Democratic rights

National Guard deployed in Philadelphia following protests against police murder

By Nick Barrickman, 31 October 2020

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, a Democrat, has announced plans to keep the National Guard in the city until after Election Day.

Clare Moseley on the horrific plight of English Channel migrants: “They are asking for help, but being treated like criminals”

By Laura Tiernan, 31 October 2020

The founder of refugee charity Care4Calais spoke with the WSWS about this week’s horrific loss of life on the English Channel, including the deaths of three children.

FBI raids neo-Nazi camp in Michigan as national connections of Whitmer plotters emerge

By Eric London, 30 October 2020

The FBI conducted further raids in Michigan Thursday as more details emerge of a national conspiracy involving fascists and police in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Delaware, Texas and Minnesota.

“What is Left of American Democracy on the Eve of the 2020 Elections?”

David North and Adolph Reed discuss US political crisis at online forum

30 October 2020

North and Reed discussed and debated their views on the unfolding political crisis in the United States and the way forward for the working class, and responded to audience questions at the forum hosted by the San Diego State University.

Police officer threatened to kill Democratic mayor of Phoenix, Arizona

By Chase Lawrence, 30 October 2020

The threat to kill the mayor of a major American city comes amid the exposure of plotting by fascist militia groups in the lead-up to the election to kidnap and kill Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and others.

Demonstrations against police violence continue in Washington D.C., federal agents target Philadelphia teacher for protesting

By Jacob Crosse, 30 October 2020

Protesters in D.C. were doused with pepper spray and fired upon with “less-lethal” ammunition, while a Philadelphia social studies teacher was arrested by federal agents for his alleged role in George Floyd protests over the summer.

Nigeria: Live ammunition fired at anti-police brutality protesters

By Jean Shaoul, 30 October 2020

A Lagos-based soldier, speaking anonymously to Reuters, said soldiers from the army 81st Division’s 65th Battalion, based at Bonny Camp, had fired on unarmed civilians at the toll gate.

Trump holds closed-door meeting with Special Forces troops

By Patrick Martin, 30 October 2020

Few details were revealed about the meeting, which took place only five days before an election whose results the president has repeatedly threatened to ignore.

Three killed in terrorist attack on church in Nice, France

By Will Morrow, 30 October 2020

A lone attacker entered the building at 8:30 a.m. armed with a knife and attacked churchgoers who were attending the morning mass.

Introductory remarks to “What is Left of American Democracy on the Eve of the 2020 Election?”

By David North, 30 October 2020

These remarks were delivered October 28 to an online forum sponsored by the San Diego State University Department of Political Science.

As US vote total surges, Trump, Republicans seek to block counting

By Patrick Martin, 29 October 2020

Record numbers of voters have cast early votes or voted by mail, an indication of a growing politicization of the American population.

Google providing US Department of Homeland Security with tech platform for virtual border wall

By Kevin Reed, 29 October 2020

Documents show that Google has been secretly working with the Trump administration on the development of a high-tech surveillance wall at the US-Mexico border.

Trump defends killer cops and police attacks on protesters in Philadelphia

By Jacob Crosse, 29 October 2020

Trump is using protests against the police murder of Walter Wallace, Jr. in Philadelphia to justify repression by federal, state and local forces against the eruption of mass opposition to his planned election coup.

National Guard sent to suppress protests over police murder in Philadelphia

By Jacob Crosse, 28 October 2020

The horrific shooting of 27-year-old William Wallace Jr. in front of his mother and brother ignited protests in his West Philadelphia neighborhood.

The New York Times attacks the First Amendment and embraces censorship of “disinformation”

By Kevin Reed, 28 October 2020

An essay published in the October 18 edition of the New York Times Magazine argues that online “disinformation” has rendered First Amendment rights to free speech “inadequate,” requiring government and social media censorship of “unfettered speech.”

The WSWS and the fight to free political prisoners

By Oscar Grenfell, 28 October 2020

The remarks below were given by Oscar Grenfell, a member of the Socialist Equality Party (Australia) national committee.

Macron administration wages far-right campaign against “Islamo-leftism”

By Will Morrow, 28 October 2020

The term “Islamo-leftism” is used to define anyone who defends Muslims’ democratic rights and opposes French imperialism as accomplices of terrorism.

Questions remain as to ties between police, border militias and Trump campaign in southwest US

By Chase Lawrence, 28 October 2020

Border militias in the Southwest have trained thousands of vigilantes with the same fundamental outlook as the men who plotted to kill Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. These groups have connections to individuals like Joe Arpaio, who is close to the Trump campaign.

The constitutional referendum and class struggle in Chile

By Mauricio Saavedra, 27 October 2020

Chile’s parliamentary “left” set itself the task of redirecting the explosive mass struggles into the safe parameters of parliamentary politics by promoting the referendum.

Facebook deploying teams with advanced censorship tools in advance of the US election

By Kevin Reed, 27 October 2020

Citing concerns over election-related “chaos” and “violence,” Facebook is preparing—in collaboration with the US intelligence state—advanced software tools for implementing a censorship regime during November 3 and its aftermath.

Prospect of right-wing violence and police repression hangs over US election

By Eric London, 27 October 2020

Additional details are emerging of right-wing plans for election day violence as police prepare to repress election night demonstrations.

Australian spy agency raises new alarm about foreign “plot”

By Mike Head, 27 October 2020

This is not the first such lurid allegation by ASIO, accusing China of conspiring to take over Australia.

Supreme Court ruling on mail-in ballots sets stage for stolen election

By Eric London, 27 October 2020

Monday’s Supreme Court ruling strips tens of thousands of Wisconsinites of their right to vote and facilitates Trump’s plot to remain in power no matter the popular vote.

Right-wing recall campaign seeks to remove Socialist Alternative’s Kshama Sawant from Seattle City Council

By Kayla Costa, 27 October 2020

The campaign to recall Kshama Sawant is led by the Democratic Party with the active support of Republican and far-right elements.

Clashes erupt in Guinea-Conakry as Condé declared president for third term

By Anthony Torres, 27 October 2020

The week that has unfolded since the election was marked by violent clashes between supporters and opponents of Guinea’s long-time president.

Trump escalates coup plotting with swearing-in of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett

By Patrick Martin, 27 October 2020

The installation of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, without significant resistance by the Democrats, is a key step in Trump’s plans to hijack the presidential election.

Malaysian king rejects PM’s “request” for emergency rule

By Mike Head, 27 October 2020

The political establishment is breaking up in the face of a pandemic-triggered economic reversal and rising class tensions.

ICE uses torture to pressure African asylum seekers to agree to deportation

By Meenakshi Jagadeesan, 26 October 2020

In a blatant violation of international law and the US constitution, ICE officials in the privately run detention center in Mississippi have been forcing asylum seekers from Cameroon to sign their own deportation forms and quickly shipping them back on secret flights.

Mercenary group sued for hiring armed poll watchers for election day in Minnesota

By Kevin Martinez, 26 October 2020

The Council on American-Islamic Relations of Minnesota is suing Atlas Aegis for recruiting former Special Operations personnel to patrol polling places.

Sri Lankan parliament boosts president’s autocratic powers

By K. Ratnayake, 26 October 2020

The move towards dictatorship in Sri Lanka coincides with the drive by the ruling classes in every country towards fascist and autocratic rule.

Activist with ties to Ohio Republican legislators plotted to kidnap and kill Governor Mike DeWine

By Eric London, 24 October 2020

Renea Turner is a Trump supporter linked to a group of state legislators who have threatened to impeach DeWine or have him “arrested” for his coronavirus lockdown actions.

Russian court extends prison sentence for historian of Stalinist terror to 13 years

By Clara Weiss, 24 October 2020

The brutal vendetta against Dmitriev speaks to the enormous fear of the Russian oligarchy about the growing interest in the historical truth about the October revolution and the Stalinist terror in broad sections of the population.

Ten years since WikiLeaks and Julian Assange published the Iraq War Logs

By Oscar Grenfell, 23 October 2020

The publication was an imperishable contribution to the fight against imperialist militarism, for which the war criminals and their political representatives have never forgiven Assange.

50 years since Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau invoked the War Measures Act

By Keith Jones, 23 October 2020

During the October Crisis, the Canadian state, led by Trudeau, exploited two terrorist kidnappings to carry out a coup de force, jailing and intimidating left-wing government opponents amid a growing working class upsurge.

Anti-Muslim hysteria dominates French political establishment after terrorist killing of Samuel Paty

By Will Morrow, 23 October 2020

The anti-Muslim hysteria of the French political establishment is continuing, a week after the terrorist killing of Samuel Paty, a middle-school history and geography teacher in Conflans, on October 16.

Nigerian government clamps down on protests

By Jean Shaoul, 23 October 2020

The deployment of Nigeria’s army followed its announcement last week that it was ready to maintain law and order and deal decisively with “subversive elements and troublemakers.”

Israel’s growing anti-Netanyahu protests face increasing right-wing and police attacks

By Jean Shaoul, 23 October 2020

The increasing violence in confrontations between anti- and pro-Netanyahu demonstrators have caused several commentators to warn of the descent into civil war.

Trump storms out of interview when asked about ties to Michigan conspiracy

By Eric London, 23 October 2020

By walking out of the interview with 60 Minutes’ Leslie Stahl, Trump revealed that he views the fascist plot as a massive political liability while a new report confirms the threat of fascist election violence.

No to police-state rule after the terrorist killing of French teacher Samuel Paty!

By Alex Lantier, 22 October 2020

The bankruptcy of communal terrorism is once more exposed. The state uses such atrocities as opportunities to whip up support for authoritarianism and nationalism.

UK government steps up attacks on asylum seekers and refugees

By Julia Callaghan, 21 October 2020

The Conservative government has no intention of upholding the fundamental “right to asylum” section of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in the aftermath of the Second World War.

Fair Wayne Bryant, jailed for life for stealing hedge clippers, granted parole by Louisiana Pardon Board

By Helen Halyard, 21 October 2020

Imprisoned for life at the notorious Angola State Penitentiary in Louisiana on one count of attempted simple burglary, he was granted parole by a 3-0 vote of the state Parole Board, after being denied parole on three previous occasions.

International media hails New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s re-election

By Tom Peters, 21 October 2020

Far from being a progressive alternative to Trump and other right-wing populists, Ardern is being embraced in the world’s corporate media precisely because of her Labour Party government’s pro-war and pro-business policies, packaged with her “kind” and “inclusive” persona.

Demonstrations in Thailand continue as government rejects protesters’ demands

By Ben McGrath, 21 October 2020

Underpinning the demands for democratic rights is a growing economic and social crisis for Thailand’s youth and working class.

UK COVID-19 “alert” system overseen by UK spy chiefs

By Julie Hyland, 20 October 2020

The decision to invest in this secretive body, rather than the National Health Service, is part of the policy of herd immunity, while using the pandemic to restructure economic and social relations and strengthen the state apparatus.

Macron launches anti-Muslim police-state crackdown after terror attack in France

By Will Morrow, 20 October 2020

Macron’s policy is indistinguishable from the fascistic ravings of National Rally leader Marine Le Pen.

Nigerian government unleashes massacre against police brutality protesters

By Bill Van Auken, 20 October 2020

Nigeria’s protests against police brutality are also fueled by popular anger over conditions of mass unemployment, endemic poverty and unprecedented social inequality in Africa’s largest country.

Support Socialist Equality Party candidates Joseph Kishore and Norissa Santa Cruz on Colorado ballot

By Socialist Equality Party (US), 20 October 2020

Coloradans have the chance to officially vote for the genuine opposition—SEP candidates Joseph Kishore and Norissa Santa Cruz.

Nigerian anti-police protests continue and garner international support

By Jean Shaoul, 20 October 2020

The dire social conditions are the product of colonial and neocolonial oppression by the imperialist powers on behalf of their banks and corporations, exacerbated by the venal and corrupt rule of the national bourgeoisie.

Macron promotes anti-Muslim “free speech” hypocrisy after terrorist killing

By Will Morrow, 19 October 2020

Less than 48 hours after the murder of a teacher near Paris on Friday, the political establishment launched a campaign for “national unity” behind anti-Muslim laws.

State-orchestrated anti-Semitism witch-hunt extended to UK university campuses

By Thomas Scripps, 16 October 2020

Williamson’s letter is the latest move in a five-year conspiracy of the Conservative government, the Labour Party, and Zionist organisations aimed at criminalising vast swathes of the political left.

North and East of Sri Lanka paralysed by mass anti-government protest

By Subash Somachandran, 15 October 2020

Social opposition is mounting among workers and the poor across Sri Lanka against the Rajapakse government’s continuous attacks on social and democratic rights.

Wisconsin police conduct mass arrest of protesters, journalists after announcement of no charges against killer cop

By Jacob Crosse, 10 October 2020

Relatively small protests in Wauwatosa, a suburb of Milwaukee, have been met with the deployment of the National Guard and overwhelming unconstitutional police violence.

Sri Lankan government presses ahead with plans for a presidential dictatorship

By Saman Gunadasa and K. Ratnayake, 10 October 2020

Facing an economic catastrophe exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, President Rajapakse wants new anti-democratic measures to suppress the eruption of mass social struggles by the working class.

Brazil’s Workers Party promotes military police in mayoral elections

By Miguel Andrade, 10 October 2020

The mayoral elections to be held in Brazil in November and December are laying bare the turn by all factions of the ruling class to the hated Brazilian military.

The Michigan conspiracy, Trump, and the 2020 election

By Eric London, 9 October 2020

Donald Trump is engaged in a plot to deploy fascist militia to overturn the outcome of the election. The working class must demand answers in order to expose and stop the conspiracy.

After the Assange hearing—the fight against imperialism

By Thomas Scripps, 9 October 2020

What took place at London’s Old Bailey was a process of vicious retribution against a journalist who exposed the barbarism of the ruling class before the world.

Macron’s anti-Islamic separatism law: The death throes of French democracy

By Alex Lantier, 8 October 2020

This bill, which would impose control of Islam by the state and mass surveillance of the population, exposes the fascistic and anti-secular policies of the Macron government.

Police shut down protests, fine students at University of Sydney

By Jack Turner, 8 October 2020

On the pretext of enforcing COVID-19 safety measures, the state government has deployed police to conduct anti-democratic operations on a university campus.

Republican operatives indicted in voter suppression scheme in Michigan

By Jacob Crosse, 7 October 2020

Jack Burkman and Jacob Wohl are alleged to have orchestrated a mass robo-call voter suppression campaign that targeted minority voters in Detroit.

Bangladesh’s Awami League government intensifies anti-democratic attacks on its critics

By Wimal Perera, 6 October 2020

Prime Minister Sheik Hasina has responded to the social crisis exacerbated by COVID-19 by suppressing information on the disease and persecuting journalists.

Australian government silent on calls to intervene in defence of Julian Assange

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 October 2020

The silence of the government and Labor has been a green light for the abuses that Assange has been subjected to over the past month, and the entire US-led campaign to destroy him.

UK plans to detain refugees on prison ships

By Robert Stevens, 6 October 2020

Repressive anti-immigration policies, in Britain and Australia alike, have been built up over decades by all political representatives of the ruling class.

Spanish court bars Catalan regional premier from holding public office

By Alejandro López, 5 October 2020

Regardless of who is in power in Madrid, the ruling class exploits the Catalan issue in order to shift politics further to the right and build a police state.

Johnson’s UK government forwards legislation flouting the rule of law

By Robert Stevens, 3 October 2020

Parliament has become an arena for enshrining naked criminality within the highest echelons of the state. And there is no constituency in ruling circles for opposing this.

New York Times echoes Trump’s attacks on “violent anarchists”

By Jacob Crosse, 3 October 2020

Times editorial board member Farah Stockman attacks supposed anarchists from the standpoint of the privileged African American upper middle class.

UK schools told “anti-capitalist” teaching prohibited

By Julie Hyland, 2 October 2020

The guidance builds on the Prevent strategy, first implemented by the Blair Labour government, which targeted Muslims as potential extremists and required schools to report anyone they deemed “vulnerable to radicalisation.”

Assange’s extradition hearing concludes at London’s Old Bailey, with decision due January 4

By Thomas Scripps, 2 October 2020

In a final affront to due process, Judge Vanessa Baraitser refused to admit into evidence a statement by veteran human rights campaigner and Assange’s instructing solicitor Gareth Peirce.

Watch: Stella Moris, partner of Julian Assange, delivers a statement outside the Old Bailey

2 October 2020

“This case is already chilling press freedom. It is a frontal attack on journalism, on the public’s right to know, and our ability to hold governments, both domestic and foreign, to account.”

Detroit City Council defies public opposition and renews facial recognition contract

By Kevin Reed, 1 October 2020

A majority of the council of nine Democrats voted to approve a two-year, $220,000 upgrade and maintenance contract with South Carolina-based DataWorks Plus.

Evidence of war crimes, torture, surveillance and assassination plots: Assange hearing nears final day

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 1 October 2020

The CIA’s surveillance was targeted against Assange’s communication with his legal representatives, considered “priority targets.”

Judge orders release of recordings in Breonna Taylor grand jury proceedings

By Kevin Reed, 30 September 2020

The Kentucky Attorney General's exoneration of the police officers who shot Taylor is being exposed as part of a cover-up that began when she was killed in her apartment on March 13.

Former US prison warden testifies Assange will be treated like a “terrorist”: The “war on terror” comes home

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 30 September 2020

Baird’s testimony made clear that Assange is now the victim of the CIA-backed torture and rendition which he courageously exposed as WikiLeaks publisher and journalist.

Wave of anti-government protests across Egypt

By Jean Shaoul, 29 September 2020

Protests have been small but testify to the social and economic powder keg over which the El-Sisi regime presides.

Assange faces a fate “worse than death” in US prisons, witnesses tell court

By Thomas Scripps, 29 September 2020

No amount of lame denials can hide the fact that if Assange is put in the clutches of these people, he will be disappeared into the darkest corner of the US prison system.

Killing by Colombian military escalates protests against state violence

By Andrea Lobo, 26 September 2020

The wave of unrest is merging with opposition to the devastation caused by the state’s counter-insurrectionary war, which has killed more than 200,000 civilians.

Renewed mass arrests target Kurdish-nationalist HDP in Turkey

By Ulaş Ateşçi, 26 September 2020

There is growing speculation that the Turkish government is preparing a renewed military offensive against US-backed Kurdish-nationalist forces in Syria.

After the exoneration of Breonna Taylor’s killers: The way forward in the fight against police violence

By Niles Niemuth, 26 September 2020

The ubiquity of police violence in the US, with approximately 1,000 people killed every year, is bound up with the extreme growth of social inequality and class tensions.

Decision on Assange’s extradition set for next year

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 26 September 2020

Accepting the defence’s argument that any dramatic change in the facts surrounding the case before November 13 would have to be taken into account, Baraitser asked, “What impact on your case, say you, will the American elections have?”

Australian government seeks to ban phones in immigration detention

By Martin Scott, 25 September 2020

The proposed new laws will allow warrantless searches and the use of sniffer dogs.

Protests erupt over whitewash of police murder of Breonna Taylor in Kentucky

By Niles Niemuth, 24 September 2020

Neither of the two officers who fired the fusillade of 22 bullets that killed 26-year-old Breonna Taylor in her Louisville, Kentucky home were charged by the grand jury convened by state authorities.

Further revelations about sterilizations and medical malpractice at ICE detention facility in Georgia

By Meenakshi Jagadeesan, 24 September 2020

The latest revelations, including the naming of the doctor who performed them, strengthens the account given in a recent whistleblower complaint, while giving lie to the US government’s dismissals.

Medical evidence shows devastating impact of decade-long state vendetta against Assange

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 24 September 2020

What UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer described in May 2019 as the “public mobbing” and “psychological torture” of Assange has had the desired effect.

Assange’s partner Stella Moris calls for Australian government to intervene in his defence

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 September 2020

“This is not something that the Australian government can just hide its head in the sand and say ‘nothing to do with us.’”

Assange faces “very high risk of suicide,” medical expert tells court

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 23 September 2020

Kopelman’s evidence confirms the warnings made since November 2019 by Doctors for Assange that Assange is suffering “psychological torture” and “could die in prison.”

Explosive evidence from Trump insider

Assange dragged from embassy “on the orders of the president”

By Laura Tiernan and Thomas Scripps, 22 September 2020

Cassandra Fairbanks testified that Arthur Schwartz, a wealthy Republican Party donor and key Trump ally, had provided her with evidence of plans by the Trump administration to impose the death penalty.

Thirteen former national presidents demand an end to the British show-trial of Julian Assange

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 September 2020

The statement demonstrates that the attempt to prosecute Assange for exposing war crimes is widely viewed as an act of imperialist banditry that brands Britain and the US as rogue states.

Tens of thousands of Thai protesters call for a new constitution

By Owen Howell, 21 September 2020

An estimated 50,000 people gathered at Bangkok’s Thammasat University on Saturday night, with some protest leaders urging a general strike.

Colorado police conduct militarized arrests of Party for Socialism and Liberation members

By Jacob Crosse, 19 September 2020

The manner of the arrests and the overwhelming charges against the six protesters are a clear act of intimidation against all those determined to put an end to police violence and racism.

Witnesses recall Collateral Murder attack: “Look at those dead bastards,” shooters said

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 19 September 2020

“The publication of that video and those words was the equivalent of the death of George Floyd and his words ‘I can’t breathe’. They had a profound effect on public opinion in the world.”

Democrats engineer removal of Green Party presidential candidates from Pennsylvania ballot

By Kevin Reed, 18 September 2020

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court kicked the Green Party off the November presidential ballot on Thursday on the basis of undemocratic procedural considerations.

Iraq Body Count co-founder: WikiLeaks exposed mass civilian casualties to a global audience

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 18 September 2020

John Sloboda said that the Iraq War Logs had been brought “to the largest global audience of any single release.” There have been no comparable revelations in the last decade.

Former CIA director Leon Panetta: We are prosecuting Assange to intimidate others

By Oscar Grenfell, 18 September 2020

Panetta’s comments confirmed the mafia-character of the US-pursuit of Assange, its politically-motivated nature and flagrant disregard for international laws.

No charges in Missouri police murder of 25-year-old Hannah Fizer

By Jacob Crosse, 17 September 2020

As another killer cop goes free, protesters against the police killing of Ricardo Munoz in Lancaster, Pennsylvania remain in jail, with bail set at $1 million.

Former Der Spiegel journalist exposes US government lies that Assange “failed to redact” and “put lives at risk”

By Laura Tiernan, 17 September 2020

Testimony from John Goetz established that the only “harm to life” came from US war crimes which Assange and WikiLeaks were trying to expose.

Assange exposed “a very serious pattern of actual war crimes,” Daniel Ellsberg tells extradition hearing

By Thomas Scripps, 17 September 2020

Ellsberg said that “with the Manning and Assange papers, I found my name being mentioned all the time as a very good person … to use me as a foil against these new revelations which were supposedly very different from mine.”

Assange would not have fair US trial, witness tells Old Bailey

By Thomas Scripps, 15 September 2020

A damning picture was painted of the degrading treatment which would characterise Assange’s detention in the US and of the impossible restrictions which would be placed on his legal defence.

Trump, Roger Stone call for violence and repression after Election Day

By Patrick Martin, 14 September 2020

The US president and his oldest political crony called for a police-military crackdown to back his continued rule.

Wisconsin Supreme Court blocks mailing out of absentee ballots pending ruling on Green Party ballot access

By Jacob Crosse, 14 September 2020

The Democratic party has led the charge in purging third-party candidates, including the Greens, from the November ballot.

State University of New York scapegoats students for COVID outbreaks, prepares repressive measures

By Alex Findijs, 12 September 2020

Refusing to take any responsibility for this catastrophe, the SUNY system is punishing groups of students for gathering and laying the ground for further police repression on campuses.

UK Tories use Extinction Rebellion protests to argue for savage political repression

By Richard Tyler, 12 September 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has asked officials to take a “fresh look” at the legal status of Extinction Rebellion and see if it can be classified as an “organised crime group.”