Revolution #373, February 9, 2015 (

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

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Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

From the Editors—About This Issue:

In This World of Madness...
Bring Forward Another Way!

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Everywhere you look around the world, two forces contend. Neither has an answer—any real, any emancipatory, answer, that is—for the agonizing, killing problems confronting humanity. Yet all too often these are posed as the only alternatives.

On one side stand the arrogant imperialists who control the world. These imperialists, with the U.S. at their head, use overwhelming military power to terrorize people into submitting to this control. They celebrate their terror and their massacres with Nazi-like culture, in films like American Sniper, the big new hit. They unleash suffocating surveillance, with new outrages coming to light all the time, and they persecute those who expose their illegal spying. They debate and even battle (sometimes quite sharply) with each other over whether, and how, and where, and exactly when to unleash war and aggression, and they quarrel over how to package it... but the ultimate aim is the same: exploitation and domination of the people and the planet. In their “home countries,” savage inequalities rage. They brutally repress “minorities”—as the U.S. does to Black people and Latinos, where cops murder 12-year-olds playing in the park and the criminal injustice system entraps millions of people in its snares. They brag of the status of women, while they “roll back” and suppress abortion rights and birth control and pour forth a putrid pornographic culture that “eroticizes” domination, enslavement, and brutality. And all the while, they hurtle the planet to ecological devastation and disaster.

And what is the other pole? Far too often the only opposition people see is in the form of reactionary religious, woman-hating and woman-killing fanaticism, from Nigeria to Pakistan to Syria and Iraq and beyond. Despite its claims to be an alternative, fanatical Islam is deeply rooted in the very same horizons of exploitation and domination as those they claim to oppose. As Bob Avakian has put it:

What we see in contention here with Jihad on the one hand and McWorld/McCrusade on the other hand, are historically outmoded strata among colonized and oppressed humanity up against historically outmoded ruling strata of the imperialist system. These two reactionary poles reinforce each other, even while opposing each other. If you side with either of these “outmodeds,” you end up strengthening both.

While this is a very important formulation and is crucial to understanding much of the dynamics driving things in the world in this period, at the same time we do have to be clear about which of these “historically outmodeds” has done the greater damage and poses the greater threat to humanity: It is the historically outmoded ruling strata of the imperialist system, and in particular the U.S. imperialists.

BAsics 1:28

Re-broadcast of the November 15 Simulcast


Read more

Excerpts from Away With All Gods! Unchaining the Mind and Radically Changing the World by Bob Avakian:

» Religious Fundamentalism, Imperialism and "The War on Terror"

» Why Is Religious Fundamentalism Growing in Today's World

This is madness! And the fact that these are the only alternatives that most people know about right now is itself horrific, suffocating, and intolerable. Truly the people and the planet need another way. And that other way is being forged and fought for and brought forward, right now, in the movement for revolution. The truth of that, the possibility of a truly liberating way human society could be, was powerfully posed in the Dialogue this past November between Bob Avakian and Cornel West—“Revolution and Religion: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion.”—and this is brought out in the wonderful new piece we are featuring, “Ardea Skybreak, on Attending the Dialogue Between Bob Avakian and Cornel West.” At the same time, people in the U.S. are working to retake the offensive against police murder and the whole genocidal program it spearheads. This is a movement of crucial importance both in its own right and to the cause of revolution—and we cover that as well in this issue, beginning with the important conference held February 7 and 8 in Atlanta by the Stop Mass Incarceration Network.

Check out what’s going on in the world on this website. Learn about the causes of these different events, what ties them together, and learn as well about Bob Avakian’s new synthesis of communism and how that world can be fundamentally changed. Learn how we can hasten, and are hastening, the day when revolution becomes possible—and be part of getting ready for that (see "What Is a Revolutionary Situation?", an excerpt from what Bob Avakian had planned to include in his Opening Presentation to the Dialogue on November15, 2014, with Cornel West). Get organized for an actual revolution.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

What Is a Revolutionary Situation?

by Bob Avakian | February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Editors' Note: The following is part of what Bob Avakian had planned to include in his Opening Presentation to the Dialogue on November 15, 2014 with Cornel West, although it did not end up actually being included. We are publishing it here because of the importance of the question it speaks to.


What is a Revolutionary Situation? A deep crisis and sharpening conflicts in society and in the government and ruling circles, where they cannot find a way to resolve these conflicts—in society and among their own ranks—which do not make things worse for them and call forth more resistance and further undermine people's belief in their "right to rule" and in the "legitimacy" of their use of force to maintain their rule; programs of "reforming" the system are shown to be bankrupt, totally unable to deal with what more and more people recognize as profound dysfunction and intolerable injustice of the whole setup; those, in society as well as among the ruling class, who are trying to enforce the existing system are on the political defensive, even if lashing out; millions of people are actively seeking radical change, determined to fight for it, willing to put everything on the line to win it, and searching for a force to lead them in doing so; and a solid core of thousands is united around a leadership, an organized vanguard force with the vision and method, strategy and plan—and deepening ties among masses of people—to actually lead the fight to defeat and dismantle the violent repressive force of the existing system and its power structure, and to bring into being a new revolutionary system that can provide the means for people to radically transform society toward the goal of abolishing oppression and exploitation.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

All the Outrages
Against the People and the Planet

February 4, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Download Leaflet (PDF)

There is something new afoot in the country.

When people at the bottom of society rose up in Ferguson, Missouri, against the police murder of Michael Brown, their spirit spread around the world. Whether you stood with the people in demanding that police murder stop, that there be justice, became a dividing line. Which side were you—ARE you—on?

When the killer of Michael Brown was not even indicted, and when the same thing happened in the equally notorious case of Eric Garner, the spirit of resistance... of shut it down... roared through society, and onto the campuses, and then back out again. The thinking of millions of people was challenged, and began to change—worldwide.

This in turn gave heart and militancy to fights against other outrages where they were already taking place. This new spirit has to grow, and has to go back on the offensive and spread. Many people want to break out of seeing these struggles as things unto themselves—they want to find the links and take up the fights on many fronts. On every campus, in every part of society, there needs to be a movement to actually STOP the systemic outrages and horrors that millions—no, billions—of people face. 






The broader and deeper that each of these struggles spreads and the more determined they grow, demanding that the outrages STOP, the more that millions will be driven to question what they once assumed or never thought about, and the more that new possibilities for a society in which justice is possible will become debated and possible. The more organized that people become around STOPPING all this, the more powerful will be the movement. The more that people fighting on one front become fighters on every front, the stronger each of these battles becomes... and the chance for basic, fundamental change throughout society becomes more real.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Fifty Shades of Grey: A Putrid Pornographic Story

by Rigel Kane | February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


This February 13, the movie based on the book Fifty Shades of Grey will be released. On Valentine’s Day, couples and friends across the country will go to see the anticipated blockbuster based on the international bestseller that tells the story of a young journalism student (Anastasia Steele) who signs a sex contract with a rich Wall Street entrepreneur (Christian Grey). This man takes over her life and her body. She is beaten, tormented, isolated, and at many times feels trapped, but all this is portrayed as sexual stimulation and, ultimately, love. Christian Grey’s fits of rage and desire to own and control, Anastasia being beaten to the point where tears are streaming down her face from pain and fear, and pretty much everything else in this book-made-into-a-movie is caked in the dust of centuries of women being brutalized and treated like property. This story poses itself as "kinky" and "edgy" and rebellious against repressive sexual “norms,” but in reality it is just recycled garbage, taking to even more absurd and dangerous extremes the same old and brutal notion that women should be abused, controlled, tortured, humiliated, and terrified, and find all of this “fulfilling” and even “liberating.” In a world where an international sex trafficking industry continues to shatter female bodies and minds, glorifies rape in a multibillion-dollar porn industry, pimps out young girls on the streets, convinces men they are entitled to women's bodies, and then tries to convince women that this is what they should want, people everywhere can and must reject and resist the blatant mainstreaming of this putrid pornographic slave story.

Fuck Fifty Shades of Grey.

You may say, "Who are you to tell people what should turn them on? Everyone is different." The irony is that right now this system—and this movie—is telling you what should turn you on. It is simply a fact that people do not develop their sexuality and sexual fantasies in a vacuum—just like they don't develop their attitudes towards women in general, or towards people of different genders, or people of different nationalities and “races,” in a vacuum. In every society, it is first and foremost the accepted and enforced social relations that set the terms for how individuals come to see these questions. Romanticizing and eroticizing female torture and enslavement is part and parcel of—it reflects and serves—a world that tortures and enslaves women.

From Bob Avakian:

Break ALL the Chains!

Bob Avakian on the Emancipation of Women and the Communist Revolution

Sampler Edition

Break ALL the Chains!

Bob Avakian on the Emancipation of Women and the Communist Revolution

Today, we live in a society defined by deep divisions of people into oppressor and oppressed, exploiter and exploited, master and slave. It is not a coincidence that this is also a society that has normalized the enslavement of women. In the U.S. alone, men can buy little girls from an international sex trade, order wives online, rent the wombs of women in Third World countries to bear their children, and pimp out little girls in their own neighborhoods. We live in a global system that buys, sells, and discards women, that markets them like meat, and promotes rape as both a tool of war and an expression of "love."

It is not necessary to have—nor should we accept—a world where wars for empire ravage and destroy the people and resources of the planet, where Black and brown people in this country are snuffed out by police or caged in prisons, while a tiny handful of people exploit millions and use their lives like pieces in a chess game. The way that women—half of humanity—are used and abused, enslaved and degraded, is a cornerstone in the foundation of that kind of world. If we want a world without any of this, we must break all the chainsincluding those that bind women. As Bob Avakian—the Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA, and the leader who has re-envisioned revolution and communism—has said:

You cannot break all the chains, except one. You cannot say you want to be free of exploitation and oppression, except you want to keep the oppression of women by men. You can't say you want to liberate humanity yet keep one half of the people enslaved to the other half. The oppression of women is completely bound up with the division of society into masters and slaves, exploiters and exploited, and the ending of all such conditions is impossible without the complete liberation of women. All this is why women have a tremendous role to play not only in making revolution but in making sure there is all-the-way revolution. The fury of women can and must be fully unleashed as a mighty force for proletarian revolution.
BAsics 3:22

This is what we must be doing—and that means fighting against women's enslavement, not romanticizing it!

Fifty Shades of Grey is the exact opposite of what we need—in fact, it not only smacks of thousands of years of tradition's chains on women, it is part of a ramped-up and even more perverse revenge being waged against women in every sphere of society. Both big changes in the world and people fighting back against oppression have brought forward sharp contention over the role of women in society, and we are living through a vicious backlash against the very notion that women are human beings. There are people in power who do not think this society can survive without "traditional family values" that includes the subjugation of women, and there are many, many men who have been trained to feel entitled to women's servitude, to hate the fact that they might have a female boss, that their wives have thoughts and goals that are out of their control, or that a woman they catcall on the street could dare to tell them to fuck off. Both the rulers of this system and those brainwashed by it are making great efforts, some consciously and some as a knee-jerk reaction, to slap the heaviest chains back onto women that held them down for far too long.

What does this wave of revenge against women look like?  

Around the world: An epidemic of rape, gang-rape, "date" rape, rape porn, rape culture, is on the rise. There are horrific, and in some cases rising levels of honor killings, acid attacks, genital mutilation, murder, shunning, silencing, forced motherhood, forced sterilization, forced marriages, forced surrogacy, coercion of every kind imaginable. All this, along with sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual exploitation, and sexual stigma teach a woman “her place.” There is no place in the world where it is safe to be a woman.

On the Internet: Porn is teaching boys and men that if a woman says "no" repeatedly and you force yourself on her, she will end up loving it and thanking you for it—that sexuality is a conquest, and boys should be proud of pushing girls past their comfort levels.

On the radio: Violent, insulting, and hateful speech about women. The kind of bragging about "breaking" a woman that sounds like a slave master talking about his slaves echoes across the airwaves.

In the Congress and courts of the U.S.: Abortion rights are being abolished. The idea that women's duty is to bear children—even if/when she does not want to and even if it risks her own life—is being resurrected and given the backing of the law and its enforcers.

Everywhere: Girls are taught that their value lies in their sexual attractiveness (but if they actually have sex they are shamed and often bullied or worse), or their ability and willingness to otherwise serve a man.

Fifty Shades of Grey is a part of all this and is part of making all this even more mainstream.

You know, it would be really fucking nice if sexuality were free from the puritanical, stigmatized, stifling, patriarchal bullshit that has filled women with shame and self-loathing for too long. But let’s be clear: The pornographic, degrading, stifling, patriarchal bullshit propaganda that is Fifty Shades of Grey is NOT a rebellion against those repressive “norms.” It is the “modern,” distorted, house-of-mirrors reflection of the same damn thing. It is not necessary for half of humanity to be enslaved to the other half, or to have any masters and slaves at all, and we have to fight like hell to end both a cult-like worship of virginity and motherhood, as well as complete sexual objectification, and, yes, all forms of oppression and enslavement of women. Women are not breeders or sex toys. Women are human beings. This system is robbing women of their potential and their very lives, and robbing men of their empathy and humanity; it is this old-ass patriarchy as adopted and adapted by the horrors of capitalist commodification (turning everything and everyone into a thing to be exchanged for profit) that is pushing so hard right now to glamorize violence toward women, demand their submission, and sexualize their enslavement. That's pretty uniform, not unique, and not even a little rebellious.

So fuck Fifty Shades of Grey. Fuck glamorizing the story of a young and sexually inexperienced woman being owned, stalked, and tormented by a rich and sadistic man. Fuck portraying being possessed, tricked, and terrified as “liberating.” Fuck the notion that a woman's highest purpose should be "saving a man from himself" by withstanding all this abuse. Fuck that. This story is all played out.

Read the special issue of Revolution.
PDF edition available also.

Love looks nothing like hate. Freedom does not look like slavery. Liberation does not look like submission. It's not that complicated, really. A woman is not property looking for an owner, or some kind of pet, dumbly skipping through life waiting for a man to rape her, “take” her, and show her “true self.”It is only the kind of society we live in, in this era of revenge against women, that can market misogyny (women-hating) as intimacy and sell it back to millions of people. 

People of all genders: Get off that shit! Reclaim your humanity and fight for a world where all these horrors in every form really are ancient history! If you want to rebel against the oppressive “norms” of this society, which you really should, fight for women’s actual liberation—their ability to participate fully and equally together with men in every realm of human endeavor, including—as one essential part of this—women's ability to truly explore intimacy and sexuality based on mutual respect and equality. Refuse to go along with this awful premiere, refuse to see it go off unopposed, stand up and protest it to send a jolt throughout this whole society that has accepted rape and normalized slavery in so many forms. People need to stand up and say, “We see straight through your multimillion-dollar facade of ‘edginess’ to the oppression you are celebrating and the entitlement you breed!” This revenge wave, this sexualized slavery, this old posing as new, let's expose it for what it is, and call on others to do the same:

Stop romanticizing women’s enslavement, and start fighting for women’s liberation!




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015



Updated February 12, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


On Valentine’s Day, couples and friends across the country will go to see the movie based on the bestseller, Fifty Shades of Grey. This is NO GOOD; in fact it’s real bad. Fifty Shades of Grey is a tale of stalking, domestic violence, abuse, and torture, dressed up like a love story! Fuck that.

Around the world: An epidemic of rape, gang-rape, "date" rape, rape porn, rape culture, is on the rise. Still with us and/or making a huge comeback: “honor” killings, acid attacks, genital mutilation, murder, forced motherhood (denying women the choice of abortion), forced sterilization (denying women the ability to get pregnant), forced marriages, coercion of every kind imaginable. All this, along with sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual exploitation, and sexual stigma teach women “their place.” The women of the world are already wearing the blood-soaked ropes and chains of patriarchy—so let’s break them off, not slap new ones on!

Every single day, a multi-billion dollar industry of violent and degrading porn is saturating boys and men with the notion that the torture of women is arousing. Now, Fifty Shades of Grey is a big part of selling that lie to women. Fuck that.

In this society where women are still shamed for having or enjoying sex, Fifty Shades of Grey might look “edgy” and “rebellious.” It is right to rebel against sexual repression, to fight the cult of "purity" and virginity that is pushed on women and girls, and to ferociously defend women's right to abortion and birth control. But let's be clear: Fifty Shades is NOT a rebellion against any of this! It is a distorted house-of-mirrors reflection of the same patriarchal view of women that created those repressive sexual “norms” and rigid gender roles. There is no fundamental difference between the Christian fascists who want to reduce women to objects who breed children for men and the Christian Greys who want to reduce women to sex objects to be used and abused for male sexual pleasure. There is NOTHING rebellious about men controlling, owning, and terrorizing women, or the lie that women should feel “liberated” by submitting to this. Fuck that.

Women are not toys to be used for male pleasure, nor are they breeders of children. The domination of women is only “sexy” in a society that accepts women being bought, sold, owned, and controlled. Fuck that.

IT MATTERS if this premiere, and its blatant mainstreaming of rape culture and revenge against women is accepted or rejected. Get off this shit! Take up the fight for women’s actual liberation! Say NO MORE to patriarchy in all its forms! Dare to imagine—and fight to CREATE—a world without rape, without sex trafficking, without domestic violence, without the sexual sadism of pornography or the misogyny of theocratic Puritans. Women are full human beings, capable of participating fully and equally in every realm of human endeavor together with men. That is what we should set our sights on. That is what we must fight to make real.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015


A statement from Carl Dix

December 20, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Special to Revolution/

Today in America, police murder people and get away with no punishment. This happens again and again and again. But something new has also begun to happen, and people have risen up against this, in the tens of thousands, across the country. The outpourings of resistance to this wanton police murder have been beautiful, powerful, and very necessary. Our movement of resistance must broaden, becoming even more diverse, and its determination to stop police murder must be strengthened and deepened. It must continue and escalate until these horrors are really ended.

When police murder people as they did with Eric Garner and Michael Brown, it is unlawful, illegitimate and should not be tolerated in any society that anyone would want to live in.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Black Lives Matter! Latino Lives Matter! All Lives Matter!

by Joe Veale | February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |

  Listen to audio

On MLK Day this year, there was a march of 200 or more in Santa Ana, California. One of the main signs of the people marching said: Black Lives Matter!

Santa Ana is mainly Latino. The marchers were Latino, Black, and white.

Santa Ana was home for two of our youth – Manuel Diaz and Joel Acevedo – that BA talks about in the beginning of the film REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS!

Manuel and Joel were killed – in cold-blooded fashion – by the Anaheim, California police.

People also held signs saying: Latino Lives Matter! As well as other signs demanding justice.

This was a beautiful sight!

Black people stood up in Ferguson, Missouri, after a pig pumped at least six bullets into Michael Brown – murdering Michael Brown in broad day light. The pig who did this was not even arrested – they stood up again refusing to accept the grand jury verdict of: “justifiable homicide” – of Mike Brown – and they were joined by people of all “races”/nationalities when they stood up and powerfully said: HELL NO!

Thousands stood up again in New York after a gang of thuggish pigs choked Eric Garner to death. We all heard Eric speak his last words as he was gang tackled by NY police: “I can’t breathe!” – again the grand jury said this was “justifiable homicide” – again this was met with a big:HELL NO! – by thousands pouring into the streets saying: Black Lives Matter! – which struck a deep cord with Latino people – immigrants – women – with millions of people – high school students – college students – artists – people who have relative privilege joining – uniting – with those who do not – beginning to question what kind of fucking society is this that we live in?!

We need to build on this kind of unity. Sharpen it – as we spread and intensify this struggle for justice.

But in the face of this beautiful development, some have stepped forward to divide the people. To pit them against each other. To divert this beautiful development into something else.

Into a scramble to get a “better” place on the “totem pole.” A scramble to get privilege in this system that rests upon profound inequalities and injustices. Into a scramble that pits one group of the people against other groups of the people. Blacks vs. Latinos. Blacks vs. white people. Trying to direct people into fighting to “own” a little slice of oppression. Compete with others to do this.

Fighting to divert people back into the dog-eat-dog ways of thinking and acting that keeps them trapped in the killing embraces of this capitalist-imperialist system.

Trapped in conditions where the very, very brutal, very, very de-humanizing murder of Brown and Garner – are repeated and justified over, and over again.

When you come face to face with that reality... what are you going to do? When you come face to face with the fact that this is essential for the maintenance of the system... what are you gonna do?

This is what the scramble to “own” a piece of this oppression diverts people away from confronting: confronting reality the way it really is in order to change it.

This narrow, petty outlook of “me and mine” weakens the ability of the masses to stand up and fight. Stand up and resist. Stand up to put a STOP to the criminalization, mass incarceration, police terror, murder, and genocidal assault against Black and Latino people.

It weakens instead of strengthens our ability to make these struggles further contribute to building the movement for revolution – to finally get rid of this life stealing and spirit crushing capitalist-imperialist system.

Yes! Linking the struggles today with the movement to get organized for an actual revolution.

Hastening the time when we can in our millions and millions rise up to get rid of this system – to overturn it – to defeat and dismantle it – its repressive forces – its system of police – courts – its prisons – its military – that backs up and enforces this capitalist-imperialist system and all the suffering and horrors its brings down on tens and tens of millions of people here and literally billions more around the world.

This is what revolution is all about. It is not about anything else.

It is not about trying to “piggy back” – or “hitch a ride” – on “my” vs. “your” struggle. It is about fucking eliminating this shit. Eliminating all exploitation, oppression – the pain, the suffering – the horror, the stunted lives, the shackled growth, the mangled bodies – that are produced and reproduced in the millions – every fucking day under this capitalist-imperialist system.

We need revolution. We do not need to be trying to “own” exploitation and oppression. Yours or anybody else’s.

It is not about struggling to “own” any part of this shit. It is not about trying to improve your position on the “totem pole.” Or trying to be the biggest and baddest bottom feeder. It is about revolution. It is about getting free. A world community of freely associating human beings. Communism. This is what it is all about.

This is what Bob Avakian, the leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party, is all about. This is what the RCP is all about. This is what is all about, Revolution newspaper, the Revolution Club.

This is what you need to be about if you want to get free.

Think about it... are you out to get the franchise on suffering and oppression or are you out to dig out and overturn the very soil, the very ground, that make exploitation and oppression necessary? Do you want to create new soil, a new system – with a new foundation – where All oppressed humanity, male and female, are oppressed no more? A revolutionary new socialist system on the path to a communist world – where no group is trying to “own” oppression because no longer is there any oppression or exploitation to “own.”

The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America (Draft Proposal) from the RCP gets into this – see how we must and can make the struggles we fight today be part of getting to a whole new society – and a whole new world.

Why should Black and Latino people fight against each other? Why should they compete against each other? For what? What sense does it make?

But some Black people say Black Lives Matter! is only for Black people. That Latino Lives Matter! should not be brought into this.

Some Latinos say: Latinos should not get involved into a struggle that is mainly about Black people because it will make Blacks a “stronger” force – give them stronger “backing” in this system.

ALL this is harmful and really BULLSHIT!

People who say this are

#1 Wrong. Black Lives Matter! raises big, fundamental questions: Do you want to live in a society where Black Lives do NOT Matter or do you want to live in a society where they do? Black lives, Latino lives, the lives of women – where ALL Lives Matter? How strongly do you want this? How badly? Enough to get with this revolution?

#2 Some people are confused. They are not clear on how these struggles are linked – have a common root and a common solution. They easily get pulled between uniting in this struggle for justice and following through on their convictions, on the one hand, and misdirecting their anger – misdirecting it into competing with others – looking out for their “own.” Stuck on a treadmill going nowhere. Nowhere good. Such people should stay active, hook up with the RCP, Revolution Club, – quickly get clear about all this and stop allowing yourself to be played.

 #3 Then there are counter-revolutionaries. They are a small distinct group. Fundamentally different from the other two groups. Though there can be overlap in thinking.

They not only play on the spontaneous strivings of some who are out to “own” oppression – as being what is realistic and possible – they go a step further – in every way conceivable they try to block up and prevent people from getting on the only pathway that will lead to eliminating this shit. They do all they can to prevent this. All they can to prevent people from discovering what is it going to take to get free. They do all they can to prevent people from discovering and hooking up with the revolutionary leadership they need to go forward with this.

They directly or indirectly work for the system.

Who does that serve?

You want to lay “claims” to this shit? Really? –  put down a stake on it? – be the first to get the patent on suffering – really?

This can only – no matter what anyone says – this can only lead to perpetuating the very conditions – the very system – the very genocidal assault on Black and Latino people – with all the pain, trauma, misery, horror this involves.

Look at 12-year-old Tamir Rice and 15-year-old Andy Lopez. Murdered in cold blood by the police. Look at Ezell Ford and Omar Obrego living in the same South Central neighborhood in LA – murdered by the pigs from the same precinct. Look into the prisons, the jails... who do you see? The majority are Black and Latino. Look at the person who is in the cell next to the one you are in... who do you see? Look at who is on probation or parole. Look at their families. The millions whose life is being stunted in some way by this.

You are being played big time – condemning yourself and others to a genocidal assault by trying to “own” a stake in this shit – what you need to do is raise your sights and join the fight to eliminate this brutal shit. Do not stop until it is completely eliminated. Do not pull back if you find this pursuit takes you out of your comfort zone. Keep going.

And if you are out to really eliminate it then you welcome everyone in the struggle for justice. The more the merrier. It’s gonna take all of us and lots of revolutionary leadership to eliminate this horrific shit.

If you want to see Blacks, Latinos, Asians, Native Americans, and whites unite in their common highest interest – in the interest of revolution – if you want to see people put an end to “racial hostilities” like the prisoners pulled together to do during the California Prison Hunger Strike – You got to make it happen by getting with this movement for revolution and going out challenging and struggling with others to do the same.

Unity on a revolutionary basis. Steeped in a deep scientific understanding of what is the problem and how revolution is the common solution.

You can not do this from the sidelines – pointing – saying there needs to be more unity. More Latinos should take part in Black Lives Matter! And Blacks should be more welcoming of Latino Lives Matter! in the struggle.

All that is true. As revolutionaries we join in all resistance against oppression. No matter what the nationality or gender. As revolutionaries we fight against all oppression. We bring out to people how different oppressions are linked. How they stem from a common source and have a common revolutionary solution.

As revolutionary communists we also bring out the deeper links – how Blacks and Latinos are in great numbers part of a common group at the bottom of society – the proletariat – who can free itself only by freeing all humanity. Only by eliminating all oppression everywhere in the world.

We should recognize that some people are gonna only want to fight against what affects them directly. We unite with them but we do not change who we are when we do.

Join this movement we ARE building for revolution. Contribute to helping people see the unity but also the difference between fighting against one oppression – and fighting against all oppression. The movement for revolution includes both kinds of people. But revolution can only happen if it is led by the revolutionary movement with the party at its core to get rid of all oppression – get rid of this system and replace it with a new system. With new values, morals, ways of thinking – new ways of relating to each other. New ways of producing and reproducing the necessities for the surviving – and the thriving of human beings.

You got to make the struggle for revolution – and the cohesion that comes from that – the unity – the feeling of community happen by ACTING NOW – in common – putting your ass on the line for it – going against the grain. Millions of Blacks and Latinos are part of the same group of people, the same class, that is the potential backbone and driving force for this revolution.

This is real. This is what is possible. Because of the way the world could be at this stage of human history, and because we have the leadership to make it real and possible. This leadership – this understanding – the RCP – This leader – BA – is what you need – dare to get off the sidelines – act now – become a fighter in the movement for revolution – transform yourself in the process – become a leader of others in this process – give your life over to the cause of human emancipation. Give it over to revolution – nothing less.

Think about that for a minute.

So much more is possible than the dog-eat-dog shit this system makes us do to each other.

Ironically, so much more is possible because of the very workings of this capitalist-imperialist system itself.

Its crimes, suffering, and horrors – have also created the basis to overturn and surpass this system. It has brought large groupings of people together around the globe to work in a collective and interdependent way – globalization – (At the base – at the heart of this – are the proletarians with nothing to lose but their chains) to produce and reproduce the necessities of life.

This goes on and can only go on in the most criminal way – the most horrific way – conditions that force mass suicides – crumbling buildings that crush people – people if working can barely live – can barely eat – starving babies stumbling on the edges of a village in the Horn of Africa – stalked by buzzards – in Mexico students are disappeared and murdered for protesting –  when this system has no more need for people – need to exploit them as instruments to make profits – people are treated as waste – in the U.S. this means people treated as surplus population, as “thugs,” “criminals,” guilty just for being – treated as animals, demons – and all kinds of other shit.

What is even more killing than this – is the fact that all this is so unnecessary. Humanity can live in a whole different way.

You see – millions of Blacks, Latinos, immigrants, Native Americans, whites, and others – women and men in the U.S. – are part of this worldwide class that has nothing to lose – whose interest lies in making this revolution – organizing society on a new revolutionary foundation, where the necessities of life – intellectual, cultural, and physical – are increasingly taken hold of – and utilized to raise the all-around living conditions of those at the very base of society – and the masses over-all – while also creating more freedom for dissent and contrast – for learning – for discovering what is true – for more room to breathe for everyone, people used to working with ideas and people new to working with ideas – engaging in this process – learning from this – as society goes forward...

And most importantly, all this is utilized to not only defend the gains of the revolution here – but fundamentally to advance, support, and spread this revolution all around the world.

This party is deeply rooted in the science of this revolution. Intensely passionate about it. It is led by the greatest revolutionary communist in the world today. Bob Avakian (BA). See the film BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS!Watch the video of the simulcast of the Dialogue between BA and Cornel West: “Revolution and Religion: the Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion(a high-quality film is coming soon).

It deeply and scientifically understands how to apply that right here in the “belly of the beast.”

The RCP has developed the strategy for doing exactly that. It is right there in the supplement to chapter 3 in the book BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian. Study this. Become part of this – become part of the movement to prepare the ground, prepare the people, and prepare the leadership – the thousands now who are the backbone and driving force for this revolution – which today must reach and influence millions – “hastening while awaiting” the development of a revolutionary crisis – which will require winning millions more to become part of the backbone and driving force to carry through with this revolution – to go all out for it... with a real chance to win. In the fullest sense. To emancipate humanity.

This is what we need. Get with this now.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

As Part of Retaking the Political Offensive...

Defend the Defiant Ones of Ferguson

February 5, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Editor’s note: Ferguson. A small suburb of St Louis comes to stand for the refusal to accept the murder of a young unarmed Black youth at the hands of the police. When you ask youth from other parts of the country, they might not immediately recognize the name Ferguson but they all know “Mike Brown.” They know the people stood up—“Hands Up Don't Shoot!” The people of Ferguson, in particular those cast off and trapped at the bottom of this society, especially the youth, stood up in resistance and awakened hundreds of thousands of people. They changed the political and moral landscape in this country. They concentrate and symbolize the urgency and potential to wake up society to the epidemic of police murder and brutality that is daily lives of Black and Brown people everywhere in this country. The authorities are scared at what they see in embryo—a potential force for revolution.


February 5, 2015

Letter from a reader:

I want to call people's attention to heightened repression, including physical attacks against people active in the movement in the Ferguson/St. Louis area. By the end of 2014, there were already over 600 people arrested in Ferguson/St. Louis, a significant number of whom face serious felony charges. These attacks have continued to intensify. People everywhere need to have the backs of the courageous people of Ferguson.

Last November, when the grand jury refused to indict Darren Wilson after months of struggle, there was understandably a ferocious response to this outrage in Ferguson. Soon after, the authorities started an open-ended investigation of Mike Brown's stepfather for inciting a riot. Right around the time that the NY Times floated out that the federal government would not charge Darren Wilson for any crime, the local authorities released videotapes—videos taken from stores that were damaged the night that Wilson walked and which purportedly showed “looters.” The public is being urged to identify and turn those people in to the police. In a highly publicized case, a 19-year-old activist, prominently associated with the defiant ones, was arrested and charged with arson. The people who “step outside” the bounds of acceptable protest, especially among the youth are demonized and criminalized while police who commit cold-blooded murder walk.

There are other attacks where who or what is behind the attack is not obvious. On MLK Day, there was a march from Canfield Green memorial for Mike Brown to the Ferguson Police Department. Afterward, back at Canfield Green there were multiple shots fired from an unidentified source toward a group of people who had been part of the protest. Bullets struck a car which has been very visible in the protests for months in Ferguson. Others reported being narrowly missed. A young woman activist in the car was struck but not critically injured. People are left with questions and a bad taste afterward. Was this a wrong-headed attack from among the people who think people are somehow disrespecting them? Or is there something more sinister at work? Does the state and its operatives, of different kinds, have a hand in these attacks?

The point is not to speculate about who/what is involved in these recent attacks on activists. The point is that we should understand that the authorities use all kinds of ways to attack the resistance. People who bravely stood up to tanks and phalanxes of police can become confused and demoralized when the attack appears to come from among the masses, and that is exactly the point! (See the article "Important Lessons on Political Piggery: How FBI COINTELPRO Targeted Radical Groups")

Some Lessons from History

The police and other authorities like the FBI have a long, bloody history of behind-the-scenes maneuvering and dirty tricks that are aimed at fanning differences and creating antagonisms among the people, and people need to be alert to this and not let them get away with it.

Ferguson, August 16, Saturday night, protesting curfew

People in Ferguson, Missouri standing up together against the police murder of Mike Brown, August 16, 2014. Photo:

The authorities historically have done everything in their power to break down gang unity truces like those forged in the wake of the LA Rebellion in 1992. The gang turf mentality itself can lead people into doing what the system wants us to do, fight among each other. (One of the most inspiring things about Ferguson was the pictures of the youth with signs saying “Guns down for Mike Brown” and youth sporting red or blue colors standing shoulder to shoulder defiantly in the face of pigs with armored vehicles and machine guns trained on them.)

The authorities can instigate or turn a blind eye to the operatives of pro-police fascist and racist forces, including ones that have already been active in Ferguson like the Oath Keepers. Police also utilize informants and operatives from among the oppressed themselves, including people who they coerce into carrying out their dirty work.

Historically and down to today, the rulers have gone after both the organized forces for revolution and people who are newly gravitating to the movement for revolution in order to send a message loud and clear: “don't you dare think about getting rid of all this once and for all.” (See the article "The Ominous Attacks Against the RCP and Bob Avakian")

The enemy does all this to make people afraid, to divide and demoralize people, and to derail the resistance.

What can we do in response to all the enemy can throw at us? We need to transform the situation into one of deeper and stronger unity among the people in resisting the outrage of police murder in Ferguson/St. Louis and throughout the country. We need to build principled unity and draw in a growing number of people (not just in Ferguson but throughout the country) to take on and beat back the heightening repression and any attempts to sow dissension and foment disunity among those who have stepped forward to protest and resist police brutality and murder (and other outrages bound up with this). This in turn must be developed as one key front of the larger effort to more fully re-seize the political and ideological initiative and retake the political offensive, to have this protest and resistance become even much broader, deeper, and more determined. For revolutionaries, this also means working to win people to see how this interconnects with all the other oppressive outrages of this system and the solution to this through an actual revolution.

As an integral part of this, adopting some basic principles (standards) that the movement embraces could be very valuable in forging deeper unity that can stand up to all the various ways that the enemy will attack and in enabling those who are part of the resistance to sort out contradictions among the people and resolve them on the right basis and prevent them from being turned into or being used by the enemy to intimidate, derail and demoralize the movement. If people widely adhere to these and struggle for them, then it will be clearer if someone is doing the work of the enemy, and it will be possible to expose and keep it from causing havoc.

This is a proposal for adopting such principles. (I would urge that they be considered for adoption at the Stop Mass Incarceration Network's national meeting in Atlanta [or in its immediate wake], as well as shared with and adopted by others.)


As part of building the fight to STOP the outrage of police murder and brutality right now, many different people and political forces from different perspectives come together and make plans on how to unite in common struggle against a common enemy. And within that, there should be a spirit of lively wrangling over differences. If done in the right way, with largeness of mind and generosity of spirit, this kind of wrangling actually deepens the unity of any group or community of people working together.

At the same time, there should be and must be a few simple principles of what does NOT go in this movement. We recognize that the police and other authorities like the FBI have a long history of behind-the-scenes maneuvering and dirty tricks that are aimed at fanning differences and creating antagonisms among the people, and people need to be alert to this and not let them get away with pitting people against each other. (Learn about COINTELPRO.) By adhering to principles, it makes it much harder for the authorities to get away with such attacks.

We urge these principles be widely adopted:

Differences among people and groups should be struggled out in a principled way.

* There must not be physical threats, let alone physical attacks, against anyone in the movement to end these outrages.

* Do not make accusations that someone or some group is working with the police—being a provocateur or informant—without actual evidence.

* There are times when "working with the police" is necessary to negotiate permits, etc.; but in no instance is it ever permissible for people in struggle to finger, or turn over, others to the police or to speculate to the press—who often work closely with the authorities—about someone else in the movement. Such activity should actually be cause for barring people and individuals from the people's movements, until they renounce and change these practices.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Obama's "Environmentalism" Is Killing the Planet

Updated February 18, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Deepwater Horizon fireExplosion of the BP oil well that caused a massive, destructive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, April 2010.

President Obama is increasingly eager to portray the U.S. as “leading on climate change” and himself as the “environmental president.” In his recent visit to India, for example, Obama called on Indian Prime Minister Modi to do more on climate change, saying, “[E]ven if countries like the United States curb our emissions, if countries that are growing rapidly, like India, with soaring energy needs don’t also embrace cleaner fuels, then we don’t stand a chance against climate change.”

Well, what is the reality of what the U.S. and its “environmental president” have done and are really doing?

Above, time-lapse graph shows the increasing annual average temperature on Earth, starting in 1950 and ending in 2013.

All of this comes on top of the fact that the U.S. is the largest contributor of atmospheric greenhouse gases that come from the burning of fossil fuels, and thus is more responsible than any other country for causing the climate catastrophe.

Obama’s “environmentalism” is killing the planet.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

From A World to Win News Service:

Auschwitz and today's world

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


February 2, 2015. A World to Win News Service. Seventy years ago, on January 27, 1945, Soviet troops reached the walls of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp complex in Poland and liberated the few thousand prisoners still alive out of the 1.3 million people taken there. The memorial ceremony at Auschwitz was not meant to express sorrow and keep alive the memory of those who suffered and died, but merely to serve as an opportunity for reactionary governments to push agendas that have brought and will bring the world even more suffering and death.

Child survivors of AuschwitzChild survivors of Auschwitz

The presidents of Austria, France, Germany and Poland attended, along with royals from Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark. U.S. President Obama sent his treasury secretary. Russia’s President Putin was not invited, despite the former Soviet Union’s role, when it was still a socialist country, in liberating Auschwitz. This was another sign of the Western powers’ bellicose contention with their Russian imperialist rival. Inter-imperialist conflict, at the heart of World War 2, is not confined to the past.

Further, in the name of defending Western “civilisation” against the “barbarism” of Islamic fundamentalism, painted as the successor to Nazism, these Auschwitz commemorations covered up the fact that the rulers of the imperialist countries are the world’s biggest perpetrators of barbaric crimes—not only in the past, but also today.

By invading or otherwise destroying Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Republic of Congo, the Central African Republic, Mali and so many other countries, just to speak of today, not to mention the millions killed in their wars against Algeria and Vietnam, they have achieved a death toll unmatched in history. Not to mention the ordinary workings of their lethal global system.

Furthermore, this anniversary was used to glorify the barbaric and criminal state of Israel. It is worth noting an editorial in the Guardian, because actually this UK newspaper attempts to distinguish itself for being critical of Israeli policies, in contrast to the governments of the U.S., UK, Germany, France and so on. It said, “A people who came close to extinction cannot be blamed for not wanting to put their fate ever again in other hands.” This is an excuse for Zionism, even if the editorialists might wish for a kinder Zionism than has ever existed or could exist, a state built in the name of one ethnicity and religion (a political outlook that belongs to the Dark Ages) through murder, expulsion and terrorism against the people whose land it was built on.

The Nazi genocide, a real historical event that should shed light on the inherent cruelty and unreformability of the imperialist system, has been turned into a mystical token to justify more crimes. The Zionists and ruling classes served by Zionism try to make it forbidden—even blasphemous—to ask why this genocide occurred, as though understanding it meant justifying it. Today, when the imperialist powers are claiming to represent certain values in their conflict with Islamic fundamentalism, and use the dangerous revival of anti-Semitism to hide their own historic and current crimes, more than ever what is needed is a scientific analysis of a past that seems to loom larger and larger.

The following is from an AWTWNS article published on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz a decade ago.


A thick stench of hypocrisy and lies filled the air as world leaders gathered at Auschwitz-Birkenau to mark the sixtieth anniversary of the liberation of the largest Nazi death camp. The truth is that the U.S. and UK failed to lift a finger to stop the genocide, covered it up while it was happening, and after the war protected the men who did it. The question is, why, and what does that mean for today?

When the Nazis came to power in the German elections of 1933, their hatred of the Jews was well known. Germany had about half a million Jews, less than one percent of the population. The Nazis started by repressing the communists. Many of the tens of thousands of German Jews who emigrated in the first wave were leftists. This was followed by the secret murder of the mentally ill, handicapped and other “misfits” in what turned out to be a pilot project for the death camps inaugurated eight years later. Homosexuals were also especially targeted.

Street violence and murder against the Jews aimed to drive them out of Germany. In 1936, the Nuremberg laws deprived them of civil rights and made marriage between Jews and non-Jews illegal. Yet once they were swept out of all positions of authority, there was a pause that some people took to mean that the worst was over. This illusion was shattered by the Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass) in 1938, when the Nazis led mobs in attacking Jewish businesses and homes. With that event and the German annexation of Austria that year, more and more Jews were trying to leave.

But few countries let them in. In fact, only one welcomed them in unlimited numbers: the then socialist USSR [Soviet Union]. In 1938, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt convened the Evian Conference, a meeting of 32 countries held in France, to decide what to do about Jewish refugees. Although the U.S. and UK were admitting tens of thousands a year, ten times more were applying for visas. The two main powers asked other countries to take them instead. France refused. The only country in attendance that agreed to increase its quotas was the Dominican Republic. The Nazi press saluted the conference as a sign that the world was coming around to its racial policies.

The ship St. Louis departed Hamburg, Germany, in May 1939 bound for Cuba with 937 desperate refugees aboard, nearly all German Jews. Most had applied for visas to the U.S. Cuba had given them permission to land there while they waited for an answer. Just before they arrived, the U.S. pushed Cuba to change its mind and forbid the refugees to leave the ship. No other Latin American country would take them either. The ship sailed so close to American shores that passengers could see the lit streets of Miami at night. It waited offshore for a response to a cable sent to Roosevelt asking for humanitarian refuge. The U.S. government had already decided against them, but sent no reply. In June, the ship was forced to return to Europe, where many of its passengers ended up in Nazi death camps.

By 1941, when the Nazis officially forbade Jewish emigration, more than 80 percent of German Jews had already left. But the German invasion of Poland had brought Europe’s main concentration of Jews under the control of the Third Reich. As the Nazi armies moved through Eastern Europe and into the Soviet Union, rampaging through heavily Jewish areas in what are now Belarus and Ukraine, many millions of Jews came under their boot. In January 1942, at a conference in a leafy green suburb of Berlin called Wannsee, they adopted a plan for “the final solution”: all Jews would be sent to camps in the east. Those too weak to work would be exterminated. The rest would be worked and starved to death. Those who survived would also be exterminated.

The Western Allies [ editor’s note: mainly the U.S., Britain and France] knew about this, but kept it secret. When the World Jewish Council in Geneva sent the U.S. State Department a cable detailing the Wannsee plans, the government not only ignored it but told a leading American rabbi who had also received the report to keep his mouth shut. The Vatican knew the full story from the beginning through Catholic sources, but despite requests from below, Pope Pius XII refused to make a public statement against killing Jews, whom the Church still officially considered “Christ killers”.

In the Warsaw ghetto, a Jewish fighting organisation led by communists and other resistance forces sent scouts through the sewers and beyond the walls where the Nazis had locked them in. They followed the trains that were taking families away by the thousands to an unknown destination. [ editor’s note: The trains from the Warsaw ghetto led to the Treblinka  concentration camp. Other Jews were sent to Auschwitz, where eventually more than a million Jews, 75,000 non-Jewish Poles, 18,000 Roma (Gypsies) and 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war were to perish, killed by poison gas, their bodies burned in ovens.]

A representative of the pro-British Polish government overthrown by the Nazis was brought into the ghetto to hear their story. They described the camp and told him that the trains were carrying 10,000 Jews a day to their deaths from Warsaw alone. Although not particularly inclined toward Jews, he agreed to slip out of Poland and tell the British and American authorities, thinking that as a political ally they would listen to him. He was the kind of man who expected to meet with Churchill, and he had a long talk with Roosevelt. Nothing happened.

Auschwitz, like the other concentration camps, was fed its constant intake of Jewish lives and coal by rail starting in 1942. Without those railroad tracks, the death factory would have ground to a halt and the gas ovens grown cold. Why didn’t the Allies bomb them? After all, they were pounding German-occupied European ports into ruins to wreak economic havoc, and bombed the city of Dresden into an all-consuming firestorm for the same reason. What held them back?

It has been argued that Auschwitz lay too far to the southeast to be within range of UK-based bombers. But, if that was ever true, by April 1944, at least, it was no longer. This was publicly proven recently when an RAF aerial surveillance photo of the camp came to light. Such photos were made to prepare bombing runs. The photo clearly shows the prisoner barracks, the gas chambers and the crematoriums. It is known that Allied intelligence received reports from two escapees from Auschwitz that month, and two more the following month.

Auschwitz was approaching its infernal climax. Poland was emptied of Jews. The trains brought 440,000 Hungarians, half of the country’s Jewish population, to their deaths over the course of only a few weeks in May and June. The U.S. and Britain merely watched.

In August and September of that year, the U.S. Air Force staged bombing runs on an industrial complex less than five minutes by air away from the Birkenau gas chambers. An Auschwitz survivor speaking in a recent BBC documentary bitterly recalls how she and other prisoners watched hundreds of warplanes pass over their heads. They said to each other, "Why don’t they bomb this place? Even if they kill many of us, that’s the only chance any of us have to live."

October 1944 saw one of the known prisoner revolts at Auschwitz. Hundreds of prisoners attacked the guards with axes and rocks. They used smuggled explosives to blow up a gas chamber and set a crematorium on fire. The Allies were considering air-dropping guns on the camp. They never did.

In fact, the camps continued running without outside interference until 27 January 1945, when the Soviet Red Army arrived at its gates. They found about 7,000 survivors, all too weak to walk. The Nazis had taken another 58,000 with them on a death march as they fled to the west. They were determined that even if they were defeated, no Jews would remain alive.

The crimes of the U.S., however, did not stop on that date. Very few Nazi leaders and executioners were ever brought to justice for the simple reason that the U.S. protected them. Shortly after the war, the U.S. recruited many former leading Nazis as allies against the Soviet Union.

The Allies identified three million Germans as having committed crimes during the war. A million were tried. Eleven were sentenced to death. A few received short prison sentences. Most of the rest had to pay a fine or were briefly ineligible to hold public office. In 1951, almost all of them were amnestied. Big capitalists like Krupp whose factories had used concentration camp labour were given their fortunes back.

The Nazi commandant at Auschwitz was hung. But of the 10,000 members of the elite Nazi SS who administered the murders there, only about 750 suffered even the slightest punishment.

As recently reaffirmed by the book U.S. Intelligence and the Nazis by Norman J. W. Goda, based on official American archives, thousands of Nazis and SS officers were brought to the U.S. where “they could be useful in countering communist leanings in immigrant communities,” as an Associated Press article put it. The Catholic Church and American military intelligence worked together to smuggle some of the most notorious Nazis out of Germany. In fact, Goda says, the CIA took a group of German officers who had been responsible for intelligence on the Eastern Front and used them as the core around which to build West Germany’s future intelligence service, still at work today.

In our time historians who defend Roosevelt’s and Churchill’s conduct make two contradictory arguments. One is that the two men were fearful that if the war became identified with saving Europe’s Jews, anti-Jewish “public opinion” in their own countries might hurt the war effort. In other words, this account blames the people of the Western countries, who were kept in ignorance of what the Nazis were doing. This is putting the truth upside down.

The other, more commonly made by military experts, is that if the truth about the extermination camps became known, public pressure to do something about it would have interfered with their freedom to set military priorities according to their overall war aims.

If you want to know what the U.S.’s aims were, look at what came out of it when they won: America became the chief imperialist power, able to fatten on exploitation around the world. The UK, although taken down a peg from its former position, survived as a major power and became the U.S.’s chief partner. Germany and Japan, which had tried and failed to achieve the kind of global dominance the U.S. did achieve, had no choice but to become associate members in the U.S.-led crime syndicate. The U.S. and UK could not spare a single bomb to save Jewish lives because they had other aims. They protected Nazis after the war for the same kind of imperialist reasons.

It is worth thinking about what political and ideological reasons fueled the Nazi genocide against the Jews, and why the Western powers chose to ignore it.

The Nazis always associated Jews and communism, not just for demagogic purposes, but as part of their overall outlook. Of course anti-Semitism flourished long before modern times, but that doesn’t explain why it took the virulent, genocidal form the Nazis gave it as they prepared for what they considered the inevitable conflict with the USSR, a cause they hoped would win the support or at least neutrality of the Western allies. The Nazis’ murderous hatred of the Jews turned especially acute as the eastward-moving German armies found themselves first stalemated and then pushed back by the “Bolshevik Jew”.

Many Jews had good reason to hate the existing world order. They were strongly represented in the communist movement, and a great many looked to the Soviet Union as a beacon of salvation. The Soviet Union, in fact, was a beacon to the Jewish people as well as to the oppressed in general. The Bolsheviks emancipated the Jews in a country, Tsarist Russia, which had been a hellhole for them for centuries. They welcomed Jews into the revolutionary movement and the public life from which they were previously banned. In the course of World War 2, the Red Army saved the lives of 1.5 million of the 4 million Jews in German-occupied or invaded territory, according to the well-known American historian Arno Mayer.

Like other forces in the war, the American and British rulers had their own political and ideological agendas. One reason why they were anxious to limit a Jewish presence was precisely because of the influence of the socialist Soviet Union and revolutionary Marxism among many Jews. Further, they wanted to win public opinion to fight this war on the most backward basis possible. They wanted to weaken anti-imperialist and pro-Soviet public opinion and fan patriotic and chauvinist sentiments instead. They wanted this war waged in a way that would serve their imperial plans and prepare to confront the then-socialist USSR even as they were compelled to ally with it to defeat Germany.

The clearer it is that all the world’s top reactionaries allowed the Nazi genocide, the clearer it is that today’s rulers are trying to use this experience once again to further their present aims. Many of them are, for example, trying to use that experience to excuse or even justify Israel’s oppression of the Palestinian people. But opposing this is not enough. The question of why such a crime happened also needs to be addressed. Was it because there is “evil” lurking in human hearts, as many people say, or instead because of real political, economic and ideological forces at work in the world? It was an evil that took a particular form in a particular global context. It was a world configured differently than the one we live in today, but one in which the imperialist powers were driven no more and no less by the same motives as now: the quest for empire in a capitalist system whose inevitable product is the constant division and redivision of the globe.

A World to Win News Service is put out by A World to Win magazine, a political and theoretical review inspired by the formation of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement, the embryonic center of the world's Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties and organizations.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Atlanta Conference Calls for NO BUSINESS AS USUAL April 14 to STOP POLICE MURDER

Updated February 11, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Sunday, February 8. A very important two-day conference in Atlanta drew over 170 people, from different walks of life, different nationalities and ages, to discuss and issue a Call from the Stop Mass Incarceration Network for a day of massive resistance this April 14 as a crucial step to get back on the offensive in the fight to stop police murder.

Carl Dix kicked things off on Saturday, February 7, with a talk, pointing to the real challenges facing the struggle against police murder and the plans that need to be realized for a day of No Business as Usual for April 14.

Sunday afternoon, at the end of the conference, a press release was issued announcing: “April 14, 2015 National Shut Down of Business as Usual to Stop Police Murder of Black and Brown People.

Finalizing the Call was a very important task of the conference. In the course of the conference, in discussion of the Call and the vision of April 14, people expressed real determination to re-take the initiative in the fight against police murder by going on a mission to shut down business as usual across the country. Discussion included serious wrangling with what is really needed to STOP police murder, in contrast to pulls on sections of those who have been active to settle for solutions short of that. People came out united on working for a day of resistance on April 14, including some who had just heard about it. And everyone threw into the discussion, getting into why such a day is crucial at this moment and why it is so important to have a societywide impact—to, as the Call says, “take our movement to STOP wanton police murder to a whole new level.”

There was a dynamic mix of backgrounds, walks of life, philosophies, and political perspectives at the Conference—Black nationalists, revolutionary communists, people from the faith community, lawyers, artists, and teachers, and members of families of victims of police murder. Two dozen students—mostly college plus a few high school students—brought insight and energy—including a contingent from the Ohio Students Association representing students organizing for justice for John Crawford who have linked up with mobilizations around Eric Garner and Mike Brown, and who are a significant force in the Black Lives Matter movement. They are helping take responsibility for spreading the call for the 14th nationwide among students. Revolution Clubs, including from NYC, Atlanta, Cleveland, Chicago, and LA played important roles in the conference and represented for revolution.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015



Updated April 11, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


The people have stood up. Beginning in August with the youth in the streets of Ferguson and continuing through the end of the year, all across the country, thousands and thousands of people took to the streets to stop the murder of Black and Brown people at the hands of the police. People blocked highways and bridges, marched through shopping malls, stopping commerce as usual, did die-ins everywhere, walked out from school, and shook this country to its core, opening the eyes of millions around the world to the brutal reality that time and time again police kill Black, Brown, and other people of color with impunity. For many people, this was the first time they had ever marched and demonstrated. This outpouring was long past due and was a real advance in the people’s struggle to stop this horror.

Now we are at a crossroads: will the authorities succeed in suppressing our resistance, or will we move forward on the offensive and bring even more massive waves of struggle to STOP the murder of Black, Brown, and all people by the police?


On April 14, we will take our movement to STOP wanton police murder to a whole new level. NO SCHOOL! NO WORK! STOP BUSINESS AS USUAL!

On this day, thousands of students must walk out of school, take over buildings and go on strike at colleges and high schools nationwide. People must gather and march in cities all across the U.S. The normal routine of this society includes wanton police murder of Black and Brown people. Everyone must disrupt that normal routine.

Our demands are clear:

The business as usual of police killing our people and never being punished is a concentration of an overall program of mass incarceration and all its consequences that has tens of millions of people living their lives caught up in the criminal “injustice” system of this country. A hidden part of this program is the demonization, criminalization, deportation, and murder of immigrants. This must stop. Will our righteous protest and the people’s determination to STOP this be suppressed with threats and empty promises? Will that business as usual continue? Or will we retake the initiative to lead, YES, millions back out into the streets, not stopping until the police murder of Black and Brown people stops? This is the challenge we face. All of us must act on April 14 to loudly declare we will not go back. Stop the police murder of our people.

This Call for a day of massive resistance all over the country on April 14 was adopted at the national meeting hosted by the Stop Mass Incarceration Network in Atlanta on February 7 and 8. Everyone needs to get on a mission to work from now to April 14 to make the day of stopping business as usual as powerful as possible to end the system putting its stamp of approval on police murdering people.

Contact us for more information:
Email: FB: stopmassincerationnetwork
Twitter: @StopMassIncNet  Phone: 646/709-1961

Join These Signatories And Others Who Have Endorsed April 14th.   Endorse Here.

Cornel West, Author, Educator
Carl Dix, Revolutionary Communist Party
Elliott Adams, Veterans for Peace*
Ramona Africa, MOVE organization
All of Us or None (Inland Empire)
Rafael Angulo, Professor, USC, School of Social Work*
Iris Baez, mother of Anthony Baez, killed by NYPD, Dec 22, 1994
Fr. Bob Bossie (SCJ)
Lorentz Bruc, brother of Kami Stevens, killed by Long Beach Police, Dec 26, 2007
Bianca Carlisle-Parker, wife of Dan'te Parker, killed by Victorville police
Colia Lafayette Clark, Green Party, Grandmas for Mumia Abu Jamal
Coalition For Justice (Milwaukee)
Claude Conkrite, Secretary of the Black Caucus, Washoe County, Nevada*
Gerry Condon, Member of Veterans for Peace*
DeLisa Davis, sister of Kevin Davis, murdered by DeKalb County, GA police
Dr. Jesse Diaz, UC Riverside*
Dougie the Abolitionist, Georgia Coalition to End the New Jim Crow
Ophelia Ealy, mother of Michael Ealy, killed by Seattle Police Dec 28, 1998
8th Day Center of Justice
Eve Ensler
Tarik Farrar, Professor of African American Studies, City College of San Francisco*
Ty Ellis-Hadnot, brother of Barry Montgomery, beat nearly to death by Compton Sheriffs, now facing felony charges
Family of O'Shane Evans, killed by San Francisco Police, Oct 7, 2014
Tara Fenamore, Teachers College, Columbia University*
Maria Perez Giron, Adopted son Oscar Perez Giron murdered by Seattle Police Department
Nicholas Heyward Sr., father of 13 year old Nicholas Heyward Jr murdered by NYPD
Mike Holman, Prisoners Revolutionary Literature Fund
Dorothy Holmes, mother of son killed by Chicago police October 12, 2014
Yolanda Hurte, aunt of Dante Parker, killed by San Bernardino CA Sheriffs, Aug 12, 2014 and Donte Jordan, killed by Long Beach Police, Nov 10, 2013
Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace (ICUJP), Los Angeles
Stephen Jaeger, Professor Emeritus, U of Illinois, Urbana*
Khafre James, Hip Hop for Change*
Cephus "Uncle Bobby" Johnson, uncle of Oscar Grant, killed by BART police, Jan 1, 2009
Kelly Kunta, Skid Row Advocate, LA
David Kunzle, Professor, UCLA, Department of Art History*
Jim Lafferty, Executive Director, National Lawyers Guild, LA Chapter*
Gloria Leiva, Mother of Donte Pomar, killed in 2004 by NYPD
Rabbi Michael Lerner, Editor, Tikkun MagazineChair, Network of Spiritual Progressives*
Jessica Loarca, mother of Jesse Delgadillo, killed by Long Beach Police, April 28, 2013
Ernestine Lopez, sister of Ernesto Lopez, killed by Phoenix police 2011
Marin Interfaith Task Force on the Americas
Marie Martin, mother of son who spent 38 years in CA prison system
Rev. Jerome McCorry, The Adam Project, Dayton Ohio
Deltra Paulk McCoy, mother of Dante Parker, killed by the San Bernardino CA Sheriffs, Aug 12, 2014
Travis Morales, Stop Mass Incarceration Network
Frank Nevarez, brother of Ernesto Lopez killed by Phoenix Police 2011
Efia Nwanganza, Malcolm X Center/Radio Station WMXP
April Nation, aunt of James White Shield
Angela Netter, aunt of Matthew Netter, killed by police in Silverdale, WA, July, 2010
Maureen O'Connell-Caputo, Don't Shoot Inc.
Arturo O'Farrill, musician
Reginald Owens, father of Na'im Owens, killed by NYPD, Aug 31, 2014 and step-father of Khiel Coppin, killed by NYPD, Nov 12, 2007
Rev. Dr. J. Alfred Smith, Jr., Sr. Pastor Allen Temple Baptist Church
J. Andree Penix Smith
, Mother's Cry for Justice, mother of Justin Smith, killed by Tulsa, OK Police, Aug 14, 1998
Richard and Pat Perez, Family of Richard "Pedie" Perez, Killed by Richmond CA police
Rev. Stephen Phelps, PC (USA)
Jean-Guerly Petion, artist
Mary Ratcliff, editor, San Francisco Bay View newspaper*
Tony Serra, lawyer
Charissa Shamley, loved one of Jedidiah Waters, killed by police in Federal Way, WA, July 21, 2011
Bill Shields, Faculty, City College of San Francisco*
Chris Silva, brother of David Silva, beat to death by Bakersfield Police, May 7, 2013
Dionne Smith Downs and Carey Downs, parents of James Rivera Jr., 16 years old, unarmed, killed July 22, 2010 by Stockton PD, in a hail of 48 bullets
Lynne Stewart, people's attorney and former political prisoner
Debra Sweet, Director, World Can't Wait
Toni Taylor, mother of Cary Ball, Jr.
Immortal Technique, music artist
Aleta Alston Toure, New. Jim Crow Movement/Free Marissa Now
Rev. Frank Wulf, Pastor, USC United University Church*
Juanita Young, Mother of Malcolm Ferguson, killed by NYPD in year 2000
United Against Police Terror, San Diego
Laurie Valdez, wife of Antonio Guzman Lopez, murdered by San Jose State University police*
Jim Vrettos, John Jay College of Criminal Justice

* org listed for ID purposes only.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

170 People Meet in Atlanta, Announce
April 14, 2015 National Shut Down of Business as Usual to Stop Police Murder of Black and Brown People

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


For Immediate Release Steven Yip 347 979 7646
February 8, 2015

170 People Meet in Atlanta, Announce April 14, 2015
National Shut Down of Business as Usual
to Stop Police Murder of Black and Brown People

On February 7 and 8, a wide variety of people, numbering over 170, gathered in Atlanta from across the country. At this meeting called by the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, people forged a plan of action to launch to a national day of action on April 14 to stop the police murder of Black and Brown people.

The call for April 14 in part states, “No business as usual. We will not go back ... we will take our movement to STOP wanton police murder to a whole new level ...” Those who attended stated that “On this day, thousands of students must walk out of school, take over buildings and go on strike at colleges and high schools nationwide. People must gather and march in cities all across the U.S. The normal routine of this society includes wanton police murder of Black and Brown people. Everyone must disrupt that normal routine.”

They demand:

The murder of Black and Brown people by the police MUST STOP.
Justice for all the victims of brutal, murdering police.
Indict, convict and send killer cops to jail—the whole damn system is guilty as hell.
Stop the repression targeting the protests—Drop all the charges against all those arrested.

The 170 attendees included, people from New York; Charlotte and Greensboro, North Carolina; Greenville, South Carolina; Jacksonville, Florida; Houston; Cleveland and Dayton, Ohio; Chicago; St. Louis/Ferguson, Missouri; Los Angeles, Sacramento, Oakland, and Stockton, California; Seattle; Maryland; Atlanta and several more.

Participants included students, the religious people, revolutionary communists, Black nationalists, lawyers, artists, teachers, families of people murdered by the police and people incarcerated in the prisons of the U.S., LGBT activists, and immigrants.

Commitment toward the April 14 day of action was demonstrated by the pledges to raise $10,000 in seed money by February 22, 2015.


Stop Mass Incarceration Network
c/o P.O. Box 941 Knickerbocker Station
New York, NY 10002-0900
Twitter: @StopMassIncNet
347-979-SMIN (7646)

The “Stop Mass Incarceration: We’re Better Than That!” Network is a project of the Alliance for Global Justice, a 501c3 tax-exempt organization. Tax-deductible contributions accepted, and checks should be made payable to the “Alliance for Global Justice”, with “Stop Mass Incarceration Network” in the memo line and sent to the address above. Contributions also accepted online at




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Families of People Killed by Police Speak Out at Atlanta Conference

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Parents of people killed by police played an important role at the Atlanta conference of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network calling for NO BUSINESS AS USUAL April 14 to STOP POLICE MURDER. The following videos capture some of their statements:


Parents of those killed by the police speak out:


Uncle Bobby, uncle of Oscar Grant, killed by the police in Oakland, California, on January 1, 2009.


Kerry Downs and Dionne Smith-Downs, parents of 16-year-old James Rivera Jr. who was shot dozens of times and killed by the Stockton, California, police on July 22, 2010.


Steven Benjamin, brother of 20-year-old Jayvis Benjamin, killed by the police on January 18, 2013 in Avondale, Georgia.






Revolution #373 February 9, 2015


February 6, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


EDITORS’ NOTE: The following is an excerpt from a wide-ranging interview with Ardea Skybreak. A scientist with professional training in ecology and evolutionary biology, and an advocate of the new synthesis of communism brought forward by Bob Avakian, Skybreak is the author of The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What’s Real and Why It Matters, and Of Primeval Steps and Future Leaps: An Essay on the Emergence of Human Beings, the Source of Women’s Oppression, and the Road to Emancipation. In this part of the interview she speaks to the experience of attending the November 15, 2014 Dialogue between Bob Avakian and Cornel West at Riverside Church in New York City. The full text of this interview will be published in the near future.

Order from Insight Press

The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters, by Ardea Skybreak

The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism

Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters

by Ardea Skybreak

"This book will be of tremendous benefit to many..."
— Richard Leakey

Order from RCP Publications or from Revolution Books - New York City.

Of Primeval Steps & Future Leaps

An Essay on the Emergence of Human Beings, the Source of Women's Oppression, and the Road to Emancipation

by Ardea Skybreak

Ardea Skybreak:   Oh god (!), it was really great to be at this Dialogue. I’m so glad I was able to be there in person, and I’m also so glad that the livestream is available for anybody who wasn’t able to be there. I would encourage people to go to the website, and you can access it right there and experience the whole thing. And I am really excited that a high-quality film is being made of the Dialogue, which will soon be available as well.

I don’t even know where to start. It was like there was magic in the air. It was one of the most hopeful things that I’ve seen in a very long time. I think it was historic in many different dimensions: in terms of the topic that was approached; the people who were involved in it, the two speakers; the moment in time. I felt like I was able to see a great demonstration of morality and conscience applied to dealing with the problems of humanity—that both speakers stood out this way.

I am sick to death of the culture that prevails so much in this society today that is all about self-involvement and self, individualism, and so on. In contrast to this prevailing culture of basically small-mindedness, self-centeredness, selfishness, whatever you wanna call it, here were two people, Bob Avakian and Cornel West, who have different views on many important questions, but they came together to speak to the people together in a way that was projecting tremendous morality and conscience, a tremendous amount of social responsibility. And I thought, yes, please, promote this, let’s have more of this. I thought it was a wonderful example of how you could have principled differences—you could have differences and debate and discuss some of those differences in a principled manner, but draw out the points of unity. They were both so generous in spirit, and part of why is because they’re not focused on self, neither one of them; they’re different people, but one of the things they have in common is that they are both trying to think about the conditions of the oppressed and all the horrors that are visited upon so many people on a daily basis in this country and throughout the world...and what could be done about that.

And, in Bob Avakian’s case, he’s been spending his whole life, decades and decades, developing work that is deepening our understanding of why these problems are not just accidental, or periodic anomalies–how they actually stem from, originate in, the deeper structures of the system, and why it’s the system itself, the system of capitalism-imperialism, that has to go, and be replaced with a completely different system, before we could really emancipate humanity. He brings that to life, and he’s dedicated his whole life to studying and bringing out to people, in a very scientific way, in a very rich and developed way, why that is the case, what is actually needed, what kind of revolution is needed, what is the strategy to actually be able to get to revolution, how can we actually have a serious strategy for seizing power, for dismantling the existing state apparatus of capitalism-imperialism, and replacing it with a new state apparatus of socialism, socialist institutions that move in the direction of a communist world that would be a genuinely emancipatory journey for the majority of people. He’s done a lot of very serious scientific work on this over decades. Has he ever made mistakes? Of course. Will he make more mistakes? I’m quite sure—everyone does, you know. The point is that he’s willing to examine his own mistakes and the mistakes of others throughout history, throughout the communist movement, and in what’s been done by other forces in society—constantly being like a good scientist who is actually willing to do critical examination of all of this to try to figure out what’s right and can move things forward in a good way for the majority of people, and what’s wrong and can actually take things in very bad directions. And even when the mistakes come from the historical forces of the revolutionaries or communists in this country or around the world, he’s willing to examine that. And so, because of that, you feel like you’re in the presence of a real scientist who’s actually going to work and has been working for decades. It’s like a very advanced scientist who is at the top of his field in terms of analyzing empire, in terms of analyzing the sources of problems and the alternatives and how to get there, and what pitfalls to avoid, what are the dangers, what are the wrong kinds of thinking that people can fall into and do fall into. You don’t have to agree with everything, but you can really feel like you’re grappling with a scientist who’s being serious about this, and whose heart is with the people.

And what you see with Cornel West—and BA pointed that out in his part of the Dialogue—you see someone who is a very wide-ranging intellectual who’s studied many different questions, and who is very concerned about the history of oppression, but who also recognizes that it is not enough to just be an intellectual behind closed doors who thinks about these is important to play a role as a public intellectual and to actually help develop understanding and consciousness about these issues. He understands, in short, the social responsibility of a progressive intellectual. And he, also, is not concerned with self. He also is willing to take some risks and to stand up to slanders and be demeaned for some of this. He refuses to go along—and he doesn’t. I think one of the things that both these people show is a willingness to stand up under fire of a certain kind. We can talk about this later, but there are all sorts of people who wanna tear down people who are trying to change things in a positive direction.

So, not to go into that right now so much, but I just wanna say that there was something—I’m trying to find the words to describe the magical atmosphere. Here’s the thing: I think there were some people who were in attendance...I heard that they said afterwards, I wish every day could be like today. And I felt that myself. It felt like you were in the presence of...that there was leadership in the room, that there was a diversity of people in the audience, that there was a shared concern about a lot of the outrages and injustices in society and a shared lively determination to do something about it, rather than just accept it as the way of the world. So it was very encouraging.

And there were many other things. I mean, even the venue. Okay, look, I’m an atheist, I’m not a religious person. I don’t believe in supernatural forces of any kind. I’m a scientist who is deeply steeped in historical materialism, and I don’t get wowed or awed by the sanctity of religious places or religious venues. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t appreciate the beauty of the religious art. This church, Riverside Church, is a beautiful venue, and it has all sorts of interesting and beautiful carvings in wood and in stone, and so on. It’s just a beautiful place, and you’d have to be stone cold not to be able to appreciate the art, even if you’re not a believer. And this was a wonderful setting for this historic event. It is a church that historically has hosted many controversial subjects and topics over the years and has provided a platform for the contestation of ideas. And I thought that, once again, this happened in this period in a way that hasn’t been seen in a long time, has never been seen actually. I can’t think of another example of exactly this kind of event in history, where a revolutionary communist leader of the revolution is meeting together with a revolutionary Christian so that they can bring forward what they have in common and explore the differences and put it before the people and encourage hundreds, thousands and ultimately millions of people to engage these very important questions that have to do with morality and conscience and with the future of humanity.

And the topic itself is so important, the topic about religion and revolution. Look, I’ve been arguing, and I know this is definitely BA’s framework, that you have to have a scientific materialist approach to analyzing the patterns of society—past, present and future—in order to figure out what to do about the problems of the world. Other people think that you have to apply a religious spiritual framework. That’s a different approach to trying to deal with some of the same problems. It’s a different approach to some of the solutions. It’s a different approach, but it doesn’t have to be in all cases an antagonistic difference. In this case, one of the things that I saw, and was inspired by, was that I thought there was a strategic alliance being modeled between a revolutionary communist... the revolutionary communist project, and progressive moral religious people, as embodied by Cornel West. Many religious people are not so generous of spirit, so moral, so solid in terms of their conscience. But this is an example of how two people can walk together and two actual sections of society can walk together in a strategic alliance. I thought that was very inspiring and should give hope to people.

And there was a lot that was modeled methodologically by BA in this Dialogue, in how he dealt with a lot of these questions. Many people are afraid to criticize religion—they think the people need it and you shouldn’t say anything. One of the things I really like about BA is that he’s never afraid to tell people what’s what, even if he knows it will make them uncomfortable, even if he knows that it’ll be controversial, that it’s not the popular way of thinking, that he will be attacked or even slandered or reviled for doing so. He’s just gonna tell people the way he sees things, on the basis of a scientific examination over decades of some of the key underlying phenomena. And, okay, religion, as Cornel expressed it very clearly, especially for Black people in this country, this is where many people live, this is very close to their heart, this is very intertwined with the history of resistance of Black people to oppression since the days of slavery, it’s very intimately tied in with people’s loved ones, and their feeling of who has led them in the past to fight against oppression. So it’s all very intertwined. And BA is very clearly expressing to people that he understands all of that, but that you have to let a lot of this go, you have to let it go because it doesn’t correspond to reality and it will actually take you off course and make it harder for you to actually transform the world in the direction that would benefit the majority of humanity. So there’s a difference there, but it is a difference that can be wrangled with and analyzed and subjected to critical analysis and thinking. And the audience was into it. The vast majority of the audience was really into this—BA’s presentation, Cornel’s shorter but substantial remarks, and then the dialogue between them where they went back and forth. So there’s a tremendous amount there. I think it’s worth re-watching and reviewing the livestream, and the upcoming film, because there’s a lot to learn from what was being modeled there, and by the whole event.

Re-broadcast of the November 15 Simulcast

So the speakers were great, the topic was great—and then I have to say about the audience: There was also a magical element, something that was greater than the sum of the parts, that came out of the connection, the presence of the audience with the speakers. That was something that I may be having trouble putting into words exactly, but I felt it very strongly at the time. There were 2,000 people or so filling this historic venue. And many came from the area, from New York, but many came from far away. There were people there from Chicago, from Ferguson, from Boston, from Hawaii, and so on. People actually traveled there, people raised money for some of their friends to be able to go and represent for them and for the ones who couldn’t all go and travel such distances. So you had people arriving, you had buses arriving, there was an excitement in the air, you got the definite sense that people felt this is an important day, a day where we’re going to talk about the things that are really wrong in the world, all the outrages and injustices, and, in particular, at that moment, there was a lot of focus on these police murders and brutality. And we’re gonna talk about: do we have to take it, or can we put a stop to this, and how are we going to go forward from here? And partly it is taking a moral stand, but it’s more than that. There was a lot of discussion with both speakers encouraging the people to stand up and fight this stuff. Both speakers were very good about doing that. And there was a certain electricity in the air when, for instance, the buses came and there were people from Ferguson who arrived, and they came in chanting, "Hands Up, Don’t Shoot," and the entire audience...this was before the start of the program...the audience stood up and joined in: Hands Up, Don’t Shoot! I’m getting goose bumps even thinking about that. And everybody felt it.

And part of what was really, really special about this was the mix of people. And this is something I give great credit to the Revolutionary Communist Party and the leadership of Bob Avakian for, historically, going way back to the '70s and since then. I don’t know any other organization that brings people together in the way that BA’s leadership and the Revolutionary Communist Party does, in terms of being able to bring together people from what are often referred to as basic masses, in other words, the people from the inner cities, the people who might not have much education, who are poor and the most oppressed of the oppressed, and for whom daily life is a constant struggle under the boot of the oppressors...bringing them together with students, college students and others, including older people, from the middle strata, from the intellectual strata, from the artists and the scientists, and so on. So you have a Ph.D. professor, or a prominent person in the arts, who is sitting with somebody who is from one of the hardest inner city ghettos in the country—and they’re together! They’re not looking at each other with suspicion. They’re not looking at each other with fear or disdain. They’re together in this because they are being brought together by this project and by this whole determination to put an end to this degrading and dehumanizing oppression, and to make a better world. And whenever I’ve seen glimpses of that, going way back even to the '70s, even in how I, myself came forward, that was one of the things that has inspired me. 

BA talked at the Dialogue, very movingly, about Wayne Webb, also known as Clyde Young, and what a hard life he came out of, and how he developed and emerged as a leader who became a member of the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Communist Party, and what his whole life trajectory was about, coming from the hard streets and from the prisons. You have someone like that, and you have people who’ve gotten Ph.D.s in science or who are prominent artists or prominent members of society who can be in the same party and in the same movement for revolution. That tells you something. It doesn’t tell you everything, but it tells you something important about the nature and characteristics, the type of movement that this is. And this bringing together—the great diversity of the audience being brought together, at this moment in time when people are waking up and standing up against some of these egregious police murders and other abuses in society, and becoming, once again, more determined to figure out if there’s any real way we can change things for the better—and coming together with these two speakers who, in their own different ways, were speaking to the people. One was a speaker of conscience who describes himself as a revolutionary Christian who was encouraging intellectuals to have principle and integrity and to stand with the oppressed. There are not many people from the intellectual strata these days who are doing that, and I salute Cornel West for taking that position and promoting it and serving as an example of that.

And then you have Bob Avakian standing there, on the basis of decades of hard work developing a whole body of work—theory to advance the science of communism, to advance the science of revolution, to more deeply explain where the problems come from, what the strategy is for getting out of this mess, what the methods and approaches should be to stay on track and actually build a better world, to build a society that most human beings would want to live in. That’s a hallmark of Bob Avakian’s work, working on building a society that most human beings would want to live in. But, to do that, you have to understand the need to sweep away the system of capitalism-imperialism and to build a completely different society on a different foundation—economically, politically, culturally. He was bringing that to life. And he was also bringing to bear the strategy for today. You know, it was brief [laughs]. Some idiots were complaining that he spoke too long. Actually, a lot of people were glued to their seats and wanted to hear even more, if there’d only been more time. But luckily, we have his whole body of work and the website at is full of books, articles, speeches. There’s the film Revolution—Nothing Less! which is six hours of exposition from Bob Avakian’s work, which people should really get into. There’s BAsics, which is a really good book to start with, which also points people to the major works that things are taken from. So there’s no shortage of materials to go to.

But at least, in that short period of time, you were able to get a feel for the strategy for an actual revolution, what it means to work towards that, what it means to provide leadership, what is the nature of leadership, what is the role of new people in relation to that, why everybody needs to come into this process, and there’s a place for you no matter where you come from, there’s a place for you in this process, in this revolutionary process, and there was a lot of modeling of the kind of culture in society that we would want to bring into being. And then there were some very serious discussions of the connection between the very necessary fights of today—the protests, for instance, around Ferguson, and so on—and the actual struggle for revolutionary power, the seizure of power. What is the connection, how does one help build the other?

And there was at least preliminary discussion of some of the work that’s been done to bring out the real possibilities for how to actually win. That working on revolution isn’t just a good moral thing to be doing—you actually have to do it in a way that you have a chance of winning and not being crushed. BA spoke about that some, and he pointed people to some key documents that are available on that website: the documents “On the Strategy for Revolution”; and “On the Possibility of Revolution,” which is a document that talks about the strategy for the actual seizure of power, and how you might have a chance of winning instead of being crushed by the forces of the other side. And then he was also pointing to the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America—and...I have to say it just for a second here...that’s an incredible document that I don’t think enough people have actually looked at, or even leafed through briefly, to get a sense of it. There is actually a Constitution, for a new society, that has been developed based on the work brought forward by Bob Avakian, his whole new synthesis of communism. So if you wanna know what kind of society Bob Avakian’s work is trying to bring into being and lead people towards, you have something very concrete that you can dig into, that talks about the rule of law under socialism and what kind of freedoms there would be, how you would organize the economy, education...I mean, every imaginable question.

So, there was a lot presented there at the Dialogue, in a short period of time. There was enough, I think, to whet a lot of people’s appetite to actually go and dig further into this and join in, both in the struggles of today that are very necessary: again, things like the police murders, and on a number of other fronts, including what is happening in terms of women and the attacks on abortion—this is basically a way to enslave women, to deny them the right to their own reproduction, to control their own reproduction—and other abuses, and the wars, and the environment, and so on. There was an outlining of a lot of that, and then there was a pointing to where people could go to learn a lot more and to get into a lot more.

And something else I want to say about the Dialogue is that there was this wonderful affectionate, warm, rapport between the two speakers, which was also a model. These are two people who, with their differences, care about each other greatly, and appreciate each other deeply. There was a lot of warmth, and both people just came off as really warm, generous-minded individuals, and there was just a wonderful comradely atmosphere between them that I thought also was in sharp contrast to the kind of culture that prevails today. It was a good model of how you could have differences—and neither one of them was going to throw away their principles, you know, they had their differences and they were going to make those differences clear—but not only did they also bring out all the points that they agreed on, and the need to fight injustice and oppression, but they served as a model of how to handle differences. This is very important: They were modeling how people should relate to each other when they have differences. Because they were more concerned with the conditions of the oppressed and what to do about it than about themselves and their own egos. Because both people were much more focused on that, they found it in themselves to interact in a principled way, and with generosity of spirit and comradeliness. Nobody was—to be crude, nobody was kissing ass to anybody else. When there were differences, there were differences. But they were very respectful and principled and willing to dig into things. And that was a model that a lot of other people in society should actually be inspired by and try to emulate. This is what the people should do. When you have differences, you should struggle over substance and not...look, there’s generally way too much of a culture in current society of nasty attacks and gossip and snarkiness and petty complaints and petty criticism. When people dedicate their whole lives, and this is certainly the want to talk about Bob Avakian, he has spent his entire life dedicating himself to trying to serve the people, to trying to bring into being a better world, to fighting for that...he could have feathered his own nest, he could have just made out his own life to be better for himself. But this is not what he’s done. He’s dedicated his whole life to working on the problems of why there are so many outrages and oppression and so on, and what to do about it. That deserves respect, that deserves appreciation, and it deserves being looked into critically but deeply, to really try to grapple with what it is that he’s bringing forward that is new and different and should be learned from.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Check It Out

D'Angelo and the Vanguard: Powerful Performance of "Charade" on SNL

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


On January 31, D’Angelo and the Vanguard appeared on the Saturday Night Live TV show, singing “Charade,” a song from their recently released album, D’Angelo and the Vanguard: Black Messiah. This was a powerful performance. Members of the band wore shirts that said: “BLACK LIVES MATTER” and “I CAN’T BREATHE.” Drawn on the stage floor was the chalk outline of a body—like those that appeared when someone is shot down and killed by the police. Throughout the song and then at the end, the band raises their fists in the air. The chorus of the song echoes a sentiment felt by many in the last months of protest against police murder:

All we wanted was a chance to talk
'Stead we only got outlined in chalk
Feet have bled a million miles we’ve walked
Revealing at the end of the day, the charade

Black Messiah, D’Angelo’s first album in almost 15 years after his widely acclaimed album Voodoo in 2000, dropped on December 15, 2014. It was originally slated to come out in 2015, but D’Angelo decided to rush the album’s release because of protests over the killing of Michael Brown by Ferguson cop Darren Wilson. After the grand jury decision on November 24 not to indict Wilson, D'Angelo called his co-manager Kevin Liles and said, “Do you believe this? Do you believe it?” According to Liles, “And then we just sat there in silence. That is when I knew he wanted to say something.”

D’Angelo said, “The one way I do speak out is through music... I want to speak out.” The album notes say: “'Black Messiah' is a hell of a name for an album. It can be easily misunderstood. Many will think it’s about religion. Some will jump to the conclusion that I’m calling myself a Black Messiah. For me, the title is about all of us. It’s about the world. It’s about an idea we can aspire to. We should all aspire to be a Black Messiah.

"It’s about people rising up in Ferguson and in Egypt and in Occupy Wall Street and in every place where a community has had enough and decides to make change happen. It’s not about praising one charismatic leader but celebrating thousands of them. Not every song is politically charged (though many are), but calling this album 'Black Messiah' creates a landscape where these songs can live to the fullest. 'Black Messiah' is not one man. It’s a feeling that, collectively, we are all that leader."

One of the tracks on the album, "1,000 Deaths," begins with a soundbite from The Murder Of Fred Hampton, a 1971 documentary about the Chicago Black Panther shot dead by the police.

Another Song, "Till It’s Done (Tutu)," speaks to war and the environmental crisis:

Carbon pollution is heating up the air
Do we really know? Do we even care?
Acid rain dripping on our trees and in our hair
Clock ticking backwards on things we’ve already built
Sons and fathers die, soldier, daughters killed
Question ain’t do we have resources to rebuild
Do we have the will?

As people can see and hear when they watch the YouTube video of D’Angelo and the Vanguard’s recent performance of "Charade" on Saturday Night Live—this is a band with really great, tight music and a lot of heart and hope for a better world.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

From a World to Win News Service:

Greece: What is the problem Syriza is supposed to solve?

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


January 26, 2015. A World to Win News Service. The electoral victory of the Syriza party and the formation of a government with its leader Alexis Tsipras as prime minister is an important event, not just for Greece, but for Europe. This is not only because of the potential economic consequences for the European Union, but also because Syriza and Tsipras claim to represent a solution to the hardships that Greeks and many other Europeans have endured since the 2008 world financial crisis. “Far left” and ultra-right parties in Spain and France have seen the Syriza victory as heralding their own future electoral triumph.

For historical reasons that have to do with the late, weak and foreign-dominated development of capitalism in Greece, it has long been economically and politically subordinated to the big capitalist powers. Much of its ruling class, especially concentrated in shipping and banking (with major investments in the Middle East and later the Balkans), has been particularly intertwined with big-power capital, especially the UK and Germany, at various times and in various combinations, and the U.S.

This dominance has been violently enforced. Germany seized Greece in World War 2. Britain sent Winston Churchill and troops to support the Greek fascists facing a communist-led rebellion at the end of the war. When civil war broke out, the U.S. sent CIA advisers to direct the anti-guerilla strategy later applied in Vietnam: to defeat the guerrillas by emptying much of the countryside. The king went from being a British intermediary to an American one.

Greece did not follow the trajectory of the bigger and more developed European powers, for whom the three post-war decades were a period of vigorous economic growth and a fairly broad rise in living standards. Massive emigration and exile played a major role in transforming Greece from a rural to a modern urban country. Much of the country’s ruling capitalist bourgeoisie was and is concentrated in shipping and banks (major investors in the Middle East and later the Balkans), with a political base among the many traditionally-minded family business owners and self-employed professionals. It was not until the 1980s that the state was able to bring greater political stability through government spending and employment and the kind of social welfare measures implemented elsewhere in Europe.

The integration of Greece into the European and international market, and especially the international capital market, accelerating after Greece’s entry into the eurozone in 2001, brought about economic growth. Yet this process and its particular forms in Greece laid the basis for the particularly Greek severity of the later crisis. Government spending was to a large extent sustained by loans. The prosperity of the Greek economy actually weakened it structurally. Imports towered over exports. The big trade deficit, too, required loans to bridge the gap. That growth itself was fueled by foreign investment, including in the form of private bank loans.

German and French banks lent the Greek government money spent to import goods from Germany and buy war planes and other arms from France and the U.S. (amounting to 40 percent of Greek imports in the last decade). In effect, Greece was subsidizing the profitability of German, French and U.S. business. Further, of course, these loans were a form of investment which themselves yielded profits for capital based in other countries.

It has been charged that Greece became addicted to foreign credits. But at the same time, foreign finance capital became addicted to loaning money to Greece. The Greek government already had a high level of debt when Greece joined the eurozone, but its books were “cooked” to conceal the situation by the U.S. financial firm Goldman Sachs. This was not because of “corruption” but a consensus among all the big powers—the monopoly capitalist ruling classes and their governments—not to forgo the profits that could be gained by extending even more loans to Greece. Nor was this just a question of greed. None could afford not to grab when their rivals were grabbing profits to inject into their own economies. Some big French banks invested 40 percent of their capital in Greece. This pyramid scheme—debt paid for by borrowing and expanding debt—was a bonanza for foreign and Greek finance capital alike. High risks meant higher “spreads”—higher potential profits for those who bought into it.

The U.S. Lehman Brothers bank got the Greek government to agree to a derivative scheme, a restructuring of part of Greek government bonds, which became even more attractive for financial speculation with the country’s infrastructure (airports, seaports, etc.) as the collateral. Agreeing to these debt instruments was a short-term solution for the Greek government and its debtors, but ensured that the long-term debt could never be repaid under any imaginable circumstances. A competition-driven profit system that destroys the earth we live on can’t be expected to factor in other long-term consequences.

In 2008, when a financial meltdown swept the globalized economy, a process was launched in which Greece was lent more and more money in so-called “bailouts” so that its government could continue making payments on its debts to foreign and domestic banks and other creditors. In exchange, the “troika” formed in 2010 by the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank (now headed by Mario Draghi, formerly of Goldman Sachs) imposed draconian restrictions on Greek government spending. These cutbacks sent the Greek economy into a tailspin and its economy shrank by about a quarter. Even as some of its debt was paid down, its continuing payments soared in relation to its ability to pay through government revenues.

Salaries and pensions were slashed or simply went unpaid. Millions of jobs were lost. Hospitals and other vital public facilities closed. Many Greeks could no longer afford even electricity. They shivered in the winter and survived on charity food or by their wits while foreign financial companies fattened and Greek shipping companies and the large land holdings of the Greek Orthodox Church continued to enjoy tax exemptions.

To call this “austerity” doesn’t begin to describe the hardships imposed on Greeks. It is the worst collapse in living standards modern Europe has ever seen in peacetime. The main traditional ruling class parties, one historically rooted in the monarchy and fascism, the other social democratic, saw their attractiveness and credibility in tatters. Elected governments had trouble claiming to represent the will of the people when basic decisions were clearly out of their hands. In 2011, when Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou announced he would call a referendum on the country’s debt, he was publicly humiliated by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who told him otherwise. His social democratic government was followed by a rightist government led by a former vice-president of the European Central Bank. This is the background to Syriza’s rise.

If the situation is understood in this light, then even without trying to predict how events will unfold it is clear that Tsipras’s proposals (chiefly negotiating a debt reduction and making more government spending possible) cannot possibly bring about a basic resolution to the situation. Regardless of whether or not Greece leaves the eurozone—which Tsipras says he does not want—Greece is structurally dependent on its relations with capital based in the world’s biggest powers and the imperialist world economy as a whole. Further, Tsipras’ proposed continuing links with the EU and NATO are meant to keep Greece firmly on the dominating side of the Mediterranean.

This reactionary nationalism explains why his party formed a governing coalition with the Greek Orthodox, Greek-chauvinist, immigrant-bashing ANEL (the Independent Greeks party), which was given the key ministry of defence. That nationalism also explains the apparently paradoxical fact that Syriza is being hailed by both rightist and “leftist” parties in imperialist France and Spain, parties whose programme is not to overthrow the monopoly capitalist ruling classes in those countries but to bring back the social welfare schemes and living standards of the days when imperialism seemed to be thriving in Europe, even while crushing much of the rest of the world.

The situation in Greece is in many ways a concentration of the global contradiction between the “severe imbalances built up between the financial system—and its expectations of future profits—and the accumulation of capital, that is, the structures and actual production of profit based on exploitation of wage-labor.,” to quote Raymond Lotta (“Financial Meltdown and the Madness of Imperialism”, Revolution, 23 September 2008). How can capitalism in Greece unzip itself from the global, competition-driven profit system—which is not Syriza’s intention anyway? How could radical change in Greece—or anywhere else, for that matter—take place except as part of a country by country but ultimately worldwide revolution whose ultimate aim is the abolition of all exploitation and all the oppressive relations of class society?

To free Greece from this system would require a new kind of state, born of a revolutionary movement with the material power to shatter the state apparatus of the capitalist ruling class and then entirely reorganize the economy step by step, creating an economic, social and political system where the people could actually and increasingly have say over their lives, which is not at all the case in Greece, with or without Syriza. The ruling classes of Europe were frightened by the mass tumult and rejection of the measures imposed on Greeks. A revolutionary movement in Greece—and especially a revolution—could help transform the regional and even world political situation, which in turn would make a breakthrough in Greece more possible to achieve and sustain.

When “austerity”—a nice name for brutal mass impoverishment—first hit Greece, some commentators predicted that would spell the end of “democracy” there. The thinking was that a political system based on elections (and the whole traditional state apparatus that implies) could not survive if millions of people no longer believed in it. Among other things, the electoral triumph of Syriza represents a rebirth of false hope in the political and economic system that brought Greece to where it is today. Reformists in other European countries and elsewhere are placing their own hopes for a share in power, or at least government, on bolstering the illusion that radical problems can be solved by reformist means. The experience of the elected, self-proclaimed socialist government of Salvador Allende in Chile, overthrown by a U.S.-organized military coup in 1973, showed how raising hopes that a government is in no position to deliver on, imperialist economic pressure that a populist government has no plan to stand up to, and the resulting divisions among the people who united around it or accepted it, can pave the way for the fiercest repression.

The palpable failure of the old order, the discrediting of its institutions and the collapse of the daily routine that limits people’s horizons that Greece is experiencing today provide conditions for rapid revolutionary advance—if this situation is really used to do that. Syriza, which calls for an adjustment and not a revolutionary rupture, is serving as a main channel for people’s rage in Greece at the moment.

Our point here is not that Syriza could bring stability to Greek capitalism, although some representatives of foreign capital may think that some kind of deal with Syriza is in their best interests right now. Political and social stability is the least likely of all possible outcomes, not only in Greece but worldwide. But no matter what happens, fostering hope in the possibility of repairing and patching up the existing system is part of the problem, not the solution.

Within the political hodgepodge that is Syriza and among its supporters internationally, too, many leftists and people who consider themselves opponents of capitalism are, once again, suspending their once real or professed disbelief in the parliamentary and electoral path. Rather than help Greeks find a solution, they are themselves creating further obstacles and leaving people helpless in the face of what is likely to come: the further squeezing by the capitalist imperialist system and rapid and dangerous political gyrations.

(Among other sources, this article draws on the work of Stathis Kouvelakis, political philosophy lecturer at King’s College in London and Syriza central committee member, for both information and insight and some of the thinking that we critique here. [See New Left Review 72, November/December 2011 and Jacobin Magazine, January 2015.])


A World to Win News Service is put out by A World to Win magazine, a political and theoretical review inspired by the formation of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement, the embryonic center of the world's Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties and organizations.





Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Thousands Protest Fracking in Oakland

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Thousands of activists from all over California marched on February 7 from downtown Oakland to Lake Merritt to demand a ban on and an end to fracking. The day before, about 70 activists blocked the entrance to the State Office Building in San Francisco; 12 were arrested.

Oakland, February 7, 2015.

Marshall Islanders, Oakland, February 7

Oakland, February 7

Photos: Special to

Fracking is an environmental nightmare that involves pumping a mix of water, sand, and chemicals into the ground (including methane and propane) that spreads for miles underground, forcing the gas and oil up a well through fissures in the rock, where it is collected, put into trains, and sent off through cities and small towns, through farmlands, forests, and wild lands, to refineries thousands of miles away. (See “Fracking: an Environmental Nightmare.”)

There was a large contingent of people from the Marshall Islands where climate change (which fracking contributes to) is causing both drought and rising seas, with portions of the islands literally disappearing, while food and water supplies dwindle.

The demonstration brought together more than 100 grassroots groups, from labor to indigenous to environmental justice organizations. The protest was called the March for Real Climate Leadership. Many people carried signs in the shape of puzzle pieces, urging California Governor Jerry Brown and other “leaders” to be a “piece of the solution.”

The Revolution Club marched with a banner “The Capitalist System Is Destroying our Planet. Revolution Is the Solution.” Revolution Books distributed literature. There was vigorous discussion of capitalism and revolution throughout the day.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Excerpt from article published March 3, 2014

Ukraine: Not a “Democratic Uprising” but a Clash Between Predators

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


The following is an excerpt of an article originally published at March 3, 2014. We are currently posting this excerpt since it gives some important background to the conflict in Ukraine, which continues to sharpen.

Background to the Upheaval—the History and Strategic Significance of Ukraine

Ukraine is a country of 45 million people, geostrategically located in relation to Russia, Europe, the Middle East, and the Black Sea.

(Click map to enlarge)

What today constitutes the nation of Ukraine first emerged as a state in the 17th century, and by the end of the 18th century had largely been incorporated into the reactionary Czarist Russian Empire. In 1917, the Czarist Empire was overthrown by something new and unprecedented: the socialist revolution in Russia and the formation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), which included Ukraine. This was a radically different kind of society until socialism was reversed and capitalism restored in 1956. (For the real story of the nature and significance of the Soviet Union from 1917 to 1956, see: You Don’t Know What You Think You “Know” About...The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation: Its History and Our Future; and

From 1956 until 1991, the Soviet Union was an imperialist power (even though it called itself “communist”) locked in sharp confrontation with the U.S. imperialists—what was known as the Cold War. Ukraine was part of the Soviet bloc of countries until the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. It then became formally independent and was run by a new, openly capitalist ruling class.

Ukraine is rich agriculturally, industrially developed, and strategically located between Russia, Europe, and the Middle East. Today pipelines carrying Russian natural gas crisscross the country. The country straddles the Black Sea (which connects to the Mediterranean Sea), and Russia’s Black Sea fleet is based in Crimea, a part of Ukraine. Russia considers Ukraine key to its military position.

After the Soviet Union collapsed, Ukraine became the focal point of a new wave of contention between the U.S., Europe, and Russia. That contention is the main driving force in the upheaval now gripping the country. Broadly speaking, since 1991, the rulers of the U.S. have assessed that it is essential to maintaining their empire to lock in global supremacy, including by hemming Russia in and preventing it from re-emerging as a global challenger. A key element of this strategy has been working with its European imperialist allies to absorb former Soviet bloc countries into the European Economic Union and the U.S.-led NATO military alliance. (Ukraine has sought NATO membership.)

Meanwhile, Russia’s capitalist rulers are driven to rebuild Russian power and influence. In part, this involves attempting to reassert their influence over bordering countries once part of the Soviet bloc, including by using their enormous energy resources as economic and geopolitical leverage.

From 1991 on, these predatory imperialists—the U.S. and the European Union on one side (though the U.S. and Western Europe each have their own strategic agendas) and Russia on the other—have generally been in direct contradiction, even as there are times when these rival powers cooperate for their own reactionary interests.

The Hypocrisy of “Defending Ukrainian Sovereignty”

The news is filled with representatives of the U.S. ruling class denouncing Russian moves in Ukraine as clear violations of Ukrainian sovereignty.

The hypocrisy is astounding.

A leaked audio of a phone call between a top U.S. State Department official and the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine revealed these officials discussing which representative of the Ukraine ruling class should replace Yanukovych and how to effect that change. Remember, Yanukovych, yes, a representative of the oppressive Ukrainian ruling class, was nevertheless the elected president of the country. Imagine high-level operatives of some other country discussing, in the midst of the recent budget crisis in the U.S., for example, how to replace the president of the United States with a more malleable ally (one who they could better manipulate to serve their own interests).

And then U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry railed that “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pretext.”

Really!? Did Kerry forget the long list of U.S. invasions, coups and proxy wars in the 20th and 21st centuries, from southern Africa to Iran, from Vietnam to Iraq—all justified by one “trumped up pretext” after another. What was the invasion of Iraq—justified by the “trumped up pretext” of “weapons of mass destruction?” Millions and millions of people died as a result of these U.S. coups, proxy wars, and invasions.

Actually, Kerry meant you can do anything under any pretext if you are the United States, but you can’t do it if you’re messing with the interests of the U.S. Empire.

The Clash Over Ukraine

When Obama claims the U.S. is protecting the interests of the people of Ukraine, he’s lying. Again, the leaked exchange by U.S. operatives discussing how to effect regime change in Ukraine doesn’t even mention the interests of the people.

But when Obama says the U.S. is “deeply concerned” about the situation, he’s not lying. Ukraine has been a focus of the clash between these powers, and the U.S., Europe, and Russia have all been deeply involved in shaping events in the country. For instance, in 2004, the Orange Revolution brought to power, with direct U.S. and European support, ruling class forces favorable to drawing closer to the West. Russia countered on a number of fronts, including in 2006 cutting off natural gas supplies to Ukraine to weaken the government. Meanwhile, Ukraine has been gripped with economic crisis, a facet of the current shocks and crises of global capitalism, and many have been suffering greatly.

This past November things came to a head. Ukraine has been desperately seeking international financial and economic aid. Such international “aid” packages are shaped by the imperatives of global capitalism and by the geopolitical interests of the “donor” countries. The U.S. and the EU have been offering Ukraine “aid” in the form of closer integration into the EU and possibly an International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout. But these would involve adhering to their strictures. These often include severe austerity measures, including slashing social safety nets and sharply increasing the price of basic commodities like food, public transportation and energy—measures which have literally starved and killed people and also led to mass rebellion, for example in Greece.

Russia countered, offering Ukraine $15 billion in aid and cheap natural gas, without, reportedly, demanding that Ukraine reject Western “aid.” Apparently, Yanukovych felt the Russian deal was a better option for stabilizing the situation, perhaps fearing the kind of discontent and revolt that accompanied IMF-imposed measures in Greece, and signed it. This outraged the Western imperialists and various factions of the Ukrainian ruling class, who escalated their protests and behind-the-scenes jockeying. Top U.S. and European officials have been in direct contact with Ukrainian government and bourgeois opposition figures and have gone to Ukraine to personally support anti-Yanukovych protests.

This global rivalry set the stage for the February 18-22 surge of clashes and the implosion of Yanukovych’s government. On February 22, a deal brokered by U.S. allies Germany and Poland to temporarily ease the crisis was signed by President Yanukovych and Ukraine’s bourgeois opposition. The New York Times reported: “A rejection of Russian aid seems to have been one of the conditions set....Europe and the United States have been leaning heavily on Kiev to accept that only a Western aid package led by the International Monetary Fund can rescue Ukraine’s economy.” (“With President’s Departure, Ukraine Looks Toward a Murky Future”).

The situation remains fluid and extremely volatile, with sections of people being mobilized around a range of reactionary programs, armed forces aligned with Russia taking up positions in Crimea, the Russian parliament authorizing sending troops into Ukraine, and Obama threatening that there will be “costs” if Russia moves into part of Ukraine.

Where Do the People’s Interests Lie?

None of these clashes and maneuvering between rival world powers and rival Ukrainian capitalists have done anything positive for the people who’ve suffered enormously under one predatory, oppressive government after another. The vaunted deal now cut by the West with Ukraine is more of the same, and there’s nothing positive about the current configuration of power or the outcome of the current crisis in Ukraine. Instead, truly grave dangers loom.

However, the sudden, unexpected emergence of this crisis, seemingly out of nowhere, does reveal an aspect of the impermanence of the existing order. The imperialists themselves sense this potential. The German newspaper Der Spiegel called the clash in Ukraine and heightened rivalry between the U.S., the EU, and Russia “a chess game in a minefield.”

The existing world order will not fundamentally change without conscious forces acting on it, but it is not a wall of permanence and stability, particularly now. All this underscores, once again, the crying need to work urgently for the emergence of genuine revolutionary communist leadership to forge another path for humanity, away from this dark past of oppressive regimes and cynical wars. Without this, imperialist and reactionary forces will continue to plunge the world into new, unprecedented nightmares.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

The Cold but Liberating Truth About the Police, the Struggle for Justice, and Revolution

January 14, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |




The TRUTH is this:

The 1000s who took the streets against the police murdering people and walking free were RIGHT...

The police are NOT heroes...

They are NOT “serving and protecting” the people...

They function like an occupying army against Black and Latino people in this country: harassing, brutalizing and murdering people...

And if we want this to stop, we have to build up our movement to re-take the streets, even more massively than before, and even as we learn more deeply how to get at the root of this madness and end it once and for all. WE HAVE TO ACT.

New York City, December 13, 2014. Posters of the eyes of Eric Garner by French artist JR are carried in a march of thousands. Photo: Special to


The Reality of Black Lives

For four short months, beginning in August with the rebellion in Ferguson, MO, and especially in the five weeks after the grand juries in Ferguson and then New York freed the cops who murdered Mike Brown and Eric Garner, Black lives actually did matter in this country.

No, not to those who run and enforce this system; Black lives never have and never will matter to them, except to be exploited or as a source of potential threat to their system. But to the millions who generally just go along with things and don’t allow themselves to think about the horror right beneath the surface—yes, suddenly they were forced to confront the reality of what happens to Black and other oppressed peoples in this society day in and day out, and what has been going on in one form or another since Day One of this country.

And what IS that reality?

Michael Brown's father, shortly after Michael Brown was murdered by police

Michael Brown's stepfather, shortly after Michael Brown was murdered by police. "Ferguson police just executed my unarmed son!!!" Photo: AP

In case we forget, we can go on YouTube and look at the latest video to come out of Cleveland, Ohio where not only did police murder a 12-year-old Black boy, Tamir Rice, for allegedly playing with a toy gun at a playground, but it has come out and can be seen that they shot him less than 2 seconds after they came on the scene and then not only tackled and detained his sister who ran to help him, but stood there while he bled out and died, refusing to come to his aid! Where is the humanity?

In case we forget, we can just look in the newspapers and find out that, far from being an “isolated” incident, the chokehold that the New York police used to murder Eric Garner—another case where these cops stood around and did nothing to aid a man who was dying in front of them, due to their vicious and monstrous actions—is actually the first thing that many cops resort to when arresting someone. Not only is this supposedly forbidden by their rule books, but it has also come out that when they are caught and the so-called Civilian Review Board recommends punishment, nothing is ever done! Where is the justice?

In case we forget, we can read the author Isabel Wilkerson who, like many others, has recently compared the numbers of police murders of Black people to the numbers of lynchings of Black people during the height of Ku Klux Klan terror—and found that the police murders are even more frequent. These murders and this all-around harassment, abuse, intimidation and violence by police serve the same social function as the Klan lynchings: to terrorize an oppressed people, to “keep them in their place.” Where, really, is the so-called progress?

What the Demonstrations Accomplished

But—again—these last few months were different. People did NOT forget and they did NOT block this out from their minds and they began to actually confront this and think about it. Why? Fundamentally because in August, when the police murdered Michael Brown, people in Ferguson rose up—and in large part, those at the backbone were the people on the bottom of society, who are so often demonized and hounded. This rallied others and made it impossible for the powers-that-be to put things back in a box. All eyes were kept on Ferguson and New York. Would there be justice?

Then, when the grand juries allowed the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner to walk, tens, maybe hundreds, of thousands of people blocked traffic and in many other ways disrupted “business as usual.” People in Ferguson again rose up and in dozens of other cities people of ALL nationalities and skin colors came into the streets, night after night. Millions were inspired, and tens of millions were forced to take notice, here and all over the world. Millions said or chanted or whispered “I can’t breathe” and in doing so broke a suffocation that had been locked down on people for decades. The thinking of millions was changed, and this was a huge accomplishment of the struggle.

It took massive disruptive action to do this. These actions were part of reaching into the deepest suppressed feelings of millions, opening people up to new ideas, and beginning to change the thinking both of those who acted and those who watched. This has been a great beginning, even as it is just that—a beginning.

They Are Trying to Kill This Movement With Lies—What Is the REAL Truth? And What Do We Need to Do?

But in the past few weeks, even as people have in many places bravely continued to fight and even as writers have continued to expose the reality, this new movement faces a big challenge. After trying—and failing—to suppress the movement with arrests, with demonization, and through many other means, the powers-that-be seized on the killings of two police in New York to take the offensive. Overnight, any criticism of police was ruled out of bounds. All kinds of distortions and lies were put out, all kinds of threats were made, and the police and their defenders—none of whom ever once came forward to say that what they and their fellow cops had done and do every day to Black and Latino people was in any way wrong—dominated the airwaves.

Because there have been so many lies put out there, it’s important to clear the air with some truth.

These lies are thin and paltry, but if they go unchallenged then the thinking of millions of people will again be shut down. And these murderers and their masters will again get away with these horrors—unless and until people once again rise up and take the streets. THAT—new waves of struggle, even more massive and defiant than before (including struggle over how people are understanding things)—is a necessary part of shining a light through the fog of lies to get the truth out and more deeply changing the thinking of the millions who have been programmed to go along with all this madness.

So that is definitely one huge challenge before the people right now: to go back on the offensive and bring forward even more massive waves of struggle to STOP these outrages. Not mitigate them, not tone them down—but STOP them.

Right now the Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN) is joining with others to host a national meeting in early February to develop plans that will re-take initiative on this front. Everyone who has been fighting this, all the different groups who want to see this stop, should be part of this, sorting out differences and uniting more strongly.

At the same time, our Party and the Revolution Clubs are organizing people FOR revolution in the communities and campuses all over. We are mobilizing people to fight the power, in very active and determined ways, and at the same time working to transform people’s thinking... FOR revolution. This is critical... and you can and should be part of this, going up against the powers while learning more about the revolution.

Why Does This Happen?

This gets to another big challenge that has to be met: getting to WHY this goes on, and what must be done to STOP it once and for all.

Why do the police do this? Bob Avakian, the leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party, has put it this way:

The role of the police is not to serve and protect the people. It is to serve and protect the system that rules over the people. To enforce the relations of exploitation and oppression, the conditions of poverty, misery and degradation into which the system has cast people and is determined to keep people in. The law and order the police are about, with all of their brutality and murder, is the law and order that enforces all this oppression and madness.

Think about it. THIS is at the heart of what goes on in the ghettos and barrios all over the country. “Relations of exploitation and oppression” are being “enforced.” And these relations go far beyond the ghetto. Think about what goes into just the daily functioning of this system, in addition to the killing discrimination and slow genocide now coming down on African-Americans, and Latinos, and other oppressed peoples within the U.S.:

We Need a Revolution—A REAL Revolution!

These horrors are a big part of what we’re talking about when we say “relations of exploitation and oppression.” This is what is enforced by their cops, their armies, their prisons, their courts and all the rest. This is what is defended and covered over by their media and their politicians. A system that not only produces these horrors, but feeds on them and requires them to keep going, is a system that must be done away with. And the only way it can be done away with is through revolution.

Revolution is not just a catchword. It means something, something real. As we have said:

An actual revolution is a lot more than a protest. An actual revolution requires that millions of people get involved, in an organized way, in a determined fight to dismantle this state apparatus and system and replace it with a completely different state apparatus and system, a whole different way of organizing society, with completely different objectives and ways of life for the people. Fighting the power today has to help build and develop and organize the fight for the whole thing, for an actual revolution. Otherwise we’ll be protesting the same abuses generations from now!

We, our Party, has taken responsibility not only to take up this fight today but to build this as part of getting organized for an actual revolution. And listen—this is not something that has to be way far off—a lot depends on what all of us do, right now and in the immediate future. Our Party has developed a strategy to make revolution. Our Party has developed a vision of what is to replace this system. Our Party is developing the theoretical fighting doctrine through which people could actually meet and defeat these imperialists, even with all their power, once conditions change and the all-out struggle for power comes on the agenda.

AND: we have in Bob Avakian (BA) a leader who has given his heart and soul to the masses of people and who has developed a visionary new synthesis of communism, a deeper understanding of human emancipation. A leader like BA is something rare, and this is a great strength for our movement. “If you are serious about an actual revolution, you have to get seriously into BA.” Our Party is made up of revolutionary fighters dedicated to leading masses of people to get free of this madness, applying science to the problems we face, and organized into the structure of our Party to do that. And we have a way for you to get with this, to learn about this as you are fighting back, to get organized to actually make a revolution.

The time is now. The challenge is there... the leadership is there... what is needed, very urgently right now, is YOU.

Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution!
Get Organized for an Actual Revolution!


To learn more, explore this website, And check out the dialogue between Bob Avakian and Cornel West, “Revolution and Religion: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion.”




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Police and Sheriffs in the San Francisco Bay Area Shoot and Kill Two People on the Same Afternoon

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

In the city of Antioch in the San Francisco Bay Area, a Contra Costa Sheriff's Deputy responding to a "domestic disturbance" call shot and killed 29-year-old Dewayne Ward, who police claim was charging at him with a knife. One neighbor, speaking to a Contra Costa Times reporter, said, "No shooting should have happened. There could have been a better way."

On the same day, at a Home Depot in Emeryville, Emeryville police chased a Black woman, Yvette Henderson, for an alleged shoplifting incident into neighboring Oakland, a couple of blocks away. The cops shot her multiple times as she was cornered in a storage unit alcove. Police claim she had a gun (and now even claim she had attempted three carjackings). However, many of the people who gathered at the killing site were skeptical of the police story. One witness claims Yvette Henderson was running down the street screaming with a purse in her hand, while another woman who was on a bus (that Henderson tried to flag down) told Contra Costa Times, "The girl did not have no gun. She was waving her hands."

A vigil for Yvette Henderson was quickly called for, and over 70 people gathered at a makeshift site of candles and a "Stolen Lives" banner showing people killed by the police. The vigil included members of the Revolution Club, the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, and a wide number of groups and individuals who have participated in the recent upsurges against police murder. Also present were a few residents of the small neighborhood that is being encroached upon by the big box stores like Home Depot just a few blocks away. One of the residents was outraged that police let Yvette Henderson's body remain where she died for almost six hours, which reminded him of how the police in Ferguson left Mike Brown's body on the street for four hours to "terrorize" the people. He said "things are getting worse now,” pointing out how the cops had shot down "a woman running away from them."

A little over half the crowd then marched to the Home Depot to disrupt business as usual, and later returned to the vigil. As people discussed what is needed to do, an announcement was made by a SMIN member that people should come to the meeting called by SMIN for February 7-8 in Atlanta and prepare for a nationwide Shut Down Day on April 14.

People are watching closely for developments in these two latest cases of people killed by police.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

NYC Revolution Club Member Takes on Attack against Ferguson Rebellion

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

Former New York City mayor David Dinkins, together with Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams (a former NYC cop and State Senator), were on a panel at Columbia University on February 5 called “Improving Police-Community Relations.”

The program opened with Adams, the ex-cop, trash-talking the righteous rebellion in Ferguson, Missouri, as the “wrong” way to protest, as violent and counter-productive. Noche Diaz, member of the NYC Revolution Club, sprang to his feet calling out the bullshit. And he called on people to come to the Stop Mass Incarceration Network conference in Atlanta on February 7-8. (See YouTube video of what happened.)

After Noche left the room, there was a changed mood. Later in the program, others in the audience spoke out. An ex-cop spoke with outrage at the ways the police get away with murder after murder—while it’s guaranteed that if someone harms a police officer, they’re going to be locked up for a long time. Others pointed out that police rape women, and how youth are trained to accept having a target on their backs. When another member of the Revolution Club stood up to say she was “thoroughly convinced that NONE of this is going to change short of a revolution,” the panelists and the room had to address the question of revolution as the solution. Some said that revolution can’t succeed; others said, yes, but it would have to be a nonviolent, MLK kind of “revolution.”

People afterward came up to the Revolution Club members, including a mother whose son had been murdered by the NYPD. People said they were glad the club was there at the program, had told the truth, had challenged the speakers, and continued to be out in the streets.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation

eBook available at and other retailers.
Order information at

Download pdf flyer

Communism: Setting the Record Straight

February 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


This eBook takes on and refutes the ruling and false narrative of capitalist society that communism has been a failure and nightmare. Raymond Lotta analyzes the actual reality of the Russian and Chinese revolutions: their liberatory aims and extraordinary accomplishments; their shortcomings and problems; and the causes of their eventual defeat. He discusses Bob Avakian’s new synthesis of communism and the basis to go further and do better in a new stage of communist revolution. The reader will come away with new, scientific understanding of how these revolutions opened a whole new chapter in world history.


Chapter 1

Chapter 2
The First Dawn—The Paris Commune

Chapter 3
1917—The Revolution Breaks Through in Russia

Chapter 4
China—One Quarter of Humanity Scaling New Heights of Emancipation

Chapter 5
Toward a New Stage of Communist Revolution

Notes on Epistemology

Illustrated Timeline
The REAL History of Communist Revolution

An account of the history of communist revolutions that focuses on the creation of new institutions, organizations and collective practices that have been largely ignored in the standard literature.

—Michael Brown,
Professor of Sociology and Anthropology,
Northeastern University

A welcome counterpoint to the contemporary treatment of communist history, demonstrating vividly why and how so many millions of people joined these movements, or drew inspiration from them.

Thomas Lutze,
Professor of History,
Illinois Wesleyan University

Raymond Lotta's research and argumentation demonstrate forcefully that a better world for humanity is indeed possible.

—Dongping Han,
author of The Unknown Cultural Revolution:
Life and Change in a Chinese Village







Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Houston: Revolutionaries Bring Police Meeting to a Halt

February 10, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper | received this correspondence:

A February 7 “town hall meeting” organized at Texas Southern University (TSU) by the Houston Police Department (HPD), and intended to promote “community engagement” with the police, was turned on its head. Revolutionaries marched in carrying pictures of people who have been murdered by the police, chanting “hands up, don’t shoot,” “I can’t breathe,” and “arrest, indict, send the killer cops to jail. The whole damn system is guilty as hell.” 

The meeting was brought to a halt as the revolutionaries marched to the front of the stage. Three were arrested and dragged from the auditorium. Outside, several of the 20 people who had come to protest the event exposed the police for arresting the revolutionaries.

One Black man yelled at the pigs, “They didn't hurt nobody, they didn't shoot nobody, all they did was talk and you make this a crime! You talk about all these other countries that don't allow people to speak. What kind of country is this that people can't speak? They were just telling the truth!” In the midst of all this, some people chanted, “Who are the real criminals, the police are the real criminals,” and “shame on you.”

As word got out about the arrests, several people jumped into action to get the arrested revolutionaries out of jail. A couple of people spread it all over social media, while other people went out and raised bail money. A revolutionary raised over $200 from family and friends. A student went out to his friends and donated $180. Other people also donated. One person said that she is very concerned about the people arrested and that she does not like how the authorities are responding to political protest. A student drove to TSU and talked to other students there. The TSU students said that they had all been encouraged to attend the town hall meeting, but most of them didn’t because they saw it as a slap in the face. One guy said that “it looks like a military occupation” of their campus. They were excited to hear about the protest and said that they would check out the Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN) because all of the killing of youth by the police has got to stop. 

Texas Southern University is a historically Black school in the heart of the 3rd ward, one of the oldest and largest Black communities in Houston. The HPD enlisted the support of a network of pastors for the event, which included a helicopter, SWAT mobiles, a kid-friendly robot, and cookies and punch. A key feature of the program was enactments of a high-tech "training" simulator called “shoot don’t shoot,” which is aimed at getting people to “step into the shoes of the police” and see what a "hard job" they have. 

This is in the context of the tremendous outpourings of resistance against police murder and brutality around the country and in Houston—and as police brutality and murder have continued with impunity. Only about 40 people not affiliated with the police showed up for the event, and about half of them were there to protest. Revolutionaries were in the middle of this mix, and struggled with people to take things further and more boldly challenge this pig fest, as part of retaking the initiative in the struggle for police murder and brutality to stop. The police are working to push the whole struggle backwards, and this is not acceptable. As a revolutionary said during the protest action, on that same day in Atlanta, people from around the country were gathered in the meeting called by SMIN to develop plans for April 14—Stop Business as Usual! and ran down the demands from the April 14 Call.




Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Ex-Prisoner on the Dialogue and the Dinner:

“Everyone was Feeling It”—People Need to See This

February 11, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

I sat down with a former prisoner who attended the Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian, “REVOLUTION AND RELIGION: the Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion.” We watched the beginning of the footage of the Dialogue online, through the speeches by both BA and Cornel West. I want to share three of his many important observations.

You're Invited To:

A BA Everywhere Fundraising Dinner

Getting Ready for a Spring of Putting Revolution in the Air

Read more

1. "That story about Clyde Young was so good. Everybody needed to hear that. That's about the hope. People the system says are the worst of the worst can change and be part of this. If you don't get that part you are missing a big part of what BA's speech is about." Later he commented on what it would mean for it to be heard when the movie of the film comes out.

2. He spoke about how the Dialogue brought home how no one is doing what BA is doing, offering the real analysis of the problem and the solution of real revolution.

3. On November 15 this brother was sitting in a section of Riverside Church with a lot of people from the oppressed neighborhoods in Harlem and elsewhere. He described how people responded to different parts of both speeches: Cornel West, too but mainly BA, He talked about the enthusiasm and excitement, around how BA went after the murderous history of this country and the oppression of Black people and others, How he spoke about how those on the bottom are treated and he talked about the environment, what the U.S. did in Indonesia, and how he challenged all of them, including him. He spoke about how people cheered, spoke back "that's right" and also how there was uneasiness at times around "the truth" around religion and Obama, but intense listening and going with BA through this and being with him in real ways.

Watch NOW!
Re-broadcast of the November 15 Simulcast

Then he said, "When BA talked about how the world could be different in the 'What If...' part of the speech almost everybody in that section was in tears, including me. People were feeling it." He went on to cite several of the "What ifs...": any woman being able to walk down the street and look any man in the eye without fear; no borders, no more people considered “immigrants” ... in this overall thing that was going on among that part of the audience, something even more moving and powerful came from both women and men. Some people came to their feet applauding and shouting  "Yes!" – breaking into smiles and laughter. 

This brother went on to think out loud about what it meant that people were moved so profoundly and the impact the release of the professional film of the Dialogue needs to have—millions seeing this across the country and among all sections of people. He is struggling for his partner and others from the projects to come to the Dinner this Sunday—so people can see the advance clips of the new film and get involved in spreading this everywhere this spring.



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Revolution #373 February 9, 2015

Thoughts on a Recent Experience—Building for the BAE Dinner on February 15—In the Moment!

“A Whole Section of People Who Are Decisive to This Revolution Was Standing Right in Front of Me.”

February 11, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

The BA Everywhere Dinner on February 15—“Getting Ready for a Spring of Putting Revolution in the Air”—raising funds to spread the new film of the powerful Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian, “REVOLUTION AND RELIGION: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion”—really presents a depth of going at, and going up against, all of the ways good people are wrangling with “what's the state of things, what's the way forward?” and all too often ending up in dead-end programs and worse.

You're Invited To:

A BA Everywhere Fundraising Dinner

Getting Ready for a Spring of Putting Revolution in the Air

Read more

A couple of us went to a panel discussion and a powerful exhibit at an important African American art museum on the New Jim Crow. It was a thoughtful audience of all ages and people were deeply moved by the art and photos. There were numbers of Black college-age folks there. The panelists raised questions in relation to police murder, like “is this what you want your democracy to look like? There is a democracy that looks different than this that we should be fighting for.”  Selma was raised in this context of fighting for a better democracy. We worked at engaging in sharp exchange that brought out important differences in a principled way, but uniting with the deep outrage people felt at the way the system does the people.  We brought out how this country's “democracy” is a slave-owners' democracy, and we need to, and can! overturn this whole setup and bring something far better and liberating into being.

I felt in this room—and this is multiplied in so many places right now—that a whole section of people who could be—and need to be!—connected with BA in this moment; who could be—need to be!—a decisive part of this whole real revolution—was standing right in front of me. A number of people spoke with us after the formal discussion was over. One young woman was seething beneath the surface. There were big questions she didn't articulate outright about why things are the way they are and how they can change. There was deep outrage and it was deeply personal, as she described experiences in her life. She didn't have solutions and had not thought about the possibility of getting to a different world. When asked, What do you think we need, she answered “more diversity.” I asked her, “If you were able to do what you're saying for people of color, how would that change the world? Even if it were to mean something in this country, what about the people of Nigeria, what about the people of the world?”

I posed that in a real fight for a different kind of world, you could end national oppression, there could be a real fight around the environment, around the brutalization and degradation of women, around all these horrors. This was new, but intriguing to her.

Watch NOW!
Re-broadcast of the November 15 Simulcast

I told her that you'll see in the livestream [at right] of the Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian a way that it all could change. That millions should see this—there is a historic battle going on right now over standing up and bringing something new and emancipatory into being, or settling back into the horrors of what this system does—and you can be part of this revolution.

She said she wanted to go meet up with some of her friends after leaving the program. I asked if I could join them. We went to her campus and another friend joined us. They called around to get other friends to come. There was discussion of the art work at the museum, and the approach to art in the socialist world that BA talks about in this film. They were excited by this. They invited me, or maybe other revolutionary leaders, to speak to their group, their friends, people at the school, this week.

This young woman is doing a project interviewing people in prison. I told her we know so many people who have been in prison.  “Oh, can I talk to them?”  You could see how things can come together—not just in the future, but now—crossing lines, breaking down the barriers among the people.

They asked, “Can a white man represent everybody—most especially Black people?”  I referenced what BA said about how if he was Black and male, he wouldn't be female; if he was Latino and gay, he wouldn't be something else ...  More importantly, that BA's work has contributed to the emancipation of humanity, and getting at understanding reality—there's not a “brown reality,” a “Black reality”—there's different experiences, but we all confront reality that we all have to collectively change. You'll see that BA in this Dialogue has contributed a huge amount to getting to a place where there is genuine human liberation. 

One of the friends said that they were going to watch the whole Dialogue in the next two days.  They took a book of 5 tickets for the BA Everywhere dinner. They were excited about bringing their Black Student Union to the dinner.

We all left each other with a lot to think about—and a lot to move on right now.