Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Latest Shopfloor out now

Latest issue of Mandate's Shopfloor magazine.

The most radical trade union newspaper in Ireland and a great read of all workers.


Red Bloc against G8

Facebook page for Red Bloc the G8 https://www.facebook.com/events/525526424160124/
For communist events against the G8 visit to Ireland check out the page

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Sunday, April 21, 2013

WFDY May Day Statement

Class oriented - uniting - democratic - modern – independent – internationalist!

MAY DAY 2013


The World Federation of Trade Unions appeals to all the trade union organizations in the world to organize on the occasion of May Day 2013 rallies and activities in all countries, in all continents, honoring the International Workers’ Day and the martyrs of the working class. The WFTU proposes, based on its resolution at its Presidential Council Meeting on March 7-8,2013 in Lima Peru, the slogan: "CHICAGO SHOWED US THE WAY" to be used next to the respective slogans of each union organization.

The international trade union movement bears great responsibility to protect and defend the International Workers Day from the efforts of capitalist governments, employers, various institutions and non governmental organizations to vanquish this day or completely alter its meaning.

The May Day is for the international working class a SYMBOL of the irreplaceable role that the workers hold in the society and the production, of the important and the victorious achievements of the class struggles historically, of the fact that all the rights are the fruit of bloody struggles. Nothing was handed over to the working people.

The May Day is a DAY OF MEMORY AND TRIBUTE to the martyrs of the working class who sacrificed themselves in the crucial and decisive strikes of the American workers in Chicago (1886) demanding 8 hours of work, 8 hours of recreation, 8 hours of rest, as well as the struggles for the working hours in many countries all over the world before and after the Chicago strikes, throughout the history of the class struggle until today. We pay tribute to the martyrs of the working class who were killed, tortured, imprisoned and were forcibly disappeared by the anti-popular and anti-labor governments of the capital in all continents.

The May Day is a LESSON FOR THE NEW GENERATIONS that includes the principles of the working class such as the proletarian internationalism, the class unity, the irreplaceable value of the decisive struggles with class-orientation.

Most of all, the May Day is a DAY OF STRUGGLE where the International Working Class meets in the streets of the fight for the contemporary labour and social rights. For the right to less working hours with dignified salaries which was realistic in the 1880’s and cannot be unrealistic in the technological progress of the 21st century!

Nowadays, while capitalism being in its deep crisis exposes in all the spectrum its barbaric, brutal and ruthless face confiscating any ounce of right from the working class and the popular strata; Nowadays that the competition of the monopolies creates more battlefields and new imperialist interventions; Nowadays that the state violence, repression of social and labour struggles and the violation of the trade union freedom escalate internationally let’s move:

Chicago showed the way – NO to the contemporary capitalist slavery

We fight for a world without exploitation of men by men

On May Day, the WFTU expresses its internationalist solidarity with the people of Cuba, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Mali, Colombia, Venezuela etc.


Athens, Greece – April 16th 2013

Saturday, April 20, 2013

James Petras: Anti - imperialist

In advance of this years James Connolly Memorial Lecture given by James Petras below is a number of his recent writings for those hoping to attend to check out in advance:

In this essay we will analyze the central role of class struggle, its impact and reflection in economic decisions and, most especially, the different methods and forms, according to the particular classes engaged in class struggle.

Having clarified the types and methods of class struggle, we will turn to the specific results of class struggles in different regions and countries: the different policies adopted as a result of class struggle reflect the balance of class power at both the national and regional level.

In the last section, we will compare and analyze a series of case studies of class struggles, highlighting the particular class configurations of power, the changing nature of class struggle (CS) and the concrete contingencies, which need to be taken into account in order for the ‘class struggle from below’ to effectively counter-act the class offensive from above.


President Hugo Chavez was unique in multiple areas of political, social and economic life. He made significant contributions to the advancement of humanity. The depth, scope and popularity of his accomplishments mark President Chavez as the ‘Renaissance President of the 21st Century’.


In late August 2012, President Santos announced that the Colombian regime was opening peace negotiations with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, (FARC), with the aim of ending nearly 50 years of civil war.


There is ample evidence that the Obama Presidency has pulled the US political spectrum further to the Right. On most domestic and foreign policy issues Obama has embraced extremist positions surpassing his Republican predecessor and in the process devastating what remained of the peace and social movements of the past decade.


Monday, April 15, 2013

James Connolly Memorial Lecture 2013

KKE New General Secretary

Dimitris Koutsoumpas has been appointed the new General Secretary of the KKE.

He was born in Lamia on the 10th of August 1955. He is married and has a daughter. His family were militants in the EAM national resistance, some of them were executed by the Nazi occupation troops and by the extraordinary military courts in the period of the civil war, others were imprisoned and exiled. His father, Apostolis Koutsoumpas, a member of the KKE, was arrested in 1945 in Larisa, tried, imprisoned and exiled for 8 years.

Dimitris Koutsoumpas graduated from High School in June 1973, took the exams and entered the Law Department of the University of Athens. While he studied, he worked in different jobs in order to meet the costs of his studies. On his arrival in Athens, he came into contact with the illegal organization of KNE, he participated in the events in the Polytechnic in November 1973 and became a member of anti-EFEE and KNE in December 1973, working in illegal conditions until the fall of the dictatorship in the summer of 1974. He became a member of the KKE in December 1974. He was sent to work in the party in the summer of 1975 in the organization of Eastern Sterea and Euboia as a member of the regional bureau of KNE. He was a delegate at the 1st Congress of KNE.

In the Autumn of 1977 he moved from working in KNE to working exclusively in the party, as a secretary of a sectoral organization and later as the secretary of the Prefectural Organization of Boiotia. In 1979 he became a member of the Regional Bureau of Eastern Central Greece and Euboia, with various responsibilities, for work in the labour and trade union movement, responsible for the political guidance of the Prefectural Organizations of Boiotia, Fthiotida, Fokida, Evrytania. Later on he became secretary of the Regional Committee of Eastern Central Greece and Euboia, apart from a period of 21 months when he carried out his military service in Messolonghi, Komotini, and Limnos.

He was elected to the Central Committee of the KKE at the party’s 12th Congress in May 1987. In the split of 1991, as the secretary of Eastern Central Greece and Euboia and member of the CC, together with other comrades he struggled to defend the party, its principles, its worldview, against the splitting opportunist group that went to Synaspismos.

At the 13th Congress, he was again elected to the CC and its Secretariat responsible for politically guiding party organizations, while after August 1991, immediately after the split, he took on the responsibility for the CC’s Press Office.

In December 1991 at the 14th Congress, he was elected to the PB of the CC, responsible for the Press Office, Culture, and later “902” (TV and radio), until the floods of 1994, when he took on the responsibility for the organizations of Thessalonica, Central Macedonia, Western Macedonia, and Eastern Macedonia and Thrace.

At the 15th Congress (May 1996) he was elected to the PB and became the Director of “Rizospastis”, a responsibility he held for 10 years.

At the 16th Congress (February 2000) and the 17th Congress (February 2005) he was re-elected to the PB and took on the responsibility for the International Relations of the party.

At the 18th Congress (February 2009) he took on the responsibility of the Secretariat of the CC on behalf of the PB. At the 19th Congress (April 2013) he was elected General Secretary of the CC of the KKE.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

YCL of Israel Congress

The 19th congress of the Young Communist League of Israel (YCL) opened with a large ceremony in I'biliin last Friday (April 5th), with hundreds of Arab and Jews activists from all over the country. The congress took place with the slogan "Think revolutionary, create real change."  There were several speakers and musical performances through out the evening, including speeches from the secretary general of the Communist Party of Israel, Muhammad Nafa' and YCL secretary general Amj'ad Shbeita, traditional debka dancing, and poetry readings.

Discussions and voting took place the next day, including around 140 young delegates, for many their first time participating in such a congress. In attendance was the vice president of the World Federation of Democratic Youth, Dalfino Guila of Mozambique, bearing the greetings of the Federation and a youth delegation of the Palestinian People's Party.

Over the course of the discussion the congress voted to accept the following decision:

Against the occupation, for peace, against the right-wing bourgeois government and the settlers, preserving democracy and stopping racist discrimination, stopping government plans against Arab youth, standing with youth who are threatened by imperialism, against growing violence in Arab towns, for the release of the conscientious and occupation objectors from prison, for the success of the Democratic Front for Peace and Equality (Hadash) in the nearly local elections, against attacks on the housing rights of Arab citizens, to recruit in large numbers for the March of Return (in remembrance of the Naqba) and for May Day, the International Workers Day, rallies; and to mark the 90th anniversary of the YCL next year.

KKE Political Report to Congress

Below is the link to the KKE's comprehensive analysis presented to their 19th Congress.


We have reached this point after a 4-month long pre-congress process, with the completion of the assemblies of the PBOs (Party base Organizations) and the conferences of the Sectoral, Prefectural and Regional Committees.
The discussion was conducted in two rounds in the general assemblies of 98.5% of the PBOs. The participation of the party members was 77.8%, those absent with justifiable cause 14.9%, without justifiable cause 7.35%.
96.8% of the party members votes in favour of the Theses and draft Programme of the Party, 1.65% against, blank votes 1.55%.
97.3% of the party members votes for the draft Statutes in the PBOs, 1.21% against, blank votes 1.49%.
The results of the discussion in KNE are the following. 98.9% votes in favour, 1.1% votes against and blank votes.

Young Indian Communist brutally murdered by police

Sudipto Gupta, a leader of the Communist Party of India Marxist Student wing the Student Federation of India was beaten to death in police custody in Kolkata on Tuesday 2 April 2013.

The Association of Indian Communists and the Indian Workers’ Association GB condemn this brutal attack that has claimed the life of the young student leader. We express our solidarity and share the grief with the family of Sudipto Gupta, the Student Federation of India and the CPI M in mourning this tragic loss.The CPIM polit bureau has condemned the killing of the 22 year old Sudipto. The PB has called for a judicial probe and the left in West Bengal has called for 15 minute road blocks along with a 12 hour strike in the state in protest.

Comrade Sitaram Yechury has issued the following statement on behalf of the Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist):

“The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) strongly condemns the killing of a student leader, Sudipta Gupta, under police custody, in Kolkata. Along with a large number of students, Sudipta, a leader of the Students Federation of India, was protesting demanding holding of college union elections in the state, which the Trinamul Congress state government has been thwarting. The protest action took place with prior police permission. When the students were arrested and were under police custody, Sudipta was killed.

The explanation given by the Kolkata Police is totally incredulous. It is necessary to have a judicial enquiry into the incident. The state government must take the full responsibility for such a sorry state of law and order where even peaceful exercise of basic democratic rights is not being tolerated. “

The Student’s Federation of India leader was cremated last night as thousands in Kolkata poured out on the streets to grieve. An autopsy report released yesterday said that Mr Gupta had a broken jaw and fractures on his head, as well as injury marks all over his body and that all the injuries were sustained before his death.

Sudipto Gupta

The father of student leader Sudipto Gupta, who died soon after he was arrested by the police during a student demonstration in Kolkata on Tuesday, today met West Bengal Governor MK Narayanan.Accompanied by CPM leader Surya Kanta Mishra, Mr Pranab Kumar Gupta and Sudipto’s sister Sumita Sengupta met the Governor to seek justice for his son.

Sudipto, a member of the CPM’s student wing, was arrested while protesting with other activists against Ms Banerjee’s government for delaying college elections.Sudipto’s colleagues say he was beaten mercilessly on his head.The police says that while the students were being taken to prison, Mr Gupta fell out of a bus, hit his head on a lamp-post and died hours later in hospital. His death triggered massive protests in Kolkata.In an attempt to cover up the killing a local bus driver was arrested by the police alleging a fall from a bus and reckless driving by the bewildered driver.

Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee of the Trinamool Congress, said yesterday that young activist’s death was a “petty matter” and no reason for students to protest over. Her remarks have further angered the people of West Bengal, particularly the student community. More protests are likely to follow in the days ahead.

The left in Britain will stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of West Bengal in challenging the tyranny of the TMC that has already claimed hundreds of lives. We endorse the call for a judicial enquiry to fully probe this brutal killing.

Harsev Bains
National General secretary

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Battle Groups of the European Empire

On July 1 for a six month period over 150 Irish soldiers are taking part
in a 3,000 strong German led EU Battlegroup that can be sent anywhere in the world  including Syria or Iran to take part in a war if the EU Council of Ministers decide to do so.

The PANA discussion document "The Battle Groups of the European Empire"  provides an analysis of how this happened and how the people of the different nations living in the emerging Empire need to work together to oppose it.


Many still see the European Union as a civilian power which has little to do with war and armament. Yet, a “civilian power Europe” would not need any huge military apparatus; a world power Europe which, in case of need,
is ready to pursue its interests through violence, however, would. And it is actually almost impossible to close one’s
eyes to the militarization of the European Union which has been taking place for the past few years and which is virtually impossible to overlook. Still, it has been maintained again and again that the European Union would be a good thing, above all for those who would like to save money in the military sector. But by means of trite catchphrases such
as “efficiency enhancement“, “economies of scale“, and ”savings potential”, reality is being whitewashed. While social spending is in free fall in almost every country of the European Union, military budgets are left almost unscathed: In the year 2011, the Member States spent only unsignificantly less than in the previous years: $ 281 billion!


On the developments in the Korean Peninsula - PCP

1 -The Portuguese Communist Party expresses its concern over the recent events and the rising tension in the Korean Peninsula which constitute a serious threat to peace in the region and the world. The PCP calls for a restraint by all parties and the immediate resumption of the negotiations based on mutual recognition and respect.

2 -The Korean Peninsula remains divided for more than half a century due to a brutal war, resulting from the US interference and aggression. Tens of thousands of US troops and sophisticated military equipment, including non-conventional, are stationed in South Korea. It is well known that South Korea and the US have a history of provocations against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, in the economic, political as well as in the military field. The PCP reaffirms its position that only a political process of dialogue among equals, free from interferences and pressures foreign to the interests of the Korean people, could pave the way for a peaceful reunification of the country and the construction of a unified Korea, free from foreign bases and military forces.

3 -Warning to the dangers resulting from the threats and bellicist rhetoric, the displacement of powerful US military means to the Asia-Pacific region and the holding of clearly hostile and provocative military exercises, the PCP calls on all the involved parties to refrain from carrying out actions of unpredictable consequences to the peoples of the region and to the international security. The PCP emphasizes that it is in imperialism’s aggressive policy that lies the escalation of tension and destabilization in the region, regardless of the way the leaders of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea have dealt with the breach of agreements, hostile measures and increasing provocations carried out by the US. The PCP also draws attention to the fact that the most recent events in the Korean Peninsula cannot be dissociated from the process of militarization of the South Pacific led by the US, with the displacement of vast military means and the strengthening of its presence in the various military bases in the region, in a clear geostrategic relocation aimed at the People’s Republic of China, or from the growing aggressiveness and bellicism shown by the imperialist powers in the different regions of the globe, like the Middle East and Africa.

4 -The PCP draws attention to the fact that the wars of aggression carried out in recent years by the NATO powers against countries that had destroyed their arsenals of non-conventional weapons (like Iraq and Libya) and the development of nuclear arsenals by some countries in violation of the treaty of non-proliferation of nuclear weapons (as is the case of Israel, India and Pakistan) are undeniable factors stimulating the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. The PCP reaffirms its position of defence of a world free from nuclear weapons, and reminds that the non-proliferation treaty advocates the simultaneous dismantling of the existing nuclear arsenals of the world.

5 -The PCP regrets the positions of the Portuguese Government, expressed by Minister Paulo Portas during his visit to Japan, of a total and uncritical alignment with the US positions, a position that does not contribute to the necessary defusing of the tension in the Korean Peninsula.

9th April 2013 Press Office PCP

Monday, April 8, 2013

April Socialist Voice - 100th Issue!!!

Check out the new issue of Socialist Voice at:

CPI Press Statement on death of a tyrant

Margaret Thatcher’s death is no loss to the greater part of humanity
Margaret Thatcher has left a deep legacy not only for the people of the neighbouring island but also for the Irish people and for the oppressed and suffering peoples of the world.
Thatcher epitomised the arrogance of the long imperialist traditions of the British ruling class. Her policy in regard to the H-block hunger strikes exposed her deep contempt and hatred for those who opposed British imperialist interests. Under her rule the British army gained greater freedom to develop and perpetrate its dirty war in the North of Ireland, when selective assassinations and the management of loyalist paramilitaries became more central to the British war machine.
Thatcher was one in a long line of British rulers who had a deep hatred of working people, such as her great hero, Churchill, another person who carried as a badge of honour his hatred of Ireland and the Irish people’s struggle for independence as well as for the British working class. Thatcher saw workers as mere cannon-fodder in imperialist wars, whether in Ireland or the Malvinas, or simply strategic pawns in her anti-communist crusades, as with “Solidarity” in Poland.
Her name has become a byword for aggression, selfishness, and rampant individualism. She has left a legacy of destroyed lives, shattered communities, rampant militarism and chauvinism and the destruction of what was left of British manufacturing and raised the adoration of the “market” beyond all previous levels.
Her policies have been continued by all subsequent British Governments, whether Conservative or Labour, Tony Blair being her most enthusiatic and most effective disciple.
No tears will be shed for her among the families of the hunger-strikers or of those assassinated by the British army and loyalist paramilitaries, nor in the mining villages of Wales and many other mining communities in Britain. She had no ears for the cries of suffering from the families of dead coalminers as she shackled and trampled on workers’ rights.
Margaret Thatcher was a product of the material conditions in which that monopoly capitalism created.   She represented the most aggressive interests of monopoly capitalism, the political forces that had defeated the exponents of the post-war economic and social compromise. In this she also exposed the shallow and duplicitous nature of British labourism.
Unfortunately, as history shows, the very nature of this economic system throws up and requires such arrogant and ruthless individuals. 

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Stop this Indo-EU Free Trade Agreement

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) expresses deep concern that negotiations on the Bilateral Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) between the European Union and India, has proceeded without any due scrutiny by Parliament or other democratic institutions. We understand that there is a move to conclude the negotiations by the middle of April.
 The FTA with the European Union is the most ambitious and comprehensive of all FTAs that India is negotiating or has signed. Its impact on the economic and social fabric of the country could well be deep and long lasting. The agreement is likely to worsen the already burgeoning current account deficit and trade deficit. Evidence from trade agreements that India has already entered clearly indicate that they further worsen the country's trade deficit. For example, in the case of the agreement with Singapore a trade surplus was rapidly converted into a deficit after the signing of the FTA.  The intellectual property, investment and government procurement chapters of the agreement will have a negative impact on virtually every area of economic activity -- including agriculture, industry and services. Higher standards of intellectual property protection will have a negative impact on health services;  strong investor protection mechanisms will undermine the government's ability to regulate industrial and financial corporations in national interest; and the opening up of government procurement to foreign firms will undermine even the minimal social protection measures in place, such as the public distribution system. The agriculture sector is likely to be particularly affected by the dumping of subsidized agricultural products from the EU. 
Several sections representing different sectors of the economy have already articulated serious concerns about the impact of the FTA. The automobile industry is likely to be seriously affected. Amul, India's largest milk cooperative, has similarly expressed concern  regarding the impact of subsidized dairy imports from the EU that can jeopardize the livelihood of 80 million farmers in India. 
Claims that the FTA will open up additional markets for Indian exporters are unsubstantiated and are not, in any case, going to compensate for the expected surge in imports. The EU can be expected to continue with its strategic use of subsidies and non tariff barriers to prevent entry of Indian exports. 
The CPI(M) is particularly concerned that the entire negotiating process has been non-transparent, with a total lack of public consultation with affected sections, parliamentary oversight, or the involvement of state governments.  Despite repeated expressions of concern by political parties including the CPI(M), the government has moved forward with the process, shunning even a modicum of effort to arrive at a political consensus on the issue. The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Commerce is examining the impact of FTAs but the government's determination to sign the EU-India BTIA without waiting for the Committee's report betrays a shocking disregard for parliamentary democratic institutions. 
The CPI(M) demands that the government should not conclude the negotiations at this stage and should instead: ·        wait for the Report of the Parliamentary Standing Committee; ·        conduct a parliamentary debate on the issue; ·        hold public consultations with all affected groups; ·        share the texts of the current negotiating process and conduct, on their basis, impact assessment studies. 
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