Myanmar: Military Moves Against US Subversion

Flag of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar

07-02-2021: When is a military coup progressive? When it stymies and rolls back the designs of US imperialism, that’s when. On February 1 the Myanmar military (Tatmadaw) detained leader Aung Sung Suu Kyi and took control for 12 months, citing a clause in the country’s 2008 constitution. The clause states that in case of a national emergency, the president and the National Defence and Security Council can issue a decree to hand the government’s executive, legislative and judicial powers to the Tatmadaw’s commander-in-chief.[1] The Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Services is Min Aung Hlaing, who is now in power of the state for the coming year. Suu Kyi along with President U Win Myint and other National League for Democracy (NLD) officials were detained, with the Tatmadaw announcing a new round of elections will be held due to voter irregularities and suspected fraud during the November 8 election last year.[2] The NLD “won” an absolute parliamentary majority, and has been running the government in Myanmar since 2016.[3]

Coup installed President denounces…coup

Scaling the heights of hypocrisy, US President Joe Biden – weeks after being installed in a deep state coup where blatant and overt electoral fraud was documented[4] – condemned the Tatmadaw’s takeover in Myanmar. His statement threatened to reimpose sanctions which were lifted following the 2016 election which propelled Suu Kyi into the leadership. Laughably, Biden’s statement also averred that “The United States will stand up for democracy whenever it is under attack” ![5] This is from the very same government which has directly funded “civil society” Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) in Myanmar for decades – almost all of which have the aim of subverting if not overthrowing the state.

The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the public relations arms of the CIA, even lists on its own website around 80 phony “human rights” and “investigative journalism” organisations it funds and sustains. Using the British colonial based former name of Myanmar (Burma),the names of just some of these organisations are a dead giveaway: Assistance for Political Prisoners and Human Rights Advocacy, Burmese Language Satellite Television Broadcasts, Civil Society Development in Burma, Empowering Burmese Democracy Activists and so on.[6]  Obviously, this is not benevolent funding  so much as a direct and orchestrated attempt at regime change, which blatantly violates any semblance of Myanmar’s national sovereignty. It is the internal political version of landing US troops on the beaches and marching to the capital. Yet it has been going on for decades – and was the prime reason why Aung Sung Suu Kyi became leader (or State Counsellor) in the first place.

British imperialism is also in on the act. It is no exaggeration to say that almost the entirety of the “pro-democracy” movement – including the NLD – is a not indigenous to Myanmar at all. It is a product of the political and financial backing of two of the most powerful capitalist powers on earth – the US and the United Kingdom (UK).[7] This faux “democracy” movement is so powerful that it is virtually impossible to run in the elections against the NLD and make any substantial electoral gains. The US and UK funded fronts operating in Myanmar operate as para-state organisations, and working people in Myanmar simply do not have the political or financial resources to compete with them. The Tatmadaw’s claim that the November 8, 2020 election in Myanmar contained fraud is indeed feasible.

Targeting Red China

The goal of this extensive political interference in Myanmar by Washington and London, and backed by Canberra[8], is not only to procure a more pro-Western government in Naypyidaw. It is also aimed at Myanmar’s giant neighbour, the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The economy of the PRC, a bureaucratically deformed workers’ state, is in the process of outstripping the capitalist economies of the US and Europe because it does not primarily run on the basis of production for private profit. Huge state-owned industries in the PRC provide the stimulus for economic growth rates which are simply not possible in the West – or at least not over a period of decades. Myanmar, a direct neighbour of the PRC and a developing country, has no option but to join with the PRC in its offers of mutually beneficial trade, investment and infrastructure building opportunities. Neither the US nor Europe nor Australia nor Japan can even offer the economic partnerships the PRC can. Aung Sung Suu Kyi, despite being installed with the backing of Washington and London, understood this. She did not break Myanmar’s ties with the PRC, as it would be economic suicide. This enraged Washington, which cannot abide by sovereign decisions to do business with Beijing.

This was the real basis for the Western campaign against Suu Kyi over the manufactured Rohingya “crisis” of 2017. Washington was scarcely concerned about the human rights of the Rohingya in the Rakhine state – they were far more concerned about the PRC assisting Myanmar in building the deep-water port of Kyaukpyu, which lies at the conclusion of the China-Myanmar oil and gas pipeline. This pipeline went into use in 2013, and stretches from Kyaukpyu in the Bay of Bengal through to Kunming in South Western China, dissecting Myanmar. The PRC is building the Kyaukpyu port as part of its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and delivering oil and gas to Kyaukpyu via the pipeline for export bypasses the Malacca Strait.[9] This means that the oil and gas shipments do not have to negotiate the South China Sea, which remains patrolled by US warships with the assistance of the Australian Navy.

The crocodile tears and handwringing by Western governments over the fleeing of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees to Bangladesh in 2017 was pure hypocrisy. The Rohingya were fleeing violence from two sources. Firstly, they had been subjected to racist physical attacks from Buddhist “monks” who wanted to drive them out of Myanmar, and who were also a part of the political base of the “Saffron Revolution” which assisted Aung Sung Suu Kyi into power. Secondly, they were fleeing from the violence instigated by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) – who do not at ally deny their links to Al Qaeda. Despite their name the ARSA do not only attack the Myanmar government, they attack other Rohingyas who do not support their violent separatism.[10]

It was sheer folly to suggest the Tatmadaw engaged in a campaign of “ethnic cleansing” against the Rohingya. In reality, the Tatmadaw were responding to an armed pre-dawn attack on 30 police posts across the townships of Maungdaw and Buthidaung, as well as an army post at Tuang Bazaar. The ARSA assault took the lives of at least 10 police, 80 ARSA militia and 6 civilians.[11] The Rohingya who fled to neighbouring Bangladesh were thus fleeing the conflict between the ARSA terrorists[12] and the Tatmadaw, with the clear danger of being caught in the crossfire. Can anyone imagine what the government response would be in Australia, the US or the UK if a militant group had launched an ambush on police stations and slaughtered 10 police officers? To ask this question is to answer it.

Armed separatists bordering the PRC

Suu Kyi – and most in Myanmar – could see the manipulation of the Rohingya “cause”. Therefore she (correctly in this case) refused to acknowledge alleged “human rights” crimes in the Rakhine state. This – along with her rational position of refusing to break lucrative and necessary trade and investment ties with Beijing – was the reason Suu Kyi was subject to a backlash from Western liberals who had previously upheld her as a democracy icon. There were calls for the Nobel laureate to be stripped of her Nobel peace prize, and Amnesty International stripped her of its highest award, an “Ambassador of Conscience”.[13] In practice, this was also an expression of US imperialism giving Suu Kyi a public slap on the wrist for not being pliable enough in their barely concealed anti-China drive.

At the same time, Western backing of armed separatist groups along the norther border with the PRC continues. Armed groups from the Kachin state are engaged in a running battle with the Tatmadaw, ostensibly for “independence”, but in reality serving to destabilise co-operation between Myanmar and the PRC. Kachin fighters in fact formed part of the UK’s Burmese colonial army stemming out of World War II. It was stacked with Kachin alongside Gurkha from Nepal and Punjabis from India, while there were barely any from the Burman majority.[14] A classic divide and rule colonial tactic, but one which serves to disrupt key Myanmar-PRC building projects today.

For example, the Kachin Development Network Group (KDNG) – another US government funded NGO in Myanmar – publicly campaigns against the Myitsone Dam project in the Kachin state. Wikileaks revealed some of its activities some five years ago.[15] Ostensibly they campaign against the dam on environmental grounds, claiming that people will be displaced and environmental damage will be caused. Yet this is a transparent ruse to oppose a major project that will provide electricity to areas of northern Myanmar that have never previously seen it – in order to disrupt economic activity which is spurred through dealings with China.

US funded fronts, not “NGOs”

It is oxymoronic to describe US funded NGOs as “NGOs”, as their entire agenda matches that of one of the most powerful foreign governments in the world. Even the Australian state media admits US funding of the “civil society” groups in Myanmar would not be affected by any sanctions that were applied. This amounts to a sum – or that which they admit to – of $US 108 million per year.[16] This money does not go to the people of Myanmar – it pours into a spectrum of organisations which undermine and subvert the government towards US interests. They include fake human rights fronts, quasi legal organisations, media organisations and supposedly environment focused campaign groups. In reality, they politically bolster the NLD, and undermine, attack and reverse cooperation between Myanmar and the PRC.[17] For unknown reasons, the Tatmadaw has allowed these US funded political mining operations to operate unhindered in Myanmar for decades.[18]

However, the Tatmadaw’s recent takeover is the first indicator that perhaps it needs to take steps to ensure US/UK influence does not prevail entirely. Ultimately, the US would prefer to have US troops in Myanmar on the border with Red China, as a continuation of imperialism’s struggle to contain and encircle the PRC – in the manner of Russia and Iran. The US almost gained complete control of Myanmar via Aung Sung Suu Kyi and its fabricated NLD. However, the Tatmadaw has stepped in to prevent this from occurring. To this extent only, Marxists offer critical support to the actions of the Tatmadaw insofar as it acts to defend Myanmar and its people from US control. In a similar way in which Marxists offered critical support to the actions of the Russian government in using its superior air power to strike down ISIS mercenaries in Syria, the actions the Tatmadaw takes to defend Myanmar from Western or Al Qaeda backed terrorists can be similarly defended.

For a socialist Asia

Needless to say, military moves in Myanmar alone are not enough to curtail the intrigues of the US Empire, especially when it tactically plays the game of political subversion so well. Already, a “civil disobedience” campaign to the Tatmadaw coup among health workers and teachers has begun,[19] no doubt linked to the very US backed NGOs well versed in disguising political motives. The Tatmadaw would do well to begin to uproot and remove these subversive groups entirely. Or at the very least, put in place laws such as those of the Russian Federation. In Russia, US funded fronts are required by law to publicly disclose their funding[20], so that Russians know exactly who is behind the groups being vocal for “democracy” and “human rights”. It is one reason why the pro-US “democracy” groups in Russia have such little backing, which is confined to a relative handful of malcontents.

Amongst other things, given that both the government and the Tatmadaw were in the process of implementing the Covid “pandemic” nonsense, neither offer political direction to the workers of Myanmar. Only a genuine socialist movement can provide a path forward for Myanmar and all of South Asia. While economic cooperation with the PRC will be vital, politically South Asia needs proletarian revolutions in Myanmar, Thailand and Cambodia to be combined with proletarian political revolutions in China, Vietnam, and Laos. The forging of internationally linked Leninist vanguard parties is a prerequisite, to light the path towards regionally integrated planned economies.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

 

[1] European leaders condemn Myanmar coup after military takes control, detaining Aung San Suu Kyi | Euronews (06-02-2021)

[2] Myanmar to clarify voter fraud, hold new round of elections | The Myanmar Times (mmtimes.com) (06-02-2021

[3] Myanmar election: Aung San Suu Kyi wins parliamentary seat for ruling National League for Democracy | World News | Zee News (india.com) (06-02-2021)

[4] When Exactly Was the “Fascist Coup” ? | Red Fire (redfireonline.com) (06-02-2021)

[5] Myanmar coup: Joe Biden threatens to resume sanctions | Myanmar | The Guardian (06-02-2021)

[6] BURMA 2019 – NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY (ned.org) (06-02-2021)

[7] Land Destroyer: Myanmar (Burma) “Pro-Democracy” Movement a Creation of Wall Street & London (06-02-2021)

[8] Marise Payne calls in Myanmar ambassador after Australian adviser to Aung Sun Suu Kyi detained (msn.com) (07-02-2021)

[9] https://www.chinacenter.net/2020/china_currents/19-3/a-relationship-on-a-pipeline-china-and-myanmar/ (07-02-2021)

[10] https://redfireonline.com/2018/09/13/myanmar-rohingya-manipulated-for-the-wests-drive-to-war/ (07-02-2021)

[11] https://asiatimes.com/2017/08/rohingya-insurgency-declares-open-war-myanmar/ (07-02-2021)

[12] http://m.thedailynewnation.com/news/247344/arsa-a-threat-to-bd-or-burma (07-02-2021)

[13] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-46179292 (07-02-2021)

[14] https://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2018/07/militants-threaten-chinas-obor.html#more (07-02-2021)

[15] https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/10RANGOON30_a.html (07-02-2021)

[16] US formally declares Myanmar has been subject to military coup – ABC News (07-02-2021)

[17] Myanmar’s Military Takes Over | New Eastern Outlook (journal-neo.org) (07-02-2021)

[18] Land Destroyer: Myanmar Crisis Explained… (07-02-2021)

[19] Aung San Suu Kyi could face two years in jail over ‘illegal’ walkie-talkies | Global development | The Guardian (07-02-2021)

[20] https://meduza.io/en/cards/russia-s-authorities-increase-pressure-on-ngos-with-plans-to-strengthen-foreign-agent-laws (07-02-2021)

Iran: Baha’i Used as Yet Another Excuse for Regime Change War

View of the World Baha’i Centre in Haifa, Israel.

04-01-2021: As the orchestrated removal of the US Trump Administration nears its end, the Israeli state is likely behind multiple attempts to trap President Trump into attacking the Islamic Republic of Iran, again. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif stated that its intelligence via Iraq indicated that Israeli agents-provocateurs were planning attacks on Americans in the region, in the hope that the US Empire would have no choice but to launch strikes on Iran.[1] While the Trump Administration largely faced down relentless pressure from the Democrats and the Deep State to wage war against Russia, it has remained bellicose towards Iran, even assassinating top Iranian General Qassem Soleimani at the start of 2020. Any and every excuse is used to agitate for a regime change war on Iran, the largest independent power in the Middle East. An ongoing one is supposed “repression” of the Baha’i.

Innocent religious beliefs?

Some on the left fall for the liberal imperialist “humanitarian” war agenda, such as the appalling proxy war against the Syrian Arab Republic from 2011 to the present day. Many of the same actors make wistful but entirely deceitful claims that the Baha’i in Iran are simply being persecuted for innocent religious beliefs that differ from those of the predominantly Shiite Islam held by the Iranian governmental system. An ABC News Australia report would even claim that arbitrary arrests and home raids of Baha’i believers are currently “escalating”. The accompanying blurb would claim that Baha’i beliefs include “truthfulness, equality and human rights, and an emphasis on the essential worth of all religions”.[2] In reality, there could not be a greater distortion of the political role of the Baha’i in Iran.

Many in Iran who still back the overwhelmingly popular 1979 revolution view the Baha’i as “Zionist spies”. Is this an unfounded suspicion? Hardly – when one considers the fact that the Zionist Israeli state has allowed the Baha’i to establish their spiritual authority – the Universal House of Justice (UHJ) of their religion on a large property in Haifa, without subjecting it to any tax. The Israeli government has issued a postage stamp featuring the UHJ, and numerous Israeli Presidents and Prime Ministers have visited the World Baha’i centre in Haifa. This includes Izhak Ben Zvi in 1954, Zalman Shazar in 1964, Chaim Herzog in 1984, Yitzhak Rabin in 1994, Shimon Peres in 1994 and the current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.[3] Just these “visits” alone, from top representatives of the Zionist Israeli state which has never hidden its outright hostility to Iran, should at least raise eyebrows.

The Baha’i make the deceptive claim that they are “persecuted” in Iran because they are not allowed to practice their religion, but in fact they are only prohibited from proselytising their religion. They are entitled to practice their religion amongst themselves, get married (and divorced), pray etc – which is in fact the exact same situation in Israel itself. In Iran and Israel, the Baha’i practice is banned in terms of being able to be publicly taught and disseminated, while the private practice of the Baha’i faith is not subject to legal or governmental restriction.[4]  Despite this, the Baha’i claim to only be repressed in Iran, but not in Israel. This is just the start of a series of glaring hypocrisies.

Given the actual or claimed religious beliefs of the Baha’i, it is only logical that not only Iran and Israel, but ANY government in any country could not allow the Baha’i faith to be openly practiced. If they did, they could find themselves overthrown, or have a potential world war on their hands. Some of the Baha’i doctrine is directly political and explicitly calls for: a world super state, a world legislator, the unification of all the world’s religions under the umbrella of the Baha’i faith (!), a world parliament, a world police force, a single world currency, a world taxation system and a single auxiliary world language.[5] Alongside these, the claims that the Baha’i believe in the unity of the human race, the equality of men and women, and the need for world peace are scarcely credible, and appear to be a covering credo to obscure the actual agenda.

Any government in any country, likewise, could not allow other Baha’i views such as the abolition of all non-Baha’i legal systems[6] to be openly promulgated. Can one imagine what would happen to a group in Australia, the US and Europe openly calling for the removal of their legal systems, and its replacement with one run by their own religion? Furthermore, the Baha’i even view non-Baha’i education as “death incarnate” which leads to “stagnation”.[7]  That is, they do not wish for their children to be educated alongside other members of the community in a state or private school not run according to the Baha’i religion. This is flagrantly in breach of their professed belief in the unity and oneness of all humanity, and even of their supposed view that all religions should be equal!

No to war on Iran

A fantasy narrative about Baha’i persecution in Iran is being peddled to once again beat the drums of war against Iran, on the anniversary of the US assassination of General Qassem Soleimani. Workers the world over have a vital interest in opposing any drive to war by US/EU imperialism, no matter what the claimed justification. Even though the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has entertained the false Covid-19 “pandemic” hysteria in an effort to assuage world imperialism, this has not had any effect in deflecting the threats of war. The wars of regime change against Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria were catastrophic and unjustifiable – as will be a war on Iran. War propaganda retailing false allegations of Iranian government “repression” is a key component of regime change war. All tenets of it must be exposed and rejected. NO TO REGIME CHANGE WAR ON IRAN!

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

 

[1] Iran’s foreign minister urges Trump to avoid Israel ‘trap’ to provoke war | Reuters (03-01-2021)

[2] Australia’s Baha’i community pleads for help as arbitrary arrests and home raids escalate in Iran – ABC News (03-01-2021)

[3] Home – Baha’i-Israel Relationship (webs.com) (03-01-2021

[4] Bahai Israel Relationship | The Bahai Insider (03-01-2020)

[5] Global Governance and the Baha’i Faith – The Real Agenda News (real-agenda.com) (03-01-2020)

[6] Shut down Nauru! For an Anti-Empire Refugee Rights Movement! | Red Fire (redfireonline.com) (03-01-2020)

[7] How Baha’is View non-Baha’i Schools – Baha’i principles (bahaibahai.com) (03-01-2020)

Hands off Iran! No to Regime Change War

29-11-2020: Little more than 11 months after the US Empire assassinated Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp (IRGC) General Qassem Soleimani, the Islamic Republic of Iran announced one of its top nuclear scientists had been assassinated. The Iranian Ministry of Defense stated that armed terrorists attacked Mohsen Fakhrizadeh and his security protection team, after which he was transported to hospital, but was unable to be saved.[1] No one has claimed responsibility for the attack as yet, but it occurs on the back of rumours that US President Donald Trump would launch a strike on Iran before he leaves office on January 20 (despite a fraudulent poll where a litany of election laws were ignored and statistically impossible outcomes suspiciously delivered a “result” in favour of the Democrats).[2] Adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and military leader Hossein Deghan accused the state of Israel of trying to provoke a full-blown war in the last days in office of their US ally.[3] Hossein Salami, an IRGC Commander posted on Twitter that “..the assassination of nuclear scientists is the most obvious violent confrontation of the imperialist system to prevent us from gaining access to modern science”.[4]

British-Australian operative released in prisoner swap

This cowardly act of war against Iran comes hot on the heels of the release of Kylie Moore-Gilbert, a British/Australian academic who was sentenced to 10 years in jail in Iran for espionage. Ms Moore-Gilbert was released in exchange for three Iranians detained elsewhere.[5] The case of Moore-Gilbert is being used by the Australian government and its compliant corporate media to ramp up even more hostility to Iran, even though it is evident that the Iranian government had ample grounds for their charges of espionage. Ms Moore-Gilbert had worked as a lecturer at Melbourne University, and had attended a conference in Qom in 2018. It was at that time that Moore-Gilbert was detained and later charged and convicted of espionage, and given a 10 year sentence.[6] Moore-Gilbert has always denied the charges, but never has she, nor the corporate media, nor the Australian government, ever explained what she actually did in Iran. If she was innocent of spying, why not tell the whole story?

This refusal to explain should sound loud alarm bells. It is plausible that Moore-Gilbert was not employed or paid by the Australian government to spy on Iran. It is possible that Moore-Gilbert was yet another liberal academic who consciously or unconsciously allies herself with Australian, and therefore British and US imperialism, in their non-stop attempts to force regime change in Iran by any means. In 2019, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Mousavi stated that Moore-Gilbert was arrested on a charge of violating Iran’s national security by spying for another country.[7]  This other country is the Israeli state, and given the history of the Israeli governments’ relentless war provocations against Iran, it is entirely understandable for the Iranian government to take extreme precautions. The Sydney Morning Herald fatuously claimed that the Iranian government detained Moore-Gilbert after discovering she was in a relationship with an Israeli citizen, and was backed by the US government operated Human Rights Watch and the Australia-Israel Jewish Affairs Council.[8] From this it is not a large leap of logic to conclude that Moore-Gilbert was indeed at least aiding the Zionist Israeli state, and the Islamic Republic of Iran was justified in protecting itself from the possible consequences. Inane whining from the liberal pro-imperialist intelligentsia about how the “regime” (they are not able to deign themselves to refer to it as a government) in Iran is allegedly “oppressive” is always used by Anglo/US/AUST imperialism as political capital for catastrophic regime change war.

Iranian government rolls out “pandemic” pantomime

What the government of the Islamic Republic could be justifiably criticised for is enacting its own scientifically groundless lockdowns[9] and medically absurd facemask mandates, which mirror the actions of the imperialist governments targeting them for destruction. From November 21, the Iranian government moved to close 150 cities on partial or full lockdown, with even a ban on cars entering or exiting.[10] The aping of the actions of the imperialist ruling classes against their own workers is a major error, one perhaps carried out to assuage the relentless war campaign against it from the West. Alas, if anything, this has only encouraged the imperialists to step up their war moves. Imperialism cannot be appeased, no matter how many times non-imperialist governments act in the same way and adopt public policies identical to the governments of the US/NATO/EU Empire. Imperialism cannot tolerate any degree of independence, even one which seeks to replicate some of its own practices.

Despite this, it is in the vital interests of working people the world over to defend the Islamic Republic of Iran against a Western led war of regime change. Iran’s role in militarily assisting the defeat of US imperialism in Syria was heroic, and vital because the Iranian government understood that if Washington/London/Paris was able to overthrow Syria, it would itself be next. Iran does not have nuclear weapons capability, but it must have the sovereign right to develop any energy source it requires – including nuclear generated electricity. The repeated assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists at the hands of the West, combines with medieval siege type sanctions to nearly break the Iranian economy. Workers must demand the lifting of all sanctions on the Islamic Republic of Iran, along with the immediate cessation of any assassinations and war provocations by the West.

Despite the laudable victories of the IRGC as part of the Shia Resistance bloc (Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Yemeni Houthis), Anglo/US/NATO imperialism ultimately cannot be defeated militarily. It will take an international socialist struggle against COVID-19 lies, “the Great Reset” and its accompanying imperialist wars of conquest. The forging of Marxist vanguard parties based on Permanent Revolution throughout the Middle East and internationally remain key to the first steps towards undermining the destructive power of the international system of private profit for private gain. NO WAR ON IRAN!

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

 

[1] https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/iran-announces-assassination-of-top-nuclear-scientist/ (28-11-2020)

[2] https://theredelephants.com/there-is-undeniable-mathematical-evidence-the-election-is-being-stolen/ (28-11-2020)

[3] https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2020/11/28/iran-nuclear-scientist-assassination/ (28-11-2020)

[4] https://www.axios.com/mohsen-fahrizade-iran-nuclear-assassinated-tehran-b1765dd7-ab7b-4e54-ac95-29fc082dcef2.html (28-11-2020)

[5] https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-11-26/kylie-moore-gilbert-released-from-iran-prison-in-swap-deal/12921768 (28-11-2020)

[6] https://womensagenda.com.au/latest/dr-kylie-moore-gilbert-has-been-released-from-iranian-prison-after-804-days/ (28-11-2020)

[7] https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/443546/Australian-woman-violated-national-security-Iran (28-11-2020)

[8] https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/kylie-moore-gilbert-detained-by-iran-over-baseless-israeli-spy-claims-20201126-p56i7f.html (28-11-2020)

[9] https://jonsnewplace.wordpress.com/2020/06/10/who-says-covid-19-social-distancing-lockdowns-vaccines-now-unnecessary/ (29-11-2020)

[10] https://financialtribune.com/articles/national/106143/iran-gov-t-orders-full-lockdown-in-150-cities-to-curb-covid-19 (29-11-2020)

No Boycott of Beijing 2022! Hands off China!

The Qazihan Mosque in Turpan, Xinjiang. It was built in 1747. The Islamic religion is freely practiced in the far West of China.

     18-10-2020: As if the anti-China Cold War hysteria was not already enough, a pair of reactionary Australian MPs are now calling for a boycott of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. Independent Senators Rex Patrick and Jacquie Lambie will move a motion in the Australian parliament next month which calls on the Australian Government – via the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) – to ensure Australia boycotts the Beijing 2022 Winter games.[1] Long time AOC head John Coates, who is also a senior member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) reacted angrily to the possibility that Australian athletes would be offered financial incentives to boycott the games, as it occurred the last time an Australian Olympic boycott was attempted.This was in 1980, when the Olympic Games in Moscow were boycotted by the USA over the “invasion” of Afghanistan.

What actually occurred at that time was that a pro-socialist movement came to power in Afghanistan in 1978, and proceeded to modernise the country, legalising Trade Unions for the first time in history, and opening up education for women, where only 12% of adults were literate. Horrified, extreme Islamic fundamentalists armed by the CIA began a counter-insurgency which aimed to overthrow the secular government. This lead to 30 years of war and the near total destruction of the country.[2] The boycott of the Moscow Olympics in 1980 by the US government, and partially echoed by the Australian government, was key to whitewashing the anti-Soviet and anti-socialist Cold War I drive of imperialism with rivers of lies, deception and false narratives.

False accusations against China

Now, as Cold War II dramatically ramps up, another imperialist sponsored mountain of lies appears. Cold War II is not only directed against the People’s Republic of China (PRC), but also Russia, Iran, Syria and any other country which does not bow far enough to the will of Washington. Yet the PRC’s stunning economic, scientific and technological advances have driven Western capitalists into a frenzy, as they rightly fear being overtaken while their own for-profit economies flounder in a never-ending recession. Hence the desperate attempts to whip up political subversion using any means necessary – beginning with blatant falsehoods about what is happening inside the PRC. Senator Patrick makes wild and unsubstantiated claims that one million Uyghurs have been forced into internment camps, and are being pressured to “relinquish their language, culture and religion”. He name drops UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and US Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden as warning against “human rights abuses” and “genocide” against Uyghurs. He also makes the grandiose claim that the National Security Law in Hong Kong will “crush democratic freedoms”.[3]

Senator Patrick is simply retailing Western corporate propaganda, and is perhaps unaware of the role of the US deep state in funding and in many cases organising the political unrest in both the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in the PRC, as well as in Hong Kong. At the moment, he has not yet roped in the Australian government to this latest anti-China crusade. The Australian Sports Minister Richard Colbeck, when questioned in parliament, stated that he thought it best to keep sport and politics separate. However, the Minister then went on to publicly agree with the main reason for the proposed boycott!  Colbeck stated that “Australia” remains deeply concerned “by reports of enforced disappearance, mass detention, forced labour and pervasive surveillance of Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in Xinjiang.”[4] These nonsensical claims are risible, but the bigger the lie, and the more times it is repeated by those in “authority”, the greater likelihood that many will believe it.

Lurid claims of forced labour and mass detention of Uyghurs in the XUAR are little more than false slander. What is actually occurring is a tiny minority of Uyghur jihadists are being funded by the US state, via the National Endowment for Democracy (NED)[5], to wage a separatist war using any means up to and including violent terrorism against entirely innocent people. The World Uyghur Congress (WUC) is headquartered in Munich, Germany, and is more focused on fanatical anti-socialism than the rights of Uyghurs. Its founder, Isa Yusuf Aleptikin, directly appealed to then US President Richard Nixon for backing “East Turkestan” (their name for Xinjiang) against “Soviet and Chinese communism”, which they claimed was the greatest threat to Islamic peoples.[6] The former Soviet Union, like today’s PRC, does not suppress Muslims and in fact allows them to freely practice their religion. However, they do seek to prevent a tiny minority using Islam to wage separatist and/or terrorist insurgencies.

Even the Western media itself admits that Uyghur terrorism is a serious problem in the XUAR. There have been semi-regular attacks by Uyghur terrorists on innocent civilians in the XUAR over the last eight years, a bombing in Bangkok after the Thai government sent Uyghur militants back to the PRC rather than allow them passage to Turkey, and thousands went on to join ISIS and Al Qaeda in the West’s proxy war against Syria.[7] Obviously, the PRC government has to take precautions when these barbaric mercenaries return home. Any measures it takes to prevent Al Qaeda trained fighters from wreaking havoc inside the PRC can then easily be portrayed by the Western media as “repression”.

In fact, the PRC government has set up vocational training centres to give unemployed Uyghurs language and work skills so they can find work either in Xinjiang or other regions of the mainland. The PRC government has also built high-speed rail links and highways through the Taklamakan desert connecting Xinjiang to other regions, and has expanded big data internet services, which foster economic development.[8] Xinjiang is also a major hub of the PRC’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI or New Silk Road), which in this section connects China to Europe through Eurasia. The New Silk Road is arguably the primary reason why the US human rights industrial complex has targeted Xinjiang with fabricated tales about Uyghur “forced labour” and “mass detention”. The New Silk Road in all its dimensions, highlights the growing economic and political power of the PRC, and at the same time reveals the further economic and political decline of US and European imperialism. This is the real reason why US/EU imperialism and its “human rights” industry drums up fantastic lies[9] about “internment camps” in Xinjiang. The lies simultaneously obscure the role of the US/EU governments in funding Uyghur separatist terrorism as part of its regime change war efforts against both Syria and the PRC.

More US backed separatism in Hong Kong

Senator Patrick’s claims that “democratic freedoms” in Hong Kong will be crushed by the National Security Law likewise turn reality on its head. What occurred in Hong Kong during 2019 was not a “democracy” movement, but a US/UK government backed campaign of anti-socialist violence aimed at separating Hong Kong from mainland China. While the initial rally may have drawn in some Hong Kongers who had concerns about inequality, the actions quickly deteriorated into a dangerous Blackshirt minority who waved US[10] and British[11] flags while physically attacking Hong Kongers who did not agree with their violent actions[12], and wanted no part of it. In arguably the worst incident, one Blackshirt literally set fire[13] to a man who implored them to stop destroying the city. Such egregious violence repelled the majority of Hong Kongers and ensured the “democracy” movement would dwindle away into a tiny minority which could be easily dealt with.

In British colonial Hong Kong, which was ruled by the UK for 155 years, there were no elections, no minimum wage, no trade unions, no freedom of speech or basic democratic rights whatsoever. It is more than ironic that the Blackshirts and their backers now claim they stand for “democracy” against integration into the PRC. While Britain handed over Hong Kong to the PRC in 1997, both the UK and the US governments built and maintained a network of contacts, rather than genuinely vacate Hong Kong. The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the public relations arm of the CIA, has two active branches in Hong Kong, and directly funds groups such as the Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor.[14] The Blackshirts in Hong Kong would not have been able to sustain months of violent anti-government anarchy unless they knew they had the backing of a major imperialist power.

The Blackshirt mobs have no chance of separating Hong Kong from mainland China. The PRC’s massive socialist state backed development has meant a vast expansion of high-speed rail, with one line now linking Hong Kong with Shenzhen and Guangzhou.[15] The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge is also now open[16], linking the Hong Kong island with mainland China via the world’s longest (55 klm) sea crossing road connection. With a constant interaction between Hong Kong and mainland China via streams of people through travel and commerce, in integration of Hong Kong into the PRC is permanent. The US Empire cannot reverse this by open warfare, and hence resorts to internal political subversion. For now though, Blackshirt street violence has been worn down and subdued.

PRC government reinforces Covid-19 lies

While workers internationally have a vital interest in countering the anti-socialist Cold War drive against the PRC, its government cannot be a political ally. Hidebound into the non-Marxist theory of “socialism in one country”, the Communist Party of China (CPC) has betrayed workers by lending legitimacy to the torrents of lies which buttress the Covid-19 deception. The CPC attempts to mirror the actions of the governments of the capitalist West in a vain attempt to ensure “peaceful coexistence” with imperialism. In the case of the fake pandemic, the CPC carried out their own lockdowns[17], and uttered not a word of protest when the Western governments did the same – but with the intention of inflicting political repression of working people never previously attempted. While the CPC did not use lockdowns to attack the economic position of Chinese workers necessarily, it did everything it could to augment and assist the imperialist governments assault their own working class. It played up to and fuelled the lies used to shutdown Western economies under the guise of “healthcare”. Despite the entirely dubious role of the WHO, President Xi Jinping called on it to lead the response[18] to the discovery of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The WHO did just that, which encouraged capitalist governments to shutdown economies, throw millions of workers out of a job, suspend parliaments, virtually eliminate freedom of speech, freedom of assembly and the most elementary of basic democratic rights.

Here lies the sheer duplicity of the CPC as far as working people are concerned. In order to secure mutual co-operation with the capitalist governments of the West, the CPC is more than prepared to stand by and allow – and even assist – the ruling classes of the West install a form of domestic fascism. Lockdown fascism reached extremes in the US and Europe, but was arguably surpassed by the intolerable repression still being meted out in Melbourne, Australia.[19]  It should be noted that the governments of other deformed workers’ states – in Vietnam, the Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Cuba – likewise acquiesced with the very imperialist governments bent on their overthrow. They also locked their borders and took other measures which appeared to validate the open mendacity of the “Covid-19 as a biblical plague” narrative.

Despite the political perfidy of the leadership of the PRC, the working class has a vital interest in defending the PRC against imperialist efforts to undermine and eventually overthrow the state which emerged out of its 1949 socialist revolution. This means opposing the call for an Olympic boycott of Beijing 2020, and countering the lie factory which retails endless fabrications about “repression” in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and even in mainland China. The imperialist West is trying in vain to counter the incredible economic growth of the PRC, which is ultimately guaranteed by its gigantic state-owned industries, which are in turn guarded by the gains of 1949. Some of the state-owned and state subsidised firms on the US Fortune 500 list include large-scale oil, solar energy, telecommunications, engineering and construction companies, banks and automotive companies.[20] These firms in fact form the core of the Chinese workers’ state, which is nonetheless impaired by the essentially nationalist politics of the CPC. The forging of vanguard parties based on genuine Leninism remains the key task for workers internationally, part of a fightback against both lockdown terror and anti-socialist hysteria.

 

WORKERS   LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO  Box  66  NUNDAH QLD  4012

[1] https://www.insidethegames.biz/articles/1099360/coates-angry-over-beijing-boycott-call (15-10-2020)

[2] https://gowans.blog/category/peoples-democratic-party-of-afghanistan/ (15-10-2020)

[3] https://www.rexpatrick.com.au/australia_must_boycott_the_beijing_winter_olympic_games (15-10-2020)

[4] https://www.portnews.com.au/story/6958849/minister-cool-on-chinese-olympics-boycott/ (15-10-2020)

[5] https://stuartbramhall.wordpress.com/2020/09/16/inside-the-world-uyghur-congress-the-us-backed-right-wing-regime-seeking-the-fall-of-china/ (16-10-2020)

[6] https://consortiumnews.com/2020/03/09/inside-the-us-backed-world-uyghur-congress/ (16-10-2020)

[7] https://www.globalresearch.ca/us-fueling-terrorism-china/5657922 (16-10-2020)

[8] https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-09-01/Xinjiang-camps-more-fake-news-TqIrWBgF8s/index.html (16-10-2020)

[9] https://www.globalresearch.ca/biggest-lie-china-xinjiang-internment-camps/5723028 (17-10-2020)

[10] https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/hong-kong-protesters-plan-march-us-embassy-65460014 (17-10-2020)

[11] https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/politics/article/3023817/are-hong-kong-protesters-pro-american-or-british-when-they (17-10-2020)

[12] https://www.wired.com/story/how-hong-kongs-protests-turned-into-a-mad-max-tableau/ (17-10-2020)

[13] https://edition.cnn.com/2019/11/10/asia/hong-kong-protester-shot-intl-hnk/index.html (17-10-2020)

[14] https://www.mintpressnews.com/hong-kong-protests/259202/ (17-10-2020)

[15] https://www.china-briefing.com/news/hong-kong-high-speed-rail-connects-mainland-china-september-23/ (17-10-2020)

[16] https://www.hzmb.gov.hk/en/index.html (17-10-2020)

[17] https://qz.com/1855154/china-re-imposes-strict-lockdowns-as-cases-re-emerge-in-northeast/ (17-10-2020)

[18] http://chinaplus.cri.cn/recommended/1661/469062 (17-10-2020)

[19] https://redfireonline.com/2020/07/13/the-covid-19-siege-of-melbourne/ (17-10-2020)

[20] https://iacenter.org/2019/09/09/whats-behind-hong-kong-protests/ (17-10-2020)

      

Freedom Day: All Out on September 5!

The anti-lockdown movement will mobilise on September 5 for Freedom Day. Image from http://www.news.com.au

Freedom Day: All Out on September 5!

27-08-2020: When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty. This age-old axiom has never been more relevant than to the barbarous enforcement of lockdown fascism in 2020. Scientifically groundless lockdowns, the deliberate but needless sacking of millions of workers, and state and national border shutdowns form just part of the totalitarian nightmare facing working people in Australia, the US, Europe – the supposedly advanced countries of the West. The house arrest of entirely healthy people, on pain of prosecution by the police and/or the armed forces, quite obviously has nothing to do with a respiratory virus which MAY represent some concern for the well-being of the elderly and the immune compromised. Yet the enforced separation and isolation of healthy men, women and children through lockdowns is precisely what creates the most danger for the elderly and immune compromised – via the physical prevention of natural or herd immunity. The brave few scientists who have spoken out name the “human catastrophe” of lockdowns and quarantine.[1]

Covid-19 code for war

For ten years, the dark forces of capitalist imperialism have been doing their utmost to start a new World War against Russia and China. The wholesale destruction of living capital (working people) and dead capital and the rebuild afterwards is arguably the only scenario which can rebuild the dire crisis of the profit system, based on private ownership of the means of production – yet using social labour which is appropriated for private gain. The Anglo/US/EU Empire has thus far been thankfully blocked from launching such a global conflagration by the skillful use of both diplomacy and occasional military action by Russia, to a lesser extent China, and by non-imperialist allies such as Iran, Syria, Hezbollah, Venezuela, the DPRK, Zimbabwe, Belarus and so on. Unable to precipitate an international war, the ruling classes of the West instead unleashed a devastating war on “their own” workers. To gain the backing of the liberal left[2], and to leave workers without leadership, this war was discharged under the false guise of a “pandemic”. The “global health emergency” is anything but.[3]

The Australian state of Victoria, under Labor Party Dictator Dan Andrews, is unfortunately a laboratory for the most extreme venture of big capital’s descent into lockdown fascism. Nightly curfews, confining people to their homes, mandatory facemasks, restricted exercise times, and 5 kilometre travel restrictions are just some of the repressive measures implemented by the state. Most civil rights have been abolished, with police now able to enter any premises without permission or a warrant. Elementary democratic rights – always tenuous under the profit system – have been all but removed without explanation. Daily propaganda about death numbers, devoid of any context whatsoever, saturate TV and online media. Daily threats of being injected with a mandatory vaccine – likely to be useless, and potentially causing harm – abound. The stifling oppression is intense, and is undeniably causing immense physical, psychological, economic and social suffering.

To resist is to be free

Despite the apparently grim scenario, workers should not despair. An optimistic outlook is gained if it is acknowledged that resistance to lockdown fascism is growing through many forms. Not everyone has been scared into submission. Not everyone simply obeys the logic-defying rules, which change by the hour. Not everyone swallows the gratuitous grim reaper scenario politicians and the corporate media pump out 24/7. Critical thinkers read, study, observe and analyse information which contradicts the official narrative – where it is not censored by Big Tech. Under lockdown conditions, people are separated from each other, with little chance to discuss and debate such issues. Physical separation largely prevents political opposition from organising – which points to the real reason for lockdowns.

This is why the “Freedom Day” demonstrations planned for September 5 are vital. Mass, public defiance of lockdowns and all of the political repression associated with Covid-19 (forced facemasks, forced vaccines, forced social-distancing) is a central component of the what will need to be the political defeat of the Western ruling classes and their war to save the staggering inequality generated by their system. Freedom Day actions are planned for Melbourne, and in many other centres around Australia, for September 5. Due to mass political censorship by Google, Facebook, Amazon etc., actual plans for the day cannot be circulated openly. Workers need to stand by and be ready to mobilise, as organisers plan to release some details in the 24 hours before September 5.

Due to the treasonous actions of Union officials and so-called left parties – who have been exposed as police auxiliaries – leadership of the anti-lockdown movement has fallen into the hands of elements who are not usually associated with working-class struggle. Regardless, what is urgently required is a united front of ALL sections of society that can see through lockdown mania – irrespective of their political ideas on other issues. This is likely to result in a combination of left and right, of nationalists and internationalists, of so-called “anti-vaxxers” and those concerned with 5G telecommunications infrastructure, of civil libertarians and followers of QAnon, of privacy and anti-war activists, and more. But the majority are likely to be those who simply have legitimate concerns about the vast expansion of state power, from its powers of surveillance up to the ability to forcibly quarantine those who quite rightly refuse to be tested and tracked and traced. The anti-lockdown movement is one framework where there can be a temporary alliance of otherwise opposing political viewpoints.

Revolutionaries must assist the anti-lockdown movement even despite the rejection of what is interpreted as “socialism” among some of its participants. Unfortunately, the governments of several non-imperialist and even workers’ states have played their own role in fanning pandemic hysteria and have even imposed their own lockdowns. Russia, China, Iran and Syria are examples. Marxists need to explain the need for defence of these states against US imperialism, while offering not a shred of political support to the governments of these countries which fruitlessly seek to co-exist with the US Empire. Resistance to inhuman lockdowns must be combined with resistance to imperialist war. A better world is on offer for those prepared to stand strong. ALL OUT ON SEPTEMBER 5!

WORKERS  LEAGUE

http://www.redfireonline.com

E:workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO  Box  66  NUNDAH  QLD  4012

[1] https://www.collective-evolution.com/2020/04/29/leading-scientist-claims-lockdown-quarantine-is-a-human-catastrophe-new-interview/ (26-08-2020)

[2] https://redfireonline.com/2020/08/25/the-labour-lieutenants-of-lockdown-terror/ (26-08-2020)

[3] https://jbhandleyblog.com/home/lockdownlunacy (26-08-2020)

 

Covid-19: Natural Pathogen, or Biological War?

Covid-19: Natural Pathogen, or Biological War?

22-03-2020 – As the Covid-19 (Corona Virus) crisis spreads further throughout the globe, the spectre of an unprecedented economic depression looms large. As with the Great Depression in the 1930s, the private-profit based economies at that time did not have a hope of a release from its grip. It was “resolved” the only way it could have been – through a World War. This outcome suspends itself over the planet now. Even without the Corona Virus outbreak, the capitalist economies of the United States (US), Europe, Japan and Australia had effectively limped along since the Great Recession of 2008. These desperately waning economic conditions drove the imperialist axis to wage regime change wars or attempted coups against Libya, Syria, Ukraine, Venezuela, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK or “North Korea”), Iran, Bolivia and Honduras, at the least. These hostile acts were pre-cursors to the real targets of Washington and their acolytes – the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China (PRC).  Workers should be aware that the US Empire’s dangerous hostility to Russia and China will not abate regardless of how the Corona Virus crisis plays out.

Where did Covid-19 come from?

The US Empire (backed by Paris, Berlin, London, Canberra) is desperate to slow or stop the indomitable economic rise of Red China, and the political and diplomatic power that flows therefrom. Washington knows that US corporations – during a virtual recession in the West – cannot compete against the giant socialist state backed industries within the PRC. It also knows that a military attempt at regime change in the PRC is impossible, given the size of China population wise, and the PRC’s possession of advanced nuclear weapons. Thus, the priority flows to political attempts to undermine the authority of the government, along with attempts to break away some of its component parts, such as Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Tibet. Given the fact that these efforts had so far largely failed – even if they had fooled many liberals in the West – it is not unreasonable to suggest that Washington is trying something different with the Corona Virus, regardless of the eminently misanthropic consequences.

Despite attempts to paint Covid-19 as a “Chinese” virus, there is some evidence to suggest that it did not originate in the PRC at all. A report in the English language Global Times newspaper in China, first broke the story that a study by ChinaXiv, an open repository for Chinese scientific researchers, had indicated that the Huanan Seafood market in Wuhan was NOT the original source of the novel coronavirus. The study indicates that “patient zero” introduced the virus to the market last November, with the crowded market then providing grounds for its relatively rapid spread to others.[1]  A report on a Japanese TV station also made the claim that Covid-19 may have originated in the US. Apparently some 14 000 fatalities due to influenza over the previous period may have been due to Covid-19. Moreover, the Military World Games were held in Wuhan last October, with one social media user speculating that the virus had been brought with the US delegates.[2] Various theories are floating around the internet, mainly over whether the release of the virus was accidental or deliberate.

No less than Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian posted open questions on social media to the US government about the known extent of Corona Virus. He posted a video of Robert Redfield, a director of the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, admitting that some Americans who had died from influenza later tested positive to the Corona Virus. “When did patient zero begin in US?  How many people are infected? …. Be transparent! Make public your data! US owe us an explanation!”[3] While the exact origin of the Corona Virus may not be able to be known, developments such as these raise pertinent questions. In the spirit of never believing anything until it is officially denied, US Secretary of State and arch war hawk Mike Pompeo swiftly shot back accusing Zhao Lijian, and China generally, of spreading “outlandish rumours”. A US state department official even stated that the spreading of “conspiracy theories” is dangerous.[4]

It takes some chutzpah for the US to accuse China of spreading “conspiracy theories” at the very same time as US government officials and corporate media fling baseless and evidence free claims of 1 million Uyghurs being detained in the Xinjiang province. And for all the whining from the West about “authoritarianism” in the PRC, the fact is that the Chinese government’s measures to contain and control the Corona Virus have been unmatched by any Western counterpart. China’s efforts to build a 1000 bed hospital from scratch in under two weeks[5] is by now well known. Western economies running on a for-profit basis with governments enthralled by private corporations would not even be able to contemplate, let alone attempt, such a feat. For all the misunderstanding about the PRC economy, the fact is that it does not operate primarily on the basis of production for profit, and the major and strategic means of production are state owned – a legacy of the victory of the 1949 socialist revolution.

Act of biological war?

Despite the distorted leadership of the PRC by the essentially nationalist Communist Party of China (CPC), the simple existence of the Chinese workers’ state and its still rising economic power spell the end of US primacy of the globe – something the US ruling class cannot afford to allow. They are prepared to use any measure to prevent other countries looking to China for economic and even political leadership. While it would be difficult to determine scientifically, it is feasible to suggest that the intention was to bring down the powerhouse Chinese economy, in order to give the ailing US economy some respite.  If so, this appears to have backfired, with the New York Mayor recently declaring that city to be the new epicenter of the Corona Virus.[6]  Yet the question must be posed as to why China, Iran and Italy, out of the 196 countries in the world, have been hardest hit. It has been mooted that Italy was the first G7 country to sign on to Red China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI or “New Silk Road), while Iran has been attempting to bypass the crippling US sanctions on its economy by importing from China while selling China its oil.[7] As the Chinarising website reports, at one point Iran had 10 000 cases of Corona Virus, while the countries between Iran and China had virtually nil. Also, India, with a similar population to China, but with hundreds of millions more people living in dire poverty and in many cases with poor sanitation, has been left almost unscathed.[8]

The US ruling class is known for its use of biological war against its declared enemies. During the Vietnam War, the US dumped Agent Orange by the gigalitre on an innocent people resisting the imperialist behemoth. Socialist Cuba has also been targeted. What is more, the Russian government had recently warned the world of its grave concerns that the US was developing biological weapons. In November last year, the Secretary of the Security Council of Russia, Nikolai Patrushev, sounded the alarm that the Pentagon had established some 200 biological laboratories which study infectious diseases and can be used to manufacture biological weapons. Many of these labs had been set up in the countries of the former Soviet Union, such as Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Armenia.[9]

What acts of imperialist subterfuge can be determined is the fact that the US has increased already crippling sanctions against Iran, at the peak of the Corona Virus outbreak.[10] This at a time when the Russian and Chinese governments, amongst many others around the world, had been issuing pleas for the US to lift its sanctions on Iran, to assist global efforts against the Corona Virus.[11] Google, ever reliable as an arm of US foreign policy, chimed in by removing Iran’s Corona Virus app from the Google Play Store.[12] The app was released by the Iranian government to help detect patients. This makes a mockery of US government claims that it would offer Iran assistance for the outbreak.

Social and political control

That the Corona Virus is a pathogen which needs to be combatted is not in doubt. What is suspicious is the way in which it is being used to implement mass social and political control, which could be an attempt by the imperialist West to practice a test run of submission to authority for their ultimate goal – catastrophic war against Russia and China. The banning of mass gatherings, enforceable by the police, could easily become permanent measures if not resisted by workers. In Queensland, the police are now monitoring venues with indoor events that may exceed 100 people. Fines of up to $50 000 or 12 months in jail could be applied in different Australian states.[13] If society is at a stage where public meetings can be shut-down by the armed forces of the state – we must question what the difference is with fascism. The corporate media is now so practiced at deceiving masses of people with propaganda, it can induce almost whole populations to dance to its tune.

The corporate media acts as an arm of the governments that protect their profits. In “normal” times, many workers suspect and/or understand this. Yet this time, the capitalist class seems to be willing to trigger an economic recession by throwing millions of workers out of employment. It’s as if they were just itching for the chance to sack workers. QANTAS has stood down 20 000 of its workers, and even claimed that the viability of the airline could be at stake. While there has been a murmur of dissent from the Transport Workers Union officials, saying that this amounts to workers bailing out the airline,[14]  there were no moves to organise resistance to this move at airports or at other workplaces.

The top Union officials, remunerated to the tune of six-figure salaries at the expense of Union members, are once again playing their role as political police of rank and file workers. In Queensland, the Queensland Council of Union executive wasted no time in cancelling Labour Day marches planned for 2020.[15] On the unconvincing grounds of protecting “public safety”, the ultra-conservative QCU executive was only too happy to present itself as one with the government of the elites. No other provisions for even consulting workers, or organising smaller meetings where workers could discuss or plan a response, was provided. The only action component proposed was that workers sign a petition [!!] for leave for casual workers!  The virtual absence of democratic rights for workers within the Unions, enforced by careerist officials, results in such tragicomic outcomes.

Well-heeled Union officials, the corporate media, venture capitalists, and even left groups who usually parade their “socialist” convictions, are now lining up as one. Whether they call on the government to “take the crisis seriously” or encourage people to visit government approved websites, they are all in lockstep with what appears to be a preparation for World War III. The numbers are simply not there for a “pandemic”. The production for profit economy was already effectively in recession, and large and small employers were just itching for an excuse to cut their costs by laying off workers without resistance. What better opportunity than a supposed health crisis? Those with serious capital will not lose out by mass retrenchments of workers – in fact they could well make big money out of it.

Mass retrenchment of workers will cause immense hardship and suffering for the majority of workers who only earn enough to pay the bills, and many not even that. The goal of the rulers appears to have been to once again enforce submission to authority without question. US imperialism (backed by Canberra) was seriously defeated in their war of regime change against Syria. Standing in the way of the US juggernaut was Russia, and to a lesser extent, China. Unable to accept defeat, it is not unlikely to assume that Washington is turning to any method whatever – even the fueling of biological war – in a vain attempt to reassert its fast slipping global hegemony. While workers should participate in reasonable health precautions, docile submission to attacks on jobs and living standards should be resisted. Imperialist war provocations should be rejected, and preparations made for an internationally planned and collectively owned economy. A workers’ party which leads the masses against the never-ending crisis of the profit system remains the most urgent necessity.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO Box 66  NUNDAH  QLD  4012

 

[1] https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1180429.shtml (18-03-2020)

[2] http://en.people.cn/n3/2020/0223/c90000-9661026.html (18-03-2020)

[3] https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/coronavirus-chinese-official-suggests-u-s-army-blame-outbreak-n1157826 (18-03-2020)

[4] https://thehill.com/policy/international/487853-pompeo-warns-china-against-spreading-outlandish-rumors-about-coronavirus (18-03-2020)

[5] https://www.france24.com/en/20200204-china-opens-virus-hospital-built-from-scratch-in-under-two-weeks (21-03-2020)

[6] https://abcnews.go.com/Health/coronavirus-live-updates-china-exonerates-whistleblower-doctor-warned/story?id=69702910 (21-03-2020)

[7] https://www.globalresearch.ca/more-than-just-virus/5706476 (21-03-2020)

[8] https://chinarising.puntopress.com/2020/03/16/kim-iverson-reports-the-same-geopolitical-observations-about-biowarfare-your-passport-has-a-lot-to-do-with-your-exposure-to-covid-19-the-ramifications-for-you-and-your-loved-ones-is-explained-china/ (21-03-2020)

[9] https://journal-neo.org/2020/02/20/us-wages-biological-war-against-china/(21-03-2020)

[10] https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2020/03/18/621105/US-fresh-sanctions-Iran-coronavirus-outbreak?fbclid=IwAR2F_ICOKi9ojx4QLMU3p-MMWFMdRznJp2FCKAvuEe6xcqTa0jkW7rjDrJg (21-03-2020)

[11] https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/coronavirus-china-and-russia-call-us-lift-iran-sanctions?fbclid=IwAR2sE4qPdLeLb1uwjR3fvrvy-pKaM1MWckggdpNKpMScJF8cTxUvY959kPU (21-03-2020)

[12] https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2020/03/11/620625/Google-Iran-coronavirus-US-sanctions-Trump-medicine?fbclid=IwAR01LkXDjKo4Rxv4yAg3tzgpNF41IwYMkUOJqot4sfg0pR5kaRFRiZ31RF8 (21-03-2020)

[13] https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-21/coronavirus-self-isolation-whos-making-sure-you-stay-indoors/12078074?fbclid=IwAR1T6YXt1AFDkk9bhpVHVYzelVrNOKKrgkScng6SRqbeWjbntHoFAbOW5To (22-03-2020)

[14] https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-19/qantas-to-stand-down-two-thirds-of-employees-due-to-coronavirus/12069876?fbclid=IwAR17XkUVtnqbRoLeUlpQoUpIr2y9SecSoaS76J4zkoKO8T7PumEC_LhTh0Y (22-03-2020)

[15] https://www.queenslandunions.org/workers-put-community-health-and-safety-first-in-cancelling-labour-day-events/ (22-03-2020)

No War on Iran! US: Get Out of Iraq and Syria!

Mourners mark General Soleimani’s assassination in Baghdad. http://www.politico.com

No War On Iran!  US: Get Out of Iraq and Syria!

05-01-2020: In an act of cold blooded murder, the US military assassinated Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp (IRGC) Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis, the leader of Kata’eb Hezbollah, in air strike on Baghdad Airport on New Year’s Day.[1] General Soleimani was the commander of the IRGC’s Quds Force, and was overwhelmingly popular as the key leader of the military defence of the 1979 Iranian revolution. In every sense of the word, General Soleimani is a martyr in the cause of resistance to the scourge which threatens the world – US imperialism.

Absurdly, US President Donald Trump claimed in the aftermath that the US “took action to stop a war…we did not take action to start a war”.[2] Defying reality, Trump also claimed that the US does not seek regime change in Iran. Little could be further from the truth. For four decades, the US has remained in better enmity to the Iranian Islamic revolution which overthrew the US backed Shah of Iran and proceeded to build an anti-imperialist and independent Iran. Iran is now almost the only country in the Middle East without a US military presence. It is encircled by US military bases in neighbouring countries, in a similar way in which the US is attempting to militarily encircle Russia and China.

US defeat in Syria

This latest unparalleled act of war is more related to recent setbacks for US imperialism, it is not a demonstration of US success. After destroying Libya in 2011, Washington – with the backing of Canberra, London, Paris, Riyadh and Tel Aviv amongst others – set about engaging in a terroristic and criminal war of regime change against the Syrian Arab Republic. Hordes of unhinged mercenary barbarians in the form of ISIS, Al Qaeda and others were armed, funded, trained and sent into Syria to slaughter innocents using extreme violence. The Pentagon was the key supplier of weaponry for the deranged Daesh cutthroats[3], along with its allies. Thankfully, the sadistic imperialist war on Syria was defeated – arguably the first time that US imperialism has been defeated since the liberation of Saigon in the Vietnam War in 1975. The defeat of US imperialism – via their ISIS proxy – came about in no small part due to the painstaking efforts of General Soleimani and the IRGC.

Crucial assistance also came from the Russian government, which turned the tide in the regime change war after it was invited to do so by Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. Russia’s superiority in air warfare, particularly the use of the SU-35 jet fighter, cut US/Saudi supply lines to ISIS, and prevented their advance throughout the country. Yet even with Russia’s technologically superior air power, a war cannot only be won from the skies. Ground reconnaissance and securing areas won with the air power is necessary. This role was heroically played by the Syrian Arab Army, the IRGC and also the Lebanese Hezbollah. Though not playing an active role, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) offered some forms of aid for rebuilding and helped to block attempts by the imperialist Western powers to enforce sanctions against Syria at the United Nations (UN). The PRC had a direct interest in stifling Saudi financed Wahabist terrorism, as some 5000 extremist Uyghurs had enlisted with ISIS and Al Qaeda in Syria.[4] The PRC correctly sought measures to prevent these misanthropic loons from returning to China to carry out even more terrorist attacks against innocent civilians.

Iraq colour revolution derailed

The event which preceded the criminal assassination of General Soleimani was the US backed phony “uprising” against the Iraqi government last October and November. As we wrote at the time,[5] this was no “revolution”, but yet more US backed subversion aimed at breaking the ties the Iraqi government of Adel Abdul Mahdi to Iran, Syria and the PRC. The Iraqi government has little choice but to join with Iran for collective security, and little choice but to join with the PRC for economic assistance. For example, signing on to Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI or “New Silk Road”), a huge infrastructure development program largely funded by the PRC’s still booming socialist economy. Washington was doing all it could to prevent this from occurring – now to the extent of assassinating the key General who defeated its proxy ISIS forces on the ground in Syria and Iraq.

Some have suggested that Iran’s recent discovery of a new oil field containing an estimated 50 billion barrels of oil[6] was what pushed Washington to move yet again against Iran. Iran’s oil wealth is certainly a part of the US Empire’s concerns, but by no means the only one. Even if US troops are still in Syria to illegally steal Syria’s oil despite being expelled from almost all other parts of the country[7], regime change in Iran is the supreme aim of Wall Street. One could say that the wars on Iraq and Syria were only preliminary wars waged by Washington in order to get to Iran. And taking out Syria, Iraq and Iran are key aims in the overall (failing) strategy to weaken Russia and China.

Needless to say, a new US war on Iran would be catastrophic for the world, not only the Middle East. Capitalist imperialism cannot function without horrific wars against anyone, socialist or not, who attempts to stand independently of political control from Washington. Workers of the world have a vital interest in preventing a new calamitous war from being waged not only on Iran, but also on themselves via “their own” governments. The threat of imperialist war is directly linked to the global warming fueled bushfires threatening large parts of Australia currently, and is linked to unemployment, homelessness, relentless funding cuts of government services and falling or stagnant wages. The struggle against imperialist war is simultaneously a struggle for a workers’ government. NO WAR ON IRAN!

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO  Box  66   NUNDAH  QLD  4012

[1] https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/update-qassem-soleimani-and-abu-mahdi-al-mohandes-confirmed-dead-after-us-strikes/ (04-01-2020)

[2] https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2020/jan/03/iran-general-qassem-suleimani-killed-us-trump-drone-strike-baghdad-reaction-live-updates?page=with:block-5e0fa0dd8f08c397226445f2#block-5e0fa0dd8f08c397226445f2 (04-01-2020)

[3] https://www.globalresearch.ca/u-s-military-aid-to-al-qaeda-isis-daesh/5548960 (05-01-2020)

[4] https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/2133064/china-step-aid-syria-war-winds-down (05-01-2020)

[5] https://redfireonline.com/2019/10/13/iraq-deadly-chaos-through-subversion/ (05-01-2020)

[6] https://apnews.com (05-01-2020)

 

[7] https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/u-s-has-no-right-syrian-oil-adviser-president-assad-n1106846 (05-01-2020)

No War on Iran! Lift the Sanctions!

Flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran

No War On Iran! Lift the Sanctions!

16-06-2019 – In a rehash of the lead up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held a press conference on June 13 where he promptly blamed Iran for two alleged attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Pompeo provided not one shred of evidence, and did not take any questions from reporters.[1] This follows hot on the heels of similar attacks on four oil tankers in the region on May 12, which, not surprisingly, the US government also blamed on Iran. For its part, Iran has “categorically” rejected the accusations, for the June 12 incident,[2] as it did for the May 12 incident. It is not difficult to surmise that both incidents were false flags, designed to create a context for US strikes on the country it “lost” in 1979. Once again, with a pack of lies, the US ruling class is threatening the world with a catastrophic conflagration.

Days before the May 12 incident, the US government announced it was sending a strike force to the Middle East, ostensibly to respond to threats to US troops by Iran or their allies. The strike force includes the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier, the guided missile cruiser USS Leyte Gulf and other destroyers. The USS John Stennis aircraft carrier and its strike force is already in the Persian Gulf.[3] When the Islamic Republic of Iran has publicly made no threats against any country for 40 years, US claims of their security being jeopardised are in reality yet more public relations preparing the public for a major war.

Major US provocations

US President Trump had already “withdrawn” the US from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on May 8, which was a deal to restrict Iran’s development of nuclear technology which could be used to develop nuclear weapons. The governments of Britain, France and Germany demurred, and declared they would stay within the treaty as a means to better achieve its goal of the prevention of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons.[4] In fact, the “withdrawal” is a violation of international law, as the JCPOA is a plan adopted by the United Nations Security Council. The US cannot simply withdraw without bringing into question their membership of the UN. Needless to say, however, this has not stopped them before.

The US “withdrawal” also came with even more sanctions in Iran than had been in place previously. The scale of these sanctions cannot be underestimated. They aim to shut down Iran’s oil industry entirely, something that Iran heavily relies on. Iran produces 3.8 million barrels of oil per day, which represents 3.9% of the world oil supply.[5] In addition, the US has applied financial sanctions on Iran which effectively cut Iran off from the international financial system. Last November saw US sanctions applied on most of Iran’s banks, including its central bank. Just one result of these combined measures is estimated by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to be a 4% economic contraction in 2018, which could be followed by a 6% economic contraction in 2019.[6]  Added to an estimated 50% inflation increase over that time, one can see how adversely affected the Iranian masses are as a result.

As if this wasn’t enough, in April US President Trump announced that the US was designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp (IRGC) a “terrorist” organisation.[7] In response, the Iranian government promptly labelled the US Central Command or CENTCOM (US troops in the Middle East) as terrorist. The action of the US is unprecedented in that it is possibly the first time that a nation state’s armed forces have been labelled in such a way. Usually the designation of “terrorist” is reserved for non-state actors and other armed groups. The US government is overtly throwing the worst invective against Iran it can muster – and the truth be damned.

Linked to US defeat in Syria

Although the US White House has sought the overthrow of the Islamic Republic of Iran since it’s revolution in 1979 dispensed with the US backed monarchy, the recent moves against Iran are linked to the failed eight year long war for regime change against Syria, from 2011 to the present. Although US troops are still in parts of Syria, where they are enlisting reactionary Kurdish armed groups through its Orwellian named “Syrian Democratic Forces”, overall the US suffered a stinging defeat. It was not able to bring down the Syrian Arab Republic despite the arming and funding of tens of thousands of barbaric death squads, under various guises such as ISIS, Al Qaeda and Al Nusra. The Russian intervention, at the express invitation of the Syrian government, was decisive. Beginning in September 2015, superior Russian air power took out ISIS strongholds, and cut off ISIS supply lines. From this point, Washington’s proxy ISIS forces, which had been recklessly carrying out atrocities across Syria, barely stood a chance.

US defeat in Syria was arguably the first military defeat for US imperialism since the liberation of Saigon in Vietnam in 1975. Yet as decisive as the superior Russian air power was, air power alone cannot win a war. For this, troops on the ground are needed. And these were provided by the Syrian Arab Army, the Lebanese Hezbollah and armed forces from Iran. The Iranian government recognised that if Syria was taken down by the Pentagon, it would be next. Just as Russia saw that it had to draw a red line on US regime change wars after the destruction of Green Libya, Iran drew its red line also. Thankfully for humanity, the non-imperialist forces of Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and Syria were able to “contain and roll back” US imperialism and its allies – Israel, Britain, France, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Australia, Denmark, Qatar and so on. Turkey began the war on the side of the US Empire, but finished as an ally of Russia.

While the failed regime change war on Syria has burnt the Pentagon, its 2003 invasion of Iraq has left a string of US bases in that country, although the current Iraqi government is pushing hard to remove them. The US occupation of Afghanistan, in place since 2001, has furnished the US with a string of bases on another side of Iran. Iran is thus encircled with hostile US military bases, in the same way in which the US has encircled Russia and is attempting to do to China. As Brett Redmayne-Titley writes, however, a US ground invasion of Iran will need a stable and secure border.[8] That could have been Iraq in the past, but not now. Other bordering countries of Iran, such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Turkey and Pakistan can hardly allow the US to use their soil for an invasion of Iran either.

“Internal” Regime Change

US air strikes on Iran in isolation from a ground invasion are possible, but would hardly cause what the Pentagon seeks – regime change. Hence, Washington uses the military stick at the same time as using covert means to bring down independent Iran. Using familiar fake political themes as “human rights” and “democracy”, and even “workers’ rights”, the CIA constantly seeks pro-US allies inside Iran, and amongst liberals and deluded left parties internationally. This formula may have worked in Syria but for the assistance Syria received from Russia, Hezbollah and Iran. In Iran, the Zionist Israeli state and the Saudi Arabian monarchy, while outwardly appearing to be foes, would supply dangerous levels of succor to both an external and internal US led war on Iran.

The madness of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and US National Security Adviser John Bolton make US war moves against Iran rather obvious. In the face of this, many Australian left parties swear blind that they oppose a US led war on Iran – while simultaneously calling for regime change in Iran!!  They don’t wish to acknowledge that Wall Street seeks regime change in Iran any which way it can; by external invasion OR by internal destabilisation. In practice, both are intertwined and cannot be separated. US imperialism fosters internal destablisation in lieu of an external invasion. Washington has been doing this since the CIA was created in the aftermath of World War II. Why would Iran be an exception?

If US imperialism somehow did not exist, it might be possible for those on the left to agitate for a socialist overthrow of the “capitalism” that currently operates in Iran. But we do not live in such a fantasy world. US imperialism has its agents ensconced in virtually every country in the world (with the exception of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – DPRK), as well as a layer of internal pro-US liberals who retain desperate illusions about “American freedom”. While working people can certainly have their criticisms of some of the actions of the Iranian government (as do Iranians themselves), the fact is that US control of Iran would plunge the Middle East into a hell previously unknown. The immediate task for workers internationally is to defend Iran against US imperialism, internally and externally.

Excuses offered for anti-government agitation

Some misguided left parties which backed the imperialist led war for regime change in Syria, repeat the dose in Iran. Only this time they offer what appear on the surface to be left justifications for their call to overthrow the government of Iran. However, these “left” justifications are grossly distorted, and no matter how much left rhetoric accompanies them, end up fanning the flames of imperialist war. For example, Socialist Alternative (SALT), reporting on the contrived January 2018 protests in Iran, claim that Hassan Rouhani’s government has “privatised numerous state-owned enterprises”.[9] But is this true? It is certainly not “privatisation” as we experience in the capitalist West, where a formerly state owned enterprise is handed over to private capital – whose only goal is profit for themselves. What has actually occurred is the transfer of some state assets to other state bodies, such as the IRGC, the mass organisation the Basij, or the bonyads (charities). As Ramin Mazaheri of Press TV has exhaustively argued, the Iranian government still controls the overwhelming majority of the economy, and would not politically be able to carry out privatisation as it has been known in the West for the last 40 years.[10]

The Spartacist League offers banner headlines opposing a US led war on Iran, but then undermine their claimed position by railing against the Iranian government for the oppression of “national minorities”.[11] They are joined on this imaginary bandwagon by the Socialist Alliance,[12] the Communist Party of Australia (CPA),[13] Solidarity,[14] and the Socialist Equality Party (SEP).[15] All of these left parties consciously or unconsciously ignore the extent to which violent separatists and jihadists are materially and politically aided by the imperialist powers, as well as the Saudi Arabian monarchy and the Zionist Israeli state, in their multi-faceted efforts to reverse Iran’s 1979 revolution. Baluchi Salafists in the southeast of Iran[16], Ahwaz separatists in the southwest, as well as some Kurdish reactionary parties such as PJAK (“Party for a Free Life in Kurdistan”)[17] – all carry out barbarous acts against innocent Iranians, while being materially aided by Washington, Tel Aviv and Riyadh. For example, in September last year, Ahwazi separatists, disguised in IRGC and Basij uniforms, opened fire at a military parade in Ahvaz, slaughtering at least 25 people, including women and children.[18] Yet the misinformed left parties would have us believe that it is the Iranian government which is “suppressing national minorities” !

Workers in Australia and internationally have a vital interest in undertaking all measures which can prevent yet another US led imperialist war in the Middle East. As in Syria, working people need to defend Iran against internal and external regime change, against the Pentagon and its allies, and against leftists who struggle to grasp geopolitics. While world socialism is the ultimate necessity, this goal will not be reached unless workers can prevent the imperialist annihilation of Iran today.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

 

PO Box 66  NUNDAH QLD  4012

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

 

[1] http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/51764.htm (15-06-2019)

[2] https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/world/2019/06/13/us-iran-oil-tanker-attack/ (15-06-2019)

[3] https://www.studentnewsdaily.com/daily-news-article/u-s-strike-force-heading-to-the-middle-east-to-counter-iran-threats/ (15-06-2019)

[4] https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/05/08/donald-trump-announces-decision-iran-nuclear-deal-live-updates/ (15-06-2019)

[5] http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-07/17/c_137330922.htm (15-06-2019)

[6] https://iranprimer.usip.org/blog/2019/apr/23/impact-us-sanctions-iran-oil (15-06-2019)

[7] https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/04/designates-iran-elite-irgc-terrorist-organisation-trump-190408141756166.html (15-06-2019)

[8] https://www.globalresearch.ca/geography-war-no-iraq-no-iran/5678358 (15-06-2019)

[9] https://redflag.org.au/node/6153 (16-06-2019)

[10] https://www.mintpressnews.com/what-privatization-irans-unique-socialist-economy/244887/ (16-06-2019)

[11] https://www.icl-fi.org/english/wv/1156/iran.html (16-06-2019

[12] https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/iranian-workers-protests-confront-regime-crisis (16-06-2019)

[13] https://www.cpa.org.au/guardian/2018/1852/06-rally.html (16-06-2019)

[14] https://www.solidarity.net.au/refugees/ahwazis-face-persecution-in-iran-detention-in-australia/ (16-06-2019)

[15] https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/11/26/irst-n26.html (16-06-2019)

[16] https://thesaker.is/foreign-backed-terrorism-in-iran-part-one-us-israeli-backed-salafists-in-iran/ (16-06-2019)

[17] https://thesaker.is/foreign-backed-terrorism-in-iran-part-two-us-israeli-backed-insurgency-and-separatism-in-western-iran/ (16-06-2019)

[18] https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2018/09/22/574848/Iran-Ahvaz-terrorist-attack (16-06-2019)

New Zealand Terror Attacks: Circumstances Demand Answers

A police officer stands guard outside the Masjid Al Noor Mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. Image from http://www.dailysabah.com

New Zealand Terror Attacks: Circumstances Demand Answers
Statement of the Workers League

17-03-2019 – The circumstances surrounding the terror attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday remain murky. The corporate media claim that 50 people were shot dead, in coordinated attacks on mosques at around 1.30 in the afternoon. At the time of writing, the names, ages and occupations of those that perished have not been released. One name that has been released is that of Brenton Tarrant, a 28 year old from Australia, who had apparently written a far-right wing and fascist manifesto. The names of another three people arrested who allegedly took part have also not been released.

There are three possibilities, which we remain open to. Either: 1. This act of right-wing terror took place as it was reported by the corporate media, with no prior knowledge or involvement of the capitalist state and its security arms. 2. This act did not occur as it was reported by the corporate media, but was inflated with a torrent of false information. 3. This act of right-wing terror took place after being staged and contrived by the security agencies of the imperialist states – coordinated across Australia and New Zealand and perhaps with the US, with the gunman a willing or unwilling patsy.

The first scenario we consider unlikely. This attack was apparently planned for two years, and it seems unlikely that the police and internal security services, which have been beefed up in the wake of the “war on terror”, had no prior knowledge or involvement. The second scenario is a possibility because the corporate media is an arm of the state in capitalist societies. The third scenario is also a possibility, due to the significantly adverse geopolitical conditions in which the Anglo/US Empire finds itself.

The US Empire has just suffered a huge defeat after eight years of an atrocious war for regime change on Syria. Arguably, this was the first defeat in war for US imperialism since the liberation of Vietnam in 1975. The governments of the UK, France, Australia, Canada, Israel, Saudi Arabia and others, all took part in an effort to overthrow the Syrian Arab Republic using extreme violence. This included the arming, funding and creation of ISIS, and subtle backing for Al Qaeda and numerous death squads – some of whom had been transplanted from Libya, where NATO had destroyed Green Libya in 2011. Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and the Syrian armed forces combined to defeat US imperialism where they ordinarily would have expected a reasonably quick overthrow.

The US Empire has repeatedly attempted to foment regime change in Iran in recent years, but has not been successful. While there are a number of pro-Western Iranians who agitate for the downfall of the Islamic Republic of Iran, they are very far from gaining anywhere near enough backing for “internal” regime change. The US imposes sanctions upon sanctions, but they are unable to break Iran. Iran’s stock of conventional missiles is vast, they have loyal armed forces, and the majority of Iranians are very well aware of what US imperialism is capable of.

The US Empire’s attempts at regime change in Venezuela have proven farcical, and have fallen flat. The outrageous meddling involved in officially recognising Juan Guaido, a member of a small right-wing party, as “interim president” has placed almost half of the United Nations offside. This is despite backing from the governments of Australia and the European Union. The Bolivarian Armed Forces of Venezuela remain loyal to the government of President Maduro, even despite the economic problems plaguing the country.

The US Empire was unable to foment regime change in Sudan, or at least for now. Russia is continuing to rebuild its economy since the devastation of the 1990s, and militarily at least, it has strategic weapons which it uses not only for its own defence, but to occasionally restrain the US Empire. China’s economy is still booming, and its development of science and technology, combined with a huge manufacturing base, is enabling it to, sooner or later, overtake the US. Socialist state led development is the reason for the rise of China, and the fact that the economy is not primarily based on production for private profit. Red China’s  Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a trillion dollar trade and economic development package for Africa and Eurasia, is a stark example of its economic superiority.

Under these circumstances, the US Empire is desperate, and needs to somehow regain the political loyalty of “their own” working people. This could be one reason for its potential involvement in the preparation and staging of the Christchurch terror attacks. This could well include the utilisation of far-right wing and Nazi inspired elements such as that of Brenton Tarrant. If the police and security services were not involved, the fault still lies with the entire operation of the capitalist class system, which is reaching the point of crisis in Australia, the US and Europe. It is out of crisis that far-right, anti-immigrant sentiment is fueled – if not adequately challenged and defeated by the workers’ movement.

This is why a simple broad front of “anti-fascism” and/or “anti-Islamophobia” built in response will not address the causes of the extreme violence of one-off mass shootings or the other end of the spectrum – imperialist war. Many of those who are now expressing their horror and condemnation of the mass murder of Islamic worshippers in Christchurch were actually the most vocal in their backing of the US imperialist war against Syria – where Muslims and Christians and others were slaughtered indiscriminately. This includes the entirety of the establishment politicians now piously condemning the New Zealand attacks. This also includes many Australian left parties, who strongly backed regime change in Syria – and call for the dose to be repeated in Iran. In addition, all of these forces remain hostile to Russia and China and the DPRK (“North Korea”) – with which the US Empire is itching for catastrophic war. A broad front with such elements – even under a banner of “anti-fascism”, will forever remain politically powerless.

To cleanse society of ultra-right wing violence requires nothing less than the overthrow of capitalist imperialism – in Australia, New Zealand, the US, Europe and Japan. A strong workers’ movement must be built, which can rebuild the Union movement through replacing conservative officials with a class struggle leadership. This is linked to the painstaking endeavour of forging a Marxist vanguard party, which can lead all of the workers and the oppressed to the goal of building a collectivised, publically owned and internationally planned economy. This is the only way to eliminate racist terror, fascism, and the grim possibility of global nuclear war.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO Box 66   NUNDAH  QLD  4012

Iran: Workers or Separatists?

Flag of the Islamic Republic of Iran

Iran: Workers or Separatists?

16-02-2019 – When is a workers’ movement not actually a workers’ movement? When is a Union not actually a Union? A good indicator is when such “movements” spring up in a country directly targeted for regime change by the rapacious US Empire – the same one which pulled out all stops to overthrow an allied country using indescribable violence. We of course reference Syria, and its ally Iran. The Syrian Arab Republic remains, and for now has effectively defeated the US masters of war and its allies. This was achieved with the vital assistance of Russia, the Lebanese Hezbollah, and the Islamic Republic of Iran. Furious at having been blocked in what is usually a straight forward case of imperial overthrow, the US state now dramatically ramps up its vast array of tools for regime change in Iran. To say that a US led war on Iran – the gateway between the Middle East and Asia – would be a catastrophe would be an understatement.

“Independent” Unions

The US state department is very well schooled in manipulating well-intentioned but misguided progressive youth and left-leaning workers into serving as foot soldiers for its regime change wars. Assisted by all manner of NGOs, “liberal” corporate media and ostensibly “left” parties, the US Empire effectively reversed the anti-war sentiment that came about through the war on Iraq in 2003. Although “successful” in Libya, they were blocked in Syria – which has only increased their desperation and consequent appetite for regime change in Iran. Of course the US state has been desperate for regime change in Iran since the Iranian people toppled the US backed Shah in 1979, and expelled all US “advisors”. But in 2019, the US state can ill afford to allow liberals to lie idle.

A useful method for the imperialists is to falsely claim to support the struggle of workers and Unions in a country they also label their number one enemy. As if the political operatives of world capitalism are the slightest bit concerned about the welfare of the working class!  Yet they do, and unfortunately they draw in progressive minded folk and some left parties who should know a lot better.

The “independent” Union set up is a classical case. “Independent” Unions in Iran can only be dependent on external backing, in a similar way in which “independent” Unions in China or Vietnam or Cuba are higly likely to be a conduit for US state interference. This is not to deny specific issues for workers that exist for workers in those countries, but the price of the loss of independence from imperialism – the restoration of capitalism in China, Vietnam or Cuba – would set workers back 100 years. Iran, despite operating a capitalist economy, is independent of US, and therefore world, imperialism. Despite Iran’s market economy, there is extensive state direction, and the loss of this would send Iranian workers back to a stage before 1979. This is why workers in Iran and internationally must stridently defend Iran against all facets of US domination.

Falling at the first obligation

Some Australian left parties stumble at the primary obligation of anyone claiming to be a socialist or Marxist – clear opposition to US imperialism. The Socialist Alliance (SA), through its newspaper Green Left Weekly(GLW), recently published an extraordinary attack on the Iranian government, at the precise time when it is enduring enormous hardship as a result of, amongst other things, US sanctions. In a piece dated February 1, Minna Langeberg claims that “although US sanctions have worsened the economic situation, they are not the cause: the cause is a religious fascist regime in a deep crisis of legitimacy.”[1] The mind boggles!!

To label Iran as “fascist”, at the same time as US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton are gunning for the overthrow of Iran, clearly marks where the Socialist Alliance stands. Whether they are aware of it or not, SA is unfortunately repeating its notorious role backing US led regime change in Syria. Regime change right now, in Iran, can only benefit the US ruling class. One cannot wish US imperialism out of existence. The only possibility that a political movement for a new government in Iran now could garner support from workers internationally would be one that: 1) Clearly maintained that it opposed the imperialism of the US and their allies in the UK, France etc, with the backing of Israel, and did so to a greater extent than the current Iranian government 2) Clearly stated that it stood for the defence of Iran and Syria and the region against Saudi Arabian and Zionist Israel, to a greater extent than the current Iranian government 3) Clearly stated that is was for the complete liberation of women through working class emancipation. 4) Clearly maintained the equality of all religions and minorities within Iran to a greater extent than the current Iranian government 5) Clearly stated that the economy should be more publicly owned than is currently the case 6) Clearly maintained that it backs the workers throughout Iran, not just in a couple of areas known for anti-government sentiment, and so on.

If such a political movement existed in Iran today, or even one with even some or even one of the above characteristics, leftists internationally would have to seriously assess it. But there are no indications the current “movement” of protests in Iran expresses serious anti-imperialism. This is even despite the fact that it claims it stands for “workers” and “unions” and subjectively opposes the “crony capitalism” of the Iranian government. Sure, there are workers demonstrating against the economic hardships largely caused by US sanctions. Some Iranians certainly blame the government, even while recognising the impact of US sanctions. But in a country whose population has now surpassed 82 million people[2], such demonstrations and rallies have to be closely analysed.

Khuzestan and separatism

GLW’s article by Minna Langeberg hinges on two supposed labour struggles breaking out in Iran. Langeberg writes “..two simultaneous waves of labour protests stand out, both in the southwest province of Khuzestan: the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company protests, and the National Steel Company protests in Ahvaz, the capital of Khuzestan.”[3] So of all the alleged labour unrest and “Union struggle” in Iran, the two most important all happen in one province in the south of Iran?  Some explanation for this is required here, yet none is offered by GLW.

The south-western province of Khuzestan hosts the majority of Iran’s oil production. It also is home to around 1.5 million Ahwazi Arabs, reportedly making up around 2% of Iran’s population.[4] Generally, Ahwazi Arabs claim that they are marginalized and excluded from Iranian society and government, as a minority in a majority Persian country. Khuzestan’s capital Ahvaz is hard hit by unemployment, but that is unfortunately widespread across Iran. Doubtless there are some grievances that need to be addressed, but whether the Ahwazi Arabs generally favour separatism from Iran is not clear. There are certainly some Ahwazi organisations, including armed ones, which stridently advocate a separation from Iran. One is the Arab Struggle Movement for the Liberation of Ahwaz (ASMLA), which may sound legitimate. However, this group, in seeking separation from Iran, has bombed government buildings and pipelines in the region which have killed civilians.[5]  In other words, regardless of the justness of whatever cause they claim, they are a terrorist organisation with no regard for innocent life.

Another recent example of the absent lack of concern for the butchering of innocents by Ahwaz separatists was the September 22 terrorist attack on a military parade in Ahvaz. The parade was marking the anniversary of the beginning of the Iraq-Iran war, in which then Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein apparently believed the Ahwazi Arabs would welcome the entry of the forces of fellow Arabs. They did not, and Iranian forces had to wage a battle to retake the city a couple of years later at a high cost of life.  What occurred at that parade only last year, was that four gunmen disguised as soldiers opened fire and indiscriminately shot dead fleeing soldiers and civilians. At least 24 people died, including a four year old child.[6] Around 70 were injured.

Saudi Arabia, UAE, Denmark, the Netherlands all aid “jihadist separatists”

Two groups claimed responsibility for the attack: ISIS and the Ahwaz National Resistance. It is unlikely that ISIS was behind it – they claim responsibility for many attacks they have nothing to do with. The claim of the Ahwaz National Resistance is much more likely. What kind of “resistance” movement would openly claim responsibility for an attack which clearly extinguished innocent lives? Iran’s Supreme Leader the Ayatollah Ali Khamanei did not mince his words in response: “This cowardly attack was the work of those very individuals who are rescued by the Americans whenever they are in trouble in Iraq and Syria  and who are funded by the Saudis and the (United) Arab Emirates.”[7] It has long been suspected that the Saudi Arabian royal family, along with the UAE government, fund and arm the Ahwaz separatists, as a way of undermining and destablising Iran. In this case, it seems likely it was direct payback for the role Iran has played in Syria, helping to defeat the foreign backed jihadists seeking ultra-violent regime change. Without endorsing the Iranian government per se, working people can only support the actions of the Iranian military in Syria, which contributed to the defeat of the US and its proxy forces.

While the Saudi and Emirati governments fund and arm the ultra-violent terrorist Ahwazi groups, the governments of Denmark and the Netherlands give them safe haven on their soil. In response to the September 22 atrocity, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Bahram Qasemi stated that it was not acceptable for European Union countries to refrain from blacklisting known members of terrorist groups as long as they do not commit a crime on European soil. He said the Iranian government had warned Denmark and the Netherlands about the presence of the terrorists and called for their arrest and trial.[8] The hypocrisy is galling. One could only imagine the response if Iran had hosted known terrorists on its soil, whose fellow members then went on a shooting rampage in the US, or a European country. Yet the reverse happens, but the imperialist powers get away scot-free.

Workers must defend Iran, and condemn Western armed terrorism

Unfortunately the Socialist Alliance is joined by the Communist Party of Australia (CPA) in blindly backing the Ahwaz separatists, who skillfully manipulate progressives under the cover of backing “independent” workers’ “Unions”. In an article in the CPA’s The Guardian newspaper dated December 12, 2018, the author attempts to draw a wall between the open US state aim of regime change in Iran, and the workers’ protests in Khuzestan.[9] Yet they are one and the same! How do we know this? One reason is because none other than John Bolton – currently heading up US backed regime change in Venezuela and Iran – has openly advocated backing Iran’s ethnic minorities as a means of destabilising the country.[10]

Not only has John Bolton advocated the stoking of ethnic tensions in Iran as part of regime change efforts, his links to the notorious terrorist group the Mujaheddin E Khalq (MEK) are well known. The MEK fought with the invading Iraqi government during the Iraq-Iran war, and as such are despised as traitors by almost all Iranians. They are exiled because of this, but it has not stopped John Bolton declaring to MEK supporters that he will celebrate with them in Tehran “before 2019”.[11] This is a senior US official, openly preparing not only regime change in Iran, but choosing known ultra-violent terrorists as the new leaders! In addition, MEK cult leader Maryam Rajavi has publicly supported the Ahwazi separatists.[12]

Due to Iran’s necessary building of conventional missiles as defence, not to speak of a united and well-armed military, external US led regime change on Iran is unlikely – though not impossible. Much more likely is internal US led regime change – which utilises all manner of anti-government yahoos, up to and including ultra-violent terrorists and criminal jihadists. Without endorsing the political positions of the Iranian government, workers internationally have a vital interest, at this time, in defending Iran against internal and external regime change. Imperialism must be opposed regardless of its modus operandi.

WORKERS  LEAGUE

www.redfireonline.com

E: workersleague@redfireonline.com

PO Box 66  NUNDAH  QLD  4012

 

[1] https://www.greenleft.org.au/content/iranian-workers-protests-confront-regime-crisis (16-02-19)

[2] http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/iran-population/ (16-02-19)

[3] Ibid, 1.

[4] https://bigthink.com/strange-maps/the-phantom-emirate-of-al-ahwaz (17-02-19)

[5] https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/ahwazis-dont-give-anniversary-annexed-arab-province-looms-iran (17-02-19)

[6] https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2018/9/25/iran-says-jihadist-separatists-behind-ahvaz-attack (17-02-19)

[7] Ibid, 6.

[8] https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2018/09/iran-criticises-the-netherlands-for-sheltering-terrorists-after-parade-attack/ (17-02-19)

[9] http://www.cpa.org.au/guardian/2018/1852/06-rally.html (17-02-19)

[10] https://www.rferl.org/a/iran-khuzestan-poverty-separatism-bloody-war-memories/29515269.html (17-02-19)

[11] https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/comment/2018/6/8/boltons-mek-ties-make-him-more-lobbyist-than-statesman (17-02-19)

[12] https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/ahwazis-dont-give-anniversary-annexed-arab-province-looms-iran (17-02-19)