THE News Line Editorial Board sends its New Year’s greetings for the year 2014 to all our readers and to the workers and youth of the world.
This is the year when a further deepening of the worldwide economic crisis of capitalism will lead to new banking and industrial collapses and a sharpening of the class struggle world-wide to explosion point.
This will see the working class in the advanced capitalist states fighting in the same trench as the Syrian, Palestinian and other oppressed nations in an explosion of the world socialist revolution from the United States and the EU states to South Africa and throughout the Middle East.
This will create the conditions for bringing down the Tory-led coalition in the UK and going forward to a workers’ government.
2014 will be the year for building sections of the International Committee of the Fourth International in every country in order to lead the world socialist revolution to its victory.
The US ruling class is in the greatest economic and political crisis of its history,
On Xmas Day, President Obama signed a bill that means 1.3 million unemployed had all their benefit stopped from December 28, and a further 3.6 million will get the same treatment in the first six months of 2014.
This is the result of a deal with the Republican Party to try to prevent another government shutdown, while the Democratic and Republican leaders hammer out gigantic cuts in Medicare, Medicaid, and other government programmes to slash the US $17.1 trillion deficit by making the US workers pay the bill.
The Federal Reserve Bank has already announced that it intends to wean the US banks off the $85bn dollars a month of quantitative easing that has kept the banks from collapsing.
The banks are already wobbling at the thought that their vital life support is to be cut off.
There is no way out for them except to turn savagely on the US workers and on the workers of the world.
The US economic recovery is a false dawn.
The new jobs that have been announced are all low-paid and part-time, with the new workers unable to feed their families.
There has already been a huge movement of low-paid workers taking strike action throughout the US demanding a minimum wage of $15 an hour.
The US working class, which made it clear to President Obama that it would not tolerate US military intervention into Syria, is angry at its leaders for continuing to support Obama’s dirty deals with the Republicans to make the working class pay for the crisis.
2014 will see an explosion of working class anger in the US which at the minimum will force the trade unions to break with the Democrats and form a Labour Party to carry forward a struggle for socialism.
There has never been a better time for the building of a section of the International Committee in the USA.
Meanwhile, in Africa and the Middle East momentous changes are on hand.
The Egyptian military, which was forced to remove the Muslim Brotherhood regime of Mursi to prevent a socialist revolution, will have to tackle the Egyptian trade unions.
The unions have no intention of allowing the Mursi-appointed General Sisi to become another Mubarak.
In the early part of 2014 the trade unions will clash head-on with the military over its laws banning strikes and demonstrations.
The 18 million that marched against ex-President Mursi when he sought to introduce the same measures showed the strength of the Egyptian workers and youth.
What the working class requires is a revolutionary leadership, and the building of a section of the International Committee of the Fourth International in Egypt.
Meanwhile, the Syrian people are to attend the Geneva çonference on January 22 and insist that only the Syrian people have the right to decide who will rule Syria and nobody else.
The Syrian masses have shown enormous heroism in standing up to the Islamist hordes that have been paid for by the US, UK, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, and been sent by them to smash Ba’athist Syria for the benefit of Israel and the US.
They want to reduce Syria to the same state of chaos that they have imposed on Iraq and Libya, where advanced countries were destroyed by imperialism and its agents in order to grab their oil.
Destroying Ba’athist Syria is vital for Israel and imperialism.
Defence of Syria is vital for the working class of the world.
The fact that the Syrian masses have stood fast is of historic importance.
Their stand will encourage the Palestinian masses to fight for their state over the whole land of Palestine, and the Iraqi people to deal with the collaborators that the US put into power in 2003, and left behind when they were forced to end the US occupation of the country.
Victory for the Syrian people in 2014 will enormously strengthen the revolutionary movement in the Middle East, and lead to an upsurge of the revolution throughout the region including in Egypt, Turkey and Libya.
In South Africa, a giant, the working class, has awoken after the massacre of the Marikana miners and the death of Nelson Mandela.
It is determined to go forward to complete the revolution that the ANC-Communist Party-Cosatu-led Alliance aborted once Apartheid was removed.
The South African working class hates those that transformed themselves from liberation fighters into billionaire servants of world capitalism whose job it is to keep the South African workers under control.
There is now a revolution taking place within the Cosatu trade unions, and amongst the masses of workers and youth.
Many are breaking with the ANC and the Communist Party and are beginning the organisation of a Labour Party to fight for socialism, and for a workers and small farmers government, that will put an end to South African capitalism.
Now is the time for the building up rapidly of the South African section of the International Committee of the Fourth International.
It has the job of leading the South African working class forward to take the power and establish socialism.
Such an action will change Africa for ever and will inspire emulation throughout the continent, to defeat imperialist plans to recolonise Africa, and to create the conditions for the emergence of the Socialist United States of Africa.
2014 will be a critical year for the European Union.
Greece has been bled white by never-ending cuts and is already on the point of insurrection.
Spain, Portugal and Italy see daily mass demonstrations against the austerity measures that their regimes are imposing on the masses.
Workers in France and Germany are mobilising to defend all of the gains that they made during the pre-2008 boom.
Ireland has seen massive austerity imposed and is being kept quiet for the moment, because over 100,000 young people have been forced to emigrate.
Ireland has resumed its biggest export – people.
Meanwhile, the German and French banks fear that the declared end of EU state rescue operations of EU banks means that a new banking crisis is on hand.
It is in the UK, however, that the biggest storm clouds are gathering.
There, the Tory-led regime has publicly declared that the UK can no longer afford a Welfare State, and that it intends to drive the UK working class and middle class back to pre-1948 conditions (when the Welfare State was legislated).
All benefits are being abolished or slashed and one million youth unemployed are being told that they must do exactly as they are told or they will have what benefit they receive stopped. If they don’t bow down before the bosses they will starve.
The NHS is being privatised and a massive swathe of hospital closures is on hand.
Vital public services such as the Fire Service are being cut, slashed and privatised!
Britain is now so poor that many schools have to provide breakfasts for their pupils since their families are too poor to provide them.
Meanwhile, bankers bonuses are booming.
The Tories are seeking to get the UK capitalists out of their indebtedness while the masses have to decide whether to heat their homes or buy food for their children – they cannot do both.
The disgraceful trade union bureaucracy has just stood by and watched this happening, or when they have been forced into a struggle have disgracefully surrendered as the Unite trade union did at Grangemouth.
The TUC has observed this situation and has not lifted a finger to stop it, or to fight for the working class.
For the past two years the TUC has been discussing the practicalities of a general strike but has refused to call one.
Meanwhile, the Tories are becoming more and more hysterical that they will lose the next general election and are seeking to win the racist vote by attacking Romanian and Bulgarian migrants as ‘benefit tourists’.
Even Lib Dem minister Cable, part of the coalition cabinet, has compared Cameron’s attacks on Bulgars and Romanians with Enoch Powell’s ‘Rivers of Blood’ speech in the 1960s!
In fact, the crisis of the Tory Party has deepened to the point where they are being threatened with being thrown out of the EU, which would be a disaster for the UK banks and bosses.
It is already being put that EU law and parliamentary sovereignty are opposites.
Lord Judge has commented that the European Court of Human Rights can set law on social matters and that this threatens Parliamentary sovereignty.
Lord Judge said Parliament needed to decide how much power it was willing to give up to the court in Strasbourg.
Meanwhile, the European court’s head said Britain is violating international law with a ban on prisoners voting.
Judge Dean Spielmann said if Britain did not adhere to European human rights laws it could face leaving the EU.
British capitalism and its Tory Party are in a deep crisis, economic, political and historical.
There is no doubt that 2014 will be the year to bring the rotten coalition down with a general strike in order to bring in a workers’ government and socialism.
To prepare this development, the WRP and the Young Socialists must be built up rapidly, alongside evicting the reformist leaders of the trade unions and replacing them with a revolutionary leadership – the number one issue.
The world crisis of capitalism is also creating the conditions for the political revolution in degenerated and deformed workers’ states such as Russia and China.
The ruling Stalinist bureaucracies seek to be the junior partners of imperialism and try to show just how useful they can be to get imperialism out of trouble in Syria and other places.
Putin, who rescued Obama from disaster when he brought forward the plan to disarm Syria of its wmds, has been rewarded by the US-EU effort to carry out a regime change in the Ukraine!
Leading US and EU politicians such as John McCain and Baroness Ashton descended on Kiev to urge the crowds of EU supporters to bring down the Ukrainian government.
Driven by the crisis, the EU seeks to colonise the Ukraine, while the US sees splitting the Ukraine from Russia as the start of the dismemberment of Russia itself.
Meanwhile, Putin talks about his partners in the west.
Putin undertakes to defend Russia by military means.
However, since he is opposed to the world revolution he cannot defend Russia politically, placing all his hopes in imperialism making a deal that it will keep, unlike the Stalin-Hitler Pact or the 1990s pledge that NATO would not expand eastwards if Russia quit Eastern Europe.
Soviet workers want to see the reconstitution of the USSR.
The drive forward of the working class of the world sets the scene for this reconstitution of the USSR through a political revolution of the working class that will restore rule through workers’ and peasants’ soviets, as part of the world socialist revolution
2014 will be a year for world revolution.
We must see to it that the International Committee of the Fourth International is built in every country to lead this developing world socialist revolution to its victory.