• 06 jun 2022

    Do not naturalize war!

Do not naturalize war!

Work to overcome the global leadership crisis

Masses 665 – editorial – May 29th, 2022


The war in Ukraine has completed three months. The press, in Brazil, and probably in Latin America, has not given much importance. However, there are no signs of a peace agreement. The United States continues to force the confrontation to continue. Their European allies cannot stand for a retreat. And Russia is fighting for control of the strategic region of Donbass.

Biden’s administration explicit intention is to exhaust the Russian military and economy as much as possible. Which expresses the objective of the Northern power to advance the economic-military siege of Russia, and put an end to Putin’s nationalist government. The war in Ukraine ended up anticipating the way in which the United States developed the conflict with China.

At the base of the war tendencies and the escalation of armaments are the impasses of the North American economy, its broad degenerative reflexes in the world economy, and the impulse given to the trade war. Mainly, since the economic-financial debacle of 2008, the “concord”, discussed since the mid-1970s, between the United States and restorationist China, has deteriorated and given way to bellicose animosity.

The narrowing of the world market, the low growth, the tendency to stagnation, the recession (like that of 2009) and the gigantic accumulation of financial capital push the United States to impose new commercial conditions all over the world, and, fundamentally, on China. Russia is part of this offensive. The blind forces of the world economy – driven by the contradiction between highly developed productive forces and capitalist production relations – led imperialism to risk war with Russia, dragging Ukraine towards its inclusion in NATO.

The conditions for a war that spread across Europe were not given, but they were given for the use of the Ukrainian people as cannon fodder, according to the expansionist objectives of the United States and the European Union, of jumping over the borders of the former soviet republics. This would make it easier to complete the siege of Russia, which controls vast natural resources and maintains its independence, even under the conditions of advancing capitalist restoration. This explains the sending, by the United States and its allies, of powerful weapons and abundant financial resources to the Zelensky government.

Russia has the military capability to quickly defeat Ukraine’s Armed Forces, but it would have to resort to crushing carnage. Which is not possible in the conditions of world balance of forces. The United States uses this advantage to appear with “clean hands”, as if they were the victim of the Russians, as the Ukrainian people have been.

By prolonging the military confrontation, and forcing Russia to remain within the limits of Donbass, the great powers began to naturalize the war. For this they count on the division and inertia of the European and world working class.

The most recent fact, reported by the press, was the decision of the United States to use Ukraine’s experience to justify the military escalation against China. The epicenter is in Taiwan. The island, which is historically part of China, has long been armed with missiles by the imperialist power. But, at this moment, Biden announced the modernization of Taiwan’s war apparatus, expressly referring to China, based on what is happening in Ukraine.

The effort of the United States to create the new economic bloc with countries in Asia gives the dimension of how much the trade war drives the military escalation. Biden’s attempt to make the defunct “Trans-Pacific Partnership” viable through the “Indo-Pacific Economic Framework” will be carried out in the context of the intensification of the military siege of China.

The United States hopes that Putin will not go beyond a Pyrrhic victory, which would be considered a defeat. If so, Biden will focus on tightening the economic-military siege of China. Disagreements between participants in the alliance formed against Russia and within the United States are bound to escalate. This is the case with Turkey and Hungary’s contestation of economic sanctions against Russia, and with negotiations on the entry of Finland and Sweden into NATO.

The economic crisis will take a leap forward this year and next, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Pandemic has only just cooled its deadly momentum and the Ukraine war already begun. The breakdown of production chains and world trade is felt in the fall in economic growth and in the worsening of the working and living conditions of the oppressed masses. The working class will wake up to the meaning and consequences of war. There is no way to accurately predict it. However, the attacks suffered clash with the passivity and the class conciliation policy that predominate in the unions and movements.

The class-conscious vanguard has a duty to explain the link between the war and the decomposition of capitalism and the leap forward made by unemployment, poverty, misery and hunger. It must strengthen the international campaign of the Liaison Committee for the Reconstruction of the Fourth International* for the end of the war and for the independent organization of the proletariat. This is one of the conditions to boost the struggle to overcome the world leadership crisis.


*English translation for “Comitê de Enlace pela Reconstrução da IV Internacional” – CERQUI