Revolution # 008

July 17, 2005


The World Can’t Wait!

Drive Out the Bush Regime!

Mobilize for November 2, 2005!

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

Revolution newspaper received the following statement. The statement and news about the movement to “Drive Out the Bush Regime” is available on line at

Your government, on the basis of outrageous lies, is waging a murderous and utterly illegitimate war in Iraq, with other countries in their sights.

Your government is openly torturing people, and justifying it.

Your government puts people in jail on the merest suspicion, refusing them lawyers, and either holding them indefinitely or deporting them in the dead of night.

Your government is moving each day closer to a theocracy, where a narrow and hateful brand of Christian fundamentalism will rule.

Your government suppresses the science that doesn’t fit its religious, political and economic agenda, forcing present and future generations to pay a terrible price.

Your government is moving to deny women here, and all over the world, the right to birth control and abortion.

Your government enforces a culture of greed, bigotry, intolerance and ignorance.

People look at all this and think of Hitler—and they are right to do so. The Bush regime is setting out to radically remake society very quickly, in a fascist way, and for generations to come. We must act now; the future is in the balance.

Millions and millions are deeply disturbed and outraged by this. They recognize the need for a vehicle to express this outrage, yet they cannot find it; politics as usual cannot meet the enormity of the challenge, and people sense this.

There is not going to be some magical “pendulum swing.” People who steal elections and believe they’re on a “mission from God” will not go without a fight.

There is not going to be some savior from the Democratic Party. This whole idea of putting our hopes and energies into “leaders” who tell us to seek common ground with fascists and religious fanatics is proving every day to be a disaster, and actually serves to demobilize people.

But silence and paralysis are NOT acceptable. That which you will not resist and mobilize to stop, you will learn— or be forced—to accept. There is no escaping it: the whole disastrous course of this Bush regime must be STOPPED. And we must take the responsibility to do it.

And there is a way. We are talking about something on a scale that can really make a huge change in this country and in the world. We need more than fighting Bush’s outrages one at a time, constantly losing ground to the whole onslaught. We must, and can, aim to create a political situation where the Bush regime’s program is repudiated, where Bush himself is driven from office, and where the whole direction he has been taking society is reversed. We, in our millions, must and can take responsibility to change the course of history.

To that end, on November 2, the first anniversary of Bush’s “re-election”, we will take the first major step in this by organizing a truly massive day of resistance all over this country. People everywhere will walk out of school, they will take off work, they will come to the downtowns and town squares and set out from there, going through the streets and calling on many more to JOIN US. They will repudiate this criminal regime, making a powerful statement: “NO! THIS REGIME DOES NOT REPRESENT US! AND WE WILL DRIVE IT OUT!”

November 2 must be a massive and public proclamation that WE REFUSE TO BE RULED IN THIS WAY. November 2 must call out to the tens of millions more who are now agonizing and disgusted. November 2 will be the beginning—a giant first step in forcing Bush to step down, and a powerful announcement that we will not stop until he does so—and it will join with and give support and heart to people all over the globe who so urgently need and want this regime to be stopped.

This will not be easy. If we speak the truth, they will try to silence us. If we act, they will to try to stop us. But we speak for the majority, here and around the world, and as we get this going we are going to reach out to the people who have been so badly fooled by Bush and we are NOT going to stop.

The point is this: history is full of examples where people who had right on their side fought against tremendous odds and were victorious. And it is also full of examples of people passively hoping to wait it out, only to get swallowed up by a horror beyond what they ever imagined. The future is unwritten. WHICH ONE WE GET IS UP TO US.

These next two months are crucial. The call you are reading has to get out to millions right away—on the internet, passed out as flyers in communities, published as ads in newspapers. DO NOT WAIT!! GET ORGANIZED!! If you agree with this statement, add your name to it!!! And do more than that: send it to friends, get them to sign it, organize a meeting, take it to your church, your school, your union, your health club, your barber shop, to concerts and libraries and family gatherings, everywhere you go. Raise money, lots of money. Get people together, make plans to be there on November 2, and to build for it.


The world can’t wait! Drive out the Bush Regime! Mobilize for November 2!


Not Being Jerry Rubin, or Even Dimitrov, but Actually Being Revolutionary Communists:


by Bob Avakian, Chairman, Revolutionary Communist Party,USA

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

EDITORS’ NOTE: This is part of a series of excerpts on various subjects—drawn from conversations and discussions, as well as more formal talks, by Bob Avakian—which we will be running in this newspaper over the next period of time. This has been edited for publication.

As I have emphasized many times, it is very important to understand the complexity that’s involved in the current situation and its development. Bush doesn’t do nuance, but we have to. That’s the difference between the solid core that exists now within the ruling class— the group now at the core of its power—and our solid core, which must be combined with, which must involve, a lot of elasticity. We have to understand the complexity of things and not see them in oversimplified dogmatic terms.

If the current polarization in U.S. society continues, and if the “center does not hold” in the old way, and a new form of rule in society is brought into being—as a continuation of the current trajectory—that will not be a good thing, it will be a very bad thing. The task of repolarization in society, ideologically and politically, not only poses itself acutely now, but it will be an ongoing challenge and task in terms of all the political, and ideological, work we do to prepare for and then to seize on the direct approach and then the full ripening of a revolutionary situation and a revolutionary crisis, when a revolutionary people, of millions, has been brought forward. And in the way this is acutely posed now we can see not only its immediate but also its strategic dimension.

To get into one important aspect of this, there is the whole prospect of our having to lead the struggle to defeat attempts to trample on and abolish bourgeois-democratic rights—and perhaps even bourgeois democracy (the bourgeois-democratic form of capitalist rule) itself. This could have arisen in relation to the recent (2004) election— particularly if there had actually been an attempt by those currently at the core of power (those grouped around Bush, in a general sense) to suspend that election, or some other attempt to suppress what people understand to be fundamental rights. But what we have emphasized—and what I want to emphasize again here—is the need for us to do this from our communist perspective and with the goal of proletarian revolution and ultimately communism—and nothing else and nothing less. The point is that we must not degenerate into bourgeois democrats ourselves in taking up the challenge of defeating attempts to trample on and abolish bourgeois-democratic rights.

One way to put this—taking as a point of reference the history of the international communist movement, and in particular its experience in relation to the fascist danger, in the period leading into World War 2—is that we must defeat attempts to trample on and abolish bourgeois-democratic rights without falling into being Dimitrov1—not attempting to build a united front against fascism whose essential objective is just to preserve bourgeois rule in the form of bourgeois democracy.

Or another way to get at this is to say that we must not fall into being Jerry Rubin. What I mean by this is that at one point, back in the ’60s, Jerry Rubin, a well-known rebel of those days, ran for mayor of Berkeley. He was sort of running as a radical alternative candidate, and I remember one time seeing him on the Cal campus in Berkeley, and he exclaimed: “Hey, I just realized, there’s no Democrat running for mayor, the only opponent I have is a Republican. I could actually win!” Well, he didn’t win. But that’s the less important point. The main and essential point is that he was already becoming like the Democrats in order to “win.” So, this is another way of encapsulating the challenge (or another metaphor for the challenge) of dealing with the complexity of the situation we have to deal with. It is another dimension of why and how we have to act—and to think—like communists, like real communists, and not like the cardboard caricature of the stereotypical dogmatic “commie.” How else are we going to be able to handle the contradiction of not only taking up but actually leading the struggle against attempts and outright moves to trample on and abolish bourgeois-democratic rights—or very possibly even the whole bourgeois–democratic form and framework—and yet not become mere bourgeois democrats ourselves. How do we do this from the communist perspective and with the goal of proletarian revolution and ultimately communism—and nothing else and nothing less?

Not only in immediate terms, but thinking in terms of everything that will be involved, all the way between here and the development of a revolutionary situation, whenever that comes, this is going to be a challenge which, with all its complexity, we are going to have to take up and handle correctly.


1. Georgi Dimitrov was a leader of the Comintern (the Communist International, which was founded by Lenin shortly after the victory of the Soviet Revolution and played a major role in the development of the international communist movement, until the Comintern was abolished during World War 2). After the seizure and consolidation of power by Hitler and the NAZIs in Germany in the early 1930s, Dimitrov put forward the thesis, adopted by the Comintern, that the pressing task, to which everything else should be subordinated, was the defeat of fascism; this amounted to arguing that the goal of communists, at least for a period of time, should be reduced to simply defending and preserving the bourgeois-democratic form of capitalist rule and not to overthrow capitalism and replace it with the rule of the proletariat and socialism.

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On the London Bombings

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

On Thursday, July 7, a series of bombings in London killed at least 49 people and injured many more. The bombings targeted people on their way to work during rush hour, on subways and busses. The bombings coincided with a summit meeting (the so-called G-8) of the leaders of the main imperialist powers in the world, then being held in Scotland.

At this time it is unclear who was behind these acts and what they were aiming to do, and no one should accept the explanations of the news media and government leaders at face value. But some things ARE very clear.

One: whoever was behind this and whatever their intent, their acts, besides causing the suffering of innocent people, actually benefited the imperialists. These bombings will be seized on by the likes of Bush, Blair, et al. as a pretext to further their program of war and repression.

Two: the imperialist system is the cause of massive suffering in the world and ultimately holds responsibility for creating the conditions that give rise even to very wrong-headed actions in opposition to it. But things like the attack in London are most definitely NOT in the interests of the masses of people, all over the world.

Three: What is urgently needed, right now—as opposed to this kind of harmful stuff—is, in countries like the U.S. (and England), and indeed globally, the building of truly massive political resistance and opposition to what these imperialists, led by the U.S. imperialists, are doing—the many crimes they have committed and are continuing to commit—and to the way in which they will seize on this incident to seek to justify and to carry further these crimes and their overall juggernaut of war and repression.

Finally: a genuinely emancipating revolution—a communist revolution—is a struggle involving millions and millions of people, who are determined to bring about a radical change in society and the world. This communist revolution aims to overturn the grotesque and horrific systems and relations in the world that cause such untold and unnecessary suffering for literally billions throughout the globe, and which themselves also give rise to and are ultimately responsible for grotesque forms of opposition to this. The nature and aim of this revolutionary struggle is nothing less than the conscious and determined struggle of millions and ultimately billions, throughout the globe, to bring into being a whole new world without exploitation, oppression, and social inequalities. It is a serious thing and it must be approached in a serious way—soberly, with science, commitment, and maturity.


Some Will Be Diners and Some Will Be Dinner...

Thoughts on Pat Robertson, George Clooney and the Oh So Christian Logic of All the Better to Eat You My Dear

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

Revolution newspaper received this correspondence from a reader:

What do thoughtful artists like Susan Sarandon, Mos Def, Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas, Alfre Woodard, George Clooney, and Penélope Cruz have in common with that certifiably insane fascist theocrat and Bushite henchman Pat Robertson?

The correct answer should be NOTHING!

But the latest insanity of “finding common ground” with Christian fascists has now put people who have brought us memorable characters in thought provoking films like Frida, Thelma and Louise, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, O Brother Where Art Thou?, Crazy in Alabama, and Amistad—side by side with the likes of Pat Robertson online at for all the world to see.

And I just want to say to all those artists who are respected among the masses for speaking out against the Bush regime—including people who signed the NOT IN OUR NAME Statement of Conscience that set new standards for resistance amidst all the confusion after 9/11—THIS MADNESS HAS TO STOP!

However you got hooked into this deadly logic, you need to get unhooked right now. While you are busy trying to find common ground with people like Pat Robertson, he and his fellow theocrats are busy planning for the day when they can tear your face off (to borrow a phrase from columnist Maureen Dowd describing how the Republicans treated the Democrats at the RNC).

While you are sitting down to lunch, Pat is planning for the day when you are lunch!


Wednesday, July 6, 2005. Breakfast, coffee, and the New York Times. On the op-ed page I discovered a column, “A Pat on the Head” by Sarah Vowell, who is temporarily replacing Maureen Dowd. And Sarah was singing the praises of Pat Robertson. She was beside herself with joy at seeing him with all these progressive artists. Too terrible...

Backtrack. I had been doing a slow burn for days about all the artists and millions of concertgoers around the world whose anger at global poverty has been sucked up into the political framework of Live 8—which imagines that the G-8—the biggest international gangsters and bloodsuckers on the planet—can be convinced to do something to help eliminate global poverty. And I had been thinking: Wow, we really need a culture of resistance and this Live 8 thang is not it!

That would have been bad enuf, but it got worse. The day before the Live 8 concerts in ten major cities worldwide, I checked out—the U.S. affiliate of Live 8. After reading the mission statement which talks about continuing “the best American tradition of helping people help themselves”—I was convinced that the people behind this statement were either totally and willfully ignorant of all of U.S. history or they were deliberately pitching things to find “common ground” with people like Toby Keith, whose Super Bowl performance of a song upholding the great southern tradition of lynching went unnoticed while Janet Jackson’s breast (which is rather beautiful) sent the U.S. press into a frenzy of moral outrage.

And sure enuf, when I clicked on the video spot, which featured a host of liberal and progressive artists in an appeal to stop world poverty, I found that creepy Christian Fascist Pat Robertson was among them.

So when Sarah Vowell did us all the favor of raising this madness to an actual theory of how to get eaten alive by Christian fascists in her New York Times op-ed piece, I had to say, thanks for the big fat target!

Although Sarah does admit that she used to think Robertson’s fundamentalist Christian ideology was a real problem, she writes that when she saw him on the video she was “delighted to see him.”

One of the things that Sarah cites as evidence that Pat Robertson is “sane” is a conversation with George Clooney on Nightline where Clooney asked Robertson if his organization “Operation Blessing” would advocate the responsible use of condoms in Africa. And Robertson’s response: “Absolutely.I just don’t think we can close our eyes to human have to do that given the magnitude of the problem” sent Sarah into such a spin that she “could have hugged him.”

Sorry Sarah. Wrong again. Actually the “ABC” program—which stands for abstinence, be faithful, and use condoms as a last resort—is the Christian fundamentalist program to deal with AIDS in Africa. Not surprisingly the abstinence part has been pushed by the churches for unmarried women, while everyone knows that “boys will be boys.” In other words, male sexuality is “human nature,” while according to tradition’s chains, women should not have sex before marriage. And especially soldiers and armies—which are very important for the imperialist-sponsored plans in Africa— definitely will be “boys.” And guess whose regime backs and arms the neo-colonial armies in Africa? Okay, it begins with a “G”.and it is not George Clooney.

I could go on for pages about this desire to hug Pat Robertson—not to mention that it is disgusting to even visualize such a thing. But the basic point is that Robertson’s comments about condoms are completely consistent with his whole fundamentalist bible-based viewpoint which sees women as the property of men.

And I have a few more questions for Sarah and all those who think that they have anything in common with people like Pat Robertson:

What do they have in common with a man who believes that Satan is responsible for most of the suffering in the world and that much, if not most, of the disease in the world is caused by sin;

The answer should be NOTHING.

The answer should be that thinking people in the arts who want to change the world—who want to make a difference, who want to use their public voice to help billions of people on this planet whose lives are literally torn apart by a totally outmoded global economic and political system—have nothing in common with Pat Robertson.

The answer should be that such artists are banding together to oppose all this Christian fascist morality and to open their eyes to what is really standing between the 6 billion people on this planet and a world we would all want to live in.


Readers may recall that George Clooney played the scientific member of the hilarious team of three escaped cons in the Coen brothers’ film O Brother Where Art Thou? In one scene, after an encounter with three mysterious “Sirens” at a local pond, one of Clooney’s sidekicks suddenly disappears, and the third guy—convinced that their friend has been turned into a toad—insists on taking the toad along for the journey. Later, when Clooney is challenged by his friends about why he thinks he should be the leader of the group, he quips, “I thought it should be the one who was capable of abstract thought.” So I can’t resist asking George: what the hell are you thinking? Dontcha know that all the time you are bending to be inclusive to people like Pat Robertson, he will gladly accept your dinner invitations while he goes full steam ahead to carry out his program to push the world in the direction of theocracy, uncritical thinking, genocide and slavery. And by the way George, he probably believes that on the day of rapture Jesus will turn you into a toad. I wonder if he likes frog’s legs.


1. See the discussion of Robertson’s book Answers to 200 of Life’s Most Probing Questions, in “The Truth About Right- Wing Conspiracy.And Why Clinton and the Democrats Are No Answer” by Bob Avakian.

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2. Lumumba was elected Prime Minister to a newly independent Belgian Congo in 1960. He was assassinated in a U.S.-backed coup that placed bloody dictator Joseph Mobutu in power.

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G8 and Their System

They ARE the Problem, but They ARE NOT the Solution

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

The G-8 conference in Scotland closed with a package of hype and lies about ending global poverty. The eight leaders of “the world’s richest countries” agreed to increase their aid to the Third World by $50 billion a year and cancel the debt for 14 countries in Africa.


First off, it is an outrage that the leaders of these eight countries have the power to make decisions over the lives and futures of literally billions of people.

The G-8—the U.S., Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Canada, and Japan—are not just “the world’s richest countries,” but also the world’s most notorious imperialists with long histories of bullying, invading, and robbing countries all over the world. Their wealth and power today has everything to do with this history. And international relations today are structured to continue this exploitation.

Not Even “A Start”

The decisions reached at this G-8 summit will not even scratch the surface of global poverty.

What impact can $50 billion have in a situation where a billion people live in extreme desperation and hunger on less than $1 a day, and two billion (one in every three people) are anemic, mainly due to malnutrition?

The Third World now spends $13 on debt repayment for every $1 it receives in so-called aid grants. And this is on top of the larger extraction of profit, the mechanisms of unequal trade, and the relentless exploitation of people’s labor

Digging into Root Causes

Even if they were inclined to do so, ( which they are not!), these imperialists actually cannot do anything to really address, let alone eliminate the massive poverty and attendant suffering throughout the world, particularly in the Third World.

This is because men like Bush, and Britain’s Tony Blair, and France’s Jacques Chirac represent and defend a global system—governed by capitalist dynamics and imperatives. And so, the whole G-8 process will not and cannot touch the underlying causes of poverty.

Take for example, the ruination of the world’s small farmers.

Step by step, wider swathes of the world’s agriculture are being brought more fully into the international capitalist market. Small peasant farmers are increasingly forced to produce goods for the world market and find themselves competing with more mechanized and productive farming throughout the world. They get forced out of business, wealthier farmers or foreign agribusiness buy out their land. And hundreds of millions of them are driven into the slums of swelling megacities—to unemployment and desperate hopelessness.

The imperialist powers actually see such dynamics as an importance source of growth and profit. For example, the U.S. government demanded, as part of their NAFTA agreement, the right to buy up the most productive land and flood Mexico with cheap U.S. corn.

Today China is flooded with 150 million ruined peasants looking for work in the cities. And their desperate willingness to work for some of the world’s lowest wages is seen as the very engine of this “success story” of capitalist development in China.

The imperialist system thrives and depends on the ongoing impoverishment of hundreds of millions of people.

How It Works

Capitalism, by its very nature, demands attention to “the bottom line.” It is rooted in the relentless competition for profit maximization, the constant accumulation of capital and expansion of markets. Its dynamics demand the aggressive cheapening of costs, and the unending hunt for new places with new and more favorable conditions for making profit. Capital rushes in and out without any social responsibility, leaving people ruined in its wake.

This nature of the capitalist market shifts the production of athletic shoes—from South Korea to China; from China to Vietnam—as countries compete, not to abolish poverty, but to offer it up for exploitation!

How is it conceivable to abolish the poverty of sweatshop conditions while remaining WITHIN the framework of such a system? The leaders of the G-8 countries can no more abolish poverty, than a vampire can live without sucking blood.


Headlines blared that the G-8 leaders agreed to cancel the debts of 14 countries in Africa.

First: think of how twisted it is, after two centuries of slave trade, colonialism and imperialist exploitation, to claim the people of the world owe anything (even one penny!) to these imperialist gangsters and their banks!

Second, this G-8 debt cancellation only affects $40 billion in debts (compared to the over $500 billion dollars in debts owed by the world’s 60 poorest countries in 2002, and the $260 billion that Brazil alone owes today.

Third, these “forgiven” debts were obviously seen by the banks themselves as uncollectible—so cancellation now intends to clear the ground for a new more profitable wave of loans.These 14 countries must accept new demands imposed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank—including ending any remaining “impediments to private investment, both domestic and foreign.”

In short, the terms of “debt forgiveness” lock in the conditions that caused the current debt and impoverishment in the first place.

Imaginary Moments

Imagine a hypothetical transnational corporation controlled by people who believe in global “social justice.” Think of what would happen. This corporation would rapidly lose its market share, as competitors produced the same goods for less. It would be punished by “financial markets” for “under-performing” (i.e., not maximizing profits). It would be bought out and restructured or simply go under.

Another thought experiment: Imagine what would happen if some imperialist leader decided to propose basic changes in the world economy. Like corporations based in his country would be forbidden to “pick up and move” from country to country when taxes or wages became “unfavorable.” Or like proposing that all debts—internal, external, or even personal—simply be cancelled. Such laws would produce chaos, corporations would leave, banks would go under, political forces would demand his resignation, and he would be removed (one way or another).

G-8 leaders have outrageous and unjust power over people’s lives—but they do not have the power to go against the basic operations of the capitalist system.

A Final Thought Experiment

Now, imagine that somehow global poverty and debt has disappeared overnight —but at the same time, the laws, structures, institutions, governments, ideas, and lopsidedness of today’s global capitalism were still in place. People would wake up with pantries full of food, cancelled debts, a little savings, a guarantee of living wages, and so on.for the moment at least. (Yes, yes.... this is impossible, but it’s just a thought experiment!)

So what would happen then?

All the capitalist mechanisms that produce extreme poverty and lopsidedness would immediately kick back in again.

The peasant farmers of the countryside would still find themselves competing—under conditions where their machinery, fertilizer, and seed grains are still controlled by foreign corporations (the way Monsanto today controls 52% of seed for South Africa’s staple corn crop).

Highly mechanized foreign producers would still drive down prices, and soon the children of peasants would be working in the fields again.

Wage workers in Third World countries would find factories boarded up—their wages no longer low enough to “attract capital.” And the doors would not reopen until a new flood of ruined farmers had driven wages down again.

Three companies (owned in G-8 countries) would still (like today) control 95% of the processing and export of cocoa in Africa’s Ivory Coast, and have a stranglehold on the very lives of that country’s people. And much of the wealth of the whole planet would still be concentrated in the dominant countries of world imperialism, so that future development would still require attracting or borrowing investments from a few countries and global banks.

In short, even if poverty were magically eliminated—the very workings of this capitalist system would RECREATE that massive poverty—bringing it all back wherever the system’s tentacles reached.

And this could happen very quickly and dramatically. In Indonesia, the crisis of 1997 struck and within months had driven 20 million more people into poverty. Crisis (fueled by bankruptcy, currency speculation, and the mobility of capital) struck Mexico in 1994, Southeast Asia in 1998, and Argentina in 2000-01—leading to murderous cycles of debt and austerity and further impoverishment.

False Hopes, Real Truths

On July 8, British Prime Minister Blair said, announcing the G-8 package: “It isn’t the end of poverty in Africa, but it is the hope that it can be ended.”

No. This was not about “hope,” but about illusion—especially the dangerous illusion that the G-8 imperialists who are so clearly “part of the problem” might (under pressure) become “the solution.”

Ending poverty requires breaking out of that capitalist framework. Without that you cannot have balanced, integrated, sustainable development in both industry and agriculture that is geared to the needs of the people. You don’t have the capacity to mobilize the energy and determination of the masses to solve the acute problems they face. And without that, the oppressed and their highest historic interests cannot shape the direction of society.

When political forces in Brazil wanted to vote out the U.S.-backed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), U.S. trade representative Robert Zoellick threatened that Brazil could either keep the FTAA or get used to trading only “with Antarctica.” And of course, the threat of military attack is never far away.

One decision of the G-8 summit was to jointly support the expansion and training of a military force to police the continent. Guess where this force will stand and what it would do if a serious attempt was made to REALLY dig up the roots of poverty in Africa? Actually abolishing poverty (and all that gives rise to poverty) will require radical upheaval, ongoing revolution and struggle against those who profit from the misery of the people.

Once you are outraged by the extremes of poverty and driven to act, then you have to take a second leap. Once you see how deeply poverty and oppression is woven into the very fabric of the dominant world capitalist order—then you must leap to settling for nothing less than the overthrow and abolishing of all this exploitation and oppression.


Protests Confront G-8 Summit

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

In the first week of July, tens of thousands protested the G-8 meeting in Gleneagles, Scotland. In the face of intense police repression, protesters tore down the fence around the G-8 summit, blocked roads, marched, rallied, and fought the police in the streets. The protests were called by the Dissent Network, G-8 Alternatives, and Making Poverty History.

The high point of the protests was on July 6. Thousands of activists camped out in the town of Stirling and in the countryside. Indymedia UK reported, “After spending a wet night in the fields, forests, and hills surrounding Gleneagles, people woke up and started blockading. Rolling blockades of all routes into Gleneagles started at 6 a.m. and were in place by about 7:30. The primary motorcade route, the A9, was shut down through most of the day.”

Five to six thousand people joined the festive G-8 Alternatives march. Radical activists attacked parts of the perimeter fence around the summit and battled police. In Edinburgh, hundreds of people who were prevented from getting to the protest in Gleneagles took to the streets. According to the BBC, “Their demonstration eventually lasted more than five hours and caused disruption to numerous streets around the center of Edinburgh.”

Over 200,000 people marched in Edinburgh on July 2. On July 4, 2000 people blockaded the Faslane nuclear submarine base. In Edinburgh on the same day, hundreds of youth engaged in running street confrontations with police. On July 5, 1,000 people rallied at the immigrant detention center at Dungavel and demanded that it close.


World Can’t Wait...

Sights and Sounds from Live 8 Philly

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

The following “sights and sounds” from the Live 8 concert in Philadelphia were compiled from reports and interviews from people who went into the crowd to get out Revolution newspaper and the statement: “The World Can’t Wait—Drive Out the Bush Regime!”


One young couple walks past us and refuses to take the leaflets, yelling out quite angrily that it won’t do any good, “We’ve already been robbed twice.” After chasing after and catching up to the couple and expressing that we understood how they feel and that’s why we need to talk, the woman shoots back very fiercely and still angrily, “You know how I feel? Like I’ve been raped!” After hearing what this proposal is actually calling for, she turns more to pleading and says, “I just want someone to tell me what I am supposed to do.” And then she leaves with a big stack of leaflets to get out.


“This government has always openly tortured and killed people and justified it—look at what they did during slavery, or with lynchings, or to Native Americans. They have always put people in jail unjustly, with no evidence. What’s new is who they’re doing it to. Christian fundamentalists are scary—Black people here can’t find a radio station Sunday mornings that isn’t Christian. What have Black people done to have this forced on us? What Bush is doing is typically Christian—look at the crusades. How can we fire up the American people? Too many are disinterested.”

Charlotte, a Black proletarian woman from Philly


A white laborer from Kentucky who had been up north working on a construction site, stares at the Revolution Books table for a while. He says Bush is taking the country in a Hitler direction and he wants to be part of what we’re doing. He throws ten dollars in the donation bucket, gets a subscription to Revolution, and takes flyers to distribute in Kentucky.


For many people, a newspaper that brings truth in time of lies, and gives a revolutionary communist perspective, is an intriguing and even exciting discovery. And some people are desperate for a paper like this. One of us sells a sub to a guy with a MOVE T-shirt, who is really fascinated by the whole idea of driving out the Bush regime, and then to a Black worker at UPS who came to the concert more to look for alternative political stuff than to catch the acts.


“Bush is a Nazi. It’s going to take the power of the people to drive him out—I don’t think they’ll willingly impeach him. They need to feel pressure from us. If we do nothing, we’re just copping out. We need to bring people together and I feel this project can do that.”

A white Christian man in his mid-fifties from Philly who took a large stackof the “World Can’t Wait” flyers


Just above the heads of the crowd are 21 huge placards each with a four-foot-tall letter on it. Together, they spell “Drive Out the Bush Regime.” We’re having some trouble getting through the crowd with the huge placards, but almost immediately, a young white dude with a Mohawk and “Jazzy-Jay” tattooed Tupac-style across his stomach, asks if we need help. He tells me he was a soldier but got out of going to Iraq for health reasons. All together, we wade deep into the crowd, loudly calling out the slogan, asking people to make way, and handing out flyers. There was a generally friendly response, along with a few catcalls like “I love Bush.” We talk to a group of youth. Some had been deeply involved in the Kerry campaign at college, all of them hated Bush. When they heard what we were doing, they went out and came back in five minutes with more kids like themselves. Now there are 15 or so of us and together we move on to find a spot to hoist up our signs. We call out to the crowd, “Who will take the U, the S, the H?” Quickly people come forward to get in line with their letter.

As we lift up the signs, the reaction is quick—like a wave, the crowd starts cheering, and it’s electrifying. After several minutes a group of about five jock-types physically attack us — grabbing at the letters and punching a couple of people. But we all hold our ground and others from the crowd jump to our defense. At this point the musician onstage is the reactionary Toby Keith, which I think ups the ante. The polarization is thick. One young woman with blue hair glows as she tells me, “I really can’t believe we could do this in the middle of Toby Keith. That was impressive.”


“People really need to know what Bush is about. Americans need to say he’s not carrying our voice. He wasn’t voted in in the first election, and I think he’s more illegitimate now. What will it take to get the government to work for us? We can’t be passive in the face of this. To drive his regime out, it will take something we haven’t seen in a few years—sacrifice. It’s going to take people saying ‘I’m not going to let my kids grow up under this kind of government.’ I registered people to vote—a lot of new immigrants, parents of my students—because people need to make informed decisions. I had my students research and compare and contrast the main contenders and then we took polls. I taught them how there are different forms of government—not just democracy.”

Brandy, a young middle school teacher from the Bronx,
who says it’s controversial to teach evolution at her school


We find ourselves enlisting people who voted for Bush, including some who still identify as Republicans. One guy who voted for Bush took a whole box (several thousand) flyers to distribute and is getting a lot of them out on the spot. We talked with white woman in her mid-fifties who is a Republican. She said she hates and detests Bush, and that he was “ruining the Republican party.” The person selling Revolution gave her five papers to distribute and she responded by reaching over and taking ten more. She said she would be part of anything that called to drive the Bush regime out of power.


A Party supporter active in the “World Can’t Wait” initiative wrote:

"We really had to engage people in discussion and struggle and the paragraph in the box on the back of the flyer [telling people how to get in touch and what to do] was important and worth talking with people about, particularly toward the end of our conversations. I would tell people ‘I know how you feel—horrified by what is being done—but that’s not good enough. It’s not good enough to be angry, or to complain, or to be scared—we have to change history and you have to take responsibility for this, right now, in a way you never imagined. There’s no escaping. . .’ This had a huge effect on people and whether they agreed to take a stack of 30 leaflets—or 300.

"We also struggled to really go broadly to sign people up. And not just the people who are angry and ready to do something, but also many more who are questioning, filled with anxiety, not yet ready to act, but who need to be in the mix and hearing from the organizers as events unfold and to be challenged through this to get more involved—in all kinds of new ways.

"We are confronting an unprecedented challenge, and part of this is whether we will dare to speak and move the many millions in this country. What we began in Philly—and are still coming from way behind to in achieving—was an important advance in the effort to drive the regime from power.

“It’s interesting to note that where we struggled with people to take this effort to drive out the Bush regime as their own, and did this based on the materialism of this current situation and what it says in the call—this was not antagonistic to bringing out our full view of the problem and solution, and quite a few papers, Bob Avakian DVD samplers, and subscriptions to Revolution were sold.”


Crime Against Humanity

Turkish Regime Murders 17 Maoist Revolutionaries

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

June 16, 2005, late in the night, at Dersim, in the mountains of the Kurdish region of Turkey, a great crime against humanity was committed by the government of Turkey.

A group of important communist leaders were on their way to the Second Congress of the Maoist Communist Party of Turkey and North Kurdistan. Among them were Cafer Cangöz, General Secretary of the Maoist Communist Party (MKP) and several other members of the Central Committee.

The revolutionaries had stopped to take a break on their journey. Brutally, without warning, death came from the sky.

Suddenly, three Sikorsky helicopters of the Turkish government armed forces appeared overhead and began blasting the revolutionaries with machine-gun fire. More than 1,000 soldiers moved in to finish off the carnage.

Seventeen important leaders of the Maoist Communist Party and leading fighters in the People’s Liberation Army—including Comrade General Secretary Cafer Cangöz—were murdered in the attack.

It was a cowardly and savage massacre. No charges, no warning—it was a straight-up assassination, carried out with massive force. And the perpetrator of this massacre is the very regime that the U.S. government describes as “moderate” and “democratic”.the very regime that is armed to the teeth through U.S. aid.the very regime that the U.S. government relies on to help police the region.

According to A World to Win News Service, the MKP comrades who were killed in this ambush along with Cafer Congoz were Aydin Hambayat, Ali Riza Sabur, Cemal Cakmak, Kenan Cakici, Okan Unsal, Berna Sagili Unsal, Alattin Ates, Okkes Karaoglu, Taylan Yildiz, Ibrahim Akdeniz, Binali Guler, Dursun Turgut, GŸlnaz Yildiz, Ahmet Perktas, Cagdas Can and Ersin Kantar.

For three days in the Turkish media, the attack on the Maoists was top news. The national daily paper Millyet gloated that “the Maoists have been finished with a single blow.”


Across Turkey, people poured into the streets in funeral marches. With their faces uncovered, carrying red flags, they courageously defied the Turkish regime to publicly mourn the fallen revolutionaries and to express their outrage at this crime.

In the Gazi district of Istanbul, red cloth rolled out, passing hand to hand, over the heads of the thousands of mourners, until the whole funeral procession moved like a river of red through the streets and hills and right in front of the police station. Mass funerals were also held in Ankara, Izmir, and Dersim.

Memorial meetings were held in several cities in Europe over the following days. On June 25, more than 5,000 people marched in the German city of Duisberg.

There were reports that the bodies of the murdered MKP comrades were heavily mutilated and burnt and showed signs of torture. At the funeral in Dersim for some of the murdered Maoists, Aydin Hambayat’s niece said, “My uncle’s body was shattered, and it is clear that he was caught while he was injured but still alive, and that then they shot him in the back of the head.” Human rights groups and other progressive organizations denounced the attack and demanded that the government make public the names of three other revolutionaries that it claims were captured during the attack.

The MKP is a participating party in the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement. A statement from the Committee of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement, dated June 24, spoke of the role played by the General Secretary of the MKP in the struggle in Turkey and as a strong supporter of the RIM.

“Comrade Cangöz was well known to the enemy. He struggled for decades for the liberation of the peoples of Turkey as part of the world proletarian revolution. He spent more than ten years in the Turkish dungeons. In prison he was a daring and inspiring model of resistance and defiance and was loved by the imprisoned revolutionaries and hated by the prison authorities. Even while imprisoned, this comrade paid a great deal of attention to the problems of the communist movement in Turkey and internationally. After his release from prison in 2002 he played a key role in organising the founding congress of the MKP and in forging the political line adopted at that congress, an historic event which fought to consolidate a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist understanding in the party. Since the first congress, comrade Cangöz had been fighting to reorganize and strengthen the party and bring about a breakthrough in waging people’s war.”

( We urge our readers to gather together and view the video footage of the funeral march in Istanbul in memory of these fallen comrades. It is online at and


Statement from RCP,USA

On the Loss of Comrade Cafer Cangöz and 16 Other Comrades of the Maoist Communist Party [Turkey and North Kurdistan]

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

It is with great sadness that the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA learned of the killing of Comrade Cafer Cangöz and sixteen other comrades at the hands of the reactionary Turkish army. The revolutionary struggles in Turkey and the United States both face the common, oppressive force of imperialism and share the final goal of achieving communism throughout the world. Our two parties are both participants in the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement. The RCP,USA joins with the thousands in Turkey and all over the world in denouncing this cowardly massacre and honoring the memory of the fallen comrades.

Communists live in different countries, but share a common revolutionary vision: the emancipation of all of humanity, by the masses themselves, everywhere, from exploitation, oppression and social inequality. When this revolutionary cause advances in any one country, comrades everywhere share in the joy. And when comrades give their lives in the struggle, we share in the bitterness.

Although the Turkish ruling class has a huge military, armed to the teeth by U.S. imperialism, terror and repression alone cannot forever stem the revolutionary aspirations of the masses in Turkey. Although the road is difficult and full of sacrifice and hardship, the people, with the leadership of their communist vanguard, can forge their way to final victory.

Comrade Cafer Cangöz led the First Congress of the MKP which opened the door in the communist movement in Turkey to a critical reexamination of the past weaknesses and a fresh approach to the problems of making revolution. The greatest way of honoring Comrade Cangöz’s memory is to carry forward the process which began under his leadership. We are confident that armed with the ever vibrant and constantly developing science of Marxism-Leninism- Maoism your party will overcome this bitter blow, turn grief into strength and advance the cause of the revolution.

Central Committee
Revolutionary Communist Party, USA


Weeping Willow

by Nazim Hikmet

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

The water flowed,
it showed
willow trees in its mirror,
weeping willows washing their hair in the stream.
Red riders raced towards the sinking sun,
their flaming swords drawn to strike the willows.
like a bird
               in the wing
a wounded horseman tumbled from his horse.
He did not shout,
Or call after those who passed,
he just looked with brimming eyes
          at the flashing hooves of the riders receding.

          alas that he
will never lie again on the foaming necks of his galloping horses,
or brandish his sword chasing after the white armies!

Gradually hoofbeats die away,
the riders are lost in the sunset.

Horsemen, horsemen, red riders,
horses wind winged
horses wind wing.
horses wind.

Life passed like the wind winged horsemen.
The sound of the running water stopped.
Shadows grew denser
                       colors were wiped away.
Black blinds came down,
                       on his blue eyes,
the weeping willows leant
                       over his fair hair.

Don’t weep weeping willow,
                       don’t weep,
in the dark mirror of water, don’t fold your hands,
                       don’t fold your hands,
                                 don’t weep.



Senate Lynching Apology: The Hypocrisy and the Horror

by Philip Watts

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

Recently the U.S. Senate passed a “resolution” apologizing “to the victims of lynching and the descendants of those victims for the failure of the Senate to enact anti-lynching legislation.” Of course, there was a hitch: Bill Frist, the leader of the Senate, refused to put who did—and did not—vote for it in the written record. And some eight Republican senators still refused to support the apology!

On one hand this “apology,” and the way it was carried forward by the Senate represents a self- exposure of this system and the way it operates. After all this time these suckers still can’t get together around any real apology for the whole history of lynching of mainly Black people in the U.S. Let alone change the actual oppressive conditions of the people.

On the other hand this “apology,” coming now, reveals some deeper lessons about forms of oppression and subjugation in U.S. history. The resolution for the apology was originally sponsored by two Senators after viewing the book Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America, which shows pictures and even postcards that were made of lynchings.

The book grew out of an exhibit of those postcards and pictures, and not too long after hearing about this so- called apology I went to check out this exhibit with a friend.


On the postcard picture a small white x showed the spot where William James, a Black man, had been lynched. He was hung from a steel arch in Cairo, Illinois on November 9, 1909. Bright light illuminated the steel arch so that everyone in the town could see his body. After William James died his corpse was pulled down and dragged around while a racist white mob cheered. Then members of the crowd severed his head and put it on a wood pole. They removed his organs so they could use them as souvenirs. And finally the remains of his body were set on fire.

This was one of the first stories I encountered at this exhibit, but it was far from the most gruesome. In many of the pictures and postcards there are crowds of white people cheering and grinning. Some have little children smiling up at the burnt corpse, standing with their family and dressed up in their Sunday best.

These pictures and postcards were sold as souvenirs. What made this all the more disgusting and appalling were the notes written on the postcard pictures of lynched people. One postcard showed a crowd standing around a burnt Black man, hanging from a tree, and read, “This is the barbeque we had last night, my picture is to the left with the cross over it. Your son Joe.”

According to the book Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America, “Between 1882 and 1968, an estimated 4,742 blacks met their deaths at the hands of lynch mobs. As many if not more blacks were victims of legal lynchings (speedy trials and executions), private white violence, and ’nigger hunts,’ murdered by a variety of means in isolated rural sections and dumped into rivers and creeks.” These lynchings were officially and unofficially sanctioned by and often led by sheriffs, politicians, and clergy.

In response to this, an anti-lynching movement developed in the North and to a degree in the South. Ida B. Wells, an ex-slave, journalist, and anti-lynching crusader, exposed the horrendous nature of lynchings. She, together with W.E.B. Dubois and others, mounted a mass campaign which put anti-lynching legislation as their top priority.

And some 200 anti-lynching bills were introduced in Congress. None passed. Why this is so is never explained in the Senate’s apology.

“But Why Didn’t They Send In the Army?”

The exhibit included a book where people could write their comments after viewing the photos and reading the horrific stories. One page contained the following, in the handwriting of a child: “Why didn’t they just send in the army to stop this?” Damn good question.

After the Civil War, from 1865 to 1877, the Union Army did remain in the South. This was the period of Reconstruction. Freed Blacks and poor whites seized lands and began farming. Former southern plantation owners, defeated in the war, were largely held at bay by the Union Army. Changes and reforms also happened in the political superstructure. Blacks were not only able to vote but also ran for and were elected to political office.

But, as Chairman Avakian points out in his essay How This System Has Betrayed Black People: Crucial Turning Points,

“In 1877, all this was reversed and betrayed. The bourgeoisie had gotten what it needed out of this situation: it had consolidated its hold over the country as a whole; it had consolidated its dominant position economically and politically within the South as well as the North and West.”

The old plantation owners used their control of the plantations to force millions of Black people into sharecropping and serf-like conditions. And in 1877 the Union Army was withdrawn from the South.

The answer to the question, then, is this: They—the bourgeoisie, or ruling class of capitalists—“didn’t send in the army” because they had consciously decided to pull it out years before! Once the army was gone, a whole structure of Jim Crow laws codified the subjugated position of the Black masses. In the spread-out conditions of the rural South, the plantation owners relied on the massive terror of racist lynch mobs and the Ku Klux Klan to enforce those laws and that oppression.

And that’s why they not only didn’t “send in the army,” but didn’t even pass a law to make lynching a federal crime: lynching was too important, too central, to the whole system of the oppression of Black people in the South, and to holding together the whole class structure of the United States, north as well as south.

“I Wonder: Has Anything Really Changed?”

Another comment written in the book at the end of the exhibit was from a young Black man. He said,

“I’m a 24-year-old Black man. I found this exhibit very powerful and it made me remember stories I’ve heard from relatives who live down south. But then I wonder, has anything really changed? I still live with the harassment of the police and discrimination.”

Think about the fact that this “apology” is coming long after lynching as such is no longer a significant form in which the oppression of Black people is carried out and enforced.

The forms of exploitation and impoverishment have changed with the economic changes in this country, as the southern plantations were mechanized and many Black people moved from the rural south into the urban ghettos, north and south, to be exploited in the factories and other jobs, or kept unemployed.

The corresponding forms of oppression have changed too. From lynching and Jim Crow, we’ve gone to pervasive police brutality, police murder, and massive imprisonment. Under capitalism, control over the poor and continued oppression of Black people takes the from of direct state terror by urban police forces. This is backed up by the army in times of massive rebellion against this oppression.

There continues to be segregation and discrimination, massive impoverishment, exploitation and super- exploitation, and terror to back all this up. Some of the forms have changed, but the essential nature of the system has not. Nor will it until it is overthrown and something different is brought into being.


All of this makes me wonder, when is the U.S. Senate going to apologize for the present-day terror? For Abner Louima, for Tyisha Miller, for Rodney King, for Amadou Diallo, for all the Black people and especially the youth who live with the constant fear of the present-day terror?

And even lynching isn’t totally off the map. Just look at what happened in Howard Beach where three white racists recently attacked some Black men, for the second time in 20 years. Or who can forget James Byrd, lynched in Texas in the late 1990s?

And what does it say about what kind of country this is, and what kind of system we live under, when this historical period in which most of these lynchings took place is not the whole story, but merely a chapter in an ongoing real-life book of horrors? From the horrors of the middle passage on the slave ships, to the selling of children and other atrocities during slavery time, through lynching and down to the present-day mass incarceration of Black youth—what does it say?

Sorry, the lame fucking apology won’t cut it. And we don’t intend to, nor need to, wait another 50 years for a half-hearted apology for all the hell you put people through now. (Which won’t be delivered anyway.)

We have a whole other kind of future in mind.


If This Torture-Justifying Hangman Is a “Moderate”...

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

Alberto Gonzales is now being hailed by some Democrats as an “acceptable” and “moderate” nominee for the Supreme Court. When Bush was governor of Texas, Gonzales was his counsel. Together they presided over the executions of 152 people, more than any other state in modern U.S. history. Gonzales advised Bush on clemency appeals, but according to a study in the Atlantic Monthly, he “repeatedly failed to advise the governor of crucial issues” that could have influenced the clemency board. When Bush became president, Gonzales wrote the memo arguing that the Geneva Conventions no longer applied and was involved with the memo that justified the systematic torture applied by the United States that has now come to light.

...We’d Hate to See a FASCIST!


Bush Caught Red-Handed

The Case of the Downing Street Memos

Revolution #008, July 17, 2005, posted at

Revolution received the following correspondence from San Francisco.

For over nine months before their March 2003 invasion of Iraq, the U.S. government insisted they were giving negotiations, UN pressure and international inspections “a chance to succeed.”

Now the lies of their charade have been exposed—in a series of high-level British government memos and briefing papers that have leaked into the press. Behind the scenes, the Bush White House had already decided to launch the invasion, and was lining up Britain’s Tony Blair government as allies and was negotiating which lies to use as justification.

The so-called Downing Street memo in particular is a “smoking gun” that confirms that the U.S. and British governments were coldly lying to the world about their motives and intentions. This memo (first published in Britain’s Sunday Times May 1, 2005) contains the minutes of a July 23, 2002 meeting between British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Richard Dearlove, then head of British MI6 Intelligence.

Dearlove had just returned from high-level meetings in Washington. The memo documents what the U.S. officials were then saying to their main ally behind closed doors:

“Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The National Security Council had no patience with the U.N. route... It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbors, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.”

Clearly war to remove Iraq’s government had already been decided, but the British and U.S. governments were trying to get their stories straight—on which excuses to use as their pretext for the aggression. To repeat a key sentence: “the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.”

This Downing Street meeting was in July 2002—eight months before the invasion was launched in March 2003. While secretly fine-tuning war plans with the British intelligence head, Bush publicly insisted he was seeking peaceful alternatives.

Neither Bush nor Blair deny the authenticity of this Downing Street memo. But the White House does deny that its decision for war had been made by that time.

In response to a question about the fixing of intelligence to justify the war, a White House spokesman stated, “The suggestion is just flat-out wrong.” Stung by the exposure of their lies, the Bush administration responds with a new lie.


As if this Downing Street memo was not damaging enough, a secret British Cabinet Office briefing paper (also dated July 23, 2002) has also been leaked to the Times. It states that “since regime change was illegal, it was ‘necessary to create the conditions’ which would make it legal.”

This secret briefing confirms that Blair “had already agreed to back military action to get rid of Saddam Hussein at a summit at the Texas ranch of President George W. Bush three months earlier.”

It went on to say that the British regarded “the use of force against Iraq, or any other state, as lawful if exercised in the right of individual or collective self-defense, if carried out to avert an overwhelming humanitarian catastrophe or if authorized by the U.N. Security Council.”

In other words, the British government too was set on war, but wanted to come up with a legal public rationale for the war.

In a third secret memo (dated March 14, 2002), David Manning, the foreign policy advisor to Blair briefed the Prime Minister on a dinner he had with Condoleezza Rice — over a full year before the invasion was launched.

Manning wrote:

“We spent a long time at dinner on Iraq. It is clear that Bush is grateful for your support and has registered that you are getting flak. I said that you would not budge in your support for regime change but you had to manage a press, a Parliament and a public opinion that was different from anything in the States. And you would not budge either in your insistence that, if we pursued regime change, it must be very carefully done and produce the right result. Failure was not an option.”

Clearly overthrowing Hussein was the goal and the only discussion was how to manipulate public opinion.

Yet another secret memo (dated a week later, on March 22, 2002) confirms this. This memo was from Peter Ricketts, British Foreign Office Political Director, to Jack Straw, British Foreign Secretary.

Ricketts writes:

“U.S. scrambling to establish a link between Iraq and Al Qaeda is so far frankly unconvincing. ...Much better, as you have suggested, to make the objective ending the threat to the international community from Iraqi WMD before Saddam uses it or gives it to terrorists.”

But Ricketts then writes that this too may be a problem:

“What has changed is not the pace of Saddam Hussein’s WMD programs, but our tolerance of them post-11 September...the best survey of Iraq’s WMD programmes will not show much advance in recent years on the nuclear, missile or CW/BW fronts... Attempts to claim otherwise will increase skepticism....”

A few days later on March 25, 2002 Straw wrote a memo to Blair stating:

“[T]here has been no credible evidence to link Iraq with UBL and AlQaida. Objectively, the threat from Iraq has not worsened as a result of 11 September.” (UBL refers to Osama bin Laden.)

These leaks make clear that it was not “poor intelligence” that caused the U.S., British and allied governments to attack Iraq. These war criminals knew from Day One that their justification for war was based on lies. And they were working together to fine-tune these lies, long before they admitted publicly that they were going to war.

They never believed that Iraq’s weapons posed a growing threat or that Saddam Hussein’s government had “links to terrorists.” These were only a cover story invented to cover their calculated aggression.