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Military Resistance: thomasfbarton@earthlink.net 5.26.14 Print it out: color best. Pass it on.

Military Resistance 12E13





[Thanks to SSG N (retd) who sent this in]


Memorial Day What?
Its A Dilemma
How To Pay Tribute To The War Dead
While Giving Pause To Young Men And
Women Who May Be Thinking About
Stepping Into The Dead Soldiers
Combat Boots?

From: Clancy Sigal
To: Military Resistance Newsletter
Subject: Memorial Day What?
Date: May 25, 2014

Except for mourning family members and Boy Scouts loyally placing tiny flags on
veterans gravestones hardly anyone knows anything about Memorial Day except that
its a day off.

Its the saddest of the military holidays, invented after the Civil War, supposed to help us
honor, or at least pause to remember, all the American dead from all our wars. Thats a
lot of men and some women to remember going back, well, how far?

Big and small, weve done about 70 wars starting with the mid-18th century so-called
French and Indian wars where George Washington was blooded and when we got our
first taste of industrially massacring Native Americans, mainly Ojibwas and Algonquins
who sided with the French against our British masters.

Before penicillin its hard to get an accurate sum total figure of all those combat deaths
because so many men died of disease and what was later called shell shock.

In our thirteen major and 60 or so minor wars lets call a round figure of one and a half
million dead.

Compared to the mass war slaughter in, say, Russia or China, thats small potatoes, but
big potatoes for us.

Our dead include wars you never heard, such the Quasi War with the French, the First
Sumatran Expedition and Sheepeater Indian War plus, of course, both World Wars,
Korea, Vietnam and Iraq and Afghanistan. A large number of U.S. wars were fought
against our own Native Americans (Modocs, Nez Perce, serial Seminole wars etc.) and
other colored peoples in China, the Philippines, Haiti, Central America, Mexico etc.

This doesnt and shouldnt take away from the genuine valor of so many American
soldiers who fought, died, massacred others and were scalped in return.

Sadly or inspiringly, the truth is men and now women sometimes like to go to war. To
do ones patriotic duty can be exciting as well as deadly. You get a sense of purpose
and usefulness, possibly your own worth by being in uniform.

Personally, I liked being in the military including its chickenshit.

Its also thrilling to watch war movies.

To celebrate Memorial Day, Turner Classics on TV is throwing shot and shell at us for
a solid four day, 72-hour marathon starting Saturday. The lineup includes 34 classics
from the Civil War on.



Unless my eyes deceive me Turner is not showing, or avoiding, some fine anti-
pro-war films, Renoirs Grand Illusion and Kubricks Paths of Glory as well as All
Quiet On The Western Front and Howard Hawkss The Road To Glory (co-written
by William Faulkner).

Turners bias is toward blood-and-guts combat stories, comedies and touching stories
of the families who wait at home.

In the midst of all the testosterone-laden, gut-wrenching kill, kill, kill is some real quality
that fails in the mission of sending men off to war.

If you can make your way past The Dirty Dozen and Kellys Heroes, theres The Best
Years of Our Lives, the Quaker-friendly Friendly Persuasion, Sidney Lumets brilliant
exposure of military sadism in The Hill, the German-made Westfront 19l8, and J ohn
Hustons butchered but decent The Red Badge of Courage.

Missing, thank heaven, are Ronald Reagans favorite Patton and Katherine Bigelows
ballsy recruiting poster Hurt Locker.

But Im sorry we wont see Clint Eastwoods Letters From Iwo J ima, a surprise
masterpiece telling the battle from a J apanese point of view.

Whats not to love about war movies?

Vivid images of men shooting the crap out of each other heats my blood. The gore of
this is how it is is ultimately romantic and seductive. Most war movies cant help but
call us to arms. Rat tat tat to Black Watch bagpipe music.

Some movies, like Catch-22, M*A*S*H* and Tony Richardsons The Charge of the Light
Brigade, which also are not on Turners list, make an attempt to lower the testosterone
level with some humor and cynicism.

But in the end its almost impossible to outshout Objective, Burma, The Dawn Patrol,
Where Eagles Dare and Twelve OClock High.

Its a dilemma.

How to pay tribute to the war dead while giving pause to young men and women who
may be thinking about stepping into the dead soldiers combat boots?





FORWARD OBSERVATIONS




At a time like this, scorching irony, not convincing argument, is needed. Oh had
I the ability, and could reach the nations ear, I would, pour out a fiery stream of
biting ridicule, blasting reproach, withering sarcasm, and stern rebuke.

For it is not light that is needed, but fire; it is not the gentle shower, but thunder.

We need the storm, the whirlwind, and the earthquake.

The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they
oppose.

Frederick Douglass, 1852


The Nixon administration claimed and received great credit for withdrawing the
Army from Vietnam, but it was the rebellion of low-ranking GIs that forced the
government to abandon a hopeless suicidal policy.
-- David Cortright; Soldiers In Revolt


Full Disclosure Memorial Day 2014

The Wall 1986. Photograph by Mike Hastie, Army Medic Vietnam

From: Mike Hastie
To: Military Resistance Newsletter
Sent: May 26, 2014
Subject: Full Disclosure Memorial Day 2014

Photo and caption from the portfolio of Mike Hastie, US Army Medic, Vietnam
1970-71. (For more of his outstanding work, contact at:
(hastiemike@earthlink.net) T)

One day while I was in a bunker in Vietnam, a sniper round went over my head.
The person who fired that weapon was not a terrorist, a rebel, an extremist, or a
so-called insurgent. The Vietnamese individual who tried to kill me was a citizen
of Vietnam, who did not want me in his country. This truth escapes millions.

Mike Hastie
U.S. Army Medic
Vietnam 1970-71
December 13, 2004


Especially After The 1968 Tet
Offensive, Antiwar Sentiment
Spread Widely Among The
Combat Troops In Vietnam
The Main Activities Of Antiwar
U.S. Servicepeople In Vietnam
Were Not Peaceful
Demonstrations
A 1975 Survey Revealed That 75%
Of Vietnam Veterans Were Opposed
To The War
There Is No Contemporaneous
Evidence Of Any Antiwar Activists
Spitting On Veterans

Excerpts from Vietnam And Other American Fantasies; H. Bruce Franklin; University Of
Massachusetts Press; Amherst, 2000

The most serious occurred on April 14 at the base of Dau Tieng (east of Tay Ninh,
north of Cu Chi), when a unit of the Third Brigade of the Fourth Infantry Division
defied orders to proceed on a search-and-destroy mission near where another
unit had been badly cut up.

The commanding officer ordered other soldiers to fire on the rebels, who returned
the fire. One report indicated dozens of men killed or wounded and three
helicopters destroyed.

As the Vietnam veteran and sociologist J erry Lembcke has demonstrated in his
invaluable 1998 book The Spitting Image: Myth, Memory, and the Legacy of Vietnam,
the vast majority of returning veterans characterized their reception as friendly.

There is no contemporaneous evidence of any antiwar activists spitting on
veterans.

The first allegations of such behavior did not appear until the late 1970s. The spat-upon
veteran then became a mythic figure used to build support for military fervor and, later
on, the Gulf War, but the myth has become so powerful that many veterans have now
come to believe, despite all evidence to the contrary, that it actually happened to them
personally.

Of course it is possible that isolated instances may have occurred. But if antiwar activists
were frequently spitting on veterans or otherwise abusing them, why has nobody ever
produced even the tiniest scrap of contemporaneous evidence? According to the myth,
spitting on veterans was a regular custom as they arrived from Vietnam at the San
Francisco and Los Angeles airports.

We are supposed to believe that these men just back from combat then meekly
walked away without attacking or even reporting their persecutors, and that
nobody else, including airport security officers, ever noticed what was going on.

For there is not one press report, airport security report, police report, court record, diary
entry, video shot, or photograph of a single incident at these airports or anywhere else.

How then to explain the belief now held by many veterans that they were indeed spat
upon as they arrived from Vietnam at the San Francisco and Los Angeles airports?

The answer lies in the transformative power of collective national myth over individual
memory.

The myth is so strong that it has even determined their memory of where they
arrived, for they were flown back not to these civilian airports but to military bases
closed to outsiders.

And a 1975 survey revealed that 75 percent of Vietnam veterans were opposed to the
war.

Especially after the 1968 Tet offensive, antiwar sentiment spread widely among the
combat troops in Vietnam, where peace symbols and antiwar salutes became
commonplace.

Some units even organized their own antiwar demonstrations to link up with the
movement at home.

For example, to join the November 1969 antiwar Mobilization, a unit stationed at Pleiku
fasted against the war and boycotted the Thanksgiving Day dinner.

Of the 141 soldiers classified below the rank of specialist fifth class, only eight showed
up for the traditional meal; this J ohn Turkey Movement spread to units all over
Vietnam.

When Bob Hope introduced General Creighton Abrams, commander of all U.S. forces in
Vietnam, to the 30,000 troops assembled for a Christmas show at the sprawling Long
Binh base, the entire throng leaped to their feet and held their hands high in the V
salute of the peace movement.


The Main Activities Of Antiwar U.S. Servicepeople In Vietnam Were Not
Peaceful Demonstrations .

But the main activities of antiwar U.S. servicepeople in Vietnam were not peaceful
demonstrations.

An ongoing dilemma for the antiwar movement back home was the difficulty of
finding ways to move beyond verbal protest and symbolic acts to deeds that
would actually interfere with the conduct of the war.

The soldiers in Vietnam had no such problem.

Individual acts of rebellion, ranging from desertion and sabotage to injuring and
even killing officers who ordered hazardous search-and-destroy missions, merged
into mutinies and large-scale resistance.

As early as the spring of 1967, sporadic small-scale mutinies were being reported in the
French press but not in the U.S. media except for the movements own press.

The most serious occurred on April 14 at the base of Dau Tieng (east of Tay Ninh,
north of Cu Chi), when a unit of the Third Brigade of the Fourth Infantry Division
defied orders to proceed on a search-and-destroy mission near where another
unit had been badly cut up.

The commanding officer ordered other soldiers to fire on the rebels, who returned
the fire.

One report indicated dozens of men killed or wounded and three helicopters
destroyed.

The base was sealed off and no outside personnel were admitted for three days.

Combat refusal and outright mutinies spread rapidly after the Tet offensive in
1968.

But news about this form of growing GI resistance was kept rather efficiently from most
of the American public until August 1969, when correspondents reported firsthand on the
unanimous battlefield refusal of a badly mauled infantry company to go back into
combat.

During the next two years, the press published numerous reports of entire units refusing
direct combat orders, and the public actually got to see two incidents of rebellion on
network television.


A Common And Less Conspicuous Method Of Killing Unpopular Officers:
Rifle Fire Often In The Midst Of Combat

Resistance took another form so widespread that it brought a new word into the English
language: fragging.

Originally taking its name from fragmentation grenades but soon applied to any means
of killing commissioned or noncommissioned officers, fragging developed its own
generally understood customs, usages, and ethos.

Officers who aggressively risked or otherwise offended their men were customarily
warned once or twice by a nonlethal grenade before being attacked with a booby-
trapped or hurled grenade.

By mid-1972, the Pentagon was officially acknowledging 551 incidents of fragging with
explosive devices, which had left 86 dead and more than 700 wounded. These figures
were no doubt understated, and they did not include a common and less conspicuous
method of killing unpopular officers: rifle fire often in the midst of combat.


This Memorial Day, Gold Star Mothers
Can Save Up To 60%!

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

May 26, 2014 By J ay-B. The Duffle Blog

THE MALL Memorial Day doesnt just mean the start of summer. Its also a chance
to cash in on the sacrifices in blood made by your loved ones!

Now through Tuesday, come on down to your local consumer emporium, and get blown
away by an improvised explosive SAVINGS device!

If you come in with a death certificate for a child in the armed forces, you can save up to
60% off the latest electronics, including smart phones, tablets, and phablets. Dont
worry! Our low prices wont maim your pocketbook!

If you served in the military, we also want to help you. All grills are 15% off with a valid
military ID card. Show your purple heart or other commendation to receive an additional
10% off! (Sorry, offer not valid for bronze stars.)

Feeling suicidal? Dont jump off a lame old bridge. Check out Martys Gun Superstore
and go out in style! Weve got great discounts on shotguns all you need is your VA
identification card to qualify.

We can also match your disability rating from the VA! Lost a leg? Well chop 30% off our
already low, low prices! Traumatic brain injury? Talk to one of our reps for special
pricing.

Hanks Butcher Shop is offering bulk, freshly ground sausage to service members at a
price so low it will give you PTSD! Fire up that grill with J P-8! Smells like victory!

If your husband or wife didnt make it home, Floppys Mattresses can help you by
offering as much as 50% off on a fresh start twin beds to replace that depressing old
queen size you used to share with someone.

Finally, Crazy Hals used cars will be offering moms and dads of veterans prices that are
almost suicidal. Almost!

Show you support the troops and their sacrifice by coming out to the Memorial Day
mega-sale!

Our discounts have never sunk so low!


YOUR INVITATION:
Comments, arguments, articles, and letters from service men
and women, and veterans, are especially welcome. Write to Box
126, 2576 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10025-5657 or email
contact@militaryproject.org: Name, I.D., withheld unless you
request publication. Same address to unsubscribe.


Military Resistance In PDF Format?
If you prefer PDF to Word format, email: contact@militaryproject.org


ANNIVERSARIES


May 27, 1963: One For Our Side
Masters Of War Released


The record album, The Freewheelin Bob Dylan, with the song Masters Of War, was
released.

Masters of War
By Bob Dylan

Come you masters of war
You that build all the guns
You that build the death planes
You that build the big bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks

You that never done nothin
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like its your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly

Like J udas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain

You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you set back and watch
When the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young peoples blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud

Youve thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You aint worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that Im young
You might say Im unlearned
But theres one thing I know
Though Im younger than you
Even J esus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And your deathll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And Ill watch while youre lowered
Down to your deathbed
And Ill stand oer your grave
Til Im sure that youre dead


DO YOU HAVE A FRIEND OR RELATIVE
IN THE MILITARY?


Forward Military Resistance along, or send us the email address if you
wish and well send it regularly with your best wishes. Whether in
Afghanistan or at a base in the USA, this is extra important for your service
friend, too often cut off from access to encouraging news of growing
resistance to injustices, inside the armed services and at home. Send
email requests to address up top or write to: Military Resistance, Box 126,
2576 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10025-5657.


CLASS WAR REPORTS


Protests, Strikes And Direct Actions
Have Been Flaring Up Across The
Country As The 2014 FIFA World Cup
Approaches
Its Almost Impossible To Keep
Track Of The Wave Of Strikes And
Demonstrations Taking Place Across
Brazil, And It Will Only Heat Up More
As The World Cup Approaches
There Were Scenes Of Chaos Across
Brazil Yesterday As The There Will Be
No Cup Movement Was Repressed With
Tear Gas And Rubber Bullets In Major
World Cup Cities

May 15, 2014 by Dave Zirin, The Nation

Dave Zirin has a book out next week called Brazils Dance with the Devil: The World
Cup, the Olympics and the Fight for Democracy. His travels to Brazil and work on that
project inform much of this article.

*********************************************************************

For people just tuning in, the idea that people in Brazil would be protesting the
2014 World Cup makes about as much sense as New Yorkers rebelling against
pizza.

And yet here we are, less than one month before the start of the Cup, and
demonstrations bear the slogan #NoVaiTerCopa, or There will be no Cup.

Protests, strikes and direct actions have been flaring up across the country as the 2014
FIFA World Cup approaches.

Most notably, as many as 10,000 people in So Paolo under the banner of Brazils
Landless Workers Movement, or MTST, has occupied a major lot next to Arena
Corinthians, site of the World Cups opening match.

They call their occupation The Peoples Cup and point out that the nearly half a billion
dollars that went into building the FIFA quality stadium next door could have been used
to combat poverty or improve healthcare. The slogan we want FIFA quality hospitals
and schools still rings out as it did a year ago, when during the Confederations Cup,
Brazil saw its largest protests in a generation.

Now there is an even sharper desperation as the cup approaches. Maria das Dores
Cirqueira, 44, a coordinator for the MTST, told the Los Angeles Times, When the
government told us we would host the World Cup, we hoped there would be
improvements for us. But they arent putting on a Cup for the people, theyre putting on
a Cup for the gringos.

This belief that the lions share of Cup expenditures are for foreign consumption, while
the disruption and pain will be shouldered by Brazils masses, is widespread.


Members of the Landless Workers Movement protest against the money spent on the World Cup
near Arena Corinthians, which will host the tournaments first match in So Paulo, Brazil. (AP
Photo/Andre Penner)

Every protest, every rally, every cry of despair is connected to the the three Ds:
displacement, debt and defense. The stats on displacement, debt and defense can be
numbing or easy to disregard for outsiders.

The numbers on people expelled from their homes vary wildly, but without
question, hundreds of thousands of the most vulnerable residents in the country
have been or will be relocated by either carrot or stick, whether through financial
reimbursement or through the barrel of the gun.

As far as debt goes, this will be the most expensive World Cup in history, with a low-
estimate price tag of $15 billion.

And then there is defense. In addition to harsh new anti-terror legislation, Brazils
government will have more boots on the ground than any World Cup has ever
witnessed: more than 170,000 security personnel, 22 percent more than South Africa
saw in 2010. This brand of defense will drive up the displacement and debt on the
ground in Brazil, as safety becomes the catch-all justification for President Dilma
Rousseff and the ruling Workers Partys every step.

It is also defense that is driving people and organizations into the streets to say No
Vai Ter Copa.

The defense operation has put the near-entirety of its focus on internal targets, which
creates the appearance that all of this money is being spent to protect wealthy soccer
tourists from the people of Brazil themselves. (Yet even some of the internal security
measures are not immune from the discontent, as stadium security officers went on
strike recently saying that they wanted FIFA quality wages.)

As Brazilians suffer these unprecedented disruptions into their lives, the words of
those in charge could not be more tone deaf.

Brazils Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo huffed in March that any anger would dissipate by
the time the Cup was underway, saying, People will be more concerned with celebrating
rather than protesting.

FIFA General Secretary J erome Valcke seemed to pine for the dictatorial Brazil of
yesteryear when he said that working with democratically elected governments can
complicate organizing tournaments.

The foot-in-mouth Valcke also commented recently that FIFA has been through
hell trying to keep the World Cup on schedule.

It is safe to guess that the hell of having your home bulldozed or being beaten
and gassed by police is slightly worse than anything Valcke has had to endure.

The calls for protest aim to highlight the pain as well as show the world who is behind
the curtain, pulling the strings. There is a highly sophisticated awareness that just as the
governments World Cup plans for Brazil are designed for international consumption,
there is also an unprecedented global spotlight. The great journalist Eduardo Galeano
once wrote, There are visible and invisible dictators. The power structure of world
football is monarchical. Its the most secret kingdom in the world. Protesters aim for
nothing less than to drag FIFA from the shadows and into the light. If they are
successful, it will leave a legacy that will last longer than the spectacle itself.

*************************************************************

After we published this article, I received the below message from my friend Dylan
Stillwood who is living in Brazil. His eyewitness observations are extremely
helpful. He wrote,

Its almost impossible to keep track of the wave of strikes and demonstrations taking
place across Brazil, and it will only heat up more as the World Cup approaches.

There were scenes of chaos across Brazil yesterday as the There Will Be No
Cup movement was repressed with tear gas and rubber bullets in major World
Cup cities.

In So Paulo, ten thousand public schoolteachers, who have been on strike for three
weeks, marched to City Hall.

Meanwhile, the Homeless Workers Movement (MTST) joined forces with the Landless
Workers Movement (MST) and blocked highways near the Itaquero stadium, where the
opening game will be held, as well as in the west and south zones of the city.

In Recife, which will host five games, the military occupied the streets with tanks as a
strike of the police and firefighters entered its second day.

Teachers are also on strike in Rio and Belo Horizonte, both Cup cities, and their unions
officially joined the anti-Cup protests.

Rio was paralyzed by a wildcat bus strike for two days, while subway workers in
So Paulo are threatening to do the same.

The list goes on: oil workers in Cubato, armored car drivers in So Paulo, civil
servants in Belo Horizonte, airport workers in Guarulhos, just to name a few.

There have even been protests at Brazilian embassies abroad.

Many Brazilians have fallen out of love with the World Cup after seeing the destruction
its caused. The word FIFA is about as popular as FEMA in New Orleans after Katrina.

A web poll at Veja magazine showed that only 22% of readers would root for Brazil,
while 34% planned to root against.

Everyone has commented that the traditional pre-Cup festivities -- painting the streets,
hanging up green and yellow bunting -- is hard to find this year.

In a poor neighborhood in So Paulo, one woman commented, The city hasnt even
sent milk for our kids yet. How am I going to paint the street?

Another added, My children have a fever and theres no doctor to attend them. I cant
think about the Cup in this situation.

But Brazilians havent forgotten about the protests last year, and the last few weeks
have shown that the action off the pitch will be just as intense, and much more decisive
for Brazils future, than the action on it.


Comment On China Vietnam
Maritime Clashes And
Vietnamese Worker Riots:
Workers Have Acted Due To A
Mixture Of Mass Revulsion
Against Chinas Bullying Actions
And Raw Class Hatred Of Bosses
Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean And
Even Vietnamese Factories Have
Been Attacked And Burnt
Unleashing Their Class Hatred Against
All These Bosses, Due To A Pretext, Is
Not Difficult To Understand At All

May 21, 2014 by M Karadjis, Marxism List

Comment on China Vietnam maritime clashes and Vietnamese worker riots

A number of key points need to be understood about recent Sino-Vietnamese
clashes in the East Sea (also known as the South China Sea ) and the mass
reactions of Vietnamese workers.

First, the disputed islands that China has placed its oil rig near - the Paracels -
were not disputed before being seized by China from Vietnam in an act of armed
aggression in 1974.

At the time, China carried out this action in agreement with Kissinger.

In 1988, in further naked armed aggression, China seized about a quarter of the Spratly
Islands, which are much further south (and thus much further from China), which had
also, till then, been simply Vietnamese sovereign territory.

I certainly dont support war, ie, I dont think any Vietnamese worker in uniform should
have to get killed just to defend uninhabited islands.

However, that is different to being neutral in low-level conflict that inevitably does
occur.

If leftists want to call the Paracel Islands disputed, then they should call the Golan
Heights, which Israel similarly seized from Syria via armed aggression during that era,
disputed.

If they want to call the Paracels Chinese because after all, Americans/Australians etc
speaking on behalf of the Vietnamese dont want to be nationalists, then kindly be
consistent and declare the Golan Israeli.

The bigger picture, of course, is that China has claimed the entire East Sea as its own,
with the famous dotted line going right up to the borders of neighbouring countries,
including Vietnam, the new Monroe Doctrine of the new imperial colossus.

Second, regardless of the Paracels - for arguments sake lets call them (and the Golan)
disputed - the oil rig has been placed in what is indisputably Vietnams Exclusive
Economic Zone (EEZ), based on what is indisputably Vietnamese territory on the
mainland.

Third, the mass reaction against Chinese aggression by thousands of Vietnamese
workers cannot be written off either as a chauvinist outburst (though it certainly
has elements of that), as a government-orchestrated provocation, or as an act of
mass ignorance (since so many attacked factories were Taiwanese rather than
from the PRC).

Rather we need to look at it in all its complexity.

Mass revulsion against the Chinese regime in Vietnam is widespread (and an
obvious problem for anti-imperialist analysts). It has a historical aspect (not just
1000 years of Chinese rule, but the 1979 invasion, being knifed by Mao in late
Vietnam war (including the seizure of the Paracels); it has economic aspects, with
Chinese companies operating a gigantic environmentally destructive bauxite-
aluminium operation in VNs Central Highlands, and seizing the lions share of
contracts for projects of similar size and of similar strategic importance; it has an
aspect of moral revulsion and solidarity, as the Chinese navy regularly kidnaps
large numbers of Vietnamese dirt-poor fisher-folk from around the two disputed
island archipelagos, and holds them for massive ransoms for months at a time.

To blame the VCP government for provoking nationalism is a statement of
ideology (whether Trotskyist or otherwise), based on the idea that as a Stalinist-
turned capitalist regime it must be doing so.

It is also a statement of breathtaking ignorance about the actual facts.

The VCP government of course vigorously defends its own view of the islands. However,
it also holds the view that only diplomatic means can be used, that war is out of the
question.

However, most of the Vietnamese dissident opposition (whether genuinely democratic,
right-wing, Buddhist, Catholic etc) have found the idea of anti-China nationalism a good
horse to ride on, precisely because the VCP government is seen to have a too
moderate strategy and opinion.

So they denounce the VCP government as being communists betraying the nation to
China (which, while they dont often say so openly, can mean little more than
advocating war, since the VCP does everything but this). In fact, anti-China, defend the
islands, actions have become the most prominent issue in anti-VCP regime dissidence
for some 5 years now.

It is wrong, the way the dissident movement pushes the issue, of course; but it cannot be
denied that there is justice to the side overall which is resisting a new mega-capitalist
superpower (whether one wants to call it imperialist or not is frankly besides the point).

Does this mean the nationalistic dissidents have secretly orchestrated the workers?
Again, I think that is unlikely.

Most are rabid supporters of foreign capital (curiously, they think there isnt enough in
Vietnam!); but more generally, workers are quite capable of leading themselves, both in
doing good class struggle things and in making bad chauvinistic errors - no need to
romanticise raw class struggle by having to explain its bad aspects by orchestration by
the government, the opposition, or China itself (another theory floating around).

The simple facts of the matter are:


Workers Have Acted Due To A Mixture Of Mass Revulsion Against Chinas
Bullying Actions And Raw Class Hatred Of Bosses

Workers have acted due to a mixture of mass revulsion against Chinas bullying
actions and raw class hatred of bosses - Chinese, Taiwanese, Korean and even
Vietnamese factories have been attacked and burnt.

More have been Taiwanese than Chinese, because more Taiwanese investors
invest in these sweatshops than Chinese.

The Taiwanese, Chinese (often Hong Kongese) and Korean bosses are famous, not
only in Vietnam, for running brutal capitalist regimes in their factories, which openly
violate Vietnams labour laws, and are generally much harsher than what is tolerated by
workers from Vietnamese bosses (let alone Vietnamese state industries, where workers
conditions are far superior).

Unleashing their class hatred against all these bosses, due to a pretext, is not
difficult to understand at all.

But to understand the particular revulsion against the Taiwanese bosses, two things
need to be considered.

First, Chinas claims to the Paracels and Spratleys (which at the time were part of
Frances Vietnam colony and were thus handed over to Vietnam at the 1954 Geneva
Accords, where *China* and the USSR betrayed Vietnam by agreeing to partition) were
only made by the Kuomintang regime that ruled China in the late 1940s before the 1949
revolution.

The CCP simply inherited these chauvinistic claims against its smaller and weaker
brother nation, as you do. The Kuomintang still rules in Taiwan, still supports these
claims to the islands (like China, it claims all of them), and in practice has been
supporting the PRC in the island issues (so far has the capitalist integration of Taiwan
and the PRC gone).

Second, even more surprising (for anti-imperialists, and those who see China as some
kind of socialist state): As explained by Taiwanese researcher Wang Hongzen: Almost
all Taiwanese factories hire PRC people as cadres (Yes, that is also how Taiwanese
call their supervisors: cadres); inside the factories, there is a glass ceiling that blocks
Vietnamese from being promoted.

There is also everyday confrontation between Chinese supervisors with Vietnamese
workers under the so-called suppressive management style with Chinese
characteristics (Hongzens article, Beating up Taiwanese is not a Misunderstanding,
for anyone who reads Chinese, is at
http://www.appledaily.com.tw/realtimenews/article/new/20140516/398528/).

One needs to take this into account when we read reports of Vietnamese workers
beating up Chinese workers, in some cases killing them.

From where I am, I cannot tell how targeted these attacks are: are they specifically
targeting these repressive Chinese supervisors and cadres, or are these simply ugly
chauvinist attacks on Chinese workers as a whole?

I dont know, but I suspect there is probably a bit of both.

However, to explain it as simply some kind of latent mindless chauvinism in
Vietnamese workers coming out, rather than in the class terms as explained by
Hongzen, is just plain wrong.

That of course should not be read to mean any justification to the real chauvinist
acts that may be occurring.

Of course, more generally, regarding labour, some have written that workers all around
the world often attack foreign workers for taking their jobs etc. In my opinion, this again
is too narrow.

This usually refers to immigrants from poorer countries trying to get jobs in richer
countries, being opposed by more privileged local workers.

But here it is reversed, and I dont only mean the joint-venture CCP/KMT cadres; as
well, China tends to bring in masses of Chinese workers with its investments in Vietnam,
as in Cambodia, Papua-NG, African countries etc. Bringing your workforce is not
immigration; what it normally means is 2 things.

First, since the capitalist regime inside the factory is significantly harsher in China than in
Vietnam, Chinese investors bring a workforce so as to not have to put up with too much
trouble; they are well-known to see Vietnamese workers as more strike-prone and
lazy, ie, refusing to take as much shit.

In any case, the Chinese workers often have no work visas; their jobs there are
completely tied to their bosses.

Second, the Chinese investors use Chinese workers for better-skilled and higher
paid positions, leaving Vietnamese with the least skilled and lowest paid
positions.

Just how different this is from the position of immigrant workers vis-a-vis locals in
imperialist countries is rather obvious.

So all this also adds to the antipathy to Chinese workers.

Naturally, that does not mean that the attacks on Chinese workers are in any way
justified, except in cases when there is a issue of clear class revulsion against slave-
driving cadres.

Clearly, masses of Chinese workers see themselves as in danger, and have fled; the
VCP has been able to use the outbreaks as a cover to crack down on other peaceful
forms of protest; the opposition claims the chaos is a result of the VCP not being hard
enough on China; China has scored some points by pointing these events as
Vietnamese anti-China aggression.

Vietnamese and Chinese workers need to see each other as allies against intensified
capitalism in both countries.

However, when Marxists analyse what causes events like this, it is also important
to understand who is the oppressor, both the national oppressor in the big
picture, and the class oppressor - including its cadre agents and screws - in the
factories.



OCCUPATION PALESTINE


Zionist Occupies Continue To Bar
Gazan Children From Visiting Fathers
Imprisoned In Israel;
Two Of The Forbidden Ones Tell
Their Personal Stories

12 May 2014 BTselem

In J uly 2012, Israel partially reinstated authorization for relatives to visit Palestinians
from the Gaza Strip being held in Israel as prisoners or detainees (hereafter: inmates).
Israels decision was made in consequence of a hunger strike by almost 2,000
Palestinian inmates.

However, Israel set strict criteria for these visits, allowing only inmates parents and
wives to visit.

All other relatives, including children, siblings and grandparents, were not allowed
to visit.

Visitation rights were extended to inmates children under the age of eight only in
May 2013, and to children under the age of ten in September 2013. No official
explanation was given, at any stage, for the age limit on childrens visits, which is
not applied to children of security or criminal inmates from the West Bank and
from Israel.

According to Israel Prisons Service (IPS) data, at the end of April 2014, Israel was
holding 460 inmates from Gaza: 373 are defined as security inmates and 87 are
defined as criminal inmates.

According to data by Gazas Ministry of Prisoners, there are 424 minors in the
Gaza Strip whose fathers are incarcerated in Israel; yet only 164 those under the
age of ten may visit.

In recent months, BTselem gathered testimonies from Gazan children over the age of
ten who have not seen their imprisoned fathers since 2007, and from siblings of such
prisoners.

In their testimonies, the children describe their longing to be reunited with fathers, as
well as the difficulties they face because of the separation.

Security inmates are not allowed to speak on the telephone and their only mode of
communication with relatives barred from visiting is written correspondence. Visitors are
permitted to bring prisoners no more than three photographs per visit. The basic right of
the inmates and of their relatives to family life, including prison visits, is enshrined in both
international and Israeli law, which recognizes that people are social creatures who need
family and community frameworks. It is the states duty to protect the right of every
inmate to such visits, regardless of the offense for which he or she was convicted.

BTselem yet again calls upon Israeli authorities to act with regard to Gazan inmates as
they do with those from Israel and the West, i.e., to allow all first-degree relatives, and
especially children under the age of 18, to visit their loved ones being held in Israel,.
There is no justification for discriminating between inmates based on their residence, all
the more so where children are concerned.

****************************************************************

LEEN A-SAFTAWI, 13, DOES NOT KNOW HER FATHER WHO HAS BEEN HELD IN
ISRAEL FOR THE LAST 14 YEARS


Im in the eighth grade in Dar al-Arkam School.

I live with my mother and my brothers and sister in the a-Saftawi region of Gaza City. I
have three brothers and a sister: J ihad, 23, Hamza, 24, Asad, 20, and Sara, 16.

My father, Imad Asad Hashem a-Saftawi, was arrested at Rafah Crossing on 13
December 2000, on his way back from Egypt. The crossing was under Israeli control at
the time.

He was sentenced to 18 years in prison. My mother says that I visited him once, back in
2004. I went with my grandmother and my brother J ihad to Nafha Prison.

I dont remember anything from that visit, or of my father, because I was only three then.
My grandmother told me about the visit later. Im thirteen now, and I dont know
anything about my father.

I dont remember getting a hug from him like other kids, who feel their parents love. Im
very sad. I have no words to describe how I feel. I feel something is missing in my life,
especially on holidays or special occasions.

It really hurts when I see my cousins hugging their parents and sharing their problems
with them and telling them how their day was.

I try to hide my feelings but sometimes I cant, and then I start crying.

Ive always dreamed of visiting my father and talking with him, sharing what Im going
through, and telling him about my life. I really hope that someday well be allowed to visit
him at least once a month.

I know my father only from photos. The last time I got a photo was two weeks ago, when
my mom visited him. I was so happy. I decorated it and posted it on Facebook and
wrote: How is Dad? Does he have any gray hair? Every time I use the computer, I see
my fathers photo.

My mother visits my father at Nafha Prison about once every two months. She always
calls the Red Cross the day before the visit to make sure its still on and to ask if
anything has changed with regard to childrens visits.

Shes always told that she can only bring children under the age of ten. Every visit, my
mother brings my father only three photos, because thats all shes allowed to give him.

That makes me angry too, because I want to send him more photos. Were five children
and none of us can visit our father. I dont know how long Israel will keep denying me my
right to visit him. Im afraid I wont get see him before he gets out of prison.

Leen a-Saftawi gave her testimony to BTselem field researcher Khaled al-Azayzeh on
11 March 2014.

****************************************************************

RAMEZ AL-FARA, 13, OF KHAN YUNIS, HASNT SEEN HIS IMPRISONED FATHER
IN SIX YEARS,


Im in the eighth grade in Eid al-Agha School. I live with my mother and two sisters
Muna, 15, and Nada, 16 in a-Satar al-Gharbi neighborhood in Khan Yunis. I have two
other sisters who are already married Maryam, 20, and Rana, 17.

My father, Raef al-Fara, belongs to Fatah. He was arrested on 11 December 2004 by
soldiers at Abu Huli Checkpoint [a former checkpoint between the northern and southern
Gaza Strip]. I was four years old then. My mother says he was sentenced to life in
prison. Hes now in Nafha Prison in Israel.

Until 2007, I used to visit him with my mother and grandmother twice a month. My sisters
visited him, too. There was no age limit for visitors.

The last time I visited my father was sometime in the summer of 2007; I dont remember
the exact date. Dad was in Nafha Prison and I went there with my mom, my
grandmother and my sister Muna. I was so happy to see him. We spent 45 minutes with
him. I couldnt hug him because of a glass partition between us, and we spoke through a
phone. When the time was up, the wardens hung up the phone and told us to leave.

I remember that one time, the wardens let me go into the room my dad was in and hug
him. Thats the only time Ive hugged him since he was arrested. He was really happy.
He picked me up and kissed me and walked around the room with me in his arms. I felt
so happy in his embrace, and the other prisoners were so moved, they started crying.
After 2007, Israel wouldnt allow prisoners from Gaza to have visitors for years. I was
sad and very worried about my father, because we had practically no contact. Every now
and then we sent him regards over the radio, and sometimes we sent him letters through
the International Red Cross. I felt his absence particularly on special occasions and
hoped I could at least visit him on holidays.

In 2012, Israel allowed visits again and I was thrilled. But they set an age limit for visitors
and since I was 11, I wasnt allowed to visit him. It made me very sad. My mother goes
there with my grandfather and grandmother about once every two months. My sisters
and I stay home, sad because we cant go too.

On the day of the visit, I wake up with my mother at 3:00 A.M. and walk her to the bus
station in Khan Yunis, where you get the bus to Erez Crossing. I ask my mother to say hi
to my father from me and tell him that I miss him. I sit and wait with my sisters and aunts
until she comes back with my grandparents. When they get home, at around 9:00 P.M.,
relatives pour into the house to hear news from my father. My sisters and I want to hear
about every single detail of the visit.

The last photo I saw of my father is from seven months ago.

My grandparents visited him them at Nafha Prison and the wardens allowed prisoners to
have their photos taken with visitors over the age of 50.

My mother calls the Red Cross every two weeks to find out visiting dates and the age
limit for children. Every time, shes told that Israel doesnt allow kids over the age of ten
to visit.

* Ramez al-Fara gave his testimony to BTselem field researcher Khaled al-Azayzeh on
4 March 2014.

To check out what life is like under a murderous military occupation commanded
by foreign terrorists, go to:
http://www.maannews.net/eng/Default.aspx and
http://www.palestinemonitor.org/list.php?id=ej898ra7yff0ukmf16
The occupied nation is Palestine. The foreign terrorists call themselves Israeli.


DANGER: CAPITALISTS AT WORK






DANGER: POLITICIANS AT WORK





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