Asia

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

29 April 2017

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Trump threatens “major conflict” with North Korea

By Mike Head, 28 April 2017

The US president invoked the danger of war, while claiming to be seeking a diplomatic solution to the Korean crisis.

Sri Lanka SEP holds picket in Jaffna to free Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 28 April 2017

Despite the anti-democratic intervention of student union leaders, most Jaffna University students supported the campaign.

White House briefing signals escalating war preparations against North Korea

By Mike Head, 27 April 2017

Comments by senators after the briefing ranged from support for military action against North Korea to pushing for a harder line against China.

Tamil workers in northern Sri Lanka support Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 27 April 2017

Residents in the small town of Chavakachcheri, near Jaffna, said social conditions for Tamil workers were like those confronting the persecuted autoworkers in India.

US tests missile in Pacific as it escalates threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 26 April 2017

The provocatively-timed US test again underscores where the real risk of nuclear war resides—in Washington.

South Korean presidential candidates move further to the right on North Korea

By Ben McGrath, 26 April 2017

Moon Jae-in of the DPK has sought to prove his pro-US credentials by calling for an additional military buildup.

The frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers—Part 4: The police and company conspire against the workers

By Eric London and Keith Jones, 26 April 2017

Police colluded with Maruti Suzuki, fabricated evidence, and systematically failed to carry out basic forensic tests as part of a bogus investigation aimed at framing up militant workers who challenged sweatshop conditions.

US naval “armada” menaces North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 25 April 2017

The nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Michigan, is due to arrive in South Korea today where it will be joined by the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and its strike group.

Sri Lankan government seeks to suppress garbage disaster protests

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 25 April 2017

The move to outlaw protests against garbage dumps has broader implications for all basic democratic rights.

Modi’s “Make in India” campaign and the battle of the Maruti Suzuki workers

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 25 April 2017

In arguing for the hanging of the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers, the prosecution denounced the workers for imperiling the Modi government’s efforts to woo profit-hungry investors.

Pence’s Asian tour reinforces US threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 24 April 2017

Without any public consultation, the US and its allies are placing millions of people at risk of a devastating nuclear war.

Tense standoff continues on Korean peninsula

By Peter Symonds, 22 April 2017

The media is fueling tensions with speculation that North Korea could conduct a nuclear or missile test to mark its Military Foundation Day next Tuesday.

Sri Lanka: Jaffna residents demand release of Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 22 April 2017

A picket and meeting in Jaffna next week will demand the release of the imprisoned Indian autoworkers.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

22 April 2017

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

ICFI supporters in India call meeting on “World War and the Russian Revolution”

22 April 2017

Speakers will explain that the only way to prevent another world war is the mobilisation of Indian workers as a part of an international anti-war movement.

US government and media ratchet up threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 21 April 2017

The Trump administration’s ultimatums are intensifying the risk that miscalculations could trigger a conflict that would endanger the lives of millions of people.

Indian elite hails US bombings in Syria and Afghanistan

By Deepal Jayasekera, 21 April 2017

Leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janatha Party and the opposition Congress Party support the US military attacks.

US vice president warns North Korea “the sword is ready”

By Peter Symonds, 20 April 2017

Pence threatened “an overwhelming and effective American response” to any North Korean use of conventional or nuclear weapons.

Incumbent Jakarta governor defeated in bitter electoral contest

By John Roberts, 20 April 2017

A virulent chauvinist campaign against Governor Basuki was a means of diverting the rising unrest generated by the pro-business program that he shares with President Widodo.

US continues dangerous brinkmanship with North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 19 April 2017

By keeping the world guessing as to what he will do, Trump has added a great deal of uncertainty into an already precarious situation and heightened the danger of conflict.

Indian bus workers strike against privatisation

By Arun Kumar, 19 April 2017

The Haryana bus stoppage underscored the intensifying class tensions across the state and India as a whole.

India strengthens defence ties with Bangladesh

By Sarath Kumara, 18 April 2017

The Indian government, in line with US geo-strategic manoeuvres, is attempting to reduce Bangladesh’s military and economic reliance on China.

Sri Lankan government sponsors a sham celebration of the Russian Revolution

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 15 April 2017

The event was a congregation of right-wing politicians, pseudo-lefts and anti-Marxist representatives of academia who are deeply hostile to the heritage of the Russian Revolution.

US media reports Trump preparing “preemptive strike” on North Korea

By James Cogan, 14 April 2017

The pretext for a US attack would be to prevent Pyongyang from carrying out another nuclear weapons’ test.

The Coming War on China: A pacifist appeal

By Richard Phillips, 14 April 2017

Pilger’s documentary exposes something of Washington’s escalating war plans against China but suggests that protests can prevent a nuclear conflagration.

Australian prime minister visits India to boost strategic ties

By Mike Head, 13 April 2017

The outcomes were in line with the ongoing push by Washington for US allies throughout the region to strengthen their military relations with each other.

Sri Lankan artists express solidarity with the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By our reporters, 13 April 2017

A number of Sri Lankan artists have sent statements to the World Socialist Web Site  calling for the release of jailed Maruti Suzuki workers in India.

“It is a frame-up and war on the working class”

Support grows for Maruti Suzuki workers

By our reporters, 13 April 2017

It has been nearly a month since an Indian judge condemned 13 autoworkers to life imprisonment.

Australia’s role in US plans for war on North Korea

By James Cogan, 12 April 2017

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has publicly endorsed Washington’s bellicose rhetoric against the Pyongyang regime.

Trump threatens North Korea, issues ultimatum to China

By Peter Symonds, 12 April 2017

Trump is preparing to attack North Korea if China fails to heed his dictates and Pyongyang conducts another nuclear or missile test.

South Korean presidential candidates line up behind US war drive

By Ben McGrath, 12 April 2017

As tensions with North Korea rise, the leading “democratic” contenders, Moon Jae-in and Ahn Cheol-soo, have taken a pro-militarist and pro-US stance.

Indian ICFI supporters to picket for release of Maruti Suzuki workers

12 April 2017

Workers in Sriperumbudur, Oragadam and other Special Economic Zones should join the April 17 protest and fight for the immediate freeing of the framed-up autoworkers.

China fears US military attack on North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 11 April 2017

The state-owned Global Times warned that “a military strike on the North will very likely evolve into large-scale bloody war on the Peninsula.”

Indian railway and transport workers denounce Maruti Suzuki frame-up

By our correspondents, 11 April 2017

Workers in Chennai spoke out in defence of the jailed auto workers.

US aircraft carrier deployed in direct threat to North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 10 April 2017

Following its attacks on Syria, the US, in a “show of force,” dispatched the Carl Vinson strike group to waters near the Korean peninsula.

Rohingya killings expose fraud of Burmese “democracy”

By John Roberts, 7 April 2017

The response of Suu Kyi and her government to a limited UN inquiry into the military’s atrocities reveal their complicity and involvement.

The frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers—Part 2: The factory fire and the death of Avineesh Dev

By Eric London and Keith Jones, 7 April 2017

The fire was the pivot of the prosecution’s case, but it provided not a shred of credible evidence tying any of the workers to the blaze.

Trump official warns “the clock has run out” on North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 5 April 2017

Unless China forces North Korea to bow to Washington’s demands, the US will use every means, including its huge military forces, to crush the Pyongyang regime.

The frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers—Part 1: A travesty of justice

By Eric London and Keith Jones, 5 April 2017

Careful examination and systematic refutation of the state’s legal case has always been a critical part of international defense campaigns.

Trump threatens China with war on North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 4 April 2017

The Trump administration has threatened to launch a war that will not only be catastrophic for the people of the Korean peninsula but could drag in other major powers, including China, Russia and Japan.

After Park’s ouster, South Korean pseudo-left orients to pro-US opposition

By Ben McGrath, 4 April 2017

The state-capitalist Workers’ Solidarity group is backing the campaign to install a new president favorable to the US war drive against China.

Maldives opposition intensifies campaign to destabilise government

By Rohantha De Silva, 4 April 2017

Infighting between the Maldives opposition and President Yameen is bound up with geo-political manoeuvres by the US and India against China.

In the background of the Maruti Suzuki frame-up

Portrait of the Suzuki corporation, a ruthless transnational employer

By Shannon Jones and Saman Gunadasa, 4 April 2017

Suzuki is typical of the transnational auto corporations that scour the world in search of the cheapest labor and lowest production costs.

Former South Korean president arrested

By Ben McGrath, 3 April 2017

In the wake of Park’s impeachment and arrest, political parties are jockeying for the May 9 presidential election.

Sri Lankan university students condemn Maruti Suzuki frame-up

By our correspondents, 3 April 2017

Students and workers in Colombo, Kandy and Jaffna denounced the heavy sentences imposed on framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers in India.

Tensions erupt between the Philippines and China over disputed island

By Joseph Santolan, 30 March 2017

Sharp divisions emerged in the Duterte administration after a Chinese official announced plans for an environmental monitoring station on the Scarborough Shoal.

Indian auto workers demand release of Maruti Suzuki workers

By Moses Rajkumar and Yuvan Darwin, 30 March 2017

Indian auto workers voice their support for the ICFI campaign and demand release of the Maruti Suzuki workers.

Sri Lankan SEP/IYSSE to picket and hold public meeting for release of Maruti Suzuki workers

30 March 2017

The campaign to overturn the frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers requires the independent mobilisation of the working class in India, throughout South Asia and internationally.

Growing debate in Beijing over North Korea

By Ben McGrath, 28 March 2017

Sections of the Chinese ruling elite are growing increasingly frustrated with Pyongyang and the danger it represents to China’s security interests.

Sri Lankan workers support campaign to free framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 28 March 2017

Socialist Equality Party campaigners distributed the ICFI statement “Free the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers” in Sinhalese and Tamil.

Scandal exposes Japanese government’s ultra-right ties

By Peter Symonds, 27 March 2017

The affair has drawn in other political figures close to Prime Minister Abe, providing a glimpse of the network of extreme nationalist organisations connected to his government.

Sri Lankan government moves to privatise major state corporations

By Saman Gunadasa, 27 March 2017

State-owned enterprises will be turned into “self-sustained” commercial ventures.

“The 13 workers are political prisoners”

South Asian filmmakers Rahul Roy and Prasanna Vithanage back campaign to free Maruti Suzuki workers

By our reporters, 27 March 2017

Raul Roy, the director of The Factory, the 2015 documentary on the Maruti Suzuki workers, and the Sri Lankan filmmaker Prasanna Vithanage have demanded the freedom of the 13 framed-up autoworkers.

China warns US strategic bomber in East China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 25 March 2017

The war plane was one of two B-1Bs deployed from Guam to join massive war games underway in South Korea amid high tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

Join the fight to free the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 25 March 2017

Workers in Sri Lanka, India and around the world must unite to defeat the imprisonment of these victimised workers

Sham character of Maruti Suzuki workers’ trial further exposed

By Keith Jones, 23 March 2017

The presiding judge had to admit police colluded with Maruti Suzuki and fabricated evidence, but even as he did so, he downplayed the significance of these crimes.

US threatens more sanctions, military build-up against North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 22 March 2017

As the US secretary of state declared last week, all options, including military action against Pyongyang, are under consideration.

Support grows for framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers in India

By Jerry White, 21 March 2017

Opposition to the brutal life sentences meted out to 13 Maruti Suzuki workers is growing in India and around the world.

Thirteen sentenced to life imprisonment in India

Free the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers!

By International Committee of the Fourth International, 20 March 2017

Thirteen Maruti Suzuki workers have been condemned to life in prison as the result of a monstrous frame-up mounted by the automaker, the police and judicial authorities, with the full complicity of India’s principal political parties.

Indian court to hear sentencing arguments against framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By Shannon Jones, 17 March 2017

Thirteen autoworkers could face the death penalty in a case that has seen blatant collusion between company management, police and Indian state officials

US secretary of state ramps up pressure on China over North Korea

By Mike Head, 17 March 2017

Rex Tillerson’s trip highlights the Trump administration’s focus on using North Korean missile and nuclear programs as a pretext for targeting China.

IMF demands “decisive action” on Sri Lankan austerity cuts

By Saman Gunadasa, 16 March 2017

The global institution has ramped up its pressure on the government to further slash social spending and speed up the privatisation of state-owned enterprises.

Nationalist groups in Tamil diaspora seek deal with Trump at UN

By Athiyan Silva, 16 March 2017

While the US has abandoned its call for investigation of Sri Lankan civil war atrocities, the Tamil nationalists continue to promote Washington as an ally of the Tamil people and aid its anti-China war drive.

BJP gains in Indian state elections leave opposition Congress reeling

By Deepal Jayasekera, 15 March 2017

The BJP exploited popular anger with the Congress and various caste-ist and regional parties that have implemented pro-investor “reforms” and presided over mass joblessness.

On the Communist Party of the Philippines’ support for fascistic President Duterte

By Joseph Santolan, 15 March 2017

Joma Sison and the Maoist CPP have played a politically criminal role in promoting the fascistic Duterte administration and defusing opposition to it.

US sends drones, assassination squad to South Korea

By Peter Symonds, 14 March 2017

The military build-up by the Trump administration takes place as the White House considers launching strikes on North Korean nuclear and military sites.

Is the US preparing for war against North Korea?

By Peter Symonds, 13 March 2017

Amid a shrill media campaign inflating the threat posed by North Korea, the Trump administration is considering “all options” against Pyongyang.

ICFI supporters in India hold public meeting on “World War and the Russian Revolution”

By our correspondents, 13 March 2017

The Chennai meeting was part of the ICFI’s commemoration of the centenary of the October 1917 Revolution and promoted its online lecture series.

US rejects talks over North Korea, declaring “all options on table”

By Peter Symonds, 9 March 2017

China’s foreign minister warned that the US and North Korea are like “accelerating trains” on a collision course “with neither side willing to give way.”

As US deploys anti-missile system, China warns of nuclear arms race

By Peter Symonds, 8 March 2017

Using North Korean missile tests as a pretext, the US has begun deploying its THAAD anti-ballistic missile system in South Korea.

India: BJP-backed student union unleashes violence at Delhi University

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 8 March 2017

The ABVP’s attack on left-wing students at Delhi University is part of a concerted, government-supported campaign to stamp out political dissent at India’s universities.

Sri Lanka asks UN to delay human rights inquiry

By W.A. Sunil, 8 March 2017

The appeal to the UN Human Rights Council is another attempt to manipulate or suppress any investigation of war crimes in Sri Lanka.

North Korea tests missiles amid huge US-South Korean war games

By Peter Symonds, 7 March 2017

The Trump administration is considering all options, including military ones, to prevent North Korea from building a nuclear-tipped ICBM able to reach the US mainland.

China lowers economic growth target

By Nick Beams, 6 March 2017

The Chinese government has cut its target in an attempt to address growing problems in the country’s financial system.

Court hears final arguments in South Korean president’s trial

By Ben McGrath, 6 March 2017

Park’s impeachment is a sign of the struggle within the political establishment over how to balance between the US and China amid sharpening tensions between the two powers.

US Congress members visit Sri Lanka to boost US interests

By Saman Gunadasa, 3 March 2017

Visits by delegations of senior officials from the US, India and China indicate intensifying strategic tensions.

South Korea demonises North Korea over Malaysian murder

By Peter Symonds, 1 March 2017

The South Korean government is exploiting the killing of Kim Jong-nam to demand North Korea’s suspension from the UN and criminal charges against its leadership.

Did VX kill Kim Jong-nam?

By our reporter, 1 March 2017

The claim by Malaysian authorities that Kim Jong-nam was killed by the potent nerve agent VX raises many unanswered questions.

Leading opposition senator arrested in the Philippines

By Joseph Santolan, 1 March 2017

Senator de Lima’s arrest is an expression of the advanced political crisis in the country which is rooted in the dispute within the ruling class over Manila’s geopolitical orientation.

South Asian nuclear arms race accelerates amid India-Pakistan standoff

By Sampath Perera, 28 February 2017

India and Pakistan are rapidly expanding their nuclear arsenals and proclaiming adherence to aggressive military strategies that increase the prospect of nuclear war.

Lurid claims that North Korea used VX poison to kill Kim Jong-nam

By Peter Symonds, 25 February 2017

The murder of the North Korean leader’s half-brother is being exploited in the US to ramp up the demonisation of Pyongyang in preparation for further punitive measures.

US officials accuse China of building missile bases in South China Sea

By Mike Head, 23 February 2017

Media reports have declared the latest claims to be “an early test of US President Donald Trump.”

Jakarta election points to social unrest in Indonesia

By John Roberts, 22 February 2017

A chauvinist Islamist campaign against the incumbent governor is seeking to capitalise on the mass discontent of some of the poorest sections of the population.

Sri Lankan elite discusses “frightening economic situation”

By Saman Gunadasa, 22 February 2017

The country has been severely hit by the continuing global downturn and a prolonged drought that has destroyed key crops and driven up the prices of staple foods.

US conducts show of force in South China Sea

By Mike Head, 20 February 2017

The USS Carl Vinson’s operation is being mounted amid a sharp escalation in US trade war and military threats against China since the inauguration of Trump.

US-backed UN statement condemns North Korean missile test

By Peter Symonds, 16 February 2017

The UN warned of “further significant steps” if Pyongyang did not halt its testing and called on UN members “to redouble their efforts” to implement existing sanctions.

Trump administration to expand India-US military-strategic alliance

By Deepal Jayasekera and Keith Jones, 15 February 2017

The Trump administration is intent on using India as a frontline state in a drive to thwart China through economic and military pressure and, if need be, all-out war.

Sri Lankan president insists on retaining emergency powers

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 14 February 2017

The government’s decision underscores its readiness to use draconian measures against political opponents, workers and the poor.

US drumbeat for action against North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 14 February 2017

North Korea’s missile test took place amid mounting tensions between the US and China, North Korea’s ally, over trade, monetary policy, Taiwan and territorial disputes in the South China and East China seas.

Japanese and US leaders condemn North Korean missile test

By Peter Symonds, 13 February 2017

Trump’s flat-footed performance at the press conference only heightens the danger that he will embark on a reckless course of action against North Korea.

Duterte militarises the “war on drugs” in the Philippines

By Dante Pastrana, 13 February 2017

Making the military responsible for continuing the state-sanctioned killings is a marked development in Duterte’s drive toward dictatorial power and military rule.

Trump’s lavish welcome for Japan’s prime minister

By Peter Symonds, 11 February 2017

Despite Trump’s gushing praise for Abe, a question mark remains over the US-Japan alliance and the threat of punitive US trade measures continues.

Sri Lankan foreign minister raises concerns over Trump’s economic policies

By Minusha Fernando, 11 February 2017

Harsha de Silva told a Colombo meeting of business chiefs that the US president’s trade policies would drastically impact on the Sri Lankan economy.

Former diplomat admits India’s role in Sri Lankan communal war

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 10 February 2017

Shivashankar Menon’s account confirms the political and military support given by India to the Colombo government to crush the LTTE with large-scale civilian casualties.

Chinese foreign minister warns against war with the US

By Peter Symonds, 9 February 2017

Trump’s top adviser Steve Bannon declared last March there was “no doubt” that the US would go to war with China over the South China Sea in “five to ten years.”

Sri Lanka: Tamil parties launch communal campaign to divert social tensions

By Subash Somachandran and S. Jayanth, 9 February 2017

The political aim of the Batticaloa protest is to divide Tamil workers and the poor from their class brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka’s south.

Philippine President Duterte declares “all-out war” against Maoist party

By Joseph Santolan, 8 February 2017

The party has strongly supported Duterte but the peace talks were undermined by the military and by a section of the leadership of the CPP’s armed wing.

Sri Lankan riot police attack Colombo port workers

By our reporters, 7 February 2017

The police set up barricades and used tear gas and water cannon to disperse a protest of port workers against privatisation.

US defence secretary backs Japan, threatens war against China over disputed islets

By Peter Symonds, 6 February 2017

Mattis’s remarks were precisely what Tokyo wanted to hear: a US commitment to wage war against China in the event of a conflict over the Senkakus.