deutsch |  english |  español  |  français  |  italiano  |  nederlands  |  polski  |  português  |  svenska  |  türkçe  |  中文  |  عربي  |  русский

latest news

Britain
After the referendum

24/06/2016: Tories Out! General election now! Fight for a 24 hour general strike

  Britain, Europe

Pakistan
Budget 2016-17

24/06/2016: The digits change but reality remains a nightmare for most

  Pakistan

Britain
EU referendum

23/06/2016: Whatever the result, political turmoil is ahead

  Britain

Taiwan
Student protests win important victory

23/06/2016: Education ministry retreats over increased tuition fees

  Taiwan

Italy
Prime Minister Renzi’s party routed

22/06/2016: Five Star mayors elected in Rome and Turin

  Italy

Ireland
The left wing case for leaving the EU

22/06/2016: Article by Paul Murphy, Irish MP and former MEP and CWI member

  Ireland Republic

Hong Kong
New protests as kidnapped bookseller speaks out

22/06/2016: Gangster methods of China’s regime exposed

  Hong Kong

Ireland
This weak government can be beaten

21/06/2016: “The reality is that a small clique of hard-left, Trotskyite politicians, who are quite upfront about seeking to overthrow the current system, are now arguably setting the political agenda.” (Shane Coleman, Irish Independent 17 May 2016)

  Ireland Republic

 Pakistan
Women health workers protest in Sindh

21/06/2016: Lady Health Workers organisation protests at non-payment of wages

  Pakistan, Women

Britain
EU referendum

19/06/2016: Whatever the result, political turmoil is ahead

  Britain

US
Stand together against bigotry, war and terrorism

17/06/2016: Orlando – massive wave of solidarity with LGBTQ community

  US

Asia
Conflict in the South China Sea

16/06/2016: Territorial disputes resemble pieces on a ‘geopolitical chessboard’ as the US and China struggle for hegemony in Asia

  Asia, China

Middle East
ISIS under pressure on several fronts

15/06/2016: Working classes, through bitterest of experiences, will take to road of mass struggle again

  Iraq, Middle East, Syria

France
Massive protest demonstration in Paris

15/06/2016: Workers march as Senate debates hated labour law reform

  France

 US
Over 100,000 sign petition for independent Sanders challenge

13/06/2016: Surge in support for petition initiated by socialist councillor Kshama Sawant

  US, Video

US
Orlando massacre

13/06/2016: Stand with our LGBTQ Sisters and Brothers! Fight back against Scapegoating & Islamophobia!

  US

Belgium
New trade union action plan

13/06/2016: “The cup is full !”

  Belgium

Egypt’s workers in revolt

12/06/2016: Review of "The Egyptians: a radical story"

  Egypt

Environment
EU green myths

11/06/2016: The truth about the EU and the environment

  Environment

EU
Left parties turning against bosses’ Europe

10/06/2016: Progress in Portugal and Spain, confusion in Britain

  Europe, Portugal, Spain

History
China’s ’Cultural Revolution’ 1966-67

10/06/2016: 50 years ago the ’Cultural Revolution’ began in China.

  China, History

Britain
Youth and the EU referendum

09/06/2016: Fight for our future, starting with a Leave vote to smash the Tories

  Britain

Muhammad Ali
A fighter who inspired millions

09/06/2016: Establishment forced to incorporate his legend into re-writing of history

  Sport

Review
The working-class case against the EU

08/06/2016: Review of ‘And The Weak Must Suffer What They Must?’ by Yanis Varoufakis

  Review

China
1989 mass movement and June 4 massacre

08/06/2016: Video by CWI comrades in China and Hong Kong

  China, History

Greece
Victory for Athens bus cleaners

07/06/2016: Strike action wins major concessions from contractors and bus administration

  Greece

Northern Ireland
Biggest union votes to support exit from the EU

06/06/2016: Union and Labour leaders should join NIPSA and other combative unions in opposing bosses’ club

  Ireland North

Venezuela
On the brink of collapse?

04/06/2016: Counter-revolution gaining ground

  Venezuela

Germany
After party conference, where is DIE LINKE going?

03/06/2016: SAV/CWI member Lucy Redler elected to national committee

  Germany

Portugal
Lisbon dockers victory against precarious work

02/06/2016: Militant strike action blocks bosses attempts to undermine collective bargaining

  Portugal

Britain
Tories tearing themselves apart over EU referendum

01/06/2016: Socialists say, ‘Vote Leave to get Cameron out!’

  Britain

France
Fight against Valls/Hollande government intensifies

31/05/2016: Gauche Revolutionnaire statement underlines vital need for political alternative

  France

Spain
Left government on the horizon in June elections

31/05/2016: Establishment parties panic as Podemos and United Left agree joint election challenge

  Spain

Greece
Bus cleaners renew strike after management’s broken promises

29/05/2016: "Triple-oppressed workers - immigrants, women and low-paid – show way forward"

  Greece

Congo
Day of Protest 26 May

28/05/2016: New massacres in mineral-rich region

  Congo

Review

Art exhibitioin, Soviet graphics

www.socialistworld.net, 03/11/2002
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

A large portrait of Leon Trotsky dominates one wall of the ’Soviet Graphics - States of illusion’ exhibition currently showing at the Tate Modern Museum on London’s South Bank (on display at the History/Memory/Society section). On close inspection, the visitor sees that the portrait has jagged edges. The accompanying narrative explains that a "sheet of card, pasted over it to hide Trotsky’s forbidden likeness".

Niall Mulholland, CWI, 3 November 2002

Art exhibition, Tate Modern, London

Soviet Graphics - States of Illusion

cwi
1. Red Moscow Heart of World Revolution 1921

cwi
2. Red Cavalry 1921

cwi
3. All Russian Agricultural Exhibition 1923

cwi
4. Fascism is the Worst Enemy of Women 1941

cwi
5. Lenin and Dirigibles 1931

This prominence of this image is particularly apt. The ideas of Trotsky and the Left Opposition in the 1920s and 1930s, who stood for workers’ democracy and internationalism, caused terror amongst the ruling conservative Stalinist bureaucracy. The gangster-elite reacted by persecuting and hounding the Left Opposition and later organising the physical annihilation of all opponents. It was therefore extremely dangerous to be associated with Trotsky, in any way. We can only imagine the bravery of those in secret possession of the Trotsky portrait throughout the decades of mass terror.

Prior to the Russian Revolution, poster making by oppositional forces was at a relatively early stage in the Czarist Empire, certainly compared to the West. The victory of the Bolsheviks, eighty five years ago this month, ushered in fundamental social changes. This inspired a new generation of artists. The poster became an indispensable artistic medium, especially for politically informed works. The art of the early years of revolutionary Russia, just as with the poetry of the period, was to have a huge and lasting effect internationally.

As a product of Stalin’s reign of terror, all genuine artistic freedom was quashed. The brilliant and revolutionary art that found expression in many fields after October 1917 was outlawed under the dictatorship of the bureaucracy. Nowhere was this more clearly revealed than in the art of propaganda poster making. The Tate exhibition is a visual tour of this degeneration, as what had been experimental and explosive art became sterile and hollowed out and made to be the crude tool of a counter revolutionary, parasitic ruling elite.

This excellent exhibition charts very well the rise and fall of the political graphic/poster during the aftermath of the 1917 Russian Revolution, but only in a visual sense (note 1). The accompanying narrative, no doubt purporting to be ’neutral’, is generally shallow. This is a great pity. The visitor leaves really wanting some explanation of the great changes in Soviet society that affected art and propaganda over the decades. A brochure would have been helpful, including biographical details of the main artists featured, such as Dimitri Moor, Victor Deni and Vladamir Mayakovsky.

The showing is divided into several general themes. The immediate post-revolution section begins with rather ’primitive’ graphics, when the mass circulation political poster was in its infancy. Some are just text proclamations: ’To the Citizens of Russia’ (26 October 1917), announces the revolution. These early posters are nonetheless inspiring examples of the passions and solidarity unleashed by the Bolsheviks coming to power. One of the first works by Dimitri Moor (1893-1946), a master poster artist, called ’Muslim Comrades’, is an appeal to the peoples of the Caucuses and Central Asia, parts of the former Czarist Empire, to rally to the young workers’ government.

Moor lampoons the League of Nations, with a poster entitled, ’Capitalists of the World Unite!’ This shows three fat bosses representing the major imperialist powers of the day, Britain, France and the US, sitting on the backs of the masses.

In contrast, ’Red Moscow Heart of World Revolution’ (1921), by vkhUTEMAS (Higher State Artistic and Technical Workshops) drawn in a Cubist-style, is an announcement of the new workers’ international, the Third International (Comintern) (plate 1).

Civil War art

The best part of the exhibition deals with the Civil War years, when foreign capitalist armies and the reactionary Russian White forces attempted the bloody strangulation of Soviet power. The posters are simple, direct and striking, summing up the dangers posed and the revolutionary enthusiasm behind the artists as the working class fought to save the revolution.

’Death to World Imperialism’ shows a huge green dragon (imperialism) wrapped around a factory - the counter revolution aimed to sabotage the economy and wipe away the state owned economy, returning to the anarchy and inequities of the market economy and landlordism.

’Red Cavalry’ (1921) is a famous heroic depiction of a soldier horseman (plate 2). The Red Army was organised in the most difficult circumstances, and under the leadership of Trotsky, succeeded in repulsing the armed threat of capitalism, through a combination of a political programme attractive to the working class and peasants, and by brilliantly innovative military techniques.

The internationally renowned "poet of the revolution" Vladimir Mayakovsky (1893-1930), who was driven to suicide by the Stalinist regime, was also a hugely talented artist. One of his Civil War posters exclaims, ’we must not let the landlords rule over the workers’ and shows two red figures hoisting a landlord with bayonets.

As well as re-organising the economy and fighting a war, the early years of the revolution also saw huge efforts to raise the literacy and cultural level of the mass of people, a basic necessity on the road towards a higher stage of society, a socialist society. Street posters played a vital role in this enormous task. The artist Zelensky devised a graphic of a hammer and sickle (Soviet symbols of the unity of the industrial working class and poor peasantry) over an open book. A photomontage from 1925 by Lebedev bears the slogan, ’Communism is Soviet power and electrification’.

A work by Alexander Lebedev, ’All Russian Agriculture and Craft-Industrial Exhibition - Pageants and Sport’ (August-September 1923) represents the attempt to combine science, technique, rural industry and sporting prowess (plate 3).

The ascendancy of the Stalinist bureaucracy and with it the increasing gagging of all independent thought and initiative had its deleterious consequences in all cultural, scientific and artistic fields, including the production of the mass political poster. This is revealed by the substance and style of the exhibited posters following the Civil War period. More and more, inventive, youthful and experimental graphics are replaced by conservative and dull conformity, reflecting the outlook and selfish material interests of the ruling sphere.

By the mid to late 1920s, the image of Lenin is depicted in a god-like way, and was used to promote Stalin, as a ’great leader’ in his own right, and as Lenin’s ’natural heir’. This of course was a complete caricature. Stalin had played a minor role during the revolution, and actually opposed Lenin’s decisive policies to win power for the working class. Stalin’s narrow vision perfectly suited the rising bureaucracy, that had gained more and more power and influence as the Russian Revolution remained isolated after big defeats for the working class in Europe. Towards the end of his life, Lenin was greatly concerned by the encroaching bureaucracy, and in particular warned the party against allowing Stalin too much influence. In 1923, Lenin called for Stalin to be removed as Communist Party general secretary. Stalin suppressed Lenin’s opinions, however, and his stranglehold of state power grew in a period of general want and cultural backwardness, which led to the growth of the bureaucracy. After Lenin’s death, Stalin presided over the bureaucratic degeneration of the Communist Party and the Comintern (Third International).

Artists’ sycophancy

A poster from 1935 by Gustav Klutis (1895-1944) illustrates the sycophancy that had marked the role of officially blessed artists, ’Long live the Stalinist Order of Heroes and Stakhanovites’ (Stakhanovite was a fictional super-productive worker created by the Kremlin. All Soviet workers were berated to follow his example). Other examples of Klutis’s ingratiating works include,’ Hold up the banner of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin’ (1935), and ’Long live our happy socialist Motherland and long live our beloved Stalin’ (1940).

A 1931 lithograph by Georgii Kibardin entitled, ’Lenin and Dirigibles’ links Lenin the leader (and ’by association’, Stalin) with the achievements in science and industry (plate 5).

Like many graphics from this period of so-called ’Socialist Realism’, Klutis’s style is masculine/heroic, often promoting the Soviet ’family’ (an important base of rule for the reactionary bureaucracy). Like many faithful servants of Stalin, however, Klutis still fell victim to the mass hysteria and paranoia of the 1930s.

The excesses and wild swings of Stalinist policy are partially reflected in the latter stages of the Tate exhibition. A poster by A Strakhov (1896-1979) shows a huge fist driving into the back of a Kulak (a rich peasant). This signifies the abrupt change of policy by Stalin, who previously had leaned on this social layer, but turned on them ruthlessly as their increasing wealth and power threatened the stability of the regime. Stalin introduced a ’five year plan’ in agriculture. Trotsky and the Left Opposition had been condemned earlier by the ruling clique for calling for the collectivisation of agricultural production, which they said had to be undertaken in a sensitive and voluntary manner. Characteristically, under Stalin, collectivisation was introduced in a violent and forced way, resulting in huge economic chaos and famine.

At the height of the Moscow Show Trials, which led to the murder of most of the Bolshevik leaders of Lenin’s time, political posters in the hands of people like Sergei Igumnov (1900-1942) became hysterical calls for the liquidation of all those that dared to resist the criminals in the Kremlin. One of his works bears the demand, ’Let us eradicate all spies and saboteurs, All Trotskyites’ (1937), illustrating a hand throttling a snake with Nazi swastikas for eyes. Trotsky was the main defendant, albeit absent, at the 1936-38 frame-up trials in Moscow. In 1940, he was assassinated in Mexico by one of Stalin’s secret police.

Heroic struggle against Nazism

In August 1939, Stalin signed a ’non aggression pact’ with Hitler. This desperate and cynical bid to keep the Soviet Union out of war failed disastrously. In June 1941, Hitler mounted a huge attack and made big territorial incursions into Russia. The Red Army, massively weakened by widespread purges, was initially swept aside.

It was the heroism of the people of the Soviet, defending the social and economic gains of the October Revolution against Nazi barbarism, and the superiority of the planned economy (directed towards war demands) that led to the defeat of the Nazi armed forces - despite the burden of the Stalinist bureaucracy. Over 25 million people died in the conflict. This human tragedy of unimaginable proportions is indicated by some of the posters concerning the war years, even when made by those artists completely slavish to the ruling elite.

’Young Female Partisan - Tass Window, Number 469’ c. 1942-43, by Alexander Pavlovich Babnov (1908-1964) is a stencil of a young female resistance fighter firing at occupying forces from a tree.

Victor Ivanov (1909-1968) records the outrage against the sheer brutality of the Nazi invasion. ’Death to child murders’, is a gruesome picture of a blood soaked Nazi boot stepping on the lifeless body of a young girl.

A 1941 lithograph by the artist Nina Vatolina, ’Fascism is the Worst Enemy of Women’, depicts a defiant Russian woman dressed in red in the forefront of burning buildings and a dead woman and child (plate 4).

Stalinism emerged enormously strengthened after the war, with new Stalinist regimes emerging in Eastern Europe. The official artists lost no time rewriting history, portraying Stalin as the ’Great War General’. V Klimashin’s ’Salute Stalin’s Artillery’ (1946) is one such example provided at the Tate.

The antagonism between an emboldened Stalinism and the major capitalist nations, two fundamentally opposed social systems, soon led to the development of the Cold War. The advent of atomic and then nuclear weapons raised the terrible possibility of a new world war that could lead to the destruction of the entire planet. In fact, the policy of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD), should these awesome weapons be deployed, stayed the hands of Moscow and Washington. It was not in the interests of the capitalists or the bureaucracy to embark on a conflict that would destroy the working class and the productive forces. But this did not mean that nuclear Armageddon was completely ruled out. The Cuban missile crisis of forty years ago brought the world close to a new war. On the basis of a fascist regime coming to power in the US, which would only be possible after big defeats for the US working class, a ’first strike’ against the Soviet block would have been very possible. This did not happen over the long years of the Cold War, although many millions of people died in ’lesser’ conflicts, or proxy wars between the superpowers, set in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Cold War

In this global context, the Moscow bureaucracy was keen to find props of support and promoted its ’international peace campaign’. The ruling elite cynically played on the genuine fears of working people everywhere at the horrors of another world war.

Kanstantin Konstantinovich Ivanov produced a poster in 1948 celebrating a heroic Soviet man and woman and the flags of many nations, under the slogan, ’For Peace - For People’s Democracy’. This echoed the earlier policy of so called ’popular fronts’, which called for blocks between the tops of the mass workers’ organisations and sections of the ’progressive’ capitalists, supposedly in opposition to the reactionary capitalists. This was the antithesis of an independent class approach: in the 1930s Trotsky had called for a genuine united front of workers’ organisations to defeat fascism. A united front would marshal the forces of the Left against the dangers of reaction and at the same time allow the independence of political programmes.

In the modern epoch there is no such thing as a ’progressive’ capitalist class. The capitalist friends of the Stalinists, who entered ’popular’ or ’peoples’ fronts with the workers’ organisations, did so as a self-preservation exercise, and subsequently turned on the working class once they felt strong enough. Often where popular frontism was practised it led to big defeats of the working class - in Spain, Germany and other countries during the 1930s.

In the post war period, economic growth in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe leapt forward due to the advantages of the planned economies, despite the huge waste and mismanagement attendant with bureaucratic totalitarian rule and the absence of workers’ democracy. The ruling strata was confident, even predicting their economies would outstrip the most powerful capitalist nations in a matter of years. This mood of self-belief and notion of historical mission was faithfully reproduced by Soviet artists. Viktor Kovetsky (1909-1998) produced a dramatic poster in 1948, illustrating a teenage violinist who is poor and unwanted in the West, shunned and homeless (’In the country of capitalism this is the path of talent’). In contradistinction, his talent is celebrated in the more culturally advanced Russia, where he is seen playing in a concert hall (’In the country of socialism all paths are open to talent’).

It has to be said that Kovetsky was not just indulging in empty Stalinist propaganda. Under the planned economy great strides forward were made in the fields of culture and the arts. Universal literacy was introduced, and even the creation of languages and alphabets in some of the Soviet republics. Under capitalism and landlordism these societies had floundered in a pit of social, cultural and economic backwardness. For decades, quite high levels of sporting and cultural achievements were realised (albeit artists and writers and so on were denied all initiative and independence of thought and expression). The long decline of the Soviet economy in the 1970s and 1980s, followed by collapse and the re-introduction capitalism, has all but wiped away most of this legacy.

’Comrades - The End’?

The Tate exhibition ends rather abruptly with a poster by Istvan Orosz, entitled, aptly, ’Comrades - The End’ (1989). We are shown the back of a Russian army officer’s head, signifying the retreat of the Red Army from Hungary. This is especially poignant given that the same armed forces rolled into the country in 1956 to crush a workers’ uprising against Stalinism. During that heroic revolt the working class of Hungary were groping towards a political revolution, that is, the removal of the despotic regime and the introduction of workers’ democracy over the planned economy and society as a whole.

In the late 80s and early 90s there were mass movements in many Stalinist states against the ruling clique. Unfortunately, without a far-sighted leadership, the potential for political revolution was lost. The West was experiencing a boom at that time (albeit one sided and at the expense of workers’ living conditions), which gave the illusion that a return to the market economy was the solution to economic stagnation in the East. Capitalist restoration was achieved in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe. This has been proved to be a cruel trick for the masses of the former Stalinist states - living standards in these states suffered an unprecedented drop in the following ten years.

The Tate exhibition does not explain this new reality, nor does it provide any political posters from the period of mass resistance to Stalinism (other than the example from Hungary), or during capitalist re-introduction. This is unfortunate, because the collapse of Stalinism does not mean the end of political struggle and its representation through art - anything but! In fact, socialists in Russia have been to the forefront of developing poster art in the campaign against racism. Several years ago, the campaigning organisation, Youth Against Racism in Europe, which was initiated by the CWI, held a very successful art exhibition in Moscow as part of its work against racism.

With the rise of the anti-capitalist and anti-globalisation movement, and other campaigns, such as anti-racism, the vital role of the poster will certainly resurge. As part of this radicalisation, we already see that the1960s iconic image of Che Guevara has become even more popular in recent years, in the former Soviet Union, and all around the world. As worker’s struggles develop in Russia, there will also be an increasing turn to the ideas of figures like Lenin and Trotsky and genuine Marxism. This ideological search will undoubtedly find new expression in all artistic fields, including, of course, the political poster and graphic.

Note 1. See ’The Bolshevik Poster’ by Stephen White (Yale University Press/New Haven and London, 1998) for an excellent array of Soviet graphics reproductions and in-depth commentary.



Europe

 video

US: Over 100,000 sign petition for independent Sanders challenge, 13/06/2016

 further videos

CWI - get involved


solidarity

tamil solidarity campaign kazakhstan

featured links

Socialist Party Ireland

cwi links

Marxist.net, CWI marxist archive

cwi comment & analysis

world economic crisis

analysis and commentary


cwi publications

marxism in today's world che

Che Guevara: Símbolo de Lucha

Por Tony Saunois

A socialist world is possible, the history of the cwi with new introduction by Peter Planning green growth, a contribution to the debate on enviromental sustainability

NEWS

Britain: After the referendum
24/06/2016, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party deputy general secretary:
Tories Out! General election now! Fight for a 24 hour general strike

Pakistan: Budget 2016-17
24/06/2016, Muhammad Khan Ahmedani Socialist Movement Sindh, Pakistan:
The digits change but reality remains a nightmare for most

Britain: EU referendum
23/06/2016, Editorial from the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Whatever the result, political turmoil is ahead

Taiwan: Student protests win important victory
23/06/2016, CWI Taiwan:
Education ministry retreats over increased tuition fees

Italy: Prime Minister Renzi’s party routed
22/06/2016, Chris Thomas, ControCorrente (CWI Italy):
Five Star mayors elected in Rome and Turin

Ireland: The left wing case for leaving the EU
22/06/2016, Originally published on sluggerotoole.com:
Article by Paul Murphy, Irish MP and former MEP and CWI member

Hong Kong: New protests as kidnapped bookseller speaks out
22/06/2016, Dikang, Socialist Action (CWI in Hong Kong):
Gangster methods of China’s regime exposed

Ireland: This weak government can be beaten
21/06/2016, By Paul Murphy, Anti-Austerity Alliance MP and Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) member:
“The reality is that a small clique of hard-left, Trotskyite politicians, who are quite upfront about seeking to overthrow the current system, are now arguably setting the political agenda.” (Shane Coleman, Irish Independent 17 May 2016)

Pakistan: Women health workers protest in Sindh
21/06/2016, Sughran Khaskheli:
Lady Health Workers organisation protests at non-payment of wages

Britain: EU referendum
19/06/2016, Editorial of the Socialist, issue 906:
Whatever the result, political turmoil is ahead

US: Stand together against bigotry, war and terrorism
17/06/2016, Tom Crean, Socialist Alternative:
Orlando – massive wave of solidarity with LGBTQ community

Middle East: ISIS under pressure on several fronts
15/06/2016, Niall Mulholland, CWI:
Working classes, through bitterest of experiences, will take to road of mass struggle again

France : Massive protest demonstration in Paris
15/06/2016, Naomi Byron in France for The Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England and Wales):
Workers march as Senate debates hated labour law reform

US: Over 100,000 sign petition for independent Sanders challenge
13/06/2016, socialistworld.net:
Surge in support for petition initiated by socialist councillor Kshama Sawant

US: Orlando massacre
13/06/2016, Immediate reaction from Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative councillor, Seattle:
Stand with our LGBTQ Sisters and Brothers! Fight back against Scapegoating & Islamophobia!

Belgium: New trade union action plan
13/06/2016, Nicolas Croes, PSL-LSP (CWI in Belgium):
“The cup is full !”

Egypt’s workers in revolt
12/06/2016, Christine Thomas:
Review of "The Egyptians: a radical story"

Environment: EU green myths
11/06/2016, Claire Laker Mansfield, originally published in Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
The truth about the EU and the environment

History: China’s ’Cultural Revolution’ 1966-67
10/06/2016, Edited version of article written by Socialist Party general secretary Peter Taaffe for Militant (predecessor of the Socialist) in February 1967.:
50 years ago the ’Cultural Revolution’ began in China.

Britain: Youth and the EU referendum
09/06/2016, Editorial from the Socialist (weekly paper of the Socialist Party – CWI England & Wales):
Fight for our future, starting with a Leave vote to smash the Tories

China: 1989 mass movement and June 4 massacre
08/06/2016, Socialist Action (CWI) reporters in Hong Kong:
Video by CWI comrades in China and Hong Kong

Greece: Victory for Athens bus cleaners
07/06/2016, Eleni Mitsou (Xekinima - CWI Greece) and Apostolis Kasimeris (Board Member of OASA - Athens Bus Workers’ Union):
Strike action wins major concessions from contractors and bus administration

Northern Ireland: Biggest union votes to support exit from the EU
06/06/2016, Kevin Henry, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland):
Union and Labour leaders should join NIPSA and other combative unions in opposing bosses’ club

Venezuela: On the brink of collapse?
04/06/2016, Tony Saunois, Committee for a Workers’ International (CWI):
Counter-revolution gaining ground

Germany: After party conference, where is DIE LINKE going?
03/06/2016, Michael Koschitzki, SAV (CWI in Germany):
SAV/CWI member Lucy Redler elected to national committee

Portugal: Lisbon dockers victory against precarious work
02/06/2016, João Félix Socialismo Revolucionário (CWI in Portugal):
Militant strike action blocks bosses attempts to undermine collective bargaining

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

Asia: Conflict in the South China Sea
16/06/2016, This is an abridged version of an article by Vincent Kolo, originally published on chinaworker.info.:
Territorial disputes resemble pieces on a ‘geopolitical chessboard’ as the US and China struggle for hegemony in Asia

EU: Left parties turning against bosses’ Europe
10/06/2016, Danny Byrne, CWI:
Progress in Portugal and Spain, confusion in Britain

Muhammad Ali: A fighter who inspired millions
09/06/2016, Hugo Pierre, Socialism Today (originally published in 2003):
Establishment forced to incorporate his legend into re-writing of history

Review: The working-class case against the EU
08/06/2016, Hannah Sell, article from Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Review of ‘And The Weak Must Suffer What They Must?’ by Yanis Varoufakis

France: Fight against Valls/Hollande government intensifies
31/05/2016, Clare Doyle, CWI:
Gauche Revolutionnaire statement underlines vital need for political alternative

Austria: Only 31,026 votes prevent far right’s Hofer becoming president
24/05/2016, Sonja Grusch, SLP (the Austrian section of the CWI):
‘Breathing space’ offers chance to build a fighting, democratic left alternative

Britain: EU referendum exposes gaping political fault-lines
24/05/2016, Peter Taaffe, from Socialism Today (monthly magazine of the Socialist Party England & Wales):
New road can open up for labour movement if working class relies on its own forces

Brazil: Fall of President Dilma Rousseff unleashes offensive against working class
19/05/2016, André Ferrari, LSR (‘Freedom, Socialism and Revolution’ - CWI Brazil):
The impeachment process and historic crisis of the PT (Workers’ Party)

Ireland: ‘Jobstown trials’ to go ahead
18/05/2016, Kieran Mahon, Anti-Austerity Alliance / Socialist Party Councillor, Dublin:
Government loses battle on water charges but wages war on Left

Saudi Arabia: Gathering storms over the House of Saud
13/05/2016, Serge Jordan, CWI:
Collapse of oil prices expose fragile foundations of oil Gulf monarchies

France: New stage in battle over labour law
12/05/2016, Clare Doyle, CWI:
Hollande’s decision to over-rule parliament provokes another round of struggle

Ireland: 100th anniversary of the execution of James Connolly
12/05/2016, Three articles on Connolly’s life and ideas :
Revolutionary socialist, militant workers' leader and internationalist

Belgium: Trade unions announce new plan of action
11/05/2016, LSP/PSL (CWI in Belgium) Reporters:
Call for two national demonstrations, building towards general strikes

Britain: 90th anniversary of epochal general strike
05/05/2016, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales) general secretary:
When workers tasted power

Israel/Palestine: The Marxist left, the national conflict and the
Palestinian struggle

29/04/2016, Socialist Struggle Movement (CWI Israel-Palestine):
The necessity of a class approach and a socialist alternative

France: One-day strike set for 28 April
26/04/2016, Alex Rouillard, Gauche Revolutionnaire (CWI in France):
A final stage before indefinite action against Hollande’s government?

US: The un-Democratic Primary
22/04/2016, Kshama Sawant, Socialist Alternative Seattle, originally published on counterpunch.org:
Why we need new party of the 99%

Capitalism: a failing system
18/04/2016, Peter Taaffe, from May edition of Socialism Today, magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
A new book, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, analyses the downward course of the US economy – and the limits of the whole capitalist system

Review: ’Militant’ by Michael Crick
14/04/2016, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) general secretary:
Lessons of Militant vital for anti-austerity struggles today

US election turmoil
01/04/2016, By Tony Saunois (CWI Secretary) who recently visited the US for meetings of Socialist Alternative:
Bernie Sanders campaign - an opportunity to build a new party of the 99%

Britain: A new moment
28/03/2016, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales), published in April 2016 issue of Socialism Today:
Extracts from a statement discussed at the Socialist Party’s recent congress

Ireland: 100th anniversary of Easter 1916 Rising
26/03/2016, Cillian Gillespie, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland):
A revolt against imperial power and war

History: When Khrushchev denounced Stalin
26/03/2016, Niall Mulholland, from Socialism Today (April 2016 issue of the monthly journal of Socialist Party, England & Wales):
1956 ‘secret speech’ a devastating blow to Stalinist regimes

11th CWI World Congress: World Perspectives
22/03/2016, socialistworld.net:
Amended agreed version of the World Perspectives document agreed by the CWI’s 11th World Congress

Germany: Big gains for right-wing, nationalist, AfD in state elections
22/03/2016, Sascha Stanicic, Sozialistische Alternative (CWI in Germany):
DIE LINKE (Left Party) urgently needs to change course