President Joseph Biden says his threats to sanction and punish Russia, and the deployment of more warships and bombers by NATO to eastern Europe, are to defend “American interests” against Moscow’s threats to Ukraine.
What the government calls “American interests” is in fact defense of the predatory interests of the ruling capitalist class. They extend abroad their profit-driven assaults on workers at home, attacks that have forced a series of hard-fought strikes recently. Washington’s appeals to “our” interests — under whatever pretext — are aimed at chaining working people to the ruling class that grows wealthy off our exploitation, and to get us to see working people abroad as “our” enemy.
But in fact, workers have no common interests of any kind, on any question, with the bosses and their imperialist government. Workers worldwide are our allies against capitalist exploitation and oppression.
Everything Washington does is aimed at maximizing the U.S. rulers’ profits and defending their class power. It acts to shore up their domination of the splintering capitalist world order, deal blows to their rivals, seize markets, and put down rebellions by working people. That is why they stockpile nuclear weapons and constantly expand their military might. That is why they inflict punishing sanctions on the peoples of Cuba, Iran, North Korea and Venezuela. It is the reason the U.S. rulers expanded NATO’s presence across Eastern Europe in recent decades, bringing their troops ever closer to Russia’s borders.
Working people need our own foreign policy, independent of the capitalist rulers, just as we fight against them at home — for the jobs, wages and conditions we need. A working-class foreign policy starts from the interests we share in common with working people worldwide, and advancing our class’ fighting capacities, its self-confidence and political independence from the exploiters.
We should stand shoulder to shoulder with working people in Ukraine facing Moscow’s threats. We demand the Russian rulers get out of Crimea, and support the fight to free Crimean Tatar leaders Moscow has framed up and tortured. These struggles aren’t advanced by appealing to Washington for intervention. The more we can stay the hand of the U.S. imperialist rulers around the world the better.
The capitalist rulers will never act to aid working people — at home or abroad. The only road forward is to mobilize workers and farmers and fight to take political power into our own hands — in Ukraine, Russia and the U.S.
Ukrainian workers and farmers have already shown their fighting capacity and power in the 2014 Maidan battles that overturned the Moscow-backed government of Viktor Yanukovych. They just lacked the leadership needed to go all the way.
Workers worldwide can learn from working people and their Marxist leadership in Cuba, who rose up and overthrew the U.S.-backed Fulgencio Batista dictatorship in 1959. They carried out a thoroughgoing socialist revolution, and have extended the hand of solidarity to fighting toilers around the world ever since.