After a year of political turmoil, Venezuela turned a corner recently, at least according to an eye-catching October 21 op-ed in The Washington Post. Titled “It’s official: Venezuela is a full-blown dictatorship”, the piece claimed the country has become an “all-out, no-more-elections dictatorship”.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the start of an assault to recapture Mosul, the most important Iraqi city held by ISIS, on October 16.
The assault is spearheaded by the Iraqi army and the peshmerga, the armed forces of the Kurdistan Regional Government in northern Iraq. It also includes the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), an umbrella group of militia groups loyal to the Iraqi government and based in Iraq’s Shi’a Arab communities, and some other Iraqi militias.
Building the Commune
By George Ciccariello-Maher
Verso Books, 2016
Every commune is different, George Ciccariello-Maher says in Building the Commune, but “the coffee is always too sweet, and the process is always difficult, endlessly messy and unpredictable in its inescapable creativity”.
In a historic step toward lifting the blockade on Cuba, the United States abstained Wednesday in the United Nations General Assembly vote, unanimously calling for the end of the Cold War measure for the 25th consecutive year.
"The United States has always voted against this resolution," said US representative to the UN Samantha Power. "Today, the United States will abstain."
A new report from the United Nations released on October 17 brought another dire warning of the catastrophic consequences of climate change, Common Dreams said that day. The report warned that without putting immediate environmental safeguards into place, more than a hundred million more people could be driven into extreme poverty and hunger by 2030.
Tom Morello, renowned guitarist from Rage Against the Machine and social activist, has just finished a “Make America Rage Again” tour with new supergroup Proohets of Rage. The group features RATM members Brad Wilk and Tim Cummerford, as well as Public Enemy vocalist Chuck D and Cypress Hill frontman B Real.
Ernesto “Che” Guevara was executed by a Bolivian soldier in the village of La Higuera, Bolivia, on October 9, 1967. The soldier was acting on orders that came directly from Bolivia’s then-president Rene Barrientos.
Guevara was summarily executed for fear that a trial would become a public spectacle and garner sympathy for Guevara and his revolutionary socialist cause.
During a debate in Miami earlier this year between the candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination, Bernie Sanders came out against the Monroe Doctrine.
This doctrine dictates that the United States government could intervene throughout the hemisphere and overthrow whatever government does not suit Washington.
Thousands marched in Venezuela’s capital of Caracas on October 12 to commemorate the Day of Indigenous Resistance — previously known as “Colombus Day”. The march also sought to counter opposition mobilisations in favour of the recall referendum against socialist President Nicolas Maduro.
Hundreds of thousands of Colombians marched in silence in cities across the country holding candles and torches on October 5 in support of a peace deal that only just lost a plebiscite on October 2, Morning Star said.
The huge marches came after the shock victory of the “No” vote in a plebiscite on whether to accept the peace deal negotiated between the government of Juan Manuel Santos and the left-wing Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).