(April 30) – A Venezuelan fishing vessel was boarded in the Pacific Ocean by the US Coast Guard on April 28, a fact that was celebrated by the right-wing media and social networks in Venezuela. The name of the ship is “Taurus I” which carries out fishing in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Costa Rica, authorized by the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission. Continue reading
Monthly Archives: April 2020
Statement by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba, Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla
As the Ministry of Foreign Affairs timely informed, around 2 o’clock today, that is, in the early hours in the morning of today, Thursday, April 30, 2020, a terrorist attack was perpetrated against the embassy of the Republic of Cuba to the United States in Washington. An unidentified individual shot at the building of the Cuban embassy in the US using an assault rifle.
None of the members of the staff of the mission was injured, who is safe and protected, but some material damages were caused to the building as a result of the numerous gunshots. Continue reading
May Day Virtual Workers’ Forums
Our Security Lies in the Fight for the Rights of All
Forum in French
Friday, May 1 — 7:00 pm
Forum in English
Sunday, May 3 — 2:00-4:00 pm EDT
On the occasion of May Day 2020, under the conditions of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Workers’ Centre of the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) is organizing several video meetings to provide workers who are on the front lines of fighting for their rights and the rights of all with a Workers’ Forum to share their stories and exchange experiences.
All those who want to be included in the video-consultations please inform: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Continue reading
On the occasion of May Day 2020 during conditions of a worldwide pandemic, the Workers’ Centre of the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) is organizing a series of video-meetings with workers representing different sectors of the economy to exchange opinions on matters of concern. Everyone who wants to join will be given the opportunity to register beforehand and identify the economic sector where they work or have worked. Continue reading
By Ekaterina Blinova
On 22 April, the foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey held a trilateral video-conference on the situation in Syria within the framework of the Astana format. International observers have explained why the group has succeeded in maintaining the balance of interests in the region and what is behind the growing divisions within jihadi ranks.
The Astana group, a trilateral format comprising Russia, Turkey and Iran created in 2017 to tackle the Syrian crisis, acknowledged on Wednesday that the 5 March 2020 ceasefire deal had facilitated the de-escalation of the situation in Idlib, following Turco-Syrian clashes earlier this year, despite Hayat Tahrir al-Sham’s* attempts to obstruct it. Continue reading
With Deepest Respect
(WORKERS’ FORUM) – Today, April 28, is the National Day of Mourning held to commemorate workers who have been killed, injured or suffered illness due to workplace-related hazards and conditions. Continue reading
Emphasizing the importance of social solidarity, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has described Vietnam’s efforts to contain the virus as the “spring general offensive of 2020”, referring to the crucial 1968 Tet Offensive by the liberation forces during its last war.
(April 27) – Vietnam, just south of coastal China, is the 15th most populous country in the world with 97 million people. At the time of writing, Vietnam has registered no new cases of the coronavirus in the past ten days. In all, according to its Ministry of Health (MoH), only 268 coronavirus infections and no deaths have been recorded. In contrast to Canada, a country with developed resources and 48,800 cases and 2,852 deaths, this is a staggering achievement. Continue reading
As we approach April 28, the National Day of Mourning for workers killed on the job, an even more sombre cloud will hang over us at this year’s ceremony as we remember all workers killed in the past year.
BY PETER PAGE, Hamilton District Injured Workers Group
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, added to this year’s list will be the frontline workers who have put their lives on the line to make sure society does not come to a complete standstill. While doctors, nurses, EMS workers, firefighters and police are who we think of as the first line of defence, bus drivers, taxi drivers, truck drivers, personal support workers, social workers and people who work with the homeless are all potential victims to the COVID-19 virus. Even our grocery store workers or the person giving you your morning cup of coffee are also at risk of contracting the virus. There are many other unsung heroes too numerous to mention but they will not be forgotten as we gather on April 28 to remember those who have fallen during this time of crisis. Continue reading
The US has launched a frenzied slander campaign against Cuba and Venezuela under the pretext of “narco-terrorism,” which is uncontested by Ottawa. This is a matter of concern. Canada itself is playing an ignominious role in the Lima Group against Venezuela. At the beginning of the pandemic, the Trudeau government had two Canadian warships – HMCS Nanaimo and HMCS Whitehorse – operating in the Caribbean and the eastern Pacific Ocean unbeknownst to the Canadian people as part of the US Southern Command’s Operation Martillo and its “war on drugs”. Initiated in 2006 by the Harper government, the Canadian deployment is called Op Caribbe. We are posting an article by Francisco Arias Fernández which explains who has been behind the drug trafficking in the region over the past 50 years
(April 17 ) – The cyclical slander campaigns of U.S. governments and their special services against Cuba have been a regular weapon in the arsenal used in attempts to discredit – and eliminate – the Revolution, as evident in secret files on efforts to fabricate a pretext to invade the island, during the events that gave rise to Case no.1 of 1989, in which Cuban military officers were convicted of drug-related offenses. Continue reading
We are not in this together, because the authorities in command have for thirty years unleashed a vicious anti-social agenda on society. The motto of the ruling classes today is: All for One. That’s it.
For only the fifth time in her 68 years as “Queen of the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland” and “Head of State of the entire British Commonwealth of Nations”, on Sunday, April 5, Elizabeth II gave a special address “to the nation and to her subjects”. The monarch has now cancelled the artillery salute on the occasion of her birthday for the first ever time as “inappropriate.”
The media and pundits, including those employed by CBC and CTV, lauded the speech to the skies saying that, even though it was less than five minutes long, its “We’re all in this together” message was very sincere and heartfelt and brought tears to their eyes. Continue reading
In this situation nurses are giving expression to the notion that we are one humanity fighting for the rights of all, in this case the right to health care. #Windsor
By ENVER VILLAMIZAR
There has been a lot of talk between the leaders of Canada and the United States over the movement of goods and people in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Trump has withheld medical supplies and Trudeau and other elected leaders in Canada have openly or indirectly threatened to limit the travel of Canadian health care workers currently working in U.S. border towns. Continue reading
When I try and find online publications of hard-to-find, old or expensive books that I can download, I go to archive.org. Now, the Public Books Database is cataloging titles of academic presses (mainly US), Continue reading
(April 16) – Caricom member countries called for the lifting of United States sanctions against Cuba and Venezuela, since all countries must be part of the global effort to combat the Covid-19 pandemic. Continue reading
By DIANE JOHNSTON
The Safe Third Country Agreement, signed by Canada and the U.S. in 2002, came into force in December 2004. Under that agreement, Canada and the U.S. each declare the other country safe for refugees and close the door on most refugee claimants at the Canada-U.S. border. Continue reading
What does it mean when the Prime Minister and other Government of Canada Ministers and Premiers say they are sorting things out with the U.S. imperialists? What are they negotiating and whom does it favour? PAULINE EASTON and K.C. ADAMS #COVIDCanada
Times of crisis have a tendency to reveal the truth of a matter in stark and often startling ways. Following Canada’s announcement of having ratified the new NAFTA trade deal with the United States and Mexico, the ugly reality of a trading relationship, declared to be mutually beneficial, has been revealed.
U.S. President Donald Trump announced in a White House press briefing on April 3 that he would use the Defense Production Act to prevent U.S. companies from selling N95 respirators, surgical masks, gloves and other personal protective equipment to other countries, including Canada and Mexico. He issued an executive order giving the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) the power to “allocate to domestic use” several types of medical personal protective equipment that would otherwise be exported.
“It is the policy of the United States to prevent domestic brokers, distributors, and other intermediaries from diverting such material overseas,” the executive order reads while giving FEMA some discretion, telling the agency to stop exports “as appropriate.”
“We need these items immediately for domestic use. We have to have them,” Trump said at his daily briefing, describing medical supply exporters as “unscrupulous actors and profiteers.”
Medical manufacturer 3M, headquartered in St. Paul, Minnesota and with plants throughout the world, said in a statement that the U.S. government has ordered it to stop sending N95 respirator masks to Canada and Latin America. “The administration also requested that 3M cease exporting respirators that we currently manufacture in the United States to the Canadian and Latin American markets. There are, however, significant humanitarian implications of ceasing respirator supplies to health care workers in Canada and Latin America, where we are a critical supplier of respirators,” 3M said. News agencies report the company warned that if other countries retaliate, “the net number of respirators being made available to the United States would actually decrease.”
Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau responded saying that blocking trade to Canada could “end up hurting Americans as much as it hurts anybody else.” He alluded to the fact that many Canadian health care workers cross over from Windsor, Ontario to Detroit, Michigan every day to work in the U.S. medical system and that U.S. companies producing personal protective equipment receive necessary material inputs from Canadian producers. “The level of integration between our economies goes both ways across the border,” Trudeau said, adding, “It would be a mistake to create blockages or reduce the amount of back-and-forth trade in essential goods and services, including medical goods, across our border.”
Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said, “I do want to assure Canadians that our government – as has been demonstrated by our action – is prepared to do whatever it takes to defend the national interest.”
For his part, Ontario Premier Doug Ford expressed over and over again his “disappointment” with the decision. “I can’t stress how disappointed I am with President Trump for making this decision,” Ford said at a press conference. Quebec Premier François Legault echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the importance of provinces being self-sufficient when it comes to medical equipment. “I’m not going to rely on President Trump, I’m not going to rely on any prime minister or president or any other country ever again,” Legault said.
The Heart of the Trading Relations
To see and hear those who claim to represent Canada posturing as if Canada is independent of the U.S. and an equal trading partner is quite sickening. They parade their ignorance of historical truths to force people into believing they represent “Canadian interests” and not those of the global financial oligarchy.
The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) sorted out how the matter of Canada-U.S. relations poses itself shortly after its founding in the 1970s. At that time, some proclaimed that Canada was an oppressed nation and the struggle for independence was the main issue for the Canadian people. Others called Canada an imperialist power with its main contradiction between the bourgeoisie and the working class.
CPC(M-L) pointed to the necessity of making clear distinctions when analyzing, such as:
– between colonies proper and others that one could call derivative colonies;
– between global owners of social wealth, what was called the big bourgeoisie, and owners of local or national social wealth, called the national bourgeoisie;
– between dependence and independence; and
– between an oppressor state and an oppressed state.
To characterize Canada as a colony proper, a country occupied by a European colonizing population means that the state is oppressed. In this regard, CPC(M-L) pointed out the facts of the matter. Canada was established as a colony in the 1790s in the style of colonies established with oppressor states. To say that Canada was a colony proper and that the Canadian state was an oppressor state is not contradictory. A state can be a dependant state like Canada’s, while at the same time being an oppressor state. There is no contradiction there either.
Another thesis refuted by CPC(M-L)’s investigation and analysis claimed that the question of the independence or the dependence of Canada is tied up with whether or not a bourgeois democratic revolution has taken place.
CPC(M-L) pointed out that the success or failure of a bourgeois democratic revolution does not decide the questions of whether or not Canada has an oppressed state, whether or not Canada is dependant, and whether Canada is a colony proper or not. In Canada, a democratic revolution against the colonial power never took place, and in Quebec, the British suppressed the nascent republic, preventing the democratic revolution from happening.
CPC(M-L) pointed out that from the time of the British colonial conquest of New France in the 1760s, the British colonialists established the capitalist mode of production in what is now Quebec, while at the same time perpetuating certain aspects of feudalism that had been imported from pre-revolutionary feudal France.
After the setback suffered by the British colonialists with the American Revolution in 1776, they planted the expelled so-called United Empire Loyalists in what is now Canada. This was meant to consolidate the British colonial position in British North America.
The British colonialists established an oppressor state in York (Toronto region) in the 1790s, with a capitalist mode of production throughout Upper Canada and wherever it expanded. The socio-economic system and political forms of the English bourgeoisie were extended into what is now called Canada, over which it ruled.
Canada’s ruling elite and their governments, media and social base have also perpetuated another plank in their disinformation. This concerns the history of the development of capitalism in Canada into imperialism, the highest stage of capitalism, the development of industrial mass production into monopoly capitalism, and the merging of owners of industrial and financial social wealth into a financial oligarchy that sends its social wealth around the world in search of maximum profit.
Right from the 1790s and especially since 1867, the state has played a major role in establishing in Canada a capitalist socio-economic system with monopolies imposed upon it. The major branches of large-scale industry in Canada are a consequence of the import of social wealth into the country, mainly from Britain and, after the beginning of the 20th century, from the United States.
With the onset of the general crisis of global imperialism during and after World War I, state monopoly capitalism emerged in Canada. It was particularly dominant in the manufacturing, mining and forestry sectors, as the embracing feature of the economic system. This means that the socio-economic system became state monopoly capitalist, i.e. an imperialist system overlaid with monopolies, mainly multinational U.S. imperialist corporations. Within this system, the state operates as an executive committee of the most powerful owners of social wealth who together finance, direct, control and are generally active in and dominate the key economic sectors and send the social wealth they own and control throughout the world in relentless pursuit of maximum profit.
Within this situation, the Canadian state is an oppressor state within the world imperialist system of states. Nevertheless Canada has features that have perpetuated from its colonial beginning. Its imperialism is dependant on the more powerful members of the imperialist system of states and its state is dominated by U.S. imperialism.
Today, as a result of neo-liberal globalization and the striving of U.S. imperialism for worldwide hegemony, the Canadian economy and state are not just dominated by U.S. imperialism but are integrated into its global cartels and war economy.
Food for Thought
CPC(M-L) carried out the economic and historical analysis of Canada with the participation of thousands of people from all walks of life in the early 1970s. The Party established that the social base of reaction and the ruling elite in Canada is the imperialist social class, the financial oligarchy. The ruling elite include Canadian owners of great social wealth and those who exist as an extension of the U.S. imperialist financial oligarchy. The ruling elite own, control and monopolize the vast majority of the economy. They control the main means of production and expropriate the added-value the Canadian working people produce.
In Canada, what could be termed a national class of owners of social wealth, or a national bourgeoisie, is extremely weak and has proven itself incapable of fighting the ruling financial oligarchy that is integrated within the U.S.-controlled imperialist system of states.
In Canada, the class of owners of social wealth with only a home market and production of goods and services for that home market is overwhelmed by the financial oligarchy and U.S. imperialism. This class of Canadian owners of social wealth for the home market cannot sustain an independent existence because the financial oligarchy in control is the base of the U.S. imperialist domination of Canada.
The ruling elite of the financial oligarchy are reactionary through and through and do not permit the state power to be used to favour the peoples of Canada. This is why, to wage their struggles effectively, the Canadian working people have to take into account the reactionary financial oligarchy of big owners of social wealth and the U.S. imperialists and their system of states. The spokespersons for the current arrangements cover this up by presenting government representatives as representing “Canada” and “Canadians” while in fact they represent the dominant financial oligarchy and U.S. imperialism.
What the current crisis is revealing provides a lot of food for thought. Can the Canadian working class and other strata of the people go along with this so-called anti-pandemic war the Government of Canada declares to be waging on behalf of the nation? What does it mean when the Prime Minister and other Government of Canada Ministers and Premiers say they are sorting things out with the U.S. imperialists? What are they negotiating and whom does it favour? What does it mean when the Premiers of Ontario and Quebec say that to be self-sufficient in medical equipment is important for them when in fact no manufacturing of any significant capacity is independent of the U.S. imperialists and capable of taking decisions that favour Canada’s national interests.
To be truly independent demands independence from the U.S.-controlled imperialist system of states and its war economy. To be truly independent means to have the courage to oppose the financial oligarchy that is completely integrated with U.S. imperialism and which colludes and contends within its own ranks for the sole purpose of serving narrow private interests.
A new direction out from under this control beckons Canadians.
The pandemic crisis reveals an alternative is not only necessary but possible with organization, audacity and clear thinking.
By Louis Lang
On April 3, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that his government had signed an agreement with Amazon Canada to manage the distribution of medical equipment, such as masks, gloves and ventilators that are needed in all the provinces and territories.
Trudeau did not provide any details on the value of the contract but a government news release issued later the same day said that Amazon was providing the service to Canadians at cost, without profit. Continue reading
On Saturday, April 18, a special solidarity webinar to learn about the example Cuba is setting of putting human needs ahead of profits in the fight against COVID-19. Panelists discuss Cuba’s history of medical internationalism; how Cuba is fighting COVID-19 on the Island based on providing health care as a right; learn how Cuba is developing effective new medications such as Interferon Alpha 2-B; and how Cuba is sending medical teams to Italy, the Caribbean and dozens of countries. Continue reading
– Campaign of the National Solidarity Network with Cuba in the United States and the Canadian Solidarity Network with Cuba –
COVID-19 is wreaking havoc in the United States. Day after day, hour after hour, infected and deaths continue to spiral, and the most vulnerable communities, especially African-American communities, are disproportionately affected. The entire health care system is under pressure that exceeds its ability to provide adequate healthcare and treatment. Doctors, nurses and health workers are forced to work long hours during their brave lives-saving efforts.
A pandemic is by definition global. Without a doubt, in the face of this global threat, this is the time for international medical cooperation and solidarity. A time to gather joint efforts to face COVID-19. A time to put aside political differences in order to save lives. It is for this reason that we are launching a campaign to ask for medical collaboration with Cuba, so as to have access to Cuban medical knowledge to help in the fight against COVID-19. Continue reading
Without the mobilization of the human factor/social consciousness of the working people and their organizations to address the crisis of the pandemic, all that is left is police powers, repression and blaming the workers and people | STEVE RUTCHINSKI Continue reading
As coronavirus ravages the world, Cuba has exhibited disproportionate heroism, deploying medical personnel to at least 14 countries thus far to battle the pandemic—including to Italy, which has been particularly devastated. The response is in keeping with Cuba’s decades-long tradition of “doctors, not bombs,” which has seen the tiny island nation dispatch tens of thousands of medics across the globe to combat everything from Ebola to more mundane diseases like malaria and tuberculosis. Continue reading
By Isaac Saney, Spokesperson, Canadian Network on Cuba
The Canadian Network on Cuba (CNC) is launching the Campaign to Support Cuba’s Contribution to World Fight Against COVID-19 to assist the heroic island’s internationalist medical missions that are combatting the pandemic across the world. Continue reading
By PETER EWART
Like other countries, Canada is facing an acute shortage of respiratory masks in the struggle to protect health care workers and the population at large from the COVID-19 virus. Supplies dwindled fast with a province like Ontario reportedly having only a five-day supply left on April 3 and health care workers forced to disinfect and reuse their masks. Without protection of masks, these workers are being put in an impossible, life and death situation. Continue reading
Members of Parliament and Senators are enjoying pay increases – 2.1 per cent and 2.4 per cent, respectively. The pay raise took effect on April 1, April Fool’s Day. The base salaries for MPs went up to $182,600 from $178,900. News agencies report that the law requires Senators be paid $25,000 less than members of the House of Commons, so members of the Senate will now be paid $157,600, up from $153,900.
According to Parl.ca increases in pay for MPs and Senators are based “on the average percentage increase in base-rate wages for each calendar year, resulting from major settlements negotiated with major bargaining units of 500 or more employees in the private sector in Canada.” The law requires that the base salaries for all parliamentarians “be rounded down to the nearest hundred dollars.” Who are in these “major bargaining units” in the private sector is a mystery to most Canadians who think the pay of a Member of Parliament should be equivalent to the pay of an average working Canadian.
That might level the playing field between those who govern and those who are governed a tad.
A long-standing tactic of the Zionists to undermine and criminalize support for the Palestinian people is to conflate opposition to Zionism — the chauvinist political ideology and its aim of genocide of the Palestinian people — with anti-Semitism, a prejudice against people of Jewish background. Continue reading
The Canadian state’s current support for Zionism is part of its manoeuvring for Canada to win one of five non-permanent seats on the UN Security Council for a two-year term beginning in 2021. From this vantage point, Canada could better serve U.S. imperialist interests, which includes putting a human face on Zionist war crimes and terrorism against the Palestinian people, and U.S. aggression worldwide. Continue reading
I just saw this documentary. It is a devastating indictment of the behaviour of the architects of the policy of forcing Jews from Arab countries to live in godforsaken outposts in far reaches of territories *newly” conquered by Israel. All this bears a sickening resemblance to the manner in which African-Americans and Indigenous peoples have long been treated in the U.S. and Canada. – Sid Shniad, Digest for firstname.lastname@example.org
JERUSALEM — An electrifying new documentary series on the problematic integration of Middle Eastern Jews by Israel’s European founders in the 1950s has reopened old wounds of an ethnic divide within Judaism ahead of the country’s 70th anniversary festivities. Continue reading
Seven lessons from Palestine on surviving lockdown | Ramzy Baroud
(April 5) – Call it a ‘quarantine’, a ‘shelter-in-place’, a ‘lockdown’ or a ‘curfew’, we Palestinians have experienced them all, though not at all voluntarily. Continue reading
The global COVID-19 crisis is simultaneously bringing out the very best and the very worst of humanity. This is no more true than in Palestine, whose heroic people this year are marking 72 years of steadfast resistance to occupation, dispossession and lawlessness by the Israeli occupation. Whereas the global pandemic requires all of humanity to rise to the occasion, Zionist reactionaries are using the crisis as a means to further their genocide against the Palestinian people. Continue reading