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This article by a guest writer
on RT seems to get it right...
what do you think?

Dead end: UK's Theresa May has led
 her party & country into an impasse
December 14th, 2018
by John Laughland

British Prime Minister Theresa May is a politician who
holds on to power through defeats. Even though she
survived a no-confidence vote held within her own
Conservative Party this week, it was also a sort
 of defeat.

She achieved high office (Home Secretary) thanks
to David Cameron, who failed to gain a majority
in Parliament at the 2010 election in spite of the
fact that Labour had been in power since 1997
 and that the outgoing prime minister, Gordon
Brown, was deeply unpopular. Cameron had
to govern in coalition with the Liberals.

Theresa May then became Prime Minister in 2016,
 after Cameron resigned, having been defeated,
like her, in the referendum on Brexit.  She and
 her boss had campaigned for Remain.

She then led her party into a catastrophic election in
2017, in which the Conservatives lost the 20-seat
majority they had won in 2015 and ended up
 nine seats short of a majority. This was in
spite of the fact that the Conservatives
faced a Labour opposition in deep
disarray, with a leader (Jeremy
Corbyn), who many thought
then, was unelectable.

Since last year, May has clung on to power only thanks
 to the support of the Ulster Unionists. Without them,
she could not govern.

Theresa May's latest election, the one held on December
 12 by her fellow Conservative Members of Parliament,
was also a sort of defeat.  True, she won by 2 thirds: 
200 votes for her, 117 against.  But out of the 200
votes there are more than 150 MPs who belong
to the government, either as ministers, deputy
 ministers or private parliamentary secretaries.

These people have to vote with the government or
they lose their government job, and any chance
of future preferment.  In other words, over half
of the Tory backbenchers voted against May.

Moreover, her re-election as leader has not answered any
 of the questions which led to the vote in the first place,
in particular what to do, given that there is no majority
in the House of Commons for the deal she has agreed
with the EU.  Indeed, there is no majority in the House
 of Commons for any option at all. She has led her
party and her country into an impasse.

Her only tactic is to turn this weakness into a strength:
like Madame de Pompadour, Theresa May says it is
either her or chaos. Après moi, le déluge.

 Unfortunately, the tactic of turning defeat into victory
 has – as was inevitable – ultimately created the
conditions for defeat.

This is because the deal that she has negotiated with the
 EU creates precisely the conditions which guarantee
that her objective of a free trade deal with the EU,
first stated in January 2017 and repeated on
many subsequent occasions, cannot be
achieved. According to the terms of the
 agreement – which is, in fact, only an
agreement to continue negotiating –
 Britain and the EU will seek to sign
 a free trade deal by the end of the
transition period, in 2020. 

But the famous ‘Irish border backstop’ ensures that
the EU has no interest in agreeing to anything.

If there is no free trade agreement by the end of 2020,
 according to the terms of the deal she negotiated in
 November, the whole of the United Kingdom will
remain in the EU customs union. It will not be
able to leave it, until a new agreement is
reached. Britain will, therefore, be in a
uniquely weak position, and the EU
 has every interest in getting
 it there.

London would have to accede to a long shopping list of
 individual demands from EU states – from the French
 on fishing, from the Spanish on Gibraltar, and so on
– in order to break free from the backstop. It is more
difficult to leave the backstop than it is to leave the
 EU, and May’s deal is therefore the longest suicide
 note in history.

The fact is, that Britain and the EU have been negotiating
for two years, with radically different objectives. Theresa
May does not seem to have realized this. London was
trying to have the benefits of EU membership (a free
trade agreement) without the costs; Brussels was
determined to show, that you cannot have the
benefits, without the costs. London wanted
to prosper outside the EU, Brussels is
determined to show, that you cannot
prosper outside the EU: for fear that
other EU member states might
start trying to follow Britain.

Theresa May was determined to succeed,
whereas the EU’s priority has been, to
ensure that she fails.

The EU’s strategy has, therefore, been to create a
 situation in Britain, which is untenable, with the
openly admitted goal of getting the British,
one way or another, to reverse Brexit. 

This is but a variant of the tactic the EU has deployed
many times, in the past, when it has lost in other
 referendums – in Denmark, in 1992, in Ireland,
in 2001 & 2008, in France & the Netherlands,
in 2005, & in the Netherlands again, in 2016
(in a vote on the Association Agreement
with Ukraine, which was widely seen
as being against the EU,
 in general.)

On each occasion, the EU simply decided to ignore
 the vote; either it pressed ahead with ratification
 in other states so that the countries in question
were forced to vote a second time (Denmark &
 Ireland) or the same legislation was passed by
 the political class in their respective national
 parliaments (France and the Netherlands) &
against the people’s wishes.

 The same thing is now happening against Britain,
 and we are now witnessing, in real time, a sixth
attempt to strangle democracy.

By running down the clock, Prime Minister May hopes
that her deal will be accepted as the only way of
preventing no deal or no Brexit. That is why,
it is essential for MPs to adopt the
opposite logic from hers,
and vote for no deal.


________________________________________




At a time when the ''pink tide'' in Latin America

has receded, and most see the US pivoting
to re-enact a Monroe Doctrine 2, this new
article from Fort Russ, is refresshing!

What do you think?


‘BEIJING CONSENSUS’:
 China-Latin America
 Cooperation Signals
New Era
by Paul Antonopoulos
August 1st, 2018

A Chinese space research base located in central Patagonia,
Argentina, has sparked interest in The New York Times,
which labeled it “one of the most striking symbols”
 of Beijing’s transformative role in the region.

The US newspaper highlighted the story on the front cover
of its July 29 issue and dedicated an extensive report,
analyzing the reasons behind the colossal facility in
 the province of Neuquén. Under Chinese control,
the site is part of the ambitious project under-
taken by Beijing to land on the hidden side
of the moon.

According to The New York Times, this facility is only one of
 many pieces of evidence of China’s growing influence -- not
only in Argentina but in other countries in the region where
 it has invested in construction, or to which it has lent, in
exchange for holdings in hydrocarbon reserves.

“The base has a geographical position very close to the
 Argentine submarine platform facing the Atlantic and a
 strategic monitoring station in Antarctica, where China
 has the largest scientific base in the world,” Gustav
Cardozo, an analyst at Argentine Centre for
 International Studies (CAEI), explained.

The construction of the Chinese space complex on Argentine
 soil, which covers about 200 hectares, is the result of
negotiations between the government of Cristina
 Fernández de Kirchner (2007-2015), and the
administration of Xi Jinping and is intended
 to be a space for “astronomical research.”

In Cardozo’s opinion, the base “has an objective of military
monitoring” in a privileged space. In recent years, with
projects like this, China has demonstrated a policy of
 “space race” with a very strong investment and
 improved technology from Russia and the
former Soviet Union, to consolidate itself
as a leading player in the industry.

In fact, the base in question is part of the Deep Space
 Network, a set of communication resources to
support Chinese operations beyond Earth.

“China has a strong intention of exploring space and
competing strategically with the US. This military
 base not only allows us to monitor space, since
Argentine Patagonia and southern Chile are
geographically very good regions because
 of the visibility they offer, China’s
 fundamental interest has to do
with Antarctica,” said
the expert.

The white continent is “very strategic” area in the eyes of
Beijing due to the abundance of natural resources, in
addition to hydrocarbons and mining.  China is
moving in to take advantage of the US’ fragile
imperial reform period in which Washington
 is reassessing its commitments around
the world, such as in Antarctica and
Latin America, which have, until the
Trump presidency, seemed to have
taken a back seat to the European
 theatre of Atlanticism.

“With Donald Trump, that gap between Washington and
the rest of the Latin American countries has increased
 and China, with a strong investment, is occupying the
 space that the US is leaving behind,” Cardozo said.

In this way, “through scientific and technological means,”
the military presence of China is consolidating, because
 in facilities like Neuquén, “the work of Argentine
scientists is minimal.” Officials who control the
perimeter are Chinese and “people living in
 the area can not enter the perimeter.”

In any case, the Neuquén Space Station is a symbol of the
power of the Asian giant in Latin America. In the opinion
of CAEI’s expert, “in a decade, China will play an
extremely important role in the region”,
a
preponderant place that is already
observed, he says, due to the
strategic importance of Latin
 America, which is a supplier
of food, raw materials and
hydrocarbons.

The examples cited by the analyst include control over
 the Panama Canal and investments in broadening it,
as well as the incentive to create new bi-oceanic
corridors to improve trade. This is part of the
Chinese project to include Latin America in
the New Silk Road, the ambitious infra-
structure investment project in the
 corridor that runs from South Asia
 to Eastern Europe and Africa.

The New York Times points to this Asian country’s strategy
 and mentions that the bond that formed during the era of
 progressive governments in Latin America (2005-2015)
has lasted even after the shift to the right in several
countries, as in the case of Argentina itself.

“China is taking a leading role, which will increase in the future
because it has sovereign funds to invest, and because it has
an interest in Latin America, an interest that no other extra-
continental power shows. I believe that, in a few years, in
 a decade, this will be something totally visible,” said
Gustavo Cardozo.

However, there is a difference between China and other powers
 that once were present in Latin America: the policy of treating
countries as partners, since, for Beijing, “self-determination
of
peoples is of great importance”, as is “respect for internal
sovereignty.” This is a policy of cooperation with “non-
interference in others’ domestic affairs” which,
according to Cardozo, might be explained by
 “China’s past suffering of unequal treatment”
 from the colonial powers.

According to Cardozo, at a time when the so-called “Washington
Consensus” dictated a package of rules to be followed by
countries receiving assistance from institutions under
the US umbrella, “today we could say that there is a
 ‘Beijing Consensus’ based on non-interference
in
internal affairs.”

This consensus “manifests itself in regions such as Africa
 and Latin America, where there are young countries that
attach much importance to the issues of sovereignty
and
self-determination,” said the expert.

As an example, he cited the case of Venezuela, a country
with which, China has maintained close ties, even when
other countries have imposed economic and diplomatic
sanctions. Beijing reiterated --- that the crisis of the
Caribbean nation “is something that its people
have to solve”.

_______________________________________________



War Crimes in Korea -
Guilty as Charged

With the world's press spending a great deal of its energy
on the rather fractious relationship between the United
States and North Korea, a look back in time gives us
some fascinating insight regarding the geopolitical
stresses that rule the region, particularly the
stresses that occurred during the
Korean War.

Thanks to the International Action Centre and the International
Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL), a Non-Governmental
Organization which was founded in 1946 and acts as a
consultative group to UNESCO, we have an interesting
document that outlines some of America's actions on
the Korean Peninsula during the early 1950s.

In March 1952, the IADL issued a Report on
 U.S. Crimes in Korea during the Korean War. 

In the early 1950s, the Government of the Democratic People's
Republic of Korea repeatedly asked the United Nations to
protest violations of international law by their enemies,
the United States-led international coalition.  These
requests were ignored by the United Nations &, as
such, the Council of the International Association
of Democratic Lawyers set up a Commission...
consisting of lawyers from several nations, to
investigate these allegations with a "boots on
the ground" trip to Korea, which took place
from March 3rd to March 19th, 1952, visiting
the provinces of North and South Piengan,
Hwang Hai, Kang Wan, including the towns
of Pyongyang, Nampo, Kaichen, Pek Dong,
Amju, Sinchon, Anak, Sariwon and Wonsan
among others. 

The IADL notes that, under United Nations rules, the U.S.
intervention on the Korean Peninsula was unlawful and
that President Truman's orders to the American Navy
and Air Force should be considered an "aggressive
act" that went against the United Nations Charter.

Here are some of the more interesting findings
of the IADL Commission:

1.) Bacteriological Warfare: The Commission investigated
the allegations that American forces in Korea were using
bacteriological weapons against both the DPRK armed
forces and the nation's civilian population.  Between
the 28th of January and the 12th of March (i.e. during
the dead of winter), 1952, the Commission found...
insects which carried bacteria, in many different
locations:

The Commission noted that many of the insect species had
not been found in Korea, prior to the arrival of American
forces and that many of them were found in mixed groups
or clusters that would not normally be found together, for
example, flies and spiders.  It also noted that the January
temperature was 1 degree Celsius (just above freezing)
to 5 degrees Celsius in February but that the prevailing
average temperature was far below the freezing level,
temperatures that are extremely hostile to insect life.

The insects were infected with the following bacteria
which include plague, cholera and typhus:

1.) Eberthella typhus
2.) Bacillus paratyphi A and B
3.) Shigella dysenteriae
4.) Vibrio cholera
5.) Pasturella pestis

In addition, a great quantity of fish of a species which live in
regions between fresh water and salt water, were found;
these fish were found in a half rotten state and were
 infected with cholera.

2.) Chemical Weapons: On various occasions since May 6th, 1951,
American planes used asphyxiating and other gases or chemical
weapons as follows:

In the first attack on Nampo City, there were 1,379 casualties
of which 480 died of suffocation and 647 others were
affected by gas.

3.) Mass Massacres:  According to witnesses, the commander of
the U.S. Forces in the region of Sinchon by the name of Harrison
ordered the mass killing of 35,383 civilians (19,149 men and
16,234 women) during the period between October 17th and
 December 7th, 1950.  The civilians were pushed into a deep
open grave, doused with fuel oil and set on fire.  Those who
 tried to escape were shot.  In another case, on October 20th,
2015, 500 men women and children were forced into an air
raid cave shelter, located in the city of Sinchon.  Harrison
ordered American soldiers to put explosives into the
shelter and seal it with sacks of earth, prior to the
 fuse being lit.

Here are other examples of mass murders:

4.) Attacks on Civilians:

Prior to the Korean War, the capital city of North Korea,
Pyongyang, had a population of 464,000.  As a result
of the war, the population had fallen to 181,000 by
December 31, 1951.  In the period between June
27, 1950 and the Commission's visit, more than
30,000 incendiary and explosive devices were
 dropped on the city, destroying 64,000 out of
 80,000 houses, 32 hospitals and dispensaries
(despite the fact that they were marked with
a red cross), 64 churches, 99 schools and
university buildings.

Here is the conclusion of the Commission:

The IADL Commission unanimously found that the United
States was guilty of crimes against humanity during the
Korean War and that there was a pattern of behaviour
which constitutes genocide.

Let's close this posting with the conclusion of the
2001 Korea International War Crimes Tribunal,
which examined the testimony of civilians
from both North Korea and South Korea,
over the period from 1945 to 2001:

The Members of the International War Crimes Tribunal find
the accused Guilty, on the basis of the evidence against
them: each of the nineteen separate crimes alleged in
the Initial Complaint has been established to have been
committed beyond a reasonable doubt. The Members
find these crimes to have occurred during three main
periods in the U.S. intervention in and occupation
 of, Korea.

1. The best-known period is from June 25, 1950, until July
27, 1953, the Korean War, when over 4.6 million Koreans
perished, according to conservative Western estimates,
including 3 million civilians in the north and 500,000
civilians in the south. The evidence of US war crimes
presented to this Tribunal, included eyewitness
testimony & documentary accounts of massacres
of thousands of civilians in southern Korea by
U.S. military forces during the war. Abundant
evidence was also presented, concerning
criminal and even genocidal U.S. conduct
in northern Korea, including the systematic
leveling of most buildings and dwellings by
U.S. artillery and aerial bombardment; wide-
spread atrocities committed by U.S. & R.O.K.
forces against civilians and prisoners of war;
the deliberate destruction of facilities essential
to civilian life and economic production; and
the use of illegal weapons and biological
and chemical warfare by the U.S. against
the people and the environment of
northern Korea. Documentary and
eyewitness evidence was also
presented showing gross and
systematic violence committed
against women in northern and
southern Korea, characterized
by mass rapes, sexual assaults
and murders.

2. Less known but of crucial importance in understanding
the war period, is the preceding five years, from the
landing of U.S. troops in Korea on September 8, 1945,
to the outbreak of the war. The Tribunal Members 
examined extensive evidence of US crimes against
peace, and crimes against humanity, in this period.

The Members conclude that the U.S. government
acted to divide Korea against the will of the vast
majority of the people, limit its sovereignty, create
a police state in southern Korea using many former
collaborators with Japanese rule, and provoke
tension and threats between southern and
northern Korea, opposing and disrupting any
plans for peaceful reunification. In this period
 the U.S. trained, directed and supported the
ROK in systematic murder, imprisonment,
torture, surveillance, harassment and
violations of human rights, of hundreds
of thousands of people, especially of
those individuals or groups considered
nationalists, leftists, peasants seeking
land reform, union organizers and/or
those sympathetic to the north.

3. The Members find that, in the period from July 1953, to
the present, the U.S. has continued to maintain a powerful
military force in southern Korea, backed by nuclear weapons,
in violation of international law and intended to obstruct the
will of the Korean people for reunification. Military occupation
has been accompanied by the organized sexual exploitation of
Korean women, frequently leading to violence and even murder
of women, by U.S. soldiers, who have felt above the law. U.S.-
imposed economic sanctions have impoverished and
debilitated the people of northern Korea, leading to a
reduction of life expectancy, widespread malnutrition
and even starvation, in a country that once exported
food. The refusal of the US government to grant visas
to a delegation from the Democratic Peoples Republic
of Korea, who planned to attend this Tribunal, only
confirms the criminal intent of the defendants - to
isolate those whom they have abused, to prevent
 them from telling their story to the world.

In all these 55 years, the U.S. government has systematically
manipulated, controlled, directed, misinformed and restricted
press and media coverage, to obtain consistent support for
its military intervention, occupation and crimes against the
people of Korea. It has also inculcated racist attitudes
within the US troops and general population, that
prepared them to commit and/or accept atrocities
and genocidal policies against the Korean people.

It has violated the Constitution of the United States, the
delegation of powers over war and the military, the Bill
of Rights, the UN Charter, international law and the
laws of the ROK, DPRK, Peoples Republic of China,
Japan and many others, in its lawless determination
to exercise its will over the Korean peninsula.

The Members of the Korea International War Crimes
Tribunal hold the United States government and its
leaders accountable for these criminal acts and
condemn those found guilty, in the strongest
possible terms."

And Washington wonders why the North Koreans are
so hostile toward the United States!  The irony of
Washington's criticism of other nations (i.e Syria)
and their use of chemical weapons is stunningly
 hypocritical.

Posted by A Political Junkie 

If any validity at all exists to the claims made in the
1952 IADL and the 2001 Korea International War
Crimes Tribunal reports, some of North Korea's
fear and distrust of America, becomes very
understandable. More about these claims
in the article below.

http://brucewilds.blogspot.com/2018/06/
north-koreas-view-and-something-we.html

    PalJim1924June 11, 2018 at 8:20 PM

I'm so grateful for this information. Now how to get it
to every US and UK citizen? My country, UK, was
involved in this war too. I already knew Korea's
population was reduced by 20% but that's just
a number. Reading how the US managed it, is
vivid and sickening. They're not the good guys
handing out the Chocolate, are they? Would be
nice to think UK wasn't involved with US in
War Crimes/Genocide, but who knows.

(Source - Viable Opposition)


______________________________________________



Few noted the essence of Putin's inauguration speech
and its implications. What do YOU think?

We welcome your thoughts: email us at
rayjoseph05@aol.com


TALL ORDER? Russia aims to be
 world’s 5th largest economy
by Paul Antonopoulos
May 11th, 2018

The inauguration ceremony of Putin to the presidency
 took place on Monday, in which he also signed a
decree of instructions for the objectives on the
development of the country for the next
few years.

Putin has instructed the government to make the country
one of the five most powerful economies by 2024 . The
news was released by the Kremlin press service
on Monday.

“The Russian government was instructed to ensure the
following national goals for the development of Russia
in the period up to 2024 … Russia must become one of
 the five largest economies, ensuring rates of economic
growth above global standards, maintaining macro-
economic stability as well as inflation not
exceeding 4%,” the decree explains.

In addition, Putin instructed the government to create at
least 15 global science and education centres, through
the integration of universities and companies, by 2024.

Re-elected for a new six-year term as the Russian president,
Vladimir Putin took office as head of state on Monday. It
was the fourth presidential inauguration ceremony in
 his political career.

Putin was re-elected as Russia’s president in 2018 with
record support, receiving a vote of more than 56.4
million from people.

It must be noted though, that in 2007, Putin said it would
happen in 2017, and then, in 2008, he said it would be
achieved by 2020. Russia’s economy is currently
 ranked 12th, behind the likes of Canada and
South Korea.

Meanwhile, Dmitry Medvedev said on Tuesday, that he
was ready to do everything for Russia’s development
 if the parliament approved his candidacy as PM.

“I would like to thank President Vladimir Putin for the trust
placed in me and for the proposal to become the head of
the government. This is not only trust, but also a huge
responsibility, and in the case that the corresponding
decisions are made, I am ready to do everything
for the development of our country Russia,”
Medvedev told a plenary session of
the
State Duma.

Whether or not Russia is capable of growing to become one
 of the world’s top five economies in the next decade, is not
simply a technical one - it is an ideological & philosophical
 one. There is an active debate within Russia, about the
uses and utilities of market vs. planned economic
 structures, and secondly – though not entirely
separately – the utility and value of Russia
integrating into Western economies, and
how the costs vs. benefits of that, will
play out, in the middle to long term.

(Source - Fort Russ)


_______________________________________________



Don't Trust Putin's Kleptocrats
Russia Needs Socialism

November, 2017.

Veteran Russian communist DR SLAVA TETEKIN talks to
John Foster, about how Russians today view the former
Soviet Union and attitudes towards Vladimir Putin.

Asked about current support for communism in Russia,
Dr Slava Tetekin, veteran member of the Communist
Party of the Russian Federation, puts the figure at
around 30 per cent.

Tetekin, recently in London for the celebration of the
October Socialist Revolution, explained --- “our
parliamentary representation fell significantly
 in the most recent Duma elections, to just
over 12 per cent — largely as a result of
 a rigged electoral system.

“But the daily sale of the communist-supporting Pravda is
80,000 and of Sovetskaya Rossiya 120,000. Particularly
 among the young and the better-educated, interest in
 our party’s policies and the achievements of the
 Soviet Union, is increasing.

“This is because life,” says Tetekin, “is becoming increasingly
difficult for all in Russia, except the very rich. Real incomes
have been declining for three straight years. Twenty-two
m
illion people are classified as living in absolute
poverty —
struggling to get enough to eat.
Half the population
is classified as poor.

“Yet people still remember that things were not always like this.
 Less than 30 years ago there was universal free healthcare.

“Education was free, right through to university, and so was
childcare. There were full pensions. There was no
 unemployment. Housing, energy, transport
and
basic foods, were all heavily
subsidised.


“There is also a growing awareness - of the degradation of
Russia’s economy. Russia’s manufacturing industries are
 virtually dead. The economy is almost entirely dependent
 on extractive industries that sell to the West: oil,
minerals,
natural gas.

“In 1990, the Soviet Union produced 1,000 aircraft. Last year...
 we produced 50. Our airlines lease from the West. Our motor
 industry is entirely dependent on imported technology and
 components. The same applies even more to IT and
computing. The technological base for independent
 economic development, has all but disappeared.

“These are some of the reasons why a new generation of
Russians are looking again at their own history and
particularly at the period following the revolution.
 In 1917 Russia had a backward, largely agrarian
economy. Within just 25 years the Soviet Union
 was outperforming Europe’s biggest economy,
Germany, both in output and the quality of its
 technology. It was in large part for this reason
 that the Soviet Union was able to defeat
Hitler fascism.”

Asked how he would describe Russia’s current
government under Vladimir Putin, Tetekin
denied that it should be seen as at all
progressive.

“It is embedded in a layer of kleptocratic comprador
 oligarchs - who are dependent on the West for the
 sale of their raw materials, for the banking of their
money and for the technology needed for their
operations in Russia. Immediately below Putin
virtually all ministers are of this character.

“The government depends on the oligarchs
 and the oligarchs depend on the West.

“Putin,” he says, “has now been in power for a very
long time. His 18 years exceed those of Brezhnev.
 It is remarkable how little challenge he offered to
Nato and the US, for the great bulk of that time: 
years, that saw Nato’s eastward expansion into
central Europe, the Balkans and the Black Sea.
Russia even failed to oppose the invasion
 of Libya.

“It is only recently, in Crimea and in Syria, that Russia
 has set down markers against further US advances.
This may reflect the directness with which the US
was challenging Russia’s interests.”

But, says Tetekin, “there may well be other
 factors, which we need to consider.

“These might include: perceptions of a decline in the
global power of the US, of a shift towards China,
and
economic rivalries between the US and
the EU.


“Russia sells seven times as much to Germany as it
does to the US — and buys from Germany in the
same proportion.

“In turn, Germany’s own energy costs and international
competitiveness against the US depend very significantly
 on Russian oil and gas. US diplomatic action to impede
the construction of new gas pipelines from Russia to
Germany & banking sanctions on oligarch companies
-- match the increasing conflict between the EU and
the
US, over steel quotas and corporate taxation.”

Joking, Tetekin says he would be all in favour of
US
sanctions against Russia --- if they covered
technology
and spare parts.

“It would force the Russian government to invest in
 the redevelopment of our productive economy.”

However, he adds, these rivalries also underlie attempts
to promote a “democratic opposition“ in Russia similar
to that funded by the US in Ukraine, prior to the
2014 coup.

“It has a smaller potential base. It is impeded by its
 neoliberal ideology. Unlike the time of Yeltsin’s
1991 coup, there are no illusions about free
markets. Russians have seen them, and
know the consequences. But regime
change is increasingly becoming a
goal of the US administration.”

This, he says, makes it all the more important to
 redevelop working-class mobilisation and to
ensure that the current reawakening of
enthusiasm for the October Revolution
 is converted into a wider political
movement for socialist change.

The young are already leading
 the way.

Dr Tetekin is currently chief policy adviser to the
general secretary of the Communist Party of the
 Russian Federation, was a communist member
 of the Duma and previously played an active
role in support for the anti-apartheid
movement in southern Africa.

(Source - Morning Star)


________________________________________



North Korea: Standing
 proud for Korea!
30/8/2017
 
Few foreigners know this but here it is: most South Koreans
 admire their brothers and sisters in the North, the DPR Korea.
 The US does not know this, because such feelings are shared
 in private but then again what can you do if you have a foreign
 power on your soil controling your policy? Some react, others
 lie in bed with their master.

After all, the Japanese did it increasingly from 1876, then de
facto from 1910 until 1945, by which time the founder of the
Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Kim il-Sung, had
made a name for himself as an anti-Japanese guerrilla
fighter and commander. And hero. After all, the Japanese
 took five hundred thousand Korean girls and ladies and
turned them into "comfort women" to receive the dirty
water from tired Japanese imperial invaders. After all,
the Koreans provided half a million male slaves to the
 Japanese invader. It is this that Kim il-Sung was
fighting against and the South Koreans know this.

The South Koreans, or the citizens of the Republic of Korea,
know that South Koreans took part in the Sinchon Massacre
 which shows the torture and murder of civilians by mainly
South Korean military personnel but also US soldiers,
acting under the auspices of Washington. The South
Koreans know that the USA deployed 32,557 tons of
chemical weapons on North Korean civilians. The South
Koreans know that the US and its South Korean puppet
 planned to invade the Democratic People's Republic of
Korea in 1950. They know that these plans were seized
 by North Korean agents, and they know that these
documents counter the lies used by the US State
Department claiming that the war started when
 the North invaded the South. As was its right
under international law, the DPRK defended
itself. And so ensued the Korean War
between 1950 and 1953.
 
The South Koreans know that in this war, the Americans
dropped more bombs on North Korea than it used in the
 entire Pacific arena in the Second World War. They know
 that in this war, the United States of America dropped
635,000 tons of explosives as opposed to 503,000 in
the Pacific conflict. They know that in this war, the
United States of America deployed 32,557 tons of
Napalm, a chemical weapon, on N. Korean citizens.

 In this war, 3.5 million Koreans were killed.

 In this war, Pyongyang was bombed, it was carpet
bombed and after three years of day-and-night
humiliation, two buildings were left standing.

The South Koreans know that in this war, 20 per cent of
 the North Korean population was murdered by the United
 States of America and they know that American soldiers
carried out the most barbaric atrocities, strafing air-raid
shelters full of women and children, laughing as their
screams filled the air as they burned to death. They know
 that in this war, US soldiers poured gasoline on civilians
and stood back watching as they died a horrific death.
 The South Koreans know that in this war, US military
personnel decapitated political prisoners with Samurai
 swords and they know that in one shelter, nine hundred
 women and children were incinerated. Korean children.
 Incinerated. As US soldiers looked on and giggled.
Some say a few masturbated.

The South Koreans know that in one massacre of Koreans,
500 civilians were forced into a ditch and doused in gasoline
 before someone tossed in a match. The South Koreans know
 that American soldiers were seen pouring fuel down the air
vents and that they were seen setting fire to the civilians
 sheltering below.

The South Koreans know that the Partial Test Ban Treaty
(PTBT) bans nuclear tests in the atmosphere, outer space
 and under water. However, the DPR Korea is not a party
 to this treaty. Neither is underground testing banned
under the treaty, unless radiation is released into the
 atmosphere. The South Koreans know that the CTBT,
 or Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (1996) is not in
force and the DPR Korea is not a party to this treaty.

The South Koreans know that the DPR Korea did sign the
Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 1985. This treaty
 expressly bans the manufacture and testing of nuclear
devices, under Article II. However, the DPR Korea with-
drew from the treaty in 2003, having given notice to the
 UNSC, as per Article X (I) which allows member states
 to withdraw from the treaty. The S. Koreans know this.

The South Koreans know that the Nuclear Disarmanent
Declaration made by the DPR Korea is taken by some to
 be legally binding. This statement was made under the
 fourth round of the Six-Party Talks on the DPRK nuclear
 weapons program (PR China, Japan, DPR Korea, Russia,
Rep. Korea, USA) in 2005. The declaration by Pyongyang
 was not a public declaration, but rather, an affirmation,
 made in private negotiations with five other nations and
 secondly, where is the evidence that Pyongyang intended
 to be bound by circumstances, especially after Iraq and
Libya spelled a clear lesson: that if you destroy your
weapons, then you are invaded.

And here we get to the crux of the matter. If you destroy
 your weapons, Washington invades you. Ask Iraq. Ask
 Libya. Ask Syria (proxy invasion by western-backed
 terrorists).

And if someone tries to use the UNSC (United Nations
Security Council) as a legal entity or legal source, then
 let us ask Washington under which UN law did it invade
 Iraq? Or did the USA breach the UN Charter and breach
international law with its invasion?

And regarding nukes, if the DPR Korea cannot have them,
has anyone investigated Israel and found out whether the
 number of nukes it has is really 80 & with fissile material
 for a further 200 nuclear missiles?

The point is that the DPR Korea stands up against all these
 monumental injustices and these attempts to humiliate
Koreans. The DPR Korea wants foreign troops off Korean
 soil and wants peace and reconciliation with the South.

That is all they ask for. From a position of pride & dignity.
 The South Koreans know this and they also know, in
whose bed they lie.

by Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey

(Source - Pravda.Ru)

Twitter: @TimothyBHinchey

timothy.hinchey@gmail.com

_____________________________________________



TURNING THE LIGHT ON...


In this year of the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution,
and twenty years after the dissolution of the Soviet Union,
it seems that no media in Russia, or anywhere else, ever
quotes any serious news
or analysis, from or about,
the second most powerful
political party in Russia,
after Putin's
United Russia party!


The Communist Party of the Russian Federation
(CPRF), is mentioned less than the Russian
Communist Party, a fake party, in RT news
and other Russian media outlets...

So here's the latest report from the CPRF
itself, well worth ploughing through, for
what it reveals.

I wonder what you will think about it!

Please drop me a line, at
rayjoseph05@aol.com


 Political Report of the Central Committee
to the XVII Congress of the CPRF

Delegates and guests of the Congress,

We have left behind us the report period, for which the start
was made by the XV Congress. This stage was full of highly
 important, sometimes dramatic events. The time has come
 to review the results of the work over the past four years
and set new benchmarks.

We are holding our XVII Congress in the year of the centenary
 of the Great October Revolution. The party started preparing
 for the jubilee in March 2015 at a special plenary session of
the Central Committee.

Human history has seen many great events, but only some of
them change the course of development of the whole world.
Proletarian revolution in our country, dramatically changed
 the face of the planet. It set Russia on the path to socialism.
It solved the national crisis, and saved the country from
destruction.

The 'Great October Revolution' rid Russia of capitalist and
 national oppression. For the people of the Earth it became
 the lode star and the clarion call --- for the search for a
future,
worthy of Mankind.

The era of the building of socialism, is written into the biography
 of our country in golden letters. The unique experience of Lenin-
Stalin modernization enabled the country to increase its industrial
potential seventy-fold within two decades, a rate of development
unprecedented in world history. That experience is still an
example of the successful creation of a society
 of social justice.

The Jubilee of the Great October Revolution is an excellent
 opportunity to remind the world of its significance and high-
light the achievements of socialism. To show an alternative
 to the omnipotence of capital. To mobilize all the forces,
to
struggle for the triumph of the bright ideas of
working people.


The crisis of capitalism: a sign of decay

Comrades,

The world is immersed in a profound systemic crisis which
engenders instability and threatens a new world war. This
 is the essence of the present stage of capitalism. The
 inherent contradictions of this system have not gone away:
the contradictions between Labour and Capital, between
the social character of production and the private form of
appropriation of the results of labour. On the contrary, the
inborn flaws of this system, have assumed a worldwide
character. There is no corner on Earth where the tentacles
 of the rapacious octopus have not reached. As Marx noted
 in his time, its very nature, forces it to scour the world
in search of maximum profits. Therefore the miasma
of over-
ripe and decaying capitalism, is poisoning
practically all
countries and continents.

Crises are an inseparable part of the capitalist economy.
Throughout its history capitalism has engendered several
major and tens of smaller crises. The current crisis is now
into
its tenth year. It is the biggest crisis since the Great
Depression in the USA and the Second World War. The
 crisis has affected, not just one individual sector, not
one tentacle of the octopus, but the entire system.

The current crisis is a direct consequence of neoliberalism.
The US Marxist, David Harvey, came to the conclusion that
 in the 1970s, speculative financial capital had finally gained
 an upper hand over industrial capital, so that not production,
but the market value of shares of stock, became the aim of
economic activity. Financial interests, “the power of the
accountants rather than the engineers”, prevailed among
 the ruling classes and the ruling elites. Indeed, capitalism
 is drifting further & further away from material production.
 The imploding financial bubbles, form a characteristic
feature of modern capitalism. You will remember that
the CPRF has described this phenomenon as financial
imperialism, and has provided its extended analysis.

Neoliberalism has led to a revision of the idea of a “social
state.” It has cast aside all the vestiges of democracy and
human rights. It is relentlessly asserting its class & even
 caste supremacy. According to Oxfam, the international
association of NGOs, 1% of the planet’s population
 owns more wealth, than the remaining 99 percent.
The
combined wealth of 62 of the richest people,
is comparable
to what the poorest half
of humankind owns, and that,
is
3.5 billion people.

It is impossible to challenge the English philosopher Terry
Eagleton, who predicted in his book Why Marx Was Right,
that “Capitalism will behave anti-socially, if it is profitable
 for it to do so, & that can now mean human devastation
 on an unimaginable scale.”

The number of billionaires increased six times - to 1,810 -
 between 2000 and 2016. At the same time, more than a
billion Earth people live in abject poverty. Nearly 400
 million children suffer from malnutrition. This is not
a
coincidence. There is a direct link between the
enrichment of the rich, & the impoverishment
 of the poor.

During the last crisis, the lower strata were ruined, lost
their jobs and dwellings, while banks and corporations
drew billions in assistance from governments. This isn't
surprising, considering that government institutions have
become no more than managers hired by Big Business.
While Apple pays, in Europe, a profit tax equal to five-
thousandths of a percentage point, ordinary people
are
choked by high taxes, prices and credits, low
wages,
and the dismantling of social rights.

The parasitic essence of world capitalism will not disappear
- unless capitalism is destroyed. In its quest for maximum
profits, the oligarchy stops at nothing: stepping up their
exploitation and financial speculation, the unleashing
 of wars, and the destruction of whole states.

Our XV Congress thus defined the main features
of the present-day capitalist system:

First, globalism is the highest form of imperialism.

Second, the world economic crisis is deepening.

Third, capitalism is mounting an attack against
human rights everywhere.

Fourth, imperialism is increasingly aggressive in the world
arena, and the threat of a new, major war, is growing.

Fifth, financial-oligarchic capital ever more openly puts
 its stake, on the most vicious and reactionary forces.

Life has vindicated our analysis. During the past four years
the beastly snarl of capitalism has manifested itself in all
its ugly cynicism. World capital does not tolerate
competitors,
let alone rivals: it strangles and
destroys political regimes
that think
along national lines.


Over a hundred years ago Lenin drew attention to the crises
 connected with the transition from the “peaceful” to the non-
peaceful stage of the functioning of the bourgeois system.
The destruction of the Soviet Union, ushered in another
“peaceful” period. Not encountering any serious obstacles,
capitalism pursued a policy of globalization. The workers’
and communist movement was weakened. There was an
upsurge of opportunism. Absolute impoverishment of
the working people was taking place, even in
economically
developed countries.

That period is now over. New trends have emerged.

First, imperialism is actively provoking internal conflicts
in various countries and is using military force to redraw
 the world map. Examples are Iraq, Libya and Syria.

Second, a tilt to the right is encouraged in the centres of
world capitalism. Even the European social-democrats
have given up their pacifism and embraced aggressive
 imperialistic attitudes. Seeing Russia as a competitor,
 the West is fomenting anti-Sovietism and Russophobia.

Third, right-wing forces, including Fascism, have moved
 to the forefront of the capitalist world.

We believe it is wrong to assert that Russia has immunity
to Fascism. The historical experience of Italy & Germany
 has shown that in the “weak links” of the capitalist chain,
 imperialism uses Fascization as an “antidote” to socialist
revolutions. That is why Russia is also vulnerable. We
communists have to be vigilant.

The scenario of the extreme right coming to power has
already been acted out in Ukraine. The Banderovites,
backed
by the US and the European Union, staged a
government coup to establish a terrorist, reactionary
nationalist regime that cracks down on communists
and all dissenters. The proclamation of the Donetsk
& Lugansk People’s Republics was a logical reaction
 of millions of honest and courageous people. In spite
of the Minsk Agreements, the situation in Donbass is
extremely tense. Today the CPRF reaffirms: “Donbass,
we are by your side.” We come out for the recognition
of the independence of the Donetsk and Lugansk
People’s Republics, and for their further
rapprochement with Russia.

The decision of the people of Crimea on reunification with
Russia, was a landmark event. At the same time, it has
shown that world capitalism won't tolerate attempts by
our country, to protect its borders and interests. The
Western countries are turning Ukraine into an anti-
Russian bulwark. In July 2016, the NATO summit
in Warsaw declared Russia to be the main threat
-- and
“containing Moscow”, to be the key goal.

Having accused Russia of aggression, the North Atlantic
Alliance has stepped up the militarization of Eastern
Europe. NATO has deployed its military units in Poland,
 Romania and the Baltic states. NATO is strengthening
its presence on the Black Sea. Montenegro has been
 drawn into the Alliance.

The new US Administration has not renounced its
aggressive foreign policy. One of Trump’s early
directives was to increase the defense budget
by more than 50 billion dollars.

The USA has unleashed expansion in the Middle East
under the guise of fighting ISIL. Its aim is hegemony
over the key region rich in hydrocarbon resources.
The US strike on Shayrat air base on April the 7th
 shattered the myth of Trump’s “love of peace.”
This
put paid to Zhirinovsky’s Trumpomania.

While tirelessly instructing the world in democracy, US
imperialism is taking part in crimes against humanity.
Hundreds of civilians died, during the bombings of
Mosul in Iraq, the air strike on a hospital in Kunduz,
in Afghanistan, claimed tens of lives. The barbaric
operation in Yemen, in which Saudi Arabia has the
direct support of Washington, is into its third year.
The death toll has topped 10,000, two-thirds of the
country’s population are on the brink of starvation.

The process of the decay of imperialism, predicted by
Lenin, is unfolding. The link between world capital and
religious extremism has grown stronger. The USA and
its satellites support such brutal groups as Jabhat al-
Nusra and ISIL. Uigur separatist and Islamic groups
 whose chieftains are based in the US and Western
Europe are being used to destabilize China. It isn't
 surprising, that China is one of the main targets.
 Acting now by threats & now by cajolery, global
capital seeks to weaken the Celestial Kingdom.
 It is clearly scared of the successes of the new
world power. To “neutralize the Chinese threat”
 the US is cobbling together an alliance against
 the PRC, trying to drag into it, not only Japan &
South Korea, but also the Philippines, India and
some other countries. In April, the US military
came
close to unleashing war on the Korean
Peninsula.
Pyongyang is denied the right
to strengthen its
national defense.

In Latin America capital continues to oppose “XXI-century
Socialism.” When it was embraced by Venezuela, Bolivia,
Ecuador and Nicaragua this put hope into the hearts of
millions of disfranchised citizens. In response, every trick
 in the book has been used: sanctions, threats of invasion,
 and the financing of subversive actions of the right-wing
opposition. The globalists have managed to bring about
an impeachment of Dilma Russeff in Brazil. They have
put Mauricio Macri, as the head of Argentina. Now,
these countries open the door to US corporations
and the rights of workers are under attack.

However “the right-wing revenge” has stalled. In Venezuela,
 attempts to depose Nicolas Maduro, the successor to the
legendary Hugo Chavez, are failing, although Washington
 has invested huge resources in it. In Ecuador the left-wing
candidate, Lenin Moreno, scored a victory. In Nicaragua,
 Daniel Ortega comfortably won another term. Late last
year
the world suffered a heavy loss. Fidel Castro, the
symbol
and banner of anti-imperialist struggle, died.
His like-minded
fellow fighters, carry on his
courageous cause.


Thus, the international situation is determined by the clash of
 two trends. The first is the offensive of the forces of capitalism.
It is doing all it can to shore up its global dominance. But there
 is also the second trend, and that is the growing resistance to
 capitalist hegemony, and the commitment to uphold the right
to independent and sovereign existence.

We are for a better world

Opposition to the forces of capital takes various forms.

First, a number of states reject the course imposed by the
ideologues of liberalism. The Communist Party of China
will hold its XIX Congress in the autumn. The Chinese
communists are moving steadily toward achieving their
 two main goals: to build a middle-level wealth society
 by the time of the Party’s centenary in 2021 and to
create “a powerful, affluent, democratic, civilized,
harmonious and modernized socialist state” by the
PRC's centenary in 2049. In the international arena
 Beijing comes out for peace & economic integration
and is promoting the One Belt, One Road, project.

Vietnam, Cuba, Laos and the DPRK are developing confidently.
Belarus is setting an example to the post-Soviet space. Leftist
governments in Latin America, united in the ALBA alliance, are
demonstrating staunchness. Their social programs have given
millions of people housing, jobs, medial care and education. All
 these countries prove, that there is an alternative to globalism.

Second, millions of working people are struggling for their rights.
In France last year the reform of labour laws involved hundreds
of thousands of citizens in protests. Millions of people regularly
 go on strike against liberal reforms in India. The people of Brazil
 and Argentina, are actively opposing the offensive of capitalism.

It has to be admitted that the crisis of capitalism tends to increase
 the influence both of the left and of the right parties. The ideas of
 euroscepticism are gaining popularity in Europe, as manifested by
Brexit, and the electoral success in France of Marine le Pen and
Jean-Luc Melanchon. In the heart of world capitalism, the USA,
socialist-leaning candidate Bernie Sanders, won active support
 before the presidential vote and Donald Trump also campaigned
on criticism of the dominance of Wall Street.

It is very important for the left to prevent a “right-wing march” on
the planet. Possibilities for that do exist. It is clear that after the
treacherous destruction of the Soviet Union no “end of history”
 and no “collapse of communism” have occurred. The influence
 of the left could not have disappeared, if only because poverty,
inequality and injustice did not go away. They force people to
 fight for a better life. The world communist movement, has
not
been destroyed. It is building up its strength.

Communists today form part of the ruling coalitions in Nepal,
Venezuela, Ecuador, Uruguay, and some other countries. In
recent years our comrades in Belarus & the Czech Republic
 have scored successes. The Labour Party in Belgium, has a
chance to win more seats in parliament. Communists have
nearly trebled their presence in the parliament of Japan.
These are just some examples.

The program of our party determines that the CPRF is part of
 the international communist and workers’ movement. We are
actively promoting cooperation with fraternal parties, pooling
our efforts in the struggle against imperialism, and for the
interests
of the working people.

Socialism is the strategic goal of communists. In their struggle
for it, the communist parties are called upon to strengthen their
position in the grassroots with due account of the specificities
of each country. This task should be solved, through opposing
 both social-reformism and left-wing sectarianism.

The CPRF is actively involved in the analysis of the modern stage
 of class struggle, & in developing its forms and methods. During
 the report period, we initiated a number of academic-practical
conferences & round tables, including: International Communist
 Movement Today & Tomorrow, The Image of Socialism We Are
 Struggling For, The Party Press, & the Struggle of Communists
 under Current Conditions.

In May 2015 the CPRF organized in Moscow, a meeting of
international democratic organizations, to mark the 70th
Anniversary of the Victory Over Fascism. Taking part were...

The World Federation of Trade Unions, The World Peace Council,
The Women’s International Democratic Federation, The World
Federation of Democratic Youth, The International Federation
of Democratic Lawyers, The International Federation of Anti-
Fascists and Resistance Fighters. All of them have a
corresponding status at UNESCO, the International
 Labour Organization, and other UN agencies.

This year the activities of the world’s communist parties are
dominated by the 100th Anniversary of the Great October
Socialist Revolution. Resolutions have been passed,
 stressing its significance.

Our party takes an active part in International Meetings of
Communist and Workers’ Parties. Since 1998, these have
been held annually, at the initiative of the Communist Party
 of Greece. The last one, held in Vietnam last year, brought
 together 60 parties. In the year of the October Revolution
 jubilee, we will host the 19th International Meeting of
Communist & Workers’ Parties. It will be held in early
November in the City of Lenin (St. Petersburg). The
participants
will set the agenda of the communist
movement, in the
struggle for socialism. Great
responsibility devolves on
us, to hold this
forum in a worthy manner.


The CPRF takes part in international meetings, seminars
& conferences and interacts with left-wing parties on a
bilateral basis. We took part in the congresses of the
communist parties of the Czech Republic & Moravia,
Portugal, Finland, Bangladesh & other countries, &
in events staged by left-wing parties. Cooperation
agreements have been signed with the communist
 parties of China and Vietnam. An agreement has
been signed with the Workers’ Party of Korea.

These agreements are being successfully implemented,
thanks to the efforts of L.I.Kalashnikov, K.K.Taisiyev,
V.M.Tetyokin and other Russian comrades.

A Russia-China meeting, '70 Years of Common Victory' was
held in Khabarovsk in September 2015. Delegations of young
 CPRF activists go to China every year to study the experience
 of reforms conducted in the PRC. Our comrades regularly take
 part in the festivals of the Portuguese Communist newspaper,
 Avante (Awake). A joint Russia-Korea photo exhibition,
'A History of Friendship' was held in three stages,
 in Pyongyang, Moscow and Minsk.

At all the international events the CPRF briefs fraternal
parties
on its activities. Solidnet posts documents,
and other
information, about our party.

A great amount of work is being done in the framework of the
 UCP-CPSU. The Union brings together 17 parties. The high-
lights in the report period were: the celebration of the 20th
anniversary of the Union in Kiev before the Maidan coup,
 the XXXV Congress of the UCP-CPSU in Minsk, plenums
of the Union Council in Moscow, the opening of the
Union’s
internet site, and so on.

Coordination of activities takes on an added importance,
considering that the authorities in some republics of the
 former USSR, persecute communists. At various times,
 pressure was brought to bear on the communists in
Georgia, Moldavia & Kazakhstan. In the Baltic States,
Uzbekistan & Turkmenistan communist parties have
to work practically underground. The UCP-CPSU
parties,
repeatedly come out in support of the
Ukrainian
communists led by P.N.Simonenko.
Some of our
Ukrainian comrades had to be
rescued from
the hands of pro-fascist
elements.


On 29 May 2014 a headquarters for humanitarian aid to the
 citizens of the Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics
 was set up. Their population is exposed to severe trials.
Within three years the CPRF has sent 60 convoys with
 humanitarian aid to these republics. This work goes on.
Over three thousand children from Donbass, went
to
the Snegiri complex outside Moscow, to rest
and improve
their health.

International work is covered in the Vestnik SKP-KPSS.
The newspaper Pravda carries a monthly feature devoted
 to the Union of Communist Parties. The newly opened
rubric “Communist Brotherhood” has already carried
out
talks with the leaders of the communist parties
of
Portugal, Lebanon, Cyprus, Britain and India.

The CPRF takes an active part in solidarity actions, with peoples
that have become the victims of imperialism's aggressive actions.
 The voice of our party was heard in joint statements against the
persecution of communist parties, manifestations of fascism
and
nationalism, and the offensive on the rights and
freedoms of
working people. We have come out
in defense of Libya and
Syria, and against
the US blockade of Cuba..


The cohesion of communist &workers’ parties is the guarantee
 of their success. It is an uphill struggle. Capitalism will never
resolve its inherent contradictions on its own. Imperialism
is
becoming more and more aggressive in the time of crisis.
Analyzing the ideas of Marx and Lenin, modern US academic
James Petras, writes that capitalism has proved convincingly
 and indisputably that it prospers thanks to the degradation of
tens of millions of workers, & is absolutely deaf to the endless
 pleas for reform & regulation. The capitalism that really exists
cannot, and does not want to, raise the living standards of
ordinary people, guarantee their employment, or provide a
decent life without fear and humiliation. Capitalism…
is
diametrically opposed to freedom, equality,
democratic
decision-making and
the common good.


There are only two paths for humanity: either socialism or further
decay, wars, instability, the moral degradation of society and the
destruction of the environment. Only the power of working people,
public ownership of the means of production, & rational planning
 in the economy, can set humankind on the path of all-round
development. It is the duty of our party to actively
promote
these ideas among the grassroots.

Non-stop crisis

Comrades, after 1991 our country became part of world capitalism.
 The liberal traitors who came to power cherished the hope of joining
 the “golden billion.” They obediently followed the instructions of the
 International Monetary Fund and other global capitalist institutions.
 Even in the West, they considered the team of Yeltsin’s foreign
advisers to be ''economic murderers''.

The Russian bourgeoisie was accorded the dubious honour of
supplying the West with raw materials and fulfilling its whims.
Many upstart oligarchs raised on Gaidar’s “yeast” were quite
 comfortable with such a role. They treated Russia as “this
country,” in which they were “cowboy builders,” Russia was
 a place for business, while their safe landing sites were
 their mansions and hefty foreign bank accounts.

A regressive, parasitic, oligarchic, comprador capitalism established
 itself in the country. Its basis is the export of commodities and the
banking sectors. This proves that Russia is becoming a raw
 materials appendage, and a market for foreign goods.

However, part of the Russian bourgeoisie wants greater independence.
 Experessing the aspirations of this part of “the newest Russians”
government has ratcheted up patriotic rhetoric and taken some
 independent steps. The Crimea was brought back to where it
 belongs. Support was rendered to the legitimate government
of Syria. The people of Russia, tired of self-abasement,
welcomed these steps. This state of affairs was not
to the West’s liking. Sanctions were introduced, and
a massive information campaign, leavened with
Russophobia and anti-Sovietism, were launched
against Russia. If Russia's leadership does not
want to repeat the fate of Milosevic, Hussein
and Gaddafi, it has no other option, but to
strengthen the country’s sovereignty.

However, the Russian oligarchy has neither the strength nor
 the desire, to break with the system of global capitalism. It
 has still not recognized the DPR and LPR. “The pivot to the
East” policy is clearly marking time. Attacks continue on
Belarus, which undermine the process of a closer union
between our peoples. The process of integration of the
 post-Soviet space, which the CPRF has always
welcomed, is meeting with serious difficulties.

After the devastating Serdyukov “reforms” many, but not all
the problems of the Armed Forces combat ability have been
solved. The cuts in the defense budget which have started,
 run counter to the need to restore military education and
science. Our precision weapons still need imported
components, while the software built into them,
may be set in motion at any moment. It is not
possible to effectively protect the country’s
sovereignty, without a powerful defense
industry independent of foreign suppliers.

On the whole, the quarter century of liberal reforms in Russia
has produced an extremely cruel socio-economic model. A
 peripheral oligarchic-bureaucratic regime has taken shape
 in the country.

Russia’s joining the World Trade Organization, was a major
concession to global capital. Only the CPRF has consistently
opposed it. Restrictions on production, reduction of customs
duties and other novelties gave an edge to foreign “partners.”
During five years of WTO membership, the Russian budget
lost about 800 billion roubles due to lower customs duties.
 Indirect losses topped 4 trillion.

Big owners have been given a free hand in plundering Russia.
The economy is being deprived of vitally needed investments.
Today they account for a mere 18% of GDP, only half of what
they were in the RSFSR in 1990. But the authorities calmly
look on as the oligarchs transfer capital to offshore zones
and foreign banks. In the last 2 years alone, capital flight
 exceeded 70 billion dollars. And we are constantly being
called to make “civil peace” with those who are simply
 robbing Russia.

Dependence on foreign capital is beginning to threaten the
country’s sovereignty. Companies with foreign capital
account for 75% of the communications sphere, 56%
of the extractive industries and 49% of the processing
industries.

This is highly reminiscent of the situation in the early XX
century when Western capital dominated the industry and
 banking sector in the Russian Empire. That dependence
 cost Russia dearly: it was drawn into the First World War
 defending the interests of the Entente capitalists. Russia's
 GDP has been shrinking for over two years. Since 2014, it
has dropped by 8%. The state budget is losing trillions of
 roubles. Modernization and diversification of the economy
 have failed. The Government ministries in charge of the
economy and finances are unable to cope with the crisis.
They are misleading the country. The Ministry of Economic
Development reported a 0.4% growth of GDP at the end of
the first quarter. However, this data was promptly
challenged by Vneshekonombank analysts, who
proved that the GDP continues to fall.

The socio-economnic course followed by the government has
 turned the country into a society of mass poverty. According
 to official data, real income in Russia dropped by nearly 13%,
and consumption has gone down by 15%. The number of
paupers has increased by 3 million. Twenty million, one in
every seven citizens, live below the poverty line. The CPRF
 points out that the official living minimum, is 2-2.5 times
 lower, than the actual level.

Sociology confirms the picture of mass impoverishment. Last
year three quarters of citizens significantly cut consumption.
 Forty percent say they don't have enough money to buy food
 and clothing. Almost 30% need food stamps to survive.

Russia has become a country of appalling inequality. Dollar
millionaires own 62% of Russia’s wealth, and billionaires
own 29%. A handful of moneybags own nine tenths of the
 national wealth. The international research organization
The New World of Welfare has concluded that Russia
 ranks first in the world, in terms of wealth inequality.

During the past year alone the aggregate wealth of 200 of
Russia’s richest businessmen increased by 100 billion
 dollars. ”Income champions” own 460 billion dollars,
which is twice the annual budget of a country of
150 million people.

These then are the main problems of the Russian economy:

— its reliance on commodity production,

—the destruction of its industrial potential,

— poverty and the low purchasing power of its citizens,

— a flawed monetary policy,

— inefficient governance.

The sanctions compounded the situation.

The government’s regional policy is extremely ineffective.
 Receiving only 30 percent of the total national income,
the regions are struggling to maintain the social sphere.
There are only nine donor regions left. The debt of
regional budgets, has already reached 2.5 trillion
roubles, of which, over 50% are commercial credits.
The budgets are overburdened with commitments.

The CPRF is ready to change the situation drastically. We
maintain that the crisis in Russia is man-made. It is created
 by the government which has no coherent development
 program. Spinoza said that He who knows not where he
 is sailing, will never have a fair wind.” So, our government
is either full of bad navigators, or they are deliberately
 leading us into a dead end.

The Russian crisis is, at the same time, part of the global
crisis of capitalism. In the framework of this system, our
country has no favorable prospect. There is no room for
 such a Russia in the modern world: it will be torn to
pieces and simply swallowed by the sharks of world
capital. Our country lived through such an experience
 before. The brief period when a Provisional Government
 was in power, in 1917, nearly brought about the demise
 of Russia. It was rescued by the Red Project of the
 Great October Revolution. The Bolsheviks restored
 the country’s sovereignty, and prevented it being
“digested” in the insatiable stomach of world
capitalism. This lesson is still relevant to
 Russia today.

One of the main contradictions, is that between the interests
of the country and the interests of Russian capital. This can
only be resolved by a cardinal change of the socio-economic
system. Only a renewed socialism will be able to cope with
social inequality, economic disarray and create an effective
 governance system.

The working majority and false “class peace.”

The question arises, what are the driving forces of socialist change?
 We turned to this question more than once over the past years. The
 destruction of socialism and the Shock Therapy of the 1990s, had a
negative impact on the social class structure of society. The situation
 continued to worsen after 2000. The number of workers in industry,
 dropped by more than 2 million. The past few years alone have seen
 the closure of the Likhachev Plant in Moscow, the Nickel Plant in
Norilsk, the Khimprom chemical plant in Volgograd and other giants.
 Many enterprises dramatically cut production. The share of the
processing industry, fell to a pitiful 13%.

The main change that occurred in the life of the working class
 and the peasantry is their proletarization. Under the Soviet
 government the worker and the peasant were co-owners of
 the means of production and the national wealth. Now,
 almost two-thirds of the gainfully employed population
(64.6 percent), work for the benefit of private capital.

Workers have fewer and fewer chances to rise up the social “lifts.”
 The degree of class polarization in this country is among the
highest on the planet. It is impossible to achieve class peace
 under such conditions. The exploiters and the exploited have
 diametrically opposite opportunities and interests.

“The masters of the world” behave like time-servers. It is no
accident that capital flight increases. High-ranking officials
increasingly behave in a criminal way. More and more
governors are charged with corruption. The elite’s
inability to “rule in the old way” causes it to swing
 from liberalism to conservatism, from nationalism
 to a token crackdown on Russian nationalists, etc.

The past quarter century has seen a sharp growth in the
 number of those engaged in petty commodity production
 and speculative-usury sectors. A sizable stratum has
emerged of people who live by “gigs.” In the European
 Middle Ages these people were referred to as “free-
lancers.” Most of them are young people in the 20
to 45 age bracket. Their instrument of production
 is the computer. What they want out of life, is,
 above all, independence. These new
phenomena merit a very close study.

For all that, there are no grounds for saying that the working
class in Russia is disappearing. It numbers about 30 million.
 Does it mean many or few? Much fewer than in the RSFSR,
 but many times more, than in Russia in 1917.

“The proletariat of workers by brain,” as Engels called it, is
being exploited too. It has to get hired by the bourgeoisie
for meager pay. There are almost 20 million such people
 in modern Russia. To this, you have to add small business-
men and small farmers. The crisis ruins tens of thousands
 of small owners, which makes it easier for us to promote
 our ideology to them.

CPRF is for the working people

Esteemed delegates and guests of the Congress,

To achieve its goals the proletariat needs a political vanguard.
 Only a modern communist party can rise to this task. In turn,
the communists ”have no interests separate from the interests
 of the proletariat as a whole,” as Marx and Engels wrote.

It is the duty of the CPRF to staunchly adhere to the position
of defending the interests of the working class. We have to
regularly revisit the decisions of the October 2014 Plenum
 which was devoted entirely to our goal of increasing our
influence in the proletarian milieu. The decisions taken
 then, are highly concrete and are easily verifiable.

Two and a half years have passed since then. It is high time
 to ask ourselves, what has been accomplished? Have we
strengthened our positions in the midst of the working class?
 Can we report to the Congress an influx of workers into the
 CPRF? Let us answer this question looking the truth straight
in the face. For the workers’ issue is the key issue in our
political struggle for power.

The share of workers in the CPRF's ranks, has risen to 14 percent
during the report period. Yet no dramatic change has taken place.
Overall, the party influence on the working class is, obviously,
insufficient. We have to admit that on that issue, we are still
at the start of the road.

Thus, our tasks are directly linked with strengthening the party’s
 influence on the workers’ and trade union movement, the youth
and non-governmental groups.

We have to be more active in seeking freedom of political activity
 in the street. However, we should breathe new life into various
 forms of protest even within the existing framework. We value
 all those who form the nucleus of our actions. We are grateful
to them. But we must broaden our ranks if we are to be
reckoned with. Big politics is where the millions are.
The topics of our slogans should be relevant and
specific. We should “strike at the nerve” of the
social atmosphere, use the whole arsenal of
technologies, to arouse citizens in their
struggle for their rights.

About 60% of Russians prefer a “society of social equality” to
a “society of individual freedom.” So the ideological component
 of protest sentiments is growing, turning such actions into
class struggle.

The communists must prevent mass protests from being
hijacked by pro-Western anti-national forces. Under these
 conditions it is vital for the CPRF to formulate a clear-cut
class position.

The party and the young communist league must pay particular
attention to the youth. The youth has shown its readiness for
street action. It is not only that the liberals use inexperienced
 young people while keeping them in the dark. Today, young
 people are the most vulnerable social stratum. Even
pensioners are in a more secure situation, because
 of what remains of the Soviet system of
social guarantees.

Today’s young people are the first to have grown up after
the dismantling of the system of Soviet social guarantees.
 They are defenseless in the face of capitalist society.
These young people have no chance to study, work and
 raise families normally. Housing becomes an insuperable
problem for many of them. Feeling like outsiders, they are
 not ready to reconcile themselves to such a position and
 plunge into street protests without always understanding
 the slogans. In Ukraine, the bourgeoisie used popular wrath
 ...to establish a dictatorial regime. Russia faces a similar
danger. It is the task for the CPRF to go to the youth, to
help it transform the demand for social justice into
massive and resolute protest.

The prerequisites for success are there. According to the
Public Opinion Fund, less than 20% of young people are
infected with the ideas of liberalism. 73% come out for
state ownership of enterprises and natural resources.
 28% think of themselves as staunch supporters of
socialism. The share of those who support
capitalism, is even less among other
age groups.

We need to mobilize CPRF supporters to struggle to bring
the country back to the socialist path. Each of us must
 contribute to strengthening the party’s authority, as
the only force fighting to assert the people’s rule

Along with the development of the workers’, protest and
youth movements, we have often stressed the importance
of work with the trade unions, & non-governmental groups.

The nucleus of a new life

I would like to draw your attention to the fact that “stability”
in Russia does not have a solid basis. The number of poor
people has doubled compared to the pre-crisis period. The
dynamic of social inequality has intensified. The gap
between the richest 10% and the poorest 10% has
 reached 30 times. The inequality of access to quality
 healthcare and education, has deepened. Russian
society is in an anxious state, not knowing what
 the future holds in store for it.

The liberals in government continue to tighten the
financial noose around the people’s neck. The only
 alternative to this disastrous course is consolidation
 of the healthy forces on the basis of socialism and
 genuine patriotism. This nucleus will be able to
counter the destructive energy of any Maidan,
 and the ruinous experiments of the
“monetarists” in government.

People are having less and less hope that this power
will come up with a creative development project. Such
 a project was proposed by our party at the Oryol
Economic Forum in February of last year. Here is our
program: Ten Steps toward a Decent Life for a
Government of Popular Trust.

1. Russia’s wealth must serve the people. It is high time
 to rein in the oligarchs, to bring back to the state the oil
and gas industry, key banks, the power industry, railways,
and defense industries. A powerful state sector will protect
the economy from foreign capital pressure. The draft law
on nationalization, is ready. It will bring several trillion
roubles to the treasury every year. Planning will make
 the economy more competitive in the world.

2. To guarantee economic sovereignty. The CPRF wants Russia
to leave the WTO. We will create an independent financial
system, rid the country of the diktat of the dollar, and free
the Central Bank from the influence of the US Federal
Reserve System. State control over the banking system
and currency transactions, will stem the staggering
flight of capital. Small and medium-sized businesses
and people’s and collective enterprises, will get
active support.

3. To develop industry, science and technologies. Russia needs
 a new industrialization driven by micro-electronics, robotics,
 and machine tool building. Today the processing industry
accounts for 14% of the GDP. It is necessary to double that
 share within a short space of time. The decimation of the
Russian Academy of Sciences is a crime against the future.
Financing of science must be increased several times over.
We will be able to do away with unemployment.

4. A new life for rural Russia. Russia is not secure in terms of
food. It imports half of its food from abroad. A third of arable
land is overgrown with weeds. The task of the Government
of Popular Trust is to revive large-scale agricultural
production and the rural social infrastructure.
At least 10% of budget spending should go
into agriculture. We are ready to adopt new
Land, Forestry & Water Codes, and improve
the environmental situation.

5. Credits must be used to revive the country. Russia is in 48th
place in terms of transport infrastructure, and in 87th place in
terms of air transport. The regions are heavily in debt. The
Government complains about a shortage of resources, while
at the same time, crediting the US economy. We should direct
 investments into the development of the Russian economy.
 To help the regions, the Popular Trust Government will
 replace commercial loans with subsidies and
subventions out of the federal budget.

6. State control of prices and tariffs. As for living standards,
Russia has dropped to 90th place in the world, which puts
it in the same company with Guatemala and Namibia. The
 state must control prices. Housing and utilities rates
should not exceed 10% of a family's income. The
government must regulate the tariffs for
electricity, fuel and transportation.

7. The country must have fair and effective taxes. Russia has
a distorted tax system. The CPRF proposes to abolish VAT,
which will make domestic products cheaper. We are ready
to scrap the PLATON system and raise taxes on property
and settlement land. Budget losses will be compensated
for, by a progressive tax on the incomes of physical
persons. It will add an annual 3-4 trillion roubles to
 the treasury. State monopoly on the production of
alcohol will yield another 2-5 trillion. Russia will
 have a budget of development, not degradation.

8. People are the nation’s main value. The CPRF guarantees
 an accessible and high-quality education and health service.
A law on “war children” will be passed without delay. Youth,
 children and mothers, disabled people and old folks will
receive particular attention. Science, education and health-
care will get 7% of the budget each. The CPRF has the
corresponding package of laws. The state will build
social housing and will be responsible for the state
 of domestic infrastructure. Levies for the capital
 repair of housing, will be scrapped.

9. Strong power, secure life. Russia needs a strong defense.
It should go hand-in-hand with information and technological
security and defense against cyber-weapons. The CPRF is in
 favour of stronger EAEU, SCO, and BRICS, of integration in
 the post-Soviet space and protection of fellow-countrymen
abroad. We have to make governance more effective,
tighten oversight over the activities of government
officials, and curb corruption and crime.

10. A country of high culture. We will protect the people from
 anti-Sovietism, nationalism and Russophobia, from immorality,
vulgarity and cynicism. Culture will be reigned by talent, not
money. Writers and composers, the cinema and television,
 can multiply our cultural heritage. Our government will
surround us with care museums and theatres, Houses
 of Culture and philharmonics, libraries and archives.
Russian talents, the creativity of young people,
 physical culture and sport, will be supported.

Seeking to implement this program, the CPRF is engaged in
a constant dialog with the country’s citizens. Our proposals
have been approved during the course of many election
campaigns, over the past year. We held an All-Russia
Council of Work Collectives, attended by more than
600 representatives of factories, farms and trade
unions, from 82 regions. A program of rural
development was presented at the Congress
of Russian Agro-Industrial Complex Workers,
 held at Zvenigovsky centre. The All-Russia
Congress of Public-Sector Workers, has
approved proposals on how to preserve
 and develop social institutions.

Concrete steps to implement our programmatic ideas and
proposals are critical. Our Duma deputies have a special
role to play. In the previous Duma the CPRF deputies
secured the adoption of laws On Strategic Planning,
On State Defense, Order, and On Industrial Policy,
 in the RF. The Medvedev government is obviously
 dragging its feet over fulfilling them. In the meantime
we are pressing for the next step; the creation of a
State Committee for Strategic Planning.

Practice shows that the anti-crisis measures proposed by the
CPRF are highly effective. The key task is to go to the grass-
roots and explain this. It is our duty to demonstrate that the
results of the party’s work indicate that it has proved to be
 a credible nucleus of genuine power of the people.

To Struggle for Power

Comrades. The presidential election is fast approaching.
 It will be held in an atmosphere of growing public
discontent and alienation from power. The ruling
circles will have to press into service administrative
 resources and resort to other gimmicks. The regime
 may exhibit growing Bonapartist traits. Such a regime
is a dictatorship of big bourgeoisie, steering its course
between opposing classes. Its internal contradictions
 are mitigated, by foreign policy confrontations.

Russia today is a super-presidential republic. The number
one person has more powers than the Tsar and General
 Secretary combined. Power in the country has not
changed hands for more than seventeen years. In
 fact, a whole generation has grown up under one
president and one governing party. During this
 period the US & France had 4 presidents each.

What are the key features of the political regime in Russia?

First, monopolization of power in the hands of the president
and the narrow circle around him. Secrecy in taking key
decisions. The political process has turned into a
succession of special operations.

Second, the ruling United Russia party has merged with the
 bureaucratic apparatus. The party is merely the ”driving
 belt” and not the subject of making key decisions.

Third, opposition exists in and outside parliament, but on an
ever smaller limited scale. There is simulation of democratic
 institutions and procedures, in order to legitimize the
 ruling group.

Fourth, monopolization of the main media outlets and the
introduction of political censorship and “self-censorship.”

Fifth, the absence of truly independent justice coupled with
 pervasive corruption & political control over the law courts.

Sixth, liberal fundamentalism in the economy remains the
bedrock foundation of the current regime. The ruling elite
 dreads the prospect of being isolated from the Western
 world, and openly woos the centres of capitalism.

Seventh, the regime is not bound by any ideological principles,
its postulates changing, depending on the exigencies of the
day. Personal safety calls for a more patriotic policy, which
 we have been witnessing recently.

The figure of the president is at the centre of the political regime.
 Official propaganda is at pains to convince the masses of the
danger of his departure. However, elections remain as the
trappings of democracy. For us taking part in the elections
is like wrestling on a small patch of legal opposition
activities, and that opportunity should be
effectively used.

But, to repeat a well-known idea, it is naïve to put the stake
 on elections. They may only be crowned with victory when
 revolutionary sentiments grow. Only then would the party
 be able to hold on to its electoral victory with the support
of millions of activists. An electoral victory is only possible
 in the event of a major change in the balance of political
 forces and the active support of the street.

On the face of it, the protest potential among the population
is low and the president’s approval rating is high. But the
stability of a regime of personal power is not a given that
 is eternal. The situation may change quickly. The CPRF
 is duty-bound to use its participation in elections to
 promote its ideas, to strengthen its structures and
 attract new cadres and supporters.

In December you read my appeal “Time demands a new policy.”
 We agreed to thoroughly discuss all candidates for election,
 in the coming years. This work must continue. At the Central
Committee level it is coordinated by the CPRF Headquarters,
 headed by I.I.Melnikov.

In the report period the CPRF has preserved its status of the
 main opposition force. The party scored some high-profile
victories but also faced some difficulties in the elections.
 The setback in 2016 is due to the fact that the elections
 had been turned into a special operation against Russian
 society. They were not a free expression of the citizens’
will, but a criminal mechanism of delivering the pre-
determined result. This is witnessed, among other
things, by several dozen criminal cases opened
thanks to our activists.

When we brought our voters to the polling stations our candidates
 won by a comfortable margin. A.Lokot was elected Mayor of
Novosibirsk, V.Potomsky Mayor of the Oryol Region,
S.Levchenko Governor of the Irkutsk Region.

Seven of our comrades won seats in the State Duma in single-
mandate constituencies. They are V.Bortko (St.Petersburg),
 S.Kazankov (Mariy El), A.Kurinniy (Ulyanovsk Region),
D.Parfyonov (Moscow), O.Smolin (Omsk Region),
N.Kharitonov (Krasnodar Territory) and
M.Shchapov (Irkutsk Region).

In the elections to the Moscow City Duma in 2014, communists
 won five single-mandate constituencies. One of the highlights
 was the election of A.Klychkov, who defeated the prefect of
the South-Western Electoral District, Zotov.

On the whole, the party’s average result in elections in recent
 years is 15%. The CPRF never drops below 20-25% in Irkutsk,
Novosibirsk, Oryol regions and in North Ossetia where we are
contesting first place with the governing party, like in Mariy El
and the Omsk Region where our result is just shy of 30%. So,
it is possible to fight and win. On the other hand, there has
emerged a stable zone of election rigging in the Volga
 Area, and in the North Caucasus.

Our party comes out for democratization of the political system
 and for fair elections. The tactic of the ruling regime consists
 in constantly changing the rules of the game in the political
field in order to falsify results. Changing the election date to
 September, greatly affected the turnout. In general, trust in
the institution of elections has diminished. Turnout is
plummeting. All the parties are losing votes, in
absolute terms. The institution of debates has
been discredited. Neither the president, nor
governors, take part in them. On the whole,
the low turnout is the citizens’ indictment
of the unfair electoral system.

Power deliberately adjusts the political system in favour of
 the governing party. We for our part will insist on direct and
 free elections of the heads of regions. On electing municipal
deputies by party lists. On debarring from elections governors
 who ''retire'', in order to be able to take part in fresh elections.

Battling in parliament

Letters of citizens to the CPRF faction in the State Duma and to
 the Central Committee, are symptomatic of Russia's problems.
 They criticize government policy, complain about the plight of
 the people and about court rulings. Many complaints have to
do with the impossibility of getting housing, the unreasonable
 utilities rates & soliciting financial help for medical treatment.

Protecting the rights of working people is at the focus of our
deputies attention. At present, we have 42 deputies at the
State Duma and two members of the Federation Council
(V.Markhayev and V.Ikonnikov). The CPRF has 81 factions
(a total of 342 deputies) in regional legislatures. There are
 9,360 communist deputies in local government bodies.

Although the CPRF lost some seats in the State Duma it still
spearheads the struggle for the interests of the common
people in parliament. I.Melnikov is first deputy speaker of
 the Duma. Five communist deputies – V.Kashin,
 N.Kharitonov, L.Kalashnikov, T.Pletneva and
S. Gavrilov— head the key Duma committees.
 S.Reshulsky, N.Kolomeitsev and V.Shurchanov
 coordinate the work of the Duma deputies, on
 a day-to-day basis.

Communist deputies did not support the draft federal budgets.
Even with amendments, they lead to the degradation of the
country and the impoverishment of working people. The
 oligarchy relentlessly shifts the burden of the economic
crisis onto the ordinary working people & onto those who
 need social help: children, pensioners & disabled people.

For the CPRF, education policy is the key to building up human
potential. Without it, modernization in the XXI century, is
 impossible. At the initiative of deputy O.Smolin the CPRF
faction prepared a draft law On Education for Everyone.
 Although the draft was rejected, in recent years, we
managed to bring about a partial reform of the Unified
State Examination, the retention of preferential treatment
 when entering higher education institutions for disabled
 people, orphaned children and people who saw combat
 action, an adjustment of pay for places in student
dormitories, official fixing of teachers’ salaries at
a level not below the average pay in the region;
although 75 regions are known to have
 ignored these regulations.

The CPRF is categorically against raising the retirement age,
against dropping the indexation of the pensions of working
pensioners and the cut in monthly payments towards
accumulative pensions. A pro-government majority
stubbornly blocks our draft law On War Children,
but we have again submitted it to parliament.

Communists’ work in the regional legislatures
 is exceedingly important.

The CPRF has increased the number of local deputies by
15.5% to nearly ten thousand. Almost 200 heads of local
governments have been elected with the party’s support.

As part of strengthening the body of deputies, the CPRF CC
held two All-Russia Congresses of Communist Deputies and
 Heads of Executive Power Bodies in June 2013 & May 2016.
 Mandates of the deputies, and their duties to the citizens of
Russia, have been adopted.

Of all the parliamentary parties, the CPRF commands the
highest level of popular trust. United Russia is unable to
 hide its face of the party of oligarchs and bureaucrats.
The Just Russia party has never managed to shed its
 role of an appendage to the “governing party.” The
 LDPR plays a similar function, at the other end of
the spectrum

One of the CPRF’s tasks is protecting citizens against arbitrary
 rule and lawlessness. The profound crisis caused a degradation
 of the social environment, a criminalization of society, and
 diminished the level of people’s safety. Key human rights –
to life, work and healthcare – are not guaranteed. Over
 2 million crimes were registered in Russia, in the past
 year, and by no means, were all crimes registered.

100th anniversary of the Great October Revolution
 and our struggle

Esteemed participants in the Congress,

The 100th anniversary of the biggest event in human history,
the Great October Socialist Revolution, is drawing closer and
 closer. The Bolshevik victory in 1917 saved Russia from a
disastrous liberal experiment. It pulled our country away
from the edge of a precipice, paved the way for progress
in the economy, the social sphere, culture and education.

The anniversary is less than months away. It is our duty to
 celebrate it in a dignified, substantive and spectacular way.
Much has already been done. Enrolment of new members to
 mark the revolution jubilee continues. Mass actions on April
 12 and 22, May 1 and 9 were major political events. A Lenin
evening has been organized at the Gubenko Theatre. A
working group for the preparation of the 19th International
Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties has had its
meeting. The Lenin Prize has been brought back, in tribute
to those who are faithful to the working people.

A series of conferences and round tables has been held.
Important discussions took place, on Lenin’s theory of
imperialism and his April Theses, on the theme “From
 February to October” and on the experience of building
the Soviet Armed Forces. Some interesting films have
been released on the CPRF’s Red Line TV channel. To
 give but some examples, they include The Stalin Model,
The World Cabal, To Live without Lying, By Hook or by
Crook, Blind Leaders of the Blind, The Soviet Man,
Master of the Russian Land. They should be used
more actively in our propaganda work. Party media
outlets regularly publish materials devoted to the
 events of 1917, Lenin and Soviet history. Internet
projects specifically devoted to the 100th
Anniversary of the October Revolution
 have been launched.

The topic of the socialist revolution must be reflected at the
 World Festival of Youth and Students in Sochi. The LCYU of
 the RF is taking part in the preparations for the Festival.

The best proof of loyalty to the ideas of the October Revolution
is constant struggle for the interests of the working people, and
for a socialist transformation of Russia. However, practical work
 can only be effective if it rests on a strong, sound theoretical
foundation. We have such a foundation in the shape of the
Marxist-Leninist ideology, the dialectical materialist method
of cognition and the class analysis and assessment of,
 social facts and phenomena.

The programmatic goal of the CPRF is socialism. It can only be
 achieved by introducing advanced socialist consciousness
 into the ranks of the working people.

The crisis in Russia opens the eyes of the masses to the fact
 that bourgeois recipes for development do not work. This
tends to increase the activities of those who would like to
“improve capitalism,” to replace “savage” capitalism with
 a “civilized” market, to combine the best features of
capitalism and socialism. We resolutely reject these
 attempts to gloss over the flaws of globalism.

I would like to remind you of Lenin’s succinct formula, from
his book What Is to Be Done: ”It is either bourgeois or
 socialist ideology. There is no middle road here…
Therefore any belittling of socialist ideology, any
alienation from it, signifies the strengthening of
 the bourgeois ideology.”

The CPRF is convinced that socialism alone will save Russia
and the world from a catastrophe, a catastrophe that
capitalism is preparing by each new step it takes.
 Therefore a revision of communist ideas cannot be tolerated.
As history shows, this path leads to total capitulation to the
bourgeoisie. It is not by chance, that many leaders of the
Second International, ended up by viciously condemning
the October Revolution. Indeed, ineffectual representatives
at the top of the leadership of the CPSU, gave up the
communist ideology and went on to destroy the party
and the state. Some of them openly defected to the
anti-communist camp. French writer & philosopher,
Jean-Paul Sartre, was categorical: ”Every
 anti-communist, is a rascal.”

Ideological struggle never stops. Seeking to bolster its
positions the oligarchy fosters anti-communism, anti-S
ovietism and Russophobia. This reveals the genetic
 link of the liberal bureaucrats with Gorbachev and
Yeltsin on the one hand and with the “orange’
opposition, the Navalnys and others. Shying
 away from socialism, they all play the role
 of anti-national, anti-people forces.

Russophobia and anti-Sovietism are close relatives, as the
 CC CPRF proved convincingly at its latest Plenum. The
October Revolution and the Soviet system are inseparable
 from the historical destiny of the Russian people. A fierce
campaign is being waged against our history, against our
communist ideas. The Svanidzes, Gozmans & Zhirinovskys
 never tire of pouring venomous lies on the pages and
 images of our past that we hold sacred. The celebration
of the jubilee of Solzhenitsyn, the man who called for
aggression against his own country and actively
 backed the Banderovites, promises to be wider
 and wider. The building of the Yeltsin Centre
 in Yekaterinburg did not only “consume”
7 billion roubles of budget money.

It openly calls for the rehabilitation of Vlasov. Is it not because
of this, that the Centre has been awarded the 'Best European
Museum of 2017' prize?

Here and there, monuments and memorial plaques are put up
 to Kolchak, Krasnov, Mannerheim and the White Czechs. At
the same time Soviet monuments are pulled down or moved.
Streets and even cities, are being renamed.

Take the nationwide dictation test. This year the participants
were offered a text by the writer Yuzefovich, in which a White
general makes scathing remarks about a monument to Lenin.
How does that square with condemnation of the illegal Kiev
rulers, for vandalism and for dismantling Lenin monuments?.

The authorities cannot afford to ignore mass sentiments.
Sociologists have found that there are more supporters
of the Soviet political system in this country than there
 are admirers of the current political system and
Western democracy combined. The Immortal Regiment
 action sent a very clear political and cultural message.
The prevailing sentiment of this impressive march was
the victorious Soviet spirit. It remains to lament the fact
that the Immortal Regiment, unlike the regiments that
marched straight to the front in 1941, is marching past
the Lenin Mausoleum, that has been covered in drapes.

While resorting to patriotic slogans, the authorities seek
 to erase the positive perception of socialism from people’s
 consciousness. We, for our part, should confidently uphold
truth and justice, protect the historical memory and make
active use of our experience of combating anti-Sovietism,
anti-Communism & Russophobia and distortions of history.

Nationalism is another evil for which an antidote is needed.
Only the CPRF has a clear-cut program on the nationalities
 issue. It stresses the value of the friendship of the peoples
 and the multinational character of our country. Our position
 was accurately expressed by the October 2013 Plenary
Session of the Central Committee which stressed that
the main cause of the aggravation of inter-ethnic
relations, is the deepening of social & economic
problems. Big Capital uses the nationality card,
to distract people’s attention, from the
widening social schism.

We maintain that socialism alone can make the working
people masters of their land and of their destiny. Only
then will inter-ethnic conflicts vanish like a nightmare.

Mass events staged by the CPRF help to promote the
party’s ideas. A year ago Ufa hosted the All-Russia
Forum Friendship and Brotherhood of the Peoples:
Guarantee of Russia’s Resurgence in which guests
from Belarus, the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s
Republics took part. Every year in June the party
holds Pushkin Days & Days of Russian Language
and Culture. The tradition was initiated by North
Ossetia's Republican Committee of the CPRF. A big
contribution to official recognition of Russian Language
Days, was made by the communists in the State Duma
and the Russky Lad movement. The CPRF’s proposal
to outlaw calls for the dismemberment of Russia,
has met with public approval.

The entire edifice of party propaganda should be built on
 a solid ideological foundation. People under the age of
40 did not study the basics of Marxism-Leninism, at
school or university. This is the generation that is
 joining the party and its consciousness is often
littered with pseudo-socialist rubbish. The party
education system is called on, to address this.

The CPRF Political Education Centre set up after the ХV
party Congress to train our activists has already had 21
enrolments. More than 700 young communists from all
the Russian regions as well as Transdniestria, Georgia,
South Ossetia, Kyrgyzstan, the DPR & LPR, attended.
Many of the Centre’s graduates have been elected as
secretaries of the regional and local CPRF branches
and head up Young Communist League organizations.
The journal Politicheskoye prosveshcheniye, helps
 the party members to build up their theoretical
luggage & train party activists in the provinces.

Lenin never tired of stressing the importance of the party's
 press and believed that the newspaper should not merely
 ‘disseminate ideas” but also act as a collective organizer.
 Important information outlets today are the newspapers
Pravda and Sovetskaya Rossiya. Oblast, region and city
 party branches put out more than a hundred periodicals.
Some good experience has been accumulated by the
editorial offices of many party newspapers, including
Podmoskovnaya Pravda, Krasniy Put’ (Omsk Oblast),
KPRF v Nizhnem Novgorode, Leviy marsh (Ulyanovsk
 Oblast), Priangarye (Irkutsk Oblast), Donskaya iskra
 (Rostov Oblast), Za narodnuyu vlast’ (Novosibirsk
 oblast) and Rodina (Stavropol Territory).

Party life is regularly reported on the Central Committee site,
 politpros.com, regional and local party sites. KPRF.RU has
 launched such internet projects as Narodnaya initsiativa,
Storonniki KPRF, Antikorruptsionniy komitet imeni Stalina.
At the end of 2016 the Central Committee site competed
convincingly with the United Russia resource. Even so,
we are still seriously losing out to the liberals in terms
of volume and presentation. That situation should be
urgently rectified.

The opening of the Krasnaya Liniya TV channel in the wake
of the XV CPRF Congress was a big step forward. Since 2015
it has been broadcast via satellite. This round-the-clock
channel is beamed to an audience of nearly 7 million.
 Krasnaya Liniya has an internet site and accounts
 in social networks. It puts out daily news bulletins.
Among its more popular programs are Special
Report, Viewpoint, Soviet-Era Brands, and
Politpros, to mention just some.

The Agitpunkt section of Political Education site carries
video, audio and photo materials and samples of printed
copy. This is particularly important in election campaigns.

To strengthen the party at all levels

Comrades, we must strengthen all the party links. The past
 four years have seen a growth of the number of primary
and local CPRF branches. Today the party has 162,173
members. During the report period, it enrolled over
 60,000 new members.

The biggest regional branches are: Moscow oblast — 7528
members, Volgograd oblast — 6536 members, Krasnoyarsk
Territory — 6153 members, Moscow City — 5712 members,
Dagestan Republic — 5547 members, Stavropol Territory—
 5510 members. Last year, we had no regional branches
 where the rate of admission of new members did not
 exceed 5 percent of the total membership.

Contrary to the allegations of our opponents, more than half
 of Russian communists are people of active working age.
They include14 percent — workers; 13 percent — salary
earners; almost 7 percent — unemployed people; 6.6% —
 farmers; 4.3 percent — students; 4.2 percent — engineers
 and technicians; 4 percent — members of the creative
 intelligentsia; 3 percent — entrepreneurs; 1.2percent
 — enterprise managers.

The percentage of workers who joined the party increased
somewhat. The average age of CPRF members is 55.6,
slightly less than the 2013 indicator. Thus the party has
 both experienced and young members. Still, the share
of older members is high. Our distinguished veterans
 form the party’s “golden fund.” There are 70,000
 of them, or 42.5 percent.

Many young people joined the party during the enrolment
campaigns to mark the 70th anniversary of Victory and
the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution. In the
period between the XV and XVII party congresses,
 almost two thousand people under 30 joined the
 CPRF to bring their total number to 11.6 percent.
Women account for 33 percent.

Our party operates in a society divided by class. Power in
 Russia is in the hands of oligarchic capital and the top
bureaucrats. This sets high demands on the ideological
 and moral character of its members.

The latest report-and-election campaign makes it possible to
 formulate the main challenges facing the CPRF organization.

1. Annual admission of 10 percent of the total membership
 barely keeps the size of membership constant. The figure
 must definitely increase if the CPRF is to increase its
influence in society.

2. Party branches should be more active among workers,
there should be more workers, professionals and farmers
 in the CPRF.

3. Full-scale training of party activists for participation in
 election campaigns needs to be improved.

4. Our priorities must include work with potential allies
and supporters of the CPRF, the creation of a data base
 of supporters in each regional party branch.

5. The quality of the training of the reserve cadres,
especially at the local and primary level, is still
 a challenge.

On the whole, much remains to be done to improve the
style and methods of party work. All these tasks need
 to be addressed now.

The material base of our work

Esteemed participants in the Congress,

Shortly after the 100th anniversary of the socialist revolution
we shall be marking the 25th anniversary of the re-creation
of our party. The architects and stewards of national betrayal
were aware that our people would still be drawn to the ideals
of socialism. That is why they tried to leave the CPRF without
its material and technical base and thus limit its influence at
a grassroots level. At the time the party was re-created, we
were deprived of the basic conditions for daily work, for
agitation, communications, and cadre training. And all
the while, we were in the authorities’ gunsights and
under fire from the left and the right.

In fact, we had to rebuild the economic base of the CPRF
from scratch, twice, the first time after the Gorbachev-
Yeltsin betrayal and the second time after attempts to
privatize the party’s property by the supporters of the
“wet congress.”

Today we have not only revived our party, but have provided it
 with considerable assets. In 2004 the party owned only two
buildings in Moscow and some built-in space in Cherkessk.
Since then we have acquired 109 offices for regional and
local branches. Only 10 regional committees still have to
rent space. I think we will be able to solve the problem
within two years.

The main sources for replenishing the party budget are:
party dues, donations to the party fund, budget financing
and 'other'. On the whole, more than 80% of the money
 goes to regional party branches. This enables them to
work more effectively and meaningfully.

The country’s future is the future of the party

One of our key tasks is work with the youth. Only one-third
of the people aged 18 to 22 are interested in politics. The
blows sustained by the education system, the decline of
young people’s educational levels, makes them easy
prey for political manipulation.

The state goes through the motions of pursuing a youth policy.
Youth councils and parliaments create an illusion of social lift.
64% of university graduates are unsure of their future. One in
every two of them cannot find a job for which he/she has been
 trained. More than 50% of unemployed people in Russia, are
citizens between 18 and 35.

For the CPRF the youth is not only the target of electoral battles.
It is the future of our country. The party pays particular attention
 to its youth policy.

The share of young people in the party is growing. Our opponents
 can no longer claim that the CPRF is a party of elderly people.
Leading positions are more and more often occupied by people
 of young and under middle age. Party cadres are becoming
younger due to new members who have gone through serious
schooling as members of the Komsomol. D.Novikov, Yu.Afonin
and K.Taysyev established themselves as politicians in the
past report periods. After the XV CPRF Congress, important
jobs at the Central Committee were entrusted to our young
workers, A.Klychkov,A.Korniyenko, M.Kostrikov & I.Makarov.

We have many young people who are willing and able to work.
Thanks to them we can safely say that the CPRF is a XXI-
century party, a party of the future. Let us recall that in
 1917, more than half of the Bolshevik party members
were under 35.

The LKSM (Leninist Communist Youth Union) is a youth
organization that preserves the Soviet traditions. Its
track record includes the protection of education
institutions from being closed, preventing a rise in
payment for student dormitories and transport
fares, and the fight against the curtailment
of social benefits.

The Leninist Komsomol is the reserve cadre of the party

The nationwide Komsomol action The Banner of Our Victory,
 is an example of the patriotic upbringing of young people. It
 included more than 18,000 school lessons where students
 were told about the heroic exploits of the Soviet people.
The project has a follow-up under the title, The October
Banner is the Banner of Victory.

Every year hundreds of children are enrolled in the Young
Pioneers at a ceremony in Red Square. Today more than
250,000 children and teenagers wear the Young Pioneer
red scarves.

On the agenda is the issue of uniting all the Young Pioneers
in a single Lenin Union of Young Pioneer Organizations.
 This end is to be served by the Second All-Russia
Meeting of Young Pioneer Guides in which the
 Party and the Komsomol will take part.

The Komsomol faces the challenging task of increasing our ranks
 and attracting new supporters. Party and Komsomol members
must conduct the difficult but very necessary educational work
with the young generation. Strong links with the working class
youth, are particularly important.

Next year sees the 100th anniversary of the Lenin Komsomol.
The organizing committee “Komsomol is 100” is already active.
This date is not only an occasion for remembering the
accomplishments of Soviet Power, the outstanding
role of the youth in developing and defending the
country, but also for encouraging the new
generations to uphold their rights and
a worthy future.

Keep in mind the main thing

Esteemed delegates and guests of the Congress,

A new stage of history began 100 years ago. The world’s first state
 of workers and peasants was formed. In the year of the 100th
anniversary of the Great October Revolution we recall more
 and more often the name of Lenin, the revolutionary and
statesman, a genuine romantic & an outstanding scholar.
 It was the great idea of social justice that enabled him
to translate a great theory into the practice of great
accomplishments.

Lenin constantly stressed that at the end of the day the central
 issue of all politics is the economic issue. And today Russia is
faced with challenges that stem directly from its economic lag
 and its reliance on commodity production, from technological
degradation and a mass impoverishment of its citizens. This
 is the system that was established in this country ,after the
 collapse of the USSR.

The authorities are unable to meet these challenges. The
incomes of big Russian businessmen are growing at a f
antastic rate, even today. This means that the oligarchy
has no economic incentives to overcome the crisis. The
 anti-national essence of such an “elite”, is obvious.

At the beginning of the last century Lenin came to the conclusion
 that Russia was the weak link in the chain of capitalist states.
This fact set the stage for a revolution. Otherwise, Russia would
have remained a raw materials appendage of more developed
countries. This conviction was reaffirmed by Stalin at the XV
 Congress of the AUCP(B):

”We must make our country economically self-reliant, independent,
based on the internal market. We must build our economy in such
 a way as to prevent our country from becoming an appendage of
 the capitalist system.”

The supreme meaning of the socialist revolution was the embodiment
of the ideal of social justice. This was achieved through the building
of a truly independent state based on new economic relations. As
Stalin said, “Soviet power did not have to replace one form of
exploitation with another, as did the old revolutions, but to
liquidate all exploitation.”

A revolution is genuine only if it leads to a large-scale class
restructuring of society. Otherwise it is a “colour” simulation
 of one, which brings to power liberal “fighters against the
 regime” guided by foreign principals.

This was the kind of threat that hung over Russia in February 1917.
But Lenin came forward with convincing calls: Peace to the peoples,
 Bread to the hungry,” “Factories to the workers” and “Land to the
peasants.” These slogans arose from the deepest convictions of a
romantic and politician, a fighter and a scholar. The simplicity and
 clarity of Lenin’s slogans disguises deep insight into the problems.

Reread Lenin’s works “The Immediate Tasks of Soviet Power,”
 “On Cooperation,” and “On the Food Tax.” You will find there
 a massive scientific basis on which Lenin based his practice.
Those who run the country today are incapable of such vision.
Russia is reaping the bitter fruits of their economic illiteracy
 and irresponsibility.

Myth has it that by introducing the New Economic Policy, Lenin
 admitted the need to return to the capitalist market. Some even
say that Gorbachev’s line was a successor to the NEP. Only his
 perestroika led to a dismantling of socialism and the collapse
 of Russia, while the Soviet State grew stronger under the NEP.

After the First World War and the Civil War and foreign Intervention,
 production had shrunk by nearly five times and agriculture by half.
Crop failures and famine compounded the situation. The NEP saved
 the country. As for foreign companies, they were allowed at
 enterprises that accounted for less than 1% of the total
 industrial output.

The decisions taken then strengthened the state system of
controlling the socialist economy. In 1921 the State Central
Bank was founded in the country. It issued up to 70 percent
 of all the credits. The state invested in the economy. During
 the first five years of the NEP, agricultural output doubled
and industrial output trebled. The economy grew by 13% in
1927 and by 19% in 1928. National revenue increased at an
 annual rate of 18%. Between 1922 and 1929, the USSR built
 more than 200 big industrial enterprises. Prices were going
 down rapidly. The world had not ever known, such
 economic success.

This was Lenin’s New Economic Policy. It is a brilliant example
 of an anti-crisis program capable of rescuing the country from
 economic collapse. The CPRF program has echoes of Lenin’s
approach. It is becoming more relevant every day. The Moscow
 Economic Forum confirmed that more and more experts, are
proposing measures consonant with our approach.

Russia today needs a financial system that serves the interests
of the country and not of transnational capital. The banking
system must be put under state control. Only then will it be
able to provide effective loans to the national industry and
to small businesses. The country needs to replace the flat
income tax rate with a progressive one and to exempt the
 poor from all taxes. Without a fair distribution of national
 wealth the Soviet State could not have overcome mass
poverty and provide the economy with investments. The
 same is true of today.

Lenin passed away in 1924, but his economic policy lived on.
The foundation had been laid for a staggering breakthrough
 that was Stalin’s industrialization. Think of Stalin’s then
amazingly bold words: “We are 50-100 years behind the
advanced countries. We must run this distance within
ten years. Either we do it or we shall be crushed.”

 This appeal was imbued with the Lenin spirit. The titanic
task was fulfilled. In January 1932 the French newspaper
 Le Temps wrote: “The USSR has won the first round, it
industrialized without the aid of foreign capital.” This
 was recognition of the Soviet economic achievements,
recognition of the success of Lenin’s ideas and
 accomplishments.

Lenin’s economic policy is behind the colossal success
 of Stalin’s industrialization and total liquidation of
 unemployment by the beginning of the 1930s. The
great Victory over Fascism is also the result of
Lenin’s policy. So was the Soviet conquest of
outer space. So was the level of social
 guarantees, that one can only dream
 of, today.

Vladimir Lenin won the Great Socialist Victory which long
survived him. Today the country is suffering a crushing
capitalist defeat. It may turn out to be a catastrophe.
Today the experience of Lenin and Stalin stands in
contrast to the Yeltsin-Gaidar legacy of the 1990s.
We communists will do all we can to make sure that
the creative forces prevail. The number one task is
 to help the people to become aware of the need to
 restructure along socialist lines.

* * *

Dear comrades,

The October 1917 Revolution lit the dawn of a new life.
 Our legacy is grandiose. Next year sees the 200th
anniversary of the birth of Karl Marx. Great is the
power of Lenin’s ideas. The Bolsheviks have
 colossal experience of opposing capital.

The greatest achievement of Lenin and his comrades-
in-arms was the creation of the Bolshevik Party, a
party of a new type. Bolshevism linked the proletarian
 movement in Russia with scientific socialism. It
consistently implemented the teaching on the class
 struggle of the proletariat, on the socialist revolution,
on the building of socialism in one country surrounded
 by capitalism. The party of Lenin put the Russian
revolutionary movement in the vanguard of the
 struggle against capitalism and its leading
 force, the financial oligarchy.

The Bolshevik Party is the party of socialist revolution,
 of socialist creative endeavour and the communist
perspective.

Bolshevism combines loyalty to principle and flexible
 tactics, the romanticism of lofty dreams, and
pragmatic actions.

Proletarian internationalism is a characteristic of
Bolshevism. However, it skillfully combined the
 general laws of the struggle for socialism with
 national-historical specificities.

Bolshevism rejects opportunism and revisionism. It
upholds the purity of the Marxist-Leninist theory and
 opposes the falsification of this theory. At the same
 time it rejects sectarianism and seeks to unite left-
wing forces in the struggle against the dictatorship
 of capital.

In October of 1917 the Russian Bolsheviks aroused the
 masses and won. They took up the slogan of Marx and
 Engels Proletarians of all lands, unite” and put it into
practice. After the victory Lenin said: “Our socialist
 republic of the Soviets will stand firm as the torch of
 international socialism and as an example to all the
working masses. There they have fighting, war and
bloodshed, here we have a genuine policy of peace
 and the socialist republic of the Soviets.” That was
 indeed the case. The Soviet country became a
bulwark and a beacon of hope for the working
 people of the whole planet.

The Soviet Union presented mankind with a unique
experience of socialist construction. Its Red Banner
became the main symbol of the fighters for justice
 in all the corners of the world. During the clash with
 Fascism this red flag called the Soviet warriors into
 battle and their heroism inspired the Resistance
fighters of Europe. The banner with a hammer and
 sickle was the main symbol of the Great Victory.

Russian communists are proud of their history. Our path
draws on the brilliant experience of many units of the
international left movement. The wealth of this
experience is our great heritage. The heritage of
Soviet socialism inspired the members of the
Comintern .It found its continuation in the Chinese
and Cuban revolutions, in the struggle of Korea and
Vietnam against the US military, in the daring exploits
 of Ernesto Che Guevara and the ХХI-century
socialism of Hugo Chavez.

The achievements of the Soviet era are our lode star in
the whirlpool of events. Building on the path covered,
 we have to go further in upholding social justice.
Remembering past victories the CPRF has to intensify
 its struggle against capitalist savagery and degradation.
The Party must establish itself as the vanguard of the
workers’ movement. It must help hired laborers to
 become aware of their basic interests, to acquire
socialist consciousness, to master the methods of
 class struggle –this is our task and this is our
political and civic duty.

Russia is living through an exceedingly complicated period.
 To protect the working people, our party has to prove itself
 day after day by its teamwork and convincing results.

The centuries-old dream of humanity about a better future
gives us faith in the triumph of good over evil, the triumph
of the values of peace and creative endeavour, justice
 and progress.

Let us be faithful to the cause of the October Revolution.

The race is won by the running.

Onward toward new heights.


This entry was posted in CPRF Congress,
Statements on June 2nd, 2017, by admin.

 http://cprf.ru/2017/06/political-report-of-the-central-
committee-to-the-xvii-congress-of-the-cprf/




Stupid Butt-Hurt Millennials

(made me laugh out loud!)



What do YOU think, after watching this?


__________________________________
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Please watch the video to the end.
This is why the world hates the US.




THE US IS LISTING & DEMONISING NEWS SERVICES
OUTSIDE THE MAINSTREAM
PRESSTITUTES, NOW

So we thought you'd like this
list of good news services...

 Newsbud,
Counterpunch,
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 21st Century Wire
Moon of Alabama.org
The Saker
Dmitry Orlov's blogsite cluborlove
Dances with Bears
The Duran
Strategic Culture.org,
 globalresearch.ca,
drudgereport.com,
wikileaks.com,
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wikispooks.com.
zerohedge.com,
 truthdig.com.
 RT.com
Sputniknews.com
USSLIBERTYVETERANS.org,
 infowars.com,
 intrepidreport.com,
 intellihub.com,
 informationclearinghouse.info,
corbettreport.com,
 floridasunpost.com,
 opednews.com,
oilgeopolitics.com,
 gatesofvienna.net,
blackagendareport.com,
 mintpressnews.com,
 ahtribune.com,
thefreethoughtproject.com,
 consortiumnews.com,
 washingtonsblog.com,
asia-pacificresearch.com,
 filmsforaction.com (Native Americans),
 thirdworldtraveler.com,
 activistpost.com.
Prensa Latina
The Morning Star
paulcraigroberts.org
Truthdig.com
 Naked Capitalism.com




Jeremy Corbyn just announced a plan to end
one of the biggest scams in modern history
by James Wright

As part of his ‘Digital Democracy‘ manifesto, Jeremy
 Corbyn has unveiled plans to end one of the biggest
 scams in modern history.

At present, the British people are paying twice for
education and information. Once, to create research
(for example, through Research Council funding) and
 then again to buy back the research through online
journal subscriptions, university fees and public
library costs. Despite funding the research, the
 taxpayer must pay again for access.

An ‘Open Knowledge Library’, proposed in the
 manifesto, would stop us being charged twice
for academic research:

    The Open Knowledge Library will be the digital
 repository of lessons, lectures, curricula and student
work from Britain’s nurseries, schools, colleges and
universities. We will require the findings of all state-
funded research to be made available without charge
 to the general public through this learning portal.

In a move that will anger private digital libraries like
JSTOR, Corbyn’s Labour has vowed to end their
sneaky profiteering on the back of the taxpayer.
Publicly funded research would, accordingly,
become publicly available.

Without such access, we are currently paying
extortionate fees to expand our knowledge through
 research we have already funded. Single journals
on JSTOR can cost up to $50 to access without a
 university affiliation. If they are available at all.

If you happen to be a student at university, then
 you may sidestep the online paywalls, but not the
scam. Research funded publicly and by universities
themselves is then sold back to universities at
inflated prices. As Laura Mckenna writes in
The Atlantic:

    Step back and think about this picture. Universities
that created this academic content for free must pay
 to read it. Step back even further. The public —
which has indirectly funded this research with federal
 and state taxes that support our higher education
 system — has virtually no access to this material,
since neighbourhood libraries cannot afford to pay
those subscription costs.

Each UK university loses up to £3.38m (PDF, page 6)
per year buying back research they themselves have
funded. Meanwhile, access to digital libraries for
students costs universities an annual fortune.
Students therefore join the general people in forking
 out once again for publicly funded research, but
through tuition fees rather than paywalls.

Like students, if you happen to be at a public library
then you may sidestep the online paywalls, but not
 the scam. In 2008, access to journals and
subscriptions cost UK libraries £235m (PDF, page
 1) of taxpayer money. Hence, even if you are at
a library, the library has paid a second time for
publicly funded research.


Open access to information saves lives

The injustice of paying twice for research is not the
only reason we should adopt an open access model.
 All of us benefit from having doctors, teachers,
 academics & other well educated people in society.

Case in point: Jack Andraka, who was 15 years old
when he identified a revolutionary tool in recognising
 pancreatic cancer, would never have made his
 discovery without access to online journals.

Open source information is a no-brainer. As the rights
 to the research are bought by digital libraries like
 JSTOR, removing these companies and their
 paywalls does not mean that the researchers and
writers do not get paid. It only means huge profits
are not siphoned off by these unnecessary
 gatekeepers. It means we are not paying
twice for information.

And crucially, the more people who have access
 to research, the higher the chance we have of
scientific, philosophical and artistic breakthroughs.
150 million attempts to read JSTOR content are
denied every year. This is not including the other
private digital library giants. Imagine the expansion
 of human knowledge and progress should these
attempts have been granted.

Get involved!

Watch the documentary on Aaron Swartz, one of
the
greatest pioneers of internet freedom and open

 source information. He was the co-founder of Reddit,
 architect of Creative Commons, political activist,
and a key contributor to the first RSS feeds at 14.

These are just a few examples of his incredible
 achievements before he committed suicide in
the face of persecution by the US government
- aged just 26.





Sick to Death of the BBC
and MainStream Media Bias?


Try these alternative media outlets in the UK
(They deserve our support)

The Canary    
Media Diversified


Novara Media     Corporate Watch

Common Space     Media Lens

Bella Caledonia     Vox Political

Evolve Politics     Real Media

Reel News     STRIKE! magazine

The Bristol Cable     Manchester Mule

Salford Star     Scisco Media




Jeremy Corbyn has been accused by some of
being disconnected from the North of England.

Watch this amateur video !
(Where he mentions - briefly -
  the Work
Capability Assessment, damned below:)



 Courtesy of Liza Van Zyl on Facebook.

Liza is the lady who received a visit from police
 who claimed she had committed a criminal act
against the Department for Work & Pensions,

 just before midnight on October 26th, 2012 ---
being
that she'd been highlighting the deaths
of sick
& disabled people after reassessment
by
Atos and the DWP for Employment and

Support Allowance.

Fortunately for those who still have to undergo
 these assessments, she was not discouraged
 and has continued to fight for those who can
not stand up for themselves. However, she is
 currently suffering severe disenchantment
 with the Labour Party, as she says, below:

“We heard from Owen Smith MP today [Saturday,
 March 7] (a member of the left wing of the Labour
 Party leadership) that it is important for disabled
 people to continue to die, lest any commitment by
Labour to scrap the Work Capability
Assessment
generate a negative response
in the press and
affect Labour’s
general election chances.


“He said, while he, personally, doesn’t like the
 WCA, his Labour colleagues will not support
 scrapping it because of fears it will play badly
 with the right wing press & damage Labour’s
 electoral chances… I’ve since been contacted
by other disabled people who’ve raised the issue
 with their Labour MPs, & the response has been:

Yes, the WCA isn’t nice but if Labour commits to
scrapping it, it would appear to be ‘soft on welfare’.

“The similarities of these responses (and given that
Owen Smith is a frontbench shadow sec of state and
 therefore presumably is up to date on party strategy)
 indicates that this is an agreed line or represents an
 actual decision. This is profoundly disturbing, given
that a great many Labour MPs know in detail exactly
 what suffering and deaths the WCA is responsible
 for among their own constituents: Tom Greatrex
organised a powerful meeting of Labour MPs with
Chris Grayling two years ago. Dame Anne Begg is
 herself a disabled person, as are other MPs.

“So: When was the decision taken by Labour MPs that
the opinion of the right wing press matters more than
 the suffering and deaths of disabled people? How
 was this decision made, and why didn’t the likes of
John McDonnell, Dennis Skinner, Jeremy Corbyn etc
kick up a holy fuss? I have put the WCA question to
parliamentary candidates Jo Stevens, Mari Williams,
 Chris Elmore and Elizabeth Evans and got the strong
 impression from them that they were committed to
scrapping the WCA… What is going on?”

What do you think -- is it right that people
have their disability benefits cut
and -- die as a result?

Write now to:

rayjoseph05@AOL.com


________________________________


Follow up by the brilliant Voxpolitical

We know that the Work Capability Assessment has
 been a catastrophe for people all over the UK. It is
 based on a system evolved by the criminal US
 insurance firm Unum, designed to be hugely
difficult and stressful.

The stress of having to prepare for an assessment
 kills many, as does that of taking it. Some commit
suicide when they are refused benefit, some die
from the stress of having to appeal. Some who
are granted it, then die from its requirements –
 like trying to become ready for work in a year if
they’re in the work-related activity group of ESA.

Some who are granted benefit die from the strain
 of being re-assessed, sometimes at short notice.

Death surrounds the process. When Mr Smith said
 Labour would not oppose the WCA because of the
 right-wing press, he was tacitly saying Labour is
 willing to let these fatalities continue – even if
he wasn’t actually saying it.

It’s something that some people have found hard
to accept, but that is the message being put out
 to people across the UK by Labour’s unwillingness
to denounce the process and Liza just happened
 to be the one who stood up and said it.

As a result, it seems she has been hounded off
the Internet. She wrote: “Folks, if you don’t hear
from me for a while, don’t worry I’m ok. I’ve given
 my phone and all means of Internet access to a
friend, so that I don’t have to see all the horrible
messages I’m being bombarded with.”

If Mr Smith’s answer was a “fudge”, then he has
 no right to be scandalised by Liza’s response.
 On Twitter he claimed it was a “lie”. Perhaps
 he could apologise for creating misunder-
standing, and clarify what he really was
saying about Labour’s position, instead.

The last WCA data published – Nov. 2011 –
showed around 4 deaths every 3 hours,
or 220 a week. That’s a monstrous figure.

It's possible that the DWP may provide new
 figures soon, & we can hope the average
 will be lower ---- but the sheer weight of
punitive measures enacted since 2011
     suggests otherwise.

Just as shocking is Labour’s apparent
disinterest in changing it. The sheer
number of people who have contacted
 *Vox Political – via the comment column,
 Twitter or Facebook – to say they have
 tried, repeatedly, to engage Labour
luminaries on the subject, only to get
 cold-shouldered, is a scandal in itself.

We’ve already got enough political parties
whose leaders are only interested in what
 they can get for themselves – they’re called
 Conservatives and Liberal Democrats.

Labour needs to be better; Labour needs to
stand up and do what’s right for everybody.

And that's a big reason why this is so important.
 
Labour is the only party with a hope of kicking
 the Conservatives back into Opposition. People
all over the country want to support Labour –
but can’t, because they don’t believe Labour
will support them. That’s the ultimate reason
the WCA has to go; it doesn’t help people –
it kills them.

If the alternative to being “soft on welfare” is
causing the deaths of thousands of people
who only asked for the benefits their tax
 money is supposed to have funded, then
‘One Nation’ Labour cannot afford to
 have anything to do with it.


*Vox Political - the excellent site
that produced this wonderful
piece of expose journalism.


!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

funny robert crumb



Try real news
--- why not? --- at:


http://therealnews.com/t2/#


Here's a recent interview there:


US imperialism the BREXIT culprit
by Michael

How Western Military Interventions
 Shaped the Brexit Vote

Michael Hudson argues that military interventions in
 the Middle East created refugee streams to Europe
that were in turn used by the anti-immigrant right
to stir up xenophobia


GREGORY WILPERT, TRNN: Welcome to the Real
 News Network. I’m Gregory Wilpert, coming to
you from Quito, Ecuador.

Britain’s referendum in favor of leaving, or exiting,
the European Union, the Brexit referendum, as the
 results are known, won with 52 percent of the vote
 on Thursday, June 23, stunning Europe’s political
establishment. One of the issues that has raised
concern for many is ...what does the Brexit
mean for Britain’s and Europe’s economy
&
politics. This was one of the main topics
leading
up to the referendum, but a lot of
disinformation
[reigned] in the discussion.

With us to discuss the economic and political
context of the Brexit is Michael Hudson. He is a
 research professor of economics at the University
 of Missouri-Kansas City, and author of Killing the
 Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Destroy
the Global Economy. Also, he is an economics
adviser to several governments, including
 Greece, Iceland, Latvia, and China. He
joins
us right now from New York City.

Thanks, Michael, for joining us.

MICHAEL HUDSON: Good to be here again.

WILPERT: So let’s begin with the political context
 in which the Brexit vote took place. Aside from the
 right-wing arguments about immigrants, economic
 concerns, and about Britain’s ability to control its
 own economy, what would you say–what do you
see as being the main kind of political back-
ground,
in which this vote took place?

HUDSON: Well, almost all the Europeans know where
 the immigrants are coming from. And the ones that
they’re talking about are from the near East. And
they’re aware of the fact that most immigrants are
coming, as a result of NATO policies promoted

 by Hillary and by the Obama administration.

The problem began in Libya. Once Hillary pushed
 Obama to destroy Libya and wipe out the stable
 government there, she wiped out the arms–& Libya
 was a very heavily armed country. She turned over
 the arms to ISIS, to Al-Nusra, and Al-Qaeda. And Al-
Qaeda used these arms under U.S. organization, to
 attack Syria and Iraq. Now, the Syrian population,
the Iraqi population, have no choice but to
 either emigrate or get killed.

So when people talk about immigration to Europe,
the Europeans, the French, the Dutch, the English,
they’re all aware of the fact that this is the fact that
Brussels is really NATO, and NATO is really run by
 Washington, and that it’s America’s new Cold War
against Russia that’s been spurring all of this
demographic dislocation that’s spreading
into
England, spreading into Europe,
and is
destabilizing things.

So what you’re seeing with the Brexit is
the result of Obama's administration’s

pro-war, new Cold War policy.

WILPERT: So are you saying that people voted
f
or Brexit because they are really–that they were
 concerned about the influence of the USA? Or
 are you saying that it’s because of the backlash,
because of the immigration that happened, and
 the fact that the right wing took advantage of
 that [crosstalk].

HUDSON: It’s a combination. The right wing was,
 indeed, pushing the immigrant issue, saying wait
 a minute, they’re threatening our jobs. But the left
wing was just as vocal, and the left wing was
 saying, why are these immigrants coming here?
 They’re coming here because of Europe’s support
of
NATO, and NATOs war that’s bombing the near
East,
that is destabilizing the whole Near East, and
 causing a flight of refugees not only from Syria, but
also from Ukraine. In England, many of the so-called
 Polish plumbers that came years ago have now gone
 back to Poland, because that country’s recovered.

But now the worry is that a whole new wave of
Ukrainians–and basically the US policy is one of
 destabilization–so even the right-wing, while they
 have talked about immigrants, they have also
 denounced the [inaudible] fact that the European
policy is run by the United States, and that you
 have both Marine Le Pen in France saying, we
 want to withdraw from NATO; we don’t want
confrontation with Russia. You have the left
wing in England saying, we don’t want  troop
concentrations to attack Russia. And last
week when I was in Germany you had the
Social Democratic Party leaders saying that
Russia should be invited back into the G8,
 that NATO was taking a warlike position
 and was hurting the European economy by
 breaking its ties with Russia and by forcing
 other sanctions against Russia.

So you have a convergence between the left and the
 right, and the question is, who is going to determine
 the terms on which Europe is broken up and put back
together? Will it simply be the right wing that’s anti-
immigrants? Or will it simply be the left saying we
 want to restructure the economy in a way that
 essentially avoids the austerity that is coming
f
rom Brussels, on the one hand, and from
the
UK Conservative Party, on the other.

And again, you have Geert Wilders, the leader of the
 Dutch nationalists, saying, we want Holland to have
 its own central bank. We want to be in charge of our
 own money. And under Brussels, we cannot be in
charge of our own money. That means we cannot
run a budget deficit and spend money into the
 economy & recover with a Keynesian-type policy.

So the whole withdrawal from Europe means
 withdrawing from austerity. If you look at the voting
 pattern in London, in England, you had London to
 stay in. You had the university centres, Oxford and
 Cambridge, voting to stay in. You had the working
 class, the old industrial areas of the north and the
 south. You had the middle class and the industrial
class saying, we’re getting a really bad deal from
Europe. We want to oppose austerity. And we don’t
want Brussels to give us not only the anti-labor, pro-
bank policies, but also the trade policy that Brussels
 was trying to push onto Europe, the Obama trade
 agreement, which essentially would take national
economic policy out of the hands of government
& put it into the hands of corporate bureaucracy,
corporation courts.The bureaucracy in Brussels,
then, is largely pro-bank, pro-corporate, and
anti-labour.

WILPERT: That actually brings up the issue of the
 Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or
 the TTIP. It was one of the things that the Cameron
 government was really pushing for, this relationship
 between the European Union and the United States.
 Now that Britain is presumably going to be leaving
 the European Union, don’t you think that this might
 open the possibility of just a TTIP between Britain
 and the United States? In other words, that it will–it
 has been one of the arguments, actually, of those
 who were opposed to Britain leaving the EU, that it
 will tie Britain even closer to the United States than
 it was before, and by virtue of the fact that it’s
 leaving Europe.

HUDSON: I think just the opposite. I’ve gotten 'phone
 calls today from Britain, and I’ve been on radio with
 Britain. The whole feeling is that this makes the TTIP
 impossible, because you can’t do a TTIP just with
 Britain. You have to do it with all of Europe. & this
 prevents Europe - and I think Britain, too - from
making this kind of trade policy. The rejection of
 eurozone austerity is, essentially, a rejection of
the
neoliberal plan that the TTIP is supposed
to be
the capstone of.

WILPERT: And what do you think this means, then,
 in general for Europe’s future? One of the things
 that–one of the dangers that many perceive, is
 precisely that Europe, as a European Union, is
going to fall apart. Do you think that’s the
 likely scenario here? Or–.

HUDSON: I watched Marine Le Pen today in France,
 and you could see from her face that she was
 overjoyed. She thinks all of a sudden, almost every
European interview where the people–there was such
 unleashing of a feeling of freedom, a feeling of yes,
 we can do it. When Ireland voted not to join the
 European Union people just ignored the popular
 vote. But now it can’t be ignored anymore.

And I think that the British vote is a catalyst for
 moves in Spain, Italy, the Five Star movement in
 Italy, the Podemos in Spain, to say, we are–we have
 an alternative to Europe. Europe is sort of like the
 Soviet Union in the ’30s and ’40s. There was an
 argument, is it reformable or not? There is a feeling,
 and I think it’s correct, that the European Union, the
 eurozone, and the euro, is not reformable, as a result
 of the Lisbon treaties and the other treaties that
 have created the euro. Europe has to be taken apart
 in order to be put together not on a right-wing,
 neoliberal basis, but on a more social basis.

Now, ironically, the parties who call themselves
socialists are now moved to the ultra-right, to the
neoliberal. The French socialists, the German social
democrats. But you’re having real radical parties
arise in Italy, Spain, Portugal, and potentially in
Greece, again, that are going to say, well, the key
of
any government - of any national government -
has to
be the ability to issue our own money, to run
a
deficit, spending into the economy to make the
 economy recover. We cannot recover under the
Lisbon agreements, under the eurozone, where the
 central bank will only create money to give to banks,
not money to spend into the economy, to actually
 finance new investment and new employment. And
 we cannot be part of a eurozone that insists that
pensions have to be cut back in order to make the
banks whole and save the 1 percent losing money.

So for the first time you’re having the real left wing
 in Europe talking about financial issues, not about
 political philosophy, or the fact that countries are
 not going to go to war again. Nobody ever believes
that France, Germany, & other countries in Europe
 are going to go to military war again. There is a fear
that the countries in Europe may go to war against
Russia, pushed there by NATO, pushed by the
adventurism
of the US stance towards Russia.

And so, all of a sudden, the eurozone that was
 supposed to be a bulwark of military peace has
 become belligerent, and even more so if Hillary
 would win in the United States. And there’s a
feeling we do want peace. That means we have
 to withdraw from the eurozone. And essentially
, withdrawing from Brussels means withdrawing
 from NATO & withdrawing from the United States.

So you could say that the vote to withdraw from
 Europe is, it’s really a vote of the British middle
 class, the working class, to withdraw from the
U.S. neoliberalism that has been running
 Europe for the last ten years.

WILPERT: Okay. Unfortunately we’ve run out of time,
 but thanks so much, Michael, for your insight on this.
 I’m sure we’ll come back to you again, as we always
 do. So thanks again for joining us.

HUDSON: Good to be here.

WILPERT: And thank you for watching
 the Real News Network.

http://therealnews.com/t2/#



eternal disgrace if you're for cruel austerity


UN’s condemnation of austerity UK
- is a national disgrace

by Charlotte Hughes

The United Nations committee on economic
 and cultural rights recently published a
 highly damning report.

It confirmed that the UK government’s austerity
 measures are in breach of its obligations to the
human rights of citizens living in Britain.

Although mentioned in the mainstream press,
it hasn’t been given enough attention. It’s an
 important issue that should not be swept
 under the carpet.

The report considers a number of areas, all of
which are drastically important to our every-
day lives and the lives of the poorest.

It covers foodbanks, unemployment rates,
the housing crisis, mental health care and
 discrimination against the vulnerable.

In its report the committee reminds the UK
government of its obligations and actively
calls upon it to make the changes required.

Sadly I fear this has fallen upon deaf ears,
 as no official acknowledgement has been
made, let alone a rush to tackle the issues.

The UN committee is “seriously concerned”
about the disproportionately adverse impact
 that UK austerity measures have forced upon
the poorest, who are already disadvantaged
and marginalised individuals and groups.
To put it simply, people are suffering,
 and it is completely unnecessary.

These are people who already had a bad deal
 in life and now can see no way of getting out
 of the situation that they are in.

Many are ill or disabled, some have children
and some are single parents. These people
 are being targeted time and time again. It’s
 an endless circle of suffering and poverty.

The committee also emphasised problems
with welfare reform. It said it was “deeply
concerned” about the various entitlement
changes & cuts in social security benefits
 that are constantly being made.

These include the reduction of the household
benefit cap, the four-year freeze on certain
benefits and a reduction in child tax credits.

The committee goes on to say that this will
 deeply affect “women, children, persons
with disabilities, low-income families and
 families with two or more children.”

Despite constant demonisation by the press,
 which labels these people as scroungers, the
 fact is, they're suffering and their children are
 suffering. So much so, that their schools are
 "concerned". This used to be unheard of.

The report goes on to tackle other issues, such
 as the unemployment rate, the high incidence
 of part-time, zero-hours contract work, people
 forced into precarious self-employment, the
 “persistent discrimination” against migrant
 workers, the low national minimum wage, the
new Trade Union Act, the limited availability
 of affordable childcare, the increased risk of
poverty for disabled people, ethnic minorities
and single parents, families with children,
the lack of affordable, accessible housing,
the significant rise in homelessness, and
 ever-increasing university tuition fees.

However, I would like to focus on one issue,
 the issue of sanctions relating to benefits
and the absence of due process or access
to justice --- for those affected by a benefit
sanction.

Sanctions are handed out far too freely by
the government’s DWP workers. They are
given to mostly innocent people who are
 trying their best and are quite often
 not fit for work.

Claimants aren’t given any due process and
 often don’t have an explanation as to why a
sanction was imposed.

They will often find out about a sanction when
they go to their bank --- and see that their
regular payment has not been paid.

They will then not have any access to any justice,
-- except from overworked and underpaid staff, at
 their local Citizens Advice Bureau, a welfare rights
 office or equivalent. Not everyone is so lucky and
 many don’t have access to these services, nor do
they know how to challenge a sanction.

The DWP does not inform people who’ve been
 sanctioned unfairly about how to do this, and
 many just take themselves off the system.

In some tragic cases people can’t take any more
 and commit suicide, some are so hungry and cold
 that they die of related illnesses.

The report is indeed damning and is a very sad
 indictment of how a UK government treats the
 most vulnerable in society.

It has continued to punish those most in need,
 while others gain massive wealth at the cost
 of the poorest.

It’s easy to become distracted by all the news
about a referendum, the Tory Party leadership
 and infighting in the Labour Party. But what
 I can say is this: we need to stand united as
 a country and continue to highlight the fact
 that these very issues exist, and the situation
is bad enough to be condemned by the UN, a
fact that we should be ashamed of.

We need to educate others, share this report,
lobby MPs, help those who are affected and
who are suffering.

 Let’s show this government that we are all in
 this together and will not stand by while a
UK government acts like this, any more.

    Charlotte Hughes blogs at
thepoorsideoflife.wordpress.com.


WHAT DO YOU THINK?





Real (unsuppressed) History of
the Welsh (British) (FULL VERSION)

by Alan Wilson...

is guaranteed to set your heart and mind
racing - as Alan Wilson might be 77 years
old -- but he's a MIGHTY man !






Happy Birthday to Magna Carta
 
June 15, 2015, was the 800th anniversary of
Magna Carta. In his book, 'Magna Carta', J.C.

Holt, professor of medieval history, University
of Cambridge, notes that 3 of the chapters
of this ancient document, still stand on the
English Stature Book, and that so much of
what survives of the Great Charter, is
“concerned with individual liberty,”
which
“is a reflexion of the
quality of the original
act of 1215.

 
In the 17th century Sir Edward Coke used the
 Great Charter of the Liberties to establish the
 supremacy of Parliament, the representative
 of the people, as the origin of law.
 
A number of legal scholars have made
 the irrelevant point that Magna Carta
protected the rights of the Church,
nobles
and free men who were not
enserfed: a
small percentage of the
population in
the early 13th century.

We hear the
same about the US
Constitution -- it
was something
the rich did for them
selves. I have
no sympathy for debunk
ing human
achievements that -- in the
end --
gave ordinary people liberty.

 
At Runnymede in 1215, no one but
 the armed barons had the power &
 audacity to make King John submit
to law. The rule of law, not the rule
 of the sovereign, or the executive
 branch in Washington, acceded to
by a cowardly & corrupt Congress
 and Supreme Court, is a human
 achievement that grew out of the
 Magna Carta over the centuries,
with ups and downs, of course.
 
Blackstone’s Commentaries in 1759
 fed into the American Revolution and
 gave us the US Constitution and the
 Bill of Rights.
 
The Geneva Conventions extended the
rule of law, to the international arena.

 
Beginning with the Clinton Administration
 and rapidly accelerating with the George
 W. Bush & Obama regimes -- & Tony Blair
 in England -- the US & UK governments
have run roughshod over their
 accountability to law.
 
Both the US & UK in the 21st century
have gone to numerous wars illegally
under the Nuremberg Standard estab-
lished by the US and UK, following
 Germany’s defeat in WWII and used
 to execute Germans for war crimes.

  The US and UK claim that, unlike
Germany, they're immune to the
 very international law that they
 themselves established, in order
 to punish the defeated Germans.
Washington and London can bomb
and murder at will, but not Germany.
 
Both governments illegally & uncon-
stitutionally, (the UK Constitution is
 unwritten) spy on their citizens, and
 Bush & Obama's executive branches
 have eviscerated, with the complicity
of Congress and the federal courts,
 the entirety of the US Constitution...
 except for the 2nd Amendment, which
 is protected by the strong lobby of the
 National Rifle Association. If the gun
 control “progressives” have their way,
nothing will be left of the US Constitution.
 
Washington and its European satellites
have subordinated law to a political and
economic hegemonic agenda.  Just as
under the heyday of colonialism when
 the West looted the non-white world,
 today the West loots its own.  Greece
is being looted as was Ireland, and
Italy and Spain will not escape looting
unless they renege on their debts and
 leave the EU.
 
Western capitalism is a looting mechanism.
 It loots labour.  It loots the environment,
 &, with its transpacific and transatlantic
 “partnerships” it will loot the sovereign
 law of countries.  For example, France’s
 laws against GMOs become “restraints
on trade” & subjects France to punitive
 law suits by Monsanto. If France
doesn’t pay Monsanto the damages
Monsanto claims, France is subject
to punitive sanctions like Washington
 applies to Russia when Russia doesn’t
 do what Washington wants.

A new slave existence is being created
in front of our eyes as law ceases to be
 a shield of the people, and becomes a
weapon in the hands of government.

 Eight hundred years of reform is being
 overturned --- as Washington and its
vassals invade, bomb, and overthrow
governments that are out of step with
 Washington’s agenda.  Formerly self-
sufficient agricultural communities are
 becoming wage slaves for international
agribusiness corporations.  Everywhere
privilege is rising above law, and justice
is being lost.

This concentration of wealth and power
 is reminiscent of the aristocratic era and
 of Rome under the Caesars.  The demise
 of the rule of law, has stripped ordinary
people of security and dignity.  Peoples
of the world must protect themselves by
 acting in defense of the Great Charter’s
 principle: governments are accountable
 to law.  Governments unaccountable to
 law are tyrannies, whatever they might
 call themselves, no matter how except-
ional and indispensable, they declare
 themselves to be.
 
On Monday in Westminster in London, the
International Tribunal for Natural Justice
 was forming. If my understanding of this
 work of Humanitad is correct, we have
a cause for hope. Perhaps the Tribunal
will try the criminals of our time, (almost
 all of which, are “leaders” of Western
governments), on the Internet, with
juries
& prosecutors --- so populations

everywhere can witness  the evil that
 every Western government represents.
 
Once the West is perceived as the evil
 force that it is, it will have to reform &
 again embrace Edward Coke’s vision of
 the Great Charter, or become an unim-
portant backwater while the rest of the
 world goes on to better things. The
world is saved, once the world ceases
 to bow down to the American Caesar.
 
Paul Craig Roberts,
PaulC¬ĀraigRoberts.org




Zionists ugly plot for Yemen could backfire


Well... the Chinese have a curse
"May you live in interesting times",

and since Yemen - just like Libya -
is a country China has massively

invested in, perhaps their curse
on whoever is behind Yemen's 

current pain, is well deserved.

Conspiracy theory?
Judge for yourself...

It's up for discussion
here on Rhondda Records!!!



******************************************

Zionist ‘Arab’ regimes attack Yemen
By KEVIN BARRETT

It is a disgraceful spectacle.

Across the Arab world, illegitimate dictators have
 united to prop up the worst illegitimate dictatorship
 of them all – the doomed and desperate House of 
Saud. Their goal: Keep Yemen, and the rest of the
 Arab world, under Saudi-American-Zionist 
domination.

As I write this the Saudis are bombing Yemen &
 preparing a ground invasion. They have named
 their war on Yemen “Operation Decisive Storm”
 in apparently homage to the 1991 US attack on
 Iraq, Operation Desert Storm, when US troops
 marched through Saudi Arabia en route to their 
“turkey shoot” on the Highway of Death. 

After the “turkey shoot” – one of the worst war
 crimes of the 20th century – the Zionist-dominated
 US murdered a million Iraqis, half of them children,
 through a draconian sanctions regime, preventing 
Iraq from rebuilding and operating its sanitary and 
health care infrastructure.

Then-US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright
 bragged on national television that “it was worth
 it” to murder half a million Iraqi children. Albright 
is currently a co-investor, with Jacob Rothschild
 & George Soros, in a $350 million dollar company
 that builds cell phone towers in Africa. (Since cell
 phone towers have been implicated not only in
 negative health effects, but also in covert mind-
control technologies, one wonders what the
 Rothschild-Soros-Albright cell phone towers will
 be doing to Africans, who've traditionally served
 as guinea pigs in secret non-consensual human
 experimentation.)

In any case, if the Zionist puppet regime in Riyadh
 tries to invade Yemen, it won’t be a turkey shoot.
 Despite the differences in size and wealth between
 the two nations, the Yemenis are expert guerrilla
 fighters defending their home terrain. The Saudi
 troops, in contrast, have nothing to fight for except
 the continued pillaging of their region by their
 depraved and decadent royal masters and the 
Zionist banksters behind them.

A Zio-Saudi invasion of Yemen could end up looking
 like the 2006 Israeli invasion of Lebanon. During
 that war, the Israelis, despite their huge edge in 
money and military technology over the Lebanese
 Hezbollah fighters, suffered a humiliating defeat. 
Why? Hezbollah was fighting a defensive war on
 its own terrain. It knew that terrain; it knew what
 it was fighting for; and its fighters were willing to
 risk their lives in a just cause.

Representative of the 
New World Order bankster empire

Like the Lebanese in 2006 and the Vietnamese
 of the 1950s and 1960s, the Yemeni Houthis and 
their supporters are willing to put their lives on
 the line to defend their country against a foreign
 invader representing the New World Order bank-
ster empire. The Saudi invaders, like the USA
 in Vietnam and the Israelis in Lebanon, have no
 equivalent motivation, & will thus have no reason
 to fight hard or accept serious casualties. The 
mountainous terrain in Yemen will, additionally, 
favor the defenders.

Given that prognosis, the stampede of brutal,
 dictatorial Arab regimes to line up behind the 
Saudis is not just appalling, but potentially 
suicidal. 

The Saudi “coalition of the wicked” includes all 
the corrupt Zionist-bankster-owned Persian Gulf
 Sheikdoms – Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, and the UAE
 (an ostensibly Muslim country which is the world’s
 leading importer of alcoholic beverages). It also
 includes Jordan, which is run from the CIA station
 in Amman; Egypt, whose democracy-destroying
 dictator el-Sisi is a lifelong Zionist sleeper agent 
of Moroccan Jewish heritage; & Morocco, whose 
King is an alleged homosexual & one of the world’s
 leading drug dealers, & who (unlike his even more
 thuggish father) has sold Morocco to Europeans,
 and turned it into an oversized brothel.

Zionist-controlled media, including fake “Arab”
 outlets like al-Jazeera, are trying to use the 
conflict in Yemen to throw gasoline on the fire
 they themselves started: The phony “Sunni vs.
 Shia” conflict. But there is no such conflict. The 
only meaningful conflict is between the Zionist
 bankster empire and the Resistance.

 If the Zionists can dupe Sunnis into thinking
 Shia are the enemy, and vice versa, they will 
succeed in destroying the region & maintain-
ing their hegemony.

It is easy to see which forces in the Middle East 
are slaves of the Zionist New World Order Empire,
 and which ones stand with the Resistance. 

Simply ask this question: Who is genuinely working
 against Zionism and struggling to liberate Palestine,
 and who is not?

The answers are clear. ISIL, for example, never
 attacks Israel. On the contrary, it defends Israel 
by helping balkanize the Middle East in service 
to the Oded Yinon plan, & by attacking the forces
 that Israel rightly considers genuine threats.
 Hence ISIL is not a real “radical Islamic” group 
at all, but a Zionist false flag group. Netanyahu
 openly visits their wounded fighters who are
 being treated in Israeli hospitals.

Likewise, General el-Sisi in Egypt pretends to be 
an Arab Muslim, but is not. As the long-time liaison
 between the Israeli and Egyptian militaries, el-Sisi’s
 job was to take Israeli orders and relay them to his
 Egyptian underlings. That is what he is still doing
 today from his usurped Presidential Palace. It should
 be no surprise that his uncle Uri Sibagh served in the
 Jewish Defense League from 1948 to 1950 and then
 emigrated to Israel and worked for David Ben-Gurion.

The House of Saud may also be a family of crypto-
Jews – a theory which, if true, would help explain
 their foreign policy and lifestyle choices. (Saudi
 Arabia could put Israel out of business overnight 
by imposing a real oil boycott, not a fake one like 
the 1973 charade engineered by Henry Kissinger; 
but for some reason they refuse to do so.)

According to American investigative reporter 
Wayne Madsen, who was recently named by 
France’s President Hollande as one of the 
world’s five most notable “conspiracist 
intellectuals” (I am proud to also have been 
on that list), the Ibn Saud family and their 
Wahhabist supporters belong to the Donmeh
 sect of satanic “Jewish” heretics.

 If so, Mecca and Medina are in the hands of a 
family that engages in ritual orgies & is dedicated
 to the rise of a false messiah. Israeli investigative
 reporter Barry Chamish agrees with that analysis,
 and adds that the Rothschild family are part of 
the same heretical group. This hypothesis would 
explain the alliance between the Ibn Sauds and 
their Rothschild masters, who control the usury-
based bankster petrodollar through their control 
of Saudi Arabia.

Whether the Ibn Sauds work for the banksters out 
of donmeh loyalties or character flaws, the result
 is the same. They are selling their fabulous oil
 wealth at a fraction of its true value in order to 
prop up the usury-based New World Order empire 
in general, and the Zionist dagger in the heart of 
the Middle East in particular.

Will the Empire and its increasingly-sophisticated
 mind-control technology prevent Arabs & Muslims
 from recognizing their real situation and standing
 up for their real interests? Or will the Resistance
 ultimately triumph? What happens in Yemen may
 be an indicator.

As the Chinese curse has it, we are certainly
 'living in interesting times'.




Cuba and its glorious people



The Spirit of Our Struggle
Leave a Little Light On for Me
by FIDEL CASTRO

Fidel Castro sent this message to the
 Federation of University Students on the
 occasion of an event commemorating
the
70th anniversary of his admission
to the
University of Havana.


In 2006, as a result of health issues which
 were incompatible with the time and effort
 required to fulfill my duties – which I myself
assumed when I entered this University on
September 4th, 1945, 70 years ago – I
resigned
from my official positions.


I was not the son of a worker, or lacking in
 material or social resources for a relatively
 comfortable existence; I could say that I
 miraculously escaped wealth. Many years
later, a richer and undoubtedly very capable
 U.S. citizen, with almost 100 billion dollars,
stated – according to a news agency article
published this past Thursday, January 22 –
 that the predominant system of production
 and distribution of wealth would, from
generation to generation, make the poor rich.

Since the times of ancient Greece, during
almost 3,000 years, the Greeks, without
 going very far, were brilliant in almost all
 activities: physics, mathematics, philosophy,
 architecture, art, science, politics, astronomy
 and other branches of human knowledge.

Greece, however, was a land in which slaves
 did the most difficult work in fields and cities,
while the oligarchy devoted itself to writing
 and philosophizing. The first utopia was
written precisely for them.

Observe carefully the realities of this well-
known, globalized and very poorly shared
 planet Earth, on which we know every vital
 resource is distributed in accordance with
historical factors: some with much less
than
they need, others with so much
they don’t
know what to do with it.


 Now amidst great threats and dangers of
war,
chaos reigns in the distribution of
financial
resources and social
production. The world’s
population has
grown, between 1800 and 2015,
from
one to seven billion inhabitants. Can
this
population increment be
accommodated, in this
way, over the
next 100 years, and food, health,
water
and housing needs met, regardless of

 whatever scientific advances are made?

Well, setting aside these perplexing problems,
it is astonishing to recall that the University
 of Havana, during the days when I entered
 this beloved, prestigious institution almost
three fourths of a century ago, was the
only
one in Cuba.


Of course, fellow students and professors,
we must remember that it is not just one
now, but rather more than 50 institutions
 of higher learning distributed across the
 entire country.

When you invited me to participate in the
 launch of the commemoration of the 70th
 anniversary of my admission to the University,
 which I was surprised to learn of, during days
when I was very busy with various issues in
 which I can perhaps still be relatively useful,
 I decided to take a break and devote several
 hours to recalling those years.

I am overwhelmed, recalling that 70 years
 have passed. In reality, compañeros and
 compañeras, if I were to register again at
 this age, as some have asked me, I would
 respond, without hesitation, that it would
 be to pursue scientific studies. I would
say, like Guayasamín: Leave a little light
 on for me.

In those years, already influenced by Marx,
I was able to understand more, and better,
 the strange, complex world in which it has
befallen us to live. I may have harbored
some
illusions of the bourgeoisie, whose
tentacles
managed to entangle many
students, when
they possessed more
passion than experience.
The topic
would be long and interminable.


Another genius of revolutionary action,
founder
of the Communist Party, was
Lenin. Thus I did
not hesitate a second
when during the Moncada
trial, when
they allowed me to attend, albeit just

 one time, I stated before the judges
and dozens
of high ranking officials
of the Batista regime
that we were
readers of Lenin.


We didn’t talk about Mao Zedong, since
the
socialist revolution in China,
inspired by the
same principles,
had not yet ended.


I insist, nonetheless, that revolutionary
ideas
must always be on guard, as
humanity
expands its knowledge.


Nature teaches us that tens of billions
of
light years may have passed, and
life in all
of its expressions has always
been subjected
to an incredible
combination of matter and
radiation.


A personal greeting between the
Presidents
of Cuba and the United
States took place at
the funeral of
Nelson Mandela, a distinguished,

 exemplary combatant against
apartheid who
had become
friendly with Obama.


It is enough to indicate that, at that
time,
several years had passed since
Cuban troops
had decisively defeated
the racist South
African army, directed
by the wealthy
bourgeoisie, which had
vast economic
resources.


 This is a story of a conflict which has
yet
to be written. South Africa, the
government
with the most financial
resources on the
continent, had
nuclear weapons supplied
by the
racist state of Israel, as the result

 of an agreement between this party
and
President Ronald Reagan, who
authorized
the delivery of devices
for the use of such
weapons to
attack Cuban and Angolan
forces
defending the Popular Republic of

Angola against racist troops
attempting
to occupy the country.


Thus peace negotiations were excluded
 while Angola was attacked by apartheid
 forces, with the best trained & equipped
 army on the African continent.

In such a situation, there was no possibility
whatsoever, for a peaceful solution.
Continual
efforts to liquidate the Popular
Republic of
Angola, to bleed the country
systematically
with the power of that well
equipped and
trained army, was what led
to Cuba;s
decision to deliver a resounding
blow to
the racists at Cuito Cuanavale,
the former
NATO base which South Africa
was
attempting to occupy at all costs.


That powerful country was obliged to
 negotiate a peace agreement which
put
an end to the military occupation
of
Angola, and an end to apartheid in

 South Africa.

The African continent was left free of
nuclear weapons. Cuba was forced to
 face, for a second time, the threat of
 a nuclear attack.

Cuban internationalist troops with-
drew
from Africa with honor.


Then Cuba survived the Special Period in
 peace time, which has already lasted for
 more than 20 years, without raising the
white flag, something we have never
done, and will never do.

Many friends of Cuba know of the Cuban
 people’s exemplary conduct, and I will
explain to them, in a few words, my
essential position.

I do not trust the policy of the United States,
nor have I exchanged one word with them,
though this does not in any way signify a
 rejection of a peaceful solution to conflicts
 or threats of war. Defending peace is the
duty of all. Any negotiated, peaceful
solution to the problems between the
 United States and peoples, or any people
 of Latin America, which does not imply
 force or the use of force, must be
 addressed in accordance with
international principles and norms.

We will always defend cooperation and
 friendship with all of the world’s peoples,
 and with those of our political adversaries.
 This is what we are demanding for all.

The President of Cuba has taken pertinent
steps in accordance with his prerogatives
and faculties conceded by the National
Assembly & the Communist Party of Cuba.

The grave dangers that today threaten
humanity must yield to norms which are
 compatible with human dignity. No
 country can be denied such a right.

In this spirit I have struggled, and will
 continue to struggle, to my last breath.


russell brand


50,000-strong anti-austerity march
blanked by BBC


When an anti-austerity march starting from
 the steps of the BBC fails to make the news,
 something is rotten in the UK.

 Russell Brand believes it’s to be expected,
 as people would surely rise up if they saw
just
how exploited they are.


On Saturday, tens of thousands assembled
on
the doorstep of the BBC's offices in
London to
kick off a “No More Austerity”
march and demonstration.


The rally was called by The People's Assembly
 Against Austerity, a broad coalition of groups
 opposed to the Con-Lib Dem government that
 embraces trade unionists and campaigners.

And just as protesters attacked the state-run
 BBC for ignoring the impact of social spending
 cuts on impoverished people in the UK, their
 decision to not report on a protest happening
 right on their doorstep further served to annoy
 those who feel alienated by the political
establishment.

When asked why mainstream media coverage
 of such events seemed to be lacking, Brand
said
it all comes down to who gets to control
the
social narrative.


“I think that the mainstream media likes to
 control the parameters of debate so that
important ideas never reach mainstream
 ideology. Because if people knew what
 was happening, they wouldn’t tolerate it;
 if people knew how exploited they were.
 Ignorance is a necessary ingredient for
 oppression,” he said.

Despite fears that protesting has become
 an ineffective means of social change,
Brand remains philosophical.

“Everything makes a difference in a constantly
 mutating cosmos, and it will make a positive
 difference, because we are unifying, so yes.”

When asked if he still wants a revolution
 to take place, Brand, who has predicted
 a “peaceful, effortless, joyful revolution,”
 said, “Yes.”

While Brand remains hopeful, Sam Fairbairn,
 national secretary of the People's Assembly,
 issues a dire warning:

“Make no mistake,
these cuts are killing
people and destroying
cherished public
services which have
served generations.”


Fairbairn, who spoke to the crowd outside
 Parliament at the end of their march, says,
 like it or not, the establishment will have
to
deal with the protesters.


“Soon we will reach a size and influence
 where neither the BBC nor this austerity
 government will be able to ignore us.”


What do YOU think?

Put your thoughts in an email
and send it to

rayjoseph05@aol.com


G7 for gee, are you serious?



G7 summit - from Ukraine to Syria

Leaders of the seven major industrial countries
 at their summit in Brussels, unanimously backed
the military operation pursued by the government
 in Kiev, but strictly condemned Damascus’s fight
 against radical Islamists and other armed groups.

 G7 welcomes the presidential election in Ukraine
 which took place during ongoing bloodshed, with
 no participation in the eastern regions, yet brands
 the presidential election in Syria during terrorism
 and even the shelling of the capital, as illegitimate.
 
G7 leaders give full support to Ukraine’s actions:
 describing the ongoing military operation in the
 country, using heavy artillery and armed fascists
incorporated into its National Guard, as balanced
 actions, aimed at restoring law and order.

They strongly denounce Bashar Assad’s regime
 which, "fomented the conflict that killed 160,000,
making 9.3 million face needing humanitarian aid".

G7 leaders describe Syria's presidential election
 as "counterfeit" despite a 73.42% turnout, with
over 88% supporting the incumbent. While with
 no reason given, Brussels refuses to recognize
 the result, concluding by saying that Assad "has
 no future in Syria",  and remaining totally silent
about the need to respect a nation’s sovereign
 choice in determining its future.

The election in Ukraine, with a 60.29% official
 turnout (independent observers say 40%)...
 receives an opposite assessment.
 
The summit welcomes its “successful conduct
 under difficult circumstances”. High turnout
figures demonstrate, the statement says, the
 Ukrainians’ wish to determine their own future.

The leaders approve the unilateral sanctions
 illegally imposed on Russian companies and
 individuals and confirm their readiness to
 introduce new sanctions in the future.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, afterwards,
says this issue requires additional discussion
 and analysis.

G7 leaders call on Russia to cooperate with
 the Ukrainian government for a stable peace,
 to recognize the election results, to complete
 their withdrawal of troops from the border, to
stop the flow of weapons and volunteers (sic)
across the border, and to use its influence in
 talks with federalization supporters, to make
them surrender and lay down their arms.

G7 welcomes the start of an austerity program
 in Ukraine, and supports efforts to diversify gas
 supplies to Ukraine, primarily by reversing the
 supplies of Russian gas, from Europe.

The summit then beats all its previous
comments, by declaring its support for
 “a free, prosperous & democratic Libya
which will play its role in promoting
 regional stability”.
 
This once-flourishing country slid into the abyss
 after a NATO air campaign lasting over 9 months,
 with 30 to 150 assault flights a day, according to
 the daily NATO reports.

The bombing was stopped almost immediately
 after the rebels had killed the leader, and Libya
is now the main supplier of weapons that have
 crept across the whole of North Africa from its
 ransacked military depots. Much of it, ending
 up in Syria.

 Democracy?    G7?    Don't make me Lol.



LEFT UNITY BANNER



‘Bob Crow died despising what

UK Labour Party had become’

In an age when there are few successful heroes
 willing to fight against neoliberalism, the UK’s
Bob Crow stood apart.

He made the National Union of Rail, Maritime and
 Transport Workers the UK's fastest growing union.

 Who'd have thought he would die so suddenly
 at the age of 52, of a reported heart attack?

Like most workers’ leaders, he was demonized by
 the tightly-controlled right wing press in the UK.

 Every time he fought for his members, journalists
and the commentariat volunteered to defame
 him by almost any means necessary.

 That is a testament to just how dangerous
 the establishment saw Crow, just as they
 saw Arthur Scargill a generation ago.

Everything the establishment had in its power
was thrown at Scargill, to sabotage his attempt
to preserve the most economic coal in Europe.

Today, Britain imports coal mined by children.

With Crow, attention in the media centered on
 the fact that he lived in a council house despite
 his earnings. What those who call themselves
 journalists in the UK didn’t understand, was
 that Crow favored public over private, society
 over atomized individuals.

 Only a council house could be acceptable.

Then they attacked his salary, even though
 it was his thousands of members who voted
 for him to earn in a year, what a CEO of a
nationalized bank takes home in a month.

 Most recently, they had paparazzi photograph
 him on holiday in Brazil - as if taking a holiday
before preparing for battle wasn’t a wise move.

Since the 1984 Miners’ Strike, UK politicians
have become more subservient to the 1%
 management elite - and that made Crow all
 the more unique as a voice against prevailing
 ideas about the organization of society.

Our last interview with Crow was conducted at
the RMT’s headquarters in London, in the centre
of a toroid table around which the General Strike
 of 1926 was voted on, and around which, the
 Labour Party was founded.

 He died despising what the Labour Party had
 become - deeply committed to the Thatcher
 Revolution of the 1980s.


More interesting to Crow was the broad sweep
 of worker struggles. RMT HQ is adorned, not
 just by an alarming amount of Millwall Football
memorabilia, it also commemorates workers
who died fighting fascism in Spain and those
 fighting the US-backed coup against Hugo
Chavez in Venezuela.

The RMT, under Bob Crow, severed links with
 the UK's Labour party, soon after it helped
launch the catastrophic war on Iraq.

The Union had had ties with Labour for over
a century. Crow was preparing to stand as a
candidate for a new party that would fight
 the macro-level neoliberalism of the EU.

He would have been giving speeches in the
coming weeks about the US-backed coup
d’état in Ukraine.

Crow believed in a great narrative of global
 history & supported anti-imperialist movements
 around the world. He sought a vanguard & said
 he was inspired by the spirit of the Palestinian
 people, who continue to fight, despite all odds.

 He said he wanted a wholesale revolution in
the UK, akin to the revolution in Cuba.

One of Crow’s inspirations, Fidel Castro still
 survives amidst Cuba’s on-going war against
 the biggest military power on earth, and Bob
Crow is no more.

 But I think it’s a pretty good bet that Crow will
have inspired a new generation who will strive
 harder for a society that is truly egalitarian, in
effect a grander class struggle than just one
train or shipping strike.

The UK is in the throes of the greatest economic
 crisis since the 1930s --- and, unlike the 1%, so
 memorably evoked by F Scott Fitzgerald in The
 Great Gatsby, those inspired by Bob Crow will
 beat on, boats against the current, borne
 forward ceaselessly into the future.


The above article appeared in RT.

Afshin Rattansi is a journalist, author of
 “The Dream of the Decade – the London Novels”
 and an RT Contributor. He can be reached at
 afshinrattansi@hotmail.com.


_________________________________



LEFT UNITY - NEW PARTY FORMED


RON TODD's GRANDSON:

From an early age, my grandfather
instilled
in me one key value:
never, ever forget
your roots.


 My grandad was Ron Todd, a lifelong trade
 unionist and, from 1985 to 1992, the general
secretary of the Transport & General Workers'
 Union – a predecessor of today's Unite.

He lived by that creed.

However high he rose, he stayed living in
 the same house, in the community where
he grew up.

 He campaigned for peace, and for the release
 of Nelson Mandela. He was offered a peerage
3 times – and three times said no. He didn't
have Sky TV, because he refused to give a
penny to Rupert Murdoch. His was a socialism
of the heart, with a great humanity, solidarity
 and internationalism.

He was a member of the Labour party – but
 at the time he didn't seem out of place there.
 Trade union values were Labour values.

That's why Labour's latest "reforms" to the
trade union link marked such a sad and
historic break.

 Ed Miliband bowed to rightwing pressure
 to distance himself from the unions – and
 walked right into the Tories' trap.

Let's face it, no one on your street is
going to care about the technicalities.
 But the key point is that the changes turn
 the decision to affiliate from a collective
one by 1.6 million members into an
individual choice on a form.

 Union members will effectively be asked
whether they want their political fund
 contributions to go to a Labour party
 that is embarrassed by them, or to be
 spent on local campaigning instead.
 Not a hard decision.

As a member of Unite, one of the most
 exciting things I have been involved in
 is the union's community membership.

It is organizing at grassroots level,
 empowering ordinary people to fight
against the horrific impact of the cuts
 on our everyday lives.

 Yet so often we find it is Labour councils
 making these cuts, so we're funding the
 very people we're campaigning against!

 I'm sad not to be part of the Labour party
 any more, but for me it's simple: if your
 friend keeps punching you in the face,
you stop calling them a friend.

The tragedy is that it was the trade union
 movement that created the Labour party.
We didn't do it because we wanted to,
 but because we needed to – we needed
 a political voice to challenge the people
 in power.

 Yet Labour politicians now look and talk
the same as every other party – the only
difference is the colour of the tie.

Today that need for a political voice hasn't
gone away. That's why I'm part of Left Unity,
 the newly founded party that's working to
become a real alternative to Labour, based
 on putting people before profit.

Already we have branches in more than
40 towns and cities across Britain. More
disenchanted Labour members and trade
 unionists are signing up every day – and
 I encourage you to give it a try too.

We can't wait for Labour to be "reclaimed"
 while people are dying in the war on the
 welfare state. If not now, then when? We
need the debate about an alternative to
 Labour to start being had across the trade
 union movement.

I feel sure that if Ron Todd were alive today,
 he would be working to help create that
alternative. It's not just me who has joined
Left Unity: we took the decision together,
as a family.

 Ed Miliband's Labour party has forgotten its
 roots – but we won't.


http://leftunity.org/left-unity-a-new-
radical-politcal-party-of-the-left/




Methinks good Labour Party members
have now elected Jeremy Corbyn
as
a response -- what do you think?


email us here at
rayjoseph05@aol.com


West's money is now seen as corrupt



BITCOINS THE NEW WAY FORWARD?

The link below gives both the pro
and anti arguments as well as

an exposition by its chief (pun
unintended!) protagonist:-


http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/
2014/01/03/can-bitcoin-alleviate-poverty-pine-
ridge-reservation-tribe-pursues-its-own-cryptocurrency


What do YOU think?

Karen Hudes


DEMOCRACY ?

Karen Hudes is a graduate of Yale Law School

 and she worked in the legal department of the
World Bank for more than 20 years. 

When she was fired for blowing the whistle
on corruption inside the World Bank, she
 held the position of Senior Counsel.

She was in a unique position to see exactly
 how the global elite rule the world, and the
 information that she is now revealing to
 the public is absolutely stunning.

 Hudes says the elite use a very tight
 core of financial institutions and mega-
corporations to dominate the planet.

Their goal is control.  They want all of
us enslaved to debt, they want all of
our governments enslaved to debt, and
 they want all of our politicians addicted
 to the huge financial contributions that
 they funnel into their campaigns.

  Since the elite also own all of the big
 media companies, the mainstream media
never lets us in on the secret that there
 is something fundamentally wrong with
the way that our system works.

Remember, this is not some “conspiracy
 theorist” who is saying these things.

 This is a Yale-educated attorney who worked
 inside the World Bank for over two decades.
 The following summary of her credentials
 comes directly from her website…

Karen Hudes studied law at Yale Law School
and economics at the University of Amsterdam.
She worked in the US Export Import Bank of the
 US from 1980-1985 and in the Legal Department
 of the World Bank from 1986-2007.

She established the Non Governmental
Organization Committee of the International
Law Section of the American Bar Association
 and the Committee on Multilateralism and the
Accountability of International Organizations
of the American Branch of the International
Law Association.

Today, Hudes is trying very hard to expose
 the corrupt financial system the global elite
are using to control the wealth of the world.

 During an interview with the New American,
she discussed how we are willingly allowing
 this group of elitists to totally dominate the
 resources of the planet…

A former insider at the World Bank, ex-Senior
Counsel Karen Hudes, says that the global
 financial system is dominated by a small
 group of corrupt, power-hungry figures
centered around the privately owned
 U.S. Federal Reserve.

The network has seized control of the media
 to cover up its crimes, too, she explained.

 In an interview with The New American, Hudes
 said that when she tried to blow the whistle on
multiple problems at the World Bank, she was
fired for her efforts.

 Now, along with a network of fellow
whistleblowers, Hudes is determined to
 expose and end the corruption. And
she is confident of success.

Citing an explosive 2011 Swiss study published
 in the PLOS ONE journal on the “network of
global corporate control,” Hudes pointed out
 that a small group of entities — mostly
financial institutions and especially central
 banks — exert a massive amount of influence
 over the international economy from behind
 the scenes.

“What is really going on, is that the world’s
 resources are being dominated by this group,”
 she explained, adding that the “corrupt power
 grabbers” have managed to dominate the media
 as well. “They’re being allowed to do it.”

A Swiss study Hudes mentions, was conducted
 by a team of researchers at the Swiss Federal
 Institute of Technology in Zurich, Switzerland.

 They studied the relationships between 37
million companies and investors worldwide,
and what they discovered is that there is
 a “super-entity” of just 147 very tightly knit
 mega-corporations that controls 40% of
the entire global economy…

When the team further untangled the web of
ownership, it found much of it tracked back
 to a “super-entity” of 147 even more tightly
 knit companies – all of their ownership was
 held by other members of the super-entity –
 that controlled 40% of the total wealth in
the network.

“In effect, less than 1% of the companies were
able to control 40% of the entire network,”
says Glattfelder.

 Most were financial institutions. The top 20
 included Barclays Bank, JPMorgan Chase
 & Co, and The Goldman Sachs Group.

But the global elite don’t just control these
 mega-corporations.  According to Hudes, they
 also dominate the unelected, unaccountable
 organizations that control the finances of
virtually every nation on the face of the planet.

  The World Bank, the IMF and central banks
 such as the Federal Reserve, literally control
the creation and the flow of money worldwide.

At the apex of this system is the Bank for
International Settlements.  It is the central
bank of central banks, and posted below
 is a video where you can watch Hudes tell
 Greg Hunter of USAWatchdog.com this…

“We don’t have to wait for anybody to fire
 the Fed or Bank for International Settlements
 . . . some states have already started to
recognize silver and gold, the precious
 metals, as currency”

Most people have never even heard of the
 Bank for International Settlements, but it
 is an extremely important organization.

  This “central bank of the world” is literally
 immune to all national governments laws…

An immensely powerful international organization
 most people have never even heard of, secretly
 controls the money supply of the entire globe.

 It's the Bank for International Settlements,
 and it is the central bank of central banks. 
It is located in Basel, Switzerland, but it also
has branches in Hong Kong and Mexico City.

 It is essentially an unelected, unaccountable
central bank of the world, that has complete
 immunity from taxation and from national laws.

 Even Wikipedia admits “it is not accountable
 to any single national government.“

 The Bank for International Settlements was used
to launder money for the Nazis during World War II,
 but these days the main purpose of the BIS is to
guide and direct the centrally-planned global
financial system. 

Today, 58 global central banks belong to the BIS,
 and it has far more power over how the US economy
 (or any other economy for that matter) will perform
 over  the next year, than any politician does.

  Every two months, the central bankers of the world
 meet in Basel for another “Global Economy Meeting”.

 During those meetings, decisions are made which
 affect every man, woman and child on the planet,
and yet none of us have any say in what goes on.

 The Bank for International Settlements is an
 organization founded by the global elite... it
operates for the benefit of the global elite,
 and it's intended to be a key cornerstone of
 the emerging "one world" economic system.

This did not come into being by accident.
 The global elite have been developing
 this system for a very long time.

 Way back in 1966, Georgetown University
history professor Carroll Quigley wrote of
the big plans the elite had for the Bank for
 International Settlements…

"[T]he powers of financial capitalism had
another far-reaching aim, nothing less than
 to create a world system of financial control
in private hands able to dominate the political
system of each country and the economy
of the world as a whole.

"This system was to be controlled in a
 feudalist fashion by the central banks of
the world acting in concert, by secret
agreements arrived at in frequent private
 meetings and conferences.

 "The apex of the system was to be the Bank
 for International Settlements in Basle,
Switzerland, a private bank owned and
controlled by the world’s central banks -
 which were themselves private corporations."

And that is exactly what we have today.

We have a system of “neo-feudalism” in which
all of us and our national governments are
enslaved to debt.

 This system is governed by the central banks
 and by the Bank for International Settlements,
 and it systematically transfers the wealth
of the world out of our hands and into the
 hands of the global elite.

But most people have no idea that any of this
 is happening because the global elite also
control what we see, hear and think about.

 Today there are just 6 giant media corporations
 that control over 90% of the news  watched
 on televisions in the United States.

This is the insidious system that Karen Hudes
 is seeking to expose.  For much more, you
 can listen to Joyce Riley of the Power Hour
 interview her for an entire hour right here:

 http://xposethereal.com/news/world-bank-whistle
blower-reveals-how-the-global-elite-rule-the-
world.html#sthash.1fHbwmK3.dpuf

what kind of wales do we want

WHAT KIND OF WALES DO WE WANT?

That often poisonous programme, 'Week In Week Out',
pushed heavily this month for the valleys to be turned
into just 'dormitory
areas' for a gigantic Cardiff.


Isn't it a more noble vision to build community
enterprises, co-operatives, and businesses
right here, in the valleys?

Using centres that encourage valleys people
to invest and work and create new products,
combining science with local nature?

Local "hubs", like the Boilerhouse Project,
beginning on
Penrhys village, in the Rhondda?


Then, valleys people would retain their independence
and build a better, fairer, economy for our future.

What do YOU think?


_______________________________________



Millions in farm subsidies given to rich

Millions of US taxpayer dollars were
allocated to businesses owned by
 50 billionaires between 1995 & 2012,
 states a study by the Environmental
Working Group (EWG).

The EWG notes that farm subsidies 
are making their way to billionaires,
whom
Forbes calculates to have a
collective
net worth of $316 billion,
as Congress
cuts millions from
federal food stamps
for the poor.


 According to the report, US citizens paid
 $11.3 million in subsidies to corporations
 which fully control some aspects of US'
 agricultural production, including nearly
$15,000 directed to Paul Allen, co-
founder of Microsoft.

 The subsidies were first put into place to
 help small farmers' families to run their
 farms, if they had a bad crop year.

Subsidies to "help farmers conserve"
are used in Wales, and these also
prevent innovation.. and avoid the
major problem of rich corporations
effectively taking over the running
of many small farms, under the
guise of "research" and "I.T."
 expertise and support.

A company 'rep' will visit weekly,
with a lap-top and exact amounts
of fertilizer, etc, with spreadsheets
 and projections most farmers find
 too convenient an offer to refuse...

and they become the servants of
these agrochemical monsters !

What do YOU think?



"BE GOOD"

  - is good behaviour irrational?


  - only in a crazy mixed up world !


Below is part of Adam Price's address to the

Institute of Welsh Politics' Annual Address,
in Aberystwyth, on the 16th November 2009.

I hope you will forgive me a moment of self-parody, but it is almost
always necessary in Wales to begin any address with an apology.
This is a politics lecture which is two thirds history, and one third
psychology. I hope at the end of the address you will agree that
there is more logic here than may first appear in giving this
address at an Institute for Welsh Politics:

The case for the defence is this: that for a fundamentally new
politics to flourish in Wales we need a new psychology which
has at its heart the idea of Wales, and of ourselves within it,
as making our own history.

History does not repeat itself, but it sure does rhyme -
said Mark Twain. So it is that Wales, for much of its history
an anomaly, today finds itself anomalous again. Before the
Act of Union we were a conquered nation that was never
fully subdued.

Post-devolution we're a post-colonial country still waiting
to be decolonised. It is these contradictions that
describe our present predicament: we are a hybrid state
living in the cracks between a dependent past and an
independent future.

This lecture is unabashedly didactic. It hopes to convince you
of three propositions no less revolutionary for all their simplicity;
that the longue duree of English imperialism began here in Wales;
that the deepest legacy it has left is psychological. And that
national liberation, if it is to mean anything, has to be a
liberation of the mind. Otherwise we will be condemning
ourselves to be not just the first, but also the final colony.

To begin at the beginning. English imperialism can perhaps be
described as Wales's greatest and most terrible export. What
was tried and tested here, soon became the template for what
one English historian has called the "thousand year Reich" of
the English empire.

It is a pedigree we appear to have worked very hard to forget.
The title of "First Colony" is a crown of thorns more often
claimed by the Irish – most recently in setting the scene for
the 2005 BBC series of The Sceptred Isle that focused on Empire.

And yet the Normans settled Wales a near century before Ireland,
and the Statute of Rhuddlan, formally annexing Wales, predates its
Irish equivalent, the Statute of Kilkenny by about the same number
of years. Whatever the Irish suffered, we, sadly, suffered first.

A more plausible case for English colonialism's origins perhaps
could be made by the Cornish. But Cornwall was merged with
Wessex before England as a nation proper had been formed.
So though it may be the great unspoken fact of our identity,
we in Wales were indeed the first piece in England's empire.

But does enough of our past qualify as colonial in the
classical sense, for this to have relevance for us today?

Answering that question means looking in turn at each of
the six core features of colonialism: military conquest,
settlement, cultural assimilation, political subjugation,
economic exploitation and racial discrimination. There is
plenty of evidence of all of them at work in Wales over the
best part of a millennium, but the most obvious and least
debatable is the brutal fact of the conquest itself: Even
today, Edward’s I’s ring of iron stands as a potent
reminder of our colonial past. The Normans’ castle
building programme in Wales remains the most
concerted effort at the pacification of an
occupied country in European history.

Of course, Wales was to prove, in that classic formulation,
an easier country to conquer than to hold. England's new
rulers quickly extended their control of the river valleys
and coastal lowlands seasonally vacated by a farming
people that in the Summer moved their stock to the hills.

In some important sense, they never conquered Wales
above six hundred feet, where their heavily armoured
knights lost their advantage over Welsh archers and
lightly armed infantry.

Indeed the "piecemeal, long-drawn out and uncompleted'
nature of the English conquest of Wales was why it had to
be done again and again.

The highlands and the forest remained in the hands of
a Welsh insurgency using the tactics of guerrilla war-
fare as described by that mixed-race Cambro-Norman
Gerallt Cymro. Between 1090 and 1415 Wales was a
country in rebellion or else under siege, raiding or
being raided, celebrating victory or coping with
defeat, in a landscape for the English occupying
power as hospitable as Helmand, for the Welsh,
as merciless as Fallujah.

But the Norman conquest was no mere military affair.
Territorial annexation by force was simply the prelude
to the entire panoply of measures in colonialism's armoury.

First came the movement into Wales of whole populations of
English or Flemings combined with the forced displacement
of the indigenous Welsh. Wales was divided into two separate
domains: ‘Englishries and ‘Welshries’, a powerful settler
minority and a conquered native populace.

This was not the natural, organic shift of population
happening all over Europe throughout the Middle
Ages. This was a deliberate act of State policy that
presaged the creation of ‘Planter’ settlements
elsewhere in the tragic unfolding story of colonialism.

Alongside their castlries, the Anglo-Norman invaders
created in Wales a powerful bulwark in the chartered
town with borough status.

A class of special liberties – the so-called Laws of
Breteuil – imported from the town of the same name
in Normandy by the Marcher Lords was created to
entice settlers in, as surely as the Castle was to
keep the Welsh out.

While Carmarthen, Montgomery and even Aberystwyth were
soon sites of growth for a nascent property-owning English
merchant class, the Welsh became outcasts, confined to the
favelas of medieval Wales on the margins of town or in the
rural uplands. In this way the Welsh are not just the original
inhabitants of these island. They are also the the very first
to be socially excluded.

The third vector of colonialism is cultural: the supplanting
of inferior local languages and traditions by the supposedly
superior culture of the colonial power. The first stage, after
all, of any sustained colonial project is to convince oneself
that conquest is “ordained of God” and necessary for the
‘civilisation’ of a barbarous people.

The first victim was a slightly anarchic Celtic church soon
Romanised into an orderly hierarchy of Bishoprics and
Parishes all under the ultimate authority of the State-
approved denizen of the Canterbury see.

Ecclesiastical colonialism is the first of the great continuities
of Welsh history as it features in all three waves of colonial
conquest: Norman, Tudor and Victorian. So we have in the
early years of the Norman occupation, the sidelining of
ancient abbies dedicated to the names of Welsh holy men
by local Benedictine franchises – the religious equivalent of
Starbucks or MacDonalds – promoting universal saints with
no local connection.

With Cistercian support, Wales was able to rebuild
aspects of a national church in the Thirteenth
Century, an achievement that Glyndwr sought to
consolidate through the programme agreed at
the Pennal Synod.

With that dream defeated, the English delegate at
the Council of Constance was able to declare when
the issue of the Welsh church was raised:
“inclyta natio Anglicana Brytannica”,
an early Latin rendition of “For Wales, see England ”.

Fast forward five centuries and in the second wave of
colonisation – closely tied as it was to the Reformation
of Convenience under Henry VIII - and we have a State-
funded campaign of iconoclasm targeting such
medieval shrines and images of Welsh piety as
Derfel Fawr, St. Winifred's Well, our Lady of Cardigan
and the Virgin of Penrhys.

The English Bishop of St. Davids’s hates the cult of St. David
so much he strips the lead off the roof of the Cathedral and
moves the Bishop’s Palace to Abergwili where it remains
to this day. (Perhaps in an Act of Penance it’s time the
Bishop of St. David’s moved back in.)

An English Book of Common Prayer is then pressed on a
monoglot Welsh population with, predictably, little success,
shoring up the popularity of old Catholic Rites.

Most people will not realise it but Wales , like Ireland ,
remained stubbornly loyal to Mother Church long after
England had succumbed, much to the frustration of
English Puritan missionaries. It wasn't until the Eighteenth
Century that the Protestant Reformation – in the sense of a
genuine popular attachment and the full rejection of what
later came to be known disdainfully as the Marian cult –
could be said to have been completed in Wales & only then,
because of a Third Wave of ecclesiastical colonisation that
drafted in Anglophone Anglican priests in their hundreds
into Welsh parishes and drove their long-suffering laity into
the enthusiastic arms of the Methodist revivalists.

The Welsh, therefore, - despite inhabiting the only part of the
Island of Britain to have an unbroken Christian tradition -
must join a long list of colonised peoples forced to change
their religion as a consequence of conquest.

Not content to steal our land, they then conspired to
steal our soul. No wonder the poet Thomas ab Ieuan
Rhys would lament: “We have been changed by the
faith of the Saxons. Our hearts are not inclined
towards it” and Sion Brwynig would speak in 1550
of the “icy coldness” of the new faith and the
”bitter blow” of witnessing the removal of the
altars and adjuncts of Catholic worship.

It is hardly any wonder that when Guido Fawkes went
to see Philip of Spain in 1603 – introduced most probably
through the auspices of Hugh Owen, Plas Du, Hispanophile
and the Continent's leading Catholic spy - to petition him in
favour of an invasion, it was Milford Haven he proposed as
the landing site since Wales would prove the most fertile
recruiting ground for a Catholic army.

It was a change of strategy not a change in purpose that won
Wales to the Protestant faith. Elizabethan state sponsorship
of the translation of Bible and the Book of Common Prayer
should not be mistaken as an altogether altruistic measure.

The final clause of the “Act for the Translation of the Bible and
Divine Service into the Welsh Tongue” required that an English
Bible be placed in every Welsh Church so that the monoglot
Welsh “may by conferring both Tongues together, the sooner
attain to the knowledge of the English Tongue”. Whatever
William Morgan’s motivation, the ultimate aim was the same
as the Acts of Union themselves: Anglicisation and uniformity.
The fact that it had the opposite effect was more by
accident than design.

The wider attack on the Welsh language probably represents
the longest State-sanctioned policy of attempted linguistic
genocide in history. A Charter granted to Welshpool in 1406
stated that legal cases could only be pleaded henceforth in
French or English. Six hundred years later and we are still
pleading for Welsh to achieve equal status in the courts.

The Acts of the Union with their condemnation of “sinister
usages & customs”, in Gwyn Alf Williams words, rendered
a ”largely monoglot people aliens in their own land”.
With friends like the Tudors, who needed enemies?

The Victorians - for all their Celtomania - were determined to
finish the job: even the Arch-Celticist Mathew Arnold was to
declare “the sooner the Welsh language disappears as an
instrument of the practical, political, social life of Wales the
better”. With Arnold a senior inspector of schools, it could
hardly came as any surprise that the 1870 Education Act
made English compulsory. It was to take until 1939 for the
first Welsh-medium school to open - here in Aber. By then
the damage had been done.

The most telling symbol of all of cultural imperialism in Wales,
of course, was a little wooden halter with the letters WN
branded in it that hung around the necks of children. The
language was literally beaten out of us. But children were
forced not just to betray their culture but also their class-
mates: the ultimate mental cruelty. The Welsh Not was the
model for the corporal punishment of indigenous culture
thoughout the Empire; the Nobel prize winning Kenyan
novelist Ngugi wa Thiong’o wore a wooden tablet around
his own neck as a child which they called 'Monitor'. Any child
speaking KiSwahili or Gikuyu would be given the Monitor until
he heard another child do the same so he could point them out
to the teacher . The child left holding the Monitor at the end of
the day would be beaten with a stick. Sounds familiar?

That we were a subject people in political terms is also an
objective fact however uncomfortable we may be with its
consequences. Wales, unlike the Scots or Irish Parliaments,
was not consulted on its own Act of Union. We were to be
rendered politically invisible as things turned out until the
final year of the final century of the last Millennium.

Our royal house was not conjoined through dynastic
marriage; it was murdered. The heir to the English
throne, a constituent of mine who admittedly has
shown more genuine interest in Wales than all his
predecessors put together, has about as much
moral right to the title Prince of Wales as Perkin
Warbeck did to the English throne in the time of
Henry Tudor.

And it wasn't just  the descendants of Hywel Dda
that were 'disappeared" like the victims of a
military junta; his laws too were consigned to
the garbage heap of history.

Monmouthshire found itself lumped in with England
for no better reason than the English circuits were
composed of four counties – and Wales had thirteen,
so Monmouthshire was forced to make up the
numbers with its three English neighbours.

That said, in the remaining twelve counties the
native law of Wales survived two of the three
attempts to render them null and void.

The Statute of Rhuddlan in the Welsh circuit
courts soon evolved into the Statute of Wales, 
and a separate Welsh judicature developed
which again somehow survived the Act of
Union's legal lynching.

Welsh law obviously embodied the spirit
of Gwilym Crach of Gower who was hung
not once, but twice for his involvement in
a rebellion of 1298, and still survived....
The devil simply wouldn't die. So it was that
even as late as 1779 Welsh defendants were
employing the legal argument - breve regis
non currit in Wallam - the king's writ doesn't
run in Wales.

It was the last great imperialist monarch that
succeeded where Edward I and Henry VIII
failed: Queen Victoria abolished the Welsh Court
of Great Sessions in 1830 and finally laid the
legal legacy of Welsh independence to rest.
At least until now.

The reasons for the colonisation of medieval Wales were
probably more strategic than economic. Upland Wales
helped supply England with beef, milk and wool, but it
was acting as a buffer against foreign invasion that
was probably the principal attraction. In the third
wave of colonisation fuelled by the Industrial
Revolution, that position was dramatically reversed
when Wales became one of the most industrialised
 regions on the planet.

As Professor Merfyn Jones has said, Wales from 1850
can be caricatured as one big mine or quarry as some
mineral or ore was being extracted virtually every-
where. Iron ore was dug & smelted here continuously
from the late 1780s; at the same time Anglesey had a
virtual world monopoly on copper: Here in Ceredigion
the mines were for lead and zinc. And yes, Wales was
the only the part of modern Britain ever to see a gold
rush , in Dolgellau in the 1880s.

Then there were all the different types of stone quarried here:
limestone for the foundries, sandstone, dolerite, granite and,
of course, slate where North Wales represented the world's
biggest producer for all of the 19th century and much of the
20th. And I haven't even mentioned coal . By 1913, 35% of
the tonnage of all Britain’s exports was leaving through
south Wales ports: almost all of it coal to fuel the industries
of the world.

One of the most striking features of all this impressive economic
record is that it was led, with a very few exceptions, by English
proprietors. The Dowlais Iron Company, for example, that turned
Merthyr into an economic powerhouse was founded by Anthony
Bacon from London. He was followed by the Crawshays from
Yorkshire and the Guests of Herefordshire. The Ebbw Vale iron
works was established by the Homfrays of Worcester. In North
Wales, it was John Wilkinson of Lancashire that led the way.
  The metal industry in Swansea meanwhile was developed by
the Vivian family from Cornwall.

There were some exceptions - the Copper and Coal kings,
Thomas Williams or David Davies- but on the whole the pattern
was clear. John Taylor, the leading figure in the Welsh lead
industry, was from Norwich. English landowners were also at
the forefront of development. The current Duke of Westminster's
Grosvenor family was involved in lead mining in north east Wales.

Another Cheshire family, the Assheton's Smith's of the Faenol
estate, made their fortune in slate. The Butes made vast profits
not only from coal but from the ports they built to export it.

Even in agriculture the almost feudal level of absentee
ownership persisted late into the 19th century. In 1887
less than 5% of the land in Caernarvonshire was owned
by its tenants.

With such a high level of English ownership, we bore all of the
human and environmental cost but saw little of the profit - with
the exception of a few square miles of civic pride in Cardiff.

Instead follies and mock-feudal mansions were built the length
and breadth of Wales. This was the Welsh equivalent of what
economists call the 'resource curse', the fact that mineral wealth
is almost always more trouble than its worth. The 'path dependence'
created by an extractive mono-culture is still with us today: our
failure to develop an indigenous enterprise culture or, as George
Monbiot has recently pointed out, the preponderance of East-West
over North-South links, all stem from the colonial exploitation
of our economy.

Beyond economic domination and military conquest, as the
late Edward Said was able to show, colonialism is also, of
course, a discourse of domination: a deep-seated idea that
the imperial power has an inherent right to rule and impose its
values on the nation that it dominates. The first step, then, in
any colonial project is convincing oneself that the colonised
are inferior; that the act of conquest itself, for all its brutality,
is morally justified, even “ordained of God”. So it was that the
Anglo-Norman propagandists opened up a ‘cultural front” in
their war against the Welsh which has formed the bedrock
to Cambrophobia down the centuries.

So it is that the author of the 12th century English history The
Deeds of King Stephen informs us that “Wales is a country of
wooded pasture that breeds men of an animal type, swift-footed,
accustomed to war, volatile, quick in breaking their word and
changing their abode” he omits to mention the fact that the Welsh
also lived in towns, until the Normans drove them out and that the
need to fight and keep constantly on the move may have had
something to do with his kinsmen’s presence.

When Chretien De Troyes says, in writing of Peredur or Perceval –
one of a number of Welsh characters to populate the European
romantic imagination for the best part of a millennium – not bad
for a people ‘on the edge’ – “All Welshmen are, by nature, more
irrational than animals in the field” he is not just echoing the
views of the Anglo-Norman elite, he is presaging the classic
strategy of the coloniser of rendering the colonised as the
savage “Other” used centuries later by the European Powers
in Africa, Asia or America.

But he also represents a tradition that continues right through
to the nineteenth century view of the Celtic personality as
irrational, feminine, child-like and impractical and racially
inferior to the Saxon.

A second reoccurring theme is our immorality. The Normans
justify their Takeover of the Welsh Church by reference to
the loose morals of their flock who practiced trial marriage,
homosexuality, and inheritance rights for the illegitimate.

We were, it seems, prodigiously modern. It is here that the
continuity of colonialism re-emerges. When the infamous
Report of the Commissioners of Inquiry into the state of
Education in Wales of 1847 (which came to be known by
Nonconformist Wales as the Treachery of the blue Books)
was published it was again the moral laxity of the Welsh
that was held up as the most pressing reason for
making English the sole medium of instruction.

In those periods where the Welsh demonstrate passivity and
obedience then a different picture of the Welsh is presented as
the comically stupid if a little two-faced. In the eighteenth and
nineteenth century there was a rich market for this kind of thing –
Taffy and his wife sat atop a goat – because they couldn’t afford
a horse, leeks poking out of their hats, holding a cheese in one
hand, and their pedigree in the other.

There was often a modern sinister undertow. In 1885 John
Beddoe, President of the Anthropological Institute developed
an "Index of Nigrescence" which claimed to show that the
Welsh and western Irish were “Africanoid” in their ‘jutting
jaws’ and ‘slitty nostrils’ and thus originally immigrants
from Africa.

This idea of the Celts as 'colonials' has been a constant
theme since the Age of Discovery:-  as one Protestant
pamphleteer said in 1651, frustrated at the lack of
success in converting the Welsh: “We have Indians at
home – Indians in Cornwall, Indians in Wales, Indians
in Ireland. ” Forget sending missionaries to the West
Indies, he argued - send them to Merthyr.

So it is that prevailing image of the Welsh in England
throughout these three colonial periods ranges
from submissive and deferential, to lewd and unruly,
and even downright perfidious on a par with that of
the wild Irish. What never changed was the tacit
assumption that we were, by definition, inferior.

The lowest point was the passing of the Punitive Laws
in the wake of the Glyndwr Rebellion which introduced
a system of racial discrimination equal to Apartheid.

These race laws have fallen prey to a collective amnesia
so it is worth recounting them in full: from 1401, no
Welshman was to enjoy the privilege of burgess status
(an absolute prohibition traditionally reserved for Jews);
no Welsh man was to buy land in England; no Welshman
was to hold a major office in Wales.

These prohibitions extended to any Englishman who
had married a Welsh woman since the revolt began.

No Welshman was to carry arms in any town, market,
church assembly or highway. No Welshman was to
hold a castle or any other defensible house that had
existed in Edward I's time. Garrisons must comprise
exclusively Englishmen – not even men of mixed race
would be allowed. No Englishman was to be convicted
in Wales by, or at the suit of, a Welshman.

As Rees Davies argues, what is particularly striking
about these edicts is that they are “specifically racist
in character”. An extreme reaction to the shock of
the Glyndwr revolt they undoubtedly were – but they
were also reinstating the common law practice
of three hundred years of English supremacism.

Kidwelly, created in the 1100s, had English, French
or Flemish burgesses – but no Welsh (or forinseci) -
we were literally foreigners in our own land.

In 1351 the ironically named Hope in Flintshire
banned the Welsh from holding burgages and
confiscated any that already did - but this was
nothing new, Edward I had banned Welshmen
from holding land in borough towns in reaction
to Llywelyn Bren's revolt of 1294.

The attitudes that underpinned the Punitive Laws
have re-emerged at other times in our colonial
past, and overt discrimination continued to be
part of our experience in Wales right through
into the modern period.

For the first part of the Eighteenth Century, for example,
the majority of Welsh by virtue of their Nonconformity
were banned from any office in the House of Commons.

They couldn’t enter Oxford or Cambridge finally until
1871 - this being one of the principal drivers behind
the establishment of the University of Wales.

We were a colony. And now we're in a state of denial.
The factual evidence for the reality of colonisation
is all around us - indeed it can even be said to be
within us.

But to the extent that we acknowledge it, it
might as well be invisible. Dilys Davies, a Welsh
psychiatrist working at Guy's hospital who has
conducted an exhaustive analysis of the Welsh
psyche, has called this a form of cultural autism
and drawn analogies with child sexual abuse -
which for all its pervasiveness, was once met
by a wall of silence.

Colonisation is our 'dangerous idea', a "dirty little
secret', a 'painful memory' that has to be repressed.

Cambridge University Press' primer on Medieval Wales
warns the reader that in Wales’ case “the colonial
analogy – may be pushed too far and it must be
used with great sensitivity”.

The late great Rees Davies – whose revolutionary
tracts 'Colonial Wales' and 'Race Relations in Post-
Conquest Wales' were published within a year of
each other in the mid 1970s as he moved to
Aberystwyth – was very much the glorious
exception. He himself was warned that specialising
in Welsh history was reputational suicide for a young Welsh
historian and, sadly, he never got to teach a course on the
history of his own country here at Aberystwyth though he is
probably one of the greatest historians that Wales ever produced.

So it was left to Gwynfor Evans to continue where the professional
historians left off. When Michael Hechter produced his magnus
opus: 'Internal; Colonialism: the Celtic Fringe in British National
Development', he was met with a chorus of disapproval from
Welsh academics. Alfred Zimmern could have warned him
perhaps, of the professional perils of an American
prognosticating about issues of Welsh identity.

In some ways the robust rejection of the theory of ‘internal
colonialism” was in part a reaction to the myths perpetrated
by colonialism itself – that Wales was a backwater, outside
the mainstream of modernity, and the Welsh a people whose
history was lived perpetually in the passive tense. For Gwyn Alf,
Wales ’ global industrial pre-eminence meant the Welsh Working
Class – always written in capital letters – were “junior partners
in the British Empire ”. Casting back to Tudor times he showed
us how that latter-day Merlin, Dr John Dee, uses the Madoc
myth to stake a British claim to the New World – and British,
mind you, the Welsh at the Tudor Court having reconquered
Albion for the Celts. Far from being victims of the British
Empire, according to this, we damned well invented it.

There can certainly be no doubt that the Welsh
enthusiastically embraced imperialism. Though
less prominent than the Scots, the Welsh were
well represented among the military and civilian
ranks of Imperial Britain.

At one time, both the Chief Justices of Bengal and
Calcutta were Welsh-speaking Welshmen. But does
the sight of Zulus spearing Welshmen at the Battle
of Isandlwhana or Welshmen bayoneting Zulu at the
Battle of Rourke’s Drift in return, help or hinder the
hypothesis that Britishness was forged by all four
nations of these islands in the cauldron of empire
which became the Britannic melting-pot, as Gordon
Brown’s favourite historian Linda Colley suggests?

Could this not simply be a rather poignant reminder
of the practice of empires of time immemorial, of
pressing the already vanquished into doing the
next bit of vanquishing

Of course, we participated in later imperial
adventures. Denied opportunities for
advancement at home, we often had
little choice.

But this obscures the bigger truth, that where
other colonies were the copy, we were the
original, where colonialism's die was first minted.

It was the Marcher Lords like the de Lacys who founded
Drogheda who sought in the first instance to pacify Ireland,
able to draw as they were on a century or more of
experience of colonial occupation in Wales. The peopling
of Pembrokeshire by Flemings presaged the later
Plantation in Ulster.

The Tudors hold up post-conquest Wales as the model
for recalcitrant Ireland. As Sir Henry Sidney's secretary
William Gerard assured the Privy Council on the occasion
of his master's transfer from Wales to Ireland:

"A better president (precedent)..... colde not be founde
than to imitate the course that reformed Wales."

Wales was the epicentre for 3 tidal waves of colonial expansion
in the history of the Anglo-British State: the insular colonialism of
the Norman period, the transatlantic ambitions of the Tudors and
the global imperialism of the Victiorians. We supplied the model for
the first, the myth for the second, and the material for the third.

In each phase we paid a heavy price for our collusion in our own
enslavement, with the progressive colonisation of our own mind
& imagination. The first English imperialists were early amateurs
at this kind of thing – but come the Treason of the Blue Books...
they had learned to deploy it with devastating effect.

Colonialism in any society and in any period is an act of violation
which results in a kind of trauma whose effects are felt for many
generations. Hence the most long-lasting and deep-seated legacy
of colonialism is psychological. It was the mixed-race French-
speaking Caribbean Frantz Fanon, practising psychiatry and
preaching revolution in occupied Algeria, who first realised this
and began to write painfully but eloquently about the psychology
of colonialism.

Welsh psychologists and psychotherapists by contrast have
been almost completely silent on this theme. Dr Dilys Davies
of Guy's Hospital, the only professional psychiatrist to have
written at all about colonialism's effect on the Welsh psyche,
suggests that - as with Rees Davies the historian - it is not in
the professional interests of the Welsh psychiatrist to appear
too 'parochial'. Dr Davies, by contrast, stands out as the Frantz
Fanon of Wales, and virtually the entirety of what follows is
based on her pioneering work .

As with many other things, the Irish have a head start on us
in thinking about the psychology of colonialism. An important
feature, according to the psychologist Vincent Kenny is the
way in which the Irish have internalised their own oppression.

One way of overcoming the feeling of powerlessness that
flows from being dominated is to identify with the dominator
- sometimes even unconsciously. It is a kind of sociological
equivalent of Stockholm syndrome - what Fanon calls
'adhesion' to the dominator, the Brazilian pedagogist Paolo
Freire called "housing the other" and the German-jewish
psychologist Erich Fromm called an “inner duality”.

It goes by many names but its self-destructive consequences
are only obvious: our selves becomes divided against ourselves.

We become self-oppressing.

It should be no surprise therefore that Beriah Gwynfe Evans,
the Secretary of Cymru Fydd, was an enthusiastic exponent of
the Welsh Not as a young teacher- and that its use was far more
widespread among voluntary schools prior to 1870 than in State
schools thereafter, implying that parents generally approved
of its use.

Was Welsh as the language of the majority murdered or did it
commit suicide? The question is in some ways irrelevant as both
realities are in fact the parallel outcomes of the selfsame process.

(The Welsh Not was also an early example of the insidious effects
of performance related pay - since the teachers were paid by
results and Welsh didn't form part of the formal curriculum, the
use of Welsh was actively discouraged by the teachers).

That we have been complicit in our own colonisation is undeniable.

As Gandhi said of his own country : “the English have not taken
India;-   we have given it to them.”.

In developing this theme in his Hind Swaraj, Gandhi drew upon
a little know treatise by an 18 year old Frenchman, Etienne
de la Boetie written some fifteen years after our own Act of
Union: the Discourse on Voluntary Servitude. In it he argues
that structures of power in any situation, even where they
rely on physical force, depend in the last analysis on consent,
however reluctant, of those over whom power is exercised.

As Gandhi went on to say: “It is we the English-knowing Indians
that have enslaved India. The curse of the nation will rest not
upon the English, but upon us…”

So how has colonialism's curse imprinted itself on the modern
welsh psyche? Broadly speaking the effects can be categorised
according to 2 dimensions: the way in which we see ourselves,
and the way in which we interact with others.

The former flows from the central fact of domination itself.
Conquered peoples are often perceived as passive, a little
fatalistic, prone to introspection. The writer Rene Marques
has written, for example, about the docile nature of his
compatriot Puerto Ricans. And how much has been written
about the melancholia of the Celts? But as Erich Fromm
pointed out, rather than this forming an essential part of
our national character, it simply reflects our actual historic
experience of being downtrodden. So Welsh music is sung
in the minor key, and our poetry adopts an elegiac tone.

In political terms we develop a begging bowl mentality, because
we have become resigned to the reality of our own domination.

We feel a sense of helplessness and hopelessness - what J.J. Lee
has called, in the Irish case, the 'peasant residue' in our psyche.
We abdicate responsibility for our own future because we doubt
our ability to act constructively and change our situation.

We avoid taking risks, and prefer security even if that means
locking us into relative poverty and unrealised potential.

Above all, we suffer from a profound sense of our own
inferiority, a lack of confidence which expresses itself
through our failure to show initiative, whether in
political or business terms.

It is this deep insecurity that I believe lies at the heart
of our still tentative embrace of devolution, and our
rejection of what is after all, the normal aspiration of
any nation: political independence.

It also, in the economic sphere, explains our over-weaning
reliance on public subsidy and our failure, so far, to develop,
in sufficient numbers at least, an indigenous entrepreneurial
class. We are economically dependent because we are
psychologically dependent, and vice versa. And we reject
political independence, because of both.

Colonialism casts an equally insidious shadow on the way in which
we communicate and relate to each other. We are a nation of
indirect communicators, frightened to criticise in case we upset
'the powers that be' and lose face and even worse be punished
financially. We are unwilling to be 'pinned down' and fearful of
'being down'. The number of Welsh social scientists, for example,
that are prepared to make statements that could be seen as
controversial, can be counted on the fingers of one hand. The
number of Welsh MPs who have criticised the Welsh National
Opera and the British Lions is limited to one - for a country
with a rich Nonconformist, anti-Establishment tradition we are,
in our own context, incredibly conformist & establishmentarian.

This is a typical survival tactic for a conquered people where
direct challenges to authority are to be avoided at all cost.

Instead we learn to be evasive, complaining to each other
about someone else instead of tackling the person directly.
This is how we earned our reputation of being devious and
two-faced. We had to be.

But it also feeds into aspects of community life, especially in
Welsh-speaking Wales where a taboo against self-promotion
or self-revelation, a tendency to self-censorship and deference
to authority among local people contrasts with the assertiveness
of the in-migrant population. Welsh speakers are often the
majority in public meetings but will often remain stoically silent
- even where translation facilities are available - and let others
'dominate' the meeting.

This self-censorship in the 'public realm' is perhaps the flip-side
of another aspect of Welsh cultural psychology: a withdrawal to
an inner world of self-reflection: "the everlasting Welsh habit has
been to sink inwards" according to John Cowper Powys. But how
does this fit with the Welsh love of performance on the stage, or
the playing field where we suddenly shape-shift from a nation of
passive spectators to a nation of exhibitionists. The answer can
be found in the theory of constriction' developed by the American
George Kelly in the 1950s whereby the realms in which we can “be
ourselves” are socially controlled. So it was that the Welsh language
came to be limited to the emotive worlds of the sacred, the lyrical
and familial and progressively banished from the world of the
secular, official or practical.

These psychological manifestations of colonialism are not
accidental by-products of broad historical processes. They are
the outcome of two quite deliberate strategies of cultural
alienation. The first one can be termed manipulation; inculcating
within the mind of the dominated the dominator's myths, their
version of reality, their language, their values.

So Paolo Freire argues that at a crucial juncture in their
existential development members of the dominated
group begin to aspire to become part of the way of life
of the dominator. So they start to imitate them, to
follow them, and talk like them. When Chretien de
Troyes' Peredur first sets out for Court, his mother
persuades him to leave two of his three javelins at
home "because they look too Welsh".

We have been leaving our javelins at home ever since.

(Of course, this comes at a cost. As Aneurin Bevan quipped,
when someone accused the late Roy Jenkins of lacking
application, no-one who came from Abersychan and spoke
like that could ever be accused of laziness.) So we
have a succession of groups that anglicise themselves
in order to improve their life chances: starting with
the "uchelwyr" who become the Welsh gentry and
eventually the hated absentee landlords of the 18th
century.

But this percolated right the way down the social strata; the
Welsh language came to be seen as 'a badge of poverty".
Working class parents - like my own - decided consciously
not to pass it on to their children, in order to improve their
children’s chances in life.

The third wave of Welsh colonisation, thus, was not conducted
by military means. There was no need, as John Davies reminds
us, the author of a nineteenth century Report on the Condition
of the South Wales coalfield: "a band of efficient schoolmasters
is kept up at much less expense than a body of police or soldiery".

Our enslavement was sold back to us as the means to our
own liberation. So the 1870 Act which actually marked the
beginning of the decline of Welsh as a national language was
presented as a victory for the Welsh ideal of universal education.

The Act of Union was dressed as being about equal rights
for Welsh and English subjects, and the restoration of the
rightful Brythonic claim to the throne. Even Edward I appropriated
the Arthurian myth to bolster his imperial ambitions - naming his
first-born after the most famous of all our messianic figures -
though we were less taken in by this chicanery it has to be said
than by the Tudors. Come the Reformation, the Anglican Church
presented itself as a recreation of the Celtic Church freed from
the Romanising influences of Catholicism. Jesus College, Oxford -
deliberately designed as a tool in the indoctrination of the sons
of the Welsh elite - was presented as an act of munificence on
the part of Good Queen Bess.

The second generic cultural strategy of the dominator is summed
up by the famous formula: divide et impera. The more a community
can be broken up into separate parts, the less their sense of
belonging to their own community, the easier it is to maintain
dominance. This strategy was used by the British to devastating
effect through the caste system in India or tribal divisions in Africa
– divisions which have persisted long after independence.

The Normans set about dividing Wales into two opposing camps
of urban English settlement and rural Welsh. We have seen
ourselves ever since as a country of 2 peoples, two cultures
divided between the city and the country, North and South,
English and Welsh-speaking. - our divisions magnified and
distorted deliberately to play one group off against another.

So it was during the devolution campaign of 1997 that
No leaflets in north Wales would say that the Assembly
would be dominated by the urban, more populous English-
speaking south, whereas No leaflets in the south, you
guessed it, warned of an Assembly dominated by Welsh-
speaking farmers from Gwynedd.

So if you want to understand Welsh politics today, look to
its roots: historical and psychological. We are in a country
that has been in an almost permanent state of existential crisis.

We voted ourselves out of existence in 1979, came close to
doing it a second time in 1997, and are now worried that we
might do it again. Our physical proximity and economic
reliance on the colonial power has crushed our autonomy
and made us dependent. In fact it has infantilized us.

The arrangements of the Government of Wales Act 2006 -
whereby requests for power are scrutinised in London and
may be refused - is totemic of an attitude that regards the
Welsh polity, and by extension, the Welsh people, as too
immature to make their own laws.

Since colonialism, as the Indian theorist Ashis Nandy tells us,
is first of all a matter of consciousness, it has to be defeated
at the level of the human imagination. Politics alone will not
succeed. This struggle must be waged as a battle of ideas,
new cultural practices and economic behaviours.

In a sense, outside of the language struggle, our
nationalism has been too much focused on nation-
building as a process of creating representative
institutions, rather than thinking about the Wales
we want those institutions to represent.

There is an echo here of Saunders Lewis' parting-shot
in his history-shaping lecture Tynged yr Iaith, where
he warns that the decline of the language might be
actually accelerated - unless we undergo the cultural
change in mindset needed before independence itself
is achieved.

The Irish experience is clearly implied. The failure
of Ireland on bilingualism, and on the economy
until the 1980s, I think, points to a much deeper
truth: that formal independence is meaningless
unless we have first decolonised our minds.

As the Irish historian J.J Lee has written:

“The incapacity of the Irish mind to think through the
implications of independence for national development
derived largely from, and was itself a symbol of, the
dependency syndrome which had wormed its way into
the Irish psyche during centuries of foreign dominance”

The first step in national liberation is mental.

Cultural revitalisation always predates political renewal,
just as Dafydd ap Gwilym predated Owain Glyndwr. As
nationalists the lesson is clear: we should each of us
start to think and behave prefiguratively, as if our
nation is already free.

We must be the Wales we want to create: a vibrant,
self-empowering, dynamic country that emphasises
the power of our own initiative.

Of course, we can never escape from our colonial past by
refusing to acknowledge it. To liberate our selves we have to
learn about ourselves. On the psychology of colonialism itself
we need more research. We need to move from a culture of
silence to a culture of salience. There is an Irish Journal of
Psychology and an Australian Journal of Psychology. A Welsh
Journal of Psychology is long overdue., and a Welsh Institute
of Psychiatry would be a good idea too.

More generally we have to detach ourselves from the
insular intellectual straitjacket in which we find
ourselves – in which Welsh literature, psychology,
history and politics, are still seen as subaltern
specialisms in more mainstream disciplines.

The Institute of Welsh Politics becomes...
our National Institute of Politics.

We all stop reading the London Review of Books or re-read
Gandhi, Fanon, Nandy, Ngugi and Said, and stop reading
London newspapers too. If we have to take a foreign
newspaper, we will read Liberation or the Irish independent.

To bypass the dyad of domination between ourselves and the
former imperial capital, Wales must find a new context as a
European Nation, in the same way that Llywelyn and Glyndwr
sought allies in France, Europeanising Wales means that our
experience of domination can be understood as by no means
exceptional nor ineluctably permanent.

Building on the success of the last fifty years of bilingual
education, now is the time to campaign for tri-lingual
schools immersing students from Welsh-speaking homes
in French, German or Russian, just as effectively as
English-speaking children in Welsh. We have long claimed
a greater facility in other languages as one of the
advantages of being bilingual. It's time to prove it.

In education more broadly, we need what Paolo Freire originally
called a pedagogy of the oppressed. Developing Welsh as a
medium of instruction was the first vital step; gaining control of
the content of the curriculum the next. But the third vital ingredient
- transforming the very nature of the teaching process - itself - we
are only now beginning to embark upon. But it is here where the
truly revolutionary potential of teaching lies.

Education in Wales - informed by a conservative grammarial
tradition, and historically taught in people's second language
where education was seen primarily not as a route to
knowledge, even less self-knoweldge, but, for the lucky few
at least, the route out of poverty and all too often the route
out of Wales - has also been a domain of prescription,
rather than of development . As Dilys Davies has said:

"Education with the ideological intent ....of unquestioning
adoption, resists dialogue and critical thought and treats its
students as objects. The students are not called upon to know
but to memorize the contents narrated by the teacher. "

When Welsh was finally appended to the curriculum, this
'mechanical drilling' of learning-by-rote was then later applied
with disastrous ineffectiveness to the teaching of Welsh as
a second language to those that had lost it.

In the new Foundation Phase we have the chance of a new start
for a new generation. In ditching formal teaching for three to
seven year olds and adopting, on the Norwegian model, a strategy
of learning through play we have finally broken with the regimented
learning of 1870 on. And when I say regimented I choose my words
advisedly. The model of formal learning adopted with the advent of
compulsory schooling in Britain was the same one that spread
throughout Europe following the Prussian model of compulsory
education that was first developed in response to their defeat at
the hands of napoleon. Schools were to become factories which
would turn out obedient soldiers for the army, subservient workers
for the mines and submissive civil servants for Government.

Independent thought – and on our case, an independent language
– was to be beaten out of our children.. We have finally laid this
ghost to rest.

With this new emphasis on developing our innate creativity we have
the potential to become a nation of entrepreneurs, both individual
and collective. Our only sure means of finally putting paid to the
dependency myth is to show, by example, that we can be economically
successful - in business, and also in our own unconventional terms -
by developing business models that chime more readily with our own
collaborative and egalitarian system of values, than the rapacious
Anglo-American ideal of heroic individualism.

The Welsh National Dictionary of Biography of the Twenty First
Century should be as defined by innovators of every description
as the Nineteenth Century version was peopled by Ministers of
Religion. One important contribution might be creating an
English language version of Menter a Busnes - which has been
using a range of techniques to promote enterprise culture among
Welsh speakers for two decades, with increasing signs of success.

A final imperative has to be the creation of a new unified pan-
Wales sense of identity. This undoubtedly is the biggest failure
of the national movement. The language movement did manage
in the words of a young Cynog Dafis, “to effect some kind of
transformation in the Welsh psychology”, The counter-colonial
counter-culture it helped foster has largely been self-contained
within the Welsh-speaking community.

Reaching out to the English-language Wales. is partly a
political task: the most socially disadvantaged in Wales today,
in Hechter’s terms the modern equivalents of “hewers of wood
and drawers of water” – unskilled English-speaking women, is
the category that is least likely to vote Plaid. We cannot truly
claim to be a national party, until we change that.

But at the level of the nation as a whole, we need to transform
nation-building into a personal experience. We could usefully
learn from the Canadian experiment of Katimavik in the 1980s,
a voluntary 12 montb national civilian service programme whereby
 young people got to spend time working with other young Canadians
in the different provinces of Canada.

Huw Lewis has recently suggested immersing Welsh learners
in the Welsh language culture by billeting them with families
in the West. I agree, but let’s do it in reverse, too, and have
young Welsh women and men from the north and the west
spending time in the valleys and our cities.

If we do all this, then unlike Ireland in 1921, when independence
finally comes, as come it will, we will have a generation that has
been prepared for it.

Will we be the final colony? Well, that of course is up to us.
In the words of Antonio Machado:

“our footprints are the only road;
nothing else;
we make the road as we travel”

Somebody said to me recently that Welsh independence
is a bit like nuclear fusion: it is always a generation away.
But in a sense, it has been ever thus. I am personally hopeful.

If Sion Cent, warming himself with the dying embers of
Glyndwr’s memory and what might have been , could
still say:-  My Hope Is On What Is To Come., then I too
can find reasons to be an optimist.

Wales was not just colonised, but re-colonised and then,
for good measure, re-colonised again. We somehow survived
Norman blitzkreig, Tudor lebensraum and Victorian eugenics.
We have survived for a reason. And the reason lies within us,
however buried deep within.


_______________________________________________



PLEASE READ THESE, BY PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS:

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/01/12/ the-next-war-on-washington%e2%80

%99s-agenda/
http://www.globalresearch.ca/ index.php?context=va&aid=26326




Our world



Since most in the UK understand that the UK
has got less free in many ways... who voted
for the EEC, the Iraq war, the "Coalition",
the bank "bailouts", the cuts/cuts/cuts ?

Let's open up the debate !

Press the link below to read how perhaps
(and I mean 'perhaps') we've all been conned

then email Rhondda Records at

rayjoseph05@AOL.com

and let's start a genuine debate about the real
issues... before it gets "too late" !



ukcolumn.org/





Spirit of Love


We all wonder - 'what's happening to Ireland?'


Here's another contribution from Maireid:

If you want a really concise analysis of the boom-bust cycle,
I think this overview of what happened to the Irish, is it!


Enjoy!
Maireid

Emer O’Siochru is an Irish Architect and Valuer. She co-founded
Feasta, the Foundation for the Economics of Sustainability in 1998.
She has taught architecture, managed a design gallery, redeveloped
inner city property, worked in local community development, ran an
architectural practice and served on public and voluntary sector
boards. She currently directs EOS Future Design that creates real
and virtual systems for sustainable living, and farms organically.


Emer has written on monetary, taxation and planning reform. She
directed the Smart Tax Network funded by the Irish Department of
the Environment and edited “The Fair Tax” book in 2011.


Her background statement:
http://www.feasta.org/documents/landhousing/coritax.html


Partial transcript of Emer O’Siochru's presentation at
The IU Conference, London 2013

(The International Union of Land Value Taxation), 24 July 2013
http://www.theiu.org/theiu-conference-2013

View the full resentation here:
http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/36296397

EXCERPT:

A liquidity problem quickly turned out to be a solvency problem. 8:25

8:51
…depositors fled, continued to flee. they couldn't manage: The
situation was such, essentially, that the Irish government couldn't
borrow on the bond market, because they felt that the economy
wasn't sound; that it had made a big mistake in underwriting the
banks. And, at the end of the day, a bailout had to be accepted
from the troika.


That was an austerity, and balancing the books was the price of that
bail-out. Bear in mind that our public finances were in surplus, before
the bank crisis, but after the bank crisis, not only did we have to pay
back the troika, but the receipts - since property had collapsed - had
collapsed as well, so the gov. wasn't even bringing in as much tax
income as they had before, and things were looking very bad.

So why did it happen?

It did not happen because planning regulations restricted the amount
of land that was available, driving up the value of sites. That is not
what happened in Ireland. I hear this argument in the UK, saying the
reason why property values are going up and are now going up,
particularly in London, is because insufficient land is zoned for
housing, in particular.


We had 3 to 5 times the amount of land that you could conceivably
want zoned in our country around our settlements. And apart from
that, we had a situation in which you didn't even need to have land
zoned, to getting planning permission in the open country-side. In
fact, 30% of all the housing was self-build in the old country-side. So
we had no restrictions really on the amount of housing that got built.

So it wasn't because of a restrictive planning regime that land values
went up. It went up because of the availability of credit.


Banking regulation.

Some people say that if we'd had better banking regulation, we
wouldn't have had the problem. There is no doubt, it would have
helped, if we had tidied up on our regulation. In other words, if we
had prevented the banks from lending more than 80% of the value
of the house, for instance, to first-time buyers, or to buyers generally,
that would have, in a way, slowed down the construction and
development exuberance, and so on.

The problem was, we are in Europe, with an open market, and we
already had european banks competing with Irish banks. In fact, it
was the european banks that were the first ones that brought in the
100% mortgages, as far as I know, and everybody then had to catch
up. You can't really easily regulate your banks in a small country
where the money isn't your own money. You are using a third-party
currency. They, banks in other countries, could operate in your
country under their own rules. In some cases they operated under
Irish rules. It was possible for them to operate in Ireland under the
regulatory rules of their base country.


Yes, regulation was important, but it wasn't a sufficient reason. If
you look in other EU countries where they had broadly the same
regulatory system, they didn't get the same kind of 'boom and bust'.
So what else did they have is the question. What was the real cause?


"I have to talk about Home ownership incentives"

This is a quote from Colm McCarthy. He is an economist operating
in Ireland who likes to speak his own mind. I don't agree with him
in every respect but I respect the fact that he always writes
independently and is not politically beholden to anyone. And he said,
basically: imputed tax on housing is not taxed in Ireland." We have
had mortgage interest relief on mortgages for a long time. They were
there consistently. There is no local tax; there are no rates or property
taxes on domestic dwellings in Ireland, at all. And if your sold your
house, and it is your prime residence, there is no capital gains tax.

So, as he's explained, most of the developed countries may have one
or two of these goodies for property owners, but only Ireland had all
of them. And not only that, but there were further tax reliefs if you
built in certain locations. So if you were to build, say, along the
Shannon [river], which is an undeveloped region of the coast, and so
on, you could offset the capital cost of the construction against your
income tax. Not just the rental income, but your income tax. So we
had no real taxes on your own home. And further, we had incentives,
basically, to put your money into property.


And I'm quoting here Michael Hudson. He says, "If you don't tax
that value that attaches to land, arising from the general wealth
of the economy, the banks get it."


That's what happened.

The banks got it. they turned it into a kind of money backed by debt,
essentially phoney money, that wasn't backed by real productivity.
That essentially led to the boom and that subsequently led...
to the bust.


I'm an architect, so I'm interested in the physical effects of this:

Very unsuitable sites were developed around remote villages, flood
planes— completely unacceptable sites got planning permission
from 'connected' politicians, essentially. And houses were built. And
people occupied them, certainly in the earlier part of the boom. In the
later part, nobody would buy them, so we now have 'ghost' estates.


Most of our new housing was built speculatively, similar to the UK in
that regard. In other words, the builders built them and then they'd
look for the buyers. Except for the one-off houses —if you had lived
in a rural area or your family had access to land— but most of the rest
is built speculatively, so there was very little commissioned, and that
has an effect on the final form.


So you get identical houses, practically, cul-de-sac estates. An
'estate' is an invented spacial form, very different from the kind of
village or town form that we had in Ireland before. Of course, we had
many, many one-off houses arising from the fact that people thought
that a large house—a property
is wealth you never lose.

That, in many cases where young people got land for nothing from
their parents, instead of saving money and building a normal-sized
house- 1500 sq ft., they instead built what they considered a
normal-sized house which was 3000 sq. ft.. So they invested all of
their money in constructing fancy mansions for themselves - 5
bedrooms. These are young people who aren't even married. And, in
general, because of this attitude we got from the Americans, that if
you own your land you can do whatever you like with it and that is
some how part of our tradition, it was very difficult to oppose them.

The environmental groups that did try to oppose them were
demonised. Placards and intimidation and editorials in the
newspaper, and so on.

So, during that time, you could make money simply by the
conversion of the land from agricultural use to a higher use
— to housing use
that's where your money was made.

Or, if you converted an inner city site, an urban site, from
a lower use to a higher use, or a higher density use, that's
where your money was made.

You lost money on construction and design: that was the view of
the developers, generally speaking, so they minimised that. Now,
in Dublin, where there was more competition, the design quality
did go up because you were using existing sites that had high
value already, so you had to distinguish yourself with design and
construction quality, but in general, we built 50% of our existing
stock during that period of time and we got lousy buildings.
We did not build them to the energy standard that…
[end of video stream!]



http://www.theiu.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/IU-Conference-Brochure-2013.pdf


________________________________
________________________________


(previously...)

Friends,
Deputy Stephen Donnelly TD (East Kildare/ Wicklow)
is the fellow to keep an eye out for
within the Irish government.


After a few months of intense research, I've written a report,
"What Has Happened to Irish Sovereignty?"
Posted here, with other relevant reports:
http://www.globalartscollective.org/extra-extra.htm

Slán!

Maireid



US World War





'Let's sanction Russia!'
 
Neil Clark is a journalist, writer and broadcaster.
 His award winning blog can be found at
  www.neilclark66.blogspot.com

 Follow him on Twitter


Israel shells a UN school in Gaza killing 15.
It's the sixth time a UN school has been struck.
'Children, women and men killed & injured as they
 slept in a place where they should have been safe
 and protected. They were not. Intolerable', says
 Pierre Krahenbuhl, commissioner general of UNRWA.

Overall, almost 1,400 people have been killed in
 Gaza by Israeli forces with missiles and military
 equipment supplied by the US. After the latest
 UN school attack, it was announced that the
 US will send more ammunition to Israel. The
conclusion is: “Let’s sanction Russia!”

Over 1,000 people have been killed in the east of
 Ukraine and nearly 3,500 wounded since the US-
backed Ukrainian government's brutal military
 offensive started in April. Around 100,000 people
 have been forcibly displaced. On Sunday, at least
 13 civilians were killed by Ukrainian shelling-
 including a one-year-old girl killed next to her
parents. What do we hear? “Let’s sanction Russia!”

The US and EU supported the violent overthrow of
 a democratically elected President and government
 in Ukraine, one year before elections were due,
 creating the current crisis in the country. “Let’s
sanction Russia!”

Ukrainian ultranationalists set fire to a trade
union headquarters building in Odessa and kill
 around 40 people. As people tried to escape
 they were bludgeoned with baseball bats
“Let’s sanction Russia!”

After the illegal unconstitutional coup in Kiev,
 which brings far-right, Russia-hating ultra-
nationalists to power, the people of Crimea
 vote in a peaceful, democratic referendum
 to rejoin Russia. “Let’s sanction Russia!”

A passenger plane comes down over Ukraine –
 the second plane from Malaysia Airlines to be
lost in mysterious circumstances in the space
 of a few months. We don't yet know who was
 responsible, or even what happened to the first
 Malaysia Airlines plane. “Let’s sanction Russia!”

4 Palestinian children are playing football on the
 beach in Gaza. They are murdered by Israeli fire.
 “This was a cowardly crime,” says the spokesperson
 of the Gaza Health Ministry. Russia was one of the 29
 countries who voted for a UN Human Rights Council
 probe into alleged Gaza war crimes. EU countries
 abstained, the US voted against. “Let’s sanction
 Russia!”

Since 2008, it's been estimated that over 2,400
 people have been killed by US drone strikes. The
 Bureau for Investigative Journalism says that in
 Pakistan alone the number of civilians killed by
 drone strikes in the period 2004-2014 ranges
from 416 to 957. The number of children killed
 in Pakistan by US drones is between 168 and
 202.   “Let’s sanction Russia!”

US launches an illegal war of aggression against
 Iraq in which up to 1 million people have been killed.
 The justification for the war was that Iraq possessed
 Weapons of Mass Destruction, which did not in fact
 exist. Large parts of Iraq are now run by ISIS. Russia
 strongly opposed the Iraq war. “Let’s sanction
 Russia!”

Libya: like Iraq, a country destroyed by a Western
 military intervention in which Russia did not take
 part. Due to Western aggression, a country which
 had the highest standard of living in Africa is now
 a failed state. “Let’s sanction Russia!”

US ally Saudi Arabia is one of several countries in
the world where homosexuality is illegal and where
 gay people can be executed. Russia has no such
 laws, but isn't one of the allies. “Let’s sanction
 Russia!”

Western countries fund rebels to violently overthrow
 the government of Syria, increasing aid and support
 every time the conflict looks to be coming to an end.
 “Let’s sanction Russia!”

On July 15th, it was announced that the BRICS
 countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South
 Africa) were establishing a $100 billion BRICS
 development bank and a currency pool worth
over another $100 billion. “The big launch of
 the BRICS bank is seen as a first step to break
 the dominance of the US dollar in global trade,
as well as dollar-backed institutions such as
 the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the
World Bank, both US-based institutions BRICS
 countries have little influence within,” reports RT.

"BRICS Bank will be one of the major multilateral
 development finance institutions in this world,”
 announced President Putin. Western elites know
 that resurgent Russia is a block on their ambitions
 for total global hegemony and that BRICS and its
 New Development Bank are a threat to their
 economic power. Russia is “getting in the way”
in other areas too.

Neocons and the West's pro-Israel faux-left wanted
 war with Syria last summer to topple the Syrian
 government and break the alliance between Syria,
 Hezbollah and Iran – a long-term strategic objective
 of Israel. Russia, along with public opinion in the
 western countries, helped to block that war, and
 -- to the frustration of the Permanent War Lobby,
the Syrian government is still in power. In short,
 Russia needs to be weakened, & weakened fast:
 “Let’s sanction Russia!”


world's longest cigar from Cuba




and for those who like their news red,

Cuba has launched the ECURED, its own
Wikipedia-style open online encyclopedia
with 19,345 items of reference articles,
biographies and academic works.

The new site is:


www.ecured.cu





grow food !



THEY'RE HIDING THIS FROM YOU!

Trivia and horror fill the pages of the UK media,
yet the truth about the world is being hidden...

Read this article by Fidel Castro and find out
WHY Rhondda Records keeps banging on about food.


http://www.granma.cu/ingles/reflections-
i/30january-reflections.html


It's not trivia - but it's the coming horror
YOU and I are bequeathing now to our children.




 I aspire





WESTERN SCIENCE NOT "ADVANCED" - JUST PREDATORY

The bulk of commercial patents in the world are
for cosmetics and other glamorous products.

While millions of people are still dying from
malaria and cancer, no patents as yet exist
to counteract these diseases.


Fernández Palacio:

"The real common drama concerning the exact and
natural sciences, as in the case of the social
sciences, is that constant siphoning off of
intelligence signified by the persistent brain
drain from the countries of the South. Suffice
it to say that, at least one third of African
researchers are working outside their countries
of origin, & that in many Third World countries
the existence of certain scientific disciplines –
from chemistry to archeology – is threatened."


In an international situation characterized by
economic and environmental crises, threats of
nuclear war & extreme poverty, higher education
is called upon to take action, to guarantee ethical
scientific work & support sustainable development.


But not in the UK & Wales, or is it?

Welsh Universities and colleges like Cardiff
and the University of Glamorgan have made
notable steps to direct their new research
into good areas... green energy, transport...
and in many other areas great work is done!

and if such research in Welsh universities
drops helping the MoD, with research into
dubious areas like "conformity"...

or in bending to the "needs" of commerce,
Wales & the world could benefit - measurably!

What if research begins to develop an ECONOMY
for Wales, based on its communal love, and in
confluence with its land, and unique qualities?

Research directly transferable, and RELEVANT to
the present and future needs of its youth?

For God's sake - we need an economy !!!



Racism and unemployment




THE CURSE OF CAPITALISM

Karl Marx said Capitalism gives us 2 gifts:
racism and unemployment.

In the 2nd World War, our parents died fighting
a vile form of this, as Jews and other minorities
were used as scapegoats as a world recession hit.

The Nazis used their power over the media to turn
normally sane Germans into monsters of hatred...

and now whole generations are being taught to
fear and loathe Muslims. Even "nice" people.

All a senior UK politician has to do, to gain
more votes, is to burn or desecrate the Qur'an.

He can be a complete d**khead, with policies that
will turn the whole UK into a nightmare state, but
it won't count, as peoples' heads turn to hatred.

I've read ALL of Oswald Mosley's speeches, and
he makes perfect sense... after all, he started
as a prominent Labour politician. But the clue
to knowing when something is badly wrong, is when
he starts to talk of "rivers of fire" - hatred.

Sion Owens, a senior member of the BNP & candidate
for the upcoming Welsh Assembly elections, has
just been arrested for burning a copy of the holy
Qur'an in his garden, and posting the video.

It's a trick which will be used by many Western
politicians to misuse their people's feelings,
just to gain a few more votes in a society filled
with hatred and heading for a Hitlerian Hell.

Owens, wearing a "Whitelaw No Surrender" T-shirt
in the video, starts with the holy Qur'an lying
in a Quality Street chocolate tin, before Owens
douses the holy book in flammable liquid and
then sets fire to it. The camera zooms in as the
holy book burns.

But for UK politician Sion Owens, the affair
looks like turning out badly, as the government
reacted angrily when a leaked video clip of him
burning the holy Qur'an was sent to the South
Wales police, who immediately arrested him.

"The government absolutely condemns the burning
of the Qur'an. It is fundamentally offensive to
the values of our pluralist & tolerant society",
says the Home Office, in a strong statement.

"We equally condemn any attempts to create
divisions between communities and are committed
to ensuring that everyone has the freedom to
live their lives free from fear of targeted
hostility or harassment on the grounds of a
particular characteristic, such as religion".

"We always adopt an extremely robust approach to
allegations of this sort and find this sort of
intolerance unacceptable in our society", says
South Wales police Superintendent Phil Davies,
who led the investigation.

How can a sane cultured people like Germans, be
turned to monsters and end up gassing millions
in extermination camps, using torture & pain?

Racism and unemployment.

Watch the monsters trying to grow right now.

*************************************************

IT'S THE ENGLISH ESTABLISHMENT's FAULT !!!

Or is it? A surprising analysis here, which
accuses the "British Empire"'s elite of ruling
the USA and Bertrand Russell of... "pure evil" !

http://www.larouchepub.com/other/
2012/3905destab_russia_mcfaul.html



farmer




MOST PEOPLE SEE THIS VISION

Ask people in Wales how they see the future
of all that wasted land above the valleys...
and most say they see orchards and beauty.

But it's blocked at the moment, by stiff
ideological thinking, while Scotland powers
ahead with land reform laws that give title
to communities to shape their own future...

What can Wales do to make good?

Here's a technical paper delivered recently
in Sweden by Scottish University experts
that gives a reasonable starting point:-

http://www.caledonia.org.uk/land/
documents/Bryden-and-Geisler.pdf

I think this might need a mass grass-roots
campaign a la chartists, to happen, mind !

The main parties are too compromised by
interest groups and ideology to move...

witness the disgraceful outcome at Maerdy.


THE PROBLEM OF POWER & FREE CHOICE

Of course, ALL change brings problems too!
The article below examines how sensitive
communities must be as they change - and
how sides in an argument must be tolerant.

http://www.alastairmcintosh.com/
articles/2003-hebridean3&4-4stages.htm

(“internet version from www.AlastairMcIntosh.com”)


POSITIVELY LEARNING FROM SCOTLAND

It's great having Scotland leading the way, isn't
it - like having a big brother - we can admire
their achievements, learn from their mistakes,
and mix and match our unique differences...

Here's a positive view of Scotland's moves:


http://clanjames.com/land_reform.htm




East is Best





Here is a very good article which blew my mind!

It places NATO's role in context... and tells us
a few home truths about the West's "Empires"...


http://www.globalresearch.ca/
index.php?context=va&aid=26256














The war on democracy

by John Pilger

Lisette Talate died the other day. I remember a
wiry, fiercely intelligent woman who masked her
grief with a determination that was a presence.

She was the embodiment of people's resistance
to
the war on democracy.


I first glimpsed her in a 1950s Colonial Office
film about the Chagos Islanders, a tiny creole
nation living midway between Africa and Asia in
the Indian Ocean.

The camera panned across thriving villages, a
church, a school, a hospital, set in phenomenal
natural beauty and peace. Lisette remembers the
producer saying to her and her teenage friends:
"Keep smiling, girls!"

Sitting in her kitchen in Mauritius many years
later, she said: "I didn't have to be told to
smile. I was a happy child, because my roots
were deep in the islands, my paradise.

"My great-grandmother was born there. I made six
children there. That's why they couldn't legally
throw us out of our own homes. They had to
terrify us into leaving or force us out.

"At first, they tried to starve us. The food
ships stopped arriving, [then] they spread
rumours we would be bombed, then they
turned
on our dogs."


In the early 1960s Harold Wilson's Labour
government secretly agreed to a demand
from the US,
that the Chagos archipelago,
a
British colony, be "swept" and "sanitised"
of
its 2,500 inhabitants, so that a military
base
could be built on the principal island,
Diego Garcia.


"They knew we were inseparable from our#
pets," said Talate.


"When the American soldiers arrived to build the
base, they backed their big trucks against the
brick shed where we prepared the coconuts.
Hundreds of our dogs had been rounded up
and
imprisoned there. Then they gassed them
through
tubes from the trucks' exhausts. You
could
hear them crying."


Talate, her family and hundreds of the other
islanders were forced on to a rusting steamer
bound for Mauritius, a journey of 1,000 miles.

They were made to sleep in the hold on a cargo
of fertiliser - bird shit.

The weather was rough, everyone was ill,
two of
the women on board miscarried.


Dumped on the docks at Port Louis, Talate's
youngest children Jollice and Regis died
within a week of each other.

"They died of sadness," she said.

"They had heard all the talk and seen the horror
of what had happened to the dogs. They knew they
were leaving their home for ever. The doctor in
Mauritius said he could not treat sadness."

This act of mass kidnapping was carried out
in high secrecy.


In one official file, under the heading
"Maintaining the fiction," the Foreign Office
legal adviser exhorts his colleagues to cover
their actions by "reclassifying" the population
as "floating" and to "make up the rules as
we go along."


Article seven of the Rome Statute of the
International Criminal Court says the
"deportation or forcible transfer of
population" is a crime against humanity.

That Britain had committed such a crime - in
exchange for a $14 million discount off a US
Polaris nuclear submarine - was not on the
agenda of a group of British "defence"
correspondents flown to the Chagos by the
Ministry of Defence when the US base was
completed.


"There is nothing in our files," said the
MoD, "about inhabitants or an evacuation."

Today Diego Garcia is crucial to the US and
British war on democracy.

The heaviest bombing of Iraq and Afghanistan was
launched from its vast airstrips, beyond which
the islanders' abandoned cemetery and church
stand like archaeological ruins.

The terraced garden where Talate laughed for the
camera is now a fortress housing the "bunker-
busting" bombs carried by bat-shaped B-2 aircraft
to targets on two continents. An attack on Iran
will start here.

As if to complete the emblem of rampant,
criminal power, the CIA added a Guantanamo-
style prison for its "rendition" victims and
called it Camp Justice.

What was done to Talate's paradise has urgent
and universal meaning, for it represents the
violent, ruthless nature of a whole political
culture behind its democratic facade and the
scale of our own indoctrination in its messianic
assumptions, described by Harold Pinter as a
"brilliant, even witty, highly successful act
of hypnosis."


Longer and bloodier than any other war since 1945,
waged with demonic weapons and a gangsterism
dressed as economic policy and sometimes known
as globalisation, the war on democracy is
unmentionable in Western elite circles.

As Pinter wrote, "It never happened... Even
while it was happening it wasn't happening."

Last July US historian William Blum published
his updated "summary of the charming record
of
US foreign policy."


Since the second world war, the US has:

- Attempted to overthrow more than 50
governments, most of them democratically
elected.


- Attempted to suppress a populist or national
movement in 20 countries.

- Grossly interfered in democratic elections in
at least 30 countries.

- Dropped bombs on the people of more than 30 countries.

- Attempted to assassinate more than 50 foreign leaders.

In total the US has carried out one or more of
these actions in 69 countries. In almost all
cases, Britain has been a collaborator.

The "enemy" changes in name - from communism
to
Islamism - but mostly it's the rise of democracy

independent of Western power or a society
occupying strategically useful territory and
deemed expendable, like the Chagos Islands.

The sheer scale of suffering, let alone
criminality, is little known in the West,
despite the presence of the world's most
advanced communications, nominally freest
journalism and most-admired academy.

That the most numerous victims of terrorism -
Western terrorism - are Muslims is unsayable,
if it is known.

That half a million Iraqi infants died in the
1990s as a result of the embargo imposed
by
Britain and the US, is of no interest.


That extreme jihadism, which led to the
September 11 2001 attacks, was nurtured as
a weapon of Western policy - in "Operation
Cyclone" - is known to specialists, but
otherwise suppressed.

While popular culture in Britain and the US
immerses the second world war in an ethical
bath for the victors, the holocausts arising
from Anglo-US dominance of resource-rich
regions,
are consigned to oblivion.


Under the Indonesian tyrant Suharto, anointed
"our man" by Margaret Thatcher, more than a
million people were slaughtered in what the CIA
described as "the worst mass murder of the
second half of the 20th century."

This estimate does not include the third of the
population of East Timor who were starved or
murdered with Western connivance, British
fighter-bombers and machine-guns.

These true stories are told in declassified
files in the Public Record Office, yet represent
an entire dimension of politics and the exercise
of power excluded from public consideration.

This has been achieved by a regime of uncoercive
information control, from the evangelical mantra
of advertising to soundbites on BBC news and now
the ephemera of social media.

It is as if writers as watchdogs are extinct or
in thrall to a sociopathic zeitgeist, convinced
they are too clever to be duped.

Witness the stampede of sycophants eager to
deify Christopher Hitchens, a war-lover who
longed to be allowed to justify the crimes
of rapacious power.

"For almost the first time in two centuries,"
wrote Terry Eagleton, "there is no eminent
British poet, playwright or novelist prepared
to question the foundations of the Western
way of life."

No Orwell warns that we do not need to live
in a totalitarian society to be corrupted
by totalitarianism.

No Shelley speaks for the poor, no Blake
proffers a vision, no Wilde reminds us
that "disobedience, in the eyes of anyone
who'
s read history, is man's original virtue."


And grievously no Pinter rages at the war
machine, as in "American Football."

Hallelujah.

Praise the Lord for all good things...

We blew their balls into shards of dust,

Into shards of fucking dust...

Into shards of fucking dust go all the lives
blown there by Barack Obama, the Hopey-
Changey
of Western violence.


Whenever one of Obama's drones wipes out
an
entire family in a faraway tribal region of

Pakistan or Somalia or Yemen, US controllers
sitting in front of the computer game screens
type in "Bugsplat."

Obama likes drones and has joked about them with
journalists. One of his first actions as president
was to order a wave of Predator drone attacks
on Pakistan that killed 74 people. He has since
killed thousands, mostly civilians. Drones fire
Hellfire missiles that suck the air out of the
lungs of children and leave body parts
festooned across scrubland.

Remember the tear-stained headlines as
Brand Obama was elected.

"Momentous, spine-tingling" (the Guardian).
"The American future," Simon Schama wrote, "is
all vision, numinous, unformed, light-headed
with anticipation."

The San Francisco Chronicle saw a spiritual
"Lightworker... who can... usher in a new way
of being on the planet."

Beyond the drivel, as the great whistleblower
Daniel Ellsberg had predicted, a military coup
was taking place in Washington & Obama was
their man.


Having seduced the anti-war movement into
virtual silence, he has given the corrupt US
military officer class unprecedented powers
of state and engagement.

These include the prospect of wars in Africa and
opportunities for provocations against China,
the US's largest creditor and the new "enemy"
in Asia.


Under Obama, the old source of official paranoia,
Russia, has been encircled with ballistic
missiles & the Russian opposition infiltrated.

Military and CIA assassination teams have been
assigned to 120 countries. Long-planned attacks
on Syria and Iran beckon a world war.

Israel, the exemplar of US violence and
lawlessness by proxy, has just received its
annual pocket money of $3 billion, together
with Obama's permission to steal more and
more Palestinian land.

Obama's most "historic" achievement is to bring
the war on democracy home to the US. On New
Year's Eve, he signed the National Defence
Authorisation Act, a law that grants the
Pentagon the legal right to kidnap both
foreigners and US citizens secretly and
indefinitely detain, interrogate, torture,
or even kill them.

They need only "associate" with
those "belligerent" to the US.

There will be no protection of law,
no trial, no legal representation.

This is the first explicit legislation
to abolish habeas corpus - the right
to due process of law - and in effect
repeal the Bill of Rights of 1789.

On January 5, in an extraordinary speech at the
Pentagon, Obama said the military would not only
be ready to "secure territory and populations"
overseas but to fight in the "homeland" and
"support [the] civil authorities."

In other words, US troops are to be deployed on
the streets of US cities when the inevitable
civil unrest takes hold.

The US is now a land of epidemic poverty and
barbaric prisons - the consequence of a
"market" extremism that, under Obama, has
prompted the transfer of $14 trillion in public
money to criminal enterprises in Wall Street.

The victims are mostly young, jobless, homeless,
incarcerated African-Americans, betrayed by the
first black president.

The historic corollary of a perpetual war state
is not fascism - not yet - but neither is it
democracy in any recognisable form, regardless
of the placebo politics that will consume the
news until November.

The presidential campaign, says the Washington
Post, will feature "a clash of philosophies
rooted in distinctly different views of the economy."

This is patently false. The circumscribed task
of journalism on both sides of the Atlantic
is to create the pretence of political choice
where there is none.

The same shadow is across Britain and much of
Europe, where social democracy, an article of
faith two generations ago, has fallen to the
central bank dictators.

In David Cameron's "big society," the theft
of £84bn in jobs and services exceeds even
the amount of tax "legally" avoided by
piratical corporations.

Blame rests not with the far-right but with
a cowardly liberal political culture that
has allowed this to happen and which, as
Hywel Williams wrote after the September
11 attacks, "can itself be a form of self-
righteous fanaticism."

Tony Blair is one such fanatic. In its
managerial indifference to the freedoms
that it claimed to hold dear, bourgeois
Blairite Britain created a surveillance state
with 3,000 new criminal offences and laws -
more than for the whole of the previous century.

The police clearly believe they have an impunity
to kill. At the demand of the CIA, cases like
that of Binyam Mohamed, an innocent British
resident tortured and then held for five years
in Guantanamo Bay, will be dealt with in secret
courts in Britain, in order to "protect the
intelligence agencies" - the torturers.

This invisible state allowed the Blair
government to fight the Chagos Islanders
as they rose from their despair in exile
and demanded justice in the streets of
Port Louis and London.

"Only when you take direct action, face
to face,
even break laws, are you ever
noticed," Talate said.


"And the smaller you are, the greater your
example to others."

Such is the eloquent answer to those who
still ask: "What can I do?"

I last saw Talate's tiny figure standing in
driving rain next to her comrades outside
the Houses of Parliament.

What struck me was the enduring courage
of their
resistance. It is this refusal to give
up that
rotten power fears, above all else,
knowing it's
the seed beneath the snow.



This article appeared in the New Statesman.








Ray -- There's a new petition taking off on Change.org, and we think you might be interested in signing it;

Stop the Rot! End supply chain food waste

Rosie Boycott
United Kingdom

UK supermarkets and businesses throw out over 7 million tonnes of food annually, before it gets to your shopping basket. That’s enough to lift all the hungry people in the UK out of food poverty.

Globally, if food waste was a country, it would be the third top carbon emitter after USA and China.

I'm the Chair of the London Food Board and a journalist passionate about food. I've started this petition as part of Stop the Rot campaign because I want to see an end to this stark injustice.

Consumers are currently asked to do the lion's share of tackling food waste, but many businesses waste more in a day than a consumer does in a year.

Someone pays for these mountains of wasted food – be it you, victims of climate change, the person who can’t afford to eat, or the supermarket’s suppliers.

Food is mainly wasted on farms and in factories, but hugely affected by retailer policy. Imagine spending all year growing potatoes, just to have them rejected for being the wrong shape or size. Or toiling to overproduce cauliflowers for fear of ever missing an order. One farmer had to plough 300,000 perfectly edible cabbages back into the field. These unjust practices need to be stopped. Hidden from view, the waste piles up and suppliers suffer in silence.

It’s time to call on UK supermarkets to tackle the food waste their policies cause in their supply chains.

Three quarters of the UK’s food is sold through Tesco, Asda, Sainsburys and Morrisons. With a strong movement pressuring them, we can make them act!

Join Stop the Rot's call for the major supermarkets to:

- regularly publish their in-store and supply chain's food waste data, including collaborating to measure food waste on farms by 2018 to enable targeted reduction.

- commit to ambitious targets to reduce their own stores' and their manufacturing suppliers’ food waste by 30% by 2025

Please sign and share this petition! Together, we can stop the rot!

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