Tuesday July 7th, 2015, 3:59 pm (EDT)

Revolutions

Rebolusyon

Rebolusyon

A Generation of Struggle in the Philippines

In 1969, Ferdinand Marcos won a second term as president, in one of the dirtiest campaigns in Philippine history. That same year, Edgar Jopson was elected president of the National Union of Students of the Philippines, in a campaign to keep the Communists out of the student movement. Thirteen years later Jopson was gunned down by the military during a raid on an underground safe house. He was by then one of the most wanted people in the country, with a price on his head, a leading Communist Party cadre and member of the urban underground. … | more |

Our right to be Marxist-Leninists

The 70th anniversary of the Great Patriotic War will be commemorated the day after tomorrow, May 9. Given the time difference, while I write these lines, the soldiers and officials of the Army of the Russian Federation, full of pride, will be parading through Moscow’s Red Square with their characteristic quick, military steps.… Lenin was a brilliant revolutionary strategist who did not hesitate in assuming the ideas of Marx and implementing them in an immense and only partly industrialized country, whose proletariat party became the most radical and courageous on the planet in the wake of the greatest slaughter that capitalism had caused in the world, where for the first time tanks, automatic weapons, aviation and poison gases made an appearance in wars, and even a legendary cannon capable of launching a heavy projectile more than 100 kilometers made its presence felt in the bloody conflict.… | more |

Marx on the Camino de Santiago

Meaning, Work, and Crisis

When I walked the thousand-year-old route of the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain in September and October 2014, I expected to discuss questions of health with fellow travelers. I assumed that an ancient pilgrimage would be full of walkers pondering health issues and would provide an ethnographer’s panacea for “getting in.” I was wrong. I was surrounded by walkers from all parts of Europe, but they were pondering the meaning of work, capitalism, and their lives. I found I was seeing a profound crisis of capitalism and individuals struggling with alienated labor as discussed by Karl Marx.… [W]hat I saw on the Camino de Santiago was certainly not a revolutionary movement. Envisioning satisfying work, however, helps change the shared conception of what work is. Raul Zibechi argued that as we struggle both individually or collectively, we engage in an emancipatory process that, as the Zapatista’s Subcomandante Marcos notes, “builds, includes, brings together and remembers whereas the system, separates, splits and fragments.”… Awareness of alienated labor and struggle against crisis, whether individual or collective, does seem to create imaginative space for change even if it does not necessarily reflect what has been thought of as revolutionary struggle.… | more |

Pete Seeger, Musical Revolutionary

In the late 1950s, Pete Seeger received a letter from his manager, Howie Richmond, begging him to write a new hit song. … [Richmond] believed that “protest songs” were not marketable. Seeger was angry—he had a new song in mind, with words from a poem that he had set to music, and he believed it was, in a deep and significant sense, a song of protest.…. The song, of course, was “Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There Is a Season),” which continues to be performed and recorded by many artists, and most famously became a huge folk-rock hit for The Byrds. It was as though, despite himself, Seeger produced a hit song, even when commercial popularity was the furthest thing from his mind—an example of how inseparably his songwriting talents and political principles were bound together.… | more |

That which can never be forgotten

Thoughts by Compañero Fidel regarding an article published in the Sunday edition of the the New York Times, which evaluates the path the country should follow in relation to its policy toward Cuba, in the opinion of the newspaper.… | more |

Just ideas—or disaster—will triumph

If today it is possible to prolong life, health and the productive time of persons, if it is perfectly possible to plan the development of the population in accordance with growing productivity, culture and development of human values, what are they waiting for to do so?… | more |

Confronting Black Jacobins

Confronting Black Jacobins

The U.S., the Haitian Revolution, and the Origins of the Dominican Republic

The Haitian Revolution, the product of the first successful slave revolt, was truly world-historic in its impact. When Haiti declared independence in 1804, the leading powers—France, Great Britain, and Spain—suffered an ignominious defeat and the New World was remade. The island revolution also had a profound impact on Haiti’s mainland neighbor, the United States. Inspiring the enslaved and partisans of emancipation while striking terror throughout the Southern slaveocracy, it propelled the fledgling nation one step closer to civil war. Gerald Horne’s path breaking new work explores the complex and often fraught relationship between the United States and the island of Hispaniola. Giving particular attention to the responses of African Americans, Horne surveys the reaction in the United States to the revolutionary process in the nation that became Haiti, the splitting of the island in 1844, which led to the formation of the Dominican Republic, and the failed attempt by the United States to annex both in the 1870s. … | more |

A Hidden History of the Cuban Revolution

A Hidden History of the Cuban Revolution

How the Working Class Shaped the Guerillas’ Victory

Millions of words have been written about the Cuban Revolution, which, to both its supporters and detractors, is almost universally understood as being won by a small band of guerillas. In this unique and stimulating book, Stephen Cushion turns the conventional wisdom on its head, and argues that the Cuban working class played a much more decisive role in the Revolution’s outcome than previously understood. Although the working class was well-organized in the 1950s, it is believed to have been too influenced by corrupt trade union leaders, the Partido Socialist Popular, and a tradition of making primarily economic demands to have offered much support to the guerillas. Cushion contends that the opposite is true, and that significant portions of the Cuban working class launched an underground movement in tandem with the guerillas operating in the mountains. … | more |

We Have Lost Our Best Friend

The best friend the Cuban people have had throughout their history died on the afternoon of March 5. A call via satellite communicated the bitter news. The significance of the phrase used was unmistakable. Although we were aware of the critical state of his health, the news hit us hard. I recalled the times he joked with me, saying that when both of us had […]… | more |

An Honest Clarification

Some days ago, on May 28, the violent battle waged at El Uvero was commemorated with well deserved references. An elemental duty forces me to clarify the facts. During those weeks, Manuel Piñeiro, “Red Beard”, as the leopard, who never changes its spots, as the saying goes, managed to send to Santiago de Cuba a […]… | more |

What Obama Knows

The most demolishing article I have seen nowadays about Latin America was written by Renán Vega Cantor, full professor at the National Pedagogical University of Bogotá, which was published three days ago by the website ‘Rebelión’ under the title “Ecos de la Cumbre de las Américas” (Echoes of the Summit of the Americas). It is […]… | more |

The Fruit Which Did Not Fall

CUBA was forced to fight for its existence facing an expansionist power, located a few miles from its coast, and which was proclaiming the annexation of our island, which was destined to fall into its lap like a ripe fruit. We were condemned not to exist as a nation. Within the glorious legions of patriots […]… | more |

The Two Venezuelas

Yesterday I spoke about the time when Venezuela was an ally of the US empire and the country where Posada Carriles and Orlando Bosch carried out their plans for the brutal in-flight bombing of a Cuban plane that caused the death and disappearance of all people aboard, including the youth fencing team that had just […]… | more |

My Absence on the Central Committee

I was familiar with the content of compañero Raúl’s report to the 6th Congress of the Party. He had shown it to me a few days previously on his own initiative, as he has done on many other occasions without me asking him to because, as I already explained, I had delegated all my responsibilities within the Party and the state in the proclamation of July 2006.… Doing so was a duty that I did not hesitate for a second to fulfill.… | more |

The Congress Debates

This morning at 10:00am I listened to the delegates’ debates at the 6th Congress of the Party.… There were so many commissions that, logically, I couldn’t listen to everyone who spoke.… They were meeting in five commissions to discuss a number of issues. Thereafter I, too, took advantage of the breaks to breathe calmly and eat some energy providing food. They surely had more of an appetite given their work and age.… | more |

The 50th anniversary parade

Today I had the privilege of appreciating the impressive parade with which our people commemorated the 50th anniversary of the socialist nature of the Revolution and the Bay of Pigs victory.… Also, on this same day, the 6th Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba began.… | more |

The Revolutionary Rebellion in Egypt

I said several days ago that the die was cast for Mubarak and that not even Obama could save him. The world knows what is taking place in the Middle East. The news is circulating at incredible speed. Politicians barely have time to read the cables coming in by the hour. Everyone is aware of […]… | more |

The Time Has Come To Do Something

I shall relate a bit of history. When the Spanish “discovered” us five hundred years ago, the estimated population on the Island was no more than 200,000 inhabitants who were living in harmony with nature. Their main sources of food came from the rivers, lakes and seas rich in protein; they were also carrying out […]… | more |

Piedad Córdoba and her battle for peace

Three days ago the news was made public that the Attorney General of Colombia, Alejandro Ordóñez Maldonado, had removed the eminent Colombian Senator Piedad Córdoba from her post and barred her from political office for 18 years, because of her alleged promotion of and collaboration with the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia). Faced with […]… | more |

What They Want is Venezuela’s Oil

Yesterday I said what I would do if I were Venezuelan; I explained that it was the poor who were most affected by natural disasters and I gave the reasons why. Further on, I added: “…where imperialism dominates and the opportunistic oligarchy receives a lucrative slice of national goods and services, the masses have nothing […]… | more |

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