Archive | April 6th, 2015

Yemeni Rebels Press Attack on Aden, Arrest 120 Rival Islamists

NOVANEWS
Image result for Houthi LOGO

by Edward Yeranian

Houthi rebels in Yemen have arrested more than 120 members of a rival Islamic Sunni party, even as a Houthi leader has proposed peace talks.

The Houthis raided homes and offices in the capital, Sana’a, rounding up members of the Islah party, which has ties to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood. Islah also backs the Saudi-led coalition airstrikes against the Houthis.

The raids came as senior Houthi leader Saleh al-Sammad said the rebels are willing to hold peace talks if the Saudis stop the bombing.

Sammad told Reuters Sunday, ‘We have no conditions except a halt to the aggression……and any international or regional parties that have no aggressive positions toward the Yemeni people can oversee the dialogue.’

There has been no reaction yet from the Yemeni government or any other rival parties. But previous United Nations efforts at mediation have failed.

The Houthis gained ground in the main southern city of Aden Sunday. The French News Agency reports the rebels took over the government headquarters, including the governor’s office, in Aden’s Mualla district.

Eyewitnesses said gun battles and heavy shelling ripped through a downtown district near the city’s port.

It was not immediately clear how much territory the Houthis control.

Houthi tanks attempted to advance into Aden from the north, despite resistance from local fighters.

Arab media also reported tribal fighters from the eastern province of Hadramout are also trying to move on Makalla from the east to try to dislodge al-Qaida fighters who control the district. The Houthis also appear to be attempting to advance from the west.

The Houthis’ al Maseera TV showed video of the port region of Aden, claiming the group controls the area. A young Houthi fighter in a military uniform insisted his unit is advancing, saying Houthi tanks are ready to move on the nearby district of Makalla.

Al Arabiya TV indicated the Saudi-led coalition battling to push back the Houthis launched airstrikes along various routes to try to cut Houthi supply lines.

Last Hadi stronghold

The Houthi forces have been battling to take Aden, a last foothold of fighters loyal to Saudi-backed President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, advancing to the city center despite 11 days of airstrikes by a Saudi-led coalition of mainly Gulf air forces.

Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia launched the air strikes on March 26 in an attempt to turn back the Iran-allied Shi’ite Houthis, who already control Yemen’s capital Sana’a, and restore some of Hadi’s crumbling authority.

The fighting has failed so far to inflict any decisive defeat on the Houthis, who deny they are being armed by Tehran, or the supporters of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, who are fighting alongside them, but the growing death toll and humanitarian suffering has alarmed aid workers.

The United Nations said on Thursday that more than 500 people had been killed in two weeks of fighting in Yemen.

The International Red Cross said Sunday it had been given permission by the Saudi-led coalition to enter Yeman with medical supplies and staff, a spokeswoman told Reuters.

Red Cross spokeswoman Sitara Jabeen tells VOA there is a ‘dire humanitarian situation’ in the country. She says Yemen is running low on life-saving medicine and equipment. The fighting also has led to cutoffs of water and electricity, with aid workers reporting that Aden has been dry and dark for nearly three days.

A pro-Hadi militia source said 36 Houthi and allied fighters were killed on Sunday in Aden’s central Mualla district, near the port, while 11 of Hadi’s combatants died.

Ready for talks

Both Saudi Arabia and the Houthis say they are ready for talks which could return Yemen to the political transition which started when Saleh stood down in 2012 following huge street protests against his rule, inspired by wider Arab uprisings.

But they have set out incompatible conditions for the talks and neighboring Oman, which often steers an independent course in the Gulf and has stayed clear of the Saudi-led military operations, said last week that neither side was ready for negotiations.

A senior Houthi member said on Sunday the group is ready for peace talks as long as the Saudi-led air campaign is halted and negotiations are overseen by “non-aggressive” parties.

Posted in Saudi Arabia, YemenComments Off on Yemeni Rebels Press Attack on Aden, Arrest 120 Rival Islamists

I$raHell nuked America on 9-11-01! –Shout it from the rooftops (Part II)

NOVANEWS

It’s time to completely reject all the false narratives and Controlled Major Mass Media big lies used to cover up the fact that Israel attacked America on 9-11-01 using Nukes stolen from Pantex in Amarillo, Texas.

by  Preston James

nuclearIt can no longer be argued that Mideast Islamics had anything to do with the attack on America on 9-11-01.As Veterans Today Senior Editor and Director Gordon Duff, a veteran Intel Officer and former Marine as well as a registered diplomat, revealed conclusively when he delivered the keynote speech at the Damascus Conference “Combating Terrorism and Religious Extremism” last December 2014, the real problem is not terrorism but is a very large Organized Crime Cabal associated with Israel.

When this truth about what Terrorism actually is, was first publicly declared anywhere by Gordon Duff, it sent shock-waves around the World.

This keynote speech was the first public declaration ever that Israel is linked to a very large Worldwide Organized Crime Syndicate that uses staged, disguised, false-flag terror to attain its sinister political and economic goals.

Israel wants the whole World to think that Islamic religious extremism produces terrorism and is the main problem, when actually all Terrorism comes from Israeli religious extremism.

It is hard for the World to understand that these violent acts of Israeli religious extremism because they are false-flag attacks disguised to be blamed on Islamics and because the Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM) owned and controlled by six Israeli assets to continually broadcast and publish big lies, false-narratives and propaganda on behalf of Israel.

We now know for sure based on irrefutable, rock solid, smoking gun Intel that these very crafty False-Flag attacks by Israel all over the World are deployed on behalf of its overlord, the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) based in the City of London Financial District, a separate nation like the Vatican.

And not only was this historic declaration by Gordon Duff fully accepted because it makes complete sense and explains and clarifies much and supports what many top Intel Officials all over the World have long suspected, it sent immediate shock-waves around the World to every major World Leader and every major Intelligence Agency.

Because we now know for sure that Israel nuked America on 9-11-01 and can prove it in any honest court of law, a US or a World Court, this means that Mideast Islamics had nothing to do with it at all.

This of course means that both of the massive American invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were based on the big lies, false-narratives and propaganda dispensed to the American masses by the Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM) and were completely illegal under international law and thereby constitute abject war crimes for which those.

Numerous former top USG Officials and Members of Congress will someday soon be made accountable for committing espionage against America related to 9-11-01, its coverup and for all their war crimes based on lying about it and falsely blaming Islamics in Iraq and Afghanistan.

And those top USG officials and Members of Congress that pushed for these wars and approved resolutions to finance them must be tried not only for these serious war crimes that resulted in over 1 million innocent civilian deaths, but for all the dead, wounded, and disabled American Soldiers who were sacrificed for nothing in order to fight wars for Israel and the Khazarian Mafia (KM).

One of the most interesting traits we have discovered about these members of Congress who have sold out to the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and Israel in return for the massive political contributions, perks, and huge set-aside allocations in foreign numbered bank accounts is that they have the quality of being remarkably two-faced. That is, able to put on a phony public face while having a very evil, sociopathic inner nature characterized by absolutely no functioning soul or conscience. Yes, these Perps appear to have lost their very souls.

mukasey911TRIALcourtsMEME

It’s time for those Americans who assisted the Israelis with 9-11-01 and who covered it up to be indicted, arrested, tried and convicted for their various roles in the nuclear attack on America on 9-11-01 by Israel and its coverup.

Those responsible for these illegal invasions and wars against Iraq and Afghanistan must also be tried for espionage and Treason against America on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and Israel for the incredible damage done to the American economy in order to put vast war profits in the pockets of the Rothschild Khazarian Banksters and their associated International Defense Contractors.

But they must also be tried for the illegal torture and other mass war crimes they were responsible for setting the Policies that produced such massive crimes against humanity and so much mass suffering and death.

Can you imagine how great the damage awards are going to be when these Perps are brought to justice by the whole World someday not too far off and have all their personal assets seized and clawed back no matter where they are kept even if offshore.

Perhaps it’s time to start serving Writs of Mandamus to the Provost Marshals Office and the US Attorney General or whoever is now responsible for the US Department of Justice.

We now have smoking gun irrefutable evidence of who actually did the attack on America on 9-11-01 and how they did it.

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We now have very detailed smoking gun Intel from numerous top Intel Agencies that proves beyond any reasonable doubt that Israel attacked America on 9-11-01 using W-54 Nuclear Pits stolen out the backdoor at Pantex in Amarillo Texas with the help of the Bush Crime Cabal (BCC).

We know for sure that Mossad operatives transported these 350 stolen W-54 Davy Crockett nuclear Pits to Israel where they were reprocessed and combined and then transported back to America and stored in a Mossad safe-house in Fort Lee right across from NYC.

It was Mossad proprietary Urban Moving Systems that finally transported these mini-nukes to rest in the Twin trade Towers where they were detonated on 9-11-01 by the Mossad with full knowledge and protection provided by Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, Bush 2, and high ranking Traitors in the JCS, USAF, NORAD, and the FAA.

MichaelChertoff911israelFALSEFLAGmeme4

We now know for certain that Bibi Netanyahu has been functioning as the operational head of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and personally planned and ordered the nuclear attack on America on 9-11-01.

Top Intel sources from several different countries have reported that Netanyahu is a very hands-on former “Red Mafiya” KGB agent who was cut off from Russia when the Soviet Union collapsed and that he maintains very close relationships with all his Mossad Operatives, assets and key Sayanims working on behalf of Israel doing espionage inside America.

This includes many Members of Congress, the key Kingpins of the Bush Crime Cabal which controls most of the CIA, and AIPAC, JINSA, the ADL, Bnai Brith, the Defense policy Board, and many so-called non-profit organizations like the Heritage Foundation who work on behalf of the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) whether their members realize it or not.

What has been the result of the Israel nuclear attack on America on 9-11-01?

The result of this Israeli nuclear attack on America? Three thousand immediate deaths on 9-11-01, 39,000 more have died from strange nuclear fallout cancers, and now approximately 70,000 are fighting for their lives with strange nuclear fallout caused cancers.

And two illegal, Unconstitutional, unprovoked, undeclared, perpetual, un-winnable wars and invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan characterized by the mass-murder of over 1 million innocent civilians listed as mere collateral damage and the needless human sacrifice of thousands of American Soldiers for Israel and the Khazarian Mafia (KM).

But it doesn’t end there we have many thousands of disabled American Vets, denied proper treatment by a corrupt and despicable VA System, and thousands left abused, ignored and homeless with no jobs or means of suitable support.

Yes, America was “tricked” into fighting two illegal, Unconstitutional foreign Mideast wars by the Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM).

And all because America was tricked into fighting Mideast wars for Israel and the Khazarian Mafia (KM) by a corrupt, infiltrated USG and numerous Traitors in the JCS, the USAF, NORAD and the FAA as well as the US Administration including Cheney, Rumsfeld, Bush 2 and many more who assisted the Israeli nuclear attack on America on 9-11-01.

All nuclear materials as well as all nuclear detonations give off specific very detailed “fingerprints” of gamma, neutron and other emissions (some remain classified) and this means that based on satellite, aircraft and ground sensors, it is easy to trace the origin of any nuclear destination as well as the location and storage of nuclear devices before they are detonated.

Don’t forget the Able Danger and AEC Sandia Labs investigations of Israeli theft of nuclear materials and planted nuclear detonations in the Twin Trade Towers.

We now have the leaked AEC Sandia labs and Able Danger reports on the Israeli theft and detonation of nukes in the Twin Trade towers on 9-11-01 and we know how certain American USG Traitors lured the Able Danger Investigators to the prime target area of the pentagon on 9-11-01 where 35 of the 50 were assassinated by an Israeli fired Tomahawk cruise missile with a special hardened nose cone penetrator.

American Traitors involved in 9-11-01 and its coverup are being paid massive bribes.

This leads to the question that if this information existed, why were the Israelis allowed to proceed and use Urban Moving Systems to put the Nukes in place for detonation? The answer is that there were high ranked Americans in high USG and military positions of power that wanted the devices detonated in order to gain more political power and receive massive payoffs by the Khazarian Mafia (KM) estimated to be between 12 and 20 million USD each.

Yes, as you can imagine, it is a serious crime to take bribes and aid a foreign nation in espionage against America. And in this case it constitutes massive RICO crimes that begs for complete exposure and prosecution, which much to many’s surprise is now going to become imminent.

These payoffs are called set-aside allocations are are typically kept offshore in the Cayman Island Banks in numbered accounts. Thanks to the new upgrades of Promis software these deposits have now been secretly tracked and will be easily seized when the 9-11-01 Perps are brought to justice, which will be not too far in the future.

We now know for certain that most members of the US House and Senate Intel Committees have been receiving these massive payoffs from the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) for covering up who actually did the attack on America and the fact it was nuclear.

But do not forget that knowing about a crime and not reporting it for any USG officials is a serious felony in and of itself called Mis-prision of a Felony.

We have detailed lists of all the names of those involved and smoking gun evidence from multiple vetted Intel sources that shows who did it and how they did it beyond any reasonable doubt.

It is only a matter of time that this information  is fully released and will diffuse to mainstream America, despite the six American Traitors who work for the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and own and control all the Major Mass Media in what is aptly described as an illegal News Cartel that must be broken up under existing US Anti-trust Laws.

Soon it will be shown conclusively that these six Traitors have actually been doing espionage against America and violating various US National Security Laws against Espionage in America. In addition these six men can now easily be shown to have violated criminal and Civil RICO laws and laws against serving as accessories after a crime. By the way treason against America is a capital crime punishable by execution upon conviction.

The Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM) has been functioning as an illegal monopoly best viewed as a illegal news cartel, and has been doing espionage against America for the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) and Israel.

It is a Federal Crime to knowingly broadcast Big Lies, false-narratives, and propaganda on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) a foreign based enemy of America that attacked America on 9-11-01 reprocessed W-54 Davy Crockett nuclear Pits stolen from Pantex in Amarillo Texas with the help of the Bush Crime Cabal (BBC) which controls most of the CIA and operates it to serve the Khazarian Mafia (KM).

Yes, it is a violation of Federal Law to knowingly broadcast lies and propaganda which harms the American public which is exactly what these six Traitors who run the American Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM) have been doing.

It is now certain that these six major international news corporations that comprise the Controlled Major Mass Media (CMMM) must be completely broken up with all assets seized under the authority of the very Patriot Acts that the CMMM propagandized so positively in order to get it passed.

And these six Traitors who run the CMMM must be arrested for all their crimes against America including doing espionage on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM), serving as accessories after major crimes, RICO civil and criminal violations.

Can you imagine the massive damages that will someday have to be paid by these Six Traitors and their News Cartel for the damage done misleading and mind-kontrolling the American People on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and their main action-agents Israel?

The Internet is the New Gutenberg Press of the World and is now eroding the power and penetration of the CMMM more and more everyday.

The CMMM is the central vehicle for the massive coverup surrounding 9-11-01 that is in place and in spite of that the Worldwide Internet is making an end-run around it. And right now Veterans Today is the leader for the publication and broadcasting of serious truth about the nuclear attack on America on 9-11-01 which was done by israel on behalf of the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM).

We now know what the actual Agenda for American of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and its main action agent Israel actually is based on a real voice recording witnessed by American Intel as the recording was made.

It is time for all Americans to fully understand the agenda of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and Israel to destroy America after completely asset stripping it it of all wealth, property and industry, manufacturing and jobs.

We now have the true Agenda of Israel on behalf of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) toward America. Americans better wake up and understand that Israel is America’s greatest enemy and not our friend. Friends of America do not nuke America!

Never forget the transcript of the recording of Netanyahu at Fink’s Bar in Jerusalem when he boldly expressed his willingness to attack America in an upcoming major staged terror attack to blame on Muslims and suck America into fighting another war for Israel:

If we get caught they will just replace us with persons of the same cloth. So it doesn’t matter what you do, America is a Golden Calf and we will suck it dry, chop it up, and sell it off piece by piece until there is nothing left but the World’s biggest welfare state that we will create and control.

Why? Because it’s god’s will and America is big enough to take the hit so we can do it again, again and again. This is what we do to countries that we hate. We destroy them very slowly and make them suffer for refusing to be our slaves.”

It is important to understand that when Bibi Netanyahu refers to “god”, he is not referring the same god most of us are. He is referring to the god of the Khazarian Mafia (KM) which is Baal, commonly known as Lucifer, Satan or Moloch or the Great Owl of Bohemian Grove. The top Khazarian Mafia (KM) Chieftains are known for being ardent Baal Worshipers who do regular ritual child sacrifice and pedophilia. What they do is best referred to is Luciferian, Satanic or Sabbattean Kabbalism.

Conclusion:

Stay tuned and watch the USG and CMMM 9-11-01 coverup crumble as new verified voice recordings are released from various Intel sources all over the World which constitute irrefutable smoking gun evidence.

There are thousands of “very interesting” voice recording and wiretaps hidden in the back files of American and other Intel Agencies that will soon be released one by one.

Many of these involve recordings of secret treason by Members of the US Congress and various high USG officials in positions of power at the time of the 9-11-01 nuclear attack on America by Israel.

If you think this means that senior and retired Intel from all over the World are now working to undermine and bring down the Khazarian Mafia (KM) and its main action-agent the Israeli Likudists, as well as all of its Cutouts including Homeland Security before they destroy America the whole World which is their plan, you are correct.

These Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) are known to be the  “destroyers of all societies” and have been plotting to bring nuclear destruction to the whole World while they hide in their underground bunkers, hoping then to come out later and set up a one-World Luciferian Kingdom based on Baal Worship, commonly known as Babylonian Talmudism, Moloch or Owl worship, Sabbattean Satanism, Kabbalism,

It is important to realize that Naziism, World Zionism, and Rothschild Khazarianism are all the same thing and were started by the Rothschild Khazarian Mafia (KM) working out of the City of London Financial District, a private bankers nation with their own diplomatic corps.

The Khazarian Mafia (KM) has basically been waging an age old war against all societies, governments and peoples of the World by an incredibly evil, satanic group which suffers from a paranoid group delusion of racial superiority and hatred for all other races and people and an age old desire and commitment to subjugate, asset strip, tyrannize them, disarm them, capture them and then systematically destroy them to the last person which is what they did in Russia in 1917.

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An American “makes aliyah” to Hell in I$raHell

NOVANEWS
Jon and his children

By Marianne Azizi

Recently, I received a letter from a yet another United States citizen who immigrated to I$raHell [what the Zionists call “making aliyah” – editor] and lived to regret it.

He begins by explaining that he is still trying to deal with the ordeal he went through. He describes himself as a “prisoner of war returning home after six years in a foreign jail”.

Jon immigrated with his wife and four children in 2009. In the USA, he was a financial broker with his own practice. The family were aided by Nefesh B’Nefesh (NBN), a body that works in close cooperation with the Jewish Agency and seeks to facilitate the immigration of foreign Jews to I$raHell, which promised many financial benefits to encourage them to immigrate to I$raHell. Jon’s wife, an I$raHell, was happy to be going to I$raHell.

The couple were given USD 7,500 for their flights to Israel. Jon knew little Hebrew, so upon arrival took a job as an English teacher. As a condition for the money they were given to encourage them to immigrate to and settle in Israel, the couple had to remain in Israel for three years or repay the money. In the first year, they received over 55,000 shekels [USD 14,035]. But Jon became trapped in Israel in a divorce nightmare which many men in that country will identify with. His lack of Hebrew and naive understanding of Israeli family laws became his downfall.

Here is his story, all of which can be verified (his own words are in blue font):

I’ll never forget our first week in Israel after immigrating. My wife’s father called me into his home-office to talk. He told me, in Hebrew with my wife translating: “My daughter is a very beautiful woman. She can have any man. You’re not good enough.”  This, of course, led to an immediate rift between me and him and, of course, caused a considerable amount of tension in our marriage since my wife, who translated his words, agreed with him!

Nefesh B’Nefesh’s poisoned chalice

In hindsight I should have taken the kids and returned to America there and then; however, I made another monumental blunder when I immigrated, and that was accepting the bribes offered by Nefesh B’Nefesh and the Jewish Agency to move to Israel. The NBN terms were that we would have to pay back the “incentive” they gave us to immigrate if we returned to America permanently within the first three years after immigrating. In addition, the Jewish Agency was giving us a significant amount of money to get our family settled…

…I made [a] monumental blunder when I immigrated, and that was accepting the bribes offered by Nefesh B’Nefesh and the Jewish Agency to move to Israel.

In June 2011 I was served with a subpoena calling me to court. It was in Hebrew, so I couldn’t read it in full, but the gist was clear and I knew what was coming: my wife was divorcing me. But it turned out not to be a divorce request after all. It was a request my wife submitted to the court to block me and our four American-born children from leaving the country. The attorney I consulted to translate the document told me: ”Your wife is about to file for divorce.” Before she did that, though, she made sure to prevent me from leaving the country with or without the kids to return to our country of origin.

Her argument to the judge in the ensuing hearing was that if I left the country I would not pay her child support, which was one of the motivations for her to file divorce in the first place. In Israel, the mother is automatically awarded child support and the father, under Jewish law, is always 100 per cent responsible and must pay the mother whatever the court awards her. There is no such thing as “fault” or motivation for divorce when it comes to Israeli family law and the awarding of child support to the mother. Indeed, the mother could be earning 100,000 shekels [USD 25,518] a month to the father’s 5,000 shekels [USD 1,275] and the court will award her an amount from the father based on how many children they have, largely ignoring what he earns. In other words, mothers have a strong financial incentive to divorce in Israel.

At the time I didn’t fight the travel restriction as I was still in disbelief that my wife of 13 years and the mother of my four children could want to wreck our family, especially after we had just immigrated from the US a year and a half before. At the time, I was totally unaware of the injustice of the Israeli anti-family legal system…

I looked into Israeli family law a little bit and was dismayed by what I learned. She told me at that point – prior to the No Exit Order, in fact – that if I give her 8,000 shekels [USD 2,041] a month in child support we can avoid court and file for divorce using a mediator. Since I was earning a monthly 5,500 shekels net as a high school English teacher and knew I would also have to support myself, I told her that there was no way I could pay her that. She went on the warpath, warning me: “I’ll make your life a living hell if you don’t give me the divorce.” And that she did, for the past four years, starting with the No Exit Order…

Weapon for enslavement

The family court in Israel is split into two separate entities: civil and religious. The civil court does not actually handle divorce, only separation. The religious cou-rt has a monopoly on both marriage and divorce. Only Jews can marry Jews, and there  are specific rules for Jews in Israel who divorce. The man  must give the  woman the divorce, but does not have to. If the religious court rules that the man should give the woman the divorce and he doesn’t he can be imprisoned indefinitely for the “crime” of sarvan get – refusal to give the divorce.
If the religious court rules that the man should give the  woman the  divorce and he doesn’t he can be imprisoned indefinitely for the “crime” of sarvan get – refusal to give the divorce.

Two months before she told me she wanted a divorce, my wife stole my and the kids’ passports, both American and Israeli. I discovered that after she delivered the No Exit Order…

My wife launched another stage [in her war]… which was accusing me of abusing our children. She went to the police half a dozen times with this false accusation. After the third time, they told her they would have to interrogate our children, which was fine with her.

In the meantime, I had equal parenting rights and the kids spent half their time with me at my friends’ apartment. It was actually a pleasant time for me and the kids, away from their mother, and like a vacation as my friends lived in a very nice building with an indoor swimming pool. Of course, I had no intention of taking advantage of my friends’ generosity for too long and respected their privacy, so I found myself an apartment through another good friend in Old Jaffa. Three weeks after the separation I was living there.

Jon and kids in the park

Jon enjoying a day out with his children

The next day she went with her youngest brother to the police and upped the ante on her false charges of child abuse. It was her seventh visit to the police and this time she claimed I had raped her three times during our marriage, once seven years earlier back in America and twice during our year in Israel. I thought the police were joking – the accusations were so absurd. We had four kids! In fact, her stories were that she didn’t want to have sex those three times – apparently the only three times in 14 years of marriage – but didn’t tell me that. I was supposed to know she didn’t want sex because she alleged she was crying. It was totally absurd.

…[R]ape is a criminal offence with a 10-year maximum sentence, and the minimum the police will do after an accusation is put the accused under five days of house arrest. The police wanted to hold me in jail at the police station that night but my attorney convinced them it was a divorce case, the woman had filed six other dubious charges already, and I had no criminal record. I was thus “let off” with five days of house arrest.

In addition to falsely accusing me of rape, my wife also reiterated her charges of child abuse. At this point the police decided they needed to further interrogate our children and gave me a 21-day restraining order, preventing me from seeing or speaking to my kids! She had full access to them as they remained in her custody during this time. I was in fact under house arrest for five days and blocked from even texting my kids for 21 days!

Halfway through the 21-days the judge ordered the court counsellor to meet with me and the children together to see if there was any merit to my wife’s accusation of child abuse. Apparently, he didn’t take the police interrogation seriously, thank God. I don’t even know what the police found out through interrogating my kids, and it doesn’t matter…

Amazingly, my wife sent her brother with the kids, and when the court counsellor called me into the room where she had been meeting with the kids alone, her brother rushed in front of me and argued with her that I should not be allowed in the room with them due to the police restraining order of 21-days! The court counsellor did not take kindly to this absurdity and told him in not a nice way that the judge ordered the meeting of the father and his kids and this takes precedence over the police-issued restraining order.

Temporary relief

It was a teary-eyed heartfelt reunion. I had an extremely strong relationship with all four of my children back then. The court counsellor could clearly see that ours was a very loving father-children relationship and she immediately sided with me. She didn’t believe my wife’s lies at all. My and my wife’s stories about my relationship with the kids completely contradicted and it was obvious who was lying. The court counsellor recommended to the judge that after the 21 days were up the kids spend the remainder of the summer with me, a full 11 days with only one break, a weekend with their mother, during that period.

For the next four months I enjoyed joint custody with my kids. The kids had to take two buses to and from school when staying with me, as their mother had enrolled them in a quasi-religious school in Rishon Lezion while we lived in Holon…

At the temporary hearing I was awarded joint custody… but also required to pay my wife 4,000 shekels [USD 1,021] a month in child support. My attorney seemed to think this was a win, too, as my wife actually sued for a whopping 16,000 shekels per month, which got the judge to yell at her again, since my earnings were 5,500 shekels net. She claimed I was working two jobs and earning 16,000 and she wanted all of it. In any event, 4,000 out of 5,500 left me with next to nothing to live on. With the help of my parents and brothers, I managed to pay her three months of this amount while moving to a four-room apartment next to the kids’ school in Rishon.

…[A]fter her false rape accusation (which was still not closed at the time), my attorney and I thought she would be going for the ketuba. The ketuba is a contract you sign in a Jewish marriage. I thought back in 1998 that it was just a tradition, a gesture, and not an actual contract, so when I found out it could be legally binding I was kind of shocked. At the time of our wedding I had the strong belief we’d be married forever and I wrote on the ketuba my net worth at the time, which wasn’t that much but converted to shekels at a 5.5 rate back then it came out to about 750,000 shekels [USD 191,388]. There are four things out of which a woman must prove at least one to have taken place to be awarded the ketuba: (1) the husband is having an affair; (2) the husband frequents prostitutes; (3) the husband physically abuses her; and (4) the husband sexually abuses her. Thus, the false rape accusation had me and my attorney thinking she was going for the ketuba. Note, she never accused me of being physically abusive, though she did accuse me of being dangerous and capable of physical abuse…

I hired a special rabbinical attorney and we had a strong case relating to her promiscuity and her affair, though no direct evidence. But she surprised us by showing up alone, without an attorney, not denying she had an affair and telling the court all she wants is the divorce, not the ketuba. She basically came in waving a white flag. That was a relief to me and it saved her the embarrassment of what I had on her in terms of pictures and other aspects of her private life while we were married. The rabbinical judges, after hearing my attorneys opening argument, basically told me I had to give her the divorce since I was accusing her of having an affair. I couldn’t sue for marital reconciliation (shalom bayit) after that. To me she was haram, forbidden. I agreed to give her the divorce and the ceremony was scheduled for the following week…

Jon’s parents get No Exit Order on visiting him from USA

In June 2012 Jon’s eldest son had his coming of age ritual, known as bar mitzvah. Jon’s parents flew in from the USA for the occasion. After two weeks, his parents prepared to fly back to America. However, an hour before leaving for the airport, two court summons were handed to Jon’s parents.Jon’s ex-wife had sued his parents on the day they had landed, yet delayed the summons delivery to the moment of their departure. She was suing them for USD 50,000 – a claim stating that, as they had supported Jon, they were also responsible for child support. It was unclear if the No Exit Order had been ratified.

Jon’s parents tried to board their plane but got only as far as the second border control when they were turned back (as with Hana Gan). His former wife had indeed got a warrant preventing his parents from leaving Israel. They were led off to a small room with no windows, and forced to wait three hours until their luggage was retrieved from the plane. They returned to Jon’s apartment after 3:00 am with an 8:30 am court appearance scheduled the next morning.

If Jon’s ex-wife had won the case his parents would have been prevented from leaving Israel unless or until they paid her USD 50,000. Luckily, Jon’s parents flew out the next day, having to pay an extra USD 800 to change the flight date. They will never return to Israel as long as they live.

Next step: prison

Unable to pay the child support without his parents’ help, Jon’s lawyer filed a request for the support to be reduced to an affordable amount. Jon’s ex-wife was financially solvent and had financial support herself from her father who is said to be paying her 5,000 shekels [USD 1,276] a month as an incentive to divorce him, and she had the income from her own well paid job. Alone, with no family support and on a meagre teacher’s salary, Jon was struggling.

I was taken to prison with basically the clothes on my body and nothing else. I had one pair of underwear, one shirt and one pair of pants, one pair of socks and my running shoes. I had no toothbrush for two weeks and brushed my teeth with rolled up toilet paper…

Jon lost his attempt to reduce child support; it was raised to an amount equal to his net income which he managed to maintain for three months, but only with family help. He had no money to treat his children on visits, nor maintain his one-roomed apartment or buy food.

Unable to pay the child support, nor have it reduced, Jon was sentenced to 14 days in prison. He was taken at 4:00 am to the police and cuffed by his hands and ankles and chained to another divorced father. He says:

Neither of us was going to run off, but I guessed this was standard procedure in Israel. I’d never felt like a criminal before that in my life, including when I was arrested and interrogated for the false rape charges and put under house arrest. This was the first time I had been handcuffed in my life, and ankle cuffs were something completely strange to me

Unfortunately for me, I had neither family nor friends close enough to pay for me, nor sufficient money of my own. The judge told me to pay 7,500 shekels [USD 1,914] or go to prison for 14 days, and I had no choice.

Jon was driven to Shichma, a large prison in Ashkelon, near Gaza. He was thrown into a holding cell, with convicts of many nationalities.

My cuffs at least were taken off while I stood in the holding cell waiting for the crowded room to be emptied as the prison guards slowly checked us in. I was put in the one room where they imprison fathers (the only prisoners in there for civil offences), while the other 19 cells were full of guys who were in for various criminal offences but on good behaviour or first offences.

I was taken to prison with basically the clothes on my body and nothing else. I had one pair of underwear, one shirt and one pair of pants, one pair of socks and my running shoes. I had no toothbrush for two weeks and brushed my teeth with rolled up toilet paper that was the texture of a tough paper towel.

Jon was experiencing a similar fate to many Israeli fathers who are unable to pay child support and risk homelessness. In his words:

There was one other father there when I arrived and he had only a couple of days left out of a five-day sentence. During my two weeks there I met six or seven fathers, some who came and went on shorter sentences, a few who were given two weeks like me and one, an African guy, who had only 1,800 shekels [USD 459] a month to pay and didn’t, so was given the full 21 days. He was the only African father there and it seemed strange and racist to me that he owed less than all of us but was given the longest sentence.

I talked to all the fathers during those two weeks. Many were going through the same experience as I was. There was an Orthodox Haredi father who came in towards the end of my stay. He was sentenced to two weeks, having been caught after six years in hiding. He owed a staggering 2 million shekels [USD 510,367] as he had eight kids and his wife was awarded a lot of money which he could never pay.

He had been on the run by hiding in yeshivas (religious schools). He told me and the other fathers who would listen: “Never get married in Israel!” He told me that divorce is endemic in the Haredi community because the mothers are awarded child support automatically based on the number of children they have and their husband’s income or lack of income doesn’t matter. If the husband can’t pay, the government will, so they are cashing in. I imagined in the religious community the women would be more virtuous than my ex-wife was. The anti-family law in Israel gives mothers an incentive to divorce. If they stay married the country gives the family 400 shekels [USD 102] per child. If they divorce they can receive 2,000 shekels [USD 510] per child from the father, and if he can’t pay he does periodic prison time.

I also learned from some of the fathers in prison that some religious couples actually faked divorce to collect the child support from the government, with the father doing periodic time, like a sort of vacation…

“I completely lost all sense of my Zionism”

The two weeks finally came to an end. I had learned to appreciate my freedom after my first stint in prison, even after only two weeks. It was a strange feeling walking through the prison courtyard with the Zionist flag waving in the breeze. I think it must have been at that point that I completely lost all sense of my Zionism. It could have been earlier, but definitely by this point I no longer looked at the Israeli flag with either pride or even sentiment.

Many divorced men are unable to build a new life or remarry due to the constant harassment and false charges from non-amicable divorces. One in 72 divorcing men commit suicide in Israel every year.

Jon continues:

This wasn’t the end of my encounters with the Israeli police, unfortunately. My ex-wife was not done with her false accusations. She filed 11 false complaints in total. I remember one night four police officers came to arrest me on my weekend with the children. My ex-wife claimed it wasn’t my “turn” to have the children. It was relentless. On a visit to collect my children, four policemen turned up to arrest me for being a “dangerous man”. I was accused of a criminal offence. To my horror, I was immediately put in prison without any court hearing.

I was taken to the Abu-Kabir detention centre in Tel Aviv, accused of a criminal offence, and it was a much worse ordeal than previously. First, they kept me overnight in the jail in Bat Yam, which is at the Bat Yam police station, serving Holon and Bat Yam. I was in custody there from 1:00 pm until the next morning. No blanket or pillow, just a cold rubber mattress and a plain concrete room with the standard six bunks – made of concrete. It was a long day and a long night.

The next morning they drove me all around in a big van with the windows covered up by slats. There were three seats for prisoners on either side of the van with more room for the armed guards and police. Of course, I was in handcuffs again. They drove around filling up the van with other prisoners. I couldn’t help but feel like a criminal this time around. I had no idea how much time I was facing, where they were taking me or what was going to happen.

They marched us down dark winding hallways through the basement of a building I was totally unfamiliar with. I didn’t know if it was a prison or a courthouse. It turned out to be a courthouse, possibly even the main law court I was at before when I was sentenced to two weeks on child support charges. I was given a public defender five minutes before being ushered into the court for sentencing. A police prosecutor was telling the judge about the terrible crimes I was accused of committing. I was sentenced to four days in prison. I was shocked as I didn’t know what I was supposed to have done.

I was stuck in a holding pen with about eight to 10 convicts for five hours. Despite my fear, when I was put in a cell, I fell asleep to be woken up an hour later at 1:00 am. I was taken to an office and told to sign some papers, then suddenly released. I walked for nearly two hours to the police station to collect my personal possessions. Someone had bailed me out…

A difficult departure

In November 2014 I was informed there would be an emigration case on 2 February 2015. I’d been prevented from leaving since June 2011. I had tried one attempt to sneak out of the country through Jordan, using my new American passport. My ex-wife had stolen the previous one. Sadly, the border control connected me to my Israeli ID. I was questioned for over an hour, and allowed back into Israeli territory. I was ready to die in order to get out and had struggled with suicidal issues during my six years in Israel. I reasoned it was better to die trying to escape…

I was ready to die in order to get out and had struggled with suicidal issues during my six years in Israel. I reasoned it was better to die trying to escape.

Before my hearing on 2 February, I received another order for the criminal court on 18 February. The same false claim had been filed again, I was to learn, though it wasn’t written on the paperwork.

Luckily, 2 February arrived before the 18th and, to my attorney’s amazement, the judge let me go without guarantee. My ex-wife said she was happy to see me go, but she wanted a guarantee before she would agree to remove the No Exit Order. With the judgment, I went to various offices to try and lift the warrant. I had no bank account. My ex-wife had placed an order to prevent me having one.

With no goodbyes allowed, I went to Ben Gurion Airport but was again prevented from leaving, despite having no warrants on me. I was given no reason why.

The next day I learned my ex-wife had a court order preventing me from renewing the Israeli passport she had stolen too. No one had told me. I paid a small fortune for an emergency passport, and my brother had bought me an expensive air ticket which had flexible dates.

The next day, I was finally on my way out. I have never felt so happy on a 17-hour flight in my life. Hearing English was a joy.

My children are still prevented from visiting me. I will try and fight for them once I recover.

“Never again when it comes to Israel”

Well, I made it out and I am home now and all I can say is thank God. I can definitely say never again when it comes to Israel.

During my own experience of seven years trying to get my former husband out of Israel – detailed in my book Sour Milk and Stolen Honey – we also endured over three hours of questioning when trying to cross the border into Taba. If a person tries to leave with knowledge of a No Exit Order it can entail a prison sentence. Mt former husband also said many times he would rather die trying to escape than exist in an open prison culture.

Jon is now recovering in the USA, just a few months after leaving Israel. He is not the only one to have endured such a humiliating experience. With no Hebrew and no previous knowledge of Israeli law, he “made aliyah” with complete naivety. His story is very similar to Rick Myers – another American citizen who has lost his children to Israel. The pitfalls for foreign nationals immigrating to Israel in good faith are becoming clearer.

None of the people who have sent their stories to me know each other, yet the core of their experience is frighteningly similar. The main thing to remember is that, aside from the stories of dual nationals, this experience is happening every single day to Israeli citizens.

While Israel has a right to exist, at what point will existence move on to a more humane life for the people of Israel – and those visiting it? It has been said by many Israelis that, until the country finds peace for its own people, the chance for peace with its neighbours will only be a remote possibility.

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Watch: “Only Jews walk here” – Nazi apartheid in action ”VIDEO”

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No explanation required. The short exchange between an Nazi Wehrmacht soldier and a Palestinian pedestrian, shown in the video above, speaks for itself.

[Nazi Wehrmacht soldier] Are you an Arab?
[Palestinian pedestrian] Yes. I’m Arab.
[Soldier] Only Jews walk here.

The encounter is in the occupied Wes Bank – Palestinian land, illegally occupied and stolen by the Zio-Nazi regime.

Stop racism and apartheid. Boycott I$raHell.

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Yemen and The Militarization of Strategic Waterways

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Global Research
Map of Yemen

This article was first published by GR more than five years ago sheds light on America’s unspoken military agenda: the control over strategic waterways (GR Ed. M. Ch).

“Whoever attains maritime supremacy in the Indian Ocean would be a prominent player on the international scene.” (US Navy Geostrategist Rear Admiral Alfred Thayus Mahan (1840-1914))

The Yemeni archipelago of Socotra in the Indian Ocean is located some 80 kilometres off the Horn of Africa and 380 kilometres South of the Yemeni coastline. The islands of Socotra are a wildlife reserve recognized by (UNESCO), as a World Natural Heritage Site.

Socotra is at the crossroads of the strategic naval waterways of the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden (See map below). It is of crucial importance to the US military.

MAP 1

Among Washington’s strategic objectives is the militarization of major sea ways. This strategic waterway links the Mediterranean to South Asia and the Far East, through the Suez Canal, the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

It is a major transit route for oil tankers. A large share of China’s industrial exports to Western Europe transits through this strategic waterway. Maritime trade from East and Southern Africa to Western Europe also transits within proximity of Socotra (Suqutra), through the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea. (see map below). A military base in Socotra could be used to oversee the movement of vessels including war ships in an out of the Gulf of Aden.

“The [Indian] Ocean is a major sea lane connecting the Middle East, East Asia and Africa with Europe and the Americas. It has four crucial access waterways facilitating international maritime trade, that is the Suez Canal in Egypt, Bab-el-Mandeb (bordering Djibouti and Yemen), Straits of Hormuz (bordering Iran and Oman), and Straits of Malacca (bordering Indonesia and Malaysia). These chokepoints are critical to world oil trade as huge amounts of oil pass through them.” (Amjed Jaaved, A new hot-spot of rivalry, Pakistan Observer, July 1, 2009)

MAP 2

Sea Power

From a military standpoint, the Socotra archipelago is at a strategic maritime crossroads. Morever, the archipelago extends over a relatively large maritime area at the Eastern exit of the Gulf of Aden, from the island of Abd al Kuri, to the main island of Socotra. (See map 1 above and 2b below) This maritime area of international transit lies in Yemeni territorial waters. The objective of the US is to police the entire Gulf of Aden seaway from the Yemeni to Somalian coastline. (See map 1).

MAP 2b

Socotra is some 3000 km from the US naval base of Diego Garcia, which is among America’s largest overseas military facilities.

The Socotra Military Base

On January 2nd, 2010, President Saleh and General David Petraeus, Commander of the US Central Command met for high level discussions behind closed doors.

The Saleh-Petraeus meeting was casually presented by the media as a timely response to the foiled Detroit Christmas bomb attack on Northwest flight 253. It had apparently been scheduled on an ad hoc basis as a means to coordinating counter-terrorism initiatives directed against “Al Qaeda in Yemen”, including “the use [of] American drones and missiles on Yemen lands.”

Several reports, however, confirmed that the Saleh-Petraeus meetings were intent upon redefining US military involvement in Yemen including the establishment of a full-fledged military base on the island of Socotra. Yemen’s president Ali Abdullah Saleh was reported to have “surrendered Socotra for Americans who would set up a military base, pointing out that U.S. officials and the Yemeni government agreed to set up a military base in Socotra to counter pirates and al-Qaeda.” (Fars NewsJanuary 19, 2010)

On January 1st, one day before the Saleh-Petraeus meetings in Sanaa, General Petraeus confirmed in a Baghdad press conference that “security assistance” to Yemen would more than double from 70 million to more than 150 million dollars, which represents a 14 fold increase since 2006. (Scramble for the Island of Bliss: Socotra!War in Iraq, January 12, 2010. See also CNN January 9, 2010, The Guardian, December 28, 2009).

This doubling of military aid to Yemen was presented to World public opinion as a response to the Detroit bomb incident, which allegedly had been ordered by Al Qaeda operatives in Yemen.

The establishment of an air force base on the island of Socotra was described by the US media as part of the “Global war on Terrorism”:

“Among the new programs, Saleh and Petraeus agreed to allow the use of American aircraft, perhaps drones, as well as “seaborne missiles”–as long as the operations have prior approval from the Yemenis, according to a senior Yemeni official who requested anonymity when speaking about sensitive subjects. U.S. officials say the island of Socotra, 200 miles off the Yemeni coast, will be beefed up from a small airstrip [under the jurisdiction of the Yemeni military] to a full base in order to support the larger aid program as well as battle Somali pirates. Petraeus is also trying to provide the Yemeni forces with basic equipment such as up-armored Humvees and possibly more helicopters.” (Newsweek, Newsweek, January 18, 2010, emphasis added)


Existing runway and airport

US Naval Facility?

The proposed US Socotra military facility, however, is not limited to an air force base. A US naval base has also been contemplated.

The development of Socotra’s naval infrastructure was already in the pipeline. Barely a few days prior (December 29, 2009) to the Petraeus-Saleh discussions (January 2, 2010), the Yemeni cabinet approved a US$14 million loan by Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) in support of the development of Socotra’s seaport project.

MAP 3

The Great Game

The Socotra archipelago is part of the Great Game opposing Russia and America.

During the Cold War, the Soviet Union had a military presence in Socotra, which at the time was part of South Yemen.

Barely a year ago, the Russians entered into renewed discussions with the Yemeni government regarding the establishment of a Naval base on Socotra island. A year later, in January 2010, in the week following the Petraeus-Saleh meeting, a Russian Navy communiqué “confirmed that Russia did not give up its plans to have bases for its ships… on Socotra island.” (DEFENSE and SECURITY (Russia), January 25, 2010)

The Petraeus-Saleh January 2, 2010 discussions were crucial in weakening Russian diplomatic overtures to the Yemeni government.

The US military has had its eye on the island of Socotra since the end of the Cold War.

In 1999, Socotra was chosen “as a site upon which the United States planned to build a signal intelligence system….” Yemeni opposition news media reported that “Yemen’s administration had agreed to allow the U.S. military access to both a port and an airport on Socotra.” According to the opposition daily Al-Haq, “a new civilian airport built on Socotra to promote tourism had conveniently been constructed in accordance with U.S. military specifications.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pennsylvania), October 18, 2000)

The Militarization of the Indian Ocean

The establishment of a US military base in Socotra is part of the broader process of militarization of the Indian Ocean. The latter consists in integrating and linking Socotra into an existing structure as well as reinforcing the key role played by the Diego Garcia military base in the Chagos archipelago.

The US Navy’s geostrategist Rear Admiral Alfred T. Mahan had intimated, prior to First World War, that “whoever attains maritime supremacy in the Indian Ocean [will] be a prominent player on the international scene.”.(Indian Ocean and our Security).

What was at stake in Rear Admiral Mahan’s writings was the strategic control by the US of major Ocean sea ways and of the Indian Ocean in particular: “This ocean is the key to the seven seas in the twenty-first century; the destiny of the world will be decided in these waters.

MAP 4

Michel Chossudovsky is Professor of Economics (Emeritus) at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), Montreal, which hosts the award winning website: www.globalresearch.ca . He is the author of the international best-seller “The Globalisation of Poverty and The New World Order”. He is contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica, member of the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission and recipient of the Human Rights Prize of the Society for the Protection of Civil Rights and Human Dignity (GBM), Berlin, Germany. His writings have been published in more than twenty languages.

Related Global Research Article: See Rick Rozoff, U.S., NATO Expand Afghan War To Horn Of Africa And Indian Ocean, Global Research, 8 January 2010.


AMERICA’S “WAR ON TERRORISM”

by Michel Chossudovsky

CLICK TO ORDER

America’s “War on Terrorism

In this new and expanded edition of Michel Chossudovsky’s 2002 best seller, the author blows away the smokescreen put up by the mainstream media, that 9/11 was an attack on America by “Islamic terrorists”. Through meticulous research, the author uncovers a military-intelligence ploy behind the September 11 attacks, and the cover-up and complicity of key members of the Bush Administration.

The expanded edition, which includes twelve new chapters focuses on the use of 9/11 as a pretext for the invasion and illegal occupation of Iraq, the militarisation of justice and law enforcement and the repeal of democracy.

According to Chossudovsky, the “war on terrorism” is a complete fabrication based on the illusion that one man, Osama bin Laden, outwitted the $40 billion-a-year American intelligence apparatus. The “war on terrorism” is a war of conquest. Globalisation is the final march to the “New World Order”, dominated by Wall Street and the U.S. military-industrial complex.

September 11, 2001 provides a justification for waging a war without borders. Washington’s agenda consists in extending the frontiers of the American Empire to facilitate complete U.S. corporate control, while installing within America the institutions of the Homeland Security State.

Chossudovsky peels back layers of rhetoric to reveal a complex web of deceit aimed at luring the American people and the rest of the world into accepting a military solution which threatens the future of humanity.

The last chapter includes an analysis of the London 7/7 Bomb Attacks.

CLICK TO ORDER (mail order or online order)

America’s “War on Terrorism”

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CPGB-ML congress calls for an end to immigration control

NOVANEWS
Image result for CPGB-ML LOGO

 

At the CPGB-ML’s recent congress, delegates unanimously adopted a new policy on immigration and vowed to take the party’s analysis into the working-class movement as a counter to the racist hysteria and anti-immigrant scapegoating that is being whipped up ever higher as the capitalist crisis deepens. 
The following speech was given by the mover of the resolution on immigration. It followed over a year of inner-party debate on the topicI would like to thank the party for opening up this debate as it has done. Unfortunately for us all, the issue of immigration remains the Achilles’ heel of our movement, just as it was in Marx’s day, when he and Engels noted that the antagonism between Irish and English workers in England was the key to the impotence of the English working-class movement, despite the latter’s high level of organisation.

If we are serious about becoming the type of party that is capable of leading a revolutionary struggle to overthrow British imperialism, it is imperative that our party members are able to see clearly on this, the most divisive of issues, and are confident in thoroughly refuting all the bourgeois prejudices that have been so carefully inculcated in our minds via school, literature, the media, etc.

One of the main prejudices that seems to dog the left-wing movement is that, since immigration helps capitalists make profits (by ensuring a steady supply of cheap labour and keeping wages down), then progressive people ought automatically to be opposed to the free movement of labour under capitalism. This argument seems to be given further strength by the fact that, under socialism, a country might well feel the need to apply border controls.

This second point, however, is a red herring. What a workers’ government might need to do under particular conditions (ie, of capitalist encirclement) has no relevance to what workers demand under conditions of capitalism. 

For example, we would not demand unemployment benefits for healthy people under socialism, because we know they would have ample opportunity to work. The same logic cannot be applied to the capitalist system, however, since capitalism denies the right to work to huge numbers of workers.

If we return to the main point (ie, that immigration is good for capitalism), we find a similar sort of confusion. To argue that anything that is good for capitalism must automatically be opposed by workers is to oversimplify and confuse the matter.

To take the most basic example, it is only through employing workers that capitalists can make profits through the extraction of surplus value; should we therefore call for total unemployment in order to starve capitalists of their profits?

Seen in this light, the argument becomes absurd. Of course, we call for full employment, despite the fact that, under the conditions of capitalism, employment means wage slavery for those employed and the further accumulation of profits and power to the employers.

There are other examples of the double-edged sword of progress under conditions of capitalism. The introduction of universal education, for example, was a great benefit for workers, and one that communists fully supported and fought for. Nevertheless, under conditions of capitalism, the bourgeoisie has found ways to turn this step forward to its advantage, injecting bourgeois philosophy and prejudices into every subject, from history to art to science.

Does this mean we should fight for the abolition of education in order that workers’ minds might not be so tainted? Of course not. Educated workers, no matter how inferior the education they receive by socialist standards, are in a much better position to make a scientific analysis of the world than those who have received no education and are therefore prey to all manner of superstition.

Of course, no matter how good our education, under capitalist conditions, we cannot help but be imbued with bourgeois prejudice, but an educated mind has more chance of combating these than an uneducated one – and being able to read is a basic prerequisite for accessing the science of Marxism Leninism.

Education, women’s emancipation, employment, the vote – these seemingly progressive steps are all stunted and twisted benefits to workers under the conditions of capitalism, limited in scope, tainted in execution, and often serving to embellish illusions of bourgeois freedom. They will only blossom to complete and unfettered maturity once we have attained a higher level of society.

Nevertheless, we fight for them for the simple reason that, even in their limited, bourgeois form, they are steps forward that help to create the conditions in which workers will be able to organise themselves to throw off the shackles of capitalist society.

The same is true of unfettered immigration.

Under conditions of capitalism, mass migration can no more be stopped than can wage slavery itself. From the very earliest days of capitalist society, people found themselves forced to move from the countryside to the towns in order to find work and support their families. In present-day Britain, many people are forced to leave their homes in the regions and look for work in London and the South East.

Should workers demand a halt to all this kind of migration? Where would we draw the lines? Should there be border controls at the edge of every county? Of every town? Again, seen in this light, the argument seems absurd, yet there is essentially no difference between this kind of migration and the international kind. In both cases, people are forced to move to find work. In both cases, contradictions arise between incoming and local populaces. In both cases, capitalism benefits from the free movement of labour.

As soon as capitalism went global, so did its contradictions. Conditions of life under imperialism force many people all over the world to head from the global hinterlands to the centres of imperialism in order to support their families.

Since we cannot stop immigration under conditions of capitalism, what we should instead turn our attention to is the effect such immigration has on our movement; on workers’ struggles for pay and conditions under capitalism, and on the struggle for socialism.

Anti-immigrant legislation and propaganda all serve to whip up racist hysteria among working people, keeping them divided and impotent. This racism is still the most important weapon in the hands of the bourgeoisie, and should therefore be the main target of the working-class movement.

Our focus should therefore be on calling for the abolition of immigration controls as a progressive step that would help to eradicate the poisonous racism that hampers our movement, and would also bring in many more workers to both the trade union and the revolutionary movements (and, incidentally, workers who bring with them much that is revolutionary, having suffered at the sharp end of the imperialist system). The best way to stop ‘illegal’ immigrants from lowering conditions and wages for British workers, for example, is to fight for the removal of their illegal status as the first step to bringing them into the unions etc and demanding decent pay and conditions for all!

As to arguments that incoming migrants put an ‘intolerable strain’ on the welfare system, and that since ‘our taxes’ pay for them, it is ‘unfair’ for people to come from abroad and ‘take advantage’, these are myths put about by bourgeois media and politicians to fuel anti-immigrant racism.

It is well known to our party members that the social provision that was provided in all western imperialist countries after the second world war was the product of a very special set of circumstances, most particularly, the threat of revolution following the devastation of Europe and the victories of, and example set by, the workers’ government of the USSR.

It is not the level of immigration but the decline in fortunes, albeit temporary, of the world anti-imperialist movement that has led western governments to feel confident in attacking the level of social provision. Only a strong working-class movement will have the power to reverse that trend. And, ultimately, only a working-class revolution will make such provision a permanent, as opposed to a temporary, feature of life for working people.

That is the message we should be taking to working people: capitalism will never put their interests first, and will only provide the minimum that it can get away with at any particular time. Only socialism will put the needs of the people first and use society’s resources to meet those needs.

Moreover, social provision in the West – housing, health care, education, unemployment benefit etc – has ultimately been paid for out of imperialist superprofits. Just because a small part of these superprofits has found its way into the pay packets of ordinary workers and then been used, via taxation, to make various kinds of social provision, this does not change the fact that the ultimate source of the income is not only the ‘hard work’ of British workers but also the even harder work of the superexploited peoples of the rest of the world.

So how can we accuse these people of ‘taking advantage’ if they find themselves forced to come here to try and make a living?

Comrades, I move that we adopt the text proposed in the resolution into our party programme and take our analysis into the movement in order that we can get on with the vital work of countering the racist lies and dispelling the bourgeois prejudices that cripple our movement and stand in the way of the revolutionary task we have set ourselves, that of smashing British imperialism.

Resolution adopted

This congress notes:

1.    that the issue of immigration remains the Achilles’ heel of our movement, just as it was in Marx’s day, when he and Engels noted that the antagonism between Irish and English workers in England was the key to the impotence of the English working-class movement, despite the latter’s high level of organisation;

2.    the wide-ranging and comradely debate that has taken place since the last party congress on the issue of immigration.

This congress believes:

1.    that if we are serious about becoming the type of party that is capable of leading a revolutionary struggle to overthrow British imperialism, it is imperative that our party members are able to see clearly on this, the most divisive of issues, and are confident in thoroughly refuting all the bourgeois prejudices that have been so carefully inculcated in our minds via school, literature, the media etc;

2.    that as the capitalist crisis of overproduction deepens and conditions for British workers grow worse, the ruling class will undoubtedly attempt to whip up racism and anti-immigrant hysteria to an even higher pitch;

3.    that our party must take a very clear position on immigration if it is to be in a position to refute the bourgeois propaganda onslaught and help British workers to do the same;

4.    that the world situation makes this an urgent task for our party, and that failing to adopt a position now could seriously hamper our party’s work over the next two years.

This congress therefore resolves to adopt the following into the CPGB-ML’s party programme:

This party firmly believes that immigration is not the cause of the ills of the working class in Britain, which are solely the result of the failings of the capitalist system.

Immigration and asylum legislation and controls under capitalism have only one real goal: the division of the working class along racial lines, thus fatally weakening that class’s ability to organise itself and to wage a revolutionary struggle for the overthrow of imperialism.

These controls have the further effect of creating an army of ‘illegal’ immigrant workers, prey to superexploitation and living in dire conditions as an underclass, outside the system, afraid to organise and exercising a downward pull on the wages and conditions of all workers.

The scourge of racism, along with all other ills of capitalism, will only be finally abolished after the successful overthrow of imperialism. But since immigration can no more be abolished under capitalism than can wage slavery, our call should not be for the further control and scapegoating of immigrants, but the abolition of all border controls, as part of the wider fight to uproot racism from the working-class movement and build unity among workers in Britain, so strengthening the fight for communism.

> CPGB-ML party congress resolutions

> Capitalism and Immigration – Lalkar March 2006

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Cameron attempts to fan the flames of xenophobia

NOVANEWS

On the 26 November, the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, wrote in the Financial Times a piece entitled ” Free movement within Europe needs to be less free.” This was in essence another attack on working people, both those in Britain – whether born here or having come here to work and live – and those within the European Economic Area (EEA) who may wish to work/live in another EU country.

Cameron starts his diatribe with the now compulsory swipe at socialism: ” Ever since the fall of the Berlin Wall, Britain has championed the case for bringing nations which languished behind the Iron Curtain into NATO and the EU. That is important to their prosperity and security – and ours. ” Well the last two words are true anyway if you understand that by ‘ours’ he means the bourgeoisie in imperialist European countries. The prosperity that the Eastern Europeans are promised along with their EU membership is illusory and the security they gain is akin to the secure bonds that the spider wraps the fly in while sucking it dry.

The EU has always been a bosses’ club, a federation of imperialist European countries originally built to give the imperialist powers of Europe a better chance of competing with the world hegemony of the king of the imperialists, the USA as well as the growing Asian economies led by a rejuvenated imperialist Japan. Fear of the examples set by the Soviet Union and the Peoples Republic of China were also a consideration within the original plan for this imperialist alliance. Much has changed since then and with the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact countries the EU members saw the opening up of new avenues for exploitation. Today the worst-ever world crisis of overproduction currently battering the economies of all the capitalist players means that the weak will be devoured to save the strong. Eastern Europe has been the setting for EU/US inspired and funded wars (Yugoslavia) and other forms of destabilisation (colour ‘revolutions’ etc). This campaign of destabilisation to weaken Eastern European countries, pull them away from Russian influence and make them dependent on the West is still ongoing as can be seen from the organised and West-funded gangs of mainly unrepresentative fascists who were recently rampaging through the streets of the Ukraine demanding that that country’s government accept European Union membership.

Cameron continues: ” If it does not pay to work, or if British people lack skills, that creates a huge space in our labour market for people from overseas to fill. You cannot blame people for wanting to come here and work hard; but the real answer lies in training our own people to fill these jobs. That is what this government is doing: providing record numbers of apprenticeships, demanding rigour in schools and building a welfare system that encourages work .” What does “If it does not pay to work” mean? Does it mean if the wages are too low? Or perhaps, if the sick etc can still manage to survive on the ever-dwindling state benefits at the moment and don’t have to wreck the remainder of their health trying to work? More likely it is a reference to a mixture of both. So when you are being told that immigrants are taking your jobs and this, or the next, government is going to get tough and make sure that British workers get those jobs what they mean is they will force you to work in poorer conditions, longer hours and for less money. They mean that benefits will be reduced or taken away to give no option but to work under these dire and inhuman conditions or starve, no matter how ill you might be. If you think this is an overly bleak view just look at the things he is proposing:

1.

” We are changing the rules so that no one can come to this country and expect to get out of work benefits immediately; we will not pay them for the first three months. If after three months an EU national needs benefits – we will no longer pay these indefinitely. They will only be able to claim for a maximum of six months unless they can prove they have a genuine prospect of employment .” Note, this applies to all EU nationals even those who have enjoyed free movement up to now and it must be remembered that for the masses of ordinary people in the imperialist countries of Europe the only positive aspect to the setting up of the EU was the free movement of peoples within it (there are around 1.4 million Britons at the moment living and working in other EU/EEA countries). The chance to work and travel around Europe unhindered was the lure used on us but as the Eastern European countries are being pulled in to be fleeced, the original EU bandits are eager to curtail this right for all and virtually shut it down altogether for the peoples of the ‘newest EU member countries’ such as Romania and Bulgaria. To go back to the quote, someone coming here looking for work will have to survive 3 months with no money if they cannot find work. Three months is a long time but if other European nationals can exist for that length of time without state assistance how long will it be before it is decided that British nationals should also forgo benefits for the first three months if they are careless enough to lose a job? And when they can again claim it will be for 6 months only unless:“they can prove they have a genuine prospect of employment.” Who in this country after 9 months of unemployment can ” prove they have a genuine prospect of employment?” Does anyone think that will only apply to immigrants once we let it happen?

2.

“Newly arrived EU jobseekers will not be able to claim housing benefit.

If people are not here to work – if they are begging or sleeping rough – they will be removed. They will then be barred from re-entry for 12 months, unless they can prove they have a proper reason to be here, such as a job. ” So the EU national, the proud owner of ‘free movement’ around all EU member countries cannot come here without a job; if he has one and loses it he must survive three months without money; but if in that time he loses his home no housing benefit being available, he could very possibly also lose his children as child benefit is also being withdrawn. If the family has to sleep rough, if hunger and privation force them to beg for money, they can be bundled out of the country and barred from re entry for 12 months. Would this also not be applicable to British citizens? It is not so very long ago that vagrancy laws were strictly applied in this country. Will they re-introduce the Victorian workhouse, that hellish establishment specifically designed to ensure that unemployment “does not pay“?

3.

” We are also toughening up the test which migrants who want to claim benefits must undergo. This will include a new minimum earnings threshold. If they don’t pass that test, we will cut off access to benefits such as income support. Newly arrived EU jobseekers will not be able to claim housing benefit .” Once again, if the EU jobseeker is expected to survive this, and the British people show they support it (perhaps through a ‘democratic’ poll in the Sun or Daily Mail), then it is obvious that the British worker can be expected to survive the same. Speaking on 25 March 2013 at the University Campus Suffolk, Ipswich on immigration and welfare reform David Cameron said ” we’re going to give migrants from the EEA – from the European Economic Area – a very clear message. Just like British citizens, there is no absolute right to unemployment benefit .” You have been warned!

4.

” We are not the only country to see free movement as a qualified right: interior ministers from Austria, Germany and the Netherlands have also said this to the European Commission .” Just in case you thought this was just those nasty British Tories (and the Labour and Lib-Dem parties), this is imperialism with its back to the wall. The deaths and suffering caused by milking the Eastern European countries dry, by removing benefits all across the EU thus drastically lowering the social wage and in turn shrinking the wage packets of those lucky enough to have their labour power exploited, is a price more than worth paying if it protects the profits of the wealthy. Both in Germany and ‘socialist’ France the governments are talking of crackdowns on so-called ‘benefit tourism’ but, as with Britain, this is a prelude to further benefit cuts for everyone inside their country and a smokescreen for blocking the movement of Romanian and Bulgarian workers while the EU big boys are setting up their factories etc. inside Romania and Bulgaria to increase their profits from cheaper production costs.

But going right to the heart of the EU strategy towards Eastern European countries and the British Government’s scaremongering, Monica Macovei, a senior Romanian politician and MEP, said on 27 November: ” You cannot have the right to establish your companies in Bucharest or Sofia to benefit from low production costs without accepting workers from Romania and Bulgaria in your country .” The British bourgeoisie, however, feels it has every right to have its cake and eat it.

The media in Britain have been busy trying to work people up into a state of frenzy about the hordes of Romanians and Bulgarians about to descend on us from 1stJanuary. This booming symphony of disinformation and xenophobia has been conducted by leading bourgeois politicians from the three main parties, and their ultra-right shadows of BNP, UKIP et al have eagerly led the choruses (Farage of UKIP has already stated that making people live for 3 months without any income is far too lenient). We are told that immigrants are straining at the borders of Romania and Bulgaria, with begging bowls in hand and one way tickets to the UK in their pockets. What we are not told is that Romanian and Bulgarian immigrants have been able to come here for a while and those who have come have gone seemingly un-noticed by the press. Of course more will now qualify but are they really all coming to Britain? Even the EU employment commissioner, Laszlo Andor, said the British public had ‘not been given all of the truth’ about EU migration by David Cameron, claiming that the UK Government’s efforts to “outlaw so-called benefit tourism are a product of hysteria.” He suggested during a Radio 4 interview that Cameron was misleading the public about the potential scale of immigration from Bulgaria and Romania.

An official spokesman for the Prime Minister has said that the government would press on regardless of any objections or legal action from the EU claiming that, in the words of David Cameron “This is what we have said we will do and this is what we will do!” The Tories partners in Britain’s coalition government, the Liberal Democrats, have agreed to the measures, saying they are reasonable and proportionate while the Labour Party are saying the Government should have acted sooner with shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper MP claiming that the prime minister was “playing catch-up” and copying a Labour idea.

However, despite the basic unity of Britain’s bourgeois parties on this issue a report commissioned by the Foreign Office to back up the Government’s claims of “massive waves of immigrants” waiting to pour into Britain on 1 January has delivered a mighty slap in Cameron’s face. The 60-page report by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) says that Britain is unlikely to be the preferred destination for Bulgarians and Romanians when labour restrictions are lifted. It also says that of those who do plan to come ” they are unlikely to take advantage of the UK’s social security system.”

A comprehensive analysis of the fiscal consequences of immigration to the UK, published on 6 November by the Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM) at University College London found that EEA migrants to the UK contributed about 34% more in taxes than they received in benefits over the period 2001-11. The paper written by Christian Dustmann and Tommaso Frattini provides an in-depth analysis of the net fiscal contribution of EEA immigrants in each fiscal year since 1995.

It is thus glaringly obvious that in actual fact immigration helps the economy. The taxes extracted from immigrants actually put money in the coffers of the Treasury, money that could be used, for instance, to make welfare payments to all those who need them, and to provide more school places and hospital beds, and other extra facilities that might be needed by an expanded population. Restriction on immigration is not at all necessary for economic reasons – quite the contrary. Its purpose is to set up immigrants as a scapegoat for the ills of capitalism, so that workers who have every right to be seething with rage at the assaults on their living standards and dignity that capitalism is mounting turns that rage against innocent workers like themselves rather than against the class enemy. It’s a trick that has proved its efficacy in diverting the working class time after time. Divide and rule is the motto of every ruling class that represents only a tiny fraction of the population. Unite and fight is the motto of the oppressed and exploited masses striving for their emancipation.

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UKIP: an exercise in misdirection

NOVANEWS
Those of the disillusioned British electorate who bothered to vote at all on 22 May registered a huge protest vote against the three established parties of British capital. Unfortunately, they allowed their ‘protest’ to be directed in the interests of the very big business that has caused their anger in the first place.
The nationalist United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) has been dominating headlines for many weeks in the run-up to and aftermath of the 22 May elections. In polls for local councils in England and for the European Parliament, UKIP saw its previously negligible clutch of council seats soar to 163, whilst the party topped the poll for the essentially toothless European Parliament, securing 24 MEPs – an increase of 11, on 27.5 percent of the poll.As a result, all three of the big capitalist parties – LibDem, Labour and Conservative – are seeing swathes of what they consider to be their natural support base drifting towards UKIP, with a potential impact on next year’s much more important general election.

No doubt this is genuinely upsetting for the career politicians who hustle away in the front ranks of those three parties. What is less convincing, however, is the narrative that says that the election result is somehow shocking to Britain’s imperialist rulers. UKIP is, after all, very much a monster of the bourgeois political establishment’s own making.

Where did UKIP come from?

UKIP did not appear out of nowhere. And its success is certainly not attributable to any particular brilliance on the part of Nigel Farage or originality in his party’s manifesto. Indeed, most UKIP voters don’t have the first clue what’s written in that weighty document.

UKIP, essentially just another big-business-friendly party of British imperialism, differs from the others only in being new (and therefore not having exposed itself in power yet) and in being openly racist (and therefore less obviously hypocritical than all the parties that implement racist policies while pretending not to be racist).

The three main parties (if such they can still be called) and the corporate media have always striven to divide workers in Britain along the fault-lines of racism, xenophobia, religion, sexism, nationalism, and so on. We are now deep into the worst-ever crisis of over-production and still sinking – government claims of recovery notwithstanding. This means that the need for our rulers to divide workers in as many ways as possible is growing stronger as the crisis gets deeper.

Times are getting very hard for many working-class and even petty-bourgeois people – and they are going to get harder still. The ‘medicine’ of austerity is increasingly blighting the lives of the many, despite the continual assurances by establishment politicians and the servile media that we have ‘turned the corner’ and that ‘the worst is over’.

From our schooldays onwards, workers are taught that we in Britain live in a wonderful democracy where all are free and equal. However (or so the bourgeois fairy tale goes), there are sinister forces at work in the wider world. There are foreigners who either want what we have and are ‘flooding’ here to take it from us, or else these foreigners are madmen who live under such despotic regimes that they want to destroy our wonderful caring, sharing utopia.

The reality of living through the present capitalist crisis is doing much to undermine the confidence that we workers have in our rulers and their motivations, but the cynicism thus created has not yet brought enough of us to question the basic myths that have been pushed at us all our lives through capitalist media and schoolbooks.

Yes, many British workers have learned to hate and distrust all establishment politicians – but most of us still buy into the idea that somehow the system itself would work if only the people in Westminster were the ‘right sort’. Most of us know that the media lies – but too many of us still feel that ‘foreigners’ are either ‘taking our jobs’ or living on ‘our benefits’ and in ‘our houses’. Yes, we know that the wars that Britain launches around the world are not in our interest – but large numbers of us still harbour the illusion that Britain’s mercenary forces are inherently ‘the good guys’, on the side of right; heroes who are simply too civilised to commit crimes such as torture, rape, murder and genocide.

Despite knowing that British corporate media and politicians lie, many of us still have not yet woken up to the fact that the picture they have painted for us is a complete fabrication, and that this propaganda is what keeps us from recognising our real enemies and organising to get rid of them. So we allow ourselves to trust in the basic ‘honesty’ of British ‘journalism’ and to believe that the world outside of Britain really is full of despots and madmen – as proven by any half-hour perusal of the Sun, the Guardian or News at Ten, or any episode of Have I Got News For You or Mock the Week.

It is this combination of a growing distrust of established bourgeois politicians with a continued acceptance of the main planks of bourgeois propaganda that leads some workers to vote for ‘new’ and apparently ‘alternative’ parties such as UKIP.

Immigration, immigration, immigration

The three main parties all tell us that there is ‘too much immigration’ into this country and that they will be ‘tough’ on it if we vote them into power. And of course, once elected, they do indeed announce new racist measures to make life that little bit harder for ‘legal’ immigrants and totally miserable for the unfortunate ‘illegals’, but these measures are not actually aimed at stopping immigration – only at keeping alive the pretence that such is a desirable and realistic aim.

In truth, immigration can no more be stopped under the capitalist system than can the rising sun. Workers always have and always will move to where they can make a living, just as capital moves to where it can make the greatest profit.

Moreover, the capitalists and their political servants have no intention of stopping immigration, even if it were possible for them to do so. They know from their own research that ‘legal’ immigrants, taken as a whole, generate far more wealth than they take, while ‘illegal’ immigrants are worth their weight in gold to the national economy (ie, to imperialist profit margins), since they are virtual slaves of their employers, with no employment rights and no entitlements to the social wage (doctors, schools, benefits, housing, etc).

These downtrodden unfortunates live exactly the kind of lives that capitalists would prefer for all workers – no benefits, no rights, and if they get ‘uppity’ and try to stand up for themselves, they can simply be handed over to the authorities and shipped back to ‘where they came from’.

Unfortunately for the working-class movement, comparatively few workers have so far understood that the whole ‘debate’ amongst politicians about who has or hasn’t been ‘toughest’ in trying to ‘hold back the tide’ of immigration is simply a giant diversion, designed to keep workers in the dark about the real cause of their problems.

Crisis is built into the system of capitalist production, but, rather than let us understand that and draw our own conclusions about the continued usefulness of such a flawed set-up, our rulers do everything in their power to redirect our anger at the poverty that their crisis is forcing upon the masses of workers. So, just as the Nazis in 1930s crisis-ridden Germany pointed the finger at ‘jews’ as being the cause of German workers’ suffering, in Britain today our politicians tell us that ‘immigration’ and not capitalism is the enemy we need to fight.

The truth is that the only way to stop immigrants having a downward pull on our wages and conditions is to demand an end to all immigration laws and equal rights for every worker in Britain, and to recruit immigrant workers en masse into the British working-class movement. Together, we will be in a far stronger position to fight back against the attempts of our rulers to make us pay for their crisis through cuts to our pay, conditions, services, housing and pensions.

Ultimately, every person who works is a potential source of wealth to the nation. We have no reason to fear the arrival of immigrants on our shores. It is only the system of exploitation that forces workers to compete with one another for a short supply of jobs – and that would continue to be the case in any capitalist society, even if every immigrant was ‘sent home’ tomorrow.

Moreover, many of these superexploited foreign-born workers have experienced the sharp end of imperialism back in their home countries. They have often come here to escape the incredibly harsh conditions that Britain and other imperialist powers impose on other parts of the world in order to facilitate the looting of natural resources and the superexploitation of workers. This experience of the savage, fascistic face of imperialism, which is often hidden from workers in the relatively privileged centres of empire, makes such migrants a rich source of potential militance for our movement, if only we are prepared to recruit and learn from them.

Will UKIP take us out of Europe?

Much is made of the ‘euroscepticism’ of UKIP, and it is true that this does indeed play well with workers who mistrust the stated intentions of the politicians in Brussels. In other imperialist countries, too, there are right-wing populist parties and groups that, like UKIP, are anti-EU, and openly pander to xenophobia and racism.

They are all finding it increasingly easy to operate in the space that has been created for them by bourgeois politicos and media claiming endlessly that the cause of the problems working people face is not capitalism, but rather immigrants, foreigners, women wanting equal rights at/to work, not enough powers for the police, and so on.

The main complaints of these right-wing parties against Europe is that the legislators there have powers to override national decision-making, that European immigration is destroying our economy, and that the parliament is full of ‘lefties’ intent on implementing crazy health-and-safety measures and stopping us from using our good old-fashioned common sense to get on with our lives. Their assertions could not be further from the truth, however.

In fact, the EU is a grouping of European imperialist powers that have pulled poorer European capitalist countries into a subservient ‘alliance’ that allows their people to be used as cannon fodder or cheap labour for the purpose of shoring up the power of the leading imperialist powers. For the weaker countries, it is certainly true that joining the EU means an effective loss of national sovereignty and coming under the diktat of the stronger powers, but Britain does not come into that category.

The truth is that, far from being controlled by Brussels, Britain is one of the powers that seeks to control others throughBrussels. Although, of course, our own politicians are very fond of the trick of blaming ‘Europe’ for all sorts of unpopular legislation that they themselves have chosen to create. The real debate between our rulers over Europe is about whether, now that British imperialism has lost the world hegemony it once enjoyed, their interests as imperialists would be better served as a strong force within the EU or as a junior partner with a supposed ‘special relationship’ to the US.

The warlike and oppressive imperialist EU club does indeed need to be opposed, but that opposition needs to come in a principled form that educates workers about the class content of the EU’s real programme – not in the form of yet more divisive propaganda against everything ‘foreign’. Such a principled opposition is never going to be delivered by UKIP – a right-wing, anti-immigration party whose opposition to the European club essentially stems from its dreams of bygone days when British imperialism was the strongest in the world and had no need for such alliances.

A bourgeois-approved ‘alternative’

The established capitalist parties, in an attempt to keep their own ‘place in the sun’, sometimes seek to join in the attack on parties like UKIP and the BNP, claiming to be opposed to their racism and misogyny. But, since the backward and divisive ideas that the rightists so openly espouse are in full alignment with the lies that they themselves have helped to drip-feed into the working class from an early age, it is hardly surprising that plenty of workers don’t see their unpleasant utterances as a reason not to vote for UKIP in Britain, the Freedom Party in Holland or the Front Nationale in France – just the opposite, in fact.

Given the huge amounts of airtime and column inches dedicated to Farage and co across Britain’s media that has made it impossible for anyone living in this country to avoid hearing about the party, the ruling class can have been neither surprised nor upset by UKIP’s little victories

Never mind that some of the coverage appears to be censorious. The big press barons and BBC directors know as well as any PR guru the truth of the old adage, ‘There’s no such thing as bad publicity.’ All those ‘debates’ and ‘shock-horror’ stories had one aim – to give British workers the impression that Farage and UKIP represented a viable (or threatening) ‘alternative’ to the three main parties; all of which have exposed themselves thoroughly in recent years and earned the disgust and mistrust of the vast majority of British workers.

It is another classic case of misdirection, the main aim of which is to keep us from looking outside the capitalist system for solutions to our problems.

And, of course, we now face the inevitable, Guardian-approved sight of the so-called ‘left’ social democrats whipping themselves up into a frenzy of ‘anti-fascist’ hysteria, and doing everything in their power to mobilise workers who haven’tfallen for UKIP’s openly-racist rhetoric into falling back behind Labour as the ‘least-worst’ option in 2015.

Unite against fascism?

‘Vote Labour to keep out the Tories/BNP/UKIP!’ (delete as applicable), they will tell us, yet again. But what does this slogan really amount to?

There is not a single capitalist party in Britain that is not also an imperialist party. That means they are all parties of war, of privatisation, of austerity and of racism. They will all play the race card and compete to be toughest on immigration in order to keep the workers divided and save the skin of the system that pays their wages. Does it really matter whether the spivs in Westminster are holding the Sun or the Guardian in their hands while they stir up anti-immigrant hysteria at home and commit war crimes abroad on behalf of the British ruling class?

The fascist bogeyman that is conjured up by these false friends of the working class ends up making us forget the realdanger posed by those who are actually in power, and diverts the energy of advanced workers away from building a really effective working-class movement into utterly self-defeating electoral canvassing for the Labour party in the name of ‘uniting against fascism’.

As we have always said, however, the racism of the Labour party (and other ‘respectable’ bourgeois parties) ends up recruiting for the far right when its followers realise that whatever anti-immigrant steps the ‘respectable’ bourgeois parties actually take when they are in government does absolutely nothing to improve the situation of the working-class masses. Since they have been told that it is immigrants who are the cause of the problems, they cannot but conclude that the anti-immigrant measures that have been taken are insufficient, which drives them into the arms of those promising even more draconian and racist measures.

Nevertheless, fascism and racism are not the same thing. Britain’s ‘respectable’ parties (Labour, Tory and LibDem) promote anti-immigrant racism without so far having become fascist. What is true, however, is that the capitalist class keeps alive the flame of racism as a tool to use should the fascist repression of the working class become necessary.

Fascism is the response of a crisis-ridden capitalist class to a strong and militant working-class movement whose rise is threatening the capitalists’ ability to hold onto power. Fascists use a mixture of racist scapegoating, demagogy (to persuade some) and brute force (to coerce the rest) in order to keep the ruling class on top when its ‘democratic’ veneer is no longer strong enough to keep the social peace and revolution is looming.

That is clearly not the case in Britain today. The ruling class has no need of out-and-out fascism just yet (notwithstanding the increasing pile of repressive legislation mounting in the statute book to which both Tory and Labour administrations have gleefully contributed). For the moment, the working-class movement is still in disarray following decades of Khrushchevite revisionism and the demoralisation that set in following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the socialist republics of eastern Europe. Crisis, war and bitter experience are teaching workers valuable lessons every day, and the left-wing movement is finally starting to regroup, but we still some way off being a serious threat to those in power.

By the time the ruling class does need to unleash fascist repression, there’s no reason to suppose that Labour couldn’t be any less of a candidate for the job than UKIP. Or, more likely, by that time, some other organisation will have been brought into being in an effort to fool at least some of us into believing it really does represent some kind of ‘new alternative’.

The point is that being openly racist is not the same as being fascist – although open racism is certainly one general trait of fascist dictatorships. And being openly racist in words doesn’t prove that UKIP is more racist than the parties that have actually been proving their racist credentials in deeds for the last century and more. The fact that they are able to be so openly racist in their rhetoric speaks volumes for the atmosphere that has been created by Labour and Tory governments alike, particularly in the last 20 years of incessant war, anti-terror legislation and anti-immigrant hysteria.

And let us not forget that it was a Labour government that sent the police to protect the National Front in Southall in 1979 (murdering Blair Peach in the process). Or that a Labour government introduced virginity tests for South Asian brides in the late 1970s.

In their last 12 years of power alone, Labour built a string of concentration camps for (mainly black) asylum seekers, created an atmosphere of hysterical islamophobia in support of its criminal wars abroad, and perpetrated horrific atrocities and war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan. And that’s beside their other ‘achievements’, such as presiding over privatisations, PFI and a massive widening in the gap between rich and poor, agreeing to £20bn cuts in the NHS and destroying civil liberties. Now tell us again why we are supposed to be so terrified of UKIP?

In actual fact, allowing ourselves to be corralled into ‘anti-fascist unity’ before fascist repression is unleashed actually leads us to strengthen the forces that are promoting racism, even if they do this more surreptitiously than does UKIP. Unwittingly, we would become accomplices to the promotion of racism, to deceiving the working class, to dividing the working class against itself and to facilitating the path of fascism when our ruling class feels the need to resort to it.

What is most worrying about the increased support for UKIP is not that it is a fascist organisation, since for the moment it is not, but that it demonstrates the extent that British people have been fooled by the propaganda that the problems that they face today are caused by immigration and membership of the EU (because it supposedly foists immigrants on the UK). It is possible for people to vote for any of the three main parties without having been taken in by such crude lies, but it is not possible for people to vote for UKIP without demonstrating that they have been.

So what should we be doing about what is undoubtedly a worrying situation? The answer is obvious: we should be countering the bourgeois lies more effectively, and exposing all those who promote them – especially the sly racism of Tory and Labour which is more difficult to spot and therefore more difficult to resist.

What we certainly should not be doing is turning ourselves into canvassing and voting fodder for any of those parties.

The task is not so daunting. Let’s put things in perspective. While 4.35 million British people did indeed vote for UKIP on 22 May – more than for any other party standing in the European election – that only represents some 9 percent of the total UK electorate. Thirty-one million voters (a whopping 65 percent of those eligible) didn’t bother to go to the polls at all.

What clearer sign could there be that British workers are sick of the corruption and venality of bourgeois politicians and don’t feel represented by any of them? No wonder the corporate media went all out to push voters towards the pro-big-business ‘alternative’. Imagine if all those disaffected voters started thinking independently and looking for meaningful alternatives to capitalism!

In the end, only the results of a general election will give a more reliable indication, but, while there clearly are some poor, mainly white, areas around the country where UKIP are building a small following, alongside their main base of disaffected Tories in the shires, much of what we’ve seen in this election has been a carefully stage-managed protest vote. There aren’t many people in Britain who really care much about who gets elected to Europe, so what does it matter whether we send UKIP or Labour there?

Just like any other imperialist party, UKIP offers no alternative. A victory for UKIP, like a victory for Labour or the Tories, is simply another victory for our rulers, who remain firmly in power after each election circus featuring its various endorsed brands of ‘representatives’ has packed up and left town.

Build the alternative

Meanwhile, the interests of the working class – the overwhelming majority – can only be served by building a party that stands for the overthrow of imperialism, and with it the outmoded system of war, racism, and the exploitation of the great majority by a parasitic minority.

A major part of that party’s task is to take on the bourgeoisie’s racist propaganda head-on and help workers – both black and white – to understand that we are being taken for fools every time we accept a lie that keeps us divided from our class brothers and sisters and away from the struggle against capitalism. While we fight amongst ourselves and get poorer and poorer, our profiteering rulers are laughing all the way to the bank.

[h1]Building such a party is acquiring increasing urgency as British imperialism drags us inexorably towards a devastating third world war, which is the only imperialist ‘cure’ for this latest and deepest-ever crisis of overproduction.[/h1]

But another world is possible, and it is quite within our capabilities to build it. That is why we in the CPGB-ML carry a portrait of the great builder of Soviet socialism, Comrade JV Stalin, on May Day, alongside his famous message to workers: “Either place yourself at the mercy of capital, eke out a wretched existence as of old and sink lower and lower, or adopt a new weapon – this is the alternative imperialism puts before the vast masses of the proletariat. Imperialism brings the working class to revolution.” (Foundations of Leninism, 1924)

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Scottish nationalism: weakening the working-class movement

NOVANEWS
Image result for scotland flag
The referendum sideshow and its aftermath continue to encourage workers north of the border to identify with Scottish members of the British imperialist ruling class and to divide themselves from British workers in the rest of the country.
As the capitalist system sinks into its deepest crisis yet, and humanity stands on the brink of a third industrial-scale world-engulfing slaughter, the rulers of Britain are organising themselves to defeat the resistance of the workers to the privations that are to come. Bad as things are already getting for the worst-off section of workers, these hardships are as nothing to what is in store if the juggernaut is not stopped in its tracks by a socialist revolution.But it seems that our rulers are somewhat better than we are at learning lessons from history. They are certainly very good at manipulating our world view and at presenting us with fake enemies and false friends, the better to confuse our understanding and divide our opposition to their system.

Nothing about the result or the conduct of the referendum, or the hysterical outpourings of charlatans on both sides of the ‘debate’, changes anything about our views on the subject of ‘independence’ for Scotland.

We would only note the pertinent observation made by one of our party’s members on a blog the day before the vote, regarding the effect of nationalism on the mind-set of workers in Britain:

Although socialism is in the interests of all British workers, those of us who openly advocate for it are few in number, disunited, disorganised and very often lacking in any real understanding of what socialism really is and how we might get from here to there.

In the face of these difficulties, all too many of us have simply given up on the revolution altogether. Instead of working harder to overcome our theoretical and organisational weakness, some of us have decided that maybe we could get somewhere at least a bit better by pursuing just a part of our goal in a smaller part of Britain, against what we fondly imagine will be a weaker and easier-to-defeat enemy.

But let us consider this: when the Nottinghamshire miners and the pit deputies settled with the government in 1984, they must have followed similar reasoning. They couldn’t bring themselves to believe in the possibility of winning if they joined or maintained the strike, and they thought that they could at least preserve their own jobs and communities if they stayed at or went back to work.

Thirty years on, how has history judged this decision?

It is clear to all of us now that the pit deputies’ and Notts miners’ actions played a significant part in defeating the strike, thus selling out the rest of the miners nationwide. Moreover, this defeat ultimately led to the closure of all their pits too, and the loss of all their jobs.

They tried to go for a solution that would protect a smaller group and ended up losing everything for everyone.

Scotland is a part of Britain. Scottish workers are a part of the British working class. If we allow our exploiters to divide us, all we succeed in doing is making it easier for them to pick us off bit by bit and defeat us.” (‘Nationalism in an imperialist country can never be a progressive force’, joti2gaza.org, 17 September 2014)

The article that follows was originally published on our party’s website on 14 September 2014.

Two years ago, our party conducted some thorough Marxist research into the question of Scottish nationalism. We took a scientific look at the question of Scottish independence in order to find out whether there is any truth to the assertion made by nationalists that Scotland is an oppressed nation in need of liberating from the English imperialist yoke. (See ‘The national question in Scotland’, Lalkar, September 2012)

This question is of vital importance for communists in Britain today. If we are serious about organising for the revolutionary overthrow of British imperialism, we are going to need the maximum possible unity of the working class in order to achieve that. Everything that divides workers weakens our movement and undermines our chances of success in the class struggle – sexism, racism, ageism, ableism, regionalism … and nationalism.

What is nationalism?

Nationalism is a bourgeois ideology, since nations in the modern sense only appeared in the capitalist era. This can be confusing to understand, since there were feudal kingdoms and loose associations with the same names and similar languages in many parts of the world, but it is important to recognise that these were not nations in the modern sense. Some of these feudal communities went on to develop into modern nations. Others disappeared or were subsumed.

The true nation only appeared on the scene historically with the development of capitalism, as the expansion of commodity production and markets broke down the barriers between previously self-sufficient and isolated feudal fiefdoms and united them in the interests of trade and commerce – bringing a single infrastructure and language, a single set of laws, taxes and customs, and the massive expansion of the capitalist division of labour that made the average individual much more dependent on many others (spread across the entire national territory) for the necessaries of life.

The Marxist definition of a nation is quite precise: “A nation is a historically-evolved, stable community of language, territory, economic life, and psychological make-up manifested in a community of culture.” If a group of people lacks even one of these characteristics, they cannot be considered to be a nation. (JV Stalin, Marxism and the National Question, May 1913)

That is why Marxists refute the idea of a ‘jewish nation’ or a ‘muslim nation’, for example. Because a shared religion among people spread across the globe does not make for a nation. There are jewish Americans, jewish Iranians and jewish Germans, and the jews in each of these cases share a language, territory, culture and economic life with their fellow Americans, Iranians and Germans. Likewise, there is no such thing as a ‘black nation’. Black Americans, black Congolese and black French people may share a colour of skin, but their language, territory, economic life and culture are those of America, Congo and France respectively.

Like everything else in human history, nations are a transitional phenomenon, and their lifespan is actually destined to be rather short in the overall scheme of things. Nation states are the form that capitalist class rule took in western Europe, while in the East, where capitalism arrived on the scene somewhat later, multinational states are the norm. Along with classes and the state itself, nations will gradually disappear after capitalism has been replaced everywhere with socialism.

Nationalism is therefore an ideology that has developed out of capitalist production relations, and which reinforces capitalist society. It encourages workers to identify their interests with that of their ‘country’, which means identifying more with their own exploiters than with the exploited peoples of other countries. That is why Marx famously wrote that workers have no country, and why the communists adopt the red flag of the workers rather than identifying with national symbols. (K Marx and F Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party, 1848)

Nationalism and national-liberation

That being the case, one might wonder why we should ever give our support to a national movement. Paradoxically, in the era of imperialism, nationalism in the countries that are oppressed and superexploited by the imperialist powers canvery often play a progressive role. It can encourage the oppressed to unite against their oppressors and rise up against them, since the national bourgeoisie is also suppressed by imperialist rule and stopped from developing. In these cases, the workers and the independent-minded national bourgeoisie (as opposed to comprador sections of the bourgeoisie who facilitate imperialist exploitation and oppression) have a shared goal and can become temporary allies, despite their class antagonisms as exploiters and exploited.

When Stalin wrote his famous work on the national question in 1913, his conclusions were endorsed by Lenin and by the international communist movement. He showed that in the interests of the maximum unity of the working class, the rights of oppressed nations to self-determination – ie, to be free to organise their lives and economies without interference from imperialist powers – must be respected and fought for. He showed that the struggle of the oppressed peoples for national liberation is a part and parcel of the proletariat’s struggle against imperialism.

He explained that only by recognising and fighting for the rights of the oppressed could workers in the imperialist countries free themselves from the superiority complex that kept them siding with their own exploiters and looking down on the superexploited masses – and that this attitude kept workers in the imperialist countries tied to their own ruling classes and separated from the exploited of the world, who ought to be their biggest ally in the struggle for revolution. This division was and is a major barrier to the development of a real revolutionary movement in the imperialist countries.

On the other hand, Stalin showed that only by having complete freedom to finally determine their own destiny would workers of the oppressed countries ever let go of their own national prejudices and come to see their common interests with workers from the oppressing countries.

National oppression is therefore a bar to the unity of workers and peasants all over the world against their common oppressors, and is thus an impediment to socialist revolution. That is why Marxists support the national-liberation struggles of the oppressed peoples, and why we demand their complete freedom of self-determination. We are supporting these national-liberation struggles because of their democratic and anti-imperialist content, not because we are in favour of encouraging nationalism.

We in the CPGB-ML take these lessons from history very seriously. Of all the people who call themselves communist in Britain, we are the only ones who really take our duties towards the oppressed of the world to heart. Ours is the only party that constantly seeks to show British workers the connection between the superexploitation of workers and peasants abroad and the strength of our ruling-class enemies at home.

Unlike the Trotskyists, we do not try to tell workers in the oppressed countries how they should conduct the struggle against imperialism. We recognise their rights unconditionally and give them and their chosen leaders unstinting support, no matter how they are demonised in the imperialist media. Alone among the British ‘left’ parties we opposed the wars against Libya and Syria from the very beginning – and supported the anti-imperialist leaders of those countries against imperialist vilification.

Unlike the revisionists of the CPB, we do everything in our power to expose the imperialist nature of the Labour party and break the working class’s illusions in social democracy. We do all we can, small as we are, to promote unity with the oppressed masses of the world and to break the connection between the working-class movement and the imperialist stooges who currently control it.

Unlike every other party and supposed ‘solidarity’ movement, we try to show workers in Britain what our rulers on no account wish them to understand: that we have the collective power to stop British imperialism from functioning – whether it is waging illegal wars abroad or making draconian attacks on the working class at home – and should organise ourselves to use it.

No cooperation with British war crimes. No cooperation with capitalist austerity. Workers have the power to stop the wars and stop the cuts. These are our core messages to workers in Britain. (See various leaflets at cpgb-ml.org)

But the same seriousness we apply to our support for the oppressed peoples abroad applies to our waging of all other aspects of the class struggle. This is not a game or a passing popularity contest, but a deadly serious endeavour. We have no hope of winning in the long run if we refuse to take a scientific approach to all important questions; if we pander to popular prejudice and are scared to tell workers unwelcome truths.

The lessons from science and from history are clear. We support the independence movements of the oppressed nationsbecause that weakens imperialism and enables workers to unite on the basis of equality. We do not support anything that divides the working class for no good reason. The coming struggles will be hard enough; we have no business making them even harder by allowing ourselves to be corralled into smaller and smaller groups.

Building for revolution in an imperialist country

Alongside the conclusions discussed above, Stalin also showed very clearly that to demand ‘self-determination’ for every group of workers that has fallen into nationalism is a backward and not a progressive step. He was adamant that unless a group really can be scientifically determined to be a nation in the modern, capitalist sense of the term – and can be shown to be being oppressed and superexploited by imperialism – there is no basis and no justification for dividing the working class.

At all times and in all cases, the paramount consideration for revolutionary Marxists must be the achievement of the maximum strength and unity of the working class. If the development of the capitalist state has already brought together various disparate groups of workers from pre-existing groups or feudal societies and welded them into a single nation (albeit with some differences in their historical backgrounds and local customs), it is not the job of the communists to go re-dividing those peoples along lines that were long ago obliterated in all meaningful ways. That is merely to help the capitalists in their aim of dividing in order to rule.

At the time when Stalin wrote his pamphlet on the national question, the working and oppressed masses in the Russian empire, just like workers today in Britain, were suffering from deep demoralisation. The 1905 revolution had been defeated, and this defeat had led many to believe that the revolution would never happen. After all, at that point, before the success of the 1917 October revolution, Marxism still seemed to many to be an untested theory. As the revolutionary tide receded, nationalism rose to take the place of internationalism and revolution.

In this situation, bourgeois ideology was in the ascendant. Marxism seemed to have been disproved, and many groups sprang up claiming that the solution for their particular group of workers was ‘national self-determination’. Essentially, they said, “Forget about the revolution, forget about socialism, forget about solidarity … if we can get language rights and ‘cultural autonomy’ for our little group, we don’t need to care what happens to anyone else.”

And before they knew it, workers who had been standing together in struggle one day were acting as strike-breakers against their fellows the next, because they had started to identify themselves as being from different ‘national’ groups. Alongside this, they were voting for ‘representation’ in parliaments and other talking shops not on class lines but on ethnic ones, supporting all kinds of anti-working-class scoundrels on the basis of a shared ‘national identity’.

Scottish nationalism serves imperialism

That is why, before coming to a conclusion on the question of Scottish self-determination, we conducted research into the question of Scottish nationhood. And the conclusion we came to was clear: there is no such thing, in the scientific sense, as the ‘Scottish nation’. (See ‘Scotland: a part of the British nation’, Proletarian, December 2012)

There may briefly have been an ‘English nation’, which developed out of the feudal kingdoms of England, but that too is long gone. In its place there long ago developed the British nation – into which both English and Scottish rulers and workers alike were amalgamated. This has been an established fact for some 250 years.

There is no evidence to back up the claim that the Scots are being kept down as a nation and denied their right to self-determination in the United Kingdom.

The Irish, on the other hand, have clearly been oppressed for centuries – their people starved, their language and culture suppressed, their resources looted – with the native rulers expropriated and feeling the jackboot as well as the native workers and peasants. Hence the constant resurgence of armed struggle by the Irish people over the years. And hence the fact that the core tenets of the Irish peace process are all about redressing the basic inequality of treatment between the settler-colonial and native populations (protestants and catholics; unionists and nationalists).

There is an interesting point that no Scottish nationalist ever seems to have an answer to. If Scotland is a colony of ‘English imperialism’, how on earth has it managed to win its chance for ‘freedom’ without any kind of struggle?

Where in the world did a colonising power ever give up its hold on power and ability to loot superprofits voluntarily? Where in the world did an oppressed and colonised people ever win their freedom without mobilising a fierce struggle by the masses, usually including the use of arms?

We have seen centuries of armed and political mass struggle by the oppressed and superexploited masses of Ireland, but no such struggle has ever been remotely on the cards in Scotland. If the people of Scotland have really been oppressed and exploited by ‘English’ overlords for so long, we have to ask ourselves: why has such a struggle not materialised?

And then we have to ask ourselves something else: what kind of freedom fighters ever included in their list of demands that they should be ‘allowed’ to keep the key elements of their oppression intact after liberation?

And yet, these are precisely the ‘demands’ of the Scottish nationalist leaders. They wish to keep the British Queen as their head of state, keep the British pound as their currency (“The pound is as much Scotland’s as the rest of the UK’s,” says Alex Salmond), keep the British army regiments currently based in Scotland (and soaked in the blood of the oppressed of the world) as their army, and keep their membership not only of the imperialist EU but even of the nuclear warmongering Nato alliance. (See ‘Alex Salmond promises Scotland will keep the pound, the Queen, Dr Who’ by Asa Bennett, huffingtonpost.co.uk, 26 November 2013)

Indeed, Alex Salmond has made it clear that the SNP’s commitment to a ‘nuclear-free’ Scotland is of secondary importance to a retained membership of nuclear-armed Nato! (See ‘Alex Salmond softens hardline stance over Nato’s nuclear weapons’ by Nicholas Watt and Severin Carrell, guardian.co.uk, 26 November 2013)

Meanwhile, the Queen, the army and British financial control are precisely the bastions of British imperialist domination that centuries of Irish struggle have been aimed at removing from Irish soil!

It seems from this that what is on offer is not ‘national liberation’ or ‘independence’, but the division of the working class into hostile camps, alongside the continued unity of the exploiters. Business as usual for British imperialism, in fact.

What difference would it really make to workers in Scotland if Britain’s Trident missiles were shoved over the border to Berwick or Bowness? Would they be less likely to suffer the effects of nuclear fallout from such a move? Would a Nato-aligned Scotland be any less culpable for the use of nuclear weapons by the Nato alliance?

Those who imagine that they are ridding themselves of a large section of exploiters in voting for independence should consider carefully: Alex Salmond will not be the last representative of the British ruling class in ‘independent’ Scotland; only the most visible one. Just as in the case of ‘Westminster rule’, the real decisions will continue to be made by the British billionaire class behind the scenes.

The SNP leadership may seem to represent a less seasoned brand of exploiters, but, make no mistake, they and their replacements will simply be what all other British politicians are and have been for centuries – the public face of a very old, very experienced and very cunning ruling class.

All Alex Salmond’s statements about Nato, the Queen, the pound, the army and so on, are simply his job-interview promises to that class. In effect, he is telling his bosses: “Don’t worry, I understand what is required of me and will do the job you need me to do.” And just as in the case of Cameron, Blair and co, voting out Salmond would simply bring another Salmond clone into his place.

So what would the ‘independence’ that is on offer (as opposed to the imaginary castles-in-the-sky of various ‘left-nationalist’ illusion-mongers) really mean for workers in Scotland?

The reality, far from being the socialist paradise that is painted by the ‘left-wing’ supporters of nationalism in Scotland, will simply be a race to the bottom, as the governments in the two territories compete to ‘attract investment’ and to prove their subservience to monopoly capital by lowering wages, lowering corporation tax, removing workers’ rights, removing environmental protections and so on. The break-up of the union carries the prospect of an even faster erosion of the rights of the working class, helping our rulers to lower workers’ pay and rights more quickly than if they had to continue with a full-frontal attack on the entire British workforce in one go.

After all, breaking up the NHS into regional groups and attacking them with different levels of ferocity has been of great assistance in the work of reprivatising Britain’s health service. Workers in Scotland have been lulled into a false sense of security that if they keep voting nationalist the cuts will never come to them, while the workers in England have been left to stand alone against the worst of the attacks so far. (‘Why should Scotland let itself be ruled by the Tories?’ by Alex Salmond, New Statesman, 26 February 2014)

Of course, experience of such things teaches us that the ruling class is expert at picking us off bit by bit in order to achieve its aims. There is every reason to suppose that NHS privatisation will come to Scotland – and will be even harder to resist by workers in Scotland who have seen them happening elsewhere and will have been told that there is no alternative, and who will receive no back-up from their compatriots over the border in England.

The prospect of a destructive race to the bottom is perfectly illustrated by Alex Salmond’s proposal to cut corporation tax in an independent Scotland. Salmond has stated that: “Corporation tax rates remain an important tool for securing competitive advantage and for offsetting competitive advantages enjoyed by other parts of the UK, notably London.”

Even bourgeois critics of this policy have pointed out that “Alex Salmond wants to turn the nations of the UK into competitors, with the risks to jobs and conditions that would involve.” (See ‘Corporation tax cut “not credible”’, Belfast Telegraph, 25 July 2014)

This is a law of economics under capitalism, and especially in times of crisis, when unemployment is climbing ever higher and workers are desperate for whatever they can get. Whichever side of the separation border has better protections for workers, higher taxes and so on, will be bound to be seen as less ‘attractive’ to ‘investors’ (capitalists), since anything that benefits workers cannot help but impact levels of profitability.

So investment will flock to the more ‘flexible’ side of the border, and the cry will go up on the other side … we, too, need to be more ‘flexible’ and ‘attractive’. Down will come the wages, the corporation taxes and other ‘barriers’ to profit-taking. Back will come the exploiters to reap the rewards … until the workers on the other side of the border can be forced to accept even worse pay and conditions in the interests of ‘job creation’ and ‘competitiveness’.

In effect, the implementation of the border will help to speed up the process of ‘persuading’ British workers to accept the same kind of pay and conditions as are standard in the oppressed countries – and to lessen their collective resistance. Such a future has appeal to the ruling class, but it is hardly the manifesto of a liberation struggle! Meanwhile, the Scottish nationalists are working hard to prove to the capitalists that this is a game they are more than willing to play their part in.

‘Progressive’ nationalism: a mirage

All the ‘progressive’ arguments in favour of Scottish independence ignore these facts, basing themselves in shallow, short-sighted and sentimental arguments that mistake wishes for truths and dreams for reality.

Here are just a few of the more widespread examples of wishful thinking by the independence supporters of Britain’s ‘left’:

1. The Tories will be decimated in Scotland, and this will be good for workers, who will finally get local powers instead of being ruled from Westminster.

This argument replaces the realities of class struggle with the illusions of bourgeois politicking. Anyone who knows anything about capitalism and the bourgeois state can tell you that there is no essential difference between any capitalist party in Britain today.

What good does it do to the workers of Scotland if they simply replace the Conservatives, Labour and LibDems with the SNP? They all serve capitalist imperialism. They are all parties of war and austerity. Recent history is enough to show us that any number of Labour or SNP landslides will still bring war, genocide and looting abroad, and privatisation, crisis and austerity at home, because these are built into the system that all the British bourgeois parties serve.

We are told that people in Scotland didn’t vote for the Tories and it’s a travesty of democracy that they should have to be ruled by them.

But workers didn’t vote overwhelmingly for the Tories in plenty of other parts of Britain. Most of the poorest workers didn’t vote at all. The first-past-the-post system and the constant changing of electoral boundaries (gerrymandering) mean that by upping their vote from 32.4 to 36.1 percent of votes cast (ie, a less than 4 percent rise), the Tories in 2010 were able to increase their number of seats in parliament from 210 to 307 (a 46 percent rise). Meanwhile, the LibDems, on whom so many well-meaning liberals placed their hopes in 2010, raised their votes from 22 to 23 percent but actually lost five seats.

Likewise, we are told that most Scottish people don’t support the policies being implemented by the Tory-led coalition, and this proves they are being ‘undemocratically’ and unfairly treated.

Once again, though, this actually applies to workers all over Britain, who overwhelmingly reject the wars and austerity of both the current ConDem and the previous Labour government. Should we therefore be arguing for the republic of Yorkshire or the republic of Merseyside? These regions, too, have large populations of disenfranchised workers, who never voted Tory, feel disconnected from London and have seen their industry and services decimated.

Even the hatred for ‘London’ is misplaced and confused. London may be where the City bankers are based, along with the Westminster quislings, but it is also home to some of Britain’s poorest people. And Londoners don’t generally vote Tory or UKIP either. Should they be given their own republic to free them from this democratic deficit?

Neither the separation of Scotland from Britain, nor a change in the voting system will fix these problems for workers. The capitalist parties will do what the capitalist ruling class requires them to do, no matter how people vote or how many of them take to the street to express their ‘peaceful opposition’.

If the Iraq war taught us nothing else, it surely taught us that. A landslide Labour electoral victory and two million marchers on the streets had absolutely no impact on the dominant section of the British imperialist ruling class’s will or ability to wage a genocidal war that the people of Britain – and even a section of the bourgeoisie – were absolutely opposed to. That is the truth about our much-vaunted ‘democratic’ system.

Progressive people should be using those facts to expose the institution of British bourgeois democracy entirely and to build a movement for its revolutionary overthrow, not as a justification for dividing the working class and propagating the (totally false) illusion of a ‘fairer deal’ for just a few of them. The truth is that the struggle for a better deal for workers will actually be much harder to wage in a smaller country with an even further weakened working-class movement, where workers have been turned away from class struggle and persuaded to pin their hopes on nationalist illusions.

Meanwhile, as far as local powers go, this is also a demand of workers everywhere, and fully supported by communists. We want ‘devo-max’ for every part of Britain, not just for Scotland or Wales. Indeed, local councils with elected representatives, which are actually empowered with tax-raising and decision-making powers, are one of the many concessions granted to workers – along with council housing, a health service, free education etc – that have been under attack in the years since the overproduction crisis took hold in the late 1970s.

The lesson of this is that we cannot trust the capitalist system to be run in the interest of workers. Everything we win in the course of class struggle can be taken away again if we let down our guard. The only way to keep hold of the gains we make is to get rid of the capitalist system and establish socialism. A lack of local powers is not an argument for nationalism; it is an argument for socialism.

2. The SNP is anti-war and will take Scotland out of Nato. No more imperialist wars for Scottish workers to fight in.

Replacing the Tories with the SNP will not change the requirements of the imperialist ruling class by one iota, and the SNP has shown that it understands this and is ready to serve that class just as faithfully as Labour, the Tories or the LibDems.

That is why, the closer it gets to the possibility of an ‘independent’ Scotland, the more of the SNP’s progressive-seeming policies (which were only ever there as window-dressing to attract voters) are being ditched. The promise to keep Scotland in Nato, along with reassurances about the importance of ‘Scotland’s’ British army regiments, are a sure sign that the warmongering requirements of the ruling class remain a key factor in who can and cannot get elected – and what they will have the power to do (or not) – north of the border should ‘independence’ come to pass.

Those who spread the illusion that Scottish nationalism is somehow ‘anti-imperialist’, and that an independent Scotland will see the Scottish ruling class opting out of imperialist wars altogether, are lying to themselves and to the workers. There might be disagreement between members of the ruling class over this or that war, but the overall policy of warmongering is not going to change, since that is at the root of the wealth of the British ruling class – both north and south of the border.

The French ruling class did not take troops into Iraq. Does that mean they stopped being imperialists and warmongers? One has only to look at the crimes committed by French imperialist troops in recent times in Libya, Mali, Côte d’Ivoire and more by the ‘socialist’ government of Hollande to see that disagreement over one particular war doesn’t mean an end to imperialist war in general.

3. The SNP has a more progressive manifesto for education and health care in Scotland. Independence will allow them to carry these out.

It is true that the SNP, like Plaid Cymru and even the LibDems (until they were so deservedly exposed by joining the coalition government in 2010) have or had stated policies that were considerably to the left of the last Labour government on most social issues – hence their relative rise in popularity at a time when the working classes have been so thoroughly disillusioned with Labour and demoralised by the failure of the trade-union and social-democratic movements to represent them or struggle for their rights.

Both the Welsh and the Scottish national assemblies have been allowed some power to reject privatisation and cuts in these vital services. What is not clear is that this is a situation that would continue after ‘independence’.

On the contrary, there is every reason to believe that allowing the nationalists some financial scope to appear progressive on these fronts has objectively paid dividends for the ruling class. It has broken the unity of the fight to save services (since Welsh and Scottish voters think they are not affected) and given a massive boost to nationalist sentiments (thus keeping workers away from revolutionary ideology at a time of crisis, just when they need it most).

But the post-independence race to the bottom would be very likely to see these small gains eradicated. And, indeed, such petty gains are small beer indeed compared to the goal of a socialist Britain. Are we really prepared to sell ourselves and settle for so very little?

Not jobs, pensions, housing, health care and education with security, equality, freedom, dignity and the end of class exploitation and rule, but a slightly-less-buggered-up health service and slightly-less-shitty education policies? Frankly, we deserve a little better than to sell our birthright for such a mess of pottage!

4. British imperialism will be weakened by the departure of Scotland from the UK, and that will be good for workers at home and abroad.

There is no evidence that this is anything more than wishful thinking on the part of those who assert it. As indicated above, the Scottish nationalists, as represented currently by the SNP, have expressed their intention of setting up a ‘state’ that keeps all the important pillars of British rule intact – the army, the monetary union, membership of the EU and Nato, the Queen (spokesperson and figurehead of a united British ruling class).

Moreover, BBC propaganda has been extremely sympathetic to Scottish nationalism. It long ago changed the status of Wales and Scotland from ‘regions’ to ‘nations’ in its coverage, and it has given an open platform to nationalists from every walk of life to make their case most forcefully and without interruption. Given how infamous the BBC is for vilifying and misrepresenting every real opponent of British imperial interests – from Palestinian and Irish freedom fighters to the leaders of socialist and anti-imperialist states like Fidel Castro or Robert Mugabe – this is strange indeed.

Taking the BBC as a barometer of class sentiment, this readiness to disseminate nationalist ideology is hardly the behaviour of a class that feels its interests to be threatened. On the contrary, the coverage has all the elements of a massive sideshow – a huge and fraudulent sleight of hand that is being perpetrated on the workers of Britain, with the same mock debates, fake ‘choices’ and personality politics that characterise all our electoral charades.

And now the latest rumour is that Rupert Murdoch is getting ready to back the ‘Yes’ campaign. A more hard-headed and warmongering member of the imperialist ruling class would be difficult to find. He may talk about his Scottish forefathers, but he calculates with his blood-soaked wallet. (See ‘Rupert Murdoch arrives in Scotland as speculation grows The Sun will declare for YES in Scottish referendum’ by Stephen Lepitak, thedrum.com, 13 September 2014)

5. To campaign for a ‘No’ vote in the referendum is to side with the BNP, the unionists and the Orange Order, and therefore it must be against the interests of the working class.

This argument is as unscientific as all the rest, and has its roots in an emotive, tribal approach to class politics. While such instincts often serve progressive workers very well, they are not infallible and are all-too open to manipulation when not firmly rooted in a scientific analysis – just as a hatred of racism can turn into a hatred of all white people and a belief in black nationalism if the roots of racism are not properly understood.

Identifying ‘unionists’ as the enemy based on an allegiance to and sympathy with Irish republicans means ignoring the very real differences in the class positions of unionists in Glasgow and unionists in Belfast. The unionists in Belfast are a settler-colonial population who were for centuries granted significant material privileges in return for acting as local tools of the British imperialist ruling class – in much the same way as Israeli workers are rewarded for keeping the Palestinian people down.

Just as they did for the Israelis or South African whites, the material conditions of the Irish unionists produced a culture of racist supremacy and violence, which, alongside the well-deserved hatred of the native-Irish masses, pushed them to identify themselves with their own exploiters to such a degree that nothing short of destroying the sectarian northern-Irish statelet could open their eyes to their idiocy – by first removing the material basis for their supremacist ideology.

The tribal aspect of this ‘protestant-catholic’ or ‘unionist-republican’ rivalry has been transplanted wholesale to cities in Britain that have a sizeable Irish-immigrant population, and has been a very useful tool for the British ruling class in keeping workers divided. Glasgow, in particular has suffered from this, and seen it entrenched via the football terraces.

But, while the Irish have suffered the fate of every immigrant population into Britain in their time as cheap labour and easy scapegoats, the differentiation between these groups of workers, however real in the past, has its basis today more in perceived than in real differences, as the Irish have been assimilated and fresh waves of immigrants have arrived in Britain’s cities. Today, newly-arrived workers from eastern Europe or Africa are far more obvious scapegoats for working-class ire in Scotland as elsewhere, but the tribal identities of protestant vs catholic are kept alive in Glasgow in particular via the football rivalry of Rangers vs Celtic, just as the England vs Scotland divide is kept alive in the field of international football.

Meanwhile, our party has to take a position based on a clear understanding of the question, and not out of a fear regarding whom we might seem to be associated with.

There is emotive rubbish being talked by charlatans on both sides of the referendum campaign in Scotland, and working-class people are taking up the cudgels on both sides too – for a whole variety of real or perceived reasons. Our job as communists is to try to provide some clarity and some rational, class basis for taking a position. And our position must always be based on what is going to be in the long-term interests of the revolutionary movement.

Because UKIP are opposed to Nato’s war in the Ukraine, should we suddenly abandon a correct analysis and join the side of Nato? Of course not. We must demonstrate clearly the difference between taking up a position based on Little-England racism and one that is based in proletarian internationalism – and then do everything in our power to show workers why it is in their interests to accept our analysis and join the struggle for revolution.

The unionists want British workers to identify with the class interests and the national symbols of our oppressors. They want to divert the anger of workers down a blind alley and dissipate their energies into pointless activity. We communists, on the other hand, want to show workers that their interests lie in the maximum unity of all British workers against all British oppressors. We want them to identify their interests with the oppressed everywhere, to discard the blood-stained Cross of St Andrew along with the blood-stained Union Jack (the Butcher’s Apron, as the Irish so aptly refer to it), and to build a movement for overthrowing imperialism and building socialism.

But we will not do that without understanding clearly who are our friends and who are our enemies. The fact that good, well-meaning and generally progressive people have been misled must not prevent us from “seeking truth from facts”, as Mao so profoundly expressed it.

Nationalism vs communism

The fact that many progressive Scots wish to see British imperialism weakened, and hope that by voting for independence they will achieve this aim, does not prove that that is what will actually happen.

What we are witnessing in Scotland today has its echoes all over Britain. The outward appearance may be more progressive, since many left-wing workers support the call for independence, but it is essentially a mirror of the rise of anti-immigrant sentiment among impoverished and misguided English workers, arising from the same demoralisation and the same frustrations.

All over Britain, revisionism and the disappearance of a real, class-conscious communist movement left the most militant workers bereft of leadership and guidance. The Labour party, in which they had been encouraged to put their hopes, has proved itself irrevocably to be a tool of imperialism. It is clearly not in the interests of workers to continue voting for it or supporting it.

So as war and crisis bite ever deeper, workers have been asking themselves what the solution is. And into the gap left by the communists has crept nationalism. In England, this takes the form of anti-immigrant sentiment. That immigration is a ‘problem’ is a ‘truth’ so universally acknowledged that it is very hard to persuade workers that they have been duped on this issue.

In Scotland and Wales, a more progressive-seeming brand of nationalism has been offered up as the ‘answer’ to the problems of capitalism. But its effect is the same – it gives workers a scapegoat for the ills of capitalist society. “Don’t blame capitalism, blame the immigrants!” say the BNP and EDL to angry and disillusioned workers in England. And the media agrees. “Don’t blame capitalism, blame the English!” say the SNP and Plaid Cymru to the angry and disillusioned workers in Scotland and Wales. And the media agrees.

That people are in the mood to fall for this misdirection is a sign that they understand that something is wrong and thatsomething must be done. They have understood that this society is not serving them, and given up hopes of a worker-friendly Labour government. So far, so good. But without a clear analysis and leadership, it can be very hard to understand where all the various ‘solutions’ on offer will really lead.

Back when Britain had a strong communist movement, nationalism among class-conscious workers was almost non-existent. This explains why there is such a generational divide amongst working-class voters in Scotland today – older people are far, far less likely to vote ‘Yes’ in the referendum, because they belong to a generation amongst whom it was generally understood that class allegiances were paramount.

No argument has yet been put forward to convince us that Scotland’s rulers will cease to be imperialists after a ‘Yes’ vote in the referendum. Therefore all that nationalism does in such a context is to teach workers in Scotland to identify their interests with those of imperialism. This is an outcome devoutly to be unwished!

As communists, our job is to propagate a scientific understanding in order to help workers discard harmful popular prejudices. If we don’t do that, then there’s really not much point to our existence, since it is only through discarding the prejudices that keep us shackled to imperialist ideas that we will be able to build a movement capable of smashing imperialism and building socialism.

When we in the CPGB-ML argue against a ‘Yes’ vote at the coming referendum, we do so not because we wish to endorse the rule of the Westminster spivs or because we consider ‘rule from London’ a good thing, but because we wish workers to understand that it is not ‘the English’ who are their enemies, but the British ruling class. And because we wish to create a movement that is as strong and unified as possible that will have a fighting chance of overthrowing this wily class of bloodthirsty exploiters.

Say no to bourgeois nationalism, which ties workers to imperialism and turns us into tools of our own oppression. Say yes to working-class unity, yes to revolution, and yes to a socialist future for all British workers!

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Scottish nationalism is a dangerous diversion. Fight for the unity of the British working class!

NOVANEWS
The following resolution was passed at the recent CPGB-ML party congress. 
Image result for Scottish nationalism LOGO
This congress notes with concern the frenzy of nationalist sentiment that has been whipped up amongst British workers in Scotland in the run-up to the recent independence referendum.Congress further notes that the conduct of this referendum had all the hallmarks of a classic piece of bourgeois misdirection: the huge amount of media coverage given to fake ‘choices’ and bourgeois electoral ‘promises’, for example, and the massive corporate media endorsement given to the ‘Yes’ campaigners, while at the same time presenting them as an ‘alternative’. This reflects a similar level of hysteria around the European elections in May this year, when, whileofficially rejecting the racism and scaremongering of UKIP, the other main parties and the entire media machine allimplicitly endorsed the party and its leader by jumping to their agenda and giving them endless amounts of coverage.

Congress believes that in the cases of both the Scottish nationalists and UKIP, the votes they received would not have been nearly so high without the constant media circus surrounding them, which acted as an extremely persuasive endorsement, even as the other main British parties were pretending to stand in ‘opposition’ to them. In fact, UKIP and the SNP, just like the other capitalist parties in Britain, all serve the imperialist ruling class and work to preserve that class’s rule.

Congress further believes that votes for the SNP and for Scottish ‘independence’, like votes for UKIP, are an expression of the fact that workers are dissatisfied and disillusioned with bourgeois politics and have given up their hopes of Labour delivering for working people. They are angry at declining living standards, shrinking job opportunities and disappearing services; they are aware that something is wrong with the status quo and that something needs to be done about it. By presenting us with various carefully-presented ‘alternatives’ to the main capitalist parties, our rulers seek to provide us with harmless (to them) outlet for our anger, while keeping intact the very system that causes that anger in the first place.

Congress notes that, with the worst effects of the overproduction crisis still to hit British workers, and with World War 3 looming on the horizon, the British ruling class is very much in need of any and all diversions that can help to keep the working class divided, and stop us from understanding the real cause of our problems.

Congress further notes that, for all the left-leaning sentiment of many of the supporters of Scottish ‘independence’, the ruling class has no intention of allowing its own unity and strength to be diminished by any apparent separation. Nor is there the slightest reason to suppose that those members of the British ruling class who call Scotland home have any intention of giving up their status as some of the world’s richest and most ruthless imperialist exploiters. Therefore, congress believes that an ‘independent’ Scotland would divide and weaken the British working class without dividing or weakening the capitalist ruling class and without changing that ruling class’s imperialist character.

This congress believes that, in the context of Britain, the promotion of nationalism in all its forms – English, Scottish, Welsh, black, etc – is ultimately aimed at dividing workers from one another and at diverting as many of them as possible away from the revolutionary struggle for socialism. Such a struggle, while not noticeably on the agenda for many in Britain today, is bound to become more obviously necessary in the coming period, as unemployment spirals, essential services are cut or scrapped altogether, and poverty and war take their toll on workers who once imagined that the temporary gains and apparent ‘peace’ of the post-WW2 period were here to stay.

Congress further believes that the various ‘left’ forces that support the call for an ‘independent’ Scotland are doing so for the usual unscientific and opportunistic reasons – because they have (as usual) unquestioningly accepted bourgeois propaganda that claims that Scotland is a separate nation to the rest of Britain; because (as usual) they have accepted the fake debate and ‘choices’ presented in the imperialist media referendum circus; and because (as usual) they have no interest in standing up for the long-term revolutionary interests of the British working class. Our party has no problem standing on the opposite side of these charlatans on a whole host of issues, from support for the anti-imperialist resistance to British imperialist wars to support for the former and presently-existing socialist states. There is no reason for us to suddenly seek the shelter of such dubious endorsement on the question Scottish nationalism.

As far as devolution is concerned, this congress takes the view that the maximum possible local powers with really representative officials, elected and recallable by those they serve, should be the right of all workers in Britain. But these, like all the other just demands of British workers, will be fought for and won on the basis of a real class struggle, not granted in fake form by way of a bribe for taking the nationalist bait. In a class society, it is not so much a question of where a parliament is based as to whom the MPs inside it give their loyalty. An imperialist-aligned parliament in Holyrood is no more likely to be representative of the interests of Glasgow welders and Highland crofters than the Westminster parliament has ever been of East End dockers and small Cornish sheep farmers.

This congress endorses the view taken at the last congress that Scotland is not a nation separate from the rest of Britain, and that Scottish nationalism is a reactionary ideology, aimed at tying workers more tightly to an imperialist ruling class.

Congress further endorses the arguments made in Proletarian recently that the ‘independence’ on offer is of such a character as to be merely a mirage, not capable of weakening the unity or strength of the British ruling class, but very much aimed at breaking the unity and strength of the British working class. By dangling the chimera of an ‘independent’ Scotland in front of workers in Scotland, the ruling class aims to offer an outlet for workers’ anger against the capitalist system, and to lessen the resistance of all British workers to its neverending drive for austerity and war.

This congress believes that the ultimate source of nationalist sentiment in Britain is pessimism amongst workers. This pessimism follows the collapse of the Soviet Union and the east European socialist bloc, as well as 60 years of revisionism running rampant in our movement. Workers have for too long been bereft of clear ideological guidance, and too many of our self-appointed leaders have endorsed the propaganda lies of the capitalists rather than standing up for the interests of the working class.

Congress notes that, as a result of this, our class as a whole has temporarily lost faith in the possibility of revolution. Today, all too many of us are looking for smaller and smaller ‘gains’ with which to satisfy ourselves: not the guarantee of a secure, equal and totally free health service, for example, but one where the profiteers aren’t too obviously dominant; not opposition to all cuts and privatisation, but a plea that cuts should come a little more slowly … and so on. In the case of Scotland, workers are trading their fight for a socialist Britain in return for the electoral promise of fewer cuts to health and education services north of the border – with no reason to believe that such promises will ultimately be kept, and an implicit agreement to raise no objection to whatever cuts are implemented in the rest of Britain.

This congress believes that, in light of all the above, the job of communists is to show workers that it is not immigrants (in the case of those who have fallen for racist propaganda), white people (in the case of those who have fallen for black nationalist propaganda) or ‘the English’ (in the case of those who have fallen for Scottish nationalist propaganda) who are to blame for their problems, but the capitalist-imperialist system itself.

This congress therefore resolves:

To uphold and propagate the position reached at our last congress that Scotland is not a separate nation, but that the workers in Scotland are as much a part of the British working class as workers in Yorkshire, Merseyside or Bristol.

To make every possible effort to overcome the pessimism that leads people to be drawn into nationalist diversions, and to explain to workers on both sides of the border that we need to build the maximum possible unity in order to develop a revolutionary movement to overthrow imperialism and build socialism throughout Britain.

To resuscitate the memory of such legendary working-class leaders from Scotland as Willie Gallacher and others who were instrumental in developing revolutionary class consciousness and forging a strong communist party in Britain in the 1920s and 1930s. The legacy of this movement is still to be felt in the antipathy that many older working-class people in Scotland still feel for nationalism, despite the widespread disillusionment with Labour in particular and with social democracy generally.

To produce two pamphlets, as agreed at the last congress – one that collects all our party’s articles and analysis on this question in one place, and another that aims to answer in a simple way questions such as ‘Does standing against independence make me a unionist?’, and ‘Are you saying I shouldn’t feel proud of my Scottish heritage and traditions?’

No to bourgeois nationalism, which ties workers to imperialism and turns us into tools of our own oppression.

Yes to working-class unity, yes to revolution, and yes to a socialist future for all British workers!

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