SEP (Canada) to hold public meeting in Montreal

The Socialist Equality Party (Canada) will hold a public meeting in Montreal, Saturday, March 11 on the theme “Socialism and the struggle against social reaction and imperialist war.”

Two speakers—a leading member of the US SEP and Keith Jones, the national secretary of the SEP (Canada) and a member of the International Editorial Board of the World Socialist Web Site—will draw the connection between the eruption of imperialist war and the global offensive against the working class and elaborate the socialist alternative.

As we approach the third anniversary of the US-led invasion of Iraq, with tens of thousands of civilians killed, the country’s basic infrastructure laid to waste and ethnic conflicts on the rise, no amount of White House rhetoric about bringing democracy to the region can conceal one undisputable fact—this act of unprovoked aggression signalled a new eruption of bloody colonialism on a global scale.

The old framework of relatively peaceful international relations has been irrevocably shattered as the major capitalist powers vie for geo-political advantage and control of vital natural resources, most critically oil and gas. An incendiary element in this explosive mix of growing inter-imperialist rivalries is the reckless attempt by the US ruling class to offset the declining position of American capitalism in the world by mobilizing its still dominant military strength. All the major powers—including those, such as France, Germany and Canada, who failed for their own reasons to openly join the US war on Iraq—are boosting their defense spending and making plans to bolster their military capabilities. Canada’s new Prime Minister Stephen Harper has declared his intention is to expand the Canadian Armed Forces to the point that other powers take notice.

This growth of militarism goes hand-in-hand with a worldwide assault on basic democratic rights. Under the cover of the so-called “war on terror,” governments in Canada, Europe, Australia and above all the US are turning to police-state measures such as illegal surveillance and arbitrary detention of their own citizens—and in the case of the US, state sanctioning of torture. At the same time, the social gulf between a handful of super-rich and the majority of working people is widening at an unprecedented rate as jobs, wages and social welfare programs are being gutted to pay for massive tax cuts for the wealthy. Canada’s elite overwhelming supported a Conservative victory in the recent federal election so as to intensify this class war.

Military aggression, anti-democratic forms of rule and social inequality are all expressions of the same underlying objective phenomenon—the breakdown of world capitalism. Only a conscious turn by the world’s working people to the perspective of international socialism can prevent the failed capitalist system from dragging humanity into an abyss.

We extend a warm invitation to readers of the WSWS in Canada and especially the Montreal area to come to the March 11 meeting.

Saturday, March 11, at 2:30 p.m.
Centre St-Pierre, Room 202
1212 Panet,
(near Métro Beaudry)