IMPERIALISM DESTROYING LIVES

UN DATA: Sanctions affect the entire population

Angel D. González

Ultimas Noticias | April 24, 2021

Everyone knows that the United States maintains a policy of “sanctions” and economic blockade against Venezuela, which since the time of Donald Trump they themselves called a “maximum pressure strategy.” The government of Washington, be it Democrat or Republican, does not hide that its intention with this is to achieve a “regime change”, that is, to force President Nicolás Maduro to leave power by force. All of this is crystal clear.Read More »

SOLIDARITY

WATCH: Cuba, St Lucia, Venezuela join forces to assist St Vincent

LOOP NEWS | April 23, 2021

Kingstown Port in St Vincent.

Regional solidarity continues to keep the people of St Vincent and Grenadines afloat as they manage the ongoing eruptions of the La Soufriere volcano.

St Lucia, Cuba and Venezuela came together to coordinate the delivery of relief supplies into the island on Wednesday. Read More »

BOOK REVIEW 

Anjuli Fatima Raza Kolb

Epidemic Empire: Colonialism, Contagion, and Terror 1817-2020

University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 2021, 412 pp., $35.00 pb
ISBN 9780226739359

Reviewed by Joshua Moufawad-Paul

Marx and Philosophy Review of Books | April 27, 2021

A poetics of contagion flourished throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Language regarding literal epidemic measures (quarantine, isolation, personal protective equipment, hygiene, vaccines, etc.) intermingled with figurative language about nations and populations: orientalist claims regarding the source of the virus, migrants as vectors of transmission, quasi-Nietzschean interpretations of ‘herd immunity’. Anjuli Fatima Raza Kolb’s Epidemic Empire demonstrates that this ‘disease poetics’ has been part of global capitalism since its emergence. The thinking of contagion is bound up with how a global imperialism in development imagined insurgency alongside epidemics, how the study of counter-insurgency and the study of epidemiology were entangled. Hence, it is difficult to separate the political figuration of contagion from medical discourse.

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MAY DAY POETRY 

May Day 2021: Defence and Rights

David Betteridge

Culture Matters | May 01, 2021

May Day 2021: Defence and Rights

… we have come here in the cause of Labour,
in its own defence, to demand its own rights…
– Eleanor Marx, speech on the first May Day
held in Hyde Park, London, 1890

Mayday. Mayday. Mayday.

Two syllables, thrice.
Whoever hears this call
understands Distress,
and knows that help’s required.

M’aidez! M’aidez! M’aidez!

Wherever in the world
a ship or plane goes down,
rescuers respond.

Help me!
Tell us who you are.
Help me!
Tell us where you are…
Help me!
… and the reason for your call.

Mayday! Mayday! Mayday!

Consider a greater going-down
with greater loss of life
than any ship or plane,
or entire fleets of them.

Consider continents in distress,
nations and peoples, host upon host,
victims of social murder,
war, pestilence, and others’ greed,
victims of the wasting of the world’s good,
and dominance of class by class.

What then?
What source of aid.

May Day:
two words, each of one syllable,
encode the brief answer to that great question
that history has posed.

May Day:
more than a day in a calendar,
more than a signalling of a solidarity
that spans the world,
more than a hope made manifest,
more than a promise of better things;
it is an idea that moves the tectonic plates
of ancient thought, and fires
the actions of peoples everywhere.

May Day!

We must speak for the cause daily,
and make the men, and especially the women
that we meet, come into the ranks
to help us.

So spoke Marx.

Beyond distress and mutual aid,
she looked ahead to defence and rights,
and, further yet, to a reconfiguring
of Culture’s laws and the principles
by which they’re made.

So she spoke,
and lived her short life,
holding Socialism as our goal
stubbornly in sight.Read More »

MAY DAY POETRY

May Day 2021: The Stink

Peter Knaggs

Culture Matters | May 01, 2021

May Day 2021: The Stink

At first we thought it was a mop
or a dishcloth and we threw them out –
But the nest day it was still there –
So we swept the floor and opened a window
but it got worse. We held our hands
over our mouth and said JESUS
and – Where’s that coming from?
and – that fuckin’ stinks. We looked
under the stairs and moved the drawers.
It would make the faint-hearted gag
or puke and the women held their noses.
We looked at each other: What is it?
What is it? What is it? It was pin-clean,
we’d washed and got the bleach out
then I had an epiphany and I knew exactly
what it was. It was our government.

Read More »