Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Faults of Baroness Warsi

By Adrian Chan-Wyles

Baroness Warsi is to be applauded for her resignation from the ConDem government over the prime minister’s unquestioning support for the ongoing Israeli policy of terrorism and genocide carried-out against the innocent people of Gaza. 
The right-wing media is to be condemned over its racially motivated attacks aimed at Baroness Warsi for her principled stance against David Cameroon, and the courage she has shown in face of her own Conservative Party’s indifference to the plight of Palestinian children, and the general air of pro-Israeli warmongering that exists amongst its upper echelons, at exactly the same time that the proletariat is being brainwashed by the state to eulogise the 1914-1918 holocaust perpetuated against it – otherwise affectionately known by the bourgeoisie as ‘World War I’.
 Baroness Warsi, due to her ethnicity and complexion, is being accused by the odious Daily Mail of ‘betraying’ the prime minister essentially because she is not ‘white’.  This is the default position of the right-wing when it policies of prejudice and discrimination suffer the embarrassment of being exposed for what they really are.  It is something of an anathema that Baroness Warsi – and others of distinct ethnicity – would hold conservative views, and pursue right-wing values, when such attitudes are obviously designed to be detrimental to minorities of all kinds.
Lady Warsi possesses many faults, but these are not the product of either her ethnic background, or her.  The Baroness, for instance, has continuously used her success as a prominent right-wing politician, to give expression to vicious homophobic sentiment, and ruthlessly attack the gay community through the popular media.  In this regard, the Baroness had no qualms in attacking a British and worldwide minority that has suffered discrimination, hatred, physical attack, and in certain cases – murder – simply for expressing a preferred sexual orientation.
 The Baroness, although presented by certain sections of the media, as being ‘working class’, has nevertheless fully supported the prime minister’s policies of attacking the poor, the destitute, migrants, the homeless, the disabled, and the unemployed.
  The Baroness has set about the task of dismantling the British welfare state and the National Health Service, with a distinct sense of relish.  As Black, White, and Asian British people suffer hardship under these cuts, the Baroness has remained silent at their plight and made no move whatsoever to assist these victims of Tory bigotry.
It would appear that Baroness Warsi has no problem ignoring the suffering of multicultural Britain.  This expert manipulator of the media whilst she was in a position of governmental power, never once questioned the morality, logic, or ideological validity of current Tory policy toward the ordinary and often vulnerable people of Britain.  Workers toiling for an ever decreasing wage, disabled people dying of starvation because many have not understood the benefit cuts enacted against them, and workers and unemployed queuing together at poorly supplied food-banks in the hope that they can make ends meet for another day.  The cutting of unemployment benefit to such a low level that virtually no one can survive whilst living on it, coupled with the abolishment of Council Tax Benefit for most people, and drastic reductions in Housing Benefit, has had disastrous effects upon the poor and vulnerable, and the British working class in general. 
All this has been applied to the working class at a time when the middle and upper classes have received pointless and extensive tax-cuts that serve no purpose other than to deprive the poor of essential services, and secure votes for the Tories.  These are the extensive and profound faults of Baroness Warsi that form the foundation for the ridicule and criticism she so readily deserves from the  left, which must stand clearly for anti-racism, and defend the rights of Baroness Warsi as an individual, even if she does not, as a right-wing politician, feel she should defend the rights of the British working class. 
It is the ‘red flag’ of Socialism, and not the ‘blue water’ of Conservatism that clearly leads the way in this matter.  The people of Gaza – and the working class - will be freed through historical forces and not in spite of them!        

Friday, August 08, 2014

Communists in Britain and the fight against fascism in 2014

By Daphne Liddle

The most significant fascist and racist groups active in Britain at the moment are the British National Party, the English Defence League, Britain First, the English Volunteer Force, Traditional Britain and a number of regional Infidel and alliance groups – and of course the United Kingdom Independence Party.
The British National Party is now just a shadow of its former self after its election wipe-out in 2010 and the collapse of its electoral strategy. But it still exists. It has enormous debts and financial problems and has lost its main former financier, Ulster businessman Jim Dowson, but it is still getting money from somewhere and cannot be totally written off.
Jim Dowson himself recently told a [Channel Four News] documentary on Britain First, who are Dowson’s new protégés, that although he had broken with the BNP he had previously given them a total of around £4 million and he considered this well spent because BNP public activity during elections had “moved the whole British political spectrum several degrees to the right”.
And we should note a coincidence that the National Front’s dramatic collapse and splintering into umpteen warring factions in 1979 also coincided with a general election that swept Labour from power and brought in a very hard-line anti-working class, anti state-welfare Tory regime.
 The NF at the time had also just lost one of its main sources of income – money from the US-based World Anti-Communist League (which was funded from US, Saudi and Brunei sources and initiated by former Ukrainian Nazis) that was channelled via Lady Jane Birdwood. WACL’s new director, John Singlaub redirected the money from Birdwood to extreme right-wing Tory fringe groups. These groups included the notorious Federation of Conservative Students, which ran a campaign to hang Nelson Mandela.
In 1979 The NF was also wracked with internal strife after Special Branch leaked to anti-fascists the information that Martin Webster, second in command of the NF, had regularly supplied them with information on the NF in return for money. He considered himself seriously underpaid by the NF.
But like the BNP in 2010, the NF had done its job of diverting and dividing the working class to allow for the election of a right-wing Tory government with a strong anti-working class agenda and was no longer needed by those who had been financing it.
The English Defence League is also now just a shadow of its former self. A few years ago it could attract thousands of assorted football hooligans, former squaddies, neo-Nazis and general thugs looking for something to fight about on the streets. Its declared anti-Islamicist policies were a thin cover for its general racism and demonization of immigrants. They would bring terror to the streets of the towns targeted for their marches and they deliberately picked areas with a large Muslim community.
The tide of success for the EDL turned with massive anti-fascist mobilisations in Tower Hamlets, Brighton, Walthamstow and other places where large numbers of local residents took part in blocking the paths of the intended EDL march routes, sheer numbers and mobility making it impossible for police to control. When this happens police can, with difficulty, clear a stretch of road but it fills up again immediately with more anti-fascists.
            Anti-fascist photographers, being close to the EDL ranks, witnessed the intense anger and frustration of EDL members when their marches were blocked in this way. They were most furious to see the numbers of white working class people among the anti-fascist ranks because they have a delusion that the majority of white working class people share their racist outlook. “You’re not English anymore!” is the chant they hurl at such people.
When their marches were blocked repeatedly EDL supporters drained away. Their commitment to the cause is weak and their political understanding very shallow. Many have just come along for the opportunity of a fight. If they cannot fight immigrant communities or anti-fascists they will fight the police. And if they cannot fight the police they will fight each other.
In May 2013 the brutal murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich by two Muslims caused a new wave of anti-Muslim hysteria that revived the fortunes of the EDL briefly. They organised dozens of marches and rallies but found, as before, they were still being blocked by anti-fascists and no one wanted them and the numbers began to fall away again.
This was when their leader, Stephen Yaxley-Lennon commonly known as Tommy Robinson, decided to quit. He claimed to have suddenly realised that people of different faiths can and should live in harmony and mutual respect and from now on this was going to be his mission – as though no one had ever thought of it before. There was no word of apology to the many multi-faith groups whose influence he and the EDL had tried to smash.
Nor was there any word of apology to his former followers who had dutifully trudged up and down the high streets of England on what he now realised was a mistaken cause.  He also claimed to have only just realised that the organisation he built attracted thugs, racists and neo-Nazis. He teamed up with a dubious state-funded think-tank known as Quilliam, which claimed to specialise in the redemption of Muslim extremist would-be terrorists.
The EDL had already begun to splinter into various more extreme “Infidel” groups – some of whom spent more time attacking Catholics than Muslims – and regional alliances. Paul Pitt from Essex emerged as the leader of the South East Alliance and is also a leading member of the English Volunteer Force. Last year he was seen outside the Lord Moon pub in Whitehall chatting with Jim Dowson.
Another small group of unashamed Nazis arising from the splintering of the BNP and the EDL is Britain First, led by Paul Golding. They charge around in an armoured Land Rover trying to intimidate Muslims, invading mosques with bibles and bottles of alcohol reminding the Muslims of what they probably most despise about traditional English manners.
But Britain First does seem to have won some funding from Jim Dowson. And from the behaviour of those vying for Dowson’s money it would seem they are competing to “kick their way into the headlines” – the tactics that Martin Webster of the old National Front boasted about. The old National Front is still around, just, and has benefitted a little from the fall-out from the shrinking BNP and EDL. In spite of its small size the NF is currently divided into three warring factions.
The Traditional Britain Group is evolving to take the place of the old Monday Club – an amorphous meeting and mingling place between fascist and racist “intellectuals” and the right-wing of the Tory party.
The EDL has shrunk but, like the BNP, is still there with a small core of hard-liners. It is still putting on marches in towns around the country: Slough, Peterborough, Rotherham, Newcastle, Stevenage and Middlesbrough.
There is a pattern to these events. The EDL turnout is low – usually fewer than 150 but the local police put on a huge and expensive show to guard against clashes with the local communities and with organised anti-fascists.
The police order the EDL to assemble outside the town so that they can enter the town accompanied by a lot of police, either by train or in special coaches laid on by the police. They allow the EDL to march noisily through the centre of town offending local residents, to a prepared pen where they make speeches. These invariably focus on the theme of Muslims and paedophilia and the grooming of young girls. There is no rationality to this – such activity is just as abhorrent to most Muslims as it is to anyone else and the paedophilia practised by various celebrities, politicians and some Catholic priests is never mentioned. It just plays to tabloid sensationalism and is the modern equivalent of the Victorian “white slave trade” scaremongering.
The EDL also boast about how much their marches are going to cost local council tax payers for policing.
There is invariably an anti-fascist counter demonstration, usually organised by the local trades council. These counter demonstrations are usually much bigger than the EDL effort but police route them around the outskirts of town so only those who participate really know they have happened. This is sad because it allows the EDL to feel they have triumphed over anti-fascist opposition and gives them a little boost. Their numbers have started to grow again a little.
There is no substitute for blocking their path with massive numbers, even if the police do not like this.
So it goes without saying that on the streets and facing the fascists there must be maximum unity between anti-fascists of all political shades. We must remember that the biggest and most successful anti-fascist alliance of all time comprised Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt and they managed to work together in spite of having very little else in common, until the threat of Nazism was smashed. If they can work with each other then we can too – communists, socialists, anarchists, Tories, Liberals, Labour supporters, young, old, male, female and every gender nuance in between, atheists, Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Jews, Buddhists and every other world view and every ethnic shade possible.
            AS COMMUNISTS, working with other anti-fascists of all kinds also gives opportunities for friendly dialogue as we stand shoulder to shoulder against fascism and it in no way implies our support for the political views on other matters of the people we are standing next to. Those are matters for peaceful argument during the lulls in fighting the fascists. This is the only way to achieve the mass turn-outs necessary to stop the fascists. And it happens naturally on the streets. Anti-fascists of all shades will defend one another regardless where there is a threat of attack by fascists or by police.
The traditional tactics of Unite Against Fascism and the more anarchic tactics of the energetic young people of Antifa are both needed and should be co-ordinated for maximum effect. Some trade unions do a good job of mobilising their members for anti-fascist work from the workplace – but we must find a way to mobilise workers in places that are not unionised (yet). We need to knock on doors and talk to working people in their communities, countering the lies that the fascists and racists promote. This is what was most effective in wiping out the BNP vote.
And this is the best way to defeat Ukip. Ukip has undoubtedly had an enormous amount of free publicity from the media and the state. It is performing a function for one section of a ruling class that is divided over Europe. That function is not to win a majority in Parliament but, again, to shift the whole political spectrum even further to the right and to persuade the working class to accept even further draconian anti-working class measures – the total dismemberment of state welfare, the trade union movement and all working class rights that have been won over the last 200 years by diverting attention into racism and xenophobia and an obsession with immigration.
The media never disclose any other aspects of Ukip policy so few people are aware that Ukip wants to abolish the NHS and privatise all medical care and all free education; ultimately they would like to abolish all taxes. It is the task of the anti-fascist and anti-racist movement to make up for this deficit in general awareness and it is the task of communists to give a lead in prioritising this work. And we do not give a lead from the rear, telling others what to do. We do it by being in the front line of activity.
We communists are great ones for meetings, conferences, debates and committees – theoretical work that is usually done sitting down. This is all essential work but it is only half the struggle. If all those great resolutions and clarifications of the line are just left hanging we might as well not bother. We must stand up, get out and about and be at the forefront of implementation – on the streets, in the workplaces, in the communities, on the housing estates putting our line into practice and communicating directly with workers and raising levels of political awareness and class consciousness. And we must do this most of all among the masses who are currently disillusioned, politically unaware and sceptical of the value of left political activity.
We must ensure that the hardship and suffering caused by the austerity measures and attacks on working class living standards turn into anger and not into despair and resignation. To do that we need some successes in struggle, we need to set at first modest, achievable goals to build morale and awareness. And defeating fascist and racist activity is one area where we can do this.
Historically the poll tax was defeated by mass non-compliance that made it impossible to implement. The Save Lewisham Hospital campaign won because, through an enormous effort, it achieved a truly massive level of active involvement and support. It can be done. Some say in both cases there have been subsequent reversals – the council tax system is also unjust and the Government changed the law so that in future cases like Lewisham hospital will not be able to succeed. But both campaigns did succeed in their main immediate goals and set a powerful example for others. Under capitalism there is no such thing as a permanent victory that does not have to be defended again and again but with good morale and mass involvement that is achievable.
And on the anti-racist anti-fascist front there have been a steady level of successes in anti-discrimination laws and the Stephen Lawrence family campaign led to big changes in policing. There is still a long way to go in achieving policing that is really free from racism and the progress achieved is always under threat. But that is the fluid nature of political struggle; we can never let up but we know we can win.
It is down to a critical mass of involvement but to achieve that we have to make a public political stand that people can and will rally to. Three times this year different fascist groups – Britain First and then the ex-EDL’s South East Alliance – have tried to stage events in Cricklewood, north London.
 In the first instance in February the anti-fascist picket line was quite modest – the local trades council, members of the Labour Representation Committee and a few others – seemed quite modest in number. But when the fascists turned up it was heartening to see the anti-fascists numbers quadruple at least as local passers-by joined in and it turned into a major success. But it would not have happened if the trades council comrades had not bothered to make a stand in the first place.
In the second instance in June it was the young, mobile and daring comrades of the Antifa movement who totally blocked the street – and also won a lot of support from local passers-by. The fascists were unable to do anything and their leader Paul Pitt exploded with rage and frustration. No violence was involved – just a critical mass of people able to block and road and with the courage to do so.
In the third instance, Paul Pitt’s South East Alliance again tried to march in Cricklewood but the effect of their previous defeat was that Pitt could muster only 17 supporters – and three of them were so embarrassed by the low turnout they did not march with the others but hung about on the sidelines. Pitt protested to the police again – but this time it was very half hearted. Meanwhile the number of anti-fascists had multiplied again and, with a line of big banners right across the street, they barred the way again. 
Back in the 70s and 80s the presence of Anti-Nazi-League pickets, however small, at every fascist and racist public activity had a true mass impact on the fascists’ and racists’ morale. It led them more or less to give up street activity. And it was always a very welcome sight to an anti-fascist photographer to know they were not alone. Now Unite Against Fascism and other anti-fascist groups are keeping up that tradition.
In Europe there is a much more serious situation developing with new Nazi parties blatantly displaying fascist and Nazi symbols, calling for pogroms against immigrants, Jews and Roma people.
And in the Ukraine, with the backing of US finance they have seized power from the weak democratic government of Yanukovich as part of a western strategy to bring Ukraine under the political and economic control of Nato and the European Union.
Once again the fascists are being used to divert and divide the working class while the most draconian cuts in wages, pensions and services are being imposed on them as the giant western companies try to seize Ukraine’s agricultural and mineral wealth.
The West had tried before to destabilise Ukraine and supported pro-western and anti-Russian puppets but the people soon saw through them and threw them out. This time they used the pro-EU Maidan Square protesters as a cover to seize power.
Ukrainians are a people who can remember living under socialism and they are putting up a mighty resistance and in the east are attempting to set up breakaway republics. Crimea broke away altogether and reverted to becoming part of Russia, denying the important Russian Naval base at Sevastopol to the Kiev Nazis.
But a full scale war is being fought by Kiev against the peoples of eastern Ukraine.
There is also strong resistance to the Nazi putsch in western Ukraine but it is being dealt with very brutally. Outspoken opponents of the junta are being murdered, communist party offices have been looted and burned, Russian language books are being burned and the language is being outlawed. All to divert attention from the huge drop in living standards being imposed on all the people by western imperialism.
Russian leader Vladimir Putin, a right-wing nationalist and pro-capitalist but opposed to western imperialism, was quick to accept Crimea back into Russia but is avoiding further Russian involvement. He can clearly see the hand of Washington behind the Kiev junta and he has no desire to escalate the conflict into a third world war. He knows there are hawks in Washington who would like to do that.
Meanwhile he is securing economic agreements with China and other Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) countries to reduce the power of the US dollar globally and to defuse the American threat that way.
There are also strong Nazi movements in Greece, Hungary, Poland and in Russia itself. But they tend to be divided from each other by their extremist nationalism. Polish, Hungarian, Ukrainian and Russian fascists all lay claim to parts of each other’s territories and despise each other as lesser breeds of human.
And there are also strong anti-fascist movements growing up. The memory of the Red Army is growing stronger and communism is remembered once more as the force that succeeded in smashing fascism. It is our strength that we can unite internationally and work together with mutual respect.
 We have every reason to get ourselves into the front line of this struggle and show the world that communists still know how to organise, how to recover from initial defeats and setbacks and how to win the war and destroy fascism.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

For the freedom and reunification of Cyprus

Declaration of Solidarity of Communist, Workers and progressive parties for the freedom and reunification of Cyprus, on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the coup and the Turkish invasion and occupation

- Recalling that forty years ago, in July 1974, the Junta of Athens together with the fascist EOKA B’ procceded to execute ​​a coup d’etat against the elected President of the Republic of Cyprus, Archbishop Makarios III,

- Recalling that Turkey took advantage of the coup d’etat to realise its expansionist ambitions in Cyprus, illegally invading the island and that until today Turkey is flagrantly violating International Law through the continuing occupation of 37% of the territory of the Republic of Cyprus, the violation of human rights and freedoms of the people of Cyprus, the ongoing attempt to alter the demographic character of the island through the policy of mass colonization,

- Recalling that the twin crime of the coup d’etat and invasion was drawn up and elaborated by the U.S. and NATO aiming at the partition and “double enosis” of Cyprus between Greece and Turkey, who were both members of NATO,

- Noting that after 40 years Cyprus is still experiencing the tragic consequences of the Turkish invasion and occupation,

- Reiterating that the Cyprus problem is in essence an international problem of invasion and illegal occupation, in violation of fundamental principles of International Law and the Charter of the United Nations,

- Noting that Cyprus also has an internal aspect, the restoration of the relations between the two communities of Cyprus, Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot,

The Communist, Workers and progressive parties who sign the Declaration,

  1. Denounce the intransigent policy of Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot leadership, a policy that perpetuates the Cyprus problem and consolidates the partitionist faits accomplis on the ground,
  2. Declare that the tolerance shown by the international community towards the continuing illegality taking place for 40 years in Cyprus is unacceptable and must end immediately,
  3. Demand the solution of the Cyprus problem as soon as possible on the basis of International Law and the resolutions of the UN Security Council. The solution must restore human rights and freedoms within the framework of a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation with political equality, as defined by the relevant UN resolutions,
  4. Demand lasting peace that will in practise allow the reunification, independence and freedom of the people of Cyprus as a whole,
  5. Call for the immediate verification of the fate of the missing persons of the Cyprus tragedy,
  6. Express their full solidarity and support to the just struggle of the Cypriot people.

SolidNet Parties

1.    Communist Party of Bangladesh
2.    Communist Party Wallonia-Brussels, Belgium
3.    Communist Party of Britain
4.    New Communist Party of Britain
5.    Progressive Party of the Working People – AKEL
6.    Communist Party in Denmark
7.    Unified Communist Party of Georgia (UCPG)
8.    German Communist Party (DKP)
9.    Communist Party of Greece (KKE)
10.    Communist Party of Finland
11.    French Communist Party (PCF)
12.    Hungarian Workers' Party
13.    Communist Party of India (CPI)
14.    Tudeh Party of Iran
15.    Iraqi Communist Party
16.    Workers Party of Ireland
17.    Party of the Italian Communists
18.    Party of the Communist Refoundation
19.    Lebanese Communist Party
20.    Communist Party of Luxembourg (KPL)
21.    Communist Party of Mexico
22.    Philippine Communist Party
23.    Portuguese Communist Party (PCP)
24.    Communist Party of the Russian Federation (CPRF)
25.    South African Communist Party (SACP)
26.    Syrian Communist Party
27.    Communist Party of USA
28.    Communist Party of Venezuela

Other Parties

1.    The Left (Die Linke)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Joint statement on Palestine

The massacre at the expense of the people of Palestine must end now

We, the communist and workers’ parties which sign this Joint Statement condemn the barbaric and criminal assault of the state of Israel against the Palestinian people.
We  express our full solidarity with the people of Palestine and we call on the workers all over the world to mobilize in order to strengthen the wave of condemnation against Israel, in order for solidarity with the Palestinian people to be expressed in a practical way.
The USA also bears an enormous responsibility for these bloody developments, which is supporting Israel in every way in the continuation of the oppression and massacre of the Palestinian people.
The EU also bears responsibility, as it follows the line of keeping an “equal distance” between the victim and the persecutor and is simultaneously developing cooperation with Israel at a military and economic-political level.
The communist and workers’ parties that sign this statement demand:
  • That the crime against the Palestinian people be condemned.
  • The continuing air raids against the Palestinian people must cease immediately and  a ground offensive must be prevented.
  • The Israeli occupation armies must withdraw.
  • The immediate liberation of all political prisoners from the Israeli prisons.
  • The tearing down of the unacceptable wall of division and the lifting of every form of blockade against the Palestinians in Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
  • The immediate end to the settlements and the withdrawal of all the settlers that have settled beyond the 1967 borders.
  • The right of return of all the Palestinian refugees to their homes, on the basis of the relevant UN decisions.
  • All joint military exercises and all the agreements of military cooperation with Israel must be cancelled.
  • A Palestinian state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

  1. Communist Party of Albania
  2. PADS, Algeria
  3. Communist Party of Australia
  4. Party of Labour of Austria
  5. Democratic Progessive Tribune, Bahrain
  6. Communist Party of Bangladesh
  7. Workers’ Party of Bangladesh
  8. Communist Workers’ Party of Belarus
  9. Workers' Party of Belgium
  10. Brazilian Communist Party
  11. Communist Party of Brazil
  12. Communist Party of Britain
  13. New Communist Party of Britain
  14. Communist Party of Canada
  15. Communist Party of Chile
  16. Socialist Workers’ Party of Croatia
  17. AKEL, Cyprus
  18. Communist Party of Bohemia and Morevia
  19. Communist Party in Denmark
  20. FARC-EP , PCCC
  21. Communist Party of Finland
  22. Pole of the Communist Revival in France
  23. Union of Revolutionary Communists in France
  24. Communist Party of Macedonia
  25. German Communist Party
  26. Communist Party of Greece
  27. Hungarian Workers’ Party
  28. Communist Party of India
  29. Communist Party of India (Marxist)
  30. Tudeh Party, Iran
  31. Communist Party of Ireland
  32. Workers' Party of Ireland
  33. Party of the Italian Communists
  34. Communist Party, Italy
  35. Jordanian Communist Party
  36. Communist Party of Luxembourg
  37. Communist Party of Mexico
  38. Popular Socialist Party – National Political Association, Mexico
  39. New Communist Party of Netherlands
  40. Communist Party of Norway
  41. Palestinian Communist Party
  42. Palestinian People’s Party
  43. Peruvian Communist Party
  44. Phillipine Communist Party (PKP-1930)
  45. Communist Party of Poland
  46. Portuguese Communist Party
  47. Communist Party of Romania
  48. Communist Party of the Russian Federation
  49. South African Communist Party
  50. Communist Workers’ Party of Russia
  51. New Communist Party of Yugoslavia, Serbia
  52. Party of the Communists of Serbia
  53. Communist Party of Slovakia
  54. Communist Party of the Peoples of Spain
  55. Party of the Communists of Catalonia, Spain
  56. Galizan People’s Union, Spain
  57. Sudanese Communist Party
  58. Communist Party of Sweden
  59. Communist Party, Sweden
  60. Syrian Communist Party
  61. Union of Communists of Ukraine

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Dangerous Myth of Football

 By Adrian Chan-Wyles

THE SOCIO--economic structure of world football is controlled by the vicious bourgeois institution of the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA), and the regional Football Associations it has spawned. 
The exploitative tentacles of FIFA spread far and wide into all poor and working class areas of the world.  It spreads the myth that all poor people, if they can kick a ball, can become multi-millionaires overnight, if only they tried hard enough! 
But e reality is very different. A very small number of working class men originating from advanced industrial, or industrialising nations, are chosen from a mass of applicants to be streamed into the exclusive training regimes that more or less ensure a job as a professional football player upon graduation. These men are taken out of their natural socio-economic (working class) conditions, and immediately thrust into a middle class, financial utopia, where they can earn millions of pounds a year working for just 90 minutes a week, and personifying a developmental, bourgeois myth. The reality is more brutal.
For a small number of working class men to be privileged in this manner, the majority of the working class and the oppressed around the world must be kept firmly in their place. The majority of the masses in the world actually finance this gigantic money-making machine that only benefits the minority – that is the ruling class –which reaps all the financial benefits. Even after paying the individual players millions of pounds, there is still a tremendous amount of money leftover, which flows only from the working class toward the ruling class, through a relentless process of accumulation.
 This process is maintained not only by the selling of associated merchandise such as football shirts, boots, flags, DVDs, CDs, and other paraphernalia, but relies heavily upon slave-labour, whereby very small children spend 12 to 16 hours a day, working in appalling conditions, in factories situated in the poorer areas of the world.  This highly exploited workforce sews the shirts, footballs, and flags together, which are then played with by the rich adults and children of developed countries as a matter of leisure.
  This exploitative situation is compounded by working class males (in developed countries such as Britain), who spend hundreds of pounds of their hard earned money per week, in attending football matches of teams occupying the Premier League.  The Premier League and others like it are the main money-making device that FIFA uses to drain the poor people of the world of their wages.  In Britain a ticket for a single football match can cost more than the national government believes a family should live for a week, when in receipt of state benefits!
 In this regard, supporting football becomes an addiction that paradoxically destroys the very same working class that its mythos claims to be saving.
Modern football evolved during the industrialisation process of Britain from an ancient game played in and around villages. The bourgeois wanted the working class controlled during every part of their day, and this extended to the regulation of their leisure time. 
As factories closed for Saturday afternoons, the working class males were encouraged to attend football matches held in purpose built stadiums, and spend a part of their earnings on the price of admission. Their wives and children were not yet welcome, and had to stay at home. The police patrolled the football stadiums ensuring that the euphoria of victory or the disappointment of defeat remained only amongst the working class, who were encouraged to fight amongst themselves.
  It was essential that this discontent never spread onto the streets. This harsh control was considered necessary wherever working class men congregated en masse, so as to prevent the possibility of the development of class consciousness, and of revolutionary fervour, as such a development threatened the overthrow of the bourgeoisie.
On the pitch 22 working class men confront one another in two teams of 11 each, moderated by a referee and two linesmen. The game is played for 90 minutes, with a 15-minute break for half-time, when the two sides change the half of the pitch they have to defend. The time of 90 minutes is purely arbitrary and together with the 15 minutes break, as well as the time it takes the paying audience to assemble for the start and disperse at the end is designed simply to waste time on a Saturday afternoon. There is nothing special about this time, and indeed, compared to contemporary sports, seems a ridiculous length of time for anything significant to happen, or effectively hold an audience’s attention.
  The football stadium and the pitch are microcosms of bourgeois society, within which the working class are allowed to exist providing they follow strict rules that benefit the bourgeois, but are detrimental to the working class.
  These rules, or “laws,” are taught as being beneficial for all, when obviously they are purely arbitrary and designed to maintain the highest level of exploitation. There is also the indication that all good laws originate with God, and have a mysterious origin, when in fact all these regulations emerge from the minds of fat capitalists who have probably never kicked a ball in their lives.
 The referee is the “judge” who must be obeyed, and he is assisted by two assistant-judges (or “linesmen”). A player who infringes a rule is “booked” – similar to how a police officer records a suspect’s details – and receives a “yellow” card which amounts to a “warning” or a “fine”, whilst the “red” card represents expulsion from the pitch, or the removal from society, as in being sent to prison or exiled.
 The message is simple within modern football; the authorities must be obeyed, or there will be punishment.
  Quite often the working class resent these measures, but aim their discontent at perceived foreigners, rather than at their middle class overlords. The ruling class allows and encourages this deception, as it takes the working class attention away from what is really going on – such is the seductive power of modern football.          
Football teams, with their distinctive, different coloured football kits, became the subject of a pseudo-regionalism that was used to infect the mind of the working class, and divert their attention away from the real enemy in society – the highly ruthless and exploitative bourgeoisie. It is the bourgeoisie that is the real enemy of the working class, but if working class men have their attention aimed at the supporting of a local football team, (a false construct), and pitching that support against another local football team, (another false construct), then true revolutionary knowledge is not developed. 
Modern football is used by the bourgeoisie to keep the working class in their place. This exploitation is more or less self-sustaining, just like any drug addiction.   On the world level the pseudo-regionalism of football is replaced with pseudo-nationalism.
 It is exactly the same psychological structure that expands its parameters out of regionalism, (in other words disliking others because they come from a different local place), into the hating of others because of their different ethnic and cultural origin – in other words racism.
  Modern football is both highly exploitative and addictive.  In the minds of its victims – the working class – like any addiction it is rationalised as the “beautiful game”, and its inherent racism is viewed as an aberration rather than as a foundational structure of its history.
  Modern football today, at either its local, national, or international levels, serves as the bedrock of racism and far-right political parties.  Aggressive young men meet at the football grounds to racially abuse other supporters or players, whilst exchanging extremist ideological information.
  FIFA knows that it can not stamp racism out of football, because to do so would destroy the highly lucrative financial structure that is in place.  It is up to the working class to develop their class consciousness, and break the addiction that is modern football, that viciously holds them in psychological and financial servitude.    
The English Premier League is a very successful capitalist enterprise – and this is exactly what it is meant to be. That it just so happens to be the game of football that is used to generate millions of pounds is irrelevant to the process of the accumulation of profit itself. As long as the money keeps flowing, the Premier League will be considered successful. 
Of course this measure of success is purely fiscal, in as much as this “success” has absolutely nothing to do with performance on the pitch. This explains why the financially “successful” Premier League, has not been able to produce eleven English footballers since its inception in 1992 that can dominate at the world level, for the simple reason that it does not have to.
  Playing well and winning games is irrelevant to the money-making process.  The only way the standard of play would increase is if there was a system-wide fall in financial income, created by people protesting en masse by not going to football matches.
  This scenario would generate a market force that would effect how the capitalists who run the Premier League, that is the English FA, approach the game, but it is unlikely to happen due to the sustained mirage of tribalism, which is reinforced on the terraces every week, through a false sense of achievement and failure.  The bourgeois system of modern football is designed from top to bottom to prevent the working class from joining together in solidarity.