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Category: Blog

Writings from December 2007 to the present.

Putin, Chechnya and imperialism

The Mulroney-Schreiber affair has brought the little Central Asian country of Chechnya back into the headlines. Mulroney’s very bizarre defence for acting as Schreiber’s paid salesman, includes a reference to peddling military vehicles to Russia for use in “peacekeeping” in Chechnya. In this context, it is useful to look in some detail at the situation in Chechnya. The article posted here, makes the case that Russia’s oppression of Chechnya is a classic example of Great Power Imperialism. There is nothing remotely resembling “peacekeeping” in its actions there. This article (slightly revised with updated references) was originally written in February 2000.…

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Lois Dowson Bédard – a life for the struggle

Lois Bédard Dowson died December 14 2007, just shy of her 84th birthday. She was, for all her adult life, a committed revolutionary socialist in the tradition of Leon Trotsky. In the context of the Great Depression of her growing years, the rise of fascism and Stalinism in her teens, the horror of World War in her young adulthood – living a life as a revolutionary was not the easiest of choices. But Lois unlike many others, never wavered from her commitment to the left, to the working class, and to the women workers to whose future she was so…

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Mulroney – the real crimes are war and imperialism

My daughter was born in 1988, the year of the second Mulroney majority election victory. Growing up as she did under the man who was ultimately to become one of the most hated prime ministers in history, it made absolute sense to her when we gave her a stuffed doll, with the Tory’s face on it, and the label “Lyin’ Brian” on the back. She and her friends got hours of pleasure from the little Tory doll. The doll would come in handy now, a generation later. Mulroney is today very publicly involved in an embarrassing dispute with international arms…

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Ten years of PNAC barbarism

It is now a decade since the establishment of the Project for A New American Century (PNAC) – the neo-conservative think tank whose ideas formed the backbone for the two administrations of George W. Bush. The central legacy of PNAC will undoubtedly be the war on Iraq. It is, put simply, a legacy of barbarism. Some of the signatories on the original PNAC “Statement of Principles” were hard to take seriously (remember Dan Quayle, the vice-president who couldn’t spell “potato” – or Francis Fukuyama who thought that history had ended?). But others – Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumsfeld…

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Was ‘troop surge’ Bush’s Cambodia?

By 1970, it was clear to most that the United States could not win the war in Vietnam. But a defeated imperialist power is not a power without teeth. Before it finally left in 1975, the U.S. twice escalated the war massively. The first was April 30, 1970, when then president Richard Nixon announced a joint, U.S./South Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia. The second was in late 1972, when Nixon ordered a horrendous bombing campaign against the North Vietnamese capital of Hanoi and its principal harbour, Haiphong. The anti-war movement today has been bracing for our own “Cambodia”. We, like the…

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End game in ‘Operation Iraqi Liberation’

The British are withdrawing from the province of Basra in the south of Iraq, and the occupation of that country is now clearly exposed as an almost completely U.S. affair.[1] When the Iraq war began in 2003, it was already considerably different than the earlier war in 1991. The “Coalition of the Willing” put together by George W. Bush was just a shadow of the massive force, which backed his father’s war. France, Germany and Canada were among the major powers that refused to participate in 2003. Now, this already weak coalition is starting to completely unravel – it is…

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