Revolution #563, October 1, 2018 (

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

| Revolution Newspaper |


Who is Bob Avakian?


What You Can Do

Join the Movement for Revolution

What People Are Saying

Resources for Social Media & Promotion

Audio Downloads

A Speech by Bob Avakian

This speech is in two parts. Watch here:

"...we have two choices: either, live with all this—and condemn future generations to the same, or worse, if they have a future at all—or, make revolution!" —Bob Avakian

To read or print the text of the speech, click HERE

To download videos of the speech and the Q&As, click HERE

Contribute for this speech to reach all those who hunger for a radically different world... to spread this revolution everywhere.


What would you give for this to be seen by tens of thousands to begin?

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Be part of putting revolution on the map...


Spread this trailer everywhere.

Set up a showing to watch with your friends.

Contact us HERE.

Or come to a Revolution Books or Revolution Club organizing center.

Resources for Social Media & Promotion

Points of Attention for the Revolution The Revolution Club upholds, lives by and fights for the following principles:

Read the Points of Attention

Connect with the Revolution Club

BA Through the Years
View Bob Avakian speaking in 1969, 1979, and 2003

Connect with
The Bob Avakian Institute:

See and share more videos and statements—and make your own—spread the word


From Isabel Cardenas
Salvadoran-American activist

“This country and this world are in turmoil. What Bob Avakian says about having a revolution in [this film] ~ this may be the only answer. ... my god the people of this country and all over the planet need this!”

Read full statement

Letter from a Prisoner after watching this film

“Comrades, I just finished watching the new film by Bob Avakian, the architect of the new synthesis of communism... BA makes it clear that it does not have to be this way. There is a scientific approach that the masses (most oppressed) can take to emancipate themselves and all of humanity...”

Read full statement

Some thoughts on responses to seeing this film

At the film showing in Los Angeles... [One person] responded, ‘WOW! This is just on a whole other level. Avakian went to a whole other place. Wow.’

I thought the comment about “a whole other place” spoke to the heart of the film... BA is a person who not only does a scientific analysis of the cruel system we live under, but has an answer...

Read more




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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Showings Around the Country: People Were Inspired and Provoked to Think About What They Had Never Imagined Possible

| Revolution Newspaper |


A week ago, the weekend of September 22-23, more than 250 people across the country attended special preview screenings of the groundbreaking film of a speech by Bob Avakian (BA), Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution.

These preview screenings were held outdoors at a park in Los Angeles, at Revolution Books in New York and Berkeley, and at the Revolution Club Organizing Center in Chicago. More preview screenings were planned this past weekend—stay tuned to to hear about them. These preview screenings are part of generating momentum, buzz, and organization for the online premiere on October 19.

As we wrote earlier this week, “People were rapt... taking in and wrestling with the stark case that Bob Avakian (BA) makes in Part 1 of this film for why we face only two choices: either we live with the horrors that this system brings down on the people, or, we make revolution. Then, in Part 2, he breaks down a question that has bedeviled people for decades and more: How we could really make revolution in a country like this and what we have to do now to make that real. People were inspired and provoked to think about what they had never imagined possible.”

A member of the Revolution Club, New York City, captured the mood and sentiment at these previews, saying, “You could feel when people really connected with something in the film and you could feel when assumptions and comfort zones were being challenged. Some in the audience took careful notes and others did not take their eyes off the screen.... BA’s speech opened up interrogation of how the system of capitalism-imperialism operates as well as the possibility for things to be different.... The film led some of the people we spoke with to begin questioning things they had never questioned before. A high school student really captured it when she said she felt she’s been lied to all her life about many of the things spoken to in the film. Some of the people we spoke to also said they were challenged by a lot of what’s in the second half of the film. Overall hearing someone put forward and get into the complexity and dynamics of real revolution was challenging for some people and very attractive for others.”

This broadly characterized and captured the sentiment and mood across the country.

Those who attended came from a variety of perspectives. For example, according to a report on the New York City showing, “People came from all over the city and beyond and it was a very diverse audience. There were musicians and artists, students and young people, veterans of the ’60s, an attorney and other professionals, and residents from Harlem.... There were a number of new people who came who had never been to Revolution Books before.... People had a lot on their minds and many had come to engage, to learn, and to look for answers.”

Similarly, according to a report on the preview in Chicago, those who attended were a “diverse mix, some visiting our center for the first time, [they] included a couple who drove three hours from out of state, three people from a suburb north of Chicago, a foreign-born professor, a young man whose father had to leave El Salvador in the 1980s because of threats from the U.S.-backed death squads, as well as people from the neighborhood of the center and other parts of the South Side. The film was punctuated from the audience by outbursts of laughter, applause, thoughtful comments, and shouts of ‘All Played Out.’”

In Los Angeles, several people commented that Part 1 presented an “airtight, irrefutable” argument for why this system can’t be reformed—but that Part 2 was going to be “uphill.” However, they were thinking about real revolution in the U.S. in ways they had never considered before. A Latino organizer and activist responded, “WOW! This is just on a whole other level. Avakian went to a whole other place. Wow.”

The responses to the film from those attending the previews reveal the potential difference this film could make if seen by thousands and tens of thousands soon. A sample of brief excerpted video responses and testimonials can be viewed and spread on social media. Written and verbal responses also reflect this (see box).

One person met at a protest against global warming said she loved the way BA showed how the system works in Part 1. She said the second part left her with a lot of questions, and she wants to think about it more. She said it’s “a heartbreak” to learn that there is nothing good about this system. She’s trying to wrap her head around that. She understands and seems to appreciate that she can contribute now, as she is learning.

In conversation with a correspondent, one person said that he was very impressed with BA’s ability to present such deep analysis in ways that he could understand and then, commenting on the second half of the film, said that he had never thought about revolutionary strategy like this... that it was all very new to him and a lot of information to absorb, some of which went past him but which he wants to understand better. A criminal defense lawyer who had shared the film trailer on Facebook, and considers BA “brilliant,” really emphasized the importance of more people seeing BA. She was frustrated with people when they dismiss things like communism, and says she is attracted to the basic morality and principles of communism. A young Latino guy just getting involved in the Revolution Club, who was very engaged and taking notes during the film, said he felt like Bob Avakian was speaking to him and that he wishes he had heard about this years ago. He said that he wishes all the “warriors” who are “lost” right now could watch this film.

There were a lot of follow-up conversations, questions, and wanting to learn and discuss more, most discussions going well past the scheduled ending times, particularly with members of the Revolution Club. People discussed what will replace this society and the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America as a framework for a radically different and far better society. People also got into how the 5 Stops cannot be resolved under capitalism-imperialism. There were deep interrogation and questions on whether and how we can actually win when the time is ripe to go for an actual seizure of power. Many were feeling really challenged by this dimension and wrangling with what to do NOW to prepare for that situation.

One of the key objectives of these preview screenings was building up the organizing capacity towards the online premiere and beyond—especially with fundraising, sparking a social movement of showings going into the premieres, and spreading word of the film through social media and wherever people gather through posters, palm cards, and other publicity materials. Ideas were solicited from people on how to spread the word and impact society with this film—because what is needed are people, their ideas and thinking. As the report from Chicago said, “There was some beginning brainstorming about fundraising which included organizing a benefit in an area of artist galleries and holding a back-alley, nighttime party at our center. People were encouraged to donate on the spot, and some did, including at the new GoFundMe site. People signed up for and talked about the plan to have 500 people post the video on their social media platforms when it premieres, and promoting it on their platforms between now and then.”

There was also organizing people into the movement for revolution, through getting involved in the Revolution Clubs, Revolution Books, The BA Institute, and into the struggle led by Refuse Fascism to drive out the fascist Trump/Pence regime. Experiences in organizing people were uneven across the country, and there is a lot to learn.

Stay tuned to as we learn more, and share lessons learned.

This is an exciting beginning, but only a beginning!

What’s next? FOUR THINGS TO DO

Show the film wherever we can.

Pull together family or friends or people we work with... take it to groups and classes at school ... wherever ... let people see this and learn about the revolution. Let them experience Bob Avakian, the leader of the revolution and the developer of the new communism that is the road to emancipating humanity. Give people ways, from small to large, to get involved in spreading this. Where possible, more experienced people should be paired with less experienced, but everyone can do this. To get a copy of the film to show to your group, contact Revolution Books, or the Revolution Club in your area, or write to for an advance screening link. Read “How to be part of a mass movement to spread BA's speech.”

Raise money. The next 2 weekends are fundraising weekends for the film!

We need money to get word of this film out to thousands! Many people, once they see the trailer, will want a chance to support the movement to spread this film. When you ask people to donate you are giving them an opportunity to be a part of a national effort to change the world. Everyone who wants this film to be seen should be planning and organizing now for these weekend efforts. And, fundraising should be part of everything we all do—when we are talking to individuals, or groups, or just spreading the word on social media or on the streets. It’s a key part of getting organized for revolution. There’s an online fundraising campaign. Anyone can do it, and there are many ways to fundraise—from shaking the can, to bake sales, to fundraising parties. Send in your ideas and experience (write to

Get out promo materials 

Let’s get promotional palm cards and posters out into different neighborhoods, so people are anticipating and looking for the premiere of the film on October 19. People can do this alone, but it’s more fun and effective for a bunch of people to tackle a neighborhood or a campus.

Post on social media.

Let’s brainstorm on how to use the social networks that we’re on, and get onto ones we’re not, to spread the trailer of the film and build for the online premiere on October 19.

IMPORTANT: Your ideas and your accounts of your experience are vital to this movement. We are all needed to get to work on this with both our efforts and our thoughts. So let’s hear them (write to!

If after seeing this film you want to get more involved with and be a part of the movement for an actual revolution, is the website you should go to everyday. And, get deeper into BA and check out: Organizing for an ACTUAL Revolution—Getting Involved Now.



ALERT: Protest the GoFundMe cancellation!
Donations towards promoting this film on social media are temporarily accepted HERE.

We are raising $5,000 for targeted social media advertising of Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, focused on reaching college students.

The following are some of the verbal and written comments from people who attended the September 22-23 preview showings across the country:

  • “I learned that the revolution and its leader is understandable as well as possible.”
  • “I was struck by how he broke down why the Democrats won’t allow any progression in this day and age.”
  • “I learned about the 5 Stops—believe this is correct.”
  • “Bob was very blunt and forthcoming on this need for the revolution and how to make it work.”
  • “BA is taking on a lot of responsibility.”
  • “Bob Avakian presents important ideas and concepts I haven’t heard from other political leaders.”
  • “What I took from this film was a very powerful message from Bob Avakian about how we can actually win an actual revolution.”
  • “People could come and see this film to know what we have to do to get millions of people—thousands and then millions of people—to learn, to engage, how to really make an actual revolution and overthrow this system once and for all.”
  • “What I got out of it is a very non-compromising answer—how to change society and the world itself and change our ethos.”


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

From the Revolution Club NYC:

Overflow Crowd for the Harlem Preview Showing

| Revolution Newspaper |


It was an incredible preview screening of Bob Avakian’s historic speech at Revolution Books in Harlem on Sunday, September 23. There was excitement and anticipation in the air. People came early to get a good seat, and the house was full by the time the film began, with an overflow crowd seated under a canopy outside of the bookstore watching on a TV screen.

People came from all over the city and beyond, and it was a very diverse audience. There were musicians and artists, students and young people, veterans of the ’60s, an attorney and other professionals, and residents from Harlem. Members of the Revolution Club were there, along with activists from Refuse Fascism and supporters of Revolution Books and The Bob Avakian Institute. There were a number of new people who had never been to Revolution Books before. People heard about it through email or saw the film trailer on social media or had gotten a flyer on the street. Others got a phone call or a text message. Some people came by themselves and others came with friends.

People had a lot on their minds, and many had come to engage, to learn, and to look for answers. A young Black college student shared a story as she waited for the film to start of going to a high school in another part of the country and risking getting in trouble for standing up against racism in her school, and said she wanted to see what the film said about all this. A jazz musician in town visiting came and brought a friend to watch the film. A high school student came after learning about this from members of the Revolution Club at the September 15 Refuse Fascism protest against the fascist Trump/Pence regime. An attorney active in the struggle for justice for the people in Puerto Rico came with her husband and said she had shared the trailer of the film on social media. A person who is moving to Delaware came back for the film screening, and several young people visiting from Mexico stopped in to watch it.

Carl Dix did a short introduction, and the film began. The audience was into it, responding at different times throughout the film. You could feel when people really connected with something in the film and you could feel when assumptions and comfort zones were being challenged. Some in the audience took careful notes, and others did not take their eyes off the screen.

After the film ended, MCs from the Revolution Club called on people to become part of the mass movement needed to spread BA’s film everywhere and spoke about why this is important and some of the many ways people can be a part of this. And they were challenged to join, volunteer with, or run with the Revolution Club, Revolution Books, Refuse Fascism, and The Bob Avakian Institute. Artists in the audience were called on to contribute to the creation of a revolutionary culture and to take up the task, as BA has emphasized, of making “a culture of revolt against this revolting culture.” And an invitation was made to everyone to contribute to all this with ideas and suggestions, including ideas on finding the forms for people to become involved together with others. Many signed up to be a part of this, with people taking copies of the film on thumb drives and making plans to organize their own preview screenings with friends, neighbors, and colleagues. And an announcement was made that there would be another preview screening at Revolution Books the next Sunday (the 30th) at 4 pm.

Revolution Books buzzed with excitement long after the film had ended. A group even walked over to a nearby restaurant to continue the discussion. BA’s speech opened up interrogation of how the system of capitalism-imperialism operates, as well as the possibility for things to be different. There were many discussions, including a few heated ones, on the fundamental question of reform or revolution. The film led some of the people we spoke with to begin questioning things they had never questioned before. A high school student really captured it when she said she felt she’s been lied to all her life about many of the things spoken to in the film. Some of the people we spoke to also said they were challenged by a lot of what’s in the second half of the film. Overall, hearing someone put forward and get into the complexity and dynamics of real revolution was challenging for some people and very attractive for others.

The impact that we saw was only the beginning of what this speech on “Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution” can and will open up as more and more people seriously engage it.


Home page for the film:

A speech by Bob Avakian

Trailer for

Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

A speech by Bob Avakian

Spread this trailer today. Let people know they have a chance to be among the first to see this speech.

Then join the movement to put this before all of society, toward the online premiere October 19.




ALERT: Protest the GoFundMe cancellation!
Donations towards promoting this film on social media are temporarily accepted HERE.

We are raising $5,000 for targeted social media advertising of Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, focused on reaching college students.

Sign up to be one of 500 people who agree to all post the film on their social media on October 19, the day it's released.

Write to


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Step Up the Struggle to Defeat Brett Kavanaugh—On the Right Terms, in the Right Way

Four Points of Orientation

| Revolution Newspaper |


[1]  The past week has seen an outpouring of countless women speaking the bitterness of their experience of rape, sexual abuse, shaming, and all the rest of the horrifyingly pervasive and putrid social relations of this society around women and giving expression to powerful desire to see this ended. The fury of having to live as slaves, as playthings, as objects, as mere things to be used and abused... your most intimate sense of yourself and your body invaded and trampled on, and then to be ignored and mocked and condescended to, shouted over and belittled and rendered voiceless to boot... all this has come spilling out. The pressure is volcanic, the eruption has only begun, and this is far from an “America only” problem.

We need a whole new world. We need a world where the millennia-old, deeply seated oppression of women—the oppression that came into being with the first division of humanity into exploiter and exploited, oppressor and oppressed—is finally done away with the only way it can be: as part of uprooting and abolishing all relations of exploitation and oppression. You cannot vote out of office an oppression woven into the very fabric of the system this government was built to protect. You cannot end this oppression by going into boardrooms of banks and corporations that exploit and enchain women all over the world, feeding off their subordinate position. You can’t defeat the oppressor by playing the oppressor’s game.

To get to that new world we need a revolution: an overthrow of the existing system and the building of a new one. The possibility of such a world is real. It can be seen in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, by Bob Avakian. And it can be won by getting with the movement for revolution that he leads, a revolution that takes the emancipation of women as its cornerstone. As Bob Avakian 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)

[2]  Let's look again at what Brett Kavanaugh represents politically and the tremendous harm he has already done and the even greater harm he will do if he becomes part of the Supreme Court. He played a key role in the Christian-fascist driven impeachment of Bill Clinton, in getting George W. Bush illegitimately into office despite losing the popular vote, in Bush’s torture and warrantless wiretapping, in grooming other fascist judges for the court, and more. This pig, once on the Supreme Court, will move to reduce women to essentially being wombs in the name of being “pro-life,” and he will move to gut gay rights and critical thinking and dissent, minority voting rights and due process, environmental regulations and protections against surveillance, and anything else that gets in the way of the fascist juggernaut. He will move to protect executive power, the prerogatives of capital, police impunity, and anything else that fits the needs of the fascist project now attempting to consolidate itself. Look at his record—the proof is there; the performance last Thursday only put an exclamation point to it.

Kavanaugh’s whole history and stand make clear the fundamental and essential reasons that this monster must be kept off the Supreme Court. Because this nomination is so freighted, it has exacerbated the divide between those who are moving to install fascism and those elements within the ruling class trying to prevent it. As evidenced by Senator Jeff Flake’s sudden switch of position on Friday, things are now in a great deal of turmoil. In this situation, people must fight harder than ever to prevent Kavanaugh’s ascension to the Supreme Court, on the basis of repudiating his fascist record and program—which is, after all, why Trump nominated him—and in a way that is linked to defeating and driving from power the whole fascist Trump/Pence regime and juggernaut he is part of.

[3]  How we fight our battles is critically important. There must be a unity between our means and ends.

Specifically, it is not right, and will lead to a very bad place, to adopt a standard where all accusations are treated as proof of guilt. Just think for a second about who has paid and who will pay a horrendous price when that standard is adopted. Just because an accusation corresponds to a very widespread social phenomenon—that millions and millions of women are sexually assaulted and that the overwhelming majority of accusations are truthful—does NOT mean that every single accusation is true. Getting to the truth requires a serious and open-minded sifting of concrete evidence. This is in opposition to the stand of believing all victims no matter what, which has become not just a rallying cry but something of a litmus test.

This is in stark opposition to the view put forward by liberals like Chris Hayes of MSNBC who said, after the Thursday hearings, “It all comes down to who you believe.” No, it does not—and it should not! Is that really the kind of world we should want to live in? A society where guilt or innocence is determined by who is more “believable” on television? It should not take more than a minute or two to think of the potential for abuse and ultimately real horrors involved in that: If standards of truth go out the window, then who and what is and is not to be believed will ultimately be settled by whoever has the most power. Let’s not forget that this is America, where the words of white women were used to lynch innocent Black men in the not-so-distant past and where, as this is written, the testimony of cops who murder Black people is deemed more “believable” by mostly white juries than eyewitness accounts of people in the area and even unambiguous videotape.

That is the world we live in now, but it should NOT be the world we want.

Further, there is a question of how to evaluate a person’s past. Here, the decisive question is not what someone did as a youth but what has been the subsequent arc of their life. There are reasons that juvenile records are supposed to be sealed. The reasons have to do with the fact that younger people are unformed and without the capacities of adult judgment and that their adult lives should not be dogged and marred by what they did when they were not in a position to be fully responsible for their actions. In the case of juvenile offenses, the larger society’s right to know does NOT trump the right of the individual, even if a larger social good may be sacrificed.

For these reasons, as we have written before, “the question should not be if they did bad things as a youth, but have they fundamentally confronted and broken with that—or have they continued in the same essential direction? In the case of Kavanaugh, these facts are beyond clear: whatever he did (or did not) do as a teenager, as a full-grown man he has been a major player in strengthening patriarchal oppression and in driving forward the overall fascization of the U.S.—and this is true no matter how many women who knew him way-back-when say that he was a polite teenager, or whether Dr. Blasey’s accusation proves to be true or not. It is for these reasons that Kavanaugh must be opposed or defeated.”

[4]  Where will and where should all the fury that has poured forth now go?

Will the pent up fury felt by millions and millions against the oppression and degradation of women be a powerful fuel in the fight to put an end to the culture and system that gives rise to this nightmare? Will it drive people to look deeper—at the roots of all this in the system of capitalism-imperialism that rules over us? And, to aim higher—at a world free of all divisions into oppressors and oppressed, exploiters and exploited, masters and slaves?

Or, will this fury drive the oppressed themselves even more blindly into this world of nightmarish horrors? Will people not just wrongly accept as permanent this world of oppression and dehumanization of one group by another, but actively revel in this by aiming no higher than for a chance at revenge? Will it get spent on pulling down one or two monsters, while the monstrous system remains intact?

The history books and headlines are full of just struggles that ended up with those who once fought and sacrificed for freedom going for revenge for them and theirs, and then for their chance to “have a go at it,” and screw everyone else. That’s NOT inevitable—but it will take a struggle from the very beginning and all the way through against the strong pulls that take people there... pulls already manifesting in the struggle right now. How we answer these questions right now even in this seemingly initial stage—and in an ongoing way as we go forward—will have great bearing on whether humanity is emancipated or simply sinks deeper into the nightmare.

Let’s make this week a time to step up the battle against the attempt to put Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court and against the whole regime, to build the movement for revolution, and to plunge into the debate over the problem we face and the solution to it.


Download PDF of this article for distribution

It is a striking fact—which is starkly evident in the U.S. now—that, in comparison to what is done to women, there is no other group in society that is so systematically reviled and defiled in a way that has become acceptable (or widely accepted in any case) as a significant part of “mainstream” life and culture, as happens in a concentrated way through pornography and the extremely demeaning and degrading images and messages about women it massively and pervasively purveys (with the Internet a major focus and vehicle for this), including pornography’s extensive portrayal of sadistic and violent sexual domination of women...

I began the “Revolution” talk with “They’re Selling Postcards of the Hanging,” reviewing the ugly history of the lynching of Black people in America and the way in which celebration of this became a cultural phenomenon in the U.S., with the selling of picture postcards of these lynchings a major expression of this—often including smiling and leering crowds of white people surrounding the murdered and mutilated body of a Black man. In a recent exchange, a comrade emphasized this profoundly important and compelling point: Today, the way in which pornography depicts women—the displaying of women in a degraded state for the titillation of viewers—including the grotesque brutality and violence against women which is involved in much of this, is the equivalent of those “Postcards of the Hanging.” It is a means through which all women are demeaned and degraded.

Bob Avakian
Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA
Unresolved Contradictions, Driving Forces for Revolution


While awaiting the necessary conditions to go all-out for revolution, we need to hasten this and actively carry out the “3 Prepares”: Prepare the Ground, Prepare the People, and Prepare the Vanguard—Get Ready for the Time When Millions Can Be Led to Go for Revolution, All-Out, With a Real Chance to Win. We need to Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution—protest and resist the injustices and atrocities of this system, and win people to defy and repudiate this putrid system and its ways of thinking, and to take up the outlook and values, and the strategy and program of the revolution, build up the forces for this revolution, and defeat the attempts of the ruling powers to crush the revolution and its leadership. With every “jolt” in society—every crisis, every new outrage, where many people question and resist what they normally accept—we need to seize on this to advance the revolution and expand its organized forces. We need to oppose and disrupt the moves of the ruling powers to isolate, “encircle,” brutalize, mass incarcerate and murderously repress the people who have the hardest life under this system and who most need this revolution. We need to “encircle” them—by bringing forth wave upon wave of people rising up in determined opposition to this system.

How Can We Win? How Can We Really Make Revolution?


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

You Want A World WITHOUT Oppression, Or Just Your Turn On Top?
Women Need Revolution—Not Revenge!

by Sunsara Taylor

| Revolution Newspaper |


In a recent New York Times column, Jennifer Weiner plumbed the depths of her fury at the lifetime of patriarchal insult and injury faced by her and all women. But rather than aim her fury at ending sexual assault, violence against women, and the system that gives rise to it, she plunges headlong into a gruesome, small-minded vision of revenge.

Weiner revels in hideous fantasies of tossing rapists out of helicopters and—dare anyone lay a finger on her own daughters—“hunting down the man who hurt them and dismembering him with my fingernails and burning the whole world down.” She glorifies the lust for “revenge ... power ... money ...” and the ability “to be loved and not love in return.”

If Weiner hoped to provoke disgust and fear, she succeeded. I am terrified of the world she yearns for—and disgusted by it. We should all be. Because the only thing worse than allowing patriarchy to continue to diminish and torment all women’s humanity, would be for women to completely abandon their own humanity by becoming like their oppressors.

The problem is not that Weiner is angry. For good reason women harbor deep and righteous fury. It flows from thousands of years of female enslavement. It comes from one in three women being raped or beaten in her lifetime. It comes from women super-exploited in sweatshops from Bangladesh to Brazil and women raped in war zones from Congo and Bosnia to right inside the U.S. military. It comes from stalking, abuse, sexual slavery, and sexual shaming. It comes from the bombing of abortion clinics and the killing of doctors. It comes from pornography that is increasingly violent, degrading, and mainstream. It comes from the reality that after generations of marching, going to jail, hunger-striking, writing, and speaking against all this, a boastful sexual predator sits in the White House and the Supreme Court is on the verge of slamming women, LGBTQ people, and many others violently backwards.

If you are not furious, then wake the hell up. Men, too.

But fury is not enough. Like a fire, fury can be harnessed for good—or can destroy everything.

Should our fury drive us to lust for the chance to make men suffer the way women have? For the “right” of women to behave like depraved death squads, hurling human beings to dreadful deaths? For the squalid “satisfaction” of inflicting such terror on another person that the light never returns to their eyes because that’s what has been done for thousands of years to women?

Or, should our fury drive us to fight against and abolish the system and world that is held in place through that kind of terror—through centuries of white people terrorizing Black people, through murderous wars of imperialist aggression, through global networks of grinding exploitation, and through a culture that socializes men and boys from an extremely young age—through pornography, through scripture, and in countless other ways—to view and treat women as objects of sexual plunder or mere breeders of children?

Should our fury propel us into the ideological straight jacket of “me” and “my people”—a punier, perverse replica of “Bros before Hoes” or Trump’s chauvinist “USA! USA!”—that reduces us to seeking vengeance if something happens to our own daughter (yet another expression of patriarchal property relations)?

Or should our fury compel us to broaden our horizons to the fight to end all forms of oppression? To grasp, as Bob Avakian has emphasized in speaking about the new communism he has developed, that what we need is, “A Whole New World and the Emancipation of All Humanity—Not ‘The Last Shall Be First, and The First Shall Be Last’”? To fight with all we’ve got to beat back these horrors right now while building up the strength to make an actual revolution so that, as one expression of real liberation, one day no girl or woman anywhere ever again knows what it is to fear the sound of footsteps behind her?

Should our fury drive women to harden themselves, to extinguish their ability to feel and to love so that they can better claw their way to the top of this dung heap, where the only way to get ahead is by pummeling others to the bottom, where everything—even women’s bodies and sexualized degradation—is turned into a commodity to be bought and sold or bartered for advantage?

Or should we fight for a world not divided into oppressors and oppressed, exploiters and exploited, masters and slaves? A world where opening oneself up is not an invitation for predation, where all children of all genders are taught to respect the full humanity of others, and to forge friendships and intimate relationships based on mutual respect, shared affection, equality and—where it develops—genuine love and tenderness?

We have to choose.

It may seem like all rage is the same and that—after centuries of rape, brutality, oppression, and enslavement—all rage is justified. It is not. Revenge leads rapidly and inexcusably deeper into the nightmare. In contrast, ending this nightmare requires breaking decisively and fully with revenge, lifting our sights, and fighting for an actual revolution aimed at human emancipation. This means taking up and being guided by a morality consistent with that future every step of the way.


Sunsara Taylor is an advocate for the new communism developed by Bob Avakian, a writer for Revolution newspaper (, and a co-initiator of


Bob Avakian, "A world of rape and sexual assault"

An excerpt from REVOLUTION: Why It's Necessary, Why It's Possible, What It's All About. Watch the whole talk at

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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

| Revolution Newspaper |

Laquan McDonald

Justice For Laquan McDonald! Killer Cop Van Dyke Convicted—Now Throw Him in Jail!
The Whole Damn System Is GUILTY AS HELL!

From Carl Dix:

One Killer Cop Convicted—Get with the Revolution and Get Rid of This Whole System that Needs Killer Cops!

October 5, 2018

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Bob Avakian, "Masses Dont Know The Effect They Have"

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Read and hear what Bob Avakian, the leader of the revolution and architect of the new communism, has to say about revolution and the oppression of Black people:

"The police, Black youth and what kind of a system is this?"

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Bob Avakian (BA)—Official Biography HERE



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Premiering Online October 19, 2018

There has never been a speech like this on these questions... until now.

Bob Avakian is the leader of the revolution who has developed a new synthesis of communism aimed at the emancipation of humanity. In the summer of 2018, he gave this speech in several cities.

If you agonize about the horrors of this society, and that there's no way out... this speech will reveal why those outrages go on and on and how they can be changed.

If you have thought that even if people could get together for revolution, that it's not possible up against the powerful repressive machinery we face... this speech will challenge you.

If you have hungered for fundamental change, but did not know where to begin... this speech will give you the map you need and the way to connect.

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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Trial of Killer Chicago Cop Turns into Attempted Second Execution of Laquan McDonald

| Revolution Newspaper |


We’ve seen the horror movie over and over—cops murder people in cold blood, and then walk free almost every time. In the very few cases where one is put on trial, the killer cop gets off scot-free, or with a slap on the wrist, by claiming he feared for his own safety. The prosecutors—so skilled at sending Black and Latino people to prison—forget how to prosecute when it comes to the pigs, the armed enforcers whose job is to serve and protect the system of exploitation and oppression that rules over the people.

Almost four years after Laquan McDonald was murdered by police on a Chicago street, killer cop Jason Van Dyke is on trial for murder. A dashcam video—covered up for over a year by the police and city officials, all the way up to the mayor, before it was forced into the public eye—shows Van Dyke getting out of the squad car and, within six seconds, start firing 16 bullets at Laquan, who is walking away, hands at his sides. And after the opening week of the trial when the prosecutor, sure enough, forgot to prosecute (see accompanying article), this past week Van Dyke’s lawyers brought up a parade of “witnesses” to try to paint Laquan as a youth with a “violent” history—obviously to argue the “case” that Van Dyke was justified in gunning down Laquan. Their “testimony” included things like an intake officer at a juvenile detention center saying that Laquan allegedly took a swing at him after becoming upset at being locked up and not being able to make a phone call. Laquan, of course, is not here to speak on his own behalf about these incidents—so there is only the word of these prison officers about what happened. But whatever the accuracy of their testimony—this kind of thing that no doubt happens a lot in youth prisons is supposed to be a cause for these youths to be executed by cops?!

The judge also ordered a nonprofit organization that offers recovery services for people with substance abuse and mental health problems to comply with a subpoena from Van Dyke’s lawyers and release Laquan’s records. The nonprofit had resisted the subpoena, saying that the records are protected under privacy laws. So again—the records of people being treated for recovery from substance abuse or for psychological treatments are supposed to be “evidence” that “justifies” police killing them?!

The judge ruled such “testimony” and “evidence” admissible because they were “Lynch material,” named after an Illinois Supreme Court ruling that allows defendants, like Van Dyke, claiming self-defense in a murder trial to bring up the victim’s alleged “aggressive and violent character,” even from years previously. NO! This character assassination to “justify” a modern-day lynching is no more legitimate than using a woman’s previous sexual history to attempt to “justify” rape. Van Dyke didn’t know anything about Laquan when he arrived on the scene, jumped out of the squad car, and started shooting almost immediately—except that he was a Black youth who was refusing police orders. In any case, nothing about Laquan’s past justifies a pig firing even a single bullet at him, let alone 16!

Outside the courtroom, sympathetic media portrayals of the killer cop—which began with substantial interviews by the Chicago Tribune and others—continues. This has included a major piece in the Chicago Sun Times in which Van Dyke’s Black brother-in-law claims Van Dyke is not racist and accounts of Van Dyke’s parish priest, who has been sitting in the courtroom with Van Dyke’s wife each day, speaking in support of the cop’s claims about the murder of Laquan.

At the same time, Van Dyke’s actual record of repeated violence against the people will not be brought into the courtroom, unless his lawyers bring him up to the witness stand (and perhaps not even then). In a 2015 article titled “Chicago Rarely Penalizes Officers for Complaints, Data Show,” the New York Times noted that Van Dyke “has had 18 civilian complaints filed against him, including allegations of using excessive force and racial slurs.” The investigative group Invisible Institute reported in an article on the Intercept website that after being the target of two complaints of use of excessive force in his first two years as a cop, Van Dyke’s “complaint rate skyrocketed. Citizens filed several allegations against him over the next five years. His use-of-force rate increased as well, from less than two per year to six in 2014.” reports that according to a study in a forthcoming edition of the American Economic Journal, “Officer Van Dyke had accrued so many civilian complaints between 2002 and 2014 that he was in the top 3 percent of officers.” This is quite an “accomplishment” in a police department well-known for widespread brutality and racism. Van Dyke was exonerated in all the complaint cases—but that is just routine practice with the city’s police “review” board.

Among the other outrages from the killer cop’s defense team was the playing of an animated video of their re-creation of the scene—to supposedly refute the dashcam video by purporting to show that Laquan was moving toward Van Dyke when the officer started shooting. At parts in the animation, the figure supposedly representing Laquan is surrounded with a red outline to make him seem larger in an attempt to bolster Van Dyke’s claim that Laquan was “threatening” him. And the animation stops after the first five shots by Van Dyke—omitting the rest of the 16 shots that he fired into Laquan as he was laying on the ground.

A “pharmacology expert” was put on the stand to claim that one of the effects of the PCP that was detected in Laquan in the autopsy was to give him “superhuman strength”—another defense effort to make it look like Laquan was the “aggressor” and Van Dyke was only “defending” himself. This “expert” also claimed that even though Laquan was walking away from the officers toward a chain-link fence and an empty lot, “He’s still in the situation with a knife in his hand and disobeying orders from the police ... still showing aggressive behavior and actions. I would describe that as violent rage behavior.” Again—walking away from police, with arms at your sides, toward an empty lot is “evidence” of “aggressive,” “violent” behavior that “justifies” being killed in cold blood by an armed enforcer of this system?!

The Larger Picture

The dredging up of claims about Laquan’s past is poisonous bullshit. But people should look at the larger picture behind what happened to Laquan. Nobody knows what exactly Laquan was doing or thinking the night his life was cut short. But what kind of a monstrous system creates a situation in which a whole generation of youth like Laquan are robbed of any decent future and are treated as less than human, just because the capitalist-imperialists who hold power no longer deem them worth exploiting—after generations upon generations that came before them were brutally exploited and oppressed, first as slaves, then sharecroppers, and last-hired-first-fired wage slaves in the factories?

What kind of a heartless system keeps cutting resources—like social workers who are trying to help these youths navigate a society that has been set up against them—when the reality is that under a radically different system, on a whole different economic and political foundation and with different set of social relations, all youth could flourish and grow? There is, in fact, an actual vision and plan for such a system—the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by Bob Avakian (BA).

What kind of system trains police forces with a “mad-dog” mentality who look at oppressed youth as the “enemy” and brutalize, tase, and even shoot on sight when they encounter such youths acting in ways that may signal he or she is upset or mentally disturbed—with fellow cops who routinely lie and erect a wall of silence in order to protect their mad dogs—instead of reaching out to and helping such youth? As BA has insisted, if the police can’t handle such situations any differently than terrorizing and murdering people, they should get out of the way. Because under a radically different system, the people’s police would be willing to put their own lives on the line to resolve a situation than take the life of any human being—“That’s what you’re supposed to do if you’re actually trying to be a servant of the people.” (See BAsics 2:16.)

In order to bring into being that radically new, liberating system, we need an actual revolution to overthrow the system ruling over us now—a system that will go on murdering, by quick or slow death, youths like Laquan and go on doing all kinds of other crimes and other madness to people here and around the world until the system is brought to an end. And a crucial part of preparing the ground, preparing the people, and preparing the vanguard for that revolution is fighting the power and the outrages they commit, like the police murder of Laquan and, now, the attempted whitewash of that crime in the courts.


Laquan McDonald


Bob Avakian, "Yes there's a conspiracy, to get the cops off."

"Yes there's a conspiracy... to get the cops off" Is a clip from Revolution: Why It's Necessary, Why It's Possible, What It's All About, a film of a talk by Bob Avakian, given in 2003 in the United States. More about Bob Avakian here


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"How Long?! How Many More Times Do the Tears Have to Flow?"
A clip from BA Speaks: REVOLUTION–NOTHING LESS! In the fall of 2012, Bob Avakian gave a series of talks in different cities. This is a film of one of those talks. Watch the whole film and other selected clips at


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

September 19, 2016 | Revolution Newspaper |


From the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

To Do This, We Need To Know:

Why we need an actual revolution.
What we need to do now.
How we could defeat them.

Why We Need An Actual Revolution

An actual revolution does not mean trying to make some changes within this system—it means overthrowing this system and bringing into being a radically different and far better system.This system of capitalism-imperialism cannot be reformed. There is no way, under this system, to put an end to the brutality and murder by police, the wars and destruction of people and the environment, the exploitation, oppression and degradation of millions and billions of people, including the half of humanity that is female, here and throughout the world—all of which is rooted in profound contradictions built into the basic functioning, relations, and structures of this system. Only an actual revolution can bring about the fundamental change that is needed.

What We Need To Do Now

To make this revolution, we need to be serious, and scientific. We need to take into account the actual strengths of this system, but more than that its strategic weaknesses, based in its deep and defining contradictions. We need to build this revolution among those who most desperately need a radical change, but among others as well who refuse to live in a world where this system spews forth endless horrors, and this is continually “justified” and even glorified as “greatness.”

We need to be on a mission to spread the word, to let people know that we have the leadership, the science, the strategy and program, and the basis for organizing people for an actual, emancipating revolution. We have Bob Avakian (BA) the leader of this revolution and the architect of a new framework for revolution, the new synthesis of communism. We have the Party led by BA, the Revolutionary Communist Party, with this new synthesis as its scientific basis to build for revolution. We have the Revolution Clubs, where people can take part in and powerfully represent for the revolution in an organized way, as they learn more about the revolution and advance toward joining the Party. We have the website of the Party,, and its newspaper Revolution, which sharply expose the crimes of this system, scientifically analyze why it cannot be reformed, and give guidance and direction for people to work in a unified way for revolution. We have the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, authored by BA and adopted by the Party’s Central Committee, which provides a sweeping and concrete vision and “blueprint” for a radically new and emancipating society. People in the inner cities, and in the prisons, students, scholars, artists, lawyers and other professionals, youth in the suburbs and rural areas—people in all parts of society—need to know about this and seriously take it up.

Those who catch the worst hell under this system, and those who are sickened by the endless outrages perpetrated by this system, need to join up with this revolution. Thousands need to get organized into the ranks of the revolution now, while millions are being influenced in favor of this revolution. We have seen the potential for this in the protests that have taken place against police brutality and murder, and other ways in which large numbers of people have gone up against the established authorities and the political “rules of the game.” But this needs to be transformed, through struggle, into revolutionary understanding, determination, and organization. The organized forces and the leadership of this revolution must become the “authority” that growing numbers of people look to and follow—not the lying politicians and media of this oppressive system—not those who front for the oppressors and preach about “reconciliation” with this system—not those who turn people against each other when they need to be uniting for this revolution. While many people will do positive things in opposing the crimes of this system, we need to approach everything—evaluate every political program and every organized force in society, every kind of culture, values and ways of treating people—according to how it relates to the revolution we need, to end all oppression. We should unite with people whenever we can, and struggle with them whenever we need to, to advance the revolution.

While awaiting the necessary conditions to go all-out for revolution, we need to hasten this and actively carry out the “3 Prepares”: Prepare the Ground, Prepare the People, and Prepare the Vanguard—Get Ready for the Time When Millions Can Be Led to Go for Revolution, All-Out, With a Real Chance to Win. We need to Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution—protest and resist the injustices and atrocities of this system, and win people to defy and repudiate this putrid system and its ways of thinking, and to take up the outlook and values, and the strategy and program of the revolution, build up the forces for this revolution, and defeat the attempts of the ruling powers to crush the revolution and its leadership. With every “jolt” in society—every crisis, every new outrage, where many people question and resist what they normally accept—we need to seize on this to advance the revolution and expand its organized forces. We need to oppose and disrupt the moves of the ruling powers to isolate, “encircle,” brutalize, mass incarcerate and murderously repress the people who have the hardest life under this system and who most need this revolution. We need to “encircle” them—by bringing forth wave upon wave of people rising up in determined opposition to this system.

All this is aiming for something very definite—a revolutionary situation: Where the system and its ruling powers are in a serious crisis, and the violence they use to enforce this system is seen by large parts of society for what it is—murderous and illegitimate. Where the conflicts among the ruling forces become really deep and sharp—and masses of people respond to this not by falling in behind one side or the other of the oppressive rulers, but by taking advantage of this situation to build up the forces for revolution. Where millions and millions of people refuse to be ruled in the old way—and are willing and determined to put everything on the line to bring down this system and bring into being a new society and government that will be based on the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America. That is the time to go all-out to win. That is what we need to be actively working for and preparing for now.

How We Could Defeat Them

“On the Possibility of Revolution” is a very important statement from the Party, which is posted on It sets forth the foundation—the strategic conception and doctrine—for how to fight with a real chance of winning, once a revolutionary people in the millions, and the necessary conditions for revolution, have been brought into being. Now is not yet the time to wage this kind of fight—to try to do so now would only lead to a devastating defeat—but ongoing work is being done to further develop this strategic conception and doctrine with the future in mind, and the following are some of the main things the revolutionary forces would need to do when the conditions to go all-out to make revolution had been brought into being.

  • When the revolutionary situation is clearly emerging, rapidly transform backbone forces of the revolution into organized fighting forces in key strategic areas, carry out the necessary training, obtain the necessary equipment and provide for the basic logistical needs of this revolutionary fighting force to start the all-out fight, while preventing the enemy from crushing the revolutionary forces at this crucial juncture. Back up these core fighting forces with millions more organized into powerful “reserves” for the revolution.
  • Initiate actions throughout the country, accompanied by a bold declaration to the world, which make clear that there is an organized force determined to defeat the forces of the old order and bring into being a new, revolutionary system. Upon completion of these initial actions, quickly regroup forces for “follow-on” actions and maintain the momentum of the revolution.
  • Counter the enemy’s superior destructive force by seeking to fight only on favorable terms, and actively avoiding decisive encounters, which would determine the outcome of the whole thing, until the “balance of forces” has shifted overwhelmingly in favor of the revolution. Utilize equipment captured from the enemy in ways that fit the fighting strategy of the revolution. Build up political and logistical bases of support, in key strategic areas, but do not attempt to openly control and govern territory, until the necessary “favorable balance of forces” has been achieved.
  • Maintain the initiative—or, if it is temporarily lost, regain it—through surprise and maneuver. Fight in ways the enemy does not anticipate. Carry out actions to keep the enemy off balance, disrupting the concentration and utilization of his forces and contributing to their disintegration. Always conduct operations and act in ways that are in line with the emancipating outlook and goals of the revolution, and turn the barbaric actions of the enemy against him—to win greater forces for the revolution, including those who come over from the ranks of the enemy.
  • Combine strategic direction and coordination for the fight as a whole, with decentralized actions and initiative by local units and leaders. Relying on mass support, the intelligence this provides for the revolution and the denial of intelligence to the enemy, counter the enemy’s efforts to find, fix and annihilate revolutionary leadership and key fighting units. Rapidly replace forces and leaders that are lost—continually train and deploy new forces and leaders.
  • Correctly handle the relation between this all-out fight and the situation—including the character and level of revolutionary struggle—in countries to the south (and the north).
  • When the “balance of forces” has shifted in favor of the revolution, conduct operations aimed at achieving final victory, while continuing to “calibrate” these operations so that decisive encounters are still avoided until the forces of the old order have been brought to the brink of total defeat—and then fully, finally, rout and dismantle the remaining enemy forces.

All this depends on winning millions to revolution in the period that leads up to the ripening of a revolutionary situation. The chance to defeat them, when the time comes—the chance to be rid of this system and to bring something far better into being—has everything to do with what we do now. Everyone who hungers for a radically different world, free of exploitation and oppression and all the needless suffering caused by this system, needs to work now with a fired determination to make this happen, so we will have a real chance to win.


Now is the time to spread these messages to all of society

"HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution" is a companion to the Message from the Central Committee of the RCP, USA posted on on May 16, 2016.  Get "HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution,” together with “Time to Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution,” out everywhere.  Now is the time to spread the word to all of society.

Download "HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution" HERE (36”x24” PDF): ENGLISH  | ESPAÑOL.  Download “Time to Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution” HERE (17"x 22" PDF): ENGLISH | ESPAÑOL.  Our suggestion is that they be printed on white bond paper and posted together in the appropriate ways all over the place. Here’s a rough picture of what this could look like.

“HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution” now in booklet form!

Printing Instructions:
The PDF of a booklet that includes “HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution,Time To Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution” and the “Points of Attention for the Revolution”is now available. This booklet is 16 pages long. The size of the laid-out pages is 5 1/2" x 8 1/2". It can also be printed 6" x 9". There are two layouts here. 1) One is a single PDF with 16 consecutive, individual pages. 2) The second is a printer's spread; that is, the first spread is page 16 and page 1, the second is page 2 and page 15, etc., so that when it prints and is folded, the pages will be in order. Printers can tell you which layout they need. Readers should make plans for printing this 5 1/2" x 8.5" booklet, raising money, and getting it out in the tens of thousands everywhere as soon as possible.

Download 5.5x8.5 PDF, single pages
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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Greasing the Skids for Fascism…
Ominous and Illegitimate Persecution of 11 Members of Refuse Fascism, LA and the Revolution Club, LA

| Revolution Newspaper |


In Los Angeles, 11 members of Refuse Fascism and the Revolution Club have been criminally charged for engaging in and/or supporting non-violent civil disobedience and political protests which took place from September 2017 through March 2018. These protests included holding banners across the length of the Los Angeles 101 Freeway, with one stating “Trump/Pence Must Go!” and several protests at UCLA campus, including a disruption of Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. These protests were aimed at sounding the alarm about the Trump/Pence fascist regime, and the need for millions to fill the streets in a mass nonviolent movement aimed at driving this regime from power.

The arrests and subsequent charges for these acts of political protests are unjust and illegitimate. With a fascist regime in power, tearing up what are supposed to be protected civil and legal rights, and ruling through open terror and violence, these protests were not just needed, they were right. They were meaningful forms of nonviolent civil disobedience and, on a changing political and legal ground, forms of protected speech!

It is NOT illegal to shout fire in a crowded theater IF THERE IS A FIRE. To say the least, what we are facing is, by analogy, a fire of such extreme proportions, it demands people defy protest as usual. The Trump/Pence regime is bringing into being a theocracy, with open white supremacy, ethnic cleansing, genocide, the ripping away of women's basic and essential rights, attacking science and the basic understanding of truth... and as an essential part of this, the shutting down of our supposed civil liberties, right to free speech, protest, and the freedom of the press. With the threats of nuclear war and even more rapid environmental destruction, it is not hyperbole to say this is a regime that threatens to destroy civilization.

At the same time, the prosecution of these 11 activists and revolutionaries involves an escalation of the criminalization of political protests and a leap in state repression, moves that are greasing the skids for fascism. Some of the more serious and dangerous elements of these prosecutions include: two leaders of Refuse Fascism being singled out for criminal conspiracy charges related to the freeway protests, which have historically been used to specifically target political leaders (one person facing this charge was not even arrested nor on the freeway at the time of the protests); the LAPD’s “Major Crimes/Anti-Terrorism Division” is involved, a department which has a history of targeting progressive and radical social movements; and the LAPD’s admission that they sent in a “confidential informant” to spy on and illegally record members of Refuse Fascism and the Revolution Club. These are just some of the most egregious ways they are violating the basic legal rights of people in prosecuting these outrageous charges.

In this changing legal situation, what these protesters did—in the tradition of nonviolent civil disobedience—was necessary, right and should not be criminalized. Everyone who cares about justice should join in the demand to DROP THE CHARGES! People throughout society should draw inspiration from and emulate what these heroes did, and join the urgently needed movement to drive the Trump/Pence regime from power.

Righteous Protests, Unjust Arrests, Illegitimate Charges

In September and November, 2017, over five million people viewed on social media two early morning nonviolent actions of civil disobedience on the 101 Hollywood Freeway where traffic was stopped with signs, including a 60-foot banner sounding a clarion call that “The Trump Pence Regime Must Go!” (In the first of these two protests, they carried signs that stated: “Nov 4 It Begins!” calling on people to join the protests organized by Refuse Fascism aiming for millions to fill the streets in protest day after day, night after night, to drive this regime from power.) A total of eight people were arrested for these courageous actions. But nine are being charged in these two actions, including Michelle Xai, who was neither arrested nor on the freeway during these two protests. Both Michelle, who is also part of the Revolution Club, and USC professor and artist Perry Hoberman have been charged with conspiracy to commit a crime. Michelle and Perry are being singled out and targeted for being spokespeople and leaders of Refuse Fascism.

On February 12, 2018, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel spoke at UCLA where his speech was disrupted by protesters, including organizers from “No Cops Academy” and the Revolution Club. They called out Emanuel’s role in the cover up of the police murder of Laquan McDonald (see here for report on the protest). Three people with the Revolution Club were arrested and currently, one is facing four misdemeanors.

On February 26, 2018, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin spoke at UCLA where he was continuously booed and hissed by protesters in the audience. As seen by millions on social media, he was also disrupted by three young women from the Revolution Club and Refuse Fascism. They spoke out with substance and determination, challenging Mnuchin, and exposed a regime “that is hell bent on consolidating fascism.” These three were brutalized and dragged out of the auditorium by University of California police and arrested along with two others who were also brutalized and arrested outside the event because they dared speak out about the arrests that had just happened inside the auditorium where Mnuchin was speaking! (See report here.) Currently, two of the five are facing charges but all were told (verbally, not in writing) that they were banned from campus for seven days (including a student and UCLA alum!).

On March 1, 2018, scores of UCLA students linked arms across Bruin Walk in response to a nationwide protest called by Refuse Fascism: 11 Minutes of Silence for 11 Million Undocumented: Immigrants Stay! Trump/Pence Must Go! No one was arrested at this protest, but two people have since been charged, for “disturbing the peace,” trespassing and violating the seven day ban mentioned above. One of the charges against the UCLA student is for resisting arrest. How the hell is this even possible when she was not arrested?!

UCLA students linking arms across Bruin Walk in response to a nationwide protest called by Refuse Fascism.

These prosecutions represent a major escalation of political repression

The decision to file charges against the 11 came 10 months after the first freeway protest. Shortly after each of these arrests, when those arrested first appeared in court, they were informed by the L.A. City Attorney that criminal charges were not being filed BUT that charges could be filed any time within one year of the original arrest. This is a way the state can hold the threat of filing charges over you, in an effort to intimidate you and others from participating in future political protests.

In late July/early August 2018, 11 of the protesters received letters from the LA City Attorney ordering them to appear in court. While not all of them have appeared in court yet (some are scheduled for October), at least 10 are each facing multiple misdemeanor charges including failure to disperse, refusing to comply with a police officer, resisting or “obstructing the free movement of a person,” disturbing the peace, and trespassing on a college campus. Some of these people are facing up to over four years in jail and over $4,000 in fines.

Most serious and ominous, when Perry and Michelle first appeared in court, they first learned that Perry is being charged with three misdemeanors stemming from his arrest on the freeway at the first protest and one count of conspiracy. Michelle is charged with one count of obstruction of traffic and two counts of conspiracy for both freeway protests, even though she was not arrested nor on the freeway. Each conspiracy charge is punishable by one year in jail and $10,000 in fines.

How do they justify these outrageous charges? It turns out, the LAPD sent a spy, a “confidential informant,” into Refuse Fascism meetings last fall “for the purpose of gathering intelligence.” In other words, they admit in their official police report, to surveillance of political discussions—a violation of people’s basic rights to assemble and protest. They also admit that this confidential informant recorded a conversation they had with one of the defendants. Recording people without their permission is illegal in California!

The police report admitting to all this came from the “Major Crimes Division” (also known as the Anti-Terrorist Division, ATD) of the LAPD which is part of the LAPD's “Counter Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau.” This department has a sordid history of spying, harassment and deadly repression against a broad spectrum of political groups and individuals. (See box on Background on the LAPD’s Major Crimes Division/Anti-Terrorist Division.)

Historically, conspiracy charges have been used to specifically target political activists and especially, the leadership of political movements. If they can't figure out an actual crime that you've committed, they target you with “conspiracy to commit a crime.” This is a wide ranging charge targeting protest organizers, the leadership of political movements and aimed at debilitating the movements themselves. In the 1960s, the FBI and local cops went after leaders of the anti-war and Black liberation movements by arresting them on bogus conspiracy charges that led to lengthy, expensive, and time-consuming trials. An infamous example was the Chicago 8 trial in response to massive protest at the Democratic National Convention. When people take responsibility to lead a political movement in the interests of humanity, this is precious and these leaders must be defended!

The fact that Perry and Michelle are charged with conspiracy is outrageous on its face, but there is more to these charges. Such a charge requires a minimum of two people to be involved in such a conspiracy. In the second conspiracy charge being leveled against Michelle, according to the official police report, the second conspirator’s “identity is unknown.” This statement by the LAPD’s Anti-Terrorist Division enables the state to carry out and justify a very dangerous open-ended fishing expedition and campaign of intimidation against all the defendants in the freeway protest, with this charge being held over their heads.

Ironically, even the DA's office admits that the First Amendment is involved in this case. The detective writing the police report admits to having consulted with the District Attorney with a request to file felony conspiracy charges (vs. misdemeanors, which they are facing). The DA said that felony charges would be “contrary to the spirit of the law where First Amendment freedoms are concerned.” So how are misdemeanor charges any less “contrary” to their First Amendment rights?!

Even as these cases are in their initial stages, it is already evident that these prosecutions are politically motivated, being handled outside of the norm of criminal prosecutions. We won’t go further here with more examples but it’s evident from who is prosecuting these cases and how the defendants are being treated in court.

The Moves to Strip Away Civil Liberties, Criminalize Dissent and Ramping Up of Repression and Terror

All this is taking place at a time in which the basic rights to political protest and speech are being rapidly foreclosed by the Trump/Pence regime which has unleashed a wave of new state laws, gutting basic civil liberties and a movement of storm troopers carrying out mob violence, and violent threats, in order to intimidate and silence people. The dangers of this are even being pointed to among ruling class figures.

Even before he became president, Trump incited hatred and violence against protesters at his Nazi-like rallies with statements about longing for the day when “a protester would be carried out on stretchers”; in the wake of the murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville, Virginia, he refused to condemn the white supremacists and fascist thugs and described them as “fine people”; and called for revoking the citizenship and imprisoning people who burn the flag, in violation of Supreme Court protection; and urged the firing—and possible exile—of professional athletes who took a knee during the national anthem to protest racial oppression in the form of police violence and murder.

In 2017, state legislators in nearly 20 states have proposed or passed bills that would criminalize and physically endanger protesters, including making it legal to run over protesters as long as the driver claimed it was an accident. New penalties for protesting have been proposed in some states that would include fines up to $1,000,000 and up to 10 years in prison. Mass picketing aimed at blocking access to streets and highways, airports, train tracks, or places of business has been outlawed as has the wearing of a robe, mask or other disguises at a protest. There are cases at both Rutgers and UCLA that would make the criticism of the state of the Israel, and their policies of genocide against Palestinian people, a crime. (The case at UCLA is overlapping with attacks on the Revolution Club and Refuse Fascism for the protest against Steve Mnuchin mentioned above.)

On January 20, 2017, at Trump’s inauguration in Washington, DC, over 200 protesters were arrested for simply being part of a demonstration during which some alleged destruction of property took place. The government was forced to drop the charges against most of the defendants after the first trial of six facing serious felony charges ended in acquittals on all charges. The attempted political railroad of the J20 defendants was not only a vicious act of revenge against the righteous protests on the very first day of the Trump/Pence regime—it was a major escalation of fascist repression as the government demanded detailed information on visitors to a website that was used to organize the protests, and the site’s web hosting provider said complying with the order would have meant handing over information on about 1.3 million visitors.

Recently, Trump said in response to those who courageously disrupted the confirmation hearing of Brett Kavanaugh that we shouldn’t allow protesters in this country because it’s an embarrassment. These are not just rants from a madman. These are the words of the commander in chief of this country's armed forces: calling for the foreclosing of and crushing of dissent, the evisceration of the First Amendment, including people’s right to political speech and protest in relationship to calling out against injustices and crimes being carried out by its government, and this is even more dangerous as it is a key component towards the consolidation of fascism.

The Revolution Club in their sights

These protests have mainly taken place as part of the movement to drive out the Trump/Pence Regime, involving people from different perspectives. At the same time, these prosecutions may also include specific targeting of the Revolution Club. The Club is a force on the frontlines organizing forces for an actual revolution. They live in line with, and fight for, a radically different world: fighting the power, and transforming the people, for revolution.

In addition to the protests outlined here, members of the Revolution Club were also recently arrested for talking to people in a public park about revolution. These arrests were so outrageous, and so clearly in violation of people's basic rights, the LAPD was forced to drop the charges. Most recently, a member of the Revolution Club was arrested for amplified sound in downtown LA at the monthly event, Artwalk. In LA, amplified sound is not illegal! In both instances, people in the surrounding area stood with the Revolution Club against these attacks.

This goes together with a pattern of assault and political persecution of the Revolution Club in Chicago. One member of the Club, Maya, is facing seven years in prison for taking part in the silent protest for immigrants which took place on March 1. And throughout the spring and summer, people associated with the Revolution Club in Chicago were repeatedly arrested, threatened with arrest, and ticketed for using legally permitted amplified sound. Including Maya’s case, people associated with the Revolution Club in Chicago currently face a full dozen cases in court.

We do not know to what degree, if any, there is national coordination in these attacks, but we do know that both in LA and Chicago, there is a pattern of harassment by the authorities. And we know that the attacks on the Revolution Club are politically motivated: they are being gone after for their determination to prevent the consolidation of fascism and for spreading the message and organizing forces for an actual revolution.

People from all different perspectives need to stand with the revolutionaries against these attacks. These are people fighting for a radically different world, free of exploitation and oppression. They understand the illegitimacy of this whole system, and its violent forces of repression used to enforce this system and they are organizing forces today to bring that better world into being. They reach throughout every section of society, including the students and youth and those catching the most hell who this system has no future for. This is a message this system, and those who sit atop it, don't want you to hear.

Fascism Can Happen Here, It Is Happening Here and We Must Stop It!

A crucial component of implementing a fascist regime is the tearing up of the rule of law, and criminalization of what have been traditional forms of protest, aimed at gutting the basic right to political speech and dissent. As Bob Avakian has written: “Even supposedly fundamentally Constitutional rights throughout the history of the U.S. not only can be—but particularly in times of 'stress' or actual crisis in the system often are—sacrificed to the needs of the ruling class.” (From “The Social Content of Law and Its Interpretation” in the compilation Constitution, Law, and Rights—in capitalist society and in the future socialist society)

This is such a time.

As we stated above, in the face of these moves to criminalize and punish political protests, it is imperative that people unite broadly to step out of the bounds of symbolic protest-as-usual. To do so in this changing legal context is a form of protected political speech—it needs to be defended and it needs to spread.

These 11 resisters are being punished for acting with courage and conviction at a time when history is demanding all people of conscience act commensurate with the grave danger humanity is being confronted with by the Trump/Pence fascist regime.

There are great stakes in these cases. Will a supposed “sanctuary city” be allowed to violate the basic rights of people in these ways, contributing to the overall consolidation of fascism, with the right to dissent and protest foreclosed? Will people be able to act commensurate with the danger facing humanity without being shut down and criminalized?

All those who care about the future need to stand up against these outrageous prosecutions and demand the charges be dropped! In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America.

Who Is the LAPD’s Major Crimes Division, aka Anti-Terrorist Division?

A police report connected with the Freeway 9 case reveals the Major Crimes Division of the LAPD sent in a confidential informant to meetings of Refuse Fascism to “gather intelligence” and illegally record conversations unbeknownst to those the informant talked with. The Major Crimes Division is part of the Counter Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau of the LAPD.

There is a long, sordid—and murderous—history of the LAPD illegally spying on a vast range of progressive, radical and revolutionary individuals and organizations which began in the 1950s. At the time, this was part of the U.S. government’s response to the political support and influence of the Soviet Union. For decades since then, the LAPD has illegally spied on, infiltrated and attempted to disrupt such groups involved in constitutionally protected political activity. In 1970, the LAPD established the Public Disorder Intelligence Division (PDID). It was revealed that PDID operatives posed as student members of “radical groups” including Students for a Democratic Society at UCLA as well as such groups like the United Farm Workers. Some time later, it was exposed that the PDID had over 55,000 intelligence dossiers on not only radical groups, but tens of thousands of people, from Hollywood notables to journalists, and that these records were shared with right-wing organizations. In exposing the illegal operations of the PDID, the ACLU uncovered undercover cops who admitted to illegally spying on political organizations, including the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP).

Here is one deadly result of one of PDID’s illegal operations: In 1980, the Revolutionary Communist Damian Garcia along with two other revolutionaries raised the red flag over the Alamo in Texas denouncing it as a symbol of U.S. imperialist conquest and domination. Twenty days later, Damian was murdered in an East LA housing project while carrying out revolutionary work, building for May Day 1980, by someone who declared “you hate the government, I am the government, your flag is red, mine is red, white and blue.” This same person was himself mysteriously murdered, which may have been a cover up itself. It was later exposed that at the time of Damian’s assassination, an undercover LAPD cop was standing 5 feet away from Damian. This same pig had written internal LAPD reports identifying Damian as his assigned “target” based on Damian’s political affiliation with the RCP.

In 1983, in light of the revelations of the LAPD’s illegal spying and targeting of political organizations and individuals, it was forced to disband the PDID and a new division, the Anti-Terrorist Division (ATD) was created. But the ATD incorporated key functions of PDID in addition to stepped up surveillance, especially electronic spying. While he was chief of the LAPD, the notorious Darryl Gates ran an international political spying operation. In 1992, the RCP led a political battle to shut down a secret INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service, the forerunner of ICE) concentration camp in Pico-Union, a heavily populated Central American neighborhood. The LAPD viciously attacked and arrested 21 people during a series of protests. During the prosecution of these 21 protesters, the charges were dropped when the LAPD refused to turn over the names of all ATD officers who may have been present during the demonstrations as well as any documents related to ATD planning in advance of the protests. The ATD is now named the Major Crimes Division, the division which admits to the illegal political police spying on Refuse Fascism in relationship to the Freeway 9.


  1. Sign and share the Public Statement: We Demand: Drop The Charges Against Members of Refuse Fascism and Revolution Club! Go here to sign.
  2. Demand the LA City Attorney Michael Feuer drop ALL the charges against ALL those charged by calling the LA City Attorney’s office: 213.978.8100. Email letters to the LA City Attorney, (Please send copies of letters to Refuse Fascism, LA at
  3. Join the Defense Committee. Be part of getting this out in a big way throughout society! Spread the word in your community, at your church, and among friends and family. Be part of the team to develop flyers, posters and getting out everywhere with this demand: DROP THE CHARGES!
  4. Pack the courtroom for upcoming court dates. Contact Refuse Fascism at 323.946.1742 for up-to-date court support scheduling, or follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for announcements: @RefuseFascismLA
  5. Set up speaking engagements for the defendants. These are inspiring voices of conscience and substance from Refuse Fascism and the Revolution Club. Invite them to speak in your classes, at your church, with your union, professional, and social justice organizations, with a gathering of your friends, colleagues, family. These can also help raise the needed funds for legal costs and publicity. Reach out to radio show hosts, journalists and reporters to interview defendants.
  6. DONATE! $10,000 is urgently needed for legal representation and for publicity flyers and posters. Go here to donate.

If you are outraged by the Trump/Pence Regime's attempts to silence and punish dissent, whether you have little or no experience, little or lots of time: you are needed!


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Getting Our Heads Around Organizing Thousands ... and Thoughts on Building the Revolution Clubs

From a member of the Revolution Club

| Revolution Newspaper |


There are some things that have come up in the process of building the movement for revolution that I think may still be holding us back and are worth drawing some attention to.

One big thing is getting our heads around the kind of process that is involved in thousands getting “organized into the ranks of the revolution now, while millions are being influenced in favor of this revolution.” (From HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution [HWCW]) In a recent letter on called “Initial Thoughts on the Revolution Club…,” one of the things it says is, “Spreading and acting on the basis of the Points of Attention for the Revolution, the clubs have to go through the world as people living and embodying the values of the future world we’re fighting to bring into being. This too is a pole of attraction to the revolution for many. The clubs should be open to everyone who agrees to the Points of Attention, working and struggling with and learning from people, and not thinking everyone, or most people, will go ‘from zero to sixty.’ The clubs must embody a way of organizing and working with people that is gone into in the ‘Commitment and the Process of Building a Movement FOR Revolution’ piece from earlier this summer.”

The process discussed there, and in the “Commitment... Process” piece should not be taken as an “add-on” to what kind of work we are already doing. I think this involves breaking down, breaking with, and re-conceiving a lot of “how we do things” which tends to involve a lot of one-on-one work with people, and a lot of trying to develop and prepare people before they are involved in and given responsibility for working on the revolution. We need to be involving people and enabling them to take responsibility for the revolution AS they are learning and developing their understanding and ability to lead and take more responsibility, and we all should involve people in forging new ways that people can learn and develop above all in collective ways and as part of the process. How we do at this will also bear on whether or not we are building a movement and developing leaders for an actual revolution.

And the part that says “The clubs should be open to everyone who agrees to the Points of Attention, working and struggling with and learning from people, and not thinking everyone, or most people, will go ‘from zero to sixty’” indicates that these Points of Attention (POAs) need to be much more broadly used to give coherence and organization to a broad revolutionary movement, as opposed to just being the things you have to agree to once you’ve learned what you need to know to be able to begin taking part in the revolution.

I know I’ve been part of different approaches to building the clubs either with no process or coherence, or else an arduous process akin to a few college courses. Instead of this, for example, recently some of us were talking about how to bring into the club a number of people who got to see BA speak over the summer before we said to ourselves, “What are we gonna do with people that he didn’t just do with them and better? Let’s just talk to them and ask if they are ready to live by and fight for the POAs and if they get the basics of that and agree to it, that’s the point.” And this experience ended up showing how impactful it is for people to make that commitment and dedication in front of others when they were officially acknowledged. And then people will have to continue to struggle over how to follow through on that responsibility (I mean, who doesn’t have to keep doing that?) Doing regular ceremonies with groups of people welcomed into the club together with masses checking out the revolution has an affect all the way through, too, as it can also create a standard among the masses who are not yet ready to make that commitment but who can be part of broader support networks who are also able to hold people to those POAs who are representing for the revolution.

The New Film

This gets to another point about the upcoming film of Bob Avakian’s talk Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution. I really think with what is said about it in the piece “Take This Film and Change Everything” that this film can play a key role in giving people the basic grounding in the “whys” and “hows” of revolution that can enable many people to take this up and step into the process. With the role this can play in relation to organizing the thousands, as well as influencing the millions, in mind, I think it is worth the clubs to have more crackling over how we build for the upcoming preview screenings and the online launch the next month, as well as sharing advanced experiences and the hardest obstacles. I know, for example, that where I am there is some promising potential of someone who was able to see the talk from BA live seeking to find ways to organize their own showings among circles of people who we are not normally in touch with. We know someone else who no longer lives close by and asked if there was a club near him he could join, so we are trying to set up working with him to pull some people together and send a club member out there to watch the film with them.

People should be coming to expect not ONLY to hear something great that will affect them, but we need to find ways so that people are getting a basic sense of the role this film can play in changing everything. (I saw that there is now another piece up on who should see this film and what this will do, very directly speaks to this and more!)

The Problem and the Solution

This relates to a last point that in everything we are doing, everyone working on the revolution together from brand new to more experienced, from heavily-involved to beginning involvement, everyone should in basic ways be let in on what are the problems of the revolution and how what we are doing now is part of going to work on them. Everyone who was lucky enough to be at the talks that BA gave this summer (that will be this new film) could learn a lot from how he modeled doing this throughout the speech and the Q&As that followed, bringing people in to working together on making revolution. The film, when it comes out, and HWCW are great tools for this, and they need to be worked with so everyone involved can contribute their thinking as well as practical involvement toward solving these problems.

Fighting the Power, and Transforming the People, for Revolution

To round out the picture, I also want to point out that none of what we are doing is off to the side of major battles going in throughout society. As that “Initial Thoughts” piece says, “Fighting the power, and transforming the people, for revolution is a key part of the strategy for revolution. In carrying out such a radical strategy for such a radical goal, the clubs must of necessity be the most radical, convention-breaking, not-playing-by-the-rules thing out there—and must bring forward masses to defend them when they are attacked for being that.” The film of BA’s talk, and HWCW also, give a lot of guidance for how to understand the “5 Stops” and how to enter into struggle around these “Stops” as part of building up the forces for revolution.

What I just wanted to say here is that here, too, we need to involve people not just in coming to protests or actions of various kinds, but also in questions like: How do we build up the authority of the revolution and its leadership? Where can we unite with others and where do we need to struggle? How do people learn to evaluate different organized forces, programs, culture and values—according to how it relates to the revolution we need to end all oppression? How do we carry all this out and defeat the attempts to crush the revolution and its leadership? Here, too, on, there is a lot of up-to-date guidance on the various police attacks and charges facing the clubs all over the country. And here, too, we have to learn how people are involved in working on these problems as part of the whole process.

“Revolutions are made by the bold. On the basis of the solid core foundation of the works of BA and other key documents of the new communism, and the guidance that must be up every week and every day at, the clubs must dare to storm the heavens—and dare to make mistakes in the process.” (From “Initial thoughts...”)


Trailer for

Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

A speech by Bob Avakian

Spread this trailer today. Let people know they have a chance to be among the first to see this speech.

Then join the movement to put this before all of society, toward the online premiere October 19.

Points of Attention for the Revolution

The Revolution Club upholds, lives by and fights for the following principles:

1 We base ourselves on and strive to represent the highest interests of humanity: revolution and communism. We do not tolerate using the revolution for personal gain.

2 We fight for a world where ALL the chains are broken. Women, men, and differently gendered people are equals and comrades. We do not tolerate physically or verbally abusing women or treating them as sexual objects, nor do we tolerate insults or “jokes” about people’s gender or sexual orientation.

3 We fight for a world without borders, and for equality among different peoples, cultures and languages. We do not tolerate insults, “jokes” or derogatory names about a person’s race, nationality, or language.

4 We stand with the most oppressed and never lose sight of their potential to emancipate humanity—nor of our responsibility to lead them to do that. We work to win people of all backgrounds to take part in the revolution, and do not tolerate revenge among the people.

5 We search for and fight for the truth no matter how unpopular, even as we listen to and learn from the observations, insights and criticisms of others.

6 We are going for an actual overthrow of this system and a whole better way beyond the destructive, vicious conflicts of today between the people. Because we are serious, at this stage we do not initiate violence and we oppose all violence against the people and among the people.

How Can We Win? How Can We Really Make Revolution?

Join the Revolution Club!


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

August 31, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |



Download PDF of "The Problem, the Solution, and the Challenges Before Us"

Excerpt from "The Problem, the Solution, and the Challenges Before Us," a Talk by Bob Avakian

In light of the trial of the Chicago cop who murdered Laquan McDonald, is republishing this excerpt from the text of a talk given by Bob Avakian (BA) to a Party working group in the summer of 2017. The full talk is available online here. The audio of the full talk is available here.



Excerpt From Part 3: The Solution, the Necessity, the Possibility and the Desirability of Revolution Grounded in The New Communism

We’ve concentrated in Chicago because it has become a concentration point objectively of very important social confrontations and social contradictions. The ruling class, as such, is seizing on it as a bludgeon for greatly heightening its murderous repression that’s carried out among the masses of people who are concentrated in the inner cities in particular, but also as an ideological weapon that it’s been working on for decades—which is not very different from, and is essentially the same as, what I quoted from that wife and campaign manager of that Congressman back at the end of the 19th century—that these are a bunch of savage animals. And we even hear some of the masses telling us: “They’re too far gone, try to get the five-year-olds. These kids, by the time they’re teenagers, they’re too far gone.” No, they’re not, but it’s going to be a very intense, fierce struggle to win them to revolution. But you keep know, for decades they’ve been portraying these masses in this way through all the culture, through all the pig shows on TV, through everything the politicians have done. They portray these masses as savage beasts, like this woman said.

And I kept thinking to myself: How the fuck do they keep getting these juries that let these pigs off, or refuse to convict them, one after another, when the evidence of cold-blooded murder is overwhelming and right in front of your face? It’s partly who they get on juries, and it’s partly how the prosecution doesn’t prosecute and accepts the terms, the very narrow terms, of whether the cop had a legitimate fear for his life or whatever—which has racism written into it and institutionalized. “If I’m a cop and I hate Black people, well, then every time I see one of these young Black youth, I’m afraid of them because I hate them, and therefore I can do anything I want to them.” And then the prosecutors accept that and try to work with that basic logic, try to work within it. And you know what the judges... how they’re slanting things. But still you’ve got these juries—how do they not convict, even with all that? Because people who get on these juries, in particular, have been conditioned for years and decades on how to look at this: “If we don’t let these cops do what they gotta do, these savage beasts are gonna run wild, they’re gonna come in our neighborhood and rape the women and burn down everything and steal everything and murder everybody.” This is how they do this. They’re using Chicago as a big battering ram and a big sledgehammer ideologically to go further with that as part of, in practice, greatly heightening the repression, the murderous repression. It’s nothing less than murderous repression with genocidal, yes, real genocidal dimensions.

And so we’ve recognized this. This is a gauntlet that’s been thrown down by the ruling class, and is objectively a gauntlet that we have to pick up and transform. And there is nobody else who’s going to do this—not because of some sort of human nature that we have that’s different from other people, but because people don’t have the science. They don’t have the science to recognize what the actual situation is, what the contradictory situation is. Yes, what the very negative factors are, including in what people are into—not just what they do but how they think, and what needs to be really compellingly struggled with in a very fierce way to rupture them out of that and to get them to actually rise to the potential they have to be emancipators of humanity, to be a backbone of a revolution whose goal is the emancipation of all humanity. And furthermore, having entered into this, there is no way that we are not going to fight through on it. We have to fight through on it because of what it represents objectively, which I was just speaking to. And, on top of that, we have to fight through on it because we’ve gone to the masses and said we’re going to do so. And goddamn it, we’re not going to not do that!

Now, that doesn’t solve the problems. That’s just a basic point of fundamental orientation, and then we have to go to work on the problems—which we are. But I will say, on the positive side, if and as we make even beginning qualitative breakthroughs to bringing forward a critical mass, particularly among the youth, who are won to this revolution and don’t just put the shirt on one day—you know, “BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS!” and take it off the next—which is something—but actually get all the way in with this and are really not only willing but fired up to go out and struggle with everybody else about “this is what we need to be with,” and have the vision—a scientifically grounded vision, not a vision that’s cooked up in somebody’s head which has nothing to do with reality and is in conflict with reality, but a scientifically grounded vision—of how we could have a radically different world in which people don’t have to be put through this, all this unnecessary suffering and horror that they’re put through every day, not just the people here but people all over the world. As we make real breakthroughs on that, then, you know, the struggle is going to intensify a thousand-fold. And we have to be prepared for that. We have to be, as we once said, down for the whole thing. We have to be ready to fight that all the way through. It’s not the whole of the revolution by any means, but it is a crucial concentration point of the fight for revolution in this society and in this world. And even all over the world people know about Chicago.

So think of the positive side. What’s it going to mean if the banner of revolution—in a real sense, and real people actually raising and fighting for that banner among others like them and going out more broadly in society and fighting for it—what’s it going to mean positively as that comes forward and the fight is waged not to have it suppressed? I just want to emphasize: this is the stakes of this battle. It’s not everything we’re doing, it’s not even everything we’re doing among the basic masses, but it is a concentration point and carries tremendous stakes and implications.





Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Excerpt from SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak

Why Is It So Important, and What Does It Mean, to Get Into BA?

July 17, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |


In the early part of 2015, over a number of days, Revolution conducted 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, among other works, 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. This interview was first published online at

Q: OK, picking up on your point that there’s a role and a need for everybody who finds the state of the world intolerable, to get with this movement for revolution—with that point in mind, and picking up on the point that you just made, I wanted to ask you to speak directly to people with different levels of familiarity with BA, whether they’re just finding out about him or whether they’ve been familiar with his work for a while. And the question I wanted you to speak to is, basically what it means on different levels for people to get into BA and get with his leadership? Why is this so important?

AS: Look, in a lot of ways, it’s pretty straightforward. Whatever kind of background you come from, whatever your position in society today, if you’re the kind of person who feels that there are a lot of things that are really messed up about the way the world is, the way society is; if you’re completely outraged and unwilling to tolerate for a minute longer a lot of the more outrageous abuses and injustices of the society—and there’s no shortage of these that different people become aware of—then follow your conscience, first of all. Follow your conscience and follow your convictions, and follow the trail to see what does BA say, given that we’re saying, look, this guy’s been doing decades of work, analyzing why these problems keep happening, what they are rooted in, what’s the fundamental reason these terrible things keep happening in this society, what could be done about it.

So, “get into BA” means, first of all, don’t stand aloof when you see these great injustices and this great suffering of the people from various directions. Get involved. Get involved in fighting and exposing these abuses, in joining with others, get organized to fight these abuses, to expose these outrages, to make it clear you’re not tolerating them. And, as you become part of this movement, this movement for revolution, this movement to fight the power, to transform your own thinking and the thinking of your friends and family, and others, on some of the key questions of the day, as you get more involved in that, at the same time as you’re doing that, go deeper. Go deeper. Be like a good scientist. Get into BA, because by getting into BA you are going to learn a lot about the deeper source of the problems and what the actual solutions are, or are not, and what can be done about these problems.

Ardea Skybreak Science and Revolution excerpts A New Theoretical Framework for a New Stage of Communist Revolution What Is New in the New Synthesis? The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic--A Visionary and Concrete Application of the New Synthesis Serious Engagement with the New Synthesis--The Difference It Could Make An Explorer, a Critical Thinker, a Follower of BA Some Thank Yous That Need To Be Said Aloud Order the book here Download the full interview in PDF format here

A good place to start, if you’re new to things, besides something like the Dialogue, I would highly recommend that people watch, and watch with their friends and families, and so on, the film Revolution—Nothing Less! It’s six hours of BA talking, analyzing the deeper sources of the problem in society and the solution. There’s also an earlier film, Revolution: Why It’s Necessary, Why It’s Possible, What It’s All About, that is also full of very helpful material which gets very clearly into why a revolution is necessary and why it is possible, even in a country like the U.S., and what kind of revolution should we have, what kind of society should we bring into being. And you can get a copy of BAsics and just start reading it anywhere you want, read some of the quotes and the short essays that are in there that give a feel for some of the range and the depth of analysis on some of these questions, and why this system cannot just be fixed with a few tweaks, why it can’t just be reformed.

One of the most important things that it means to get into BA is to get into the deeper analysis and exposition of precisely why you cannot reform this system, and why capitalist imperialism as a system needs to be completely dismantled through a revolution, an actual revolution, and replaced with a new society built on a completely different economic and political foundation and, correspondingly, very different social values and ways people can relate to each other and function in society.

So, getting into BA—well, there’s not just one way to get into BA. There are many different ways. If you’re new to things, I would recommend the Dialogue, BAsics, Revolution—Nothing Less! I would recommend going regularly, at least once a week, to the website and exploring not only Revolution newspaper on a regular basis, but also going to the other portals on the website: the portal that has BA’s works, and talks about the new synthesis; the portal that talks about the Party he leads, why there’s a need for a revolutionary party and what that involves and why people should be talking about joining this revolutionary party; and the portal that talks about what’s going on in the movement for revolution and these different initiatives to fight mass incarceration and police murders and brutality, and to combat the restrictions on abortion and combat the degradation of women through pornography and rape culture and in other ways, and the fights around the environmental degradation and against these imperialist wars, and so on. There are a lot of practical things, practical initiatives, that people can get into, and people can get involved in one, or more than one, of these initiatives. But getting into BA means, at whatever level and wherever you start, trying to really get into what is he saying about why you can’t fix things just one thing at a time, and why you can’t fix things by trying to reform this system. And it means getting into what is the relationship between fighting particular abuses and outrages today, and being able to get to the point where you’re in a position to have an actual full-out revolution to dismantle the existing system and reconfigure the society on a completely different foundation.

There is something that has been on the website recently which gives a short definition. It’s called “What IS An Actual Revolution?” I’m just going to read it here:

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.

“With completely different objectives and ways of life for the people.” I just want to stay on that for a second. That’s a very important thing, how a society is organized. What does the system that governs the society—what is it aiming to do? Under capitalism-imperialism, it seeks to meet the needs of the capitalist-imperialists, in terms of being able to develop and sustain their empire, increase their profits, compete successfully with other capitalist-imperialists. It has very little to do with meeting the needs of the people, either the basic requirements of life or these more intangible things like art and culture and science. It is geared to meeting the needs of the capitalists, the imperialists. The whole state apparatus, the police and the armed forces, and so on, these are state institutions that are geared to buttressing, supporting and strengthening this system and its objectives, its goals.

And a real revolution is a process which actually involves getting to the point where you can fight—where millions of people can be involved in fighting—to dismantle, to break down and completely break apart the existing institutions of the system, and replace them with completely new institutions and new organs of power, and new ways of setting up the economy, and all the things that flow from that, including all sorts of ways that the people relate to each other, and all the ideas that flow from that. It’s a radical transformation in everything, from the way people live, to the way people relate to each other, to the way people dream and aspire to things—all of this undergoes a real sea change when you have an actual revolution.

And if you get into BA, this is what you should be looking for—you should be looking for his method and approach, his analysis of why things are the way they are. Why do police keep murdering unarmed Black and Brown people in this society? Why is this continuing what has been in existence since the days of slavery and Jim Crow? The “lynching culture” is now the “police murder of people culture”—it is an extension of the same thing. BA does a very deep and insightful analysis of the whole history of this and of how this is so woven into the fabric of this system that you can’t just wish it away, and you can’t even protest it away. You should protest, you should have strong fights against this, organize with other people, like the movement that’s been developing since Ferguson, a movement which started around Trayvon Martin and then built up around Mike Brown and Eric Garner, with people coming forward all over the country in different cities, and in cities around the world, to denounce this kind of thing. It is extremely important not only to continue this, but to actually expand it and have it grow and be stronger. It is part of organizing the people and strengthening the people.

And the same can be said around a number of other key concentrations of social contradictions, these key outrages in society, these contradictions that this system cannot fix. They cannot fix the oppression of Black people, of Brown people. They cannot fix the way immigrants get blocked from borders or turned away or tormented or denounced as “illegals,” as if any human being were ever an “illegal” human being. It cannot fix the way women are degraded and treated as less than full human beings in this country and all around the world. It cannot fix the environment in any sustained fundamental way—not as long as we live under a system that is driven by a constant search, and a fierce competition, for profits, not as long as those are the rules of the system running things. The rules of the game for capitalism-imperialism are that capitalists are constantly competing with other capitalist-imperialists around the world to divide the world, and for plunder and pillage, and to increase their profits; and if you don’t play that game, and beat out others, you go under. So even if an individual capitalist wanted to have a more enlightened position, they can’t really do anything about it. The system is set up to meet the needs of that system, not the needs of the people.

So when you get into BA, you should be reading and listening and checking out all the different things that intrigue you and interest you, and talking to other people about it. You don’t have to agree with everything, just check it out, do some work. Get together with people, read things, listen to things, watch films, discuss things, and develop your own understanding, at the same time that you’re out there fighting and denouncing and exposing the injustices of everyday life as they’re going on right now, which BA is definitely encouraging people to do. At the same time that you’re doing that, keep going deeper, so that you really start to understand why these terrible outrageous abuses are built into the fabric of this system, and you can push back for a while, but ultimately you cannot totally get rid of these abuses until you get rid of the system itself and replace it with a completely new system. BA makes very, very deep and insightful analyses of all of that: why you need a revolution; what is the possibility for a revolution; what is the basis—on what basis, even in a powerful imperialist country like the United States, with all its military and stuff, is it actually possible; and, if you succeed in seizing power, then how do you build a society that was worth fighting for, that you’d want to live in, as opposed to yet another bad system. All of that is in BA’s works.

In that statement I was reading about “What IS an Actual Revolution?” it gets into the link between fighting the power today and building for an actual revolution. It says, “Fighting the power today has to help build and develop and organize the fight for the whole thing.” “The fight for the whole thing”—if you don’t get into BA, you’re going to be missing a lot about how to link all these different things together and understand their root causes, which are deeply built into the fabric of the system, and you won’t know how to fight for the whole thing. And you have to fight for the whole thing in order to have an actual revolution. And this statement ends, “Otherwise we’ll be protesting the same abuses generations from now!” I don’t know about you, but I don’t want that, three generations hence...people have made that point about Emmett Till, that people protested what happened to Emmett Till, the lynching of Emmett Till way back in the 1950s, and here we are protesting what happened to Eric Garner, to Mike Brown, to Oscar Grant, to Ramarley Graham, to Amadou Diallo, to Trayvon Martin, to Tamir Rice...the list goes on and on and on... Right? How long are we going to be doing the same thing?

So, yes, first of all, we should definitely be protesting, but we also need to go deeper and be more scientific and more organized and more unified, and we need to get smarter, frankly, about how we take on these things. Bob Avakian has developed a whole strategy for the whole revolutionary process—not just for one corner of it, but for all the different components of it—in this country, in a country like the U.S., as well as having some very important insights for the development of revolution in other countries, including other types of countries, like Third World countries that are under the domination of imperialism, where it is necessary to work in somewhat different ways for an actual revolution.

So all that is some of what it means to get into BA. You know, just do the work. Go to the website. Get BAsics. Get Revolution—Nothing Less! Watch the Dialogue. Read BA’s memoir, From Ike to Mao and Beyond. Listen to some of the cultural things. Listen to “All Played Out.” Play the “Borderline” song on the Outernational album. Watch and listen to these things with other people. There are many, many different angles and many different ways to get into this. Look, BA has spent a lifetime, he’s spent decades developing all of this work. You’re not going to be able to catch up, you’re not going to be able to “get it all,” in a few weeks or a few months or even a few years. But make a start, and then follow it up. Ask questions if things aren’t clear enough. Struggle with other people about their misconceptions. Go to your friends and family and talk to them about what you’re learning. And, by the way, expect to be mocked, ridiculed, criticized, to be told you don’t know what you’re talking about! Expect push back, OK? But don’t give up when that happens. Do the best you can in answering things, on the basis of what you’ve been learning, but when you run into things that you don’t understand well enough, go back to BA, go back to his materials, dig in a little deeper, talk to other people who know more about this, ask them for help, so that you can keep spreading this among the people.

The idea is that, if you had hundreds more, thousands more, tens of thousands more, discussing, debating what BA has been bringing forward, what he’s arguing for, his analysis, what he says the nature of the problem is, and what the nature of the solution is, then it’s not that everybody would immediately agree, but we’d all be so much better off—if everybody were having that kind of discussion, instead of just sort of turning their backs on the problems of society and the problems of the people and just cultivating their own little “self,” or maybe actually trying to fight some of these abuses but in a way that is sort of like being stuck in a narrow little cubicle, where you’re just taking on one issue, or one corner of one issue, but you’re not seeing the bigger patterns, and you’re not linking them up to the other egregious outrages in society, and you’re not understanding that there is actually a strategy to get out of this mess once and for all. There is a strategy. This is why you should get into BA, and this is how to make a start.







Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Protesters Confront Armed Fascist "Open Carry" March at Kent State

| Revolution Newspaper |


On September 29 Alt-right fascists called an “open carry” march, complete with AK-47's, on the Kent State University campus near Cleveland, Ohio. This was where, on May 4, 1970, four students were shot dead by the National Guard for courageously protesting the Vietnam War and the invasion of Cambodia. This armed fascist organizing rally, aimed at allowing students and faculty to carry guns on campus, was an insult and provocation that infuriated many. On Saturday, over 100 counter protesters, including students, 60's people, and Refuse Fascism and other progressive groups righteously confronted, outnumbered, and prevented the fascists from completing their march. They also stood up to the police, who aggressively protected the fascists and came close to trampling one woman. The chant “No Trump, No KKK, No Fascist USA!” was taken up, and toward the end of the counter-protest, an American flag was burned with people approvingly watching it go up in flames.


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

America Steps Up Barbarity at the Border:

12,800 Minors Detained, Migrant Families to Be Locked Up Indefinitely

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Update, September 30—According to news reports, hundreds of immigrant children labeled by the government as “unaccompanied minors” have been moved in the middle of the night from where they were being held across the country to the detention camp at Tornillo-Guadalupe, near El Paso, Texas, and the border with Mexico. This camp is a tent city in the sweltering desert, which the government has quickly expanded from the original capacity of 400 detainees in June to 3,800 now. These children had already gone through the severe trauma of having to leave their families and everything else behind in their home countries, making a dangerous trek through Mexico and across the U.S. border, and then getting treated as criminals here and held in detention facilities. Now hundreds of these youths are being yanked out of where they are with little notice, separated from any friends they have made, and put on buses at night to be sent to a mass detention camp. These kids had been receiving at least some schooling and regular visits from legal representatives assigned to their immigration cases—but at Tornillo, the youths are deprived of any schooling, and access to legal help is limited. This is yet another intolerable crime by this system of capitalism-imperialism that is the cause of so much human suffering around the world.

In late June there was international outrage at the horrific sight of America's Border Patrol agents tearing immigrant children from the arms of their parents—and then the emotional damage to these young children being used by the U.S. to deliver a message to other immigrants and refugees: “Stop coming here.” Of those 2,500 children separated and detained, 300 have still not been reunited with their parents who were deported without their children.

But there are in fact another 12,800 children still in custody—those who came to this country alone, without a parent or guardian. This is the highest number of “unaccompanied minors” ever detained at one time—and a five-fold increase since May 2017! These migrant youth—overwhelmingly children from Central America’s Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala—left their families and everything else behind, risked the dangers of the weeks-long trek across Mexico, only to be treated as criminals for seeking asylum in the U.S.

At the same time, border arrests of immigrant families coming from the countries of the Northern Triangle increased 38 percent in August, making it the greatest number of family arrivals in August on record.

What Drove These People to Come to the U.S.?

The truth is that the conditions in these countries are so intolerable that they are driving huge sections of their populations to flee. And why did the conditions get that way? The violence, turmoil, and poverty that have made these countries unlivable for so many are the consequences of decades of plunder and military and political domination by the U.S. in this region the imperialist rulers so arrogantly consider “America's backyard.”

Direct U.S. support for vicious tyrants and their murderous armies and death squads in the 1980s led to the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of people in the Northern Triangle countries. This reactionary violence was aimed at suppressing resistance movements backed by the U.S.’s main global rival at the time, the Soviet Union (which had become a capitalist-imperialist power following the overthrow of socialism in the mid-1950s). The expansion of economic plunder by U.S. corporations in the decades that followed—aided by the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), this region's version of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that devastated the life of tens of millions in Mexico—made it impossible for huge numbers of people to support themselves on the land. And the widespread violence by gangs (often working with the police) that is gripping whole sections of these countries today and has created world-record murder rates, is the result of decisions made by the U.S. in the 1990s to deport thousands of youth back to Central America, in the name of the “war on gangs.”

The consequences in those countries have been catastrophic, and that has led to the huge flow of refugees and immigrants to the U.S.-Mexico border. In relation to this, there is a section of the U.S. ruling class that views immigration in the context not only of U.S. economic necessity (the super-exploitation of Mexican and Central American labor has always been the cornerstone of the capitalist economy in the southwest and western U.S.), but as a part of maintaining domination over Mexico and Central/Latin America through “soft power” (that is, economic, political and cultural domination in conjunction with the brute force and bullying). They think the best way to protect and pursue U.S. imperialist interests is to forge an arrangement where immigration can continue but under greater U.S. control. 

This was the program that Obama was carrying out. And its consequences were horrific, including trying to stop the flow of Central American refugees through more intense militarization of the border and sending the overwhelming majority back to their homelands. At one point Obama said on ABC News, "That is our direct message to the families in Central America. Do not send your children to the borders. If they do make it, they'll be sent back. More importantly, they may not make it."

Obama’s expansion and unleashing of the Border Patrol drove more and more border-crosssers into the most dangerous parts of the Arizona desert, where hundreds lost their lives each year. The bones and other remains of these migrants, ravaged by desert animals, have Obama's name on them. Obama earned the title “Deporter-in-Chief” because under his regime a record-breaking two million immigrants were deported. He promoted the program Secure Communities, under which local police forces worked hand in hand with ICE agents in cities around the country to target immigrants, until it was pulled back; used indefinite detention to discourage others from coming here; and directed tens of millions of dollars, as Trump is doing right now, to the Mexican government to fund the arrest and deportation of Central American immigrants and refugees before they can get to the U.S. border.

The Fascist Solution

The Trump/Pence regime represents another section of the rulers who are convinced that the fascist program of extreme repression, openly racist “Make America White Again” demonization of people of color, and anti-immigrant ethnic cleansing can succeed in resolving what is in fact an intractable contradiction for this system. Their fascist “solution” includes:

These crimes against immigrants are just a part of the intolerable outrages this system carries out continually, and that cause so much unnecessary human suffering for the masses of people of the world. STOP the demonization, criminalization and deportations of immigrants and the militarization of the border.   

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This detention facility in Dilly, Texas houses over 1,500 women and children who have been detained, August 2018. Photo: AP

Immigrants and the New Socialist Republic in North America

The following is from the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America, which was authored by Bob Avakian and adopted by the Central Committee of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA.

H. Immigrants, Citizenship and Asylum.

3. The orientation of the New Socialist Republic in North America is to welcome immigrants from all over the world who have a sincere desire to contribute to the goals and objectives of this Republic, as set forth in this Constitution and in laws and policies which are established and enacted in accordance with this Constitution. From the time of the establishment of the New Socialist Republic in North America, anyone residing outside of the territory of this Republic who wishes to enter its territory, and any such person wishing to become a citizen, or a permanent resident, of this Republic, must follow the relevant laws and procedures which have been established on the basis of this Constitution. Anyone who applies for asylum in this Republic and, through the relevant procedures that have been established for this purpose, is found to have been persecuted, or to have a well-founded fear of persecution, on account of having taken part in just struggles against imperialist and reactionary states or other reactionary forces, or on account of scientific, artistic, or other pursuits which have brought them into conflict with reactionary powers and institutions, shall be afforded asylum in the New Socialist Republic in North America, so long as they pledge to act in compliance with the Constitution of this Republic, and do act accordingly. Provided that they do not engage in any serious violation of the laws of this Republic, people granted asylum have the right to remain within the territory of this Republic for as long as they choose to do so, and shall be accorded the same rights as citizens, with the exception that, so long as they have not become citizens, they may not vote in elections or be elected or appointed to public office. They shall have the right, after a certain period, determined by law, to become citizens of this Republic, with the same rights and responsibilities as all other citizens. The citizenship process, as well as review of the asylum status of all those granted asylum, shall be carried out in accordance with the laws and procedures established for these purposes.


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

From the Revolutionary Communist Organization, Mexico:

In the Face of the Crimes of the State: Never Forgive, Never Forget, but Rather Resistance and Revolution!

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The following flyer from the Revolutionary Communist Organization, Mexico, was translated from Spanish by; the original article appeared at

Fifty years after the massacre of Tlatelolco [October 2, 1968], four years after Ayotzinapa and Tlatlaya, two years after Nochixtlán, these and many other crimes of the state remain in absolute impunity. And the armed forces and police of this criminal state continue murdering, disappearing and torturing thousands of people. In a “listening” forum in Ciudad Juárez, Andrés Manuel López Obrador [newly elected Mexican president] insisted that in order to achieve “pacification and reconciliation,” the victims would have to grant “forgiveness”. The victims and their families began to shout very justly so, “Never forgive, never forget!” and “Without justice, there is no forgiveness!” “Forgiving” crimes against humanity would only contribute to perpetuate the monstrous war against the people by the state, in collusion at all levels with organized crime, which has resulted in more than 200,000 murders in the last 12 years. The only hope of justice is the determined resistance of the people to expose and denounce these crimes, and the only definitive way out of so many horrors is a revolution that overthrows this criminal state and the current rotten inhuman system, responsible for so much misery and unnecessary suffering.

Ayotzinapa: It Was the State, and They Continue Lying to Cover It Up

The evidence compiled by the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts (GIEI) leaves no doubt that the federal government, as well as the state and municipal governments, participated directly in the joint operation that resulted in the murder of six people and the disappearance of the 43 teaching college students of Ayotzinapa, and who later took actions to cover up this terrible crime. Military and police from the three levels of government spied on the students with the C4 [Center of Command, Control, Communications and Computer] system from when they left the school. The police and the armed forces (as well as drug traffickers) participated in the coordinated operation to prevent the students from leaving Iguala in the State of Guerrero, and the army took control of the C4 at critical times and suppressed the videos of these crimes.

Then the Mexican Attorney General’s Office (PGR) and its Criminal Investigation Agency (AIC) set up a cover-up of this state crime, with the alleged “historical truth” that the 43 students had been incinerated by an organized crime group in the Cocula dump on the very night of September 26, 2014. This lie has been rejected by virtually every independent investigation, including the investigations by the GIEI itself, the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team (EAAF), Amnesty International, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The government fabricated its lie by torturing people illegally detained. The recent report of the UN High Commissioner confirms that, in the 34 cases that it investigated, the detainees were tortured.

A video and other evidence also indicate that they planted, under the command of Tomás Zerón of the AIC, a piece of bone, from the missing student Alex Mora Venancio, in a garbage bag along the San Juan River on October 28, 2014, to be “discovered” the next day by divers from the Marines. In addition, they planted 42 bullet shell casings in the Cocula dump. If the federal government planted Alex’s bone, obviously it was directly involved in these crimes. Authorities at the highest level of the government know where the disappeared students are, and they are only trying to cover up the role of their own uniformed assassins.

And they continue to cover up this massacre: Ten federal government entities have filed at least 222 court appeals to prevent the creation of a “Truth Commission,” and former Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto appears in government ads to defend the same lie “that the 43 young people had been incinerated by a criminal group.” Nobody from the new incoming federal government has come out to expose him for what he is: A cynical and lying criminal. Alejandro Encinas (future undersecretary of human rights of the Secretariat of the Interior) promises to push for a real investigation as of December 1, but López Obrador has already promised to choose the new heads of the armed forces from among today’s same criminal generals and admirals. So, what will his government do in the face of the opposition from the armed forces, the police and the PGR to being investigated?

It is because of the tenacious resistance of the family members, the students and thousands of other people in Mexico and the world that the state has not yet been able to bury the whole truth and close the case. Whether all the truth comes out and there is possibility of some justice, will depend on the determined resistance of the people, independent of the state, who free of restraints, expose the state’s crimes and its lies.

NEVER FORGET October 2, and the Same Murdering State Still Stands

Although there have been some changes in form, in essence the current state is still the same state as the one that massacred more than one hundred students and others on October 2, 1968, when the army opened fire on a peaceful rally under orders from President Gustavo Díaz Órdaz and his Secretary of the Interior, Luís Echeverría, with the backing and advice of U.S. imperialism. Although the first government with parties “alternating in power” and a supposed “democratic transition” with Vicente Fox as president, promised to investigate and clarify “the crimes of the past” with a special prosecutor’s office, this office was finally dissolved and none of the executioners responsible for the massacres of Tlatelolco, the “Halconazo” of June 10, 1971 [massacre of students by elite Mexican army soldiers], nor the government’s dirty war in the following years was put on trial or punished.

The 1968 student movement erupted at a time of revolts and revolutions that convulsed the world and encouraged the hopes of millions of the possibility of overthrowing the current capitalist system and getting to a much better socialist society. This movement fought the antiriot police heroically, demanded freedom for political prisoners, mocked the “regime of the Mexican Revolution,” and exposed the reactionary nature of the repressive forces of the state, which was and remains an oppressive machine to subdue all mass opposition that threatens or even hinders the “proper functioning” of the reigning system.

Stop the War Against the People!

This reactionary repressive role of the state is largely disguised now with the supposed “war against organized crime” declared 12 years ago by then President Felipe Calderón with the sponsorship of the U.S. government, which is really a war against the people. This accelerated the militarization of Mexico, increased the scourge of organized crime, and led to a huge escalation of widespread violence against the people—murders, femicides, disappearances, torture, and the unjust imprisonment of thousands of innocent people—at the hands of the forces of the state and also criminal groups, who act in collusion while competing and clashing among each other. This is a form of preventive counterinsurgency, which tries to prevent a mass insurgency from arising. In the Enrique Peña Nieto government, all this reactionary violence against the mass movements and also against the population in general has intensified. Just in July 2018, the official figure (which minimizes the actual number) was 2,599 murders—the highest figure for which there are records. In the first seven months of 2018, 16,339 people are murdered. The murders of women classified as femicide also hit a record 78 women in July, an official figure that omits many misogynistic murders that are not recorded as femicides. The Femicide Map, for example, reported more than 230 femicides per month in 2017.

Immigrants, mainly Central Americans, are a key target of this war, with the Mexican state acting as U.S. guard dog. They flee from criminal and patriarchal violence and from misery, the product of the destruction of the countryside and the environment, as well as the super-exploitation by imperialist companies. The Mexican government and the hitmen collude to kidnap, deport, disappear, or murder them. The crime of the 72 executed immigrants buried in San Fernando, Tamaulipas brought to light this massacre, but remains in absolute impunity. The Mesoamerican Migrant Movement says that it has documented between 70 and 80,000 disappeared Central Americans in the six years of Calderón government, 30 percent of them women and girls, many of them sold into human trafficking networks. Since 2014, the Mexican state, with the U.S. calling the shots, has intensified this persecution, deporting more Central Americans than the U.S. and also collecting their biometric data for the U.S. Currently, the Trump/Pence fascist regime is seeking to impose a Mexico as a “safe third country,” corralling the migrants in Mexico who are seeking asylum in the U.S.

The Army and the Marines Disappear or Murder the Detainees

“Extrajudicial executions” are already the daily norm. The crime of Tlatlaya in 2014 still remains unpunished, where the army soldiers murdered 22 people, executing the majority of them after they had surrendered, obeying written orders to “go out into the night to shoot down criminals.” Later, the police arrested and tortured the witnesses.

Since January 2018, the Marines have unleashed a reign of terror in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas. As of May, they had disappeared 36 people, nine of them had already appeared murdered with signs of torture. Despite videos, photographs, witnesses, and even several cases in which family members followed the kidnapper Marines to their bases, the commanders keep denying everything, just as they did in March when a Marine helicopter murdered two girls and their mother, a fact that was later verified by the expert reports.

The Problem Is the System, the Solution Is the Revolution

Why, in these and many other cases, do the forces of the state murder, disappear, torture, and repress people? It is not simply due to corrupt officials, the lack of “training in human rights” or that “they are not doing their job.” The truth is that by repressing people, the state is doing its job: Its job is to defend a system based on the exploitation and oppression of the great majority by a handful of big Mexican and foreign capitalists. There is no way to maintain this system of big injustices and inequalities without sowing terror among the people on the bottom of society and repressing the outbreaks of protest and rebellion, and this is precisely the fundamental role of the current state. The election of López Obrador as president has awakened in many hopes that he may at least lessen the growing horrors that we are living, but the reality is that he is going to be at the head of the same criminal state, representing and defending the same heartless system.

The only way out for the people is the most determined independent resistance that exposes the criminal state, and contributes to preparing a revolution guided by the New Communism, to overthrow the current predominantly capitalist system subordinated to imperialism which is the root of so much misery and injustice, and create a new socialist society. If you want to contribute to another future that is possible and much better, share this flyer and contact us.

Aurora Roja, voice of the Revolutionary Communist Organization, Mexico
September 1, 2018


On August 27, 1968, armored tanks went up against students in Mexico City who staged a protest in the Zócalo plaza, one of the largest protests against the government in Mexico's history. (Photo: Wikipedia Commons)

Protest of family members and others against disappearance of people by Marines, Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

“We Are All Ayotzinapa! The State Is Not Negligent, It Is Criminal! The people stand up for another future!—National Resistance Network ‘¡Stop the War on the People!’”


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

American Crime

#51: Tazreen Bangladesh Garment Inferno

December 11, 2017 | Revolution Newspaper |


Bob Avakian recently wrote that one of three things that has “to happen in order for there to be real and lasting change for the better: People have to fully confront the actual history of this country and its role in the world up to today, and the terrible consequences of this.” (See “3 Things that have to happen in order for there to be real and lasting change for the better.”)

In that light, and in that spirit, “American Crime” is a regular feature of Each installment focuses on one of the 100 worst crimes committed by the U.S. rulers—out of countless bloody crimes they have carried out against people around the world, from the founding of the U.S. to the present day.

American Crime

See all the articles in this series.


Children holding signs demanding compensation for wounded workers.
Children of Tazreen Fashion workers who died in the Bangladesh garment factory fire, November 2014. Photo: AP

THE CRIME: During the early morning hours of November 24, 2012, 600 of the more than 1,400 daily workers at the nine-story Tazreen Fashions factory near the Bangladesh capital of Dhaka stayed on to work overtime producing ready-made garments (RMG) for Walmart, Sears, Walt Disney Co., and other major transnational retailers.

A fire, apparently starting near electric generators on the ground floor in an area of the factory used illegally as a warehouse, rapidly spread upward throughout the building.

Workers were trapped inside the overcrowded factory because there were no emergency exits and the three narrow staircases between floors all led to the flaming warehouse on the ground floor and the windows were barred. The top floors, which had only recently been hastily added to the legally licensed six floors, were under construction and padlocked, blocking any access to the roof. Many bodies were burned beyond recognition, and many suffered smoke inhalation and suffocation.

One survivor, who worked on the fifth floor, reported that he escaped by climbing out of a third-floor window onto bamboo scaffolding that was being used by construction workers. He said he lost his mother, who also worked on the fifth floor, when they were trying to make their way down. “It was crowded on the stairs as all the workers were trying to come out from the factory. There was no power supply; it was dark, and I lost my mother in the dark. I tried to search for her for 10 to 15 minutes but did not find her.” Early during the fire, managers reportedly told workers to ignore the fire alarms, saying it was a mock fire drill, and to return to work. Nine midlevel officials were actually accused of padlocking exits and preventing workers from leaving the building.

By the time the flames and smoke finally cleared, at least 112 workers had died at the Tazreen factory that night or over the next couple of days, and at least 200 were injured.

Evidence found in the burned-out building along with factory records showed that at least six Walmart suppliers were sourcing Walmart goods from Tazreen in 2012 and that Walmart was the biggest customer in the months leading up to the fire.

While the Tazreen Fashions factory fire is the deadliest one in the history of Bangladesh, factory fires and other preventable catastrophes are not uncommon there. Lax safety standards, poor wiring, and overcrowding are blamed for causing several deadly factory fires every year, resulting in dozens of deaths, more than 600 from 1990 to 2012, and ongoing. Just six months after the disastrous Tazreen fire, and seven miles away from it, the Rana Plaza building, which housed five garment factories on four of its eight floors, suddenly collapsed and killed at least 1,133 people and injured about 2,500 others, making it the deadliest known garment factory disaster in history.

Currently, about four million people (mostly women from poorer rural areas) work in some 4,500 factories (and many also work at home, often in the “informal” workforce) making garments for export all over the world, but mainly to the U.S. and Western European countries. Bangladesh is the world’s second largest apparel exporter following China, and the U.S. is the largest importer of Bangladeshi ready-made garment products (accounting for about 25 percent of Bangladesh’s total exports), followed by Germany, the UK, and France. Wages and working conditions are among the worst in the world, with barely subsistence level pay (typically less than $37 per month in 2012) aggravated by long (up to 19-hour) shifts at times. Factory buildings are frequently unsafe and are often put up and/or illegally modified in a hurry to allow owners to promise and meet higher volumes and tighter deadlines from buyers.


U.S. and other imperialist multinationals with backing from the U.S. political system—the “buyers” (big brands, transnational retailers) who contract with various suppliers who then subcontract with factories to assemble ready-made garments according to specifications and timelines that these big brands direct. In this way, they direct and coordinate the economic chain of production in the RMG industry, continuing to contract with manufacturers who violate or ignore safety concerns, and thereby continue the arrangement of abuses against workers and women as well as the persistence of unsafe buildings and working conditions.

Walmart, as a particular leading transnational big-brand buyer, and its “director of ethical sourcing,” Sridevi Kalavakolanu, who, even while denying that it still contracted with the recognized-to-be-unsafe Tazreen Fashions factory and claiming to be doing everything they can to encourage safer working conditions in Bangladesh, led a movement among buyers even after the fire to refuse to invest in electrical and safety improvements there. Walmart itself had actually repeatedly audited the Tazreen Fashions factory and identified serious fire hazards that were never effectively addressed by anyone. While they claimed to have told suppliers to stop using this factory at some point before the fire, the evidence proved otherwise. And, shortly after the fire, Walmart admitted that “very extensive and costly” repairs and renovations would be needed at Tazreen and many other factories in Bangladesh. But Walmart said it had no intention of paying for any improvements, and insisted that it was “not financially feasible for the brands to make such investments.”

Tazreen factory managers, who misled workers about the reality of the fire, prevented them from escaping, and even locked some of the escape routes.

Delwar Hossain, the factory owner, who denied that the building was not safe to work in. After his arrest while reportedly trying to flee to India, he added, “It was my fault. But nobody told me that there was no emergency exit, which could be made accessible from outside. Nobody even advised me to install one like that, apart from the existing ones.”

Bangladeshi government officials, who rarely pass, and even more rarely, monitor and enforce laws to support worker rights, minimum wages, and safety, or to address the ongoing sexual harassment and abuse of women workers.


Finger pointing regarding both the specific cause of the fire and who was to blame was widespread. After an initial report that defective wiring was likely the problem (as is the case for about 80 percent of all factory fires in Bangladesh), the government issued a statement that there was an “act of sabotage” by an unknown party (which worker groups and activists suspect was a deliberate lie to excuse government inaction against the owners and managers). In 2001, after a similar factory fire killed 24 people, Bangladesh’s High Court had directed the government to set up a committee to oversee the safety of garment workers. But that directive was never implemented. Government officials claim that reaching agreement among owners in the industry to implement affordable reforms is difficult, and monitoring and enforcement of regulations even more so. Owners of these factories (many of whom also have power in the government as legislators or administrators) claim they don’t have control over the process and they can’t afford to do anything except what is required by the buyers to get and maintain a contract. Big-brand transnational buyers, in turn, claim that wage and safety issues are the owners’ responsibility, insisting that they themselves are doing their best to encourage compliance with government safety expectations, and that they are not contracting with owners and manufacturing facilities that are unsafe.

And furthermore, all claim that this disaster was an unfortunate accident while they are all doing the best they can to protect the economically crucial textile industry and continue to provide jobs for a section of the people (mainly women from poor rural areas) who otherwise would not have any jobs and would not be able to contribute to their family incomes.


But the truth is that this deadly Tazreen Fashions factory fire (and repeated others that occur every year with more than 600 deaths from 1990-2012) is not just an unfortunate accident, and the reality is that the real beneficiaries of the whole production arrangement in Bangladesh are not the overworked and underpaid women workers, but the transnational big-brand buyers who fundamentally drive the entire process.

The specific local managers and factory owners and government officials all certainly played a role in the lax safety measures, poor wiring, harsh and overcrowded working conditions, substandard building design and construction, and misdirection of people desperately trying to escape the flames and smoke that caused the terrible deaths and injuries the workers suffered that day. But the big-brand buyers drive the process—they define the products they want, choose to contract with suppliers and subcontract with manufacturers, and set the terms for when and how the products are completed and delivered. As the international coordinator for the Clean Clothes Campaign, Ineke Zeldenrust, said, “These brands have known for years that many of the factories they choose to work with are death traps. Their failure to take action amounts to criminal negligence.”

They fail to take action because the true motive underlying all these decisions is the relentless search for profit, new markets, and especially cheaper sources of labor—the same motive that drove the growing transnational U.S. clothing companies to firmly establish Bangladesh’s major role in the garment industry in the late 1970s. “The reason Bangladesh went from zero to hero in the garment sector is because there is no country with such low labor and other costs,” said Arvind Singhal, chairman of the India-based retail consultancy Technopak Advisors. “No buyer is in a hurry to move from Bangladesh because Western retailers are stressed about passing any retail price increases to customers. Currently, there is no substitute for Bangladesh, where manufacturers even risk operating from rickety structures to cap costs.”

Sources and Additional Reading

Bangladesh workers burned alive in death-trap garment factory,” A World to Win News Service, November 26, 2012

Fire in Bangladesh Garment Factory Kills 121 People: If your shirt could talk...,” Revolution, December 9, 2012

Bangladesh: The Human Cost of Cheap Clothes,” A World to Win News Service, April 29, 2013

The Hellhole of Dhaka, Bangladesh,” Revolution, June 9, 2013

“Nicholas Kristof’s Ode to Imperialism… What Kind of World Is He Celebrating? What Kind of World Can Emancipate Humanity?” Raymond Lotta, Revolution, October14, 2013

Everyone’s Talkin’ About Inequality—Let’s Talk About the System Causing It. Lesson from Bangladesh,” Revolution, January 6, 2014

Documents Indicate Walmart Blocked Safety Push in Bangladesh,” Steven Greenhouse, New York Times, December 5, 2012

Bangladesh factory fires: fashion industry’s latest crisis,” Jason Burke, the Guardian, December 8, 2013

The Effects of Globalization on Bangladesh’s Ready-Made Garment Industry: The High Cost of Cheap Clothing,” Alexandra Rose Caleca, Brooklyn Journal of International Law, vol. 40, issue 1, article 7, 2014

Rags, Riches, and Women Workers: Export-Oriented Garment Manufacturing in Bangladesh,” Naila Kabeer and Simeen Mahmud, Chains Final at

Sabotage, really?The Daily Star, December 19, 2012

Bangladesh factory owner: I didn’t know fire exits were needed,” CTV News, November 29, 2012

For cost-crunching retailers, Bangladesh reigns supreme,” Reuters, July 9, 2013

Gap and Walmart in Bangladesh: A History of Irresponsibility and Empty Promises,”, July 2013

Spinning the Chain; Lost in the Queue. International Restructuring and Bangladesh Women Garment Workers,” Rashed Al Mahmud Titumir, Solidarity Forum for Garment Workers of LDCs Dhaka, August 18-19, 2003, The Innovators

Special Report: How textile kings weave a hold on Bangladesh,” John Chalmers, Reuters, May 2, 2003

Bangladesh’s ready-made garments landscape: The challenge of growth,” McKinsey & Company Report in Apparel, Fashion & Luxury Practice, November 2011







Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

American Crime

Case #46: Slavery in Thailand's Shrimp Industry

February 5, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper |


Bob Avakian recently wrote that one of three things that has “to happen in order for there to be real and lasting change for the better: People have to fully confront the actual history of this country and its role in the world up to today, and the terrible consequences of this.” (See “3 Things that have to happen in order for there to be real and lasting change for the better.”)

In that light, and in that spirit, “American Crime” is a regular feature of Each installment focuses on one of the 100 worst crimes committed by the U.S. rulers—out of countless bloody crimes they have carried out against people around the world, from the founding of the U.S. to the present day.

American Crime

See all the articles in this series.



Americans certainly love their shrimp. They consume more of it than any other seafood, 1.3 billion pounds a year, about four pounds per person. Most of the shrimp have been peeled and cleaned, so consumers can conveniently move them straight from the refrigerator to the skillet. What most Americans don’t know, and what is largely hidden from them, is what makes it possible for them to enjoy their favorite seafood: workers who have been enslaved, often held in debt bondage and by other means, in Thailand, where a major portion of America’s shrimp comes from.

Seafood is a major, $7 billion industry in Thailand, employing 650,000 workers, and it’s anchored by tens of thousands of slave laborers. Most are impoverished migrant fishermen from Cambodia, Laos, and Myanmar desperate to find any work they can. As Thailand’s seafood export industry has expanded in recent years, agents have begun recruiting migrant children and the disabled. They lie about wages and drug and kidnap migrants, who are sold to Thai captains of fishing vessels or the companies that own them. A slave costs about $1,000 to buy, and the workers are forced to pay off their “debt” with their wages, which often aren’t paid for months, years, or sometimes not at all.

Thailand is one of the world’s main shrimp-exporting countries, and it sends nearly half of its annual catch to the U.S., which imports 90 percent of its shrimp. Thai shrimp is one of the main sources of shrimp for the U.S. market overall, and for the production and supply chains of major U.S. food stores and retailers such as Walmart, Costco, Kroger, and Whole Foods, and major restaurant chains such as Red Lobster and Olive Garden. Thai shrimp are also found in well-known U.S. seafood brands and pet foods, sold through grocery store chains with tens of thousands of outlets at which millions of Americans shop.

The fishing crews who catch the shrimp work long hours and are often the targets of physical abuse. A 2013 International Labor Organization survey of nearly 600 fishermen working aboard Thai boats found that nearly 25 percent worked 20-hour days, seven days a week, with another 14 percent reporting “indefinite” hours. Another study found that a number of fishermen were force-fed methamphetamine to get them to work harder, faster, longer. On one boat, torture and execution awaited migrant workers who tried to flee. Some corpses were thrown in the water, these bruised bodies later found weighted down by chains. “They would torture and murder the fishers then throw them into the sea,” said an escaped trafficking victim.” Such eyewitness reports of murder at sea are common.

Much of the catch is taken to one of the hundreds of shrimp cleaning and peeling sheds in a port town just an hour outside the capital city of Bangkok. Some are no bigger than a large garage and they’re packed with locked-down laborers who are frequently beaten. Slave laborers are locked inside, forced to peel and clean shrimp nearly around the clock with no days off. “Sometimes when we were working, the tears would run down our cheeks because it was so tiring we couldn’t bear it,” one reported. A woman eight months pregnant miscarried on the shed floor but was told to keep working even while hemorrhaging. A pregnant woman who escaped was tracked down, sent back to the shed, and handcuffed to another laborer to prevent her from escaping again. Some 10,000 children, boys and girls between ages 13 and 15 toil in sheds like these.

After the shrimp are cleaned and peeled in factories and sheds, they’re loaded on trucks and sent to several major Thai exporting companies, which then sell shrimp in vast quantities to large U.S. conglomerates like the Chicken of the Sea Eastern Fish Company. These conglomerates then resell the shrimp to food manufacturers to make processed and frozen foods, to retailers and food service providers including restaurants, and to brands sold directly to consumers and retailers.


U.S. government: Enforces overall U.S. imperialist domination of Thailand, including by backing its reactionary, pro-U.S. regime and by encouraging, protecting, and facilitating the exploitative economic ties and relations with Thailand. The U.S. State Department has issued reports critical of Thailand for slave labor and other abuses, but recently the U.S. has claimed things are improving. Human rights groups like Humanity United, however, write they haven’t seen “significant change,” that “egregious abuse in the seafood industry” continues, and “If anything, conditions are worsening for migrant workers, rather than improving.”

U.S. food stores and retailers, restaurants, seafood brands and pet foods, and U.S. capital overall, which dominate and shape global production and supply chains and reap extra, or super, profits from the extensive use of cheap slave labor. They’ve fought public efforts to stop them from selling slavery-produced shrimp, and U.S. courts have supported them. In January 2017, a U.S. federal judge dismissed a suit claiming that giant retailer Costco has knowingly sold frozen prawns involving farming by Thai slave labor. He ruled that plaintiffs failed to establish that Costco had to inform customers that slavery could be involved in the prawns it was selling.

Thai government: The ruling military junta has claimed repeatedly it is cracking down on slavery and human trafficking in the seafood industry, and has passed various measures to do so. But human rights groups report that in reality, slavery, trafficking, and murder still pervade the seafood industry. Thai police and the judiciary are complicit. Arrests and prosecutions of those engaging in slavery and trafficking are practically nonexistent. When police raid factories and sheds, they often send migrant workers to jail, while owners go unpunished. Former slaves report that police take them into custody and then sell them to agents who in turn sell them back into the seafood industry.


The U.S. government claims the Thai military government is continuing to make progress in tackling the problem of slave labor and human trafficking, and therefore no punitive action, such as sanctions, is required. Multinational giants like Walmart and Costco claim they are unaware of the use of Thai slave labor, or that the supply chain is so complex that it’s impossible for them to trace and be able to tell whether the shrimp they sell are slave-produced.


The highly integrated and developed production chain that brings slave-produced Thai shrimp from the ocean to U.S. dinner tables is shaped and dominated by global capitalism, U.S. capitalism-imperialism in particular. The global use of outsourcing and subcontracting is a core feature of global capitalist production today. It’s enormously advantageous to U.S. capitalism-imperialism, increasing its profitability and flexibility, and freeing it of the “burdens” of environmental, labor, or other regulations. And it gives these global exploiters “plausible deniability”—“someone else enslaved the workers, we knew nothing.”

This whole economic setup is enforced by the power of the imperialist state, including by backing, protecting, even sometimes installing brutal, oppressive regimes that serve imperialism.

Thailand is one of them. For many years it has been the U.S.’s staunchest Southeast Asian ally. During the Vietnam War, Thailand hosted seven air bases from which U.S. aircraft launched daily missions to strike strategic targets in South and North Vietnam and Laos. Thailand also hosted a U.S. naval base and port facilities that brought critical military supplies to the region. At the war’s height, nearly 50,000 U.S. military personnel were stationed throughout Thailand, and some 40,000 Thai soldiers and sailors fought alongside Americans as part of the so-called Free World Forces.

Today, the U.S. imperialists consider Thailand a critical enabler of their strategic interests in the region, including in the “War on Terror.” Top al-Qaida suspect Abu Zubaydah was waterboarded and subjected to other illegal torture at a secret “black site” in Thailand during CIA interrogation operations in 2002. The U.S. also sees Thailand as an important ally against China’s growing influence in Southeast Asia. And there are extensive economic, trade, and investment links between the two countries. In October 2017, Trump rolled out the White House red carpet for Thailand’s prime minister, the very person who in 2014, as commander in chief of the army, overthrew the elected government.

These are the reasons the U.S. refuses to seriously consider sanctions or other actions that would help end the living nightmare in which tens of thousands of slaves in Thailand’s seafood industry are enmeshed.


An AP investigation helps free slaves in the 21st Century,” Associated Press, July 2016

Thailand’s Seafood Slaves: Human Trafficking, Slavery and Murder in Kantang’s Fishing Industry,” Environmental Justice Foundation, London, November 30, 2015

Exclusive: U.S. to upgrade Thailand in annual human trafficking report,” Reuters, June 28, 2016

Retail giant Costco wins dismissal of prawn lawsuit over Thai forced labor,” Reuters, January 25, 2017

Thailand: Forced Labor, Trafficking Persist in Fishing Fleets,” Human Rights Watch, January 23, 2018

Thai seafood: are the prawns on your plate still fished by slaves?The Guardian, January 23, 2018





Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

A Call from Carl Dix and Cornel West:

Come to Chicago & Add Your Voice to Call for Justice for Laquan McDonald


| Revolution Newspaper |


A travesty of justice is being perpetrated in Chicago. Carl is in Chicago, working with the Revolution Club and other forces for social justice, mounting protest and organizing every day.

Your voice, your body, and your financial support are needed to stop this miscarriage of justice.

The trial of Jason Van Dyke, the police officer who killed 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014 is coming to a close. Van Dyke got out of his police car and within seconds fired 16 shots into Laquan's body even though he was walking away from the police with his arms at his side. The whole thing was caught on video, a video that Chicago authorities tried to cover up and keep the public from seeing.

When massive protest and a court ruling forced the public release of the video, Van Dyke was charged with murder. See the attached fact sheet for just how bad this trial has been.

The 16 shots Van Dyke fired into Laquan's body, most of them while he lay on the ground, were illegitimate violence. The trial has reinforced that illegitimate violence. And if the court lets Van Dyke walk free, that would be illegitimate violence too—a threat against every Black and Brown youth in Chicago.

Those whose voices have significant impact in society have a special responsibility to condemn the way Laquan McDonald has been executed twice, once by a cop on the street and a second time in a trial in which he, and not the cop who shot him, has been portrayed as the criminal.

Come to Chicago and stand with people as they respond to the soon-to-be-issued verdict in this case. Speak out on this miscarriage of justice where you are. Speak to the press about it. Post on social media about it. And donate now to the Revolution Chicago Project to support the struggle:


Download factsheet and distribute
-from Revolution Club
-from your organization or group

DONATE to the Revolution Chicago Project
Support the struggle!


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Killer Cop Van Dyke Gets on Stand and Lies—Again—to "Justify" the Murder of Laquan McDonald

When the Jury Goes Out, People Must Act!

| Revolution Newspaper |


Jason Van Dyke, the Chicago cop who carried out the wanton murder of Laquan McDonald with 16 bullets took the stand on Tuesday, October 2, in his trial on first degree murder charges. And as the dashcam video was played in the courtroom—which shows Van Dyke advancing and firing at Laquan as he is walking away with his hands at his sides—the killer cop blatantly lied. He claimed that Laquan “waved the knife from his lower right side upwards, across his body, towards my left shoulder”—when the video shows no such thing. In response to his lawyer asking him whether Laquan was “advancing” toward him, Van Dyke claimed, “He never stopped.” Again—no such thing is shown on the video. And Van Dyke claimed that he kept on firing until he had emptied his gun, because “I could see him start to push up with his left hand off the ground. I see his left shoulder start to come up. And I still see him holding the knife with his right hand, not letting go of it.” Yet again, the dashcam video exposes this as a lie.

On top of all this, this killer pig spewed out racist poison in his attempt to justify his crime, several times describing Laquan as having eyes “bugging out”—trying to depict the youth as some “frightening” and “violent” animal, a “savage,” that had to be dealt with by lethal force. He even claimed he saw Laquan with “eyes...still bugged out” as he was on the ground, riddled with bullet holes, his bone shattered, bleeding to death.

Asked why the dashcam video doesn’t show what he’s claiming to be the “threatening” moves Laquan made, Van Dyke repeatedly claimed the video doesn’t show his “perspective.” He was shown an animated re-creation introduced as “evidence” by his lawyers purporting to support some of Van Dyke’s claims. Asked why even that animation doesn’t show Laquan raising the knife in a threatening way, Van Dyke said it’s “not my perspective because it’s showing the back of my head and not from my eye level.”

Yes, Van Dyke was seeing things from his “perspective”—the “perspective” of the pigs whose real job is, as Bob Avakian brings out, not to serve and protect the people but to serve and protect the system that rules over the people and enforce relations of exploitation and oppression. And as part of that, the “perspective” of the police is to look at Black and other oppressed youth automatically as “criminals” and to brutalize and even kill them at the slightest provocation or for no reason at all except the color of their skin or the way they talk.

And what about the so-called “prosecutors,” whose job supposedly is to get a conviction of the accused? The cross-examination of Van Dyke was not even done by the main “special prosecutor” but by an assistant, and they wrapped up the cross-examination in less than 30 minutes! Here was an opportunity to powerfully expose the actions of this killer cop and tear his lies to shreds—using his own words. But aside from a few attempts to point at contradictions between Van Dyke’s words and the dashcam video, the prosecutors basically pulled their punches. And this follows the previous two weeks of the trial: the prosecutors putting on as one of their main witnesses Van Dyke’s partner on the night of the murder, who proceeded to argue the defense’s case; and then the second execution of Laquan McDonald by the defense, who brought on a parade of “witnesses” to paint him as a youth with a “violent” past (see the article here). And while Van Dyke’s lawyers were allowed to do this, not one word about Van Dyke’s violent past—like how he was in the top 3 percent of Chicago cops with brutality complaints against them—was uttered during the whole trial even when Van Dyke took the stand and spoke of his history as a police officer, “I've pulled out my gun a few times, but I am proud of the fact that I'd never fired it til that night.” This meant that the prosecution could have questioned him extensively about his history in cross examination—but once again, the prosecution failed to prosecute.

Also in the courtroom on Tuesday, the defense brought up another “expert” to back up their attempt to have Van Dyke walk free. A psychologist specializing in “stress” on cops—and who had interviewed Van Dyke sometime after he killed Laquan—said as part of his testimony, “In an emergency situation, if something is bad, you gotta do something. You’ve got to escape. But wait, you can’t just escape you have to neutralize the threat because that’s your job....” This was another insidious attempt to portray Laquan as the “threat” and “aggressor” and Van Dyke as not just an officer who was doing his “job” but was even the “victim” in the situation.

During his testimony, this psychologist let out that in his interview with Van Dyke, the cop had said that while he and his partner were in the squad car on the way to the scene of the eventual killing, Van Dyke had said, “Oh my God, we’re going to have to shoot this guy.” All Van Dyke knew at that point was that other cops were following someone who had popped the tire of a police car. But already, this pig was itching to pull the trigger—and in fact did, 16 times, murdering Laquan.

The judge said at the end of Tuesday that the trial was nearing the end. It is possible that the case could go to the jury (and even reach a verdict) by the end of the week. The way the trial has gone indicates the possibility of a great injustice—the cop who murdered Laquan McDonald walking totally free or with some lesser charges.

Black pastors, activists and others have called for the city to be shut down with nonviolent protests, boycotts and other actions if Van Dyke is found not guilty.

Carl Dix and Cornel West have issued a call for people to “Come to Chicago & Add Your Voice to Call for Justice for Laquan McDonald: WE MUST REFUSE TO ACCEPT THE KILLER OF LAQUAN MCDONALD WALKING FREE!”

The Revolution Club Chicago said as part of their call to action at the start of the trial: “Mobilize when the jury goes to decision. If Van Dyke IS found guilty, CELEBRATE the struggle that achieved this. IF Van Dyke is allowed to go free, business-as-usual NEEDS TO BE SHUT DOWN.”

And Carl Dix of the Revolutionary Communist Party, who has been in Chicago carrying out revolutionary work around the trial, said:

When the jury goes out, don’t be alone. If you’re in a school, stop school and go out front and listen and wait; if you’re the teacher, change the lesson to something relevant to understanding, and acting to stop, this horror. If you’re in college, go to a common room, or cafeteria or plaza—wherever people are. If you’re at work, stop work and gather around a radio or TV or phone. If you’re in your house, go out on the corner, or into a bar, or into a laundromat, and be with people. If you’re “doing business,” stop the business and start talking with people around you. If you’re out in the burbs, and there are no corners where people gather, call your friends and go witness together somewhere, on a busy corner, a mall, wherever. While you’re waiting, talk about what this means if this killer cop walks. If you have a sign, hold it; if you don’t have one, make one; start making those signs now so you’re ready.

And when the jury comes back—whatever they say, act accordingly.


Dashcam Video of Officer Jason Van Dyke Shooting Laquan McDonald

Police murder Laquan McDonald at 5 minute mark

Bob Avakian, "The police, Black youth and what kind of a system is this?"

This is a clip from REVOLUTION: Why It's Necessary, Why It's Possible, What It's All About, a film of a talk by Bob Avakian given in 2003 in the United States.

Find out more at
Justice For Laquan McDonald! Convict Van Dyke and Throw Him in Jail— The Whole Damn System Is GUILTY AS HELL!


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

Statement by Carl Dix

"If They Free the Killer Cop, the City Must STOP!"

| Revolution Newspaper |


Carl Dix was in front of the courthouse yesterday with the Chicago Revolution Club raising the cry: “If They Free the Killer Cop, the City Must STOP!”

Together with Cornel West, Carl issued a statement that said: “The 16 shots Van Dyke fired into Laquan's body, most of them while he lay on the ground, were illegitimate violence. The trial has reinforced that illegitimate violence. And if the court lets Van Dyke walk free, that would be illegitimate violence too—a threat against every Black and Brown youth in Chicago.”

Yesterday Carl said: “Laquan McDonald is today's Emmett Till. If Chicago becomes today's Money, Mississippi, by letting Laquan's killer walk free, people have to flood the streets in response, rejecting this illegitimate verdict. People must express their rage in ways that make unmistakably clear that the days when the system can unleash its cops to do whatever they want to us must be, and can be, ended."

The Revolution Club Chicago photographs have been featured in today’s New York Times, Chicago Tribune and other publications.


Carl Dix  is a long time revolutionary and a representative of the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP). Carl was one of the Fort Lewis 6, 6 US soldiers who stood together to refuse orders to go to Vietnam. In 1996, he co-founded the Oct 22nd Coalition to Stop Police Brutality and in 2011 he co-founded, with Cornel West, the Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN), which launched the campaign to STOP "Stop & Frisk" in NYC.

Photo: Ashlee Rezin/Chicago SunTimes via AP


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

From Carl Dix:

One Killer Cop Convicted—Get with the Revolution and Get Rid of This Whole System that Needs Killer Cops!

| Revolution Newspaper |


Jason Van Dyke, the Chicago cop who murdered Laquan McDonald, has been convicted—of second degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery. After decades of police and racists getting away with murder—from Emmett Till to Fred Hampton and up to Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Freddie Gray, Darius Pinex, Justus Howell, Rekia Boyd, Aquoness “Quono” Cathery, and Harith Augustus—we finally got a little bit of justice. We forced a conviction of a cop for murdering a Black person. People are right to celebrate this, and the pigs have no right to suppress them or take vengeance against them when they do.

It should’ve been first degree murder. The evidence showed this. The video shows Van Dyke opening fire on Laquan as he walked away from the police with his hands at his side. Van Dyke pumped 16 shots into Laquan’s body, most of them as he lay on the ground bleeding.

Right now, it seems that these convictions are enough to send this murdering pig to jail. But we need to be vigilant that they don’t find some loophole to let him walk. We can’t go to sleep on this.

During the trial some activists and leaders said, “Yes, we should protest but we don’t want another Ferguson.” Let’s be clear: this murdering cop never would’ve been on trial in the first place if it weren’t for what people did in Ferguson and Baltimore and the other places where people straightened their backs. This spread all across the country, including Chicago taking to the streets to demand police terror STOP! And as part of this, there were all the exposures, the marches and rallies in Chicago in response to the release of the video of the murder of Laquan and the massive coverup that ran right to the entire city administration. 

This struggle has impacted the way people more broadly look at these police murders of Black and Brown people. So much so that in this case, even though there was only one Black juror and the state put on a lackluster prosecution, the jurors still looked at the video of Laquan being murdered and saw it for what it was—MURDER. HOW WE CAN WIN, How We Can Really Make Revolution, the guide to making revolution, says: “We need to oppose and disrupt the moves of the ruling powers to isolate, ‘encircle,’ brutalize, mass incarcerate and murderously repress the people who have the hardest life under this system and who most need this revolution. We need to ‘encircle’ them—by bringing forth wave upon wave of people rising up in determined opposition to this system.” This was a step toward that.

We don’t want to just keep fighting these same battles year after year. What they do to people here and all over the world is a horror ... and it is unnecessary. It is caused by their system of capitalism-imperialism—and we must and we can overthrow that system. We have the science that lets us know how to fight. We have the strategy for fighting and winning in HOW WE CAN WIN that you can read at We have the plan for a new society, where all exploitation and oppression can be abolished and humanity can be emancipated, in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America. And we have the leadership, in Bob Avakian, architect of the new communism, whose film Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution goes online at on October 19.

I call on everyone in Chicago and all over the country who wants to see a better day, who yearns for freedom—get with the revolution and join the Revolution Club (for information, go to


Black and White | Color

Bob Avakian: Masses Don't Know The Effect They Have On Society



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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

From a Prisoner:

"A Huge Revolutionary Salute to the Revolution Club of Chicago..."

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We greatly appreciate receiving these letters from prisoners and encourage prisoners to keep sending us correspondence. The views expressed by the writers of these letters are, of course, their own; and they are not responsible for the views published elsewhere in our paper.


First and foremost, I would like to send out a huge revolutionary salute to the Revolution Club of Chicago for boldly demanding that Van Dyke be convicted and locked up for Murder and showing how the whole system is guilty of the murder/cover-up of Laquan McDonald all in front of the courthouse and for the world to see—I always make it a point to highlight what the Rev. Club is putting forward whenever the local news comes on.

Revolution’s coverage of this Killer Cop’s trial has really ignited some lively and intense discussions involving murder by police, mass incarceration, and the overall oppression of Black people as well as other oppressed nationalities and how all of this is rooted in the murderous system of global exploitation and oppression.

These weekly compiled articles from continues to play a vital and dynamic role in here. Not only do these articles expose the crimes and outrages of this system, but also shows us scientifically why this system can’t be reformed and why it is so essential and indispensible for us to be engaging and grappling with the revolutionary leadership and scientific works of BA, in particular the new synthesis of communism that BA has developed and brought forward.

As prisoners who have a heart for humanity, we need to help spread the word of the new film Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution—this film needs to get out in a big and powerful way!

We need to make a “future of revolution, actual revolution, guided by the vision, ethos, and plan of the New Communism developed by Bob Avakian” a point of contention in the face of the “Trump/Pence fascist regime” and “Imperialism-as-usual.”

A “Not Guilty” verdict in this pig’s trial will have genocidal implications for Black and Latino people and other oppressed nationalities across the country, especially as the Trump/Pence regime is preparing to lock in a pro-fascist majority in a branch of government by installing Kava-Nazi onto the Supreme Court.

Whose interests was Van Dyke “serving and protecting” when he pumped 16 shots throughout the body of Laquan McDonald?

Can you please arm me with the following:  1) Conquer the World 2) Demarcations 3) Away With All Gods! 4) Bastion of Enlightenment… or Enforcer for Imperialism: The Case of Israel. Thank You!

Fight the Power, and Transform the People for Revolution…


* Prisoners Revolutionary Literature Fund



Graphic imagePRLF is an educational literature fund that has sent Revolution newspaper (, works from Bob Avakian, (Chairman of the RCP) and other revolutionary and scientific literature to hundreds of prisoners across the U.S. for 10 years. PRLF has fought attempts by prison officials to censor these publications. For example, the ACLU of Southern California successfully represented PRLF in a censorship battle focused on Pelican Bay State Prison with statewide ramifications in California.

Donate here to support the work of the Prisoners Revolutionary Literature Fund.


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

ALERT cancelled the campaign to raise funds to promote the new speech by Bob Avakian
This is unacceptable! Protest, Donate and Spread the Word

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We've just learned that cancelled the campaign to raise funds to promote the speech by Bob Avakian, Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution. This will premiere online on October 19 and needs to be seen by many thousands who hate the way people are forced to live under this system. Over $2,300 of the $5,000 goal had been raised which has now all been refunded to the donors.

GoFundMe has yet to give a reason for this, but we are waiting for its response. This is unacceptable! What's at stake here is whether or not people will be able to get a basic understanding of the truth that this system can't be reformed... the need and possibility for a radically different world, and how to fight for that world through an actual revolution... or even be able to debate this!

What you can do:

1. CONTRIBUTE funds to spread the word of the online release of this speech. This is all the more reason you are needed... to get word of this speech everywhere, up from the grassroots. Spread the message that the defenders of the old order don't want you to hear. Spread this trailer and ask others to donate. For now, contribute HERE.

2. Write to GoFundMe in protest. Contact them through their help page here: or on social media. Demand they re-instate the campaign from RCP Publications!

3. Double down! We're now 10 days away from when our promotional campaign was going to start and just 14 days away from the online premiere. We had an initial goal of $5,000... let's double it! This message of real revolution is going up against the whole status quo... all the naysayers who tell you to accept the horrors of this system and confine ourselves to the margins. Say NO to this! Contribute generously, spread this message, organize a fundraiser or bake sale. If you already contributed, and your money was refunded, contribute again HERE and give more than your initial contribution. Don't let this message be suppressed!

Come back to this page, and @tuneintorevcom for updates of the situation. Write to with your ideas and suggestions.


Trailer for Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

A speech by Bob Avakian

Spread this trailer today.  Let people know they have a chance to be among the first to see this speech.  



Then join the movement to put this before all of society, toward the online premiere October 19.


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Revolution #563 October 1, 2018

The Importance of Protesting the Supreme Court Confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh... and Doing So on the Right Terms

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(New editors note added at end.)

Brett Kavanaugh represents a grave threat to the future of humanity, and his nomination to the Supreme Court should be thoroughly rejected. As we have written:

Brett Kavanaugh has a long ugly history in both the executive and judicial branches of the U.S. government in pursuing a reactionary Christian fascist agenda. This proven public record is why his nomination to the Supreme Court should be and must be stopped. Kavanaugh played a thoroughly reactionary role in the Republi-fascist Starr Commission’s inquisitional attempt to impeach Bill Clinton in the 1990s. As a member of the Bush regime he justified torture. Later he said that the president should be immune from prosecution. And his judicial decisions in the last decade trampled on basic constitutional rights especially regarding women and LGBTQ people.

If he is approved for the Supreme Court he would lock in a pro-fascist majority in a branch of government which can decisively affect all parts of the government, as well as the rights of the people to speak out and dissent. Further: The decisions he would almost immediately participate in will significantly intensify, to put it mildly, the oppression and degradation of women and LGBT people. The protests of the past two weeks have been righteous and should continue.

In short, Kavanaugh has done great harm throughout his life, and if given the chance to ascend to the Supreme Court he will do far, far worse.  

What we knew and what is even now further coming to light concerning Kavanaugh’s views on the rights of women to control their own reproduction, especially but not only the right to abortion, as well as a number of other serious issues, including torture and executive power, to name a few—which in every case he has verged from stonewalling to deception to outright mendacity—all argue that his ascension to the court would do grave and incalculable harm and must be opposed and STOPPED.

Up to now, despite the efforts and sacrifice of several thousand people who did turn out in DC, with many getting arrested, the struggle to stop this has NOT been commensurate with the threat posed. As for the top Democrats, they have exposed some of Kavanaugh’s record and complained about the cover-ups, but they have not brought out anything close to the full extent and substance of it nor have they pinpointed it as fascist, they have not called out masses, nor have these Senators simply stopped the hearings as illegitimate until a full disclosure was made and a full interrogation allowed; in the main they have basically gone through the motions. 

Yet it is not too late to mount the major struggle required—if masses of people are led to grasp the depth of the harm Kavanaugh’s ascension to the Court will do and its connection to the overall fascist program. But this struggle must be fought on the right terms.

The Accusation Against Kavanaugh of Sexual Assault and Attempted Rape

Early in this whole process, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford told her congressional representative that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted and attempted to rape her when she was 15 years old and he was 17. At this point, other than those who were in the room, nobody knows the exact truth of this allegation; yet many are speaking with utter surety, with no real basis to do so beyond hunches and what they know from press accounts, as to what did or did not happen. To deem something true because it comports with your experience, or is consistent with larger pervasive social phenomena (the outrage of sexual assault in this case), or what feels right to you does NOT lead to actually correctly understanding reality; getting to the truth requires a serious and open-minded sifting of concrete evidence. To act on the basis that something seems true without such evidence can lead, and has led, to very bad outcomes.

At the same time—and this is also very important—some basic truths that have been underlined in this past period include the fact that many women do in fact wait years before bringing truthful accusations precisely because of the huge social forces arrayed against women when they do so, including shaming and outright revenge attacks, all of which multiply in vitriol and pervasiveness in the age of social media. Connected to that, most women do not make such accusations lightly; and virtually all women have stories of harassment, abuse, beatings, extortion, or rape perpetrated by men and boys in their backgrounds. That this is so is one extremely important reason for revolution, for overturning this social order and its putrid relations between people and values (relations and values fostered and reinforced by virtually every institution in society), and replacing it with a genuinely emancipatory one; indeed, were this pervasive harassment and abuse the only thing wrong with this system, that would be reason enough to make revolution. However, this larger social truth does not itself determine the truth, or falsity, of any particular assertion.

Following the emergence of this accusation, for many people the truth or falsehood of this charge has become the decisive issue in the Kavanaugh nomination. And even some people who have up to now opposed Kavanaugh for the more overriding reasons we enumerated at the beginning of this article are shifting their emphasis to make this the principal issue. All of this is wrong. Even if the evidence eventually points unambiguously to Kavanaugh’s guilt, that should not be the decisive question or even the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

How Should We Judge a Person’s Past?

First, even assuming that the weight of evidence brought forward proves the charge leveled against Kavanaugh, what someone did at 17 years old has to be mainly looked at in relation to their entire life. People at 17 are not fully responsible adults; they are still in the process of becoming who they will be.*

The decisive question is not what someone did as a youth but what has been the subsequent arc of their life. People can change; the question should not be whether they did bad things as a youth, but: have they fundamentally confronted and broken with that—or have they continued in the same essential direction? In the case of Kavanaugh, these facts are beyond clear: whatever he did (or did not) do as a teenager, as a full-grown man he has been a major player in strengthening patriarchal oppression and in driving forward the overall fascization of the U.S.—and this is true no matter how many women who knew him way-back-when say that he was a polite teenager, or whether Dr. Blasey’s accusation proves to be true or not. It is for these reasons that Kavanaugh must be opposed or defeated.

The Importance of the Right Terms

This leads to the second point. If Kavanaugh is to be rejected not mainly, or decisively, for his proven record as an adult but for accusations—even if they prove to be true—of what he did as a juvenile, on what basis will the nominee who will surely succeed him (for instance, if it is the even more right-wing, if that is possible, Amy Barrett) be opposed?

More important: what kind of society are we going for? One in which errors and even crimes in people’s youth are brought forward and wielded against them when they are adults, and in which these are deployed for political ends (no matter how just and correct those ends may seem in the short run)? Or one in which people are judged on the arc of what they dedicate their lives to and in which there is a fundamental moral unity between means and ends?

The Struggle Against Kavanaugh Must Intensify

Again, the struggle to prevent Kavanaugh from being seated must not only continue but intensify, with the correct focus—on his thoroughly fascist history and what that portends for the future of humanity. Revolutionaries and radicals should be wherever people are struggling against this nomination, exposing the full weight of the danger involved with this nomination and directing the outrage against the fascist reshaping of the Supreme Court, the Trump/Pence fascist regime overall, and the capitalist-imperialist system which brought forward this whole nightmare.


Editors’ note: This past Saturday, the Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh as a Justice of the Supreme Court. This is truly ominous—there is now a pro-fascist majority locked in on the court for the foreseeable future. In light of that, we are reprinting our article filed shortly after Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations of sexual assault against Kavanaugh were made public, but before her testimony.

What makes this ascension to the court even worse is the way in which this was, and was not, resisted. Instead of focusing resistance around his actual fascist history and program, which should have and could have been opposed by millions in determined mass action and prevented in that way, resistance instead was wrongly focused around Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual assaults as a youth, which were not the heart of the point in any case and which, in the ways in which this was done, vitiated important principles related to due process. Equally destructive is that there was a streak of revenge running through this, which will undermine, cut against, and ultimately make impossible the emancipation of all humanity.

That things went this way was due in large part to conscious misdirection and manipulation by the Democrats. They put up what amounted to a show of opposing Kavanaugh on the basis of what he actually has done and represents politically (including Roe v. Wade and abortion, torture, executive power, etc.) but, instead of actually “throwing down over it,” and calling for people to come out into the streets and continue protesting and resisting on that basis, with a real determination to defeat the nomination of Kavanaugh, but also anyone else with the same horrific positions—the Democrats, et al., resorted to, yes, pimping off the struggle against the sexual abuse of women, perverting that into an instrument of intra-bourgeois political rivalry (including with an eye to the upcoming midterm elections). The fact that millions got caught up in a movement which had all the limitations we outline in the article above—limitations of a very serious nature which do real harm to the most fundamental interests of the people—adds to the defeat.

There is a way to rebound from this and to wage the crucial battle to drive out this fascist regime. We will be publishing more on this in the days to come; for now, however, we call on readers to go to the website of Refuse Fascism ( for guidance on how to take this up, and meaningful action they can take up now that will make a real and positive difference.


* For this reason, comparisons between this situation and Anita Hill are not entirely apt. Hill brought her accusations against a grown man who had authority over her in a governmental agency. [back]

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Constitution, Law, and Rights – in capitalist society and in the future socialist society

This compilation brings a truly unique perspective to a subject that is of critical importance for all those concerned with social justice: constitution, law, and rights.

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