Revolution #565, October 15, 2018 (

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

Please note: this page is intended for quick printing of the entire issue. Some of the links may not work when clicked, and some images may be missing. Please go to the article's permalink if you require working links and images.




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Why We Need An Actual Revolution And
How We Can Really Make Revolution
A speech by Bob Avakian

Premiered online at Friday, October 19

| Revolution Newspaper |


If you feel you cannot stand to look at another picture of families torn apart, children crying out from cages at the border, or hear another story of someone ripped away from their family in the middle of the night or at work or wherever... but you know you can’t turn away either...

If you don’t know how to bear another day with news of yet another Black or Latino youth gunned down by police, or women being assaulted and degraded at every turn... but don’t know just what to do to STOP it, really stop it...

If it hurts your heart to even think about the endless and unjust wars and the threat of even worse, or the environment quickly sliding beyond a state of repair... and the solutions on offer seem to fall so short of what is needed...

Then there’s a film for you.

If you think there may be something fundamentally foul about a system, capitalism, which leaves so much suffering, destruction, and madness in its wake...

If you refuse to swallow the biggest of all lies—that this is the best of all possible worlds... If you’ve wondered about revolution, and want to hear someone break down why it’s needed, what it is, and how it could come about...

Then you need to know about, watch, and help spread the filmed speech by Bob Avakian (BA), which was released online at October 19:
Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

Bob Avakian (BA) is the leader of this revolution and the architect of a new framework for revolution, the new synthesis of communism. BA embodies a rare combination. He’s been able to develop scientific theory—including on how to make revolution—on a world-class level, while at the same time he has a deep understanding and visceral connection with the most oppressed. He has a highly developed ability to “break down” complex theory and make it accessible—and you’ll see that right here in the speech.

In this speech:

BA lays bare the reasons for this insane horror that seven billion people on this planet have been consigned to and more than that, the way out of it—in depth and detail!

BA scientifically breaks down with visceral power why this system can’t be reformed... and that a real revolution means overthrowing this system.

BA looks at this system’s strategic strengths, but even more, digs into its strategic weaknesses and why revolution IS possible.

BA lays out a strategy and fighting doctrine for how the repressive forces of this system could actually be defeated by a revolutionary people in their millions... putting a whole different, and far better, system in its place.

BA puts forward the strategy on how to work now for something very definite: a revolutionary situation, when the conditions are such that it is time to go all-out to win. Now is not that time—but NOW IS the time to actively be working for and preparing for that. Thousands need to get organized into the ranks of the revolution now, while millions are being influenced in favor of this revolution so that we will have a real chance to win.

This speech—on the map, at the center of organizing forces for revolution, and engaged and debated broadly throughout society—can change everything.

This speech provides concrete and essential guidance for the increasing numbers of people who need to be brought forward into the organized ranks of the revolution.

At the same time, it opens up what is otherwise completely absent from society and people’s thinking: a needed society-wide debate over reform vs. revolution. Not how to settle for a few reforms while the planet hurtles rapidly into environmental catastrophe... not how to vote for a new oppressor to sit on top of this nightmare... not how to accept all this and just go for self. But how to go for a whole different world, breaking all the oppressive chains, emancipating all humanity.

To the people who catch the worst hell under this system and to all those who cannot stand the endless outrages perpetrated by this system... if you hunger for a radically different world... be part of making the premiere of this speech known and watched by tens of thousands and helping to spread the word of revolution.

What you can do:

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.



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

We are raising $10,000 for targeted social media advertising of Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, focused on reaching college students.

Saturday October 20 - we have raised $5,400.


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

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

About This Speech

| Revolution Newspaper |


This summer in several cities, Bob Avakian gave a two-part speech running 2.5 hours, on which we can build a movement to change everything.

In the first part, “Only an Actual Revolution Can Bring About the Fundamental Change That Is Needed,Bob Avakian (BA) breaks down why this system of capitalism-imperialism cannot be reformed and that a real revolution means overthrowing this system.

With penetrating science and with real heart, BA walks through the most excruciating outrages and abuses we face, laying bare their roots in capitalism-imperialism, and why they can’t be reformed away but require revolution.

In part two, “How We Can Really Make Revolution,” BA begins with one of the biggest questions facing those who want a radically different, emancipating society: Could the repressive power of the current capitalist-imperialist system actually be defeated—even if times radically changed and millions were ready and organized to put everything on the line for revolution?

BA lays out the basics of a strategy and takes the audience with him to grapple with some of the complex and most difficult questions involved. For instance, how would a revolutionary force deal with the attempts of the imperialist state to encircle and suppress it in the major cities and hammer the revolution, and the people supporting it, with relentless blows? How would the challenges of the attempts by the established power to decapitate leadership be dealt with? In dealing with these and other questions, BA leads the audience to grapple with those problems, scientifically, continually showing and seeking pathways to deal with the challenges.

Then, finally, in the central focus of the speech: How do we work now, urgently, to win over and organize the millions who could make revolution? For that is the central challenge of the present: how we start, to quote the speech, “building up the ranks of the revolution—first, in the thousands and then, as things develop toward the decisive point, millions—as an organized force, and learning to become leaders of this revolution who can enable those millions to be in a position to fight, all-out, with a real chance to win, when the time comes.”

Bob Avakian goes into the obstacles, but much more than that, he charts a course that can enable us—all of us—to go to work to meet the “monumental challenges” and realize the objective of moving to a world based on the emancipation of humanity.

This was an unprecedented speech, focused on the U.S. but with a method, approach, and insights that apply universally. Now this speech is a film—one that can be seen by thousands, and then millions, and make a huge difference in how people view what is possible and what they will do.

Home page for the speech:

A speech by Bob Avakian

About Bob Avakian


"Bob Avakian Through the Years"

How To Spread The Word

• Why We Need an Actual Revolution and How We Can Really Make Revolution, A speech by Bob Avakian, premiering online at Friday, October 19

• Resources for Social Media & Promotion

• Make a donation to spread word of the film


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

The Message They Fear Must Be Heard

GoFundMe Censors Bob Avakian Speech on Real Revolution

| Revolution Newspaper |


Last Friday, without warning, cancelled the fundraising campaign for the forthcoming speech by Bob Avakian, being released online on October 19: Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

All has said about this was that the campaign violated their “terms of service,” providing NO other details or information or what part of their extensive “terms of service” they’re talking about.  Their response said that if we followed up more than once, it would just delay our request.  Meanwhile nearly a week has gone by and they’ve provided no other answers.  Like an eerie detail from one of those capitalist dystopian movies where everyone is turned into a consumer robot, this message came from their “Customer Happiness Team.”

But let’s get real.  This is a suppression of revolution and the revolutionary message in this speech.  Taking on—and reaching out further—in the face of this kind of suppression is essential to how the revolution is going to advance.

Defying this suppression, advancing the revolution

The significance of this speech can’t be understated and the title says it all: Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

This speech concentrates what people need to go to work for revolution right now... it’s an essential tool and guideline to 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. The more this speech is spread, being seen by thousands today, the more it can impact all of society, letting people know that, to quote How We Can Win—How We Can Really Make Revolution, “we have the leadership, the science, the strategy and program, and the basis for organizing people for an actual, emancipating revolution.”

What we’re seeing with this censorship from GoFundMe is an attempt to silence and suppress the most uncompromising and farseeing revolutionary voice in this country and on the planet, Bob Avakian—the leader of the revolution and architect of the new communism.  We need to go up against this and reach many more with this speech.  This is the only way revolution is going to advance: when they attack and try to silence us, we reach even deeper and broader.  We show the illegitimacy and fundamental weakness behind their censorship, and build up the organized forces and influence of the revolution.

Right now, this means doubling down on the fundraising for the promotion of this speech.  It means reaching out even further, in protest of this suppression and to get deeper into what is being suppressed, spreading the word of the release of this speech on October 19, organizing even more people to watch it and share it themselves.

What are they trying to silence?

In order for you, and people throughout society, to remain imprisoned in this horrific setup, to put up with this world of needless death and destruction, you are constantly told that this is the only way the world could be, and you are trained to look for answers within the suffocating confines of this system as it is or to blame yourself for not making it in this dog-eat-dog system.  Then the rulers and their mouthpieces tell you lies that you’re free because you get to choose which oppressor is going to run all this, that the answer is to just claw your way to the top of this dogpile or that you should just give a little to charity and go back to sleep while the machinery of this system grinds up humanity and the planet.

This speech exposes the lie that this is the best of all possible worlds and lays out why this system cannot be reformed, why it must be overthrown and how to go to work now to bring this system down, at the soonest possible time.  This is what those who run this system, those who push forward its program... in the media, on the internet don’t want you to hear. 

If GoFundMe is allowed to ban the fundraising for this speech, it sets a dangerous precedent, silencing the discussion of fundamental solutions.  You can talk about some of the symptoms of the problem, you can make people feel good by participating in redressing some of those symptoms... but you can’t talk about where those symptoms come from and what the real cure is.  This can’t be accepted, accommodated to, or allowed.

You are needed

Write to in protest.  Create public opinion around this by posting your sentiments about this on social media (tag @gofundme and @tuneintorevcom).

Many more thousands of dollars are needed to go up against and break through what these gatekeepers will allow.  We need to reach to people directly and that will require a targeted promotional campaign.  Every dollar counts to enable this message of revolution to spread.

We’ve almost met our $5,000 goal for social media fundraising but aim to double this.  Defy this censorship and suppression and give generously.  Reach out to others with this call.

Even more people need to watch this speech the day it’s released online, October 19, and in the days after.  Be 1 of 500 posting about this on your social media on that day.  Gather friends and watch it together... in a dorm room, community center, barbershop, or wherever.

Write to with your ideas on how this can spread even further.



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.

Saturday October 13 - we have raised $4,775, almost meeting the $5,000 goal for social media fundraising. Let's aim to double this.


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.


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Hurricane Florence Hits the Carolinas:
A Natural Occurrence—An Unnatural and UNNECESSARY Disaster

| Revolution Newspaper |


Editors’ Note, October 15. This past week, Category 4 Hurricane Michael battered the coast of the Florida Panhandle before moving through Georgia, the Carolinas, and on to Virginia. Michael, which came less than a month after Hurricane Florence, was reportedly the most powerful storm ever to hit the Panhandle. It left death and massive destruction in its wake, including nearly obliterating the entire town of Mexico Beach where it made landfall.
Meanwhile, on October 8, two days before Michael hit Florida, a news report by the United Nations’ leading body on climate science, the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), warned that the climate crisis is not a far-off problem—it’s happening right now, and it’s accelerating more quickly and having more devastating impacts much sooner than previously understood. The report called for radical, “unprecedented” transformations starting immediately to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels to prevent a global catastrophe. A co-chair of the group of 91 scientists from 40 different countries who wrote the report calls the next few years “probably the most important in our history.”
In this five-part series on Hurricane Florence, we’ll examine how the capitalist-imperialist system of today fuels such hurricanes and worsens the death and destruction, and start to grapple with why and how it would be radically different in a genuinely socialist society.

On September 14, Hurricane Florence slammed into the North Carolina coast with rain and winds gusting to 90 miles an hour. Its storm surge flooded some coastal areas. It then moved inland, dumping as much as 30-40 inches of rain across North and South Carolina, as far as hundreds of miles inland.

Two weeks later, those rains drained down from mountains in the west. The gushing water caused rivers to crest at record levels and some towns to flood. One dam breached and flooded a coal-fired power plant, causing the release of poisonous coal ash into the Cape Fear River.

At least 48 people have been killed so far, 37 of them in North Carolina. A one-year-old was ripped from his parent’s arms by surging floodwaters. Two mental health patients were drowned when the sheriff’s van they were being transported in was flooded (the two deputies driving escaped unharmed). A million and a half people were forced to evacuate. Whole cities and towns were flooded. Countless homes were destroyed. Over a million lost power for hours or days. Toxic waste and chemicals were released into the environment. And now more storms are building in the Atlantic.

Hurricanes are natural occurrences.

But there is nothing “natural” about how hurricanes like Florence are becoming increasingly frequent, powerful, and devastating.

There is nothing “natural” about who is—or isn’t—able to escape and recover from the storm’s impact.

There’s nothing “natural” about why so many are living in harm’s way.

And there’s nothing “natural” about why power plants, chemical factories, and industrial pig farms—with all their toxic wastes—are placed in flood plains.

So, again, Florence was a natural occurrence—but some of the worst effects of the storm have been created, shaped, or greatly magnified by the workings of capitalism-imperialism. Under this system, decisions like where people live, how food is produced, and how power is generated are all ultimately determined by what’s most profitable and filtered through the oppressive social relations this system has inherited and maintains.

All this is heartbreaking, foul, and utterly UNNECESSARY! It could—and would—be handled in a radically different way in a revolutionary society aiming for a communist world free of all exploitation and oppression, as concretely laid out in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America (CNSRNA), authored by Bob Avakian.

As the Introductory Explanation to that Constitution makes clear: “In order to bring this new socialist state into being, it would be necessary to thoroughly defeat, dismantle and abolish the capitalist-imperialist state of the USA; and this in turn would only become possible with the development of a profound and acute crisis in society and the emergence of a revolutionary people, in the millions and millions, who have the leadership of a revolutionary communist vanguard and are conscious of the need for revolutionary change and determined to fight for it.”

Implementing these radical and liberating transformations will—and must—be a tumultuous process, full of ferment and struggle. It will involve, as the CNSRNA spells out, leading on the basis of the “solid core,” towards the goal of the complete emancipation of all of humanity, as part of a worldwide process. On that foundation, the new state will encourage discussion and debate, dissent and struggle, as well as create space for a wide range of activities and initiatives, over how to solve the problems facing the new society and move toward uprooting all forms of oppression, all over the world.

Part I: A “Monster Storm” Fueled by a Monstrous System

For days there was near nonstop coverage of Hurricane Florence on the major TV networks. But one rarely—if ever—heard the words “global warming” or “climate change.” And you never see this kind of extensive, visceral coverage of the storms and disasters battering other parts of the world.

Hurricanes are not created by climate change. But global warming fueled by the profit-driven burning of fossil fuels and other workings of the system, is heating up the atmosphere and oceans. Based on extensive scientific study, MIT Professor Kerry Emanuel argues that climate change causes hurricanes and other storms “to become much stronger and reach peak intensity further north, heightening their potential impacts on human lives in coming years.” “Climate change, if unimpeded, will greatly increase the probability of extreme events,” he said.

Scientists are cautious not to directly causally link warming temperatures or rising ocean levels to any particular storm or its magnitude, but a basic underlying theory holds: The warmer the ocean, the more moisture can be drawn into storms. This can make them more massive and powerful. The warmer the air, the more moisture it can potentially hold. This can make the deluge or rain even greater when storms hit land. Rising sea levels—thanks to warmer waters and melting ice—tend to lead to higher surges of water coming on land (“storm surges”). These are usually the deadliest and most destructive part of a hurricane.

Climate change has also weakened global air currents. This means some hurricanes may linger longer over land, potentially dumping much more water. In this context, it is estimated that Hurricane Florence was 50 miles wider and dumped 50 percent more rain due to the overall effects of global warming.1

The existence of global warming has been scientifically demonstrated over and over. This is a lopsided world divided between imperialist countries like the U.S. and Europe, and the vast sections of oppressed nations of the world, the “Third World.” In this kind of a world, the effects of global warming such as increased droughts and famines, rising sea levels and extreme weather events will disproportionately impact the poor and the oppressed—and are now contributing to tens of millions of refugees fleeing parts of the Third World. The rulers of this country have been well aware of its catastrophic dangers for at least three decades.2 Yet they’ve been unwilling and more fundamentally unable to do anything to really slow—much less roll back—this unprecedented, existential threat to humanity!

This has been true under Democrats like Obama. He put some curbs on greenhouse gas emissions and negotiated the Paris agreement on climate change, but these steps come nowhere near halting the acceleration of global warming. Meanwhile, he significantly stepped up U.S. production of the very fossil fuels driving global warming!

The Trump/Pence regime also announced it would withdraw the U.S., the world's second largest emitter of greenhouse gases, from the Paris agreement—insufficient as it was—thus giving a green light to other countries to do so as well. They are officially censoring climate science from government agencies, denying the science of global warming, blatantly ignoring and even pooh-poohing the incontrovertible findings of scientists and the overwhelming evidence for global warming, and deliberately tearing up environmental regulations and literally pouring gasoline on our burning planet.

Despite the science of global warming being undeniable and its effects devastating, why are the capitalist-imperialists unable and unwilling to solve what is arguably the greatest crisis that’s ever faced humanity? Because their system is based on privately owned blocs of capital compelled to compete with each other for profit and advantage, and nations competing for domination on a world scale. This unfolds, not in an organized or orderly fashion, but “anarchically” with unpredictable effects, based on the compulsion all these capitalists have to “expand or die.” This means each of them has to beat their competitors or be driven under. And this drives the competition for cheap sources of labor and energy, control of resource-rich parts of the world like the Middle East and parts of Africa, and for markets for their commodities and exports.

A concentrated manifestation of this is that the U.S. military, a key instrument of enforcing imperialist “world order” and America’s interests, is—as an institution—the single largest consumer of oil in the world. As long as this dog-eat-dog insanity is in command, this system is totally unable to undertake the massive investments and radical restructuring of the economy including transportation and industry that could really address global warming and climate change.

That would radically and immediately change after the revolutionary seizure of power and the establishing of the new socialist state in North America.

Even though global warming is a “global” problem, establishing a radically different socialist economy based on the principles of sustainable socialist development would start to make a big and immediate difference. This, after all, is the country with the largest capitalist economy and dominance over large parts of the world, the second largest emitter of greenhouse gases, and it is expending a disproportionate share of the world’s resources and energy (nearly five times its share of the world population).

The world’s largest machine of death and destruction—the U.S. military—will no longer exist, with its hundreds of bases around the world, wars of aggression, and massive infrastructure with its environmentally destructive effects. The armed forces of the socialist state will be radically different in line with defending the state, a profoundly internationalist orientation and the goals of emancipating all of humanity.

In terms of the economy, state ownership of the major means of production—factories, transport networks, land, resources, etc.—would become the primary form of economic ownership. Centralized planning would set the overall guidelines for the economy—and unleash decentralized initiatives on this basis. These guidelines and economic decisions based on advancing the world revolution overall, meeting social needs, and “Protecting, preserving, and enhancing the ecosystems and biodiversity of the planet for current and future generations.” This would require, as the CNSRNA puts it, the new society to

frontally and comprehensively confront and address the critical environmental emergency threatening humanity and the other species and ecosystems (the complex webs of interacting and interrelating life) in its development of a socialist economy, in all spheres of government and social activity, and in its international relations, will apply itself—and the initiative, knowledge, energy and creativity of the masses of people who make up and are the backbone of this Republic—to addressing this environmental emergency, in its various dimensions...3

Doing all this would involve really thorny challenges and contradictions—for instance, just to start with:

It may well be likely that some of the effects of the destruction on the environment are irreversible or difficult to transform in the short term.

But what will be different is that the workings of this system—the imperatives of capitalist competition and profit accumulation—and the enforcers of that will not stand in the way of solving these problems. The new state will actually provide backing to science and the scientists, those with expertise and those wanting to learn, and those trying to solve these problems. The new state will likely facilitate an unprecedented planetwide cooperation of scientists and other experts, including sharing scientific and technological advances with the rest of the world.

All this would require and involve mobilizing and involving broad, diverse segments of people. This would be shaped by the overall orientation of fostering the questioning, collectivity, and increasingly active involvement of the masses of people in the exercise of political power. No doubt there will be struggle and ferment among the people themselves doing this as to how—and this may even run ahead of or sometimes counter to what the leadership of the revolutionary state might think best at any given point. And this would contribute to breaking down, step by step, the division between those trained to work with ideas and those who’ve been kept out of this sphere.


The capitalist-imperialist system is completely unnecessary—it is way past time for it to be swept off the face of this planet, and be replaced by a radically new, much better, system.

Next—Part II: A Disaster Hitting the Poor, the Oppressed, and Immigrants Hardest

Many middle class people—of all nationalities—have been impacted, even devastated by Hurricane Florence. The landscape shapes where floodwaters rush the fastest and deepest. At the same time, the economic and social landscape has a tremendous impact on where those floodwaters and storms wreak their greatest havoc: they hit the poor, Black and oppressed peoples, and immigrants the hardest...


1.Kerry Emanuel: This year’s hurricanes are a taste of the future. Watch Video, MIT News Office, September 21, 2017; Oliver Milman, “Climate change means Hurricane Florence will dump 50% more rain,” Guardian, September 13, 2018; see also Michael Mann, “Hurricane Florence is a climate change triple threat,” Guardian, September 14, 2018[back]

2.The New York Times Magazine recently devoted a full issue, titled “30 years ago we could have saved the planet,” to this history.[back] special issue on environment; “Some Key Principles of Socialist Sustainable Development,” April 18, 2010 [back]

The Polo Farms neighborhood off S.C. Highway 905, South Carolina is largely underwater after Hurricane Florence's deluge, September 24. (Photo: AP)

The dam and roadway in Boiling Spring Lakes, N.C. was washed away by Hurricane Florence, September 19. (Photo: AP)

With muddy river water still washing over entire communities eight days after Hurricane Florence slammed into land with nearly three feet of rain, a family tries to keep a mattress dry. (Photo: AP)


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Misdirection from the New York Times in the Face of the Climate Crisis: “Humans have a hard time planning ahead”

| Revolution Newspaper |


Events like Hurricane Florence can jolt people into confronting the danger posed by global warming. They can also cause them to begin questioning the nature and legitimacy of the system of capitalism-imperialism that fuels this crisis. No wonder that one of that system’s leading propaganda organs—the New York Times—wants to point people in the wrong direction. They want you to focus on “human nature”—not the nature of the system that compels capitalists and its nation-states to compete with each other, including for cheaper sources of energy, and treats the care of the environment as an “externality” in its calculus for profit.

Their September 19, 2018 article, written by John Schwartz, “Humans Are Making Hurricanes Worse. Here’s How,” exposes how human activities are “bolstering the destructive potential of hurricanes and other extreme weather events.” It details some of the ways this society responds by either ignoring the problem or making it worse.

Then it poses a major question confronting humanity: “What explains the lack of action to stave off climate change at the global level and to address issues of resilience and adaptation at the local level?”

Its answer—and concluding take-home message, after all this exposure1 : “Long-range planning is necessary to confront the threat of climate change,” but “a fundamental human flaw” makes that impossible. “Psychologically, we’re just not designed to do that,” one climate scientist is quoted as telling the Times. “We are evolved to run away from the bear, not plan for long-term food supply.”

Designed to run away from the bear, seriously? Talk about a scientist not being scientific about humans and society!2

Actually, humans weren’t “designed” to do anything, nor was anything else in nature for that matter. Why? Because there IS no “Designer”! (This scientist’s argument, whether intentional or not, echoes the harmful and bogus theory of “intelligent design”: that it took an intelligent designer, that is, god, to create nature and human beings.)

There are, however, the natural processes of evolution. Evolution is an unconscious natural process with no “designer” or even direction or purpose guiding it. In other words, humans did not “evolve” to have certain fixed, hard-wired or immutable behaviors, including “running away from bears.” The claim that there are such fixed human behaviors is bad science—an unscientific distortion of the science of evolution. In fact, pretty early on, humans developed far better ways to protect themselves from predators and other dangers than merely running away from predators, including collectively coming together and developing ways to hunt them!

What has been scientifically proven is that evolution over millions of years has led to humans having large brains with the capacity to learn, with implications for social organization. As Ardea Skybreak explains in her book The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters:

[A]n evolutionary “tweaking” and slowing down of overall rates of growth and development seems to have represented the second great evolutionary leap (the first having been the emergence of bipedalism [ upright walking]) and a key turning point on the road to becoming fully human. This change led not only to an increase in total brain size (which was considerable), but also to an increase in the length of time during which the brain could grow and develop outside the mother’s body. This seems to have been the key development which allowed for a greatly increased capacity for learning, in active interaction with the dynamic outside natural and social environment. (Page 137)

Skybreak goes on to point out that “The need for a much longer period of infant care would no doubt also have had important implications for hominid [family that includes humans and some of their closest ancestors] social organization, spurring the development of enhanced social coordination and communication within families and larger groups, and facilitating expanded teaching and learning.” (Page 137)

Skybreak emphasizes the fact that for humans, “non-biological cultural evolution has become so much more important than biological evolution” and that “In the past 100,000 years or so, our bodies (including our brains) seem hardly to have changed, and it is with the same basic biological bodies that we went from a stone tool culture to being able to cure many diseases and to explore (through the use of technology) remote parts of the cosmos. Again, all this has been accomplished primarily through cultural, not biological, evolution, though it is our very biology which made this possible in the first place.” (Pages 172-173)

It is on this basis, coming together with social coordination, that humans also learned how to plan for their long-term food supply! This began long ago in hunter-gatherer societies by storing food. Later (some 10,000 years ago), it further developed with the advent of agriculture—which was, after all, a form of planning for long-term food supplies. And there have been many scientific and technological advances since then, as human civilizations have advanced—involving significant “long-term” planning from space missions to large super-colliders for the study of building blocks of matter to advanced weaponry, the latter particularly heightened under this system.

Human beings have not “evolved” to simply run away from those challenges. We’ve developed the capacity to scientifically approach, study, and understand them, develop solutions, and decide, together with others, to take on and solve them. But there is a system standing in the way of us, collectively coming together, to resolve the global warming crisis.3 Despite talks and agreements, blocs of capital and nation-states compelled to compete with each other in this capitalist-imperialist system are not able to come together and reorient and transform their economies, including their sources of energy, to really deal with the climate crisis in the way that is urgently needed.

The system that the New York Times fundamentally represents and propagates for has no real answers or resolution for the climate crisis threatening humanity’s future. So they want you to focus on the bullshit theory of unchangeable “human nature”—not on the nature of the system we live under, or the real causes of the worsening climate crisis and what is to be done about it!

It is way past time that this system be swept off the planet through an actual revolution.


1.The irony is that in early August, the New York Times ran a magazine-length feature titled "Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change," which chronicled the efforts of ruling forces of this society to quash the science of global warming and efforts to do something about it—at a time when it was becoming increasingly clear that global warming posed potentially existential threats to humanity. The Times feature did not necessarily draw the conclusion that it was the workings of the system that was dictating these efforts. But there is a method of exposure, common to these types of publications, which is necessary to maintain credibility among the progressive “enlightened” strata—but with a concluding “take-home” message hammered in that serves as propaganda for the capitalist-imperialist system, diverting away from its actual role. And this has to be recognized. [back]

2. See 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, pp. 1-4. [back]

3.The workings of this system in how food is produced and distributed, mediated through the preliminary transformation to capital, also pose serious obstacles to feeding all of the growing global population. This is despite the fact that there is actually sufficient resources and know-how to do so. We seriously encourage readers to read “‘Preliminary Transformation into Capital’... And Putting an End to Capitalism,” by Bob Avakian [back]

Order from Insight Press

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

The Science of Evolution
and the Myth of Creationism

Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters

by Ardea Skybreak

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


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

As We Go To Print... In Relation to the Disappearance and Alleged Murder of Jamal Khashoggi

Some Background on the Saudi Regime and the Sharpening Contradictions in the Middle East

| Revolution Newspaper |


October 15, 2018. On October 2, the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a citizen of Saudi Arabia who has been living in the U.S. and writing for the Washington Post, went to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, to get papers necessary for him to certify his divorce and marry a Turkish citizen. He has not been seen publicly or heard from since. His disappearance has sparked widespread speculation, fueled by alleged “leaked findings” from Turkish authorities, that he was murdered by the Saudi government for writing critically of the Saudi regime, in particular its new crown prince, Mohammad bin Salman (“MBS”), who is widely touted as the Saudi Kingdom’s effective ruler. The Saudis have vehemently denied they’re responsible for Khashoggi’s apparent disappearance.

If, indeed, Khashoggi was killed by the Saudis, as alleged, this in itself is a grisly crime that must be strongly opposed.

MBS has, until recently, been a particular favorite, not only of the Trump regime, but broad sections of the U.S. ruling class. At the same time, the possibility that the Saudis may have gone so far as to murder a legal U.S. resident and Washington Post columnist, who himself has support within the U.S. ruling class, has triggered an international outcry, seriously sharpened contradictions within the ruling class over the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia, heightened tensions between Turkey and Saudi Arabia, and become a major political issue.

This comes at a time when different contradictions are roiling the Middle East (and the world), and when the Saudis, with U.S. backing, have aggressively stepped out militarily in the region, especially with the brutal, aggressive, and devastating war in Yemen. Meanwhile, rumors about a coming U.S.-Israel-Saudi war against Iran are increasingly loud.

After not commenting for a week, as we go to press Trump has threatened “severe punishment” if the Saudis are shown to be responsible for Khashoggi’s death. At the same time, he’s resisted calls to suspend the $110 billion arms sale Trump claims his regime negotiated with Saudi Arabia, calling it a “tremendous order for our companies,” and not worth tearing up—“punishing ourselves”—over the Khashoggi issue.

This whole situation bears watching. It is extremely explosive, remains in flux, and potentially poses great dangers.

In light of Khashoggi’s disappearance, we are reposting this article on the U.S.-Saudi-UAE war in Yemen to give readers a sense of the nature of the Saudi regime, the U.S.-Saudi relationship, and some of the other contradictions at play in the region and the world.

* * * * *

In the Name of Protecting Civilians, U.S. Certifies Escalating War Crimes in Yemen

September 17, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper |


“I certified to Congress yesterday that the governments of Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates are undertaking demonstrable actions to reduce the risk of harm to civilians and civilian infrastructure resulting from military operations of these governments.”

—Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, September 12

The Trump/Pence regime’s “certification” that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were reducing “harm to civilians” is worse than a sham. And so was its claim to be working to “allow unimpeded access” for humanitarian relief and taking actions to lessen the war’s catastrophic impact on Yemeni civilians.

As Pompeo was issuing his statement, Saudi and UAE forces were renewing their assault on Yemen’s critical food and aid lifeline—the port city of Hodeidah—threatening even greater genocidal devastation. And this “certification” was America’s seal of approval—and military backing—to do so!

International Outcry Over U.S.-Saudi-UAE War Crimes in Yemen

In a world filled with horrors, the Saudi-UAE war in Yemen, backed by the U.S. and other Western powers, has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis and sparked international outrage and condemnation.

It is being waged to defeat Yemen’s Houthis to prevent the spread of Iranian influence, and ensure U.S.-Saudi dominance of this country strategically located along the Red and Arabian Seas. In three and a half years of war—carried out with U.S. planes, bombs, intelligence, and political support—the Saudis and UAE have bombed hospitals, clinics, schools, apartment buildings, markets, gas stations, factories, and farms. At least 16,000 civilians—perhaps as many as 50,000—have been wounded or killed, the great majority by the Saudis and UAE. Yemen’s food, health, and water infrastructure has been shattered, causing the largest cholera epidemic in history, and leaving 22 million in need of humanitarian aid, including 8.4 million on the brink of starvation.

Fears and Divisions Among U.S. Rulers

On August 9, Saudi forces massacred a school bus full of children—killing 40 and wounding another 56—with a U.S.-made, 500-pound MK82 laser-guided bomb.

All this has given rise to growing concerns among a section of the U.S. ruling class and sharp divisions over the U.S. role in the Saudi-UAE war. They aren’t shocked that innocents are being slaughtered. They’re concerned that openly and uncritically backing the Saudi slaughter is damaging U.S. imperialist interests. America, the self-proclaimed “bastion of freedom” and “force for good in the world,” is being exposed as complicit in the slaughter of children before the world. U.S. officials could be charged with carrying out war crimes. A recent Washington Post editorial warned the war was fanning anti-U.S. anger in Yemen, and that it was “unwinnable” and thus a risky gamble for Saudi Arabia, a key client, proxy, and pillar of America’s global empire.

These concerns had led the Obama administration to suspend delivery of certain precision-guided bombs to Saudi Arabia (after having sold them over $115 billion in weapons, more than any other president) in December 2016, as it continued to back their war overall. This was reversed by the Trump/Pence regime, but last month Congress voted to make certification a requirement for continuing the U.S. military’s midair refueling of Saudi warplanes, which enables them to carry out attacks in Yemen.

Like Obama’s suspension, this was partly a symbolic, face-saving measure, but it also was aimed at pressuring the Saudi-led coalition to curtail some of its worst atrocities. This “certification” never challenged overall U.S. backing for Saudi Arabia, but some in the ruling class are calling on the Saudis to negotiate an end to the war.

In response, the Trump/Pence regime “flouted Congress’s restrictions,” as the Washington Post wrote, and simply certified—against all the evidence—that Saudi Arabia and the UAE were reducing the risks to Yemeni civilians. The threat of a major war involving Iran—whether by U.S. design, the moves of one or another of the U.S. proxies in the region, or accident—grows sharper by the day.

The Trump/Pence Response: Doubling Down on War Crimes

The international humanitarian organization Oxfam denounced Pompeo’s September 12 “certification” as having no basis in “facts, moral code or humanitarian law.” Instead, as the group correctly argued, the Trump/Pence administration was “doubling down” and “literally fueling the world’s largest humanitarian crisis.” Note: the so-called “adults” in this fascist regime like Defense Secretary James Mattis, who far too many are counting on to save humanity, supported the certification.

This decision concentrates the Trump/Pence strategic approach to the Middle East at a time when America’s domination of the region faces a host of contradictions and challenges, including the vulnerability of some key allies and the growing regional reach and influence of the Islamic Republic of Iran: doubling down on backing for murderous clients like Saudi Arabia, Israel, and Egypt—even feigned concern for international law and human rights be damned—and doubling down on U.S.-backed violence.

This regime’s monstrous crimes in the Middle East (and around the world) are rooted in the needs and functioning of U.S. capitalism-imperialism. Its wealth, power, and stability come from its relentless economic, political, and military domination and exploitation of key regions, key resources, and especially the masses of people all over the world.

The Middle East is one of those key regions, and Saudi Arabia, the world’s leading oil exporter, is a key strategic cog in the whole U.S. empire—economically, militarily, and politically. This is why Democrats and Republicans have supported this barbaric theocratic monarchy for some 80 years. Protecting it, maintaining its stability, and today making sure its regional influence and power is not eclipsed by Iran are top priorities for the U.S. rulers.

Certifying Genocidal Escalation

On September 12, the day the U.S. issued its “certification,” Saudi-UAE forces took control of two of the main roads in and out of Hodeidah—“the sole source of food for millions in northern Yemen,” according to aid workers. They report that little aid is now getting out of Hodeidah, and if it falls “aid is likely to stop.”

This would be catastrophic on a genocidal scale. Some 2.9 million women and children are already suffering from acute malnutrition and another 400,000 children are on the edge of starvation. Recently the Associated Press (September 14) documented massive starvation in Yemen’s Aslam district, reporting, “In a remote pocket of northern Yemen, many families with starving children have nothing to eat but the leaves of a local vine, boiled into a sour, acidic green paste. International aid agencies have been caught off guard by the extent of the suffering there as parents and children waste away.”

Right now the Saudi-UAE assault is threatening grain mills in Hodeidah with enough food stored to feed 3.5 million people for a month. If Hodeidah falls and aid is cut off, as many as 10 million more Yemenis could face starvation.

What Kind of System Deliberately Starves Millions?

The Saudis claim they want to seize Hodeidah to stop the flow of arms and income to the Houthis, not to block food and humanitarian aid. These are lies. The U.S.-Saudi Arabia-UAE have used mass hunger and disease as weapons of war for the last three plus years, and now their goal is to force the Houthis to surrender by cutting off their last sources of aid and starving millions of Yemenis to death if necessary.

Any system that depends on massacring, starving, and infecting millions isn’t a system fit to exist a moment longer. Any system that’s carried out these crimes decade after decade—no matter whether Republicans or Democrats are in power—has proven it cannot be reformed, that THIS is how it operates. Any system like this needs to be overthrown through revolution as soon as the conditions come into being that make that possible. People need to confront the real nature of an empire based on starving children (HERE), and get into the real solution to ending it, and all the horrors it inflicts on humanity (HERE).

Yemen mapMap:

Saudi Arabia airstrike of Yemen, August 2018: The Saudi-UAE war in Yemen, backed by the U.S. and other western powers, has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis and sparked international outrage and condemnation.

Clip: Free yourself from the GTF!

See Also:

40 Children Killed in American-Backed Massacre by Saudi Arabia in Yemen

Read more.


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

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

| Revolution Newspaper |


(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]

Download PDF of this article for printing and distribution

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.

Read more about this compilation here

View, read or print PDF here


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Call from Refuse Fascism:

Regardless of whether you voted...even with a Democratic House

We Must Be in the Streets
Beginning the Day After the Midterm Elections



Protest Wednesday, November 7—the day after the midterms, and
Protest Saturday, November 10

| Revolution Newspaper |



This is not a “normal” election season.

11 people murdered in a synagogue while they worshipped, allegedly by a man with a terrifying record of unbridled antisemitism. 

15 pipe bombs sent to former presidents, high ranking officials, media institutions, and others who have been repeatedly targeted by Trump.

Two Black people murdered, allegedly by a man who spewed racist epithets and had just been denied entry to an African-American church.

Through it all, Trump never backed off his hate-filled, fascist rhetoric on the campaign trail. Rather, he ramped it up.

Trump’s “Make America Great Again” is a 21st century fascist program of Manifest Destiny – “America First” – wrapped in the flag and Mike Pence’s Bible taken literally, with a program of white supremacy, misogyny, and xenophobia.

Stopping this rapidly escalating fascism cannot be done through the normal process of elections!

Millions of us are shocked and horrified by what is happening, but that only matters if we dare to act in a way that can stop this nightmare. Ultimately, this means millions in the streets day after day, refusing to stop until the whole regime has been removed.

On November 7th and November 10th, join a different kind of protest movement, one that refuses to get swept up in another election cycle that buys our silence and capitulation to fascism, and instead demonstrates our singular demand and determination that:

NO! In the Name of Humanity,
We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America!

To endorse, volunteer, donate, and/or partner in this effort: is a movement of people coming from diverse perspectives, united in our recognition that the Trump/Pence Regime poses a catastrophic danger to humanity and the planet, and that it is our responsibility to drive them from power through massive nonviolent political protest. We are united in these demands:

This Nightmare Must End:
The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go!
In the Name of Humanity,
We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America


To endorse, volunteer, donate, and/or partner in this effort:


Where to be & when »

New York City

Wednesday November 7, 5:00 pm Union Square @ 14th Street Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 1:00 pm Washington Square @ The Arch Facebook Event


Wednesday November 7,  6:00 pm CNN Center (Downtown Atlanta) Corner of Marietta Street NW and Centennial Olympic Park Dr. NW Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 1:00 pm Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Park 450 Auburn Ave. NE @ Jackson St. Amphitheater In the plaza Facebook Event


Wednes​day, ​November 7, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm Rally outside South Station (Atlantic and Summer Street) Facebook Event Saturday, November 10,12:00 Noon to 2:00 pm, Gather at the Park Street T Stop at the Boston Commons on Tremont Street for rally and march Facebook Event 


Wednesday, November 7, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm Federal Plaza, Adams & Dearborn, Chicago, Illinois 60603 Facebook Event Saturday, November 10, 2018, 1 PM – 2 PM Federal Center and Plaza, 219 S Dearborn St, Chicago, Illinois 60603 Facebook Event


Wednesday, November 7, 4:30 pm – 7:00 pm Cleveland Public Square (South side between REBol Cafe and Soldiers & Sailors Monument) Facebook Event Saturday, November 10, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm Cleveland Public Square (South side between REBol Cafe and Soldiers & Sailors Monument)  Facebook Event


Saturday, November 10, 1:00 pm Corner of 9 Mile and Woodward, Ferndale


Wednesday, November 7, 4:00 pm Thomas Square Facebook Event Saturday, November 10, 4:00 pm Gather at Atkinson/Ala Moana Facebook Event


Wednesday November 7, 5:30 pm Corner of Montrose & Westheimer Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 4:00 pm Market Square Park 301 Milam Facebook Event

Los Angeles

Wednesday November 7, 6:00 pm Pershing Square, 5th and Hill St., downtown Los Angeles Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 2:00 pm MacArthur Park, 7th and Alvarado, meet at MacArthur Park Metro Station Facebook Event

Orange County

Wednesday, November 7, 6:00 pm Harbor Blvd and Chapman Ave, Fullerton California Facebook Event


Wednesday November 7, 6:00 pm Dilworth Park [City Hall – West Side] Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 2:00 pm Independence Mall [525 Market St] Facebook Event

San Bernardino

Wednesday November 7, 2 pm to 5 pm, Refuse Fascism Inland Empire, and MEChA of San Bernardino Valley College, are holding a protest to call for removing the Trump-Pence regime, on  at 295 E Street (at the corner of Court) in downtown San Bernardino. Facebook Event

San Francisco

Wednesday November 7, 5:30 pm San Francisco Civic Center (in front of City Hall) Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 1:00 pm Embarcadero Plaza in San Francisco Facebook Event


Wednesday November 7, 6:00 pm Cal Anderson Park Facebook Event Saturday November 10, 1:00 pm Cal Anderson Park Facebook Event


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

You Can’t Change the World If You Don’t Know the BAsics

| Revolution Newspaper |



Every week, Revolution features one quote from BAsics, by Bob Avakian, the handbook for revolution. We encourage Revolution Clubs and other readers, everywhere, to take the time to discuss the quote—the whole quote—and to write us at with accounts of these discussions, or thoughts provoked in yourself by reading the quote.


Basics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian

"You can't change the world if you don't know the BAsics."

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian is a book of quotations and short essays that speaks powerfully to questions of revolution and human emancipation.

Order the book or download the book in ePub format HERE


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 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
Download 5.5x8.5 PDF, printer spread

Download 5.5x8.5 PDF, single pages
Download 5.5x8.5 PDF, printer spread






Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

From the Revolution Club, Chicago:

A GUILTY Verdict! A Whole System to Go!
Getting Organized for Revolution in the Streets of Chicago

| Revolution Newspaper |


When the word hit and started spreading that a verdict was reached in the trial of the murdering pig who killed Laquan McDonald, a small group began to gather on 71st and Jeffery. We pressed in close to hear while someone held the phone up to the microphone of the loudspeaker. The judge explained what a second-degree murder charge meant and then the jury read the verdict: Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty... Guilty. Second-degree murder and sixteen counts of aggravated battery, for every bullet that ripped into the body of 17-year-old Laquan.

For a moment—silence. Processing the news. Everyone was looking at each other to see how to react. Then a yell of “GUILTY!” as we stepped into the street together with the bittersweet joy of a little taste of justice in an ocean of blood shed by police bullets. All we could shout was “guilty!” and cars honked their joy with fists up and hanging out their windows. People hugged each other and danced in the street. Others angrily shouted, “It should have been first-degree!” And some worried aloud about whether even with guilty verdicts the killer cop would do any jail time.

All afternoon, while downtown hundreds marched in the streets, the small street corner celebration continued in South Shore. The Chicago Tribune described it as a demonstration “near the home base of one of the protest groups.” In a lot of ways, the celebration in South Shore was an expression of that “home base,” but not of a “protest group,” of a beginning revolutionary movement, made up of members of the Revolution Club, people who are part of this movement joining in throughout the day, and people from the area both who know the revolution and have been part of things here and there, as well as people who knew little or nothing about the revolution but were acting out their joy. As we yelled and laughed together, the club also put clearly forward that this victory, won through people rising up in places like Ferguson and Baltimore and taking to the streets in Chicago, has to be part of growing stronger in getting organized for revolution.

In the days before the verdict, the Revolution Club had been working to set the right terms in the city, and drawing people into contributing to that effort, speaking out and getting the word out that if there was a not-guilty verdict, the city should come to a halt, taking on the barrage of upside down fear being stoked about “riots” erupting (Which Carl Dix called out rightly: “I’m not afraid of what THEY call a riot, I’m afraid if there’s a quiet.”) As people watched the trial unfold, more and more it was clear that Laquan was being demonized in that trial—literally described as a monster—and the jury was being told to believe the lying cops rather than the video we all saw.

On the morning of closing arguments, the Revolution Club had a significant presence in front of the courthouse, with new members clearing their schedules to come and represent. Then, newer people who have been meeting and checking out the revolution started popping in to the organizing center to find out what was going on, get connected, and contribute in whatever ways they could. Throughout the day, several newer people came through and joined in to be part of teams going out around South Shore and out on the trains through the city making announcements and getting out flyers. This was all part of what then came together when the verdict was announced.

And then the next day, we called a celebration party at the Revolution Club Organizing Center. People who have been seeing the Revolution Club, some who have themselves put on the REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! T-shirt at times, some who had been out on the corner celebrating the day before, many who were coming into the organizing center for the first time, came through. One person brought some mac & cheese, another brought a chicken and pasta dish, and another brought boxes of chips and sodas to go along with the hot dogs we threw on the grill out front. We had a good playlist of music going all night and some periodic episodes of dancing (mostly people really wanted to talk). More than one person came up to people in the Revolution Club and told them, with hugs and some pride, that they had seen them on the news the day before.

Mid-celebration we paused everything to toast to the struggle of the people, and the struggle needed to go further, and this came with powerful remarks by Carl Dix. Many who came through were seriously engaging questions of what is it going to take to really put an end to the terror carried out by this system, making an actual revolution and the leadership and strategy for that revolution, and making plans to see the film of the new speech from Bob Avakian, Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, and we talked about people getting organized into the effort to spread the online launch of the film in addition to seeing it. In all this, people were getting a sense of their own role in the victory that was won, but also how to contribute right now to making revolution.

See also:

Cop Who Murdered Laquan McDonald Found Guilty of Murder—This Pig Must Be Locked Up for a Long Time

Revolution Club Chicago, October 5, 2018



for the costs of Revolution Club Chicago’s legal defenses and challenges HERE


to support the work of the Revolution Club Chicago HERE


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

The Science...Actual Revolution title image

Download PDF of entire work

Editors' note: The following is an excerpt from the new work by Bob Avakian, THE NEW COMMUNISM. In addition to excerpts already posted on, we will be running further excerpts from time to time on both and in Revolution newspaper. These excerpts should serve as encouragement and inspiration for people to get into the work as a whole, which is available as a book from Insight Press. A prepublication copy is available on line at

This excerpt comes from the section titled "III. The Strategic Approach to An Actual Revolution."

Excerpt from the section:
Forces For Revolution

Let’s dig further into the strategic approach to revolution. What are the main forces for revolution, and what are other groups in society where large numbers of people have to be won either to be actively involved, or to be supportive, or at least to have a stance of “friendly neutrality” toward the revolution (in other words, at least not opposing it)? Obviously, this relates to the point I was emphasizing before about not being encircled, surrounded, and crushed. What are key contradictions that have to be confronted—where necessity has to be transformed into freedom and initiative for the revolutionary forces, in significant ways—to create the basis to go all-out with a real chance of winning?

First, it is important to recognize that revolution can not and will not be made by just spreading the idea of revolution around, and perhaps getting some positive responses. (Hey, thumbs up on Facebook!... Tweet out a message in favor of revolution!) Yes, it is very important to propagate the need for revolution, in a living and compelling way; but here is a point that needs to be emphasized: Accumulating organized forces for revolution is, and must be, a key objective in building toward an actual revolution; and whether or not real advances are continually being made in accumulating such organized forces is a key measure of progress—or lack of progress—in building the movement for an actual revolution. Here we can take something from Marx and adapt it to the current point: Accumulate, Accumulate, Accumulate!—Accumulate more and more capital!—that, said Marx, is the Moses and prophets for the bourgeois. Well, we can say for the proletarian revolution: Accumulate, Accumulate, Accumulate!—Accumulate organized forces for this revolution!—that must be a crucial commandment and guide!

And it’s not just accumulate over here, off in some corner. We could put it this way: It’s accumulate, impact; accumulate further, impact more; accumulate further... and on and on—even while taking into account the larger picture of what’s happening out in the world at large, as is pointed to at the beginning of Part 2 of Making Revolution and Emancipating Humanity. What do I mean by accumulate, impact? I mean that when you have organized forces, you can have a magnified impact on political situations and on the political terrain overall. To just take an important but relatively small-scale example, compared to the society as a whole, imagine if, in these upsurges in Ferguson or in Baltimore, you had an organized force of revolutionary communists of even a hundred people who were able to come on the scene, putting forward that program and organizing people around that program in the midst of that upsurge—think of the way that you could change all the dynamics in that situation. Whereas, if you have a few people there, who are even doing very good work, your ability to impact that situation is gonna be so much more limited. Now, you still have to try to impact it to the maximum degree—and, to do that, one of the things you have to do is to get very good at agitation, which is something we really need to strengthen and develop. But imagine if you could have a major impact in situations like this.

I was watching this thing on CNN when Don Lemon was out in the street interviewing somebody in the aftermath of the massacre of Black people in that church in South Carolina. Now, someone portrayed Don Lemon this way, and I think this really captures something about the role he plays: “I’m Don Lemon—I’m not really a Black man, but sometimes I play one on TV.” That gets to an important aspect of the role he plays as a puppet for the powers-that-be. But, in any case, Don Lemon was out interviewing somebody, playing his usual Uncle Tom role, and this Black woman came up behind him and started yelling, and they were live so it was hard for them to cut away, it took them a while to cut away. She started yelling, “Talk about the anger, Don. Don’t talk about the forgiveness, talk about the anger, talk about the anger, Don. Obama’s an Uncle Tom, too, Don. Talk about how Obama’s an Uncle Tom, Don. Talk about the anger. Are you talking about the anger, Don? Don, you’re an Uncle Tom.” Now, this is one woman standing behind him. Imagine if you had a hundred people, not saying exactly what that woman was saying but even more impacting the situation with compelling agitation proceeding from a revolutionary communist understanding. Then it changes everything. It changes the whole terrain—even with that number of organized forces, you’re changing the whole terrain. And then every force in society has to react differently.

Or think about this: Every time the masses rise up now, you have this situation where—here they come again—these “community leaders,” which is an updated version of what the ruling class and its mouthpieces used to call “Responsible Negro Leaders.” They are mobilized by the ruling class: religious figures of various kinds (not all of them, but too many of them), so-called community leaders, and others, including some who claim to be on the side of the people—they come out there in the situation where the people are angry, they’re in the street and they’re confronting the police, and these forces form a line, linking arms together, and they face the people. Now imagine if you had a force of even 30 people in that situation that came out there and said, “You motherfuckers are facing the wrong way! If you’re supposedly standing with the people, you should be forming a line opposing the pigs. Those are the ones harming the people. Turn around and face down the pigs!” You change the whole terms—and then the Don Lemons really have to “go to commercial!” You are affecting the terrain by having organized forces united around a revolutionary line. Even in a situation like that, it goes out to the world, especially in this age of the internet. It goes all over the place. And then people do want to know: Who are those forces that did that? Who are those forces that stood with the people and stood between the police and the people, facing the police and not allowing the police to attack the people? Who are those people who, while they were doing this, said, “We’re doing this for revolution, to get rid of this brutality and murder, and all the other shit that people are going through in this country and around the world”? See, when you have organized forces moving like that, then you seriously impact the situation, and then you draw more forces. It’s not that they all join up with you right away, or that you should bring them fully into the ranks of revolution right away, before they even have a chance to get a basic understanding of what this revolution is all about. There’s work and struggle that has to go on. But you’re able to get this dynamic going where you’re growing, you’re wielding your organized forces for revolution in a way to significantly impact society and drawing people to you, and through struggle accumulating more organized forces... and then you are able to do more to affect the situation, once again through a lot of struggle. This is the dynamic we have to advance while, once again, not narrowing our sights to just that dynamic, but looking at the whole world and how we affect the whole world toward the goal of revolution. But this is why we have to be seriously working to accumulate organized forces for revolution and to wield those forces to impact the terrain, and accumulate and impact more, while not approaching that in a narrow and linear way (as if everything will just go forward, from advance to advance, in a simple straight line, directly out of what we’re doing).

This is the correct basis for the point that’s made, and for correctly understanding the point that’s made, in “On the Strategy for Revolution,” about the “thousands” and their relation to the “millions.” It’s not just some vague notion of “thousands of people” who sort of go “thumbs up” on the idea of revolution (or even are very enthusiastic about it). If you’re talking about leading millions, you need an organized force of thousands of people, a growing number of people, in the thousands, who are oriented, organized, trained and led to be an actual revolutionary force and pole of attraction—not some vague bunch of electrons floating around with no real solid core.



Publisher's Note

Introduction and Orientation

Foolish Victims of Deceit, and Self-Deceit

Part I. Method and Approach, Communism as a Science

Materialism vs. Idealism
Dialectical Materialism
Through Which Mode of Production
The Basic Contradictions and Dynamics of Capitalism
The New Synthesis of Communism
The Basis for Revolution
Epistemology and Morality, Objective Truth and Relativist Nonsense
Self and a “Consumerist” Approach to Ideas
What Is Your Life Going to Be About?—Raising People’s Sights

Part II. Socialism and the Advance to Communism:
            A Radically Different Way the World Could Be, A Road to Real Emancipation

The “4 Alls”
Beyond the Narrow Horizon of Bourgeois Right
Socialism as an Economic System and a Political System—And a Transition to Communism
Abundance, Revolution, and the Advance to Communism—A Dialectical Materialist Understanding
The Importance of the “Parachute Point”—Even Now, and Even More With An Actual Revolution
The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America
   Solid Core with a Lot of Elasticity on the Basis of the Solid Core
Emancipators of Humanity

Part III. The Strategic Approach to An Actual Revolution

One Overall Strategic Approach
Hastening While Awaiting
Forces For Revolution
Separation of the Communist Movement from the Labor Movement, Driving Forces for Revolution
National Liberation and Proletarian Revolution
The Strategic Importance of the Struggle for the Emancipation of Women
The United Front under the Leadership of the Proletariat
Youth, Students and the Intelligentsia
Struggling Against Petit Bourgeois Modes of Thinking, While Maintaining the Correct Strategic Orientation
The “Two Maximizings”
The “5 Stops”
The Two Mainstays
Returning to "On the Possibility of Revolution"
Internationalism—Revolutionary Defeatism
Internationalism and an International Dimension
Internationalism—Bringing Forward Another Way
Popularizing the Strategy
Fundamental Orientation

Part IV. The Leadership We Need

The Decisive Role of Leadership
A Leading Core of Intellectuals—and the Contradictions Bound Up with This
Another Kind of “Pyramid”
The Cultural Revolution Within the RCP
The Need for Communists to Be Communists
A Fundamentally Antagonistic Relation—and the Crucial Implications of That
Strengthening the Party—Qualitatively as well as Quantitatively
Forms of Revolutionary Organization, and the “Ohio”
Statesmen, and Strategic Commanders
Methods of Leadership, the Science and the “Art” of Leadership
Working Back from “On the Possibility”—
   Another Application of “Solid Core with a Lot of Elasticity on the Basis of the Solid Core”

Appendix 1:
The New Synthesis of Communism:
Fundamental Orientation, Method and Approach,
and Core Elements—An Outline
by Bob Avakian

Appendix 2:
Framework and Guidelines for Study and Discussion


Selected List of Works Cited

About the Author





Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Commitment and the Process of Building a Movement FOR Revolution

June 11, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper |


People need to be serious in whatever commitments they make—they need to follow through on such commitments—and we should set and struggle for this to be the standard and the actual reality. But getting involved in the movement for an actual revolution has a specific dynamic that differs, say, from joining a sports team or a music group. We should not demand “zero to sixty” right away—or, in any case, try to force a leap, rather than winning people to it as part of an overall revolutionary process. What we need to be building is a continually developing mass movement for revolution—yes, an actual revolution—with a vibrant “Ohio,”* through which exponentially growing numbers of people can be actively involved and continue to advance (not all, but many of them) through the dialectical interplay of contributing and learning in continually increasing dimensions. As for those who do reach the “advanced end” of this “Ohio,” again this raises the question of their becoming not only part of the Revolution Club but also making the further leap to becoming part of the communist vanguard; but here again as well, the question of commitment should not be approached (even if in a somewhat “backhanded” way) from the negative, defensive position that amounts to: “We have had people make commitments and then not keep them, and then disappear (‘ghost’) on us; so we are going to make sure you don’t (can’t) do that!” Rather, we should proceed with the recognition that commitment, while it involves and requires (repeated) leaps along the way, essentially corresponds to and is grounded in what aspirations have been awakened, or brought forward, in people, and what they are coming to understand is required in relation to that. So, again, while we do need to have a serious attitude with regard to people making and carrying through on commitments, this must be commensurate with what their understanding and sentiments are at a given point, and most essentially must be in the context of and contribute to the broader mass revolutionary movement that they are part of (or becoming part of) and, while not involving any tailing, should proceed from what they themselves have been won (yes, won through struggle, even at times sharp struggle) to see as a necessary and essential contribution to the revolution.


* The “Ohio” refers to the Ohio State marching band’s practice of marching in such a way as to spell out “OHIO” when viewed from above; in this process, band members who begin the first O, then move through the other letters of the word until they are at the last “O”. The point is that there is an analogous process involved in building any kind of progressive or revolutionary movement, in which people “move through” various levels of understanding and commitment, though this is not (“in the real world”) quite so linear and in lockstep as the Ohio State marching band!*






Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Revcom editors’ note: We received this Call for October 22, the National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and Criminalization of a Generation in Chicago. Go to the October 22nd Coalition website to either join or plan an action in your area.


| Revolution Newspaper |


Call issued by the signatories listed below.

October 22, 2018, the 23rd annual National Day of Protest to STOP Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation!

March and Rally: October 22, 2:30 pm Daley Plaza

(Washington & Dearborn in the Chicago Loop)

Police continue to brutalize and murder people, especially Black, Latino, and Indigenous people. The system continues to almost always let brutal, murdering cops walk free. Now Donald Trump, and his Keebler elf looking attorney general, Jeff Sessions, are saying “bring back stop-and-frisk” and “courts should stop getting in the way of police trying to do their jobs,” there will be more racial profiling and more police terror.

The conviction of the Chicago cop who murdered Laquan McDonald was a little taste of justice. But rivers of blood have been spilled by killer cops.

This must STOP, and it’s up to us to stop it. Laquan’s murderer got convicted because people took their refusal to put up with police getting away with murder into the streets; in Ferguson, in Baltimore, and all across the country, including in Chicago. Now is a time for those who have to live their lives under the guns and billy clubs of brutal, murdering cops to be joined by everybody who doesn’t want to live in a world where police get away with murder to join together to say: Police Terror Must STOP!

October 22 is the day to do this. It’s the National Day of Protest to STOP Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation. A day when those whose loved ones have been stolen from them by those sworn to protect and serve have a platform to speak of how the police have stolen the lives of their loved ones! A day when others stand with them and call for this injustice to stop!

All out for October 22!


This call has been issued by:

Alice Howell, grandmother of Justus Howell, killed by police in Zion, Illinois, in 2015

Carl Dix, Revolutionary Communist Party, co-founder of Stop Mass Incarceration Network

Gloria Pinex, mother of Darius Pinex, killed by police in Chicago in 2011

Latoya Howell, mother of Justus Howell, killed by police in Zion, Illinois, in 2015

Panzy Edwards, mother of Dakota Bright, killed by police in Chicago, 2012

Veda Washington, aunt of Alton Sterling, killed by police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 2016


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Chicago Cop Who Murdered 15-Year-Old Dakota Bright Cleared of Wrongdoing —
System that Cleared Him, Beyond Redemption

| Revolution Newspaper |


In this case, the facts speak for themselves, except for one thing that has to be spelled out...

Mid-afternoon on November 8, 2012: Dakota Bright was on his way to his grandmother’s house when he was chased and shot dead by Chicago police officer Brandon Ternand. Almost six years later, on October 11, the Chicago Police Board (CPB) voted to clear Ternand of any wrongdoing in the murder of the unarmed teenager.

Ternand will be returned to active duty terrorizing Black youth, and paid around $80,000 for the nearly one year he was suspended from the force.

Here are the facts about Dakota Bright:

Here are the facts about Brandon Ternand:

Here are the facts about how Ternand’s case worked its way through the system:

So those are the facts of how a Black youth with his whole life ahead of him had it ruthlessly snatched away for nothing, and how all the mechanisms, institutions, and people supposedly set up to protect people from this kind of brutality actually worked to protect the murderer.

What remains to be said?

Only this—what is boldly stated by the Revolution Club banner carried into so many protests against the crimes this system commits:



Dakota Bright, murdered by Chicago police, November 8. 2012. Photo courtesy of the family of Dakota Bright.

“Yes there's a conspiracy... to get the cops off”

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. See the whole film at


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

United Nations’ Scientists Call for Drastic Action on Climate Change—The World Cries Out for Revolution

| Revolution Newspaper |


From a volunteer:

The Earth is facing a climate emergency. Human-caused climate change is killing thousands every year, fueled by this system of capitalism-imperialism.

The United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently issued a report, “Global Warming of 1.5° C,” calling for an urgent global response to keep Earth’s temperature from rising 2.7° Fahrenheit (1.5° Centigrade) over the level that existed prior to 1900. Ninety-one scientists from 40 countries wrote the report, analyzing more than 6,000 scientific studies. Representatives from island nations had called for the UN to assess the impact of 2.7° F change, fearing that their countries would become uninhabitable due to rising sea levels.

“It’s a line in the sand and what it says to our species is that this is the moment and we must act now,” said Debra Roberts, a contributor to the report. “This is the largest clarion bell from the science community and I hope it mobilizes people and dents the mood of complacency.”

Fossil Fuels, Global Warming, and Capitalism-Imperialism

The burning of fossil fuels (like oil, coal, natural gas and petroleum) releases immense rivers of gases into the atmosphere. Some of these gases stay in the air and trap heat from the sun. This is the main thing driving the increase in global temperatures and drastically transforming the planet.

Plundering Earth for coal, oil, and natural gas to fuel the global economy is deeply woven into the workings of capitalism-imperialism. This system can’t rid itself of this addiction because capitalists are forced to ruthlessly compete with each other for maximum returns and strategic advantage, driving them to use the cheapest and most widely available sources of energy, and treating environment impacts of their production—like greenhouse gas emissions—as something “external”—not factored into their profit and loss calculations. Instead these environmental costs are off-loaded onto society and the planet.

The cutthroat competition that propels capitalism means the capitalists can’t afford to do otherwise—no matter their professed, or even sincere, environmental concerns. This is why in 2017—when report after report warned of the danger of rising global temperatures—the world pumped out MORE greenhouse gases than in any previous year, and the last four years have been the hottest ever recorded.

The Current Situation Is Deadly... and the Future Far Worse

The impact of climate change in the world today is already a catastrophe.

The global average temperature has risen about 1.8° F since 1900. In previous reports, the IPCC had been uncertain about whether current extreme weather events such as hurricanes/cyclones, heat waves, wildfires, droughts are caused by climate change. The new report is clear: it can be said with “high confidence” that human-caused global warming is already having a profound, and deadly, effect.

These changes are responsible for the deaths of thousands every year. A heat wave struck Europe in 2003 and killed 70,000 people. Worldwide, the number of weather-related natural disasters has more than tripled since the 1960s and these are responsible for 60,000 fatalities each year, mainly in poor countries. In 2015, 19 million people were displaced because of climate or weather-related natural disasters.

Despite knowing the dangers of global warming for decades, the world produced MORE greenhouse gases than ever before. Britain is pushing ahead with natural gas fracking, Norway with oil exploration in the Arctic, and the German government wants to tear down Hambach Forest to dig for coal. The United States, the second largest producer of greenhouse gases, is working to expand the use of coal. Donald Trump mocks climate change and is pulling the U.S. out of the Paris international climate accord. Brazil, the seventh largest producer of greenhouse gases, is on the verge of electing a president who also promises to abandon the Paris agreement.

At the current rate, global temperatures will rise 5.4° F (3° C) over their preindustrial levels by 2100 and possibly far sooner. At this level, the scientists writing the report conclude, “The world as it was in 2020 is no longer recognizable.” Agriculture may collapse in whole regions, more intense hurricanes/cyclones will wipe out whole cities, hundreds of millions will be displaced, vast coastal regions will be submerged.

Targets and Consequences

Much of the IPCC report looks at what will happen in the environment at different average global temperatures. In particular the report looks at changes at 3.6° F (2° C) and 2.7° F (1.5° C).

The target put forward at the 2015 Paris climate summit and in previous reports from the UN was 3.6° F (2° C) of warming (over pre-1900 levels). The new report breaks with this and argues that the world needs to do everything that it can to prevent this. At this level, the report predicts:

The IPCC scientists want to limit the increase to 2.7° F. (1.5° C). Even at that level, humanity and Earth will experience horrendous effects. According to a 2014 report from the World Health Organization, annual deaths from heat exposure will increase to as many as 250,000 worldwide, with the world’s poorest regions suffering the greatest number of fatalities. And this doesn’t include people who will perish as a result of hurricanes, flooding, disruption of food supplies, and other causes that are not directly heat related. Seventy to 90 percent of coral reefs will die. Coastal flooding will increase dramatically.

This is what the world will be like in 2040 and possibly as early as 2030. That’s just 10 to 20 years from now!

The report proposes drastic measures in order to limit climate change to this level. These measures include a rapid phaseout of fossil fuels, mass deployment of solar and wind energy, and the eradication of emissions from cars, trucks, and airplanes.

Report Under Fire

The IPCC report has been both attacked and ignored. The right wing National Review called it “alarmist” and “hyperbole.” Trump’s response was, “I want to look at who drew it—you know, which group drew it,” which may mean that he wants to investigate the scientists who wrote the report. Media Matters reported that they surveyed 60 major U.S. newspapers the day after the report was issued and most did not report on it at all.

If anything the report understates the danger. It is “a relatively conservative assessment,” Bob Ward, a climate expert at the London School of Economics, wrote in the Guardian newspaper: But it [the summary for policy makers] does not mention the potential for human populations to migrate and be displaced as a result, leading to the possibility of war.... The summary also leaves out important information about so-called ‘tipping points’ in the climate system, beyond which impacts become unstoppable, irreversible or accelerate.”

Breaking Out of the Confines

Although the new IPCC report is playing an important role in sounding the alarm about climate change, it is constrained by its framework of working inside the capitalist-imperialist system and relying on the powerful countries that dominate the UN to carry out changes. This is, at best, an illusion.

Let’s not mince words: the situation is urgent, the future of humanity is at stake and, at present, far, far, too little is being done to stop climate change and address its impacts. Opposition needs to rock the planet, infused with urgency, and more clearly directed at the system that is responsible.

Capitalism-imperialism cannot be reformed, and is incapable of protecting Earth. Only revolution that overthrows capitalism and puts a new, radically different, socialist system in its place can save the planet.

Even with all the challenges inherent in trying to tackle a problem like this, on that basis it will be possible to unleash the knowledge, energy, and creativity of the people, from scientists to those who are the most oppressed today, to solve this without the economic and social relations of this system standing in the way.

Anyone who cares about the future of humanity and the planet needs to get with this revolution and nothing less. There is decisive work to be done right now in making this revolution. Join with us and become an emancipator of humanity and a savior of the planet.

Stop Capitalism-Imperialism from Destroying Our Planet!
Revolution—Nothing Less!


Between 70 and 90% of coral reefs will die if global temperatures rise to 2.7° over pre-industrial levels; 99% will die if it rises to 3.6°. [Credit Smithsonian Institution]

More than 3,000 died when Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in 2017. Warmer waters, warmer air, and the amount of water vapor in the air all intensify with climate change and contribute to more powerful and destructive hurricanes. [Credit: roosevelt.skerrit Flikr]

Soybeans show the effect of the Texas drought near Navasota, Texas on August 21, 2013. [USDA photo by Bob Nichols.]

"Not fit caretakers of the earth"

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. Watch the whole talk at


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

The Fascist Mobs in Chemnitz and the Need for a Radical Way Forward

| Revolution Newspaper |


Editors’ Note: This news report is based on edited excerpts of A World to Win News Service article from September 20, 2018.

People in Germany and around the world were horrified by the images flashing across their TV screens at the end of August, not sure if they were seeing the return of the dark past or a preview of a horrible future. In the city of Chemnitz, located in the state of Saxony in former East Germany, hordes of Nazi hooligans and other right-wing thugs hunted down pedestrians who looked like “foreigners,” left-wing counter-demonstrators (who the Nazis call “ticks”) and journalists. Some people in the mob displayed Hitler salutes (officially forbidden in Germany) and chanted, “Germany for the Germans! Foreigners out!”, “This is our city!”, the Nazi slogan “Free, social and national!”, “We are football fans—Adolf Hitler hooligans” and “For every dead German, one dead foreigner.” 

The immediate trigger for these lynch-mob outbursts was the death of a 35-year-old German, reportedly stabbed to death in a drunken brawl at a street festival. Two asylum-seekers were arrested almost immediately. One, described by the police as the “principal suspect,” was eventually released for lack of evidence. Even so this was just the kind of incident that the fascists were waiting for. Like lynch mobs in the U.S., an inflammatory rumor claimed that somehow the murder was connected with sexual assaults on women by refugees. 

According to media reports, about 800 people responded to a call from the informal right-wing skin-heads and football hooligan scene and marched through the streets that same evening. On the following evening, about 6,000 people gathered in the city center. Nazi street thugs came together with organized neo-Nazis and supporters of Alternative for Germany (AfD), a fascist party and now the country’s third biggest force in parliament. There were also many self-styled “concerned citizens” who reject the Nazi label but had no problem with other demonstrators making the Hitler salute and joining in chanting their slogans. 

The police largely let the mob do what it wanted, even when it threatened and attacked people. The political significance of what went on during those days was described in a newspaper article: “But if you’ve followed the pogrom-like mood that has spread since the crime both in Chemnitz itself and on the Internet, if you’ve seen the scenes of mobs hunting down anyone who looks like they might be foreign, then it becomes clear that the demonstrators are less concerned with justice and mourning than they are with sending a message. A throng of several thousand right-wingers and right-wing extremists paraded through the city, throwing stones and displaying the Hitler salute... Something has emerged in Saxony whose dimensions we have never seen before. And it should be a cause of great concern. In the streets of Chemnitz, neo-Nazis, hooligans, supporters of the right-wing populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party and disenfranchised citizens have coalesced into a lynch mob who see themselves as storm troopers on the front lines of German identity... How could such a thing happen?” (Die Zeit, August 30, 2018)

In the days immediately following, mainstream politicians reacted hesitantly. It took days before the Saxony Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer, from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU), and a federal minister went to Chemnitz. When on the following Saturday no less than 8,000 participants answered the AfD’s call for a “funeral march” to Chemnitz, counter-demonstrators, not even half as many, were able to block the route for so long that the march was finally dissolved. But this can hardly give reason to return to a business-as-usual agenda. 

Major Concentration of Trends Wracking Germany

The events in Saxony are a major concentration of trends wracking all of Germany. In fact, the right-wing mob in Chemnitz was fueled by a smear campaign carried out over the past months by mainstream politicians, not least the Christian Social Union (CSU), the Bavarian sister party to Merkel’s CDU, against asylum seekers (called “asylum tourists”). The racists could thus feel their view of the situation confirmed and feel strengthened in their demand that such words be followed by deeds.

The fascist pogrom found shameless allies in Merkel’s governing coalition and within the CSU. One of the vice-presidents of the German parliament declared that “at the root of the violence” was the Chancellor’s “We can do this” policy when her government decided to accept about a million immigrants in 2015. Merkel’s Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, from the CSU, even expressed his “understanding” for the racist demonstrators in Chemnitz and remarked that he himself would have taken part. 

Justification of the Chemnitz lynch mob and political assaults on Merkel converge. In reaction to the huge, widespread disgust at the amateur videos showing the fascists in action, and in defense of her government and Germany’s current political system, Merkel issued a statement that her government would not tolerate “the hunting down of people who appear to be from immigrant backgrounds.” Directly and deliberately contradicting her, Hans-Georg Maassen, the head of the country’s internal security service, publicly retorted that his agency “does not have sufficient solid evidence to conclude that such a manhunt for immigrants actually took place.” “There is good reason to believe,” he continued, that the videos were “fake news meant to distract public attention from the crime committed in Chemnitz.”

This deliberate echoing of AfD propaganda and siding with the fascist mob from within Merkel’s government left it reeling. Immediately after the elections last year and the entry of 93 AfD stormtroopers into the Bundestag, Germany’s Parliament, Merkel had openly announced that she and her party would tack to the right to re-capture AfD supporters—a move that has proved, over and over in imperialist countries, only to give the fascists more legitimacy—as has now happened in Germany too. A tug-of-war erupted between Merkel and the Social Democrats (SPD) in her coalition, which demanded Maassen’s firing, and the CSU and forces around Seehofer, the Interior Minister, Maassen’s boss, who protected him. In the end, Maassen was allowed to resign as head of internal security—but he was awarded a higher Interior Ministry position! Seehofer was said to have gone on the offensive against Merkel to keep the AfD from conquering his CSU’s electoral base, and Merkel ceded ground. But the biggest winners were the AfD and the open Nazis whose political positions, once considered out of bounds, have been legitimized by the mainstream, and whose thirst for power can only have been whetted by this entire turn of events. 

Backing for Fascists from Significant Sections of the Ruling Class

The history of the involvement of the German state and especially of its secret services in fascist operations goes back decades. Merkel’s previous Interior Minister was accused of supporting the AfD. He finally admitted to meeting with its leader, although he denied the charge that he advised them about how to avoid government surveillance. Perhaps the most significant case is that of the Nazi terror group the National-Socialist Underground (NSU), which over 13 years assassinated at least nine immigrants in cold blood, carried out bomb attacks and robbed banks. Several dozen informants from various state security and surveillance agencies circulated around the group, yet it supposedly remained undetected until it was finally exposed in 2011, when the file shredders in the various security authorities must have got very hot. In the course of the five-year-long trial in Munich of some NSU members and supporters, the court repeatedly refused to investigate state involvement or any additional supporters other than the five defendants. The relatively mild verdicts recently issued against these Nazis made the matter all the more outrageous. A trial observer summed up: “The fatal signal that was sent from Munich to the German Nazi scene was: This state will not prevent you from doing what you are doing.” And further: “Chemnitz could be understood as the implementation of this legal signal.”

The rise of the AfD and the broader development of the right in Germany would be unthinkable in such a form if this party were not receiving increasing support from the ranks of significant sections of the German bourgeoisie, partly open, partly covert. There is much more to this than tolerance and/or covert support for Nazis from certain sections of the state apparatus. Fascism is on the rise in many countries around the world, and Germany—long considered by many to be “immune” to this because of the Nazi past—has proved to be no exception. In the U.S., the most powerful imperialist country in the world, the Trump/Pence regime is working to consolidate its power. In Europe, fascists are entering one government after another, often in decisive positions, and persistently working to transform their countries according to their aspirations. Chemnitz marks a turning point, not only because of the extent of racist violence that escalated there, but especially because of the shift in the political framework in the world and Germany and what that portends.

While the AfD’s participation in the government is not a question on the table right now, the number of those who would rule it out in the future is falling sharply. Many Germans can hardly believe their eyes as ghosts of the past unexpectedly awaken to new life. Previously existing barriers for collaboration between militant neo-Nazis, the AfD as a parliamentary arm, “New Right” intellectuals and “concerned citizens” seem to have fallen. While Merkel has played a decisive role in the reactionary tightening of laws in recent years, including measures to expel immigrants and other harsh steps that belie her “Mother Merkel” image, the entire right-wing political spectrum in Germany is uniting against her. The determination, brutality and cynical ruthlessness with which this unified right has seized the initiative has frightened many people and left them speechless.

In a recent interview with the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, AfD leader Alexander Gauland publicly announced that the aim is to bring down the “Merkel system” in Germany. This is not just about the overthrow of a head of government, but essentially about doing away with the liberal-democratic form of rule that has existed in the Federal Republic of Germany in the past decades and replacing it with the more naked dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. Increasingly sharp contradictions are already becoming apparent. Who will prevail in the end seems to be more uncertain today than ever.

The “Rise Up” Project—Wrong and Dangerous Answer

A particularly bad answer to these developments is the Aufstehen (Rise Up) project largely initiated by Sahra Wagenknecht, a leading politician of Die Linke (the Left Party). At its core, Die Linke aims to win a majority of voters again in Germany for a potential “left” government combining with the social-democrats (SPD) now in Merkel’s coalition, and, outside it, the Greens. The aim is to bring about a turn away from a “neo-liberal” (“free market”) orientation in business and politics and a return to the classic social democratic “welfare state” model of the 1980s.

Wagenknecht’s Aufstehen project could lead to a split in Die Linke. This shows how much the strengthening of the AfD is upsetting—and reshaping—the entire bourgeois political spectrum. Wagenknecht & Co would like to win voters who have shifted to the AfD back to a “leftist” program. But she does not want to confront their racism and German chauvinism, for which she expresses appreciation and which she constantly downplays. She would rather like to show that the AfD actually pursues a neo-liberal program itself, and that only a “leftist” political agenda can respond to people’s material worries and needs. Basically, the credo is: a strong welfare state is the best answer to the rise of the AfD. But attempting to appeal to these voters by focusing on their own immediate “material” interests is dangerous for a number of reasons.

First, any real emancipatory politics cannot avoid engaging with people in an uncompromising ideological struggle over racist, chauvinist and other reactionary ideas that influence them. To reject that approach and instead merely appeal to narrowly understood “immediate” interests is not only a rejection of any claim to a liberating political perspective, but also, simultaneously, in a paternalistic way assumes that people are not in a position to broaden their outlook and stand up for goals that are higher than their own narrowest self-interest. Not least this means challenging “Germany for Germans” patriotism from the broader perspective of the interests of oppressed humanity.

Second, the assumption that people vote for right-wing parties primarily because of the economic and social consequences of neo-liberal politics is refuted by countless studies. On the contrary, AfD supporters base their election decisions more strongly on “cultural” factors such as the fear of an (imaginary) “Islamization” of German society, “social alienation” (the loss of socially shared values, customs, etc., and ripping apart of the perceived social fabric) and their opposition to the breakdown of traditional gender and family relationships. To the extent that individual AfD supporters could possibly be won over to any truly radical political approach, then it will only be by means of a hard ideological confrontation over these very questions.

Third, it is not out of the question that the AfD might ultimately exchange its neo-liberal program for intensified social demagogy. This would not be the first time in history, and such efforts already do exist within the AfD. What if at some point the AfD were to demand a higher minimum wage? What then, Sahra Wagenknecht?! During the late years of the Weimar Republic (1919-1933) the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) attempted to erect a wall against the growing Nazi movement by telling workers that the Nazis would ultimately break their promise to eliminate unemployment. Such a policy proved tragically wrong—and fruitless. 

Opposition to Fascists

There are also positive developments working against the rise of the fascists and the country's jolt to the right. Wherever fascists march, there are usually far more counter-demonstrators (at least outside Saxony). During the past months there have been huge protests against planned reactionary police laws, especially in Bavaria and North Rhine-Westphalia. Tens of thousands recently demonstrated throughout Germany for the rescue of refugees in the Mediterranean and against the cynical European policies that deliberately accept the drowning of thousands of people. Large protests are planned in Hamburg on September 29 and Berlin on October 13.

A few days after the Nazi manhunt in Chemnitz, a big open-air concert with well-known bands took place. The media estimated that about 65,000 people came to raise their voices against right-wing agitation and violence.

Such protests, including expressions of opposition in arts and culture, deserve support and must become even stronger.

The Chemnitz concert’s slogan was Wirsindmehr—“We are more.” That may well be true. The fascists do represent a minority, to the best of our understanding.

At the same time the dangers of fascism cannot be under-estimated and the resistance needs to politically escalate, and some lessons from history are pertinent: When in 1933 the gears of supreme state power were handed over to Hitler & Co, only a minority of the population consisted of convinced Nazis. Nevertheless, the fascists were able to consolidate their power within a short time, through a combination of terror, fraud, demagogy, overpowering and bribery. All too many, including not a few later victims of the Nazi regime, kept calm at that time—out of fear, opportunism, an illusionary trust in the law and tradition in “civilized” Germany, out of greed or the deceptive hope that things would “not get so bad.” We must learn from that historical experience—quickly. 


Many people who are taking to the streets for such justified demands tend over and over again to seek a safe haven under “the wing of the bourgeoisie,” to quote Lenin. In this way, “fortress Europe” and the rise of fascist forces is combated with the illusory lure of a better “Europe of human rights and social justice.” Because broad circles don’t see or don’t know about a radical alternative to the ruling order, too many people who have some notion that fascism grows out of the womb of capitalist society ultimately wind up opposing the fascist danger with a defense of bourgeois democracy.

Yet it was decades of the routine functioning of German bourgeois democracy, including during the years when the SPD led the country, which saw intensifying inequality, mega-brothels dotting the cities, the wage-slashing Hartz laws, millions of youth offered nothing but dead-end futures, while all along Germany’s bourgeoisie have kept their blood-drenched claws on its high-up position in the imperialist food chain—all this has paved the way for the declining legitimacy of liberal mainstream politics and the rise of the rabid fascist challenge. Today the liberal democrats in Germany, even as they squeal and protest, are ceding to the fascists over and over again. As shown vividly by Merkel’s latest concession, they care more about order than about justice. 

All this underlines the critical importance of the task of the revolutionary communists to get out their vision of the emancipation of humanity, for which Bob Avakian’s new communism has opened new perspectives, more vigorously and widely among people looking for a real alternative, together with Avakian’s materialist analysis of the rise of the fascist forces in the U.S.—the critical dangers this poses, and the pressing need to go boldly into the tumult and turbulence of the current upheavals with a genuinely emancipatory alternative. (Watch Avakian’s talk THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In the Name of Humanity We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America! A Better World IS Possible! at:



Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

From A World to Win News Service

"A Flag for the Aquarius" and the Immense Political Importance of This Battle

| Revolution Newspaper |


October 9, 2018. A World to Win News Service. This past weekend saw many demonstrations throughout France and in other European countries to demand that the humanitarian ship the Aquarius be given a flag. Responding to the call for "an orange wave" to sweep through Mediterranean Europe, they wore t-shirts and other clothes the bright color of life vests and the hull of the rescue ship that has saved 29,523 people from drowning as they crossed the sea from Africa.

The Aquarius (like a quarter of the world's ships) had been sailing under a Panamanian flag until the new fascist government in Italy pressured Panama to cancel its registration. Since late September it has been unable to leave port in Marseille for fear that Italy, or any other government, could board and seize the now technically-illegal ship and imprison its crew. Despite President Emmanuel Macron's criticism of Italy's "irresponsibility" for closing its ports to rescued migrants, France has joined all the other European Union countries united against the Aquarius and its sister ships. This is all the more flagrant and shameful in that the ship's operators, Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders) and SOS Méditerranée, are based in France, and a broad swath of French society has appealed to Macron to let the Aquarius be registered in France.

On October 6, thousands of enthusiastic people rallied in front of the old port in Marseille, where the night before fascist thugs had taken over the Aquarius's headquarters. The fascist group, "Identity Generation," has moved aggressively and sometimes violently to disrupt rescue operations at sea and in the mountains and forests along the French-Italian border. It is backed by the fascist National Assembly Party (formerly the National Front), which has been building increasing ties with the country's mainstream right. Not a few demonstrators commented on the contrast between the authorities' tolerance for this combat-hungry group and the harsher treatment with which NGO activists are being threatened.

It is a sad fact that in France, like Italy and elsewhere, the fascist right is making opposition to immigrants (both "illegal" and legal, including people born in Europe of immigrant parents) its battering ram, while the centrist forces (like Macron) make that racist discourse respectable by adopting legal measures formerly considered unthinkable in mainstream politics, and the parliamentary "left" parties do their best to focus attention elsewhere, especially on economic issues. Issues like pension cuts are considered by these latter forces to be more able to unite people broadly, while the nationalism and racism that is deeply and disastrously disuniting the people is left unconfronted. This reactionary approach is sometimes at odds with the sentiments of these groups’ younger rank and file, leading to deliberate ambiguity and political manoeuvring at the top.

At least a thousand took part in a rally in Paris. What was most significant about the October 6 campaign in France is that there were street demonstrations in some 15 cities, some relatively large, especially in university towns like Montpellier, and events in another three dozen cities and towns. They apparently involved both students and other youth and older people who consider themselves “apolitical,” but yet find themselves organizing actions that go up against the flagrant or tacit anti-immigrant position of most of the country's so-called "political class." About a thousand people protested in Calais, where the French government had notoriously sent in its security forces to bulldoze a migrants' camp (which they disdainfully called “the jungle”) and forcibly disperse its 10,000 inhabitants, again without much opposition other than from people who consider themselves humanitarians.

Some of the October 6 actions in Italy seemed to have a similar character. The largest demonstration was in Palermo, Sicily whose mayor offered to take the Aquarius's passengers in June when the Italian government refused to allow them to come ashore. Several hundred people rallied "against all forms of racism, fascism and discrimination" in Riace, a small mountain town in Calabria, southern Italy, whose mayor had just been arrested for his public campaign to bring immigrants from Africa and elsewhere to repopulate and revitalize this depopulated region.

At this moment, although Italy and the EU have successfully cleared the Mediterranean of NGO ships and forced even commercial shipping vessels to avoid areas where they formerly picked up people in danger, two more ships are preparing to set sail. One is funded and crewed by Italians associated with anarchist-minded people who emerged from the country's anti-G8 protests together with religious groups determined to defy the new Italian regime.

In Switzerland, many prominent personalities and some legislators have signed an open letter demanding that their government exercise its right to allow the Aquarius to fly a Swiss flag. Once again this is notable because although the signatories are mostly quite mainstream, this is in opposition to the country's leading political party and much of public opinion.

Other demonstrations in support of the Aquarius were scheduled to be held in Madrid, Valencia and Brussels.

A week earlier, at least 20,000 people marched through Hamburg, passing by the city's docks to demand that German ports be opened to passengers from the Aquarius and other rescue ships. Another 4,000 demonstrated in Berlin. These protests were spurred by revulsion against the anti-immigrant riots in Chemnitz and the sympathy for the fascist forces voiced at the highest levels of Angela Merkel's government. (See also: "The Fascist Mobs in Chemnitz and the Need for a Radical Way Forward")

Amid these events, a German government official threatened to organize charter flights to send back to Italy asylum seekers who passed through that country on their way north (which means most). Italy's new strongman Matteo Salvini announced he would close down the country's airports rather than accept them. These are very serious examples of the degree to which mainstream parties are meeting fascist demands and fascists are gaining the political initiative in Europe.

The Aquarius began its operations in February 2016, after the EU abruptly ended the search and rescue operations it had been obliged to mount three years earlier by the public outcry at the drowning of 366 people in a single shipwreck. At that time, many ordinary Italians, including on the island of Lampedusa that became a focal point for immigrant landings, shamed their government with their heroic examples of rescues and human solidarity. Back then today's UK Prime Minister Theresa May was one of the loudest voices insisting that the EU halt rescue operations because they allegedly encouraged people to undertake the dangerous sea crossing.

Especially since the rise of Italy's new regime, other EU governments have allowed it to take the lead in stopping rescue ships and making deals with Libyan warlords to block or turn back immigrant boats. Militias backed by Italy and France kidnap, imprison and sometimes auction off black Africans as slaves. While the number of people reaching Europe and especially Italy has fallen drastically, the percentage of those who die trying has tripled or quadrupled. (For a credible description of the hell that Italy, France and the EU have turned Libya into, see the New York Times, September 17, 2018, "Italy, Going It Alone, Stalls the Flow of Immigrants. But at What Cost?")

Almost all the European governments have either aggressively joined or become thoroughly complicit in the efforts to stop immigration no matter what the cost in human lives. The genocidal spirit so openly on display today could herald even more atrocious and massive measures to come. It is not just a coincidence that at the same time as the EU is trying to politically sink the Aquarius, Médecins Sans Frontières has been ordered to leave Nauru, in the central Pacific. Australia has used this tiny island nation, mostly reduced to rubble by foreign mining operations, as an open air prison camp for the would-be asylum seekers its navy kidnaps at sea before they can reach the mainland. MSF is not being expelled because its work is no longer desperately needed, but because its staff has exposed conditions so harsh that suicide attempts have become endemic among the hundreds of adults and children who have no hope of ever getting out. At the February EU summit, there was open discussion about following the Nauru model, perhaps with similar camps in deserts or other regions in North Africa.

This context is what gives the battle around the Aquarius and other rescue ships such far-reaching significance.


On March 17, 2017, A World to Win News Service (AWTWNS) announced its transformation into a more thorough-going tool for revolution based on Bob Avakian’s new synthesis of communism. Read its “Editorial: Introducing a transformed AWTWNS” here.

At least a thousand took part in a rally in Paris. What was most significant about the October 6 campaign in France is that there were street demonstrations in some 15 cities and events in another three dozen cities and towns. (Photo: AP)


Get a free email subscription to




Revolution #565 October 15, 2018

Friday: Hook Up with Launch Celebrations, Speech Screenings, and Social Media Posting

| Revolution Newspaper |


Join with others to celebrate the premiere of Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, Friday October 19 on

Bay Area

Friday, October 19, 6:00 pm
Revolution Books
2444 Durant Avenue


Los Angeles

Friday, October 19, 5:00 pm
Revolution Club-LA Organizing Center
2716 S. Vermont #8 (upstairs)
just south of Adams


New York

Friday, October 19, 3:00-9:00 pm
Come to Revolution Books:
Live "Social Media Flash-Mob” and Outreach Celebration. 
Watch the film
, post about it, reach out to others, and we’ll brainstorm together.

Premiering online at
October 19, 2018

About This Speech


Watch it, spread it, fund it


Get a free email subscription to