Thursday, February 19, 2009


an invitation to step off track

all india symposium

under the aegis of



C.Achutha Menon Hall (near ERNAKULAM public library)

from 10 A.M TO 6 P.M ON 22ND FEBRUARY 2009





organisers of the symposium in kerala: porattom

for details contact: 09249713184

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Red Block, Italy: Against threats to "identify and punish demonstrators"

The following is excerpted from the Web blog of Red Block, a revolutionary youth organisation in Italy. (www.redblock- it.blogspot. com)

Students from La Sapienza University in Rome challenged the president of the Chamber Gianfranco Fini as he was speaking 21 January. [Fini, a so-called "postfascist" – the self-identified successors to Benito Mussolini – is a leading member of the rightist government led by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and president of the lower house of parliament.] Since then, from right to left, all the "palace parties" [past and present members of governing parliamentary coalitions] have expressed their solidarity with this neo-fascist, and no spokesperson for the government or the centre parties has so much as made any public reference to Fini's threat on that occasion to "identify and punish” those demonstrators.

Punish them for what?

It's not that we're surprised that guard dogs for the bourgeoisie and representatives of the PD [Democratic Party – one of the main currents that came out of the non-revolutionary Communist Party that had been a pillar of the system in Italy for decades] have once again called for repression.. .

Nevertheless, it's necessary and important to denounce this witch-hunt atmosphere we're forced to breathe in Italy, where the state of the bourgeois imperialists and modern fascists does not hesitate to repress any form of dissent, and in the name of "security" foment racism and intolerance [against immigrants] – and whatever other manure that encourages the proliferation of neo-fascist and Nazi groups that are guilty of committing assaults, stabbings, etc. While criminalizing dissent, they remain silent about Israel's crimes, and flood us with propaganda according to which anyone who defends that state's victims is a terrorist.

This is why we express our maximum solidarity with the Roman students who have challenged this neofascist president of the Chamber, and particularly with the students who were identified by the police for the sole reason that they shouted "fascist" (which is the truth) at Fini.

Today we still live in a democratic state where freedom of expression and dissent are guaranteed, but we have no illusions about bourgeois democracy. We must constantly oppose any step the state may take toward modern fascism and strongly protest any attempt by the bourgeoisie to violate its own constitution in a reactionary direction.

Fidel Castro: Contradictions between Obama’s politics and ethics

By Fidel Castro Ruz

February 4, 2009 -- A few days ago I referred to some of Obama’s ideas which point to his role in a system that denies every principle of justice.

Some throw their hands up in horror if anything is said to criticise the important personality, even if it is done with decency and respect. This is usually accompanied by subtle and not so subtle darts from those with the means to throw and transform them into the elements of media terror imposed on the peoples to sustain the unsustainable.

Every criticism I make is always construed as an attack, an accusation and other similar qualifiers reflecting callousness and discourtesy towards the person involved.

This time I’d rather address some questions of many that could be raised and that the new President of the United States should answer.

The following for example:

Whether or not he renounces his prerogative as President of the United States -- that his predecessors with few exceptions exercised as a right per se -- to order the assassination of a foreign political adversary usually coming from an underdeveloped country?
By any chance, has any of his many assistants ever informed him of the sinister actions carried out by former presidents from the days of Eisenhower through the years 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966 and 1967 against Cuba, including the mercenary Bay of Pigs [Giron] invasion, the terror campaigns, the introduction to our territory of a great amount of weapons and ammunition, and other similar actions?
It is not my intention to blame the current President of the United States, Barack Obama, for actions conducted by former presidents when he had not been born or when he was just a 6-year-old boy born in Hawaii to a black Moslem Kenyan father and a white Christian American mother. On the contrary, this is an exceptional merit of the US society and I am the first to admit it.

Is President Obama aware that for decades our country was the victim of deliberately introduced viruses and bacteria carrying diseases and plagues which affected people, animals and plants? Does he know that some of them like the hemorrhagic dengue fever later became a scourge that took the lives of thousands of children in Latin America and that other plagues impinge on the economy of the peoples of the Caribbean and the rest of the continent as collateral damages that have yet to be removed?

Does he know that several politically submissive Latin American countries, which are today embarrassed by all the damage they caused, also took part in such terrorist and economically harmful actions?

Why is our country the only one in the world enduring the imposition of a disrupting Cuban Adjustment Act which promotes trafficking in persons and other events that take the lives of people, mostly women and children?

Was it fair to impose on our people an economic blockade lasting almost 50 years?

Was it right to arbitrarily demand from the world to accept the extraterritorial application of this economic blockade which can only bring hunger and shortages to the people?

The United States cannot meet its vital needs without extracting large mineral resources from a great number of countries often limited in their exports of them by the intermediate process of refining. In general, when it is convenient to the interests of the empire, these products are traded by big transnational companies operating with Yankee capital.

Will that country renounce such privileges?

Would that renunciation be compatible with the developed capitalist system?

When Mr Obama promises to make large investments to be self-reliant in oil, despite the fact that his country is today the largest market in the world, what could the future be of those countries whose main revenues come from exporting that energy as many of them lack any other significant source of income?

After the crisis, once the competition and the fight over the markets and sources of employment is unleashed again, as it is usually the case among those who are better off and more efficient in the monopoly of that technology with sophisticated means of production, what possibilities will be left to the not developed countries dreaming of industrialisation?

The efficiency of the new vehicles manufactured by the auto industry notwithstanding, will they use the procedure demanded by the ecology to protect humanity from the increasing deterioration of the climate?

Will the blind philosophy of the market be able to replace that which only rationality could promote?

Obama promises to mint enormous amounts of money to foster the quest for technologies that can multiply the production of energy whose absence would paralyse modern societies.

He includes the nuclear power plants among the sources of energy he promises to hastily develop. These are already opposed by a high number of people due to the high risks of accidents with disastrous consequences for life, the atmosphere and human food. It is absolutely impossible to prevent the occurrence of some of these accidents.

Modern industry has already contaminated all the seas on the planet with the release of toxins, even without such accidental disasters.

Can the conciliation of such contradictory and antagonistic interests be rightly promised without transgressing ethics?

The US House of Representatives with a Democratic Party majority launched the extremely protectionist slogan of “buy US goods”, to please the unions that supported his campaign. This tramples on a basic principle of the World Trade Organization, since every nation in the world, be they big or small, dream of their development based on trading goods and services; however, only the big and rich among them have the privilege to survive to realise such dream.

The Republicans in the United States, discredited by the actions of the reckless Bush administration, soon reacted against the measures taken by Obama to please his allies in the unions. Thus is wasted the credit given by the voters to the new President of the United States.

As an old politician and fighter I commit no sin by modestly exposing these ideas.

As hundreds of news items from the political, scientific and technological circles are published every day, many questions could be raised for which there are not easy answers.