What the World Needs Now

By Bonnie Weinstein

Fight Back

A Collection of Socialist Essays

by Sylvia Weinstein

The capitalist world is in turmoil. Workers all over the world are victims of austerity designed to ensure abundant wealth for the rich—and workers are rising up in protest everywhere.

This includes in both Russia and China—both former worker’s states—the USSR (United Soviet Socialist Republics), a Stalinist state that degenerated from the democratic and revolutionary Soviets of Lenin and Trotsky back to capitalism; and China, a Stalinist state that was deformed from the start and has further degenerated back to capitalism while maintaining the power of the Chinese Communist Party—“Communist” in name only.

All the workers of the world are bearing the burden of capitalist exploitation, austerity, and the constant wars and threat of wars—including Russian, Chinese, and Iranian workers.

Some on the left think that Russia, since it is in competition with the U.S., has the right to invade Ukraine to protect itself from the claws of U.S. capitalism. They point to the fact that the U.S. has been involved in the manipulation of the Ukraine government making it an ally of the U.S. And since they rightly think that the U.S. is the reigning capitalist nation, support to Russia is justified as a blow to U.S. power and its stranglehold over the world.

What they are leaving out is the right of the Ukrainian, Russian, and Iranian workers to defend themselves—the Ukrainian people defending against Russian guns and bombs, Russian worker’s opposition to the war, conscription, austerity, and oppression as workers, and Iranian workers for equality, democracy and freedom from austerity, and the oppression of women.

Russia has no right to invade Ukraine or any other country. Nor does the U.S. have the right to carry out the wars and occupations they have been carrying out for centuries beginning with the occupation of the very land it stands on.

The U.S. is not just the strongest military power in the world today. The U.S. war manufacturing industry is the most profitable industry in the U.S. and in the world. They sell weapons to countries all over the world and they benefit from tax dollars ripped from the pockets of even the poorest workers here in the belly of the beast that is U.S. capitalism. It’s our tax dollars that pay for the U.S. military—for their nuclear weapons, ships, planes, submarines, weapons of mass destruction, their military bases, and the poor souls that make up their cannon fodder. And it’s our tax dollars that subsidize this giant war machine. War is a win-win industry for the U.S. and is essential to their ongoing struggle with the rest of the capitalist world to maintain their place as the most powerful military and economic power today.

Neither Russia—nor any capitalist country—is exempt from this competition for wealth and power. This is the very nature of capitalism itself. It is defined by constant war and competition among themselves.

Some who defend the Russian invasion of Ukraine with the rationale that it weakens the U.S. also condemn the Iranian women’s movement for equality and freedom claiming that the movement is a CIA plot to weaken the Iranian government—another government that challenges U.S. power—in essence— “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

Socialist Viewpoint unconditionally supports the right of the women of Iran, and all those who support them, in their fight for equality, democracy, and justice, bodily autonomy and against austerity designed to enrich the wealthy at the expense of the entire working class and the planet itself.

The only way to end this and all war is to end capitalism. And the only way to end capitalism is for the workers of the world to recognize that the capitalists have no power without our labor, our bodies, our minds.

In this issue of Socialist Viewpoint, we are presenting a discussion of differing views on the vicious and brutal Russian war on Ukraine reiterating our own position that Ukraine has the right to self-determination, including the right to defend itself against the Russian invasion by any means necessary. And, while we oppose U.S./NATO’s involvement in Ukraine—and everywhere else they stick their nose—we support the right of the Ukrainians to defend themselves with whatever weapons they can get their hands on.

Russia out of Ukraine Now! No U.S./NATO interference with Ukraine or any other government! Solidarity with the Russian antiwar movement! Solidarity with the women and workers of Iran! Solidarity with workers everywhere!