October 12 again. And back again with the barbarities and outbursts of the Spanish right wing, López Obrador’s cynicism and the moralizing and “decolonizing” delusions of the identitarian university left. Each one with its own agenda but, however noisy it may be, their confrontation is only apparent. All are in fact selling us the same outdated product: a terminal nationalism which is as anti-historical as the system feeding it.
The entertainment content on TV is scarce and not very comforting this season. We discuss a close-up look at the USA of precarity (Tiny House Nation, Netflix); Alejandro Amenábar’s first series (La Fortuna, Movistar); and the most incompetent reading imaginable of Asimov’s “The Foundation” (Foundation, Apple TV).
Thirty years of Mercosur… and maybe this is the last one. After months of tensions whipped up by the radicalization of agro-exporting interests in the face of the crisis and pandemic conditions, the Brazil-Uruguay-Paraguay axis no longer speaks of flexibilizing, but directly of ignoring the treaties. The end of Mercosur is a fact… for the time being, since the continent is not governed by blocs of countries with stable strategies, but is struggling between two transnational currents that fracture each national capital. The synchrony and parallelism provide a background of reality to the old project of the “Patria Grande”, but also expose its utopian and reactionary character.
News of an outbreak of protests in Cuba leapt through agencies to media outlets around the world yesterday. Beginning in San Antonio de los Baños, protests spread in a matter of hours from the West to the East of the country and ended up surrounding the Capitol in Havana. The regime’s response was swift: exculpatory speeches, calls for civil confrontation and door-to-door repression all night long.
The G7 summit kicked off in Cornwall with Biden warning the EU and Britain: “Don’t jeopardize peace in Northern Ireland”. Is he exaggerating? Not so much: the European Commission says it has “little patience” left with the British government and openly threatens a trade war. Meanwhile, the British services whip up the ultra unionist groups and use the media apparatus of the very US Democratic Party to sow discord between Dublin and Brussels.Welcome to the “sausage wars”, a supposedly amusing name for an imperialist feud that may well claim lives this summer.
Income distribution data in Europe show increasingly worrying patterns of territorial inequality apparently condemning whole regions to rural depopulation and massive and eternal unemployment. Local nationalisms and regionalisms use these differences to justify their aspirations. But neither the cause of the problems resides in a territorial conflict nor does the solution lie in gaining “levels of statehood” or “a voice in the capital city”.
Whilst recounting the “conflict” in national terms and with national subjects, the media do not even consider the absurdity of one country threatening its neighbor with a general strike of its own in retaliation.And yet it is the most revealing thing about how much is going on these days [this article was originally published in December 2017]. Telling because the threat is real for Israel and because Palestinian workers haven’t exactly embraced it with enthusiasm either. To understand Israel/Palestine let’s do a bit of history and for once, from the perspective of the workers.
Israel and Hamas are back on the brink of war in Gaza. The dead are still counted by the dozens due to the crossed bombardments. Outbreaks of pogroms and civil violence appear riding the nationalist wave, and imperialisms near and far are trying to gain positions.
The US has acknowledged the Armenian genocide. From Bosnia to Azerbaijan via Turkey and Armenia, the declaration seems to have opened the cesspool of nationalist narratives, myths and delusions. But what was the Armenian Genocide? Who were the perpetrators? Why has the mere acknowledgement of its existence generated an international political earthquake? What does the Biden administration intend to do now?
Raúl Castro has announced his upcoming retirement at the age of 89, 62 years after the M26J guerrillas entered Havana and 60 years after Fidel Castro proclaimed Cuba’s entry into the Russian bloc. The retirement of the last active commander of Sierra Maestra from the political leadership of the Cuban ruling class occurs in the midst of the latest acceleration of the agonizing and perennial crisis of a national capital in ruins.
For the first time since the nineties a peace process seems to be moving forward in Palestine. It is being driven by Egyptian diplomacy and neither Israel nor the United States are directly involved. Its main rivals are Iran and Hezbollah, the Shiite Islamist state-party that the Tehran regime supports in Lebanon and Syria. The centerpiece, and also the most fragile party in the negotiations, is Hamas, the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, supported by Turkey and Qatar and in simultaneous war against Israel, the Palestinian National Authority led by the PLO… and Egypt itself.
We answer some questions about “indigenism” that were agreed upon by several readers after the publication of “To Understand Bolivia”.
The institutional crisis in Peru has reached a critical level. What is behind it? What does the maremagnum of acronyms, names and accusations of corruption mean?
The American ruling class say we are “sighing with relief”. Actually, that is something even they can’t do
Historical perspective in order to understand Bolivia. Because it is impossible to understand the failure of the Áñez government, the return of Masism and the differences of the period that begins with Arce without studying how the Bolivian class structure has evolved during the last ninety years, what the historical aspirations of the main factions of power have been and how they have expressed themselves politically.
A brief historical perspective of Ethiopia to understand how and why this country of 110 million people is now facing the abyss of a new war between factions.
We need concrete slogans to advance the struggles, but also to form political groups to accelerate the development of a class programme and party.
We arrived at this weekend with a Brexit agreement pending approval by the British parliament, a Turkish truce awaiting reciprocation by the PKK-YPG and a call for a general strike in Catalonia which, in the lack of common interests between nationalism and the workers, has become a lockout.