Detroit Youth March for Jobs!

By Tom Michalak

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Demanding jobs and an end to the corporate theft of city services in the municipal bankruptcy case, several dozen people marched through downtown Detroit on April 4, the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Called by the youth group Detroit FIST (Fight Imperialism, Stand Together), it was a march for jobs and justice, which attracted activists from various groups as well as college students, young unemployed workers and low-wage workers, as well as a handful of students still in high school.

The marchers covered a lot of ground in the downtown area. Starting with a rally at the iconic Spirit of Detroit statue outside city hall, they then headed to the Chase Bank building, the botched Wayne County Jail project and through Greektown, chanting and stopping to rally at each stop.

Detroit’s overall unemployment rate for those aged 16 to 64 is 49 percent, and for those under the age of 30 it is closer to 60 percent. The demonstration stressed the dire need of people in the city for employment.

Over the last year, the state-appointed so-called “Emergency Manager,” Kevyn Orr, has spent $96 million on a handful of corporate consultants from Wall Street to come into the city and conjure up ideas as to how the city can be revitalized into an economically viable entity. Although that money is only a drop in the bucket of corporate theft from the public, it is enough money to employ 3,000 young people at a salary of $30,000 a year! This served as a rallying cry for those who marched and demonstrated.

Youth see that there are homes that need restoration, roads in need of repair and schools that need to be staffed to teach children. Protesters say the money is there, and instead of diverting it into the already deep pockets of Wall Street parasites, use the money to put the people of Detroit to work at good-paying jobs that are desperately needed.


FIST Statement: Shut Down US-Funded War in Ukraine

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Fight Imperialism, Stand Together (FIST) would like to express its solidarity with the working class of the Ukraine that is under attack from U.S. and E.U.-sponsored fascist shock troops of Svoboda Party and the Right Sector, among others. Our thoughts are with the Jews, ethnic Russians and other minorities in the Ukraine as well as communists, leftists and unionists who are now facing violence from these anti-communist, anti-Russian, Neo-Nazis. These forces uphold Steven Bandera, who collaborated with the Nazis to fight the Soviet Union in WWII. Many are flying Nazi flags and the Celtic Cross, as well as the slave-holding Confederate secessionist flag of the which was hung in City Hall in Kyiv. These ultra-rightists are destroying statues of Lenin as well as monuments to the defeat of fascism in WWII and the liberation of concentration camps.

We are outraged that billions of dollars from the US are used to fund this ultra-right coup in Ukraine. FIST acknowledges that president Yanukovich is no friend of the working class and that many Ukrainians became involved in the Euromaidan protests to voice their displeasure with him. We also recognize there is an important difference between those who attend a movement and those who lead it. Pro-E.U. liberals and outright fascists, with support from Washington and Brussels, led a coordinated effort to violently remove a democratically elected president that was anti-E.U. in order to install a pro-imperialist, illegal junta government that would carry out the will of Wall Street and conceivably pave the way to bring a NATO base to the border of Russia. We acknowledge the actions taken by Russia in the newly independent Crimea and eastern Ukraine to be defensive in nature against the proxy war instigated by the West. We respect the right of all Ukrainians who do not want to be ruled by the new pro-imperialist puppet regime and we support whatever actions they deem necessary to repel the threat imposed upon them by the West.

FIST supports the working class of Ukraine in their powerful effort to resist the new pro-imperialist government in Kiev. We are working to build actions across the US to stop the US-funded takeover. While the US government gives another $10 billion in loans to an illegal, right-wing regime, across the US children and familes are faced with $8.9 billion in cuts to food stamps. Every move the US makes towards war costs us billions of dollars that should go towards funding schools, paying unemployment benefits to the 2 million who have been cut, canceling trillions of dollars of student debt, or bailing out cities like Detroit who have been robbed by the banks.

Whether you are a student, a low-wage worker, unemployed, or a parent, you are effected by US imperialism’s drive to conquer the rest of the world. These wars only lead to countless atrocities, such as in Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq, or Vietnam generations before.

We call on young people across the US to take action to stop another US-funded war! Join one of the many demonstrations, listed at IACenter.org, or organize your own in your area.

As revolutionary youth in the US, we demand:

Down with the fascists in Kiev!

Down with US and EU imperialist proxy wars!

Money for jobs and education, not for another dirty war!

 

 


“Free them All!” – FIST demo @ Wmns Prison” on YouTube


Who are the Anti-Fascists? Hillary Clinton and Historical Confusion

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Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2012

By Caleb Maupin, NYC FIST

Hillary Clinton’s recent comparison of Vladimir Putin to Adolf Hitler is just the latest in a long string of analogies to the Second World War made by US leaders to justify their foreign policy actions.

George W. Bush almost turned such analogies into an art form, going as far as to compare those who disagreed with his invasion of Iraq to “those who appeased Hitler.”

The constant use of analogies involving the Second World War, is due to the fact that mythology around the war is part of the popular right-wing narrative of US history.

The popular re-telling of the Second World War is that Hitler was carrying out the Holocaust and attacking other countries, and so after a little isolationist hesitation, the US leaped into action like a Hollywood superhero. In this fantasy retelling, the US rushed into Europe, rescuing everyone from evil Hitler, and defending “truth, justice, and the American way.” The US was on the side of democracy, the story goes, fighting Hitler, the dictator, and after the war, everyone loved the United States, for it proved to be the “home of the brave and the land of free.”

Some aspects of this narrative resemble the truth. There is truth in the undisputed evil of the Nazis, Italian Fascists, and Japanese imperialists. No sensible human being can deny this. The images of Auschwitz will haunt humanity until the end of time.

However, the popular US narrative leaves out the many contradictions of the period leading up the war, and role big business, the Soviet Union, and other key actors in the events of 1939-1945.

Wall Street, the Real ‘Appeasers’

The US relationship with Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Japanese Imperialism was not a strictly hostile one. Many Wall Street businessmen and industrialists had friendly relations with the Nazis.

At the time, Wall Street was terrified of the Soviet Union, and of its allies, the working class movement in the United States. In the early part of the 1930s the Communist Party, the US affiliate of the Communist International, organized Unemployment Councils. These Communist led community organizations stopped people from being evicted from their homes, and broke into warehouses to distribute food to hungry families. The Communist Party led the famous 1931 “Bonus March” on Washington, where Veterans occupied the capital city, with four of them being killed in an ensuing battle.

By 1937, the US Communist Party was playing a key role in the rise of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO). Big business was being forced to sign contracts with its workers, while “reds” were leading mass strikes and protests. In many of these “sit down” strikes, the workers took over factories, refusing to leave until their demands were met. President Roosevelt responded to these mass uprisings by passing the Works Progress Administration, Social Security, and other popular reforms. Taxes on the rich went up.

Many of the billionaires openly thought Hitler and Mussolini had much better methods of governance; outlawing labor unions and the Communist Party, massively funding the armaments industry, and providing free labor for capitalists in prison camps.

Henry Ford, one of the most well-known industrialists in the United States at the time, was known for his pro-Fascist sentiments. He sponsored “The Dearborn Voice”, a publication that spoke of Hitler in glowing terms. He printed books such as “The International Jew” which promoted the same anti-Semitic conspiracy theories that became official state doctrine in Germany. Ford visited Hitler and was awarded the Iron Cross.

The IBM computer company designed the punch card machines that were used to run the concentration camp system. Even after the US and the Nazi state were at war, IBM technicians were updating and repairing the machines, making sure the network of death camps could continue to operate, with a primitive computer keeping track of each victim.

Prescott Bush, the grandfather of the George W. Bush, did stock market trading for leading Nazis on Wall Street. His bank account was seized in 1942 under the “Trading with the Enemy Act.”

Father Charles E. Coughlin, the famed “radio priest” broadcast pro-Hitler sermons across the US on his radio program. His program was sponsored by many major corporations, and his rhetoric seethed with hate.

During the Spanish Civil War, when Hitler’s ally Francisco Franco overthrew the democratically elected government, the US made it illegal for anyone to support the people of Spain. People from the US who wanted to aid the Spanish people in fighting against fascism were forced to do so in violation of the law, and risked criminal prosecution.

The rhetoric of the Pro-Nazi sectors of the United States was always the same. Hitler was a good ally against “the Red Menace.” The horrors of fascism should be ignored, they said, because the main enemy should be Marxism-Leninism.

“The greatest military achievement in all history”

While many people in the US seem to be convinced that the defeat of Hitler was due singlehandedly to the efforts of US armed forces, the reality is quite different.

Even when the Second World War finally broke out, the US did not dare enter the European theater until the war was almost over. The US left the Soviet Union and its European allies to fight Hitler alone, while focusing on the Pacific. The US did not land at Normandy, until the Red Army was already marching toward Berlin, liberating concentration camps and executing Nazi war criminals.

So many would have us believe that Hitler and Stalin were allies because of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The fact is that the Soviet Union’s record of anti-fascism was by the far greatest in the world.

Immediately after Hitler seized power, the Communist International called for a “People’s Front Against Fascism.” Shortly afterward, the Soviet Union was the only country on earth to defend Ethiopia when it was invaded by Italian fascists.

The Soviet Union’s allies in the world Communist movement were the greatest enemies of fascism. They organized underground anti-fascist resistance within France, Germany, Yugoslavia, and elsewhere. To many people in the 1930s, the words “Anti-Fascist” and “Communist” were synonyms.

The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was only signed after years of Soviet efforts to build a world anti-fascist coalition. The United States, Britain, and other countries seemed to have no real interest in such an alliance. The 1939 pact was a necessary maneuver, and it did not last very long. Once the fighting began, over 20 million people in the Soviet Union died fighting against the Nazi invaders.

Hollywood movies such as “The North Star” and “Mission to Moscow” cheered the amazing heroism of the Soviet people in fighting the fascist invaders. US Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson declared“History knows no greater display of courage than that showed by Soviet Russia.” General Douglas Macarthur called the Soviet Union’s fight against Hitler “the greatest military achievement in all history.”

The war lives in Ukraine

The US media often sounds confused about why people in Ukraine continue to bring up the Second World War in reference to the current conflict. The reasons should be obvious.

Svoboda openly professes love for the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, that fought against the Soviet Union during the Second World War. Svoboda has also held marches against Hassidic Jews and other national minorities.

In Kiev, after anti-Russian extremists seized the capitol building, they unfurled not just the Nazi swastika, but also the Celtic Cross insignia of the Ku Klux Klan, and the Confederate Flag of the slaveholding secessionists in the United States.

The outlawing of minority languages, and the destruction of monuments to those who fought against the Nazi invaders are sending a message. It is not subtle at all.

While Hillary Clinton compares Putin to Hitler, it is she and the US government that are backing the pro-Hitler elements in Kiev.

When the Red Army drove the Nazis from Ukraine, it drove the western banks out with them. Ukraine and the rest of the Soviet Union were the key pillar in the Socialist Bloc of countries that emerged in the post-war period.

When people across the globe broke the economic shackles of colonialism and imperialism, the Soviet Union was on their side. The Soviet Union aided South Africa, while the US dubbed Nelson Mandela to be a terrorist. The Soviet Union funded the economic development of Cuba, and the basis for what China’s calls its “great revival.” The most economically prosperous period in Egypt’s history was when Abdul Nasser spoke of Arab Socialism, and developed the economy with Soviet aid.

Struggles for independence around the world could always depend on Soviet aid. This did not just come in the form of AK-47s, but in doctors, nurses, literacy campaigns, and industry.

After the Second World War, what had started in 1917 became a global economic phenomenon. Countries all over the world declared that they did not have to be controlled by Wall Street and London. They could chart their own course of development.

The power of symbols

The government of Ukraine has been overthrown because it dared not to join the European Union and dared to refuse some measure of IMF and EU-led economic enslavement. It has been overturned by forces who admire the Third Reich.

In Crimea, where Russian speaking Ukrainians have rejected the new regime and formed self-defense units, they are waving the “Hammer and Sickle” emblem. This is the symbol, representing power for the working people, that once defeated Adolf Hitler and his allies.

To millions of people in the world, in 1945 and today, it is this flag, not the stars and stripes, that represents anti-fascism, and the struggle for peace, democracy, and equality. Hillary Clinton may not know this, but the people of Crimea certainly do.

Originally published on RT.com 


#FreeMarissa! No ground to stand on

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NC FIST members speak out against mass incarceration and gendered violence – banner has pictures of women heroes Marissa Alexander and CeCe McDonald – both of whom were criminalized for fighting back against gendered violence.

 

To donate visit:

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/marissa-alexander-freedom-fundraiser

This post was written by NC FIST member Danielle Boachie and first appeared on her blog “Womancipation Proclamation” – http://womancipation.wordpress.com/

Marissa Alexander has been sentenced to 20 years in prison. Marissa is the victim here. Her husband beat her while she was pregnant. After yet another beating, Alexander fired a warning shot which traveled through a wall and into the ceiling. That shot saved her life. Prosecutor Angela Corey did not take into account that Marissa Alexander: Had a court injunction against her crazed husband, Had Given Birth 9 Days Earlier, Was trained to use a weapon and earned a concealed weapons permit.

-Stand Your Ground Marissa Alexander:

http://justiceformarissa.blogspot.com/</blockquote>
On July 31, 2010, Marissa Alexander found herself in the presence of a man with at least three previous charges of domestic battery; a man who inflicted head injuries on her just the year before. She feared for her life as he taunted her with the words: “bitch, I will kill you.” On July 31, Marissa Alexander stood her ground. She protected herself from her estranged, abusive husband by firing non-lethal warning shots, allowing her to escape the dangerous situation. Despite using the obviously applicable “Stand Your Ground” defense, Alexander now faces 60 years in prison. This is the same law that acquitted Trayvon Martin’s murderer from full responsibility of his racist recklessness.

Where is Marissa Alexander’s ground to stand on?

On June 5, 2011, transgender woman CeCe McDonald was the center of a racist, homophobic and transphobic hate crime. CeCe and her friends were verbally assualted with racist and anti-trans insults by a group of older white people. When CeCe stood up to them and said that their group would not tolerate hate speech, a woman in the other group shouted “I’ll take you on” and smashed a glass bottle into CeCe’s face. A fight ensued, during which one of the attackers, Dean Schmitz, was fatally stabbed. CeCe was the only one arrested that night. On June 5, CeCe McDonald stood her ground. She defended herself from her ignorant attacker, but was nevertheless sentenced to 41 months in prison for second degree murder (19 of which she served before being released).

And so I ask, where is CeCe McDonald’s ground to stand on?

On November 2, 2013, 19 year old Raneisha McBride crashed into a parked car in a Detroit suburb and knocked on 54 year old white homeowner Theodore Wafer’s door for help – only to be shot in the back from two feet away, dying from the gunshot wound later that day.

Where was her ground?

The US “justice” system repeatedly proves that it is rife with inequalities, and irrefutably unable to eliminate bias within legislation. Because of the racist, sexist, classist, xenophobic, lgbtq-phobic etc nature of the judicial system, women of color (particularly those victim of interpersonal, sexual and domestic violence) are increasingly marginalized. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the number of women in prison increased 646% from 1980 to 2010, rising from 15,118 to 112,797. 30% of female prisoners are African American and 16% are Latinas. Plus, black women are imprisoned at nearly 3 times the rate of white women. Furthermore, 39% of women in state prisons and 23% of those in federal facilities reported being sexually abused before incarceration.

There is a double standard between the perception of the violence enacted by women and men. The same “blame the victim” rhetoric seen in rape culture is used to condemn victims of sexual or domestic violence for the abuse they endured. Plus, a paradox lies in the fact that women who act in self defense often receive harsh and unjust repercussions when compared to that of their assailant. As stated in the 1990 Florida Supreme Court Gender Bias Report: “despite the perception that the criminal justice system is lenient to women[,] . . . women (in Florida) are treated more harshly than similarly situated male offenders.” These factors, coupled with the risk undocumented women face of being deported, commonly deters women suffering from domestic battery from seeking justice.

There is no ground to stand on.

The racist and sexist nature of the criminal injustice system is apparent when Marisa’s harsh treatment for her self defense is compared to the same prosecutor’s (Angela Corey) treatment of racist killers George Zimmerman and Michael Dunn, both of whom murdered young African Americans- Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis respectively. It is incomprehensible that Zimmerman was acquitted and Dunn will receive the same 60 year sentence as Marissa.

It is time to fight for the justice us women of color deserve.
It is time to stand OUR ground!

”image” Words of encouragement written by NC FIST (Fight Imperialism, Stand Together) members to Marissa Alexander, who is currently under house arrest in Florida.

For more information please visit freemarissanow.org
FreeMarissaNow@gmail.com

http://www.facebook.com/FreeMarissaNow

Contact state prosecutor Angela Corey to demand justice for Marissa Alexander:
Angela Corey, State Attorney
Courthouse Annex
220 East Bay Street
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Phone: 904-630-2400
Fax: 904-630-2938
Email: sao4th@coj.net


The Truth About Communism: New FIST Pamphlet

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From basic Marxist concepts to explanations of historical revolutions and workers states that have built towards socialism, “The Truth About Communism” clearly and concisely lays out the Marxist-Leninist view of society, history, and revolution.

The Truth About Communism PDF

Excerpts from “The Truth About Communism”:

You are a worker. You may have a job working
behind a counter, sweeping floors, selling things,
answering phones, working on an assembly line,
cooking food, teaching, building things, or doing
anything else. You may have a job serving the public.
You may have a job producing things. You may have a
job fixing things or advising others. You may have
multiple college degrees. You may have a very specific
and rare skill. You may be unemployed at the moment.
You may be a student. You may be disabled. You may
be in prison. Regardless of the specific aspects of your
job situation, you are a worker.

A “Prison Industrial Complex” has been set up.
Capitalists are making lots of money from locking
people in prison. So, naturally they push for a “war on
drugs,” lengthy prison sentences and other expansions
of the prison system, in order to make more profits.
The fact that over 2 million people are prison in the
In the “Prison Industrial Complex”, capitalists make profits
from locking up working people.

This is not a “conspiracy theory.” There is no
secret cabal or mystical plan being put into operation.
The problems faced by billions of working people
today are simply the result of capitalists trying to
make more profits for themselves at the expense of
the rest of humanity.
What is good for capitalists tends to be bad for
workers. Wars, unemployment, environmental
destruction, mass imprisonment and poverty are all
bad for workers. But they all also mean more profits
for the capitalists.

To see Socialism fully blossom, we must see
world revolution. Only when imperialism has been
brought down, and no longer threatens the people of
the world, can the full development of socialism come
into being. Only after Socialism has thrived as a global
system, and greatly increased the technological
capabilities of the human race, can the higher stage of
Communism begin to unfold.


FIST NYC Conference | Eva’s Closing Remarks to the Conference

Eva from North Carolina FIST speaks at the NYC FIST Conference on March 2, 2014 on the main contradictions of capitalism and the struggle between the ruling class and the working class.


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