[Each day brings news of the every-sharpening contention between imperialist powers, who have long cooperated but are now more-ready to seize advantage at the expense of each other, and place burdens of more aggressive exploitation and more oppressive conditions on working people inside the imperialist countries (from US/EU to Chinese/Russian and others scrambling to expand their profits at each others expense). One day, it is the seizure of energy resources, then it is trade routes and shipping, then monetary dominance, then credit dominance and wars, then military eyeball face-offs and surrogate/proxy hotspots, then it is digital battles and cyber wars. There is no stopping this contention, nor any way for the people to see it but to raise the people’s struggles against all imperialism and all reaction. Between these imperialists, working people have no horse in this race. — Frontlines ed.]
STRATEGIC rivalry between America and China takes many forms. Rarely does a clear winner emerge. An exception, however, is the tussle over China’s efforts to found a new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). China has won, gaining the support of American allies not just in Asia but in Europe, and leaving America looking churlish and ineffectual. This month first Britain and then France, Germany and Italy said they hoped to join the bank as founding shareholders. China said other European countries such as Luxembourg and Switzerland are thinking of joining the queue.
Yet America has been sceptical about the AIIB. Its officials claim they have not “lobbied against” it, but merely stressed how important it is that it abide by international standards of transparency, creditworthiness, environmental sustainability, and so on.
[This article, from The Economist magazine in the UK, describes a ruthless, state by state restriction of access to abortion services in the US, including onerous regulations that close abortion clinics completely. Though the article refers to some courts that have struck down some of the most extreme regulations, it makes no mention of the often threatened and physically attacked clinic workers in these states who are fighting for women to have the right to control and exercise their reproductive options without restriction. — Frontlines ed.]
And then there was one … Having failed to ban abortion, [anti-women’s rights] activists are trying to regulate it out of existence
September 8th 2012 | JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI
[MISSISSIPPI’S sole remaining abortion clinic is a small single-storey sandstone building on a street corner in the state’s capital. The Jackson Women’s Health Organisation (above) appears unremarkable, until you notice the reflective glass in all the doors and windows, the multiple security cameras and the thick black plastic draped over the wrought-iron fence to shield clients from protesters, who have kept vigil daily for decades.]
Their vigil may soon end. On July 1st a law went into effect requiring abortionists who work in Mississippi to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. Privileges can be denied for any reason, and so far no Jackson hospital has granted them to any of the clinic’s doctors. Supporters claim that the law is a simple health-and-safety measure, but occasionally the masks slip. After the law passed, Bubba Carpenter, a state representative, boasted: “We stopped abortion in the state of Mississippi.” Phil Bryant, the governor, said as he signed the law: “If it closes that clinic, so be it.” Continue reading →