25, 50, and 75 years ago

July 11, 2022

July 14, 1997

STOCKHOLM — The June European Union summit highlighted the competing interests and divisions among the imperialist governments in Europe. The heads of state gathered failed to reach an agreement on voting procedures that was supposed to pave the way for the enlargement of the EU into Eastern and Central Europe.

At least ten governments have applied for membership, ranging from Estonia in the north to Cyprus in the south. For London, Stockholm, Helsinki and Washington, this enlargement is a high-priority question that intersects with the expansion of NATO.

The governments of Sweden and Finland advocate having the European Union guarantee the military defense of Baltic states that are members of the EU if threatened by Moscow. This course has been backed by Washington and by British Prime Minister Anthony Blair.

July 14, 1972

“Most Americans thought it horrifying when Gen. Curtis LeMay spoke in 1965 of bombing the North Vietnamese ‘back into the Stone Age,’” Anthony Lewis wrote in the New York Times July 3. “But something very like that is happening right now.”

U.S. bombs are pouring on the cities, villages and towns of North Vietnam, industrial centers, and even the vital dikes of the Red River delta. Meanwhile it has been revealed that the Pentagon has been consistently using an undisclosed chemical to produce acidic rain to destroy mechanical equipment.

A Senate subcommittee estimates that the total of refugees since 1965 approaches nearly 8 million men, women and children, nearly one-half of South Vietnam’s population. “Our estimates put the number of civilian casualties during April and May at nearly 80,000 — including as many as 25,000 deaths.”

July 14, 1947

As greedy landlords across the U.S. pressed their organized drive to intimidate tenants into signing “voluntary” leases for 15% rent boosts, mass resistance of tenants, largely spontaneous, began to erect a road block in the path of the rent gougers.

In most areas, tenant groups and labor organizations are demanding state and local laws to protect tenants. These include rent-freeze laws without loopholes, moratoriums on evictions and heavy penalties on landlords who try to coerce tenants into paying higher rents in violation of existing laws.

The chief problem facing tenants is to turn their mainly spontaneous and disorganized resistance into organized form. Neighborhood groups must be welded into community-wide bodies and these tenant leagues must join with the unions, Negro and veterans groups to carry out a mass action program.