No. 31 (Summer 2010)  
No. 31,
Summer 2010

Table of Contents
Selected articles linked

Click on image to left for pdf version of complete issue.


No to Imperialist Occupation – U.S./U.N. Forces Out!
Haiti Earthquake: Capitalism, Occupation and Revolution
The earthquake that wrecked the capital of Haiti and surrounding areas on January 12 produced human tragedy of almost unfathomable proportions. It has been termed the most destructive natural disaster in modern times. Five months later, Haiti is no longer in the headlines or on the nightly TV news, but for the hard-hit Haitian population the scene has hardly changed. Now a new disaster is in the making as the hurricane season begins. This was a calamity made by capitalism: the earthquake was predictable and was predicted; the inferior construction methods are the result of Haitis poverty, and the swollen slums were the result of U.S. policies that have destroyed Haitian agriculture, forcing peasants off the land. On top of everything, Haiti is under imperialist occupation: Washington makes sure it has ultimate control of the strategically placed island, as it has throughout the Cold War and since. Haiti's devastation is not the result of natural causes or even neo-liberal policies – it is the product of the oppression of this semi-colonial country by the imperial masters ever since black slaves rose up to abolish slavery and throw out the colonialists two centuries ago. No new economic model can resolve this: whats required is a new Haitian Revolution, a workers revolution overthrowing capitalism throughout the Caribbean and extending into the heart of imperialism. Haiti Earthquake: Capitalism, Occupation and Revolution  (2 July 2010)
Washington Exploits Earthquake to Reoccupy the Country
Haiti: Workers Solidarity, Yes!
Imperialist Occupation, No!

Stop Blocking Aid to Haitian People – U.S./U.N. Forces Get Out!
The January 12 earthquake in Haiti that devastated the capital city, leaving well over 100,000 dead and a million homeless, was one of the worst geological calamities of modern times. The earthquake was a natural disaster, but the horrendous death toll and monumental destruction were caused by capitalism and imperialism. Now the human suffering has been enormously compounded by to the militarization of the relief effort and reoccupation of Haiti by the United States. More than a dozen flights by aid groups, carrying rescue squads, tons of medical supplies and entire field hospitals, were refused permission to land at the Port-au-Prince airport by U.S. military air controllers who are now in charge. Food was already stocked in warehouses, but agencies refused to distribute it for fear of “riots.” The media blitz is a propaganda war to embellish the image of U.S. imperialism. This phony humanitarianism are being used to disguise a new U.S. occupation of Haiti. We demand an end to the imperialist occupation, U.S./U.N. forces get out of Haiti and stop blocking entry of Haitian refugees. Haiti: Workers Solidarity, Yes! Imperialist Occupation, No!  (20 January 2010)

Kick U.N., U.S. and Brazilian Occupation Troops Out of Haiti!
LQB Says: Workers Solidarity, Yes!
Military Occupation, No!
The Liga Quarta Internacionalista do Brasil, section of the League for the Fourth International, has published a special issue of its newspaper Vanguarda Operária devoted to Haiti and the LQBs fight for the expulsion of the Brazilian expeditionary force commanding the U.N. troops occupying the Caribbean island nation on behalf of U.S. imperialism. In the introduction (translated here) to this collection of articles, the LQB notes that “left-wing” bourgeois Latin American governments headed by Lula in Brazil, Morales in Bolivia and Correa in Ecuador have been collaborating with imperialism as its flunkeys and  “capitães de mato” (slave catchers), in repressing the combative Haitian population. LQB Says: Workers Solidarity, Yes! Military Occupation, No!  (26 January 2010)

No to the Imperialist Occupation – U.S./U.N. Forces Out!
U.S. Puts Haiti into Receivership
(Under Gouverneur Bill Clinton)
The Obama administration saw the Haiti earthquake as a golden opportunity to repair the U.S.’ image, badly tarnished by the imperialist war and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan. The Democrats in power in Washington would pose as leaders of a people-friendly empire, in contrast to the Darth Vader-like Republican regime of George Bush II. But behind all the talk of “helping” Haiti, what they actually did was what Yankee imperialists always do: send paratroops to occupy the Haitian capital and “secure” the country against unrest. From its control of air traffic at the Port-au-Prince airport the U.S. military actively blocked aid from reaching the Haitian people, likely resulting in thousands of deaths. Longer term, the U.S. wants to tighten imperialist control of the strategically located country, occupied since 2004 at Washington’s behest by a United Nations mercenary force. At a March 31 “donors conference” at the U.N. , a Haiti Interim Reconstruction Committee (HIRC) was set up to be in charge of rebuilding the country, displacing the Haitian government. Former U.S. president William Jefferson Clinton will be the neocolonial gouverneur of Haiti on behalf of Washington and Wall Street. U.S. Puts Haiti into Receivership  (11 April 2010)

Repentant Social Imperialists
Open Letter from the Internationalist Group
to the Spartacist League and ICL

The Spartacist League/U.S. and the International Communist League it leads are in deep political trouble. On April 27, the International Executive Committee of the ICL issued a statement “Repudiating Our Position on Haiti Earthquake,” headlined “A Capitulation to U.S. Imperialism.” After three months of “zealous apologies for the U.S. imperialist military intervention” in the name of humanitarian aid, the ICL suddenly declared that this was a fundamental “betrayal” and the Internationalist Group had been right all along in demanding U.S./U.N. troops out. While agreeing with the IG’s characterization of the ICL’s policy as “social-imperialist” and calling for a “savage indictment” of its own line, the ICL’s explanation for this betrayal – failure to have a formal discussion – doesn’t answer how an entire organization which proclaims itself revolutionary Marxist and Trotskyist could swallow this support for imperialism for months. Its origins can be found in years of capitulation to U.S. imperialism, notably by abandoning the call for its defeat in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. The Open Letter by the Internationalist Group urges those in the ICL who do not wish to continue gyrating in centrist confusion to examine the real record of their organization’s adaptations and capitulations to “its own” bourgeoisie over the past years. Open Letter from the IG/LFI to the SL/ICL  (8 May 2010)

Spartacist League Backs U.S. Imperialist Invasion of Haiti
The latest issue of Workers Vanguard, newspaper of the Spartacist League, has a front-page story that supports the presence of United States and United Nations occupation troops in Haiti. WV buys the U.S. rulers’ cover story for their latest invasion as supposedly aiding the desperate Haitian masses left homeless, hungry and in dire need of medical attention in the wake of the devastating earthquake. The article ends with an apoplectic attack on the Internationalist Group for exposing the imperialist lies and demanding “U.S./U.N.  Forces Get Out!” This is a deeply significant step for the SL, marking the point at which they have gone over from bending under pressure from the ruling class to outright apology for imperialism.  Spartacist League Backs U.S. Imperialist Invasion of Haiti  (30 January 2010)

Trying to Justify Support for U.S. Invasion
SL Twists and Turns on Haiti
In the wake of the earthquake that devastated Haiti’s capital, as Washington sent thousands of U.S. combat troops and a naval armada to secure the country, the Spartacist League ostentatiously declared it was not calling for withdrawal of U.S. and U.N. military forces. The SL claimed they were essential to distributing aid when in fact the U.S. military was actively blocking relief flights and refusing to release aid. While peddling the Pentagon's cover story for U.S. reoccupation of the country, in four successive articles the SL hysterically denounced the Internationalist Group for demanding that the U.S./U.N. occupation forces get out of Haiti. After trying for weeks to depict the 82nd Airborne paratroopers as humanitarian aid workers, the SL now calls for U.S. troops out now -- but not then, when it was necessary to combat illusions in the imperialist occupiers. We systematically take apart the SL's amalgams, straw men, baits, non sequiturs and smokescreens. Its grotesque apology for U.S. imperialism reflects the politics of Max Shachtman, not Leon Trotsky. SL Twists and Turns on Haiti  (9 April 2010)

For International Workers Solidarity Action to Defend the Palestinians
Oakland Picket Blocks Israeli Ship!
On June 20, mass pickets blocked the unloading of an Israeli ZIM Lines ship at the Port of Oakland (California) to protest the May 31 Israeli massacre of activists aboard a flotilla carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza. More than 800 demonstrators showed up before dawn for the day shift picket, and hundreds returned to block an evening shift, which was called off. So the picketers succeeded in blocking the unloading of the Zim Lines freighter for 24 hours – the first time an Israeli ship has been blocked in a U.S. port. The picket was called by labor and community groups and built by the San Francisco and Alameda County Labor Councils, who condemned the Israeli attack and sent out notices urging Bay Area unionists to join the lines. A message from the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions said that the Oakland dock action was “something we have longed for and expected,” recalling the 1984 boycott of a South African ship on the Oakland docks which spurred international solidarity with the struggle against apartheid. The June picket must be a spur to further workers solidarity action against the murderous Zionist regime. Oakland Picket Blocks Israeli Ship!  (21 June 2010)

For International Workers Solidarity Action –
Defeat Israeli/U.S. War on Palestinians!

Israel’s Gaza Flotilla Massacre: Bloody War Provocation
Israels seizure of a flotilla bearing humanitarian aid to Gaza on May 31 and the Zionist commandos cold-blooded executions of at least nine activists aboard one of the ships provoked outrage around the world. This was state terrorism. While European governments made mild criticisms of Israel and its four-year-old blockade of Gaza, the main concern of the Obama administration in Washington was to prevent a U.N. resolution blaming Israel. Many protesters are calling for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel, harking back to the campaign against apartheid South Africa. But impotent consumer boycotts of Israeli products, calling on businesses not to invest in Israel and for imperialist sanctions will not stop the Zionist mass murderers, nor did they stop the South African apartheid regime. Rather than looking to the capitalists and imperialists, Trotskyists call today on the workers movement to boycott cargo, ships and planes to and from Israel. Boycotts have been called by South African, Swedish and Norwegian dock workers unions and a picket is planned in the port of Oakland, California. Israel’s Gaza Flotilla Massacre: Bloody War Provocation  (17 June 2010)
U.S./South Korean Maneuvers A Threat to China As Well
Defend North Korea Against U.S. War Threats and Sanctions
On July 20, the United States and South Korea announced they would shortly hold provocative military maneuvers in the Sea of Japan, to the east of North Korea, to be followed by additional meneuvers in the Yellow Sea to the west. These “war games” and sanctions are a blatant attempt by U.S. imperialism to blackmail the isolated Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, and also pose a threat to China. Trotskyists defend the North Korean and Chinese bureaucratically deformed workers states against imperialism, including North Korea’s right to have nuclear weapons as a deterrent to the aggressive U.S. and Japanese imperialists. The current wave of North Korea-bashing was triggered by the sinking of the South Korean Navy ship Cheonan on March 26. South Korea and the U.S. have accused North Korea of torpedoing the ship, but their supposed “proof” is highly suspect. North Korea categorically denies the charge, suggesting an accident. There is a long history of imperialists staging provocations or seizing on unrelated events to justify a war. The right-wing South Korean government and the Democratic administration in Washington have been escalating threats against North Korea for some time. It is the duty of all opponents of imperialism to strongly oppose them. Defend North Korea Against U.S. War Threats and Sanctions  (21 July 2010)

Judge Resentences Radical Lawyer to 10 Years in Prison
Free Lynne Stewart! No Justice in the Capitalist Courts

On July 15, federal district court judge John Koeltl sentenced radical civil liberties lawyer Lynne Stewart to ten years behind bars. For 70-year-old Stewart, who has been fighting breast cancer, this could be a death sentence. From start to finish, the persecution of Lynne Stewart has been a major step in the direction of a police state in the United States. Stewart is not a criminal, much less a “conspirator”or “terrorist,” but a fighter for the oppressed who has been targeted by a criminal and terrorist conspiracy, the United States government. The reason for existence of this case was sheer intimidation, and to regiment the population for war. Like the arrests of radical syndicalists and socialists on sedition charges in World War I, the jailing of the Trotskyists and Minneapolis Teamsters in World War II and the execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg at the onset of the anti-Soviet Cold War, domestic witchhunts are an integral part of imperialist war. They go hand in hand with the mass deportations and jailing of immigrants in concentration camps, going after the “enemy within.” Free Lynne Stewart! No Justice in the Capitalist Courts (July 2010)

Hands off WikiLeaks!
Defend PFC Bradley Manning!
On July 6, the U.S. military announced that charges have been filed against Private First Class Bradley Manning for allegedly leaking classified material – in particular providing the “Collateral Murder” video to the investigative website WikiLeaks. The video shows U.S. helicopter gunships cold-bloodedly gunning down reporters and other civilians, first aid responders and children in Baghdad in 2007. If Bradley Manning did indeed help to uncover evidence of U.S. imperialism’s war crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq, these were justified acts evidencing rare moral courage. In addition, government officials have said that they were seeking Julian Assange, an Australian who is the main figure of WikiLeaks. Class-conscious workers and all defenders of democratic rights should defend Manning and Assange. Exposing U.S. imperialism’s crimes and tearing the curtain of secrecy from its plots can save the lives of innocent people by helping to put an end the Pentagon’s reign of terror in Afghanistan, Iraq and around the world. What’s behind all this is that U.S. imperialism is bogged down in losing wars. That’s why the administration of liberal Democrat Barack Obama is pursuing “whistle blowers” with a vengeance. Defend PFC Bradley Manning!  (8 July 2010)

After Occupying Ten Campuses for Two Months
First-Round Student Victory in University of Puerto Rico Strike
On June 21, several thousand students jubilantly ratified the agreements marking their initial victory in the strike of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR). After holding firm for 62 days during which they occupied ten out of the eleven UPR campuses (the other was closed by a campus workers’ strike), the students successfully beat back a concerted attack by the right-wing colonial government and its servile university administration. Everyone understands that the fight is not over. The students won agreement to overturn the cancellation of tuition waivers and there will be no privatization of UPR campuses. There would also be no special fee imposed this August and no summary sanctions against strikers. The showdown over the fees was postponed until January and there will likely be a battle over disciplinary reprisals. However, this gives the students several valuable months to reinforce their organization, and they do so from a position of strength, having won the first round of the battle. The task now is to turn widespread working-class sympathy with the strike into concrete labor action. First-Round Victory for Students in University of Puerto Rico Strike  (22 June 2010)

“Shock Force” Riot Police Assault Students and Workers
Puerto Rico: Beatings at the Sheraton
On the evening of May 20, the notorious Shock Force of the Puerto Rican Police brutally attacked a demonstration of hundreds of students and workers protesting against Governor Luis Fortuño. Puerto Rico: Beatings at the Sheraton  (20 May 2010)

Shut the Detention Camps – Free the Detainees!
Mobilize Workers, Immigrants to Stop the Deportations!
Full Citizenship Rights for All Immigrants
A “megamarch” for immigrants’ rights was held in Washington, D.C. on March 21 that brought out over 200,000 people, making it the largest immigrant demonstration since 2006. Pushing the theme “We March for America,” organizers handed out little American flags to participants. A parade of Democratic Congressmen spoke from the podium. Despite the flag-waving and hundreds of thousands demonstrators chanting (in English) Obama's campaign slogan “Yes we can,” the capitalist politicians are not going to do anything to legalize the more than 15 million undocumented immigrants in this mid-term election year. Even if they do eventually pass an immigration bill, it will only further victimize the super-exploited workers. The Internationalist Group put out a bi-lingual special issue of The Internationalist emphasizing that Democrats and Republicans are enemies of immigrants, and we need a revolutionary workers party. Mobilize Workers, Immigrants to Stop the Deportations!  (21 March 2010)

Full Citizenship Rights for All Immigrants!
Mobilize Workers Against Racist
Arizona Anti-Immigrant Law!

Democrats’ “Concept” of Immigration “Reform”: A Police State
The passage of a spectacularly racist immigration law by the Arizona state senate on April 19, and its signing into law by the governor four days later, has provoked a wave of justified outrage. The new law (SB1070) authorizes police to stop people on the street to demand that they produce documents to prove their immigration status. This means blatant “racial profiling” by the cops: in Arizona, anyone who “looks Mexican” is now subject to arrest. Comparisons are made to the racial laws of Nazi Germany, South African apartheid pass laws and the fugitive slave acts in pre-Civil War United States. Many are calling on the federal government to annul the racist law. Yet the federal government under Barack Obama is the biggest jailer of immigrants. Under the present administration the number of deportations has sharply escalated. The Democrats’ talk of immigration reform is a cruel hoax. The centerpiece of the “conceptual framework on immigration” drawn up by New York senator Schumer is increased militarization of the border, more migra cops and a national ID card with biometric data: in short, a police state for all. The Internationalist Group calls on workers to mobilize against Arizona’s racist immigration law and for full citizenship rights for all immigrants. Mobilize Workers Against Racist Arizona Anti-Immigrant Law  (1 May 2010)

After Racist Arizona Law, Obama’s Border Patrol Kills Mexicans
Blood on the Border
Down with Democrats and Republicans, Capitalist Parties of War and Repression!
Forge a Revolutionary Workers Party!

Today in the United States, under the Democratic administration of Barack Obama, xenophobic and racist violence is escalating. The criminal agents of the Border Patrol have reached the point of killing in cold blood, before the eyes of hundreds of witnesses. On May 28, construction worker Anastasio Hernández Rojas was beaten to death by some 20 agents of the U.S. Border Patrol. Then on June 7 in Ciudad Juárez, across the river from El Paso, Border Patrol agents fired into a group of youths on the Mexican side of of the border, murdering 14-year-old Adrián Hernández with a shot to the head. These crimes are part of a policy of racist repression looking for scapegoats, typified by the legalization of xenophobia and police use of racial profiling in Arizona’s SB 1070 law. But while Obama criticized the law and demonstrators chanted, “Obama, listen, we are in the struggle,” his thugs are killing on the border. It is an illusion to think that the commander in chief of U.S. imperialism, or his counterpart and semi-colonial underling, Mexican president Felipe Calderón, will defend the workers. It is necessary to mobilize the power of the working class to defend immigrants. Blood on the Border  (10 June 2010)

To contact the League for the Fourth International or its sections, send an e-mail to: internationalistgroup@msn.com