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southern africa / migration / racism Sunday December 15, 2013 23:39 by Shawn Hattingh and Lucien van der Walt
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The destruction of the apartheid state form, with its odious policies of coercion and racism, was a major triumph for the working class in South Africa and elsewhere, showing that ordinary people can challenge and defeat systems that seem quite unbreakable. Mandela did play a heroic role, but was also the first to admit that “It is not the kings and generals that make history but the masses of the people, the workers, the peasants, the doctors, the clergy." And indeed, it was the black working class, above all, that through struggle tore down many features of apartheid by the late 1980s, such as the pass law system, the Group Areas Act and numerous other odious laws and policies.

The 1994 transition in South Africa was a political revolution, a break with the apartheid and colonial periods of state-sanctioned white supremacy, a “massive advance” in the conditions of the majority. It introduced a new state, based on non-racialism, in which South Africa was to be a multi-racial, multi-cultural but unified country, founded on human rights; welfare and social policy and legislation was transformed; capitalism was kept in place, but despite this, there were very massive and very real changes, political and material, that made qualitative differences in the daily lives of millions of black and working class people. And for millions, it is precisely the association of Mandela with that victory and with those changes that makes him so emotionally powerful.

Yet at the same time, Mandela’s policies and politics had important limitations that must be faced if the current quandary of South Africa, nearly 20 years later, is to be understood. Mandela never sold out: he was committed to a reformed capitalism, and a parliamentary democracy, and unified South Africa based on equal civil and political rights, a project in which black capitalists and black state elites would loom large. These goals have been achieved, but bring with them numerous problems that must be faced up if the final liberation – including national liberation – of South Africa’s working class is to be achieved.

The 1994 breakthrough was a major victory, but it was not the final one, for a final one requires a radical change in society, towards a libertarian and socialist order based on participatory democracy, human needs rather than profit and power, and social and economic justice, and attention to issues of culture and the psychological impact of apartheid.

As long as the basic legacy of apartheid remains, in education, incomes, housing and other spheres, and as long as the working class of all races is excluded from basic power and wealth by a black and white ruling class, so long will the national question – the deep racial / national divisions in South Africa, and the reality of ongoing racial/ national oppression for the black, Coloured and Indian working class – remain unresolved. And so long will it continue to generate antagonisms and conflicts, the breeding ground for rightwing populist demagogy, xenophobia and crime. By contrast, a powerful black elite, centred on the state and with a growing corporate presence, has achieved its national liberation.

bolivia / peru / ecuador / chile / education Thursday December 05, 2013 19:15 by José Antonio Gutiérrez D.
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Melissa Sepúlveda, presidenta de la Federación de Estudiantes de la Universidad de Chile

Melissa Sepúlveda, estudiante de medicina de 22 años, militante del Frente de Estudiantes Libertarios (FeL) y feminista libertaria de La Alzada, ha sido elegida, a mediados de Noviembre, presidenta de la Federación de Estudiantes de la Universidad de Chile (Fech) como candidata de la lista Luchar, con un 31,2% de los votos. Esta lista es la expresión de “un espacio de construcción político y social que se levanta a fines del 2011 con la finalidad de hacer converger diferentes trabajos de base existentes en la Universidad de Chile gestados por, organizaciones e independientes de Izquierda de Intención Revolucionaria que apuntan al desarrollo de un proyecto de Universi¬dad y de educación al servicio del conjunto social”, según lo explica su mismo programa. El FeL ha sido un animador y una importante fuerza dentro de esta coalición amplia que no solamente se articula en los momentos de elecciones estudiantiles sino que trabaja en los espacios de construcción y movilización permanentemente, desarrollando una propuesta de universidad dentro de un proyecto de transformación social radical del Chile actual.

Conversamos con Melissa para que nos explique la apuesta que como vocera de la Fech tendrá en el actual período. Clara y concisa, nos da un repaso de los desafíos que el movimiento popular, el movimiento estudiantil y el movimiento libertario tienen en momentos en que, ante la crisis del modelo, el bloque en el poder siente el imperativo de reformar para ganar en gobernabilidad. Adjuntamos, al final de esta entrevista, el programa sobre el cual Luchar ganó la presidencia de la Federación.

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international / the left Tuesday December 03, 2013 21:09 by Jan Makandal
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Sectarianism is an ideological practice, a comportment, in the ideological realm. It is rooted in the social division of labor into classes, which originated with the emergence of a gender-based division of labor in hunter/forager social formations, which itself corresponded to and resulted from the development of various relations of gender-based domination and subordination.

The fundamental basis of sectarianism is the historical development of private ownership. All the historical tendencies produced at the level of the superstructure (the political and ideological systems) — especially in the ideological field — reproduce the social reality of private ownership. This is not always necessarily for directly economic reasons, but will still have economic effects (such as competition). Sectarianism has its roots in individualism, in the promotion of personification, self-identity and self-centeredness that capitalism relies on to divide the working class and stifle its collective strength.

bolivia / peru / ecuador / chile / movimiento anarquista Tuesday November 26, 2013 21:37 by FAO
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En consecuencia, es necesario seguir fomentando las luchas reivindicativas y socioeconómicas en el seno de la clase trabajadora y el conjunto del pueblo para de esta forma, en praxis dialéctica, ir avanzando en la conformación de una conciencia de clase para sí y la politización de las/os trabajadores de base. Esto último bajo un prisma materialista histórico de la realidad social y de la lucha de clases, rechazando lecturas apresuradas e idealistas que apuestan a que desde el mundo político, desde la democracia representativa en sintonía burguesa, en definitiva desde el Estado- Gobierno y Parlamento- se puede romper el cerrojo de la institucionalidad dictatorial heredada y la Constitución de 1980.

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scandinavia / danmark / island / anarkistiske bevegelsen Sunday October 27, 2013 16:15 by Adrien A. Wilkins
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Høstens kongressdeltakere og observatører smiler for kamera

Den 19. og 20. oktober holdt Motmakt høstkongress i Oslo. Denne kongressen var litt annerledes enn de tidligere kongressene. Vi hadde for første gang representanter fra tre lokallag til stede, og spørsmålet var hvordan disse lokallagene skulle koordineres fremover.

20. oktober 2013 ble Motmakt stiftet som føderasjon. Men hva er en føderasjon? Nå som Motmakt har blitt en, er det på sin plass at vi redegjør hva vi mener med det, og hvorfor vi har valgt denne måten å organisere oss på. Med denne artikkelen håper vi å kunne sette tankene i sving hos andre som også har lyst til å organisere seg på en så demokratisk måte som mulig.

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