The G-8 Summit and the London Terror
Ray O. Light
The explosions set off in three London subway cars and a double-decker bus on July 7th, 2005 have led to more than fifty lost lives and hundreds injured. From whatever source the reactionary attack came, it brought home to the people of one of the two main perpetrating countries a taste of the death and destruction that US and British imperialism have been inflicting on the people of Iraq over the past few years.
Ninety years ago, Lenin pointed out that the essence of imperialism lies in the fundamental distinction between the oppressing and oppressed nations. Once again, the United States imperialist-dominated mass media demonstrated this great truth with its detailed coverage of the London tragedy as compared to its routine, callous coverage of Iraqi murders at the hands of US and British occupation troops on a daily basis ever since the US-British invasion of Iraq began in March of 2003.
All of us know that the 9-11-01 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City served as the raw material for the mass hysteria fomented by the US imperialist regime of George W. Bush throughout the USA, justifying its open ended war on the world’s peoples, including the war against Iraq. Over time it has become clear that this criminal regime, if it did not itself order the attacks on the World Trade Center, certainly knew about them and allowed them to take place. The Bushites were ready to move on Afghanistan immediately and Iraq immediately thereafter.
The whole unjust and unprovoked war against the Iraqi people was justified by Bush and Blair at the time on the basis of ‘proof’ of Weapons of Mass Destruction and ‘links’ between Osama bin Laden and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Over time both of these claims were exposed as lies. In recent weeks, through leaks from British government circles, it has been clearly established that these lies were deliberately foisted upon the populations of the USA and England by their modern day Hitler-Goebbels type rulers.
It is in this light that the response of the British rulers to the July 7th bombings needs to be understood. Britain’s Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, claimed that the bombing attacks bore ‘all the hallmarks of Al Qaeda.’ But British police and security spokespeople seemed to disagree with this top Labour Government official! British counterterrorism experts thought it more likely that a locally based group, rather than Al Qaeda itself was responsible. This means that they have no idea who is responsible for this atrocity.
This whole grisly scenario is, of course, reminiscent of the train bombings in Madrid, Spain in March 2004, just before the presidential election in Spain. There, the Spanish bourgeoisie, and the international capitalist class were surprised by the Spanish people. For the people rejected the attempt at political hysteria and dumped out the openly reactionary, pro-Bush pro-war incumbent government. The Spanish people responded to the terrorist attacks by blaming their own ruling class and voted in as President the Social Democrat who promised to withdraw Spain from the US-led war and occupation of Iraq.
Now, in London, the bombings took place shortly after the pro-Bush, pro-war imperialist Blair was successful in being re-elected as Prime Minister, despite the British mass sentiment against British participation in the Iraq war! While in Spain, it was clear that the terrorist provocation may well have been created by the reactionaries themselves in a desperate bid to stay in power; this was clearly not the scenario in London. In Britain, Blair retained state power but the mass sentiment against British imperialism’s role in Iraq has continued to grow. On July 2nd, more than two hundred thousand people demonstrated against Bush, Blair and the leaders of the imperialist camp, as the G-8 Summit was about to begin in Scotland. They demanded that the imperialist powers give a fair deal to the oppressed nations of the world. This was an anti-globalisation and anti-capitalist demonstration. The British imperialist rulers initially resorted to banning further demonstrations, exposing their anti-democratic essence and exposing the G-8 as a force isolated from their own people. They reconsidered the ban only when the demonstrators threatened to march on nearby Edinburgh. It was in this environment that on the morning after the three day G8 Summit Meeting began, the terrorist bombings occurred in London.
Conveniently, for the British ruling class, ‘a previously unidentified group’ calling itself ‘the Secret Organisation of Al Qaeda in Europe’ claimed credit for the dastardly deeds. On this basis, the British Labour Government has set off a hysteria that compelled the Islamic Human Rights Commission to issue ‘a plea for Muslims in London to stay off the streets for their own safety.’ Clearly, there is a concerted effort to create a mass hysteria in England to solidify the Blair government control of the political situation.
Furthermore, on June 28th, US President Bush had delivered a key televised speech on ‘the War on Terror’ from Fort Bragg, North Carolina, the largest US military installation in the USA. Bush’s television audience was shockingly small. And, there were many US citizens, who previously had given Bush the benefit of the doubt, that were now outraged by his repetition of the alleged ‘connection’ of 9-11 to the war in Iraq and by his refusal to give any date for a US military exit from Iraq. Thus, Bush’s speech fell flat. Already, a majority of US citizens considered the war against Iraq to have been a ‘mistake’. Perhaps more importantly, growing numbers of troops in the US military, potential new recruits and military families are withdrawing their support from the commander-in-chief and his ‘unending war’. Now, his so-called ‘war on terror’ was coming dangerously close to being rejected entirely by the people of the USA. It was in this context, too, that the London bombings occurred on July 7th.
Finally, there is the significance of the G-8 Summit itself. As the July 7th issue of the Washington Post (prior to the London bombings) observed about the G-8 Summit, ‘Discussions are also expected to turn toward Iraq, an issue that unites Blair and Bush but often alienates them from other world leaders.’ And the July 8th Christian Science Monitor reported that, ‘The G-8 conference that was supposed to be taking up the issues of climate change and poverty in Africa instead devoted its opening session to producing a condemnation of the [London] bombings’. What was only a three day meeting was seriously disrupted by the bombings. Thus, instead of Bush and Blair being faced with contentious issues raised by the leaders of the other imperialist powers, the Iraqi war in the first place, they were, instead, able to use the terrorist bombings to get their imperialist partner-rivals to unite behind their ‘resolve to defeat terrorism’.
Once again, as with the 9-11 attacks on the World Trade Center, it is imperialism and US imperialism in particular that stands to gain the most from the London bombings. And, as the world’s number one terrorist, US imperialism would not hesitate to commit such an atrocious incident.
Of course, there is always a chance that the London bombings were committed by Islamic terrorists seeking revenge on the people of the imperialist countries whose troops are occupying and terrorising Iraq and other parts of the Middle East. But such ‘terrorism’ on the part of fighters against imperialism only spontaneously develops where there is no path to liberation available, where there is no mass popular movement that is growing to the point where it can seize power from the imperialist enemy. Such terrorism, a form of ultra-leftism based on a lack of patience with and confidence in the masses of humanity, constitutes acts of desperation which objectively serve to strengthen the very enemy the terrorists are trying to punish.
At this historical moment, the Islamic fundamentalist movement, to the extent that it is allied with the Iraqi Resistance, is part of a growing and developing mass movement, which even the top US military brass admit is gaining strength every day. It is not in a desperate situation. Furthermore, these days, the most loyal collaborator with Bush in all of Southeast Asia, the Philippine government of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, is on the verge of collapse. In the Andes and throughout Latin America, with Hugo Chavez and Fidel Castro in the lead, the peoples and even the bourgeois governments are taking increasingly independent stands in opposition to US imperialism. Within the USA and in the other imperialist countries, the working masses are losing whatever social welfare benefits they have historically possessed and are becoming increasingly desperate and alienated from ‘their own’ bourgeoisies. And despite the short term ‘unity’ generated at the G-8 Summit by the London bombings, the imperialist partner-rivals of US imperialism are increasingly dissatisfied with the small share of the world’s booty that Bush and US imperialism are willing to share with them. The European imperialist powers are increasingly using this independent spirit to make economic deals with Latin American countries. Beyond that, these imperialist powers recognise that Bush and US imperialism’s unbounded greed and brutality threaten to destroy their system altogether.
The increasingly desperate position of British and especially US imperialism makes them a more likely source of the London bombings than the Islamic fundamentalists that the imperialists are trying to blame. After all, 9-11 worked like Hitler’s Reichstag Fire. Why not try it again?!
For proletarian revolutionary forces around the world – Let us not allow the decades of right opportunist compromises with imperialism, headed by US imperialism, to keep us from the revolutionary struggle for national democratic revolution, socialism and communism. On the other hand, out of frustration, let us not allow the London bombings and quick, destructive, subjective and illusory (objectively counter-revolutionary) ‘results’ to divert us from the difficult but necessary task of winning the hearts and minds of the oppressed and exploited through their own experience to make the revolution.
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