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Commentary :: War and Militarism
No to Racism and War!
23 Nov 2015
We must give good and equal chances to youth in education and training instead of hate campaigns and general suspicion. The Islamic State would not exist without the western wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and now in Syria. Whoever wants to fight IS must battle against the imperialist wars.

Statement of Attac France

[This statement published on 11/14/2015 is translated from the German on the Internet,]

After the massacres of Paris, the members and supporters of Attac in accord with French society feel horror and shock over the blind and murderous hatred.

Attac declares its total solidarity with the victims and their relatives. The persons murdered on Friday evening only wanted sociability, friendliness, art and a free life. These killers wanted to destroy all these things in the name of a fanatical understanding of religion.

Amid all our emotion and sorrow, we refuse to give in to the terror. We reject a society of fear, stigmatization and the search for scapegoats. We confirm our resolution to move freely, to work, commune, meet and struggle.

“France is at war,” we are told. But that is not our war. After the American disaster in Iraq and Afghanistan, the current French interventions in Iraq, Libya, Syria, Mali, Tschad, Niger and the Central African Republic help destabilize these regions and trigger the exodus of refugees and migrants who crash against the fortress Europe and whose bodies founder on our coasts. Inequalities and predatory attacks tear societies apart and set them against one another.

Al Quaeda or Dschihad draw their cruel inhuman strength from these injustices. This war does not lead to any peace because there is no peace without justice. To end this war, our societies must end their greed for power, weapons, oil, uranium and rare metals.

The “banality of evil” lies beyond the social and economic causes that feed despair and insane acts. Humanity is never excluded from a relapse into barbarism when some decide to ignore respecting people as people.

On our side, we must fight against imperialism more than ever, against the "humanitarian” imperialism, against the destructive productivism and for societies where moderation, free4dom and equality rule.

In advance, we reject all restrictions on the right of demonstration and the right to fight against this decaying world and for alternatives that bring together the peoples of the South and North.

From November 29 to December 12, we will show with our mobilizations in Paris that another world is possible, necessary and urgent.


By Yaak Pabst for

[This article published on November 16, 2015 is translated from the German on the Internet,]

The “War on Terror” produces terror. Air bombardments and closing the borders are the wrong answer. A comment by marx21.

The brutal acts of the perpetrators in Paris were ruthless and inhuman expression of barbaric violence. Our deep sympathy goes ou8t to the many victims and their families and friends. The terrorist attacks claimed by the “Islamic State” (IS) cannot be justified by anything. They will only lead to further escalation of violence and counter-violence. The political calculation of IS includes exposing Muslims in Europe to even greater hostilities.


The great danger exists that racists and Nazis will try to put refugees and Muslims under general suspicion. So the Bavarian finance minister Markus Soeder used the attacks as a pretext “to demand consequences for the refugee policy.” CDS head Seehofer plays the same tune in calling for stronger border controls. When Soeder and Seehofer urge closing the borders in reaction to the Paris attacks, they provide arguments for open racist attacks on refugees by Pegida, AfD and NPD. The identification of the first attackers of Paris points out the assassins grew up in Europe. Several came from the slums of Paris and Brussels suburbs. Exclusion and discrimination of Muslim youths leads to many seeing no perspectives for themselves any more. Nearly all of them reject the assassinations. But some are completely estranged from the society surrounding them and are losing all support.


Fascists and racists use the attacks to sow hatred. They already exploited the January attacks against “Charlie Hebdo” to set fire to dozens of mosques in France and Germany. Since January, attacks were perpetrated on around 700 refugee quarters in Germany. Politicians of the governing parties have hardly reacted to the hate-wave from the rightwing. A cry of outrage would be appropriate. We must give good and equal chances to youth for education and training instead of hate campaigns and general suspicion toward Islam. That would harm IS and lessen its chances of finding followers among young Muslims.

Closing borders is the wrong answer. Not one of the assassins of IS within Europe would have been prevented by closed borders or rejection of refugees. Rather the new debate aroused by Seehofer, Schauble and others leads to a climate of ill-will and hatred. Therefore the left must now urge welcoming refugees – open the borders instead of allowing people to drown in the Mediterranean.


French Prime Minister Hollande declared war against the Islamic State right after the attacks. The French air force dropped 20 bombs on the Syrian city Rakka in one night in a first reaction.

In the media, the impression was given that only terrorists would be struck. However these attacks unavoidably hit innocent civilians like the attacks in Paris. The long tradition of French colonialism and imperialism is manifest when Hollande thinks he has the right to bomb Arab cities and villages. These actions will drive new followers to IS.


The Islamic State would not exist without the western wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and now in Syria. The destruction of Iraq by the 2003 US invasion and the establishment of a system along religious-ethnic lines led to the war between Sunnis and Shiites in Iraq. IS arose because the Shiite government under Prime Minister Maliki installed by the US stole the riches of the country and systematically excludes and persecutes the Sunnis. The regime in Baghdad can only survive today thanks to religious-sectarian Shiite militias that commit the same crimes as IS. More bombs on “IS posts” and the military buildup of the government in Baghdad – even with weapon-exports from Germany – will not solve the conflict. Rather they help intensify the conflict between Sunnis and Shiites.


This conflict can only be solved by building a democratic movement from below that brings people together irrespective of their faith as workers, builders, artisans and businesspersons. In the summer of 2015, hundreds of thousands demonstrated on the streets of Basra and Baghdad against the corruption of the Baghdad government. This shows there are political forces among all the ethnic groups that resist the logic of ethnic and religious hatred.


For more than 15 years, the US in alliance with France and Germany has waged a so-called “war on terror” that started in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Iraq and Syria, Palestine and Libya. This war was and is waged also in Mali, Yemen and Somalia. Russia has also bombed in Syria for two months. These wars have taken the lives of more than a million persons and destroyed whole societies. Oil, profits and geo-strategic power-politics are involved in these wars, not “western” values like democracy or women’s rights. After the attacks on Charlie Hebdo, the spokesperson of the DIE LINKE (The Left Party fraction) Sahra Wagenknecht wrote that the obliteration of “innocent Arab families by drones steered by the West is a detestable crime like the terrorist attacks in Paris.” This is also true today.

A few weeks ago a targeted US air attack on an Afghanistan hospital killed at least 30 patients and doctors. That was nothing but imperialist terror that gives new breeding ground for the terror of IS. Whoever wants to fight IS must battle against the imperialist wars. War and terror are two sides of the same coin. This vicious circle must be broken. Neither weapon exports, military training missions nor support of air strikes against cities and villages are a contribution for peace. Germany must get out of the US-waged “war on terror” which itself is nothing but terror.
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