judge what is right and what is wrong, particularly as the “common people” are what the Left is supposed to be fighting for.  The Left must have confidence in the class instincts of the oppressed and their freedom to choose what they think is the right course. This should be a core value for the Left. Without this, the Left has already lost the war before the first battle.  Viewed from this perspective, Initiative 1000 should be welcomed by all the forces of the Left.

Need for co-ordination and action

The Initiative 1000 does not seek to limit itself only at the level of ideas and debate. Discussions through blogs, websites and other social media are necessary and important but also have serious limitations:  they do not engage large sections of the oppressed and are restricted to (cadre and leaders) on the Left who have the ability, time, etc, to participate. 

The Initiative 1000 needs the life-blood of the real movements. That is why it is important to set the goal of establishing local committees of groups of friends or supporters of the Initiative 1000, and to take initiatives, whether at a local level, in workplaces or within the Left party they belong to.

Xekinima (CWI Greece) participates actively in this initiative precisely because we believe that only a Left policy can provide a way out of the crisis and challenge the power of capital (national and multinational) on the basis of the socialist reconstruction of the economy and a socialist society.

The present economic crisis is an international crisis which begun in the US, in 2007, and will not end anytime soon.  Imploding capitalism now leads entire societies into barbarism, including societies that thought they belonged in the “developed” world.  The socialist perspective is the only practical and realistic solution to the crisis for Greek society, the European South, Europe, and the entire world.

All parts of the Left that agree with these views have to get together, communicate and coordinate their activities, beyond organisational and party divisions. This is the only way that the workers’ movement and the oppressed can face the future with optimism, confident we can win the battles ahead.

Members of Xekinima have already signed the Declaration of the Initiative 1000 and we are discussing what it the best way forward, how to reach a wider audience, etc. We are asking all our friends and readers of our website to do the same.



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NEWS

Scotland: RISE - launch of a politically unclear left alliance
02/09/2015, Philip Stott, Socialist Party Scotland (CWI), Dundee:
Clear 100% anti-austerity and socialist platform essential steps towards new mass workers’ party

Greece: What does “Popular Unity” stand for?
28/08/2015, Interview with Andreas Payiatsos, Xekinima (CWI in Greece), by Lucy Redler, SAV (CWI in Germany):
New Left force launched following Tsipras’ betrayal

Britain: The Corbyn insurgency
27/08/2015, Editorial of Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales), September 2015:
Whatever the outcome of the contest, Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign has already transformed the political situation in Britain

Lebanon: ‘Garbage protests’ shake the ruling class
25/08/2015, socialistworld.net:
Interview with Tamer Mahdi, CWI member in Lebanon

World economy: China crisis triggers panic on global markets
25/08/2015, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info:
More than $5 trillion wiped off global stock markets in two weeks since Chinese devaluation

Sri Lanka: Election sees Rajapaksa fail to make a come-back
23/08/2015, Srinath Perera, United Socialist Party (CWI in Sri Lanka):
Neo-liberal policies of UNP-led government will not satisfy demands of workers and poor.

Gulf War: 25 years since invasion of Kuwait
22/08/2015, Niall Mulholland, CWI:
’Unfinished business’ remains today

Scotland and the Jeremy Corbyn campaign
20/08/2015, Editorial taken from the current issue of the Socialist - the paper of Socialist Party Scotland (CWI):
The response to Corbyn’s campaign has parallels with the outpouring of class anger that was seen during the independence referendum

Thailand: Bomb in Bangkok kills 20
19/08/2015, Per-Ake Westerlund, Rattvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI in Sweden):
Country plagued by military junta and economic downturn

Greece and the latest phase of the EU crisis
18/08/2015, Tony Saunois, CWI, from September 2015 issue of Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Alexis Tsipras and the Syriza leadership have pushed through parliament the third bailout – and further deep cuts – although only with the help of right-wing parties. However, the crises in Greece, the eurozone and wider EU are far from over…

Britain: Corbyn challenge - a very welcome political upheaval
17/08/2015, Interview with Judy Beishon in the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
The Labour Party’s right-wing leaders have been astonished and horrified at the over-flowing rallies for Jeremy Corbyn around the UK over the last few weeks

Northern Ireland: Left Challenge for Largest Union’s Leadership
15/08/2015, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) reporters:
CWI member, Patrick Mulholland, leads Left campaign for leadership of NIPSA union

Ireland: Paul Murphy and 22 activists to be charged over peaceful protest
14/08/2015, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) reporters:
Socialist MP to be charged with false imprisonment for protesting against water charges

CWI School 2015: New Left formations
13/08/2015, Matt Dobson, Socialist Party Scotland (CWI in Scotland):
Report of discussion on New Workers’ Parties, Left Populism and the ideas and programme of PODEMOS, SYRIZA

China: Devaluation of yuan jolts global markets
12/08/2015, Editorial comment by chinaworker.info:
Sudden reversal of Beijing’s exchange rate policy underlines seriousness of China’s economic woes

Malaysia: Prime Minister implicated in financial scandals
11/08/2015, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Malaysia):
Power struggle in UMNO party

France/Britain: Human tragedy of Calais crisis
07/08/2015, Sarah Sachs-Eldridge, from The Socialist (weekly paper of the Socialist Party, CWI England & Wales):
Tories have no solutions

Japan: 70th anniversary of Hiroshima atomic bomb
06/08/2015, Geoff Jones and Kate Jones, from The Socialist (newspaper of the Socialist Party – CWI England & Wales):
Can a future nuclear conflict be avoided?

CWI School: Building the CWI
06/08/2015, Socialistworld.net:
Introductory video to the plenary session on ‘Building the CWI’ shown at the 2015 CWI Summer School, featuring the work of our International across the world

Britain: Jeremy Corbyn – thousands rally to anti-austerity appeal
05/08/2015, Steve Score, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Large attendances at Corbyn rallies across country

US: Kshama Sawant leads primary elections count on 50%
05/08/2015, Socialist Alternative reporters:
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CWI School: Drawing the lessons from the revolutions in North Africa
03/08/2015, David Johnson, Socialist Party (CWI in England and Wales):
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US: Over 1,000 attend housing debate hosted by Socialist councillor Kshama Sawant
31/07/2015, Kshama Sawant:
Kshama Sawant, Seattle’s socialist councillor defending seat in primary elections on 4 August

CWI School: Social and political turmoil in Ireland
30/07/2015, Eddie McCabe, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland):
Socialists play key role in rapidly changing situation

Britain: Corbyn’s Labour leadership bid shows anti-austerity message popular
29/07/2015, Editorial from The Socialist, weekly paper of the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales):
Militant Tendency held up as bogeyman by Labour right and media - What’s the real history?

Turkey: Horrific Suruc massacre
28/07/2015, Paula Mitchell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Only workers’ unity can end terrorism and division

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

Britain: Council cuts and the Corbyn campaign
01/09/2015, Clive Heemskerk, from Socialism Today, September 2015 issue (monthly magazine of the Socialist Party England & Wales):
Potential to resist if follow 80’s Liverpool Council example

Kurdistan: Democratic autonomy or socialism?
29/08/2015, Socialistworld.net:
Articles on Öcalan’s ideas and Rojava, originally published in sozialismus.info, the quaterly magazine of SAV (German section of the CWI)

Sri Lanka: Identifying the challenges after defeat of Rajapaksa
27/08/2015, Siritunga Jayasuriya, United Socialist Party (CWI in Sri Lanka):
Working class struggle top priority for socialists

History: Anniversary of Trotsky’s assassination
21/08/2015, Peter Taaffe, General Secretary Socialist Party (CWI England and Wales), article published on 70th anniversary of Leon Trotsky’s assassination, in 2010:
Coming mass revolts will see workers and youth look to Trotsky’s ideas

Socialism: Past or future?
18/08/2015, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) General Secretary:
Review of ‘PostCapitalism: a guide to our future’ by Paul Mason

Technology: Will robots end capitalism?
14/08/2015, Interview with Peter Taaffe, conducted by Shahar Ben-Horin from Socialist Struggle Movement (CWI in Israel-Palestine):
Technological developments, the threat to jobs, and perspectives for the struggle against capitalism and for the future of humanity

Ireland: Mass non-payment campaign transforms political landscape
10/08/2015, Cillian Gillespie, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland):
57% refuse to pay hated water charge

Kurdistan: PYD leaders call for partnership with Bashar al-Assad’s regime
06/08/2015, Serge Jordan, CWI:
No faith in authoritarian rulers and Western powers!

Greece: ‘The working class showed it will return to struggle’
04/08/2015, Interview with a Greek socialist:
After Syriza capitulates, taking first steps towards building a new mass Left alternative to austerity and capitalism

CWI School 2015: World crisis continues amid horrific consequences
03/08/2015, Cillian Gillespie, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland):
Report of World Perspectives discussion at the 2015 CWI Summer School

CWI School: Europe’s euro-crisis and prospects for class struggle
28/07/2015, Kevin Parslow, Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales):
Ground prepared everywhere for new battles and rise of left formations

China: Stock market crash can turn into a political crisis
08/07/2015, Interview, with chinaworker.info editor, Vincent Kolo:
Regime adopts panic measures as market crash threatens wider economic recession

Greece: Mighty class-based ‘NO’ shakes bosses’ EU
06/07/2015, Editorial comment by Xekinima (CWI Greece), 6 July 2015:
Referendum earthquake sees working class boldly defy Troika and Greece’s servile ruling class!

Britain: Socialists and the EU referendum
03/07/2015, Clive Heemskerk, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
How should socialists approach the in-or-out EU debate?

Greece: Troika threatens Greeks ahead of referendum
30/06/2015, Andreas Payiatsos and Niall Mulholland:
Vote ‘No’! For a mass working class campaign to oppose Troika and for socialist policies!

Britain’s class battle-lines are drawn
26/06/2015, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) Deputy General Secretary - article from ’Socialism Today’:
A quarter-of-a-million people protested through London and Glasgow raising the need for trade union-led struggle

Greece: Tsipras retreats before Troika threats
24/06/2015, Statement by Xekinima (CWI Greece) [dated 23 June 2015]:
What should the SYRIZA Left do next?

Greece: No surrender to‘Gang of Lenders’
22/06/2015, Editorial article from Xekinima (CWI Greece) [dated 17 June 2015]:
Plan an anti-austerity fight-back, with socialist policies!

Iraq/Syria: US imperialist strategy in tatters
12/06/2015, Serge Jordan (CWI):
A year after ISIS captured Mosul, the jihadist group controls about half of Syria and a third of Iraq – more territory than ever before

Greece: Syriza voters want austerity ended, not another ’compromise’ Troika deal
04/06/2015, Editorial article from Xekinima (CWI Greece) website [dated 3 June 2015]:
Break with the austerity - adopt a socialist programme!

China: Is China heading for a new Tiananmen?
04/06/2015, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info:
26th anniversary of the Beijing massacre on June 4, 1989, is also a warning of revolutionary shocks ahead

Hong Kong: Endgame for Beijing’s fake democracy plan
03/06/2015, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info:
Government’s electoral reform proposals meet with mass opposition

Spain: Victories for Left “popular unity” lists in local elections
02/06/2015, Danny Byrne, CWI:
Two-party system dealt a new blow in local and regional elections

Belgium: Momentum to bring down right wing government lost
01/06/2015, Els Deschoemacker and Eric Byl, LSP/PSL (Belgian section of the CWI), Brussels:
Learn from the struggle, as new opportunities open up

Ireland: Massive ‘Yes’ to Marriage Equality referendum
28/05/2015, Conor Payne, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland):
Growing opposition to conservative establishment