Tens Of Thousands Of Workers March In Brussels Protesting Rising Living Cost And NATO’s War

Countercurrents | June 21, 2022

March in Brussels on June 20, 2022 protesting rising living cost and NATO’s war

Tens of thousands of workers demonstrated against the rising cost of living, with many linking the crisis to the NATO’s war and Russia policies. Many demonstrators condemned the US-led NATO alliance and its involvement in the Ukraine war. Many linked their dire economic straits to the EU’s sanctions regime on Russia and with the NATO’s rush to arm Ukraine.

Protesters demanded that their leaders “spend money on salaries, not on weapons,” and chanted “stop NATO.”

Media reports said:

Workers marched through Brussels on Monday demanding government action to tackle sharply rising living costs, as one-day strikes at Brussels Airport and on local transport networks nationwide brought public travel to a near-halt.

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Anti-communism, authoritarianism and repression are growing in the capitalist world

Luciana Bohne

Lenin “toppled”: the convenient rebellion of fools. Freedom at last from a spurious tyranny.

Authoritarianism in China? A place that nipped Covid in six weeks and ended poverty in 2020? Let’s turn the camera, shall we? And let’s fix it on the Western/capitalist bloc. Do you see any recrudescence of BOURGEOIS AUTHORITARIANISM in examples from recent times?

1. Slovakia: passes law on 1 Dec 2020 designating Czech and Slovak Communist parties “criminal organizations.”

2. Poland: the anti-communist hysteria is well established in the persistent “witch hunt” against the communists that for decades has characterized the Polish bourgeois authorities on a dangerous undemocratic and reactionary ridge, with the complacency and encouragement of the EU. In fact, the persecutions, restrictions and criminal proceedings that have been conducted for years against the Communist Party of Poland (KPP), its daily “Bzrask” and their members are known “for the promotion of totalitarian regimes”. Furthermore, among other things, we remember the interruption of scientific conferences on Karl Marx organized by universities, the use of public institutions such as the National Memory Institute (IPN) for the dissemination of anti-communist propaganda and the establishment of a dangerous legal framework for communist persecution which includes the 2017 “decommunization law”

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Belgium paralyzed as massive strike cancels all flights, halts public transport & blocks roads

All flights in and out of Belgium are canceled due to a general strike on February 13, 2019.
Ageneral strike over pay and working conditions has brought Belgium to a halt, leading to total chaos in airports, on the roads and in the skies.

Though Brussels Airlines provided advance warning of the general strike last week, thousands of travelers unable to change their plans have been stranded at airports across the nation that hosts the EU capital. Some 60,000 people’s travel plans have been affected, with only emergency and military flights allowed to depart or arrive nation-wide.

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Promise on the Belgian Left

by Peter Mertens

Supporters of the Workers’ Party of Belgium marching in 2015. Prima News

The Workers’ Party of Belgium (PTB) has seen surprising gains in recent months. Long marginalized electorally as a fringe Marxist organization, the PTB is now the third-largest political force in the French-speaking region of Wallonia, with polls giving the party 18 percent of voter support in the region, plus 10 percent in Brussels, Belgium’s capital.
With the 2019 federal elections approaching, the PTB aims to turn these results into a durable presence in Belgian politics.

Founded in 1979, the PTB entered the federal parliament for the first time in 2014 with two MPs, and has been working from the opposition to the current right-wing coalition in power in Belgium.

Peter Mertens, president of the party, sat down with Mario Cuenda García, a blogger and PPE student at the University of Warwick, and Tommaso Segantini, an independent freelance journalist who’s written for the New Arab, openDemocracy, and Telesur to discuss, among other topics, the prospects of the PTB in Belgium, its position on Europe, and the CETA affair of recent months.

Mertens stresses the need to create a counter-hegemonic bloc to the far right through a constant “presence of the ground” and a “strong anti-establishment discourse,” along with the creation of a transnational alliance of radical left-wing forces in Europe to provide an alternative to both the current policies of the European Union and rising nationalist forces.Read More »