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Global Left Midweek - April 1, 2020

Pandemic is a systemic crisis of capitalism, and the responses worldwide foretell systemic changes.

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An information poster regarding the coronavirus is secured to a fence amongst refugees from various African nations living on a city sidewalk in Cape Town, Photo: EPA-EFE/NIC BOTHMA
  1. Europe: The Catastrophe Begins
  2. Amazon Workers’ Rage
  3. South African Program of Action
  4. Euro Parties Respond
  5. Brazil’s Favela Dwellers
  6. Pakistan: A Left Strategy
  7. Iran: Covid-19 and Prisoners’ Rights
  8. Italy: Report From CGIL International Department
  9. From Spain: Health Problem, But Systemic Crisis
  10. 'Break the Chain' Campaign in Kerala
  11. Legacies

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Europe: The Catastrophe Begins

Katerina Anastasiou / transform! Europe (Brussels)

An unorthodox chronology of the last 4 weeks at the European border.

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Amazon Workers’ Rage

Melissa Heikkilä / Politico (Brussels)

Amazon faces a rash of strikes and protests at sites across Europe as warehouse workers lash out over what they say are gruelling labor conditions, minimal protection and the risk of infection after several employees tested positive for coronavirus.

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South African Program of Action

C-19 People’s Coalition / Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

We must guard against the easy deployment of the military and police to create security in our communities. We must also prevent against creating scapegoats to blame for the current crisis. Instead, we must ensure that care and resources are provided for the safety and protection of all who live in our country and in our communities. How each of us responds to the Covid-19 pandemic will determine who we are as a society.

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Euro Parties Respond

European United Left/Nordic Green Left (Brussels)

EU member states need to invest massively in the response to the epidemic, and they must be supported unconditionally by the full power of the ECB.

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Brazil’s Favela Dwellers

Lu Sudré and Eduardo Miranda / Brasil de Fato (São Paulo)

In a self organizing manner, people living in the ghettos of Brazil’s largest cities are coming up with strategies to halt contagion by the novel coronavirus in their communities.

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Pakistan: A Left Strategy

Dr Ammar Ali Jan and Zahid Ali / Pakistan Left Review

The Left should not only bombard the system with rational demands deemed impossible by the system, we must also construct a long-term strategy to reorient theory and practice. The existing political institutions of the Left (and the Right) are inadequate to meet the challenges of our time. We must develop a new language and a practice of socialism if we are not to be overwhelmed by the persistent immediacy of the multiple crises we face.

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Iran: Covid-19 and Prisoners’ Rights

Golnar Nikpour / Jadaliyya (Beirut)

As organizations and activists campaign on behalf of Iran’s political prisoners, what of the overwhelming majority of incarcerated people in Iran who are held on “non-political” charges?

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Italy: Report From CGIL International Department

Leopoldo Tartaglia / Labor Notes (Detroit)

The struggle was so widespread that the government—after days of resistance to the demands of the CGIL and other union confederations for clear and mandatory security measures and for the reduction of all non-essential work—decided to convene a meeting with unions and employers. 

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From Spain: Health Problem, But Systemic Crisis

Joan Benach / Socialist Project (Toronto)

COVID-19 is not only a global health problem, but is also a problem with interconnected facets of an economic, ecological and social nature, a complex detonator of the systemic crisis of capitalism.

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'Break the Chain' Campaign in Kerala

Vijay Prashad and Subin Dennis / Peoples Dispatch (New Delhi)

The population was educated about the severity of the virus and then mobilized in a mass campaign to defeat its lethalness.

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Legacies

Lucien Sève, France, 93 / transform! Europe
Manolis Glezos, Greece, 97 / Deutsche Welle (Berlin) 
José María “Chato” Galante, Spain, 72 / Explica (Austin)