National Sections of the L5I:

History

Rosa Luxemburg - Revolutionary fighter

"In Rosa Luxemburg the socialist idea was a dominating and powerful passion of both heart and brain, a truly creative passion which burned ceaselessly. The great task and the over-powering ambition of this astonishing woman was to prepare the way for social revolution, to clear the path of history for socialism. To experience the revolution, to fight its battles, that was the highest happiness for her. With a will, determination, selflessness and devotion for which words are too weak, she consecrated her whole like and her whole being to socialism, not only in her tragic death, but throughout her whole like, daily and hourly, through the struggles of many years. She was the sharp sword, the living flame of the revolution." Clara Zetkin. Read more...

The April theses: Lenin re-arms the party

The explosion of anger that swept aside the Tsarist regime in February 1917 led to a profoundly contradictory situation at the level of state power. Conservative and liberal politicians declared themselves the Provisional Government, although they had not participated in, let alone led, the uprising. They were deeply fearful of where the mass mobilisations and the workers’ and soldiers’ councils – the soviets that mushroomed – would lead. The revolution had given the soviets power. Now it had to be stopped. Read more...

The July Days

In the spring and early summer of 1917, it became more and more clear that the Provisional Government would not address any of Russia’s crying needs. The war-weary soldiers’ yearning for peace, the cry for bread from the workers of the cities, the peasants’ calls for the aristocrats land to be distributed to them – all were met with delay and diversion. The government made the continuation of the war its overriding priority. A government of the imperialist bourgeoisie, mortgaged to Anglo-French imperialism and with its own designs on the Turkish Empire and Eastern Europe, could not seriously contemplate a separate peace. Read more...

Whatever happened to the anticapitalist movement?

“After the disappointment that was Nairobi, many long-standing participants in the [World Social] Forum are asking themselves: Is the WSF still the most appropriate vehicle for the new stage in the struggle of the global justice and peace movement? Or, having fulfilled its historic function of aggregating and linking the diverse counter-movements spawned by global capitalism, is it time for the WSF to fold up its tent and give way to new modes of global organisation of resistance and transformation?” The Forum at the Crossroads, Walden Bello, May 4, 2007 Read more...

1974: The Portuguese revolution

In April 1974 rebel army units, under the leadership of the Armed Forces Movement (MFA), over threw the 44 year old Portuguese fascist dictatorship. The fascist regime of Caetano had few friends left, and as the rebel tanks moved through the streets they met little resistance. The workers of Lisbon welcomed the soldiers as liberators, placing carnations in the muzzles of their rifles. Read more...

1922: Mussolinis march on Rome

Fascism came to power in Italy at the point when the real revolutionary period in Italy between 1920 and 1922 (the “biennio rosso”) had begun to wane. Under the centrist leadership of Antonio Gramsci and Amedeo Bordiga, Italian workers had not forged an alliance with the peasants and land workers and were unable to take the post-war factory occupations and control of production beyond the point of dual power. Read more...

The slave trade: unceasing resistance and revolt

Official celebrations credit William Wilberforce for the abolition of the Slave Trade. Marcus Chamoun looks at the slave rebellions that really forced Britain's hand Read more...

Slavery and the roots of racism

Dave Stockton introduces the first in a series of articles on the history of the slave trade and its abolition. In this article he explains the roots of slavery and the racist ideology that was used to justify it Read more...

The Indonesian Massacre of 1965

Available in Bahasa Indonesian
Indonesia was estimated in the 1950s to be the fifth richest country in the world in natural resources, and had long been the target of a drive by US imperialism to dominate its natural wealth and to win its rulers to become part of Washington’s worldwide anticommunist alliance. This was the era of a series of military coups to produce “regime change” in semi colonial countries such as Mossadegh was removed in Iran in 1953, Arbenz in Guatemala in 1954. Read more...

February 1917: The Tsar falls

In 1917 Russia still used the old Julian calendar and so was 13 days behind most other countries which used the Gregorian calendar we use today. That is why the great events which are called the February Revolution took place between 8-15 March in our calendar. Under the old-style Russian Calendar 23 February to 1 March. But Russia was not simply 13 days behind central and Western Europe. In terms of its political regime it was any thing from fifty to a hundred years behind. Read more...