12/23/10

Why the West Must Realize Brazil is a “Communist” Country

By: Trevor Loudon
New Zeal

Most Western commentators claim that there are only a few communist countries left on the planet.

This huge mistake occurs because these naive souls fail to distinguish observable economic policies, with foreign policy goals and long term strategic objectives.

The rationale goes – “well country X is ruled by Marxist-Leninists and leftists, but they are pursuing “free market” economic policies, therefore they are not really communists and if we keep trading with them, we can eventually convert them to a western way of thinking.”

Sooner they will find fairies in the bottom of their gardens.

The reality is that communists have always used “free market” policies when it suits them to build their economic base, secure foreign funding or for strategic disinformation purposes.

The key element here is while country X may operate with some semblance of a market economy, Marxist-Leninists continue to control all key levers of power as well as foreign policy and are completely tilted towards helping the international communist movement in its long term strategic plans.

China, Vietnam, Laos, Mongolia, Mozambique, Laos and Angola, are obvious examples. To those, I would add Venezuela, Cuba (just starting), South Africa, Russia and several of the Central Asian republics and most certainly Brazil.

“Lula” Anoints Dilma Rousseff Under the Communist Party of Brazil Banner

Former president Brazilian President Luis Jose Inazio Lula Da Silva, or “Lula,” is a committed Marxist revolutionary as is his hand picked successor, former underground terrorist leader Dilma Rousseff.

Luis Fleischman is one of the few commentators to “get” the point. Writing for the Center for Security Policy, Fleischman’s new column: A closer look at Brazil’s foreign policy, exposes the folly of U.S. policy vis a vis communist led Brazil.

Latin America is increasingly turning into a geo-political and international challenge. On the one hand, Venezuela, under the leadership of Hugo Chavez, continues to support the Colombian narco-guerilla group known as the FARC. The FARC protects the activities of drug cartels, and cooperates with terrorist groups such as Hezbollah. On the other hand, a number of Southern Cone countries led by Brazil (and supported by Argentina and Uruguay) did not go as far as Venezuela but have conducted a foreign policy which is detrimental not only to the United States but to the free world, in general.

Brazil under the government of Jose Inazio Lula Da Silva took advantage of the country’s economic growth (which was the cumulative result of years of economic and developmental polices that began before Da Silva took office) to flex its muscles in the regional and international arena.

President Lula Da Silva surprised the world, when despite having a left-wing background plus having been a co-founder along with Fidel Castro of the anti-American Foro de Sao Paulo, appointed conservative figures to his cabinet. That move was aimed at maintaining the continuity of Brazil’s economic development which was pretty much based on the strong role and cooperation of the business community. The fact that Lula did not go left on domestic and economic polices led many people in the region and in Washington to believe that Brazil’s stand in the international arena would be similar.

Thus, Washington policy makers sought out Brazil as an ally to counteract the growing malicious influence of Venezuelan president, Hugo Chavez. However, they were very disappointed and astonished by the fact that Lula not only failed to play such an expected role but also became an enabler of Chavez’s revolutionary and expansionistic agenda.

In Lula’s own words, “Chavez has been the best Venezuelan president in 100 years.” Likewise, Lula pointed out that the anti-democratic practices employed by the Venezuelan government belong to the realm of Venezuelan sovereignty and not to the domain of universal human rights. Just last week Brazil and its allies in the Southern Cone supported the inclusion of Venezuela in Mercosur, the South American common market, despite Chavez’s anti-democratic practices which contradicts the group’s clause that conditions membership on the existence of fully democratic institutions.

In addition, Lula helped smuggle the deposed pro-Chavez former president of Honduras back into Tegucigalpa and shelter him there in the Brazilian Embassy. Lula has so far refused to recognize the elected government of Honduran president, Porfirio Lobo. The Brazilian president has also warmed up to the long and discredited die hard autocratic Cuban leader, Fidel Castro and called a Cuban political prisoner who died from a hunger strike a “criminal.”

Beyond the region, Brazil joined forces with Turkey a number of months ago to cut a deal with Iran that would not only have not prevented Iran from developing a nuclear bomb but also encouraged it to develop more. Likewise, Brazil voted against sanctions on Iran imposed by the UN National Security Council. Thus, we have discovered that Brazil has had and continues to have its own distinctive foreign policy which requires further scrutiny and analysis…

Along with China, India and Russia, Brazil seeks a multi-polar world where the United States is not the only superpower. According to their thinking, world power is best shared among a number of countries. This scenario is not necessarily a bad one if maximum cooperation is achieved between these different political poles. One might question why the United States, alone, should be involved in every single case of counties that wish to develop nuclear weapons. Why should the U.S. be the only country to care about events in the world while the rest of the world waits for America to deliver a ready-made product? Why should the U.S. be the only country to raise concerns when democracy or human rights are violated while the rest of the nations seek only to satisfy their national interests? Indeed, there is nothing wrong with multi-lateral cooperation.

However, Brazil’s international behavior under Lula has been guided by a strong and obsolete dose of anti-Americanism brought directly from Lula’s radical left political upbringing. Brazil does not really seek a multi-polar world of cooperation. Lula’s notion of multi-polarity is based on his opposition to the power and policies of the U.S. Thus, Brazil has cooperated with Iran‘s agenda of developing nuclear weapons and gave Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahamdinejad, a hero’s welcome when the latter visited Brazil. Brazil also recognized the fraudulent elections that gave a victory to Ahmadinejad in June, 2009 with no regard for the violence with which anti-government demonstrations were repressed. This insensitivity is reflected in repeated statements made by Lula according to which Iran “has a right” to a nuclear program.

In this context, it is easy to understand why the Brazilian president was the first to unilaterally recognize the creation of a Palestinian state (with pre-1967 borders) while the U.S was making serious efforts to bring the Israelis and Palestinians together. According to Lula, who was successful in getting the Argentinean and the Uruguayan presidents to go along with this recognition, “it is a step to move forward a stagnant peace process.” In fact, Lula was not only giving a free pass to the Palestinians in exchange for nothing but also trying to symbolically show its independence from and opposition to the United States and its ally, Israel.

Lula’s foreign policy logic is embedded not just on the fact that Brazil is now a great country and therefore it demands a place in the world. Such policy is also guided by a strong desire to diminish U.S influence; not only in the region but in the world. Lula’s policy is amoral and is deprived of any global responsibility. Jorge Castaneda, a former Mexican Foreign Minister, has observed that Brazil is part of a group of countries that oppose “more or less explicitly and more or less actively” notions such as human rights, democracy and non-proliferation. Castaneda pointed out Brazil’s foreign policy under Lula is closer to that of authoritarian China (with which Lula has astronomically increased commercial and political relations) than it is to the West.

Lula’s logic is of a political not economic nature. Like his fellows on the radical left, he dreams of a world with little American influence and claims a leadership role without offering any ideas that contribute to world peace: such as stability, human rights, opposition to international terrorism and nuclear proliferation or any moral problems that have traditionally been the West’s preoccupation. Lula’s Brazil represents another version of Third World obsessed and outdated anti-colonialism. Under, a veil of sophistication (made possible due to comparisons with the ruthless and thuggish Hugo Chavez) Lula’s Brazil has become a negative force in the region (attracting Argentina and Uruguay, countries now run by two leaders who share Lula’s triumphalist attitude).

Brazil is largely seen by Western countries as an emerging economic power but not necessarily a reliable political player. Under the new Brazilian president, Dilma Rouseff, no change should be expected except for the worse since Ms. Rouseff is a former guerilla and as such is likely to strengthen the policies of her predecessor.

Meanwhile, the U.S and the Western powers should continue to block Brazil’s attempts at playing greater roles in international affairs (including its demands to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council) and treat that country with the suspicion it has earned.

Well said, Mr Fleischman.

Just before the October election that brought Dilma Rousseff to power, the Communist Party of Brazil issued a statement:

On the eve of 3 October – with the strong wave of popular support for the candidacy of Rousseff – the liberal opposition in league with major media outlets has resorted to “dirty war” to try to prevent another people’s victory. They manipulate facts, spread lies against Dilma, carry out a campaign of hate against President Lula too. They seek – at any price – to drag the electoral race into a second round of voting.

Given this escalation of anti-democratic opposition, PCdoB calls for an intensification of the mobilization of the campaign in these final hours of this great and decisive conflict that will define the direction of Brazil…

The West needs to realize that it has far more enemies than it is willing to admit.

12/23/10

Top Communist Argues for Continued Support for Barack Obama

By: Trevor Loudon
New Zeal

While some on the U.S. left are backing away from President Barack Obama, the Communist Party USA is still banking on their “friend.”

Jarvis Tyner Campaigning for Obama, Salem Oregon, 2008

Communist Party USA executive vice chair Jarvis Tyner lays out the party’s case for continued support for Obama in today’s People’s World:

There is a lively discussion in left progressive circles about the response to the tax (and unemployment insurance) extension compromise, and where to go after the midterm election set back. Left and progressive activists and voters have played a very important role in the fight against the extreme right-wing. I think most left people understand that the main danger to democracy and progress is coming from the extreme right, GOP/tea party and their powerful corporate backers.

The Communist Party will not agree with our liberal allies at every turn, but we keep pushing for unity, we keep working to find the tactics that keep a broad labor and people’s coalition, that keeps the movement for change going.

In my view, too many people are arguing that the compromise tax bill “is the last straw” and “I’m through with Obama.” This view singles out the tax breaks for the rich and largely ignores the concessions the GOP had to make to the working class….

In my opinion, a winning strategy has to be based on the real world; on the facts, not on subjective feelings that we all understandably have at this point. Serious change makers should not let those feelings be the sole guide as to how to move forward. If we want to win more economic and democratic rights for working people, minorities, women, young people, etc., it is self defeating to use this tax compromise difference to “break” with Obama. (I have to add that there are some voices who advocate a “break” that were never “with” the coalition to elect Obama in the first place.)

The stakes for our country and world are too high for any break — or left/progressive go it alone — tactics. Theories that promote “the worst things get, the better the opportunity for progressive change” are too simplistic and one dimensional. The problem is more complicated than that.

The economic crisis is deep, and millions of working people are suffering. The facts are that the Republicans policies deepened the crisis yet, they made the greatest gains in the last election.

The times we live in call for a strategy and tactics that will bring victories; victories that can be built on…

Everybody understands that running an election and running a country are different. It is my view that the Obama administration policies and legislative victories have helped tens of millions of working families — perhaps more then any president in living memory — considering the short time and the challenges he faced in office. Much more needs to be done but this struggle is a marathon not a sprint.

Communists say that even though we are not in agreement with the president on many basic issues, he implemented many of his campaign promises. Progressive researchers who track that sort of thing give him pretty good marks.

A significant problem that the president and others had to grapple with was while the Democrats had a majority in both houses of Congress, they did not have a big enough majority in the Senate to stop the filibuster. And on many questions Democratic members of Congress were not united enough to win. It was a fragile coalition to say the least.

The first woman speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and the progressive Democratic leadership did a heroic job from 2006-2010. They passed 290 pieces of legislation in the House that the U.S. Senate never acted on, everything from a clean energy bill to the DREAM Act.

The right-wing opposition to these bills and Obama policies have been unrelenting, unprincipled, well financed and well organized.

In my time, I have never seen a sitting president subjected to such unrelenting, personal attacks. The level of racism and red-baiting, including violent threats, has been unprecedented.

What does it achieve when some on the left join in with the right wing, proclaiming Obama a liar who had deceived the voters; and worst of all that he was no different than Bush.

Tell that to all those workers who were able to put food on the table and keep their jobs and homes because of legislation proposed and passed by Obama and the Democrats in the Congress.

If it were the case — i.e. Obama is Bush, etc. — how do we explain those right-wing billionaires who finance so-called tea party and other anti-Obama movements. To these Bush supporters, Obama was the devil incarnate.

Some on the left saw any compromise with the right as “being too soft” rather then what was often a reflection of the real balance of power between the more lock step Republicans and divided Democrats.

I think Obama could have fought harder in many instances, but I also think when the racism was pouring down like acid rain polluting the atmosphere, and staining the political and moral fabric of the nation, the left was amazingly unresponsive. Too many times I heard people say it was Obama’s fault for not fighting back. But the movement could have fought back. Blaming Obama makes it seem that the attacks are acceptable. Is that a principled position? For me, it’s a form of capitulation to the extreme right and racism.

It’s important to note, if the results had been more positive on November 2, the movement would be discussing taking the political offensive to help working people survive this horrible crisis by creating new, green jobs, ending the wars and attacks on immigrants.

The right-wing racist attack did more than mobilize their base, it also demoralized and demobilized Democratic voters. Some Democratic and progressive voters went from a messianic view of Obama to demonizing him. Neither are the right assessments to make.

For progressives, adopting an anti-Obama strategy is totally self-defeating. How do we distinguish ourselves from Sen. Mitch McConnell’s and the Republicans’ main goal of bringing down Obama?

2012 has to be part of any strategic and tactical thinking after these midterm elections. The next president will either be Obama or some right wing Republican. That’s the reality for now. If the Republicans take control of all three branches of government — again — that will put the great majority of people on the defensive in the fight for economic and democratic rights. To not see that is a gross miscalculation of the right danger.

I think the most explosive issue is jobs and related economic crises — like evictions — facing working people. This will not be a easy time for the broad left/center coalition that brought the victory in 2006 and 2008.

One thing is clear to me, this fight cannot be won by making Obama the enemy. Those who are looking for a third party candidate on the left certainly have a right to do that, but it’s not the path to victory at this stage.

The path to victory is in the critical fight for jobs and related issues. It’s clear that the crisis of massive joblessness is not going to be solved in the halls of Congress and the White House alone. We need a united visible movement of the jobless to make it happen.

There needs to be a two year offensive for jobs through public works. In every city, state and town across the country we need to raise the demand.

Martin Luther King holiday weekend is an ideal occasion to kick off what should be a two year campaign all across the country.

King struggled for peace, jobs and freedom. The issue of jobs is not just an economic issue but a moral one, too. It can be linked to other issues including child welfare, poverty, immigrant rights, education, racial and gender equality, military spending and housing crisis.

Such a broad, grassroots movement will give real momentum to and build muti-racial unity for the 2012 elections. Franklin Roosevelt needed social movements to deliver the New Deal, and today, so does Obama.

In the last section, Tyner reveals just how the Communist Party plans to help Obama with some pressure from below – a major nationwide campaign for government “jobs creation.”

The call will come, from mass communist inspired marches and demonstrations, from communist led unemployed groups etc. to cut military spending in order to create jobs. The more people the Communist Party can get onto government jobs programs by 2012, the better the Democrats will do in the elections.

Its all about power. We should never underestimate the Communist Party’s lust for power and their proven expertise in gaining it.

12/23/10

Communists Pleased With Progress Under Obama

By: Trevor Loudon
New Zeal

The Communist Party USA is deservedly crowing about the achievements of their “friend” Barack Obama and the Democratic (and RINO) dominated 111th Congress.

From the People’s World:

The 111th Congress goes down in history as having written more laws affecting more people than any Congress since the Great Society of the 1960s. The legislative achievements include health care reform that gives 32 million Americans coverage, the most sweeping Wall Street reform since the Great Depression, the spending of $1.67 billion to revive the economy, including tax cuts and stimulus to create 3 million jobs, construction of roads and bridges, initial steps towards green energy projects, an end to the ban on gays serving openly in the military, and a massive nuclear arms reduction treaty with Russia.

Polls this week give President Obama an approval rating of 56 percent for his handling of the lame duck Congress, with 41 percent dis-approving.

Observers see a possible weakening of solidarity in the ranks of Republican senators, with a number of them having crossed over on several issues to support President Obama.

Alaska’s Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski backed all four of President Obama’s signature initiatives in the lame duck session – repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the tax cut compromise, the START Treaty and the DREAM Act.

It’s time for the American voter to understand.

The agenda of the President of the United States of America and the Democrats is nearly identical to that of the Communist Party USA, Democratic Socialists of America and the far left Institute for Policy Studies.

If you want to know what Obama will propose tomorrow, read what the Marxists are advocating today.