History

100 years since the Seattle General Strike—Part 2

By Kayla Costa, 12 February 2019

One hundred years ago, over 60,000 workers brought the city of Seattle to a standstill in a strike that holds important strategic lessons for today’s struggles.

One hundred years since the Seattle General Strike

By Kayla Costa, 11 February 2019

One hundred years ago, over 60,000 workers brought the city of Seattle to a standstill in a strike that holds important strategic lessons for today’s struggles.

This week in history: February 11-17

11 February 2019

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Eighty-two years since the victory of the Flint sit-down strike

By Jerry White, 11 February 2019

With General Motors threatening to shut five factories in the US and Canada, it is valuable for autoworkers to study the heroic 1936-37 sit down strike against GM’s operations in Flint, Michigan.

One hundred years since the death of Franz Mehring

By Peter Schwarz, 6 February 2019

Mehring was one of the leading Marxist theoreticians of his time. Unlike other leading Social Democrats, who shifted to the right, he joined the Spartacus League during World War I.

Fire in my mouth: New York Philharmonic premieres oratorio on the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Fire

By Fred Mazelis, 6 February 2019

The hour-long work probes an infamous example—in New York City in 1911—of capitalist exploitation and the sacrifice of workers’ lives on the altar of private profit.

This week in history: February 4-10

4 February 2019

<em>This Week in History</em> provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: January 28-February 3

28 January 2019

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

100 years since the founding of the Bauhaus

Including an interview with Bauhaus student Wilf Franks

By Barbara Slaughter and Stefan Steinberg, 25 January 2019

This year marks the 100 anniversary of the founding of the Bauhaus movement in Germany, which played a key role in the development of progressive art and culture in the twentieth century.

Who Will Write Our History: Emanuel Ringelblum and the Warsaw Ghetto archive on the screen

By Clara Weiss, 24 January 2019

Roberta Grossman’s film is an important contribution to a wider discussion about the significance of historical truth in the struggle against fascism.

This week in history: January 21-27

21 January 2019

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

German SPD politician justifies murder of Rosa Luxemburg

By Peter Schwarz, 18 January 2019

Although the SPD continues to officially deny its complicity in the murder of Luxemburg and Liebknecht, Wolfgang Thierse, former president of the federal parliament, has now declared: We would do it again.

Video: Christoph Vandreier on “One hundred years since the assassination of Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht”

By Christoph Vandreier, 16 January 2019

In this video, Christoph Vandreier, the deputy chairman of the Socialist Equality Party (SGP) in Germany, speaks on the 100th anniversary of the murder of the two great revolutionaries.

New study finds up to 15,000 Jews killed each day at peak of Holocaust

By Clara Weiss, 16 January 2019

At least 1.47 million Jews, more than a quarter of all victims of the Nazi genocide of European Jewry, were murdered within 92 days from mid-August to early November 1942.

One hundred years since the murder of Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht

By Peter Schwarz, 15 January 2019

The ruling class had to kill Luxemburg and Liebknecht to prevent the revolution, which spread like wildfire throughout Germany during November 1918, from overthrowing capitalism as it had done in Russia.

This week in history: January 14-20

14 January 2019

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: January 7-13

7 January 2019

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Remembering the Kindertransport: 80 years since 10,000 mainly Jewish children were allowed in to Britain

Until February 10, 2019 at the Jewish Museum London

By Paul Mitchell, 28 December 2018

The testimony of the Kindertransport children are invaluable because most of the archives about their lives in Germany and Britain were destroyed during and after World War II.

The bicentenary of Frederick Douglass

A leading figure of the anti-slavery struggle

By Fred Mazelis, 20 December 2018

The foremost black Abolitionist escaped slavery as a young man and went on to advise Abraham Lincoln in the Civil War.

Russian television’s Trotsky serial: A degraded spectacle of historical falsification and anti-Semitism

By Fred Williams and David North, 19 December 2018

The eight-part mini-series, now available on Netflix, is an exhibition of the political, intellectual and cultural depravity of all those involved in its production. This comment was originally posted in November 2017.

This week in history: December 17-23

17 December 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

SEP (Sri Lanka) to hold lecture on “Lessons of History and the Fight for Socialism Today”

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 21 November 2018

The lecture in Jaffna will focus on the political lessons of key strategic experiences of the 20th century for the working class and their contemporary relevance.

The centenary of the “Spanish Flu”—Lessons for today

Part two

By Benjamin Mateus, 20 November 2018

This is the second part of a two-part series. The first part was posted on November 19.

The centenary of the “Spanish Flu”—Lessons for today

Part one of a two-part series

By Benjamin Mateus, 19 November 2018

The influenza pandemic of 1918-1919 was the deadliest outbreak of disease in human history, killing as many as 100 million people.

The armistice of November 11, 1918 and the lessons for today

By Nick Beams, 12 November 2018

The silencing of the guns 100 years ago was not the end of the bloodshed and carnage but was simply the conclusion of the first phase of what was to become a thirty-year international war between the major capitalist powers.

“100 years of social partnership”—a sinister celebration of trade unions, employers’ associations and the state in Germany

By Wolfgang Weber, 10 November 2018

On October 16, the German Trade Unions and Employer Associations celebrated the centenary of the Stinnes-Legien-Agreement, which laid the foundation for the suppression of the German Revolution of 1918/19.

One hundred years since the November Revolution in Germany

By Ulrich Rippert and Peter Schwarz, 9 November 2018

On November 9, 1918, the revolutionary uprising of the German working class against war and monarchy reached its peak and shook the capitalist system to its foundations.

David North in conversation with Nick Beams

Book launch of The Heritage We Defend in Sydney, Australia

9 November 2018

Meetings in Australia and New Zealand to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Fourth International

19 October 2018

The meetings will take place in Sydney on Sunday, December 2, in Melbourne on Thursday, December 6, and in Wellington, New Zealand on Sunday, December 9.

Large Colombo audience hears David North’s lecture on the history of the Fourth International

By our reporters, 9 October 2018

David North concluded his Sri Lankan tour with a powerful lecture in Colombo, delivered to a large, enthusiastic audience.

Mexico: Fifty years since the 1968 Tlatelolco Massacre

By Don Knowland, 6 October 2018

For five decades the Mexican state has engaged in violence in order to crush political and social opposition, regardless of the political party in power.

SEP and IYSSE win broad support for Peradeniya university meeting on the struggle for Trotskyism

By our correspondents, 29 September 2018

SEP campaigners have spoken with scores of students, workers and academics at the campus, explaining the historical record and political importance of the struggle for Trotskyism in Sri Lanka and internationally.

The neo-Nazi offensive in Germany and the role of historians

By Christoph Vandreier, 27 September 2018

The 52nd Historikertag (Historians’ Conference) September 25-28 in Münster takes place under conditions where historical questions have assumed immense significance.

Vadim Rogovin and the sociology of Stalinism

By Andrea Peters, 25 September 2018

September 18 marked the 20th anniversary of the death of Soviet Marxist historian and sociologist Vadim Rogovin, the author of a seven-volume series on Stalinism and the Marxist opposition to the Soviet bureaucracy.

Twenty years since the death of Marxist historian and sociologist Vadim Rogovin

By David North, 18 September 2018

On the twentieth anniversary of the death of Vadim Rogovin, we republish two tributes to the greatest Soviet and Russian Marxist sociologist and historian of the second half of the twentieth century.

Ten years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers

By Nick Beams, 15 September 2018

September 15, 2008 marked a milestone in the eruption of the most far-reaching and devastating crisis of the capitalist system since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

Bisbee ’17: The deportation of Arizona copper miners is a “still-polarizing event”

By Joanne Laurier, 10 September 2018

In July 1917, 1,200 striking copper miners in Bisbee, Arizona were illegally kidnapped, loaded in cattle cars and dumped in the southwest New Mexico desert. This episode is the subject of Bisbee ’17.

On the 80th anniversary of the founding of the Fourth International

By David North, 3 September 2018

The founding of the Fourth International on September 3, 1938, was an event of great historical significance and contemporary relevance.

Fifty years since the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia: Part four

The split with the OCI and the degeneration of the WRP

By Clara Weiss, 31 August 2018

The intervention by the Pabloite International Secretariat in Eastern Europe in 1968-1985 was facilitated by the degeneration of the British Workers Revolutionary Party.

Arsène Tchakarian (1916-2018): the Manouchian Group’s resistance struggle

Part 2: Who betrayed the Manouchian Group?

By Francis Dubois and Alex Lantier, 31 August 2018

There is no doubt that the Stalinists’ decision to sacrifice the Manouchian Group was bound up with their genocidal onslaught against Trotskyism and the Left Opposition.

Fifty years since the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia: Part three

The intervention of the Pabloites

By Clara Weiss, 30 August 2018

The Pabloite International Secretariat intervened aggressively in Eastern Europe and especially Czechoslovakia in 1968 in order to disorient the opposition to Stalinism within the working class and intelligentsia.

Arsène Tchakarian (1916–2018): The Manouchian Group’s resistance struggle

Part 1: The political origins and military record of the resistance fighters

By Francis Dubois and Alex Lantier, 30 August 2018

Arsène Tchakarian, the last remaining survivor of the famed Manouchian Group of the French Resistance, died on August 4, 2018, at the age of 101.

Hostiles: A US soldier accompanies a Native American chief home in 1892 …

… and homelessness in Seattle in The Road to Nickelsville

By Joanne Laurier, 30 August 2018

Scott Cooper’s Hostiles opens in 1892 in Fort Berringer, New Mexico, as the mass destruction of the Native Americans population is winding down.

Fifty years since the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia: Part two

The Prague Spring

By Clara Weiss, 29 August 2018

On August 20-21, 1968, tens of thousands of troops of the Warsaw Pact states invaded Czechoslovakia to crush the “Prague Spring” and stifle a nascent movement of the working class. This is the second part of a four-part series.

Fifty years since the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia: Part one

Establishment of a deformed workers’ state in Czechoslovakia

By Clara Weiss, 28 August 2018

On August 20-21, 1968, tens of thousands of troops of the Warsaw Pact states invaded Czechoslovakia to crush the “Prague Spring” and stifle a nascent movement of the working class. This is the first part of a four-part series.

Seventy-eight years since the assassination of Leon Trotsky

By Eric London and David North, 21 August 2018

On August 21, 1940, Leon Trotsky, the founder of the Fourth International and the co-leader of the Russian Revolution, died from wounds inflicted the day before by an assassin, the Stalinist GPU agent Ramon Mercader.

An “Exemplary Comrade”: The Socialist Workers Party’s 40-year-long cover-up of Stalinist spy Sylvia Callen: Part four

By Eric London, 17 August 2018

This is the final part in a four-part series examining the cover-up by the Socialist Workers Party, beginning in 1947, of information exposing the role of Sylvia Callen, the personal secretary of long-time party leader James P. Cannon, as a Stalinist agent.

An “Exemplary Comrade”: The Socialist Workers Party’s 40-year-long cover-up of Stalinist spy Sylvia Callen: Part three

By Eric London, 16 August 2018

This is the third part in a four-part series examining the cover-up by the Socialist Workers Party beginning in 1947 of information exposing the role of Sylvia Callen, the personal secretary of long-time party leader James P. Cannon, as a Stalinist agent.

An “Exemplary Comrade”: The Socialist Workers Party’s 40-year-long cover-up of Stalinist spy Sylvia Callen: Part two

By Eric London, 15 August 2018

This is the second part in a four-part series examining the cover-up by the Socialist Workers Party, beginning in 1947, of information exposing the role of Sylvia Callen, the personal secretary of long-time party leader James P. Cannon, as a Stalinist agent.

An “Exemplary Comrade”: The Socialist Workers Party’s 40-year-long cover-up of Stalinist spy Sylvia Callen: Part one

By Eric London, 14 August 2018

This is the first part in a four-part series examining the cover-up by the Socialist Workers Party beginning in 1947 of information exposing the role of Sylvia Callen, the personal secretary of long-time party leader James P. Cannon, as a Stalinist agent.

Preface to the Russian edition of In Defense of Leon Trotsky

By Vladimir Volkov, 2 August 2018

Understanding the role Leon Trotsky played in the twentieth century is fundamental to the revival of the heritage of Marxism in the countries of the former Soviet Union, and to the fight to build the International Committee of the Fourth International.

This week in history: July 23-29

23 July 2018

25 years ago: Clinton administration proposes anti-immigrant legislationThe administration of Democratic President Bill Clinton announced a new round of attacks on immigrants and democratic rights on July 27, 1993, unveiling new legislation titled the “Expedited Exclusion and Alien Smuggling Enhanced Penalties Act,” to be sponsored in Congress by the leading Senate liberal, Edward Kennedy.

A quarter century since the Thai toy factory fire

By Richard Phillips, 14 July 2018

The Kader fire exposed the rapacious character of global capitalism, which was not improving factory conditions but further undermining them.

This week in history: July 2-8

2 July 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

SEP in Sri Lanka holds powerful 50th anniversary meeting

By our correspondents, 27 June 2018

The meeting began by paying tribute to the party’s founding general secretary Keerthi Balasuriya, Wilfred Pereira and all those who gave their lives to the fight for Trotskyism in Sri Lanka and South Asia.

Social studies teachers denounce anti-democratic changes to Michigan education curriculum

By Debra Watson and Ed Bergonzi, 26 June 2018

Teachers are opposing proposed changes to the state’s social studies curriculum that would block students from learning about struggles for democratic and civil rights.

This week in history, June 25-July 1

25 June 2018

<em>This Week in History</em> provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Preface to the thirtieth anniversary edition of The Heritage We Defend

By David North, 21 June 2018

We are posting the new preface written by David North for the soon to be released thirtieth anniversary edition of The Heritage We Defend: A Contribution to the History of the Fourth International.

Fifty years of the Socialist Equality Party of Sri Lanka

Arm the working class with the program of socialist internationalism and with revolutionary leadership!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 16 June 2018

The fulcrum of the 50-year struggle of the RCL/SEP has been the fight for the political independence of the working class and the program of permanent revolution.

This week in history: June 11-17

11 June 2018

25 years ago: US military slaughters Somali civiliansOn June 11, 1993, six months after US troops landed in Somalia for the supposed purpose of feeding starving people, US warplanes reduced large parts of the capital city, Mogadishu, to rubble, while United Nations troops carried out house-to-house raids and cold-blooded massacres.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 8—The centrist line of the OCI (4)

By Peter Schwarz, 6 June 2018

Fifty years ago, in May–June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 7—The centrist line of the OCI (3)

By Peter Schwarz, 5 June 2018

Fifty years ago, in May-June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 6—The centrist line of the OCI (2)

By Peter Schwarz, 4 June 2018

Fifty years ago, in May–June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 5—The centrist line of the OCI (1)

By Peter Schwarz, 2 June 2018

Fifty years ago, in May-June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 4—How Alain Krivine’s JCR covered for the betrayals of Stalinism (2)

By Peter Schwarz, 1 June 2018

Fifty years ago, in May–June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 3—How Alain Krivine’s JCR covered for the betrayals of Stalinism

By Peter Schwarz, 31 May 2018

Fifty years ago, in May–June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 2—The betrayal of the PCF and CGT

By Peter Schwarz, 30 May 2018

Fifty years ago, in May–June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

Germany: Twenty-five years since the arson attack in Solingen

By Marianne Arens and Elisabeth Zimmermann, 30 May 2018

On Saturday, May 29, 1993, five members of the Gença family were killed in an arson attack carried out by far-right extremists in the town of Solingen.

1968: The general strike and the student revolt in France

Part 1—A revolutionary situation develops

By Peter Schwarz, 29 May 2018

Fifty years ago, in May-June 1968, a general strike brought France to the brink of proletarian revolution. This eight-part series describes the events and draws the political lessons for today.

Capitalist restoration in Russia: A balance sheet

Part 4: The Kuzbass today

By Clara Weiss, 4 May 2018

This series reviews the lessons of the Soviet miners’ strike of 1989 and capitalist restoration in Russia.

Capitalist restoration in Russia: A balance sheet

Part 3

By Clara Weiss, 3 May 2018

This series reviews the lessons of the Soviet miners’ strike of 1989 and capitalist restoration in Russia.

Capitalist restoration in Russia: A balance sheet

Part 2: What happened to the miners’ strike

By Clara Weiss, 2 May 2018

This series reviews the lessons of the Soviet miners’ strike of 1989 and capitalist restoration in Russia.

Capitalist restoration in Russia: A balance sheet

Part 1

By Clara Weiss, 1 May 2018

This series reviews the lessons of the Soviet miners’ strike of 1989 and capitalist restoration in Russia.

This week in history: April 30-May 6

30 April 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

NY Times, Mark Rudd on anniversary of Columbia U sit-in: Socialist revolution is a “fantasy”

By Patrick Martin, 26 April 2018

Mark Rudd, the most prominent leader of the student protests at Columbia University in 1968, has taken to the pages of the leading capitalist newspaper to deny the possibility of revolution.

Lenin, Trotsky and the Marxism of the October Revolution

By David North, 19 March 2018

David North, chairperson of the International Editorial Board of the World Socialist Web Site and of the Socialist Equality Party (US), delivered this lecture at the University of Leipzig on March 16.

This week in history: March 19-25

19 March 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: March 12-18

12 March 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: March 5-11

5 March 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Arts editor David Walsh speaks on the centenary of the October Revolution

What the Russian Revolution meant for modern art and culture

By David Walsh, 28 February 2018

This talk was given in Chicago and in Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, Michigan, in late 2017 and early 2018 to mark the centenary of the October Revolution.

This week in history: February 19-25

19 February 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

PBS’s The Gilded Age: Removing the working class from the stage of history

By Tom Mackaman, 15 February 2018

PBS aired the documentary as part of its American Experience series on February 6.

This week in history: February 12-18

12 February 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

A conversation with film historian Max Alvarez: How the #MeToo campaign echoes the McCarthyite witch hunt of the 1940s and 1950s

“The climate is chillingly similar in terms of the massive capitulation and conformity”

By David Walsh, 8 February 2018

It is “Scoundrel Time” again in Hollywood, complete with denunciations, anonymous informants, humiliating “confessions,” trial by media and the banning of prominent performers.

Nothing learned from Auschwitz

By Johannes Stern, 6 February 2018

Just a cursory glance at the politicians assembled in the German parliament to commemorate the 73rd anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz makes clear the same ruling class that made Hitler chancellor 85 years ago is returning to its infamous traditions.

An interview with David North

Socialism or Barbarism: Reflections on Global Disorder

6 February 2018

In October 2017, David North delivered a lecture on the centenary of the October Revolution at St. Andrews College in Scotland. Prior to the lecture, he was interviewed by Adam Stromme, the editor in chief of the St Andrews Economist, the official publication of the St Andrews Economics Society.

This week in history:

5 February 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Marshall and #MeToo: A 77-year-old civil rights fight exposes the reactionary character of the sexual misconduct witch-hunt

By Fred Mazelis, 1 February 2018

The 1941 case, in which a black man was acquitted of rape charges, poses awkward questions for those who dismiss due process in their campaign against sexual harassment, both real and alleged.

Fifty years since the Tet Offensive

By Patrick Martin, 31 January 2018

The military assault marked a turning point in the Vietnam War, demonstrating the enduring power of the popular revolutionary struggle and crippling the Johnson administration.

This week in history: January 29-February 4

29 January 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: January 22-28

22 January 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

This week in history: January 15-21

15 January 2018

This Week in History provides brief synopses of important historical events whose anniversaries fall this week.

Diego Rivera in the Soviet Union: An exhibition in Mexico City

By Alex González, 12 January 2018

The current show in Mexico City focuses on Rivera’s two visits to the USSR in 1927-28 and in 1955-56. It contains many remarkable items.

Final reflections on the centennial year of the October Revolution

By David North, 30 December 2017

The commemoration of the centenary of the October Revolution reflected the political interests and outlooks of different class forces.

How former Nazi official Reinhard Gehlen erected a state within a state in post-war Germany

By Wolfgang Weber, 27 December 2017

Over 100,000 pages of documents relating to the post-World War II head of the German Federal Intelligence Service and ex-Nazi official Reinhard Gehlen have been leaked to the Süddeutsche Zeitung.

This week in the Russian Revolution

December 18-24: Peace negotiations begin at Brest-Litovsk

18 December 2017

Trotsky later writes, “The circumstances of history willed that the delegates of the most revolutionary regime ever known to humanity should sit at the same diplomatic table with the representatives of the most reactionary caste among all the ruling classes.”

Ron Chernow’s Grant: An able and compelling new biography

By Andre Damon, 15 December 2017

Chernow capably weaves together an account of the life of the Civil War general, president and memoirist.

Cancellation of exhibition about Jewish art collector in Germany raises issue of Nazi-confiscated art

By Sibylle Fuchs, 13 December 2017

Düsseldorf art gallery owner Max Stern’s art collection was auctioned under pressure from the Hitler regime in the 1930s and has remained largely unseen ever since.

This week in the Russian Revolution

December 11-17: White forces capture Rostov

11 December 2017

As forces commanded by the counterrevolutionary General Kaledin occupy Rostov, a major industrial center in southern Russia, conflict continues to rage in the Bolshevik leadership over the question of the Constituent Assembly.

Russian federal investigators review anti-Semitic conspiracy theory about murder of the Tsarist family

By Clara Weiss, 7 December 2017

An investigation, opened in 2015, into the killing of the Tsarist family at the behest of Soviet government in 1918, is considering a fascistic and anti-Semitic conspiracy theory which presents the execution as a “ritual killing.”