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Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal seeks to promote the exchange of information, experience of struggle, theoretical analysis and views of political strategy and tactics within the international left. It is a forum for open and constructive dialogue between active socialists from different political traditions. It seeks to bring together those in the international left who are opposed to neoliberal economic and social policies, and reject the bureaucratic model of "socialism" that arose in the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe and China.

Inspired by the unfolding socialist revolution in Venezuela, as well as the continuing example of socialist Cuba, Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal is a journal for "Socialism of the 21st century", and the discussions and debates flowing from that powerful example of socialist renewal.

Links is also proud to be the sister publication of Green Left Weekly, the world's leading red-green newspaper, and we urge readers to visit that site regularly.

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United States: Other revolving doors

 

 

By Don Fitz

 

July 16, 2018 
 Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — It’s more than doors between the US government and the businesses that they supposedly regulate that go round and round. One of the other swinging doors is between the Democratic and Republican Parties.

 

The League Against Imperialism (1927-37): An early attempt at global anti-colonial unity

 

 

By John Riddell

 

July 13, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from John Riddell's Marxist essays and commentary — The League Against Imperialism was launched in Brussels in 1927 with the goal of forging unity between colonized peoples and workers in the colonizing countries. Initiated by a wing of the Communist International, it was the first attempt to structure international anti-colonial unity. This brief presentation will focus on its origins and the causes of its decline.

 

Manbij Democratic Civil Administration Legislative Assembly councillor: 'We have organized our own life with great hope'

 

 

By Bêrîtan Sarya & Axin Tolhildan

 

July 12, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from ANF NewsEmel Dede is a representative of the Turkmen people in the Manbij Democratic Civil Administration Legislative Assembly Council.

 

She said that the whole society has the right to work for, take part and to be represented in the autonomous administration. 

 

Turkish elections, looming fascism and left politics

 

 

By Baris Karaagac

 

July 12, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist ProjectThe elections on 24 June in Turkey for a new president and parliament, which took place under a state of emergency, constitute an historic moment in Turkish republican history with important consequences.

 

Lenin and the Bolshevik Party: A revolutionary collective

 

 

By Paul Le Blanc

 

July 10, 2018
Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal The Russian Revolution of 1917 clearly reveals the complexities of Bolshevism – Lenin’s party – as a revolutionary collective. In fact, there is a convergence of complexities related to several different factors I would like to touch on in these remarks. These include party structures, personalities, and outlooks.

 

After months of unrest, Nicaragua is at a fateful crossroads

 

 

By John Perry

 

July 6, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from The NationIn a video clip, a young boy stands at a makeshift barricade across a road. He holds a toy gun to the head of his friend. Off camera, an adult asks, “What are you going to do?” “We’ll kill him and leave him naked,” replies the boy. The adults laugh. This scene from Nicaragua, filmed at one of the hundreds of towns paralyzed by street protests, epitomizes the violence that has taken hold since April 18. Before that date, local media proudly quoted figures showing that Nicaragua had become the safest country in Central America. But the two months since then have seen more than 170 violent deaths, thousands injured, and scores of public buildings burned down or ransacked.

 

When feminism sets the political agenda

 

 

By Nazaret Castro

 

July 6, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Equal TimesOn 14 June, the women of Argentina made history: in a very narrow vote (129 in favour, 125 against), and a denouement that left the public on tenterhooks until the very end, the Congress of Deputies approved a bill to decriminalise abortion, processed, to everyone’s surprise, by the country’s conservative president, Mauricio Macri. It is now up to the Senate to decide whether the bill will become law, but the women’s movement nonetheless felt they had secured a victory: they had shown that pressure from below is able to sway a vote that for many years seemed to be a lost cause.

 

Revisiting the theory of super-exploitation

 

 

Introduction and translation by Richard Fidler

 

July 5, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Life on the LeftAs part of his critical assessment and updating of the Latin American dependency theory pioneered by Brazilian Ruy Mauro Marini,[1] Argentine economist Claudio Katz analyzes a major component of that theory, the concept that waged workers in the peripheral nations of global capitalism are “super-exploited.” He suggests some necessary modifications of the theory in light of developments since Marini’s day.

 

Marini’s thesis has been given new currency by some recent analyses of imperialism in the twenty-first century such as John Smith’s book of the same title.[2] Smith holds that Marini’s theory of super-exploitation is of continuing relevance, and embraces the view that waged workers in the global South are systematically paid below the value of their labour power, owing to their greater oppression and exploitation. He argues that this constitutes a third mechanism by which capital increases its surplus value, in addition to the absolute and relative forms of surplus value analyzed by Marx.

 

Russia World Cup 2018: Lukaku, Mbappé and the colonial ghosts within Belgium and France

 

 

By Leslie Xavier

 

July 5, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from News ClickWhen Kylian Mbappé ran like the wind through the heart of the Argentine defence in their pre-quarterfinal match at the FIFA World Cup, it was difficult not to be reminded of the concept of time dilation which Albert Einstein postulated in his Special Theory of Relativity. Mbappé bent time, it seemed, making it move at a pace he dictated, leaving the players around him, fans, as well as many footballing connoisseurs, in a daze.

 

The France striker is not the first “time bender” in football, and certainly won’t be the last to possess this rare ability to take the ball, time and space onto a personal dimension. In fact, Mbappé, the phenomenon, has got some company in Russia itself -- in the form of Romelu Lukaku, who helped Belgium into the quarters with a phenomenal display of his own against Japan.

 

AMLO and Mexico’s watershed election

 

 

By Richard Roman and Edur Velasco Arregui

 

July 1, 2018
— Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Socialist ProjectThe July 1 national election in Mexico is likely to be a watershed in Mexican history. The splintering of the three old parties, their unprincipled tactical electoral alliances across party boundaries, the rapid movement of key party figures from one party to another, have made understanding the labyrinth of Mexican elections even more complex and confusing than ever.

 

Venezuela — After the elections: What is to be done?

 

 

By Marta Harnecker[1], Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

 

Recalling the context in which it emerged

 

1. By the time Hugo Chávez won the 1998 presidential elections, the neoliberal capitalist model was already in deep trouble. The dilemma he faced was basically whether to refound the neoliberal capitalist model — obviously with some changes, among them a greater concern for social issues, but motived by the same profit-seeking logic — or to seek to build another model.[2]

 

2. Chávez chose the latter option. In naming it, he decided to resuscitate the word socialism, despite the negative connotations it had due to the past. But he specified that this was a 21st century socialism to differentiate it from the Soviet socialism of the 20th century. He warned that we must not “fall into the errors of the past”; into “Stalinist deviations” that bureaucratized the party and ended up eliminating popular protagonism; into state capitalism that focused on state ownership and not on the participation of workers in the running of companies.

 

Pakistan - Awami Workers Party 2018 election manifesto: 'An alternative is possible'

 

 

By Awami Workers Party

 

June 30, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Vote for AWP — There is a common perception in Pakistan that politics is only for the powerful, and that money, clout and deceit reflect “success” in politics. The Awami Workers Party, on the other hand, believes that a politics based on a progressive vision of society is not only possible but utterly necessary. In the upcoming elections we are taking our message to all parts of Pakistani society to convince the electorate that he existing political-economic system can be transformed through the power of the people.

 

Pakistan: Support the Awami Workers Party’s campaign for the 2018 General Election

 

 

By Awami Workers Party

 

June 30, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Awami Workers Party — As Pakistan heads toward a general election in July, cynicism about the mainstream political sphere is rife. Attempts by unelected institutions to subvert the democratic process are playing out in full public view, censorship and attacks on press freedom have escalated and personal attacks among political elites have replaced any pretense of reasoned debate about Pakistan’s many economic, social and political crises – from rising inequality, to crippling national debt, to the 22 million children out of school, to the affordable housing crisis, to widespread malnutrition, to the imminent countrywide water shortage.

 

Alarmingly, the forces that seem best placed to exploit this situation are the political movements of the fascist right. Under state patronage, the forces of organized religious fundamentalism have risen at a frightening pace as they exploit popular resentments to target minorities, women and other oppressed groups in their attempts to capture state power. Even as they prop up the organizations of the fascist right, both military and civilian institutions continue to engage in widespread repression of nationalist and progressive forces across the country, be it enforced disappearances of political workers in Balochistan, FATA and Sindh or trumped-up terrorism charges against peasant activists in Okara.

 

Amid such overwhelming obstacles, it is imperative that progressives come together to challenge the onslaught of authoritarian and fundamentalist forces and bring their politics into the mainstream. This year, in order to provide a genuine progressive alternative to the Pakistani people after decades, the Awami Workers Party (AWP) will contest the General Election in different parts of the country.

 

Abandoned by the state: How the police fail survivors of sexual assault

 

 

By Marienna Pope-Weidemann

 

June 29, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Red Pepper — A study released today revealed that one in five festival goers have been subject to sexual harassment there, with the figure rising to 43% of women under 40. Campaigners say the report should be a wake-up call for the industry to “start treating sexual violence as seriously as other crimes.” The sinister extent of rape culture in this country remains widely unseen – especially where it extends to the state itself. 

 

Much of the rhetoric around tackling sexual violence focuses on encouraging women to come forward and report their assaulters to the police – to treat it as a crime, and use the formal mechanisms of police and state to deliver justice. But those mechanisms have perennially failed survivors of sexual assault.

 

The birth of the Cuban polyclinic

 

 

By Don Fitz

 

June 29, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Monthly Review — During the 1960s, Cuban medicine experienced changes as tumultuous as the civil rights and antiwar protests in the United States.1 While activists, workers, and students in western Europe and the United States confronted existing institutions of capitalism and imperialism, Cuba faced the even greater challenge of building a new society.

 

The tasks of Cuban medicine differed sharply between the first and the second halves of the revolution’s first decade. The years 1959–64 aimed at overcoming the crisis of care delivery, as half of the island’s physicians fled. It was during the second half of the decade (1964–69) that Cuba began redesigning medicine as an integrated system. The resulting reconceptualization of health care, which put the area polyclinic at the center of medical care, created a model for poor countries that has changed medicine ever since.

 

The rise of far-right populism in the world – A ‘morbid symptom’ of our times

 

 

By Bulent Gokay

 

June 23, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — Italian Marxist philosopher Antonio Gramsci wrote in his Prison Notebooks, in 1930, that “the crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born. In this interregnum, a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.” Gramsci was preoccupied with the breakdown and collapse of the liberal order which was the dominant pattern in international affairs after World War I. In particular, when struggling to understand the rise to power of Benito Mussolini, Gramsci used the term, “morbid phenomenon”. For Gramsci, Mussolini was one such morbid symptom. The term “interregnum” was originally used to denote a time-lag separating the death of one royal sovereign from the enthronement of the successor. Interregnum here, as referred by Gramsci, can be understood with a new wider meaning as a period where one arrangement of hegemony is waning, but prior to the full emergence of another.

 

At a Johannesburg BRICS think tank, scholars get drunk on their own rhetoric

 

 

By Patrick Bond

 

June 23, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal — A ‘think tank’ is sometimes a group of people paid to think, by the people who control the tanks (as Naomi Klein once remarked). Here in Johannesburg, one of South Africa’s highest-profile intellectual vehicles appears to be a victim of drunken driving by scholars from whom we otherwise expect much stronger political navigation skills.

 

The US-DPRK Singapore Summit was a meaningful step towards peace on the Korean Peninsula

 

 

By Marty Hart-Landsberg

 

June 22, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Reports from the Economic Front — The June 12th Singapore Summit between the US and the DPRK was an important, positive step towards the achievement of peace on the Korean Peninsula, normalized relations between the US and North Korea, and the reunification of Korea.

 

In the words of the Korean Public Service and Transport Workers’ Union, one of South Korea’s largest unions:

 

The very fact that the top leaders of North Korea and the U.S., two countries whose relationship has been laced with hostility and mutual threats for the last seventy years, sat together in one place and shared dialogue is historic and signals a new era in which peace on the Korean Peninsula is possible. We therefore welcome the North Korea-U.S. Summit and joint statement.

 

Liberals are criticizing the Korea Summit from the right. Here’s why they have it all wrong.

 

 

By Sarah Lazare

 

June 22, 2018
Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from In These TimesPoll after poll shows that the 51 million residents of South Korea overwhelmingly want an end to the 68-year Korean War—which the United States is still officially involved in. A recent survey found that 88.4 percent of South Koreans support the April 27 joint peace declaration by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in. And 81 percent of South Koreans expressed optimism about the Trump-Kim summit.

 

Despite widespread concerns that U.S. President Donald Trump would torpedo an historic opportunity for peace—including through his repeated threats to annihilate the entire Korean Peninsula with nuclear weapons—this worst-case scenario has not yet come to pass. When North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met with Trump in Singapore on June 12 and etched out a four-point agreement, the reaction in South Korea was largely a sigh of relief. “Koreans see the Singapore summit not just as another sensational episode in the story of Donald Trump but as a step away from a sixty-eight-year-old unfinished war,” writes E. Tammy Kim for The New Yorker.

 

Is imperialism still imperialist? A response to Patrick Bond

 

 

By Walter Daum

 

June 21, 2018 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from Review of African Political Economy — In Towards a Broader Theory of Imperialism Patrick Bond joins in the debate between John Smith and David Harvey on roape.net over the direction of imperialism today. He criticizes both debaters for overlooking the category of sub-imperialism, a concept that can indeed help clarify some issues. But in stressing this and other important matters like environmental destruction and gender oppression, Bond sidesteps the major issue over which Smith challenges Harvey: what is the reality of imperialism today? Is it so different from the system described and analyzed by Lenin, Luxemburg and other Marxists a century ago that the traditional imperialist powers no longer drain value from the resources and labor of most of the world?

 

Bond is more critical of Smith than of Harvey, since he disparages Smith’s ‘old fashioned binary of oppressed and oppressor nations,’ just as Harvey rejects Smith’s ‘fixed, rigid theory of imperialism.’ But in avoiding the key issue Bond is in effect covering for Harvey: focusing on the theory of sub-imperialism serves to obscure the untenability of Harvey’s position on imperialism itself.

 

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