National Sections of the L5I:

We will not be hostages of Bush's and Blair's warmongering

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Statement on the London bombings from the League for the Fifth International

The terrorist attack on the London underground and bus services, which has resulted in the death of dozens of people and serious injuries to many others, is an horrific act aimed at innocent people - workers, students, tourists - and deserves the most unequivocal condemnation by all socialists and progressive people. Both the survivors and the families of the victims deserve our deepest sympathy.

Such actions can have nothing but the most reactionary consequences for all those struggling against imperialist war, against the US/British occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and the Zionist occupation in Palestine. The antiwar movement, which mobilised over a million people on February 15th 2003 and over 100,000 people only this spring in London, will be set back by them - momentarily at least. These actions play right into the hands of those who present the war in Iraq and its predecessors as a defensive struggle against “terrorism.” Blair will use it to try to push through identity cards and further attacks on civil liberties. The reactionary tabloids will whip up fear and hatred against the Muslim community. It will be used to foster a favourable climate for future war threats against countries like Syria or Iran.

In reality Bush and Blair’s claim to be waging a defensive “war against terrorism” is a brazen lie, just like their pretext for war with Saddam Hussein- the non-existent weapons of mass destruction. Their outrage is the rankest hypocrisy. Such terrorist acts - 9/11, Bali, Madrid - are the consequence, not the cause, of the imperialist policies of war, occupation and economic plunder carried out in the oil rich countries of the Middle East and Central Asia. These policies have been pursued by Blair, Bush, Sharon and their predecessors for decades.

The first Gulf War, the brutal ten years of sanctions that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children, Israel’s killing of thousands of Palestinians and the relentless robbery of their lands, these are the real reasons that the masses of the Middle East hate our rulers. These actions give rise to heroic guerrilla wars of resistance and national liberation but also to desperate and self-defeating acts such as the London bombings.

Horrible as the attacks on innocent civilians in London, Madrid, New York and Bali are, they are dwarfed by the scale of the atrocities deliberately organised by the American and British governments. Estimates of the number of non-combatant Iraqi civilians killed since the 2003 invasion vary from 25,000 to 100,000. In the city of Fallujah, which twice in 2004 suffered siege and assault by US armed forces, the civilian death toll in the April 2004 was between 572 and 616, with over 300 of these being women and children. In November, when the Americans finally captured the city, a BBC reporter put the death toll at 2,000. Baghdad-based human rights groups claimed many of these were many unarmed civilians. Blair calls the perpetrators of the London bombings “barbarians". Yet Bush and Blair have committed barbaric acts, on a far greater scale. In fact not only the masses of the Middle East but increasingly the people of the West have become hostages of the reactionary warmongering of the imperialist rulers.

Blair said “terrorists will not succeed in destroying our values and our way of life.” George Bush said after 9/11 “they hate us for our democracy". This is yet more lying propaganda. It is not “our way of life", “our democracy” let alone “our civilisation” that people in the Arab or Muslim countries hate or want to overthrow but “our” troops, stationed in their countries against their will, the seizure of their natural resources for Exxon, Bechtel, Halliburton, the torture of their sons and daughters in Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay. These are the actual “civilised values", the “way of life", that these gentlemen want to send young British and American soldiers to die for.

Many activists will wring their hands at the way the London bombings have upstaged the issue of debt cancellation and aid for Africa. Last weekend Bob Geldof told his Live8 performers to lay off Bush and the Iraq war. Anti-globalisation writer Walden Bello was told by the Make Poverty History organisers that he must not mention the war when he spoke from their platform in Edinburgh. But events in London and the response of the “world leaders” in Gleneagles show that it is a complete illusion to believe that the economic aspect of imperialism, the huge foreign debts, the mega corporations pursuit of free trade, the ruthless plunder of raw materials, including oil and gas reserves or the IMF’s forced privatisations, could ever be separated from the ’war on terrorism’. That war is, indeed, the military policy of globalisation. It provides the main pretext for invading and occupying countries like Iraq

The “blowback” from this policy of invade and plunder is 9/11, Madrid. London. For this reason Bush, Blair and their allies are ultimately responsible for the deaths in London, just as they are responsible for the deaths in Falujah, Najaf, and Baghdad. Of course Blair and Bush will seek to use events in London on 7/7 to press on with more draconian attacks on civil rights at home and military brutality and torture abroad. However the huge antiwar demonstrations in 2003 and their partial renewal this year show that they can be fought. London will surely make this more difficult but there is simply no choice but to continue with the struggle. It is a struggle for our freedom, for the freedom not only of the people of Asia or Africa, but for the workers and oppressed of the world.

Imperialist wars such as in Iraq or Afghanistan are inevitable as long as capitalism itself survives and will only come to an end with the revolutionary overthrow of the whole system. The true lesson of these bombings is the urgent need for these different fronts- resistance in Iraq and resistance in Britain and the USA - to be coordinated and led internationally

The US and British imperialists know that isolated terrorist acts have no real power to defeat occupation or imperialist plunder. Indeed terrorism actually disorganises and demoralises the very forces that really can defeat imperialism: the mass resistance in Iraq and Palestine, the mass antiwar movements around the world, the worldwide movements of the workers, the peasants, the poor and oppressed. That is why terrorist acts against ordinary people in cities like London or Madrid do not help but hinder our struggle to get all imperialist troops out of the Middle East and to win working people in the West to side with the armed resistance in Iraq. We do not for one minute confuse indiscriminate attacks against civilians, whether carried out in London or Iraq, with this justified Iraqi resistance to the occupation forces.

Uncowed by the hysterical campaign of the right wing media, the League for the Fifth International and its British section Workers Power will continue to fight to build the mass anti-war and anti-occupation movement and to demand the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of every single British and US soldier from Iraq and the entire Middle East. And we will continue the fight against the system that creates war, economic competition, occupation, rigged trade rules, debt, exploitation and desperation - the system of global capitalism.

The sooner we succeed in overthrowing capitalism and building of a socialist society, the sooner terrorism will disappear. These are the goals of our struggle, these are goals worth dedicating our lives to - join us!

* No pogroms, no persecution of Muslims and Arab people
* Resist repressive legislation: no ID cards, no further police state powers
* Defend civil liberties
* Troops out of Iraq, Afghanistan and the Middle East now - victory to the Iraqi resistance
* End all aid to Israel - end the occupation of Palestine
* Cancel all third world debt
* Abolish IMF, World Bank, World Trade Organisation
* Bring down the G8 governments
* Not terrorism but mass class struggle and workers’ revolution can defeat imperialism and create a communist world free from poverty and war.

8 July 2005
League for the Fifth International
Workers Power (British section of the League for the Fifth International)