Spectre of Communism Podcast

Fiona Lali recently shot to prominence, and stunned former British Home Secretary Suella Braverman, when she publicly branded Suella a “war monger” and a “liar” for her support for the genocide in Gaza. Fiona’s words chimed with millions of workers and youth who have seen this clip, and who are sick and tired of this rotten imperialist system, of the hypocrites who run it, and of the commentators, media and ‘opposition’ that do nothing to challenge it.

As the horrors of Israel’s war on Gaza continue to escalate, a wave of student protests has erupted in solidarity with the Palestinians: drawing comparisons with the anti-Vietnam War movement. Starting in the USA, the encampments quickly spread internationally, meeting with press slander and brutal police repression. In this special episode, we speak with four student communists from Canada, the UK, Austria and the USA, who have been active in encampments at various universities, to hear about their experiences of this inspiring struggle.

In June, the International Marxist Tendency will take the monumental step of founding a new Revolutionary Communist International (RCI), to provide communist workers and youth around the world with a bold rallying point in the struggle to overthrow capitalism. In doing so, the RCI will build on the immense revolutionary legacy left behind by the Third (Communist) International, founded by Lenin and the Bolsheviks as the world party of revolution. Register now for the founding of the RCI!

Advances in artificial intelligence continue to make headlines, as AI has begun to play a role in everything from art and journalism to conspiracy theories and unemployment. While AI is clearly here to stay, it is equally clear that the capitalist class has no interest in using it to its fullest. Once again, capitalism’s brutal inefficiency and systematic misuse of such technology is profound evidence of the need for communism and economic planning.

Communism is often presented by its enemies as being at best uninterested in art and culture, and at worst openly hostile to anything but the crudest propaganda. This is completely at odds with the approach of Lenin and the Bolsheviks, and genuine communists today. The Russian Revolution ushered in an explosion of artistic creativity, which for the first time was unshackled from the constraints of class society. This is the legacy that communists must defend.

Communists are often slandered by our enemies as wanting to violently suppress and ‘ban’ religion. But this crude caricature bears no resemblance to a real Marxist approach. In this week's episode we look at the genuine Marxist attitude towards religion.

Yesterday, the International Marxist Tendency proudly published the Manifesto of the Revolutionary Communist International: a call to arms for all communists who want to put an end to the rotten capitalist system once and for all. If you agree with our analysis, register now for the founding conference of the RCI in June, and help us build an organisation in the traditions of Leninism and Bolshevism. This episode of Spectre of Communism podcast welcomes Alan Woods, who was instrumental in drafting the document, to introduce the

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On 25 February, 25-year-old US airforce serviceman, Aaron Bushnell, took his own life by self-immolation outside the Israeli embassy in Washington, in protest at US imperialism’s support for the crimes being carried out by the IDF. His last words, livestreamed to the world, were: “Free Palestine!” Just days later, IDF soldiers murdered over 100 civilians at an aid convoy in Gaza, embodying the horror and injustice that inspired Bushnell’s act.

Few people in history are more slandered than Vladimir Lenin. From school textbooks to the capitalist press, the ruling class are desperate to blacken Lenin’s name wherever they get the opportunity. But how should communists respond?

We are often told that capitalism is the most efficient economic system; that markets are rational tools for distribution; and that only under capitalism can people live free and fair lives. However, while capitalism might enrich a parasitic handful, it is fundamentally a system of oppression and exploitation for the vast majority of humanity. But what actually is this system? How does it work, and not work? How do we bring it down; and what can we replace it with?

This week’s special episode was recorded during the recent meeting of the global leadership of the International Marxist Tendency in Italy. We hear reports from the front lines of the class struggle from five leading comrades involved in building revolutionary communist organisations in: South Africa, Argentina, Pakistan, France and the United States.

The Cuban Revolution is rightly considered an inspiration by communists worldwide. This tremendous movement threw off the chains of capitalism and US imperialism, opening the way for incredible social, economic and technological advances in what had previously been a brutally oppressed society. Today, however, the Cuban Revolution faces a number of perils.

A textbook argument against communism is that, although it may sound nice, it is fundamentally “against human nature”. Many communists will be sick and tired of hearing this accusation, but what actually is ‘human nature’? How should communists respond to this claim?

With capitalism in its deepest-ever crisis, it is more important than ever for communists to defend the immortal achievements of one of the greatest revolutionaries the world has ever seen. For this reason, 2024’s first episode of Spectre of Communism looks at the real life and ideas of Lenin.

Israel’s ongoing war on Gaza is undoubtedly the defining political event of 2023. The entire political establishment has lined up behind Israel, justifying a brutal military campaign of collective punishment against the Palestinians (which has killed around 20,000 civilians so far) as “self defence.” While liberals, reformists and even some self-proclaimed “communists” parrot the rhetoric of the bourgeoisie, or descend into utopian moralising, genuine communists must boldly proclaim a revolutionary solution for the liberation of Palestine.

It’s the festive season, and the Spectre of Communism podcast welcomed Alan Woods (marxist.com editor-in-chief) onto a special live episode to discuss the origins of Christianity from a Marxist perspective. This is a fascinating story of revolution and counter-revolution in the ancient world. The recording is now available on all platforms!

It’s the festive season, and the Spectre of Communism podcast is welcoming Alan Woods (marxist.com editor-in-chief) onto a special live episode to discuss the origins of Christianity from a Marxist perspective. This is a fascinating story of revolution and counter-revolution in the ancient world. We will broadcast the episode tomorrow (12 December) at 7pm British time via our YouTube channel.

Ridley Scott’s recent biopic Napoleonhas evoked much criticism for its shallow narrative and plethora of historical inaccuracies. But who was the real Napoleon Bonaparte? How did a young Corsican from a relatively modest background become the strongman behind an empire that would dominate Europe?

Many people think of the state as a huge collection of bureaucratic offices and institutions that have little to do with our daily lives. Some have illusions in the state as a neutral arbiter over society, operating on the basis of universal principles of ‘democracy’ and ‘rule of law’. But for countless workers and youths on the receiving end of police violence, legal victimisation or military oppression, the real nature of the capitalist state is clear.

The Chinese Communist Party and its defenders claim that China is building a successful socialist society, and is at the forefront of an anti-imperialist struggle against the West. But is China communist? Does the legacy of the Chinese Revolution live on today in the CCP?