War and militarism

Australia cancels citizenship of woman labelled ISIS terrorist

By Tom Peters, 27 February 2021

A dual Australia-New Zealand citizen and her two young children, detained in Turkey, now face deportation to New Zealand.

With US missile strike on Syria, Biden escalates US aggression in the Middle East

By Bill Van Auken, 27 February 2021

The act of aggression against Syria and the global escalation of US militarism constitute the foundation of bipartisan unity between Biden and the Republican Party.

Tokyo gives coast guard authorization to fire on foreign vessels

By Ben McGrath, 27 February 2021

The Japanese government’s decision will only heighten the danger of a clash with China over disputed territories in the East China Sea.

Germany: Left Party congress paving way for government participation and war

By Johannes Stern, 26 February 2021

Germany’s Left Party congress will set an even more direct course towards government participation and support for war.

South American states militarize borders against refugees

By Mauricio Saavedra, 25 February 2021

Conditions for refugees residing in Latin American countries have only deteriorated during the pandemic as millions have been laid off, evicted and made homeless.

999 Militarization of borders in Latin America

24 February 2021

Spain’s PSOE-Podemos government showers arms dealers with billions in contracts

By Alejandro López, 23 February 2021

The Socialist Party-Podemos government is making sure Spanish arms manufacturers cash in as the imperialist powers rearm and prepare for new wars.

World governments exploit pandemic depression to recruit youth into their militaries

By Eoin Oisin, 20 February 2021

Economic crises are notoriously fertile grounds for militaries to recruit applicants who would otherwise study or work.

Pentagon report reveals growth of fascistic networks within US military

By Jacob Crosse, 20 February 2021

The October 2020 report to the House and Senate Armed Service Committees provides details of the extent of far-right forces within the US military.

While Biden proclaims “America is back,” imperialist conflicts dominate Munich conference

By Bill Van Auken, 20 February 2021

Biden’s attempt to assert US leadership under the false banner of “democracy” received a chilly reception from Washington’s NATO allies.

NATO summit stresses anti-China strategy as wars in Middle East, Afghanistan continue

By Bill Van Auken, 19 February 2021

The most urgent issue confronting NATO, a May 1 deadline for withdrawing 10,000 troops from the two-decades-old war in Afghanistan, was left undecided.

999 Young people turn to the military under pandemic economic crisis

19 February 2021

Iran, Russia and China launch joint naval exercises in Indian Ocean

By Alex Lantier, 18 February 2021

Coming shortly after the massive US-led Malabar 2020 naval exercise, these drills point to war tensions at explosive levels across the region.

Australian government overturns university research grants as part of anti-China campaign

By Mike Head, 18 February 2021

Funding vetoes and a witch-hunting inquiry by the Australian parliament are bound up with the US-instigated confrontation with China, now being intensified by the Biden administration.

999 Exposure of far right elements in the US military

18 February 2021

President Macron rejects troop draw-down in French military intervention in the Sahel

By Will Morrow, 18 February 2021

The French army has waged the neo-colonial war under the cynical banner of the fight against terrorism and the defence of the local population.

Rocket attack on US base in Iraq underlines continued Middle East militarism under Biden

By Bill Van Auken, 17 February 2021

The rocket attack came as the Pentagon formally evaluates US troop deployments in the Middle East and the Biden administration pursues a policy of continued confrontation with Iran.

Washington’s Wuhan laboratory lie

By Andre Damon, 16 February 2021

In the face of universal scientific consensus on the natural origins of COVID-19, the Biden administration and the US media have doubled down on the lie that the disease was released from a Chinese laboratory.

Over 700 detained after Turkish invasion of Iraq targets PKK

By Ulaş Ateşçi, 16 February 2021

The Turkish Interior Ministry has announced that 718 people have been detained as part of “terror operations” in 40 different cities across the country.

German government registers record military budget and gears up for war

By Johannes Stern, 13 February 2021

A Defence Ministry position paper reveals that, behind the backs of the population, the German ruling class is preparing the biggest arms offensive since Hitler’s build-up of the Wehrmacht in the 1930s.

Air New Zealand admits to working for Saudi Arabian navy

By Tom Peters, 12 February 2021

The Labour-Greens coalition government has feigned shock over revelations that the state-owned airline has assisted the Saudi Arabian military, which is engaged in a genocidal war against Yemen.

Biden declares US in “extreme competition” with China

By Mike Head, 11 February 2021

Biden’s catch-cry—“America is back”—has the same belligerent content as Trump’s “America First.”

International Criminal Court ruling paves way for legal proceedings against Israel for war crimes

By Jean Shaoul, 10 February 2021

This ruling has infuriated Israel and its patron in Washington, which rejects any constraints on its geostrategic interests and plans for a new imperialist carve-up of the world in which Israel plays a central role in carrying out this agenda and suppressing the working class in the region.

UK dismisses UN Maritime Court ruling that it has no claim to Chagos Islands/Diego Garcia

By Jean Shaoul, 9 February 2021

The maritime court confirmed the legitimacy of Mauritius’s claim to the Chagos Islands, calling Britain’s continuing administration of the islands “unlawful” and criticised its failure to hand the islands back. The ruling implies that the UK’s leasing of Diego Garcia to the US is also illegal.

Behind Biden’s invocations of “democracy,” US military prepares for nuclear war

By Andre Damon, 6 February 2021

As Biden devoted his first foreign policy speech to invocations of “democracy” and “human rights,” the head of US nuclear forces declared nuclear war “a very real possibility.”

Pentagon orders “stand-down” over fascist threat in US military

By Bill Van Auken, 5 February 2021

One month after retired and active-duty personnel joined the January 6 Capitol coup attempt, Pentagon brass are acknowledging the growth of fascistic forces in their ranks.

Pentagon purges advisory boards packed by Trump

By Bill Van Auken, 4 February 2021

The forced resignations of members of all 42 Pentagon advisory boards is aimed at blocking last-minute appointments made by Trump as he prepared a coup to overturn the election.

Germany’s Left Party embraces military rearmament and war

By Johannes Stern, 3 February 2021

As a member of a potential German federal coalition government with the Social Democrats and Greens, the Left Party would fully support the continuation of Germany’s foreign military operations and the rearmament of the armed forces.

Biden administration continues “maximum pressure” assault on Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 29 January 2021

A B-52 bomber flight over the Persian Gulf and the seizure of a tanker allegedly carrying Iranian oil have made clear that the policy pursued by Trump is still in effect.

UK: Corbyn and Owen Jones line-up with anti-China campaign

By Julie Hyland, 28 January 2021

The Labour left’s stance has nothing to do with defending the rights of Uighur Muslims, much less the super-exploited Chinese working class. It articulates the interests of a layer of the upper middle class, represented by the Labour and trade union bureaucracy, which advocate economic protectionism to defend British capitalism

Bernie Sanders backs Biden’s national security cabinet

By Patrick Martin, 28 January 2021

The Vermont senator and self-styled “socialist” voted to confirm Biden’s choices to head the Pentagon, State Department and US intelligence apparatus.

For second time in four years, Senate confirms ex-general as US defense secretary

By Bill Van Auken, 23 January 2021

While the Democrats and media have hailed retired General Lloyd Austin as the historic first African-American secretary of defense, more significantly he is the second recently retired general tapped to head the Pentagon in four years.

Yellen takes aggressive stance on China in treasury secretary confirmation hearing

By Nick Beams, 21 January 2021

Yellen’s nomination seems assured, as she enjoys support from both the Republicans and Wall Street.

Senate hearings for Biden’s security cabinet expose bipartisan unity on war and reaction

By Bill Van Auken, 21 January 2021

Veterans of the Obama administration’s wars in the Middle East, drone assassinations and pivot to Asia, the nominees were largely embraced by Senate Republicans.

China’s growth rate increase fuels geo-political tensions

By Nick Beams, 20 January 2021

The 6.5 percent growth in the fourth quarter indicates that the Chinese economy is expanding at a faster rate than before the COVID-19 pandemic.

US State Department designates Cuba state sponsor of terrorism

By Alexander Fangmann, 16 January 2021

The announcement is a continuation of the rollback of Obama’s normalization of relations as the island has been hit hard by COVID-19 and a deepening economic crisis.

Are Trump and Netanyahu plotting war against Iran?

By Bill Van Auken, 15 January 2021

Washington openly claimed credit for providing intelligence used in Israeli airstrikes on Iranian-linked targets in eastern Syria Tuesday that claimed scores of lives.

After Trump’s coup attempt: German politicians call for massive military build-up

By Johannes Stern, 14 January 2021

While the ruling class in Germany reacts with a mixture of shock, nervousness and aggression to the fascist coup attempt in the US, all the establishment parties are intensifying their great power offensive.

Israel strikes Syria as Trump coup attempt stokes war threat in Middle East

By Bill Van Auken, 8 January 2021

The threat that Trump and Netanyahu, both fighting for their political lives, may provoke a war with Iran continues to escalate.

UK government refuses to publish list of airstrikes in Yemen involving civilian casualties

By Jean Shaoul, 7 January 2021

While the UK’s Ministry of Defence has listed a staggering 516 potential International Humanitarian Law violations by the coalition of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the real number is far higher.

999 Anti-Russia campaign escalating in leadup to Biden inauguration

6 January 2021

Growing threat that Trump will provoke war with Iran to further coup plot

By Bill Van Auken, 6 January 2021

In the midst of his plot to overthrow the results of the US election, Trump suddenly ordered a halt to the Pentagon’s withdrawal of the USS Nimitz carrier strike group from the Persian Gulf.

EU–US tensions mount after EU signs trade deal with China

By Alex Lantier, 5 January 2021

Officials of the incoming Biden administration and their European allies denounced the EU–China deal, which they tried to halt before it was signed on December 30.

Spanish officers plot fascist coup to impose “herd immunity” COVID-19 policy

By Alejandro López and Alex Lantier, 31 December 2020

The “left populist” Podemos party and its ruling social-democratic allies are hushing up active plotting for a coup that has taken place throughout virtually the entire year.

B-52s fly over Persian Gulf as Washington escalates war threat against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 31 December 2020

The threat that Trump will launch a war of aggression against Iran, on whatever pretext, in the waning days of what is supposed to be his “lame duck” presidency, is deadly serious.

Active-duty Spanish officers hail retired officers’ fascist calls for mass murder

By Alejandro López, 29 December 2020

Despite the PSOE-Podemos government’s denials, calls by retired officers for a fascist coup and mass murder of left-wing voters have broad support among serving officers.

House overrides Trump veto of military spending bill

By Patrick Martin, 29 December 2020

The veto override, which has the effect of approving a record outlay for the US military machine, had the support of the entire Democratic leadership, from Speaker Nancy Pelosi on down.

Israel’s fourth election in two years dominated by far-right forces

By Jean Shaoul, 29 December 2020

Netanyahu faces a strong challenge from the far right, his former colleagues. These forces have moved to fill the vacuum left after Benny Gantz joined and served as Netanyahu’s political accomplice in imposing the government’s “herd immunity” policies.

Pentagon brass on “red alert” over Trump’s coup plotting

By Bill Van Auken, 29 December 2020

The extraordinary tension within the Pentagon’s uniformed command has been made clear in a series of reports by media commentators with close ties to the US military-intelligence apparatus.

Trump pardons Blackwater killers for Nisour Square massacre

By Patrick Martin, 24 December 2020

The four mercenaries, all former Marines, killed 14 unarmed Iraqis in 2007 in an unprovoked slaughter in Baghdad.

999 Anti-Russia campaign

24 December 2020

The ICC refuses to prosecute UK war crimes in Iraq despite “reasonable” evidence

By Jean Shaoul, 18 December 2020

The imperialist powers that orchestrated criminal wars are determined that they should never be brought to account for their war crimes.

CNN, Spiegel double down on anti-Russia campaign over Navalny case

By Clara Weiss, 17 December 2020

This latest bogus “investigation” into the Navalny case marks yet a further escalation of the anti-Russia campaign.

999 ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said there was a “reasonable basis to believe” that UK committed war crimes

17 December 2020

German government increases military spending, cuts education and health care

By Johannes Stern, 17 December 2020

The entire budget debate underscored that the ruling class sees the pandemic primarily as an opportunity to advance its policies of militarism, repression and social austerity.

Largest US overseas base placed on missile alert amid nuclear war warnings

By Bill Van Auken, 16 December 2020

Sirens and loudspeakers at Ramstein Air Base in Germany, the center of the largest US overseas military complex in the world, sounded the alarm for an incoming missile strike.

Labor helps expand Australian spy agency’s secret interrogation powers

By Mike Head, 15 December 2020

Pushed through parliament in one day, the bill extends ASIO’s coercive questioning powers beyond terrorism to “foreign interference,” “espionage” and “politically motivated violence.”

India moves to strengthen strategic relations with Sri Lanka and the Maldives

By Rohantha De Silva, 14 December 2020

Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval’s trip to Sri Lanka was aimed at securing maritime cooperation to counteract Chinese influence in the Indian Ocean region.

999 UN reports 80 million refugees in 2020

12 December 2020

Canada’s military seeks to cover its tracks following damning report on Australian war crimes in Afghanistan

By Penny Smith, 12 December 2020

In response to the release of a report exposing Australian military atrocities in Afghanistan, the Canadian Armed Forces has doubled down on its long-running efforts to cover up its own war crimes in the region.

US B-52 bombers threaten Iran for second time in three weeks

By Bill Van Auken, 11 December 2020

These massive warplanes used to devastate Vietnam half a century ago have been deployed amid mounting US and Israeli war threats and provocations against Iran.

999 UN reports 80 million refugees in 2020

11 December 2020

999 DELETE

11 December 2020

US Army punishes 14 senior officers at Fort Hood citing “leadership failures”

By Chase Lawrence, 11 December 2020

The disciplinary actions were one of the single largest taken by the Army in history, indicating that the Pentagon is well aware of deep disillusionment and anger within the ranks.

In bipartisan vote: US House approves record $741 billion military spending bill

By Patrick Martin, 10 December 2020

In a country with “no money” for schools, the unemployed or the health care system being destroyed by COVID, there are effectively unlimited funds for the world’s largest military establishment.

999 14 senior officers punished after Fort Hood probe

10 December 2020

US secretary of state hypocritically sanctions Chinese officials over Hong Kong human rights

By Peter Symonds, 9 December 2020

Washington has a long record of selectively exploiting human rights issues to further its economic and strategic interests, while turning a blind eye to flagrant abuses of democratic rights by its allies and strategic partners.

999 US Secretary of State Pompeo imposes sanctions on Chinese officials

9 December 2020

Biden selects recently retired general, ex-Mideast war commander to head Pentagon

By Bill Van Auken, 9 December 2020

The media and the Democrats have hailed the choice of Lloyd Austin as the first African American nominee for secretary of defense, glossing over the implications of another general being tapped for the Pentagon’s top civilian post.

US war threats mount against Iran and Venezuela with six weeks remaining in Trump term

By Bill Van Auken, 8 December 2020

US ultimatums over fuel and arms shipments between Iran and Venezuela have escalated the danger of a military provocation as Trump attempts to overturn the US presidential election.

Mélenchon calls for military conscription, arms buildup in France

By Will Morrow, 8 December 2020

Mélenchon used the interview as a presidential candidate in 2022 to advance his credentials to France’s ruling elite as an aggressive promoter of the interests of French imperialism at home and around the world.

UK deploys troops to Mali

By Jean Shaoul, 8 December 2020

Earlier this year, Mali witnessed months of protests against the French occupation, launched in 2013, and the ethnic massacres between rival militias that Paris tolerates, and uses to divide and rule the country.

Australian Greens on Afghan war crimes: Hypocrisy, hand-wringing and support for militarism

By Oscar Grenfell, 7 December 2020

The Greens have promoted the official cover-up as a “justice process,” while advancing proposals aimed at providing future predatory wars with a democratic figleaf.

Chinese defence minister visits Nepal to boost political and military ties

By Rohantha De Silva, 7 December 2020

The landlocked and poverty-stricken Himalayan country has become another focal point in the dangerous geo-political rivalry between India and the US on one side, and China on the other.

New Zealand government denounces China’s condemnation of Australian war crimes

By Tom Peters, 5 December 2020

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern did not condemn the murder of at least 39 unarmed people in Afghanistan by Australian special forces, but denounced a Chinese official’s tweet that drew attention to these war crimes.

999 Chinese defence minister visits Nepal to boost military ties

5 December 2020

Australian soldiers drank alcohol from prosthetic leg of dead Afghan

By Oscar Grenfell, 4 December 2020

Politicians and corporate journalists have maintained a stony silence on the gruesome revelation, while waging a furious campaign against a Chinese tweet condemning the war crimes.

Trudeau names top military officer to lead Canada’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout

By Laurent Lafrance, 4 December 2020

Making the military responsible for the vaccination campaign is part of an ongoing government effort to promote the armed forces as a pivotal national institution, and acclimatize the population to its playing an increasingly important role in public life.

999 Pentagon warns about China in Latin America

4 December 2020

EU-Turkey tensions mount over Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean

By Hasan Yıldırım, 3 December 2020

The unilateral opening of Varosha or Maraş in northern Cyprus and Ankara’s proposed two-state solution have intensified tensions between the European Union and Turkey.

“So that rifles shoot”: Germany’s Green Party leader Baerbock pleads for massive arms spending and new war missions

By Johannes Stern, 3 December 2020

In advance of next year’s federal elections, the Greens are spearheading the campaign for the return of German militarism.

Australian court upholds sacking of academic for criticising US and Israeli militarism

By Mike Head, 3 December 2020

The court’s anti-democratic ruling further shreds academic freedom, as well as trade union claims to have protected it via enterprise bargaining agreements.

Australian ruling elite responds to Chinese condemnation of Afghan war crimes with nationalist hysteria

By Oscar Grenfell, 2 December 2020

Having covered up and downplayed the atrocities against Afghan civilians, Australia’s official parties and the corporate media are up in arms about a tweet condemning the war crimes.

Australian war crimes report: A damning indictment of the barbarity in Afghanistan

By Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 2 December 2020

The depraved abuses flowed inevitably from the nature of the war itself—a brutal operation to crush all resistance to the imposition of US control over the country.

War tensions mount in wake of Israeli assassination of top Iranian scientist

By Bill Van Auken, 1 December 2020

While neither Washington nor Tel Aviv have formally claimed responsibility for the assassination of Moshen Fakhrizadeh, the authorship of this act of state terrorism is hardly in doubt.

Fiji and Australia to negotiate new military pact

By John Braddock, 1 December 2020

The move to establish closer Fiji-Australian military ties is part of the intensifying US-led build-up to counter China’s influence in the south west Pacific.

This week in history: November 30-December 6

30 November 2020

75 years ago: General Douglas MacArthur, the effective leader of US-occupied Japan, ordered the arrest of former Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe and eight of the country’s other civilian and military leaders for war crimes, setting the stage for criminal prosecutions.

German Green Party sets course for government based on promoting militarism and war

By Jan Ritter and Max Linhof, 30 November 2020

The party made clear that a future Green federal government and/or Green chancellor would continue and expand the right-wing militaristic policies espoused by the current CDU-SPD grand coalition.

Ethiopian military seizes control of regional capital after offensive against Tigray province

By Jean Shaoul, 29 November 2020

The desperate situation confronting Ethiopia is bound up with great power rivalries between the US, Europe and China that led over the last decades to the fragmentation and disintegration of a region that includes Ethiopia, Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia and Djibouti.

Israel’s siege means death for Gaza’s COVID-19 patients

By Jean Shaoul, 28 November 2020

The Hamas government has said the Gaza Strip “lacks oxygen-generating machines, ventilators, protective gear, and hygiene materials. Thirty-two percent of basic drugs and 62 percent of drugs and materials for medical laboratories are not available.”

Ten years since WikiLeaks published the US diplomatic cables

By Thomas Scripps, 28 November 2020

WikiLeaks contributed to a growing recognition among workers and young people that state criminality and ruling class conspiracies are not accidents or the work of a few bad individuals, but the product of a whole social system based on the rule of competing oligarchies which must be overthrown.

Top scientist assassinated as Israel and US stage war provocations against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 28 November 2020

The brutal assassination of Iran’s most prominent nuclear physicist Friday is part of an escalating campaign to provoke a catastrophic new war in the Middle East.

Hailing election security, New York Times drops its “Russian meddling” narrative

By Barry Grey and Jacob Crosse, 26 November 2020

The fact that it is absent from the Times’ November 22 editorial makes absolutely clear one basic fact: the entire anti-Russia narrative is a deliberate fabrication.

Australian war crimes report points to history of military atrocities and coverups

By Mike Head, 26 November 2020

For all the mythology of heroic and honourable armed forces, the report outlines more than a century of illegal killings, massacres and other abuses.

US, Israel and Saudi Arabia meet amid mounting war threats against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 24 November 2020

The trip by Pompeo and Netanyahu to Saudi Arabia came as the Pentagon is steadily building up its air power in the region.

Labor governments presided over most confirmed Australian war crimes in Afghanistan

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 November 2020

Many of the war crimes flowed out of Labor’s escalation of Australia’s role in the occupation of Afghanistan, including in US-led “kill or capture” operations.

New Zealand government, media downplay Australian war crimes in Afghanistan

By Tom Peters, 24 November 2020

Prime Minister Ardern did not condemn the Australian war crimes, as her government has sought to cover up similar atrocities committed by New Zealand special forces.

Biden names national security team of right-wing militarists

By Patrick Martin, 24 November 2020

The roll-out of Biden’s first cabinet nominees shows the top priority of the incoming Democratic administration: building a US-led imperialist front against China and Russia

Stop the rearming of Germany’s air force, army, and navy!

By Johannes Stern, 21 November 2020

Six years after the federal government declared the end of military restraint at the 2014 Munich Security Conference, the largest rearmament programme since the Second World War is being implemented, in spite of the coronavirus pandemic.

UK government announces £21.5 billion increase in military spending

By Thomas Scripps, 21 November 2020

UK Prime minister Boris Johnson is trying to extricate his government from its foreign policy crisis over Brexit—intensified by the US election victory of the anti-Brexit Joe Biden—with the lever of British militarism.