The Militant(logo) 
    Vol.63/No.4           February 1, 1999 
U.S., NATO Hands Off Yugoslavia Now!  
Working people should condemn U.S. war threats against Yugoslavia and campaign to tell the truth about the imperialists' aims in the Balkans. Washington sheds crocodile tears over the slaughter of Albanians in Kosova, as it moves step by step toward an eventual military onslaught against all the peoples of Yugoslavia.

The U.S. rulers couldn't care less about the national rights of Albanians there. Their howls about "crimes against humanity" are cover for their plans to unleash massive airstrikes, or whatever other force they think can serve their interests, in the Balkans. These are the same imperialists responsible for the devastation of the Iraqi people, who slaughtered more than 150,000 in the 1991 Gulf war and are imposing sanctions today that are responsible for 5,000 deaths each month.

Washington attempts to portray itself as the "peacekeeping force" in Kosova much the same way it did in Bosnia, where it established itself as the dominant power in Europe on the blood and bones of the Yugoslav people. As the rival national capitalist classes of Europe, wrapped in the United Nations flag, wore themselves out in futile attempts to displace one another as the "winner" there, Washington unfurled its NATO banner in 1994 and decisively moved in. The aim was never to halt "ethnic cleansing" or impose "democracy," but to establish U.S. supremacy in Europe and create conditions that will one day facilitate the restoration of capitalist social relations throughout the Yugoslav workers state.

As the fighting unfolded in Kosova, the U.S. wealthy class held back from intervention, hoping the regime of chauvinist Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic could do its dirty work and demolish the independence fighters in Kosova. Instead the Albanian people have grown even more determined to resist national oppression - creating a bigger obstacle for the warmongers in Washington.

Clinton's war moves in the Balkans, as in the Middle East, are part of the imperialist military encirclement of the Russian workers state. The eastward expansion of the NATO military alliance and its occupation force in Bosnia are part of the U.S. rulers' preparations for their eventual military confrontation with workers and peasants in Russia, Yugoslavia, and other workers states. They aim to wipe out the remnants of the social conquests that abolished the system of private profit, including centralized economic planning and state monopoly of foreign trade, and crush the struggles and aspirations of working people there. This is the only road for the wealthy class to restore capitalist rule and reimpose its dog-eat-dog system of wage slavery on these toilers.

The fight for self-determination in Kosova and the battle by 10,000 miners in Romania against layoffs confirm that it was the U.S. rulers who lost the Cold War. They have not been able to establish conditions for stable capitalist property relations in any place where it has been overturned. And they will have to take on and try to defeat a working class that will begin to link its struggles with the resistance of workers and farmers around the world.

The Marxist magazine New International no. 11, featuring "U.S. Imperialism has Lost the Cold War" and the Pathfinder book The Truth about Yugoslavia: Why Working People Should Oppose Intervention explain why U.S. imperialism is sinking its tentacles deeper into the powder kegs of the Balkans and elsewhere. These books point to coming explosions of class struggle that will result from the intensifying competition and interimperialist conflicts that will shake the foundations of the world capitalist system. Class-conscious fighters can use these political weapons to wage a steady campaign among fellow workers and farmers against imperialism and its wars.

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