World

Brazilians vote on October 28 in an election that will be critical for the future of Latin America. Far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro, who topped the first round of the presidential election on October 7, faces off against the Workers’ Party (PT) candidate Fernando Haddad in the second round vote.

Facing the real prospect of a Bolsonaro win, the country’s social movements are stepping up their efforts to confront fascism, at the polls and on the streets.

The rise of the far right around the world, with fascist candidate Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil close to joining the growing ranks of authoritarian far right leaders, many on the left are wondering how to respond.

The parallels with the rise of fascism in Europe in the early 20th century are clear.

In July, Canadian Marxist academic and activist John Riddell gave a speech, abridged below, at a York University seminar entitled “Historical perspectives on united fronts against fascism and the far right”.

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As the brutal murder of a Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi by the Saudi regime dominates headlines, Khury Petersen-Smith takes a look at Show the US is backing Saudi war crimes in Yemen.

Twenty days after Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) bombed a school bus full of children in Yemen in August, United States Defense Secretary James Mattis hosted officials from the two US allies at the Pentagon.

The unexpected strength of far-right demagogue Jair Bolsonaro in the October 7 Brazilian presidential elections sent shockwaves throughout the country, writes James N Green.

Two big hurricanes hit southeastern United States in September-October. The first, Florence, devastated North and South Carolina with torrential rain, up to 40 inches in some locations over a few days. It caused huge flooding as rivers overflowed for weeks.

The second, Michael, hit Florida with very high winds. Near the coast, on the east side of the eye, sustained winds were 155 miles per hour when the storm made landfall. Together with the ocean storm surge, it made the coast look like it had been devastated in a bombing raid.

The Polish city of Lublin held its first Pride parade on October 13 amid threats and obstructions, TeleSUR English reported.

At the October 14 local elections, the Workers’ Party of Belgium (PTB) made some breakthroughs.

PTB chair Peter Mertens said: “For the first time we have moved from an urban phenomenon mostly concentrated in Antwerp and Liège to a breakthrough in most large and medium-sized cities of Wallonia, the Brussels region and Flanders. The number of our local elected officials increases from 50 to 157.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel vowed to restore confidence in the government after crashing to a humiliating defeat in the October 14 Bavarian state elections, Morning Star Online reported.

The Christian Social Union (CSU) — sister party to Merkel’s Christian Democrats — polled 37%, its worst vote for more than six decades. It lost its majority in Germany’s southern state in a major defeat for the governing parties.

“I do not consent! I do not consent! Where is my representation?”

Those desperate words rang out in the Senate galley on October 6 as protesters tried to make the US Senate listen to the majority of people across the country opposed to the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

But the elected leaders of the “world’s greatest democracy” ignored the objections of protesters inside the Senate gallery — as 13 women were arrested for interrupting the vote over the angry shouts of Vice President Mike Pence, who repeatedly had to bring the process back to order.

The latest warnings contained in the October 8 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) included stating the world has less than 12 years to drastically alter course to avoid the worst impacts of human-caused global warming, and that nothing less than keeping all fossil fuels in the ground is the solution to avoid future calamities.

If these have you frightened or despondent, experts responding to the report have a potentially unwelcome message for your already over-burdened heart and mind: It's very likely even worse than you're being told.

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