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Britain
Terror attack at Westminster

24/03/2017: Unite against terror, racism and war

  Britain

Italy
Democratic Party splits and 5-Star Movement in crisis

22/03/2017: Class struggle can build real left force

  Italy

Spain
Student strike empties classes and fills streets on 9 March

21/03/2017: Over 100,000 take to the streets in SE demonstrations

  Spain

Scotland
Second referendum on independence?

18/03/2017: SNP fire the starting gun but offer no solutions to austerity

  Scotland

Brazil
National day of strikes and protests shows Temer can be beaten

17/03/2017: For a one-day general strike as the next step

  Brazil

South Africa
Unity against poverty, crime and xenophobia

17/03/2017: Capitalist politicians use xenophobia to divert attention from failures of profit system

  South Africa

Netherlands
Election result a colossal defeat for austerity government

16/03/2017: Oppose Wilders and the ‘mainstream’ right – Build a mass workers’ party that struggles for socialism

  Netherlands

Yemen
Workers and their families left to starve by multi-billionaire companies

16/03/2017: International campaign needed to force companies to pay

  Yemen

Hong Kong
Protest against LSG Sky Chefs dismissal of union chairman

14/03/2017: Ng Chi-Fai sacked for organising union by multinational’s Hong Kong division – international solidarity needed

  Hong Kong

Ireland North
Snap election raises sectarian temperature    

14/03/2017: Workers need strong socialist alternative at ballot box and in unions

  Ireland North

Quebec
Counter protest against far-right

13/03/2017: Rise of Islamophobia and right-wing reaction poses new challenges to the left

  Quebec

 International Women's Day
Speech by Kshama Sawant

12/03/2017: Video of 8 March rally in Seattle

  Women

 International Women’s Day
Millions join marches and take action

10/03/2017: Socialists around the world demand an end to women’s oppression

  Women

 Hong Kong
Women’s march against sexism and racism

09/03/2017: International Women’s Day: “Solidarity with global mass protests and women’s strikes”

  Women

 Spain
Hundreds of thousands participate in International Women’s day student strike

08/03/2017: ‘Libres y Combativas’ and Sindicato de Estudiantes call strike against sexist violence and for working class women's rights

  Women

Pakistan
Political spectacle of the ruling class

08/03/2017: Most workers underemployed, 40% in poverty - situation demands new workers’ party

  Pakistan

 International Women’s Day 2017
A century on from the Russian Revolution

06/03/2017: Demonstrations world-wide swelled by anti-Trump anger

  Women

Britain
Massive demo shows battle to save the NHS can be won

06/03/2017: Up to 250,000 march in national protest, organised from below

  Britain

Egypt
Price hikes hit workers and middle classes

04/03/2017: Falling support for dictator Sisi portends growing opposition

  Egypt

Hong Kong’s sham election

03/03/2017: Pan-democrats sink to new low by supporting “lesser evil” John Tsang

  Hong Kong

US
Socialist response to Trump’s address to joint session of congress

02/03/2017: Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative councillor, speaks

  US

Sweden
“Who could believe it?"

24/02/2017: What is behind Trump's attack?

  Sweden

Britain/Ireland
Dublin's #JobstownNotGuilty

23/02/2017: Defend the right to protest - stop this political vendetta!

  Ireland Republic

Ireland
A web of intrigue sparks government crisis

22/02/2017: Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower

  Ireland Republic

February revolution 1917
What lessons for today?

21/02/2017: 23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

  Russian Revolution

 Yemen
International protests in support of TOTAL/G4S workers

20/02/2017: Solidarity spreads for victims of wage robbery and killing by multinational corporations

  Solidarity, Yemen

Netherlands
Anti-immigrant Freedom Party leading polls ahead of general elections

18/02/2017: Only a choice between the “regular” and far-right?

  Netherlands

Britain
Council cuts can be fought - and they must be

16/02/2017: Corbyn needs to stand up to Brexit rebels

  Aceh

Spain
Pablo Iglesias wins clear victory in Podemos congress

15/02/2017: Time to build the class struggle on the streets

  Spain

US

Trump in trouble

www.socialistworld.net, 17/08/2016
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

Political polarisation deepens

Tom Crean, Socialist Alternative, USA

The presidential election campaign is heading into its final phase now that the Democratic and Republican conventions are over. The result was the anointing of the two most unpopular major party nominees in living memory although Trump is right now definitely winning the unpopularity competition. Progressive workers, women, black people, Muslims and immigrants are legitimately afraid about what an unhinged Trump presidency would mean. But millions of people are also sickened by the choice at the top which is contributing to significant support for both Jill Stein of the Greens and Gary Johnson of the Libertarians.

This presidential cycle has witnessed an upheaval against the political establishment of both parties not seen in decades. In particular there was the mass support for Bernie Sanders’ call for a “political revolution against the billionaire class” fuelled by pent-up anger at unprecedented inequality and the neo-liberal attacks against working people over the past 30 years. The more than $200 million raised by his campaign from ordinary people proved once and for all the potential for a new political force representing the 99% independent of corporate control.

Donald Trump’s campaign in a distorted way has also channelled anti-establishment and working class anger but is using that to further a nationalist and racist right populist agenda which is in reality deeply hostile to the interests of working people and the oppressed.

Trump and the Ghost of Nixon

At the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Trump focused on a “law and order” message playing on fears of racial strife and terrorism, consciously modelled on the odious Richard Nixon. But he also demagogically talked of standing up for the “forgotten men and women” in working class communities devastated by the loss of good paying industrial jobs. Since then he has come out in favor of changes to the tax code that would represent a further shift of wealth to the 0.01% showing how hollow the “I feel your pain” rhetoric really is.

The liberal media have focused on Trump’s white working-class supporters as motivated centrally by “racial insecurity” caused in part by the country’s changing demographics. It is undoubtedly true that xenophobia is a key part of Trump’s appeal for a section of the Republican base. But the frequently crude attempts to dismiss the white working-class as one reactionary mass are fundamentally wrong.

For one thing a large section of the white working class rejects Trump, for various reasons including being repelled by his nauseating misogyny, anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant tirades or simply because they don’t believe a billionaire blowhard actually has their interests at heart. Many of the poorest white Americans are completely alienated from the political process and will not vote. And of those inclined to support Trump there is more than one motivation. Besides those actually attracted to the xenophobia there are many looking to punish the establishment of which Hillary is such a consummate representative.

There is a reason why Bernie Sanders crushed Donald Trump in every poll for months and that is because a section of the people prepared to consider Trump, given a choice, would have opted for a clear pro-working class and anti-racist candidate. This shows the danger of trying to oppose right populism with a candidate of the status quo like Clinton. There should be no illusion on this score: whether Trump wins or loses, a right-wing force is emerging in the U.S. which can only be defeated by a mass movement of working people and the oppressed.

The Establishment Goes After Trump

In the weeks since the convention, we have seen a full court press in large parts of the corporate media to damage Trump. Significant sections of the ruling elite have their own reasons for going after him. First of all they are not happy with Trump’s isolationist position in foreign affairs including his opposition to trade deals or talk of pulling back from NATO commitments. Secondly they have concluded that Trump is incapable of “pivoting” after the primaries to be more “presidential”. They see his attacks on one group after another and his completely unscripted and undisciplined approach as potentially seriously damaging the institution of the presidency which they value greatly and further undermining the credibility of the political system. They worry – not without reason – that a President Trump could unleash civil unrest on a scale not seen since the 60s and 70s.

Of course Trump still has his ruling class backers but it is striking how wide the elite coalition against him has become: Republican generals and intelligence agents as well as a slew of prominent Republican political operatives and a number of prominent Republican capitalists like Meg Whitman, the CEO of Hewlett Packard, who says she’s supporting Clinton. Even reactionary figures like the Koch brothers who have played a key role in bankrolling the right in the last period are steering clear of Trump. More Republican elected officials might join this chorus if it wasn’t for the fear of losing their own jobs due to the wrath of Trump’s supporters.

As long as Hillary, clearly now the favored candidate of Wall Street and the corporate elite, can keep the focus on him her position strengthens. The danger for Hillary is if the focus returns to her. After the FBI report on her use of a private email server during her time as Secretary of State – which confirmed that she had been less than truthful in her public explanations – the polls showed her neck and neck with Trump.

It is also open to question what Clinton’s message is besides “stop Trump”. At the convention she and her surrogates presented an argument about the threat of Trump as a “strongman” ruler which demanded an alliance of left and right to stop him at all costs. But she also talked about inequality and reigning in Wall Street to appeal to Sanders supporters. In reality the Democrats were forced in their platform to make some verbal concessions to the Sanders base. But none of that is binding on the Democrats if they win and there is no guarantee how far Hillary will go to even pretend to be “left” in the remainder of this campaign. The ruling class would like a President Clinton who has made as few promises as possible but this is also a dangerous approach in dealing with Trump who is clearly prepared to make a lot of promises.

The DNC Walkout

From the start of Bernie Sanders’ historic campaign, Socialist Alternative argued that he should have run as an independent. By accepting the framework of the rigged Democratic primary system, he set the stage for the betrayal of the political revolution after likely losing. In the end he tragically gave his fulsome endorsement to Hillary Clinton, who represents Walmart and Wall Street. But if Sanders was standing all the way to November there would be the potential for a left vote on a historical scale.

But despite the serious limitations of Sanders’ campaign, millions got an education in how the political system and particularly the Democrats really work. Wikileaks only confirmed what folks already knew, that the Democratic National Committee, under Debbie Wasserman Schultz, was in reality an extension of Hillary’s campaign. The clear conclusion was that the Democratic establishment were prepared to go all out to prevent Sanders winning. Why? Because as a party which serves the interests of corporate America they are opposed to the pro-working class program which Bernie ran on including single payer healthcare, a $15 minimum wage and opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal. If the ruling elite seem distressed about the prospect of a President Trump that is nothing compared to how they would have reacted to the prospect of a President Bernie who in his own words intended to act as “the organizer in chief”.

But to the great credit of Sanders delegates they were not prepared to go out quietly. Despite the efforts of the corporate media to keep the story under wraps, the Democratic convention in Philadelphia was the most contentious in 50 years. The walkout of half or more of Sanders’ delegates on the Tuesday night of the convention reflected the anger at the way the primary had been stacked against them which was all brought back by the Wikileaks data dump. But it also reflected the disbelief at Hillary’s choice of Tim Kaine, a supporter of bank deregulation, as a running mate all while talking about “party unity”. Only days before Clinton announced her VP choice, Kaine also reiterated his support of the TPP.

Socialist Alternative was proud to have played a role in helping to organize this walkout which was an affirmation of the political revolution. But even among those who walked out there was a clear differentiation between those who still believe the Democratic Party could be reformed into a party which represents the interest of the 99% and those who, like us, believe this is impossible and have decided to support Jill Stein of the Green Party as the best way to continue the political revolution in the November election.

Sanders meanwhile has set up Our Revolution which is supporting a number of Democratic candidates in “down ticket” races who are standing against representatives of the establishment and the status quo. Sanders clearly sees this effort going on past 2016.

Johnson and Stein

Stein is now getting up to 5% in some polls while Johnson is polling near 10%. Both campaigns are feeding off the desire for more political choice than the dysfunctional two party system offers but they also point in fundamentally different directions. While advocating progressive measures on some issues including civil liberties, the Libertarians adhere to a free market fundamentalism which would make the situation facing working people if anything even worse than it is today. Stein’s platform on the other hand is a continuation of Sanders’ call to end the domination of the 0.01%.

We utterly reject the argument that a “vote for Stein is a vote for Trump”. A vote for Jill Stein in November is a vote for single payer healthcare, tuition free college, ending mass incarceration and a transition from a fossil fuel based economy through a “green new deal”. The key issue for us is how to rally those forces who see the necessity for a complete break with corporate politics.

We fully recognize that millions who reject what Clinton represents will in the end hold their noses and vote for her to stop Trump. We also want to see Trump lose badly but we see the question of laying the ground for a new political force as primary. Forty years of neoliberal Democratic policies helped drive a big section of the working class into the arms of utter reactionaries. The solution to this is not to keep supporting those same Democrats but to build our own political party.

We must begin to prepare for the major social struggles that are going to be unleashed in the coming years. We recognize that many genuine Bernie activists will continue to try to reform the Democratic Party and we will seek to engage them in an ongoing discussion about the way forward. In Seattle, Socialist Alternative member Kshama Sawant proved the effectiveness of independent politics by winning election and reelection as a councilmember as well as winning the first local $15 minimum in the country. We also aim, alongside others, to continue to demonstrate in practice what a new independent politics based on determined struggle and directly challenging the corporate political establishment can achieve.



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Video: US Socialist Students build for student walkouts against Trump, 15/12/2016

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NEWS

Britain: Terror attack at Westminster
24/03/2017, Judy Beishon, from the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales) website :
Unite against terror, racism and war

Belarus: Protesters flood onto streets demanding scrapping of “law against parasites”
21/03/2017, Daniil Raskolnikov (translation of article from the Russian CWI site www.socialist.news):
President Lukashenko must go!

Spain: Student strike empties classes and fills streets on 9 March
21/03/2017, Sindicato de Estudiantes (SE), Spanish Students' Union :
Over 100,000 take to the streets in SE demonstrations

Scotland: Second referendum on independence?
18/03/2017, Philip Stott, Socialist Party Scotland (CWI) :
SNP fire the starting gun but offer no solutions to austerity

South Africa: Unity against poverty, crime and xenophobia
17/03/2017, Shaun Arendse, Workers and Socialist Party (CWI South Africa):
Capitalist politicians use xenophobia to divert attention from failures of profit system

International Women’s Day: March in Malaysia and week of activity in Belgium
16/03/2017, socialistworld.net :
Reports from Kuala Lumpur and Brussels

Netherlands: Election result a colossal defeat for austerity government
16/03/2017, Pieter Brans, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Netherlands), Amsterdam:
Oppose Wilders and the ‘mainstream’ right – Build a mass workers’ party that struggles for socialism

Russian Revolution: March 1917 - After the fall of Czarism, what next for the revolution?
16/03/2017, socialistworld.net:
New article on 1917revolution.org

Hong Kong: Protest against LSG Sky Chefs dismissal of union chairman
14/03/2017, Sally Tang Mei-ching, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong) :
Ng Chi-Fai sacked for organising union by multinational’s Hong Kong division – international solidarity needed

Quebec: Counter protest against far-right
13/03/2017, Michele Hehn, Alternative Socialiste (CWI in Quebec) :
Rise of Islamophobia and right-wing reaction poses new challenges to the left

International Women's Day: Speech by Kshama Sawant
12/03/2017, Socialistworld.net :
Video of 8 March rally in Seattle

International Women’s Day: Millions join marches and take action
10/03/2017, Clare Doyle, CWI:
Socialists around the world demand an end to women’s oppression

Hong Kong: Women’s march against sexism and racism
09/03/2017, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong) reporters:
International Women’s Day: “Solidarity with global mass protests and women’s strikes”

Spain: Hundreds of thousands participate in International Women’s day student strike
08/03/2017, Sindicato de Estudiantes, students’ union in the Spanish state :
‘Libres y Combativas’ and Sindicato de Estudiantes call strike against sexist violence and for working class women's rights

Pakistan: Political spectacle of the ruling class
08/03/2017, Tariq Shahzad, National Organiser of IYWM (International Youth and Workers Movement) :
Most workers underemployed, 40% in poverty - situation demands new workers’ party

Britain: Massive demo shows battle to save the NHS can be won
06/03/2017, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) deputy general secretary :
Up to 250,000 march in national protest, organised from below

Egypt: Price hikes hit workers and middle classes
04/03/2017, David Johnson, Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales) :
Falling support for dictator Sisi portends growing opposition

Hong Kong’s sham election
03/03/2017, Dikang, Socialist Action:
Pan-democrats sink to new low by supporting “lesser evil” John Tsang

US: Socialist response to Trump’s address to joint session of congress
02/03/2017, socialistworld.net:
Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative councillor, speaks

Catalonia: Historic demonstration in Barcelona in support of refugees
25/02/2017, Esquerra Revolucionària :
'Volem acollir'

Sweden: “Who could believe it?"

24/02/2017, Per-Åke Westerlund, Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI Sweden):
What is behind Trump's attack?

Britain/Ireland: Dublin's #JobstownNotGuilty
23/02/2017, Neil Cafferky, from The Socialist (weekly paper of the Socialist Party, England & Wales):
Defend the right to protest - stop this political vendetta!

Ireland: A web of intrigue sparks government crisis
22/02/2017, By Cillian Gillespie, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) :
Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower

Yemen: International protests in support of TOTAL/G4S workers
20/02/2017, Socialistworld.net:
Solidarity spreads for victims of wage robbery and killing by multinational corporations

Netherlands: Anti-immigrant Freedom Party leading polls ahead of general elections
18/02/2017, Pieter Brans, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Netherlands), Amsterdam:
Only a choice between the “regular” and far-right?

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

Italy: Democratic Party splits and 5-Star Movement in crisis
22/03/2017, Marco Veruggio, ControCorrrente, (CWI in Italy) :
Class struggle can build real left force

Brazil: National day of strikes and protests shows Temer can be beaten


17/03/2017, André Ferrari LSR (CWI in Brazil) :
For a one-day general strike as the next step

Yemen: Workers and their families left to starve by multi-billionaire companies
16/03/2017, Cedric Gerome, CWI :
International campaign needed to force companies to pay

Ireland North: Snap election raises sectarian temperature    
14/03/2017, Daniel Waldron, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
Workers need strong socialist alternative at ballot box and in unions

International Women’s Day 2017: A century on from the Russian Revolution
06/03/2017, Clare Doyle, CWI :
Demonstrations world-wide swelled by anti-Trump anger

February revolution 1917: What lessons for today?
21/02/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales), printed in the Socialist (paper of the Socialist Party):
23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

India: Upheaval in Tamil Nadu
09/02/2017, Sajith Attepuram, New Socialist Alternative (NSA) (CWI India) :
Corruption, nepotism, and other crimes of ruling party exposed

Britain: Universal basic income demand gains ground
08/02/2017, Judy Beishon, from The Socialist (weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party – CWI England & Wales) :
What approach should socialists take?

CWI and Izquierda Revolucionaria – Towards unification
06/02/2017, Socialistworld.net :
Joint declaration of the CWI’s IEC and Izquierda Revolucionaria’s IEC

France: After Sarkozy, Juppé and Valls, now Fillon is on the way out
06/02/2017, Alex Rouillard, Gauche Révolutionnaire (CWI in France) :
Space opening up to left of Socialist Party

Syria: Is an end to the war in sight?
03/02/2017, Serge Jordan (CWI) :
New movements for change will need to arm themselves with the lessons of the Syrian tragedy

Sri Lanka: The year 2017
31/01/2017, Siritunga Jayasuriya, United Socialist Party (CWI in Sri Lanka) :
Between oppression and struggle

Canada: Where are Trudeau’s ‘Sunny Ways’?
31/01/2017, Tim Heffernan, Socialist Alternative (CWI Canada), Toronto

:
Battles of Indigenous peoples, youth, workers will test Liberal government

Russian Revolution Centenary: January 1917 - On the eve of revolution
29/01/2017, Niall Mulholland, from 1917revolution.org :
War, hunger, hated Tsarist regime: class tensions reach breaking point

Afghanistan: The limits of US power
28/01/2017, Judy Beishon, from Socialism Today (February 2017 issue), monthly magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales)<br />
<br />
:
Imperialism’s 15-year adventure a bloody catastrophe for millions

US: Build 100 days of resistance to Trump’s agenda!
27/01/2017, Bryan Koulouris, Socialist Alternative, US :
Establishment deeply divided as mass resistance explodes

Millions on women's marches around the world
25/01/2017, Editorial from the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) and reports from US marches :
Reports from mass women's marches against Trump

China: New US President’s approach to China
21/01/2017, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info :
Outbursts raise fears of confrontation

Ireland North: Snap elections called to Stormont Assembly
17/01/2017, Daniel Waldron, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
Build a socialist alternative to the ‘Orange’ versus ‘Green’ headcount

Spain: What kind of Podemos do workers and youth need?
17/01/2017, Izquierda Revolucionaria, Spanish state, editorial :
Debate within leadership touches on fundamental issues for future of party

US: Trump prepares vicious attacks
05/01/2017, Philip Locker and Tom Crean, Socialist Alternative (US):
Mass resistance needed!

Russian Revolution centenary
02/01/2017, Editorial from Socialism Today, Dec/Jan 2017 edition:
Defending the legacy in a new era

2017:Upheaval and fightback will continue
01/01/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) general secretary :
Everything to play for in 2017

Britain's shifting political contours
22/12/2016, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) from Socialism Today Dec/Jan 2017 edition :
Capitalist establishment in disarray

CWI International Executive Committee: European capitalism “battered by events”
16/12/2016, Kevin Henry, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) :
Report of discussion on Europe at CWI IEC meeting in November