WHAT began as a Black Lives Matter movement sparked by the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis has developed into a nationwide movement against US capitalism and its leader President Trump.
Trump has responded to mass protest marches against police brutality and mass unemployment in Portland, Oregon, by sending in the storm troops – special federal units – without any invitation by the State government, who have opposed this move. These federal officers have fired on crowds with CS tear gas, rubber bullets and sonic weapons.
Federal agents have driven up to groups of protesters, grabbed people and bundled them into unmarked vans, hauling them off to undisclosed locations for interrogation. Many of these agents have worn generic camouflage rather than uniforms which normally identify their names or agencies.
The Portland protests have gone on for more than 50 nights. Last week, protesters pulled down fencing around the federal courthouse, and hundreds of people dressed in yellow t-shirts, who said they were mothers and fathers, demanded the agents withdraw.
Last Thursday, the Mayor of Portland, Ted Wheeler, tweeted: ‘This afternoon I was made aware of concerns within the community that federal agents may be authorised to use live ammunition on demonstrators this evening.’
On Wednesday, the Mayor, who had joined the protests, was tear gassed with the crowds. One man walked up to the Mayor and emptied a bag full of shrapnel in front of him, evidence that the police had been firing weapons.
On the same day, Trump launched Operation Taliferro which will see agents from the FBI, the Marshals Service and other federal agencies ‘working with’ local law enforcement sent into multiple states.
New York, Chicago and Philadelphia are being targeted by Trump’s counter-revolution. However, the elected political leadership of these states opposes this offensive civil war move.
The mayors of New York City and Chicago have said they would take Trump to court if he caries out his threat and sends unidentified US government agents to terrorise their cities, the biggest in the USA.
The DHS (US Department of Homeland Security) has placed about 2,000 officials from US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and other agencies on standby for possible deployment.
In Trump’s Independence Day speech (July 4), he said: ‘We are now in the process of defeating the radical left, the Marxists, the anarchists, the agitators, the looters, and people who in many instances have absolutely no clue what they are doing.’
Trump has given up on seeking to retain the presidency on the basis of the ‘wonderful US economy’. Twenty million jobs were wiped out in the US in April! He has also fiddled while coronavirus runs riot. The consequences have been devastating – four million infected by coronavirus, 146,000 dead!
Meanwhile, US police have killed 598 people in 2020 to date. We are only half way through the year, so that averages at over three a day.
Meanwhile there is no health care for the US poor, if you get sick and have no health insurance, you can die. Millions of families in the US are in abject poverty, living on food stamps, teetering on the edge of starvation and eviction.
Trump is now seeking to retain office with an anti-communist crusade, complete with mass repressions to mobilise the backward sections of the middle class against the ‘Marxists’ and the ‘Radicals’. He aims to return to office on a wave of anti-socialist, and anti-communist propaganda and city wide pogroms, in order to to maintain US capitalism at the expense of the US working class.
The US trade unions must now take action to protect the US working class and middle class from Trump’s police state repressions. The US unions must call a general strike, that will be welcomed by the mass of the population, to bring Trump down and bring in a workers government through a socialist revolution.
This is the only way forward in the USA for the working class and the majority of the middle class.