The Worker, April 12, 2017
Published by the Workers Party, USA
P.O. Box 25716, Chicago, IL 60625
Do Not Let the Rich Silence Our Voice!
Even though today the Democrats and Republicans are still being presented as the only legitimate political forces, and the demand is put on the people to go along with the entrenched view that no decisive political role can be found for the people, it is also true that the coverage of governance in the media and the events being organized by the Democratic Party to protest Trump’s presidency are both things meant to give the distinct impression that something fundamentally different from usual is going on in Washington. In particular, we have seen how Trump is being portrayed as a political outsider undermining the fabled “good reputation” of the U.S. government and capitalist class in the world. A mountain of significance is made out of this in order to present the people with the sense that anything but Trump must be the lesser of two evils. A more apolitical approach than ever is taken. Everything is treated as a scandal about Trump’s personal antics, which are used to promote a constant crisis atmosphere.
On the one side, the great uproar about Trump coming from the Democratic Party is entirely centered on that party’s expression of outrage at having lost its bid to hold on to the power of the White House. On the other side, the centerpiece of the attacks on the current administration are not based on opposing it for carrying out the same agenda as the former, but rather on the basis that it has promised to undo various cosmetic changes to the system implemented by the Obama administration.
As matters stand, two threads can be found in this whirlwind: 1) the alleged backwardness of the working people is to blame and 2) no matter what happens, the profits of the capitalists must be protected.
In particular, social democracy and modern revisionism work to import this capitalist ideology into the ranks of the working class and popular movements of the people. The aim is to suppress the political independence of the workers. They insist that workers can only be “pragmatic” and participate in political affairs by aligning themselves under the wing of the so-called “progressive” section of the capitalists. They deny that the workers are a class-for-themselves and divide the people into competing pressure groups and interest groups while insisting that people must work “within” the framework – the political limits – already laid down by the capitalists.
However, the government’s reactionary agenda – its slashing of social programs, its aggressive foreign policy, its attacks on people’s democratic rights, etc. – is not merely the work of some of the capitalist politicians. It is the bi-partisan program of both the Democrats and Republicans.
In fact, when various opportunist political groupings try to create hysteria about the “ultra-right” Republicans and promote the Democrats as an “alternative,” they are only making it easier for the capitalist class to push through its reactionary agenda.
This line of the “lesser evil politics” insists that people “stop complaining” and be “pragmatic.” But this really means that we are supposed to shut our mouths, give up our own political aims and agenda and passively accept the tutelage of the admittedly “evil” Democrats and/or Republicans. But complaining – denouncing – the capitalist politicians is an essential part of defending the interests of the people. In particular, denouncing the Democrats (along with the Republicans) is the only way to consistently reject and isolate the reactionary agenda and begin to express our own independent political point of view.
The line of “lesser evil,” seeks to cover over the real cause of the oppression and exploitation of the people and of the government’s reactionary agenda. The problem is not that some politicians are “bad” while others are good. The problem is that both the Democrats and Republicans represent the class interests of monopoly capital. And it is this fact, the fact that monopoly capital controls the political power and is using it to attack the people all along the line, which is the problem. The workers and people can not get very far in their struggle if they ignore the root cause of the problem.
The line of “lesser evil” seeks to keep all the political initiative in the hands of the capitalists. According to this logic, the struggle for progress or retrogression is a struggle between two wings of the capitalists and the role of the workers and people is nothing more than to line up behind one or the other wing. In short, the people have no independent role whatsoever in shaping the society they live in.
This is the real crux of the matter.
Just as the reactionary agenda of the government finds its source in the class interests of the capitalists, so too, the agenda for social progress, enlightenment, and emancipation finds its source in the aspirations and struggles of definite classes – in the struggle of the working class and people.
Large numbers of people reject capitalist politics but still feel marginalized by the entire way the discussion is presented and monopolized.
Thus, it is no wonder that one of the sharpest manifestation of the growing class polarization is the almost universal hatred of the people for the Democratic and Republican parties and the corrupt political process which completely excludes the people. And people are not only fed up with the political status quo, they are continually coming into the public arena and taking actions to advance their own agenda. This is reflected in on-going struggles to demand universal health coverage, in struggles to defend public housing and income support programs, in the growing anti-interventionist and anti-imperialist movements, etc.
All across the country, people are already in motion. At the workplace, workers are continually in struggle against capitalist exploitation – fighting against wage and benefit cuts, against downsizing, restructuring, contracting out, privatization, the substitution of part-time employees for full-time, etc. People are not only resisting but taking the initiative into their hands and coming out to demand that the right to a job or income be recognized and guaranteed for everyone. Ever-wider sections of people are opposing the government’s aggressive foreign policy and war programs. Many struggles are breaking out to defend democratic rights.
What is more, people are expressing their profound alienation from the current political process and demanding a real role in governance – in shaping the society they live in.
The independent movement which is emerging out of present conditions cannot be forced to develop according to some preset ideology. Nor can the movement be left to spontaneity.
The key thing is the enunciation and development of the independent class aims and political program of the workers. The real issue facing the working class and people is to work out the ways to give independent political expression to the interests and aspirations which arise from their own real conditions and on-going struggles.
The Workers Party says that the line of submitting to the “lesser evil” is merely another means for keeping the workers and people sidelined and outside of the political process. We say that it is high time to beat back this blackmail.
We say. “Don’t let the rich and their political parties silence our voice and our struggle.” “Denounce the Democrats and Republicans for their attacks on the people.”
We say that the future of our country depends on the workers and people asserting themselves and taking their rightful place as the active and leading force in our country. The starting point is to come into the political arena on the basis of our own independent aims and program.
$80 Million U.S. Airstrike on Syria Violates the Sovereignty of That Country and Intensifies the Grave Dangers Facing the Peoples
On April 6, as leading members of both parties rushed in to voice their support of the new president’s executive decision, Trump ordered airstrikes on Syria using the pretext of preventing a future chemical attack.
American people are expected to “disprove” this absurd claim coming from the #1 user of chemical weapons in the world, or be forced to accept the dictate of the government in declaring yet another aggressive war.
This political tactic is nothing but an attempt to put the anti-war movement in a permanently reactive position. The people are told to get behind one or another of an array of limited options displayed by their political “representatives.” These are always kept within the distorted confines of the bourgeois “version” of history. On the one side of the scale, the “skepticism” of Rand Paul (R) offers an option. On the other side of the scale lies the outspoken backing of the aggression (and complaints that it didn’t go far enough) from politicians like Hillary Clinton (D) and Ted Cruz (R). In the middle of the scale lies support for the airstrikes with caveats about the need for congressional oversight from politicians such as Pelosi (D) and Sanders (D). Within these confines, any denunciation is considered heretical and foolish. The people are told that they elect the president and congress and must trust their judgment.
However, after Thursday’s airstrike on Syria, millions and millions of people are more aware of the nature of U.S. imperialist aggression than ever. Other than military counteraction or threat of loss of political power itself, there is no power that can restrain a U.S. president from inventing any pretext for war at any time he wishes.
Relying on the doctrine that “Might Makes Right” U.S. imperialism is policing the world, trampling on the sovereignty of countries and returning to open colonialism. However, the present international situation marks a new phase in the struggle of imperialist powers to redraw the map of the world and carve it into spheres of colonial and neo-colonial domination. As the economic crisis of world capitalism deepens, each imperialist power tries to escape the crisis by intensifying its exploitation and domination of other countries and beating out its capitalist rivals in the struggle for spheres of influence, natural resources, strategic territory, etc. U.S. imperialism’s first-strike military actions have only further intensified these rivalries and conflicts among the imperialist powers.
None of the big powers – either those in the U.S.-led coalition or Russia – are motivated by an interest in the well-being of the Syrian people.
Today, Syrian society is being torn apart in a struggle between imperialist rivals over regional and global hegemony. These rivalries are intensifying as a direct result of U.S. imperialism’s “war against international terrorism.” So too, U.S. imperialism has been worsening the situation by continually working to disguise its exploiting, aggressive aims by talking peace while in deed, working to militarize every situation. This is done in order to play its military superiority hand to the maximum advantage of the monopoly capitalist class.
Those with a lack of respect for Syrian political institutions and lack of faith in the ability of the Syrian people to govern themselves are only proving that they have done nothing to challenge the ultra-chauvinist doctrines that assert the “moral superiority” of “American values” and serve to disguise the exploiting aims of U.S. imperialism under the banners of “freedom,” “democracy,” and “human rights.” Barring that, they cannot possibly have anything to offer in the resolution of any conflict anywhere. Furthermore, it is U.S. imperialism itself, through it’s longstanding intervention in Syria that is the primary force behind the destabilization campaign.
The strategy is to follow some form of the model already well established – of invasion, ‘nation building’ in the hope of propping up a neo-colonial regime, and criminalizing anyone who fights for a different vision for their own society.
This must be opposed on principle.
Furthermore, no one has any right to demand that the American military carry out any police actions or “nation building” of any foreign country. While it is true that U.S. imperialism took upon itself the role of world policeman and nuclear superpower after WWII, there has never been unity among the American people on this point. There has been mass internal opposition to every single aggressive war launched by the U.S. government. However there has never been a single open discussion or referendum or direct response by the state to any of this mass opposition. While the U.S. government has been forced to refrain from launching some wars to a certain degree as a result of the political struggles of the people, even this remains one of its best kept secrets.
In short, the American people have never gotten to decide. They have only had the “priviledge” of paying in death and taxes for wars launched against peoples they never had any grievance against.
If the American people were organized into constituent committees there would be no space in the society for the American chauvinists to promote their aggressive exploiting program for world domination through war and militarism.
If there is to be any investigation of the use of chemical weapons, it must begin with the atrocities committed by U.S. imperialism in using depleted uranium and phosphorous gas during the course of its Iraq and Yugoslavia wars – admitted facts that U.S. imperialism still has not paid for.
So too, it’s use of chemical weapons in the Gulf War and in several other cases going all the way back to the Korean War, have not yet been prosecuted. Furthermore, the atrocities being carried out by U.S. imperialism not only in Syria, but also in Iraq and Afghanistan, are still ongoing. The U.S. government must withdraw from these countries, pay reparations and undergo other forms of prosecution for their criminal wars of aggression.
As long as the system of capitalist-imperialism prevails, the rivalries and struggles amongst the big powers will continually result in aggressive, imperialist wars. The only antidote to the wars which imperialism is already waging as well as the wars that it is preparing, is the revolutionary movement of the working class and oppressed peoples of the world. History shows that when the working class movement for emancipation and the national liberation struggles of the oppressed nations advance, the peoples can thwart and defeat the plans and wars of imperialism.
Only the peoples can stop the wars!
Peace is the Sacred Cause of the Peoples!
U.S. Pumped $4.2M in 2015 to Destabilize Venezuelan Government
The following is reprinted from telesurtv.net, April 8, 2017.
In 2015, the United States government earmarked at least US$4.26 million for Venezuela through the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, with much of this going to organizations undertaking anti-government work.
Almost US$2 million of these funds were funneled through the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), an organization created in 1982 purportedly “dedicated to the growth and strengthening of democratic institutions around the world.” Of these funds, US$849,223 were allocated for “civic” or electoral purposes including the creation of an “interactive online platform connecting citizens to National Assembly candidates,” along with US$160,813 for the promotion of “free market” reforms.
Some US$505,796 were disbursed for media purposes including funds to “radio programs”, “alternative channels to generate and disseminate news and information”, “local independent journalists and alternative media outlets in defending freedom of expression and democracy” as well as for training “journalists on investigative journalism and the use of social media in disseminating news.”
With more than US$170 million in annual funding from the U.S. State Department through USAID, the NED provides 1,000 more grants to support organizations that promote U.S. foreign policy objectives in more than 90 countries. In addition to the NED, USAID also partners with Freedom House, The International Republican Institute, The National Democratic Institute and The Pan-American Development Foundation of the Organization of American States.
The U.S. Congress also provides some US$777.8 million for the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which runs the Voice of America, as well as the anti-Cuban government outlets Radio Marti and TV Marti, while also providing millions in funds to media organizations and journalists who opposed governments that are at odds with U.S. interests.
The NED also boasted about the impacts of its funding on the outcomes of elections in Argentina.
“In Argentina and Venezuela, NED grantees played key roles to promote free and fair elections,” the NED’s 2015 report states.
“Mauricio Macri won Argentina’s presidential election, an outcome that symbolized the end of the Kirchner imposed, populist and authoritarian political model. In Venezuela, legislative elections in December 2015 gave the political opposition a supermajority in the National Assembly for the first time in 18 years of Chavista rule. A strong opposition presence in the legislative branch may help reverse Venezuela’s devastatingly anti-democratic government.”
While the government-funded NED does specify grant recipient in certain countries, neither the report nor the organization’s website names the organizations that received funding in the case of Venezuela.
In 2015, the NED also spent some US$1,047,818 in Ecuador and US$883,620 in Bolivia to support organizations working against those left-wing governments.
Since winning a majority of the National Assembly in 2015, Venezuela’s MUD opposition has been accused of attempting to create an institutional crisis between branches of government through repeatedly attempting to pass laws in direct contravention to the country’s constitution, such as a law that attempted to retroactively reduce the presidential term.
Opposition leaders, who have been increasingly calling for street demonstrations to oust the Maduro government, have cited the impasse as grounds for foreign intervention.
Why U.S. Imperialism Needs War
The extreme aggressiveness of U.S. imperialism threatens all of humanity. Successive U.S. administrations led by both parties – casting aside all of international law – have officially adopted the doctrine of “preemptive” military strikes while declaring that every country must either join with the U.S. or be “treated as terrorist.” They have repeatedly emphasized that this so-called “war against terrorism” will last for decades. At this time the U.S. has already started or escalated war in Afghanistan, Iraq, Palestine, the Philippines and elsewhere. The U.S. is preparing an all-out war against Syria. These wars are directed against the independence of countries and the liberation movements of the people. The character of these wars is graphically revealed in the willingness of the U.S. government to unleash the most sophisticated weapons against civilian populations.
Gaining a perspective on the extent and causes of this war program is one of the decisive practical tasks facing the anti-war movement. Only a clear-cut perspective and scientific theory will empower the people to work out the political strategy and tactics for eliminating the war danger.
In fact, one of the ways in which liberalism and opportunism try to suppress the anti-war struggle is by thwarting genuine political discussion and imposing their subjectivist ideologies on the movement.
For example, the war danger is said to arise only from the stupidity or vindictiveness of individual political personalities, that it is only “an election ploy” or a “diversion.” All these “theories” try to cover over the cause of war in the capitalist-imperialist system. Such theories, in fact, minimize the war danger and narrow the scope of our movement.
The U.S. government’s war program – this bipartisan program of Republican and Democratic parties – is a product of the crisis and decay of the capitalist-imperialist system in the U.S. and the world.
Capitalist-imperialism is a human-devouring system. The very social existence of the U.S. monopoly capitalist class is based not only on the exploitation of the American working class but also the superexploitation and enslavement of peoples all over the world.
In relentless, insatiable pursuit of markets, sources of raw materials, economic territory, etc., U.S. capitalism seeks to penetrate every corner of the globe and remove every roadblock or competitor which prevents it from maximizing profit. This social system is a system of exploitation, of colonial domination and subordination of one state to another. As such it can only be built on military force and maintained through war.
What is more, for a number of years, the worldwide system of capitalism has been in a general crisis, a crisis which is the inevitable result of the basic law of monopoly capitalism – the pursuit of maximum profit which requires continually expanding markets.
The need of capitalism to “expand or perish” brings to the bursting point all the basic contradictions of the system. In particular, it sharpens the contradictions 1) within the U.S. between the monopolies, on the one hand, and the masses of people, on the other; 2) between U.S. imperialism and the colonial peoples; and 3) between the imperialist powers and capitalist states themselves.
For many years, the U.S. monopolies have sought to escape the crisis and “overcome” these contradictions by shifting the burden onto others.
With the collapse of the Soviet empire, U.S. imperialism declared a “new world order” with itself as the “sole superpower.” But to maintain and expand this “new world order” it has had to rely on military force.
Thus, U.S. imperialism launched the first Persian Gulf War not only to project its power directly into the Middle East but also to force all the capitalist states to recognize its strategic dominance.
So too, the Clinton administration launched war against Yugoslavia not only to partition that country but to grab a new military base in the Balkans. As the struggle amongst the capitalist states over control of Europe intensified, U.S. imperialism again turned to military force to insert itself into the equation and secure its spheres of influence.
So too, the war against Afghanistan aims to secure another strategic base for the U.S. monopolies. Again, U.S. imperialism relied on its military predominance to redraw the map of the region.
So too, the war against Iraq aims to recolonize Iraq, secure U.S. domination of the strategic, oil-rich Middle East, and to assert U.S. imperialism as the sole superpower and military ruler of the world.
During this entire period, U.S. imperialism also continued to prepare and wage war against the peoples’ liberation movements in Palestine, in Colombia, in the Philippines and elsewhere.
In short, U.S. imperialism’s post-Cold War “new world order” is based on tearing down the entire edifice of international law and openly declaring that Might Makes Right. It is in reality directed against the liberation movements of the peoples and against any country which, for whatever reason, resists the dictates of U.S. imperialism. Time and again the U.S. government has openly trampled underfoot the sovereignty of countries, torn up international treaties, declared itself the judge, jury and executioner of the peoples, waged wars against the liberation movements of the people, threatened and intimidated countries with nuclear holocaust and other weapons of mass destruction, willfully targeted civilian populations, etc., etc.
In other words, U.S. imperialism wants and needs war in order to maintain its profits and empire.
It needs war to redraw the map of the world and grab new markets, sources of raw materials, spheres of economic dominance.
It needs war to reimpose the colonial system and direct U.S. military rule.
It needs war to bring the weaker capitalist states and other imperialist rivals under its thumb.
It needs war to further militarize the U.S. and put the whole of our country’s economy at its disposal.
In sum, the “war against terrorism” is U.S. imperialism’s blueprint for world domination through force of arms. An objective analysis of the features and causes of this war program confronts the people with 1) the urgent need to continuously mobilize the widest possible sections of the people into struggle and 2) to organize the independent movement of the people in opposition to and struggle against the parties of war and imperialism.
North Korea Demand of Compensation for U.S. Atrocities
17 and 1/2 years ago, in response to U.S. press reports about the massacre of Korean civilians in 1950 during the Korean war, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) made public a joint statement issued by the “Central Committee of the Democratic Front for the Reunification of the Fatherland” and the “Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland.” No agency of the U.S. government has yet responded in a satisfactory way to the American people on this matter much less responded to the Korean people’s demand.
And let us not forget that since the end of open hostilities, the U.S. has still refused to sign a peace treaty with the DPRK and remains in a state of war. Thirty thousand (30,000) U.S. troops occupy south Korea preventing the peaceful reunification of Korea. Through economic and financial sanctions, the U.S. is trying to strangle the DPRK. It continually carries on aerial espionage and regularly engages in “war games” to prepare for invading the country. For decades, the U.S. stockpiled thousands of nuclear warheads in south Korea and today, U.S. nuclear submarines surround the DPRK and dock in south Korean harbors. The U.S. government has branded the DPRK as part of an “axis of evil” and repeatedly called for “regime change.” The Pentagon openly boasts of plans for a nuclear first-strike against the DPRK.
Below we reprint the statement:
Despite the brutal murder by the U.S. troops, which had been kept secret for nearly 50 years and now verified as an irrefutable fact, the U.S. authorities are still scheming to mystify the truth of the case, hush up public opinion, and escape the responsibility for it, by talking about a “lack of evidence” and a “sinister assertion.”
The South Korean rulers are [also trying] to cover up the murder case.
. . .
The moves of the U.S. and the South Korean rulers are an unpardonable attempt to keep the murder case secret forever and calm down the growing anti-American sentiment in South Korea.
The massacre recently disclosed in Rogun-Ri is no more than a part of the atrocities committed by the U.S. in Korea.
Fleeing to the south during the war, the U.S. savagely murdered 1,146 people in Suwon, over 2,060 in Chungju, over 600 in Kongju and Pyongthak respectively, over 2,000 in Buyo and Chongju respectively, 8,644 in Taejon, over 4,000 in Jonju, over 400 in Kunsan and Anyang respectively and over 800 in Thongyong.
A U.S. news report stated on September 15, 1951 that the number of people killed by the U.S. troops in South Korea amounted to one million.
Brutal massacres were committed by the U.S. troops in North Korea, too. They murdered 35,383 innocent people in Sinchon, South Hwanghae Province, or a quarter of the county’s population.
The U.S. should acknowledge the massacre in Rogun-Ri, a stark fact, and compensate for it.
At the same time the U.S. should apologize and unconditionally compensate the Korean people for the thrice-cursed murder, plunder and arson by their troops in South Korea for over 50 years and in the northern half of Korea during the Korean War, and should withdraw from South Korea, taking along their aggressor troops and all lethal weapons.
The South Korean rulers should immediately stop their base flunkeyist and treacherous acts of patronizing the massacre by the U.S. troops and selling out the dignity and interests of the nation.
Our fellow countrymen will make the U.S. aggressors pay for the blood of the Korean nation however long it may take.
The massacres carried out at Rogun-Ri and elsewhere were only part of the unspeakable atrocities committed by U.S. imperialism during its savage war against Korea – a war in which the U.S. carried out wholesale carpet-bombing of Korean cities and civilian population-centers. It was a war waged under an official “scorched-earth” policy with the stated goal of “annihilating North Korea and destroying communism forever.”
For Your Reference
The U.S. War Against Korea
The following article provides background material on the U.S. occupation of Korea and the history of U.S. aggression against the Korean people.
At the end of World War II, the U.S. government signed several documents pledging to withdraw all its armed forces from the Korean peninsula and to support the establishment of a “free and independent Korea” based on the sovereign will of the Korean people.
But the U.S. government did not honor these commitments even for a second. From the first day that U.S. troops landed in Korea, they began to create the infrastructure for permanent military occupation. The patriotic Korean political forces which had fought the Japanese aggressors were systematically suppressed or killed. By 1948, the U.S. had installed a puppet government (based, in large part, on former collaborators with the Japanese) in South Korea and declared the partition of the country. (see “The Worker,” November 1, 1999).
Not content with occupying the southern half of the peninsula, U.S. imperialism prepared and launched the Korean war with the goal of occupying the entire country. The Korean war was part of U.S. imperialism’s strategy of extending its colonial empire to the four ends of the earth by suppressing the national liberation movements and “containing communism.” Amongst other things, the U.S. sought to create a ring of military bases around China and the Soviet Union. In fact, the Truman administration planned the Korean war as a preparation for “rolling back communism” through an all-out attack on the People’s Republic of China.
Below we provide further material on how the U.S. launched the Korean war and the barbaric methods it used against the Korean people.
Immediately after occupying Korea in September 1945, the U.S. moved quickly to accomplish its goal of turning the Korean peninsula into a U.S. military base.
Near the 38th parallel, the U.S. started fortifying artillery positions and bomb shelters. Money was poured into the construction of military air bases, roads, and naval ports. Cheju island was placed under direct control of the U.S. army and its airport was expanded to accommodate B-29 bombers. Naval bases at Ryosu, Inchon, and Pusan ports were all rebuilt and expanded.
During this time the U.S. army command in Korea also began organizing a puppet Korean army in the southern half of the peninsula. A “Korean National Guard” was organized by U.S. military authorities, and an “English Military Institute” was created to train South Korean officers. In the Spring of 1948, President Truman agreed to the decision of his Security Council to increase military aid in order to “build and strengthen a South Korean army.” Soon afterwards, a “conscription law” was issued forcing Korean youth in all southern provinces into the military. By 1950, the U.S. had amassed a 100,000-strong south Korean army.
In addition to pouring in huge amounts of money in order to turn the peninsula into a U.S military base, the U.S. announced in early 1950 an official “Treaty of Mutual Defense” which called for the “defense and modernization” of the Korean army in the south. According to General MacArthur, the new South Korean military force was “the best in Asia” and the head of the U.S. military advisory group called it “the faithful watchdog guarding U.S. capital.”
Confident in its military position and strength, and not content with merely occupying the southern half of the peninsula, the U.S. then began a determined campaign of military threats and provocations against North Korea.
Throughout 1949-50, the South Korean president, Syngman Rhee, began issuing calls for a “northward expedition” and “unity through force of arms.” On October 31, 1949, for example, on the deck of the U.S. cruiser Setpol, Rhee stated that the “North-South division must be removed through war. We can occupy north Korea and achieve unification.” In a letter to a U.S. official on September 30th of that same year he wrote: “I think this is a golden opportunity for us to open an attack and wipe out the remnants in Pyongyang. Our people hanker for north-bound expedition.” And in a press interview in December he declared “In the coming year we will strive as one to regain our lost territory...we must remember that next year we should unify north and south Korea by our own strength.” Such statements were accompanied by the huge buildup of U.S. and South Korean troops in the summer of 1949.
In 1949, the U.S. military began launching combat operations, small border incursions, against the North all along the 38th parallel. Over 2,617 armed invasions of the northern territory took place that year, and U.S. reporters themselves began describing the situation as a “small war.” The head of the U.S. Military Advisory Group, Roberts, stated in October 1949 that “Attacks on the region north of the 38th parallel have been and will be made by my orders. In many cases, however, units launched attacks at discretion only to spend a tremendous amount of ammunition with no result whatsoever except to suffer heavy losses.”
(to be continued)
U.S. Military Offensive in Iraq
From the Anti-Imperialist News Service, March 27, 2017.
For the past month U.S. imperialism has carried out the latest phase of a large assault on the Iraqi city of Mosul. Reports described helicopter rocket fire, heavy gunfire and mortar blasts in districts near the Nuri mosque. In the past week U.S. forces have tried to seal off a main road in order to prevent attacks on their positions. Large sections of the city are being converted to rubble and hundreds of civilians have already been killed or wounded. The offensive has also displaced a great number of people. In the past five months, 255,000 people have been forced to flee the city. These brutal methods show that U.S. imperialism is willing to destroy Iraqi society to accomplish its aim of maintaining strategic military bases.
U.S. imperialism has placed a great deal of importance on retaking Mosul because it views the city as a center of Iraqi resistance. U.S. imperialism wants to wipe out its opposition because it is the sworn enemy of the national liberation struggle of the Iraqi people. Right now U.S. forces are resorting to a lengthy siege against the city to try and carry out their aims, denying hundreds of thousands of people water, food, electricity, medical care and other necessities while raining bombs down on their homes.
And yet the U.S. occupation continues to take a beating. In Mosul, attempts by U.S. troops to seal off a main road from the city have been repeatedly blocked by counter-offensives. Resistance forces also have employed innovative tactics in their counter-offensives against the occupation troops. Iraqi troops and police serving as U.S. cannon fodder are forced to fight street by street while under constant attack. At the same time, positions retaken by U.S. occupation forces are coming under frequent attack. This is the result of fourteen years of war and occupation in Iraq.
South Koreans Protest Against THAAD System
From the Anti-Imperialist News Service, March 27, 2017.
On March 18, 2,000 people demonstrated in Seongju county, South Korea against the U.S.-South Korean government plans to deploy a THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) ballistic missile system. The demonstrators carried banners saying “No THAAD but peace,” and they demonstrated in defense of the sovereignty of South Korea and their right to determine their own affairs free of U.S. imperialism dictate and interference.
The protests took place one day after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson visited South Korea. Tillerson insisted that the U.S. and South Korean government “decided to take the defensive measure of deploying THAAD Missile Defense System” in South Korea. Tillerson added that it is the U.S. government “expectation” that any South Korean government “will continue to be supportive of the Thaad system.” In other words, Tillerson is asserting that since the government of South Korea is a pro-U.S. puppet regime, then the U.S. government can violate the sovereignty of the country in service of U.S. imperialism's military aims.
Spitting in the face of the South Korean people, the U.S. is stepping up its militarization of the situation on the Korean peninsula. The Pentagon is deploying more weapons in and around the Korean peninsula while carrying out war exercises and spy-flights against the north.
The U.S. government’s refusal to respect the sovereign rights of the Korean people – including the right for peaceful reunification according to the free and sovereign will of the people themselves – is not only a violation of the fundamental principles of international law, it is also the source of tensions on the Korean peninsula.