Archive | July, 2008

  • The two Koreas – Part 2

    On October 19, 1950, more than 400 thousand voluntary Chinese combatants, on orders from Mao Zedong, crossed the Yalu and waylaid the US troops that were advancing towards the Chinese border. The US units, surprised by the vigorous response of the country they had underestimated, were forced to withdraw towards a region near the southern coast, pushed back by the joint action of the Chinese and North Korean forces. Stalin, who was immensely cautious, offered far less support than Mao had anticipated, though the MiG-15 aircrafts piloted by the Soviets, over a limited 42.5-miles front, proved valuable help during the initial stage of the conflict in protecting land forces during their intrepid advance.

  • Rank-and-File Activism: A Viable Alternative

      “Man’s greatness consists in his ability to do and the proper application of his powers to things needed to be done.” — Frederick Douglas Over time, fads come and go, yet for organized labor certain basic principles hold true.  In the “big picture” search for answers to the problems faced by labor today, outspoken […]

  • Chavez: Russia and Venezuela Unite as Oil & Gas Giants

    Click on the link and read the full transcript of RussiaToday’s interview with Chavez: “Chavez: Russia and Venezuela Unite as Oil & Gas Giants,” 24 July 2008. This program was broadcast on RussiaToday on 23 July 2008. | | Print

  • Machiavelli’s Strategy

    Raul was right to keep dignified silence over the statements published last Monday, July 21st, by Izvestia on the eventual installation of strategic Russian fighter-planes bases in our country. The news came up from a certain hypothesis elaborated in Russia associated with the Yankees obstinacy in setting up radars and launching pads for their nuclear shield close to the borders of that great power.

  • Reclaiming the Commons in Palestine/Israel: ¡Ya Basta!/Khalas!

    The regime that will succeed the nation-state will not be the fruit of preconception or social engineering, but of sociological and political imagination wielded through transformative actions. — Gustavo Esteva Que se vayan todos (‘Let’s get rid of them all’). — message written on the walls of Argentina The No-state Solution Even as the neo-liberal […]

  • Liberal Philanthropy and the “Birth” of Population Control Environmentalism

    Many environmentalists can rightly claim that they (as a social movement) have made valiant efforts to temper the relentless destruction wrought on Planet Earth by its human inhabitants (those luxuriating in their consumer lifestyles in the ‘developed world’ have waged the war against life most relentlessly).  Environmentalists can even claim to have successfully prodded many […]

  • The two Koreas – Part 1

    The Korean nation, with its unique culture that differentiates it from its Chinese and Japanese neighbors, has existed for three thousand years. These characteristics are typical of societies in that Asian region, including those of China, Vietnam and others. There is nothing like it in Western cultures, some of which are less than 250 years old.

  • No Human Being Is Illegal

    In April 2006, hundreds of thousands of immigrant rights protestors marched in cities across the United States.  They countered prolonged debates about the pros and cons of comprehensive immigration reform with a short but sweet affirmation, scrawled on placards: “No Human Being Is Illegal.”  Their direct assertion challenged the deeply entrenched practices of our government […]

  • Bolivia: MAS, Opposition Prepare for Recall Referendums

    With the victory of an unlikely opposition candidate in the June 29 election for prefect (governor) of Chuquisaca, the number of opposition-controlled prefectures increased to seven out of nine. The result came as the right-wing opposition plots the extension of its regionalized resistance against Bolivia’s first indigenous president, Evo Morales. Sabina Cuellar — a former […]

  • Palestine and Israel: What’s Iran Got to Do with It?

    Responding to the Israeli voices and actions noisily advocating a preemptive strike against Iran, Ha-Aretz columnist Uzi Benziman (July 21, 2008) writes, “Before bombing Iran, it would be best [for Israel] to solve the conflict with the Palestinians.  By the way, there does appear to be a link between the two threats.”  While Benziman doesn’t […]

  • Tears of Rage, Tears of Hope

    Nurses see everything in a day’s work.  But at the maternity ward of Nashville General Hospital, nurses caring for an immigrant woman in labor broke down and cried when the sheriff’s deputy guarding the woman refused to remove the shackles chaining her leg to the bed.  The undocumented woman was detained by local authorities because […]

  • Jesse Helms and the Theater of the Depraved

    On July 8, the resplendently Caucasian, flag-loving, fag-hating, five-term Senator Jesse Helms exited the political scene, stage right, to begin his long-awaited dirt nap.  All the world being a stage, a host of players, including Dick Cheney and John and Cindy McCain, assembled sorrowfully near the starred-and-striped coffin containing the body of the hidebound conservative […]

  • The Geo-politics of Oil

      Paul Jay: Welcome back to our interview with Aijaz Ahmad, asking a question: “what would a rational US foreign policy for the United States look like?”  Aijaz, at the core of much of US foreign policy is the assumption that the United States needs its military prowess to defend its oil interests, whether it’s […]

  • Union-busting by any other name…

    The huge meatpacking plant had been cited by government agencies for numerous violations of environmental and labor laws and for “acts of inhumane slaughter” of animals.  New inquiries were under way into allegations of wage violations and the illegal employment of minors.  A large national union was trying to organize the factory’s 970 workers.  But […]

  • How the Left Saved Capitalism

    There is an entire genre of theory explaining why the Western capitalist democracies did not undergo socialist revolution in the 20th Century, as Classical Marxism had predicted.  Not surprisingly, most of this material comes from the Left itself.1 We can include Antonio Gramsci’s work on hegemony in this genre, as well as the entire output of […]

  • Education in Cuba

    It would seem our country has the most educational problems in the world. All of the cables that reach us report the many and difficult challenges we face: a deficit of over 8,000 teachers, disrespectful and ill-mannered students, lack of training, in short: problems of all sorts.

  • Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power (Part 2)

    Adam Hanieh, “Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power: Part 1,” MRZine, 19 July 2008. Neoliberalism, the “New Middle East” and Palestine In the late 1960s, with the definitive collapse of British and French colonialism in the Middle East, the US rose to become the dominant imperial power within the region.  Because […]

  • Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power (Part 1)

    Adam Hanieh, “Palestine in the Middle East: Opposing Neoliberalism and US Power: Part 2,” MRZine, 19 July 2008. Over the last six months, the Palestinian economy has been radically transformed under a new plan drawn up by the Palestinian Authority (PA) called the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan (PRDP).  Developed in close collaboration with institutions […]

  • Declaration by Zimbabwean Civil Society regarding a Transition to Democracy in Zimbabwe

    Briefly. . . 15 July 2008 Broad Zimbabwean Civil Society adopted Declaration calling for establishment of transitional authority, drafting of a new peopled-driven constitution and subsequent democratic elections DECLARATION BY  ZIMBABWEAN CIVIL SOCIETY REGARDING A TRANSITION TO DEMOCRACY IN ZIMBABWE following the “Whither Zimbabwe: National Civil Society Consultative Conference” We, civil society organizations acting on […]

  • Democracy: Too Important to Leave to the Members?

    Earlier this summer, it looked like the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) union was about to experience something truly unusual in its history – — a contested campaign for national president.  The last contest for the union’s top Canadian officer was in 1960, a quarter of a century before the formation of the CAW and a […]