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The News Line: Editorial Workers in UK and US must dismantle the imperialist war machine with a general strike and a socialist revolution! AFTER Tuesday’s talks with the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella, President Putin spoke about the situation after the US’s 59 cruise missile attack on Syria.

Putin said: ‘Now about whether new attacks are possible or not. We have information from a variety of sources that such provocations (I cannot find another word for this) are being prepared in other parts of Syria, including in southern suburbs of Damascus, where they are planning to plant certain substances and accuse Syrian authorities of using them.

‘However, we believe that things like this should be thoroughly investigated. We plan to officially address the appropriate UN institution in The Hague and call on the international community to thoroughly investigate these matters.’

Despite the visit of the US Secretary of State, Tillerson, to Moscow, this remains the situation, where US imperialism has sent a naval squadron off the shores of North Korea threatening war, and has publicly announced that Trump will take renewed military action if there should be more gas attacks in Syria.

President Maratella also made his position clear. On Libya, smashed up and destroyed by NATO, he said, ‘As concerns Libya, Italy believes a military operation would be the wrong decision. The Libyan Political Agreement and the subsequent unanimous UN resolution provide a legitimate framework for a political solution. We hope for a constructive approach on the part of Moscow, and its understanding that stabilising the situation in Libya and the Mediterranean is quite important for Italy.’

On Syria he said: ‘Regarding Syria, the tragic events of the previous week demonstrate that we must work together to find a solution to the crisis as soon as possible, based on dialogue at different levels, between the Syrian parties, regional participants and representatives of the international community. We must work on a joint political solution under the auspices of the UN and in line with the Geneva talks. We owe this to the hundreds of thousands of people suffering from thoughtless violence. We owe this to the millions of refugees.

‘The use of chemical weapons, which was banned by the Geneva Convention, was, of course, unacceptable. We hope that Moscow, along with everyone else, can use its influence to prevent similar attacks in the future. The guilty parties must be identified and prosecuted.’

This position means that when the US’s would-be warlord Johnson went to the G7 summit, also on Tuesday, all of the UK government’s anti-Russian spite and hysteria was rejected and Johnson was sent packing while Tillerson did not even attend the meeting.

Back in the UK, Defence Minister Fallon, who attacked Russia with extreme hostility, was silenced for the moment. What this means is that the situation has been reached where the US-UK war alliance in the Middle East and the Gulf can be smashed and defeated and the principle established that only the Syrian people can decide who is to govern them, and that the Palestinian people must have their state!

The workers’ movement in the West must now enter this life and death struggle with all of the force that it has to fight for the people of Syria and Palestine and also Mosul where there is now a news blackout despite the fact that the slaughter of civilians by UK and US jets is continuing.

The imperialist powers, especially the ruling classes of the US and the UK must be disarmed by the US and UK working classes. This means that UK trade unions must separate themselves completely from the Anglo-US war chariot and call massive demonstrations against any new war in the Middle East and demand the withdrawal of all UK forces, from Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, the Yemen and Bahrain, and the cancelling of the building of a giant UK naval base in Bahrain.

This will mean hundreds of billions being diverted from making imperialist war to financing the NHS, housing and education at home. In fact, the struggle to defend the NHS is directly linked to the struggle to end the UK’s imperialist wars and overthrow British imperialism. There is no doubt that the disarming of British imperialism will require a general strike leading to a socialist revolution.


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