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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 October 2001

Starving Afghans face Bush and Blair's bombs

War is no solution

Don't let workers pay the price for capitalism's war

Fight for a socialist world

TONY BLAIR has used the platform of Labour Party conference to launch a war.

Not a war against the scandal of hundreds of thousands of elderly people struggling to survive on an inadequate pension; not a war to end the underfunding of the health and education services; not a war to stop the profiteers from leeching off our public services.

No, Labour will continue with its poverty-creating, big business agenda.

Instead, Blair and George Bush will declare war on the dirt poor country of Afghanistan - a third of whose population (8 million) are dependent upon United Nations food handouts to survive.

Even so, thousands are dying of hunger in the squalid refugee camps. It is a country in which 23 years of civil war have reduced the cities to rubble.

Inevitably, it will be ordinary Afghans - already the victims of a barbarous capitalist system where a handful of multi-billionaires own as much wealth as 40% of the world's population - who will now face the bombs of imperialism.

Blair claims this action is a war against terrorism. In reality it will not bring justice to the victims of the World Trade Centre attacks. It will do little to destroy bin Laden's terrorist network whose cells exist worldwide.

It is likely, however, to further destabilise the region creating more terrorists and risking a regional nuclear exchange.

And even if this War succeeds in dislodging the medieval rule of the Taliban, it's extremely unlikely the opposition Northern Alliance will restore democratic rights to the Afghan people.

After all, it was these Western funded, armed and trained mercenaries who, on taking power in 1992, outlawed all opposition and who swept aside democratic rights during three years of bloody civil war.

And now the Western powers are talking of restoring the feudal king who was kicked out in 1973. It's obvious that this 86-yearold would simply be a puppet of imperialism which would continue to exploit the country.

The only solution lies in the hands of ordinary Afghans. They must fight for a government of working people and rural poor as part of a socialist federation of Middle Eastern states.

Working class people here must show solidarity with ordinary Afghan people. We too have nothing to gain by being exploited by the multinational companies and the governments of the richest countries.

We will expose and oppose this rotten capitalist war. And we will fight for a massive redistribution of wealth and power in favour of ordinary people, together with socialist planning of the economy. This would end the poverty and injustice throughout the world.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 5 October 2001:

War is no solution

Save The NHS: No To Privatisation

US Imperialism's Confused "War Aims"

Growing Protests Against Bush's War

What Socialists Say About Terrorism

US / Afghan Crisis: CWI Reports From Around The World


 

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