Against the Current 45

— The Editors
WITH AMAZING SPEED, the euphoria of Bill Clinton's January inauguration turned to slush. Clearly President Clinton is already on the defensive. His most stinging defeat came on April21, when Republicans in the U.S. Senate crushed his weak stimulus package through a filibuster. But Clinton could not—or did not—organize his Democratic forces in Congress for a decisive confrontation; the $16 billion plan became a mere $4 billion extension of benefits to the long-term unemployed.
— David Simcha
ALLIED INDUSTRIAL WORKERS Local 837 of Decatur, IL has declared war on the decline of the labor movement. The determination to fight came after their employer, the A.E. Staley Manufacturing Co., attacked the union. Staley, a subsidiary of British sugar conglomerate Tate & Lyle, demands concessions, of course, but they also took on new employees.
First, they retained Seyfarth, Shaw Fairweather & Geraldson, a union-busting Chicago law firm. Second, they hired a new labor relations...
— Catherine Sameh
RU-486, COMMONLY KNOWN as the French abortion pill, is now in the hands of a few select U.S. physicians. Over the next few months, protocols will be established to administer the drug to patients under a controlled study.
The pending widespread availability Of RU-486 in this country, though potentially exciting, raises many hard questions for reproductive rights activists and health care workers.
First, it is crucial that a common misconception about the "privacy" of RU-486 be corrected. Under...
— Langa Zita
WITHIN THE SPACE of two weeks in April, the liberation movement here lost two towering figures, Chris Hani and Oliver Tambo, one by an assassin's bullet and the other in the after-effects of that bullet The elderly Tambo stayed up all night in the cold air of the Haiti funeral, and passed away a few days later. Two men, who represented in their different ways the synthesis of what is best in the revolutionary tradition of the ANC, were taken at the most trying time in the movement's history.
— Searchlight South Africa editorial
(The following editorial statement appears in the latest issue of Searchlight South Africa issue 10; April 1993), an independent Marxist journal of South African studies, published in London and edited by Baruch Hirson and Paul Trewhala. This journal has previously published extensive material on the events in the ANC camps surrounding the 1984 mutiny (issue 5; July 1990).
AS THIS ISSUE was being prepared for the printer, a news flash announced the murder of Chris Hani. This was an act of terror...
— Gonzalo Santos
THE UNTIMELY DEATH of United Farm Workers (UFW) organizer and Chicano civil rights leader Cesar Chavez brought an enormous outpouring of grief from the Chicano and Mexicano communities, and calls for redoubling efforts in "la causa campesina." Spanish-language radio stations were flooded—especially the UFW-affiliated "Radio Campesina"—with so many calls that they operated for several days in the open-line talk show fashion with no signs of slowing down.
It was very impressive: Most...
— Dianne Feeley
THE ERUPTION OF a political crisis in Guatemala came just a week after peaceful marchers were gunned down in the streets of El Salvador's capital city. Central America may have faded to black in the newsrooms of the television networks, but confrontations between popular movements and the military-backed regimes continue.
Guatemalan President Jorge Serrano Elias attempted a "self-coup," in the manner of Peruvian President Fujimori, without checking first with the U.S. embassy—which proved...
— an interview with Christine Halvorson
AMANAKA'A IS A US.-based environmental organization which acts in solidarity with and as a liaison for indigenous peoples and workers who live in the Amazon rainforest of Brazil. They seek to communicate the proposals and express the concerns of the Amazon forest peoples to the rest of the world, and build awareness of their struggle to keep traditional ways of living and working in harmony with the forest.
Amanaka'a also seeks to build support for the peoples of the forest in their efforts to...
LULA (LUIS INACIO da Silva) of the Brazilian Workers Party thinks that the Brazilian government should immediately prohibit large-scale burning and deforestation in the Amazon until scientific research can survey the region's existing ecological richness.
"Our position is one of strict defense of the forest,' he says, 'but one that does not rule out the possibility of a politics of Amazonian development compatible with environmental conservation. And this will include a politics of agrarian...
— Branka Magas
CONTRARY TO WHAT some on the Western left believe, the Western states, including Germany, all initially  favored Yugoslavia's unity, which they saw as a stabilizing factor in the Balkans and—in the eyes of France and Great Britain, at least—a barrier to German expansionism.
They continued to insist on Yugoslavia's territorial integrity, indeed, even when it had become quite clear that this could be maintained only by force of Serbian arms: i.e. by federal Yugoslavia becoming...
— Kit Adam Wainer
The Fall of Yugoslavia:
The Third Balkan War
By Misha Glenny
New York: Penguin Books, 1992, 184 pages.
The Destruction of Yugoslavia:
Tracking the Break-Up, 1980-92
By Branka Magas
London: Verso, 1993, 359 pages.
The Fragmentation of Yugoslavia:
An Overview
By Catherine Samary
Amsterdam: International Institute for Research and Education, Notebooks for Study and Research, 1993, 46 pages.
THE TWENTIETH CENTURY may close much the same way it opened: with a Balkan tragedy of unthinkable...
— Ronald Suny
MOUNTAINOUS KARABAGH IS remote even from the Armenian capital of Erevan. What began in the time of Gorbachev as peaceful demonstrations for the merger of the region with the neighboring Armenian republic, has widened into a four-sided war between the newly-independent republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan and the self-proclaimed states of Karabagh and Nakhichevan.
Beyond the borders of former Soviet Transcaucasia, Turkey sits anxiously watching as the Turkic people of Azerbaijan take on those who...
— Tony Smith
THE TERM "POSTMODERNIST" has been used to describe everything from contemporary paintings and music videos to amusement parks and information technologies. Things remain confusing even if we restrict our attention to postmodernist theory. A great variety of perspectives have been lumped under this heading.
Nonetheless, there are a number of theses that are closely associated with leading postmodern theorists such as Foucault, Lyotard, Rorty and Baudrillard.(1) For those who have not had the...
— Loren Goldner
p>MULTICULTURALISM, POSTMODERNISM, post-structuralism and Identity politics" are, in 1993, overlapping but not identical phenomena. And in 1993, despite some cracks in their general indifference to a good old-fashioned economic crisis, they remain dominant.
This article will not attempt to deal with multiculturalism as such, as the term is understood in current debates about textbook revision, educational curriculum and the definition of cultural literacy. The subject will rather be the ideology...
— R.F. Kampfer
ONE CAN NOW get a new Chinese Tolkarev pistol for $120, or spend $500 for a prototype Navy SEAL switchblade. And we used to carry knives because we couldn't afford handguns.
The insurance companies are worried about the increasing use of air-bags in cars. Seems a lot of crash victims who would have been killed without them are surviving, to run up big medical bills.
The big division in industry is between those who assume that everything will work right, and worry about how to maximize...
— Samuel Farber
Cuba: The Revolution in Peril
By Janette Habel
Verso, 1991, $34.95, cloth.
SINCE THE COLLAPSE of Stalinism important elements of the U.S. radical and socialist left have reconsidered their previous support for the one-party Stalinist-type states that prevailed for many years in Eastern Europe. Given this, it is astonishing that hardly any U.S. left group or well-known leftist writers and activists who supported the Castro regime before 1989 have called for a revision of that support since then....
— Mauricio Tuesta
Peru: Caught in the Crossfire
By Aldo Panfichi and Jo-Marie Burt
Jefferson City, Missouri: Peru Peace Network-USA, 1992, 66 pages, $6.
AN IMPORTANT RESOURCE for human rights advocates published by the Peru Peace Network-USA, Peru’s Caught in the Crossfire puts Peru's complex social and political problems in historical context. It has been published with the intention of educating the North American public on the Peruvian reality and the causes of the violence endemic in this country of 22...
— Mark Pittenger
Three American Radicals:
John Swinton, Crusading Editor; Charles P. Steinmetz, Scientist and Socialist;
William Dean Howells and the Haymarket Era
By Sender Garlin
Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1991.
LABOR JOURNALIST Sender Garlin has chronicled the history of American labor and radicalism from the front lines since the end of World War I, when at age fifteen he began editing the Glens Falls Socialist Advocate in his upstate New York home town. Later a student of radical educator Scott Nearing at...
— Tod Ensign
CARL FEINGOLD, A lifelong revolutionary socialist and a cofounder of Against the Current, died following a battle with esophageal cancer in New York City on April 6, 1993. He was sixty-four years old. Against the Current and New York Solidarity organized a memorial meeting. Carl is survived by two daughters, Karie Durgin and Jackie Feingold.
The son of Jewish immigrants, Carl was raised in Los Angeles where his father, an expert cutter, led garment workers on labor actions. Carl led his first...
THE EDITORS OF Against the Current learned with great sorrow of the death of Kendra Alexander, a National Co-chair of the Committees of Correspondence. A veteran of the civil rights and antiwar movements, Alexander was a principal spokesperson of the defense committee for her sister Angela Davis in the 1970s. She was a leading member of the Communist Party from 1965 until her resignation in 1991.
Kendra Alexander will be greatly missed, not only by her comrades in the Committees of...