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Inspiring Uprisings across the Arab world: Message from John Percy, RSP


LALIT has known the Revolutionary Socialist Party of Australia from its inception, and two of our members, Lindsey Collen and Cindy Clelie, attended the first Congress of the DSP in 2009. Last year, John Percy of the RSP was a guest speaker at LALIT’s International Action Conference on Diego Garcia and Chagos. Here is his message on behalf of the RSP.

Greetings to LALIT Labour Day celebrations
From the Revolutionary Socialist Party Australia

Dear Comrades,

The Revolutionary Socialist Party of Australia sends our warmest revolutionary greetings to LALIT and our solidarity to all those in struggle in Mauritius, and our best wishes for the success of your Labour Day celebrations.

This May Day we have to salute the inspiring uprising across nearly every country in the Arab world which has been the major development of 2011. In fact it can be a historic turning point in the international situation.

Revolutionary struggles against imperialist-imposed dictatorships in Tunisia and Egypt have already won their first goals, forcing out their dictatorial rulers, and the struggles continue. They’ve spread to the whole Arab world, and show the instability of the rule of capitalism, smug in its delusions that it was “the end of history”, and “there is no alternative.” These struggles should put revolution back on the agenda around the world, inspiring fresh hope for Marxist revolutionaries, but also presenting tests and challenges, as imperialism works to subvert these struggles and crush them militarily, directly or through their proxy dynasties and dictators.

The revolutionary uprisings themselves resulted from the crisis of the world capitalist system. The semi-colonial countries have been squeezed further by the capitalist economic crisis and the austerity drives in imperialist countries. The tremendous rallies in the streets in country after country have been very much composed of an increasingly educated layer of youth, with no jobs or prospects.

The Libyan uprising began as part of the Arab awakening, demanding political freedom linked to demands for economic and social justice. But the imperialists have grabbed their opportunity to intervene militarily and politically. Their main goal is to contain and subvert the uprisings, to ensure they don’t take the next steps and challenge imperialist control, linking up across the Arab world, and questioning the system of capitalism.

Socialists around the world must be absolutely clear – while wholeheartedly supporting the Arab awakening, we must be totally opposed to the imperialist military attack on Libya. In no way is it a “humanitarian intervention”. It’s not helping a people’s rebellion – it’s a kiss of death! We should be opposing the idea of a “no-fly-zone”, even though imperialism has already gone far beyond that. We should also oppose other imperialist measures, such as blockade, embargo, and confiscation of assets.

The hypocrisy of the imperialist intervention is astounding. There’s no intervention to support the peoples’ struggles in Bahrain, Yemen, or Palestine, to rescue them from bloody crackdowns – rather it’s intervention on the side of US-friendly dictators and monarchs. But the success of the imperialist military blitzkrieg is not a foregone conclusion. The main task for socialists is to oppose the imperialist interventions, especially from our own ruling class, while defending the continuing Arab uprisings.

Washington has been challenged in recent years in its own backyard, Latin America. For more than 50 years Cuba has resisted blockade and subversion. The Venezuelan revolution has provided a new inspiration, galvanising millions also in other countries of Latin America. The awakening in the Arab world poses another huge political challenge to imperialism, already suffering from the impact of its global economic crisis, and rising economic challenges from China.

Imperialism’s response is even more than ever a military one. Imperialist wars are never-ending – Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Palestine, Libya… and they’re eyeing off Syria now. In the US itself workers conditions, health, and education are slashed, but there’s money for the military, cruise missiles, drones, bases and more wars.

But the dramatic exposures by WikiLeaks have torn away much of the veil of secrecy on these wars, and on the lies and deceptions that US imperialism daily uses to perpetuate its aggressive rule.

So it is a very contradictory world situation, with capitalism suffering multiple crises, and increasingly exposed, and revolutionary mass struggles exploding, but a left as yet very inadequate to the task of providing direction and leadership to mass movements that could address capitalism’s weaknesses and contradictions and build a better world. Our task remains in every country – build a revolutionary Marxist party.

Your vital campaign against the US base in Diego Garcia has proved even more important and internationally relevant. We were inspired by our participation in your excellent conference last year. Congratulations on the successes your work has achieved so far. Keep up the excellent work.

So this May Day, our internationalist solidarity is with you, and best wishes for success in the coming struggles, and for the growth of your organisations and the strengthening of the Marxist movement in Mauritius.

US and other occupiers out of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya!
Kick the US base out of Diego Garcia!
Long Live Lalit!
Build the international socialist movement!
Workers of the World Unite!

Warmest revolutionary greetings,
John Percy
National Secretary
Revolutionary Socialist Party