Well, they have done it to us again. What for most White Americans is a simple inconvenience, a traffic stop, became for an African American another series of frames from a horror movie. Instead of being pulled over, given a ticket and sent on his way; Tyre Nichols was pulled out of his car by the police, sadistically beaten and sent to the hospital to die. The villain or beast from this real-life horror was not Dracula or Frankenstein. The spawns of Satan that beat Tyre Nichols are not made-up characters from the minds of Bram Stoker or Mary Shelley. This villainous threat to the African American community is real! They are stalking the streets of our cities and towns for more victims every hour of every day and night. This threat, these body snatchers don’t need the cover of darkness or need to operate in the shadows. They conduct their evil in broad daylight under the color of law. They are the urban army that is sworn to “protect and serve”.
55-year-old Víctor Santisteban Yacsavilca was declared dead on Saturday, January 28, after he was shot in the head with a pellet gun by the National Police of Peru. Yacsavilca is the first protester to die in Peru’s capital Lima since the protests against the coup began in December. Videos of him being shot show him standing with a group of journalists, medical brigade members, and other protesters, and falling to the ground immediately when police begin shooting at the group. Subsequent videos show a large pool of blood on the ground where Yacsavilca fell. His death occurred on one of the bloodiest nights to date in Peru’s capital. January 28 began with a mass march in the center of the city with traditional dances, songs, and chants, but after a couple hours the events turned ugly. Once night fell, police ramped up their repression of the protests by shooting tear gas and pellet guns at protesters, press, human rights defenders, and medical brigades.
Attorneys and journalists, who visited WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange while he was living under political asylum in the Ecuador embassy, amended their lawsuit against the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for allegedly spying on them. The complaint [PDF] filed in the Southern District of New York now even more explicitly seeks an injunction against the CIA to prevent the agency “from utilizing in any way, or revealing to any third party, the content of materials seized” from the plaintiffs, who are all US citizens. It also asks the court to order the CIA to “purge and destroy all such materials from their files.” In the initial lawsuit that was filed in August 2022, the CIA, along with former CIA director Mike Pompeo, UC Global, and UC Global director David Morales, were sued for their alleged role in violating the privacy of attorneys Margaret Ratner Kunstler and Deborah Hrbek and journalists John Goetz and Charles Glass.
On January 19, during one of its raids in the Occupied West Bank, the Israeli military arrested a Palestinian journalist, Abdul Muhsen Shalaldeh, near Al-Khalil (Hebron). This is just the latest of a staggering number of violations against Palestinian journalists and freedom of expression. A few days earlier, the head of the Palestinian Journalist Syndicate (PJS), Naser Abu Baker, shared some tragic numbers during a press conference in Ramallah. “Fifty-five reporters have been killed, either by Israeli fire or bombardment since 2000,” he said. Hundreds more were wounded, arrested or detained. Although shocking, much of this reality is censored in mainstream media. The murder by Israeli occupation soldiers of veteran Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh on May 11 was an exception, partly due to the global influence of her employer, Al Jazeera Network.
Win a union election, and it’s a long road to a signed contract. Lose a union election, and workers may think the fight is over. But win, lose, or not even close to an election, workers at all kinds of workplaces can fight for their unions and win demands here and now. It's a strategy called “pre-majority” unionism, and the Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee (EWOC) is here to help navigate it. Where an election or contract victory doesn’t seem possible for years to come, workers are often ignored by existing unions that don’t have the resources to support them. But their continued organizing is key, we believe, to helping the labor movement grow. While they may not be able to win official recognition or a contract right away, these workers can still build shop floor unions and fight for and win improvements.
The Labour Party of Taiwan was founded in March 1989 by three groups of people. First, the veteran political prisoners of the martial law period in Taiwan who persisted in their struggle while they were imprisoned for a long time. Second, a collection of progressive intellectuals who were united by the well-known magazine “China Tide” (夏潮) in the 1970s and the equally prominent publication “The Human World” (人間) in the 1980s, including Chen Ying-zhen (陳映真), Su Qing-li (蘇慶黎), Wang Li-xia (汪立峽), and others. Third, there were some leaders of the labour and social movements at that time, such as Luo Mei-wen (羅美文) (now a member of the Hsinchu County Council), Ngan Kun-chuan (顏坤泉), and others. The establishment of the Labour Party of Taiwan initiated the third period in the history of the Left in Taiwan. The first period, from the early 1920s to 1931, was defined by the resistance against the Japanese Empire’s colonial rule;[i] the second period, from 1945 to the 1950s, was marked by the participation of the “Old Classmates” in the New Democratic Revolution[ii] in Taiwan; and the third period, from 1988 onwards,[iii] has been characterised by the re-uniting the labour movement with the movement for the reunification of China.
A few months into the special military operation in Ukraine, the Russian Radiological, Chemical, and Biological Defense (RCB) Troops began compiling data pertaining to the role and functions of US biolabs in Ukraine based on the documents they secured. Initially, Washington refused to admit the, however, later in time undersecretary of state Victoria Nuland did. According to RCB Troops Chief Igor Kirillov, “Russian troops have secured over 20,000 documents, reference and analytical materials, and interviewed eyewitnesses and participants in American military-biological programs,” since the start of the special operation. Furthermore, Kirillov confirmed that the documents, which remain under review and in the process of being deciphered, without any doubt reinforced the existing analysis, which argued that the Pentagon had intended to test biological weapons on the populations of the Eastern European country and its neighbors, Russia included.
Coast to coast, the biggest labor struggles happening today are happening at universities. We’ve seen it with grad workers at the University of California and adjuncts at The New School in New York. That movement has spread to Temple University in Philadelphia, too, where I teach. Just a few weeks ago, graduate workers voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike. But it’s not just grad workers who are organizing. Last semester, Temple undergrads formed the Temple University Undergraduate Workers Organizing Committee, or TUUWOC. And TUUWOC is moving aggressively to unionize the thousands of undergrad workers. Temple relies on about 4,100 undergrad workers. They do the kinds of mostly menial tasks that keep the university running from the honors center and student center to the IT offices, residence halls, and beyond.
There was a time in the last century when we, quite foolishly, believed incineration to be a superior means of waste disposal than landfills. And, for decades, many of America's most disadvantaged have been paying for those decisions with with their lifespans. South Baltimore's Curtis Bay neighborhood, for example, is home to two medical waste incinerators and an open-air coal mine. It's ranked in the 95th percentile for hazardous waste and boasts among the highest rates of asthma and lung disease in the entire country. The city's largest trash incinerator is the Wheelabrator–BRESCO, which burns through 2,250 tons of garbage a day. It has been in operation since the 1970s, belching out everything from mercury and lead to hydrochloric acid, sulfur dioxide, and chromium into the six surrounding working-class neighborhoods and the people who live there.
A new course in Sweden poses the question, “what will a self-sufficient Hällefors Municipality taste like in 2030?” Students on the course act like talent scouts. They search for unrealised food-growing potential across the region – people, unused land, forgotten traditions. An example could be a farmer who’s started to grow heritage wheat, but cannot find customers. Or a school teacher who wants to connect his students with a working farm. A student might spot an abandoned field near her home and and explore new ways to grow food there. Another might develop snacks to sell to a mountain bike business in the forest. At the end of each course, students pitch their ideas to real-world professionals – for example, chefs, farmers, or food production businesses.
Louisville, Kentucky - Employees at the only Trader Joe's store in Louisville voted in favor of organizing Thursday evening, becoming the third location of the national grocery chain to form a union. The store's workers will now be a part of the Trader Joe's United, the guild for employees across the country. The employees who voted in favor of unionizing won their vote 48-36, a release said, after taking action to do so in September. "We are so excited to be the first Trader Joe’s location affiliated with Trader Joe’s United in the south. It’s a game changing decision that will contribute massively to the modern labor movement," Connor Hovey, an employee of the store and union organizer, told The Courier Journal. A request for comment sent to Trader Joe's corporate Thursday night was not immediately returned.
How many Dollar General workers does it take to whip up a strike at Store #10635 on Broad River Road in Irmo, South Carolina? Two. Two, because Miranda Chavez and TyBrianna Shaw constitute the entirety of the location’s fulltime, non-managerial staff. Two, because when a store is so drastically understaffed that there’s only one worker in the building for an eight-hour shift, she doesn’t get a lunch break. Two, because when a worker is forced to close up alone at 11 p.m., she has to walk by herself to her car in a dark parking lot, where even the Dollar General sign no longer glows. Two, because it doesn’t matter how many people are on the payroll if workers aren’t provided with masks and gloves when unloading boxes dripping with corrosive chemicals. Those were among the complaints lodged against the Tennessee-based chain by Chavez and Shaw, who on January 17 became the first low-wage workers to strike under the auspices of the newly formed Union of Southern Service Workers.
As the Sandinista Revolution is finally able to make its platform a reality, Nicaragua has made significant achievements in healthcare, education, housing, renewable energy and food sovereignty, to name a few. One achievement that is starting to get more attention is the gain in equality for women. The Global Gender Gap Report for 2022 ranked Nicaragua 7th in the world for gender parity. Clearing the FOG spoke with Jill Clark-Gollub, who recently returned from a delegation to Nicaragua that focused on conditions for women. She describes the country as "run by women" who connect their feminism to the struggles against capitalism, colonialism and patriarchy. Clark-Gollub also dispels misinformation about Nicaragua being promoted in the US corporate media and explains how the US is working to undermine the gains of the Sandinistas through hybrid warfare.
Empires in terminal decline leap from one military fiasco to the next. The war in Ukraine, another bungled attempt to reassert U.S. global hegemony, fits this pattern. The danger is that the more dire things look, the more the U.S. will escalate the conflict, potentially provoking open confrontation with Russia. If Russia carries out retaliatory attacks on supply and training bases in neighboring NATO countries, or uses tactical nuclear weapons, NATO will almost certainly respond by attacking Russian forces. We will have ignited World War III, which could result in a nuclear holocaust. U.S. military support for Ukraine began with the basics — ammunition and assault weapons. The Biden administration, however, soon crossed several self-imposed red lines to provide a tidal wave of lethal war machinery
The US/NATO war on Russia via its proxy Ukraine has awakened significant opposition here in the US. For example, over 90 different actions against the US government, its wars, and imperialism were held last week under the initiative of the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC). Activists agree on the need to build up larger and stronger opposition to this war from an anti-imperialist standpoint. It is helpful to know there is an expanding base among the working class people for the building up a stronger and more organized opposition to US imperialist war than we have now. One way UNAC activists know this is from the positive responses seen while sloganeering and leafleting against the US government war on Russia; calling for the US government to open peace negotiations with Russia. Polling by various specialized organizations, that are far from being progressive or socialist, also shows there is a good basis for building up the majority of the population against US government war.