For a whole week, demonstrations have taken place across Catalonia and Spain in protest at the jailing of Communist rapper Pablo Hasél, who was arrested on Tuesday 16 February in Lleida for political opinions expressed in his lyrics and tweets. His jailing has unleashed a groundswell of anger, particularly amongst young people, who have met vicious repression at the hands of the state.
The parliamentary elections in Kosovo on 14 February 2021 ended with a sweeping landslide victory for the left-wing "Movement for Self-Determination" Vetevendosje (VV). They scored a 20 percent increase, from 27.7 percent in the last election in 2019 to 47.85 percent according to the latest count. The centre-right PDK (Democratic Party of Kosovo), founded by Hashim Thaci, lagged far behind with 17.41 percent. The bourgeois conservative LDK (Democratic League of Kosovo), which had been in power for many years in the past, only scored 13.08 percent. Another right-wing formation, the AAK (Alliance for the Future of Kosovo), led by former UCK (Kosovo Liberation Army) commander Ramush Haradinaj was stuck at 7.43 percent. Nisma-Social Democrat (Social Democratic Initiative) scored only 2.6 percent and will thus not get any seats.
We have received the shocking news that Datar Singh, a renowned farmer leader and a real class fighter, has passed away. According to sources, he travelled from the Delhi sit-in to Amritsar to speak at a rally organised by the farmer activists. In his last speech, he stood firm in his opposition to Modi’s agricultural laws and argued for farmers’ and workers' joint struggle to bring down the government. When he ended his speech and took a seat, he suffered a cardiac arrest which proved to be fatal. He left behind a daughter and a son and millions of farmers organised under his genuine leadership. He was the President of the Kirti Kisan Union in Punjab. This is indeed a great loss for the farmers' movement at such a critical juncture.
Around 21 January 2021, a young worker who operated a small channel on the popular Chinese video-sharing platform Bilibili died in destitution amidst family discord, disease, and conflict with his employer. He starved to death in his rental apartment, and his body was only discovered days later by the landlord.
About a year has passed since COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic. Over two million people have died directly from the virus itself thus far. Many more have died from ancillary causes. While the vaccines now in circulation offer a ray of hope for the masses, who are trapped in a cycle of isolation and precarity, the crisis is far from over. Not least because protectionism and “vaccine nationalism” are preventing billions of people from actually accessing these lifesaving resources. When will it all end?
The past few years of political turbulence have troubled the ruling class. They are facing unprecedented waves of protests and instability. They are now increasingly desperately trying to stabilise the situation using state expenditure and other concessions. This was seen at the World Economic Forum last month.
The 2021 Montreal Marxist Winter School was truly an unprecedented event. More than 1,150 people registered to participate in the school, which had ten presentations over three days, making this by far the largest Canadian Marxist meeting in recent memory. With big class battles on the horizon, the forces of Marxism are growing in preparation.
The MSF recently held its largest ever national conference, with hundreds of young people from schools and universities across the country taking part. There has never been a better time to get involved and join the revolution!
The coup in Myanmar has unleashed a movement of revolutionary proportions. The determination of the masses to stop the military from taking over can be seen in the widespread and growing strike and protest movement that has been unleashed. The military junta clearly underestimated the level of opposition they would face.
The scandalous arrest of a left-wing rapper for telling hard truths about the rotten Spanish state has led to furious protests against this assault on freedom of expression.
Following a fortnight of blunders, Keir Starmer and the Labour right wing are on the defensive. Bold calls for a recall conference are clearly making a mark. The left must press forward and take the fight to the right.
The Tories are attempting to whip up hysteria around questions of identity and culture, in an effort to distract from their own failings and divide the working class. The left must fight a class war, not a culture war.
Yesterday, the Senate acquitted Donald Trump of inciting the Capitol riot on 6 Jan. Although seven Republicans joined the Democrats to vote 'guilty', this was short of the two-thirds majority required to find Trump guilty. Despite a furious speech attacking the ex-president, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell also voted to acquit. As explained in this article (published last month by our US comrades), the GOP is divided from top to bottom between MAGA true believers, opportunists looking to ride Trump's coattails, and career politicians intimidated by his reactionary voter base. The future of a cornerstone of the bourgeois political system hangs in the balance.
On 2 February, the Ukrainian president issued sanctions on three of the most popular television news channels in the country. Media outlets getting shut down is nothing new in Ukraine, ever since the Euromaidan brought a right-wing government to power in 2014. However, the recent events represent the most concerted move to shut down opposition media in Ukraine’s history.
The military coup that was carried out in Myanmar by Min Aung Hlaing, commander-in-chief of the army, on 31 January has unleashed a movement that the military were clearly not expecting. Their coup took many by surprise. No one in Myanmar was expecting it, and it also does not seem to fit with the needs of the moment. So why did it take place? In this article, we attempt to outline some of the factors that led to this sudden and sharp change in the situation.
The inaction of the Giuseppe Conte government in the face of the deepest economic, political and social crisis in Italy since the Second World War had become unbearable for big business. That explains why the figure of Mario Draghi has come to the rescue. It is clear, however, that this bourgeois technocrat has no solutions for the problems facing the Italian workers.
The Ecuadorian election on 7 February produced a clear victory for the left-wing candidate Andrés Arauz, but not enough to prevent a second round. There is a very close tie for the second position between the capitalist oligarchy’s preferred candidate Guillermo Lasso and the “indigenous” candidate Yaku Perez.
The despotic President of Haiti, Jovenel Moïse, is refusing to step down, while the impotent bourgeois opposition appears incapable of forcing him out. The Haitian masses must break with the rotten bourgeois regime altogether, and establish a revolutionary constituent assembly.
The Marxist Student Federation in Britain invites you to the online MSF Conference 2021 this Saturday! The past six months have seen enormous students struggles emerge, with the biggest University rent strike movement in forty years foremost amongst them. We have also seen the government's attempt to write anti-capitalism out of schools, which the MSF answered with its Tell the Truth campaign. All this and more will be discussed. Buy your ticket now!
Brexit is only a month old. But already, Ireland has been caught in the crossfire as the UK and EU clash. The menace of Protestant sectarianism is rising once again. Only united class struggle can offer a way forward.