Antonio Gramsci died in 1937, after spending nearly ten years in prison under Mussolini’s fascist regime. All these years later, his ideas and legacy are still being debated and reinterpreted. Who was Gramsci? All manner of weird and wonderful answers have been given to this question, with plenty of distortions, if not outright historical falsifications, from petit-bourgeois academics and intellectuals, to revisionists in the labour movement.
In recent months the monarchy has been thrown into crisis, a symptom of the crisis of capitalism. First we had the proroguing of parliament, then Prince Andrew's train crash interview and now the crisis of "Megxit." Overthrow this feudal relic!
The following is a speech by Marie Frederiksen (editor of the Danish Marxist journal Revolution) on the Comintern and the women's struggle, delivered at the International Marxist Tendency's 2019 Word School in Italy.
We spoke with Leonid Shaidurov: a 17-year-old activist who has played a leading role in the School Strikes for Climate movement in Russia. He has helped organise students in schools and is a member of both the coordination council for Fridays for Future internationally and the organisational committee in Russia. He agreed to be interviewed in order to give advice to school students hoping to build on the movement around climate change.
The battle in France over Macron’s reactionary pension reform passed its 40th day on 13 January. A fourth interprofessional strike last Thursday and follow-up protests on the weekend brought hundreds of thousands onto the streets yet again, and further days of action have been declared up until 16 January.
One week in, and the first round of the Labour leadership contest is over. Already, leadership hopeful Clive Lewis is out of the race, leaving five candidates remaining. In reality, however, the election is a straight up battle between the left and the right.
The results of Taiwan’s presidential and legislative elections were largely as expected. Incumbent President Tsai Ing-wen won over 8.1 million votes (57 percent), defeating the KMT’s populist candidate Han Kuo-yu, who got 39 percent of the votes. Tsai’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) maintains its majority in the Legislative Yuan (Taiwan’s parliament), while the newly established conservative Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) replaces the liberal New Power Party (NPP) as the third-largest party in the Legislative Yuan. Behind these seemingly clear results, however, lurk significant contradictions. The Taiwanese workers, youth and oppressed still need to actively seek their own political voice.
The admission of the Iranian authorities to shooting down a Ukrainian aircraft has caused a wave of indignation across Iran and led to protests in several cities. The regime, which was buoyed by the US killing of Qassem Soleimani, is now once again feeling the pressure of the masses.
This article was originally published in Russian on 23 April at 1917.com. It describes the Putin regime in Russia: how it came about, its main characteristics, and how it fundamentally differs from traditional bourgeois regimes as we know them in the West.
Hamid Alizadeh (an editor at In Defence of Marxism) explains the recent developments between the US and Iran and why we must oppose American imperialism.
The movement that has shaken Hong Kong to its foundations shows few signs of losing steam. It has entered 2020 with a mass protest of up to 1 million people on New Year’s day, proving that it has retained the support of the majority of the population despite all the storm and stress of the past six months.
On 8 January, India came to a grinding halt as more than 250 million joined a general strike across the country, called by the 10 central trade unions, raising demands against the brutal policies of the Modi regime. A.R. Sindhu, national secretary of the CITU (Centre of Indian Trade Unions) told the media that 15 states came to a complete halt.
The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Labour Party have fired the starter pistol for the race to succeed Jeremy Corbyn. The main contestants have bolted out of the gates, with six candidates already announcing their intention to stand for the top job. But it is clear that the battle for the leadership position is a two-horse race.
At the time of writing these lines, the outcome of the struggle that began on 5 December is still uncertain. The government has made clear that it will not back down on the key elements of its “reform” (a counter-reform, in reality). Faced with this, the striking workers have demonstrated exemplary courage and militancy.
The birth of the New Year was celebrated with the usual razzmatazz. In London, revellers welcomed the start of a new decade with fireworks displays, as did many people in Edinburgh and other major cities. No doubt, Britain’s new Prime Minister Boris Johnson was celebrating even more enthusiastically than most other people. Having won the 2019 general election with a handsome majority, he is now free to lead the nation to a successful conclusion of the Brexit negotiations. That, at least, is the theory.
Those who follow the situation in Morocco can see that the repressive dictatorial regime has become more and more frenzied, and the police state has tightened its repressive grip on everyone and everything. They are arresting those who protest, who sing, who criticise, who write, and who show solidarity with those arrested.
Early Friday morning (3 Jan 2020), in an act of supreme arrogance the Trump administration carried out the killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, as well as top Iraqi paramilitary leader Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes in Baghdad airport. Yet again, US imperialism is adding to the instability in the Middle East.
Note: this dramatic development means we have postponed Alan Woods’ new year article, which will be published tomorrow.
The Modi government has unleashed a brutal attack on the student leaders of the Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi through its goons, allegedly linked to ABVP and RSS. The thugs of the ABVP, student wing of BJP, assembled in large numbers along with security personnel in civilian clothes, and entered the premises of the university on the evening of 5 January. They severely beat and injured many student leaders, including the president of the student’s union, Aishe Ghosh. She has now been admitted to hospital and is in critical condition with a fractured skull.
On 11 January 2020, the Taiwanese voters will decide who will be in charge of the Presidential Palace and the Legislative Yuan for the next four years. These are two key ruling class institutions under Taiwan’s “Republic of China (ROC)” bourgeois-democratic system. After witnessing the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)’s catastrophic defeat in the 2018 municipal elections and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)-backed repression against the Hong Kong democratic movement, many Taiwanese workers and youth dread a future where the CCP begins to take away Taiwan’s hard-earned democratic rights by way of its local comprador, the KMT, returning to power.
President Macron’s dreams of a peaceful Christmas were dashed as striking workers rejected his plea for a holiday truce, during what has become the longest continuous strike in 30 years – longer than the victorious struggle of 1995.