Archive | January 20th, 2018

Secessionism in Iraqi Kurdistan Under the Banner of Referendum


Secessionism in Iraqi Kurdistan Under the Banner of Referendum, in the Service of Imperialist and Zionist Interests.

Party of Labour of Iran (Toufan)

Communists agree with the principle of the right of nations to self-determination by means of their own struggle and not by outside interventions. The communists achieved this principle through their struggles against colonialism and imperialism, which violated and are violating national rights. At the same time, the communists do not issue a blank check for the rights of nations to secede in all cases. In each case, a concrete analysis must be carried out in order to determine whether the secession will be in the best interest of the struggle of the working class and in favour of the people against neo-colonialism, imperialism, and Zionism. If not, the question becomes, “Will secession be in the service of world reaction that will strengthen the counter-revolutions in the world?” We agree with the separation of Ireland and Scotland from Britain, for example, because such separation weakens the world counter-revolution and creates a more favourable ground for class struggle in these countries. We disagree with the division of Yugoslavia because it served the world reaction.

In the case of Iraqi Kurdistan:

1) The Autonomous Government of Iraqi Kurdistan has decided to conduct an organized referendum with the official and open support of Israeli Zionism to secede from Iraq and to establish an “independent” Kurdistan in northern Iraq. This runs contrary to the constitution of Iraq, which the Autonomous Government had signed to it. Is a bourgeois and national chauvinist government and a close ally of imperialism and Zionism in the region really independent?

In the next step, the Kurdish regions of Turkey, Syria, and Iran should join the “independent” Iraqi Kurdistan to declare a so-called unified and independent state of Kurdistan. This independence is even opposed by the Security Council of the United Nations. The only country that openly and officially supports this “independence” is the aggressive state of Zionist Israel whose expert agents continue to sabotage and provoke conflict in the region. Also, Saudi Arabia has hidden behind Israel and the U.S. imperialists and has actively moved to build a reliable base for their sinister intentions in the region. Israel has been active in Iraqi Kurdistan for many years. It has deployed military and spy agents to train the Iraqi Kurds and to strengthen their ties with Israeli Kurds who are moving to the area and buying lands in Kurdistan.

After the 1979 Revolution, the Iranian pro-Israeli trends of Mansour Hekmat, with financial and logistical assistance from Israel, entered Iraqi Kurdistan and encouraged the Kurds to make connections with the Israelis. Hekmat’s theories are in the service of removing obstacles to “independent Kurdistan”. The theories of struggle against Iranians’ love for homeland and the support for “patriotism” of national chauvinist Kurds are two examples of such theories; the first was falsely portrayed as chauvinism, and the second as a symbol of internationalism. According to Hekmat’s followers, non-Kurdish communists should be “internationalists” and vote for the secession of Kurdistan, but Kurdish communists should be nationalists and, with all powers and under all conditions, support the dismantling of Iran. They contrive stories that the secession of Iraqi Kurdistan will lead to intensification of class struggle and bring the prospect of socialism in Kurdistan closer. What an invalid statement! Did the rise of the state of Israel intensify the class struggle against the Zionist bourgeoisie within Arab-sieged Israel, or, conversely, did it lead to the suppression and disarmament of the Jewish communists with their tradition of a heroic anti-fascist struggle?

Will the struggle of the Kurdistan working class against their own bourgeoisie flourish and intensify, or will it be suppressed due to a range of factors such as the following: the geographical situation of Kurdistan, the real or fabricated permanent threat by its neighbours, the use of unilateral and misleading propaganda tools and pretexts (such as “external threat”, “Kurdistan security “, and “defence of the existence of the Kurdish people”), the brainwashing of the workers and the public by the imperialist propaganda experts in favour of the Kurdish bourgeoisie, and the conversion of Kurdistan to a base of imperialism and Zionism? It is clear that, as an accomplice to the imperialism and Zionism, the bourgeoisie of Iraqi Kurdistan provides a “calm environment” for the establishment of a national, jingoistic government.

2) Iraqi Kurdistan opened the oil resources to Israel in the aftermath of its complicity with imperialism and Zionism in their invasion of Iraq and the overthrow of its UN-recognized government. The U.S. imperialists and Israeli Zionists, through their political-economical-financial assistance, used the Iraqi Kurds to change the political geography of the region and to create a counter-revolutionary base against all revolutionary forces and the people of the region. In addition, the sell-out Kurds who collaborated with Bill Clinton, George Bush, Obama, and Netanyahu in the destruction of Iraq, strengthened Daesh (ISIS) through a fabrication of events. They encouraged and assisted Daesh in its move towards Baghdad. These counter-revolutionary Kurds are now President Trump’s accomplices in the further destruction of the region. There are Kurdish organizations that consider themselves as revolutionary and communist, but they do not fight against these pro-imperialist and pro-Zionist moves in the region. Their activities consist of a fight for the “Right to Self Determination” by means of alliance with imperialism and Zionism, the creation of a counter-revolutionary base, and a second Israel in the region with the purpose of suppressing the area’s revolutionaries while stabilizing Israel’s status in the region.

This counter-revolutionary Kurdistan, in the context of strategic policies of imperialism and Zionism, will not only be the enemy of the people of the region, but will also fight the presence of any revolutionary and labour movement within Kurdistan itself.

Mullah Mostafa Barzani, the undisputed Kurdish leader and the father of Massoud Barzani, a graduate of the University of Tel Aviv, repeatedly called for U.S. support for Kurdistan and even expressed the desire to annex Iraq’s Kurdistan to the U.S. as its fifty-first state. (See page 57, International Politics and the Middle East, Carl Brown.) Has such a request served the interests of the people of the region and of Kurdistan? Mullah Mostafa Barzani congratulated the Israelis on the defeat of the Arabs in the Six-Day War. Barzani fought with the Shah of Iran and the Savak and Mussad operatives against the Arab people and sent the Kurdish revolutionary anti-Shah opponents to the gallows. In October 1998, U.S. imperialism provided aid to the sell-out opposition, including two main Kurdish groups, the Democratic Party of Barzani and the Patriotic Union of Talebani and to the Kurdish Islamic Movement; $97 million military aid and $2 million propaganda aid, for their assistance in the U.S. occupation and looting of Iraq. There is no Kurdish organization that has condemned these plots against the people of the region including the Kurds.

Now, putting aside the theory,

Doesn’t the emergence of such a counter-revolutionary centre and the right hand of Zionism and imperialism in the region objectively harm the revolutionary national and workers’ movements of all people of the region and even the Kurds?

Doesn’t the emergence of such a counter-revolutionary centre objectively harm the revolutionary and democratic unity of the working classes of nations within each country while representing a futile attempt that damages the struggle for socialism for all people of the country?

Doesn’t the counter-revolutionary decision of secession generate chaos in the region in the interest of imperialism and in the service of a re-division of the world into new areas under imperialist influence?

If history and reality have shown that the answers to these questions is negative, and surely they have, then this move should not be supported on the basis of a general principle. No progressive force can conceal itself under the cover of the “right of nations to self-determination” by means of alliance with imperialism and Zionism. National chauvinist Kurds argue that it is no one’s business whom they want to accept as their master, that alliance and cooperation with Israel and the United States will be their own decision, and that they alone will determine who their friends and enemies are.

If we accept this pseudo-argument, why should the people and working class of the region “raise a snake in their sleeves”, which intends to establish a base against the existence of other countries? Is this not a suicidal move for the people and working classes in the region? Isn’t it selfishness and nationalist blindness to call on all revolutionary forces to accept the creation of a colony in which swords are sharpened against the neighbours? Is it permissible to not recognize as democratic and respectable the moves of a force that “voluntarily” and “democratically” accepts complicity with Israel and imperialism? The “rights” that lead to the destruction of the rights of others or threatens the lives of others, are not rights, but are instead acts of conspiratorial violence. Just as there is no right to murder or to aggression, there is no right to suppress or plot against other nations. No nation can disassociate its fate from the fate of other nations. No nation can generate an atmosphere of false hope for self-determination by means of alliance with imperialism. Such a nation would become indifferent to the bloody repression of other people by the common enemy: the reactionary rulers of the region. The people of the region have the same destiny as the Palestinian people who are the victims of Zionist aggression. The people of the region also support Palestinian liberation struggles against the artificially-built state of Israel. Those who defend the oppression, expulsion, murder, and genocide of the Palestinian people, those who expressed happiness and applauded the Zionist victory over the Arabs, cannot be the supporters of democracy, freedom, and rights of nations to self-determination. One should not ignore the fact that in the aftermath of upcoming events of the economic and military siege of “Independent Kurdistan”, there will be situations that harm the Kurdish people. Unfortunately, the Kurds in alliance with the region’s reactionary forces, as past experiences have shown, will be the first victims of attempts for secession and of regional conflict.

3) In this class struggle that has been waged, apart from a few individuals, the seats of Kurdish communist groups and revolutionary organizations are unfortunately empty. No Kurdish group has come to the scene as a defender of the class interests of the working people, to defend their unity, and to expose and destroy the common and oppressive enemy in each specific country. When non-Kurd communists in Iran or Iraq speak for the elimination of national oppression, in the arena of culture and education in mother tongue or otherwise, they advocate this for all people in Iran, whether Kurd or Azeri. Naturally, the duty of the communists of oppressed minority nations is to promote national unity, to cooperate and ally with other people, to promote the advantage of the existence of a greater country, and to promote the cooperation and alliance of the proletariat of all these nations under the leadership of the party of the working class in Iran or Iraq. The Iranian communists’ support for the legitimate demands of minorities should expose the face of the bourgeoisie of nationalities that intend to deceive their own working class and should contribute to the unity of the class struggle. It’s ridiculous that a self-declared progressive Kurd calls on non- Kurdish communists to defend their secessionist activities unconditionally. According to them, “Kurdish communists” should call for national secession, and non-Kurd communists should also defend national secession and sacrifice the expediency of class struggle and the interest of workers for the interests of national chauvinists. This relationship is not naturally dialectical. By this logic, the “Kurdish communists” are looking for non-Kurdish allies who confirm their secessionist movement with a “communist stamp”.

4) The rights of nations to self-determination which Lenin puts forward, deals with the rights of nations to establish their own national governments, especially during the anti-colonial struggles that the Socialists of the Second International did not recognize. The Second International claimed that since they were “civilized” and their country was more advanced, it was permissible in terms of the interest of the global developments and the growth of productive forces that African and Asian and other colonies remain in the hands of colonialists. With respect to pure democracy, Lenin never addressed the issue of the rights of nations to self-determination, which he correctly regarded as democratic bourgeois rights. There is no such right to pure democracy. Democracy has always had class content. This should be taken into account with regards to the treatment of the right of people to determine their own destiny. The right of nations should be evaluated and given practical support with consideration for the interests of the communist movement. From Marxism-Leninism’s point of view, the issuance of a blank cheque for each group that is “fighting” in abstract for the “right of nation to self-determination” is in complete contradiction with Marxism. In the Soviet Union, the communists never tolerated the plots by the imperialist-allied “Rada” in Ukraine or “Musavat – (Equality) – a national liberal party” or “Dashnaks” in the Caucasus, and suppressed them with the help of the Red Guard and communists of the regions. The interests of socialism and the working class demanded that the bourgeois sections of these governments or forces be suppressed. In Finland, the working-class movement was suppressed by the betrayal of the right-wing “socialists” and by the direct intervention of the Germans and by the reactionary bourgeoisie of the Baltic countries. The Finland solution stemmed from the weakness of the Bolsheviks during the First World War and was never repeated. The national chauvinist Kurds who do not have knowledge of the history of this secession are sticking to “Finland Solution” example in vain and citing it with ignorance.

From the communists’ point of view, during the era of imperialism, one cannot defend a national separation if that separation does not serve the interests of the proletariat. The disintegration of Yugoslavia, Sudan, Libya, Iraq, Syria, Nigeria, the Congo and others were in the interest of the strategic policy of hegemonic imperialism.

We still remember the division of Vietnam and Korea. The communists will not support a policy of “divide and conquer”. The imperialists want to divide the countries so that they can more easily challenge each nation’s independence, threaten its survival, and rule more easily.

At the time when the Great October Socialist Revolution became victorious, the imperialist policy was to unite the divided or isolated states that were not able to confront the influence of communism, to strengthen the central government in these countries, and to put them in confrontation with developing socialism. Reza Khan’s (Reza Shah’s) coup in Iran, the repression of Sheikh Khazaal, Simko Shikak’s followers, and the installation of the central government in Iraq led by King Faisal should be seen and examined in the context of this analysis. Now that the Soviet Union has disintegrated and its power has diminished, and China cannot yet play the role of the former Soviet Social Imperialism, the division of countries has been put on the imperialists’ agenda. It is easier for the imperialists to dominate countries such as Macedonia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, and Serbia than it is for them to dominate a strong and unified country like Yugoslavia. It should be said that Bosnia-Herzegovina or Kosovo is essentially not a country, because their survival hangs by a hair.

Stalin, describing Lenin’s ideas and the Marxist-Leninist conception of the national question in the era of imperialism, wrote that:

“It was formerly the ‘accepted’ idea that the only method of liberating the oppressed peoples is the method of bourgeois nationalism, the method of nations drawing apart from one another, the method of disuniting nations, and the method of intensifying national enmity among the labouring masses of the various nations.

“That legend must now be regarded as refuted. One of the most important results of the October Revolution is that it dealt that legend a mortal blow, by demonstrating in practice the possibility and expediency of the proletarian, internationalist method of liberating the oppressed peoples, as the only correct method; by demonstrating in practice the possibility and expediency of a fraternal union of the workers and peasants of the most diverse nations based on the principles of voluntariness and internationalism. The existence of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which is the prototype of the future integration of the working people of all countries into a single world economic system, cannot but serve as direct proof of this.” (The International Character of the October Revolution, On the Occasion of the Tenth Anniversary of the October Resolution, November 6-7, 1927)

5) The Marxist-Leninist Kurds are placed along with the communists of other nationalities residing in Iran that fight for a common cause. The Kurdish organizations that declare themselves Iranian communists have not taken the smallest steps to expose the complicity of the reactionary Kurds with Zionism and the imperialism and reaction of the region including Saudi Arabia. This conduct alone shows the extent to which they are caught in the web of the Zionist financial networks and the imperialist influences in the region. They are incapable of making independent moves. It is the duty of the Kurdish organizations and groups in particular to expose, on the basis of the tragic and undeniable experience of the past, the destructive roles of Zionism and imperialism in cooperation and relation with the Kurds, and in particular with the Iraqi Kurds. Unfortunately, in this context, the national chauvinism’s spotlight has blinded the eyes and the opportunism of the Iranian liberal oppositions. Obviously, no organization with such a disgraceful stand can seize the leadership of the people’s struggles. The deviant Kurdish organizations do not pay attention to this opposition and laugh at them for the service these cowards give to the Zionists.

Long live the unity and solidarity of the people of the region against reaction, imperialism, and Zionism!

Long live socialism, the banner of human liberation!

The Party of Labour of Iran (Toufan)

September 23, 2017

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We Reject Imperialist Intervention in Venezuela


We Reject Imperialist Intervention in Venezuela and Condemn Reactionary Violence


The events currently taking place in Venezuela show signs of interference from North American imperialism and the imperialist states of the European Union, as well as the intervention of the Organization of American States (OAS) and the reactionary governments of Latin America. They lay bare for the world to see the use of reactionary violence organized by the oligarchs and forces of reaction, who intend to restore their privileges and end the social development of the first stages of the so-called “Bolivarian Revolution.”

Yankee imperialism does not tolerate the Venezuelan government’s efforts to recuperate losses from exploited petroleum or the Chinese government’s interference in their economy, and has in turn intensified its campaign to regain and expand its interests in the exploitation of oil, natural resources, and the broader Venezuelan market.

This political and social confrontation has spilled out onto the streets and has drawn to the fight millions of youth and working class folks, people of varying social stratum, the police and military, and – on behalf of the bourgeoisie opposition – lumpen elements acting as mercenaries.

The Maduro government has demonstrated its inability to respond to the most urgent needs of Venezuelans, to create what they themselves refer to as “indigenous development”; The inefficiency of its administration and its conciliatory posturing with corporations has allowed for a shortage of food, medicine, and basic hygiene products. It has given room for criminal gangs to expand while they continue to threaten security. It has allowed for the tremendous growth of external debt and has opened the nation up to Chinese and Russian imperialism. While corruption remains entrenched at the top levels of government, Venezuela suffers from economic crisis that worsens daily. It creates both unemployment and hunger, and provokes inflation that currently exceeds 700 percent, bringing with it a recurring devaluation of currency.

These circumstances are being used by the forces of reaction and imperialism to manipulate the ideology and politics of hundreds of people in opposition to “Bolivarianism,” who demand the resignation of Maduro and are currently calling for early elections.

These violent confrontations, which grow in intensity every day, are a measure of the ongoing political crisis and threaten to resolve themselves in favor of the imperialists, the oligarchy, and the forces of reaction. We have held in the past that in Venezuela there is no social revolution, that Venezuela is not building socialism, and that the established political economy there has not developed beyond basic democratic transformation. These circumstances are based in material reality. The Venezuelan working class craves change and the benefits of socialism, which the “Bolivarian revolution” has yet to deliver on. And the “socialism of the 21st century” has tempered their expectations so much so that they can be won over with greater numbers to the right.

The advanced sections of the working class, the legitimate Leftist forces, the supporters of democracy, the revolutionaries, and the Marxist-Leninist Venezuelans, are building an alternative for the good of both the present and the future of the working class and the masses. They face tremendous challenges that make the development of this process very difficult, but are fundamentally taking the correct course and will, sooner rather than later, lead the struggle for revolution and socialism that will inevitably triumph.

The events which have transpired in Venezuela demonstrate, once again, that populism and reformism do not constitute responses to the demands of the masses for real change. They prove that the “Bolivarian Revolution” and “21st Century Socialism” cannot break the chains of capitalist exploitation and imperialist domination. In Venezuela and across the globe, now and throughout history, we see populism and reformism are expressions of one section or another of the ruling class that ultimately support the capitalist system.

The Marxist-Leninists reaffirm our position; Proletarian revolution and socialism are the only path towards social justice, freedom, and democracy for the workers of the world, that the working class alone can achieve its liberation, and that with working class liberation comes the liberation of humanity.

The Coordinating Committee of the International Conference of Marxist- Leninist Parties and Organizations and the Meeting of Marxist-Leninist Parties of Latin America, reject imperialist intervention from the United States (which includes the threat of economic blockade), the European Union, and the complicit reactionary governments of Latin America. We condemn the reactionary violence of the oligarchy and the right. We proclaim that the problems of Venezuela should be resolved by the Venezuelan people, for the good of the working class and the masses.

We give our solidarity and support to the working class and the masses, the supporters of democracy, the antifascists, the legitimate Leftists and revolutionaries, and with the revolutionary proletarians organized by the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Venezuela (PCLMV); We extend solidarity to the organizations involved in the Popular Front and the union of social, political, and Leftist forces integrated into the People’s Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist Union.

Quito, July 2017


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The Story of Independent India


The Story of Independent India: Capitalist Accumulation Grapples with Semi Feudal Dis-Accumulation.

Book Review

Nasir Tyabji

Chirashree Das Gupta State and Capital in Independent India: Institutions and Accumulation (Delhi, Cambridge University Press: 2016) hb. pp. xiii+315. Rs. 795

Chirashree Das Gupta’s book can be read at two levels: firstly, as an account of India’s industrial growth experience from the time of independence to the 1980s; and secondly (and to this reader, and hopefully to readers of RD, more profitably) as an examination of the features of the capital accumulation process that led the country to be what it was, at the beginning of the neo liberal phase, starting with Indira Gandhi’s return to power in 1980. Colloquially put, while in the first phase the state led the accumulation process, in the second it acquiesced in the private accumulation decisions of capitalists, particularly those representing large capital.

Of course, as Das Gupta observes, throughout the post-independence period there were zones of engagement, and zones of disengagement where through conscious choice, the state chose to let private decisions prevail. Foremost of these, of course, was the agrarian sector where pre-existing structures of land ownership were left undisturbed, along with the social relations that these structures underpinned. The impact of this feature on industrial capital accumulation, which Das Gupta has not explicitly examined, will be discussed later in this review.

In the industrial sector, skilful use was made by policy makers of the Gandhian inspired sympathy for the village artisan to create within the category of “cottage and village and small-scale industry” an arena within the economy where small capitalist enterprise could develop and grow, outside the purview of licensing regulation and, indeed, free of the responsibility of providing welfare provisions to workers employed in these enterprises. Over time, the investment limit that defined what constituted a small scale industrial unit was raised. While this practice was justified in terms of the effects of inflation, it also ensured that the arena of small enterprises was continually enlarged, leading to the charge of “once a small unit, always a small unit.” More seriously, while the original intention had been to extend support to the person of small means, the porous boundaries of a definition which depended on a scalar value such as investment, allowed large capital to enter the field of the small-scale sector.1

If this was one aspect of the functioning of a zone of non-intervention, a more serious encroachment on the state’s intentions in guiding capital accumulation lay in the distortions in the allocations sought by industrial licensing, by which the more powerful blocs of industrial capital gained disproportionate opportunities for investment and accumulation. As far back as 1939, Asoka Mehta had determined that the form of operation of Indian big capital was not through a diversified enterprise, or a limited number of enterprises, but by a conglomerate of firms straddling industrial and commercial activities, as also firms in traditional banking which extended to money lending.2 Despite the widespread awareness of this feature of big capital’s operations, and the controversies over the functioning of managing agencies, which bound many enterprises to centralised decision making, industrial regulation legislation confined its attention to discrete enterprises. This allowed many fractions of large capital, particularly the Birla Group to concentrate enormous economic power.

Although RK Hazari began his work on business group in the late 1950s, it was not for more than a decade subsequently that parliamentary pressure, after the findings of the Mahalanobis Committee on Incomes and Wealth, and the Dutt Committee on Industrial Licensing, led to regulatory innovations. It was with the passing of the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act in the early 1970s, that the state took official cognisance of the business group.

If big capital used these methods to thwart the accumulation priorities of the state, Das Gupta points to another feature which, by boosting the rate of surplus, increased capital accumulation. This lay in the inadequate legislative support for ensuring fair wages to workers, even in the organized sector. She points out that for 9 years, between 1947 and 1956, the concept of the workplace was not defined. Later, this was narrowed to exclude a substantial portion of workers. The implication of this was that welfare measures provided by law were available to a small section of workers. Unlike the common perception that informalisation of the workforce is a recent phenomenon, it has been a feature of the Indian economy virtually since independence.

If the operation of big capital in the form of the business group is by now well known, an original contribution which Das Gupta has made to our understanding of the role of the state in moulding the capital accumulation process is that of identifying the institution of the Hindu Undivided Family (HUF). Although the HUF gained recognition in the process of the late 19th century codification of Hindu personal law, it was subsequently incorporated within the Income Tax Act in 1922. After independence, the state granted special privileges to the HUF, including in the initial years, a taxation level lower than for individuals. It is significant that the term “Hindu” is defined negatively, as incorporating all those who are not Muslims, Christians, Parsis or Jews. It may be noted in passing that this definition makes followers of Sikhism, Buddhism, Jainism and all those who are followers of theistic practices outside organized religions, also Hindus. Conversely, there is no institutional mechanism for non- Hindus to benefit from institutional arrangements corresponding to the HUF.

So, Das Gupta points out, big capital operates not only through the various forms of corporate bodies, share market listed and non-listed public limited companies, private limited companies, and unincorporated partnerships and proprietorships: nested within such interlocking entities are HUFs, whose internal financial operations are more opaque than those of even partnerships or proprietorships. In a subsequent paper, Das Gupta has elaborated on the consequences of the legal recognition of the HUF to the enhancement of the private aggrandizement of those privileged to operate such institutions.3 The word aggrandizement is used advisedly here, as there is no method to establish that the resources that remain tax free are actually utilized for accumulation of productive assets.

Fundamentally, then, the opaqueness permitted by law in the operations of a HUF lends opaqueness to the entire financial operations of the business group and thus to the overwhelming mass of large capital operating in the economy. The most that can be done is for the tax authorities to examine the accounts of individual enterprises. They have no way of determining how funds may be diverted for personal ends or in furtherance of non-productive expenditure. In the paper mentioned earlier, Das Gupta has described the structure of a Mumbai based business group which she surveyed as part of a study of 150 business families which had as many as 7500 firms, corporate and non-corporate, affiliated to these families. Significant here, in a group whose large enterprises were integrated into the global textile industry, was the inclusion of a partnership firm (i.e. a firm subject to no formal financial scrutiny) engaged in financial services. And thereby hangs a rather large and disturbing tale.

The 1967 report of the Congress Parliamentary Committee recommending bank nationalization suggested that one important reason for bank nationalisation was that integrating the organized banking sector with the cooperative banks4

would also help to curb the flow of financial resources into the unorganized money market which plays havoc with the economy in the present situation of acute scarcities and shortages

and further

Moreover, in the presence of such a unified financial system, the unorganized money market would lose much of its attraction and concealed power to engage any financing operations which will be beyond the purview of the organized financial system.


Let us not imagine that the unorganized money market in the country operates entirely outside the banking system. There are strategic points of linkage between the unorganized money market and the banking system.

Around the same time, Charles Bettelheim had pointed to the fallacy of the argument that the large differences between interest rates in the urban and rural money markets implied that these markets were entirely distinct. On the contrary, he used evidence provided by the Banking Enquiry reports of the 1930s, and the RBI credit survey of the early 1950s to argue that urban resources, including surplus value generated by industrial production was flowing through a number of intermediaries to highly profitable rural money lending activities.5 In other words, a process of capital dis-accumulation was taking place, a truly ironic feature of an economy where the state was otherwise encouraging capital growth.

Lending credence to this apprehension is a relatively recent RBI Survey that points out that the non-institutional share (i.e. the share of private money lenders)in rural credit), which had fallen consistently after bank nationalization, had begun to increase again after the 1991 series of structural reforms.6 In other words, 70 years after Independence the semi feudal structure of the agrarian sector is not only the cause of continuing mass misery, but also allows for a drain on industrial surpluses and so on capital accumulation. It is not fanciful to suppose that the money trail spreading out from Ramalingam Raju’s collapsed Satyam Computer Services would have led to rural money lending operations, if the entire circuit could indeed have been traced.

At the time of writing this review, new information has emerged that indicates that the effects of demonetization and the introduction of GST has had profound implications of feeding further into the flow of urban funds into the informal money-lending market. An informal survey of small scale industry shows that7

In Punjab, Odisha and Tamil Nadu as well, businessmen were putting their money into speculative schemes instead of factories. In Punjab, businessmen diverted working capital loans for their sinking businesses to land purchases. In Odisha, earnings from the state’s iron ore boom were funnelled into gold, real estate, apartments, education and chit funds. In Tamil Nadu, money-lending appeared to outperform more productive enterprises in terms of returns.

It may be noted that as early as 1931, capitalists were aware that their cohabitation with landlords might allow the latter to use their position to siphon off not just part of the peasants’ necessary product, but also capitalist surplus. In a note to the FICCI executive before the Karachi session of the Congress, Ambalal Sarabhai had suggested nationalization of land (with compensation) for non-cultivating landlords as this class “…gives no service whatever, while on the other hand it consumes a lot which it neither earns nor tries to earn.”8

This review has concentrated on the points that seemed to this reviewer to be the more significant features of the accumulation process that Das Gupta’s book has pointed towards. Taken together with the more factual data on industrial performance that also forms a part, this is a monograph of considerable value, more so because its approach to the subject it covers is now a rarity.


1. Nasir Tyabji “Nature of Small Enterprise Development: Political Aims and Socio-Economic Reality” Economic and Political Weekly 19 (1984): 1425-1433; S.K. Goyal et al Studies in National Development: Small Scale Sector and Big Business (New Delhi, Corporate Studies Group, IIPA: 1984)

2. Originally published under the title of “India Comes of Age,” the article was republished along with a similar study of the situation in 1949 in Asoka Mehta Who owns India? (Hyderabad, Chetna Prakashan: 1950)

3. Chirashree Das Gupta and Mohit Gupta “The Hindu Undivided Family in Independent India’s Corporate Governance and Tax Regime” South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal 15/2017

4. Congress Party in Parliament Banking Institutions and Indian Economy: A Critical Review (Delhi, CPP: 1967): 65-66. The Report was commissioned by Chandra Shekhar, then Secretary of the Congress Party in Parliament and authored by H.K. Manmohan Singh of Patiala University, V.B Singh of Lucknow University, S.C Gupta of the Agricultural Economics Research Centre of Delhi University with S.K. Goyal of IIPA as convenor

5. Charles Bettelheim India Independent (New York, Monthly Review Press: 1968): 74-76

6. Narayan Chandra Pradhan, Persistence of Informal Credit in Rural India: Evidence from ‘All-India Debt and Investment Survey’ and Beyond Working Paper Series, Department of Economic Policy and Research, No 05/2013 (Mumbai, Reserve Bank of India: 2013)

7., accessed on September 26, 2017

8. Ambalal Sarabhai Note to FICCI Executive, pp. 12-13 enclosed with FICCI letter F. 1306 dated 16.10.1931, Walchand Hirachand Papers, File 8 (Part II), pp. 92-93 Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi

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Genocide of Rohingyas in Myanmar: The Hindutva Imprints


Shamsul Islam

Currently, one of the worst post-World War II genocides is underway in India’s neighbourhood. In Rakhine Province of Myanmar (Burma) cleansing of people belonging to the Rohingya Tribe (mostly Muslims and few Hindus and Buddhists), has been going on for last two decades. But this cleansing project of Rohingyas is in full steam now by the Myanmar army and foot- soldiers of the Fascist Buddhist organizations with coming to power of Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Prize recipient for fighting against military rulers of the country. Ironically, this Nobel laureate now supervises genocide of Rohingyas in collaboration with the country’s army and fascist Buddhist cadres.

The rampaging killer/raping/maiming/burning gangs sponsored by the Burmese State, Army and Fascist Buddhist organizations have evoked worldwide condemnation including severe repudiation from world forums including UN. However, Indian PM Modi who visited Myanmar recently instead of expressing concern on the cleansing of Rohingyas expressed solidarity with the Killer State. He and Myanmar’s State Counsellor and de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi in a joint statement said, “It is important to maintain security and stability along the long land and maritime borders of India and Myanmar… India stands with Myanmar over the issue of violence in the Rakhine state which has led to loss of innocent lives.” This statement remained silent on the mass cleansing of the Rohingyas but expressed grave concern on the ‘terrorist’ activities of a section of Rohingyas in self-defence. In a more shocking development the RSS/BJP Indian Government has issued instructions to deport nearly 40,000 Rohingyas who escaped to India while under attack for being security threat.

The inimical attitude of the Indian rulers towards Rohingyas is neither accidental nor sudden. It does not seem to be the fall-out of some grave security threat which might have cropped up in the recent past. We need to investigate whether this cleansing got impetus with the political ascendancy of fascist Buddhist organizations in Myanmar and Hindutva fascist organizations in India.

The world obsessed with Islamist terrorism has not bothered to take any notice of a new terrorism network developing fast in India and its neighbourhood between Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and two ultra nationalist Buddhist groups of Myanmar and Sri Lanka against minorities in the area. In a startling and focussed disclosure The International New York Times (October 16, 2014) in an editorial titled ‘DEADLY ALLIANCES AGAINST MUSLIMS’ disclosed how fascist Buddhist groups in the region; Sri Lankan Buddhist group Bodu Bala Sena, Myanmar’s Wirathu Group 969’ [run by Ashin Wirathu a so-called monk from Myanmar who has preaching hatred toward Muslims and is the spiritual leader of a movement to boycott Muslim businesses] were in contact “at a high level” with the right-wing Indian Hindu group Rashtriya Swayam Sevak to form what he called a “Hindu-Buddhist peace zone” in South Asia which meant a Muslim- Christian free zone in the area. The editorial concluded with the following alarming words:

“It is folly for the governments of Mr. Rajapaksa in Sri Lanka, President Thein Sein of Myanmar [both headed their respective countries in 2014] and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in India, or their political allies, to give even the appearance of tolerating these Islamophobic groups in a region that has too often been convulsed by religious sectarian violence. They should condemn this mad alliance before it can spread further.”1

This network though prioritizes Islamic/Muslim threat as the main concern but also treats Christians and other ethnic minorities as dangers and wants to control them. They refused to accept that this region was multi-religious area. Ashin Wirathu is committed to get rid of Muslims and other minorities of the area. They have killed hundreds of Muslims, raped Muslim women, burned hundreds of mosques and destroyed large number of Muslim properties and businesses.

For public consumption RSS has denied the claim of Gnanasara that they were in discussions “at a high level” with the right-wing Indian Hindu group Rashtriya. Rashtriya Swayam Sevak spokesman, Ram Madhav, promptly denied that there were any such discussions. But according to NYT Madhav, a senior RSS/BJP ideologue of India’s ruling oligarchy, “has written comments sympathetic to Bodu Bala Sena and Mr. Wirathu’s group 969 in Myanmar on his Facebook and Twitter accounts”. He lauded the plan of “Hindu-Buddhist peace zone” in South Asia which means an area free of minorities specially Muslims. In his posting [March 28, 2013 on Facebook] he agreed with the propaganda that

“The Muslim population in Sri Lanka is growing fast…. There are mosques and madrassas sprouting everywhere in the country. A rough estimate suggests that of the 1.2 million Muslim populations every 50 households have a mosque. In Colombo itself a new magnificent mosque is coming up, so are in many other places. Increasing number of burqa-clad women and skull cap-wearing men can be sited [sic] on the streets of Sri Lankan cities and towns now.”

Ram Madhav also noted that Muslims in Sri Lanka have been insisting on halal products. He noted approvingly that “the Bodu Bala Sena essentially talks about protecting the Buddhist culture of the country from foreign religions. By this it also means the Christian missionaries who are trying to convert people”.

He was happy to note that “the Bodu Bala Sena has maintained that Hindus and Buddhists of the country should work together on these issues.” He ended by commending, “So far, the issues raked up by the BBS are worthy of active and sympathetic consideration. Bodu Bala Sena is able to capture the attention of the Buddhist population of Sri Lanka.” It was atrocious on the part of Ram Madhav, a leader of the ‘largest Hindu organization in the world’ to overlook the fact that the Sri Lankan State in connivance with such Buddhist fascist organizations of Sri Lanka killed, raped and maimed lakhs of Hindu Tamils in the area. In one of the Tweets he wrote: “BODU BALA SENA – A NEW BUDDHIST MOVEMENT IN SRI LANKA Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) – a Buddhist organisation many wish”.

It is to be noted that RSS historically has been close to the ruling military dictators in Myanmar who have encouraged characters like Ashin Wirathu to propagate hatred for minorities in the country. How close RSS was to the military junta which now shares power with Aung San Suu Kyi can be known by the following report which appeared in the official organ of the RSS, Organiser dated February 28 March 5, 2000:

“The 50th anniversary of the Sanatan Dharma Swayamsevak Sangh (SDSS – the RSS counterpart in Burma) was held at the National Theatre on Mayoma Kyaung Street, Yagnon, recently. Secretary-2 of the State Peace and Development Council, Lt. Gen. Tin Oo attended the meeting. The programme was attended by ministers and senior military officers. Minister for Commerce, Brig. Gen. Pyi Sone; Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, Maj. Gen. Sein Htwa; Minister for Health, Maj. Gen. Ket Sein were among the prominent persons who attended the function…. The Secretary-2 delivered speech at the function.”

This report appeared with two photographs. In one photograph five military Generals including second in command of the military junta, Lt. Gen. Tin Oo, were seen standing on the stage in the midst of SDSS leadership wearing khaki shorts. In the other photograph leading lights of the Burmese military junta were seen sitting in the front row of the auditorium.

This terrorist network exposed by the New York Times may have many other layers as was made clear by neo-Nazi mass murderer of Norway, Breivik who glorified Indian ‘Hindu Nationalists.2 He opened Pandora’s box when declared ‘Hindu Nationalist’ movement as a key ally in a global struggle to bring down democratic regimes across the world. Just before he went to massacre a large number of people in Norway he released a ‘manifesto’ of 1,518 pages, of which 102 pages dealt with the glorification of Hindutva movement of India. It declared support to “Sanatana Dharma movements and Indian nationalists in general.” This manifesto also laid down a plan of co-operation between neo-Nazi movements of Europe and ‘Hindu Nationalist’ organizations of India. This neo-Nazi document emphasised that it was essential that these two “learn from each other and cooperate as much as possible” as “Our goals are more or less identical’. This manifesto specially mentioned the name of the fountain head of the Hindutva politics like RSS and its subsidiaries like BJP, ABVP and VHP in this regard.3

Importantly, the manifesto pledged military support “to the nationalists [RSS] in the Indian civil war and in the deportation of all Muslims from India’ as part of a larger campaign to ‘overthrow of all western European multiculturalist governments.”

Imagine if such conspiratorial revelations were made against some Muslim/Christian/Sikh individuals or organizations, the Indian intelligence agencies would have dug the areas inhabited by them to find out the linkages. Unfortunately, these startling disclosures about RSS’ linkages with a developing terror nexus internationally, are no cause of worry for the Indian State. This silence gives the conspirators legitimacy to play havoc with the region.

The International Court of Justice at The Hague must immediately constitute a team to unearth the nefarious role of fascist religious and cultural organization behind genocide of Rohingyas in Myanmar. Apart from looking into the role of such organizations in this genocide, this UN organ must also find out whether this cleansing is taking place to facilitate the capture of oil resources in this region and land grab by the Chinese and Indian corporate giants.4



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Claims and facts about the right of nations to self-determination


Claims and facts about the right of nations to self-determination,following the independence referendums in Iraqi Kurdistan and Catalonia.

Following the independence referendums in Iraqi Kurdistan and Catalonia, the right of nations to self-determination has become a popular debate. Here are some of the claims and facts about this right:

Claim 1. Defending the right of nations to self-determination ignites separatism

The right of self-determination is a way of respecting a nation’s right to live the way it chooses to. Lenin states that this right applied even to the most ‘extreme’ options, including the ‘right to secession’. For this reason, the right of nations to self-determination forms the ‘right to establish a separate state’. This means that even if a majority of a nation now calls to ‘break off from’, i.e. ‘secession’, this right must be recognised. However, Lenin did not want this right because he wanted a separation, but because he wanted to advocate a genuine fraternity and unity among peoples. According to the programme of the Bolsheviks, the solution to the national question was to recognise the right of self-determination, and through this, removing all national privileges under a single state framework as a voluntary union based on equal rights. In order for the peoples to live together, the ‘right to secession’ must be recognised. Prohibition of this right encourages separation. For example, the more the demand of Turkey’s Kurds to have autonomous life is repressed, the more the Kurdish people gain a sense of need for ‘separation’. Therefore, the right of nations to self-determination does not mean to advocate separation but to defend the removal of national privileges and the conditions of voluntary unity.

2. The national question has already been resolved in Iraq. Language, cultural freedoms and autonomy have been provided. The Kurds are no longer an oppressed nation. The referendum serves the interests of Barzani, the President of Kurdistan Regional Government.

It is true that the recent independence referendum is linked with Barzani’s political interests. However, reducing the national question to the issue of language and culture is a liberal approach. For example, why has the national question in Catalonia not been resolved? They have their language, culture, local government and own parliament, but the national question still was not resolved. There is a similar situation in Iraqi Kurdistan and the Kurdish question in Turkey. Even if we assume that language and cultural equality were to be provided, the Kurdish question would not be resolved without the demands of the Kurds for autonomy being met. The national question cannot only be seen as a cultural rights issue. The problem will continue as long as the Kurds request for autonomy is interfered with and prevented from the outside. In the final analysis, the national question is the rejection of the right of a nation to self-determination. In some cases, this will include matters such as language, culture and so on (just like the situation in Turkey for instance) and not in others (Catalonia and Iraqi Kurdistan). And so the national question can not be solved without the recognition of the right to self-determination. For this reason, Turkey’s left’s refusal of this right in ‘good faith’ opens the way to the nationalism of the oppressor nation.

3. To defend the right to a referendum that will clearly lead to separation is to support separatism through the rhetoric of ‘principles’ and ‘rights’.

A socialist from Turkey cannot handle this issue abstractly without taking into consideration the historical context as if they were living in Australia. In Turkey, the nationalism of the oppressor nation is institutionalised and is highly effective among the working people. This nationalism is based on anti-Kurdishness and therefore there is a hysterical hostility to a possible Kurdish state. Establishing a state is seen as a privilege that the Turks hold and therefore a Kurdish state is not deemed appropriate. This is why socialists of Turkey firstly have the duty to help the working people gain an internationalist consciousness and to oppose all national privileges.

The question is as follows: How will an equal friendship-fraternity relationship be established between the Turkish workers and the Kurdish workers? How will the common struggle be achieved? If socialists of Turkey will not respect the will of the Kurds demanding independence in Iraqi Kurdistan, can equality and fraternity even be considerable? The only way to establish trust, fraternity and equality between the nations in the medium term so that a common way of fighting is achieved is through the recognition of the right to self-determination.

4. Those who support the right to self-determination do not care about the common struggle of the peoples.

For the common struggles and fraternity of peoples and show to them that we are brothers, it is necessary to respect their preferences in order to break the prejudices of a people who have been massacred for centuries. This is the foundation of voluntary unity. The right to self-determination is not only a defence of an abstract principal but also a compulsory principle to provide for the fraternity, common struggle and voluntary unity of the peoples.  As Lenin says “Humanity … can only achieve the inevitable union of nations by going through a transition period when all oppressed nations are liberated, i.e. when they have the freedom of secession from the oppressor nation.”

5. Kurdish parties did not support the referendum. Therefore, the referendum does not reflect the will of the Kurdish nation.

It is true that there are differences between the Kurds and their parties. However, the objection of Kurdish parties is not to the referendum itself, but to Barzani’s desire to make the referendum an instrument to serve his own political future. Nearly all Kurdish parties criticized this and called for a ‘yes’ vote the day before the referendum. There will always be division and political infighting within a national movement; their existence does not invalidate the right of people to self-determination; especially for the socialist of another country.

6. In the age of imperialism, the right of people to self-determination is invalid. It is not possible. Small countries get annexed to imperialism.

This is exactly the content of Lenin’s polemics with Luxemburg on the right of people to self-determination. Lenin naturally defends the right of people to self-determination as the solution to the national question. As the right of people to self-determination does not solve patriarchy, press freedom or lowered wages problems, nor does it solve the problem of imperialist economic hegemony.

In his polemic with Luxemburg, Lenin argued this democratic principle not as a solution to all the problems in the world but as an idea to put an end to the national oppression in a multinational country. Of course, this country will be united with the struggle against imperialism and its stance under revolutionary conditions, i.e. progressive or socialist party leadership of the nation. This is the call of the III International and we defend it. Unfortunately, this is not what is happening in the case of Iraqi Kurdistan.

7. While the concept of the right of people to self-determination is the revolutionary concept of yesterday, this question cannot be discussed ‘idealistically’ unless the concept of imperialism in others dependent on itself is seen today.

Imperialism wants to use the right of people to self-determination to serve its own interests. This was done in Yugoslavia. This, however, requires the socialist not to reject the right of people to self-determination, but the perspective to struggle against and combat imperialism. Big monopolies may suggest control of unregistered employment, in part due to the fact that it is an element of “unfair competition”. As seen in WTO meetings, some representatives of imperialist countries may oppose low pay in countries like Bangladesh, in fear of competition. Imperialist countries such as the USA and Russia may fight against ISIS. All this does not require socialists to give up on these claims and defend ISIS. However, it requires one to struggle and act in a revolutionary context. Therefore, apparent defence of this principle by imperialists in some cases cannot be an excuse for socialists to give up. As Lenin expressed in the then current circumstances, “Just as in the example of Latin countries, conditions, where people were lied to with republican slogans and these were used by financial oligarchy for financial pillage cannot be a reason for social-democrats to give up on republicanism; in the same way, in the fight for freedom against the imperialist state, the condition that this could be used by another ‘bigger’ imperialist state for imperialist intentions of same order, cannot be a reason for social-democrats to reject the right of people to self-determination”.

8. If the national movement is collaborationist or bourgeois-led, the right of people to self-determination cannot be defended.

If a national movement was not led by the bourgeoisie, there would be no debate on the right of people to self-determination. The reason for the debate is the bourgeois nature of national movements. Thus, the right of people to self-determination is valid under conditions of bourgeois-led national movements; or even co-operation with imperialism. Socialists recognize it but fight against the nationalist exercise of this right. For example, some in the Turkish left opposition to the referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan openly reject the right of people to self-determination. The referendum is to be respected. The fact that the referendum was brought about by Barzani for various reasons is an internal problem for the people of Kurdistan. When these internal problems are dealt with, there will be no such thing as the right of people to self-determination. Excuses such as “Talabani is a compromiser”, “Goran is a nationalist”, “PKK is nationalist” etc. to deny the right of people to self-determination will never cease to exist. Because an immaculate national movement in human history can never be found. Therefore, it is not the referendum that we should oppose. What we should criticise is Kurdish support for Barzani. And our friendly call to Kurdish workers and labourers is thus: “Do not support Barzani, the representative of the Kurdish co-conspirator bourgeoisie, take your fate into your own hands, do your own politics. Do not let independent Kurdistan become a toy for imperialism.” This call is a sign of our friendly, revolutionary support and solidarity, not a “lecture”. The right of people to self-determination and support for Barzani are two separate things. This is what separates internationalists from Kurdish nationalism.

9. For Lenin, the right of people to self-determination was not a principle but a tactic.

It was beyond a dilemma of whether it was tactics, principles or strategy. It was all of them; tactical principle and strategic principle. Along with being a democratic principle, it was the only way to safeguard the unity of the working class. From this point of view, it had an unbreakable connection with socialist goals. By his statement; “Wherever we see ties relating to international oppression – without preaching for the need to separate – we will vigorously defend the right to self-determination and the right to separation for each nation. To defend, recognise and side with this right means: to defend equal rights between nations; to resist oppression; to fight against national privileges of any nation; and hence, to develop the class struggle between workers of every individual country”.

10. Independent Kurdistan will be a second Israel in the region.

The basis of this thesis is clearly the traditional bourgeois-nationalist sensitivity to an independent Kurdish state. If it remains in Barzani’s leadership, Kurdistan will indeed be an important figure in US imperialism, and therefore Israel’s anti-Iran strategy. It will be a co-conspirator state. However, it will not be a second Israel because there is no Palestine in Kurdistan, there is no Zionism. As a co-conspirator administration to imperialism, it will look more like Turkey than Israel. However, with its size, population and economic dependency it will probably be a weaker partner than Turkey.

11. Kurdistan will be an advanced outpost of imperialism.

It seems likely to be so under the collaborator Barzani administration. At the referendum, the decision was for independence. It must be implemented in accordance with the right of people to self-determination. However, there is great opposition amongst Kurds too. Perception of an independent Kurdistan as an “unchanging, collaborator country” is also linked to the nationalist hysteria of hate against the Kurds. Barzani can be overthrown, independent Kurdistan can advance in a popular, anti-imperialist and democratic line. This popular option is not blocked by independence. In other words, Kurdistan does not have to be an imperialist outpost just because it is Kurdistan. Kurdish people harbour a vigorous vein of opposition in their collective historical memory that advocates the opposite.

12. Independent Kurdistan will trigger a war in the region.

Independent Kurdistan is not a disaster. In fact, Kurdish autonomous region operates like an independent country already. The administration is now a collaborator of imperialism. For that reason, unless war originates from hostility to Kurds; it should be seen as a disaster for the region. Disaster can only happen when politics of Kurdish hate leads to a war, started by reactionary countries in the region. In that case, it is not the Kurds demanding independence, but the reactionary states of the region that should be blamed and fought against.

13. ‘Socialists’ on Turkish left that reject the right of the people to self-determination are fascists.

Of course, rejection of the right of people to self-determination is a step in support of oppressor state nationalism. However, some parties that reject this right on a theoretical level defend recognition of the results of the referendum and oppose military action or oppression against Kurdistan. These parties and movements cannot be accused of fascism. What we see is the result of being influenced by a deviation to the right and oppressor state nationalism.

14. Lenin defended the right of revolution to self-determine, not right of people to self-determination.

Lenin’s perspective was undoubtedly revolutionary. He addressed the solution of every problem with a revolutionary perspective. For this reason, he unfalteringly defended the right of people to self-determination. He did not point to a tautology of “right of revolution to self-determine” because revolution cannot be expressed in terms of a right; it is a matter of power. When sufficient power is gained, neither counter-revolution nor revolutionary forces will be trapped in an abstract notion of right. Revolution does not take place by rights but by the force. However, the right of people to self-determination is defensible and defended as a right and principle.

15. Independence of Iraqi Kurdistan will also open Turkey’s borders to debate.

It is a pity that this argument came from the ‘left’. Of course, the struggle cannot be carried out without considering existing borders. However, today’s borders were drawn by imperialists on the basis of oppression and division of Kurdish peoples. It is the duty of socialists to defend their unity on the basis of equal rights and not act as “border guards” in a geography where peoples are oppressed and massacred, and in order to do this unfailingly, they must recognize the right of people to self-determination.

16. The father of the right of people to self-determination is US President Wilson. Lenin quickly adopted this principle to gain the support of colonial peoples against Wilson.

This principle entered socialist agenda long before Wilson expressed it. This principle was included in the decisions of the Second International Congress held in London in 1896. It has been in the program of Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (RSDLP) since its first Congress.

17. Lenin defended this principle not in the era of imperialism but in the era of socialist revolutions.

The right of people to self-determination was the subject of a further four comprehensive discussions for Lenin and the Bolsheviks after being re-admitted into the 1903 program. First; In 1913, the right of people to self-determination was defended against the Austrian national-socialist Otto Bauer’s “national cultural autonomy” formulation and its reflections in Russia. In 1914, Lenin defended the right of people to self-determination in the Bolshevik Party against rising national movements, and in opposition to those who claimed it will inflame apartheid. In 1916, Lenin again explained in detail the right of people to self-determination against the Bukharin and Kievsky thesis that “the right of people to self-determination cannot be realized in the era of imperialism” and that “it will serve imperialism”; he described their opposition as “Marxism’s cartoon” and “imperialist economics”. Finally, it was proposed by Lenin in the Third International, expanding the scope of the formulation of the struggle against the imperialism of the colonial countries.

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Regarding the coup against Robert Mugabe

Declaration of the Revolutionary Communist Party of the Ivory Coast (PCRCI)

Under pressure from the military, Robert MUGABE, the President of Zimbabwe, resigned on Tuesday, November 21, 2017. Immediately the imperialist and pro-imperialist agencies have been gloating, announcing the end of a dictator and trumpeting the so-called failure of MUGABE and his policy of economic ruin.

Faced with this nauseating disinformation campaign, the Revolutionary Communist Party of the Ivory Coast wants to reestablish the truth of the facts.

1) The military and imperialism have perpetrated a coup against the patriotic power of MUGABE.

2) But MUGABE remains and will remain in the memory of the Zimbabwean people and in history the hero of the fight against the racist regime of Ian SMITH and has given back to Zimbabweans their freedom and pride.

3) MUGABE remains and will remain the one who, by bold and courageous agrarian reform, has allowed the restoration of the land to the black Zimbabwean peasants. For centuries these lands had been confiscated by a minority of white settlers.

4) MUGABE remains and will remain for his people, the African revolutionaries and the world a true patriot and an anti-imperialist fighter.

The Revolutionary Communist Party of the Ivory Coast condemns this coup which signifies a setback for this people in their mobilization against imperialism and the remains of apartheid.


Abidjan, November 26, 2017

Achy Ekissi
Secretary General of the PCRCI

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Stop the Jerusalem Provocation!


US President Donald Trump announced that he would relocate the US Embassy to Jerusalem, officially recognising the city as the capital of Israel.

This is a serious provocation. It will cause new conflicts in the Middle East. With this step, Trump wants to launch such a process of conflict.

With this decision, Trump aims to strengthen himself in domestic politics, as well as launch a new process in alliance with Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia against the Russian and Iranian influence in the Middle East.

It is the Palestinian people who will decide in the peace process whether they are for a Palestinian State with Jerusalem as its capital, or for two states, Palestine and Israel, sharing Jerusalem as their capital.

However, in order for the peace process to resume, it is first necessary to end the US-Israeli provocation, to halt the Israeli policy of opening new settlements, to abandon the occupied territories, and for those Palestinians who were driven out to return to their countries.

It is not in the interests of the peoples of the Middle East and of the world to bring new conflicts while there is already a war in the region. The United States and all imperialist powers must take their hands off the Middle East immediately.

President Erdoğan and his government are trying to benefit from Trump’s decision. They are trying to cover up domestic problems, using this issue as an instrument for their reactionary policies.

This cannot be treated as a religious and sectarian problem. It is the policies of the imperialists and their collaborators who create this problem. American imperialism and Israeli Zionism cannot be fought with words. All bilateral agreements, including all military and economic agreements, open and secret, must be cancelled. Without this, it is not possible to take any effective step.

As Labor Party, we fully and sincerely support the oppressed Palestinian people.
We call all workers and labourers to support the just cause of the Palestinian people.

End the provocations!
End the occupation!
Long live free and independent Palestine!

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Communiqué Against the Imposition of an Unconstitutional and Anti-Democratic Regime in Honduras


Dominican Republic

Despite the fact that the Honduran people have been demanding that the candidate of the Opposition Alliance against the Dictatorship, Salvador Nasralla, be recognized as their president elect, the disputed Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE) has declared the winner of the elections of November 26 to the current president, Juan Orlando Hernandez.

The candidacy of Hernandez is illegal in the first place, since reelection is prohibited in the Constitution of Honduras. Fraud and serious irregularities in the electoral process have already been admitted by countless voices around the world, including the General Secretary of the Organization of American States. The declaration of Hernandez as the winner is an offense on a world scale, unacceptable from any point of view.

The repression against the people has been brutal, with up to now about 40 Hondurans killed, including about 10 children asphyxiated in their homes by tear gas, and a large number of people arrested.
In this situation, for justice and peace in Honduras, we in the Dominican Republic demand:

  1. The immediate cessation of violence by the repressive forces of the dictatorship of Juan Orlando Hernandez and respect for the civil and political rights of all Honduran citizens.
  2. That the declaration of Juan Orlando Hernandez as the winner of the elections be revoked.
  3. That the Government of the Dominican Republic disclaim and reject the declaration of Juan Orlando Hernandez as the winner of the elections, as the governments of El Salvador and other countries have already done, and that within the International Community the Dominican State demand that all legitimate means be applied in defense of the institutions and democracy in Honduras, to avoid the imposition of an unconstitutional government.
  4. That the citizens of the Dominican Republic and all Latin American countries demand from their governments a consistent, clear and firm conduct of defense of democracy in Honduras, without space or margin for further electoral fraud or coups in the region .

This statement was delivered to the Embassy of Honduras in Santo Domingo and to the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Dominican Republic on December 20, 2017.

Signed by:

Revolutionary Left – IR
Dominican Popular Movement – MPD
Socialist Workers League – LST-CURR
Caamañista Movement – MC
Aniana Vargas Popular Front– FEPAV
Rebel Movement– MR
Broad Front
Transport Federation The New Option FENATRANO
World Federation of Trade Unions (Dominican Republic Chapter)
Popular Urban Network
Magisterial Current Juan Pablo Duarte
Alba Movements
Assembly of the Peoples of the Caribbean (APC)
International Alliance of Inhabitants
Cry of the Excluded
Communist Party of Labor (PCT)
Movement of Independent Workers (MTI)
Movement of Working Women (MMT)
Flavio Suero Student Front (FEFLAS)
National Commission for Human Rights
University Renewal Front (FUR).
Caribbean Youth
Trade Union Current Juan Pablo Duarte (UASD).
Homeland Movement For Everyone
National Union of Revolutionary Students –UNER
Force of the Revolution
Dominican Youth Force FJD
Magisterial Current Narciso Gonzalez
Venezuela Movement We Are All RD
Dominican Committee of Human Rights (CDDH)
Foundation Jesus in you I trust.
Matías Bosch Carcuro
Maribel Nuñez
Narciso Isa Conde
National Association of Nursing – Asonaen
Jupana Student Movement

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Long live the raging movement of the people of Iran!


Revolution is the midwife of every old society, which is pregnant with a new one. The grassroots movement in Iran that is entering its 5th day is an expression of the rejection of the totality of the criminal mafia in power; a power that is not accountable to the people and is trying to squeeze the life out of the poverty-stricken masses. This is a movement of wisdom against ignorance, a movement against poverty, unemployment, corruption, multi-milliard dollars embezzlement by the officials, looting of the meager savings of the millions of working people, and political repression. This is the cry of anger of millions of people who have waited patiently for years and are now challenging the regime of the Islamic Republic and are shaking its base.

The recent uprising is expression of the accumulated anger and dissatisfaction of the masses from the neo-liberal economic policies of the regime. This anger has built up during the past several decades. The regime of the Islamic Republic has intensified the implementation of the dictates of the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank. Consequently, the economic condition of the masses has declined rapidly, the level of poverty has risen, inflation has skyrocketed, the cost of living has sharply increased, the purchasing power of the general population has declined, the price of water, gasoline, electricity, and other fuel has increased.

In the past several years, especially in 2017, there were many strikes, demonstration and protests by different sectors of the society; workers, teachers, retirees, unemployed, nurses, many thousand individuals who are the direct victims of looted bank savings, etc. It was expected that a general protest will develop in response to this condition. Adding to this is the intensification of the inner fight between the factions of the regime of the Islamic Republic. The protesters used this fight in their own service and targeted all factions of the regime of the Islamic Republic. All social and political sectors of the society are participating in these protests, from communists to revolutionaries, from ordinary masses to organized forces, from the monarchists to reactionary and proimperialist Mojahedeen and to individual agents of Zionists and imperialists.

This uprising is spontaneous, mainly by the youth, does not have an organized leadership at this moment. Despite all shortcomings, this uprising is a genuine expression of discontent of the general population from four decades criminal rule of the Islamic Republic. The protest movement started with economic demands and is moving forward towards political issues. The Party of Labour of Iran (Toufan) hails the just and bold movement of Iranian people against the Islamic Republic that has ruled for nearly foty years using repression and extreme violence. We insist on the unity of the masses and on a clear and sharp stand against the aggressive imperialist powers and their agents who try to derail the movement.

There is not yet sign of an increase in the number of workers in the streets. A general strike will force the regime to retreat and will provide the opportunity for the street demonstrators to continue protesting with a lower cost. The unbalanced class forces, the lack of political organization and leadership, and the exhaustion of the street protesters will not produce a condition in favor of the movement. In the Middle East, the U.S. imperialists and Israeli Zionists are trying to penetrate any movement against the regimes that do not bend to their dictates. This is particularly true about Iran. The presence of agents and lackeys of the US imperialists and Israeli Zionists in a movement does not necessarily express the nature of the movement.

In the present uprising in Iran, the role of these agents is not dominant. This is a spontaneous movement from bottom-up and not from top-down. At the same time, the communists, left, and progressive forces must be very vigilant and analyze the erroneous slogans and stands that are expressed in the marches and expose the nature of them to the masses. If the demands “bread, job, housing, liberty, social justice, and the republic” are more clearly expressed, if the slogans in support of the overthrown old order – the hereditary monarchy – and the slogans that compromise with faction of the regime are rejected from the ranks of the movement, then one can hope, with the rise of revolutionary forces in particular the Marxist-Leninists who are the true representatives of most radical social demands and who are strongly opposed to imperialist interventions, that the movement will achieve its goals.

The Party of Labour of Iran calls on the masses in the streets to be vigilant and avoid the premature violence. The agents of imperialists and Zionists and the sell-out circles do not value the human life. They only look for their interest. Every call on the masses should be carefully examined and its source be investigated. The rights to formation of independent guilds, the right to employment and housing and unemployment insurance, the freedom of association and assembly, the separation of religion from the state and education, the abolition of gender segregation and compulsory veils and dress code, and the freedom of all political prisoners are part of the demands of the street demonstrators.

The Party of Labour of Iran gives its whole hearted support to these demands and believes that no faction of the Islamic regime has the will to fulfill these just and popular demands of the masses. The Party of Labour of Iran ( Toufan) strongly condemns the brutal killings of the protesters and calls on the fraternal Parties and Organizations in the ”Internatinal Conference of the Marxist Leninist Parties and Organizetions” and on the revolutionary and progressive forces and individuals to condemn the regime of the Islamic Republic of Iran for its crimes and to demand the immediate and unconditional release of all detained street protesters.

The remedy for the workers and the working people is unity and organization!

The Party of Labour of Iran

(Toufan) January 1, 2018

Posted in IranComments Off on Long live the raging movement of the people of Iran!

Anti-imperialism between the NATO and Russia



We say that we have to get rid of the NATO scourge that we have been in for 65 years but the government is adding the Russia scourge. Yusuf KARATAS The agreement that has long been debated on the purchase of S400 air defence batteries from Russia has been officially announced. According to Russian and Turkish officials’ explanation, Russia’s shipments to Turkey in exchange for $ 2.5 billion for selling the four S-400 batteries will be held in 2020.

The purchase of the S-400s has been presented as an antiimperialist victory, as evidence of the indigenous and national power of the government. Well, is it really like that? Let’s take a closer look at the agreement to find the answer to this question. Turkey wanted to be given the electronic code of the S-400 system that she will purchase. Russia rejected this request. So the installation and maintenance of this defence system will be done by the Russians. It is not just that.

The batteries that will be installed in Turkey will function according to the radar that will be established and controlled by the Russians. Therefore these defence systems cannot be used against the places/countries where Russian radars are not coded as threats. What a great victory, is not it? We are giving Russia a ‘base’ with the hand of the government in exchange for 2.5 billion dollars! There is more than that. It is well-known that Turkey is a NATO member country.

It even sent Turkish troops to war in Korea that it even couldn’t have shown the location of it on a map in 1950 to become a member of NATO, a military alliance that led by the US and western imperialists formed against the Soviets, but then proven that Turkey, in 1952, was a NATO member. Today, including İncirlik and İzmir air bases in Turkey, Konya Main Jet Base Command, NATO has 28 bases and all the equipment modernization and defence systems of the Turkish army have been dependent on NATO (mainly the US) since 1952. That is to say, Turkey, which is the southernmost member of NATO functions as an ‘outpost’ for NATO.

After the collapse of the Soviets, NATO’s “threat” assessment has changed over time, especially with respect to US priorities. So, which country or whom do you think is the biggest threat for NATO today? According to NATO’s “Warsaw Summit” in July 2016, “the most important threat” is Russia! In fact, in this summit, where Turkey was represented by a delegation led by President Erdoğan, the decision that NATO to place AWACS early warning system had already been made in order to monitor Russia’s activities in Syria. Another question is that “What happened back then that Turkey became close enough to Russia, which was declared as the “biggest threat” at the NATO summit, in order to buy defence system from?”

To answer this question, it is necessary to look at the events at the region (Middle East-especially Syria) in the last two years. In September 2015, Russia’s active intervention in Syria provided substantial liquidation of jihadist groups supported by Turkey and Saudi Arabia and enabled the Syrian regime to breathe in that period. At the same time, the US took steps to increase its business alliance with the Kurds (SDG-Syrian Democratic Forces) since there was no other power to support its effectiveness in Syria. However, when the love of overthrowing Assad became a dream, to destroy the Kurds’ achievements in Syria became a question of existence and non-existence for Erdoğan’s power to pursue a policy of liquidation inside.

Nevertheless, the efforts of Erdoğan’s power to persuade the United States (especially for the Rakka operation) were inconclusive. It is exactly one month after the NATO summit in July 2016, in which Russia was declared as the biggest threat, Russia gave permission to Turkey’s Euphrates Shield operation to prevent the merging of Kurdish cantons in Syria (Kobane and Afrin). Russia used Turkey’s Kurdish sensitivity to make it away from NATO-US axis and to attract it to its side. Erdoğan embraced Putin, helplessly. And after Astana summit, and the removal of the jihadists from Aleppo, ‘observer’ mission in İdlib was given to Turkey.

Finally, this cooperation was moved to a new dimension with the S-400 agreement. To sum up, the situation is this: Turkey is a NATO member. NATO sees Russia as the biggest threat. However, Turkey, whose all the defence system is dependent on NATO, is buying a new defence system from Russia (SR-400). But it leaves the control of this defensive system to Russia. And NATO is opposed to the S-400 because it is not compatible with its own system. When we say that we have to get rid of the NATO scourge that we have been in for 65 years, the government is bringing the Russia scourge which is NATO’s biggest rival. It makes the country a playground for these two imperialist powers.

Thus, the anti-imperialism and nationalism of the powers that have created itself with the cooperation of imperialism up to now are only to approach another imperialist from the previous one. As a final word: to get rid of the imperialists and become a truly independent and democratic country, first of all, we need to get rid of the powers whose horizon does not go beyond cooperation!

Posted in USA, Europe, RussiaComments Off on Anti-imperialism between the NATO and Russia

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