Produced by the Workers International League in the USA, this is an analysis of the economic and political situation in the United States. We hope this document can contribute to clarifying the many issues confronting working people and youth. In the coming years, literally millions of people in the US will be searching for an alternative to capitalism. Only the ideas of Marxism and the revolutionary transformation of society along socialist lines can provide a solution. Please visit the WIL website to find out how you can join the WIL in the struggle for a better world for working people and the youth in the USA and around the world.

On Monday July 15, the famous American writer Gore Vidal was interviewed on the BBC Four channel. Gore Vidal is a member of one of America's leading families - a patrician in background, upbringing and culture. His close personal acquaintance with America's ruling elite gives him a unique insight into the workings of the system, and he understands the hypocrisy that underlies this pretence, and the vicious, exploitative and aggressive character of US imperialism. He is one of those extremely rare animals - a bourgeois political commentator whose vision transcends the immediate and has a broad historical view of things.

As preparations for war with Iraq continue, and prospects for the economy look bleak, John Peterson, editor of the US Marxist Magazine Socialist Appeal looks at the complete hypocrisy of the US government in relation to Iraq.

As contract talks are underway between the Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, a Bush Administration task force has said that if the longshore workers strike, troops of the National Guard will be sent to occupy the ports, and members of the Navy will be used to load and unload ships. But this threat has only made the workers of the ILWU more determined to fight. In the name of the "War on Terror" Bush is attempting to destroy the most fundamental gain of the Labor Movement - the right to strike.

The West Coast shipping bosses have declared a lock-out which affects all 29 ports along the US Pacific coast. The bosses are demanding that new technical jobs be non-union. This is a mortal attack on the union's future. Thus while Bush prepares to go to war against Iraq he has another war opening up on the home front - the class war - this time against US workers. David May in the USA reports on the latest developments in this key struggle of the American workers.

For the first time in many years the Taft-Hartley bill has been used against the West Coast dockers in the USA. This is a reactionary anti-union law that has been invoked to force the dockers back to work. But this is only a temporary “solution” for the bosses. The problems that forced the workers to take union action will not go away. Roland Sheppard in the US looks at the issues involved.

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