Socialist Workers Party statement

The working class needs to carry out its own foreign policy

July 18, 2022

The following statement was released July 6 by Chris Hoeppner, Socialist Workers Party candidate for U.S. Congress from Pennsylvania.

 The working class needs its own foreign policy — in sharp counterposition to that of the profit-driven imperialist U.S. rulers — for the same reason we need to act independently of the bosses as we fight for jobs, better wages and working conditions at home. It’s the road to advancing our self-confidence, class consciousness and political independence from the capitalists who exploit us. It starts from the interests workers share in common worldwide and the need for international working-class solidarity.

Locked-out Rolls-Royce workers in Montreal face attacks on pensions, wages and schedules that damage our families, similar to the assaults on workers here and around the world. Like other struggles by workers and farmers, the fight at Rolls-Royce deserves the support of our unions.

Farmers in the Netherlands are protesting reactionary “climate change” restrictions that will force many to cull herds and quit farming. The simple fact is there is not enough food in the world today, not too much, especially with Moscow’s war and blockade of Ukraine’s grain harvest. In the U.S. and worldwide farmers confront ruinous price hikes on fuel and fertilizer. Our unions should back their struggles and call on governments to guarantee farmers’ costs of production. The Socialist Workers Party calls for nationalization of the land so it can be turned over to those who live and work on it and all debts can be abolished.

Crucial to a working-class foreign policy is unconditional support for the Ukrainian peoples’ fight for independence. Russian President Vladimir Putin claims Ukraine has no right to exist. His war of destruction exacts a deadly cost on the people of Ukraine, as well as the Russian workers he uses as cannon fodder. Workers worldwide should demand the immediate withdrawal of Moscow’s forces from all of Ukraine, including Luhansk, Donetsk and Crimea. Forging unity among working people both inside and beyond the U.S. borders cannot be achieved without an unbending struggle against all national oppression, including Putin’s attempts to resurrect the czarist prison house of nations.

The SWP calls for an end to Washington’s sanctions against Russia, which, regardless of who they are aimed at, inevitably fall hardest on workers there. This undercuts advancing the unity among working people in Ukraine and Russia that’s needed to defeat Moscow’s war.

Everywhere Washington intervenes it does so to defend the interests of the U.S. capitalist rulers. As they have shown in countless wars, from Vietnam, to Korea, Iraq and elsewhere, they will not hesitate to use the most barbaric violence — including nuclear weapons as they did in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Nor will the world’s final empire willingly relinquish its power. Power is never given away, it is taken.

The only force that can accomplish this mighty transformation is the U.S. working class. This is where working-class foreign and domestic interests come together — in the need to forge our own political party capable of ending the dog-eat-dog rule of capital and taking political power into our own hands. This will open the door to join with workers and farmers worldwide to chart a course forward together.