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[Palestine] [International Connections] [Hunger Strike]
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PALESTINE: Revolutionary Nationalist Prisoner Reaches Agreement In 140 day Hunger Strike

Hisham Abu Hawash breaking hunger strike on day 141

On 28 December 2021, Hisham Abu Hawash of the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine has gained victory against I$rael’s counter-revolutionary policy of “administrative detention.” Hawash’s lawyer, Jawad Boulos, has stated that I$rael pledged for Hawsah’s release on 26 February 2022 and therefore the hunger strike will end.(1)

Hawsah is a 40-year-old father of 5 and a member of the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine. He is among several Palestinian revolutionaries waging a hunger strike in protest of I$rael’s unjust policy of administrative detention. He has faced 8 years of time imprisoned with 4 of those years under administrative detention.(2)

The Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine (PIJ) rightfully threatened counter-attacks if Hawsah ever died in custody.(3)

Palestinians across the occupied land have gone in protests supporting the strikers. One protest in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on 6 January 2022, included signs which read: “Those starving behind bars feed the universe with dignity” – a slogan we extend to hunger strikers not only in Palestine but across the world.(4)

The Reactionary Policy of Administrative Detention

Administrative detention is a form of arrest or imprisonment done without trial – usually for issues of “terrorism” or rebellion. Many imperialist countries use the tactic of administrative detention.(5) In the United $tates for example, around 182,869 migrants from the Third World were held in detention centers through this method in 2020.(6) Despite the more advanced and developed contradictions between Israel and Palestine, compared to oppressed nations in North America and the United $tates, I$rael held a mere 1,595 Palestinians in administrative detentions. Amerika has truly earned the title “Big Satan” in contrast to I$rael’s “Little Satan” status on this front.(7) The administrative detention policy of the I$raelis work through the arrest and detention of Palestinian revolutionaries and activists. The idealists arguing for I$rael will say that administrative detention has been applied to I$raelis as well – notably, against ultra-chauvinist zionist terrorists and unruly settlers. Throughout the years, only 9 I$raelis were held in administrative detention; Palestinians and Arabs number in the thousands.(8) Any sober minded person and materialist will be able to recognize that the exception proves the rule in this case like so many often times.

DOWN WITH ADMINISTRATIVE DETENTION!

THOSE STARVING BEHIND BARS FEED THE WORLD’S DIGNITY

Notes: 1. Joseph Krauss, “Palestinian prisoner ends hunger strike in deal with Israel” Associated Press, January 4th 2022

2. Ibid.

3. Ibid.

4. Ibid.

5. “Israel’s Policy of Administrative Detention,” European Parliament

6. “United States Immigration Detention Profile,” Global Detention Project

7. “Prisoners society: Israel issued 1,595 administrative detention orders against Palestinians in 2021,” Press TV

8. “Stop Administrative Detention,” Prisoner Support Human Rights Association

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[Afghanistan] [U.S. Imperialism] [ULK Issue 75]
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Whither Afghanistan?

Taking Kabul

On Thursday, 12 August 2021, CNN reported that Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul would fall into the hands of the Taliban in 30 to 60 days.(1) On Sunday the 15th (only 3 days later!) the Taliban took control of Kabul. One day after that, the chief comprador leader of the Islamic Republic, Ashraf Ghani, fled the country on an airplane.

As thousands stormed the capital’s airport to flee the country from the Taliban takeover, U.$. soldiers escorting Amerikan personnel shot and killed two Afghanis on the tarmac of Kabul International Airport.(2) Video footage captured citizens hanging onto the side of the airplane and falling off mid-departure.

In regards to the humiliating end note of their 20 years war, the National $ecurity Advisor pig Jake Sullivian said the following:

“Despite the fact that we spent 20 years and tens of billions of dollars to give the best equipment, the best training and the best capacity to the Afghan security forces, we could not give them the will and they ultimately decided that they would not fight for Kabul and they would not fight for the country.”(3)

U.$. imperialism and the “democracy” they claim to spread around the world propped up the extremely reactionary government of the now fallen Islamic Republic. Despite wimmin’s rights having been a focal excuse for the imperialists to invade Afghanistan, their puppets in the Islamic Republic had no meaningful difference in wimmin’s rights in Afghanistan.

To the U.$. imperialists, their defeat (while surprising in how quickly Kabul fell) did not come as shock. On Saturday, 29 February 2020, (around a year and half before the fall of Kabul) the United $tates and the Taliban met in a five star hotel in Qatar and signed agreements to end the 20 years war.(4) One of the primary points of the agreements was complete withdrawal of U.$. troops within 14 months.(5) It seems that this is one of the rare agreements in which Amerikans made a promise and actually kept it with an oppressed nation. Other agreements included Taliban’s refusal to “terrorist groups” such as Al-Qaeda to use Afghanistan’s territory as operation grounds, and lifting of U.$. sanctions on the country.

The Sober Taliban?

In the Amerikan press, there were two big talking points around their defeat in Afghanistan. One was the would-be refugees trying to flee Afghanistan into the arms of Amerika, which nicely reinforces the story that Amerikans were the saviors in the country after all. The second was how wimmin would fair when the Taliban took over again. This reinforces the justification for invading Afghanistan to have been to liberate wimmin from gender oppression, a point that continues to serve U.$. militarism even after a failed 20 year war. A point that had nothing to do at all with why the U.$. invaded.

The Taliban is not unaware of these perceptions, leading to their representatives at the peace negotiations to suggest for less backwards treatment of wimmin under their rule.(6) Zabihullah Mujahid has claimed that they will “honor women’s rights,” and the “independence of private media” (journalists, news organizations, etc.).(7)

Mujahid’s comment highlights an important part of the Taliban’s new look (and most importantly, their class character). As rising from the bourgeois nationalist position, they were part of a country-wide Islamic movement to usurp warlord factions which ruled Afghanistan. The warlords themselves rose with western aid to usurp Soviet social-imperialist compradors led by Mohammad Najibullah. Mohammad Najibullah also started out with bourgeois nationalist tendencies usurping monarchist compradors.

After coming to power in the 1990s, the Taliban were overthrown by the U.$. imperialists themselves in the early 2000s after seeking to bite the hand that fed them decades before. Now, in 2021, they have risen to the seat again in Kabul. In order to maintain legitimacy, they must seek acceptability to new potential imperialist sponsors. If that means talking the talk to become the neo-colonial semi-feudal comprador state that the puppet regime beforehand never lived up to, then they must do it out of tactical necessity. Despite this tricky position that they have found themselves in, the United $tates’ do not seem to be the number one contender as Afghanistan’s neo-colonial ruler.

Upon the line of which class interest is at the helm of Afghanistan’s liberation from the United $tates’, we should also emphasize that under the leadership of the national bourgeois there was also the petty-bourgeoisie, the peasantry, and the agricultural proletariat within the Taliban movement. This character of Afghanistan’s national liberation gives time and space for the Afghan masses to breathe and provide necessary conditions for discussions on the country’s past, present, and future: what is to be done? What were the historical conditions that led up to colonial exploitations and humiliation? What does our liberation from the U.$. imperialists mean today? These questions will be further asked during the transformation of subjective and objective forces by revolutionaries.

The Social-Imperialist Road to Afghanistan

China was one of the first major imperialist countries to recognize the Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan and the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan as a legitimate country.(8) It is nothing new for social-imperialism (not only in Afghanistan but for the whole world) to hijack bourgeois nationalist movements and turn them into satellite states. The number one tactic of Soviet social-imperialism was through neo-colonial aid, and China seems to be using the same tactic. China’s foreign minister Wang Yi said on September 8th, only a few weeks after the Taliban’s victory, that they will be providing the Taliban government $31 million dollars equivalent in food and aid.(9)

While publicly declaring their $31 million dollar deal with the Taliban, Wang Yi has also expressed calls for the Taliban to combat and remove the Uyghar jihadist movements of Xinjiang province – primarily the Turkestan Islamic Party (TIP). Where China borders Afghanistan, the Xinjiang province is where most Uyghars reside (a majority Muslim national minority group of China facing oppression). The Turkestan Islamic Party – which has had historical alliances with the Taliban of Afghanistan – poses a major threat to the stability of capitalist China alongside the general Uyghar minority group. As a group who once declared liberation for the Muslim world, the Taliban will now have to be in a position of being the agents for Chinese social-imperialism against fellow Muslim nations/organizations. This is the limit to Jihadism as an anti-imperialist force (and other bourgeois nationalist anti-imperialisms) and the poisonous consequences of social-imperialism. Without Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, liberated countries will only fall back to colonialism.

Long Live Afghanistan

The United $tates’ defeat in Afghanistan, and the Taliban’s victory is a victory for the Afghan people. For the first time, Afghanistan could have a chance of being an independent nation state in our modern capitalist era. However, foreign meddling by the Amerikans, Chinese and others continue to threaten the development of Afghanistan’s self-determination. It is only by continuing down the road of independence that questions of economics, gender and the urban/rural divide in the country can be adequately addressed. The Taliban has served as a historically important and necessary opponent of foreign occupation, but the Afghan people need more than that to continue to address the contradictions they face as a nation. Revolutionaries here in the United $tates must continue to oppose our government’s interference in that progress.

Long Live Afghanistan!

Down with world imperialism!

Notes

1. Barbara Starr, “Intelligence assessments warn Afghan capital could be cut off and collapse in coming months,” CNN, 12 August 2021.

2. Rebecca Klapper, “U.S. Military Fatally Shoots 2 at Kabul Airport as Biden Orders in 1,000 Additional Troops,” Newsweek, 12 August 12, 2021.

3. Ibid.

4. Saphora Smith, “U.S.-Taliban sign landmark agreement in bid to end America’s longest war,” MSNBC, 29 February 2020.

5. Ibid.

6. Amanda Thub, “Why the Taliban’s Repression of Women May Be More Tactical Than Ideological,” The New York Times, 4 October 2021.

7. Associated Press, “The Taliban Claim They’ll Respect Women’s Rights — With Their Reading Of Islamic Law,” NPR, August 12, 2021

8. Memri, “During September, China-Taliban Relations Continued To Strengthen,” 5 October 2021.

9. Helen Reagan, “China to provide Afghanistan with $31 million worth of food and Covid vaccines,” CNN, 9 September 2021.

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[Palestine] [International Connections] [Hunger Strike] [ULK Issue 75]
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Attica 2 Gilboa: Long Live Palestine!

prisoners support gaza liberation struggle

The Escape

On 6 September 2021, 6 Palestinian prisoners of war have escaped an I$raeli maximum security prison known as Gilboa by digging a tunnel with plates and panhandles.(1) The tunnel was 72 meters long, and the I$raeli Security Agency has suspected that the excavation had started around November of 2020.(2) This incident is being talked of as the most significant prison break in the history of Palestine.

The 6 Palestinian prisoners were members of Palestinian nationalist organizations (The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades and the al-Quds Brigades) which have resisted the I$raeli occupation.(3) Out of the 6, four of the escaped freedom fighters were serving life sentences.(4)

In response to the prison break, the I$raeli Prison Service (IPS), launched a lockdown on Palestinian prisoners: break time has been cut to one hour a day; prison canteen has been closed; and the number of captives able to walk in the yard has been decreased. 400 prisoners, who have been deemed “Jihadist” and a threat to the security of the prisons, have been separated from one another as well. On top of this, family visits have been completely taken away by the pigs.(5) For our readers on the inside, these tactics by the I$raeli prison pigs to punish all for the actions of some sound similar as the United $tates and I$rael are very similar in character. Both are settler-colonial states, and both trade and exchange tactics/information used to better repress their respective oppressed nations.

The Day of Rage

In response to this crackdown, I$raeli prisons faced strikes and riots. In Katziot prison, seven cells were set on fire by Palestinian prisoners and hunger strikes have been set to begin in Gilboa on Friday, 17 Septemebr 2021.(6) The Palestinian Prisoners Affairs Commission has declared that 1,380 prisoners have joined the hunger strikes.(7)

Outside of the prison walls, the nationalist organization Hamas has declared a “Day of Rage” on the Friday of September 10th.(8) At the al-Aqsa mosque, supporters of the escaped freedom fighters have organized a sit in protest after the end of prayer. The I$raeli forces stormed the mosque in response to the protest and killed one man and arrested another. The man killed was a Palestinian doctor named Hazem al-Jolani.(9)

About a week after the escape, the 6 prisoners were recaptured into imprisonment. One of the freedom fighters, Yaqoub Mahmoud Qadri, was put in solitary confinement with nothing but a blanket and was subjected to physical and psychological torture.(10) All other prisoners involved in the escape were sent to separate high security prisons as well.(11)

Internationalism in the Prison Movement

While studying Engels’ writings on the bourgeois state, Lenin said the following:

“Engels elucidates the concept of the ‘power’ which is called the state, a power which arose from society but places itself above it and alienates itself more and more from it. What does this power mainly consist of? It consists of special bodies of armed men having prisons, etc., at their command.”(12)

As Lenin explains, prisons serve a class purpose in maintaining power in class society. In the world we live in today, the bourgeois class utilizes prisons to control their “unruly” populations under their command. Under socialism and proletarian dictatorship, prisons will exist as well (albeit under principles of rectification and rehabilitation learned from the past socialist experiences rather than punishment for punishment’s sake). For the case of not only the 6 prisoners of war who escaped Gilboa, but also for all prisoners in Palestine and all prisoners in the United $tates, their facilities are a material form of capitalist-imperialist power locking them up in their every move. Here in the United $tates, we have had historic moments of prisoners fighting against the repression and seeking for redemption and liberation through class struggle. The Attica uprising of 9 September 1971 is a prime example of that class struggle. With Attica as the battle cry of the revolutionary prison movement in the United $tates, we hope to reach that cry across the oceans and to Palestine itself.

From Attica 2 Gilboa!

Down with the I$raeli Prison Service! Down with the Department of Corrections!

Bibliography 1. Toi Staff, September 14, 2021, “Jailbreak probe said to find 11 Gilboa prisoners started tunnel dig in November.” Times of Israel 2. Ibid. 3. The Palestine Chronicle, September 6, 2021, “Six Palestinian Prisoners Break out of Gilboa Prison after Digging Tunnel” 4. Ibid. 5. Middle East Eye, September 10, 2021, “Palestinian killed during ‘day of rage’ solidarity protests for prison escapees” 6. Khaled Abu Tomaeh, September 14, 2021, “Palestinian prisoners to begin hunger strike Friday,” The Jerusalem Post. 7. Ibid. 8. Ibid. 9. Ibid. 10.Yeni Safak, September 16, 2021, “Palestinian prison escapee to keep fighting for freedom.” 11. Middle East Eye, October 1, 2021, “Israel: Recaptured Palestinian jailbreakers transferred to solitary confinement” 12. Vladimir Lenin, August 1917, “State and Revolution.”

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[International Communist Movement] [Latin America] [Revolutionary History] [ULK Issue 75]
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Long Live Chairman Gonzalo

On 11 September 2021, Chairman Gonzalo has been reported to be dead by the Peruvian prison service and the Peruvian government.(1) The president of Peru, Pedro Castillo, has tweeted in regards to Gonzalo’s death:

“The terrorist ringleader Abimael Guzmán, responsible for the loss of countless lives of our compatriots, has died. Our stance of condemning terrorism is firm and unwavering.”

Born as Abimael Guzmán, Chairman Gonzalo was the leader of the Partido Comunista del Perú(PCP) also known as the Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path in English). The PCP initiated People’s War in Peru in 1980, and waged a righteous struggle against the U.$.-backed regimes in Peru until the capture of its leadership in 1992. Arguably the first communist leader to explain Maoism as the next stage of communism, Gonzalo was instrumental in pushing these ideas within the international communist movement.

At age 86, Gonzalo had lived in complete isolation in a Peruvian prison for 29 years. Long-term solitary confinement is a form of torture used around the world to combat political dissent. It is used most extensively within the United $tates, where in recent years over 100,000 people languished in such conditions.

Religious Idealism Barks

Gonzalo was an infamous figure in Peruvian society. The revolutionary violence of the PCP sparked hostile reactions especially from the petty bourgeoisie, the middle-peasants, and the likes within Peru. One outspoken figure which repeated these sentiments condemning Gonzalo on his death day was Archbishop Eguren of the Catholic Church in Peru. During a mass on September 12, a day after Gonzalo’s death, Eguren said this referring to the Maoist ideology and the Maoists of Peru:

“Along with him fell the principal members of his communist, terrorist, genocidal, and murderous gang, which caused the massacres of entire communities of poor inhabitants of our Andes and jungle regions in the 1980s and 1990s.”(2)

The Archbishop continued:

“The day Guzmán was captured was also one year after the start of the campaign ‘Peace in Peru is well worth a Rosary.’ This campaign was conceived and promoted by Bishop Ricardo Durand Flórez S.J., a great Peruvian bishop who, throughout his life and ministry, worked hard for the poor according to the Gospel.”(3)

After condemning Marxism through the usual Christian idealism, Archbishop Eguren replaces the anti-capitalist vacuum with the Catholic church’s historical response to poverty and capitalist ills: distribution of wealth and charity to the poor. We Maoists do not believe in the metaphysical notion that “the poor will always be with us,” nor that walking across a homeless person on the street is a test by god to prove ourselves of our good heart and soul. We believe poverty – and the impoverished proletariat along with the rich bourgeoisie – comes out of material phenomena: rise of capitalism through revolution, class struggle, and change of production relations. Thus, the elimination of poverty and capitalist ills will be done through the proletarian revolution against capitalism, class struggle, and change of production relations as well; not through wealth redistribution nor through charity.

Along with condemning Marxism, Eguren used this chance to call for the elimination of the politicians and bureaucrats of the current Peruvian government who had historical ties to the Maoist movement:

“We Peruvians should not forget, for an instant what this intrinsically perverse ideology embodies, as well as the immense suffering it has caused in the recent history of our country, much less allow it today to be able to seize total power. Therefore: Mr. President, clean up your cabinet!”(4)

Reformism Barks

Chairman Gonzalo and the PCP’s legacy in Peru is often associated with the “violent left.” So it is appropriate that one of the most popular opportunist and reformist newsletters, Jacobin, condemned Gonzalo by saying that Peru’s left is finally free to “move forward.”(5)

In the article, “The Shining Path’s Abimael Guzmán Helped Keep Peru in the Past,” Jacobin news cited the Lucanamarca massacre and the violence of the PCP against the indigenous masses as one of the main arguments against the PCP. The Communist Party of Peru (PCP) has mentioned in their writings the attacks against the masses by the masses, and how the state security used the differing class levels of the peasantry against itself (poor peasants, middle peasants, rich peasants). These tactics to divide the masses are used against the communists of India as well. In the remote and countryside regions under the leadership of the Communist Party of India (CPI-Maoist), the capitalist lapdogs in India find it much more useful to use local reactionaries against the guerrillas than using the army. If not the local police, it is the paramilitary organizations of rich peasants, middle peasants, lumpen-bourgeoisie, lumpen-proletariat, etc. that is attacking the Maoists. In Peru, the majority of the PCP guerrillas were indigenous themselves as the main population base in the communists’ base areas were indigenous.

When judging the legacy of a People’s War and a revolutionary party, communists should know when to throw away the baby with the bathwater and when to still keep it. Before the capitalist roaders overthrew socialism in the Soviet Union, many of the errors of what would become the capitalist line (commandism and economism) has been planted by Stalin as well and other comrades. This did not cause Mao to throw away Stalin’s legacy. In the same breath, when Fidel Castro liberated Cuba from imperialism and semi-feudalism, his merits were part of a worldwide movement for national liberation of the colonies at the time – it isn’t until Castro’s selling out of the entire island to the Soviet social-imperialists as a sugar factory that Maoists should throw Castro away.

Heavier Than Mount Tai

It is well within the realms of material reality that the PCP’s legacy among the general Peruvian society lies not only in the Peruvian comprador bourgeoisie who propagate the ideas of the PCP as bloodthirsty terrorists, but also within the bad lines and practices of the PCP as well. It is an often repeated idea we hear that if the revolution fails, it is the fault of the revolutionaries. In the same light, it’s the internal characteristics not the external of a communist movement that will ultimately decide its success and failures.

We must draw a clear line between us and those who condemn the PCP because they waged People’s War. Whatever internal contradictions led to the collapse of the Peruvian revolution, it was a shining example in theory by leading the world to the concrete ideas of Maoism and in practice in mobilizing the Peruvian people to control a majority of Peru before their fall.

Communists should learn their lessons from their errors in history. For the enemy to say, “Denounce Gonzalo!” is for them to also say “Don’t learn your lessons! Give up revolution!” Nevertheless, no matter what the Catholic idealists or the writers of Jacobin wish, the PCP and Chairman Gonzalo’s legacy will not go away as easily as they wish.

Long Live Chairman Gonzalo – Death Heavier than Mount Tai.

Notes 1. RPP, September 11th, 2021, “Murió Abimael Guzmán, el sanguinario cabecilla del grupo terrorista Sendero Luminoso.”

2. David Ramos, September 13th, 2021, “Archbishop calls on Peruvian president to rid his administration of ties to Shining Path.” Catholic News Agency.

3. Ibid.

4. Ibid.

5. Miguel La Serna, September 15, 2021, “The Shining Path’s Abimael Guzmán Helped Keep Peru in the Past.” Jacobin.

6. Communist Party of Peru, Collected Writings.

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[Russia] [Asia]
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KAZAKHSTAN: Spike in Oil Prices Spark Mass Uprising

On 2 January 2022, mass protests raged across the cities of Kazakhstan in response to the sharp spike in oil prices. 3,000 Russian paratroopers were called into the country to quell the uprising,(1) and 5,800 people were detained during the unrest with 164 people reported to have been killed.(2)

A Single Spark in Zhanaozen

One day before the uprising, the Kazakh government started off the new year with a lifting of the government enforced fuel price cap. This action doubled the fuel price of 60 tenge to an average of 120 tenge per litre (approx. U$D $1.06 per gallon). With the average monthly income of a minimum wage proletarian being less than the equivalent of $100 a month, the rebellious consequences of a one day doubling of fuel prices – in a country with oil production as its major industry – isn’t surprising.(3)

The beginnings of the uprising started in the city of Zhanaozen located on the far eastern coast of the country’s coasts – which borders the Caspian sea. Protestors blocked the roads, demanding stabilization of gas prices and prevention of fuel shortages. Two Akims (Akim is a title of local leaders in provincial, district, or municipal government of Kazakhstan) were called by the demonstrators: Akim Nogaev and Akim Ibagarov – neither were brought forth. Instead, acting leader of the city of Zhanaozen Akim Baijanov advised the crowd of protestors to write a complaint letter to the city administration.

Encampments of tents and protestors numbering in the 100s popped up in other cities of the country. Most of these encampments were staged on the respective city’s center squares. The crowds of encampment expanded to 1000s, and the demands chanted shifted from stabilization of gas prices towards fair elections of local leaders. By 4 January 2022, the biggest city and former capital of Kazakhstan, Almaty, had 1,000 protestors in the centre of the city. Police tactics of stun grenades and tear gas were used against the demonstrators, and the president declared a state of emergency. The country faced a mass internet outage; the mayor’s office of Almaty was stormed and set ablaze; and locations of firearms were seized by protestors.

On the 6th of January, dozens of protestors alongside 12 Almaty police officers were reported to be killed with one officer who was found beheaded.(4) Mass “looting” and burning of government buildings occurred with 2,298 people having been arrested for partaking in the protest. On the same morning, 3,000 Russian troops were sent from Moscow after president Tokayev of Kazakhstan made a “formal” request of assistance.(5) The police and the army of Kazakhstan at this point in the uprising was ordered a “shoot to kill” policy on the protestors.(6) After days of gunfire and burning, the Interior Ministry of Kazakhstan has claimed 175 million Euros in property damage; 160 people dead; and 5,000 arrested.(7)

Soviet Revisionism’s Legacy in Kazakhstan

Approximately 100 years before the masses were on the streets rebelling against a corrupt and despotic bourgeois dictatorship, Kazakhstan was facing immense amounts of transformation as the nation – like many of the colonial or semi-colonial nations at the time – were entering the world of modern capitalism-imperialism. In the early 1900s, Kazakhstan faced settler-colonialism and imperialist rule by the czarist government. During the 19th century to the first third of the 20th century, Kazakhstan was settling around 400,000 Russians. Resentment against colonial rule, and competition of land with foreign settlers in a semi-feudal country resulted in various revolts.

Three years after the czarist government fell and Russia became the first proletarian dictatorship on a country-wide scale; Kazakhstan came under socialist rule in 1920. Through the war against fascism, Kazakhstan saw industrialization but mostly still stayed an agricultural economy. After the war, with Stalin’s death in 1953 and the restoration of capitalism in the USSR by Khrushchev, Kazakhstan also enters a new period in history.

The “virgin lands campaign” by Khrushchev would transform Kazakhstan into a major grain producer for the Soviet Union. Transformation of smaller and weaker nations under the control of the Soviet social-imperialism into monolithic agricultural hubs for Russia was often the fate of recently liberated countries. Cuba, for example, became the major sugar producer for the USSR. With further bureaucratization of the republic’s government into the hands of the social-imperialists of Moscow, Kazakhs became a minority in Kazakhstan by 1959 making up only 30% of the country.

With further weakening of the revisionist Soviet state, the bureaucratic state-capitalist government of Kazakhstan would declare independence on 16 December 1991. It was the last Soviet republic to declare independence. Ten days later, the USSR itself would no longer exist and turned into the Russian Federation. The revisionist bureaucrats governing Kazakhstan would become the leaders of the new and Liberalized economy. The Kazakh masses would enter a new period of industrial exploitation.

In 2011, proletarian workers of the oil fields in Zhanaozen (the same city which sparked the uprising this January of 2022) would form a strike for better wages and working conditions. The state oil company fired 1,000 of these workers and the strike was declared illegal by the local courts. The protest went on with furthering of demands such as independent political parties formed by workers free from the government – similar to our own work of building independent institutions within U.$. prisons. On the 16th of January, the police opened fire at protestors causing 11 to die.

Revisionist Geopolitics vs Internationalism

With the quelling of January 2022, Russian president Vladimir Putin described the new year’s event as a “foreign backed terrorist uprising.”(8) The president of China, Xi Jinping, expressed that “China opposes external forces triggering unrest in Kazakhstan.”(9) With the social-imperialist Chinese “Communist” Party and the imperialist Russian Federation being the great hope of revisionists and social-chauvinists around the world; many revisionists express this sentiment that all mass uprisings in the Third World against Russian or Chinese friendly governments are a ploy from external forces.

When it was socialist, China called for a relentless criticism of revisionism and for rebellion against reactionaries. Since 1976, modern Chinese Communist Party is always promoting unprincipled peace and “stability” indicating how much the colors have turned in the former socialist republic. As Maoists, we recognize that internal contradictions are always the impetus of change as external contradictions are the basis of how that change and movement is played out. Even if the first stone cast in Kazakhstan was from the hands of a covert CIA spy – or an “Islamic radical” as Kazakhstan’s government would state – the fact that there was a prairie fire for a single spark to start in the first place reveals much in regards to the objective conditions of Kazakhstan’s political economy and the subjective forces of the masses of Kazakhstan. Unless the revisionists claim that every single protestor was a non-Kazakh foreign spy, this claim is idealist and metaphysical. A real internationalist political line would be the recognition of the people of Kazakhstan as friends against world imperialism, and part of the world’s people while also being able to combat against respective communists in each imperialist country in political control and economic exploitation of the nation of Kazakhstan.

Notes 1. Walker, Bisenov, “Russian paratroopers arrive in Kazakhstan as unrest continues,” The Guardian, January 6, 2022.
2. Heintz, “Kazakhstan says 164 killed in last week’s protests,” AP News, January 9, 2022.
3. Kantchev, “Kazakhstan’s Elite Got Richer on Natural Resources. Then Came the Unrest.” Wall Street Journal, January 7, 2022.
4. Walker, “Dozens of protesters and police dead amid Kazakhstan unrest.” The Guardian, January 6, 2022.
5. “Moscow-led bloc to send ‘peacekeeping forces’ to protest-hit Kazakhstan.” France 24, January 5, 2022.
6. “Kazakhstani president issues ‘shoot to kill’ order to quell protests” The Hill, January 7th, 2022.
7. “Kazakhstan: More than 160 killed, 5,000 arrested during riots,” Al Jazeera, January 9th, 2022.
8. Vaal, “Putin claims victory in defending Kazakhstan from revolt,” Reuters, January 10th, 2022.
9.“China opposes external forces triggering unrest in Kazakhstan, says Xi Jinping.” Asian News International, January 7th, 2022.

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