8th October 2022 by https://wrp.org.uk/
THE working class of the world faces a revolutionary autumn and winter, as the major imperialist powers step up their war in the Ukraine against Russia, and create the conditions where their own working classes at home go hungry and are unable to pay their heating bills or feed their families.
The OPEC cartel of oil-producing countries led by Saudi Arabia which includes Russia, has already rebelled against the US diktat, and agreed to steep cuts in oil production – defying a behind-the-scenes diplomatic push by the Biden administration to avert cuts that will further push up global gasoline prices and may well lead to millions of people demanding to ‘stop the imperialist war’ and that their enemy is at home.
In the OPEC meeting on Wednesday in Vienna, the OPEC+ group that comprises most of the world’s top oil exporters agreed to cut production on paper, by 2 million barrels per day, the biggest slash in production since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.
Two of Washington’s most important Middle Eastern partners, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, sided with other major oil states, including Russia, Iran and Venezuela in making the decision to slash oil production.
OPEC defied a behind-the-scenes diplomatic push by the Biden administration to avert cuts that will push up global gasoline prices and lead to demands and then actions to ‘stop the war’ against Russia.
This has driven the US ruling class into a frenzy with President Biden declaring, ‘We have not faced the prospect of Armageddon since Kennedy and the Cuban Missile crisis.’
He made his remarks at the same time as Ukraine’s President Zelensky said that the US-led NATO alliance should launch first preventive strikes against Russia, i.e. begin a nuclear war!
The Kremlin has slammed Zelensky’s remarks, saying such statements are nothing more than an appeal to start yet another world war, with Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warning of ‘unpredictable, monstrous consequences’.
France’s President Macron on Thursday pledged that European countries would send more military hardware to the Ukraine, to help Kiev counter Russia.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Blinken, has expressed pleasure over the sabotage of Russia’s Nord Stream gas pipelines, hailing it as a tremendous opportunity to repel European Union states from using Russian energy resources.
Workers in the UK, the US and the EU now face the prospect of paying the full bill for the war on Russia, with a massive inflation and going cold and hungry and also jobless throughout the winter as the economy crashes.
Already in the UK the government is imposing extreme austerity on the working class. Freezing the £50,000 threshold at which child benefit begins to be withdrawn, has led to 26% of families with children (2 million) now losing some or all of their child benefit, the Institute of Fiscal Studies is warning.
In addition, the frozen benefit cap means the number of families with capped benefits could hit around a quarter of a million in 2025-26 – double the current figure, and three-and-a-half times as many as when the cap was last actively reformed in 2016.
PM Liz Truss has refused to rule out blackouts this winter, after the National Grid warned parts of the UK could be without power for hours at a time under its ‘worst case’ scenario.
The National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) published three possible scenarios on Thursday, the worst of which warned of planned three-hour outages for households and businesses to ensure the grid does not collapse.
The Tory government has opened a new licensing round for companies to explore for oil and gas in the North Sea. Nearly 900 locations are being offered for exploration, with as many as 100 licences set to be awarded. This scramble, a new ‘Gold Rush’, is to provide ‘energy security’ but will lead to disasters of all kinds.
The capitalist crisis is deepening by the minute. In a warning of what is to come, Royal Mail had to rush to inject millions into its pension scheme to prevent a massive crash. This ‘crash’ was just a tremor of what is ahead.
The only way out is to build the WRP rapidly to organise the British socialist revolution. We must all lobby the TUC Congress on October 18th, to demand that it immediately calls a general strike to bring down the Tories and bring in a workers’ government and socialism!