25, 50 and 75 Years Ago

February 8, 2021

February 12, 1996

Raúl  Castro: The first literacy brigade carried out in the Second Front was a mass campaign involving both Rebel Army fighters and local men and women who until then had lived in complete ignorance.

The rebel leaders played a vitally important role, not just in improving the education of the fighters and peasantry but also in helping them understand more clearly why we were fighting and the urgent need for deep-going political, economic, and social changes.

Many teachers participated in military operations after school. The image of the future conveyed by our fighting teachers, with a rifle in one hand and textbooks in the other, proved highly encouraging for our peasants. This large-scale political and social work showed very graphically what the triumph of the revolution would signify.

February 12, 1971

LOS ANGELES — A Chicano demonstration and rally of over 10,000 here Jan. 31 was followed by brutal police attacks on the Chicano community. It was a legal, orderly protest against the policies of the government — in this case the policy of systematic police brutality practiced upon the barrio to stop independent organization and mobilization.

The ruling powers of Los Angeles made it clear that they do not want the Chicano community to exercise its right to assemble. By the end of the day, Gustav Montag, 24, an East Los Angeles resident, was dead and many more were injured victims of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department.

The ruling class is using its police to attempt to beat Chicanos into submission. This attack on the right to organize, demonstrate, march, and rally must be exposed and vigorously fought by all.

February 9, 1946

The gigantic strike struggles being waged by America’s industrial workers have demonstrated that the organized labor movement is capable of rallying the overwhelming portion of the population behind it and of providing leadership to every oppressed layer of the people.

The struggle has also disclosed dangerous weaknesses and shortcomings. In every instance where the struggle has had to be waged on the political plane, the unions have been helpless.

A new and different kind of labor leadership is required if the workers are to triumph in the stormy conflicts that lie ahead. With such a leadership and program, and with their own party, the workers will then have the major requisites for success in the struggle for real labor political power against the rule of Big Business and its Democratic and Republican machines.