Category Archives: We Asked

We Asked about the Bernie Sanders 2020 Campaign

Bernie Sanders’ second presidential campaign brought a ray of hope to what had been a dismal political news cycle in the United States dominated by Trump’s odious figure and the Democrats’ ineffectual, “back to normal” opposition to him. To be sure, the broader resistance to Trump has also galvanized genuine movements devoted to protecting the undocumented and other marginalized groups he went out of his way to threaten, to fighting against climate change, and to demanding universal healthcare. These righteous but disparate causes lacked unity until the Sanders campaign made them pil ..

We Asked: the Legacy of Corbynism

Under the radical leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, the UK Labour Party has been seen as a ray of hope and a model for progressive revival by many – though by no means all – leftists across Europe and the Atlantic world. Labour’s painful defeat in the recent general election is an occasion for thinking about the legacy of Corbynism, and the view from Eastern Europe, broadly defined (here including Israel and the diaspora) is particularly important given the role played by Eastern European migration, English nationalism, xenophobia and accusations of antisemitism in the run-up to this decisive setback ..

WeAsked: Left Perspectives on Venezuela from the (Semi)Periphery

Venezuela has been at the center of heated left-wing polemics for some time now. As tensions rise in the border regions of the country and self-appointed “interim president” Juan Guaido calls for ever more militant action, including even armed rebellion, concerns grow over the possibility of a foreign intervention. As with previous such interventions, legitimacy is being drawn from a combination of propaganda and a display of an apparent “international” consensus against Maduro’s Government. Many countries from the European periphery have been complicit in this agenda. LeftEast appro ..

WeAsked: Left Perspectives on Venezuela from the (Semi)Periphery

Venezuela has been at the center of heated left-wing polemics for some time now. As tensions rise in the border regions of the country and self-appointed “interim president” Juan Guaido calls for ever more militant action, including even armed rebellion, concerns grow over the possibility of a foreign intervention. As with previous such interventions, legitimacy is being drawn from a combination of propaganda and a display of an apparent “international” consensus against Maduro’s Government. Many countries from the European periphery have been complicit in this agenda. LeftEast appro ..

We Asked: Geopolitics & the Left, Part II

In continuing the theme of the conflict between Russia and the West, which we discussed last week, now we turn to the broader issue of a leftist perspective on geopolitics. Even though most of the articles LeftEast publishes deal in one way or another with the transnational connectivities, we have been somewhat reticent about the whole issue of geopolitics. For two reasons. In the first place, because of our method of seeking authors based in or at least with deep knowledge of concrete societies, who would share that knowledge with our readers. If so much news analysis, even on the left, starts with some geopolit ..

We Asked: Geopolitics and the Left (Part I: Russia & the West)

The latest wave of confrontation between Russia and the West—from the Skripal affair and the following diplomat expulsions and sanctions on Russia to the gassing of Douma residents most likely perpetrated by the Assad regime and the resulting US-UK-French bombing raids on Syria–rarely left the front pages of mainstream media. LeftEast has until now resisted the topic: it is not quite our fight. Not to sound nostalgic, but if the original Cold War, for all the devastation of its proxy wars and the dictatorships it bred, created conditions that sometimes favored the processes of decolonization, the victory ..

The Left in Greece & Macedonia: We can write new pages of common struggle!

The ongoing negotiations between the Greek and the Macedonian government on the issue of the “name” of the Republic of Macedonia have sparked a nationalist backlash in Greece- it manifested itself in two mass nationalist rallies, the first in Thessaloniki on January 21st (which ended with the burning down of the Libertaria Squat) and the second in Athens on February 4th. We approached comrades from both Greece and Macedonia, and asked them about the response of the radical left to this situation, but also the possibilities that it might open for future common struggles against neoliberal capitalism. 

We Asked: Refugee Rights Organizers Address the Conditions of Refugees on the EU’s Borderlands

As the EU’s refugee ‘crisis’ continues to develop, we sat down with refugee rights organizers in central and eastern Europe to discuss the local reception of refugees, how EU policies are influencing member state policies, as well as activist responses that are seeking to curtail rising European xenophobia. Click on the names below to learn more about the responses of community activists and organizers in the different countries along the refugees’ route.

International Workers’ Day: resounding struggles from Greece to Russia

“For more than twenty years have the wage workers of this country begged and prayed their masters, the factory lords, to reduce their burdens. It has been in vain.” – this proclamation could easily have come from a 1st of May rally in 2015, as it remains equally relevant today. But it dates back to the 4th of May, 1886, when August Spies, one of the key protagonists of the Haymarket affair in Chicago incited the rally in support of workers striking for an eight-hour-day, which spiraled into a mass protest and inspired the International Workers’ movement. 130 years on, as the struggle continues, LeftEast s ..

Was the 8th of March cancelled in the Balkans this year?

Wrapped in a perfumed Valentine’s-meets-Mother’s-Day packaging, year after year International Women’s Day seems to become further stripped of its political flavour. What is worrying is that this occurs at a time when women face deteriorating conditions across the region, in their homes, at the work place and society at large. We asked activists, researchers and feminist thinkers, about the cross-temporal meaning of the day, the current state of women’s struggles in their countries and their sources of inspiration.