Africa

On Sunday 25 September, hundreds of protesters took to the streets in the Tunisian capital of Tunis. The protests were ignited by the severe social and economic crisis, which has engulfed the country. The workers and poor of Tunisia are being crushed under rising inflation and food shortages, which have made the living conditions unbearable for the majority.

William Ruto was sworn in as Kenya's fifth president on Tuesday 13 September, a week after the Supreme Court rejected a challenge by his opponent in a close-fought election, in which Ruto received 50.5 percent of the vote against 48.8 percent for Raila Odinga. Neither of these reactionary bourgeois politicians offered any way forward for the Kenyan masses, who face increasingly intolerable conditions.

On Wednesday, thousands of workers of the labour federations SAFTU and Cosatu took to the streets across South Africa to protest against the massive cost of living crisis, which has hit the working class and poor people especially hard.

As of the evening of Friday 1 July, an uprising has broken out across Libya. The parliament building in Tobruk, Cyrenaica was stormed by protesters, and partly burned, after the masses used a bulldozer to smash through the gates of the palace.

The following article was written by the Nigerian Marxists, concerning a call by the leaders of the labour movement for workers and youth to join the Labour Party en masse in the run up to the 2023 general election. Despite the rotten character of its leadership, many workers and youth see the party as a vehicle for change. Therefore, Marxists must form a correct perspective towards this development.

Fifty years ago, on 29 April 1972, violence between Hutus and Tutsis broke out in Burundi. This was the latest round of ethnic conflict in the African Great Lakes region, and marked the beginning of a genocide of up to 300,000 people. Western imperialism bears direct responsibility for the horrors of the spring of 1972. They didn’t lift a finger to stop it, and in some cases, they actively supported it. Today, while western imperialists cry crocodile tears over Ukraine, they bury the history of the far greater abominations they perpetrated just 50 years ago.

Last month, on 17 February, President Macron announced the withdrawal of French troops from Mali in West Africa. From 2013, alongside the forces involved in ‘Operation Barkhane’ and the ‘Takuba Task Force’, France led an intervention in Mali with the supposed intention of fighting to “stabilise the country”. All major European NATO countries were involved, and the intervention was fully backed by the UN, which sent a 15,000-strong mission, which it called “MINUSMA”, which also established itself in other countries of the Sahel region.

The EFF’s recent campaign of ‘labour inspections’ at restaurants in Gauteng is a reactionary descent into the xenophobic politics of the right-wing parties like ActionSA and the Patriotic Alliance. These right-wing outfits are very small on a national scale, but their message has been amplified by opportunist elements in the bigger parties such as the DA and the ANC. Now, scandalously, the EFF has joined in the fray.

The Algerian Council of State has banned the Socialist Workers’ Party (PST) and shuttered its offices. This scandalous act of political repression is part of an ongoing, general clampdown on left-wing activism, democratic freedoms and the revolutionary Hirak movement. The International Marxist Tendency (IMT) strongly condemns this outrageous move and sends its solidarity to the PST.

The Sudanese Revolution is at a critical crossroads. The security forces are killing, raping and brutalising the masses with impunity. The revolution has responded by launching new protests, locking down neighbourhoods, and holding a two-day general strike – although the latter was undermined by a lack of organisation. We must be clear: time is short.

We are starting this perspective document with an excerpt from Leon Trotsky’s The “Third Period” of the Comintern’s Errors, written in January 1930. In this work, Trotsky explains the importance of perspectives for a revolutionary Marxist organisation to correctly orient itself towards the working class.

Less than 24 hours after South African scientists announced the discovery of the new Omicron COVID-19 variant, rich countries in Europe, as well as Canada and the United States, slapped highly damaging, blanket travel bans on a swathe of southern African countries. The imperialists are reacting in a haphazard fashion to the discovery of this new strain, whose emergence they facilitated to begin with through hoarding the world’s vaccine supply.

In recent days, cities and towns across Morocco have witnessed mass youth movements involving students and unemployed university graduates. Like all serious and deeply-rooted movements, it was marked by mass participation of young women, who stood at the forefront and brought with them high levels of militancy. The movement has been received with warm sympathy by all layers of the poor, not only because its demands are legitimate, but because the masses are angry and looking for a point of reference to rally around.

The Sudanese Revolution has taken a new turn. 28 days after the coup that removed him from power, Abdalla Hamdok was reinstated as Prime Minister by the military junta. The streets, which have fought and shed blood for a month to win civilian rule, have met this news, not with jubilation – but rage.

Yesterday was the bloodiest day of the Sudan coup so far. A nationwide march was met with the deadliest clampdown yet by the security forces. This massacre must be a final warning to the masses: only armed self defence by any means necessary can guarantee a victory for the Sudanese Revolution.