24 March 2018
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
International League of Peoples´ Struggle
The International League of People’s Struggle salutes the National Conference to Defeat Austerity being organized by the Moratorium Now Coalition in Detroit, Michigan. We support the demands of the Moratorium Now coalition for an end to foreclosures and evictions and plant closings, an end to cutbacks, money for the people’s needs not wars around the world, and most important, for canceling the debt to the banks, who are plundering Detroit, Puerto Rico and the world. They have no right to take your homes, your jobs, your schools, your hospitals.
The ILPS is a worldwide alliance of people’s organizations in 45 countries-workers, peasants, fisherfolk, urban poor, students, Indigenous people, women,, LGBT people-who are united to resist imperialism.
Imperialism is not just about war and invading and bombing countries, as the US military machine has done in Iraq, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Vietnam, Korea and so my other countries around the world. It is not just about the CIA overthrowing democratic governments, as it has done in so many countries, and is now trying to do in Venezuela.
Imperialism is monopoly capitalism, it is the rule of finance capital, the rule of the banks and the bankers. It is their drive for profits and more profits and super profits, their need for ever-greater return on their invested capital that drives the United States from war to war, to lay waste to country after country, to impose brutal dictatorships around the world.
The same drive for profit has driven these same imperialist banks to wage economic war against the people of Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland and Newark and many other once booming industrial centers in the United States, now impoverished.
They have foreclosed on homes and destroyed communities. They have destroyed schools and hospitals and mass transit and libraries to squeeze money for debt payments and maintain the value of their loans. In Detroit they have imposed direct bankers’ rule. And on top of that, they loot the public treasury to feed the Pentagon and pay for the bankers’ wars.
Nowhere is the cruelty of the bankers and their system revealed more clearly than in the colonized nation of Puerto Rico. Six months after the devastation of Hurricane Maria, thousands have died needlessly and hundreds of thousands remain without power. But the bankers demand their pound of flesh on the island’s $70 billion odious debt and salivate on the profits to be made by gentrifying the island.
The workers of Puerto Rico have given too much to the bankers. Puerto Rico does not need its debt restructured, it needs to be canceled. Puerto Rico needs reparations from the United States, and the Puerto Rican people have the right to determine their own destiny free from the bankers’ government in Washington. The same is true of Detroit and all the other US cities bound by debt payment.
When the people of the Philippines resist the Duterte dictatorship, they are also fighting the Wall Street bankers who stand behind it. When the people of Venezuela and all of Latin America resist the United States, it is the rule of the bankers they are resisting. When the people of Southern Africa fight the legacy of apartheid, they are fighting the Wall Street banks. When the people of Palestine and Syria and Iraq and Iran resist the tracks of the US and Israel, they are fighting the bankers and the oil companies they control. The people of Korea are also resisting slavery to Wall Street banks.
The fact that economic crisis pushes the imperialist ruling class of this toward war makes solidarity between our struggles more important than ever.
We wish you success in planning fight back strategy for the people’s struggle in Detroit and across the United States. your fight is our fight. Together we can defeat the banks and build a society for people not profit, for workers not bankers. Long live international solidarity. Workers and oppressed people of all countries unite.