Capitalism leads to war, it’s time to overthrow it!

Lutte Ouvrière workplace newsletter
July 24, 2023

Even the most naïve of workers didn’t expect anything from the government reshuffle or Macron’s speech, live from New Caledonia. He knows how to blow hot air but he’s just a puppet working for the most powerful people.

The powerful people, heads of state and military leaders of the major imperialist powers, met this month for the NATO summit. And that will bear a lot more weight on our future than the pointless gesturing of someone like Macron.

The confirmation of large-scale rearmament means that they are preparing for a generalized war. A future of death and destruction for all those who are exploited, what the top-ranking officers call “a high-intensity war”.

And not so ar away, it’s already part of daily life for the Ukrainian and Russian populations. Over the last sixteen months, at least 300,000 Ukrainian and Russian soldiers have died. The images of this trench warfare are reminders of the horrors of the First World War. The weapons are more sophisticated and deadly but it still means that soldiers are being sent to their death just to win back a few yards of scorched earth.

Putin is waging a dirty, fratricidal war. But the imperialist side, fighting him by proxy with the lives of Ukrainians, is not to be outdone.

The most recent decision from the United States of America, master country of the imperialist game, has gone one stage further into horror by delivering cluster munitions to the Ukrainian army. They are particularly deadly for the civilian population because they have hundreds of small charges that can explode before, during and after being dropped. Biden has dared to claim that this was “a very difficult decision to make”. His crocodile tears can’t hide the fact that US imperialism is an expert in weapons of mass destruction against populations.

Even apart from the two atomic bombs that killed more than 100,000 Japanese civilians in 1945, American aviation dropped as many as 260 million cluster bombs between 1964 and 1973 during the Vietnam war! To this day, Laos is the most cluster-munitions infected area on the planet, despite the Western world and its local allies having dropped them elsewhere, from Iraq to Afghanistan, by way of Lebanon.

The protests of these great “democratic” nations against Putin’s “dirty war” are truly cynical! Imperialist powers claim to be helping a small country unjustly attacked by Putin the executioner. But they’re really just trying to consolidate their domination and enlarge their zone of influence in order to better serve the interests of their respective ruling classes. And, sooner or later, the crisis will transform the business war they are waging on one another into out-and-out war. So they’re getting ready for it, as witnessed by the increase of military budgets throughout the world – 413 billion euros for France alone!

It’s also in the workers’ best interests to get ready… arming themselves with the awareness that we need to oppose the war in which our capitalists want to enlist us. In the same way that the bourgeoisie can’t make profits without workers to exploit, it can’t wage war without convincing workers to become cannon fodder.

The only certainty for workers is that the ones who are ready to send us “to die for our country” today, are waging war on our living conditions today. The politicians that serve big business, who are forcing us to work hard for two more years while daring to claim that it’s to save our retirement pensions, will then explain that we can only save our families by going to war.

Will they claim to be defending the homeland? For the capitalists and the politicians who represent them, that doesn’t include saving schools and hospitals or the factories and offices where we work – which are all being destroyed by their profit-serving policies. Those liars will spew the same lies about the country’s interests. But they’ll just be spouting an even deadlier poison. It’ll be a question of life and death.

The war that is being prepared will never be our war. It’ll be the capitalists’ war for their profits. Our interests as workers is to not be dragged into line behind a sacred union of big business and its representatives.

On the contrary, we need to assert that the only war worth fighting for as is the one to overthrow our exploiters, starting with those in our own country.