25, 50, and 75 years ago

January 2, 2023

January 12, 1998

BOSTON — A meeting here Dec. 10 kicked off a year of activity in solidarity with the struggle of the Puerto Rican people. Puerto Rico is a U.S. colony in the Caribbean, one of the last official colonial possessions of any of the imperialist powers.

Rafael Cancel Miranda, a Puerto Rican Nationalist hero and independence fighter, described the role of U.S. imperialism. When he was six years old in 1937, he said, U.S. troops opened fire on a demonstration, killing 21 people and wounding some 200. His parents participated in the action and returned home covered with blood. When he was an 18-year-old high school student, he was imprisoned in Florida for two years for refusing to submit to the draft.

The U.S. government “wanted me to fight in the Korean War. I had never even seen a Korean before. Why would I go and kill them for the same government that gunned down my people?”

January 12, 1973

Jan. 2 — Faced with an unprecedented world outcry against U.S. war policies in Southeast Asia and the threat of a new upsurge of protest in the United States, President Nixon suspended at least temporarily the genocidal bombing of Hanoi and Haiphong begun Dec. 18.

This time there were few believers of the administration line that only military installations are being targeted. “Bach Mai, a 900-bed hospital where 300 people were undergoing treatment at the outset of the resumed raids on the city, was not only ‘damaged,’ but literally razed by several large bombs,” said Agence France-Presse.

Nixon’s goal remains to reimpose the capitalist regime of Saigon on the South Vietnamese people. The events of the last two weeks underscore how meaningless any “peace” in Southeast Asia will be that does not include the total withdrawal of the U. S. military armada.

January 5, 1948

Henry Wallace´s announcement that he will run as a third party candidate for president has exploded like a bombshell on the political arena. It splits the Democratic Party and deals the Truman candidacy a blow from which it may not recover.

Wallace will exploit the deep-going mass discontent with postwar conditions. But the Wallace movement is not a Labor Party. Such a party must be an expression of the organized working class, that is, of the trade union movement, and responsible to it. Regardless of the support it may pick up from individual workers, it does not have the character of a Labor party movement. It is a third capitalist party.

Now is the time for labor to take its rightful place on the political field by launching an independent Labor Party and by running its own candidates for national, state and local office!