PCdoB - Brazil: Struggle for life and peace in times of pandemic
The victims are essentially the workers and nations impoverished by austerity and neocolonial policies and the restriction of democratic freedoms.
The emergency created by such an aggressive new coronavirus will affect a considerable portion of the world population and may precipitate the collapse of multiple economic and social sectors. The psycosocial impact on people is huge. We must dedicate efforts to put life first, tending to health and wellbeing for the various population strata, and strengthen the struggle against the persisting problems affronting humanity.
All over the world, the unsustainability of the system of exploitation and oppression that we live with is evident, not only due to the neoliberal model of (lack of) attention to healthcare and other services essential to life, which are geared towards private profit, but also evident in the intensification of threats against various peoples through the policies of the United States and its allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
The imperialist powers intensify their aggressive policies to keep the world under their hegemony. In a public health crisis, the seriousness of these policies becomes evident in a vicious way. It shows the wars engulfing millions of people, in conflicts involving countries of all continents.
It shows the perniciousness of having huge populations of refugees all over the world, trapped by xenophobia, persecution, ill treatment and neglect. There are almost 71 million people forcibly displaced worldwide, according to data from the office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR): 26 million registered refugees —including 5.5 million Palestinians and their descendants who, since 1948, seek refuge from the massacres perpetrated by the Zionist regime and are prevented from returning home; 41 million internally displaced people; and 3.5 million asylum seekers. There are also 3.9 stateless people, with no recognized nationality, according to the UNHCR. All these people, in conditions of normalcy, already face extreme vulnerability, which is intensified in the current world emergency; they will bear the unacceptable cost if there is lack of human solidarity, empathy and aid cooperation for healthcare and survival.
Among the imperialist powers’ aggressive policies are those adopted by the United States against Iran, Venezuela, Cuba and Syria, for instance.
Reinforcing smothering sanctions against Iran —which is among the countries most affected by the spread of COVID-19 and faces the shortage of medical equipment and supplies— is criminal and must be internationally contested. Syria —which faces almost a decade of aggression expressed in the support for putschist and terrorist groups and the US and its regional allies’ military offensives— enters this period devastated, but resistant. Russia, which stands firm against the war maneuvers and rhetoric, amongst other belligerent threats from the United Nations and NATO, is also targeted by US and EU sanctions, but adopts exemplary steps to contain the epidemic in the country and sends aid even to forefront allies of US imperialism, such as Italy. Even to the very United States Russia is sending medical assistance.
In Latin America, the economic, media and political offensive against Venezuela continues, including the recent decision of the US Attorney General of charging president Nicolás Maduro and other Venezuelan authorities with narco-terrorism, corruption, drug trafficking and more, aiming to forcibly overthrow a legitimate government of a sovereign country. Blackmail is the name of the US State Department’s “transition framework”, which demands the formation of an interim government that includes the putschist Juan Guaidó as a condition for Venezuela to be able to apply for loans and for the relief of the criminal sanctions in place. Also maintained and crueler is the six-decade blockade on Cuba which, resistant, has shown impressive capability of offering international solidarity and cooperation at times and places where they are most urgent, even considering all the internal difficulties caused by the blockade.
China, which ascends at a fast pace as a world power and is a target of the North-American establishment’s fury, faces with pride the US diplomatic and commercial offensives and belligerent threats and, at this moment, also engages in impressive economic and humanitarian efforts to contain the epidemic and cooperate with the most affected nations, sending medical equipment and teams to many countries.
To all those countries and peoples, we express our support in solidarity.
Still ongoing are the devasting conflicts, wars and aggressions in places such as Yemen, Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Cameroon, Sahel, Sudan, and the Central African Republic.
Appeals such as that of the UN Secretary General for a “global cease-fire”, or that of people’s organizations for transformations that allow us to tear down walls towards another future my sound idealist, but are the only and sensible ways forward at this moment, if priority is in protecting people and mitigating the impacts of the pandemic in the world economy.
It is evidently urgent to make a global call, a cry for cooperation and solidarity, for the protection of life and for effective, humanitarian, communitarian steps that allow us, while facing the current situation, to build foundations for not only a return to “normalcy”, but for a leap towards one that is not the normalcy of neoliberal capitalism, which has already shown to be a failure.
When something must imperatively happen, but seems momentarily impossible, we have tragedy. We cannot accept it. Our so desired return to a new normality may take time but must be transformative. And it shall, if while facing the pandemic and the effects that we already experience, we unite all those who put life first and strengthen the struggle for world Peace, aiming for a common destiny to human society made of solidarity, freedom, national self-determination and progress for all nations and peoples of the world.
Communist Party of Brazil
Brasilia – April 2, 2020