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Can the Working Class Change the World?

Radicals of every stripe believe that capitalist economies are incompatible with human liberation. That is, while human beings have enormous capacities to think and to do, capitalism prevents the vast majority of people from developing these capacities. Therefore if we want a society in which the full flowering of human competencies can become a reality, we will have to bring capitalism to an end and replace it with something radically different

Memorial Service for Paul Marlor Sweezy (1910-2004)

Referred to by The Wall Street Journal in 1972 as “the ‘dean’ of radical economists,” Paul M. Sweezy was, in the words of John Kenneth Galbraith, “the most noted American Marxist scholar” of the second half of the twentieth century.1 Sweezy’s intellectual influence, which was global in its reach, lay chiefly in two areas: as a leading radical economist (and sociologist), and as the principal originator of a distinct North American brand of socialist thought in his position as co-founder and co-editor of Monthly Review magazine. Like both Marx and Schumpeter, to whose thought his work was closely related, Sweezy provided a historical analysis and crtique of capitalist economic development, encompassing a theory of the origins, development and eventual decline of the system.

A Turn for the Worse in the United States

This is not the article I started out to write. What I wanted to write about was the Patriot Act and the way this Federal statute was giving license to federal, state and local law enforcement to curtail our due process protections, by blurring the line, which is more fluid than ever, between what law enforcement can do in the name of foreign intelligence and what it can do in the name of a domestic criminal investigation

Dr. Baburam Bhattarai on the Failure of the Peace Talks in Nepal

In this space we have followed as best we can the evolving revolutionary struggle in Nepal. Our most recent comment in February 2003 accompanied the presentation of an interesting article on women’s leadership in the revolutionary struggle. We then noted with relief and pleasure the ceasefire of January 29, 2003 that promised to bring an end to the brutality and bloodshed that had engulfed a beautiful people and a beautiful land

Remembering W.E.B. Du Bois

While we commemorate the 40th anniversary of the historic 1963 March on Washington, we should as well be commemorating another event. On the eve of the 1963 March on Washington, the life of one of the 20th century’s most brilliant individuals came to an end. W.E.B. Du Bois, scholar, Pan Africanist, political leader, champion of the struggle against white supremacy in the United States, died in Ghana, August 27, 1963


Opening or Closing Debate?

No doubt, Monthly Review will not want debate on John Saul’s contributions to continue indefinitely. At the same time, his recent response to Jeremy Cronin (Monthly Review, December 2002) contains certain allegations about my conduct, which deserve space for a response

Imperialism Today

On Saturday, May 3rd, 2003 Monthly Review and the University of Vermont co-sponsored “Imperialism Today,” a one-day conference in honor of Harry Magdoff. Invited speakers were asked to discuss the context and workings of the current U.S. global hegemony, the means by which control is exercised over resources and the global periphery, the maintenance of (and challenges to) ideological hegemony, and the prospects for anti-imperialism.

Fidel Castro

May Day 2003

Here is the text of a speech given by Dr. Fidel Castro Ruz, President of the Republic of Cuba, at the May Day rally held in Revolution Square

Understanding the U.S. War State

Genocide used to be a crime without a name. Although the most heinous of all crimes, the concept was not introduced into international language until after World War 2. Until then, military invasion and destruction of other peoples and cultures masqueraded under such slogans as progress and spreading civilisation

Diana Johnstone on the Balkan Wars

Diana Johnstone’s Fools’ Crusade: Yugoslavia, NATO and Western Delusions (Monthly Review Press, 2002) is essential reading for anybody who wants to understand the causes, effects, and rights-and-wrongs of the Balkan wars of the past dozen years. The book should be priority reading for leftists, many of whom have been carried along by a NATO-power party line and propaganda barrage, believing that this was one case where Western intervention was well-intentioned and had beneficial results. An inference from this misconception, by “cruise missile leftists” and others, is that imperialism can be constructive and its power projections must be evaluated on their merits, case by case. But that the Western intervention in the Balkans constitutes a valid special case is false; the conventional and obvious truths on the Balkan wars that sustain such a view disintegrate on close inspection

The Face of Empire

They who advocate and enforce the neoliberal agenda have now lost intellectually, morally, even in terms of their own beloved market test. The neoliberal policies of the last decades have failed to bring about economic growth and financial stability, to say nothing of meeting the test of justice or of addressing the social costs and wrong headed quality of the growth the existing system does produce. It is now clear to a great many people around the world that the neoliberal agenda is bankrupt. The World Bank and the academic defenders of the so-called Washington Consensus have stopped defending it as before. Suddenly the need for “reform,” which has up to now meant the imposition of the Washington Consensus, is applied by them to the Washington Consensus itself. Of course these “reforms” are mostly aimed at disarming critics. “Dialogue” and “partnership” are on offer only so they can better pursue their unchanged agenda of domination

Rejoinder on Some Current Issues

A Communication from the Revolutionaries in Nepal on the Current (September 2002) Situation in the Civil War

On September 5th, 2002 MR received a letter, that we believe from internal evidence to be authentic, from Dr. Baburam Bhattarai—who is one of the leaders of the revolutionary forces in the Nepalese civil war. In the nine months since the last communication from Dr. Bhattarai ( was received, the civil war in Nepal has deepened both in scope and brutality. It now extends from one end of the country to the other. The Royal Nepal Army has executed many hundreds—perhaps thousands—of kids in the countryside in faked encounters, “disappearances” and in aerial bombing of civilian gatherings. In this atmosphere the remaining democratic political forces of all tendencies, including the majority faction of the right-wing Congress Party, refused in May to permit the legal extension of the state of emergency. The state of emergency suspends freedom of thought and expression, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, the right against preventive detention, the right to information, and any right to judicial review of acts committed by the armed forces. The dictatorship of the usurper King, exercised through a minority faction of the Congress party headed by Sher Bahadur Deuba, refused to accept this outcome. On May 27, 2002, parliament was dissolved, the state of emergency extended by decree, and an election called for November 13th

Comparisons Between Recent U.S.-Backed Coups

Caracas and Kathmandu

One thing about the CIA is that their playbook rarely changes. Take for example, the agency’s involvement in the recent abortive military coup against Venezuela’s democratically-elected President Hugo Chavez. The April 13 Washington Post reported that during the period leading up to the coup against Chavez, “members of the country’s diverse opposition had been visiting the U.S. Embassy…hoping to enlist U.S. help in toppling Chavez. The visitors included active and retired members of the military, media leaders and opposition politicians.”