“Marxists Speak Out: 200 Days of War” panel speeches

by Davey Heller, 14th September

On September 10th/11th, a panel was held entitled “Marxists speak out: 200 Days of War. Stop the war of US/NATO imperialism against Russia! Stop the US preparations of war against China!” The panel was timed to coincide with the 200th day of the war in Ukraine. It is now clearer than ever that the conflict was provoked by US/NATO as part of its long held efforts to dominate the Eurasian landmass by finally subordinating Russia. It is also clear that the war of US/NATO imperialism against Russia is occurring simultaneously with US plans to ratchet up conflict with China as it prepares to potentially wage war on two fronts as part of a drive to World War 3.

The panel included Marxists from ten countries across five continents of Marxists who presented their assessments of how the war in Ukraine is progressing and what impact is this having on the class struggle internationally They also discussed how Marxists should be responding, organising and intervening in the response of US imperialism’s turn towards fascism and world war.

Groups and individuals presenting included:

κομμουνιστικη επαναστατικη δραση / Communist Revolutionary Action (Greece)
Consistent Democrats (LCFI  Great Britain)
Bolshevik Tendency
Socialist Fight (Great Britain)

North America
Class Conscious (US/Australia)
Friends of the Soviet People (US)
Socialist Unity Party (US)
Partido Obrero Socialista CR/ Socialist Workers Party CR (Costa Rica)
Mike Gimbel (US)

South America
Liga Communista / Communist League (LCFI – Brasil)
Partido Communist Do Povo Brasileiro/  Communist Party of the Brazilian People  (Brasil)
Tendencia Militante Bolchevique/ Militant Bolshevik Tendency  (LCFI – Argentina)

East Asia
Bolshevik Group (South Korea)

South East Asia

Komite Esperansa (Timor Leste)

Anti-War West Sydney (AWWS)

The panel built on two previous panels that have been held since Russian launched its military intervention in Ukraine. The first was held one month into the conflict and perhaps at the height of the pro-imperialist war hysteria entitled “Marxists Speak Out: On the Conflict between Russia and Imperialism”.   A second panel was held in August entitled “Marxists Speak Out : Victory Day, against Nazism and Imperialism, yesterday and today”. A May Day declaration against the imperialist war on Russia was also issued and signed by many of the groups involved today.

This was the first initiative though organised under the banner of the “WORLDONFIRE – Worldwide Organising Network Against Fascism Imperialism and Exploitation”. It is hoped that this becomes an ongoing network to organise internationally.

The panel was streamed live to the “A Call for Action: Stop US led imperialism’s war against Russia & China” Facebook Page but is also hosted on the a WORLDONFIRE Youtube page.

Below are written versions of some of the speeches presented at the panel.

South East Asia


First we against it, second we are not afraid of it: 200 Days of US/NATO War Against Russia, China and the Global South

Fernando A. T. Ximenes

Representative of Komite Esperansa

Camaradas all over the world. This conference led us to the strategic historical experiences, memories and spirit of revolutionary socialist of Zimmerwald. It is such an honor to us, to share this historical moment with you, and stand along with all of you in facing our dangerous and cynical moments. And here, we have representatives of East Timor social left movements. Along with Komite Esperansa  from East Timor, are Klibur Estudante Progresivo(KEP), Movimento Resistencia Social (MRS), Juventude Socialista Maubere(JSM), Movimento Rosas Mean(MRM), Rehabilitasaun Ekolojia Nasional(RENAL), Ermera Peasants Union(UNAER), Manufahi Peasants Union and so on. And again, it is our privilege to speak on this historical day. 11 September, marking the 200 days of US/NATO war against Russia and its preparation for war against China. On the other, today also marked a decades of 9/11 or September Attacks, a terrorist attack that means to us oppositely – that is for us, the attack resulted by the diseases of fundamentalism that was created by the virus of Western liberalism and imperialism.

Comrades, we are living in a time of “historical chaos” that follows in parallel with the “obscurantist reaction and restoration”. Before I move into the current Ukraine war. I would like to talk and discuss the central neglected questions on the historical development of our time: that is impasse. That is a name that is responsible for and the reflection of the structural crisis of international communist, for its absence in the current crisis and war. For us, our problem for decades has been not only a crisis but also an impasse. It was a situation characterized our ‘tipsy-world’ today, and in which any march-forwardness always led to march backwardness, and of course, to nowhere to move.

To cite my other articles is:

The impasse is a determinable point of our historical time […] We found impasse, not a simple name or politico-grammatical expression, nor is it simply equivalent to economist word such as stagnation. It is not only a transition, regression, finalism of particular conjuncture or epiphenomena of crisis – not an excrescence monstrosity, not either the negation or any shift in the representation, but the existential normality in between the absence of emancipatory politics and the globalized imperialist capitalism as such.

Therefore, the contemporary conjuncture of global capitalism shows the over-expanding crisis produced under the impassable crisis of the system as a whole, to the entire capitalist modernity. The crisis persists in its long downturn and decline because it is maintained through the prolonged crisis of impasse. Isn’t all current regression and absence of emancipatory politics, prolonged downturn and stagnation of global capitalism reflecting the deepening, and expansion of both entangled crisis and impasse in the normal function of capitalism as an impassable system and crisis prone contradictory system?

We today witnessed the merging of two structural fields that permits a deep impasse of a crisis, and a crisis of impasse. The current situations imply the need to move beyond the dominant univocal understanding of the disorder. The impasse now became the dominant axiomatic name of contemporary conjuncture, perhaps an uncanny real that we must accept and to move beyond. The combined distinction with crisis conditioned the unity between both, reconstituted toward a new substance of the system and current representation. According to necessity of understanding this combined disorder-obscured substance and representation that forced us to rethink and rediscover the contemporary conjuncture to foment a new social imagination and experimentation of collective politics and dialectical coordination between North-South, to rethink the struggle and capacities to mobilize the balance of forces on the international level that will lead us to transcend the global neoliberal financial capitalism, and move toward a world socialism.

Comrades, the war in Ukraine has its dual character. A national fascist counter-revolutionary and imperialist war for profits against Russia, then to China. A fascist war that is reactive against the crisis, the people, the left, the Russia, and the preservation of the decadent system. While in another, an imperialist war of conquest of wealth, for the sake of accumulation, of profits, and of course, to empire-building.

Ukraine neoliberal fascism is the ‘frightful enemy’ of the people, of the working masses, either in Ukraine, in Russia, in Europe, in the US, in the Global South, international left and so on. War and fascism in Ukraine are not simply the extension, means of bourgeoisie or monopoly capital’s violence against the working masses. Both are the essence and expression of decay and disintegrated capitalism, deep contradiction unfolding in our global imperialist capitalism – and fascism, a reactionary force that is reactive toward a decadence system and disintegrating society. Its political and ideological functions were to restore and protect the regime of profit, to safeguard the private property regime amidst the growing decadence and crisis.

Here it leads to important, and provocative questions over the national question of Ukraine. Ones that our sectarian and puritan left have failed to see, instead they committed to play the imperialist, NATO’s grand narrative of propaganda. First is, are they (Ukrainian state, or government) neutral?, our answer is big No! – for us the left, and the left in Ukraine or elsewhere, our tasks is to expose the bourgeoisie, dependent, parasitic, predatory character of the Ukraine Government, its fascistic elements. Ukraine nationals had completely filled the three triangulation character of twenty first century fascism: it has a neoliberal reactionary power in state; it has fascist forces in the civil society and it has the fascist monopolies behind of it. Secondly, did the Ukrainian state and US/NATO fight for Ukrainian freedom? – Again, our answer is a big No! – Here again, US/NATO fight for the liberation of the Russian wealth and resources to be able to privatize as what Ukrainian government has done to IMF, World Bank and US/imperialist triad – it ensures the natural and human resources to be able to be controlled by the North. It was a war that replaced Ukraine blood with the profits to the imperialist triad.

For us, it was an imperialist war of geopolitical expansion to weaken and designed for regime changes across the counter-hegemonic countries of Russia/China and movements of the East and South, a war to rebuild US global hegemony and nuclear supremacy. And, it’s just another war-preparation to counter the revolutionary war against China’s industrial market socialism, which is this decades-exceptional achievement resulting from the Chinese’s state and party political system known as Democratic Centralism. The imperialist global war and militarism is a war that financed by us in the South, by the working masses in the advanced capitalist nations, by the crucifixion of the vast masses of global population.

I would like to propose some “optimistic” of the will here. I begin with the question, what is the progressive and non-progressive character of war in Ukraine?

The non-progressive part of the war is that it aims at accumulation at world scale, how the militarism abroad was central to imperial global strategy of accumulation and hegemony, and war as a means of preserving the stability of the system – that is unipolar super-imperialism of US-led globalized neoliberal imperialist order. Consequently it brings more suffering to the working people and Global South countries, that is more pillaging, more austerity, more debt, and more transfer of wealth from South to North. 

The progressive part of the crisis and war initiated by the fascist-imperialist aggression for our particular task in the twenty-first century is that, this diseases not only struck us, it not simply bring more deaths and suffering, but it helps dissolve the capitalist schizophrenia-inducing social confusion and impasse. It is with this that, the idea of happy-ending after the collapse of socialism and the spread of liberal capitalist modernity was a real childish utopia of the Fukuyamaian ideology, where they claimed rationality and peace will have to reign in the society of late capitalism. What some has referred to ‘super-calamity’, where the aggressive social inequality, misery and pauperization coupled with worldwide ecological crisis, pandemic and potential nuclear war is not just a bleak vision in the coming future – it is the idea and reality of “permanent holocaust” that approaching us rather than the so called ‘a period of return to normality’, as our beloved liberal, democrats and right-wingers has promised the masses.

The imperialist US/NATO proxy war on Russia and China over Ukraine, and now Taiwan, is a traditional form of ‘unjust war’. The unjust war is a non-progressive war. What is unjust war, shall be responded with just war by the peace-loving countries. I think that’s what Russia is doing and what China has to do. While in addition, the fascist war backed by the imperialist North is a war to maintain what be described as war to protect the ‘evolution by/within continuity’ – an irrational move and actions to safeguard the continuity of impasse, of decadent, of moribund, of barbarism. As Marxists and communists in movements, our solidarity shall be with all independent liberation movements and oppressed nations, and it shall be equal to existing peace-loving countries that are facing imperialist aggression and war for profits.

To end, Marxism is a proletarian science, it is a science of the partisan, to take side, and look, work and struggle from the side of the unseen, of the oppressed and exploited class/people. So do the question of war – A war always provoked and initiated by the ruling, established power, by the monopoly, by the capitalist states of the North. The objective reality since the rise of the era of capitalism is maintained along this objective law. The imperialist war is an unjust war that should be totally opposed by the people, and any social-political left. The Russian position is clear, it is to defend the Russian sovereignty and its people, to defend the oppressed people in Ukraine, of defensive war countering the cruel expansionist war for profits and fascist war of preserving the stability of the profit regime. 

To move backward briefly, the European empires were ruled by the fascist forces prior to World War II and the Cold War across the Western Europe. And the organic crisis of capitalism during the 1930s-1940s, and 1960s-1970s, opened the revolutionary revolt against the empire from the Global South. The current organic crisis of global capitalism, specially in the West, again, will test this historical hypothesis on the return of popular revolt in many parts of the Global South against the tyranny return of neo-fascist forces across the civil society, the reactionary far-right in political power of the state, and the hegemony of monopoly capital (with its transnational, corporate and financialized variant). Again, from the First and Second World War until the Cold War has given us revolution and war across the world during the Twenty Century – and we are not afraid of the possible consequences of war that will open a new horizon for more chaos, for national and international socialist revolution.

That’s why Mao Zedong said: first, we are against it; second, we are not afraid of it. Comrades, we don’t want a war – it is a imperialist-fascist war that was imposed on us, that forced the nation and people to take arms, and to fight.

Down with war!

Down with Imperialism!

A luta continua!

East Asia

Bolshevik Group (South Korea)

This presentation was first published on the Bolshevik Group website

We participated the last “OPEN LETTER FOR MAYDAY”, but do not participate in this “CALL OUT FOR ACTION: in September”.

We explained the reason in the internal discussion of “Marxist Speak Out”. Especially because of the second paragraph. There are a groundless and exaggerated view that “Sections of the US ruling class are also banking on the insane idea that in the event of full scale war with Russia and China, the US can win a nuclear war.” and an imaginary hope expressed in the sentence “Stop these imperialist vampires destroying the planet, with an international outcry.” In the background lies their own panic about war.

The May joint statement had the spirit of the working class fighting against U.S.-led NATO imperialism, but this joint statement contains a panic that war should be prevented at all cost. We assume that the phrase “World on fire” in the banner of joint action and the image of the Earth burning under the flames of nuclear war are such expressions of fear that threw out the class consciousness. In the meantime, the main strike point has changed from “U.S.-led NATO imperialism in May” to the “war” that must be prevented even by “Outcry.(Sep)” The target of the spearhead shifted from the devil itself to the shadow of devil.

The dramatic escalation of the Sino-US conflict served as the trigger for the war panic. On August 3, U.S. House Speaker Pelosi visited Taiwan, which created a sense of crisis between China and the U.S. that a war would erupt at any moment. They growled as if anyone would open fire first, and the imperialist media amplified its appearance. Then, the fear of war which has been trapped in the Eastern European fringe was released and spread to North America and Western Europe, which have been safe zones.

The panic that nuclear war must be prevented whatever it costs has been released. To paraphrase, there was a madness trying to open the door by pushing though it can only be opened when the handle was turned. The joint action quaked by the panic.

The cause of the war is imperialism, which is the highest stage of the capitalism. The violence of imperialism is not accidental. It’s a law of itself. It is the nature of capitalism and imperialism to survive only when profits are maximized. Thus, the violence of imperialism is not as incomprehensible madness as that of serial killers. Judging their violence as something crazy is not based on the nature of the object itself. It was the panic of observer that made it looks that way. And the panic leads to the wrong path of bourgeois pacifism. At the end of the road is the advocacy of their country’s imperialism.

The nature of imperialist war is to make the working people of all parts of the world obdient subject to exploitation. That is the reason for the war. The main goal of U.S.-led imperialism is to subdue a semi-colonial state Russia, which has repeatedly resisted imperial hegemony, and a deformed workers’ state China, which is still based on vast state ownership, and to devour the huge industries and resources of the two countries. That is the only way for capitalism and imperialism to escape and rejuvenate from ruin. This is the essence of the Ukrainian war and the Sino-American conflict.

Capitalism, which was on the brink of destruction during World Wars I and II, was able to revive with the cooperation of the imperialist minions within the working class.

The task of Marxists in imperialist countries is not to discourage the ruling class from walking towards the war. We can’t stop war by the Outcry. Imperialists have always responded to the Outcry, which is gripped by war fears,: “We are also opposed to war. There will be no war soon!“

The Marxist mission is to firmly promote that the cause of the war is imperialism, that peace is impossible under the capitalism and imperialism, and that a socialist revolution that defeats imperialism at home and overthrows capitalism is the only way to end the war. This was the spirit of the Zimmerwald Left that built the leadership of the Russian Revolution.

Now that far right chauvinist madness is escalating, this work could be a lonely road. However, as seen in the past history, the situation changes rapidly in certain period. From 1916 to 1917 is an example of such a dramatic change. We are seeing such signs all over the world.

The hegemony of imperialism is weakening and incidents are accumulating one after another to raise the morale of workers in each country fighting against it. The 2014 Euromaidan coup was the lastest success of imperialist regime change. Meanwhile, similar attempts have since been thwarted in Syria, Venezuela, Bolivia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan. The United States failed to make a nosebleed of North Korea or Iran, which openly resisted imperialism hegemony. And they were awfully ousted after losing the war in Afghanistan. There was also a very rare scene in which angry working class entered the Sri Lankan presidential palace without bleeding where the imperialist servant stayed. Saudi Arabia and India, the traditional allies of the United States, are also openly reported to ignore U.S. demands and make friendly faces to Russia and China. Strategic resources such as oil and gas are traded not only in dollar but also in ruble and yuan.

These things that have happened in the last 10 years are rarely seen in the last 100 years. The world working class is carefully watching this strange scene and getting inspiration for liberation. This scene is not only seen by the oppressed people. There are also pro-imperialist servants in many countries that are difficult to sustain for months without imperialist military support. They are terrified that they may easily be abandoned by their imperialist masters.

Thus, this era is a ‘general current of advantage for the global working class on the one hand and general disadvantages for imperialism on the other hand’.

– For the peace, the desperate wish of the working people!

– Defeat imperialism!

– Overthrow the first link of the imperialist slave chain, ‘social democracy, social patriotism, bourgeois pacifism, and Anglo-American chauvinism’!

– Build a revolutionary international party that will break the chains of slavery!

P.S: Regarding the BT’s speech today, we welcome their point that the slogan “stop the NATO war against Russia and China” is pacifist and opportunistic. That was our argument in early August. But BT has continued to fail to explain their contradicton between 2014 and 2022. Between their neutrality and the accusing neutrality as opportunism.

South America

Liga Communista/Communist League (LCFI Brasil)

I’m Frederico Jorge, education worker, I work as a university professor at a public university in Brazil, I’m part of the Instituto do Movimento Operário at the State University of Ceará. I will represent our organization on this panel and with great satisfaction and joy I would like to inform you that the Communist League and PCPB are currently, from September 9th to 11th, holding a national conference. This conference, to begin the process of merging the two groups, was attended by communist workers from five states in Brazil and also by the TMB from Argentina. We need to build an international party defending oppressed peoples against imperialism and defending all workers against the inflationary crisis manipulated by capitalists around the world.

All the major wars of the last two centuries have untied revolutionary waves from the breaking of the capitalist balance in the relationship between states. The Prussian Franco war provoked the Commune of Paris; the first world war provoked the Bolshevik revolution and the creation of the USSR; World War II provoked the revolutionary wave that overthrew capital in 1/3 of the planet.

 In 1945, the capitalist balance was restored only between the imperialist states under American hegemony as a need for “antagonisti’c cooperation” (to use an expression of August Thalheimer) against the USSR, the new workers states and the bourgeois nationalism of semicolonial countries. In 1975, with the fall of Saigon and the American withdrawal from Vietnam, a cycle of territorial reduction of capitalism ended, as witnessed by the revolutionary situations of Iran, Nicaragua, Burkina Faso, whose revolutionary processes did not give rise to new workers states. In the last 50 years imperialist financialization has restabilized the balance between states under US hegemony, which was strengthened after the fall of the USSR in 1991.

 With the social counterrevolution in the workers states between 1989 and 1991 the tendency to capitalist territorial reduction was reversed, leaving the United States as the only global power. The situation of imperialist-capitalist equilibrium has never been stronger than in this period, especially in the 1990s. In 2008, with the global economic crisis, which was centered first on the U.S. and then the European Union, which are in reflux within the world market, a new phase of imperialist imbalance began, which at first was artificially contained by a wave of coups promoted by the CIA. Neo-mercantilist, constituted from the inheritance of the most extensive and populated workers states of the past. It is at this stage that the current war in Ukraine takes place and the prospect of a third world war opens up.

Revolutionaries must prepare for the trend of a new war that has indeed begun, by taking sides with the nations oppressed and attacked by imperialism and the unconditional defense of existing workers states such as Cuba and North Korea, which translates politically at this time into supporting Russia’s defensive war in Eastern Europe and rejecting imperialist provocations against China. Therefore, we are not pacifists in front of the warring blocks. It is possible that the current situation evolves, matures for the third world war in current, chronological times, or in historical times in the medium term.

As Nancy Pelosi’s provocation against China has shown, the internal contradictions of American imperialism, threatened by civil war, can accelerate the chronological times of the historical trend to the third world war.

However, we are not impressionists like the Posadists who fell into an immediate view of the war, who renounced the construction of proletarian internationalism in favor of bourgeois nationalism and Stalinism, we know that only an eruption of the proletariat can prevent a new world war. However, if this war is not avoided, we must be prepared to take advantage of the fall of the interspersed capitalist equilibrium to advance beyond the neomercantilist capitalist bloc that today is driven by the creation of a single anti-imperialist front of oppressed bourgeois states and workers states. We believe that the world proletariat and oppressed peoples of all the world should take advantage of the Intra-bourgeois fissures to impose their own program to change reality.

Tendecia Militante Bolchevique/Militant Bolshevik Tendency
(LCFI Argentina)

The need of the world party of revolution at this timeWe need to build an international party defending oppressed peoples against imperialism and defending all workers against the inflationary crisis manipulated by capitalists around the world.All the major wars of the last two centuries have untied revolutionary waves from the breaking of the capitalist balance in the relationship between states. The Prussian Franco war provoked the Commune of Paris; the first world war provoked the Bolshevik revolution and the creation of the USSR; World War II provoked the revolutionary wave that overthrew capital in 1/3 of the planet.

In 1945, the capitalist balance was restored only between the imperialist states under American hegemony as a need for “antagonisti’c cooperation” (to use an expression of August Thalheimer) against the USSR, the new workers states and the bourgeois nationalism of semicolonial countries. In 1975, with the fall of Saigon and the American withdrawal from Vietnam, a cycle of territorial reduction of capitalism ended, as witnessed by the revolutionary situations of Iran, Nicaragua, Burkina Faso, whose revolutionary processes did not give rise to new workers states. In the last 50 years imperialist financialization has restabilized the balance between states under US hegemony, which was strengthened after the fall of the USSR in 1991.

With the social counterrevolution in the workers states between 1989 and 1991 the tendency to capitalist territorial reduction was reversed, leaving the United States as the only global power. The situation of imperialist-capitalist equilibrium has never been stronger than in this period, especially in the 1990s. In 2008, with the global economic crisis, which was centered first on the U.S. and then the European Union, which are in reflux within the world market, a new phase of imperialist imbalance began, which at first was artificially contained by a wave of coups promoted by the CIA. Neo-mercantilist, constituted from the inheritance of the most extensive and populated workers states of the past. It is at this stage that the current war in Ukraine takes place and the prospect of a third world war opens up.

Revolutionaries must prepare for the trend of a new war that has indeed begun, by taking sides with the nations oppressed and attacked by imperialism and the unconditional defense of existing workers states such as Cuba and North Korea, which translates politically at this time into supporting Russia’s defensive war in Eastern Europe and rejecting imperialist provocations against China. Therefore, we are not pacifists in front of the warring blocks.

It is possible that the current situation evolves, matures for the third world war in current, chronological times, or in historical times in the medium term .As Nancy Pelosi’s provocation against China has shown, the internal contradictions of American imperialism, threatened by civil war, can accelerate the chronological times of the historical trend to the third world war.

However, we are not impressionists like the Posadists who fell into an immediate view of the war, who renounced the construction of proletarian internationalism in favor of bourgeois nationalism and Stalinism, we know that only an eruption of the proletariat can prevent a new world war. However, if this war is not avoided, we must be prepared to take advantage of the fall of the interspersed capitalist equilibrium to advance beyond the neomercantilist capitalist bloc that today is driven by the creation of a single anti-imperialist front of oppressed bourgeois states and workers states. We believe that the world proletariat and oppressed peoples of all the world should take advantage of the Intra-bourgeois fissures to impose their own program to change reality.

If we can better understand this reality, establish the necessary tasks in the face of the demands of class struggle for the end of NATO and against inflation, imperialism, and capitalism we can overcome the current stage of an embryo of “international propaganda society” (Leon Trotsky) in the process of regrouping and establishing a program to build the world party of the socialist revolution that the current stage of class struggle requires.

North America

Class Conscious (US/Australia)

On the 200th day of the war while Russia may be winning a grinding war of attrition it’s a war it is not allowed to win. 

The US will not tolerate a Russian victory even if it means fighting to the last Ukrainian. In fact, the US is not concerned with actual military “victory” in Ukraine but on a staggeringly high death toll from a protracted war to bleed Russia dry.

The proxy insurgency will contribute to the destabilization of Russia, facilitating a long-planned regime change operation and the carve-up of the country itself. 

This is even clearer now than it was when we met in March. 

Unlike the centrists we cannot get trapped into viewing this through the narrow lens of Ukraine alone.  The war must be seen in the an international context.

As Trotsky wrote in his 1928 Critique of the Draft Program of the Communist International:  

The international program must proceed directly from an analysis of the conditions and tendencies of the world economy and of the world political system taken as a whole in all its connections and contradictions, that is, with the mutually antagonistic interdependence of its separate parts. In the present epoch, to a much larger extent than in the past, the national orientation of the proletariat must and can flow only from a world orientation and not vice versa. 

Today world capitalism is mired in deep crisis. The US rate of profit has not recovered from the financial crisis of 2008.

Yes the mass of profits is increasing but the rate of profit is too low to sustain growth in real production. 60% of the growing mass of profit flows into financial markets.

Fictitious capital is parasitizing on production and choking off new investment to a greater extent than at any time in the past 50 years. And it demands a growing share of the world surplus value to stay afloat. 

American capitalism is using its productivity advantage to offload the crisis of valorization onto its European allies. And most of all it is intensifying the looting of the Global South from which it has been draining Value since ‘08.  

The US Fed is responding to the inflationary crisis and the wage offensive by creating a recession in the model of the Volker shock treatment of the 1980s to attack the working class.  

Europe is looking at a new winter of discontent. Inflation in the UK is predicted to rise as high as 18%. Half of British households are at risk of falling into poverty as a result of surging gas prices this winter. The National Health Service expects thousands to die because they can no longer heat their homes. 

In Argentina inflation is heading towards 70% by the end of the year. The interest rate has climbed to 52% in a bid to avert investors dumping peso assets. South America’s 3rd largest country is at the breaking point.

We are on the cusp of two things: A working class upsurge along the lines of the Yellow Vests in 2019 on the one hand, and a growing tendency towards state authoritarianism and fascism on the other. 

The threat of fascism represents a great danger both in the imperialist centres and in the Global South. Trump, Bolsinaro and Le Pen must be taken seriously. 

The fastest growing, most aggressive sector of finance capital— the vulture firms of private equity capital— are supporting Trumpism. 

The upsurge of course also presents a great opportunity, but there is no revolutionary leadership. This is why we must build on efforts such as this panel to clarify our thinking and make links. We must continue towards the creation of a Zimmerwald Left for the 21st century.  

Imperialist war is the objective reality before us.

Not only in Europe but in the Asia Pacific. 

In just 20 years China has surpassed the US as the world’s leading trading partner.  China represents an intolerable challenge to imperialism as both as an economic and ideological competitor as it remains a deformed worker’s state despite its large capitalist sector. 

Building an international antiwar movement is the order of the day. Our forces are small but 4/5ths of the world is with us. We must build links with broader forces. 

Even some of the centrists are breaking from Russophobia in the face of the emerging facts on the ground. 

Mass protests are already beginning. 70,000 came onto the streets of Prague this week to demand an end to the EU/NATO war and to the inflation but we must play our part to raise the banner of anti-imperialism and Socialism at these protests. 

On to the creation of a Zimmerwald Left! On to building a international anti-war movement! Down with fascism and victory to socialism! 

The Imperitive to Rally All Anti-fascist Forces

Hello everyone. My name is Mike and I represent the US Friends of the Soviet People, an organization that seeks to support struggles to restore socialism in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union after the counter-revolution in 1991. And I believe it is important for us to start back in 1991 at the time when American hegemony was claiming victory over the socialist forces. The famed “not one inch east” proposal that the US had agreed to with then general secretary Mikhail Gorbachev was meant to be an assurance that the Eurasian landmass would be free from NATO interference and expansion. However, as we all know, this would not last as imperialist forces continued to push farther east into Eastern Europe. One by one, the former soviet countries were absorbed into the organization, Yugoslavia was broken apart to make way for military bases in Kosovo, and within decades, NATO was now dangerously close to Russia’s borders.

 In 2014, the US would fund and take part in the Euromaidan in Ukraine, allowing reactionary and fascist forces to take over the country. In the coming months, Russian citizens living in Ukraine would be subject to abuse, killings, and other acts of terror. Ultimately, this would result in the Donbass region seceding and becoming independent states. Ukraine led a bloody campaign for over 8 years that resulted in over 14,000 citizens being killed by Ukrainian forces as their Neo-nazi forces terrorized the people in the Donbass. This is what has led us to the events spiraling in front of us today that we must act upon.

 The US/NATO alliance has sought regime change in Russia not only since the counter-revolution in 1991 but since 1917 when Russia overthrew the Tsar in the Bolshevik Revolution. America has always painted the Russian people as outsiders to the European project, as people who are uneducated and callous. We even see this russophobia fomenting in the way Russians are deemed “orcs” by far-right forces and the various ways they have been harassed, beaten, and killed for years. American media has laid the grounds for this current manifestation of Russian prejudice and hatred by the virulent ways it portrays them in every medium from movies featuring Russians as main antagonists who are determined to destroy the US as well as military propaganda present in video games that proclaim around every corner and in every country Russians are poised to take over the entire world.

 It’s these exact portrayals that the US is guilty of. Countless coups, counterrevolutions, and assassinations carried out in countries on every continent; the idea of a multipolar world is simply unacceptable to the United States. NATO is willing to sacrifice the entire population of Ukraine to weaken Russia. When history looks back on the current proxy war, it will be the US/EU/NATO alliance whose hands will be responsible for the blood spilled.

We must also speak about the propaganda war being waged against the People’s Republic of China and Washington’s long attempts at destabilizing the country and the Communist Party of China. The US government itself has admitted that the NED funded forces in Xinjiang to foment unrest in the region. Recently, House Speaker Nany Pelosi has taken it upon herself to visit Taiwan and proclaim she “stands in solidarity” with the island. The US has long used Taiwan to keep a foothold in the region and to further delay the inevitable reunification with mainland China.

The tensions being stoked by American imperialism are further causing harm to the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean populations living in the US. Hate crimes soar when mainstream media proclaim China a deadly enemy that must be stopped by any means. As with Russia and so with China, the US is only interested in total spectrum dominance and a unipolar order that allows them to engage in the worldwide looting of countries’ resources. The crisis of US imperialism has left the working class in the country as well as in Europe in a further precarious state. Workers in several states in America deal with unsafe drinking water, power outages from poor infrastructure, outrageous housing conditions, and costs, yet the US establishment has given untold billions of dollars to defense companies and abroad. Instead of allowing for a ceasefire and negotiation between Russia and Ukraine, arms sales are skyrocketing. In Europe, the population is being told that they must be willing to sacrifice everything for the cause of Ukraine. Mass unrest is growing and it is up to anti-fascist forces around the world to be there when the public becomes disillusioned

Socialist Unity Party (US)

This presentation was also published Struggle La Lucha website

Washington doubles down on proxy war in Ukraine by Melinda Butterfield

Today the capitalist media is rapturous with news of the advance of the long-anticipated Ukrainian counter-offensive and the withdrawal of Russian troops from the Kharkov region. How significant this will be remains to be seen. Less is said about why and how this counter-offensive was made possible: the massive intervention of the Pentagon and NATO to shore up their faltering proxy war against Russia.

Last week, as the Ukrainian offensive was taking shape, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken made a surprisevisit to Kiev to pledge another $2.8 billion in military aid from Washington. For those keeping track, that brings the total in public U.S. aid to Ukraine this year to a whopping $16.5 billion. That’s more than the annual Gross Domestic Product of 98 countries, according to U.N. figures.

This has been described as the largest single arms transfer in U.S. history. It’s also an enormous transfer of wealth to the military-industrial bourgeoisie. But in reality this is just the tip of a very large iceberg that includes not only covert U.S. funding, but the infusion of weapons, troops and mercenaries from the U.S.-controlled NATO alliance.

Blinken’s visit was not really a surprise. It was the latest in a long line of visits by high ranking U.S. officials to give marching orders to their puppet regime in Kiev. These visits date back to the very beginning of the war against Donbass in 2014 and 2015, when it was thenVice President Joe Biden, among others, who delivered the orders.

The continuing infusion of massive amounts of money and weapons to the war zone removes any illusions that the Ukrainian conflict is just a brief episode in the New Cold War against Russia and China. On the contrary, the way Washington has doubled down at a time of growing economic crisis for the masses in the U.S. and Europe shows that the ruling class intends this war to continue for a long time, to break up and dominate the Russian Federation.

But they also feel the urgency to make tangible headway quickly. The ability to seduce large sections of the U.S. population to “stand with Ukraine” has waned sharply with the accumulating crises facing the working class. Inflation is only the most obvious. The Biden administration is spending billions on war and police, while funds for public health, pandemic eviction bans, climate crisis and education are eviscerated. This contradiction cannot be papered over forever.

The situation will sharpen even more quickly among the Western European NATO powers, which face the prospect of winter without access to cheap Russian fuel.

The efforts of the organizations represented here for a genuine anti-imperialist position in the movement is making headway. Here in the U.S., the United National Antiwar Coalition has finally called for a week of action around U.S. threats to Russia and China in mid-October. There are many factors, but the impact of events like this one, and of John Parkers visit to the Donbass front line in May, on the rank and file of the left are significant.

The importance of the Donbass people’s struggle continues to be under-appreciated if not outright ignored by most left forces in the West. If the people of Donetsk and Lugansk are considered at all, it is as a mere tool of Russia. In fact, the relationship is quite different.

Imagine trying to build an anti-imperialist movement during the Vietnam War while ignoring the struggle of the Vietnamese people! And yet, this is the standard position of the Western left on the conflict in Ukraine and the Donbass republics.

The explosion of resistance in eastern Ukraine after the Maidan coup in 2014, particularly in the Donbass, the most working-class region of Ukraine, was a tremendous breakthrough in reviving anti-fascist consciousness and internationalist solidarity rooted in the Soviet period. It reverberated through the people of all the former Soviet countries, particularly Russia.

There is a reason why Soviet flags and the Banner of Victory are seen everywhere in the current anti-fascist military operation. It’s not that Putin is trying to restore the USSR, as the Western media claim, or put something over on the global left. He and the Russian ruling class would love nothing more than to be rid of those symbols.

But they reflect the genuine consciousness of the most active elements of the Soviet people about the stakes of the war, even three decades after the destruction of the USSR. That includes many anti-fascist Ukrainians.

Since February, the anti-fascist military alliance has succeeded in liberating much of Donetsk and Lugansk from Ukrainian occupation. But as they have advanced, a large group of Ukrainian troops has become concentrated in a well-defended area west of the capital of Donetsk. And all summer, this has meant unrelenting, daily, brutal Ukrainian attacks on the civilian population of the city, including raining thousands of small anti-personnel mines on the streets, where children, seniors and emergency workers have been the main victims.

This heroic population, which has held strong for more than eight years of war, is under the worst siege of the war. The morale of this anti-fascist city is absolutely crucial to the struggle. We must elevate the plight of the people of Donetsk and expose the grotesque war crimes of the U.S. and Ukraine.

Victory to the Donbass republics and Russia! End the U.S./NATO proxy war and sanctions!

Partido Socialista Obrera Socialista CR/ Socialist Workers Party of Costa Rica

Greetings colleagues from the different organizations. We are the Socialist Workers Party of Costa Rica. The Partido Obrero Socialista de Costa Rica is grateful for this space for discussion of the central problems facing the capitalist system and to be able to characterize the events with the aim of proposing solutions for the working class in the different scenarios, both where the war is lived imperialist, as in those countries where we receive in one way or another the consequences of the decay of the system. The capitalist system, in its imperialist phase in decline, continues its path of decomposition and barbarism. The United States of America, despite the crisis of the system, intends to continue maintaining its capitalist hegemony over the rest of the nations or blocs of nations that still depend largely on the dollar as the world’s commercial currency, with which this imperialism obtains enormous profits and not intends to give up that advantage. But, in addition, the permanent harassment against Russia and against China, due to the market dispute, has allowed imperialism in recent years to increase and encourage the arms market, to test them and sell them to those countries that are guardians of their interests in the different parts of the world.

On the other hand, the United States wants to cling to its imperialist hegemony,This, inherited from the last century, from the first and entrenched after the Second World War, is why the war that is being waged in Ukraine has the objective of maintaining said hegemony. Given this position, we are clear that Russia and China, which are not imperialisms, and pose multilateralism as a utopian way out. But the idea of ​​multilateralism is a trap, because the United States is not going to share its advantages in the market with the use of the dollar and the military power that allows it to sustain this advantage. Just as the idea of ​​autarchic socialism in a single country in the days of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics did not work in its ideal of peaceful coexistence with capitalism, neither did the ideal of building socialism in a single country by incorporating the capitalist market into the productive structure, will have positive results in the long term as they can claim in China, because the imperialist bourgeoisie will apply the mechanisms to exhaust them, either with internal shocks and if necessary using military resources to liquidate such projects. For example, as we have seen in some declarations, North American imperialism is already seeking to wear down Russia, using Ukraine and Europe as a stage, and will continue to set up the war scene, necessary to corner these mixed-economy countries, which have gone through a revolutionary process. , and what they continue to be an obstacle to imperialism, given that, for example, after the fall of the bureaucracy of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, they failed to establish capitalism, as they intended to do. We must remember that the Soviet army was not dismissed by another at the time of the fall of the USSR and the arrival of the Russian Federation (the army is the essence of the State), and since it was not defeated, just as the Soviet Army has not been defeated either. army of the People’s Republic of China, both maintain the essence of both revolutions, fundamentally in the defense of state property on which their economic, scientific and social boom depend to a great extent. This situation is adverse for the hegemonic plans of the United States, until now, and they know it. Regarding the situation in Ukraine, we must point out the importance of the Ukrainians uniting so that there is no more support for this war, there must be a demand to stop the recruitment of Ukrainian civilians to go and die for the interests of their servile government to imperialism. We believe that the Ukrainians must unite so that the attacks against the territories of their neighboring brothers in the Dombass end, and that they once and for all shake and topple the neo-Nazi and servile government of Zelensky, and deal a heavy blow to North American imperialism.

We, the other peoples of the world, also have the opportunity not only to denounce and demand the end of the US imperialist war in Ukraine, ALSO we must raise our voices against the sanctions applied against Russia, and which today affect the entire world, increasing the cost of living and that is another way to maintain the war, by other means. The habitants of Europe receive the consequences of their politicians, of continuing to insist on sanctions that in the short and medium term will not really affect Russia, if not themselves, limiting energy resources, as well as sources of employment, who pay the consequences are the members of the working class. For this reason, the working class and organizations of our countries must raise their voices for any people that is being attacked by the United States and NATO. We maintain our call to defend all nations attacked or harassed by imperialism, but we also state that, within capitalism, there is no alternative. The only way out is world socialism, both Russia and the neighboring nations that were part of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, as well as China, must take the step towards the nationalization of their main productive sectors, as well as the nationalization of the bank, because there are no chances to share profits amicably with the hegemonic imperialism of the dollar. World socialism is the way out, the federations of socialist nations are the only way out, not only to put an end to the decline of the capitalist system, but also to stop the escalation of war, which is the last resort of the imperialist bourgeoisies to ensure with the market and the control of the capitalist system, as we saw in the last century. Thank you very much.

Mike Gimbel


Every person on this planet will be affected by the current world military crisis in The Ukraine and Taiwan. We are on the verge of World War three. The threat of WWIII, is why we are here, and why you are watching this forum.

My question:

Where is the worldwide ‘Communist movement’ at this critical moment in human history? Why are they not participating on this panel? Mass anti-NATO demonstrations are already beginning in Europe.

Why are these ‘communist’ parties ABSENT, from this forum, at this critical moment in human history?Why aren’t they creating PUBLIC support for Russia and the Donbas, in the fight to defeat US sponsored fascism and NATO?

Russia has hit the fascists in the mouth, but these ‘communists’ have run the other way, often using pacifist slogans, in this critical moment in human history, which REQUIRES ALL COMMUNISTS to show what they stand for and what they will fight for.

We are in a new, Zimmerwald moment in history, where a new COMMUNIST leadership in the mass struggle, must be created. We hope to be part of that creative process.

The big question for today: What is the main target of US-led imperialism in the Ukraine? The answer. The target is CHINA, not Russia.

China’s historic rise, as a workers state, no matter what internal problems China may have, is a beacon of hope for the workers and the oppressed of the world, and a huge nightmare for US-led imperialism.

We are Marxists. We recognize that economics is the driving force of history.

At the end of WWII, the GDP of the USA was 50% of the entire world’s GDP.

US imperialism’s economic base, at the end of WWII, gave it the economic, military and political control over the capitalist market, as it initiated the “Cold War” to defeat Communism, using these three weapons:

  1. US imperialism created the World Bank and the IMF, with the US Dollar equated to Gold, to be the ECONOMIC base of control of the world capitalist market.
  2. US imperialism created military alliances, such as NATO, to be the MILITARY base of control of the world capitalist market.
  3. US imperialism created the UN, as its political instrument for control of the world capitalist market.

The world capitalist market even dominated the USSR and Eastern Europe BACK THEN, and continues to dominate the current worker states. There can be no escape from the capitalist market, be it in New York City or Beijing or Havana.

However, China’s economic rise is challenging US imperialism’s control of the world capitalist market. TODAY, China’s industrial base is more than DOUBLE the industrial base of the USA. LET FACT THAT SINK IN! US-led imperialism has off shored a good portion of its industrial base, in its relentless seeking for greater profits. A good portion of that industrial base is now in China!

As a result, US imperialism has created the very rope, in China, with which to hang themselves! Only recently, has it dawned on the vampires running the capitalist system, that China’s rise is an immediate threat to the very existence of US-led imperialism!

The immediate purpose of the US/NATO proxy war in the Ukraine was a failed attempt to isolate China, by splitting Russia from China, but it did the very opposite! The war brought Russia and China closer together!

The war has also proved to the colonial world that US-led imperialism is crumbling. The global south, victims of US-led imperialist oppression, are NOW, beating a path to Beijing and to Moscow, seeking liberation from the US imperialist vampire! The current sanctions placed on Russia, has speeded up the collapse of US-led imperialism’s power.

Class struggle, inside Europe and the US, is beginning to break out. Worker anger, however, will need to be focused on the real enemy.

That is our job, COMRADES!

As a result of their defeat in the Ukraine, US-led imperialism NOW faces two choices:

  1. Accept a surrender of world leadership to the Chinese Worker state – or –
  2. Start WWIII NOW. Five years from now will be too late! China’s economic rate of growth will eliminate any possibility of a military victory for US-led imperialism, if the war is long delayed.

There is no ‘middle choice’ between those two choices. WAR or SURRENDER!

Which of the above choices US-led imperialism takes, we can only guess at. According to Larry Johnson, a retired US military official, there is a US naval officer, in charge of the Pacific Fleet, determined to create a provocation, in order to start WWIII.

Question: Doesn’t the Pentagon control that US Naval officer? Yes…but. All capitalist ruling classes are a coalition of competing capitalist groups. The US President, and the US government is just the Executive Board of these competing parasitic interests. Too many comrades have a simplistic view of the ruling class, as if that class is united. It isn’t. It is only united against us!

Within these parasites, there is no consensus over starting WWIII. However, some sections of the capitalist rulers have more influence over the military, than others. A big section of the ruling class, even if it is a minority, wants war NOW and has great influence within the military leadership. These US military commanders are no different than the military leaders, who do Coup d’état’s in other countries. Do you really think that Donald Trump and the Republican Party would oppose a coup? They already tried one on January 6th, 2020!

The US Navy, as with the UK imperialist Navy of a century ago, is the most right-wing, the most aggressive, the most arrogant and the most elitist, and most war-mongering part of the US imperialist military. The UK and US Naval armada’s are the definition of “Gunboat Diplomacy”.

The war in the Ukraine has demonstrated that, in a land war, the US/NATO alliance would lose to Russia, let alone China. The US NAVY is the ONLY portion of the US military that is more powerful than the Navy of Russia and China. All the capitalist vampire hopes are with the US Naval armada, as their possible savior.

We must not understate the danger to the world, that we face today! That is why, the Communist movement MUST begin the process of unification in creating MILITANT PUBLIC demonstrations in support of Russia and China!

There is no other option for the workers and the oppressed of the world: Either we win or the capitalist vampires win! The fate of humanity is in our hands!

We need a world network coordinating our response! Join Us!

My question:





A conundrum — we must ask why we have to raise such a slogan as STOP US WARS ON RUSSIA! STOP US WARS ON CHINA! as a rallying demand? 

Why would it not be obvious to left, progressive, socialist & self-acclaimed Marxists that — to quote the most conscious & committed elements of USA’s working class — we must “Stop the US War Machine to Save the Planet?  That many of the world’s woes point to USA as the elephant in the room?

Here I must say I have been totally disgusted by the European Left, democratic socialist, Stalinist, or once-trotskyist, that after 80 years of US occupation it could only manage to squeal “Russia Out!” from behind the skirts of the west European bourgeoisie.

USA has declared itself – “the world’s first, last & only truly global empire” (Ziggy Brzezinski 1986) – the initiator of a “New World Order” (GHW Bush 12 Sep 1990). Since 2017 it has nominated Russia and China as “existential” threats and “revisionist” powers that threaten USA’s “rules-based” world order (as in US Rules! OK?)” Inherent in these concepts are powerful indicators of US ambitions of global domination that it may be willing to enforce by any means up to and including the threat of nuclear war.

You would think such statements would cause global uproar – but they haven’t.

Since the waging of the first Gulf war and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 the peace and anti-war movement and above all the left, including, especially many of those, who call themselves Marxists have been in a state of confusion as to the causes, responsibilities & even the victims, when it comes to responding to the rash of wars & other aggression such as embargoes that have been unleashed by the USA since 1990.

After a century of failure by the European left — the left in the imperialist countries generally — there is a situation of extreme disorientation, matched with increasing irrelevance & diversion from basic tenets, that has paved the way for capitalist reaction in the imperialist countries. We have largely been trapped in the matrix of world views and ‘knowledge’ manufactured by the ruling classes of imperialism.

We deny humanity’s heroic efforts & progress to overthrow imperialism and colonialism as part of the world socialist revolution – that emerge from the contradictions of capitalism itself. The corollary of this is that the left seems totally confused as to what imperialism is.

(I recall Trotsky defending Emperor Haile Selassie from Italian aggression – These days many leftists would probably call that situation as one of ‘competing imperialisms’)

To understand imperialism — to put it in its historical context – I turn first to Marx’s summation of the world historical “mission” of capital –that is, the “logical conclusion” of the laws of operating under capital. He says in Capital III – (to paraphrase )

The capitalist mode of production is an historical means of developing the material forces of production and creating an appropriate world-market. At the same time, there is a continual conflict between this, its historical task & its own corresponding relations of social production,” because “capital and its self-expansion (solely) appear as the starting and the closing point, the motive and the purpose of production”; production is only production for capital and not to expand the living process of the society of producers’; because the preservation and self-expansion of the value of capital can only ‘work’ (or proceed) though the expropriation & pauperisation of the great mass of producers.

So its purpose — unlimited extension of production, towards production as an end in itself – and its means — unconditional development of productive forces of society — come continually into conflict with the limited purpose, the self-expansion of the existing capital. “The real barrier of capitalist production is capital itself.

Maybe I can put this more simplistically – because capitalist production is based on expropriation & pauperisation of the great masses of workers in its quest to maximise capital – among other dehumanising things it stifles people’s ability to use or consume what collectively they produce – so continuously generates crises for itself – which it resolves through destruction of existing capitals then an expansion of the new capitals.

The historical vehicle for this expansion of capital has been imperialism – and colonialism — the form particular capitalist states have taken to enable their national capitals to capture new markets & resource bases from which to extract and maximise their profits & suppress competition. 

By the time Lenin contended with ‘Imperialism’ he was recognising this law of capitalist motion in more concrete form as it progressed into a more mature and even culminating or definitive stage — many Marxists, communists & socialists refer to Lenin on imperialism … So what does he say?

Lenin outlines five basic features — the basic, purely economic concepts — by which to define imperialism –

(1) concentration of production and capital developed to such a high stage it has created monopolies which play a decisive role in economic life;

(2) merging of bank capital with industrial capital, creating, on basis of this “finance capital,” of a financial oligarchy;

(3) export of capital as distinguished from export of commodities acquires exceptional importance;

(4) formation of international monopolist capitalist associations which share world among themselves & (5) territorial division of the whole world among the biggest capitalist powers completed.

This can be used mechanistically – (ticking off ‘traits’ to determine how imperialist a state being examined or categorised is). It can be used to construct ‘comparative systems’ for instance… or hierarchies of imperialisms …

Yet Lenin hedges the use of these defining features in analysing imperialism with qualifications:

“.. very brief definitions, although convenient, for they sum up the main points, are nevertheless inadequate, since we must deduce from them some especially important features of the phenomenon that has to be defined

We shall see later that imperialism can and must be defined differently if we bear in mind not only the basic, purely economic concepts—to which the above definition is limited—but also the historical place of this stage of capitalism in relation to capitalism in general, or the relation between imperialism and the two main trends in the working-class movement. The thing to be noted at this point is that imperialism, as interpreted above, undoubtedly represents a special stage in development of capitalism.

In other words we cannot understand imperialism in ‘real time’ by a cladistic grading of nation/ states by means of five traits/features: we have to behold it holistically, and non-mechanistically, so we can see where we are within capitalism’s historical progression & how imperialism stirs the ‘working class movement’, e.g., by creating ‘two main trends’ or counter-currents – and so, consider the most effective ways to unite the world’s working class against imperialism, against global monopoly capitalism.

If we view the world historical stage in its completeness (as IMO the Chinese communists do) we can see and place ourselves and other events within the period of the world’s revolutionary transformation from capitalist class society into a classless world communist society. Well into its second century of transformation if we start with the revolutions of 1848, more than a hundred years if we count from The Great October revolution and likely generations to go. To deny the validity of the Soviet Union/Comecon, the Chinese revolution, the Cubas, Nicaraguas, Venezuelas, the DPRKs etc the interactivity of these “outbursts” & their validity as historically progressive, integral steps in this transformation is ultimately self-defeating, because it is saying that far from being capitalism’s gravediggers the proletarian and working class revolutions have proven incapable of any lasting victories in 200 years against capital.

We’ll come back to that in a moment.

Let us now look at one power that is imperial – in fact claims to be the world’s ‘first, last & only truly global empire”.  It claims to be the world’s global hegemon, the sole power, with the right to crack any power that may challenge it.  You would think it is a no brainer that this is the most dangerous entity currently on the planet, but apparently many cannot see it, let alone see its hand in multifarious events & situations.

I want to look at Ziggy Brzezinski’s proclamations in the Grand Chessboard (1986) where he states:

“…the American entrepreneurial economic model … stresses global free trade and uninhibited competition….  As imitation of American ways gradually pervades the world, it creates a more congenial setting for the exercise of indirect & seemingly consensual American hegemony. … that involves a complex structure of interlocking institutions and procedures, designed to generate consensus and obscure asymmetries in power and influence. American global supremacy is thus buttressed by an elaborate system of alliances & coalitions that literally span the globe. “

In promoting the “American entrepreneurial economic model” Brzezinski disparages the ‘Western European” economic model –

 … its “welfare state, including its German emphasis on ‘codetermination’ between entrepreneurs & trade unions” & the “pervasive decline in Europe’s internal vitality”, from an “excessively burdensome welfare system sapping its economic vitality”; resulting in “more Europeans voicing the opinion that the more competitive and even ruthless American economic culture has to be emulated if Europe is not to fall further behind”.

So, to clarify — the US empire is not promoting ‘democracy’ in general, or even ‘social democracy’, which at least recognises some role for labour as a co-determinant in a pluralist socio-economy; let alone expressing tolerance anywhere in its world system for a democracy that embraces socialism, or communism.

Brzezinski is in fact describing a world ‘liberal-democratic’ order that serves capital, specifically finance capital (see Michael Hudson “Super Imperialism” on this) to create an “appropriate” world market to maximise its power to extract profit over any needs & interests of society, and the workers and people at large whom it enslaves (& debauches). USA is the world executor of the ‘neo-liberal’ order — “laissez faire” for business in the era of global monopoly capital. At its core is a complex of interconnected US-global corporations and institutions, with an attendant “US war machine’ to serve their interests.

As for ‘poorer countries of the world’, with their ‘hundreds of millions of unemployed and increasingly restless young, whose level of frustration is growing at an exponential rate’, says Brzezinski — only a ‘sustained and directed American involvement’ will prevent ‘international anarchy’ and the “threat of war” cannot be discounted in this case, because they are outside ‘those parts of the world where US power has been reinforced by democratic socio-political systems and elaborate external multilateral — but also US-dominated — frameworks’.

So this is the way that USA realises the ‘neo-liberal’ dream – the creation of an “appropriate world market” to allow an untrammelled “expropriation & pauperisation of the great mass of producers” for capital and its eternal self-expansion, being based on finance capital and international monopolist capitalist associations which share world among themselves – but which are all contained, just the same, in ‘US-dominated — frameworks’.

And this vision of course is not merely about “national” domination and alliances – its aim is global but its reaches right into the work place everywhere under the prevailing “neo-liberal” capitalist hegemony.

Witness the restructuring of jobs and the workforce as industry is automated and the ‘gig’ economy spreads – its loss of full-time work, loss of conditions, work security; an increasing difficulty for labour to organise at workplace and industry level. We have been deliberately steered by neo-liberal governments into a cycle of economic restructuring where increased labour productivity no longer sees a growth in wages. This is in the imperialist core countries where labour has been comparatively privileged compared to in the “global south”.

The idea that all ‘big’ powers – are competing imperialisms — and organised in this way is a myth that the left, and the labour movement must explore and dispel.

I will leave Russia as a special case, other than to say, that it is only 30 odd years since the Soviet Union collapsed – even now Russia is treated by the west – the European Union and USA – as a country way past due time to be dismembered and ransacked for its resources – they are just a bit behind schedule but still working on it …  Class relations are fluid and Putin is a bonapartist figure who survives by his ability to balance the needs of the people and the new capitalist class; but he has reconstituted Russia as a nation state & turned the economy and living standards of many Russians around. The building alliance with the PRC is Russia choosing a new future, finally giving up hope to be part of a Europe under a fading world power.

This is important to the “global south” that has quietly applauded Russia finally standing up to USA/NATO in Ukraine, because they see here the chance of a multi-polar world-power arrangement that will take the pressure of US imperialism  (with its IMF, World Bank etc instrumentalities of neo-colonial domination) from off them ; allowing them to escape debt & allocate national resources to their own sovereign development).

So, the left in the imperialist core countries should be able to see that not all “imperialism” are the same – some are not imperialist at all; and in relation to PRC, the left in the imperialist hemisphere must have an obligation, surely, to look at the progress of China since its successful workers-peasant revolution of 1949 and understand it in terms of the centuries long revolutionary transformation of capitalist class society into classless world communist – human – society.

When one world power advocates a “world market” that progresses through austerity & war and another enunciates a “global community of nations with a shared destiny” that aims for “an ecological civilisation” surely a politically informed person would be curious to find out more.

Lastly – I will finish off with stating something that deserves a whole session of its own.

That is – that since the world of imperialism as revealed by Lenin, one world event, that has spawned a whole progression of further events, has occurred – the Russian revolution that Lenin himself had a central, leading role in. Since then – starting with the bloodbath against communists in Germany in 1919, the competition of capitals and the manoeuvring of empires have been circumscribed by capital & empire’s collective fear – the spectre of communist revolution that would put an end to all their capitalist, imperialist games.

To not see what is going on in the world even now – ‘austerity at home’ that is the crushing of whole labour forces and ‘war abroad’ — aimed at those nations and movements not accepting capitalist hegemony (as usually tested by their willingness to subject their workers & economies to “neo-liberal” “reforms”) is not to understand anything that is going on in the world –and to be left open to impressions and & the propaganda of the oppressing classes who are constantly aiming to convince us our enemies are our allies and our friends our enemies.


κομμουνιστικη επαναστατικη δραση / Communist Revolutionary Action (Greece)

The war in Ukraine should not be seen as a single event. Its true essence is revealed only if its seen in the context of the last 30 years. The end of the cold war was a signaling point for the unravelling of a global reactionary strategy of subordinating the whole globe under NATO’s boots. The true meaning of Ukraine can be seen along Serbia, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan. As well as on the basis of the coop attempts in the rest f the world (Venezuela, iran, Palestine etc).

Our enemy’s on the other hand follow an exceptionalist reasoning. They view Ukraine as a single situation. As an expression of some kind of eternal and inherent authoritarianism of Russia.  In this sense these political enemies and ex-comrades follow a non-materialist way of thinking about political problems. They pose some metaphysic explanations that attempts to explain the developments in Ukraine on the basis of some kind of spirit or constitutional ideal.

How far is this in comparison with for example Jordan Peterson, a far right scumbag infuencer, who says that Russian aggression is a general characteristic of Russia from its beginning. But the material circumstances are, unfortunately for their part a very stubborn situation. Russia tried to reconcile with Ukraine. It tried to make the Minsk aggreements, and all of this while neo-Nazis were killing thousands of people. On the basis of a true fascist ideology.

Political circumstances are rarely so exceptional. And the developments after the start of the special military operation confirms this. New crises are emerging as we speak. How should we understand the Taiwan visit by kamikaze Pelosi? How did it happen and the stars of national liberation became so aligned with each other during this specific period?

Why did the Ukrainians and the -so called- Taiwanese feel such an allegiance to each other’s cause, to fight for their so called freedom? And believing that their freedom shall be carried by American F-34s and British drones?

No this is not possible. These are not national liberation movements. These are just imperialist networks which have erased so much of these governments, to the point that they have become true puppets of the NATO lords.

Why is this happening?

Because we are facing a historical crossroad. What is being posed is the doubting of the 500 years of global European dominance. We are now in a crossroad, whose beginning started with Cortez’s landing in latin America, was consolidated in the Dutch and the English East Indies Company, the creation of the great empires.

The question which is posed now, is whether the European overlords will continue to steal the fruits of global labor, products and land of the rest of the world. The question which is posed is whether we will live in a unipolar world, under the continuous threat of a military intervention by the West, in case some government want to have a social program and not sell of all of its wealth to them

The question which is posed is whether we will also live under the cultural dominance of the west, their own specific neo-colonial ideologies and practices. It is also a challenge of breaking all these academic, news and ideological institutions which are continuously trying to impose how we should think, feel and understand about reality and one another

For us, the question is clear. Even though the situation is not as clear as it might had been 70 years ago during the second world war with the CCCP.  Nevertheless our true class interests and hearts lie with the non-privileged peoples of this world. The ones which are faced with new Iraqi wars on their people. The ones whose wealth is being stolen. Our interests and hearts lie with the Global South

This presentation was published first on the Bolshevik Tendency website

Firstly, I would like to thank the organisers of this meeting. We are gathered here to discuss a critical issue for the international working class in this period characterised by the loss of global hegemony for American imperialism and the role of other powers, including Russia, in shaping an increasingly multipolar geopolitical world order.

The origins of the current military conflict between Russia and the Ukrainian proxy of US-led Western imperialism can be traced to the 1991 capitalist counterrevolution, as we have outlined in our published materials. The US has sought to expand NATO throughout Russia’s “near abroad,” by enlisting the countries of the former Warsaw Pact. The long-term strategic objective of the US, as described by Dick Cheney when he was Defence Secretary under George H.W. Bush and Zbigniew Brezinski, Jimmy Carter’s National Security Adviser, is to dismember Russia, and create 3, 4 or 5 smaller more pliable—that is exploitable—states.

For the past several decades, the economic weight of the US and its imperialist “partners” in NATO, as well as Japan and Australia, in the global economy has been declining, while China, where collectivised property relations remain dominant, has been steadily gaining ground on its “advanced capitalist” peers.

The global economy is at the edge of a major economic crisis that will dwarf the 2008 crisis. Even before the impact of the COVID pandemic, global capitalism was clearly showing signs that a major profitability crisis was in the offing. Now as the sanctions against Russia spectacularly backfire, most notably in Europe where exploding energy price rises are driving the most serious cost of living escalation in generations, international capitalism stands on the brink of the most dire economic crisis since the Great Depression.

Russia’s economic engagement with the world, particularly the former Soviet republics, is primarily characterised by selling commodities—particularly oil and gas—at prices lower than those current on the world market. Rather than extracting super-profits in its near abroad, or anywhere else, Russia derives most of its income from energy sales, largely to Europe. Russia is not a predatory imperialist power, despite its formidable military, but rather an essentially dependent capitalist country.

A military victory for Russia over Zelensky’s US backed Ukraine will strike a powerful blow against global imperialism—just as a Russian defeat will embolden the US and its NATO stooges for further aggression in the Indo-Pacific, particularly against the Chinese deformed workers state. This is why revolutionaries side with Russia in the current military conflict while refusing to offer any political support to Putin’s bonapartist, anti-working-class regime. We took exactly the same attitude towards the struggle of the Taliban in driving the US and its NATO allies out of Afghanistan.

Russia is not an imperialist country, because it is not a net extractor of value from less developed countries. Offering military support to Russia in its struggle against the Ukrainian proxies of US/NATO imperialism, is an acid test for all those who claim to stand in the tradition of Lenin and Trotsky.
It is a test which most of those who claim the Bolshevik tradition have failed—with some taking a position of neutrality while others side with NATO’s Ukrainian puppets. Whilst imperialist governments are throwing billions of dollars into propping up the Zelensky regime with the aim of weakening and ultimately destroying Russia, workers in the West are becoming increasingly restive as it becomes clear to them that this reckless military adventure, which is going to destroy much of Ukraine and cost many tens of thousands of lives, is going to be financed by slashing popular living standards in the NATO countries. Intersecting that sentiment and making the link between the imperialist war drive and the cost of living crisis must be a central focus for Marxists in the coming period—it is vital to communicate to the millions of working people turning against NATO’s war in Ukraine that a Russian victory is in their direct, material interest. On May Day the Bolshevik Tendency marched in London and Toronto under the slogan “US/NATO War Drive Against Russia and China Hurts Workers Everywhere!”

The other groups speaking here today, who broadly share our perspective, have put forward a variety of slogans including:

  • Victory to the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics and their allies!
  • U.S./NATO: Hands off Russia! Get out of Ukraine and Eastern Europe!
  • For defeating imperialism and defending Russia and Donbass.
  • It is necessary to support Russia in its battle with imperialism.
  • We stand with Russia in this conflict.

We note however that the “Worldwide Organising Network Against Fascism, Imperialism, Racism & Exploitation (WorldOnFire),” which most of the groups represented here today are affiliated with, avoids a clear statement of which side to support in its Call Out For Action.

Instead of seeking to make it clear that genuine anti-imperialists must side with Russia and its allies against NATO’s client in Kiev, the propaganda put out by your bloc has a pacifist “Stop the War” message, as is shown, for example, by one of the slogans proposed as the basis for common action: “Stop the war of US/NATO imperialism against Russia!” This is presumably due to the opportunist calculation that this will make it easier to get a hearing, which it likely will. But at the cost of blurring the key issue and ending up echoing the slogans of the various larger formations of centrists, opportunists & left-reformists whose “opposition” to NATO has an essentially pacifist quality.

We call on those of you who are seriously committed to the Bolshevik-Leninist tradition to heed Trotsky’s injunction: “To face reality squarely; not to seek the line of least resistance; to call things by their right names; to speak the truth to the masses, no matter how bitter it may be”.


We see the war in Ukraine as a crucial conflict in this period between imperialism and its opponents and victims.

It is a product of the decay of imperialism, and in particular the world imperialist hegemon, the United States, whose decline as an imperialist power is well underway.  In a manner analogous to the situation British imperialism began to suffer after WWI.

After the German challenge was defeated in 1918, Britain was eclipsed, not by an enemy, but by what became its most important ally – the US.

The US having been originally a creation of mainly British colonists, it negated and pushed out its originator and became British imperialism’s successor as the world hegemon.

This became possible because of the economic decline of British imperialism as an economic and military power, its internal contradictions in terms of the beginning of its economic decline, and not least the developing revolt of its many colonial subjects against their subordination.

These liberation struggles massively expanded after WWI, and the decline of Britain proceeded apace in the interwar period.

The liberation struggles were massively accelerated by the Russian Revolution of 1917, and the enormous ideological, and often material help and inspiration that the initially revolutionary Soviet Republic under the early Bolshevik ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ gave to anti-colonial struggles everywhere.

Since the British Empire at that point was by far the biggest, it was most shaken and damaged by the Russian revolution and its galvanising effect internationally.

In parallel with that, the 1929 Great Depression and the tragic course that the class struggle took because of that, with Hitler’s rise in Germany, the viability of British imperialist hegemony was further massively eroded.

Germany under Hitler’s Nazi rule, jointly with Japan and to lesser extent Italy, attempted to take advantage of the decline of Britain and to head off the evident project of the United States to replace it as world hegemon.

In a sense, the United States was helped to victory and the conquest of world hegemony over its imperialist rivals by the successful resistance of the degenerated first workers state, the USSR, to Hitler.

Both the imperialist allies of the United States in WWII, Britain and France, and its imperialist enemies, Germany, Japan and Italy, became its clients in military sense.

Despite considerable economic tensions and episodic disagreements over the past three quarters of a century since WWII, that pecking order has remained essentially intact.

But it is being threatened decisively now by the economic and military decline of the United States as the world hegemon, whose fundamental problem is the most basic problem of the capitalist system itself, the long-term tendency of profit rates to decline.

That is what has driven the US to a course of action that has put US hegemony in danger. Deindustrialisation has become a categorical imperative in all the older capitalist countries and has particularly affected the United States and Britain.

The large-scale export of manufacturing jobs to East Asia, and particularly China, has created a new situation in the world.

It dovetailed splendidly with the project of ‘counterrrevolution from above’ of the Chinese Stalinists that grew out of Deng’s initial market reforms to the Chinese then deformed workers state at the end of the 1970s.

This accumulated through the 1980s as part of China’s bloc with US imperialism against the USSR.

The Chinese Stalinist bureaucracy helped imperialism to destroy the USSR. It was the military pressure of imperialism that forced it to devote a disproportionate part of its resources to the military.

This brought about the economic stagnation that led a decisive section of the USSR’s bureaucracy to capitulate to imperialism through the programme of perestroika.

Both in the economic sense, with an accelerating drive to embrace ‘the market’ in a manner that always logically pointed to capitalist restoration.

And in the military-strategic sense, as escaping from that imperialist military pressure logically pointed to capitulation.

So that is what basically happened. And as a result, Russia underwent capitalist restoration and an incredibly ruinous economic shock treatment at the beginning of the 1990s, after the August 1991 failed coup attempt.

Gorbachev’s perestroika, initially sweetened by glasnost, the false promise of political freedom to the working class, morphed into a brutal capitalist dictatorship under Yeltsin, that resulted in the most brutal decline of living standards ever seen in a relatively advanced country.

The economic decline was steeper and more deadly than that which happened in Germany after 1929.

In Russia the experience of millions of deaths and impoverishment at the hands of neoliberalism and imperialism, led to a massive popular backlash against neoliberalism

And to the growth of nostalgia for the much better times under the deceased Soviet workers state, even under Stalinist rule.

Imperialist capitalism was torn out by the roots in Russia in 1917, a material fact of enormous significance for Marxists. There can be no comparison of Russia with Germany, for that reason.

So, the popular backlash in Russia was a backlash against neoliberalism. The defeated official communist movement was in no position lead opposition to capitalism and neoliberalism.

What actually happened is that part of the infant Russian bourgeoisie, which had inherited the military power of the USSR, saw the opportunity to develop in a different direction using that military power and its economic weight as an energy supplier in the first instance.

The result being a peculiar form of non-imperialist capitalism with negligible power in terms of the financial plundering nature of imperialism, but considerable power militarily and as an energy supplier (comparable to Saudi Arabia, Iraq, or Venezuela in that sense), that had a unique ability to resist imperialist domination.

At the same time, the imperialist export of large numbers of jobs and industry, drive by the quest to raise declining profit rates, led to China’s growth as an industrial power, benefitting from ‘global labour arbitrage’ as John Smith put it in his work Imperialism in the 21 Century

This happened concurrently with the counterrevolution from above in China that proceed apace in in the 1990s and took a very different form from in Russia.

China’s capitalist restoration actually avoided the neoliberal shock treatment that afflicted Russia and managed to industrialise itself and become a major industrial power, benefitting from its status as a reservoir of cheap but skilled labour, out of the imperialist drive to outsource industrial labour.

Paradoxically, it allowed the Chinese bureaucracy to restore capitalism from above, via a kind of bourgeois mixed economy that is very much marked by China’s decades as a deformed workers state.

It also paradoxically allowed China to resist imperialist domination.

This produced anti-Chinese sentiment in the US in particular, expressed initially in Trumpism, when the penny dropped as to what the US bourgeoisie had paradoxically managed to do.

Create a non-imperialist, capitalist industrial rival whose driving force is NOT finance capital, i.e., the extraction of revenue in a parasitic sense from dependent countries.

These two major non-imperialist countries have been driven together for self-defence against US imperialism, which is very fearful of the future of its world hegemony.

It cannot tolerate any country in the world that seriously endeavours to defy it and assert real sovereignty.

So that is what this conflict is about. It is about the decline of US imperialism, and threats to its world hegemony.

But this is very unlike the situation in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, when British imperialism’s hegemony was first threatened and then eclipsed by US imperialism, this time US imperialism is not threatened with being eclipsed by another imperialist hegemon.

That is not how imperialism works. Imperialism is an exclusive club. It is not possible for oppressed countries to join it. That contradicts Lenin’s understanding of imperialism. It also contradicts experience.

Only one new (relatively minor) imperialist power has emerged in virgin territory since the First World War, when the advanced capitalist countries tore themselves apart and gave birth to the October Revolution.

That was Israel. And that was transplanted in an artificial manner, the social and political expression of a distinct layer within the existing imperialist bourgeoisies that for unique reasons, sought their own national imperialist state.

Russia and China do not fit that model at all. They are both products of the delay of the world revolution, and the failure of imperialism to replenish itself, proof of the nature of imperialist capitalism as a system in decay and decline.

They are anomalous, hybrid forms of capitalism, whose capitalism, instead of replicating imperialism, is very much marked by its origins in states that for decades were degenerated forms of the dictatorship of the proletariat.

Neither imperialism, nor they, are historically viable. Imperialism is reactionary through and through.

 Those states at odds with it are anomalous by-products of a temporary decline and setback of the world revolution.

But the road to revolution is still through the defeat of imperialism.

And the non-imperialist nature of these states, and the fact that they are now forced to resist imperialism, imposes a duty on the world proletariat to defend them against imperialism.

This resistance to imperialism inspires an element of anti-imperialist consciousness in the working class who come to understand it. Which is the road to revolutionary class consciousness.

A conscious understanding of how this paradox came to be, how these anomalous states in conflict with imperialism are products of revolutions that regressed, or were born with deformations that hamstrung them, point to the solution in class consciousness.

A defeat for imperialism at the hands of these non-imperialist states points the road back to the revolution and revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat as the solution to the huge social, environmental, and cultural barbarism that imperialism is dragging us into.

A successful defence of Russia and China, and the defeat for imperialist hegemony, points back to the need for the world revolution as the only thing that can save humanity from destruction at the hands of imperialist capitalism.

Davey Heller

Davey Heller is a Trotskyist from Melbourne and long-time campaigner for Left-wing causes including anti-war, refugee rights, environmental protests and workers' struggles. He is a former secondary teacher who studied history at Monash University and currently works in the environmental field. You can follow him on Twitter at @socialist_davey

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