Montag, 19. Dezember 2011

US won't legally execute Mumia Abu-Jamal

12 December 2011. A World to Win News Service. Following are excerpts from an article by C. Clark Kissinger in Revolution, newspaper of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA.

December 9 marked the 30th anniversary of the night that Philadelphia police shot, beat, and arrested the revolutionary journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal. He was accused of shooting a police officer and swiftly convicted of murder and sentenced to death in a flagrantly unjust trial. He has now been sitting in solitary confinement on death row for 29 years. But two days before this anniversary, Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams announced that he was finally dropping the 30-year campaign to legally execute Mumia.

The DA's decision comes on the heels of the U.S. Supreme Court's refusal to hear any more appeals from the State of Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania has been trying for a decade to overturn a 2001 decision by a federal district court that Mumia's death sentence was unconstitutional because of misleading instructions to the jury by his trial judge.

While this means that Mumia will soon be transferred to general population in the state prison system to serve life without parole, the massive injustice of his conviction and incarceration remains. To millions around the globe, even one more day in prison for Mumia is an intolerable injustice. The political battle must continue to be waged to free Mumia from his unjust imprisonment. While the threat of a legal execution has now been lifted, it is important to be vigilant and keep up the fight to protect him and ensure that his voice continues to be heard. The authorities could try to make the situation worse for him behind bars, and even the threat of an extra-legal execution staged behind prison walls remains.

Afghanistan and Bonn II

C(M)PA: "Bonn II: A gathering for deciding the future of the occupation war against our people"

12 December 2011. A World to Win News Service. Following are excerpts from a statement, dated 22 November, by the Communist (Maoist) Party of Afghanistan.

Ten years ago now, in December 2001, the invading American and British imperialists and their allies organized the Bonn Meeting to sketch their future war plans against our people and set up a puppet regime in Afghanistan. In this gathering under the wings of the imperialists a flock of national traitors were brought to assemble. The UN was employed to provide an international and legal façade for the war of imperialist aggression under the pretext of a "war against terrorism".

Now once again the imperialist occupiers are gathering in order to rearrange the plans for the future of their war against our people. However, this planning is not merely regarding the next three years, but it is a two stage plan of thirteen years. The first stage includes from now until the end of 2014 and the second stage starts from 2014 until the end of 2024. In the first stage, America's allies and a part of American forces are leaving Afghanistan, thus the military, political and economic strategic agreement between them and the puppet regime has to be formalized in order to allow it to continue with their invasions and military interventions against our country and its people.

It has become apparent that the American imperialists intend to keep tens of thousands of their forces in several key military strategic bases even after 2014. The ten years extendible strategic agreement between the US and Karzai’s puppet regime is supposed to provide the legal framework for the presence of American forces and the establishment of their long-term military bases. The legal basis for the continuation of invasions and military interventions of American imperialist allies too would be provided through these strategic agreements with the puppet regime. British, German, French, Australian and other imperialists and the European Union as whole can continue with their aggressions and military interventions based on these kind of agreements.

The strategic agreement between the expansionist reactionary Indian state and the Kabul puppet regime that was signed a while ago between Manmohan Singh and Hamid Karzai is an essential aspect of the overall strategic agreements signed between the Karzai regime and the imperialist and reactionary powers from the perspective of regional power realignments. In this context, signing the strategic agreement between the Indian government and the puppet regime is nothing other than the alignment of the Indian state and the puppet regime against Afghanistan.

The emergence of this kind of circumstances would be an important source of regional tensions and conflicts, and would even further ignite the flames of reactionary conflicts that have already engulfed the region. Thus, the continuation of the imperialist war waged by the US and its allies against our country and people, whose central issue is the persistence of the presence of the strategic military bases in Afghanistan, proves and illustrates the following:

The American imperialists and its allies have not come to Afghanistan to fight against terrorism nor to promote democracy and human rights, women’s rights and the rights of oppressed nationalities, nor to bring social, cultural and economic development. In reality they are after their regional and global political and economic strategic interests and they do not intend to easily leave our people and the region's peoples alone or withdraw their occupying forces.

The second Bonn conference is a gathering for the purposes of the implementation and execution of this plan of the American imperialists and its European and non-European allies. That is why, we view this gathering as an event about the future of occupying, aggressive, and interventionist imperialist war against our country and our people and we strongly condemn it.

The Communist (Maoist) Party of Afghanistan that is working towards and preparing for the people's revolutionary war of national resistance against the occupiers and the puppet regime, strongly believes that the continued presence of the American imperialist occupiers in Afghanistan after 2014 would increase the pressure of war against our people, but would also ignite and increase other regional tensions. Therefore, their prolonged strategic military presence would not only not reduce the resistance against them, but it will even further strengthen and expand the social base of resistance against them. Moreover, the continuation of the American occupiers’ crisis-engendering presence would increase the opposition against them in the entire region. At a time when the entire imperialist world system and specially the American imperialists have been engulfed with a severe economic crisis and the peoples resistance in the imperialist countries is on the rise, and the corruption and rottenness of the puppet regime is incurable, we strongly believe that the American imperialists and their national traitor satraps would be defeated by a broadly-based and prolonged national resistance.

Based on this conviction we have augmented our preparatory efforts for the people's revolutionary war of national resistance and we strive to move from the stage of preparation to the start of the actual war sooner rather then later. The imperialist plans for the future of the occupying war against our people are doomed to failure.

The new US plans for Afghanistan: notes on the long-term strategic accords

12 December 2011. A World to Win News Service. After a decade of occupation and war by the US-led coalition, the people are looking back to assess the results.

But the reactionary forces on an international scale have prepared themselves for that too. By organizing various international and internal conferences and meetings, they have sought to impose their own conclusions and prepare public opinion for the continuation of their reactionary plans in Afghanistan and the region for at least another decade.

In fact US policy on Afghanistan is entering a new phase. The US is pretending that its mission in Afghanistan is almost over and that stability and prosperity there is within reach, with some minor shortcomings of course. Consequently they have started to draw down their soldiers and gradually hand over security responsibilities to the Afghan government. By the end of 2014 only a small number of foreign troops will remain to "protect the country" against its neighbours because the Afghanistan army is not strong enough to defend itself.

Just as the story told by the US and its allies when they invaded Afghanistan was a lie, so is this one.

Among the meetings recently held on Afghanistan have been the October Istanbul conference involving the Nato countries and Afghanistan's neighbours, and the traditional grand Loya Jirga with participation of 2,000 members called by Afghan President Hamid Karzai in mid-November to discuss two important issues, the long-term strategic accord with the US and negotiations with the Taliban.

The most decisive conference for the imperialists was held in Bonn, Germany on 5 December, a follow-up on the first Bonn conference 10 years ago. The first Bonn conference, held two months after the invasion started and the Taliban were ousted from power, established the framework for imperialist plans for Afghanistan over the last decade. In that conference Karzai was appointed head of the provisional government and the cabinet was given to his allies and other Islamic fundamentalists known as Jihadis who opposed the Taliban.

The second Bonn conference on Afghanistan was tasked with approving the framework for the imperialists' plans for Afghanistan for the next decade or so. Unlike the guardedly optimistic impression that the imperialists want to give, the real picture is gloomy. The majority of Afghanistan's people have been increasingly disappointed with the situation and the broken promises, and many are joining the reactionary opposition forces. Moreover the occupiers are acting with severe brutality against the population.

Air strikes and bombardment continue to victimize civilians who have nothing to do with the Taliban. A recent incident highlights the pattern of Nato and US bombardments. On 23 November an airstrike in Zhare district in Kandahar province in southern Afghanistan killed seven civilians, including six children belonging to two families. "Mohammad Rahim, 50, had his two sons and three daughters with him. They were between 4 and 12 years old and all were killed, except an 8-year-old daughter who was badly wounded."

While Nato and government forces repeated their stereotyped story that they were chasing a group of insurgents who in this case were "planting a mine", the uncle of the killed children challenged this account, saying,

"There were no Taliban in the field; this is a baseless allegation that the Taliban were planting mines… I have been to the scene and haven't found a single bit of evidence of bombs or any other weapons. The Americans did a serious crime against innocent children, they will never ever be forgiven." (CBS News, 24 November 2011)

The occupiers' night raids meant to terrorize the Afghani people have become so widely and deeply hated that Karzai has had to address this issue. In his speech in the opening of the Loya Jirga he said, "Afghanistan believes that the war on terrorism is not in the people's houses, their nest is somewhere else. The corruption in offices is incredible. There is still government harassment of the people, people's houses are still not immune, both governmental institutions and foreigners can harass the people. So what should we do about these problems?" (BBC Persian website, 16 November 2011)

Women continue to be the victims of fundamentalism, both by the Nato-installed Karzai government and the opposition. There are numerous reports indicating intense and painful discrimination against women. The story of a young woman named Golnaz who was raped by a relative is particularly shocking. Golnaz, who became pregnant, was arrested and convicted of sex outside of marriage (Zina). She was given three years in prison. When she appealed, a higher court increased her sentence to 12 years imprisonment. After her story found its way to the world's media, Karzai ordered her released on the condition that she marry her rapist, though she did not want to. This is the supposed liberation of women under the occupation. There is no need to mention that there are thousands of Golnaz in Afghanistan.

No aspect of the country's reconstruction has been seriously pursued except for building up its armed forces and bureaucratic apparatus. The cultivation and production of drugs continues to rise and shape the economic structure of the country. Corruption, poverty and suffering have engulfed the people. The US and Nato forces are hated. These are some of the reasons why people who despised the Taliban are increasingly drawn to their side.

No real success in fighting the Taliban but seeking to make peace with them

While the people have suffered most from the occupation, the occupiers are now trying to make peace with the Taliban who were supposedly their target. As previously mentioned, this has been a core issue at most of the recent international and local meetings.

The government and the US are doing everything they can to draw the Taliban to the negotiating table. They have been compromising on many issues, especially women's rights. The Karzai regime's increasing application of Sharia (Koranic law) is meant to win over Taliban supporters. They have offered immunity to many Taliban leaders and suggested that the organization open an office in Doha (Qatar) or Turkey to facilitate negotiations.

Whether most or some of the Taliban forces would go to the negotiating table is another question, one that depends on their own assessment of the situation. The point is that the occupiers and the Karzai government are working hard to get the Taliban to accept some sort of power-sharing arrangement.

All this shows that the US and other imperialists did not invade Afghanistan to liberate the people or women. They did not invade Afghanistan to fight terrorists or to bring peace and reconstruct the country. Contrary to these claims, they invaded Afghanistan for their global and strategic interests. In this sense, the US-led invasion is little different than the invasion of Afghanistan by Soviet social-imperialism (the imperialist USSR before its fake socialism was dropped). The difference is that the Soviets allied with the local revisionist forces who called themselves democrats or communists, while the US and other Western imperialists have allied mainly with Islamic forces and various sections of Islamic fundamentalism.

The long-term strategic treaty between Afghanistan and the US

The US and its allies still will continue to pursue their global interests in Afghanistan no matter what changes they might bring to their policies there. In fact, the new policies on the agenda, including drawing down their forces, negotiations with the Taliban and the long-term strategic accord, all are in the service of those imperialist interests.

There have been many meetings between the US and Afghanistan governments to complete the drafting of this accord. It seems the latest round of bilateral talks took place September 2011 in Washington. The draft document is said to cover military, economic, political, cultural and educational relations between the two countries.

Many observers have suggested that the most important issue under discussion over the last couple of years has been the proposed building of US military bases to facilitate the permanent or at least long-term presence of tens of thousands of US soldiers in Afghanistan. Despite initial denials by Afghan and US officials, Karzai confirmed this in his speech at the recent Loya Jirga, which was to discuss the accord, whose details remain secret. Even the Loya Jirga were not informed of the full contents of the US demands and conditions.

In his opening speech Karzai argued that Afghanistan would benefit from such military bases.

"The US wants military bases that would have some effects on us and on the region and on our neighbours. We can use this to our benefit. But we have our conditions: the US must stop the night raids. And stop the parallel offices in Afghanistan [American financial and political structures meant to substitute or oversee Afghan government organs]. While we and the US and the West, are friends, we are also friends with Russia, China and our neighbours. We would give them [our neighbours] our word that no matter what the price we will not allow any country to be attacked from our soil.

"These are our conditions. Afghanistan is prepared to sign the long-term treaty and this is in our interest. Their money comes to Afghanistan, they train our soldiers and our police force, and they ensure the general stability of the region." (BBC Persian website, 16 November 2011)

This is all that has been revealed about the contents of the proposed strategic treaty. Even some of the Loya Jirga members protested that they were not aware of what they were going to approve. Later, Safia Sedighi, the speaker for the Loya Jirga, told reporters,"The Americans have demanded that their conditions remain secret."

While it has not been confirmed, some sources believe that the US intends to maintain permanent military bases in at least five locations (Shinden in Herat near the Iranian border, Shoor Abak, Kandahar, Khost and Bagram).

Even as the American and Afghan governments have been trying to create public opinion to justify long-term foreign military bases in Afghanistan they have also been trying to cover up the US's real neo-colonial intentions in the country and the region.

For example, whenever the issue of ending the war has come up, Washington adds that "this time" they will not leave Afghanistan "alone", as if the mess that Afghanistan fell into during the 1990s was because the Western powers "neglected" Afghanistan after the defeat of the Soviets. They argue that if the US leaves completely the mess would re-emerge. They talk as if it was not imperialist interference that led to the civil war of the 1990s and as if Afghanistan were not a total mess today – a mess they created.

First of all, the imperialists have never left Afghanistan people alone to get on with their life. In fact the mess created in Afghanistan has been the result of decades of meddling in Afghan affairs, especially by the imperialists and their regional allies. The Jihadis came to power as a result of more than a decade of military, financial, political and propaganda support from the West. Later, in fact, it was Pakistan, with US approval, that brought in the Taliban. Pakistan was then the main American ally in the region. It is important to emphasize that during that period Pakistan and US had strong common interests in the region and were mainly united on achieving them.

As a recent New York Times opinion piece recalled, "during the Clinton administration, Mr Putin proposed United States-Russian cooperation against the Taliban; Washington turned down the offer for political reasons." (Dov S. Zakheim and Paul J. Saunders, 1 December 2011) What were those political reasons? When we know that the US was one of the Taliban's main financial supporters and that the countries that recognized the Taliban regime were the main US clients in the region, the political reasons start to become clearer: the US was – and still is – seeking regional hegemony as part of hanging on to its global domination.

The US's part in turning Afghanistan into a mess is such common knowledge that even those who want to justify the present and future US occupation have to take that into account. They argue that this history is why the US must continue to run Afghanistan. "The political, moral and partly legal responsibilities of the US for helping Afghanistan is one of the expectations of the bilateral strategic relations. The US has had an obvious role in creating the present problems of Afghanistan, including provoking the ex-Soviet Union to interfere militarily, supporting the extremist groups during the [Soviet] occupation, handing over the key to Kabul to Islamabad after that occupation and entrusting Pakistan with Afghanistan after 2001,” writes Davoud Moradian, currently teaching in American University in Kabul. He concludes that "US support for Afghanistan is not only what Kabul is requesting but also Afghanistan's right and the responsibility of the US and other Western countries." (BBC Persian service, 14 October 2011)

The US wants continued control of Afghanistan for the same reasons why the USSR occupied the country and wanted to stay there – and the same reasons why the British wanted Afghanistan in the nineteenth century. In fact Afghanistan was coveted by a long list of empires, including Mongols, Persians and Indians.

Because of its strategic importance Afghanistan has long been a battlefield of contention between powerful countries. However, the recent occupations have taken place in a new era in which capitalism has developed into imperialism and military and economic global control has become qualitatively more important. And to force their way in and prolong their stay these imperialists have become more brutal, with an effect on the life of the people that has been disastrous in many dimensions.

This is what the strategic accord between the US and Afghanistan and the second Bonn Conference on Afghanistan was all about – the contention between powers.

In arguing for a continued US presence, Senator John Kerry, a former Democrat US presidential candidate and currently chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, wrote an article expressing some of the concerns of the US imperialists about what would happen if they left Afghanistan:

"Russia, for example, is looking to reassert its authority in the region and could use our departure as a pretext to redeploy Russian troops on the Tajik-Afghan border. The Chinese are expanding their economic footprint but have chosen not to engage politically or militarily, in part because they’re fearful of stirring separatist sentiments in the volatile Xinjiang region bordering Afghanistan. Iran, too, has strengthened economic and trade cooperation with Kabul, building on its cultural ties to reassert its role in the region. And the Indians recently signed a strategic partnership agreement with Afghanistan, cementing their long-term ties." (The New York Times, 1 December 2011)

The gateway to Central Asia from the north, to the Indian peninsula from the south and east and to Iran and Middle East in the west, and also close to two powerful countries like Russia and China, Afghanistan's location makes it strategically extremely important when regional and even global contention is taken into account.

US occupation: a regional and global danger

The US occupation of Afghanistan and its plan to stay for decades to come are not in the interests of Afghanistan’s people and do not serve that country's security nor the region's stability. On the contrary this occupation is a source of insecurity for Afghanistan and the region and a provocation for contention.

It is bitterly ironic that when Karzai stated that the US must have military bases in the country to protect Afghanistan's interests, he gave his word that no neighbour will be threatened or attacked from Afghan soil. Shortly after, that is exactly what happened.

Not long after he made this pledge a Nato airstrike against two Pakistani military outposts along the north-western border with Afghanistan killed at least 25 Pakistani soldiers. This act created so much outrage that the Pakistani government had to respond by ordering the CIA to cease the drone operations it runs from the Shamsi Air Base in western Pakistan, and closing the two main NATO supply routes into Afghanistan. Pakistan also boycotted the Bonn Conference in protest. Predictably US and Nato officials are investigating to see what went "wrong".

Pakistan has been an important ally of the US for years, but its strategic importance has diminished and contradictions with US regional interests have come more to the fore. This US "mistake" could have been meant to put pressure on Pakistan to accept a new US approach to the region in which Pakistan's role would be dramatically curtailed while India's role in Afghanistan and the region would increase.

Not long after that, a CIA drone that had taken off from Afghanistan was brought down deep inside Iran near the city of Kashmar, about 140 kilometres from the border. This brought attention to the covert operations inside Iran being launched from US facilities in Afghanistan.

These incidents show that the US wants to stay in Afghanistan not to protect it from its neighbours but to threaten its neighbours.

Obviously Karzai's words are worth nothing – they are only a justification for a continued betrayal of the people of Afghanistan and the region. In the same light, the US is lying to try and conceal its goals and deceive the people.

The statement that the US is leaving Afghanistan is a lie. The statement that the US is building military bases to secure the stability of the region is also a vicious lie. In fact, the US's efforts in this region may hold even more dangerous consequences on a world scale unless they are disrupted by the struggle of the people not only in Afghanistan but also in the region and globally.

KKE zu Palästina...


übersetzt von Jens-Torsten Bohlke

Auf Kommunisten-online am 11. Dezember 2011 – Anlässlich des 29. Novembers, des Tages der internationalen Solidarität mit dem palästinensischen Volk, bekundet die Kommunistische Partei Griechenlands (KKE) ihre Solidarität und ihre Unterstützung für den heldenhaften Kampf des palästinensischen Volkes, welches jahrzehntelang dem ideologischen, politischen und militärischen Druck der Imperialisten USA, EU und NATO in Absprache mit dem imperialistischen Staat Israel ausgesetzt worden ist.

Wir stehen fest in unserer Solidarität mit dem Kampf des Volkes von Palästina. Zugleich bekunden wir unsere Ablehnung gegenüber den Vereinbarungen der griechischen Regierungen, welche die militärische Zusammenarbeit mit Israel fördern.

Zu einem Zeitpunkt, an dem ein imperialistischer Krieg in der Region immer wahrscheinlicher wird, an dem es eine anhaltende imperialistische Einmischung in Syrien gibt, die Drohungen mit Krieg gegen Iran verstärkt werden, ist es erforderlich, den antiimperialistischen Kampf, den Kampf für die Rechte des palästinensischen Volkes und für die Lösung der Palästinafrage zu verstärken. Ihre gerechte Lösung ist von entscheidender Bedeutung für die Entwicklungen in der Region.

Daher meinen wir:

Wir unterstützen den Kampf für die Schaffung eines unabhängigen, lebensfähigen und souveränen Staates Palästina in den Grenzen von 1967 mit Ost-Jerusalem als seiner Hauptstadt, neben Israel. Wir fordern die Befreiung des palästinensischen Volkes aus den Fängen der grausamen Besatzungskräfte, der israelischen Armee.

Wir fordern die Anerkennung des Staates Palästina als UN-Vollmitglied.

Wir fordern auch:

- Schluss mit den Siedlungen, Rückzug der Siedler aus den Gebieten jenseits der Grenzen von 1967;

- Abriss der nicht hinzunehmenden Mauer, die Jerusalem und die West Bank teilt;

- Rückkehrrecht für alle palästinensischen Flüchtlinge nach West Bank und Gaza;

- Rückkehrrecht für alle palästinensischen Flüchtlinge in ihre Heimatorte gemäß der diesbezüglichen UN-Resolution;

- Aufheben jeglicher Blockade gegen die Palästinenser in der Westbank und Gaza;

- Sofortige Freilassung der palästinensischen und sonstigen politischen Flüchtlinge, die derzeit in israelischen Gefängnissen gefangen gehalten werden;

- Rückzug der israelischen Armee aus den 1967 besetzten Gebieten einschließlich der Golan-Höhen und der Sebaa-Region in Süd-Libanon.

Wir rufen das griechische Volk dazu auf, seine Stimme zu erheben und bei der griechischen Regierung die Beendigung der militärischen Zusammenarbeit unseres Landes mit Israel durchzusetzen und unverzüglich die Aktionen für die Anerkennung des Staates Palästina zu unterstützen.

Wir rufen das griechische Volk und die Arbeiterklasse dazu auf, dass sie ihre Solidarität mit dem gerechten Kampf des palästinensischen Volkes für die Anerkennung des Staates Palästina als Vollmitglied der UN bekunden.

Die Parlamentsmitglieder der KKE:














NANOS Apostolos


PAFILIS Athanasios






Die Mitglieder des EU-Parlaments der KKE

ANGOURAKIS Charalampos


Athen, 28/11/2011, Pressebüro des ZK der KKE


Free Mumia Abu-Jamal!

Abu-Jamal wird nicht hingerichtet

„Wegen Polizistenmord wurde der US-Journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal 1982 zum
Tode verurteilt. 30 Jahre beschäftigte der Fall die Justiz - jetzt lässt
die Staatsanwaltschaft die Forderung nach der Todesstrafe fallen…“ Artikel
von Andreas Geldner in der FR online vom 7.12.2011,1472596,11278328.html

Siehe dazu auch:

a) Todesstrafe gegen Mumia vom Tisch

„Vor wenigen Stunden bestätigte der Bezirksstaatsanwalt in Philadlphia,
USA, was vielen anderen seit Jahrzehnten klar ist: sie haben keine
Grundlage, um die Todesstrafe gegen den afroamerikanischen Journalisten
Mumia Abu-Jamal anzustreben. Der seit mehreren Jahrzehnten währende Kampf
um das Leben und die Freiheit von Mumia hat somit auch formal einen großen
Erfolg errungen: Die Todesstrafe gegen ihn ist nun vom Tisch…“ Meldung von
Markus Ossenwest vom 07.12.2011 bei indymedia

b) Drei Jahrzehnte Isolation

30 Jahre Haft im Todestrakt wegen eines verfassungswidrigen Urteils sind
genug – für die sofortige Freilassung von Mumia Abu-Jamal. Artikel von
Dave Lindorff und Linn Washington Jr. In junge Welt vom 08.12.2011

c) Am morgigen Freitag ist Mumias 30. Haftjahrestag. In den USA und
verschiedenen weiteren Ländern fordern Unterstützer_innen nun, ihn endlich
frei zu lassen. Siehe dazu die Soli-Seite „Freiheit für Mumia Abu-Jamal

Shell and the other oil companies: serial killers

5 December 2011. A World to Win News Service. Current investment in exploring for gas and oil in Nigeria is expected to reach 45 billion dollars this month, according to a 30 November report in the industry newsletter Sweetcrude. By coincidence, in a statement cosigned by numerous European film stars and other public figures issued the day before, Amnesty International France called for the major oil companies to be "compelled" to fund a massive proposal to clean up the damage they have already caused during the last half-century of oil drilling in the Niger River Delta. The initial cost of this plan drafted by the UN Environmental Programme would be a billion dollars.

The amount of oil spilled in the region is the equivalent of 7,000 tankers, Amnesty France said. It pointed out that while BP had been obliged to allocate about 40 billion dollars for dealing with the aftermath of the 2010 oil rig blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, the oil companies have contributed little to rectify the damage they have done to Nigeria and accomplished nothing.

The Nigerian government is always ready to send its soldiers to protect oil installations from perceived threats, Amnesty France continued. To that same end 16 years ago, the statement bitterly added, that government hung six men, including the writer and activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, who called for the same kind of cleanup programme the UN agency has outlined.

In June 2009, Shell oil, the company that dominates Nigeria's petroleum industry, paid 15 million dollars in an out-of-court settlement with the executed men's families rather than face trial for responsibility in these judicial murders.

Shell, a UK-Netherlands company, had a legal monopoly on the exploitation of Nigerian oil and minerals when the country was a British colony, until 1960. Since then it has been joined by France's Total, Italy's Agip and American firms. These companies provide almost 80 percent of the Nigerian government's funding and almost all of the country's foreign exchange, Amnesty France said in offering an explanation for the Nigerian government's complicity in the country's permanent oil disaster.

The Amnesty France statement was meant to draw attention to the UN Environment Programme report issued last August, as well as the mid- 2011 Amnesty International report entitled "The True 'Tragedy'" about the aftermath of two oil spills in the Niger river delta town of Bodo. Shell took responsibility for the spills, calling them a "tragedy" caused by a pipeline weld defect. The "true tragedy", Amnesty argues, was not just the spill itself but the fact that Shell allowed oil to gush out for weeks before taking action and refused to undertake any serious cleanup measures.

The UN report is based on an investigation into the damage left by 50 years of oil operations in the Delta. The 14-month survey on an "unprecedented" scale included examination of more than 200 locations, 122 kilometres of pipelines and 50,000 medical records, as well as local community fact-finding meetings involving a total of 23,000 people. Its conclusion is that the damage is both far more serious than previously acknowledged by Shell and the government, and ongoing. The report found that contrary to claims, the underground layer of clay that supposedly protects groundwater from oil spills on the surface is not continuous. As a result there is an eight centimetre layer of refined oil floating on the groundwater, contaminating the wells that were supposed to provide safe drinking water when visible oil slicks turned creeks and ponds toxic to humans, animals and vegetation.

Carcinogen concentrations reach almost a thousand times the safe level in some villages. Oil has inundated creeks and swamps, killing the mangrove leaves and coating these trees with tar. This has destroyed the fish habitats that people depend on for food. On land, "a crust of ash and tar has been in place for several decades,” killing plants or making them inedible. Hydrocarbons extend as much as five metres down into the soil. Close to a million people have been affected, losing their livelihoods and health.

It is true, this report says, that local people use artisanal methods to refine oil found on the ground or siphoned off from pipelines, causing more environmental damage. How else can they survive amidst such devastation?

A 5 August, 2011 article by the Reuters news service quotes spokespersons for Shell and the Nigerian state oil company as saying that the UN report contains nothing new that would make them take action. "The shelves are filled with reports... the fact that the devastation was caused by oil exploitation is something that all of us already knew," responded the head of Ken Saro-Wiwa's Movement for the Survival of the Ogani people.

The Amnesty France initiative is an attempt to arouse public opinion so that the UN and Amnesty International reports do not remain dead letters.

Oil production is declining in Ogoniland (the area inhabited by the Ogani people) and the rest of the Niger Delta. Shell and other foreign companies have ceased operations there. But the cumulative effects of the damage they have done to the environment and the people are increasing. According to the UN report, the only cleanup measure implemented so far, an attempt to use bacteria to eat up the oil, has been ineffective.

Shell and other oil companies, however, have not finished destroying the lives of Nigeria's people and the planet. They have merely moved their operations offshore. Deepwater drilling provides considerable economic advantages to the oil companies, and allows them to keep a distance from the populace they fear. (Whether in drilling on land or at sea, whatever jobs result are rarely held by Delta people, even in the government and its agencies.) Although this kind of drilling eliminates the need for the long pipelines and pumping stations that criss-cross the Delta, it is potentially much more dangerous, as the blowout at BP's Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico demonstrated. For the oil companies deepwater drilling for gas and oil represents the future. For their planned sites in West Africa, Brazil and other countries, it represents an unprecedented threat.

(For more analysis, see "The Gulf of Mexico and the Niger River Delta: oil spills worlds apart" in

the 21 June 2010 AWTWNS dispatch. The Amnesty France statement, Amnesty International report and United Nations Environment Programme report are available on the respective Web sites of those organizations.)

Samstag, 3. Dezember 2011

Egypt: The importance of holding out in Tahrir Square

28 November 2011. A World to Win News Service. By Samuel Albert. As Egypt's ruling military tried to shift the country's conflicts to the electoral arena, many youth and others remained in Tahrir Square in an occupation that has cost at least 42 lives and several thousand wounded so far.

The next few days will tell whether the Tahrir protesters can manage to remain in the square if a "government of national salvation" headed by leading civilian presidential candidates is installed. Their stubbornness through the last 11 days, despite the combination of armed terror and promises of change through voting unleashed against them, took the political initiative away from the armed forces and once again put these young rebels at the centre of unfolding events, much as in the days when they sparked the revolt that toppled Mubarak.

The current battles began on the morning of 19 November when military police attacked a small group of those wounded in the original revolt who had camped in a grassy area overnight. Day after day since then, the regime tried to clear the occupation with volley after volley of tear gas and shotgun-propelled projectiles. Yet the protesters not only stood their ground but even mounted wave after wave of counter-attacks on the Interior Ministry on Mohamed Mahmoud street a few blocks away from the square.

In response to friends abroad, a young pharmacist sent an e-mail from the square: "I am OK but I have two young friends, one who died already and one who is in intensive care, shot in the head, and another who lost an eye and one who lost two eyes... This massacre is revealing the ugly face of the system and has turned this into a totally people's movement, and we are trying to catch up with that. We are in Tahrir all the time, trying to be creative in our contact with the people and getting a lot of sympathy from the people still at home."

This sentiment was repeated by others: what enabled them to stay in Tahrir Square this long has not been mainly personal courage, although there was an enormous amount of that, but the feeling that what they were doing was touching a deep chord among people all over the country and was therefore worth the sacrifice. They are also aware that the world is watching them and that their actions are in resonance with the Occupy movements in the US, UK and elsewhere. People in Tahrir know about actions in support of the Egyptian revolt that have been held in a number of American and British cities. (See

Egyptian society is much more obviously divided than at any time since Mubarak's fall. In the name of defending the anti-Mubarak "revolution", the military is attacking the youth who drove Mubarak out. The main Islamist groups have come out against the young rebels, and many ordinary people are unsure and sometimes hostile. Commentators opposed to the revolt emphasize the conflict between "the street" (majority opinion) and "the square" (Tahrir). Yet so many people across society have shown such strong sympathy and even active support for the rebels that for the last 11 days the military has been unable to put an end to the political stalemate and the standoff around the square.

On Friday 25 November, the occupiers' numbers swelled into the tens of thousands as they were joined by various organized contingents, including people from various kinds of universities and neighbourhoods, and women chanting slogans against the Islamist parties. One feeder march was led by a young man who had lost one eye in the January and February revolt and the other eye just now. The rally brought out a socially mixed crowd of men and women, in contrast to the generally poorer young men and boys fighting the police near the Interior Ministry. (For a sharply drawn portrait of the various segments of protesters, see "The battle of Cairo's Muhammad Mahmoud Street" by Lucie Ryzova on the Al Jazeera Web site.)

That same evening a few thousand counter-demonstrators gathered at another centre-city square to chant, "Down with Tahrir, yes to the military council."

In a very unusual gesture, the chief imam of Al-Azhar mosque, Sunni Islam's highest religious authority, issued a statement of support for the Tahrir protesters.

The fear of public opinion has even forced the military – or at least two generals speaking in the name of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) – to express "regrets and deep apologies for the deaths of the martyrs from among Egypt's loyal sons during recent events in Tahrir Square."

But at the same time a military court has ordered another 15 days of detention for blogger Alaa Abd El-Fattah, who had already spent a month in prison. He now faces a trial before a special state security court. Another blogger, Maikel Nabil, sentenced to three years in prison for writing "The army and the people were never one hand", has been on hunger strike for almost a hundred days and his retrial has been postponed. It seems that the military's plan for dealing with public opinion includes crushing opposing opinion-makers.

SCAF tried to undermine support for the Tahrir Square rebels by removing the entire cabinet they themselves had appointed to provide themselves with a civilian face. Their new chosen prime minister was Kamal El-Ganzouri, a US-trained economist who served in the same post under Mubarak at the end of the 1990s. When news of Ganzouri's appointment reached the 25 November rally, the crowd roared its rejection.

The mood was celebratory that night, because the regime seemed to be retreating both politically and in the streets around the square. People set off the coloured fireworks seen at football games. The next morning, however, when young men and women staged a sit-in in front of the cabinet building to prevent El-Ganzouri from entering, a military vehicle ran over and killed one of them, 21-year-old Ahmed Sayed. Thousands more people came to Tahrir Square the next day, 27 November, despite the first hard rain of winter. As the polls opened the next day, their numbers dwindled, with sentiments divided between boycotting the elections (mainly in hopes of holding future elections under a civilian government) and reluctantly voting now (mainly to hold back an Islamist victory).

The medical situation reveals much about the political line-up. Many doctors and other medical personnel have come to the aid of the protesters and young fighters, setting up about a dozen field hospitals in the square itself. During the revolt last January and February such hospitals were set up because of fears that the public hospital administration would report or turn over the wounded to the police. This spirit of a necessary alternative to official institutions is still at work.

The police have made these medical tents a special target for tear gas and arson. A young woman doctor died of suffocation when huge clouds of tear gas engulfed the tent where she was working. A devout Muslim, she was said to be a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood, a party that is particularly strong in the doctors' association and that called for its members to stay away from Tahrir. Reportedly there has been no shortage of medical personnel or even supplies in Tahrir, thanks to continuing donations.

Medical attention has become more crucial than ever because of the use of new police tactics – shooting to blind people with birdshot pellets and rubber and plastic bullets. This is apparent in videos of the casualties showing wounds in the upper chest and face. One regular hospital alone reported admitting 60 people with eye injuries in the week leading up to 27 November. Their wounds included burst corneas, burst eye sockets and foreign bodies in the eye. A volunteer doctor working in the field hospital nearest to Mohamed Mahmoud Street leading from Tahrir to the Interior Ministry reported that he treated about 25 people on the morning and afternoon of 25 November. Most had been shot in the upper area of the body, especially the face, with four people hit in the eyes with birdshot. (Report by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights)

Eyewitnesses say that police taunted protesters facing off against them, "If you want to lose your eye, come over here." A notorious video on Youtube shows a police officer firing on demonstrators in Mohamed Mahmoud Street. A soldier congratulates him, saying, "Nice shot, you hit that guy right in the eye." A blogger asked what kind of army, and what kind of society, would train its soldiers to think like that.

The authorities have not hesitated to kill – another video shows men in civilian clothing wielding long clubs apparently to finish off people left unconscious by police truncheons. But shooting people in the eyes seems to have become a deliberate policy meant to cause as much pain and terror as possible while avoiding greater numbers of politically problematic deaths. In addition, according to the same report, almost 400 people have been arrested and then beaten and otherwise abused in custody, including children.

Similarly, many of the fatalities have been attributed to tear gas. Questions have been raised about what exactly this tear gas contains, although examination of the spent cartridges found so far has not revealed anything that would make it more deadly than usual. Some medical experts speculate that the deaths are caused not by a more lethal variety of gas but its concentrated and sustained use over a long period. It may be that people are suffering from cumulative pulmonary, cardiac and other damage. So much gas has combined with the dust that usually coats this desert city that in much of the downtown the slightest gust of wind sets off coughing.

This gas is primarily supplied by the United States, as anyone can see by examining the markings on spent cartridges. The US provides the Egyptian military with 1.3 billion dollars a year in direct aid, amounting to two-thirds of total US funding for Egypt (money for civilian projects is no less harmful – US "aid" obliges Egyptians to depend on American wheat imports for their daily bread). US State Department records show that the US supplied 1.7 million dollars worth of "toxicological agents" – "including tear gas and riot control agents" in 2010 alone. (El Ahram Online, 25 November.)

Youth organizations have made public documents leaked to them by customs employees indicating that the US is now in the process of shipping the Egyptian Interior Ministry an additional 21 tons of tear gas. The second of three container ships was being unloaded in the port city of Suez when these documents were released on 28 November.

While the police are a civilian body, they are run by the Interior Ministry, which is under military control. The main police units attacking the protesters are from the Central Security Forces, responsible for most of the deaths in January and February. The members of this corps are recruited from among army conscripts who volunteer for the job. The armed forces claim that they have intervened to protect demonstrators from the police, but there have been many reports of army officers and military police accompanying other police in attacking Tahrir square and in defending the Interior Ministry, often surrounded by tanks. Now the military has put up a two-metre high wall of concrete slabs across Mohamed Mahmoud street.

The US has called for a "full transfer of power to a civilian government", a move that SCAF head Field Marshall Tantawi initially rejected. On 27 November he announced that no matter what the result of the elections, "the place of the army will remain exactly as it is. It will not change in any new constitution."

While Tahrir square is united around the chant, "The people want the fall of the field marshal", there is a prevailing lack of clarity about what kind of regime could be an alternative to military rule. SCAF has become as discredited as most of Egypt's political institutions, and there is not much hope for real change from the current elections. (We Are All Khaled Said, one of the main Facebook groups behind the original revolt, asked people to vote while wearing black badges in memory of the martyrs, a call that seems to reflect a mood of bleak acquiescence to the elections due to the lack of an alternative.) Yet few people envision a revolutionary overthrow of the entire state structure, including the armed forces. Instead, most would like to hope that somehow parliamentary elections or a constituent assembly – there is debate about which – could establish a rule of law that would somehow be above society. But the Egyptian ruling classes and the US imperialists they are beholden to would never respect any legal structure that didn't reflect their economic and political interests!

The viciousness of what the movement faces can be seen in the military tactics being used against them. These tactics are not only fully enabled by the US but also seem to be in line with Washington's political goals, which are to facilitate the emergence of a regime that would both continue to be subservient to US interests and enjoy enough legitimacy to get away with crushing the young rebels and their supporters. While there may be some conflict between SCAF and Washington, it is over how best to achieve this goal.

At the same time as SCAF was expressing its "regret" for deaths on its Facebook page, the American ambassador to Egypt used her Twitter account to announce that the US was donating 100,000 dollars in "humanitarian assistance for violence victims." In light of everything else the US has done in Egypt, including building up, sustaining and arming the Egyptian military, this is like gouging out someone's eyes and then offering them eye drops.

India: CPI(Maoist) leader Kishanji murdered

28 November 2011. A World to Win News Service. Mallojula Koteswara Rao, also known as Kishenji, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), was killed in a forest area of West Bengal on 24 November.

The authorities claimed that comrade Rao was killed in a firefight during an operation involving some 900 paramilitary troops and state police, including the Cobra commandos specially trained to fight the Maoist-led revolutionary movement based in the rural areas of central and eastern India. A party statement issued the next day said that he had been been arrested, tortured and murdered.

At the funeral in his home town, Peddapally, the revolutionary writer P. Varavara Rao read out the following statement by the party's Central Committee.

November 24, 2011 would remain a black day in the annals of Indian revolutionary movement's history. The fascist Sonia-Manmohan-Pranab-Chidambaram-Jairam Ramesh ruling clique who have been raising a din that CPI (Maoist) is "the biggest internal security threat", in collusion with West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, killed Comrade Mallojula Koteswara Rao after capturing him alive in a well planned conspiracy. This clique which had killed Comrade Azad, our party's spokesperson, on July 1, 2010 once again spread its dragnet and quenched its thirst for blood. Mamata Banerjee, who had shed crocodile tears over the murder of Comrade Azad before coming to power, while enacting the drama of talks on the one hand after assuming office, killed another topmost leader Comrade Koteswara Rao and thus displayed nakedly its anti-people and fascist facet. The central intelligence agencies and the killer intelligence agencies of West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh chased him in a well planned conspiracy and killed him in a cowardly manner in a joint operation and now spreading a concocted story of encounter. The central home secretary R.K. Singh even while lying that they do not know for certain who died in the encounter, has in the same breath announced that this is a big blow to the Maoist movement. Thus he nakedly gave away their conspiracy behind this killing. The oppressed people would definitely send to grave the exploiting ruling classes and their imperialist masters who are daydreaming that they could wipe out the Maoist party by killing the top leadership of the revolutionary movement.

Comrade Koteswara Rao, who is hugely popular as Prahlad, Ramji, Kishenji and Bimal inside the party and among the people, is one of the important leaders of the Indian revolutionary movement. The tireless warrior who never rested his gun while fighting for the liberation of the oppressed masses since the past 37 years and who has laid down his life for the sake of the ideology he believed in, was born in 1954 in Peddapally town of Karimnagar district of North Telangana, Andhra Pradesh. Raised by his father the late Venkataiah, who was a freedom fighter, and his mother Madhuramma who has been of progressive views, Koteswara Rao imbibed love for his country and its oppressed masses since childhood. In 1969, he had participated in the historic separate Telangana movement while he was in his high school studies in Peddapally town. He joined the revolutionary movement with the inspiration of the glorious Naxalbari and Srikakulam movements while studying graduation in SRR college of Karimnagar. He started working as an active member of the Party from 1974. He spent some time in jail during the black period of the Emergency. After lifting up of the Emergency, he started working as a party organizer in his home district of Karimnagar. He responded to the "Go to Villages" campaign call of the party and developed relations with the peasantry by going to the villages. He was one of those who played a prominent role in the upsurge of peasant movement popular as "Jagityal Jaitrayatra" (Victory March of Jagityal) in 1978. In this course, he was elected as the district committee member of the Adilabad-Karimnagar joint committee of the CPI (ML). In 1979 when this committee was divided into two district committees he became the secretary of the Karimnagar district committee. He participated in the Andhra Pradesh state 12th party conference, was elected to the AP state committee and took responsibilities as its secretary.

Up to 1985, as part of the AP state committee leadership he played a crucial role in spreading the movement all over the state and in developing the North Telangana movement which was advancing with guerilla zone perspective. He played a prominent role in expanding the movement to Dandakaranya (DK) and developing it. He was transferred to Dandakaranya in 1986 and took up responsibilities as a member of the Forest Committee. He led the guerilla squads and the people in Gadchiroli and Bastar areas of DK. In 1993 he was co-opted as a member into the Central Organizing Committee (COC).

From 1994 onwards he mainly worked to spread and develop the revolutionary movement in Eastern and Northern parts of India including West Bengal. Particularly his role in uniting the revolutionary forces which were scattered after the setback of the Naxalbari movement in West Bengal and in reviving the revolutionary movement there is extraordinary. He mingled deeply with the oppressed masses of Bengal and the various sections of the revolutionary camp, learnt the Bangla language with determination and left an indelible mark in the hearts of the people there. He worked tirelessly in achieving unity with several revolutionary groups and in strengthening the party. Comrade Koteswara Rao was elected as a Central Committee (CC) member in the All India Special Conference of the erstwhile CPI (ML) (People's War) held in 1995. He strived for achieving unity between People's War and Party Unity in 1998. In the Party Congress of the erstwhile CPI (ML)(PW) held in 2001 he was once again elected into CC and Politburo. He took up responsibilities as the secretary of the North Regional Bureau (NRB) and led the revolutionary movements in Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Delhi, Haryana and Punjab states. Simultaneously he played a key role in the unity talks held between erstwhile PW and MCCI. He served as a member of the unified CC and Politburo formed after the merger of the two parties in 2004 and worked as a member of the Eastern Regional Bureau (ERB). He mainly concentrated on the state movement of West Bengal and continued as the spokesperson of the ERB.

Comrade Koteswara Rao played a prominent role in running party magazines and in the field of political education inside the party. He took part in running Kranti, Errajenda, Jung, Prabhat, Vanguard and other party magazines. He had a special role to play in bringing out various revolutionary magazines in West Bengal. He wrote many theoretical and political articles in these magazines. He was a member of the Sub-Committee on Political Education (SCOPE) and played a prominent role in teaching Marxism-Leninism-Maoism to the party ranks. In the entire history of the party he played a memorable role in expanding the revolutionary movement, in enriching the party documents and in developing the movement. He participated in the Unity Congress-9th Congress of the party held in 2007 January, was elected as CC member once again and took responsibilities of Politburo member and member of the ERB.

The political guidance given by Comrade Koteswara Rao to the Singur and Nandigram people's movements which erupted since 2007 against the anti-people and pro-corporate policies of the social fascist CPM government in West Bengal and particularly to the glorious upsurge of people's rebellion in Lalgarh against police atrocities is prominent. He guided the West Bengal state committee and the party ranks to lead these movements and on the other hand conducted party propaganda through the media too with initiative. In 2009 when the Chidambaram clique tried to mislead the middle classes in the name of talks and ceasefire, he worked significantly in exposing it. He did enormous work in keeping aloft the importance of People's War and in taking the revolutionary politics into the vast masses. This great revolutionary journey which went on for almost four decades came to an abrupt end on November 24, 2011.

Beloved People! Democrats!!

Do condemn this brutal murder. It is the conspiracy of the ruling classes to wipe out the revolutionary leadership and deprive the people of correct guidance and proletarian leadership. It is a known fact that the Maoist movement is the biggest hurdle to the big robbers and compradors who are stashing millions in Swiss banks by selling for peanuts the Jal, Jungle and Zameen of the country to the imperialist sharks. The multi-pronged, country-wide brutal offensive named Operation Green Hunt of the past two years is exactly serving this purpose. This cold-blooded murder is part of that. It is the duty of the patriots and freedom-loving people of the country to protect the revolutionary movement and its leadership like the pupil of their eye. It's nothing but protecting the future of the country and that of the next generations.

Even at the age of 57, Com. Koteswara Rao led the hard life of a guerilla like a young man and had filled the cadres and people with great enthusiasm wherever he went. His life would particularly serve as a great inspiration to the younger generation. He studied and worked for hours together without rest and traveled great distances. He slept very little, led a simple life and was a hard worker. He used to mingle easily with people of all ages and with people who come from various social sections and fill them with revolutionary enthusiasm. No doubt, the martyrdom of Comrade Koteswara Rao is a great loss to the Indian revolutionary movement. But the people of our country are very great. It is the people and the people's movements which gave birth to courageous and dedicated revolutionaries like Koteswara Rao. The workers and peasants and the revolutionaries who have imbibed the revolutionary spirit of Koteswara Rao right from Jagityal to Jungle Mahal and who have armed themselves with the revolutionary fragrance he spread all over the country would definitely lead the Indian New Democratic Revolution in a victory path. They would wipe out the imperialists and their lackey landlord and comprador bureaucratic bourgeoisie and their representatives like Sonia, Manmohan, Chidambaram and Mamata Banerjee.

Our CC is appealing to the people of the country to observe protest week from November 29 to December 5 and observe 48-hour "Bharat Bandh" on December 4-5 in protest of the brutal murder of Comrade Koteswara Rao. We are appealing that they take up various programmes like holding meetings, rallies, dharnas, wearing black badges, road blocks etc protesting this murder. We are requesting that trains, roadways, commercial and educational institutions be closed and that all kinds of trade transactions be stopped as part of the "Bharat Bandh" on December 4-5. However, we are exempting medical services from the Bandh.

Signed Abhay, spokesperson, CPI(Maoist).

Egypt: still out of control

22 November 2011. A World to Win News Service. By Samuel Albert. Once again events in Egypt have taken everyone by surprise, even the actors. Through a conjunction of favourable circumstances and especially through their courage and daring, the youth who were at the core of the movement that overthrew Hosni Mubarak have regained the initiative and struck back at efforts to continue the old regime in a new form.

Many people are talking about "Tahrir reloaded". They called last Saturday, when the youth first successfully resisted police attempts to clear them out of Cairo's main square, "day 19", a return to the 18 day revolt that began last January 25. But that Tahrir moment, the days when there was a consensus throughout Egyptian society – that Mubarak was finished – will not come again. The armed forces, which dumped Mubarak with US assent, have been waging a war on the youth and made themselves that movement's main target despite initial illusions that the military might be a positive force or at least neutral. When protesters now revive the old chant, "The people want the fall of the regime", and explicitly add the name of Field Marshall Tantawi, the head of the Supreme Armed Forces Council (SCAF) that took over from Mubarak, it is in much more difficult circumstances, facing even more vicious battles at the beginning of the year, and with a much more divided population. And it is even more daring.

In retrospect, it may be that the last few months, when the movement fell back amid serious difficulties, should be considered as one of intense calm in the midst of a continuing revolutionary crisis rather than an ebbing of the revolutionary situation. While the revolt had lost the initiative, it is clear that a great many people remained deeply dissatisfied and were in fact becoming increasingly angry and desperate. When they saw a chance to act decisively, they took it.

That chance occurred in connection with a mass rally called by the Muslim Brotherhood meant to pressure the military regime to its own advantage. The Islamists are reactionaries seeking to use religion and religious rule to make acceptable the relations of exploitation and oppression that have made life unbearable for so many Egyptians. But their contradictions with the military regime created room for something entirely different, an ultimately successful attempt to "replay Tahrir" in the sense of a new occupation intended to bring down the new/old regime.

The 18 November rally started out with a different scene than witnessed in Cairo's Tahrir Square back in January and February, even if it was the biggest protest since then. That earlier Tahrir was marked by an almost utopian spirit of mutual aid, collective self-reliance and equality between ethnic groups, religions and even, to some extent, men and women. Photos show men, women and children present, and at the hours of Muslim prayers, some people kneeling in devotion and others standing up, all mixed together, with many people not praying. The Brotherhood, somewhat tolerated as well as sometimes repressed under Mubarak, boycotted the revolt in the crucial first few days. When the Brotherhood did come, their presence didn't change the movement's character.

In contrast, when the call to prayer came on Friday afternoon 18 November, hardly a head was left raised. There were some distinctions between the crowds brought out by the Muslim Brotherhood (especially strong among the middle classes, including doctors, lawyers, engineers and journalists) and the various Salafist groups (known for their support from the young urban poor), although these differences in class base are very approximate and often contradictory. There were a variety of views on whether the new government should be civil in form but Islamic-based, or one on the Saudi Arabian model (seen as a rich and modern country where Sunni fundamentalism rules supreme, as opposed to poor and backward Afghanistan or Shia Iran isolated by the West). But there seems to have been a shared sense that Islam should be considered the only source of morality and political legitimacy.

Among the youth groups and leftist parties that attended, most tried to literally keep a distance from the Islamist groups (each organized around its own podium and preachers) and maintain a distinct political identity focused on opposition to military trials and political repression, which the Islamists seldom talk about. There was debate about whether or not to try and occupy Tahrir Square. In the early evening, the Muslim Brotherhood and the main Salafist groups declared the event over and left. The 6 April Youth Organization, the best-known secular youth group, announced that instead of attempting to stay in the square they were calling for another demonstration the following Friday (the only day most people have off from work).

A previous attempt to "replay Tahrir" in July failed to gather enough momentum to prevent a police attack that cleared the square and then survive the month-long break for Ramadan in August. The SCAF had been forced to permit marches and rallies in Tahrir and elsewhere, but occupation, which has come to represent a challenge to the legitimacy of the prevailing regime, had not been permitted.

However, some youth, a few hundred according to reports, decided to stay overnight in Tahrir anyway. The next morning they were attacked by the Central Security Forces, Mubarak's well-trained and organized black-clad riot police. Twice that day, in the morning and especially the early evening, the police almost succeeded in driving them out, but thousands of youth began to pour in from around the city. At first they came individually and in small groups. Later, columns marched in from assembly points at other downtown squares and even more distant neighbourhoods, both middle class and poor. The fighting was intense; at least two people were killed. The police used tear gas, clubs, electric prods, shotguns firing rubber bullets and birdshot, and standard bullets. Soldiers on the rooftops of the surrounding tall buildings threw down tear gas canisters and other deadly objects. The underground station – one of the city's two main junctions – was closed to cut off new arrivals. Mohamed ElBaradei, the Nobel Prize-winning ex-International Atomic Energy Agency head who is the country's most prominent candidate for the as yet unscheduled presidential elections, came to the square. Some Islamists, particularly youth, came back.

Other demonstrations broke out in at least seven other cities. In Suez, where people had burned down the police station and other official buildings in the first days of the January revolt, the new police headquarters was assaulted. Along with Alexandria, there were also fierce protests in several smaller cities along the upper Nile.

Tahrir remained occupied Saturday night. The police attacked even more ferociously the next day, killing at least 11 more people. Hospitals reported about 1,800 injured Saturday and Sunday. Two well-known groups of football fans ("ultras") came to reinforce the battle against the police, who have always treated them brutally. Military policemen and officers also took part in attacking people, according to some reports. But on Sunday and Monday, at times the protesters were able to take the offensive. They repeatedly marched on the Ministry of the Interior, one of the most important targets left unscathed after last January and February. Obviously they felt they had unfinished business.

Over the past months, the armed forces increasing use of naked violence, sometimes directly by soldiers as well as police, has certainly scared many people, but it has also made many conclude that the military's rule is the problem, not the solution – that an attempt to "replay Tahrir", this time against the army, is the only way out of a deteriorating situation.

Yet it was the Muslim Brotherhood and not the youth organizations and certainly none of the traditional "left" parties that issued the call for a "Million Man March" in Tahrir Square 18 November. (As it turned out, there were closer to 50,000.) It was billed as "The Day of One Demand" – that the military give up power. This might seem surprising, since the military and Islamists have been acting as "one hand" in trying to restore stability and steer people off the streets and into the polling booths for the scheduled 28 November parliamentary elections that the Islamists expect will hand them a central role in a new civilian government.

The Muslim Brotherhood's apparent conflict with the army was precipitated when a civilian minister, answerable, like the whole government, to the generals, proposed to a meeting of the major political parties that the armed forces be allowed to dictate certain constitutional principles now, choose most of the members of the panel to write a new constitution after parliament is elected, and permanently remain above civilian interference or even budgetary supervision. The Brotherhood's electoral arm, the Freedom and Justice Party, declared this a threat to the emergence of "democracy" in Egypt. Certainly a great many people saw these measures as a crude attempt to perpetuate military rule under a parliamentary fig leaf.

At the same time, however, as the Brotherhood's secular critics point out, the proposal contained articles and procedures that might make it harder to declare Egypt an Islamic republic, restrict the Islamist parties' options and of course keep them under military supervision. While the US and its Egyptian flunkies are unanimous in their belief that parliamentary elections are the only way to restore the legitimacy of state institutions, and while most observers think that an Islamist-dominated parliament is the most probable result, there may very well be contention between various forces among the Islamists and the generals.

There is another factor likely at work, although no proof has been uncovered: the US. During the period when the Brotherhood was negotiating with the military as to whether or not to call off the threatened 18 November demonstration and was also officially in contact with US State Department representatives, American government officials began to express unhappiness with the Egyptian military's efforts to formally limit the powers of a future civilian government. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, "If, over time, the most powerful political forces in Egypt remain a handful of unelected officials, they will have planted the seeds for future unrest, and Egypt will have missed a historic opportunity." (New York Times, 16 November) In other words, while the US might agree with the generals' project in the abstract, its officials fear that continuing brazen military rule could undermine US interests, which require a government whose stability depends not just on violence but also on a sufficient degree of legitimacy in the eyes of the people.

This doesn't mean that the US plans to try to do without the nearly million-man Egyptian armed forces. They are the recipient of 1.3 billion dollars a year in direct American funding, and the US has carefully cultivated its officer corps for decades. But the Egyptian military has its own political and economic interests, including a gigantic network of enterprises under its command. Roughly 40 percent of the country's economy is estimated to be controlled by a network of military and other state-owned enterprises and private companies run by retired officers.

The imperialist finance system, speaking through the IMF, has often complained that foreign investment would be better served by more "private"-sector opportunities. The US once encouraged Hosni Mubarak's son and appointed successor Gamal because he sought to expand, at the military's expense, the "private" capital sector now championed by civilian presidential candidates such as ElBaradei. (Actually, in an economy organized according to the laws of capitalism both state-owned and "private" capital are effectively private in terms of putting narrow, particular interests above the general interests of society.) The US and the Egyptian military can't do without one another, but that doesn't mean that their interests are identical.

As for the US and the Islamists, the American government's attitude seems to be "maybe". No one can say exactly where an Islamist government might lead, and US officials are certainly aware of potential problems with an Islamic government bordering Israel. But the US, which kept Mubarak in power for three decades and clung to him almost to the end, does not have a lot of options. If Egypt slipped out of American domination, that would be a disaster for US interests in the region and the world.

The basic question being fought over in the squares and streets is who will govern Egypt: Islamists, generals or those who declare themselves loyal to "human rights; and in what form, through a military junta, a parliament and civilian president, or an emir (religious political leader). These are very important questions with deep, long-term implications. But who governs and the form of governance doesn't settle the question of the content of rule – the class or classes that hold political power, and consequently the way society is organized economically and politically, for what purpose, and what ideology is promoted.

It is vital to understand that the common demand for an end to military rule covers opposing possible outcomes representing mutually antagonistic interests. The question is whether open military rule comes to an end in a way that encourages or discourages people's struggles to go further.

Even if the entire military-appointed government of the Prime Minister Essam Sharaf, a former Mubarak figure, were replaced in an effort to appease the revolt, it's likely that the military would still call the shots. Under any circumstances, no matter which civilian might become prime minister and eventually president, the armed forces would have the ultimate say, as well as control of powerful economic, social and political levers. After all, on what armed power would any other government rest?

This situation would not be changed by the resignation of the minister who suggested that the new constitution formally sanction continued military control, as the Muslim Brotherhood and other parties demanded, or even the resignation of all the ministers, an idea considered so extreme that these parties did not dare demand it Monday morning, but became a real possibility by Monday night. The SCAF may seek to "replay Tahrir" in its own way by jettisoning whoever necessary to keep from being overthrown.

ElBaradei is now proposing the replacement of the SCAF-appointed government with a government of national unity composed of all the major political parties. including the Islamists and people like himself. (According to Al Ahram, the 6 April Youth organization has endorsed this proposal.) It is also noteworthy that the SCAF's recent decision to accept IMF funds (and therefore decisions) sparked little controversy among these parties. However real their differences, they are all ultimately amenable to the global, imperialist-dominated economic system and power relations.

As long as the army is not dismantled by revolutionary force, it will continue to be the backbone and pillar of any regime. The Islamists may have their own interests and agenda, but they definitely plan on ruling with the army, not against it. (In another act of blatant hypocrisy, when their manoeuvre to use the streets to their advantage backfired, they called for an end to all street demonstrations. A prominent Brotherhood leader who came to Tahrir with a handful of supporters on 21 November was booed out of the square.)

To many people, the best-case outcome would be a government chosen by majority rule through elections. This is especially understandable in a country that has never known anything but monarchy and a military rule where the occasional opposition candidates not in the regime's pay often ended up in jail or exile. But even with real elections, parliamentary democracy is perfectly compatible with and often the best form for the dictatorship of the exploiting classes. The formal equality of citizens before the law masks and gives full play to the enormous inequalities that characterize Egypt at least as much as any other country.

Further, Egyptian experience of the last nine months is rich in examples of how a revolt unsanctioned by elections can draw ordinary people into political life and allow them to change basic things through their actions, and how the experience (and promise) of elections can strip them of their conscious, active role. It has also highlighted the limitations of a spontaneous revolt that doesn't seek state power.

The Muslim Brotherhood now argues that the latest clashes were encouraged by provocateurs to force the cancellation of the imminent elections. But maybe one factor in the current upsurge is that many people have already decided that they can't expect anything good from this electoral process, even if they haven't lost hope in parliamentary democracy in the abstract.

A few of the revolt's intellectual participants do question parliamentary democracy as a viable or even desirable alternative to the military. Some "moderate" Islamist arguments in favour of the so-called supremacy of elections are instructive in this regard. They reason that since the majority of Egyptians are practising Muslims, then it is only right for the country to become an Islamic state. This might be considered just more hypocritical opportunism – after all, these forces intend to do everything in their power to set the terms of debate in the most manipulative and coercive manner and have never relied solely on persuasion – but there is a real, inescapable point here: the majority can be fooled, and certainly what the majority might think at any given moment doesn't necessarily correspond to the fundamental interests of the vast majority of people. Those who fought to overthrow Mubarak and have continued the revolt have not always had the visible broad support they wanted.

The fact is that in Egypt, not only would parliamentary democracy be a form of the dictatorship of the exploiting classes in which the interests and deepest desires of the people do not bear any weight in basic decisions, but it would be doubly empty because life in Egypt is ultimately determined by the interests and decisions of the imperialists, the powers whose twin instruments of subjugation are their military and the global market.

To take just one example: although the Nile valley and delta where most Egyptians live is among the world's most fertile land, imported wheat and other foodstuffs are cheaper than domestic production and the world market has crushed Egypt's agriculture. Consequently the country has become the world's biggest wheat importer (American "aid" ensures that it is bought from the US). To pay for this central component of people's diet, the country must depend on revenues from the Suez canal (without which the military and bureaucracy would never have become so swollen), the export of gas (Egypt sends gas to Israel while Egyptians cook with fires or use inconvenient and dangerous propane tanks), tourism (which requires a docile population) and especially the export of people (the money sent home by Egyptians forced to work abroad). Dependence on these sectors is an obstacle to an all-around development of the economy, including employment. There are so many people hungry for work in the Nile Delta that China and Iran, in addition to the Western powers, have set up factories there to exploit cheap Egyptian labour.

Changing the country's subordinated development and its disastrous effects on every aspect of the lives of the people, including their day-to-day existence and their culture and thinking – not to mention getting rid of all the other exploitative and oppressive relations in Egyptian life – cannot conceivably happen without a thoroughgoing revolution, the forcible overthrow of the power of the exploiting classes and the establishment of a whole new kind of regime led by a party that has the goal and a plan for freeing Egypt as part of ending exploitation and oppression on a world scale.

Making a revolution in any country, including Egypt, is unthinkable unless a section of the people led by such a party can successfully navigate through a complex mix of favourable and unfavourable factors. But the current complexity of the Egyptian situation contains positive factors that are rare in the history of any country. The people's enemies have not been able to resolve a political crisis that has festered since January and now become acute. So far they have not been able to restore the legitimacy of their institutions of domination or establish new ones. If they have vacillated in choosing a course of action, it is because any choice they make entails the risk of inflaming this crisis further. For instance, beating and shooting demonstrators has been anything but a solution for them, but stopping that might allow the people's anger to boil over. Serious compromises to the people's struggle might give the rebels a taste of victory that leaves them hungry for more, now or at some later point, especially if these concessions fail to fulfil their expectations.

The persistence of youth and others – despite a difficult period in which there has been more passivity than street action, especially among the less well-off sections of the people – has proved to be a mood creating factor throughout society. It is true that this "Internet elite", as an Egyptian politician sneeringly labelled them, has not always been able to rouse the broader masses. Yet they have been a major element in preventing the military and Islamist forces from consolidating their hold and keeping alive the possibility that broader masses could once again intervene in determining the country's future, as they did during those 18 days in January and February.

As of now, a wide variety of youth, not only "the Internet elite" but also working class students and young men and boys of the lower classes in general, have become uncontrollable. They are actively supported by many thousands of other men and some women. In fact, they have won enough sympathy and support that millions may consider them more in touch with their interests and even more legitimate than the ruling regime. Their courage in the face of repression is such that many have adopted the habit of writing the phone number of their next of kin on their arm in case they are found dead or unconscious – fear doesn't stop them. The solidarity is such that amid the tear gas people have formed long lines to donate blood at two mobile stations set up in Tahrir Square.

The factors that brought about that first Tahrir moment – the inability of the ruling classes to rule in the old way and the willingness of a large section of the people to risk death rather than continue living in the old way – remain unresolved and continue to interact.

10 Geostrategische Anmerkungen zur Besetzung Libyens

Von Prof. Dr. Luigi Ambrosi


Auf Kommunisten-online am 19, November 2011 – Luigi Ambrosis folgenden Artikel hat Bernd Duschner ins Deutsche übersetzt und mich gebeten, ihn hier zu veröffentlichen:

Der nachfolgende Artikel von Luigi Ambrosi erschien bereits am 24.10.2011 in diversen italienischen Publikationen wie z. B., hat jedoch nichts an Aktualität verloren. Die deutsche Übersetzung besorgte Bernd Duschner.

Der nachfolgende Artikel von Luigi Ambrosi erschien bereits am 24.10.2011 in diversen italienischen Publikationen wie z. B., hat jedoch nichts an Aktualität verloren. Die deutsche Übersetzung besorgte Bernd Duschner.

Mit der Hinrichtung Gaddafis und der Besetzung Libyens unter zu Hilfenahme der Marionettenregierung des Übergangsrates, endet zunächst eine weitere imperialistische Operation der Hauptmächte des früheren Kolonialismus.

Das gesamte Bündnis der westlichen Sieger im 2.Weltkrieg (USA, GB, Frankreich) findet sich wieder vereint, um sich die Ressourcen eines souveränen Staates einzuverleiben.

Einige geopolitischen Anmerkungen sind dazu angebracht. Dabei verstehe ich unter Geopolitik die Analyse der internationalen Kräfteverhältnisse. Obwohl frühere historische Ereignisse (vom Wiener Kongress bis zur Konferenz von Yalta) es nahelegen sollten, geopolitischen Zusammenhängen besondere Aufmerksamkeit zu widmen, werden sie in den Analysen noch nicht angemessen berücksichtigt.

Erste Anmerkung: Die „Rückeroberung“ Libyens bedeutet einen Sieg der Nato und des westlichen Imperialismus auf internationaler Ebene.

Sie bekräftigt ihre politische und militärische Vormachtstellung auf dem Planeten. Sie ist eine Warnung an alle souveränen Staaten davor, sich den wirtschaftlichen und politischen Interessen der Länder der westlichen Allianz nicht entgegenzustellen. Trotz ihrer Wirtschaftskrise verfügen sie über ein militärisches Potential, das ihnen die Überlegenheit sichert. Iran, Venezuela, Bolivien und vor allem die BRICS Staaten sind gewarnt. Wir haben eine offen neokoloniale Operation der alten Kolonialmächte erlebt. Wir können sie als einen ersten Sieg der Nato im neuen Weltkrieg, dem Weltkrieg gegen die BRICS Staaten mit China an der Spitze, ansehen. Der Präsident der USA Barack Obama hat erklärt, der Tod Gaddafis bedeute, dass „wir jetzt in der ganzen Welt die Macht der amerikanischen Führung sehen“. Dazu hat er dieses Mal erreicht, dass zahlreiche europäische Staaten an dem Krieg teilgenommen haben.

Zweite Anmerkung: Die BRICS Staaten und ihr wachsender politischer (und wirtschaftlicher) Einfluss als Gegenpol zum westlichen Imperum und der Nato haben einen spürbaren Rückschlag erhalten.

Der Großteil der Länder der Welt dürfte von diese Machtprobe, der Vernichtung eines souveränen Staates, der Hinrichtung eines Staatsoberhauptes, der Zerstörung seiner Infrastruktur und der Beschlagnahme seiner Rohstoffe als Ergebnis eines acht Monate dauernden Krieges eingeschüchtert sein. Falls hinter der Entscheidung Russlands und Chinas nicht eine wohldurchdachte Strategie steckt, dürfte ihr Verzicht auf ihr Veto in der UNO ein schwerer Fehler gewesen sein. Die USA setzen ihrerseits seit Jahrzehnten bei Resolutionen über den Staat Palästina ihr Veto ein. Wir wollen nicht glauben, dass sich China allein mit den Erklärungen des US Vizepräsidenten über die Anerkennung der Souveränität Chinas über Taiwan und Tibet zufriedenstellen ließ. Mit Sicherheit braucht China Zeit und vermeidet Fallstricke, die zu einer offenen Konfrontation führen können. In Russland hat jetzt der Wahlkampf begonnen. Er dürfte zur Ablösung von Medwedew durch Putin führen. Medwedew hatte sich stärker mit dem Westen eingelassen. Tatsache bleibt, dass beide Mächte einen Rückschlag und spürbaren wirtschaftlichen Schaden erlitten haben (30.000 chinesische Arbeiter wurden aus Libyen evakuiert, große Verträge Russlands über militärische Lieferungen und die Ausbeutung von Öl- und Erdgaslagerstätten wurden annuliert usw).

Ebenso schwer wiegt für die BRICS Staaten, dass Libyen unter die Kontrolle des westlichen Imperialismus geraten ist, der die Kontrolle über Afrika und das Mittelmeers im Auge hat. Die mögliche Verlagerung des Sitzes von Africom (der Nato in Afrika) von Deutschland nach Libyen, ermöglicht es, mit größerer Wirksamkeit in Afrika mit seinen Rohstoffen tätig zu werden. Das Land grenzt an den Sudan an, der mit China zusammenarbeitet. Man rückt näher an den Congo und Angola. Dort finanzieren Multinationale Konzerne seit über einem Jahrzehnt Separatismus und schreckliche Kriege mit dem Ziel, diese Länder wieder voll in ihren Besitz zu nehmen. Afrika ist ein Gebiet, wo alle BRICS Staaten, von Indien über Rußland bis Südafrika und Brasilien investieren. Zum Mittelmeer ist zu bemerken: Wenn es der westlichen Allianz gelingt, in Syrien das zu wiederholen, was sie in Libyen erreicht hat und sie die russische Flotte als letzten Störfaktor vertreiben kann, wird dieses Meer vollständig unter ihrer Kontrolle sein.

Wir leben im Westen. Hier war die Propaganda für den Krieg erdrückend stark. Der übrigen Welt konnte nicht verborgen bleiben, dass dieser Krieg für die BRICS Staaten und alle souveränen Staaten in der Welt einen Rückschlag bedeutet. Folglich haben China, Indien, Rußland, die gesamte Afrikanische Union, große Teile der arabischen Liga und Lateinamerikas haben von Anfang an gegen die Intervention der Nato und das Überschreitung der Grenzen der UN-Resolution Stellung bezogen. In dieser Hinsicht dürfte die Nato trotz ihres militärischen Sieges in den Augen der Welt politisch noch stärker isoliert sein.

Dritte Anmerkung: Beim Libyenkrieg kommt es zu einer politischen Spaltung der EU

Den USA ist es gelungen, Europa politisch zu spalten und Deutschland, das am Krieg nicht teilgenommen hat, zu isolieren. In diesem Hinsicht ist es ihnen zum ersten Mal gelungen, die Front der westlichen „Sieger“ im 2. Weltkrieg wieder herzustellen.

Das ist ein weiterer Erfolg der USA in ihrem Kampf gegen die Europäische Union und den Euro. Wie stark sich diese Spaltung und die Isolierung Deutschlands auf den Zusammenhalt der EU auswirken werden, werden wir bald sehen.

Das Konzept bei diesem Krieg scheint so gewesen zu sein: die USA forcieren gemeinsam mit Quatar und mit Unterstützung von Saudi Arabien den Angriff auf Libyen. Anschließend überlassen sie den Krieg Frankreich. Dem Land werden wichtige ökonomische Interessen zugebilligt. Diese hat Frankreich mit britischen und amerikanischen Unternehmen zu teilen. Die USA begnügen sich in wirtschaftlicher Hinsicht mit der Erneuerung der Ölkonzessionen für Chevron und Exxon. Ihr Interesse ist mehr politischer Natur: Die Vorherrschaft der USA in der Welt zu behaupten, eine Militärbasis für Africom zu erhalten, Europa zu spalten. Deutschland (und auch Italien) bezahlen dafür, dass sie mit Russland direkt Verträge über Energielieferungen abgeschlossen haben. Sie müssen zusehen, wie ihre eigenen Investitionen in Libyen beschnitten werden.

Vierte Anmerkung: Italien erleidet durch den Krieg erheblichen Schaden.

Gemeinsam mit Rußland und China ist Italien das Land, das durch diesen Krieg am meisten verliert.

Das betrifft sein Ansehen in der Welt: Es ist der Staat, der einen erst kürzlich abgeschlossenen Bündnisvertrag mit Libyen bricht. Die ehemalige Kolonialmacht hatte als einzige unter den früheren Kolonialmächten vor kurzem die eigenen Verbrechen während der faschistischen Besetzung eingeräumt hatte und geplant, in bedeutenden Umfang wirtschaftliche Wiedergutmachung zu leisten (auch wenn mit öffentlichen Geldern und verbunden mit Aufträgen an Unternehmen aus dem Umfeld Berlusconis). Es wird Einbussen bei seinen Interessensphären und beim Handelsaustausch hinnehmen müssen. Frankreich hat Italien bereits gewarnt: Ihr seid nicht mehr der erste Wirtschaftspartner. Kaum war Gaddafi tot, da verkündigte der französische Verteidigungsminister: „Frankreich ist der Hauptpartner für Libyen. Wir haben uns nicht erst spät, halbherzig und unsicher engagiert ( soll heißen: im Gegensatz zu Italien). Libyen muß wieder ausgerüstet werden und wir können das gut.“ Der Minister ließ den Übergangsrat den gleichen Vertrag gegen Immigration unterschreiben, den bereits zu seiner Zeit Berlusconi hatte unterschreiben lassen. Air France wird die zerstörte libysche Luftflotte ersetzen. Total hat bereits neue Förderverträge unterschrieben und der französische Unternehmensverband eröffnet im Januar eigene Büros, um im Sektor Energie, Gesundheitswesen, Sicherheit und bei den Infrastrukturinvestitionen mitzuwirken. Unterschrieben sind bereits Verträge für ein Kraftwerk in Sirte, das Kommunikationsnetz (Alcatel und France Telecom), die Hochspannungsleitungen und die Ausbeutung der gewaltigen Trinkwasser-Lagerstätten. Areva verlangt das exklusive Ausbeutungsrecht der Uranlagerstätten.

Die russischen Aufträge für Waffenkäufe wurden bereits zugunsten der Franzosen storniert. Die Vorzeigeunternehmen des italienischen Kapitalismus werden zugunsten der französischen und angloamerikanischen Firmen beschnitten. Total, Chevron werden ENI verdrängen, die französische Rüstungsindustrie wird Finmeccanica ersetzen, und bei Infrastrukturinvestitionen werden statt Impregilo und Partner französische Unternehmen Zuge kommen. Es sollte beachtet werden, dass gerade die großen italienischen Firmen betroffen sind, für die es Interessenten gibt und die bereits unter dem Druck amerikanischer Multis (kürzliche Herabstufung) und der EU stehen (sie sollen mit Zustimmung von Prodi und Draghi gemeinsam mit den Goldreserven als Pfand Sicherheit für die Eurobonds dienen). Das erneuerte siegreiche atlantische Bündnis kann zum Sturz Berlusconis führen (oder besser formuliert, zum Ende des halbherzigen dritten Weges Italiens. Er bestand darin, die Außenpolitik von ENI, Andreotti und Craxi weiterzuführen und zu Rußland und den arabischen Ländern ebenso gute Beziehungen zu unterhalten), zur Marginalisierung Italiens und zur Isolierung Deutschlands. Damit verknüpft wäre der Zerfall der EURO Zone.

Fünfte Anmerkung: Auch Europa übernimmt den Kriegskeynesianismus.

In diesem neuen Jahrtausend war der Krieg als Mittel zur Ankurbelung der Wirtschaft bisher ein Vorrecht der USA. Der Krieg zur Zerstörung des Irak hat nicht nur der Rüstungsindustrie (die öffentliche Hand übernahm die Kosten) und der Ölindustrie ( Förderkosten von 1-4 Dollar pro Barrel) Impulse gegeben, sondern auch den Unternehmen im Bausektor und den Sicherheitsunternehmen. Die Devise heißt: einen Konkurrenten oder Feind zerstören, um wieder aufbauen (Keynes) zu können. Mit dem Libyen-Krieg hat auch Europa diese Strategie übernommen: Libyen musste erleben, wie seine Infrastruktur bei 20.000 Bombenangriffen zerstört wurde. Wie der Irak wurde es hinsichtlich seiner Infrastruktur um 20-30 Jahre zurückgeworfen. Jetzt werden westliche Unternehmen mit den beschlagnahmten staatlichen libyschen Geldern und Mitteln aus der Plünderung seiner Rohstoffe den Wiederaufbau übernehmen. Falls Libyen vollständig befriedet wird (aber das steht keinesfalls fest), können wir einen kleinen Aufschwung für die französische und englische Wirtschaft erwarten. Aber ebenso wenig wie die Plünderung des Irak 2008 die Wirtschaftskrise in den USA verhindert hat, ist dies für den europäischen Kapitalismus zu erwarten, der an diesem Krieg teilgenommen hat. Angesichts der acht Monate ununterbrochener Bombardierungen versteht man endlich, warum sich die Nato-Staaten seit einem Jahrzehnt Hunderte von Jagdbombern anschaffen: Sie hatten ein solches Kriegszenario gegen die Völker der Welt bereits geplant: Bombardierungen von oben, wenige eigene Verluste, Geschäfte beim Wiederaufbau, Einschüchterung der nicht-westlichen Bevölkerungen. Die Bombardierung von Belgrad hat Schule gemacht.

Sechste Anmerkung: Die neuen Formen des Krieges des westlichen Imperiums

Der Architekt der amerikanischen Außenpolitik Vizepräsident Joe Biden hat erklärt:„In diesem Fall hat Amerika 2 Milliarden Dollar ausgegeben und keinen einzigen Toten gehabt. Das ist die Messlatte, wie im Unterschied zur Vergangenheit in Zukunft in der Welt vorgegangen werden muss.“ Kriege ja, aber zu reduzierten Kosten für das Imperium. Wir sind in einer Zeit, in der an der Spitze des Imperiums der Friedensnobelpreisträger Obama steht. Er wurde mit der Losung „Wir können es anders machen“ gewählt. Die imperialistischen Kriege können deshalb nicht mehr die plumpen ideologischen Rechtfertigungen eines Bush vom „Neuen amerikanischen Jahrhundert“, einer „göttlichen Mission“ oder, noch simpler, vom „Export der Demokratie“ haben. Sie waren von rechten Intellektuellen ausgearbeitet worden. Anspruchsvollere Begründungen sind gefordert. Dafür haben sich sogleich „linke“ Intellektuelle, zur Verfügung gestellt, allen voran der Franzose Bernard Levy: Die Verteidigung der Menschenrechte der örtlichen Bevölkerung gegen Despoten und Diktatoren. Dieses Argument, das bereits im Afghanistankrieg langsam auftauchte (von der Rache an Bin Laden ging man zum Argument von der Verteidigung der Frauen gegen die Burka und ihrem Recht auf Ausbildung über. Mit dem tatsächlichen großen Spiel in Asien haben diese Rechtfertigungen nichts zu tun), wurde für den Krieg gegen Libyen herangezogen. Man wird es auch bei zukünftigen Kriegen des westlichen Imperialismus verwenden können. Es war ein großer Erfolg für die USA, dass die UNO dieses Argument unter Verletzung des Prinzips der Souveränität der Nationalstaaten übernommen hat. Natürlich hat man vergessen, dieses Argument bei den zahllosen Fällen (die Tragödie der Desaparicidos in ganz Lateinamerika oder die Palästinenser als Beispiel) vorzubringen, bei denen es um proimperialistische Staaten ging. Diese Strategie der „Verteidigung der Menschenrechte“ wird von den Medien mit Kampagnen unterstützt, die vor allem aus Lügen bestehen. Im Fall Libyens waren es spektakuläre Lügen. Entscheidend war die Unterstützung durch Al Jazeera. Der Fernsehsender stand wegen der Rolle, die sein Eigentümer, der Scheich von Katar, bei der bewaffneten Auseinandersetzung spielte, in einem offenkundigen Interessenskonflikt. Skrupelloser Einsatz der Medien und des Internets verbunden mit massiven Einsatz von Drohnen sind die neuen Elemente dieser neuen Art der Kriegsführung. Dazu kommt die beachtliche aktive Mitwirkung von Intellektuellen der imperialistischen „Linken“ und von Pseudopazifisten. Sie erinnerten an die Graffiti der Indignados in Barcellona (im übrigen glänzten diese, abgesehen von New York, beim Thema Krieg durch Abwesenheit): „Wo ist die Linke? Rechts, im Hintergrund“. Wir kennen es aus der Geschichte: Wenn es um nationale koloniale und imperiale Interessen geht, hat sich die Linke in den kapitalistischen Ländern gespalten.

Menschenrechte + Lügen = Beschlagnahme der Auslandsguthaben + Krieg. Besonders gefährlich an dieser Strategie ist, dass ein Präzedenzfall geschaffen wurde. Vorbereitet wird dieses Vorgehen, indem in souveränen Staaten Spaltungen auf ethnischer, religiöser Grundlage und Autonomiebestrebungen gefördert werden. Im Irak war es die religiöse Spaltung zwischen Sunniten und Schiiten, und die ethnische Abtrennung gegenüber den Kurden. In Libyen ist es die Aufspaltung mittels derAutonomiebestrebungen in der Cirencaica. Es überrascht, dass sie mit dieser Strategie auch heute noch Erfolg haben, obwohl das Konzept des „Divide et impera“ berüchtigt und bekannt ist. Diese Vorgehensweise, zu der auch der skrupellose Einsatz von Nicht-Regierungs-Organisationen gehört, kann zu jeder Zeit und gegen jeden angewandt werden: In Darfur, um den Sudan anzugreifen, in Cabinda, um Druck auf Angola auszuüben, in Kiwu für den Kongo, die grüne Revolution und die Kurden für den Iran (und die Türkei), die Unterdrückung der vermutmasslichen Opposition in Syrien, der ökologische Protest der Indios in Bolivien und Ekuador bis zum reizvollsten Leckerbissen, Tibet für China. Wenn das nicht genügt, bleibt immer noch die Option Staatsstreich, wie beim versuchten Putsch in Venezuela. Selbstverständlich ist in den westlichen Staaten Separatismus verboten.

Die Operation Libyen war ein Verwirrspiel mit drei Karten: Proteste in Tunesien, in Ägypten und der Cyrenaica. Wo würde das Imperium intervenieren? Gab es Zweifel? Jetzt ist Libyen besetzt. Ägypten und Tunesien werden wahrscheinlich unter islamischer Kontrolle geraten. Saudi Arabien, das mit den USA verbündet ist, hält die Fäden in der Hand. Arabischer Frühling : Ändern, damit sich nichts ändert, außer dort, wo dies in unserem eigenen Interesse ist (Libyen).

Siebte Anmerkung: Wer ist jetzt an der Reihe?

Das „Große Spiel“ lehrt: Wer das Zentrum Asiens kontrolliert, kontrolliert Asien, wer Asien kontrolliert, kontrolliert die Welt. Der westliche Imperialismus bahnt sich seinen Weg. Er führt ihn immer weiter, bis sein tödlicher Atemhauch China, den wichtigsten Konkurrenten in dieser Zeit, erfasst. Afghanistan war dafür der erste Hinweis, die Invasion im Irak der zweite, der ständige Druck und die Drohungen gegen den Iran der dritte, die Ausdehnung der Kriegsoperationen gegen Pakistan der vierte. Die Besetzung Libyens und im erneuerten Bündnis mit Saudi-Arabien, die Androhung einer „Flugzone“ westlicher Prägung gegen Syrien zur Kontrolle des Mittleren Orients, der Fünfte Hinweis. Dazu kommen alle mehr oder minder verdeckten Operationen in verschiedenen zentralasiatischen Ländern.

Weil das westliche Imperium aber weltweit herrschen möchte, wird es auch die Menschenrechte in Afrika nicht aus den Augen verlieren: die großen Vorkommen an Rohstoffen und landwirtschaftlichen Flächen mit Algerien, Sudan, Somalia, Congo und Angola stehen ganz oben auf der Liste. Und warum sollte man die Menschenrechte in den Staaten der ALBA in Lateinamerika vergessen, allen voran in Venezuela, Cuba, Nikaragua, Bolivien und Ekuador? Unter dem Vorschein internationaler Zusammenarbeit machen sich Nicht- Regierungsorganisationen schon daran, dafür den Boden vorzubereiten. Endziel des westlichen Imperialismus: die wachsende Bedeutung der BRICS Staaten zu beenden und jeden Staat zu beseitigen, der seine Souveränität in Anspruch nimmt.

Achte Anmerkung: Das heimliche Bündnis mit dem islamischen Integralismus

Libyen hat uns das scheinbar nicht bekannte Bündnis zwischen westlichen Imperialismus und islamischen Integralismus gezeigt. Es stammt aus der Zeit des gemeinsamen Kampfes gegen die russische Präsenz in Afghanistan und wurde erneuert. Al Kaida ist nicht zufällig der Name der Datenbank der CIA, mit der in Afghanistan islamische Kämpfer gegen die Sowjets rekrutiert und ihre Namen festgehalten wurden. Während das Imperium behauptet, in Afghanistan gegen den „islamischen Integralismus“ zu kämpfen, verbündet es sich gleichzeitig mit ihm im Mittelmeerraum, um den Umsturz in verhassten Staaten zu erreichen. (Es ist eine Tatsache, dass sich die Milizen des Übergangsrates zum großen Teil aus radikalen Islamisten zusammensetzen). Das gilt für Libyen und Syrien. Man sollte beachten, dass dieses Bündnis es radikalen Islamisten ermöglicht, die Zerstörung der letzten noch verbliebenen laizistischen Staaten in dieser Region in Angriff zu nehmen. Der erste dieser Staaten war Irak, jetzt ist die Reihe an Libyen und Syrien. Mit dem voraussichtlichen Sieg der Moslembrüder in Ägypten (dank Saudi Arabien) und ähnlicher Kräfte in Tunesien entsteht ein gemeinsamer Block des islamischen Integralismus, der das ganze Nordafrika umfasst. Der Westen hat dazu entscheidend beigetragen. Die Frauen sind die ersten, die die Folgen tragen werden: Der Übergangsrat hat bereits verkündet, dass er das islamische Gesetz in Kraft setzen und die Heirats- und Scheidungsgesetze revidieren will.

Neunte Anmerkung: Die Prüfung der ökonomischen Motive des Krieges

Der Marxismus lehrt, bei historischen Ereignissen die dahinterstehenden wirtschaftlichen Beweggründe und Herrschaftsinteressen zu erforschen. Der Krieg in Libyen wurde zur Verteidigung der Menschenrechte der Demonstranten in Bengasi verkündet. Die wirklichen Interessen werden sofort klar, wenn man sich die Erklärungen der französische Regierung und den Jubel der Clinton und von Obama ansieht: Interesse am Erdöl, Interesse an Infrastrukturaufträgen, Interesse am Wasser, Interesse, die Einführung einer Goldwährung in Afrika als Gegenstück zum Dollar einzuführen, zu verhindern, politisches Interesse an der Vorherrschaft. Alles scheint mit dem Vertrag zwischen ENI und der italienischen und libyschen Regierung begonnen zu haben: ENI akzeptierte, dass sein Anteil an den Erlösen des gewonnen Erdöls und Erdgases von bisher 30-40% auf 12,5% gesenkt wurde. Als Gegenleistung hätte Italien angemessene Aufträge bei der Infrastruktur erhalten. Diese Vereinbarung führte zu heftigen Reaktionen der französische (Total), englischen (BP) und amerikanischen(Chevron, Exxon) Ölgeselschaften. Sie befürchteten, dass es auch bei ihnen zu einer entsprechenden Reduzierung auf 12,5% bei den Erträgen aus dem gewonnenen Erdöl kommen würde. Wir werden die neuen Verträge mit der Marionettenregierung sehen. Die Aufträge für den Bau von Infrastrukturen und der Ausbeutung neuer Lagerstätten hatte die libysche Regierung unter Gaddafi Italienern, Russen und Chinesen anvertraut (zum kleinen Teil auch Deutschen). Die atlantischen Mächte waren ausgeschlossen geblieben. Schon jetzt ist der Übergangsrat dabei, die Aufträge an Frankreich zu geben, das ihm seine Rechnung präsentiert hat und für sich den Wiederaufbau der Infrastruktur und die Waffenlieferungen (bisher aus Rußland und Italien) einfordert. Auch an den gewaltigen Wasservorkommen unter der Sahara zeigt Frankreich Interesse. Diese Wasservorkommen hatte die libysche Regierung zur Schaffung der größten Bewässerungsinfrastruktur, die jemals von Menschen errichtet wurde, genutzt. Über die Goldwährung, die im Zahlungsverkehr für die afrikanischen Völker den Papierdollar ersetzen sollte, wird man selbstverständlich nicht mehr sprechen. Eine Sache verbindet Gaddafi und Saddam: beide hatten ihre Absicht zu erkennen gegeben, nicht mehr den Dollar als das einzige Geld für den Verkauf ihrer Rohstoffe zu akzeptieren. Das läßt vermuten, dass die USA Angst haben, die souveränen Staaten könnten den mittlerweile nicht mehr gedeckten Dollar aufgeben. Am Ende werden wir sehen können, ob die USA vorhaben, den Sitz von Africom nach Libyen zu verlagern und ob es in den nahegelegenen Ländern Sudan und Algerien eine Zunahme kriegerische Auseinandersetzungen geben wird. Mit Sicherheit werden wir in kürze die Streitigkeiten der atlantischen Geier um die Verteilung der libyschen Beute beobachten können.

Zehnte Anmerkung. Die Notwendigkeit für souveräne Staaten, Abschreckungswaffen zu haben.

Auch wenn man es nicht will, muß man feststellen, dass Libyen, das auf nukleare und ähnliche Waffen verzichtet hatte, angegriffen und zerstört wurde. Bei Nordkorea, hat das Imperium seine Befürchtungen und zögert. Hätte Gaddafi Atomwaffen gehabt, würde er noch leben und Libyen wäre ein souveräner Staat. Die Staaten außerhalb der westlichen Front können deshalb nur sagen: „Vorwärts Iran“.

Die Verteidigung der Menschenrechte in Libyen und anderswo überlasse ich den Naiven und der neuen Gattung solcher Art gebildeter proimperialistischer Intellektueller.

Ich schließe mit einer Verneigung vor Gaddafi. Er versprach, mit der Waffe in der Hand bei der Verteidigung seines Landes zu sterben. Das hat er getan. Kann mir jemand den Namen eines italienischen oder westlichen Politikers nennen, der dazu,wie er, bereit wäre?