On February 24, 2004 a large earthquake measuring 6.4 on the Richter scale rocked the Rif region in northern Morocco. More than one year later, hundreds of families continue to live in utter misery. Now other tremors are hitting the region.

The brutal air strikes on Sudan and Afghanistan constitute a further sample of the bullying tactics of US imperialism and will be condemned by activists in the labour movement everywhere. By such means Washington uses its powerful airforce in order to throw its weight around and intimidate and blackmail all the peoples of the third world. This latest escapade is clearly intended for US public opinion, to show that "something has been done" in relation to the terrorist bombings in Kenya.

Over recent months, the dramatic plight of the peoples of the Darfur province of western Sudan has received a great deal of attention from western governments, politicians, journalists and newscasters. Unfortunately, there is nothing exceptional about the situation in Darfur. Throughout the underdeveloped world, and particularly in Africa, starvation, mass displacement of populations, torture, rape, pillage and massacres are commonplace.

"It's a great pity that Botswana always either receives no coverage or receives coverage which paints a false rosy picture of the so-called 'success story' by World Bank standards" This letter from a Botswanan comrade tries to give a different perspective.

We have received the following solidarity appeal from the Swaziland Solidarity Network. Swaziland has been under state of emergency since 1973. In the last few days a number of leading activists of the Swaziland Youth Congress have been arrested and tortured. In protest a group of trade unionists and left activists have now occupied the US embassy in the capital. We appeal to all labour movement, youth and left-wing activists to express their solidarity with the Swazi comrades and protest against the repressive actions of the regime.

It is important that we view the situation in Sierra Leone from its roots, i.e. from neo-colonial independence. The current civil war is a confirmation of the impasse capitalism has landed the country in. It is a reflection of the total failure of neo-colonial capitalism. All it can guarantee in the long run, unless the workers take power, is barbarism.

Sierra Leone is a very rich country in diamonds and bloodshed. The reason for the protracted civil war tearing Sierra Leone apart is the legacy of British colonialism and the struggle by the ruling cliques to rob the country's wealth.

Capitalism can't be blamed for the weather, but the disaster which hit this impoverished country has been made a thousand times worse by their inability to do anything that isn't profit motivated. The price of lives is weighed up against what they can buy and how they can be used.

All the world media have turned their attention to Zimbabwe in recent months since landless peasants started occupying white-owned big commercial farms. The press has unleashed a hysterical campaign against those land occupations which they depict as illegal and violent. They completely ignore the responsibility of capitalism and imperialism for robbing the land of the black peasants and pushing them into utter poverty. How do the white settlers dare to say those lands are theirs! When they robbed the lands of the blacks peasants they used all the violent means of repression possible.

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