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Socialism for the 21st century

By Elizabeth Schulte | May 18, 2007 | Page 6

"SOCIALISM FOR the 21st Century" is the theme of this year's Socialism conference--which will draw together activists and socialists from around the U.S. and the world to more than 100 workshops and panel discussions aimed at rebuilding the left in the U.S.

Last year, Socialism--which is cosponsored each summer by the Center for Economic Research and Social Change and Socialist Worker's publisher, the International Socialist Organization--turned out some 1,500 people.

Featured among the speakers at this year's event are activists from the frontlines of organizing against the war in Iraq. Renowned journalist, activist and documentary filmmaker John Pilger will screen his film Breaking the Silence: Truth and Lies in the War on Terror.

Jeremy Scahill, independent journalist and author of the bestselling exposé Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, will tell the ugly story of war profiteering run amok in Iraq.

As an unembedded independent journalist with firsthand knowledge of the war and occupation's impact to the people of Iraq, Dahr Jamail will speak on "Beyond the Green Zone"--and Dahlia Wasfi, an Iraqi-American physician who has traveled to Iraq, will describe the day-to-day effects of occupation.

For more information

Visit the Socialism 2007 Web site for more information on the event or to register. Click here to hear several campus activists talk about why they're going to Socialism.


Antiwar veterans and soldiers' rights activists will speak out in several other panel discussions. A panel discussion on resistance by soldiers today will feature Iraq Veterans Against the War members Camilo Mejía, Kelly Dougherty and Garett Reppenhagen. Plus, Todd Ensign of Citizen Soldier and International Socialist Review contributor Joe Allen will speak on "The Vietnam Soldiers' Rebellion."

Other independent journalists will have their say at Socialism, including CounterPunch co-editor Jeffrey St. Clair, speaking on "Hot Climate, Cold Cash: Making a Killing from Global Warming"; Democracy Now! radio host Amy Goodman on "Static: Government Liars, Media Cheerleaders and the People Who Fight Back"; Air America's Laura Flanders on "Blue Grit: True Democrats Take Back Politics from the Politicians"; and Joshua Frank on the story behind Democratic Party presidential hopeful Barack Obama.

Radical writers and activists from around the world will attend, including Luciana Genro from the Party of Socialism and Liberty of Brazil, and Charles-André Udry from the editorial board of À L'Encontre, Switzerland.

Activists from the immigrant rights movement will also be on hand to discuss next steps in the fight to stop the raids and deportations. So, too, will activists against the death penalty and the criminal justice system, including Barbara Becnel, advocate of Stan Tookie Williams, who was executed in 2005; and Yusef Salaam, who was exonerated in the 1989 Central Park jogger case in 2002.

Several meetings will draw out the lessons of past struggles, such as the Black Power movement--John Carlos, the 1968 Olympic medalist will appear with Nation sportswriter and author Dave Zirin and former NFL player and author Anthony Prior on the panel "From 1968 to Rutgers: Athletes Fight for Social Justice." The inspiring lessons of the Flint sit-down strike of 1937 will be taken up by Sharon Smith, author of Subterranean Fire.

Many speakers will emphasize the importance of Marxist politics and building socialist organization today. Paul D'Amato, author of the book Meaning of Marxism, will speak on the 90th anniversary of the Russian Revolution, and Anthony Arnove, author of Iraq: Logic of Withdrawal, will speak on Marx's Communist Manifesto and its importance today.

And that's only a small part of the meetings taking place at Socialism 2007. Don't miss it!

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