In the midst of pandemic, imperialisms contend for hegemony

The rogue state USA stands in the way of China's ambitions 

8 Maggio 2020

The new global crisis triggered by the pandemic radicalises the competition among imperialisms.
US imperialism, the main rogue state on the planet, tries to recover positions lost in the last decade by reviving a new Cold War against China's power. The battle line with China has been the center of gravity of US foreign policy since 2008. Obama’s extended time in office had this distinguishing mark.
Trump's hyper-nationalist policy of "America first" inherited it and relaunched it with a more aggressive and reckless posture. The tariff war of the last two years made China its prime target. And this is not a commercial competition, but a commercial reflection of a global competition for hegemony over the world. An unsparing competition on the terrain of heavy manifacturing, of new technologies, of the race for raw materials and zones of influence on all continents, without exception.


Today, as in 2008, the new great global crisis is pouring gasoline into the engine of the inter-imperialist confrontation.

China has overcome the trauma of the epidemic at home by trying to capitalize on the difficulties of the American administration and its contradictions with European imperialism. Hence an international policy of medical aid, directed particularly towards Europe, to extend its political-diplomatic relations, to expand the New Silk Road initiative and to weaken the advantage of the US position.
But US imperialism counterattacks all along the line to defend its strongholds. It calls on his NATO allies to gather, mobilizes the intelligence communities of the English-speaking countries (USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand), denounces China as responsible for having set off the pandemic and hiding it from the world. And it goes so far as to air the possibility of extreme diplomatic acts, such as the demand for economic reparations for damages suffered, or even the (improbable) threat of not paying China the interest on the American debt that Beijing in large part holds.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo "reveals" a joint operation of China and Russia to divide the US from its natural allies in Europe, and declares to the European press that «the US Defense Department and the defense ministries of all our allies continue to keep up their guard towards the outside» against the enemies of the West. «Whether it's the Chinese navy that tries to compromise freedom of navigation, Russian devices that test our airspace, or Iranian boats that try to interdict maritime transport, we must be ready to react to any threat» (La Stampa, May 4).
The Italian bourgeois press gives whole pages to these militaristic ravings, with the impetus of new head editors (Maurizio Molinari just appointed as La Repubblica editor) chosen on the basis of the most untarnished Atlanticist (and Zionist) orthodoxy. Just as Fiat-Chrysler (FCA) has honored its own interests in America.

We are facing «an international crisis with consequences that are difficult to foresee but that will force every state – including Italy, which has paid one of the highest prices in human lives – to take a stand», solemnly declares the new editor of La Repubblica in his first editorial (May 4). Amazing! The Val Seriana massacre and the carnage in nursing homes are put to China's account by the same bosses who blocked "red zones" (lockdown areas) to rake in their profits. The truth – as always – is the first victim of wars, including diplomatic wars.

The rejection and denunciation of these maneuvers of "our" imperialist camp is the first duty of every advanced worker, even more so of every communist.


This does not mean at all that we have to beatify rival imperialisms, presenting them as standard-bearers of progress, or even as "socialists". This is a representation sponsored by "campist" organizations that flirt with nationalist circles and seek their approval (like Marco Rizzo's Communist Party [PC], recently converted to China). These are grotesque representations unconnected with reality, and above all unconnected with the most elementary class principles, which always start from the interest of the workers' movement and of the oppressed masses of the world. If US imperialism is historically the main oppressor, can we ignore today China's imperialist face?

Africa 2020. A continent threatened by the pandemic and hit by recession, the first one in 25 years. The public debt of African states to the imperialist countries amounts to a total of $540 billion. A stratospheric figure for the continent, especially considering the very high interest rates on the debt, up to 15%. Usury. To the point where most of the resources spent today by the African states are used just for the payment of debt and related interest. Which wipes out social investments in health, education, services. If the pandemic threatens a slaughter in Africa, this is also due to the social consequences of the imperialists' policy of plunder.

A coalition of African states is now formally asking the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to cancel their foreign debt. A progressive demand, even in the form of a negotiation. An unprecedented demand, driven by the public health emergency. What is the point? The point is that China is the main holder of African public debt, to the figure of $145 billion. And the highest interest rates are Chinese too. It is no coincidence that China is today the country most resistant to Africa's demand for debt cancellation. France, for example, hides behind China to ask for just a temporary suspension of the payment of the African debt, rejecting its cancellation.
Of course it's not excluded that in the clash with the US, Chinese imperialism might decide to loosen the noose around the neck of African states, in order to consolidate its area of influence. But the usurer would still be a usurer, even if he's led to a self-interested magnanimity, because the very magnanimity would function to continue the domination.

This policy has its material basis: ten thousand Chinese companies in Africa, 90% private, concentrating on the hoarding of raw materials and the eploitation of cheap labor. And the importaton into China of hundreds of thousands of African workers, subject in some cases to xenophobic reactions because they are accused of having brought the virus (as recently occurred in the Chinese city of Guangzhou).

The whole world is capital, as we have said many times. Even in China. Even in Africa.
In the struggle against imperialism at home, we will never embellish other imperialisms. Because the only alternative is one built by the working class of all continents with the perspective of another world order. Which will either be socialist or it will not be.

Partito Comunista dei Lavoratori