Letters to the WSWS
8 May 2002
Below we post a selection of recent letters to the WSWS.
In my opinion, the US Congress has now revealed itself to be the most dangerous, ignorant and uneducated bunch of morons in the world. I can’t believe all this is happening. And Lieberman wants to be president! If such a catastrophe ever comes about, I will indeed have to leave the country. He is an extremely dangerous and deceitful man, who thinks he can pull the wool over the American public’s eyes. His real intentions and goals are truly vicious and anti-American. I am 71 years old and have NEVER in my whole life seen the US in such frighteningly bad shape. The prospects for the future are ominous.
7 May 2002* * *
Bravo to your Barry Grey for his decency and ominous but regretfully truthful analysis of recent resolutions passed shamelessly by the US Congress and Senate supporting Israel’s Sharon—the only PM in the western world indicted for war crimes, who continues to repeat such crimes thanks to the protection and support of the US government, or the so-called leader of the “civilized world.”
God help us and help humanity from the catastrophes that such arrogant double standards are bound to produce in future.
With best wishes,
7 May 2002
Chris Marsden’s excellent article covered many of the most salient points which undergird the absurd demarcation attempted by the United States in distinguishing between the former Serbian president and the current prime minister of Israel.
One additional bit of information would make for some excellent follow-up journalism by Mr. Marsden on this matter—the sudden, violent deaths since January of three prospective witnesses against Mr. Sharon, scheduled to give legal depositions to the Belgian Court investigating the Sabra/Shatila massacres of 1982. All three were Christian Falangists directly involved in the incursions and the killings of Palestinian refugees, with positions of command responsibility and who claimed personal knowledge of what Mr. Sharon actually knew and commissioned at the time. Elie Hobeika [the Phalangist leader who agreed two days earlier to give testimony against Sharon in the Belgian court] died in a car bombing in Beirut in January. Another perished in a suspicious one-car accident just days before. The third was assassinated this past March in Sao Paulo, Brazil along with his wife, while at a gas station waiting for a flat tire to be fixed. These deaths have been reported in numerous places in the international press, but not in the US media. Other possible angles on these tragedies and crimes await the work of good journalists like Mr. Marsden.
2 May 2002* * *
I can’t believe what is happening right now with regards to the massacre at Jenin. Ariel Sharon needs to be held accountable for his crimes. It seems that nobody is willing to do that. Why the UN would submit to Sharon’s demands against an investigation of Jenin is incredible. Sharon must feel incredibly secure that nothing is going to happen or touch him.
My thoughts are that he could only act so confidently if he had support from the USA and who knows who else. I can’t imagine why the UN is not screaming: “Criminal, Criminal, we demand an investigation” at Sharon. This whole tragedy seems even more incredulous when you look at what the UN is now doing to Milosevic. How can they be so quick to try and prosecute Milosevic and then turn a blind eye to Sharon? We need somebody to start holding these powers accountable for their actions, or the atrocities they are committing will only increase in severity and constancy.
2 May 2002
Dear Mr. Vann,
Allow me to add that I fully agree with your viewpoints as contained in your recent reply to the member of the ISO. In my opinion no other country in recent history exemplifies the outcome of a lack of a clear political program in the fight against oppression and exploitation, than South Africa. Supporters of the ANC, and mostly the younger generation during the struggle years from the late ’70s to the early ’90s most often engaged in popular, sporadic uprisings of an ad hoc nature. Included were the burning of schools, setting tires alight in streets, stone throwing, singing, marching and dancing in the streets, attending mass meetings, delivering countless appeals and memoranda to the rulers and police—these all, as we know today, culminated in the ANC ruling elite signing a pact with the then apartheid ruling class.
The point being, very little or no attention was given to clear guiding political principles and programs which would govern and direct all those engaged in the struggle against apartheid oppression and capitalist exploitation. Indeed, these were endless “battles,” especially at political meetings, between the Charterists—supporters of the ANC—and those who adopted the 10-point plan as proposed by South African Trotskyists. The 10-point plan, briefly, incorporated the principle of non-collaboration, i.e., non-collaboration with the enemy in all its diverse forms and especially those stooges who operated in the apartheid parliament under the guise of representing the disenfranchised. The ANC elite never supported this basic tenet any self-respecting victim of apartheid oppression, one would imagine, should have supported; as a consequence, millions of South Africans were misled. The end results are clear for everyone to observe today.
If I may, to [the member of the International Socialist Organization], only the worker can set the worker free, and no amount of appeals to the factory bosses, capitalist rulers or neo-liberals can ever achieve this. However, the worker needs to fully arm him/herself with consciousness, ideas and, finally, a political program. The latter, history itself so clearly carved out for the international working class. Read about the October Revolution, read about Stalin and Stalinism, and finally, read and become fully conscious of Leon Trotsky and what his legacy teaches all oppressed and exploited peoples around the world. These demands are, in my opinion, more important than being “youthful” and “energetic” and being part of the massive protesting crowds out there. If these crowds do not have a political program, where are they heading? The answer is simple, ask all those who fought in the struggle for liberation in South Africa.
Cape Town, South Africa
3 May 2002
I was looking up the number for my mother’s electric company in California when I decided to do a search on the rate increases. My mother is on Social Security with a four-year-old daughter, they live in a one-bedroom trailer with no dishwasher and a wood stove. Her electric bill was over $800, which is more than her Social Security check. I thought that the electric company was screwing her over, that is outrageous. And even more outrageous is that she paid it. She couldn’t live without electricity again but now her phone has been shut off and I can’t call her. I don’t know how she is going to make it at this rate. I am going to call the electric company anyways, but if this is really the situation, what can I do to help her? There has to be a way to get these rates lowered so regular people can survive. I live in the state of Washington. Two adults and three children in a two-bedroom apartment with a dishwasher, baths and showers every day, baseboard heaters, three TVs that always seem to be on, a computer and lights that I am constantly shutting off, and our bill last month was $95. There is something wrong with this picture.
6 May 2002