National Sections of the L5I:

Issues

30 Theses in Defence of Trotskyism

These theses began life in the discussion period in the 1980s in various Trotskyist tendencies and were updated and republished in the early 90s. Read more...

Democrats no answer for US workers

Only 25% of registered Democratic voters bothered to turn out in the recent New York primary, an area vital to front-runner Bill Clinton’s bid for the White House. Read more...

Russia’s fast track to ruin

At the end of March IMF Director Michel Camdessus commended Yeltsin for his “bold and comprehensive economic reform programme” launched on 2 January. IMF membership is Russia’s prize. What reward the Russian peoples can expect from capitalism, Camdessus did not say. Keith Harvey surveys the restoration process and looks at the options for Yeltsin and his imperialist backers. Read more...

Fighting the rise of the far right in Europe

In April the racist Republikaner Party stunned Germany by attracting 11% of the vote in a state election. Here Mark Harrison looks critically at the left’s response to the challenge posed by the growth of far right and fascist parties throughout Europe.

In the March 1992 regional elections France saw Le Pen’s Front National (FN) gain 3.3 million votes. The Vlaams Blok in Belgium won 10.4% of the vote, and 12 seats in parliament, in the November 1991 elections as compared to 3% in 1987. In Germany the Republikaner continues to grow and is now backed by the owners of the multinational corporation, Muller. In Sweden the “New Democracy” won 6.6% of the vote in September 1991 against a background of increased racist attacks on black people and immigrants from Eastern Europe. Read more...

The rise of the right across Europe

Over the last year far right and fascist parties, like the Vlaams Blok in Belgium, the Front National (FN) in France, the Republikaner Party in Germany and the Lombardy League in Northern Italy, have either grown considerably or achieved significant votes in local and national elections. Dave Beech looks at the factors underpinning these developments and explains what the workers’ movement’s response needs to be. Read more...

Lessons of the Gulf War

On 2 August 1990 Iraq launched a lightning attack on Kuwait. In a few hours the Emir’s vastly outnumbered armed forces had surrendered. Less than four weeks later, Saddam Hussein re-baptised Kuwait “Saddamiyat” and annexed it as the 19th Iraqi province.

On 15 January 1991, after months of diplomacy and war preparations, the USA led a coalition of forces to remove Hussein in a bloody and reactionary war. In the first 100 hours the Allies captured or destroyed 42 Iraqi divisions (12,000 troops each) and took 175,000 prisoners. 3,009 Iraqi tanks and 2,140 pieces of artillery—55% and 61% respectively of Saddam’s arsenal—were captured or destroyed. Read more...

Centrism in its dotage: USFI 1980-1991

Of all the international tendencies claiming to be “the” Fourth International (FI), the United Secretariat of the Fourth International (USFI) has the best claim on at least one score. All the other tendencies (the Lambertists, the Morenoites and the Healyites) are rooted in a national leadership that either left or was expelled from the FI during the period between 1951 and 1963. The USFI can claim an international leadership with a substantial continuity”at the level of personnel” with the young militants grouped around Michel Pablo who carried out the post-war reconstruction of the Inter-national. Read more...

The USSR at the crossroads

Since mid-November 1990 Mikhail Gorbachev has sponsored a creeping coup against his own policy of glasnost. Fragile and limited democratic rights have been conceded by the bureaucracy since 1985 and extended de facto by the struggles of the new workers’ movement and the revolt of the nationalities. They are all under attack. Read more...