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Workers Vanguard No. 1065

3 April 2015
The closing date for news in this issue is 31 March.

Workers Vanguard

Imperialists Stoke Religious Fires

U.S. Out of the Near East Now!

Down With Sanctions Against Iran!

MARCH 30—The blood of tens of thousands who have been slaughtered in communalist violence throughout the Near East is on the hands of the U.S. imperialist rulers, who continue to stoke religious and ethnic hatred throughout the region. To undermine the Iran-allied regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria, the U.S. incited and armed sectarian Sunni forces, plunging that country into civil war. In Iraq, the U.S. is relying on militias controlled by longtime pariah, Shi’ite Iran, as ground troops against ISIS, which itself arose out of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq and now controls a wide swath of the country. In Yemen, where for years the Obama administration has been launching drone strikes against the population in the name of targeting Sunni Al Qaeda forces, the U.S. is backing the Saudi-led attack against the Zaidi Shi’ite Houthis, who are viewed as an Iranian proxy.

At the same time, the White House has taken a spin at diplomacy with Iran, much to the alarm of Israel and the U.S.’s Sunni Muslim allies in the Persian Gulf. The Obama administration’s latest round of negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program—with the participation of Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China—has also worked leading Republicans into a frenzy. In January, without informing the White House, Republican House Speaker John Boehner invited Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to rail against Iran at a joint meeting of Congress. The head of the Near East’s only nuclear-armed state, Netanyahu was enthusiastically applauded throughout his March 3 speech in which he ominously declared that the terms the White House was offering Iran “will inevitably lead to nuclear war.”

A week later, 47 Republican members of Congress sent an open letter to the Iranian government declaring that any agreement it negotiated with the Obama administration could be revoked by the next president “with the stroke of a pen and future Congresses could modify the terms of the agreement at any time.” Although the Israeli government has denied it, U.S. officials report that Israel has been spying on the nuclear negotiations and—what has really got the White House worked up—leaking the information to Congress. The Obama administration has tried to rein in the rabid Netanyahu as it continues its nuclear negotiations with Iran.

On March 25, the Sunni monarchy of Saudi Arabia began bombing Yemen. With the support of a coalition including other Gulf states and Egypt, the Saudis aim to restore the government of Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who resigned the presidency in January in the face of attack by the Houthi rebels. The air campaign, for which the U.S. says it is providing “logistical and intelligence support,” was announced in Washington by the Saudi ambassador. The Iranian government has denounced the U.S.-backed assault in Yemen. (read on)

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About the ICL

V.I. LeninLeon TrotskyThe International Communist League (Fourth Internationalist) is a proletarian, revolutionary and internationalist tendency committed to the task of building Leninist parties as national sections of a democratic-centralist international. Our aim is the achievement of new October Revolutions—nothing else, nothing other, nothing less. The ICL bases itself on Marxist historical, dialectical materialism and seeks in particular to carry forward the international working-class perspectives of Marxism developed in the theory and practice of the Bolshevik leaders V. I. Lenin and L. D. Trotsky and embodied in the decisions of the first four Congresses of the Communist International as well as key documents of the Fourth International such as the Transitional Program (1938) and "War and the Fourth International" (1934). We also look to James P. Cannon, a leader of the early American Communist Party who was won to Trotskyism and went on to become a principal founder of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), working in close collaboration with Leon Trotsky. The origins of the ICL are in the Spartacist League/U.S., which began as the Revolutionary Tendency in the SWP and was bureaucratically expelled in 1963. Our ICL "Declaration of Principles and Some Elements of Program" was modeled on the Declaration of Principles adopted at the 1966 founding conference of the SL/U.S.

Adopted at the Third International Conference of the ICL in early 1998, the declaration presently exists in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Chinese, German, Russian, Polish, Italian, Turkish, Indonesian, Greek and Tagalog. In this post-Soviet period, marked by a deep regression of proletarian consciousness, we continue to be guided by Trotsky's statement that "the task of the vanguard is above all not to let itself be carried along by the backward flow; it must swim against the current." Reforge the Fourth International, world party of socialist revolution!