New horizons of international and anti-racist solidarity: climate refugees, natural disasters, femonationalism/homonationalism and feminist/queer anti-imperialism, anti-austerity and labour

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outline: New horizons of solidarity:

anti-austerity/global justice, nature/climate and queer anti-imperialism

IIRE Ecosocialist School

Peter Drucker

5 December 2015


Introduction to reporter: a queer anti-Zionist internationalist, between continents, with big gaps in expertise and experience – for you to fill in Place of report in session

Aimed at deepening understanding of class and imperialism today (Léon, Alex), especially under neoliberal globalization

Climate change (Marijke, tomorrow Manuel), with a focus on consequences and responses

Homonationalism and queer anti-imperialism, paralleling and building on report on feminism and femonationalism (Nadia, and anticipating Penny)

Strategic questions: a 21st-century transitional approach (Catherine); internationalism today (Alex)

A very disparate report – with some red threads

Our Marxism: anti-economistic (citation from Lenin), founded on an open, plurilinear conception of history

Assessment of the period: fragmentation of working class and anti-imperialism by neoliberal offensive (‘new mode of bourgeois domination’, with two Achilles heels)

Need to build a new ‘infrastructure of dissent’ (Alan Sears on The Next New Left) – which is why new horizons of solidarity are needed (fragmentation or unity?)

Self-organization as key: by indigenous peoples, blacks, immigrant communities, LGBTIQ people – or in today’s report, by victims of austerity, victims of disasters, victims of imperialism

I. Anti-austerity/global justice

Weakening of international labour movement and alternative forms of solidarity

New challenges: debt crisis (from 1982 – and from 2008 in Europe) and ‘structural adjustment’

New openings after 1989: Zapatista rebellion (1994: NAFTA), Battle of Seattle (1999), first World Social Forum (Porto Alegre, 2001)

Initial strengths of global justice movement

Backing of new anti-capitalist forces (Brazilian PT/CUT/MST/Porto Alegre, Italian Rifondazione/FIOM)

New links in old movements (Via Campesina, World March of Women, trade union left)

Capacity to draw in new subjects (hijras at Mumbai WSF, 2004)

Capacity to respond to imperialist wars (Iraq, 2003)

Flexibility, diversity, horizontal ties (calls by Assemblies of Social Movements)

Multiplying Social Forums at continental, national and regional level

Modest but significant role of revolutionary Marxists (through unions, parties, CADTM)

Growing weaknesses of global justice movement

Right turns by left parties

NGOization, institutional weight of International Council

Limits of capacity to reflect new resistance movements (Occupy, indignad@s, Greeks, even Arab Spring (despite Tunis WSF in 2013))

Corruption by World Bank, governments, companies and fundamentalists (Mimoun Rahmani)

Divisions in the face of terrorism

Lack of effective coordination – by International Council or left wing

Alternative anti-austerity forums?

E.g. Europe Against Austerity, London, 2012

Problems: lack of global reach, organizational weight and active follow-up

Other experiences?

II. Nature/climate

Natural disasters (earthquakes/tsunamis – with socially determined damage, from Nicaragua to Nepal to Fukushima) and human disasters (floods)

… and in between, epidemics (AIDS, Ebola) and climate and its changes: rising sea levels, droughts (and the Arab Spring), extreme weather (hurricanes/typhoons)

Predictable disasters, glaring inequality (Pacific but not Indian Ocean alerts, Dutch but not Bangladeshi dikes)

Relief manipulated for military and geopolitical ends (polio vaccines to track al-Qaeda in Pakistan)

… and of course economic (from villages to resorts, Dutch water management technology, geo-engineering)

A popular alternative: neither power politics nor profits

From poor to poor, at lower cost

Prevention and sustainable aid

Neither caste-based, nor sectarian, nor partisan

Local roots, not parachutes

Self-organization of survivors

Ecological links (coastal and mountain vegetation) and social infrastructure (health)

Ongoing organizing among peasants and urban poor: linking the social and the political

Towards an international network of alternative relief efforts?

III. Queer anti-imperialism

Crisis, the fraying safety net and scapegoating

The concept of homonationalism

Same-sex practices in pre-colonial Africa and the Islamic world

Colonialism, imported heteronormativity (Joseph Massad) and revolutionary secularism

Tolerance (Paul Mepschen) and gay normality

Homonationalism: a dimension of homonormativity

Examples: Islamophobia, pinkwashing

Homophobia today: colonial persecution in anti-imperialist packaging

‘The Gay International’? reality of imperialist influence in Saudi kingdom and Iraq

Global and anti-racist solidarity

Regional queer organizing from Latin America to Asia

Palestinian Queers for BDS; HELEM in Lebanon and solidarity against Israeli invasion

Queer organizing in immigrant communities

Against Islamophobia: Denmark; Judith Butler in Berlin

Africa: LGBTIQ networking and the debate on aid conditionality

Towards a global queer anti-imperialism?

Conclusion: towards a 21st-century transitional approach founded on a global vision of liberation

1. Lenin, "The discussion on self-determination summed up" Collected Works Volume 22, pp.355-356

2. 2003 FI World Congress, 'Resistances to Capitalist Globalization', (I.) The Battle for Solidarity, sections 3 (Globalization) and 4 (Solidarity

3. Peter Drucker, Self-organization, self-emancipation and identity: What can we learn from indigenous peoples, blacks and lesbigays?

I. Social Forums

4. 2015 Declaration of the Assembly of the Social Movements, WSF, Tunis

5. Mimoun Rahmani on WSF 2015

II. Solidarity with Disaster Victims and Climate Refugees

6. Tsunami, Katrina, Kashmir: Elements of Political Reflection on a series of natural disasters

7. Climate refugees: new social movements, new responsibilities of solidarity

III. Feminist and Queer Anti-Imperialism

8. Fourth International, "Excerpts of the resolution Role and Tasks of the Fourth International" , 2010 World Congress

9. [Excerpts from Peter Drucker: Warped. Gay Normality and Queer Anticapitalism]

10. Peter Drucker, Arab sexualities

11. Paul Mepschen, Islam, sexuality and the politics of belonging in The Netherlands