Europe

There is a common saying that people get the government they deserve. This saying is actually incorrect, as Trotsky points out in his masterly article, The Class, the Party and the Leadership. The same people can, and do, get very different governments in a very short space of time.

The republication of Alan Woods’ Ireland: Republicanism and Revolution, which has been out of print since 2005, could not have come at a more appropriate time. The British ruling class has just buried a monarch whose reign was synonymous with the long-term ‘managed decline’ of British imperialism. Today, the decay of British imperialism has reached a new, convulsive stage. The Union is fraying at the seams, and the national question is reemerging with renewed force, in Scotland and in the North of Ireland. ...

Yesterday, what is described as the “most right-wing” government since the Second World War was elected to office in Italy, with Fratelli d’Italia [Brothers of Italy], led by Giorgia Meloni, emerging as the first party, with 26 percent of the votes cast. How does one explain this surge in votes for a party that in 2018 won a mere 4.3 percent and elected only 32 MPs and 18 Senators? We will outline in this article the reason why such a radical change has taken place in Italian politics and outline the most likely perspective.

Yesterday, we reported that president Vladimir Putin had declared a partial mobilisation, after Russian forces were driven into a disorganised rout in the Kharkiv Oblast. In this podcast (recorded a few days before Putin’s announcement), Hamid Alizadeh and Jorge Martin, members of the marxist.com editorial board, discuss the main developments in the Ukraine war, and where the conflict is going.

In the last 24 hours, a series of important announcements have been made by Russia regarding the war in Ukraine: partial mobilisation affecting 300,000 people, referendums in the Russian-occupied territories in Ukraine about their annexation to Russia, stiffer sentences for crimes related to military service and the warning that Russia will use “all means at its disposal” to protect its territorial integrity.

The Italians have a phrase for it: È Finita la Commedia – the comedy is over. After 10 days of officially imposed ‘national mourning’, on Monday 19 September at Westminster Abbey – the historic church where Britain's kings and queens are crowned – the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth was held.

Following the death of the Queen, trade union leaders have cancelled planned strike action ‘out of respect’ to the Royal Family. But the Tories and bosses have not paused their class war. The labour movement must mobilise to topple their system.

Sweden’s most racist, nationalistic and out-of-touch election campaign in living memory has produced, appropriately enough, a government with a policy to make life worse for workers, while blaming it on immigrants. But no amount of racist slander can hide the enormous problems facing the Swedish masses. We must prepare for class struggle.

In the last few days, Ukrainian forces have made significant advances on the Kharkiv front, forcing the Russians into a disorganised retreat. Where did this surprise counteroffensive come from and what is its significance for the war overall?

As the country’s longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II represented a bygone age of stability. Her passing marks the beginning of a new era of crisis; another crumbling pillar of the British establishment, heralding revolutionary upheavals.

With the death of Queen Elizabeth II on 8 September, the British monarchy is once again in the media spotlight. Amidst a flood of reactionary apologias, Marxists must cut through the propaganda and tell the truth about the role of the monarchy in capitalist society. As a result, we republish here an article by Alan Woods, written in 1997 at the time of Princess Diana’s death, analysing the real nature of the monarchy and its position as a fundamental pillar of the British establishment. While the article does not deal with recent events, its in-depth assessment of the role of the Royal Family under capitalism continues to hold true today.

The 2022 national camp of Alziamo la Testa (“Let's raise our heads”), the first held by the youth organisation of the Italian Marxists, was a big success. We are particularly proud of what we have achieved in the last few years, and our progress was attested to at the event, which was attended by young revolutionaries from more than 26 cities, who were all thrilled to finally meet all the new comrades face-to-face after two years of the pandemic.

The fall of the Draghi government in Italy has resulted in snap elections being called for 25 September. While panic abounds about the inevitable victory of a right-wing coalition led by Meloni’s “Brothers of Italy” party, the fact is that workers and youth have few illusions that a change at the top will improve their situation, which has become increasingly desperate. A lack of leadership from the left and trade union tops means workers will have to take the fight to defend their wages and conditions to the streets. Almighty class struggle is implicit in this situation.