Dossier: Working people across Canada speak out on the pandemic and take their stand

Note to Readers

(Updated February 17) – We are updating links to articles from Workers’ Forum as they appear. They present the views and reports of workers on how to handle the pandemic and their struggles for the working conditions they require to make their contribution to the well-being of the population as a whole. They speak in their own name. Continue reading

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This Day. Identity politics – forever wars

History was made last night. Kamala Harris became the first American woman of colour as U.S. Vice-President to drop bombs on Syria and Iraq. Last night the U.S. bombed Iraqi government security forces at the Iraqi-Syrian border station near Abu-Kamal/Al-Qaim. One Iraqi soldier, was killed. Other sources claim that as many as 22 were killed.

On the 36th day of his presidency, Commander-in-Chief Joe Biden bombed Syria, gave up on a $15 minimum wage, didn’t send out survival checks to the millions of people going hungry, committed to a forever war on Afghanistan, and promised vaccines.

And this from the U.S. State Department: “During his meeting with Saudi Finance Minister al-Jadaan, #USEnvoyYemen Lenderking expressed gratitude for Saudi Arabia’s generous support over the decades for the people of Yemen, especially at this critical juncture, and encouraged continued assistance and contributions.”

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Today is #CdnAgDay

May be an image of one or more people, people standing, outdoors and text that says "FOR #MigrantsFeedUs #StatusforAll #EstatusParaTodos #CdnAgDay Feb 23 is #CdnAgDay Post selfies in support of migrants that feed us! MgasA Alliance or Migrant Workers"

From Migrant Workers Alliance for Change

We are an alliance of migrant workers and allies fighting for justice, dignity, protection and status for migrant workers.

Agri-Food is Canada’s largest manufacturing sector pouring in over 120 BILLION into the economy. Why is Canada the world’s 6th largest exporter of Agri-Food? According to the government, it’s because Canada has the “lowest labour costs in the G7”. Canada is getting rich off of migrant labour. Today on #CdnAgDay, post in support of equal rights & #StatusforAll for migrants! #MigrantsFeedUs. Continue reading

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150th Anniversary of Birth of W.E.B. Du Bois. The Legacy of W.E.B. Du Bois – Paul Robeson

W.E.B. Du Bois in 1946

William Edward Burghardt “W.E.B.” Du Bois was born on February 23, 1868 in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. His stands as a political activist, human being, author, editor, sociologist, historian and Pan-Africanist earned him a place of great honour as an American leader second to none. W.E.B. Du Bois did his studies at Humboldt University of Berlin, Harvard University, Harvard College, Fisk University and the school of life. He died at the age of 95 in Accra, Ghana, on August 27, 1963.

On this occasion, we are posting the tribute to Dr Du Bois of Paul Robeson, another great American leader, second to none. Continue reading

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Anniversary of the Communist Manifesto, February 22, 1848

1. The Manifesto of the Communist Party

Revolutionary leaders Frederick Engels and Karl Marx, authors of the Communist Manifesto, which decisively summed up the communists’ experience and outlook, and the historic role of the working class.

February 22 marks the anniversary of the publication of the first edition of the Communist Manifesto, written in 1848 by Karl Marx and his life-long friend and follower Frederick Engels. The Communist Manifesto became the most read and sought after pamphlet in the world. To this day, the attitude towards this pamphlet distinguishes those who are revolutionary because they use Marxism as a guide to action, from those who are hidebound and dogmatic and have another aim. Continue reading

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Reflections on Malcolm X’s legacy

By ISAAC SANEY

This Sunday, February 21st, 2021 marks the 56th anniversary of the assassination of Malcolm X, who later took the name El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz after his pilgrimage to Mecca in 1964. As a revolutionary internationalist and a leader of the Black liberation struggle, Malcolm X shaped and influenced a generation of Black activists, artists, revolutionaries and intellectuals. His impact has been profound and lasting. The assassination’s anniversary is, therefore, a time for serious contemplation of his legacy. Continue reading

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The New Scramble for Africa

On the occasion of the 136th anniversary of the Berlin Conference, which was opened on November 15, 1884, and continued until it closed on 26 February 1885

Africa can still turn this situation around, reclaim its sovereign rights and take its rightful place on the world stage, writes Adam [Jonathan Ernst/Reuters]

By HAKIM ADI

(April 15, 2013) – In 1884 The Times newspaper coined the phrase ‘Scramble for Africa’ to describe the contention between the major European powers for a share of what the Belgian king Leopold contemptuously referred to as  ‘this magnificent African cake.’[1] Britain, France, Belgian, Germany and the other big powers each attempted to carve out their share of the African continent during the infamous Berlin Conference, held over several months in the winter of 1884-1885. They then proceeded to invade and occupy their designated colonies in the period leading up to World War I, without any concern for the fate of the inhabitants of the African continent. That was the era of the so-called ‘civilising mission’ and ‘White man’s burden,’ that provided openly racist justifications for the conquest and partition of almost the entire African continent. It was undoubtedly one of the great crimes against humanity leading to literally millions of deaths of African men, women and children even in a single colony, such as King Leopold’s ironically named Congo Free State.[2] Continue reading

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This day. Anniversary of Dresden fire bombing – Allied war crime prelude to the Cold War

(FILES) Photo dated 25 February 1945 sho

Aftermath of the 1945 bombing of Dresden, Germany by Allied forces – at the Old Market, following bombings on 13 February 1945 | WALTER HAHN/AFP/Getty Images

By DOUGAL MACDONALD

On the night of February 13-14, 1945, the British Royal Air Force (RAF) bomber command carried out two devastating attacks on the German city of Dresden. At the time, Dresden’s pre-war population of 640,000 had been swelled by the presence of an estimated 100,000-200,000 refugees. Seven hundred and twenty-two aircraft dropped 1,478 tons of high explosives and 1,181 tons of incendiaries on the city. The resulting firestorm destroyed an area of 13 square miles, including the historic Altstadt Museum. Shortly after noon on February 14, a fleet of 316 U.S. bombers made a third attack, dropping a further 488 tons of high explosives and 294 tons of incendiaries. On February 15, two hundred and eleven U.S. bombers made a fourth attack, dropping 466 tons of high explosives. [Dresden was attacked again on March 2, this time by the Americans alone. Mustang fighter escorts machine-gunned fleeing civilians while the heavy B-17s achieved the singular distinction of sinking a hospital ship on the Elbe, filled with injured from the earlier raids.–ed.]

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30th Anniversary of February 14 Women’s Memorial March

Justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls! End the Violence!

Women’s memorial events are being held on Valentine’s Day in cities across the country to demand justice for Indigenous women and girls who have been murdered or have gone missing, and to get the government to take measures to end the violence. The marches began in 1992 in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside to demand that action be taken following the murder of a Coast Salish woman whose death was met with indifference from the authorities and the media.

Today, people from all walks of life are demanding justice for murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls and opposing all forms of violence against women. Violence against women has been on the rise since the beginning of the pandemic, as the isolation imposed on everyone renders them all the more vulnerable.

The persistence of Indigenous women and peoples in asserting their right to be is an inspiration to all, especially their insistence on defining what it is they need and not permitting others to define what is acceptable. Continue reading

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This Day. France conducted nuclear tests in Algeria 61 years ago but still refuses to apologize

On February 13, 1960 (exactly 61 years ago today), the French conducted their first nuclear test at Reggane in south west Algeria. The first underground test, on May 1, 1962, code-named Beryl, resulted in radioactive vapour escaping through fissure in a rock. Its ill-effects are still felt by the people of Algeria. France has refused to apologize and has also not released archival material about this test as well as others clearly reflecting ill-intent | Mohamed Boukreta Continue reading

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Ireland: Isolated but unbowed – Frank Stagg’s hunger strike

Irish republican volunteer Frank Stagg died on hunger strike for rights as a political prisoner in an isolated British jail on the Isle of Wight, 12 February 1976, 45 years ago this week. The story of that sacrifice, by Jonathan O’Meara.

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In almost every decade of the last century, Irish republican prisoners held in jails in Ireland and England have been forced to embark on hunger strike as a last resort in support of their demands for political status. The second of the 12 republicans to die on hunger strike during the latest phase of struggle was Volunteer Frank Stagg. Continue reading

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Montreal rally and webinar in support of the Haitian people

Against the Return of Duvalierism

Sunday, February 7
Rally — 12:30-2:00 pm

Corner of St-Michel and Legendre Sts.
Facebook
Webinar — 8:30-9:30 pm
Details TBA
Organized by: Solidarité Québec-Haïti

On February 7, Solidarité Québec-Haïti is holding two actions in Montreal to mark the departure of Jovenel Moïse as Haiti’s president, to echo the actions of resistance and demonstrations on the same day throughout Haiti.

First, a rally with Rara Indigène will take place from 12:30-2:00 pm at the corner of St-Michel and Legendre streets. Rara is Haitian festival music that accompanies street processions. Joumou soup (traditional soup made from beef, squash and other vegetables) and hot chocolate will be served. Participants must respect physical distancing measures and wear a mask.

A webinar will be held from 8:30-9:30 pm to denounce the return of Duvalierism in Haiti and the role played by Canada in supporting it.

On February 7, 1986, the brutal Duvalier dictatorship in Haiti fell after nearly 30 years in power. Today, 35 years later, Jovenel Moïse, who fraudulently came to power, has restored many aspects of the Duvalierist regime, by violently repressing protests, extending his mandate, governing by decree, illegally rewriting the constitution, unilaterally creating a national intelligence agency with unlimited powers, etc. Solidarité Québec-Haïti denounces the fact that Canada continues to support the repressive Jovenel Moïse regime in Haiti.

Solidarité Québec-Haïti calls on all activists and allies of the Haitian people to join in these two events to mark the historic date of February 7.

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This Day. Kennedy launched the blockade of Cuba

Today, 59 years ago, President John F. Kennedy emitted the presidential proclamation 3447, with which the long history of the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba began. Later in the 1990s, this hostile policy would become codified as law. This has caused a degenerative impact, with multi-million losses affecting all areas of the life of the Cuban family. More than 70 per cent of the Cuban population has been born under the negative impacts of this policy. The blockade lacks moral support, is illegal, and has almost unanimous rejection of the international community and the American and Canadian peoples. #UnblockCuba

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78 years ago: 1943 – the year the tide turned in World War II

The Kursk Bulge, July 1943. Reserve troops moving to front | Fedor Levshin/RIA Novosti

 

By YURIY RUBTSOV

(May 8, 2018) – The peoples of Russia remember 1943 as the year that everything changed; a year of decisive battles that altered the course of the Great Patriotic War and World War II as a whole. It was the year of the Battle of Stalingrad, the Battle of the Caucasus, the Battle of Kursk, and the Battle of the Dnieper. It began with the lifting of the siege of Leningrad and ended with the Red Army’s liberation of two thirds of the Soviet territory temporarily occupied by the Nazis – 38,000 localities, including 162 towns. Continue reading

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This Day. Celebrating the great victory at Stalingrad by creating the new

“The Motherland Calls” statue at Volgograd Museum of the Battle of Stalingrad.

By DOUGAL MACDONALD

February 2, 2021 is the 78th anniversary of the great historic victory at Stalingrad. Stalingrad was the turning point of the Second World War and a major turning point in history. At Stalingrad, the united Soviet people led by Joseph Stalin and the Communist Party resoundingly defeated the Nazi invaders who had criminally attacked Stalingrad on August 23, 1942 with the largest military force ever gathered in one place. The battle ended with the encirclement of 300,000 German troops and a crushing irreparable defeat for the Hitlerites which eventually led to their total demise.

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Wolf Moon

On Thursday, January 28, 2021 we’ll see the rise of the full “Wolf Moon”. It will be best viewed at moonrise as it appears in the east cloaked in dramatic orange hues.

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Joint Intelligence Bulletin: An Example of Disinformation

On January 13, 2021 a Joint Intelligence Bulletin was issued by the DHS, FBI and NCTC. It is written, so it is said, to warn about the threat of further actions such as took place on January 6. But it reads as a threat to all those standing up for rights.

January 2021. Protest actions by those involved in the movement for rights and against police impunity continue in Portland (above) and other cities.

On January 13, 2021 a Joint Intelligence Bulletin was issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC). The Report is titled: “Domestic Violent Extremists Emboldened in Aftermath of Capitol Breach, Elevated Domestic Terrorism Threat of Violence Likely Amid Political Transitions and Beyond.” It states that its purpose is “to highlight the threat of violence from domestic violent extremists in the wake of the January 6 violent breach… of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, DC, following lawful protest activity related to the results of the General Election.” The Bulletin is Classified U/FOUO, meaning “unclassified, for official use only.” Continue reading

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Disinformation

Disinformation is not synonymous with misinformation. To “dis” is to destroy. Disinformation is the destruction of what is being informed, that which is providing form.

– Hardial Bains Resource Centre –

Most significant in going through this particular historical period of retreat of revolution, is that all the experience of humans relating to humans and humans relating to nature from time immemorial is coming to a head. If that vast experience is not thought through, then we could be heading for a greater tragedy, an event causing great suffering, destruction, and distress. It is in this context that what constitutes disinformation has significance. Continue reading

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The House, Senator Cruz and References to the U.S. Civil War

Even though the U.S. Civil War was launched from states seceding from the United States, as an insurrection against the U.S. state, a rebellion by the slave-masters, it was not a war between states and was never deemed an “insurrection.”

January 7, 2021. New York City protest calls for Trump to be impeached | Liat_RO

– Hardial Bains Resource Centre –

The House Judiciary Committee arguing for charging Trump with “incitement to insurrection,” and Senator Ted Cruz of Texas and the Senators who joined him in challenging certification of the vote, all use Civil War references to make their arguments. Continue reading

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Irish reject British Army Covid 19 militarization of public health

In a little-mentioned program, NATO is using the global Covid 19 pandemic as the pretext to deploy military forces in the public health system, presented as “essential” and “good Samaritan saviours” and a “normal” response to “exceptional circumstances”, even as it exclaims against medical programs of Russia, China and Cuba. Canada, which has placed the federal distribution of vaccines under the administration of the Canadian Forces, deployed hundreds of soldiers into long-term care facilities and Indigenous communities with disastrous consequences, is no isolated exception, as this news item from Republican News in Ireland illustrates. 

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(January 23) – A deployment of British Army paramedics to hospitals in occupied Ireland has angered many nationalists, particularly among families of those killed and injured by British soldiers.

Following a request by the Stormont authorities, the occupying British Army garrison based in the North of Ireland is to be increased by over a hundred. Continue reading

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Insurrection and the administrative state

The demands of the American people are not coming from a defence of the Constitutional order but as rights belonging to the people. The clash between the two conceptions is very real.

January 17, 2021. Washington DC.

By Kathleen Chandler

Why did Congress so quickly take up impeachment on the basis of charging Trump with “incitement to insurrection?” What does it mean for a Biden administration and the movements of the people for rights? Part of the problem the rulers are contending with is that existing political arrangements cannot solve the people’s demands for equality and accountability. This drive of the people was evident in many actions in 2020 and since, not only in terms of opposing racist police brutality and killings, but also by nurses, warehouse workers and other frontline workers demanding COVID-19 protections and free health care for all. It can also be seen in demands for income security throughout the COVID crisis, opposition to evictions and more. The growing conflicts within and between Congress, the Presidency, military and policing agencies also show the rulers cannot solve these conflicts among their contending factions vying for power.  Continue reading

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Today is Robbie Burns Day

Today (January 25) is Robbie Burns Day. 25 January 2021 marks 261 years to the day since Scotland’s national poet (1759-1796) was born. His polemics against the exploitation, injustice and oppression of his time enraged the establishment and won him enduring love from the peoples of all lands.

burns_statue_Halifax.600x840 The statue of Robert Burns in Halifax’s Victoria Park Square is the centre of innumerable political rallies., as this one in October 2006 against the apartheid wall in Occupied Palestine | Photo courtesy of and copyright 2006, Howard Harawitz, All rights reserved. Continue reading

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The Cinderella complex: Preserving the security of the constitutional order in the United States

TML Monthly produced a timely Supplement yesterday on the unfolding events in the United States on the eve of the inauguration of Joe Biden as 46th president of that country. These events have significance for the U.S. polity and, by extension, the Canadian polity and the peoples of the world. Continue reading

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Winter in Ingonish, Cape Breton

Photo from Our Cape Breton Home, Facebook

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Word. Oath of Loyalty and Obeisance

Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the inauguration of Joe Biden as President of the United States of America

January 20, 2021

Ottawa, Ontario

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on the inauguration of Joe Biden as President of the United States of America:

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I congratulate Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America.“Canada and the United States enjoy one of the most unique relationships in the world, built on a shared commitment to democratic values, common interests, and strong economic and security ties. Our two countries are more than neighbours – we are close friends, partners, and allies.

“Canada and the United States have worked side-by-side to tackle some of the greatest challenges we have faced in our history. We will continue this partnership as we fight the global COVID-19 pandemic and support a sustainable economic recovery that will build back better for everyone. We will also work together to advance climate action and clean economic growth, promote inclusion and diversity, and create good middle class jobs and opportunities for our people while contributing to democracy, peace, and security at home and around the world.

“I look forward to working with President Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, their administration, and the United States Congress as we strive to make our countries safer, more prosperous, and more resilient.”

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This Day. A reflection on Amílcar Cabral, Portugal and NATO

130120_amilcar_cabral_01

Amílcar Cabral (1924-1973)

By TONY SEED

Originally published on January 20, 2019 on this blog and Stop Foreign Intervention in Africa , a website organized by activists opposed to foreign intervention in Africa on a military, economic, political and cultural level. 

On January 20, 1973, Amílcar Lopes da Costa Cabral, leader of the national liberation movement in Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde in West Africa, was assassinated, just months before Guinea Bissau won its long independence struggle against Portuguese colonialism.

Guinea-Bissau was once part of the kingdom of Gabu, part of the ancient Mali Empire; parts of this kingdom persisted until the 18th century. Other parts of the territory in the current country were considered by the Portuguese as part of their empire. Portuguese Guinea was known as the Slave Coast, as it was a major area for the exportation of African slaves by Europeans to the western hemisphere.

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Flashback: Belgium’s ‘apology’ for assassinating Patrice Lumumba

Patrice Lumumba (July 2, 1925–January 17, 1961)

Patrice Lumumba (July 2, 1925–January 17, 1961)

I only gave voice to words of freedom and brotherhood, words they couldn’t accept. Just words. – Patrice Lumumba

Updated from an article published on this blog on March 22, 2016

Sixty years have passed since the assassination on January 17, 1961 of the first democratically-elected President of the Republic of Congo, Patrice Lumumba. His government sought to give citizens political rights and build a national economy independent of the imperialist system of states. The country’s rich resources were supposed to serve its residents instead of being exploited by foreign concerns. His assassination was carried out by Belgian troops for the CIA. Continue reading

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Martin Luther King’s Revolutionary Legacy

Martin Luther King Day was observed this year on January 18. Many TV and radio stations played his speech from 1967, condemning the war against Viet Nam and his last speech delivered a day before his assassination in April 1968. Reflecting the strength of the anti-war movement of that time, the speeches called for a radical rupture with the U.S. socio, economic and political system, including calling for an end to militarism, racism and poverty. His life and work, like that of Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, Fannie Lou Hammer and many others, continue to inspire millions of people in the United States and abroad We  are posting an article by historian Isaac Saney from his Facebook page.

By Isaac Saney

(January 18, 2021) Every day – not only MLK Day – is a time for serious contemplation on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy. The pervasive and dominant narrative freezes in place King’s politics and philosophy, transfixing his thinking to August 28 1963 when he delivered the famous and proudly moving, “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The subsequent development of his views on capitalism and imperialism are ignored. Continue reading

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January 26 March on Delhi: Indian farmers valiantly organize to affirm their rights

By J. Singh 

Farmers in India are continuing their struggle without letup. They continue to demand the repeal of the three farm laws which favour agribusiness at their expense. Continue reading

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January Events in Canada: Stand with Indian Farmers

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Amazing coincidences!

(January 18) – His motorcade to the Berlin airport yesterday was accompanied by German federal security police, who kindly helped him process his papers. Angela Merkel was on the job.

He innocently boarded a “low-cost flight” from Berlin to Moscow, sat in an economy seat and was accompanied by a planeload of journalists and intelligence officials.

Landing in Moscow, the masked man was greeted by more journalists. “He then embraced his wife Yulia, kissed her on the cheek, and walked toward passport control, where he was detained by a group of police officers.” Continue reading

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