FUNDAMENTALLY reactionary movements such as Isis should not obscure the continuing role of Western imperialism in the Middle East, a coterie of communists from around the world warned in London at the weekend.
Representatives of communist and workers’ parties from Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Cyprus, Greece and Guyana domiciled in Britain laid bare the sectarian and anti-communist fundamentalist movements but pointed out that Western governments have no qualms about promoting and utilising them.
Tudeh Party of Iran international secretary Navid Shomali pointed to the record of the theocratic regime in his country in using state power to suppress the left-wing, trade union and women’s movements, even executing most of the former leadership of the Tudeh Party.
He accused Islamist movements across the Middle East and north Africa of adopting and enforcing neoliberal economic policies against the interests of the masses of people.
Iraqi CP central committee member Salam Ali said that Islamist forces served imperialist purposes by seeking to fragment nation states such as Iraq and Syria, deepening sectarian divisions and destroying people’s unity against foreign intervention and domination.
In northern Iraq, the communists have set up their own armed units alongside Kurdish peshmerga and Iraqi regular forces to defend communities against “fascist” Isis.
The Co-ordinating Committee of Communist Parties in Britain (CCCPB) seminar also heard how Nato member Turkey and Western allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar had facilitated the rise of Isis.
Abdel Rahim Hassan of the Sudanese CP explained how imperialist powers had supported Islamic fundamentalists in their drive to split Sudan, enabling the Islamist regime in the largely Muslim north to consolidate itself while placing oil and other valuable resources in the hands of a fragile government in the new and mostly Christian state of South Sudan.
“For more than two decades, the Western-backed Islamic regime in Khartoum provided a safe haven, training, money-laundering and diplomatic facilities for (Osama) Bin Laden and jihadists from Afghanistan, the Middle East and north Africa,” he pointed out.
The CCCPB also urged people to attend its annual International Women’s Day celebration at the Marx Memorial Library on March 7 on “Women and the Struggle for Peace.”
It also gave its support to March 15’s Karl Marx oration at the great philosopher’s Highgate grave, where the Communist Party of the Russia Federation’s Yuri Emelianov will talk about the defeat of fascism.