Southeast Asian nations could offer a way for countries like ours to become more democratic and prosperous.
Vietnam is mentioned in the news quite often these days. But the references are almost always in relation to Iraq. What’s not being covered is what’s going on in Vietnam itself — which is unfortunate, because economically, politically and socially, it might just be the most interesting and inspiring nation on the planet.
Socialist art in Vietnam
In the interest of full disclosure, my affection for Vietnam goes way back. As an anti-war activist I met with Vietnamese liaisons to the anti-war movement on several occasions. In 1970 I visited Hanoi and was profoundly impressed with the character and resolve of the people, not to mention the beauty of the country itself. Even then, during wartime, the food was terrific, too. Continue reading →
The tremendous strides made by the Chinese economy during the last two decades have been recognised, even by its worst critics, as being incomparable in the 20th century. The average annual rate of growth during the last two decades registered an amazing 9.8%. The Chinese economy continues to grow over and above this record at roughly 8% in the current year. The IMF has predicted that by the year 2007, People’s Republic of China will surpass the United States of America as the largest economy in the world (World Economic Outlook, IMF, 1997).
Pictures of Chinese leaders Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping and Hu Jintao on parade to celebrate the 60th anniversary of socialism in China.
How was such a remarkable development possible? Particularly, in a period when the mighty Socialist Soviet Union was dismantled? When all pen-pushers of imperialism and the bourgeoisie were busy seeking to nail the coffin of socialism and claiming that “capitalism is eternal”, socialist China continued to register such impressive economic successes. In a period when imperialist ideologues are churning out theories such as the `end of ideology’, socialist China continues to speak of upholding Marxism-Leninism. While the right-wing intellectuals and academicians are in a haste to state that China’s successes have nothing to do with either Marxism or socialism, some amongst the Left are also concerned whether these successes in China represent the restoration of capitalism? Has Mao’s China been abandoned? Have `capitalist roarders’ taken over China? What are the consequences of the current economic reforms for the future of socialism in China? These are some of such questions that we seek to explore. Continue reading →
Editor’s note: The author is teaching English in China.
BEIJING – I arrived in Beijing on June 25. My first time in Asia. My first time outside of the Western hemisphere. Though I had studied some Chinese, I was a bit overwhelmed at the communication barrier as I walked into a restaurant to order my first meal here. The menu was all in Chinese, with no pictures, and no pinyin. (Pinyin is the transcription of Chinese to the Latin alphabet, with accent marks denoting the tones). Nevertheless, after being here for two and a half months, my Chinese is slowly improving.
My initial impressions of Beijing and China were, and still are, complex. China has surpassed Japan and Germany to become the second largest economy in the world, and China’s GDP will likely pass that of the U.S. in a few years. China’s economy is a mixed economy, with the state controlling much of what Lenin called the “commanding heights” of the economy, but with a large capitalist sector, and with an enormous number of small businesses. While the state permits capitalist enterprises, including foreign companies, to operate here, the state retains the ownership of the land, and essentially is granting the company the privilege of using the land in the interest of development. Continue reading →
Statement of the Central Executive Committee, Communist Party of Canada, August, 2012
The crisis in Syria continues to deepen with every passing day. Thousands have been killed or injured, including countless civilians caught in the crossfire between armed opposition groups and government forces. Thousands more have been displaced from their towns and villages and forced into internal or foreign exile by the fighting. In this very real sense, the situation has become a human and social tragedy of the first order.
But what is actually taking place in Syria? Who is really provoking the violence and prolonging the agony of the Syrian people?
The Western corporate‑controlled media would have us believe that the root cause of the conflict is the “tyrannical” government of President Bashar El‑Assad which clings to power at any price, willing to sacrifice the health and security of its own people. This “big lie” is central to the intensifying propaganda campaign to vilify El‑Assad in order to conceal the role of reactionary and clerical forces bent on destabilizing and ultimately overthrowing the current government and seizing power for themselves. And if necessary, this demonization campaign will be used as a pretext for imperialist military intervention and occupation to directly impose “regime change”, as was done in Iraq and most recently in Libya. Continue reading →
BEIJING, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) — After almost one year of campaigning, the Communist Party of China (CPC) has elected its delegates to the 18th National Congress, demonstrating both its understanding of democratic procedure and an optimized lineup with more younger, grassroots-level Party members.
Image from the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China
Earlier this week, the CPC published a list of names for the 2,270 delegates for its 18th National Congress, which will be held in the second half of this year.
Improved election measures have shown that the Party does not regard the election as mere routine, but as an important demonstration of intra-Party democracy that will serve as a critical factor in establishing a substantial democracy in a socialist country. Continue reading →
BEIJING, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) — President Hu Jintao said Friday that China is ready towork with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) to lift their traditional friendly and cooperative relationship to a new level.
Chinese President Hu Jintao (R, front) meets with a delegation of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) headed by Jang Song Thaek (L, front), chief of the central administrative department of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), in Beijing, capital of China, Aug. 17, 2012.
Hu made the remark as he met with a DPRK delegation headed by Jang Song Thaek, chief of the central administrative department of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK).
Jang, also a member of the WPK Political Bureau and vice-chairman of the National Defense Commission, is in Beijing to attend a meeting of the joint steering committee for developing and managing the Rason Economic and Trade Zone and the Hwanggumphyong and Wihwa Islands Economic Zone in the DPRK. Continue reading →
*Note: People’s Daily Online, a Chinese newspaper, has a series called Eyes on the DPRK. The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, commonly known as North Korea, is a socialist state that tolerates no interference from the outside world, and as such heavily controls what the West can access in their country.
The DPRK has friendly relations with China, however, and therefore Chinese media has access to North Korea that the West does not. The Red Hammer is giving readers a sample of some of the photos that People’s Daily has provided of life in the DPRK. We hope it will serve to challenge some of the worst, most ridiculous myths about socialist Korea.
Night-time photo of Pyongyang, capital of North Korea. Anti-DPRK propaganda states that this city shuts down entirely at night, turning off all of their lights and plunging the city into darkness.
Ignoring that energy conservation is not a bad thing, we can see in this photo that indeed the city stays lit after the sun falls. Apartment buildings, like the ones on the lower left of the photo, clearly show rooms where people have their lights on. Continue reading →