Myanmar: “Anti-Coup” Incendiaries Unleash Terror

pyu saw tee demo

Above: Defenders of Myanmar rally with banners and flags in Yangon on February 25, 2021. Image from http://www.cbsnews.com

29/06/2021: According to Western corporate media, the military forces of Myanmar (Tatmadaw) made false claims of electoral fraud with the results of the 2020 November 8 election, and carried out a coup on February 2 2021, restoring military rule. Apparently in response, hundreds of thousands across Myanmar have engaged in peaceful protests demanding the restoration of democracy, only to be met by severe repression. The peaceful protestors are determined to uphold “human rights”, and re-instate their democratically elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. Allegedly, Myanmar citizens exercising their right to protest are being gunned down in the streets, while the world looks on. Reportedly, world powers are under pressure to intervene to prevent wholesale massacres of pro-democracy protestors.

Fictional narrative

The only problem with this picture is that it bears an inverse relation to elementary facts. In reality, what is occurring in Myanmar today is an imperialist engineered Libya/Syria style proxy war of regime change weighed against the world’s most powerful socialistic state – the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Far from “peaceful pro-democracy protestors”, Myanmar’s “anti-coup activists” are directly linked to the decades of subversive “NGO” funding[1] poured into the country by the governments of the United States of America (US)[2] and the United Kingdom (UK)[3] and other corporations with which they work hand-in-glove. And just as in Libya and Syria, these foreign funded militants are prepared to use extreme violence to achieve their aims. If these “anti-coup” yahoos are “activists”, then the very meaning of the term “activism” has lost all meaning.

The “anti-coup protestors” are in effect not protesting anything. If they were, they would be putting forward a series of demands, and attempting to win significant portions of Myanmar’s 54 million[4] citizens to support them as part of a political movement. Instead, the “anti-coup protestors” are joining forces with many of Myanmar’s long running ethnic separatist armies to bring down the state through violence, terror and appeals to imperialism to directly intervene, i.e., wage war under the rubric of the “Responsibility to Protect” or R2P.[5] The ethnic separatist armies themselves have been covertly backed by US and UK imperialism ever since WWII, and especially since the independence of what was then Burma. The Karen, Chin and Kachin ethnic groups were consciously built into Britain’s colonial army,[6] in order to maintain divisions within Myanmar.

Today, these ethnic separatist armies merge under faux tags such as the “People’s Defence Forces” (PDF) and use their weapons to launch armed attacks on government infrastructure, and inevitably the Tatmadaw has to respond with heavy weapons. In the Kayah state which borders Thailand, the United Nations (UN) claims that up to 100 000 people have had to flee “attacks by security forces” in the area.[7] However, as in the ten-year failed war of regime change waged by the US Empire and their allies on Syria, what is plainly occurring is that civilians have little choice but to flee the fighting or be caught in the crossfire. In the town of Mindat in the Chin state, it was reported that 8000 people had to flee for their lives during clashes between the newly formed PDF and the Tatmadaw.[8] The Tatmadaw retook the town after days of fighting.

“Peaceful protestors” attack schools

If anyone is still prepared to give the “anti-coup peaceful pro-democracy protestors” a chance, their actions towards schools should give pause for thought. The “peaceful protestors” have carried out bombings of schools and have targeted students and teachers who are even suspected of supporting the State Administration Council (SAC – the body set up by the Tatmadaw as an intermediate governing body until genuine elections can be held). Due to the school bombings by the misnamed “Civil Disobedience Movement” (CDM), some security forces stood guard at some schools, and also brought students from home under armed escort. Some teachers are so concerned about being physically targeted by the CDM that they wear plain clothes to school, and only change into their uniforms once inside.[9] The bombings and arson attacks on schools and educational institutions are not a handful either. Between May 1st and May 26, the SAC stated there were 115 bombings or bomb attempts and 18 arson attacks.[10]

Liberals in the West complain that 125 000 (out of 430 000) schoolteachers had been suspended by the SAC for backing the “Civil Disobedience Movement”.[11] But is it any wonder, given that there is a possibility that these teachers could assist the bombing of their own schools in cahoots with the “anti-coup” protestors – which could take innocent life? The PDF disingenuously claim that they have not carried out the school attacks, and that they are in fact carried out by Pyu Saw Tee groups which have formed to assist the SAC. The PDF claims that the Pyu Saw Tee carry out bombings and arson attacks on schools in order to blacken the name of the “civilian resistance”.[12] However, given this is reported by The Irrawaddy, which admits receiving its funding almost entirely from outside Myanmar, and from “donors” in Canada, Norway, Sweden, Germany, Holland and the United States of America[13] – it should be taken with a large pinch of salt. It rather indicates that Myanmar’s citizens are mobilising against the “anti-coup protestors”, as they are not fooled by the extreme violence which is covered with “democracy” and “human rights” falsity.

US/UK government backed “independent media”

In fact, as The Grayzone has reported, “independent media” such as The Irrawaddy and Myanmar Now actually receive extensive funding from the National Endowment for Democracy (NED),[14] the regime change arm of the CIA. In addition, Myanmar Now is also bankrolled by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, which has partnered with the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) to advance covert operations of British government foreign policy.[15] To say the coverage of the violent and armed “anti-coup” protestors is skewed by imperialist funded media is to understate the situation. Rather, imperialist funded media such as The Irrawaddy and Myanmar Now in practice work hand in hand with the “anti-coup” mercenaries in order to subvert/collapse the state and create chaos so that the economic, trade and investment ties with the PRC will be disrupted.

This “independent media” in Myanmar – which is actually funded via Washington and London – also works in parallel with the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), which is based in Thailand, not Myanmar. The AAPP provides a daily update of the supposed number of “political prisoners” in Myanmar after February 2.[16] Yet this tally includes just about everyone who engages in any activity against the SAC, especially those who are armed with sub-machine guns and who have assaulted schools, police stations and government infrastructure. So the tally is false, and yet another mechanism used plead for intervention (i.e., invasion) by the West to take on the PRC. The AAPP’s founder is none other than Ko Bo Kyi, who fled to Thailand in 1989, and is so trusted by Washington that he is an NED fellow.[17] The AAPP, The Irrawaddy, Myanmar Now, the NED, the UK FCDO, armed ethnic separatist armies, the CDM – all are strings in the same regime change orchestra.

Targeting Red China

Not only do the “anti-coup protestors” engage in wanton violence, they are also viscerally anti-socialist which manifests in extreme hostility to China based investment and business activity in Myanmar. In March, several Chinese owned factories were looted and set on fire in the Halangathaya District of Yangon. During these attacks, Chinese citizens working in factories which were set ablaze were trapped and unable to escape, causing serious injuries.[18] According to the Tatmadaw, four Chinese-financed garment factories and a fertiliser plant went up in flames after being targeted. When fire engines came on the scene to deal with the emergency, a crowd of around 2000 “protestors” blocked the fire engines from reaching the burning factories.[19] Whatever one may think of the Myanmar military, China-Myanmar economic co-operation, or even the government of the PRC, such acts are patently anti-human. Notwithstanding the position of the PRC as a bureaucratically deformed workers’ state headed by a conservative caste, these are vile acts of racist and anti-socialist terrorism.

Myanmar’s participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, via the China-Myanmar Economic Corridor (CMEC) is vital for Myanmar’s economy. The oil and gas pipelines which allow the PRC to bypass the Straits of Malacca for export are jointly owned by China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) and the Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), which are both state-owned entities.  The largest project in the CMEC is the 431-kilometre Muse-Mandalay Railway, which will connect Myanmar to the Chinese railway network.[20]  These projects will not only provide much needed economic development for Myanmar, it will permanently link Myanmar to the PRC economically, commercially, and even politically. Destroying these links is the real aim of both US/UK imperialism and “anti-coup” terrorism.

Was it a coup?

Even referring to the events of February 2 as a “coup” by the Tatmadaw is grossly misleading. After the November 8 election last year, story after story emerged in Myanmar of overt fraud and deceit by those working for the US/UK created National League for Democracy (NLD) – which claimed to have “won” 83.2% of the seats contested.[21] Yet in a press conference in March, Tatmadaw spokesperson Zaw Min Tun gave details on how the NLD had manufactured thousands of extra ballots by inventing voters, even in Aung San Suu Kyi’s own constituency. He also showed videos of people saying they were paid by NLD representatives.[22]  In the Hmawbi township in Yangon region, which is one of the largest military townships in the country, the NLD garnered 50 000 more votes in the 2020 election than the pro-military Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) – whereas the NLD did not receive a single vote in Hmawbi in 2015.[23]

In the Hlaing Tharyar township, the country’s most heavily populated constituency, the NLD “won” a thumping electoral victory. Yet here, tens of thousands of Myanmar citizens were simply turned away from the polling booths, with the local electoral commission blaming a “software error”.[24] Some victory! One can imagine the indignity of not being allowed to vote in an election in your own country. In May, when the SAC formed Union Election Commission (UEC) reviewed voter lists, they found mass voter registration had taken place without the National Registration Card (NRC), and some names that had been registered with the NRC appeared two or three times[25] – all organised under the auspices of the NLD. After repeated and blatant electoral duplicity, it is little wonder that the UEC is now considering disbanding and dissolving the NLD.

One can see how, in this political environment, the Tatmadaw’s “coup” was in fact a belated measure to prevent Myanmar from being totally overrun by Western backed intrigue. It is also no wonder that the Tatmadaw moved to arrest the executive director of the George Soros created Open Society Foundation (OSF) and 11 other OSF staff in Myanmar – as their role in the deceit became clear.[26] In fact, the Tatmadaw’s “coup” may well have – for now – staved off a military incursion by the US Empire and their allies, justified either as a “humanitarian intervention” or the “restoration of democracy”.

This is why workers internationally must defend Myanmar against all moves by US/UK imperialism to sacrifice the nation as part of its New Cold War against socialistic China. Western backed violence and terror – not to speak of electoral fraud – is of course the polar opposite of a bona fide political movement, and all “pro-democracy” incendiaries must be thoroughly exposed. If the PRC was led by genuine Marxists, it would assist with this unmasking and encourage a class struggle towards socialism throughout South-East Asia. Instead, the vital task of forging Leninist vanguard parties based on Permanent Revolution falls to the most politically advanced workers of the Asia-Pacific and beyond.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

[1] https://21stcenturywire.com/2021/03/30/arab-spring-redux-is-myanmar-next-libya/ (26-06-2021)

[2] https://www.mmtimes.com/opinion/20720-bringing-democracy-to-myanmar.html (26-06-2021)

[3] https://burmacampaign.org.uk/about-us/ (26-06-2021)

[4] https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/myanmar-population/ (26-06-2021)

[5] https://www.globalr2p.org/publications/myanmars-deadly-coup-and-the-responsibility-to-protect/ (26-06-2021)

[6] https://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2018/07/militants-threaten-chinas-obor.html#more (26-06-2021)

[7] U.N. says 100,000 flee fighting in Myanmar border state | Reuters (26-06-2021)

[8] Demonstrations, defiance as Myanmar marks 4 months since coup (millichronicle.com) (26-06-2021)

[9] https://www.thestar.com.my/aseanplus/aseanplus-news/2021/06/02/boycott-and-bombings-mar-myanmar039s-new-school-year (26-06-2021)

[10] https://www.bangkokpost.com/world/2125803/boycott-and-bombings-mar-myanmars-new-school-year (26-06-2021)

[11] Myanmar’s military rulers suspend more than 125,000 teachers for opposing coup | Myanmar | The Guardian (26-06-2021)

[12] https://www.irrawaddy.com/news/burma/myanmar-school-attacks-unacceptable-says-unicef.html (26-06-2021)

[13] https://www.irrawaddy.com/about (26-06-2021)

[14] https://thegrayzone.com/2021/04/27/us-government-media-myanmar-propagandize-western-intervention/ (27-06-2021)

[15] Reuters, BBC, and Bellingcat participated in covert UK Foreign Office-funded programs to “weaken Russia,” leaked docs reveal | The Grayzone (27-06-2021)

[16] AAPP | Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (aappb.org) (27-06-2021)

[17] https://www.ned.org/fellows/ko-bo-kyi/ (27-06-2021)

[18] Chinese factories burn in Myanmar: Video: Angry with China in Myanmar, arson and looting in 10 factories, many Chinese injured – China 10 factories burn down and loot in Myanmar Many Chinese injured Watch video – BCFocus (27-06-2021)

[19] Chinese-Financed Factories Set On Fire, 39 Killed In Myanmar: Report (ndtv.com) (27-06-2021)

[20] https://www.silkroadbriefing.com/news/2021/02/02/belt-and-road-projects-in-myanmar-likely-to-progress-in-light-of-military-coup/ (29-06-2021)

[21] Amid Coup Fears, Myanmar’s Election Commission Rejects Army Election Fraud Claims – The Diplomat (29-06-2021)

[22] Myanmar military blames protesters for arson and violence – Nikkei Asia (29-06-2021)

[23] NLD receives more votes in military constituency of Hmawbi | The Myanmar Times (mmtimes.com) (29-06-2021)

[24] Huge voter list failings mar NLD win in largest township | The Myanmar Times (mmtimes.com) (29-06-2021)

[25] UEC Chairman declares to dissolve NLD party | Burma News International (bnionline.net) (29-06-2021)

[26] Myanmar: Military regime cracks down on George Soros’ OSF, seizes bank accounts (opindia.com) (29-06-2021)

Nigeria: Buhari Blocks Big Tech’s State Subversion

buhari

President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari.  Image from http://www.sunnewsonline.com

22-06-2021: In early June, President Muhammadu Buhari announced the indefinite suspension of Big Tech titan Twitter for its operations in Nigeria.[1] This was triggered by Twitter deleting some of President Buhari’s tweets in relation to the destabilisation of “protests” where dozens of buildings were set ablaze, ostensibly to highlight the accountability of police actions. Buhari had obliquely referred to the violence that engulfed the country during the Nigerian Civil War, when Biafra launched a separatist struggle, and warned involved youth of what they were getting themselves into. Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, commented that the role of Twitter in Nigeria is very suspicious. He questioned why Twitter did not delete tweets of Biafran separatist leader Nnamdi Kanu but deleted the tweets of President Buhari. He highlighted the gross hypocrisy of Twitter in fuelling the #EndSARS protests in Nigeria in 2020, where “protestors” were burning police stations and killing police officers, and implying it was about the “right to protest”. Twitter loudly proclaims its support of the right to free speech in other countries, but itself terminated the Twitter account of former US President Donald Trump at home,[2] which played a huge role in his defenestration.

US govt stumps for “free speech”

Apparently unaware of the dripping hypocrisy, the US government immediately demanded Nigeria reverse its ban on Twitter. Samantha Power, who as former US Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) assiduously urged the world to wage regime change war against Syria,[3] pressed Nigeria to reinstate Twitter. Now as a director of the US Agency for International Development, Power claimed that Nigeria’s suspension of Twitter was “state-sanctioned denial of free speech”. Donald Trump, for his part, commended Nigeria for its actions and encouraged other nations to also ban Twitter and Facebook for NOT allowing free speech.[4] It appears ironic, but ever since his election in 2016, Donald Trump has largely steered a course to the left of what might be termed hyper-liberal imperialism. Big Tech is a central pillar of the liberal wing of imperialism, which engages in regime change operations overseas as a matter of course. In 2020 however, regime change came home to Washington.[5]

Needless to say, the US Empire cares not one whit about free speech anywhere on the planet. “Democracy”, “Free Speech” and “Human Rights” are simply rhetorical shrouds which dress up all facets of the imperialist proxy wars and covert subversion it practices all around the globe. The US Empire is backed in this mission by its allies in the leading governments of the European Union (EU), and its lackeys in Australia, Canada, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and others. Imperialism is driven into regime change frenzy due to the utter inability of finance capital to expand at home, which also results in open attacks on the working class – currently through the madness of a patently false “pandemic”.

Attempted recolonisation of Africa

With its population topping 211 million,[6] Nigeria is Africa’s most populous nation, and is thus the chief target for Washington’s multiple sided proxy wars of regime change throughout the continent. In effect, it is an attempted recolonisation of Africa by Wall Street, in an effort to block mutual co-operation between Abuja (the Nigerian capital) and the non-imperialist powers of the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Washington reacts with fury to any nation in Africa, Asia or Latin America which takes the rather obvious option of signing military and security pacts with Russia, and economic and infrastructure agreements with the PRC. The US ruling class, with its EU allies, will resort to any method – up to and including the fomenting of fratricidal chaos and regime change war – to prevent Africans from looking even half favourably towards Russia and China. Twitter was patently fostering murderous destablisation within Nigeria, and thus it was entirely within Nigeria’s sovereign right to prevent its operation within the country.

In fact, one could argue that some of the nations that have also banned Twitter – the PRC, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or “North Korea”) and the Islamic Republic of Iran[7] – have NOT been overthrown precisely because Twitter and other imperialist Big Tech platforms have been disallowed. As some businesses within Nigeria operated on the basis of Twitter, Nigeria is reportedly losing $250 600 for every hour of the ban.[8] Yet this is a small price to pay for Nigeria to retain its independence and to curtail the internal devastation and destruction which could be  unleashed on Nigeria by all agents of Western finance capital – including US based Big Tech liberalism.

With capitalism globally in a state of utter decline, Nigeria and other African nations have no choice but to co-operate with the PRC, if they are to have any chance of reaching even modest development. The PRC’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI or “New Silk Road”) offers critical opportunities for economy boosting infrastructure building which is sorely needed in Africa. Nigeria signed on to the BRI in 2018,[9] and has benefitted handsomely in terms of new railways and airports. Popular BRI projects completed in Nigeria include a standard gauge railway from the capital Abuja to the trade centre and transportation hub of Kaduna in Northwest Nigeria, and a standard gauge railway line from Nigeria’s economic capital of Lagos to Ibadan in the Southwest. PRC based firms have constructed new international airport terminals in Abuja, Port Harcourt (in the oil rich Niger delta) and the ancient city of Kano.[10] Undeniably, this infrastructure will stimulate much needed economic activity.

This mutually beneficial Nigerian/PRC friendly co-operation will only continue in coming years. The PRC, despite being a bureaucratically deformed workers state, operates on a planned economy, complete with 5-year plans. PRC officials have emphasised that Nigeria will be one of the beneficiaries to the PRC’s 14th Five Year Plan, to be implemented from 2021 to 2025. China’s Consul General in Lagos, Chu Maoming, stressed that “China’s new journey to fully build a modern socialist country is also a new journey for countries around the globe to enjoy win-win results and common prosperity….China will forge greater synergy of the BRI with African countries national development strategies…”[11]  Hearing this, one can only imagine the tearing out of hair amongst the corridors of power in the US White House and the Pentagon. China is clearly offering Nigeria an economic pathway out of underdevelopment, which will vastly boost the image of China internationally.

Boko Haram/ISWAP terror

With Nigeria beset by the terrorism of Boko Haram, security remains an all-important issue. Russia’s superior military power offers the only possible option for an African nation being plundered by what is most likely an imperialist backed genocide headed by Boko Haram and now the split off, Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP). At the very least, it is plausible that some of the fighters that make up Boko Haram and ISWAP simply marched across the Sahel region from NATO’s destruction of Green Libya in 2011, taking their weapons with them. NATO then sends in troops to fight “against” Boko Haram/ISWAP – a clearly self-serving agenda.[12] In the same way, the US government claimed to be fighting “against” ISIS during its failed regime change war against the Syrian Arab Republic.

In October 2019, President Buhari travelled to the Black Sea resort of Sochi to sign multiple agreements on military and economic co-operation. Buhari and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed on further co-operation between the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Russian oil company Lukoil, plus Russian gas company Gazprom, for the development of Nigeria’s considerable oil and gas reserves. Russia would also help Nigeria develop a zero-carbon nuclear power plant and move to forgive 20 billion dollars’ worth of African debt.[13] Needless to say, neither the US state nor US oil and gas companies can offer anything in the ballpark of these deals.

Also in October 2019, the Buhari administration moved to cement military co-operation and security ties with Russia. This was an urgent necessity given the murderous campaigns of Boko Haram and ISWAP across Nigeria. Deals signed at that time included the Nigerian purchase of Russian Mi-35 attack helicopters, planes, tanks and other military equipment. It would also include the training of the Nigerian military in the use of this equipment. At the time, Nigerian envoy Steve Ugbah stated, “We’re sure that with Russian help we’ll manage to crush Boko Haram, given Russia’s experience in combating Islamic State in Syria”.[14] Arguably, the defeat of US imperialism in Syria by a combination of the armed forces of Syria, Iran, Russia and Hezbollah was their first defeat since the liberation of Saigon in 1975. Russia’s far superior air power – especially the SU-35 jet fighters – was critical in this victory.

With Nigeria openly hailing Russia’s success in defeating ISIS, it is little surprise the NATO powers grind their teeth at the prospect of African countries seeking Russian assistance. Yet the situation is so critical Nigeria has little option. The violent and life-threatening marauding of Boko Haram and ISWAP has caused the displacement of 2.2 million people fleeing the mayhem.[15] The origins of Boko Haram and its deployment across the African Sahel are extremely suspicious. Former Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir claimed that the US and Israel, in the form of the CIA and Mossad, are behind Boko Haram and ISIS attacks in Africa[16], as “no Muslim would carry out such acts”. One thing is clear: just as ISIS and Al Qaeda could not carry out extreme mercenary violence across whole countries without the backing of large imperial states, Boko Haram and ISWAP cannot just be a rag-tag bunch of self-funded zealots committed to an obtuse strand of Islam. Their heavy weapons come from somewhere.

Soros/NED funded internal subversion

Washington does not just use the military option to destabilise Nigeria – it also uses externally funded internal political subversion. As in many other countries around the world, the deadly duo of the Open Society Foundation (OSF) and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) run rampant through Africa’s largest nation. Liberal anti-socialist hedge fund billionaire George Soros and his OSF death-star like empire are behind Nigerian media fronts such as Brekete Family Radio,[17] while the NED brags about its Nigerian partners resisting “government repression” and popularising “democratic values”.[18] The very suggestion that George Soros and the NED are even remotely concerned about democracy in Nigeria (or anywhere else) should provoke peals of laughter throughout the globe. The OSF and the NED are but two arms of the imperialist octopus desperately trying to block the sovereign actions of Nigeria which are taken to protect itself from yet more colonisation.

Just as the rioting and burning carried out by Black Lives Matter (BLM) in the US in 2020 was not about fighting racism, the rioting and burning of the #EndSARS and anti-Buhari “protestors” in Nigeria is not about “police brutality”. Rather, they are false rhetorical covers for an African proxy war waged by Washington against Beijing and Moscow.[19] It is little wonder that the tactic of using violence such as burning buildings under the guise of protesting police brutality was replicated from the streets of the USA to the streets of Nigeria, as both BLM[20] and today’s anti-Buhari protestors[21] are financially backed by the OSF. Even the demand for “good governance” in Nigeria is cut and pasted from the very mission of the Open Society Initiative for West Africa.[22] In short, the “pro-democracy” protests in Nigeria are not at all about what they claim themselves to be.

Twitter, the NED, the CIA, BLM, OSF, #EndSARS, #BuhariMustGo, Boko Haram, ISWAP – all of them play a role in the current push for regime change in Nigeria. To that extent, all are component parts of the US Empire itself. The key task for workers internationally is to defend Nigeria against all wings of the imperialist assault. Nigeria’s sovereign right to protect and/or develop itself via mutually beneficial partnerships with Russia and China must be upheld. Ultimately, what is required is the painstaking assembly of Marxist vanguard parties based on Permanent Revolution which can lead workers of the region towards a Socialist Federation of West Africa.

WORKERS  LEAGUE
E: workersleague@redfireonline.com
http://www.redfireonline.com

[1] https://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2021/06/04/nigeria-Nigeria-President-Muhammadu-Buhari-Twitter/4941622845081/ (16-06-2021)

[2] https://pmnewsnigeria.com/2021/06/04/buhari-govt-suspends-twitter-in-nigeria-via-twitter/ (16-06-2021)

[3] https://www.undispatch.com/samantha-power-makes-the-case-for-war/ (16-06-2021)

[4] http://saharareporters.com/2021/06/09/us-counters-trump-asks-buhari-reverse-twitter-ban (16-06-2021)

[5] https://redfireonline.com/2021/01/16/when-exactly-was-the-fascist-coup/ (16-06-2021)

[6] https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/nigeria-population/ (19-06-2021)

[7] https://www.forbes.com/sites/joewalsh/2021/06/05/nigeria-has-banned-twitter—along-with-these-other-countries/?sh=7651a44f1d96 (19-06-2021)

[8] Twitter ban: Nigeria loses N24.72bn in 10 days (withinnigeria.com) (19-06-2021)

[9] Nigeria and China’s belt and road initiative – The Sun Nigeria (sunnewsonline.com) (19-06-2021)

[10] Belt and Road Initiative projects ramp up Nigeria’s favourable perception of China · Global Voices (19-06-2021)

[11] How China’s new development plan will benefit Nigeria, other African countries, by Envoy ` | The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News — Nigeria — The Guardian Nigeria News – Nigeria and World News (19-06-2021)

[12] NATO and the Irony of Its “Everyday Fight Against Terrorism” – Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization (19-06-2021)

[13] Nigeria Signs Military Cooperation Pact with Russia (breitbart.com) (19-06-2021)

[14] Nigeria looks to sign military cooperation deal with Russia this month | Reuters (19-06-2021)

[15] http://www.fao.org/3/cb4586en/cb4586en.pdf (19-06-2021)

[16] https://www.globalresearch.ca/intelligence-operation-in-support-of-terrorism-the-u-s-and-israel-are-behind-both-boko-haram-and-isis-president-of-sudan/5436385 (19-06-2021)

[17] A People’s Court, Live and On the Air in Nigeria – Open Society Foundations (20-06-2021)

[18] Africa – NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY (ned.org) (20-06-2021)

[19] Nigeria: Black Lives Matter Aids US Meddling in Africa | Red Fire (redfireonline.com) (20-06-2021)

[20] https://forbiddenknowledgetv.net/who-is-funding-black-lives-matter-and-why-the-answer-may-shock-you/ (20-06-2021)

[21] What We Do – OSIWA (20-06-2021)

[22] Mission and Vision – OSIWA (20-06-2021)

No To Vaccine Passports!

covid pass

http://www.abc57.com

13-06-2021: “Papers Please..” This infamous phrase now needs updating in the dystopian world emerging from the on-again, off-again lockdowns imposed the world over since 2020. Now it may be a digital pass which is required to travel, to catch public transport, or even to shop at your local supermarket. Vaccine Passports have been launched in Australia,[1] following the lead of the Zionist Israeli state, which issued a Green Pass. Israel’s “immunity” pass enables users to access supermarkets, theatres, concert halls, indoor restaurants and bars.[2] While it will be difficult in a legal sense to mandate injections with the Covid-19 “vaccine”, there are other ways of forcing people to subject themselves to the dangers of an experimental gene manipulation system, which already has thousands of adverse reactions – including death – being reported.[3] These include: No jab no job, No jab no school or university, no jab no sport, no jab no entry to cultural events, and on and on.

Vaccine Apartheid

It is notable that in Australia a “vaccine passport” was renamed as a “digital certificate”,[4] due to a potential public backlash. This is because many people can see – even if they fall for a version of the fear pandemic – that vaccine passports will seriously divide society into hostile camps. Dr Clare Wenham recently expressed the fear that many hold: vaccine passports are totally unethical, and they create a two-tier society which inevitably leads to civil unrest – “Vaccine Apartheid”.[5] Dr Mike Yeadon concurs, and warns about a “Medical Apartheid”, which hands enormous coercive power to the state to wield against unvaccinated people.[6] Indeed, vaccine passports appear to be deliberately designed to cleave society into two – those who blindly (or reluctantly) comply with government dictates, and those who refuse (or think for themselves). The latter can then be characterised as “Covid deniers” – the modern-day equivalent of a Holocaust denier.[7] The possibility that the extreme divisions fostered by Vaccine Passports could well lead to another Holocaust does not seem to figure.

Just as the Covid-19 fear pandemic was never about healthcare, vaccine passports are not about a vaccine or a virus. During an interview, Naomi Wolf stated that “Covid-19” vaccine passports are really about your personal data. Almost any other digital functionality can be loaded onto a platform, not just a vaccine history. Financial history, payment plans, all of your medical history can be added – as has already happened in Israel. This has led to activists being ostracised and placed under constant surveillance.[8] The prognosis is ominous. Vaccine passports build on the bitter conflict which has been deliberately inflamed by soulless politicians through the use of state power to enforce lockdowns, curfews, facemasks and a litany of ever-changing rules which make no logical sense whatsoever. Without exaggeration, vaccine passports are another dire step towards the “train to Auschwitz”.

Covid passport fightback

Many who have been swept up in the hype of the Covid vaccine are unaware that injection does not prevent infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (assuming it exists), nor does it prevent transmission.[9] It does NOT confer immunity to anything, let alone the dubious coronavirus which allegedly causes “Covid-19”. It MAY reduce the severity of what are most likely to be cold and flu symptoms – while posing a huge risk to your health and even longevity. If the Covid vaccine does not prevent infection or transmission, it is patently obvious that Covid vaccine passports have another purpose entirely. Nor is the Covid vaccine itself exclusively about cold profit for Big Pharma – although there is plenty of that. Pfizer will take home a cool $15 billion in profit from 2021 alone.[10]

Above all, a vaccine passport is part of the lawless political repression accompanying the largest assault on the working class in history – under the code name of Covid-19. The virtual abolition of freedom of movement signified by a vaccine passport is also aimed at working people, as any number of exceptions will be allowed for the wealthy elite. The longer the socio-economic system of capitalism has its life extended, at a certain point its regression into fascism becomes inevitable. The outbreak of the first World War in 1914 was the first clear sign that capitalism no longer served any historically progressive function and had begun to destroy itself. More than 100 years later, capitalism is lurching from crisis to crisis, as it is unable to pull itself out of the latest slump which began in 2008. This is the real material basis of lockdown fascism which reared its ugly head at the beginning of 2020.

While it is true that the nationalist bureaucracies leading the deformed workers’ states (principally the People’s Republic of China – PRC) have also played along with the coronavirus pantomime, it does not follow that lockdown tyranny is part of some kind of “socialist” oppression, taking place via the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations (UN). Nor does it follow that the political leadership of PRC is jointly pushing the march towards the “New World Order” in partnership with the ruling classes of the imperialist West. The Communist Party of China’s (CPC) behaviour in this sphere is merely part of the double deception of “peaceful coexistence” and “socialism in one country”. Under these mistaken theories, the CPC bends over backwards to preserve the status quo – even to the extent of assisting and facilitating political repression both at home and in the West.

This betrayal of the CPC is matched by the treachery of Union officials and the lockdown left (parties which claim to be “revolutionary”, but have in practice enforced lockdowns). Yet there is no reason for despair. Millions of workers energetically reject vaccine passports, reflected in the fact that many church leaders have openly stated that they will not prevent an unvaccinated person from entering their congregations. Mass protest can have the effect of rolling back vaccine passports, even if the ultimate battle against lockdown fascism is yet to be decided. This is why workers must strive to construct organs of workers’ power – with and alongside the anti-lockdown movement.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com


E: workersleague@redfireonline.com


[1] https://tottnews.com/2021/06/10/vaccine-passports-launch-in-australia/ (12-06-2021)

[2] https://www.technologyreview.com/2021/03/01/1020154/israels-green-pass-is-an-early-vision-of-how-we-leave-lockdown/ (12-06-2021)

[3] https://www.globalresearch.ca/alarming-casualty-rates-mrna-vaccines-warrant-urgent-action/5746343?print=1 (12-06-2021)

[4] Why would we need a certificate if they weren’t planning to outcast us? – Reignite Democracy Australia (12-06-2021)

[5] https://tottnews.com/2021/01/22/vaccine-apartheid-immunity-passports/ (12-06-2021)

[6] Halt Vaccine Passports! – OffGuardian (off-guardian.org) (12-06-2021)

[7] “No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs, No Unvaxxed” – OffGuardian (off-guardian.org) (12-06-2021)

[8] Naomi Wolf: Mandatory Vaccine Passport Could Lead To The End Of Human Liberty In The West | Video | RealClearPolitics (12-06-2021)

[9] https://www.globalresearch.ca/who-no-guarantee-covid-vaccines-prevent-people-being-infected/5734693 (13-06-2021)

[10] https://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/04/23/pandemic-has-shown-pfizer-obsessed-profits-not-saving-lives (13-06-2021)

West Papua: Armed Separatists Wage Terror in Puncak

Ilaga residents flee

Above: Residents of Ilaga flee from  West Papuan armed separatists. Image from http://www.en.tempo.co

06-06-2021: Throughout April and May, armed West Papuan separatist militia rampaged through the Puncak Regency, causing mayhem and leaving a trail of blood and destruction. Ostensibly claiming to be part of a “resistance” to the “oppression” of Papuans within Indonesia, the sheer cruelty of their behaviour could well be interpreted as having another dark and sinister agenda. The noble sounding aims of “independence” and “freedom” for West Papua (the Indonesian provinces of Papua and Papua Barat) remain abstract until and unless it is connected with a definite set of political ideas and, most importantly, a political program. Without concrete examples, on paper no one is opposed to “independence” and “freedom” per se. At the same time, these broad aims – if they are genuinely held – should not be used as cover or a shroud for any acts of wanton violence. The means and ends must have a feasible correlation. While it is understood that not all political struggles can remain wholly pacifist, any use of violence must be justified on the scales of history.

Terror in the highlands

In the case of West Papua, justifying the barbarity of the small handful of Papuans who are prepared to take up arms against “Indonesia” has become an impossible task. The Indonesian government refers to the armed separatist Papuan militia as KKB (Armed Criminal Group), and it is difficult to disagree with this designation. On the 8th of April, Papuan KKB entered the Julukoma Village of the Beoga District, Puncak Regency, and approached the home of Oktovianus Rayo – a local elementary school teacher. They shot him dead. The next day, the KKB entered the home of junior high school teacher Yonatan Randen, and also shot him dead.[1] This was after the Papuan separatists had burned down three local schools. Clearly, the separatists were targeting, in the most brutal manner possible, the education system which they see as “Indonesian” – but which educates all citizens regardless of ethnicity. Needless to say, the execution of school teachers is hardly a campaign of political persuasion. It is outright terror, to intimidate anyone who does not back separatist “independence”.

On Sunday the 11th of April, the separatist militia torched nine rooms of the junior high school at Beoga. After being repelled from the Beoga airport, the KKB burned the local school and several houses at Dambet Village. Here, they were engaged in a firefight with Brigadier General Gusti Putu Danny Nugraha and seven other soldiers. General Putu was shot dead in this exchange.[2] It took 100 military personnel to re-take Beoga airport from the armed separatists, from where 42 “migrants” (transmigrants from other parts of Indonesia) had to be evacuated to Mimika for their own safety.[3] The fact that the transmigrants (who are generally Indonesians from Java, Sumatra or Sulawesi) had to flee for their lives under the protection of the Indonesian security forces speaks volumes. Advocates of “Free West Papua” will not admit it, but this extreme anti-internal migrant racism appears to be the central rationale for Papuan separatism. It is acknowledged that some tensions can be caused by an influx of non-Papuans over time, but threatening to kill them is something else entirely.

More Terror

The KKB separatists did not let up during the month of May. On Monday May 3rd, the militia attacked in the Ilaga District of Puncak Regency. They set fire to the Mayubwri Elementary School, the teachers’ residence and the Puskesmas Building, which was used as a community kiosk. The separatists also sabotaged a number of local roads, as well as the Kimak Bridge.[4] They didn’t stop there. A few days later, the KKB burned down a public community centre, used locally for learning activities, in the Ilaga Kimak Village.[5] Tracing the trail of destruction illuminates the clear intent of the separatists. Attack, burn down, destroy or sabotage any public infrastructure provided by the Indonesian government. In fact, even attack and kill public school teachers as a “warning”. Again, the terror and intimidation towards the local community is obvious. Papua will be “free” – or else. Workers internationally cannot offer one iota of support to this blackmail.

Claims that the Papuan separatists only target Indonesian police and military forces are false – they also target civilians. On the 28th of May, residents from the Oksamol District reported that the community revolted against the attacks from the separatists which threatened civilians and also took the life of officer Mario Sanoi. They affirmed that they took up traditional weapons against the KKB – who did not reside anywhere in the local area – and drove them away, even as they fired at them with guns.[6] So much for separatism being a popular choice amongst the community!

NKRI declares KKB to be “terrorist”

Not without reason, in response the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia (NKRI) declared the armed Papuan separatist groups to be terrorists according to Indonesian law. In a press conference on April 29, the Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, Mahfud MD, stated that the acts of the KKB and all organisations and persons affiliated with it are now regarded as terrorist under Law No. 5 of 2018 and associated amendments. Terrorists are people who plan, instigate and organise terrorism. And “terrorism” is “…any act that uses violence or threats of violence that creates a sense of terror….that can cause mass casualties…cause damage or destruction….[to the] environment…public or international facilities, with the motive of ideology, politics and security.”[7]

When armed Papuan separatists execute public school teachers, set fire to elementary and junior high school buildings, attack and damage roads and bridges – it can hardly be argued that such acts are not terrorist. While workers internationally cannot offer the Indonesian government political support, especially its energetic campaign to inject almost all of Indonesia[8] with experimental Covid “vaccines” in response to a pandemic of lies, there can scarcely be opposition to its moves to prevent separatist violence in West Papua. After being officially declared “terrorist”, the onus is now on Papuan separatist groups and their supporters to declare their real position in relation to terrorism. Further, they must utterly repudiate the killing and/or targeting of non-Papuan civilians, as well as Papuans who do not support separatist independence. If they do not, we are entitled to view West Papuan “independence” as a campaign of ethnic violence and terror with the most unsavoury of intentions.

Left parties alibi racial violence

The knee-jerk reaction of liberals the world over is to bow down before an indigenous population and excuse their misdeeds no matter how heinous. Self-proclaimed socialist and “Marxist” parties, on the other hand, should know a lot better. Unfortunately, many of them display a championship level of credulity when it comes to West Papua. While being the first to shout to the heavens about real or imagined racial discrimination against black/indigenous/”people of colour” in the First World, they often fall silent or shift uneasily when shown examples where Melanesian Papuan militia have targeted or killed Austronesians or others from the approximately 1300[9] non-Papuan ethnicities who transmigrate into Papua. Many of these “transmigrants” have in fact lived in peace in Papua alongside everyone else there for 30 years or more. Yet racial violence targeting transmigrants in Indonesia should not be overlooked when it is carried out by separatist Papuans, indigenous or otherwise.

The Socialist Alliance (SA) very selectively reports on incidents such as the one that took the life of Indonesian General Putu. In their Green Left newspaper, SA claim that General Putu was shot “while travelling” near Dambet Village in Puncak Regency.[10] They do not mention that General Putu and his group of security forces were not “travelling” but were in fact in pursuit of the separatists which had torched the local schools and executed two school teachers. They go on to claim that there are around 5000 IDPs (internally displaced persons) in the Nduga Regency, who had to flee “Indonesian security operations”.[11] They do not mention that these particular security operations were a response to armed Papuan separatists murdering 31 road workers in cold blood who were constructing bridges on the Yigi and Aurak Rivers in December 2018,[12] and subsequent clashes since that time. Needless to say, the slaughter of any Indonesian – civilian or military – will naturally force the security forces to respond. Moreover, one can only imagine the response of the police and security forces in Australia, the US or Europe, if armed separatists attacked and killed anyone they saw as representing or working with the governments of those states.

Socialist Alternative (SAlt) likewise wave the flag for West Papuan “independence”, regardless of the consequences. In an article in Red Flag, SAlt decry the denial of parole for five Papuans charged with treason in relation to riots which erupted across West Papua and Indonesia in 2019.[13] While initially claiming the charges related to a “peaceful protest”, the article later admits that in fact the rioters had burned down the local parliament in Manokwari, as well as prisons in Sorong and Jayapura. Again we must ask – what exactly would be the response of the authorities in Australia, the US or Europe if rioters torched a parliament building and a couple of prisons? Anyone who attempted this in the first world would themselves go to prison for a very long time. Why should it be any different in Indonesia? Moreover, as we reported at the time, these riots were sparked by reports of Papuan university students desecrating the Indonesian national flag on the eve of Indonesia’s national Independence Day of August 17. While it can be acknowledged that hurling of the label “monkeys” at the Papuan students by some soldiers was wrong, it is understandable that they were incensed by the gross disrespect displayed by separatist students.[14] This is after the Indonesian government goes to some length to ensure Papuan youth have the opportunity to access various levels of education.

Human Rights?

The Spartacist League (SL) are usually the last of the self-affirmed Trotskyist parties to fall for the “human rights” false flag, but they make an exception in the case of West Papua. After the riots of 2019, they even fell for the fake charms of Veronica Koman, who they hail as “courageous” and a “defender of Papuan activists”. They claim that Ms Koman “fled” to Australia after sharing videos of police brutality on social media.[15] This is a distortion which could have been sourced from the corporate media. As we reported at the time,[16] what actually occurred is that Ms Koman was spreading fake videos online, in an effort to whip up the protests which certainly did flare partially in response to her social media posting. It is an offence under Indonesian law to spread hoaxes online, and the penalty could be six years in jail and a $US 70 000 fine. What is more, the riots that occurred with the help of Ms Koman’s incendiary videos took the lives of 40 people – both Papuan and non-Papuan. After this, she refused to come forward for police questioning several times, and then fled to Australia. So in reality, Ms Koman fled to avoid a charge of racial incitement. So much for the principles of a “human rights” lawyer!  The SL seriously needs to check with whom it is aligning itself.

The Bolshevik-Leninist organisation uses extensive quotes from Lenin in an effort to justify their support for what they see as a West Papuan struggle for “national liberation”.[17] They recognise more reality than others on the left in relation to Papua and Indonesia, and yet still come up short. They can see that West Papuan nationalism is a barrier that workers need to overcome, and propose that cross-national class unity between West Papuan and Indonesian workers should be the goal. This appears to align with “Marxist” theory, IF the reality of the basis of the “independence” movement is ignored. The unfortunate circumstance is the fact that the central pillar of separatist independence – armed or not – is racial tension and antagonism by Papuans against non-Papuans. In essence, Papuans want the transmigrants (mainly Indonesians of multiple ethnicities) out, so a Papuan only “state” can be formed. To achieve this, a small minority of Papuans are prepared to enact murderous racial violence.

This is why socialists cannot extend one iota of support to the notion of “Free West Papua”. ANY form of racial and ethnic hostility cannot be excused, regardless of who carries it out. Working people also have no interest in fostering and fomenting a national conflict, unless it is a rare case of using the methods of class struggle to combat national oppression in order to advance towards socialism. Papuan separatism has no such aims. The unity of Papuan, Indonesian and international workers is  certainly needed; but only to ensure basic justice regardless of nationality, race and ethnicity.

WORKERS  LEAGUE
www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

[1] Immediately Arrest KKB Killer 2 Teachers in Papua! – (realpapua.com) (05-06-2021)

[2] Tragedy of the Fall of Brigadier General Gusti Putu: The Sacrifice of Lives Against the Cruelty of Papuan KKB – Good Morning Papua (05-06-2021)

[3] Ibid, 2.

[4] KKB Burns Community Health Center and School in Ilaga Papua | Papua Daily (05-06-2021)

[5] Papuan separatists burn down public learning activity center in Puncak – ANTARA News (05-06-2021)

[6] Berita Otonomi Khusus Papua – West Papua Press – The Courage of Papuan Oksamol Residents, Against KKB Terrorists Using Traditional Weapons (05-06-2021)

[7] Armed Criminal Groups in Papua Categorized as Terrorists: Minister – Medcom.id (05-06-2021)

[8] Indonesia permits private COVID-19 vaccination scheme | Reuters (05-06-2021)

[9] https://jakartaglobe.id/culture/unity-diversity-indonesias-six-largest-ethnic-groups (06-06-2021)

[10] https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/west-papua-crackdown-feared-following-indonesian-intelligence-chiefs-death (06-06-2021)

[11] Ibid, 10.

[12] https://westpapuanow.com/2018/12/04/papua-separatists-group-killed-31-civilian-workers-in-nduga/ (06-06-2021)

[13] https://redflag.org.au/article/imprisoned-papuan-activists-denied-parole-indonesia (06-06-2021)

[14] https://redfireonline.com/2019/09/04/west-papua-separatists-incite-violence/ (06-06-2021)

[15] https://www.icl-fi.org/english/asp/239/indonesia.html (06-06-2021)

[16] https://redfireonline.com/2020/01/12/veronica-koman-human-rights-fraud/ (06-06-2021)

[17] https://bolshevik-leninist.org/independence-for-west-papua/ (06-06-2021)