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Brexit: Contradictions between Imperialist States Intensifies

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Ned K.

The recent vote by the people in the UK to exit from the European Union has increased tensions between competing imperialist powers within Europe. 

Germany and France in particular appear unhappy with the UK vote to exit the EU. The two countries were the principal drivers of the expansion of the European Economic Community into the European Union via the Maastricht Treaty of 1992. To what extent the economic bases of the UK and major European imperialist powers have become intertwined needs further analysis. The original intention of the major imperialist powers within the European Union was to create a bloc capable of competing with US imperialism and the rising capitalist powers of Japan, and more lately China, in Asia. German and French finance capital sought to remove regional barriers to the free flow of labour and capital to the mutual advantage of the major European monopoly capitals.

The increased mobility and displacement of workers in the European Union also assisted all the imperialist powers within the EU to force down the cost of labour by the utilization of migrant labour from Eastern Europe and the transfer of production and services to countries within the EU where labour is cheaper. In their struggle against the working classes of their respective countries and the working classes of poorer EU countries, the big powers in the EU, including the UK, have tried to impose harsh cuts to government services and in some cases income. The latest example of this is in France where the government is trying to pass anti-worker laws to repress struggle and reduce living standards.

Making Sense of It All

To understand the current events in the European Union it may be useful for readers to re-visit the CPA-ML June 2015 booklet, Marxism Today - For Australian Independence For Australian Socialism. The booklet contains an article "Imperialism: What Is It?" The article contains the following useful passage:

"The British born US based Marxist, David Harvey, in his book The New Imperialism, acknowledged the importance of the Marxist theory of imperialism as an analytical tool. Drawing on the tradition of Marxist analysis of capitalist imperialism (as opposed to the imperialism of the Roman Empire for example), Harvey put forward his view on what constituted the core relationship lying at the heart of capitalist imperialism. The core relationship was a dialectical one, between what he called 'territorial and capitalist logics of power'.

"On one side was the territorial logic of power which was the realm of the political where states' interests were of paramount importance. On the other was the capitalist logic of power where the capitalist accumulation was the dominant factor. To unravel the complexities involved in actual situations requires the ability 'to keep the two sides of this dialectic simultaneously in motion and not to lapse into either a solely political or predominantly economic mode of argumentation...In practice the two logics frequently tug against each other, sometimes to the point of outright antagonism.' "

The French working class is showing the way forward in the current situation where political contradictions between the imperialist powers are intensifying in tandem with continued economic "austerity measures" against working classes of many European countries. 
The French working class is fighting back in a way which will make it more difficult for the French ruling class to involve the French people in any war of aggression through inter imperialist rivalry. 

Study the views of European Communists

Our European comrades are in the best position to make sense of the Brexit. We recommend that the following statements, by the Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist) and the Communist Party of Greece (Marxist-Leninist) respectively:


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