Your name or email adress:
Do you already have an account?
Forgot your password?
  • Log in or Sign up

    Results 1 to 13 of 13
    1. #1
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Chronology of Political Events

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Chronology of Political Events, 1954-1992

      Part One, 1954-1966

      Part Two, 1967-1970

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Five, 1981-1992

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

      Author’s note: I compiled this chronology to organize my notes in preparation for writing Revolution in the Air. It covers key events in international and U.S. politics; mass movements and popular struggles; and especially developments on the U.S. left and within the current which came to be known as the New Communist Movement.

      Following each entry one or more sources are listed in abbreviated form. The books, pamphlets, articles, journals or newspapers each abbreviation stands for are listed in the Source Reference Guide at the end. Fuller information about many of these sources is available in the bibliography posted elsewhere on this website.

      Because of the chronology’s length (190 single-spaced pages) it is posted here in six parts. Part one covers 1954-1966; part two covers 1967-1970; part three covers 1971-1974; part four covers 1975-1980; part five covers 1981-1992; and part six consists of the Source Reference Guide.

      Since I was not trying to develop a comprehensive chronology per se, some sections (for example the years from 1967 to 1980) include much more details than others. Also, I did not go back over the chronology to double-check and correct mistakes after I began writing my manuscript. If you notice errors, please send the correct information to me at so I can change this document accordingly.

      I hope you find this of some use or interest.



      Chronology Part One, 1954-1966


      January 25-February 17: Berlin Conference ends a five-year break in negotiations among the “Big Four” powers (U.S., USSR, Britain, France). Though resisted by Dulles, the meeting is held and - while no substantive agreements are reached - the participants sets dates for further meetings on various issues, in particular for the Geneva Conference on Indochina and Korea. This begins a process of substantive East-West negotiations, regarding Germany, Austria (where a settlement is reached May 15, 1955 for neutralization of the country and withdrawal of all Soviet troops), Indochina and Korea. This entrance into dialogue reflects the end of “Cold War I” in 1953 and the beginning of what Halliday called a period of “Oscillatory Antagonism” lasting until formal “detente” begins in 1969. (Second Cold War; Political Affairs April 1954; Century)

      March 1: On the 37th Anniversary of the law that made Puerto Ricans U.S. citizens, four Puerto Rican nationalists - Lolita Lebron, Rafael Cancel Miranda, Andres Figueroa Cordero and Irvin Flores - unfurl a Puerto Rican flag and fire weapons from the gallery of the House of Representatives, wounding five Congressmen. They are imprisoned with sentences of 50 (Lebron) and 75 years, and along with Oscar Collazo - shot while trying to attack then-President Truman in Washington during the 1950 uprising on the island - they become the “five nationalist prisoners.” (Puerto Rico)

      March: Beginning of the fall of Joe McCarthy with the Army-McCarthy hearings and Edward R. Murrow’s telecast attack on the senator broadcast March 6. On December 2, McCarthy is censured officially by a Senate vote of 67-22 for contempt of a Senate subcommittee, abuse of its members and insults to the Senate. (Haunted; Student Generation; Goines chron; SF Chronicle 3/5/98 in D-3)

      May 7-8: Fall of Dien Bien Phu; The U.S. had explored conducting air strikes to rescue the French garrison, and also tentatively offered France nuclear weapons to stave off defeat, but there are hesitations in France and Britain and the deal for France to formally request the nuclear weapons and the U.S. to supply them for use falls through. (Almanac; Century; Hobsbawm; Coates in NLR #145/May-June 1984; Raskin/Fall)

      May 17: Supreme Court rules segregation in public schools is illegal - “separate is inherently unequal” - in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education case. (Prize)

      May: CIA-sponsored coup overthrows the reformist Arbenz government in Guatemala (Isserman; Barnet; Political Affairs August 1954)

      Early in the year: First issue of Dissent, edited by Irving Howe, appears. (Isserman)

      July 21: Geneva Agreements on Indochina are signed after complex negotiations, the Geneva Conference had opened on April 26. The Vietnamese are pressured by Zhou Enlai to make more concessions that they wish, the anti-imperialist forces in Cambodia are dissatisfied with the deal; although the U.S. delegate to the conference says the U.S. will not use force to disturb the agreements, Eisenhower says “The U.S. has not itself been a party to, or bound by, the decisions taken by the conference.” (Karnow; Century; Fact Sheet; Revolution Rescued; Raskin/Fall; Schurmann; Harding)

      September: Khrushchev visits Beijing, several agreements are concluded, according to Schurmann this is the highest point of the Sino-Soviet alliance and the positive climate between the two powers continues until the Soviet 20th Congress in February 1956. . (Schurmann)

      November 20: U.S. begins sending aid directly to the South Vietnamese regime of Ngo Dinh Diem, not through the French as formerly. On February 12, 1955 U.S. General O’Daniel takes over training of the South Vietnamese Army from the French. (Fact Sheet; Goines chron)

      November 1: Algerian War of Independence against France is officially proclaimed and launched. (Student Generation; Said in NLR #180)


      Malcolm X is appointed Minister of Nation of Islam Temple No. 7 in Harlem. (Allen)


      January: The Mattachine Society - founded in 1951 in Los Angeles by Harry Hay and other ex-CPUSA members to promote homosexual rights from a militant progressive perspective but after 1953 taken over by more conservative figures - begins publishing its own newsletter, The Mattachine Review. Mattachine is the first continuing organization of what becomes known as the homophile movement. (D’Emilio)

      February 8: Malenkov, who had appeared to be in the strongest position to succeed Stalin after his death (March 5, 1953) is forced to resign as Soviet Premier, but he is given another responsible post, setting a new precedent for the ouster (without arrest or execution) of a Soviet leader. Bulganin becomes Premier but it is clear that Khrushchev, the “First Secretary” of the CPSU, is in charge. (Nove; Century)

      February 9: AFL and CIO sign a merger agreement for creation of a single union center. The new AFL-CIO is born December 5 with the AFL’s George Meany as its president. (Almanac; Green; Untold)

      Late March: Split in the “Correspondence Group” (which had originated in 1951 out of the “Johnson-Forest”/State Capitalism Tendency - Johnson is C.L.R. James, Forest is Raya Dunayevskaya - of the Trotskyist movement). Dunayevskaya and her followers leave to form News and Letters, remaining folks (with C.L.R. James offering advice in letters from exile in London) include Martin Glaberman and James and Grace Boggs, all three later to play important roles in the revival of the left in Detroit in the mid and late 1960s. James Boggs is editor of the group’s publication, Correspondence. (James)

      April 18-24: Bandung “Conference of the Afro-Asian States” in Indonesia is the forerunner of the Non-Aligned Movement; key figures are Jawaharlal Nehru of India, Sukarno of Indonesia, Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, Josef Broz Tito of Yugoslavia; 29 nations participate. At first this is essentially an Asian and African movement, involving Latin Americans only after the Cuban Revolution of 1959. People’s China participates in this meeting and signs the final communiqué. Richard Wright and Adam Clayton Powell are present. (Hobsbawm; Century; Black Scholar December 1976)

      May 14: Warsaw Pact is signed. (Century)

      May 15: Austrian State Treaty signed by the USSR, U.S., Britain and France; Austria becomes a neutral state and Soviet troops leave the country. (Century; Schurmann)

      May 26-June 2: Khrushchev, Bulganin and Mikoyan reconcile with Tito during trip to Yugoslavia, saying there are “many roads to socialism.” (Century; Schurmann)

      June 26: The Freedom Charter is adopted by a Congress of the People in South Africa held under the guidance of the African National Congress. (Frontline Supplement, September 30, 1985)

      July 18-21: First East-West Summit Conference at Geneva, the heads of state of the U.S., Britain, France and the USSR meet each other. One result of the Summit is the opening of Sino-U.S. talks at the ambassadorial level in Poland, marking the first official contact between the U.S. and China since the establishment of the People’s Republic of China October 1, 1949. (Century; Schurmann)

      August 8: 26th of July Movement is founded in Mexico City by Fidel Castro and other revolutionaries. (Century)

      August 28: Emmett Till is murdered in Money, Mississippi, his (later admitted) killers are acquitted by an all-white jury, the case gets major nationwide publicity. (Freedom; Prize)

      September 21: Eight women - four couples, including Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon - gather in San Francisco and within a few weeks form the Daughters of Bilitis. In October 1956 DOB publishes the first issue of The Ladder, which lasts until 1972. (D’Emilio; BAR January 1, 1998 in BMOV-1)

      October 13: Allen Ginsberg gives the first public reading of Howl at the Six Gallery in San Francisco with Kenneth Rexroth presiding and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Philip Lamantia, Michael McClure, Gary Snyder and Philip Whalen also reading on the program; “it seemed a moment that allowed those present to see that a new force had arisen in American culture.” Ginsberg’s Howl and Other Poems is published in 1956 by City Lights (San Francisco). During this time “the beats” come to national prominence. (Utopia; Gitlin)

      December 1: Rosa Parks refuses to yield her seat to a white man in Montgomery, Alabama; the bus boycott begins on December 5, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. plays the central leadership role and rises to national prominence. The boycott ends in victory December 21, 1956. (Prize)


      After a series of military defeats, the Philippine Communist Party (PKP), leader of the Huk insurgency, abandons the armed struggle in favor of concentrating on parliamentary struggle. (Rectify/Rebuild)

      Publication of first edition of Labor’s Untold Story, by Richard O. Boyer and Herbert M. Morais (UE-United Electrical Workers & Cameron Associates, New York); this as well as the second and third editions will be reprinted many times, especially as many New Left activists turn their attention to Marxism and the working class in the late 1960s/early ‘70s. (Untold)

      Two landmark films focusing on “youth rebellion” are released, Nicholas’ Ray’s Rebel Without a Cause starring James Dean - who died in an auto crash at age 24 on September 30, 1955, three days before the film opened - and Richard Brooks’ Blackboard Jungle. The Wild One, starring Marlon Brando (“What are you rebelling against? Whadda ya got?”), had been released in 1953. (Gitlin; Utopia)


      February 14-25: Twentieth Congress of the CPSU. At the Congress, Nikita Khrushchev gives his “secret speech” with its revelations about Stalin and the extent of his crimes, terror and repression. The Congress criticizes the “cult of personality” and adopts a new perspective that, with nuclear weapons and the change in the world balance of forces, Lenin’s thesis that world wars are inevitable as long as imperialism exists is no longer valid - rather world war in no longer inevitable. Additionally, there are supposedly new possibilities for a peaceful transition to socialism in many capitalist countries. The Congress, especially the revelations about Stalin, sends shock waves through the International Communist Movement (see April 28 entry below for the response of the CPUSA), with the Chinese and Albanians critical (at first privately and only later openly) of Khrushchev’s line, and Italian Party head Palmiro Togliatti most aggressively arguing the case for a new, “polycentric” world communist movement. Within the USSR there is a “thaw,” relaxation of censorship, freeing of many prisoners, posthumous rehabilitation of many CPSU members killed by Stalin, etc. The height of “de-Stalinization” is reaching in 1961, afterwards and especially following Khrushchev’s fall in 1964 things “tighten up” again. (20th Congress; Starobin; Isserman; Haywood; Nove; Cohen; Line of March No. 11)

      April 18: It is announced that the Cominform (Communist Information Bureau, formed September 21-28, 1947) has been dissolved. (Century)

      April 28: First meeting of the CPUSA’s full national committee in five years, at which general secretary Eugene Dennis gives his report entitled The Communists Take a New Look (text in D-7). The last full convention had been in 1950. The term “new look” had first been used by Dennis at the anniversary meeting for the Daily Worker in January 1956. A summary of Khrushchev’s speech had been available at the meeting, but the full text was not published in the U.S. until June after the U.S. State Department released a text to the press on June 4. The Daily Worker reprinted excerpts the next day and the full text in the Sunday Worker. (Starobin; Isserman; Haywood)

      April: The Diem regime formally reiterates its “non-recognition” of the Geneva Accords as the last of the French Expeditionary Force withdraws from Vietnam. With the backing of the Eisenhower administration, Diem refuses to hold the elections mandated by the Geneva agreement; the U.S. Assistance Military Advisory Group begins training and equipping the South Vietnamese Army. About 700 U.S. military advisers arrive in Vietnam. (Century; Spoke; Fact Sheet)

      June 28-30: Rioting in Poznan, Poland sets the stage for Gomulka’s return to power after 5 years in prison as an anti-Stalinist. (Almanac; Century)

      June: Meeting sponsored by the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) at Carnegie Hall featuring A.J. Muste, Norman Thomas, Eugene Dennis and W.E.B. DuBois; draws 2,000, perhaps largest at any radical meeting since the 1948 Wallace campaign. And this spring the first issue of Liberation magazine appears; it is a radical pacifist publication whose initiators included Muste, Dave Dellinger and Bayard Rustin. (Isserman; Gitlin).

      July: The U.S. withdraws its promise of aid to Egypt to help build the Aswan dam, partly in response to Nasser buying Czech arms. Nasser in reply nationalizes the Suez Canal on July 26. (Roots)

      September 13: publication of CPUSA’s “draft resolution” for the upcoming 16th convention. (Starobin; Isserman; Haywood)

      September: Eighth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party declares that “transition” period is over, period of constructing socialism had begun and the main task is to develop the productive forces, Liu Shaoqi plays a leading role. (Trial)

      October 23-November 4: Hungarian uprising. Imre Nagy installed as prime minister after students clash with Soviet troops and the troops are at first withdrawn from Budapest. Nagy could not restore order, announced that Hungary would withdraw from the Warsaw pact, and Soviet tanks rolled into the cities November 4, overthrew the Nagy government and, after a few days of fighting, put down resistance. During the crisis 100,000 West Berliners protesting the Soviet action are dissuaded from storming the East German guardposts by mayor Willy Brandt (who is mayor from 1957-1966) who fears a bloodbath and the outbreak of a wider war. Also note: China had been supportive of Nagy - consistent with a policy of favoring autonomy for and equality between the various ruling parties within the socialist camp - until he announced that he was taking Hungary out of the Warsaw Pact; at that point, Beijing - based on their current view that party autonomy had to be within the camp - broadcast a statement denouncing him. (Starobin; Isserman; Haywood; Hall-S; Schurmann)

      October 29: After tensions had been building since Egypt’s July 26 nationalization of the Suez Canal, Israel (by secret agreement with France and England) invades Egypt; Britain and France invade November 5; Cease-fire forced by U.S. November 6. During the crisis, the U.S. makes “an overt and explicit [nuclear] threat toward the USSR through the global actions of U.S. strategy forces” to deter the Soviets from intervening on the side of Egypt - this is the first of at least 4 times over the next 17 years such an explicit threat was made, and one of at least 19 times that the U.S. at some level indicated it was preparing to use nuclear weapons. (Second Cold War; Almanac; Hall-S; Roots)

      November 6: Eisenhower beats Stevenson in presidential election. (Almanac)

      November 18: CPUSA national committee meets and is deadlocked on Hungary. Ends with statement that they neither support nor condemn the invasion. (See Isserman, p. 30).

      December 21: Montgomery bus boycott ends in victory. (Prize)


      In the wake of Hungary and Suez, the first “New Left” takes shape in Britain (the phrase itself is borrowed from “nouvelle gauche” concept put forward by the editor of France Observateur Claude Bourdet). The main expressions of the new current are the magazines Universities and Left Review (fist issue appears in 1957, it is “independent socialist” with Stuart Hall as an editor) and The New Reasoner (started as a critical bulletin, The Reasoner, within the CP in July 1956, name changed after its founders leave the party or are expelled, “dissident communist,” E.P. Thompson is among the core). (Hall-S; NLR #153/Sept-Oct 1985)

      End of “Operation Wetback,” which in its three years of official operation (1953-1956) was linked with the other repressions of the McCarthy era and deported more than two million people to Mexico. (Chicano)

      Rock & roll is here to stay: 1955 and 1956 are the breakthrough years for rock & roll’s explosive emergence into the center of popular music. The term originated in June 1951 with Cleveland disc jockey Alan Freed, who started a rhythm and blues show on a mainly white radio station for which he coined the euphemism “rock & roll,” since the Black-rooted R&B was considered disreputable by the white-owned music and radio industry. By 1955 chart-toppers included Bill Haley and His Comets Rock Around the Clock, Chuck Berry’s Maybelline, Fats Domino’s Ain’t That a Shame and Little Richard’s Tutti Frutti. In 1956 Elvis Presley - now on RCA Records - hits No. 1 with Heartbreak Hotel, followed by other hits; he appeared three times on the Ed Sullivan Show that year and made his first movie, Love Me Tender. White artists are now “covering” songs written and originally recorded by Blacks and (along with the record companies) reaping the profits. (Gitlin; Top 40)

      The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 authorizes 41,000 miles of Interstate freeways: a major boost to suburbanization: between 1946 and 1958, outside the farms, 85% of all new housing was built beyond the central cities. (Gitlin)

      Irish Republican Army begins armed campaign against Unionist regime in Northern Ireland; ends in failure in 1962. (Student Generation)

      The African Party for the Liberation of Guinea-Bissau and the Cape Verde Islands (PAIGC) is founded, Amilcar Cabral is the key figure. (Cabral; Guardian July 7, 1975 in BTr5; MR December 1975)

      Publication of C. Wright Mills, The Power Elite (Oxford University Press, London and New York); William H. Whyte, The Organization Man; Paul Goodman, Growing Up Absurd: The Problem of Youth in the Organized System (New York, Random House);


      January 10-11: In the aftermath of the successful Montgomery bus boycott, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) is founded under the leadership of Martin Luther King. (Prize; Spoke)

      February 9-12: 16th National Convention of the CPUSA in New York, which the Maoist New Communist Movement as the gathering which consolidated the party around a revisionist line. For broad left and public reaction at the time, see Starobin for citations of numerous contemporary articles commenting on the crisis in U.S. communism; and also - page 226/227 and notes to these pages - for the very contradictory ways the convention was summarized. (Starobin; Isserman; Class Struggle #4-5)

      March 6: Ghana becomes the first Black African territory to win independence from the European colonial powers, under the leadership of Kwame Nkrumah. (Prize; Almanac; Student Generation)

      March: Some of the participants from a December meeting initiated by A.J. Muste (that meeting, which drew 35 people, turned out to be the high point of the effort) formally launch the American Forum for Socialist Education as a left regroupment effort with Muste as chair. The effort is short lived. (Isserman; CrossRoads No. 52).

      May 6: Washington announces it is sending an Air Force detachment of Matador guided missiles, capable of carrying nuclear weapons, to Taiwan. the announcement is virtually ignored in the U.S. but noted in China with extreme alarm; it appears to Beijing as if the thaw of 1954-56 is being replaced by new imperialist aggressive moves. (Schurmann)

      June: Power struggle in Moscow: Khrushchev is outvoted in the Politburo, but then convenes and wins a vote in the Central Committee, the “anti-party group” of Molotov, Malenkov and Kaganovich (and others) is criticized and demoted to minor posts (but again, not subject to any legal penalty). (Nove)

      September 24: Eisenhower sends federal troops to Little Rock to enforce school integration. (Almanac)

      October 4: Sputnik I is launched. Only a few months previously, in August, the USSR had successfully fired its first Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). These steps - breakthroughs for Soviet technology and also prestige throughout the world - provided the fuel for the outcry about a “missile gap” that arose in the U.S. and was a factor in Kennedy’s campaign and election in 1960. They also were apparently key factors in Mao ZeDong’s speech in November 1957 in Moscow - where he attended the international meeting of communist parties, see below - in which he asserted that “the east wind prevails over the west wind,” implying a shift in the world balance toward the socialist camp - a perspective which was at the core of Soviet doctrine at the time. He is also quoted as saying in that speech that “the socialist camp must have one head, and that head is the Soviet Union; the communist and workers’ parties of all countries must have one head, and that head is the Soviet Communist Party.” (Century; Schurmann)

      October 15: Soviets sign a secret agreement on sharing nuclear technology with China which may include a promise to provide China with a sample of an atomic bomb. The Soviets unilaterally abrogate this agreement in June 1959 (see entry below) and both the agreement and its renunciation only become public in 1963 with the Soviet signing of the Test Ban Treaty. (Schurmann)

      November 16: “Declaration of Communist and Workers Parties of Socialist Countries” issued in Moscow after meeting of 12 ruling communist parties; from November 16-19 representatives of 64 parties meet in Moscow and unanimously adopt the declaration, though later the world learns of the intense struggles that went on in preparing it especially between the Soviets and the Chinese. This is the “Moscow Declaration” argued over in the Sino-Soviet polemics of 1962-64. The Declaration also sets off a fight in the CPUSA over whether to “adopt” the declaration. Finally adopted at February 1958 National Committee meeting after John Gates’ resignation (Polemic on the General Line; Haywood; Century).

      Fall: Clark resigns from CP in September; Daily Worker forced to shut down because Foster group withholds funds in December; a little later Gates resigns from CP. (See Isserman; Haywood gives January 1958 for date of Gates resignation)

      Fall: Harry Haywood completes For a Revolutionary Position on the Negro Question for the internal fight in the CP, later adopted as an official position of the POC and much later (1975) reprinted and heavily promoted by the October League. (Haywood)

      Fall: A newspaper ad against nuclear tests sparks the formation of the National Committee for a SANE Nuclear Policy. Over the next couple of years peace activism grows on campuses: a Student SANE is formed. In spring 1959 the AFSC sponsors the formation of a Student Peace Union (SPU). At the other end of the political spectrum, the Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) is formed in September 1960 at William F. Buckley’s family manor in Connecticut. (Gitlin)


      AFL-CIO expels the Teamsters for “unethical conduct.” (Goines chron; Frontline, April 10, 1989)

      “Battle of Algiers,” systematic use of torture by French troops, beginnings of antiwar movement inside France. (Student Generation)

      Founding of the Situationist International, some of whose ideas (though often reduced only to slogans) became prominent in the French upheaval of 1968. (NLR #174/March-April 1989)

      Publication of Jack Kerouac, On the Road (Viking, New York); Robert Lindner, Must You Conform?; Vance Packard, The Hidden Persuaders; Lewis Coser and Irving Howe, The American Communist Party: A Critical History, 1919-1957 (Boston, Beacon; also cited as New York, Frederick A. Praeger); Theodore Draper, The Roots of American Communism (New York, Viking) - Draper’s American Communism and Soviet Russia appears in 1960; Paul Baran, Political Economy of Growth (Monthly Review Press, New York) - important in radical literature around imperialism, center/periphery, development/underdevelopment models - and reprinted as a Modern Reader book in 1968; the novel On the Beach - about the aftermath of nuclear war - is a bestseller, the movie version follows in 1959; Anna Louise Strong, The Stalin Era (Mainstream, New York)


      January: China begins its “Great Leap Forward” - scrapping the five-year plan approved at the Eighth CPC Congress - with backyard steel furnaces, people’s communes, etc.; the Central Committee vote to proceed is actually at the end of 1957. (Trial; Jacoby; NYT/2-20-97; Century)

      June 16: Supreme Court bans denial of passports to suspected Communists, including Paul Robeson, who had been denied a passport in 1952 after a visit to the USSR. (Goines chron)

      June: Now that Gates has resigned and the Dennis/Foster leadership declare victory over revisionism, at this month’s CP NC meeting Robert Thompson issues an anti-factional ultimatum to the “anti-revisionists.” (Haywood)

      June: Socialist Party Convention approves merger with the Max Schachtman-led Independent Socialist League (of which Michael Harrington is a member, and a key figure in ISL’s Young Socialist League); after a summer referendum, in the fall ISL’ers enter the SP. (Isserman)

      July 14: Overthrow of the Hashemite monarchy in Iraq removes the “home country” of the U.S.-sponsored “Baghdad Pact.” Iraqi troops had been ordered to attack Syria and detach it from the just-formed United Arab Republic with Egypt (which is dissolved in 1961), but the troops, influenced by rising Arab nationalism, turned around to overthrow the pro-U.S. regime. Two days later U.S. Marines land in Lebanon to protect the right-wing government of Camille Chamoun, which had been engaged in battles with Arab nationalists in that country. Three days later British paratroopers land in Jordan to shore up the regime of King Hussein, which was also under nationalist pressure. (Roots; Barnet; Second Cold War)

      July: Most serious confrontation yet over the “offshore islands” of Quemoy and Matsu between China and Taiwan backed by the U.S. (an earlier crisis over these islands had taken place in spring 1955). Chiang Kai-shek’s “rollback regime” had deployed 100,000 troops on the islands trying to provoke China and push the U.S. into backing with force his ambitions to return to the mainland. Many charge the Soviets with giving little if any support to the Chinese; others argue that the Soviet nuclear umbrella over China existed and was a major force in restraining the U.S. from “unleashing” Chiang Kai-shek. (Peck on China; Second Cold War; Century for November Khrushchev letters; Handbook; Schurmann)

      August 16-17: Folks from the “Marxist-Leninist Caucus” in the CPUSA, some expelled and some quitting the party, form the “Provisional Organizing Committee to Reconstitute the Marxist-Leninist Communist Party (POC)” (Haywood gives name as “Provisional Organizing Committee for a Communist Party” and a slightly different account) at founding convention in New York. Harry Haywood (who resigns quickly, on October 25), Ted Allen and Noel Ignatin are among the founders, Armando Roman is chosen general secretary. About 70 members. (ARC45-50; Ignatin; Haywood; Class Struggle No. 1).

      December 15: Mao resigns from the presidency of China and is replaced by Liu Shaoqi, a loss of power for Mao that he only regains in the summer of 1966 just before the launching of the Cultural Revolution. See also July 1959 entry below on the end of the Great Leap Forward. (Schurmann; Hobsbawm; Trial; Century)


      First Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) Aldermaston march in Britain. CND peaks in 1960-61 and is in decline by 1963. (Student Generation; Hall-S)

      World Peace Council founded in Prague. (Newport in Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1986)

      Publication of John Kenneth Galbraith, The Affluent Society (Boston, Houghton Mifflin) which Hobsbawm cites as one of the “major texts of Golden Age reformism” along with Daniel Bell, The End of Ideology (New York; Collier, 1960, also cited as Glencoe, Illinois, Free Press, 1960), Anthony Crosland, The Future of Socialism, and Gunnar Myrdal, Beyond the Welfare State, all written between 1956 and 1960.

      Publication of C. Wright Mills, The Causes of World War III (Simon and Schuster, New York); Facing Reality: New Society, Where to Look for It, How to Bring It Closer by Grace Lee (Boggs) and C.L.R. James (Correspondence Group, Detroit).


      January 1: Batista flees Cuba, for a brief moment a military junta takes power but the next day a general strike paralyzes the country and Che Guevara’s column enters Havana; on January 8 Fidel arrives in the city. The Cuban Revolution triumphs. Huge impact throughout Latin America and on the emerging New Left in the U.S. (Gosse; Gitlin; Che)

      April 16: John Foster Dulles resigns as U.S. Secretary of State; he dies a month later. He and his brother - Allen Dulles, long time head of the CIA, are among the most hard-line and belligerent anticommunists in high posts in the U.S. government. (Schurmann)

      Spring: Tibetan rebellion against Chinese rule, suppressed by military force. (Schurmann)

      June 20: Soviets unilaterally abrogate a secret agreement on sharing nuclear technology with China that had been signed October 15, 1957, apparently as a condition of détente with the U.S. and the U.S. not giving nuclear weapons to West Germany. (Among the background facts is Mao’s statement that even if half of mankind died in a nuclear war, the result would be the other half building socialism. Also, according to Schurmann, the 1957 Agreement was secret and both it and the fact that the Soviets had abrogated it in 1959 according to the Chinese as “a gift to Eisenhower” [whom Khrushchev would meet at Camp David in September - see below] were revealed only in 1963 when the Soviets signed the Partial Test Ban Treaty with the U.S. against strenuous Chinese objections.) Also according to Schurmann, this Soviet reversal on nuclear weapons was the “great blow that sparked the split between China and Russia” - “the Sino-Soviet split began in the summer of 1959.” At the same time, the Chinese perceived that the Soviet’s were pursuing a detente that would preserve the status quo on Taiwan, due to lukewarm Soviet support for China during the confrontations with the U.S. and Taiwan over Quemoy and Matsu in 1954 and again in 1958; and the Chinese also were unhappy with the Soviets apparent tilt toward supporting India in the first Sino-Indian border clashes in August-September 1959 (even heavier clashes occurred later, in October 1962). (See Jacoby, Polemic on the General Line; Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; also see Second Cold War and its citing of John Gittings, The World and China, 1922-1972, London, 1974; Peck on China; Schurmann; Century; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 3).

      July 8: Major Dale Buis and Sgt. Chester Durand killed are the first U.S. soldiers killed in Vietnam. (Karnow)

      July: Bitter internal fight in CPC ending with Mao’s “Great Leap” effectively abandoned. It had been slowed earlier, with Mao replaced as head of state on December 15, 1958 by Liu Shaoqi, though Mao remained chair of CPC. At least partially due to the policies of the Great Leap, China experiences “probably the greatest famine of the twentieth century” (Hobsbawm) in 1959-61. At the same time, the “Lushan Meetings” of party leaders in July and August are debating the implications of the Soviet abrogation of the nuclear agreement, and as a result the Minister of Defense, Peng Tehuai, who is a strong advocate of a close alliance with the Soviets and reliance on them for technologically sophisticated weaponry, is purged. (Hobsbawm; Trial; Century; Schurmann)

      Summer: In Dissent Irving Howe attacks C. Wright Mills’ The Causes of World War III for being too anti-American and pro-Soviet; Mills replies “as regards [U.S.] foreign policy, from what, tell me, do you dissent?” In fall 1961, Howe in Dissent co-authors an article “New Styles in Fellow-Traveling” essentially an attack on the New Left, and in October 1963 (Isserman [wrongly?] says 1962) a meeting between Dissent editors and SDS leaders ends in impasse over Dissent’s insistence that anticommunism must be a pillar of any new left. (Isserman; Gitlin)

      September 15-27: Khrushchev visits the U.S. where he meets with Eisenhower in “the spirit of Camp David.” Immediately following Khrushchev’s meeting with Eisenhower he flies to Beijing for the Tenth Anniversary celebration of the PRC, but he receives an icy welcome from Mao and other Chinese leaders; Khrushchev never returned to China. The AFL-CIO under George Meany had opposed Eisenhower’s invitation to Khrushchev to visit the U.S. (Polemic on the General Line; Second Cold War; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 3; Century; Schurmann)

      December 10: Seventeenth Convention of CPUSA opens in New York, with the party decimated by losses in membership since 1956/57 - perhaps down to about 5,000 members or less after having 20,000 in 1956. Gus Hall gets the post of General Secretary; Dennis has a stroke just before the convention. (Dennis)


      Group led by Sam Marcy (“Global Class War Caucus”) leaves the SWP to form the Workers World Party; a key issue is their defense of the Soviet role in Hungary - which was similarly a key issue in the formation of the POC. They approach POC but are rebuffed. (Ignatin; GCW)

      Studies on the Left begins publication in Madison, Wisconsin, carrying C. Wright Mills’ “Letter to the New Left” in its premier issue. The magazine is largely the product of graduate students of William Appleman Williams; it moves to New York City in 1964 with James Weinstein then playing the key editorial role. (Student Generation; Aronowitz)

      The San Francisco Mime Troupe is founded - initially called the R.G. Davis Mime Troupe - led by R.G. Davis. In 1960, Peter Schumann founds the Bread and Puppet Theater in New York City. (Mime)

      The American Socialist journal - founded by the Cochran-Clarke faction after its split from the SWP in 1953 - ceases publication. (Noia)

      Forty-six day strike against seven New York hospitals by Local 1199 - then a small local of mostly pharmacists - marks the beginning of a new wave of organizing the mass of hospital workers; though 1199 does not win recognition this time it scores some gains and lays the basis for recognition and contracts in the 1960s. (Hard Times No. 87)

      Congress passes the Landrum-Griffen Act, allowing restrictions on mass picketing and outlawing secondary boycotts. (Green)

      German SPD at its Congress at Bad Godesberg and adopts a new program eliminating references to Marxism, celebrating a mixed economy, accepting German membership in NATO and generally moving way to the right of previous official stance.

      (NLR #145 & 131)

      Publication of Century of Struggle by Eleanor Flexner (Cambridge, Harvard University Press)


      January: The Student League for Industrial Democracy (SLID) changes its name to Students for a Democratic Society: SDS. (Sale)

      January: Albert Camus dies in auto crash at 46 in the first week of the year. (Gitlin)

      February 1: The start of the sit-in movement when four Black college students refuse to move from a Woolworth’s lunch counter in Greensboro North Carolina. By September 1961, more than 70,000 people will have participated in sit-ins for civil rights. (Carson)

      March 17: Eisenhower (secretly) approves CIA training of Cuban exiles to overthrow the new revolutionary regime. As U.S. hostility to Cuba rises, U.S. liberals and radicals form the Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC) in early 1960. Starting with a small handful of members the group grows to 7,000 members in 25 chapters and 40 student groups. FPCC helped coordinate Fidel’s visit to New York in fall 1960 (see below) and led protests against the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. It sponsored trips to Cuba, and one in July 1960 included Amiri Baraka (then LeRoi Jones), Robert F. Williams and Harold Cruse. The group declined afterwards and went out of existence in 1963. (Che; Goines chron says Eisenhower’s approval was February 17; CrossRoads No. 46; Kelley; and for details on FPCC see Van Gosse’s book Where the Boys Are: Cuba, Cold War America and the Making of a New Left)

      March 21: Sharpeville massacre in South Africa, 69 people protesting pass laws are killed, ANC is banned soon after, it turns to armed struggle. (Frontline Supplements September 30, 1985 and January 19, 1987)

      April 16-18: Founding conference of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in Raleigh, North Carolina, the organization which spearheads the freedom struggle in the South over the next five years. The meeting was called by Ella Baker, executive director of SCLC, but she resisted efforts to subvert SNCC’s autonomy. The meeting draws more than 120 Black activists representing 56 colleges and high schools in 12 southern states and the District of Columbia, as well as a dozen southern white students and representatives of various other student and reform organizations. Marion Barry is chosen as SNCC’s first chair, the organization launches a newspaper, the Student Voice. SNCC establishes a fuller organizational structure and clarifies its goals and strategies at its second conference October 14-16, 1960 in Atlanta. Following the conference Chuck McDew becomes SNCC chair, and he serves until 1963 when John Lewis is elected. (Carson; Prize)

      At SNCC’s founding meeting, Guy Carawan, then musical director of the Highlander Folk School in Monteagle, Tennessee, brings the song We Shall Overcome - which already has a long history in the Black freedom movement - into the sit-in movement and it becomes the anthem of the Civil Rights Movement. Highlander is an important institution in bringing together and training networks of civil rights activists (one of whom was Rosa Parks); it had been founded as one of many “radical labor colleges in 1932, it was directed from 1933 to 1973 by Myles Horton. Highlander was forced to close by segregationist pressure in 1959, it reopened in Knoxville as Highlander Research and Education Center, and then moved in 1972 in New Market Tennessee, and survived into the ‘70s. The Southern Conference Educational Fund (SCEF), founded in 1938, and its newspaper, The Southern Patriot, launched 1942, also play an early role in building support for SNCC, especially among southern whites; the organization is left-identified and one of its leaders, Carl Braden, serves a year in jail in the late 1950s for refusing to answer questions before HUAC. (Carson; Prize; King; Gitlin; Radicalism; Left Encyclopedia; Southern Patriot various issues)

      April: Publication of Long Live Leninism! by the Chinese Communist Party, opening public ideological salvo in the emerging Sino-Soviet split. Chinese allege it is a response to CPSU attacks on CPC at various Congresses of CPs around the world. In practical terms, the CPC in this dispute also alleges that during this year the Soviets renege on economic agreements, withdraw technical advisers, etc. - see July entry below. (Trial; Polemic on the General Line p59 & p533 & other pp.; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 3)

      Spring: Protests, including a vigil at San Quentin prison largely made up of UC Berkeley students, surround the execution of Caryl Chessman, a convicted rapist who had eloquently pleaded his innocence. (Goines; Gitlin; Viorst; Streets)

      May 1: U-2 spy plane shot down over Russia, pilot Francis Gary Powers captured alive. U.S. response justifying the spy missions rather than apologizing for the intrusion leads to the failure of May 16 Paris Summit, and, according to Roy & Zhores Medvedev, along with the 1962 Cuban missile crisis is a key factor in Soviets decision to try to end overwhelming U.S. military-technological superiority; that is, shifting (beginning in 1961 and consolidated by 1964 with the fall of Khrushchev) from “minimum deterrence” to the pursuit of “strategic parity” and the capacity to fight a protracted nuclear war. (Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; Second Cold War; Almanac)

      May 9: FDA approves the first oral contraceptives - “the pill.” Within six years one out of five American women of childbearing age has a prescription (Goines chron).

      May 13: HUAC opens hearings in San Francisco, police hose protesters down the City Hall steps with 31 arrests; genesis of the film “Operation Abolition,” made by HUAC but so “camp” it became a recruiting film for the new left. (Goines; Gitlin Rorabaugh)

      Spring: Socialist Workers Party (SWP) launches a youth group, the Young Socialist Alliance (YSA) (O’Brien)

      June 30: The Congo wins independence from Belgium under left-wing leader Patrice Lumumba. (Second Cold War; Almanac)

      July: Sudden recall of 1,390 Soviet advisers, academics and engineers from China, taking blueprints and plans with them; 343 contracts and 257 scientific and technical projects are scrapped as a result. (FEER/ Revisionism; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 3; Schurmann)

      August 27: Mob of whites attack desegregation demonstrators in Monroe, North Carolina, where armed self-defense advocate Robert F. Williams heads NAACP chapter. Williams is charged with kidnapping a white couple, flees to Cuba, lives there until 1966, then goes to China, then in 1968-69 goes to Tanzania and returns to the U.S. September 12, 1969. During this period he continues to publish the Crusader - which he had launched while in the U.S. - promoting revolutionary nationalism and armed struggle. James Forman, who had come from Chicago with other freedom riders to support the movement, is present in Monroe. (Carson; SalesJr; ; Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978; Guardian, April 26, 1972 & September 27, 1969)

      September 19-October 13: U.N. General Assembly Session attended by top leaders of most of the socialist countries. Khrushchev addresses the assembly on September 23 and again on September 28, where he pounds his shoe on the table and utters his widely publicized “we will bury you” remarks (he means economically, but the image popularized in the West drops out this point). Fidel Castro also attends the Assembly, but rather than stay at a fancy downtown New York Hotel he and the Cuban delegation stay in Harlem at facilities arranged by Malcolm X then still with the Nation of Islam. The Cubans receive an enthusiastic reception in Harlem, Fidel and Malcolm hold a well-publicized two-hour meeting at the Theresa Hotel. (Century; SalesJr.)

      November 8: John F. Kennedy beats Vice-President Richard Nixon in a close contest for the presidency. (Almanac)

      November 6-30: Meeting of 81 Communist and Workers Parties in Moscow, issues the “Moscow Statement” frequently referred to in later Sino-Soviet polemics. Again, intense struggle at the meeting, some of which only comes to light later. Liu Shaoqi is the CPC’s delegate to the conference, and his inability to deflect Soviet attacks on China (often by proxy through attacks on Albania) while China is in the midst of grave difficulties - the famine following the Great Leap, along with Soviet withdrawal of advisers - is, according to Schurmann, a “humiliation” for him. (Polemic on the General Line; Century; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 3; Schurmann)

      December 20: The National Liberation Front (NLF) of South Vietnam is officially launched. (Schurmann; Century)


      Universities and Left Review and The New Reasoner merge in Britain to form New Left Review, Stuart Hall is first editor. Later (1962-64) there is an editorial and political change in NLR as Perry Anderson becomes editor and the magazine becomes more distinctively (or perhaps “orthodox”) Marxist. (Hall-S; MR October 1981; 1993 Resignation Statement in DCR-3)

      The Folk Music Boom: Through the late 1950s and early ‘60s Pete Seeger is kept from a mass audience - and instead restricted to performing in left-wing enclaves - because of the blacklist. But he (and the other members of the Weavers and others) are a large if often behind-the-scenes influence in the growing popularity of folk music via Peter, Paul and Mary, the Kingston Trio and others. According to Gitlin, folk music “was the main bridge between red-diaper babydom and the rest of their generation.” (Gitlin)

      ILWU, West Coast longshore left-wing union led by Harry Bridges, negotiates the Modernization and Mechanization (M&M) pact, allowing new technology into the industry in return for lifetime job security for those already employed, pension benefits and other items. (CrossRoads No. 27; Aronowitz in SR March-April 1979/reprinted in Socialist Register 1980)

      Malcolm X begins editing Mr. Muhammad Speaks to the Blackman newspaper in Harlem, which soon becomes simply Muhammad Speaks and its offices move to Chicago. By the late 1960s the paper has a 300,000-a-week circulation, and in the very early 1970s 650,000-a-week, second largest of any weekly newspaper in the U.S., and covers many issues from an anti-imperialist perspective. Muhammad Speaks ceased publishing after the 1975 death of Elijah Muhammad, his son Wallace renamed the paper The Bilalian News and it folded up 3-4 years later. (Woodford in Underground)

      Timothy Leary and assistant Richard Alpert (later Baba Ram Dass, author of Be Here Now in 1971) begin psilopcybin research project at Harvard and hold psychedelic sessions on their own outside the university. In 1961-62 he begins to use LSD. In May 1963 Albert and Leary are fired from Harvard and they accelerate their campaign promoting widespread use of psychedelics. (Acid)

      Huge demonstrations of up to a million people in Japan against the renewal of the U.S.-Japan Security Pact; the Japanese CP and the Zengakuren student federation are the central mobilizers. Eisenhower is forced to cancel a proposed trip to Japan. (Katsiaficas; Apology)

      A decade of major demographic changes: world population is 3 billion (an increase of 17% from 1950; U.S. population is 179.3 million (16% increase); between 1950 and 1960 U.S. suburbs grow 40 times faster than central city areas, and automobile registrations increase by 22 million. California population is 15.7 million (increase of 33%). (Goines chron; Davis in NLR #143/Jan-Feb 1984)

      And finally, there is an overall “social revolution” in the nature of life pushed by urbanization, technological change and its spread to previously unaffected areas, etc.: Hobsbawm writes: “For 80% of humanity, the Middle Ages ended suddenly in the 1950s, or perhaps better still, they were felt to end in the 1960s.”

      Publication of The Great Contest: Russia and the West, by Isaac Deutscher (London, Oxford University Press; U.S. Ballantine paperback in 1961)


      January 3: U.S. severs relations with Cuba. (Che)

      January 31: Eugene Dennis dies. (Dennis)

      February 12: Congolese Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba is murdered by a Belgian mercenary in the service of secessionist leader Moise Tshombe, after being handed over to Tshombe by President Joseph Kasavubu who had conducted a coup against Lumumba. Joseph-Desiré Mobutu, who had become a CIA “asset” in 1959, gains a high post in the army. Over the next several years mercenaries and Belgian troops are employed by the regime to fight rebellions by followers of Lumumba. (Century; Second Cold War; Barnet; Almanac; SF Examiner and SF Chronicle September 8, 1997 in BMOV-6)

      March 1: President Kennedy announces formation of the U.S. Peace Corps. (Goines chron)

      March 13: Kennedy gives his major speech announcing the Alliance for Progress for Latin America, which includes some pressure on the most right-wing regimes and oligarchies for reforms while acting as a cover for increased counterinsurgency programs and the soon-to-come Bay of Pigs invasion. (Goodwin; Second Cold War)

      April 17: Bay of Pigs invasion, a failure by April 19; protests against the U.S. role on U.S. college campuses. At Berkeley, Max Schachtman gives a speech giving qualified endorsement to the invasion - he is opposed by the Berkeley YPSL chapter led by Hal Draper. (Almanac, Isserman; Century; Che)

      April: Bob Dylan, recently arrived in New York, opens for John Lee Hooker at Gerde’s Fold City, makes a splash, is soon signed by Columbia Records, and releases a series of albums that deeply affect popular music and the emerging protest movements. (Rock & Roll; Gitlin)

      May 4: First “freedom riders” (sponsored by CORE) leave Washington, D.C. in two buses; on May 14 a white mob in Anniston, Alabama burns one of the buses and beats up the riders on both. The riders are beaten again when they regroup and reach Birmingham the next day. CORE leaders discontinue the freedom ride, but SNCC activists continue with further efforts, on May 20 riders including John Lewis are beaten in Montgomery. On May 21 1,000 Blacks gathered in Martin Luther King’s First Baptist Church are besieged by a white mob and it takes federal marshals and national guardsmen to protect those inside. The Kennedy administration tries to get the protesters to stop and “cool off”; its reluctance to protect demonstrators or press for civil rights at home while proclaiming democratic freedoms abroad has a major radicalizing impact on SNCC and others. A Freedom Riders Coordinating Committee is formed by representatives of SNCC, CORE and SCLC and in the following months hundreds ride and are arrested. The Interstate Commerce Commission rules segregation in bus and train terminals is illegal on September 22. (Carson; Gitlin)

      August 13: “The Wall” goes up in Berlin amid a simmering Berlin crisis. The crisis provided the climate for congressional approval of new President Kennedy’s plans for expansion of U.S. non-nuclear forces, as Kennedy and McNamara move to establish a counter-guerrilla capacity in the armed forces and begin to direct priorities toward anticipated interventions in the Third World. Major influences on U.S. policy-makers are the 1959 victory of the Cuban Revolution, and then in 1962, the achievement of Algerian independence; Henry Kissinger is one of the voices warning that without a buildup of counterinsurgency capability the U.S. will not be able to win “limited wars” that cannot be prevented by the threat of Massive Retaliation. (Almanac; Student Generation; Gitlin; Century; Klare)

      Late summer: The activist National Indian Youth Council is founded by Clyde Warrior and others in Gallup, New Mexico, among other activities it publishes a broadside entitled Americans Before Columbus.. (Hurricane; Crazy Horse and COINTELPRO give other dates for the NIYC’s founding)

      September 1-6: First Formal Non-Aligned Summit in Belgrade, with 25 countries participating. Over the following decades the Non-Aligned Movement holds periodic Summits, conferences, and various-level consultative meetings, as does its various sub-committees and executive committee. The group is a major force in world politics in the later 1960s and the ‘70s, but declines after the mid-1980s. (Black Scholar December 1976; Century)

      September-October: James Forman goes to work at SNCC National Headquarters in Atlanta and a week later agrees to become executive secretary (Carson)

      October: 22nd Congress of the CPSU, height of criticism of Stalin whose body is removed from the Lenin mausoleum, new CPSU programme is adopted. Khrushchev also attacks Albanian Party, Zhou Enlai walks out of the Congress, full dimensions of Sino-Soviet split become apparent to U.S. communists. (Nove; Ignatin re: impact on POC; Polemic on the General Line).

      November 1: Some 50,000 women demonstrate around the country against the resumption of nuclear tests, the beginning of the Women Strike for Peace organization, which reaches its peak membership in 1963. (Gitlin; Left Encyclopedia)

      December 16: First action by Umkhonto we Sizwe, armed wing of the ANC. (Frontline Supplement January 19, 1987)


      New Politics magazine, an advocate of “third camp” socialism begins publication. It folds in 1978 and is revived in 1986. (Frontline, March 30, 1987)

      Freedomways magazine, “A Quarterly Review of the Freedom Movement” is launched (Freedomways, Fall 1961/Vol. 1. No. 3)

      MPLA militants attack the Luanda prison, launching the armed struggle in Angola that in 1974-1976 will prove pivotal in the history of southern Africa and Portugal, and also in the history of the New Communist Movement and international Maoism. (LSM News No. 13)

      The Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) is founded in Nicaragua (NLR #164)

      The July 26th Movement and Popular Socialist Party (the traditional CP in Cuba) join together to form the Communist Party of Cuba; the formal establishment of a unified Marxist-Leninist Party takes place in 1965 and the First Congress in 1975. (Line of March No. 11)

      Formation of the Eritrean Liberation Front and launching of armed struggle “14 months before Ethiopia’s formal annexation of Eritrea.” (MR June 1978)

      Nasser issues widespread nationalization decrees, turns to Soviet Union for economic help, especially in the Aswan Dam project which is completed in 1964. (Storm)

      Motown produces its first major hits (Goines chron);

      Founding of Amnesty International by London lawyer Peter Benenson (Goines chron).

      Publication of John Howard Griffen, Black Like Me.


      January 31: Under U.S. pressure the Organization of American States (OAS) votes to expel Cuba. On February 3 Kennedy orders a total embargo on U.S. trade with Cuba. The next day the Cubans issue the Second Declaration of Havana as a reply to the OAS underlining Cuba’s support for revolutionary struggle throughout the Americas. (Che)

      February 16-17: Initiated by Harvard’s Tocsin group, a coalition of peace organizations sponsors lobbying and a demonstration opposing the resumption of nuclear testing at the White House which draws 4,000-8,000, the largest White house demonstration since the effort to stop the execution of the Rosenbergs in 1953. Kennedy has his aides bring an urn of hot coffee to the demonstrators marching in the snow. (Gitlin)

      Spring: Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM) founded by a core of activists at Central State College in Wilberforce, Ohio and others. The group was largely inspired by the ideas and work of Robert F. Williams, had links to Malcolm X and played a role in pushing SNCC toward more nationalist positions, Sales Jr. says an attempt to synthesize a revolutionary nationalism on the basis of the ideas of Malcolm, Marx, Lenin and Mao, Kelley says this was the “first Black Maoist-influenced organization in history.” RAM published a bi-monthly called Black America and a newsletter RAM Speaks. (SalesJr; Kelley; CrossRoads Sustainer Notes January/February 1992; Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978; Carson discusses RAM but says its founding date is 1964; Nationalism says it is 1963).

      June: Port Huron “founding convention” of SDS, which approves and issues the most widely read manifesto of the New Left, the Port Huron Statement. In the aftermath, the executive committee of SDS’s “parent” group, the League for Industrial Democracy (LID) meets secretly, fires SDS staffer Al Haber and changes the locks on the SDS office. A compromise is soon worked out but the incident has lasting impact especially in shaping the New Left’s image of “democratic socialism/social democracy.” (Sale; Isserman; Gitlin)

      July 1: Progressive Labor Movement (later Party) is formed at a New York City gathering, led by people who split/were expelled from the CPUSA; they had been publishing PL magazine since January. Key leaders: Milt Rosen, Fred Jerome, Wally Linder, Mort Sheer, Bill Epton (PL Vol. 10, No. 1; Costello; O’Brien; Sale; Five Retreats)

      July 3: Algerian independence struggle ends in victory; France transfers sovereignty to the new republic (Almanac; Said in NLR #180)

      July 23: Fourteen nation declaration on the neutrality of Laos is adopted in Geneva in a great power attempt to defuse and control the fighting and crisis in that country. In May an important base of the rightist forces had fallen to the Pathet Lao and their allies; the Seventh fleet was dispatched to the Gulf of Siam May 12, then a tripartite (neutralists, rightists and the leftist Pathet Lao) coalition government was announced June 11, to be backed up by the 14-nation declaration. The country is effectively divided into different zones of influence. (Schurmann)

      September: Revolution in North Yemen brings Nasserite forces to power on the borders of Saudi Arabia and British-ruled South Yemen/Aden. (Second Cold War).

      October 2: Riots at “Ole Miss” attempting to prevent James Meredith’s admission; it takes federal troops to restore order. (Prize)

      October 11: Pope John Paul XXIII opens the Second Vatican Council (“Vatican II”) which holds four sessions, continuing under Pope Paul VI after John Paul’s death on June 3, 1963. The Council closes December 8, 1965. The Council’s pronouncements on human development and social justice are a major spur to progressive Catholic activism in the 1960s and 1970s, including the evolution of Liberation Theology. (Boyte; Almanac; Century)

      October 22-29: Height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, which had begun to build in August. Kennedy gives his speech announcing a “quarantine” of Cuba on October 22. Kennedy-Khrushchev agreement - in which the Soviets have to back down and withdraw their missiles from Cuba, though the U.S. does have to agree not to invade the island - ends the crisis, which brought the world closer to nuclear war than any other episode of the Cold War. (Second Cold War; Almanac; Gitlin; and many)

      Fall: Large-scale armed conflict on India-China border, Chinese accuse Soviets of backing India (Polemic on the General Line)

      December 15: First salvo in the new round of the CPC’s polemics “against modern revisionism”: “Workers of All Countries, Unite, Oppose Our Common Enemy!” (in Whence the Differences) The new round continues into and through 1963 and until July 14, 1964. (The CPC does not mention CPSU by name until after CPSU’s March 30, 1963 Open Letter.) See those years for details. (Trial; Polemic on the General Line/Whence the Differences)


      “Turn” in POC toward hairsplitting doctrinairism and away from the small amount of practice it had engaged in (Ignatin).

      “Turning Point” (which had changed its name in 1954 to the Communist League), only remnant of late-1940s small “anti-revisionist” efforts to survive past 1950, folds up. (ARC45-50).

      Workers World Party launches Youth Against War and Fascism (Sale, p. 174) (O’Brien) credits YAWF with holding the first anti-Vietnam War demonstration in the U.S. during this year; but (Spoke) says the first organized demonstrations take place in August ’63 during the annual commemorations by U.S. pacifists of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. (Sale; Spoke; O’Brien)

      James and Grace Lee Boggs lead a split from the Correspondence group and relaunch a new Correspondence with a different viewpoint; Correspondence fades and in the 1970s James and Grace Lee Boggs establish the National Organization for an American Revolution. The remaining members of the pre-1961 Correspondence group, led by Martin Glaberman and supported by C.L.R. James, change their name to Facing Reality. Facing Reality, which published a newsletter Speak Out, often carrying the writings of C.L.R. James, lasts until the 1970s. (James; MR October 1993; Wald)

      C. Wright Mills dies at age 45 of a heart attack. (Gitlin)

      Publication of Michael Harrington, The Other America: Poverty in the United States (The Macmillan Company, New York, and then Penguin Books in paperback); Rachel Carson, Silent Spring (Boston, Houghton Mifflin), which is often credited with launching the modern environmental movement. Also, first CPC explicit anti-CPSU polemic (noted above); Conversations with Stalin, by Milovan Djilas (New York, Harcourt); Doris Lessing’s novel, The Golden Notebook;


      May 2: Dr. Martin Luther King’s Birmingham campaign to end segregation in that city takes off; in the buildup, in April, King wrote “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” while in custody. Children and youth march on May 2 and again on May 3, when police arrest 500 and disperse demonstrators with dogs and firehoses and photographs attract attention across the nation and the world. More demonstrations and arrests follow; a settlement that is a substantial victory for the Civil Rights Movement is announced at the end of the week, but then a racist bombing of Rev. A.D. King’s parsonage leads to confrontations and the city threatens to explode. But the agreement holds and the Birmingham victory is a watershed for King. (Parting the Waters)

      June 11: Buddhist Monk Thich Quang Duc burns himself to death in Saigon to protest religious persecution by the Diem government. (Fact Sheet; Goines chron)

      June 11: Kennedy gives nationally televised speech on civil rights, at the mid-point of a 10-week period after the Birmingham settlement in which there are 758 demonstrations and 14,733 arrests in 186 cities. (for figures, see Parting the Waters) Just after midnight that night, Medger Evers, Field Secretary of the NAACP in Mississippi, is assassinated from ambush in Jackson and he dies in the early morning hours of June 12. (Carson; King; Freedom; Parting the Waters)

      June 14-17: Pine Hill (New York) Convention of SDS issues America and the New Era statement, the last broad, consensus manifesto of the organization. (Gitlin; Sale)

      June 22: Martin Luther King visits the White House, is warned to break all ties with alleged communists Stanley Levinson and Jack O’Dell by Burke Marshall, then Robert Kennedy, then President Kennedy himself. (Parting the Waters)

      March-July: Height of open polemics between the CPSU and CPC: CPSU Open Letter to CPC March 30; CPC’s influential A Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement June 14; and CPSU’s Open Letter to Communists of the Soviet Union July 14. The CPC’s ideological charges of “Khrushchev’s revisionism” in its June 14 Proposal center on the CPSU’s alleged deviations from Marxism-Leninism on the questions “peaceful coexistence,” “peaceful transition,” “peaceful competition,” the “state of the whole people” and the “party of the whole people” (sometimes abbreviated as “the three peacefuls and the two wholes”). CPC’s “nine comments” on the Open Letter begin September 6; the first six appear in 1963, the others in 1964 ending July 14 (which see). In the third comment the CPC argues that capitalism has been restored in Yugoslavia, the first statement of theirs on how a socialist country could become a capitalist country. (Trial; Polemic on the General Line/Whence the Differences; Myth). In direct party-to-party meetings attempting to bridge the gaps, Deng Xiaoping, then Secretary General of the CPC, heads a delegation that visits Moscow in June-July; Schurmann argues that a central goal of his trip was to try to dissuade the Soviets from signing the Test Ban Treaty with the U.S. and instead prioritizing an alliance with China above detente with U.S. imperialism, a goal that was not met. This proves to be the last formal contact between high-level leaders of the CPC and CPSU until 1989. (NYT/2-20-97; Deng). While Sino-Soviet talks are in progress, and just before a meeting of the U.S.-USSR and Britain, the CPSU publishes its second Open Letter. (Polemic on the General Line)

      August 5: Test Ban Treaty (often called the Partial Test Ban) banning aboveground nuclear tests signed in Moscow by U.S., USSR and Britain. China refuses to sign and the Soviet decision to sign the pact is a key factor in the Sino-Soviet split; right after the signing, on August 15, the Chinese release a statement for the first time revealing the secret nuclear-sharing pact with the Soviets of 1957 and the Soviet unilateral abrogation of the agreement in 1959. (quoted in Schurmann) Along with John Kennedy’s American University speech in early June saying “we must re-examine our attitude toward the Cold War...” and inauguration of the Washington-Moscow “hot line” on August 30, this is the high point of the what the Medvedevs called the first of the “interludes of comparative sanity” in the Cold War, “both initiated on the Soviet side,” this one “Khrushchev’s policy of peaceful coexistence (1955-63).” Halliday’s slightly different periodization says Cold War I was from 1946 to 1953 (Stalin’s death, truce in Korea); Period of Oscillatory Antagonism 1953-1969; Detente, 1969 (with Nixon’s ascent to the presidency)-1979; Cold War II 1979 to 1986-87. (Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; Century; Isserman; Gitlin; Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; Second Cold War; Schurmann)

      August 9: Formation of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) after a faction including Robert Mugabe breaks away from the Zimbabwe African People’s Union led by Joshua Nkomo (Black Scholar September 1978)

      Early August: Mao ZeDong issues his “Statement Supporting the Afro-Americans in Thier Just Struggle Against Racial Discrimination by U.S. Imperialism”; according to Kelley, Robert F. Williams happened to be in China at this time and was a catalyst for Mao issuing this statement; other sources identify Williams as a catalyst for Mao’s 1968 statement in support of the Afro-American struggle - see April 1968 below. (Kelley)

      August 27: W.E.B. Du Bois dies in Ghana at 96. (CrossRoads No. 28)

      August 28: 250,000 demonstrate in DC for civil rights, Martin Luther King gives “I Have a Dream” speech, John Lewis speaking for SNCC is forced to modify parts of his speech under tremendous pressure. (Carson; Freedom; Reunion; Prize; Marable)

      September 15: Four young Black girls killed in bombing of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham. (Prize)

      September: SDS National Council meeting in Bloomington, Indiana finalizes plans for ERAP - the Economic Research and Action Project, which sends organizers - including many of SDS’ leaders - into the cities to organize the poor. Tom Hayden, whose paper with Carl Wittman “Toward an Interracial Movement of the Poor?” is influential, goes to Newark. (Sale; Reunion)

      November 1: Military junta backed by U.S. overthrows Diem regime in South Vietnam, Diem and his brothers are executed. (Fact Sheet)

      November 22: John Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas. Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson becomes President. Malcolm X says that the assassination represents the “chickens coming home to roost” in white America, allegedly the reason Malcolm is suspended from the Muslims in December 1963. (Almanac; Allen)

      Fall: Grassroots Conference held in Detroit, Malcolm X gives his later famous “Speech to the Grassroots Conference,” RAM and its larger network, the Black Liberation Front of the U.S.A., plays a prominent role. (CrossRoads Sustainer Notes January/February 1992)

      December: British hand over power in Kenya to government led by Jomo Kenyatta, after brutal repression had defeated the earlier, more militant and radical Mau Mau rebellion of 1952-1960. (MR May 1985)


      The Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) is established in Washington, D.C. (various IPS-published materials in BMOV-7; Barnet)

      Reunification of most of the world Trotskyist movement, which had been split into two main tendencies in 1953, into the United Secretariat of the Fourth International. The U.S. Socialist Workers Party decision to participate in this reunification, which meant uniting with the “Pabloists” who allegedly had revised classical Trotskyism, provokes the formation of an opposition Revolutionary tendency within the SWP, which itself splits and whose members, leaving and expelled from the SWP, form the Spartacist League and the Workers League. (Fourth; self-published material in D-5)

      Founding Conference of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. (Black Scholar, Jan-Feb 1978)

      U.S. Army Caribbean School in Panama, founded in 1949, is renamed the U.S. Army School of the Americas and a new curriculum is introduced emphasizing training in counterinsurgency. The School - dubbed by the left the “School of the Assassins” is later moved to Fort Benning Georgia. (Klare)

      Publication of two books that will have a huge impact on the decade: (1) The Wretched of the Earth by Frantz Fanon (New York: Grove Press) Fanon had died of leukemia at 36 [or 37] in 1961 at a U.S. military hospital in Washington, D.C. (MR May 1969); An MR October 1975 bibliography cites the publication date as 1968, while the Black Scholar July-August 1986 says the book appeared in French in 1961 and English in 1965); (2) Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique (New York: Dell), a key salvo in beginning the “second wave” women’s movement;

      Also publication of Clark Kerr’s (President of UC) Uses of the University with all its juicy quotes concerning the role of the University in serving government and business (Goines chron); James Boggs, The American Revolution: Pages from a Negro Worker’s Notebook (Monthly Review Press, New York); Open polemics continue between CPSU and CPC, including CPC’s A Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement (noted above); The Making of the English Working Class, by E.P. Thompson (London) - the Vintage edition paperbound (Vintage, Random House, New York) widely distributed in the U.S. appears in 1966;


      January 23: Adoption of 24th Amendment to the Constitution ending the poll tax. (Goines chron)

      January: President Johnson declares a “War on Poverty,” it and the concept of a “Great Society” are themes of his public appearances throughout the spring, the first anti-poverty legislation is passed the day after the Tonkin Gulf resolution is approved in August. (Pillar; Wei)

      January: The Beatles revive rock & roll as I Want To Hold Your Hand hits the charts. In February they go on their first U.S. tour and on April 4 Beatles records hold the top 5 positions on the Billboard charts. (Top 40; Goines chron)

      February 1: A new program of covert warfare against North Vietnam goes into effect. On March 17, a new National Security Memorandum (NSAM 273) is approved that substantially expands the scope of U.S. objectives in Southeast Asia from helping the South Vietnamese government win its war to a full-scale U.S. defense of the country and the region. A right-wing coup disrupted the tripartite coalition government in Laos in April, and though formally the coalition is patched together in fact the country is now divided into two sides with the “neutralist” government serving as a figurehead for the right. Fighting within Laos intensifies and some neutralists, unhappy with the new government arrangement, go over to the Pathet Lao. These developments, in turn, lead to the beginning of U.S. bombing of Laos on May 17, which continued right down to February 1973. The administration tries to suppress the news of the strikes but the information is semi-public and published in, for example, Aviation Week and Space Technology magazine June 15, 1964. On June 6, 1964 the first U.S. plane is shot down over the Plaine des Jarres. (Schurmann)

      February/March: Nationwide one-day boycotts of school to protest segregation and poor quality of education; over 20,000 Black students boycott in Boston; 464,000 Black and Puerto Rican students boycott nationwide (Goines says on March 3) (Hunter-Green; Goines chron).

      March 8: Malcolm X formally breaks with the Nation of Islam. (By early ‘60s, NOI had grown to 200 temples, over 50,000 members and many more sympathizers). On March 12 he announces the formation of the Muslim Mosque, Inc. On April 13 (elsewhere SalesJr. says April 22) he leaves for his pivotal hajj to Mecca. On June 28 the founding rally of his new organization, the Organization of Afro-American Unity (OAAU) is held. Bill Epton among others is introduced to the rally as an invited guest. Malcolm goes to Africa again in the fall. (SalesJr.)

      March: Conference at Yale calls for antiwar actions which take place on May 2, including a march of 1,000 in New York to the U.N. PL initiates the “May 2nd Movement” (M2M) out of this action. In the spring, PL launches a weekly newspaper, Challenge. (Sale; Five Retreats; PL Vol. 10, No. 1)

      March: First “fish-in” for Indian fishing rights in the Pacific Northwest, activists of the NIYC recruit Marlon Brando to participate and he does. (Hurricane)

      May 1-4: Fist National Afro-American Student Conference on Black Nationalism held in Nashville, initiated by RAM-linked Afro-American Student movement (Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978)

      May 28: Palestinian National Council proclaims the establishment of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Jerusalem. This is largely an initiative of the Arab governments who hope to control the emerging Palestinian guerrilla movements, such as the Arab Nationalist Movement (founded in 1953 by George Habash, and later to give rise to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine/PFLP) and Fatah, formed in 1958. (Roots; Palestine)

      June 19-21: W.E.B. Du Bois Clubs of America, CPUSA-initiated youth and student group, is founded as a national organization at a convention in San Francisco. (Fighting; O’Brien; MLQ Vol. II, No. 2)

      Summer: Mississippi Summer, hundreds of white students go south, Robert Moses of SNCC, who had spearheaded earlier voter registration efforts in McComb and elsewhere in Mississippi, plays the leading role. Civil rights workers Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner and James Chaney are killed near Philadelphia, Mississippi on June 22 (Prize says 21), their bodies are discovered August 4. (On October 20, 1967, 7 Klansmen - of 17 charged, are convicted on federal charges, the first-ever convictions by a Mississippi jury for racist crimes.) In the aftermath of Mississippi Summer comes one of the most pivotal experiences for the Black freedom movement, the entire anti-racist movement and the new left: the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party challenge to the segregationist official delegation is rebuffed at the Atlantic City Democratic Convention in late August, with Hubert Humphrey and other whites with long liberal and civil rights credentials playing hatchet-man roles for, or at best caving in to, Lyndon Johnson. During the battle, Fannie Lou Hamer’s testimony before the Credentials Committee is broadcast to the country in network television; Johnson tries to prevent it by calling an impromptu press conference. (Carson; Goines chron; Prize; Gitlin; Freedom; Pillar)

      Summer: Ken Kesey’s Merry Pranksters careen around the country in a bus labeled “Further” driven by beat hero Neal Cassady. By fall 1965 Kesey and friends are sponsoring “Acid Tests” linking up with the Hell’s Angels and generally shaking up the “counterculture,” and serving as the topic for Tom Wolfe’s The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test (New York, Bantam, 1969). (Acid; Gitlin)

      July 2: Civil Rights Act of 1964 passed in Congress; it is signed by President Johnson on July 3; later it is upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court. (Spoke; Goines chron; Prize says bill is signed on the 2nd)

      July 13: Opening of the Republican Convention in San Francisco which nominates Goldwater; protests at convention organized largely by UC students. (Branch; Goines chron)

      July 14: Publication of the CPC’s Ninth Comment (see below), reportedly written by Mao himself unlike most of the earlier eight comments; this polemic first introduces the notion that the restoration of capitalism might be imminent in the USSR. The thesis that capitalist has already been restored is first publicly asserted in a series of articles in the Chinese press in late 1967, collected in the 1968 collection How the Soviet Revisionists Carry Out All-Round Restoration of Capitalism in the USSR. (Trial; Polemic on the General Line/Whence the Differences; Myth)

      July 18: Harlem erupts in the first of what will become five years of Black urban rebellions. According to Haywood, p635, there are 24 uprisings in 1964. (Allen p126 says 15) On August 5, Bill Epton of PL is indicted for criminal anarchy (Sale, p. 136) and he is convicted on December 20, 1965. (Sale; PL Vol. 10, No. 1)

      August 2: Gulf of Tonkin incident, U.S. fabricates “unprovoked” attack on U.S. ships by North Vietnamese torpedo boats; Congress passes the “Tonkin Gulf Resolution” which is the flimsy “legal” basis for the Vietnam War on August 7. U.S. planes bomb many areas in North Vietnam on August 15. (Spoke; Almanac; Fact sheet; Raskin/Fall; Gitlin)

      August 22: MFDP leader Fannie Lou Hamer’s testimony about conditions in Mississippi before the Credentials Committee at the Democratic Party National Convention is on TV before the entire country - see summer entry above. Gitlin writes: “Atlantic City and the Gulf of Tonkin together, in the fateful month of August 1964, drew a sharp line through the New Left’s Sixties. Before that, liberalism posed a dilemma. After, it was an obstacle.” (Carson; Goines chron; Prize; Gitlin; Freedom)

      August 22: Palmiro Togliatti dies, he is succeeded as head of the PCI by Luigi Longo. (Century)

      September 11: SNCC activists begin a trip to Africa arranged by Harry Belafonte; a crucial experience in the further ideological formation of SNCC. John Lewis and Don Harris unexpectedly encounter and meet with Malcolm X on the trip; after their and Malcolm’s return, Malcolm and the OAAU and SNCC begin to forge extensive ties. (Carson)

      September 27: Release of the Warren Commission Report saying that Lee Harvey Oswald acting alone had assassinated John F. Kennedy. The Report becomes the subject of constant criticism over the following years. (Gitlin)

      Fall: Free Speech Movement at Berkeley. United Front forms on September 17; Jack Weinberg arrested on October 1 and the car is surrounded through October 2; FSM formed October 3; November 20 Regents meeting stonewalls FSM; December 2 Sproul Hall sit-in, with largest mass arrest in California history on December 3. Strike begins, Greek Theater meeting on December 7 where Savio is prevented from speaking followed by rally of 10,000-plus; Academic Senate passes FSM program on December 8, Mario Savio’s birthday. (Goines, Sale, Rorabaugh)

      Fall: Proposition 14 backlash against anti-discrimination laws in housing in California; passes in November, boosting George Murphy in his successful campaign for the Senate. The first in what Mike Davis (NLR #128) called “the polarization of the southern [Calif.] suburbs against campuses and ghettoes offered a model laboratory for contriving united fronts of middle class and white working class backlash against integrated housing (1964-65), abolition of the death penalty (1965, 1976), the rights of farm labor (1972), school busing (1979) and property taxes (1978).” (Goines; Rorabaugh)

      October 14: It is announced that Martin Luther King is the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for 1964. (Pillar; Almanac)

      October 14-15: Khrushchev is ousted as head of the CPSU, Leonid Brezhnev is the new First Secretary (later the term General Secretary is reinstated). (Nove; Century)

      October 15: The Chinese explode their first atomic bomb; there is considerable discussion in Washington both before and after this of risking a “surgical strike” to destroy China’s nuclear capacity. (Schurmann; Branch; Century)

      November 3: Johnson swamps Goldwater in presidential election. Goldwater had won the GOP nomination on a conservative insurgency against the “Eastern Establishment” and the American Conservative Union - first of the new conservative groups which will feed into the New Right of the coming decades - is founded to institutionalize the “draft Goldwater” movement. 1964 also sees the founding of the Richard A. Viguerie Corporation, which masters the art of direct-mail fundraising for the right wing. Goldwater did carry five southern states (and his native Arizona) and in fact this election begins the racial realignment in voting patterns which will shape the coming decades, with African Americans voting overwhelmingly Democratic and a white-backlash shift to the Republicans, codified by Richard Nixon as his “southern strategy.” Ronald Reagan is a key spokeperson for Goldwater in California. (Almanac; Davis in NLR #128; Second Cold War; Pillar)

      November 5-8: SNCC retreat at Waveland Mississippi, a turning point in “SNCC’s transformation from being simply a militant civil rights organization to becoming a major source of radical ideas and strategies”; among the 37 discussion papers written for the 160 staff members was one on the status of women in SNCC, and there is a workshop on the status of women at the retreat. (Carson; Evans)

      November 7: M2M (200 members at this time) issues “We Won’t Go” statement - first of what will later become a flood (Sale).


      Initial breakup of YPSL in fight over Schachtman’s increasing turn to the right within the SP (the youth group is reconstituted by the SP later in the ‘60s). Many former YPSL’s join the new Independent Socialist Club at Berkeley led by Hal Draper, which becomes the model for the formation of other such Clubs around the country. (Isserman)

      Southern Student Organizing Committee (SSOC) is formed; it soon affiliated with SDS as a “fraternal organization” and disbanded as a casualty of SDS’s internal factional battles June 8, 1969. (Sale; Guardian, June 28, 1969)

      The Medical Committee for Human Rights (MCHR) is formed to support the Civil Rights movement; it goes on to be active in the anti-Vietnam War movement as well and has 34 chapters by 1971 (Guardian, July 14, 1971)

      End of the year: 23,300 U.S. troops are stationed in Vietnam, technically as “advisers.” (Goines chron)

      First edition of The Socialist Register, which will become an annual collection of left articles edited by Ralph Miliband and John Saville. (Socialist Register 1971)

      CPSU-CPC Polemics: Publication of the Seventh, Eighth and Ninth comments from CPC; Ninth is On Khrushchev’s Phony Communism and Its Historical Lessons for the World, published on July 14; it first introduces the notion that the restoration of capitalism might be imminent in the USSR. (Trial; Polemic on the General Line/Whence the Differences According to “Trial,” it is also in 1964 that Lin Biao - through whom Mao has reasserted control over the army after the purge of Peng Tehuai following the Lushan meetings in 1959 - orders publication of Quotations from Chairman Mao ZeDong (the famous “Little Red Book” or “Red Book”), and Schurmann says that “years before the Cultural Revolution began [when the Red Book began to proliferate throughout China and abroad], the soldiers of the PLA were reading the little Red Book.”

      Nelson Mandela convicted for planning and carrying out sabotage and imprisoned on Robben Island (Frontline Supplement January 19, 1987)

      Military coup ends civilian rule in Brazil, starts 15-plus year period of severe repression. (MR February 1984)

      Forbes Burnham ousts progressive Cheddi Jagan as Prime Minister of British Guiana culminating a subversion campaign by the CIA and the British, Burnham is thus Prime Minister when the British colony, which had won “internal self-government in 1952, declared independence as Guyana May 26, 1966 (Barnet; Almanac)

      Communist Party of India (CPI) splits into CPI and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), somewhat but not completely along the lines of the Sino-Soviet split. (Links No. 5; NLR #159)

      Publication of Venceremos! Mexican-American Statement on Travel to Cuba!, the first radical manifesto written by Mexican American students, by Luis Valdez and Roberto Rubalcava, after returning from Cuba on a trip sponsored by Progressive Labor. Valdez goes on to join the San Francisco Mime Troupe and then found Teatro Campesino in 1965. (Muñoz; Mime).

      Also published: SNCC: The New Abolitionists, by Howard Zinn (Boston, Beacon Press); One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society, by Herbert Marcuse (London, Routledge, and Boston, Beacon Press) - paperback 1966; William Appleman Williams, Contours of American History (New York, Quadrangle Books) - a key work in the “revisionist” radical history outpouring of the ‘60s, and - along with the works of James Weinstein and Gabriel Kolko and Martin Sklar - popularize the notion of “corporate liberalism” which Aronowitz calls “probably the most influential doctrine of American historiography in the 1960s and 1970s” (source: Aronowitz); Oliver C. Cox, Capitalism as a System (Monthly Review Press, New York)

      .Publication also of the first “underground paper” of the ‘60s era, the Los Angeles Free Press. It is soon followed (August 13, 1965) by the first issue of the Berkeley Barb. These begin an underground press explosion: 5 papers in 1965, a dozen by 1967, 500 plus 1,000 more on college campuses in 1969. (Underground; Goines chron, Rorabaugh).

      California becomes U.S. most populous state. (Goines chron)


      January 1: A unit of Fatah launches its first armed attack against Israel, the “fedayeen” are born. (Roots)

      January: The Movement newspaper is launched, initially as the monthly newsletter of California Friends of SNCC. (Movement February 1968)

      February 1: Martin Luther King and 770 others arrested in Selma while demanding an end to discrimination in voting requirements. Malocolm X, invited by SNCC, speaks at a mass meeting in support of the campaign later in the week. (Pillar)

      February 7: Massive bombing of North Vietnam - Operation Flaming Dart I - ordered by Johnson. Operation Rolling Thunder, which was sustained bombing of North Vietnam rather than specific “reprisal raids,” began on March 2. It lasted until October 1968, and after a “lull,” took place until the end of U.S. participation in the war. Soviet leader Kosygin is in Hanoi the day the bombs begin to fall; he is offering stronger support to the Vietnamese than had been the case under Khrushchev. On his way back to Moscow Kosygin stops in Beijing and sees Mao, but their meeting is cold, Mao rejects any public declaration of joint solidarity with Vietnam, and whatever mild thaw that existed in Sino-Soviet relations after Khrushchev’s fall is ended.(Spoke; Sale; Fact Sheet; Schurmann)

      February 21: Malcolm X assassinated. Later that year The Autobiography of Malcolm X is published, which becomes “must reading” for late ‘60s radicals. (SalesJr)

      March: “Filthy Speech Movement” in Berkeley. (Goines)

      March 4: Augustus Owsley Stanley mixes his first commercial batch of LSD (Goines chron).

      March 7: Activists in the Selma (Alabama) movement attempt to march and are stopped and beaten at the Edmund Pettus bridge. The episode gets nationwide attention and sparks the famous Selma to Montgomery march -- see below. (Freedom)

      March 8: First U.S. marine infantry units (there are already 23,000 “advisers” present) arrive in Vietnam. (Spoke; Sale; Fact Sheet)

      March 11: Civil rights activist Rev. James Reeb dies of injuries from being beaten in Selma. On March 15 Johnson goes before a full session of Congress to present the 1965 Voting Rights Act - which is passed and then signed into law on August 6 - and utters the words “we shall overcome.” (Carson; Freedom; Prize)

      March 19: SDS-sponsored demonstration and sit-in at Chase Manhattan Bank near Wall Street intended to make the links between U.S. banks and corporations and apartheid and more generally promote a radical, anti-imperialist perspective. The issue is rapidly overshadowed by the escalating war in Vietnam. (Gitlin-World; Sale)

      March 21-25: Selma to Montgomery March led by Martin Luther King, starts with 3,200 and swells to 25,000. March is guarded by 4,000 federal troops. Viola Liuzzo killed while driving back to Montgomery after transporting Freedom Marchers to Selma. The next day, Stokely Carmichael quietly enters Lowndes County to begin the work which culminates in the formation of the Lowndes County Freedom Organization (LCFO). Organizing for LCFO goes on for the next year (see May 1966), the group picks the black panther as its symbol for the ballot and becomes popularly known as Black Panther Party; inspiration for Huey Newton and Bobby Seale choosing name for their organization. (Carson; Goines chron; Freedom)

      March 24: First anti-Vietnam War “teach-in” at the University of Michigan, a rousing success; within two months, there are more than 100 others. Largest is May 21-22 at Berkeley (following “Vietnam Day” protest there) with 35,000 participating at one time or another. Perhaps the most famous is at Rutgers in April, where Professor Eugene Genovese says “I do not fear or regret the impending Viet Cong victory in Vietnam. I welcome it”; his comments become a central issue in the fall New Jersey governor’s race as the Republican candidate campaigns for his dismissal. (Sale; Spoke; Mellen in Viorst).

      April 15-18: Progressive Labor Movement reorganizes at a conference to become the Progressive Labor Party (PLP, or simply PL), claiming a membership of 600. (Five Retreats says a membership of 300). PL activists take a day from the convention to attend the SDS-led anti-Vietnam War march - see next entry. (Five Retreats; PL Vol. 10, No. 1; O’Brien; Spoke; Sale - who errs in saying this conference is in 1964)

      April 17: SDS-led demonstration against the Vietnam War. First major nationwide demo draws 15,000 - many more than expected - and sets a precedent in not disavowing the sponsorship of communist-linked groups and by letting anyone carry whatever signs they wanted, including pro-NLF; another crisis with LID and key experience in red-baiting from liberals and social democrats. Paul Potter’s “name the system” speech. Robert Parris Moses of SNCC also speaks at the rally. (Sale; Spoke)

      April 21: Pedro Albizu Campos, Puerto Rican nationalist leader dies after spending 24 of his last 28 years in prison; 100,000 attend his funeral on the island. (Torres; Puerto Rico)

      April 28: U.S. Marines intervene in the Dominican Republic to crush a constitutionalist revolt against a conservative regime that had come to power in a 1963 coup. (Almanac; Century; Barnet)

      July 25: Bob Dylan is booed at the Newport Folk Festival for playing electrified folk-rock. His new style is a popular success: “Like a Rolling Stone” goes to the top of the charts. In the same genre, Barry McGuire’s “Eve of Destruction” hits No. 1 in August five weeks after its release though it is banned on many stations. Later in the year the music industry promotes Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler’s “Ballad of the Green Berets” and the political battles are on the airwaves. (Rock & Roll; Gitlin)

      July: Full text of The Confessions of Nat Turner appears in this month’s issue of Negro Digest (later Black World) magazine. (Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1987)

      August 6-9: On the 20th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, the Assembly of Unrepresented People meets in Washington, D.C. The weekend gives rise to the National Coordinating Committee to End the War in Vietnam (NCCEWV), first of several umbrella coalitions to organize demonstrations against the war over the next decade. Initially coordinated from Madison, Wisconsin, A.J Muste is prominent in the group. A few weeks before the Assembly, a number of young men burned their draft cards in New York and attained national media attention, sparking Congress to pass a bill making draft card burning illegal. Prominent in organizing the draft card burnings - and later in draft resistance and antiwar activity - was the War Resisters League, a radical pacificst group founded in 1923 whose membership grew rapidly during the anti-Vietnam War period: in 1973 it reached 15,000 members with 30 local and four regional offices. (Spoke; Aronowitz; Nonviolent)

      August 11-16: Black uprising in Watts, lasting for six days, 34 killed, 1,000 injured and 4,000 arrested, fire damage estimated at $175 million. Two days of uprisings in Chicago. (CrossRoads No. 22; Goines chron; Prize; Almanac; Allen p126 says 9 total in 1965.)

      August: Constituent Congress founds the MIR, Movement of the Revolutionary Left in Chile. It unifies previously-divided organizations with a strong Trotskyist influence, but the new group adopts positions that cannot be narrowly categorized as belonging solely to one doctrinal tradition. (MIR History)

      September 3: New China News Agency publishes Lin Biao’s Long Live the Victory of People’s War, which becomes a major reference point for late 1960s/early ‘70s revolutionaries worldwide; its formulation that “the contradiction between the revolutionary peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America, and the imperialists headed by the United States is the principal contradiction in the contemporary world” is “probably the most frequently quoted analysis within the mother country anti-imperialist movements” according to Red Papers No. 2 Ironically, by the time the new revolutionaries of the U.S. and elsewhere are basing their political efforts on this analysis, this position is no longer the position (if it ever thoroughly was) of the Chinese Communist Party - see entry on the CPC rejecting joint action proposed by the Japanese CP in February-March 1966 below and entry on the CPC Ninth Congress in April 1969 below. Lin’s article, with its focus on the role of the world “countryside,” is, among other things, a polemic against the perspective of building a united front of the socialist countries. In November, the CPC publishes Refutation of the Leaders of the CPSU on United Action, which for the first time explicitly calls the Soviet Union a capitalist country (according to Trial - Myth says this assertion is first put forward in 1967); Luo Ruiqing is deposed at the same time. (Trial; Five Retreats; Red Papers No. 2; Mellen in Viorst)

      September 8: Filipino workers of the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee walk out of 33 grape ranches in the Delano area in California’s Central Valley. Eight days later, on September 16 - the anniversary of Mexican independence from Spain in 1810 - the mainly Mexican and Chicano members of the National Farm Workers Association, formed in 1962 and led by César Chávez, vote to join the strike and the central battle of the 1960s farmworkers struggle for justice is underway. A 300-mile march to the capital in Sacramento is the highlight of the effort in 1966, and the strike and boycott lasts until victory is won July 29, 1970. The two groups soon merge to form the United Farmworkers Union (UFW). (Muñoz; Chicano; Agbayani)

      October 1: After an abortive move by leftist officers to prevent a right-wing military coup, the Indonesian military moves to take effective control of the country and crush the left. Over the next few weeks a reign of terror ensues and between a half million and one-and-a-half million communists, workers and peasants are massacred. Before the massacre the PKI had been the largest non-ruling Communist Party in the world with an estimated membership of 3 million. General Suharto becomes Army chief on October 14 and head of state Sukarno becomes essentially a figurehead. Both the PKI and Sukarno had had good ties with the CPC, which is seriously affected by the Indonesian events. (Century; Five Retreats for CPC’s relationship with CPI & Sukarno; China Alliance; Links No. 2; Hobsbawm; Schurmann)

      October 3: Immigration Act abolishes the national origins quota system and removes discriminatory restrictions on Asian immigration. (Wei)

      October 4: SDS and LID officially sever ties. (Sale, p. 239; also see note there on the LID-linked ILGWU’s support for the war and for the invasion of the Dominican Republic.)

      October 15-16: First International Days of Protest against the War in Vietnam; sponsored national by the NCCEWV, Berkeley’s Vietnam Day Committee is prominent; likewise New York’s Fifth Avenue Peace Parade Committee which had been formed on Labor Day weekend. (Spoke)

      November 2: Norman Morrison, a 32-year-old Quaker, immolates himself a few hundred years from Defense Secretary Robert McNamara’s office to protest the Vietnam War. Between 1965 and 1970, a total of 8 Americans burned themselves to death in similar protests. (Spoke)

      November 11: White Rhodesia under Ian Smith issues a Unilateral Declaration of Independence to maintain white minority rule in Zimbabwe; shortly afterwards ZANU and ZAPU take steps to begin armed struggle. (Black Scholar September 1978)

      November 18: Casey Hayden and Mary King issue Sex and Caste: A kind of memo to a number of other women in the peace and freedom movements, later published in Liberation magazine, April 1966. (Evans)

      November 24: Then colonel and army chief of staff Mobutu seizes power in the Congo in a military coup welcomed (if not instigated) by Washington. As Mobutu consolidates his rule, he changes the country’s name to Zaire in 1971 and changes his own name to Mobutu Sese Seko. (Almanac; SF Examiner and SF Chronicle September 8, 1997 in BMOV-6)

      December: U.S. forces in Vietnam reach 385,300, not including 60,000 men on the nearby U.S. naval fleet and 33,000 stationed in Thailand. (Goines chron)


      US Organization founded in Los Angeles under the leadership of Maualana Ron Karenga, originator of the Doctrine of Kawaida which includes the “seven principles of Blackness” Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self-determination), Ujima (collective work and responsibility), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia (purpose), Kuumba (creativity) and Imani (faith). (Black Scholar November 1973)

      Rodolfo “Corky” González founds the Crusade for Justice (Muñoz; Chicano)

      Ralph Nader’s book Unsafe at Any Speed is published and has a wide impact. General motors makes a clumsy attempt to destroy Nader’s reputation and Nader wins a lawsuit against them. He uses part of the proceeds to found the Center for Study of Responsive Law, which is the flagship for the emerging field of “public interest law.” He later founds the organization Public Citizen to promote “public interest politics.” (Boyte)

      Publication of The Autobiography of Malcolm X, by Malcolm X with the assistance of Alex Haley (Grove Press, New York) and Malcolm X Speaks (George Breitman, ed., New York, Grove Press); The Vietnam Reader: Articles and Documents on an American Foreign Policy Crisis, edited by Marcus Raskin and Bernard Fall (Vintage/Random House)- a revised and updated edition is published in 1967; Vietnam: History, Documents and Opinions on a Major World Crisis, edited by Marvin E. Gettleman (New York, Fawcett Publications); The Free World Colossus by David Horowitz (Hill and Wang, New York); Letters from Mississippi, edited by Elizabeth Sutherland (McGraw-Hill);

      Publication of Refutation of the Leaders of the CPSU on United Action and Lin Biao, Long Live the Victory of People’s War - see September above. (Trial)


      January 3-13: Tricontinental Congress of revolutionary groupings from throughout the globe is held in Havana, 100 countries are represented. The delegates found the Organization of Solidarity with the People of Asia, Africa and Latin America (OSPAAL) which publishes Tricontinental magazine. The Cubans promote a “left” position different from both the Soviets and the Chinese. (Szymanski; Century; Barnet)

      January 6: SNCC issues statement opposing the Vietnam War and in essence supporting draft resistance, two days following the murder of SNCC worker Sammy Younge Jr. SNCC’s executive committee had earlier supported the SDS-initiated April 1965 antiwar march, and a few months later would take an all-out draft resistance stand and develop a national anti-draft program. On January 10, Julian Bond was denied the seat in the Georgia State Legislature to which he had been elected because of his support for SNCC’s antiwar stance; it takes a year for him to win his case at the Supreme Court. (Allen, Carson)

      January 21: SDS begins publication of New Left Notes as a weekly newspaper-bulletin. (Gitlin-World; Sale)

      January: National Coordinating Committee to End the War in Vietnam falls apart after being split at a Milwaukee conference over a proposal to make immediate withdrawal its main demand. (Spoke)

      Early February: General Lewis B Hershey, director of the Selective Service System, announces that local draft boards will be free to induct students who are in the lower levels of their classes, to be gauged by class rank (to be supplied by the universities to the government) and by a national draft exam to be given in May. (Sale p. 253: “The effect was electric.”)

      February 24: Kwame Nkrumah is ousted from power in Ghana by a military coup while abroad; he dies April 27, 1972 after publishing several books. (Century)

      February: M2M votes itself out of existence and members, mainly members of PL, go into SDS. (Sale)

      February-March: In the wake of continuing U.S. escalation in Vietnam and the threat of a wider war, leaders of the Japanese CP travel between China, Vietnam and Korea attempting to organize an anti-imperialist united front in defense of Vietnam which would include the USSR. Leading figures within the Chinese Communist Party - including Deng Xiaoping and especially Beijing mayor Peng Zhen seem open to idea, but Mao is bitterly opposed and blocks it. Delegations to a disarmament conference in Japan pushing the CPC’s line later in the year cause major problems for the Japanese CP and relations between the JCP and CPC deteriorate rapidly. Also in February, the CPSU invites the CPC to attend its Twenty-Third Congress set to begin in late March, but the Chinese refuse, publicly and with harsh attacks on the CPSU. They break off party-to-party relations with the CPSU and the combination of this step and the rejection of united action essentially severs all links between the two powers for many years. Peng Zhen is purged in April (the step is publicly announced in June) Within the next few months Mao and the PLA take steps that would lead to the beginning of the Cultural Revolution in May. According to Schurmann, it is at this time that Mao personally decided that the USSR rather than U.S. imperialism was the principal enemy of China, though public indications of this are left very vague during the most difficult years of the Cultural Revolution and the Vietnam War, through about 1971, and a definitive, all-round practical move to this position doesn’t take place until 1974-75. (Trial; Peck on China; Schurmann)

      May 9: Chinese detonate their third nuclear explosion, the same day the first article denouncing “demons and monsters” in authority appears in People’s Daily, a signal that the Cultural Revolution is being launched - see May 25 entry below. (Schurmann)

      May 11-16: Students seize the administration building at the University of Chicago in largest protest against “student rank” being provided to draft boards; protest fails (Sale).

      May 25: Fist big character poster put up at Beijing University is a key event in launching the “Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.” An official Cultural Revolution Group had been set up earlier in the year, but in the spring and summer its direction changed. On August 8 the Central Committee (at a meeting where half the members do not attend, and Mao has packed with his supporters) approves the “Sixteen Points” Resolution formally known as the “Decision of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party Concerning the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution,” and this document serves as the official manifesto of the mass campaign that now gets fully underway. Red Guard groups are formed among students and youth, the “Red Book” (Quotations for Chairman Mao ZeDong) and Mao buttons begin to proliferate throughout China. (Trial; Cultural Revolution; Deng; Schurmann)

      May: A few days after 900 Blacks in Lowndes County voted the black panther symbol in the first election (a primary) since the LFCO was organized, Stokely Carmichael is chosen SNCC chair, replacing John Lewis who had served since 1963 (Carson; Freedom).

      Spring: Ramparts magazine exposes Michigan State University’s complicity with CIA in Vietnam. (Sale)

      June 6: James Meredith shot during his March across Mississippi. Others continue his March; Willie Ricks and then Stokely Carmichael promote “Black Power” slogan on the March and it was after this use of the previously existing phrase that it caught fire. (Carson; Freedom; Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978).

      June 30: On the day that the Johnson administration announced the first bombing of oil depots in the densely populated Hanoi-Haiphong area, three army privates - the Fort Hood 3 - announce that they will refuse to serve in Vietnam. They are court-martialed and spend (reduced terms of) two years in prison. (Spoke)

      July: The Radical Education Project (REP) initiated by SDS is officially incorporated, publisher of many of the New Left pamphlets of the late 1960s. (Sale)

      Summer: Black uprisings in Chicago, New York, Cleveland and a total of 38 cities (Haywood; Allen p126 also says total is 38.)

      Summer: Martin Luther King’s “Chicago Campaign” for open housing puts a spotlight on racism in the north. But the campaign fails to win its concrete goals and is essentially defeated by the Daley machine. (Freedom; Marable)

      August 29-September 2: SDS Convention at Clear Lake, Iowa, marked by the rise of the so-called “prairie power” or “new breed” grouping who take leadership from the first generation of SDSers. The organization is rapidly changing from a relatively small circle of activists who have strong interpersonal connections into a mass organization, and it is moving “from protest to resistance.” A key document in the “prairie power” rise is Carl Davidson’s “A Student Syndicalist Movement: University Reform Revisited” published in the September 9, 1966 issue of New Left Notes and reprinted as an SDS pamphlet that fall. (Sale; Gitlin; Gitlin-World)

      September: Bayard Rustin article in September issue of Commentary attacking Black Power idea. (Carson)

      October 6: U.S. government declares LSD illegal (Goines chron, Rorabaugh)

      October 29: The National Organization for Women (initially named the National Organization of Women; NOW) is founded, Betty Friedan has launched the campaign to found the new group beginning in June. (Goines chron; Wei)

      October: Huey Newton and Bobby Seale found Black Panther Party in Oakland Merritt College. (Sale; Carson; Freedom)

      November 8: Ronald Reagan, hand-picked as a candidate by a group of right-wing businessmen, wins a huge victory over incumbent Pat Brown for the California governorship on an anti-Black, anti-student, backlash program. (Gitlin)

      December: SNCC votes narrowly to expel all whites from the organization. (Carson)

      December: The Student Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam (SMC) is formed at a conference at the University of Chicago. Initially a coalition effort that included SWP, CP and other folks, the SMC splintered in summer 1968 and by that fall was controlled by the SWP. (Spoke)

      December: 1,500 students, teachers and others representing especially the diverse strands of the Black intelligentsia attend Washington, D.C. conference on “Racism in Education,” focusing attention on Black History and how it is taught in the U.S. (Black Scholar, Jan-Feb 1987)


      RAM publishes a pamphlet The World Black Revolution calling for the creation of of a Black International and a “dictatorship of the world by the Black Underclass through World Revolution,” but also arguing that Black nationalism “is really internationalism.” A series of exposes in Life and Esquire magazines this year and stepped up repression in 1966 and 1967, along with ideological differences within it, begin to weaken the organization and it is dissolved by 1969. (Kelley)

      Farmworkers in Starr County, Texas begin a series of strikes for union recognition but are beaten by grower resistance, court injunctions and Texas Ranger repression. (Appeal Vol. 5 No. 4)

      SCLC’s Operation Breadbasket, headed by Jesse Jackson, wins its first significant victory, obtaining agreements from four large Chicago grocery corporations to carry products of Black corporations and deposit money in Black-owned banks. (Marable)

      Publication of Monopoly Capital by Paul A. Baran and Paul M. Sweezy (Monthly Review Press, New York); Fanshen: A Documentary of Revolution in a Chinese Village, by William Hinton (Vintage Books, New York - Alfred A. Knopf and Random House, by arrangement with Monthly Review Press); The Other Side, by Staughton Lynd and Tom Hayden about their trip to North Vietnam (New York: New American Library); Jack Newfield, A Prophetic Minority (New York, New American Library); Thoughts of the Young Radicals, with contributions from Stokely Carmichael, Tom Hayden and other members of SNCC and SDS, edited by the New Republic (New Republic Paperback); Barrington Moore, Jr., Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Lord and Peasant in the Making of the Modern World (Beacon Press, Boston); Mark Lane, Rush to Judgment (Holt, Rinehart & Winston Chicago, New York) - first in the wave of best-sellers disputing the Warren Commission Report of 1964;

      Release of Gillo Pontecorvo’s film Battle of Algiers.

      End of Part One

      Part Two, 1967-1970

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Five, 1981-1992

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

    2. #2
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Lightbulb Chronology Part Two, 1967-1970

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!

      February 11: A.J. Muste dies. (Spoke)

      February: Ramparts breaks the story that the CIA had been funding the National Student Association since its beginning in 1950. (Spoke)

      February: Volume 1, Number 1 of the NACLA newsletter published by the just-formed North American Congress on Latin America; the publication is transformed in 1970-72 to NACLA’s Latin America & Empire Report and in September-October 1977 the NACLA Report on the Americas. (NACLA Vol. 1, No. 1, Sept-Dec. 1986 and various other issues)

      March: Land takeover by “Naxalite” rebels in West Bengal India, followed by several years of armed struggle, the Communist Party of India Marxist-Leninist (CPI-ML) is officially formed by most factions of these rebels on April 22, 1969. Major defeats for the rebels in 1970-71, especially in wake of India’s intervention into East Bengal; many splits in the ranks. Shift in strategy away from armed struggle in 1975, a much smaller and ideologically different CPI-ML survives into the 1990s, as do the CPI and CPIM. (MR October 1971; Links No. 5; MR September 1975; NLR #159)

      March 21: General Lewis. Hershey, head of the Selective Service System, is prevented from speaking at Howard University by protesters chanting “America is the Black man’s battleground.” (Freedom; Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978)

      April 4: Martin Luther King “breaks silence” and gives a major public address for the specific purpose of condemning the Vietnam War at Riverside Church in New York, sponsored by Clergy and Laymen Concerned About Vietnam (of which he becomes co-chair the following week). (Spoke)

      April 5: Diggers, Straight Theater, Oracle, Church of One and the Family Dog hold press conference announcing the formation of a “Council for a Summer of Love” (Goines chron; SF Chron August 17, 1997 in BREV-1)

      April 15: Spring Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam - formed out of a process begun in summer 1966 by the Cleveland Area Peace Action Council and essentially the successor to the NCCEWV (A.J. Muste was the initial chair) - holds large marches in New York and San Francisco with a policy of non-exclusion. Martin Luther King and Stokely Carmichael both speak at the U.N. rally. At a conference following the march the sponsoring group changes its name to the National Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam, which became known as “the Mobe.” Following the Mobilization in New York, six Vietnam veterans who had met on the march formed Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW). The same day on the West Coast “The Resistance” is launched and takes up draft resistance work. (Spoke; Ramparts July 1971; Sale; Franklin)

      April 21: “Colonels Coup” in Greece, backed by the CIA, later the subject of the movie Z. (MR December 1972)

      April: First issue of Radical America appears; initially subtitled “An SDS Journal of American Radicalism.” (Sale; RA Vol. II No. 6))

      Spring: “New Working Class” analysis presented to SDS in paper titled The Port Authority Statement, gains influence within SDS and via SDS begins to gain currency on the broader U.S. left. (Sale)

      April 28: Muhammad Ali refuses induction into the U.S. Army, saying “I ain’t got no quarrel with them Viet Congs.” Six days earlier he had spoken to 4,500 at Howard University and in the next while he spoke frequently against the war across the country. His conviction was overturned in 1970 but he was stripped of his heavyweight championship title, regaining it in 1974. (Freedom)

      April 29: James Aronson resigns as editor of the Guardian and turns over his half ownership to the staff (which already owns the other half) after a series of political struggles that had gone on since 1964; this marks the transition at the paper from “Old Left” to “New Left,” and the masthead is changed from “progressive newsweekly” to “radical newsweekly” and later (the February 10, 1968 issue) from National Guardian to simply Guardian. With Aronson’s departure the paper loses significant Old Left financial support, and then further support when it upholds the national rights of the Palestinian people after the 1967 war. The paper develops stronger links with SDS and SNCC and New Left activists, survives, and by the end of 1969 doubled its number of pages from 12 to 24 and increased its paid readership to 24,000, the highest since the aftermath of the Wallace campaign in 1948. (Smith in Underground; Guardian May 6, 1967 and February 10, 1968)

      May 2 & 3: Black Panthers armed lobbying trip to Sacramento, Bobby Seale leads; Panthers come to national attention. The first issue of The Black Panther Black Community News Service, which began as a four-page mimeographed sheet, had been issued on April 25, after Eldridge Cleaver had joined the party as “Minister of Information.” (Sale; Abron in Underground; Freedom)

      May: SNCC elects H. Rap Brown (“Violence is as American as apple pie”) its new chair, declares itself a “Human Rights Organization,” announces it will “encourage and support the liberation struggles against colonialism, racism and economic exploitation” around the world, authorize an application for NGO status and set up an International Affairs Commission headed by James Forman. Shortly thereafter (June) SNCC is savagely attacked (not just by most of the established Jewish and Zionist organizations, but by Whitney Young, A Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin) for publication of an article (not an official SNCC position at the time) supporting the Palestinian side in the Arab-Israeli six-day war. (Carson; Reunion; Marable)

      May: Eastern area of Nigeria declares itself the independent state of Biafra; the area is oil-rich and the secessionists had some support from Western oil companies, South Africa, Israel, Portugal and China. After a long civil war, Biafra surrendered to the central government in January 1970. (Fage; Woodford in Underground; Guardian, January 24, 1970)

      May-July: Height of the Cultural Revolution, China verges on anarchy and civil war; Red Guards seize weapons being shipped across China to Vietnam to use in internal battles. On September 5 Mao sends message mobilizing the PLA to begin curbing power of the Red Guards. (Trial; Revolution Rescued)

      June 5: Reies López Tijerina leads members of a Alianza Federal de Mercedes in an armed takeover of the county courthouse in Tierra Amarilla, New Mexico as part of a drive to recapture lands stolen from the “Hispano people,” descendants of the first Spanish colonizers of New Mexico. “the first militant armed action taken by Mexican Americans anywhere in the Southwest for over a hundred years.” Tijerina is acquitted of kidnapping and other charges stemming from the raid in December 1968. (Muñoz; Chicano; Guardian December 21, 1968)

      June 5-11: Six day war in the Middle East, Israel seizes and occupies the West Bank including East Jerusalem, Gaza, the Sinai Peninsula and the Golan Heights.. On November 22 the U.N. passes Resolution 242 calling for “withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict,” but still treating the Palestinians as “refugees.” In the ensuing years the struggle to end the Israeli occupation and for Palestinian national rights steadily gains international recognition: 1n 1969 the U.N. recognized the Palestinian right to national self-determination and endorsed their armed struggle to attain that right; in 1974 the U.N. recognized Palestinian right to independence and recognized the PLO as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people (see below). (Palestine; Roots)

      Late June: Summit between Johnson and Kosygin at Glassboro, Maryland is a failure; Johnson wants to focus only on limitations on offensive strategic weapons - the Soviets had made a decision after Khrushchev’s fall in 1964 to build up their ICBM capability, and it began to show results in 1966-67 - but Kosygin insists on discussing both offensive and defensive systems (anti-ballistic missile systems), and also Vietnam and the Middle East. (Schurmann)

      June: “Back to the Drawing Boards” conference of the SDS “old guard,” disrupted by Diggers who show up from San Francisco. (Gitlin; Sale)

      July 12: Uprising begins in Newark (26 dead), the next week rebellion begins in Detroit (41 dead, bloodiest uprising in U.S. in half a century and most costly to that point in U.S. history). Also this month there are rebellions in Spanish Harlem, Rochester, Birmingham Alabama and New Britain; a total of 128 (Haywood; Allen also says 128.) While the Detroit rebellion is underway (July 25), Stokely Carmichael of SNCC arrives in Havana to attend the first conference of the Organization of Latin American Solidarity/OLAS (see below); his comments there calling for armed revolution in the U.S., among other things, are widely reported in the U.S. and leading politicians call for his imprisonment. After going to Cuba Carmichael spends four months visiting China, North Vietnam and Africa. In Newark, after the uprising, increased cooperation among Black community groups results in the formation of the Committee for a Unified Newark in 1967-68 with Amiri Baraka as a central figure (Carson; Reunion; Forward No. 3)

      July 19: Congress passes “anti-riot” bill making crossing state lines to incite riots a federal crime. (Carson)

      July: Nationwide Black Power Conference convened in Newark just after the rebellion, planning a year earlier had been initiated by Adam Clayton Powell. A third Black Power conference was held in Philadelphia August 29-September 1, 1968, drawing 3,000. (Allen, SalesJr.; Guardian, September 7, 1968) (Note: Freedom says that there were four Black Power Conferences held between 1966 and 1969)

      July: “Radicals in the Professions” conference (another is held the next year); this is also the period of efforts to organize the “Movement for a Democratic Society” (the first MDS was organized in fall 1965 in New York) and other groups for radical architects, city planners, etc. among SDS veterans now out of school. (Gitlin; Sale)

      August 1-10: First Conference of the Organization of Latin American Solidarity (OLAS) in Havana brings together revolutionary groups from throughout Latin America with the Cubans taking the lead in promoting a perspective of armed struggle. Che is now in Bolivia attempting to implement this view though this is not public knowledge. The 1966-68 period marks the greatest distance between the Cubans and Soviets, with the Cubans advocating a much more “left” perspective on Latin American struggles at the Tricontinental Congress (January 1966, see entry) and this OLAS Conference; they publish Regis Debray’s Revolution in the Revolution? and (in 1967) Che’s “Message to the Tricontinental” with its famous formulation of “two, three, many Vietnams”; and they openly criticize orthodox Latin American CPs. And January 27, 1968, the Cuban party purges the pro-Soviet “microfaction,” who are criticized explicitly by Fidel in his closing speech to the OLAS Conference. The Cuban and Soviet parties move back closer together in late 1968. Chinese-Cuban relations had deteriorated earlier, especially with the January 1966 cut off of Chinese trade-aid in rice, which the Cubans denounce as a “rice bomb.” During summer 1967, Fidel Castro says in an interview with the New York Times that “true Marxism-Leninism is not communism as it is practiced in Russia, Eastern Europe or China.” (Szymanski; Leviathan Vol. 1 No. 9; Mesa-Lago; Barnet; Gerassi and Fidel Castro in Latin American Radicalism; Guardian, February 3, 1968 & December 13, 1969)

      August: Formal Founding Convention of the National Welfare Rights Organization (NWRO), organizing has been underway since spring 1966 when on May 23, 1966 Dr. George Wiley, formerly of CORE who will become executive director of NWRO, opened the Poverty/Rights Action Center in D.C. Johnnie Tillmon, founder of ANC (Aid to Needy Children) Mothers Anonymous in L.A., is chosen chair of the NWRO Board. By 1969 NWRO has 22,500 dues paying members in 523 groups across the country and besides welfare benefits campaigns joins in antiwar and other coalitions NWRO is in decline by late 1970 as the main campaigns of its most active chapters in New York and Massachusetts lose momentum. In December 1972 Wiley resigns from the group to form the Movement for Economic Justice as a fundraising and resource center; he died at age 42 August 8, 1973, drowning while boating with his children in Chesapeake Bay. (Piven/Cloward; Boyte; CrossRoads No. 58; Southern Patriot, September 1973)

      Summer: Founding of Liberation News Service (LNS), which undergoes a bitter split in summer 1968 and folds up in the late 1970s. The less radical Underground Press Syndicate, which was later renamed the Alternative Press Syndicate in 1973, had been formed in 1966. (Wasserman, Young and Berlet in Underground; Sale; Guardian August 24, 1968; see also Ray Mungo’s Famous Long Ago)

      Summer: “Vietnam Summer”; up to 700 people work more or less full-time and 20,000 part-time to bring an antiwar message to middle class America, without much visible result. (Sale; Gitlin)

      August 25: Memo from J. Edgar Hoover instructing FBI offices to launch COINTELPRO activities against Black Liberation organizations; this is revealed only years later, after the Media, Pennsylvania break-in (March 8, 1971) and then the Senate “Church Committee” report in April 1976. (Abron in Underground)

      September 14: Federal judge orders release of Al and Margaret McSurely, Carl and Anne Braden and Joe Mulloy who had been arrested and charged with violating Kentucky’s sedition law. There is a long struggle over documents seized by the McClellan Committee, with repression focusing on Al McSurely and Margaret McSurely as an attack on the southern anti-racist movement overall. Decades later the McSurely’s win a large suit against Sen John McClellan’s estate. (Guardian, February 8, 1969; many issues of Southern Patriot; Guardian, January 24, 1973; personal recollection)

      September: National Conference for a New Politics (NCNP), held over Labor Day Weekend in Chicago, and which at least some of the organizers hoped to see as the launching pad for a Martin Luther King/Benjamin Spock presidential ticket in 1968, is polarized especially around issues of race and racism and ends in failure (Carson; Spoke; Sale; Gitlin; Echols)

      October 2: Thurgood Marshall is sworn in as the first Black Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court after being nominated by President Johnson and confirmed by the Senate. (Almanac)

      October 7: Che Guevara is captured and executed in Bolivia (Spoke)

      October 16: Stop the Draft Week begins in Oakland; this is also the day of a mass turn-in of draft cards organized by The Resistance. On “Bloody Tuesday” the 17th police brutally beat demonstrators. On Friday the 20th there are large-scale confrontations with police as the protesters use “mobile tactics” and fight back. Seven activists - the Oakland Seven - are charged with conspiracy following the demonstration, they are all acquitted on March 28, 1969. (Rorabaugh; Gitlin; Guardian, April 5, 1969; Franklin)

      October 18: At a protest against Dow Chemical company recruiters at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, police beat protesters and - for the first time - use tear gas on a college campus. (Spoke; Rads)

      October 21: Antiwar rally at the Pentagon sponsored by the Mobe; all-night gathering on the steps includes many direct interactions/confrontations between troops and demonstrators. The demonstration is the basis for Norman Mailer’s The Armies of the Night: Mailer and other notables were arrested at the action. Shortly before the march, there had been a meeting of 40 or so U.S. leftists with a Vietnamese delegation in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia. Tom Hayden testifies before the National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence in fall 1968 that after the Pentagon rally and the other events of October 1967, “resistance became the official watchword of the antiwar movement.”(Sale; Gitlin)

      October 28: Shoot out in Oakland leaves police officer dead and Huey Newton wounded; Newton is arrested for murder and “Free Huey” campaign begins. (Freedom)

      October: Late in this month, Eugene McCarthy tells Allard Lowenstein - who had spearheaded the search for a candidate to oppose Johnson in the Democratic primaries - that he will enter the race, and soon the “Clean for Gene” movement takes off. (Spoke; Gitlin)

      Fall: Battle of Khe Sanh in Vietnam begins, U.S. considers the use of nuclear weapons. Battle here continues through and after the Tet Offensive in 1968, and ends when U.S. withdraws from the area (without publicity, since Washington had previously promoted the site as a “strategic gateway between north and south”) in summer 1968. (Coates in NLR #145; Karnow; details are in Ellsberg, “Call to Mutiny” article in END papers I, winter 1981-1982, reprinted as the introduction to Protest and Survive)

      Fall: Series of articles in the Chinese press asserts publicly for the first time that capitalism has been restored in the USSR (according to Myth; Trial says this assertion is first made in November 1965 with the publication of Refutation of the Leaders of the CPSU on United Action). The articles are published in a 1968 collection How the Soviet Revisionists Carry Out All-Round Restoration of Capitalism in the USSR. About this same time, Chinese public statements begin to refer to China as the “rear area” for Vietnam, and eventually that designation is featured in People’s Daily as a quotation from Mao every time Vietnam is discussed - but the phrase had first been used in July 1966 by Liu Shaoqi who, in his last public act before being purged in the Cultural Revolution, had signed a decree in the name of the Chinese government saying that China was the “rear area” for Vietnam. But the phrase disappeared from view under Mao until late 1967. (Myth; Schurmann)

      November 30: Independence of South Yemen from Britain. (MR May 1973; Second Cold War)

      November: Lyndon LaRouche (sometimes using the alias “Lyn Marcus”), after being expelled from the SWP in 1966 and teaching several classes in radical politics to New York SDS members, forms the SDS Transit Committee which soon becomes the SDS Labor Committee or Labor Caucus and after SDS’s 1969 explosion, the National Caucus of Labor Committees/NCLC. (LaRouche; Berlet)

      December: U.S. forces in Vietnam reach 535,000, not including nearby naval fleet and troops in Thailand, the Philippines, etc. (Fact Sheet)

      December 31: Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Paul Krassner, Dick Gregory and friends announce the formation of the Yippies (Youth International Party). (Gitlin)


      Through 1967-‘68-‘69 PL takes a major turn: attacking the Vietnamese and saying “all nationalism is reactionary.” By summer 1968 it uses the phrase “Washington-Moscow-Hanoi anti-revolutionary axis” in a leaflet. By January ’69, attack on demands of SF State Strike and by summer 1969 headlines like “Panthers Shot - Nationalism Guilty” and fistfight at “United Front Against Fascism” conference July 18-20, 1969 (see below). In June 1970 Bill Epton is expelled. (Hamilton, Sale, Five Retreats)

      Studies on the Left ceases publication amid major differences within its board on the role of the journal and strategy for the left. (Aronowitz)

      United League of Mississippi is formed in Marshall County (Black Scholar March-April 1979; League Fact Sheet in BMOV-2)

      The Farm Labor Organizing Committee (FLOC) in Ohio is launched. (Chicano)

      Khmer Rouge launches armed struggle against the Sihanouk regime; the Vietnamese Party regards the step as ultra-left (SF Chronicle June 14, 1997 in BMOV-5; Revolution Rescued)

      Publication of Regis Debray Revolution in the Revolution? (Grove Press, New York, Distributed by Random House) - the book first appeared as the summer special double issue of Monthly Review; Who Rules America? by G. William Domhoff (Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1967), carefully documented study of the governing class. Also The Last Year of Malcolm X by George Breitman (New York: Merit Publishers); Bernard B. Fall, Ho Chi Minh on Revolution (New York: New American Library); Stokely Carmichael and Charles V. Hamilton, Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America (New York: Random House); Harold Cruse, The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual: From Its Origins to the Present (William Morrow, New York); Rebellion in Newark by Tom Hayden (New York: Vintage). Martin Luther King, Jr., Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? (Beacon Press, Boston) - King’s work is far more radical than his “reputation” was for a long period, this is an important and too-much-neglected book. Further: Rodolfo “Corky” González epic poem, I Am Joaqu*n, distributed by La Causa Publications (Oakland) and published in book form in 1972 (see Muñoz); James Weinstein, The Decline of Socialism in America: 1912-1925 (New York; Monthly Review Press); Carl Oglesby and Richard Schaull, Containment and Change (New York, The Macmillan Company); David Horowitz (Editor), Containment and Revolution (Boston, Beacon Press); Howard Zinn, Vietnam: The Logic of Withdrawal (Boston, Beacon Press); The Politics of Experience and the Bird of Paradise, by R.D. Laing (London, Penguin); Death at an Early Age, by Jonathan Kozol (Boston, Houghton Mifflin);

      The Buffalo Springfield’s For What It’s Worth is a pop chart hit: “What a field day for the heat...” (Gitlin)


      January 5: Dr. Benjamin Spock, Rev. William Sloane Coffin Jr. - chaplain of Yale - Michael Ferber, Harvard graduate student, Mitchell Goodman, a writer, and Marcus Raskin, co-director of the Institute for Policy Studies, are indicted on charges of conspiring to counsel draft resistance. On June 22 Raskin is acquitted and the other four are convicted; their convictions are overturned on appeal in July 1969. (Guardian, January 13 & June 22, 1968; July 19, 1969)

      January 15: Jeanette Rankin Brigade antiwar protest in Washington, D.C. mobilizes 5,000 in the first specifically women’s action against the Vietnam War. The demonstration organized mainly by a coalition of women’s peace groups sparks controversy among activists in the emerging radical women’s liberation movement (see August 1968 entry below). (Gitlin-World; Echols)

      January 23: North Korea seizes USS Pueblo, holds 83 who were on board as spies (Almanac)

      January 30-February: Tet Offensive in Vietnam, a nationwide uprising by the NLF,

      attacking 120 cities, 36 of 44 provincial capitals, and the U.S. Embassy in Saigon. Insurgents hold part of the South Vietnamese Army General Staff’s headquarters for two days. Hue was captured and held for four weeks. The offensive exposes the weakness of the South Vietnamese regime and the failure of U.S. policy. In the aftermath of Tet major figures in the U.S. begin to openly express doubts about the war: most publicly, Walter Cronkite in a February 27 CBS report declares that the U.S. is “mired in stalemate” and must negotiate a way out. (Sale; Spoke; Fact Sheet; Gitlin; Reunion; RA Winter 1977-78/Vol. 11/6&12/1 double issue; Guardian February 10, 1968 and subsequent issues)

      January: First GI coffeehouse of the anti-Vietnam War movement, the UFO in Columbia South Carolina near Fort Jackson, founded by United States Servicemen’s Fund activist Fred Gardner. Soon there are many such coffeehouses, and also an explosion of antiwar newspapers aimed at armed services personnel; 227 such papers have been identified as publishing at least one issue between 1968 and 1972. Antiwar G.I. Andrew Stapp, meanwhile, launched the American Serviceman’s Union in November 1967. (Haines in Underground; Guardian, February 10, April 27, November 2 & November 16, 1968; Guardian, April 19, 1969)

      January: Founding of the Newsreel radical film collective. (Movement July 1968; Guardian, April 20, 1968)

      February 8: Police fire on Black students protesting a segregated bowling alley in Orangeburg, South Carolina, killing three and wounding 30 more. (Carson; Freedom; Guardian, February 17, 1968)

      February 17: At a Free Huey rally in Oakland that drew 5,000, Eldridge Cleaver announces a “merger” of the Panthers and SNCC (to the surprise of many in SNCC). After many complex maneuvers, and dirty trick efforts by the FBI exploiting differences between the organizations, the abortive merger is officially ended with considerable tension in July 1968. (Carson; Abron in Underground; Guardian February 24 & August 24, 1968)

      February: 1,300 sanitation workers, nearly all of them Black, go on strike in Memphis demanding recognition of their union. Martin Luther King, then in the midst of preparations for the “Poor People’s Campaign” is invited to Memphis to speak in support of the strikers, and he does so to an audience of 15,000 on March 18. (Freedom)

      March 2: First Galaxy C-5A supertransport plane rolls off the assembly line with President Johnson on hand; the plane is promoted as giving the U.S. military a whole new capacity for long distance intervention. The first C-5A becomes operational June 6, 1970. (Klare)

      March 2: Release of the “Kerner Commission” report (officially, the Report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders: “two societies, one black and one white, separate and unequal.” The report’s recommendations for massive social programs to attack racism are rejected on the grounds that they will cost too much money. (Spoke; Guardian, March 9, 1968)

      March 3: Over 1,000 Mexican American students walk out of Lincoln High School in L.A. and later in the day some 9,000 more students join the strike at five other high schools. “The first major mass protest explicitly against racism ever undertaken by Mexican Americans,” according to Carlos Muñoz. Chicano students walk out of high schools in Denver and other cities as well. The period after the strike is the formative period of the Brown Berets, the largest non-student radical youth organization in the Mexican American community, initiated by David Sanchez in December 1967 according to the 1970 Guardian. (Muñoz; Chicano; Guardian, March 9 & 16, 1968 & November 14, 1970)

      March 12: Eugene McCarthy finishes only 230 votes short of Lyndon Johnson in the New Hampshire Democratic primary. Four days later, Robert Kennedy - who had given a major speech in the Senate March 2 opposing the war - announces his candidacy for the presidency. About this time Lyndon Johnson summons an informal blue ribbon advisory group of Washington powerhouses - the “Wise Men” - to study the Vietnam situation and give him their conclusions. They report in late March that the war cannot be won, the domestic cost is too high, Washington must begin to de-escalate and move toward getting out. (Gitlin; Reunion)

      March 15-17: Official founding convention of the Peace and Freedom Party, which runs an energetic 1968 campaign in many states with Eldridge Cleaver as candidate for President. Cleaver is on the ballot in over 19 states and gets 200,000 votes. In some other states, Dick Gregory, who had lost the P&F nomination to Cleaver, was on the ballot as an independent and he received nearly 150,000 votes. P&F retains ballot status in California to this day. (Mime; Guardian, March 30, 1968; Marable; Sale; NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985; Black Scholar October 1975)

      March 19: Sit-in becomes a building takeover (the first on a college campus) at Howard University; after 102 hours the students win most of their demands. The rebellion of Black students is becoming a nationwide phenomenon, by 1969 the revolt calling for Black Studies Departments and other demands had hit at least 50 colleges. (Freedom; Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978; Guardian, March 30, 1968)

      March 24-26: Formation of the New University Conference (NUC) at a conference attended by 350 radical academics in Chicago (Sale; Guardian, April 6, 1968)

      March 31: Two days before the Wisconsin primary, facing defeat by Gene McCarthy, and having been given the verdict of the “Wise Men” that the U.S. should begin trying to get out of Vietnam, Lyndon Johnson withdraws from the presidential race. He announces a “partial” bombing halt and invites the North Vietnamese to negotiations. North Vietnam announces acceptance on April 3, discussions about how to get talks started drag on for almost a year. The first day of the actual “Paris Peace Talks” is January 18, 1969, after the final dispute about the “shape of the table.” (Spoke; Fact Sheet; Reunion; Gitlin; Almanac)

      March: Republic of New Africa (RNA) holds its founding convention in Detroit with nearly 200 delegates. (Katsiaficas)

      Spring: Founding of the Asian American Political Alliance (AAPA) at UC Berkeley, the first organized Asian American political formation. The organization later becomes the Asian component of Berkeley’s Third World Liberation Front. In summer an AAPA group is formed at San Francisco State, and also in summer 1968 the first nationwide Asian student conference takes place, and through fall of 1968 and spring 1969 the Asian American student movement takes shape with a number of AAPA organizations being formed at various campuses and a series of “Yellow Identity” conferences held on the West Coast. Nine hundred attend the first, “Asian American Experience in America - Yellow Identity” on January 11, 1969 at Berkeley. (Louie; Wei; Interview with Bob Wing, February 1998)

      Spring: Formation of the Wisconsin Alliance in Madison, Wisconsin, initially a united front radical party, by 1970 a socialist organization; splits apart in different directions after 1976. (Strategy; self-published material of Milwaukee Alliance in BTr-2)

      Spring: Pulpwood cutters and landowners in South Alabama organize the Gulfcoast Pulpwood Association, which builds unity between Black and white workers, conducts a general strike and survives harassment and repression. The Association also leads a successful strike in Mississippi in 1971 and expands throughout the Gulf region. (Southern Patriot, June & December 1971)

      April 4: After returning again to Memphis to support the striking sanitation workers, Martin Luther King is assassinated. Uprisings follow in over 100 cities, largest rebellions are in Chicago, Baltimore, Washington, D.C. - where flames reach within six blocks of the White House and machine guns are mounted on the Capital balcony and the White House lawn - and Cincinnati. Forty-six people are killed, 2,500 injured, 70,000 troops are called out across the country to restore order. Altogether, there are 131 urban rebellions in the first six months of 1968 according to both Haywood and Allen. (Haywood; Allen; Reunion; SDS; Gitlin; Guardian, April 13, 1968; Katsiaficas)

      April 6: Li'l Bobby Hutton killed by Oakland police ("the first Panther to fall"); Eldridge Cleaver wounded and returned to prison. (Rorabaugh)

      Easter weekend: Seven hundred Black antiwar activists meet at a New York conference called by the recently organized National Black Anti-War Anti-Draft Union, which began as a coalition of antiwar and freedom organizations and is making the transition to build its own constituency. (Guardian, April 20, 1968)

      April 11: West German left student leader Rudi Dutschke is shot by a right-winger, setting off large-scale protests. Dutschke survives the head wound, but dies in 1980 of epilepsy caused by the bullet. (Guardian, April 20, 1968; Katsiaficas; Street Fighting Years)

      April 16: Mao ZeDong issues “Statement in Support of the Afro-American Struggle Against Violent Repression,” widely publicized by New Communist Movement groups as they develop; the statement includes a quote from his 1963 statement. Robert F. Williams, then in exile in China, is sometimes credited with persuading Mao to issue the declaration. (Black Scholar September 1977; text in Red Papers No. 5, partial text in OL Resolution “The Struggle for Black Liberation and Socialist Revolution” in BNCM-6)

      April 23: Columbia University building takeovers begin, against the University’s plans to build a gym in the adjoining Black community and displace the people currently living on the proposed site, as well as its ties to the Institute for Defense Analysis and more generally Columbia’s role in perpetuating racism and war. Five buildings are soon occupied by 1,000 students, Black students holding one building, white students are in the others. After eight days the administration calls in the police and there are mass arrests and police beatings of protesters. A month-long student strike follows. “Columbia” becomes a reference point for the increasing militancy of SDS; and is considered at the time “the most significant student rebellion to date, surpassing even Berkeley 1964.” (Sale; Gitlin; Reunion; Guardian, May 4, 1968)

      April 26: Up to one million college and high school students stay away from classes in a nationwide student strike against the war, though the broad protest gets little publicity and is overshadowed especially by media coverage of events at Columbia. There are antiwar marches in a dozen cities the next day. (Sale; Gitlin; Guardian, May 4, 1968)

      May 2: First wildcat strike at Dodge Main in Detroit in 14 years shuts the plant; driving force is the newly formed Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement (DRUM), which quickly gains prominence and strongly influences the new generation of student radicals; for example, see interview with John Watson in the July-August 1968 Radical America.and special supplement on the Black worker insurgency focusing on DRUM and then the League for Revolutionary Black Workers in Guardian, March 8, 1969. (Georgakas; Guardian, March 8, 1969)

      May: France explodes, “the apogee of the student 1968 and all it represented”: “All Power to the Imagination.” On May 3, police are called into the Sorbonne because left-wing students are rallying to protest right-wing threats. Police at the university is unprecedented (it hadn’t happen even during the height of student protests against France’s war in Algeria) and, after they arrest student leaders, are attacked by other students. Strike and demonstration called for May 6 leads to large-scale street fighting and polls show 80% of Parisians supported the students. Police still occupy Sorbonne, protests continue and the height is May 10/11, “night of the barricades” as street battles fill Paris and are broadcast live over the radio to the whole country. Monday May 13 there is a one-day general strike and demonstration of a million people. Militancy breaks out at other schools and workplaces, and three days later there is spontaneous general strike with two million workers out, three days later, 9 million are out in a “massive refusal to continue to live and work under the authoritarian conditions of the Gaullist regime.” In several areas organization of services and general administration passes into the hands of self-organized committees. On May 24 De Gaulle speaks to the nation, it is a weak effort and he offers no concessions, the next day the government loses control of several cities. Prime Minister Pompidou holds talks with the unions May 25-27 and makes huge wage (but not other) concessions. His proposals (recommended by the leadership) are rejected by the rank and file. Huge anti-government demonstration on May 29, power seems to be slipping from the government. But De Gaulle had flown to Germany, assured himself of loyalty of the military, speaks to the nation May 30, dissolves parliament, calls for new elections, mobilizes armed forces. De Gaulle’s supporters then take to the streets and the regime begins its re-capture of power. As the dust settles, the role of the CP in narrowing the mass movement’s focus, in particular to wage demands, is harshly criticized by “the radical generation of 1968” and is a constant reference point (in the U.S. as well as Europe) for efforts to build new revolutionary formations over the next 5-10 years. (Student Generation)

      May 13: Marchers arrive in D.C. to set up Resurrection City as the culmination of the Poor Peoples Campaign. The encampment is in LaFayette Square just across the street from the White House; Jesse Jackson serves as unofficial mayor. The Encampment is torn down by authorities on June 24, with the Campaign ending in failure. (Freedom)

      May: Walter Reuther takes the United Autoworkers (UAW) out of the AFL-CIO citing its leadership’s “lack of social vision.” The effort to form a new federation with the Teamsters and others - the Alliance for Labor Action (ALA) - does not get off the ground. The UAW rejoins the AFL-CIO in 1981. (Green; Davis in NLR #143 & in NLR #155; Guardian, June 15, 1968 & May 3, 1969)

      June 5: Robert Kennedy is assassinated on the night he wins the California primary; dies June 6 (Freedom).

      June 9-15: SDS National Convention at East Lansing, Michigan. The framework for discussion is “the revolution.” Bernardine Dohrn is nominated for Inter-organizational secretary by a broad anti-PL caucus (the first time an explicit anti-PL caucus takes shape in SDS, and also the first time a slate for election of officers is presented. This group was frequently referred to as the NO Caucus, for National Office). Asked if she considers herself a socialist she replies “I consider myself a revolutionary communist.” Jack Smith writes in the Guardian that “the new left in the United States has developed in the last several years from liberalism to anti-capitalism, from reformism to revolution.” (Sale; Guardian, June 22, 1968)

      June 21-23: Black Political Convention in Newark aimed at building a local Black United Front that can win local power, with Amiri Baraka prominent in the effort. Similar attempts to build local united fronts during this period take place in D.C. (Black United Front), Philadelphia (North City Congress), Boston (United Front), Denver (Black United Conference), Los Angeles (Black Congress) and other cities. (Allen)

      June: Valerie Solanas, author of the 1967 SCUM (Society for Cutting Up Men) Manifesto shoots and badly injures Pop artist Andy Warhol in New York City. (Echols)

      July 4: CPUSA holds a special Convention in New York to nominate candidates for president and vice-president for the first time in 25 years. Though the party leadership comes into the convention intending to nominate Gus Hall, the convention chooses Charlene Mitchell for President, the first time in U.S. history a party had nominated an African American woman for that post, and Mike Zagarell for vice-president, the first time a youth had been so nominated. (Myerson)

      July 27: Former chair Stokely Carmichael is expelled from SNCC “with regret and no pleasure.” The organization is increasingly factionalized and in decline; by the time of its December 1968 staff meeting, almost all veterans of pre-1966 SNCC are gone. James Forman resigns in June 1969; at that time the organization changes its name to the Student National Coordinating Committee, dropping the word nonviolent. (Carson; Guardian, August 2, 1969)

      July: China’s Red Guards are dissolved after another round of fighting and looming civil war in China. In October, Deng Xiaoping is dismissed from all posts and sent to a labor camp. (Trial; Deng; NYT 2/20/97; SF Chron 2/25/97)

      July: Afro-American Patrolmen’s Association formed in Chicago; similar groups are formed in many cities reflecting the “dual role” of Black police officers. (Guardian, October 5, 1968)

      July-September: murder trial of Huey Newton; opens July 15, 1968 with 3,000 protesters marching to Alameda County Courthouse; convicted of voluntary manslaughter on September 8; Appeals court reverses conviction in 1970. (Rorabaugh, Sale)

      Early August: Conference in Sandy Springs Maryland on the 120th anniversary of the 1848 Seneca Falls New York Women’s Rights Convention. With 20 participants this is the “first national conference of the fledgling women’s movement,” whose initial constituent local groups had begun to take shape in fall 1967 when the Westside Group in Chicago started as the first second wave women’s liberation group in the U.S. A much larger conference of 200 women (all white; an explicit decision had been made earlier not to invite Black women!) takes place in Lake Villa, Illinois, outside Chicago, over Thanksgiving. Major figures in shaping the radical wing of the burgeoning women’s movement attend one of both meetings: Shulamith Firestone, Marilyn Webb, Judith Brown, Charlotte Bunch, Roxanne Dunbar, Kathie Sarachild (originator of the phrase “consciousness- raising”) Ti-Grace Atkinson, Kate Millet and others. This is the period of the explosive growth in women’s consciousness-raising groups across the country, with their framework that “the personal is political.” There is tension in the movement and at these conferences between “politicos” and “feminists”, that is, between the emerging radical feminist current and activists who see the women’s liberation movement more closely linked to other forces on the left. The pathbreaking. if short-lived, radical feminist organizations were also formed during this year and 1969: Redstockings (initiated in February 1969 by Ellen Willis and Shulamith Firestone, lasting until fall 1970); The Feminists (formed officially in June 1969, with origins in Ti-Grace Atkinson’s resignation from NOW in October 17, 1968, lasting until late 1973); Cell 16 (formed in summer 1968 by Roxanne Dunbar, lasting until 1973); and New York Radical Feminists (launched in fall 1969 by Shulamith Firestone - who had left Redstockings - and Anne Koedt, lasted until 1972 with remnants sponsoring conferences until 1974). Many papers from this phase of the women’s movement (for example, “The Myth of the Vaginal Orgasm,” by Anne Koedt or “The Politics of Housework,” by Pat Mainardi) are circulated and gathered in the influential collections Notes from the First Year. (1968) and, later, Notes from the Second Year (1970) and Notes from the Third Year (1971); they are also and reprinted widely in anthologies and as pamphlets. (Webb in Underground; Echols; Durbin in Sixties Papers; Line of March No. 17; Gitlin)

      August 20-21: Soviets invade Czechoslovakia ending the Czech Party’s Dubcek-led experiment with “socialism with a human face.” Major impact on international politics, the world communist movement, the New Left. Brezhnev invokes his theoretical defense of the invasion - the theory of “Limited Sovereignty,” also known as the “Brezhnev Doctrine,” in a speech to the Fifth Congress of the Polish United Workers Party in November. In the U.S. left, virtually alone, the CPUSA defends the invasion, though there is some dissent within the party: Al Richmond resigns as editor of the People’s World Dorothy Healey resigns as head of the Southern California district. Cuba backs the Soviet intervention; China blasts it while also terming the Dubcek leadership revisionists out for capitalist restoration. (Guardian, August 31, September 7 & September 14, 1968; Almanac; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 1; Richmond; Dennis; Myerson - see these latter especially for impact on CPUSA)

      August 25-30: Democratic National Convention in Chicago: “The Whole World Is Watching” - literally - as police riot and batter demonstrators, reporters and McCarthy delegates day after day. Protests by some McCarthy and other delegates reach inside the hall, as the convention majority nominates Hubert Humphrey and rejects a peace platform. The polarization and nationally televised repression is a watershed experience for the antiwar movement and the country. While polls show a majority backing the police, the confrontation (along with the other events of 1968 of course) spurs the growth of the new left; that fall, 100 of 350-400 SDS chapters are new ones. (Sale; Gitlin)

      September 7: Protest at the Miss America pageant in Atlantic City initiated by New York Radical Women, an umbrella group with many ideological strands. The action receives widespread publicity and is widely characterized as a “bra burning,” though no such burning actually took place. After the action, on Halloween, one of the main organizers, Robin Morgan, along with others, forms the Women’s International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell (WITCH) and undertake various Yippie-style, media-oriented actions, including disruption of a bridal fair at Madison Square Garden in February 1969. (Echols)

      Labor Day through Thanksgiving: Height of Ocean-Hill Brownsville struggle in New York, demands for Black community control of the schools mobilizes overwhelming support among New York’s African American population and also among most sectors of the left. The United Federation of Teachers led by president Albert Shanker opposes the community’s demands and holds an eight-week city-wide walkout. The schools in Ocean-Hill-Brownsville remain open where the local governing board hires alternative teachers. In summer 1969 the New York State legislature passes a new law on decentralizing school authority but the compromise does not grant the level of power to local boards that the Ocean Hill-Brownsville community had fought for and their pioneering experiment in community control ends. (Freedom; Guardian September 14, 1968)

      September 18-23: Conference billed as the first international gathering of the New Left - officially titled “An International Assembly of Revolutionary Student Movements” - draws delegations from the U.S., France, England, Germany, Mexico, Sweden, Canada and the U.S. to Columbia University but is chaotic and unsuccessful. (Guardian, September 28, 1968)

      September 23: Tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans march into the mountains to the city of Lares to celebrate the 100th anniversary of El Grito de Lares, the 1868 uprising that first proclaimed the independent republic of Puerto Rico. (Guardian, October 5, 1968; Puerto Rico)

      September 28: J. Edgar Hoover proclaims in the New York Times that the Black Panther Party is “the greatest [single] threat to the internal security of the country." Shortly thereafter FBI internal memo’s call for accelerating already-existing COINTELPRO programs targeting the Panthers. At their height the Panthers are estimated to have anywhere from 2,000 to 5,000 members. In 1969, 27 Panthers are killed by police, 749 are arrested or jailed. (COINTELPRO; Abron in Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1986; Hanlon re: Geronimo Pratt in Bay Guardian June 4, 1977, in D-3; Boyd; CrossRoads No. 53)

      October 2: The Mexican government, faced with a rising student protest movement and with international attention turning to the country because of the upcoming Olympic Games, turns to naked repression. Protests had been accelerating especially since July, when police attacked two rival student groups on July 23, the students united and mounted a protest against police brutality July 26, at which riot squads killed seven and wounded over 500. On July 29 all schools in Mexico City are ordered closed when 150,000 students began as general strike. Protests continued to mount and on September 18 police occupied the National University and the Polytechnic Institute. A rally is called for October 2, at which troops fire upon and massacre students at Plaza de las Tres Culturas in Mexico City, at least 300 are killed. (CrossRoads Nos. 38 & 47; Katsiaficas)

      October 5: Police attack civil rights march in Derry, Northern Ireland, sparking large-scale student movement; formation of “Peoples Democracy” group within a week, “long march” demonstration in January 1969, police rampage through Bogside Catholic neighborhood, population throws up barricades and declare “Free Derry.” On April 17, 1969, Bernadette Devlin is elected to the British parliament in a by-election in Northern Ireland’s largest constituency, at 21 the youngest MP in 200 years. (Student Generation; MR June 1978; Katsiaficas)

      October 12: Largest antiwar march to date organized by active duty G.I.’s and veterans draws 10,000 in San Francisco, with several hundred active-duty personnel participating. And the first five days in November are declared “National G.I. Week” by the National Mobilization Committee with the support of SDS and other groups. (Guardian, October 19, 1968)

      October 18: Tommie Smith and John Carlos give Black Power salute while receiving their Olympic medals, fruit of the “Olympic Project for Human Rights” launched in November 1967 by Harry Edwards and others. (Edwards in Black Scholar March-April 1979)

      October: Black Power Riots in Jamaica set off by the dismissal of Walter Rodney from the University there. (NLR #128)

      October: Mao delivers a speech at CPC Central Committee plenum for the first time terming the USSR “social-imperialist.” Seemingly, Mao considers USSR the greater danger of the two superpowers, Lin Biao considers the U.S. the main danger. Official communiqué summarizing the meeting terms them equal dangers. Tension over “main danger” continues, with the forces seeing Soviets as main danger steadily gaining the upper hand, through the CPC’s Ninth Congress in April 1969 and after. The fall of Lin in September 1971 during preparations for Nixon’s visit to China (see below) apparently settles the matter in favor of the faction around Mao who target the USSR, although the formal statement of the Tenth Party Congress in August 1973 still targets opposition to the “hegemonism” of both superpowers. The “Theory of the Three Worlds” is promulgated in 1974 - see entries below. (Trial; LSM News No. 13; Peck on China)

      November 5: Nixon defeats Humphrey in a close election; the George Wallace/Curtis LeMay ticket gets 46 electoral and 9,906,000 popular votes. There is a lot of discussion of Nixon and the Republicans pursuing a race-centered “southern strategy”(Almanac; Guardian, August 20, 1970)

      November 6: Beginning of strike at San Francisco State; lasts four-and-a-half months, anchored by students of color, teachers union walks out in January, alliances with community groups and other unions, especially the alliance with oil workers, members of OCAW, on a two-month strike at Richmond Chevron Oil facility, ending with a victory in early March 1969; the alliance is widely publicized on the left. The faculty settles in April and strike is effectively over, losing most of its demands but eventually giving rise to the first-ever ethnic studies program in the country. S.I. Hayakawa leads the repressive reaction. (Five Retreats; Sale; Student Generation; Wei; Guardian, March 15, 1969)

      November: The Rolling Stones, widely proclaimed “the world’s greatest rock & roll band,” release the Beggars Banquet album, with several cuts especially resonating with the protest movements including “Salt of the Earth,” “Sympathy for the Devil” and “Street Fighting Man.” (Rock & Roll)

      November: The White Panther Party is founded by John Sinclair, Leni Sinclair and a few others. (Plamondon in Sixties Papers)

      December 19: Norman Thomas dies at age 84. (Guardian, December 28, 1968)

      December 26-31: All-out battle between anti-PL and PL factions at SDS national council meeting in Ann Arbor attended by up to 1,200 people. The ideological manifesto of the anti-PL grouping was the paper “Toward a Revolutionary Youth Movement (RYM)” by National Secretary Mike Klonsky, published in the December 23 issue of New Left Notes. This paper, revised several times, became a central document in the development of the “NO Caucus” into the RYM and Weatherman factions, and in the debates with PL and others which shape SDS’ final year. At this meeting, the RYM proposal was approved by a very narrow margin. (Sale; Weather)

      December 26: “Congress of Re-establishment” founds of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) as a Marxist-Leninist-Mao ZeDong Thought alternative to the “old” Partidong Komunista ng Pilipinas (PKP) after a period of “rectification and re-establishment” work. There are less than 100 members. Three months later - March 29, 1969 - the CPP establishes the New People’s Army (NPA) with about 60 fighters. (Toribio; Rectify/Rebuild)

      December: Black Women’s Liberation Committee of SNCC is formally established, which soon becomes the independent Black Women’s Alliance and in 1970 expands to include Puerto Rican and other Third World women and becomes the Third World Women’s Alliance. (TWWA; Carson; AAWO)


      Bay Area Revolutionary Union (BARU) is founded, building on ties that began to be forged among activists in 1967; Bob Avakian is the central figure. (Hamilton).

      California Communist League (changed name to Communist League in 1970) is founded by a split-off faction of the POC led by Nelson Peery and a small group of folks in or around SDS. (Hamilton; Chart; Ignatin; O’Brien).

      Founding of C.A.S.A.-Hermandad General de Trabajadores/Center for Autonomous Social Action - General Brotherhood of Workers, in response to attacks on Mexicans and Mexican-Americans by the INS (self-published material in BREV-4)

      United Black Brothers (later, United Black Workers) formed by a group of Black auto workers at the Ford assembly plant in Mahwah, New Jersey, they come to prominence after leading a 10-day demonstration against racism and job discrimination in April 1969, which is supported by student radicals and others. (Haddock in Black Scholar November 1973; Guardian, May 3 & May 10, 1969)

      “Hundreds of small, locally written newspapers are appearing in Black communities across the country.” (Guardian, November 9, 1968)

      Stokely Carmichael resettles in Guinea, develops a close relationship with President Sekou Toure and former President of Ghana Kwame Nkrumah, joins the All African People’s Revolutionary Party (AAPRP) Nkrumah had founded, changes his name to Kwame Ture, and returns to the U.S. for periods of time beginning in 1969 where he organizes the AAPRP in the U.S., which announces its presence publicly in 1972. (Nationalism; Carson; Ture; Black Scholar Fall-Winter 1997)

      The American Indian Movement (AIM) is founded as a “Red Power” advocacy and community defense organization in Minneapolis by urban-experienced Indian youth. (Hurricane; Dunbar)

      Liberation Support Movement (LSM) formed with perspective based on articles published by Don Barnett in Pensamiento Critico (Havana) in September 1967 and Monthly Review (April 1968, under pseudonym) (LSM News and other self-published material in BREV-3)

      National Lawyers Guild convention decides the group should serve as the legal arm of the radical movement. The Guild was originally founded in 1937 as a more professional organization, was a target of McCarthyism and suffered severe losses, revived itself in the early 1960s with many new young lawyers joining and supporting the Civil Rights Movement. By 1970 it had 2,000 members and offices in New York, Detroit, San Francisco and L.A. and was heavily involved in Panther defense among other projects. In 197o it decided to admit law students and in 1971 legal workers. By 1974 it had 4,500 members and was an important site of New communist activity. (Guardian, March 7, 1970 & September 4, 1974)

      Richard Hatcher becomes the first Black mayor of a major northern city winning election in Gary Indiana. (Black Scholar October 1975)

      Overall sum of urban rebellions (according to Allen): 1964: 15; 1965: 9; 1966: 38; 1967: 128; 1968: 131. Allen also reports that a survey by the National Advisory Committee on Civil Disorders finds that about 18% of Black residents in the effected areas participated. (Allen)

      Akwesasne Notes is launched as the newspaper of the Mohawk Nation reporting on Indian struggles in upstate New York and Canada; it begins as a mimeographed sheet and by the mid-1970s is a newspaper with a circulation of 75,000. (Osawatomie Vol. 2, No. 1)

      Antiwar business leaders organize Business Executives Move for Peace in Vietnam (Guardian, March 16, 1968)

      The every-ten-year Conference of Latin American Catholic Bishops (CELAM), meeting in Medellin, Columbia under the leadership of Brazilian Bishop Helder Camara, calls for social justice under the banner of Liberation Theology, giving a tremendous boost to grassroots movements throughout the continent. (Hobsbawm; MR July-August 1984; Katsiaficas; for the widespread impact, see among other things reference in Borge in NLR #164)

      Publication of How the Soviet Revisionists Carry Out All-Round Restoration of Capitalism in the USSR by the Communist Party of China - a collection of articles from fall 1967 (see above) which first argue the case that the USSR has fully restored capitalism (according to Myth; Trial says this assertion is first made in November 1965 with the publication of Refutation of the Leaders of the CPSU on United Action)

      Publication also of Eldridge Cleaver, Soul on Ice (New York, Dell); Julius Lester, Look Out Whitey! Black Power’s Gon’ Get Your Mama! (New York, Dial Press); Wilfred Burchett, Vietnam Will Win! (published by the Guardian and distributed by Monthly Review Press); Abbie Hoffman, Revolution for the Hell of It (New York, Dial Press); Norman Mailer, The Armies of the Night: History as a Novel, The Novel as History and Miami and Siege of Chicago (both are New York, New American Library-Signet); “Kerner Commission” report - officially, the Report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (New York, Bantam Books); Bantam Book paperback edition of Vo Nguyen Giap, People’s War, People’s Army published in October, with a profile of Giap by Bernard B. Fall. the hardcover Praeger edition has first appeared in 1962 and was reprinted in 1965, 1967 and 1968; Richard J. Barnet, Intervention and Revolution: The United States in the Third World (New York, New American Library - revised and updated edition published in 1972); Jerry L. Avorn et al., Up Against the Ivy Wall: A History of the Columbia Crisis (New York, Atheneum); Andre Gorz, Strategy for Labor, U.S. English-translated edition; originally published in French in 1964 (Beacon Press, Boston); Carlos Castenada, The Teachings of Don Juan - A Yaqui Way of Knowledge (Berkeley, University of California Press) - an early work in what will later become the widespread 1970s fascination - among former activists as well as much more broadly - with spirituality, Eastern and indigenous religions, meditation, human potential, “new age,” personal growth etc.


      January 14: Morton Sobell, convicted of espionage with the Rosenbergs and sentenced to 30 years in prison, is released after 18-and-a-half years, credited with time served awaiting trial and time off for good behavior. (Guardian, January 25, 1969)

      January 18: Governor-elect Ronald Peterson in Du Pont-dominated Delaware announces that he will pull National Guard out of Wilmington after taking office; the Guard has occupied the Black community there for nine months. (Guardian, February 1, 1969)

      January 19: At a protest to mark Nixon’s inauguration sponsored by the Mobe, SDS veteran Marilyn Salzman Webb speaks on women’s liberation and many men in the crowd are infuriated, there is yelling (“take her off the stage and fuck her”) and shoving, she is threatened and accused of being divisive afterwards. The incident is a major spur to a decision by many women’s groups across the country with links to the antiwar movement and New Left to “begin organizing for our own interests on our own” and specifically provoked the formation of Redstockings by Shulamith Firestone and Ellen Willis. (Webb in Underground; Echols; Gitlin)

      January 22: Third World Liberation Front begins student strike at Berkeley demanding an autonomous Third World college; eventually they win a compromise Ethnic Studies Division at UC, the strike ends March 14. On February 13 a Black Student Strike at Wisconsin brings out the National Guard; the Guard is also called out at University of North Carolina. Students occupy a building at the University of Chicago for 16 days beginning January 30 to protest denial of tenure to Marlene Dixon - they lose and many are expelled. There were major strikes and occupations in spring 1969 at City College and Brooklyn College in New York, led by Black and Puerto Rican students and especially important in the emergence of a large radical movement among Puerto Rican students. In March 1971 there was a three-day takeover of a building at City College led by Asian American students. Over the next 18 months confrontations and increasing violence grip the nation’s campuses, as well as society in general. And the mass demonstrations and repression is accompanied by a rise in small-group actions: from January 1969 to April 1970 there are an estimated 5,000 bombings in the U.S., an unprecedented phenomenon. (Goines chron; Rorabaugh; Reunion; Louie; Torres; Wei; Guardian, February 8, 1969)

      January: Nixon takes office with a new, Kissinger-anchored foreign policy team that tries to implement a comprehensive strategy to deal with the pressing international problems facing Washington, which include “Vietnamization” of the war in Vietnam, detente with the USSR (in the Kissinger version emphasizing “linkage” of steps toward peace with Soviet “good behavior” in the Third World) and the attempt to woo China to the U.S. side vs. the Soviet Union. (Second Cold War)

      January: January issue of Political Affairs contains an article by Albert J. (Mickie) Lima opening up a debate in the CPUSA on the labor aristocracy and the extent of opportunism within the U.S. labor movement; the inner party struggle is in the context of the pro-war stance of important sections of the labor movement on the one hand, and widespread tendencies toward “writing off” the radical potential of the working class within sections of the New Left. (Line of March No.13/14)

      January: Bloody three-day battle between police and Zengakuren students in Japan ends a months-long occupation of the medical school at the Todai University in Tokyo. Throughout the 1965-70 period Japanese students and the Japanese left mobilized against the U.S. war in Vietnam. In 1968 the decade-long battle began to save the land on which the huge Narita airport is eventually built. (Katsiaficas; Apology; Guardian, August 3, 1968)

      February 3: Eduardo Mondlane, first president of FRELIMO, is assassinated by Portuguese agents. (Return; Guardian, February 15, 1969)

      February: Red Guard Party is founded in San Francisco; this same year the I Wor Kuen organization is formed in New York, it publishes Getting Together newspaper beginning in January 1970. (IWK Journal No. 2; Louie; Costello; Asians Unite! No. 2; Guardian, December 19, 1970; Wei)

      February: Miners form the Black Lung Association and thousands march on the West Virginia State Capitol demanding passage of the State’s first law to pay compensation to the victims of the “coal dust plague.” there is also a three-week wildcat opposed by the UMW leadership for this demand (which is partially won). The same year a disaster at Consolidation Coal’s Farmington West Virginia mine kills 78 miners. This fuels the reform candidacy of “Jock” Yablonski against UMW President Tony Boyle, but Yablonski and his daughter are murdered on New Year’s Eve, the last day of 1969 by gunmen later proved to be acting on Boyle’s orders. Yablonski’s sons and others form Miners for Democracy (MFD) and in 1972 reform candidate Arnold Miller beats Boyle for the UMW presidency, after which the Black Lung Association and MFD disband. Later Miller is also confronted with a dissatisfied and rebellions rank and file - see 1977 below. (Green; Fighting; Guardian, March 22, 1969)

      February: Palestinian resistance forces led by Fatah assume control of the PLO, and the organization adopts the goal of a democratic secular state in all of Palestine. (Roots)

      Spring: Red Papers No. 1 published by BARU; the document is circulated nationally and has a major impact on the new generation of revolutionary-minded activists produced by the ‘60s upheavals, especially veterans of SDS. By 1970 it has been reprinted five times and 20,000 copies are in circulation. (Hamilton; Red Papers No. 1, & Red Papers “Selections from Red Papers 1, 2 & 3”)

      Spring: Founding of Chinese for Affirmative Action, one of the most important progressive community-based organizations in the Chinese American community. (Wei)

      March 2: Soviets report serious clashes between Soviet and Chinese troops in disputed areas along the Ussuri River; “open secret” Soviet nuclear deployment targeting China and reports (which cannot be independently confirmed) surface later from top U.S. leaders including Nixon that the Soviets broached the idea of U.S. participation in or support of a possible strike against Chinese nuclear facilities. Soviet forces in the far East put on alert March 8, the two powers are close to war; clashes continue at least through March 18 but then die down. (Hobsbawm, Coates in NLR #145/May-June 1984; Century; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 1)

      March 27: Opening of the first-ever National Chicano Youth Liberation Conference in Denver sponsored by the Crusade for Justice. The gathering adopts El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán as its manifesto. The following month, Mexican American student leaders from across California meet at UC-Santa Barbara and found El Movimiento Estudiantil de Aztlán (MEChA) publishing the manifesto El Plan de Santa Barbara. (Muñoz; Chicano)

      March: First issue of Leviathan, an independent revolutionary magazine/tabloid. By May 1970 it has 4,000 subscribers and distributes 15,000 copies. (Leviathan Vol. 2. No. 1)

      April 6: First meeting of Asian Americans for Action, an anti-imperialist and intergenerational group in New York City focusing initially on opposition to the Vietnam War. It also opposed the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty and in November 1969 organized a rally of 300 in Washington, D.C. against the pact on the occasion of Japanese Prime Minister Eisaku Sato’s visit to the U.S. (Wei)

      April 1-14: Ninth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party meets in Beijing, first Congress since 1956. Minister of Defense Lin Biao, who had emerged as Mao’s heir apparent earlier and reads the main report to the meeting, is officially anointed Mao’s “close-comrade-in-arms” and “successor.” The official Congress position as stated in Lin’s report is opposition to both superpowers, “U.S. imperialism and Soviet revisionist social-imperialism,” which allegedly collude and contend to oppose revolution; and all the “four major contradictions in the world” are listed (oppressed nations vs. imperialism and social-imperialism; proletariat vs. bourgeoisie in imperialist and revisionist countries; contradictions between imperialism vs. social-imperialism and between the different imperialist countries; socialist countries vs. imperialism and social imperialism), none are picked out as principal, a clear shift from the 1965 line of Long Live the Victory of People’s War where the “principal contradiction” was identified as that between the revolutionary peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America vs. imperialism headed by the U.S. Underneath these official formulations, an internal CPC struggle and shift is underway toward seeing USSR as the main danger. (Trial; Tenth; Second Cold War; Lin’s Report to the Ninth Congress in BICM-5)

      April 2: The Black Panther “New York 21,” including Dhoruba Moore and Afeni Shakur, are arrested and charged with plotting to blow up New York department stores and arson, conspiracy and attempted murder. After a long trial in which no less than 6 undercover agents testify they are all (all 13 in this trial - the other defendants were underground or otherwise had their cases severed from these defendants) acquitted May 13, 1971. The New York 21 generally align with the “Cleaver faction” in the internal Panther struggle which is at its height in late 1970/spring 1971 (see spring 1971 entry below), and this group and its supporters make up the roots of the Black Liberation Army (BLA). (Boyd; WUO; PFOC & May 19 material in BREV-3; Guardian May 26, 1971)

      April 5: Large antiwar protests in New York and 50 other cities; 100,000 march in New York in a militant demonstration with many making the connection between the war and the indictment of the New York Panthers three days before. (Sale; Guardian, April 12, 1969)

      April 19: Cornell Black students seize the student union for one day; some are armed. (Sale; Guardian, May 3, 1969)

      April 20: First gathering to plant flowers etc. at “People’s Park”; on May 15, the day before the regents are scheduled to meet, UC fences the park and riots ensue. James Rector and dozens of others are shot that day, Rector dies four days later. Military occupation of Berkeley for the next two weeks. (Rorabaugh; Gitlin; Guardian, May 24 & June 7, 1969)

      April: Black Economic Development Conference (BED-C), develops Black Manifesto calling for reparations which James Forman reads in disruption of Riverside church service on May 11. Important conference in building links between League of Revolutionary Black Workers and Forman and other Black activists nationally. (Georgakas)

      April: First issue of Gidra, the first radical Asian American newspaper and considered by some the journalistic arm of the Asian American movement, is published in Los Angeles. It lasts until 1974. (Wei)

      April: U.S. forces in Vietnam reach a peak of 543,400. Simultaneously, soldiers in Vietnam begin to rebel with refusals to follow orders, mutinies, sabotage and fraggings. Between 1969 and July 1972 army records showed 551 incidents of assaults with explosive weapons (fragging), with 86 men (mostly officers and NCOs) killed and more than 700 injured; between August 1969 and April 1972 ten “major” incidents of mutiny occurred and an untold unrecorded “minor” incidents; sabotage hits the Navy, by the end of 1971 it had conducted 488 investigations on damage or attempted damage during that year alone. Also see June 7, 1971 entry below. Meanwhile, protests among antiwar G.I.’s at home mount as well, for instance the case of the “nonviolent mutiny” of 27 soldiers at the San Francisco Presidio. (Spoke; Goines chron; MR October 1988; Fact Sheet; Reunion; Gitlin; Guardian, March 1, 1969)

      April: Black community in racially polarized Cairo, Illinois forms United Front to defend itself from racist attacks and fight for equality. A multi-year boycott of white businesses is conducted; the struggle attracts nationwide attention and COINTELPRO effort to smear United Front leader Rev. Charles Koen. (Triple Jeopardy July-August 1972; COINTELPRO; Guardian, January 12, 1971 & December 20, 1972)

      April: CBS cancels the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour after repeated blue penciling of its content for antiwar, anti-racist and radical content. (Guardian, April 19, 1969)

      May 1: After a San Francisco police officer dies in a run-in with some Mission District teenagers, a major manhunt is launched for seven youths who become known as Los Siete de la Raza. Six are eventually apprehended, tried for murder and acquitted (in November 1970), though they are rearrested on other charges and several forced underground. The defense of Los Siete unfolds into a major local and national campaign (Fire Vol. 1 No. 1; Ramparts July 1971; Heins)

      May: Workers Action Committee in Cleveland, formed in 1968, reconstitutes itself as the American Communist Workers Movement (ML) (Chart; Refutation)

      May: Monthly Review marks its 20th anniversary - first issue had appeared in May 1949, same era as the Guardian’s founding - ; Volume 21 is first without co-editor Leo Huberman, who died November 9, 1968; Harry Magdoff joins Paul Sweezy as co-editor. Editorial “The Old Left and the New” is interesting for its analysis of the Old Left as “reformist” and proclamation of the New Left “or at least the more advanced elements within it,” as revolutionary. (MR May 1969)

      June 5-17: After many preparatory meetings, an International Conference of Communist and Workers Parties brings together 75 parties in Moscow. The CPSU’s aims for the gathering are widely believed to be gaining support for its 1968 intervention in Czechoslovakia and to formally expel the Chinese party from the international movement which does not occur. The Chinese, Albanian and Yugoslav parties are not present and the Korean and North Vietnamese parties also do not attend; the Cubans and Swedes only send “observers.” (Guardian July 10, 1974 reports that 12 of 86 parties then existing refuse to attend.) There is opposition to Soviet positions re: Czechoslovakia and China to varying degrees from among at least 14 of the parties that do attend. This gathering turns out to be the last international meeting of the communist parties descended from the Third International. (Century; Dennis; Mesa-Lago; Political Affairs August 1969; Guardian, February 23, 1971)

      June 6-9: Provisional Revolutionary Government (PRG) is formed in South Vietnam at a conference in an NLF-liberated zone. (Guardian, June 21, 1969)

      June 18-22: SDS splits and explodes at Chicago Convention. The Revolutionary Youth Movement (RYM) faction, while probably not holding a majority of delegates, “expels” the PL-led faction. RYM itself is an alliance of the Weatherman (RYM I) and RYM II factions, which falls apart over the next several months. RYM II is the main seedbed for several of the early formations of the New Communist Movement. The polemics surrounding the SDS explosion - in particular the controversies over “You Don’t Need a Weatherman to Know Which Way the Wind Blows,” published in New Left Notes June 18 issue - become a major pivot and reference point for left debate in 1969-70. The PL-SDS faction survives another year or so and then disintegrates. (Sale; self-published SDS & RYM material in BREV-3; Aronowitz; Weather; Guardian, June 28, 1969)

      June 22:, The left wing of South Yemen’s National Liberation Front seizes power in a bloodless coup and begins the “national and democratic revolution” in the Peoples Democratic Republic of South Yemen. Both China and the USSR aid the new government, which is opposed by hostile Saudi Arabia, the U.S. and North Yemen. (MR May 1973; Second Cold War)

      June 27 (1:20 a.m. in the early morning of June 28): Stonewall riots begin, an uprising marking the beginning of the modern Gay Liberation Movement. Within a few months Gay Liberation Fronts have formed in numerous cities: New York GLF has a contingent at the fall 1969 moratorium, a GLF representative spoke at the May 1970 rally for Bobby Seale in New Haven, etc. By 1973 there are more than 800 gay rights organizations (compared to 50 “homophile” organizations in 1969 pre-Stonewall), by the end of the 1970s there are thousands. GLF’s Statement of Purpose “we are a revolutionary group of men and women...” is published in the August 12, 1969 issue of RAT. (D’Emilio; Stonewall)

      June: Formal legal incorporation of League of Revolutionary Black Workers (LRBW) in Detroit, office opened four months later. (Georgakas)

      June: Puerto Rican activists from New York visit the recently formed Chicago Young Lords Organization and gain authorization to organize a Lords group in New York City. Three New York groups come together - July 22 becomes the official Young Lords Party anniversary date - and begin organizing as Young Lords, largely modeled on the Black Panthers. Their first office is opened in September and in May 1970 they start publishing Palante as a full-sized tabloid newspaper. At the end of 1970 they have roughly 1,000 members, their height of influence and activity is 1970-1972. The New York-centered group expands, splits with the Chicago Lords in April-May 1970, and changes its name to the Young Lords Party in June 1970. (Guzman in Underground; Franklin; Torres)

      July 4-5: Cleveland conference reconstitutes the Mobe as the New Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam, an uneasy but broad coalition. (Spoke)

      July 18-20: United Front Against Fascism Conference in Oakland called by the Panthers; there are fist fights between PL members and other factions of the former SDS outside the gathering. (Sale)

      July: Speaking in Guam the President articulates the “Nixon Doctrine” of “delegation” - delegating the troops of U.S. allies and puppets to do the actual fighting in counter-revolutionary wars, with U.S. arms and logistical support. (Second Cold War)

      August 15-17: Woodstock Music and Arts Fair and Aquarian Exposition draws upwards of 400,000 people to Max Yasgur’s farm in upstate New York, while police estimated that one million people had been on the road trying to get there. (Rolling Stone; Spoke)

      August 19: Bobby Seale is arrested and charged with giving orders for the murder of a suspected informant, Luther Rackley. Rackley had been found dead in May and on May 22 eight New Haven Panthers including Ericka Huggins and Lonnie McLucas were arrested and charged with the killing. Seale is driven to Chicago for the Conspiracy trial while these other charges are pending. (Reunion; Boyd; Mitchell in Triple Jeopardy March-April 1973; Weather; Freed)

      August: Northern Ireland is immersed in virtual civil war; for over a month the Catholic ghettos in Derry and Belfast are barricaded and “no-go” areas for British Troops who arrive August 14 - sent by a Labour Government - as well as the Protestant armed units. Republican Party - successor to the traditional IRA - fails to provide any defense to Catholic areas and is pilloried in graffiti (“I Ran Away”); party soon splits into “Official” wing, arguing constitutional action, and military-oriented Provisional Wing (provos). (Student Generation; MR June 1978)

      Fall: Hot Autumn in Italy; third largest strike in Western Europe in the 20th century, behind the French May and the British General Strike of 1926. “Over 302 million work hours were lost to strikes in 1969, a figure far above the previous high of 181 million in 1962... It was a period of enormous mass radicalization.” Links between students and workers had been developing since 1968. July 3, 1969 there is a pitched battle around the Fiat plant in Turin, that fall unions take the offensive and in a series of strikes involving five-and-a-half million workers make many gains, both in contracts and “the most pro-union industrial relations act in Western Europe” passed in May 1970. Organizations to the left of the PCI - Lotta Continua, Avanguardia Operaio - take shape and play important roles and gain strength. In November the Manifesto group is expelled from the PCI and forms an independent organization, later merging in 1973 with the PDUP split-off from the Socialist Party to form Manifesto-PDUP or PDUP. These three currents, with about 15,000 members each, form the largest and most developed far left of any West European country, they are a mix of “soft” Maoism and “autonomism/workerism.” (2-3-Many; Anderson/Europe; Student Generation; MR January 1976; NLR #131/Jan-Feb 1982 & #153/Sept-Oct 1985; Guardian, September 19, 1973)

      September 3: Ho Chi Minh dies; his testament includes: “the more proud I am of the growth of the international communist and workers’ movement, the more pained I am by the current discord among the fraternal parties. Our Party will do its best to contribute effectively to the restoration of unity among the fraternal parties on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism, in a way which conforms to both reason and sentiment.” This was the stance of the Vietnam Workers Party until the late 1970s when a decisive break with China occurred. (History-Vietnam)

      September 15: Committee of Returned Volunteers - former members of the Peace Corps and other voluntary service organizations - holds its first nationwide General Assembly and calls for abolition of the Peace Corps. CRV is active in antiwar activity and adopts an anti-imperialist perspective, in 1970 beginning publication of a short-lived magazine titled 2, 3, Many. (CRV folders in BREV)

      September 19: Regents of the University of California vote to fire Angela Davis from UCLA solely because she is a member of the CPUSA. A federal judge rules the firing unconstitutional October 20. She is fired again on another excuse June 19, 1970. (Guardian, October 4 & November 1, 1969, July 18, 1970)

      September 24: The “Conspiracy” trial opens in Chicago. On October 29 Judge Julius Hoffman orders Bobby Seale bound and gagged in his chair. His case is separated from that of the other 7 defendants on November 4. (Hayden; Reunion)

      September 29: 1,000 people led by welfare mothers and Father James Groppi occupy the Wisconsin State Capitol Assembly Chamber for 11 hours after a march from Milwaukee to Madison to protest cuts in welfare programs. (Guardian, October 18, 1969)

      Fall: Puerto Rican Student Union is organized in New York City, publishes Maceta, over the next year develops ties with PSP, El Comité and the Young Lords as well as links with radical student groups in Puerto Rico. (Torres)

      October 8-11: Weatherman Days of Rage to “Bring the War Home” in Chicago. Criticized by Fred Hampton, leader of Chicago Panthers and the Chicago “Rainbow Coalition” - the first formation to use that term. The Rainbow included the Panthers, Young Patriots (who later split and produce an offshoot, the Patriot Party, which organizes nationwide), and the Young Lords Organization. The RYM II faction, which had split with Weatherman (RYM I) over the summer, holds a larger but peaceful action over the same four days in Chicago. (Sale; Guzman in Underground; self-published RYM material in BREV-3; Guardian, February 14, 1970)

      October 12: 5,000 march onto the Army base at Fort Dix, New Jersey to defend the rights of G.I.’s and oppose the war in Vietnam - the largest antiwar action ever held at a military base in the U.S. The march is organized by the Committee to Free the Fort Dix 38, who were being persecuted for participating in a spontaneous stockade rebellion at the base the previous June. (Guardian, October 18, 1969)

      October 15: Vietnam Moratorium Day, millions participate in diverse local activities, some say it was “the largest public protest against government policy ever seen in the United States” (Spoke; quote is from page 245; Reunion; Guardian, October 25, 1969)

      October 21: Jack Kerouac dies at 47. (Guardian, November 1, 1969)

      October 25: After months of organizing and statewide preparation meetings, Malcolm X Liberation University-African People’s Ideological and Technical Institute opens at a renovated warehouse in Durham, North Carolina. MXLU moves to a new headquarters in Greensboro on its first anniversary, October 25, 1970. In this period its ideology is Pan-Africanist; Owusu Sadaukai is a central figure. (Southern Patriot, September 1971)

      November 3: Nixon’s “silent majority” speech to the country; promising “Vietnamization” of the war and appealing for support by attacking “internal” enemies: “let us unite against defeat.” Vietnamization was the prime but not the only example of the “Nixon Doctrine” articulated in July (see above) The speech fuels antiwar sentiment in many quarters and serves to build rather than shrink the upcoming November antiwar actions. (Spoke; Second Cold War; Guardian, November 8, 1969)

      November 4: Brazilian police ambush and kill Carlos Marighella, a leader of the Brazilian armed left and known in North America as author of the Mini-Manual of Urban Guerrilla Warfare. (Red Papers No. 2; Leviathan Vol. 1 No. 9, which says killing is in October)

      November 12: Sam Melville, David Hughey and Jane Alpert are captured by the FBI, accused of bombing a number of military and war-related buildings in Manhattan between July and November 1969; their group had been infiltrated by informer George Dimmerle. Melville is imprisoned and in 1971 is one of those killed at Attica; Alpert goes underground before being sentenced. (Echols)

      November 15: Huge antiwar protest in DC sponsored by the New Mobe draws anywhere from half a million to 800,000, it is the largest march against government policy to that point in U.S. history. 100,00 to 250,000 march in San Francisco is the largest West Coast antiwar march in history. Moratorium actions had taken place on the local level on the 13th and 14th; Moratorium folks are hesitant to endorse but especially after Nixon’s speech they get on board. Also, it is just before the demonstration - November 13 - that Seymour Hersh’s reports on the March 1968 My Lai massacre begin to be published in U.S. newspapers. Some 15,000 people follow up the march with a protest against the Justice Department, tear gas is used and there is some “trashing.” (Sale; Spoke; Guardian, November 22, 1969)

      November 20: Seventy-eight Indian activists under the name Indians of All Tribes (IAT) land on Alcatraz and occupy the island for the next 19 months, until June 11, 1971. The occupation, which receives a great deal of mostly positive initial media attention, is a watershed for the contemporary Indian resistance movement. (Dunbar; COINTELPRO; Goines chron; Guardian, January 10, 1970; Hurricane)

      November 27-30: Revolutionary Youth Movement formally founded as an anti-imperialist youth organization at a RYM II conference in Atlanta where women activists play a central role. But the organization never actually gets off the ground, and this is its first and last conference. (Dowling in CW#3; Guardian, November 8 & December 20, 1969)

      November: First Venceremos Brigade to Cuba, with 216 Brigadistas; idea originated with Carl Oglesby after trip to Cuba at the end of 1968. The Brigadistas of the first (and larger second Brigade, which goes in March-April 1970) help with the effort to harvest “ten million tons,” (the 1970 goal, to be complete by July 26, 1970) which does not succeed, with the harvest yielding only 8.5 million tons. The Brigade (VB) becomes an ongoing nationwide organization, conducting political education and sending regular contingents to Cuba (the Sixth Contingent, for example, leaves in spring 1973); and also becomes one of the key sites of networking and interaction among a section of the NCM and broader revolutionary left, especially among activists of color. In this capacity the VB is one of the counter-pulls to orthodox Maoism and complete support of China’s foreign policy among those turning to Marxism-Leninism. (Sale; Spoke; Leviathan June 1970; Blackburn in NLR 185; Triple Jeopardy November-December 1972; various TWWA reports in DTW-1; CrossRoads No. 35; Guardian, December 20, 1969)

      November: The Black Scholar magazine and Black World Foundation are founded, The Black Scholar begins publication, locating itself within the Black Liberation Movement. A telling example of its orientation and the currents it reflects in the Black intelligentsia: Volume 1 No. 7 in May 1970 is titled “Black Revolution.” (Black Scholar Vol.16, No. 1l and May-June 1987

      December 4: Fred Hampton and Mark Clark assassinated by police in Chicago. (Sale)

      December: Charles Manson and followers are arrested outside Los Angeles and charged with the (Sharon) Tate- (Leno & Rosemary) LaBianca murders of July 1969. Manson is referred to positively in several counter-culture publications, and in her speech at the Flint War Council (see below) Bernardine Dohrn glamorizes them with the “pick up the fork” image. (Gitlin - who says the arrest is in October; Rolling Stone; Acid)

      December: Rock Concert at the Altamont Speedway near the Bay Area in California features the Rolling Stones and draws 250,000. Bad drugs abound, the Hell’s Angels doing “security” kill a young Black man, many regard the event as the symbolic end of “the Age of Aquarius” and “Woodstock Nation” counter-culture period. (Gitlin; Acid)

      December 26-31: Weatherman “War Council” in Flint, Michigan. Soon afterwards the organization goes underground and all members are underground by February 1970. The home of the Judge presiding over the trial of the New York Panther 21 is firebombed in February and, after a lull following the Townhouse explosion (see March 6, 1970 below) Weatherman conducts a number of bombings. By the time of the self-critical “New Morning” communiqué on December 6, 1970 it signs its name as Weather Underground (rather than Weatherman), and also becomes known as the Weather Underground Organization (WUO). At the end of 1970 six Weather people were on the FBI’s Ten-Most-Wanted list, which was then increased to 16 to include additional activists. Meanwhile, at the same time, December 27-30, the PL Worker-Student Alliance Caucus, now claiming to be the only authentic SDS, draws 700 to its national meeting at Yale; the group lasts about another year. (O’Brien; Sale; Weather; self-published material in BREV-3; Chicago Seed Vol. 4, No. 10 in BREV-1; Guardian, January 10, 1970)


      October League Collective founded Los Angeles, Mike Klonsky is the central figure. (Costello, Hamilton; O’Brien says 1970)

      The International Socialists (IS) is founded as a national organization through a merger of the different Independent Socialist Clubs patterned on the one started in Berkeley in 1964. (O’Brien)

      La Raza Unida Party begins to take shape in Texas and in Crystal City it wins control of the school board in elections. In the next two years it also emerges in Colorado and California. (Muñoz; Chicano)

      Twenty-five movement newspapers aimed at Mexican-Americans and Chicanos join together to form the Chicano Press Association, whose statement of goals calls for a new social order. (Guardian, January 24, 1970)

      C.L.R. James, now allowed back in the U.S., speaks frequently on U.S. campuses. (James)

      Pacific News Service (and also the short-lived Dispatch New Service International) founded in the Bay Area initially as outlets for writers and reporters of accurate stories about the Vietnam War and Southeast Asia. (Berlet in Underground)

      Chicago Women’s Liberation Union is founded, the first organization to call itself “socialist-feminist.” The influential manifesto written by CWLU’s Hyde Park chapter, Socialist Feminism: A Strategy for the Women’s Movement,” is published in 1972. Bread and Roses, a “socialist women’s liberation organization” in Boston, is formed about the same time, in summer 1969. These groups are joined in the next few years by autonomous women’s unions in Berkeley-Oakland, New York, Boston and many other cities Within the radical wing of the women’s movement, differences take clearer shape between the radical feminist and newly emerging socialist feminist tendencies. (Echols; Red Apple in SR No. 38 - which says CWLU is formed in 1970; Line of March No. 17)

      Rising Up Angry (RUA) group is started in Chicago to organize white working class youth. Begins publication of Rising Up Angry newspaper. Survives until about 1975. (Rising Up Angry Vol. 5, No. 7 in BREV-1; Guardian, November 13, 1974; Franklin)

      Chicago-area High School Independent Press formed, publishes a widely distributed pamphlet How to Start a High School Underground Newspaper; the group soon drops “Chicago” from its name, moves its office to Houston in July 1970 and starts publishing FPS, a young peoples news service. In 1971-72 it moves to Ann Arbor, merges with a project called Youth Liberation, and FPS soon becomes a “Magazine of Young People’s Liberation” which includes reprints from the high school underground press. (Berlet in Underground)

      Black hospital workers in Charleston, South Carolina, organized by the National Organizing Committee just established by New York City’s Hospital Workers Union 1199, strike for 110 days and win most of their demands. 1199 rapidly expands nationally and reorganizes to form the National Union of Hospital and Nursing Home Employees, a division of the RWDSU, AFL-CIO. (Green; Hard Times No. 87l Guardian, May 17, 1969)

      Union of Radical Sociologists (initial sponsor of The Insurgent Sociologist, launched in 1970) founded at the American Sociologists Association Convention. (Leviathan June 1970)

      A protest against a U.S. underwater nuclear test sets in motion the formation of Greenpeace, a militant new group which by September 1971 has launched its own ship to the Aleutians to try to prevent U.S. nuclear testing. In 1975 Greenpeace expands its work beyond the issue of nuclear weapons, and by the late 1970s and ‘80s is taking on a broad range of issues mainly from a radical perspective, including issues of environmental racism. (Radicalism; Radical America Vol. 17, Nos. 2 & 3; CrossRoads No. 20)

      Accuracy in Media, the right-wing press lobby organization, is founded. (Second Cold War)

      German Social Democratic Party (SPD) leader Willy Brandt is elected chancellor (serving from 1969-1974) and initiates his Ostpolitik (Eastern policy) of trying to establish detente with the Communist government of Eastern Europe. Brandt visits the GDR and signs a Soviet-West German treaty in 1970. (Second Cold War; CrossRoads No. 27)

      General William Westmoreland in a speech to the Association of the United States Army touts the idea of an “electronic battlefield” or “automated battlefield”; the U.S. has been spending billions and will spend billions more on research, testing and deployment in Vietnam of various components of this high-tech project including sensors, infrared detectors, etc. (Klare).

      Publication of Black Awakening in Capitalist America by Robert L. Allen, (Doubleday & Company, Inc.; Anchor Books paperback edition issued the next year) - widely read and influential (see glowing review in the Guardian January 31, 1970) “analytic history” putting forward the “internal colony” (“dispersed semi-colony) thesis and arguing for a national liberation, anti-capitalist revolution, See reflection of this kind of formulation in Red Papers 1. Also The Black Panther, by Gene Marine (New York, New American Library); Manifesto for a Black Revolutionary Party by James Boggs (Philadelphia, Pacesetters Publishing House); White Over Black: American Attitudes Toward the Negro 1550-1812, Winthrop D. Jordan (Baltimore, Penguin Books); The Revolt of the Black Athlete, with the Tommie Smith and John Carlos picture on the cover, by Harry Edwards (The Free Press, New York); Daniel Cohn-Bendit, a leader of the French May uprising, Obsolete Communism: The Left-Wing Alternative, English translation ( Andre Deutsch, London); Vine Deloria, Custer Died for Your Sins (Macmillan, New York); The New Left Reader, edited by Carl Oglesby (New York, Grove Press); Stuart R. Schram, The Political Thought of Mao ZeDong (Praeger, New York, Washington and London); Vietnam: A Thousand Years of Struggle, by Terry Cannon, (pamphlet from Peoples Press, San Francisco); Zapata and the Mexican Revolution, by John Womack, Jr. (New York: Alfred A. Knopf); Horowitz, Irving Louis, Josué de Castro and John Gerassi (Editors), Latin American Radicalism: A Documentary Report on Left and Nationalist Movements (Alfred A. Knopf, New York); The Making of a Counter Culture by Theodore Roszak (New York, Anchor Books); Abbie Hoffman, Woodstock Nation, (New York, Vintage); Firearms and Self-Defense: A Handbook for Radicals, Revolutionaries and Easy Riders, by the “International Liberation School” (Berkeley); American Power and the New Mandarins, by Noam Chomsky (New York, Pantheon Books); Empire and Revolution by David Horowitz; Carl Oglesby, “Notes on a Decade Ready for the Dustbin,” in Liberation, August-September 1969; Gabriel Kolko, The Politics of War, The World, and United States Foreign Policy, 1943-1945 (New York, Random House); Gabriel Kolko, The Roots of American Foreign Policy (Beacon Press, Boston); Paul Mattick, Marx and Keynes: The Limits of the Mixed Economy (Boston, Porter Sargent); Ralph Miliband, The State in Capitalist Society (New York, Basic Books); Maxim Rodinson, Israel and the Arabs (Pantheon books, New York); The New Left: A Documentary History, edited by Massimo Teodori (Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill); The New Left: A Collection of Essays, Priscilla Long, Editor (Porter Sargent, Boston); Christopher Lasch, The Agony of the American Left (New York, Random House); Reveille for Radicals, by Saul Alinsky (New York, Random House);

      Also: Kevin Phillips, The Emerging Republican Majority (Arlington House, New Rochelle) - a key manifesto in how to use racism and “status resentment” to realign white northern ethnics and white southerners behind a “neo-populist” GOP.

      Release of Constantin Costa Gavras film Z, and Easy Rider directed by Dennis Hopper. Also In the Year of the Pig by Emile de Antonio, called by Guardian critic Irwin Silber “the best English language film on Vietnam to date.” (Guardian, May 10, 1969)


      January 1: In the early morning hours “The New Year’s Gang” steals an airplane and drop three small bombs which fail to explode on an army munitions plant in Baraboo near Madison, Wisconsin. (Rads; Gitlin)

      January 31-February 1: 250 activists attend a Bay Area conference on “The working class and the political insurgency in America” sponsored by the Bay Area Radical Education Project and the Pacific Studies Center. (Guardian, February 21, 1970)

      January-March: “First Quarter Storm” in the Philippines; large-scale mass protests against the U.S.-backed Marcos regime. The CPP and its youth organizations are rapidly growing in influence within the protest movement. (Toribio)

      January-February: First issue of Socialist Revolution magazine, which one of the editors, James Weinstein, sees as a continuation of the direction he had argued for in the new-defunct Studies on the Left (the need to build a new mass socialist party) and which he would continue in 1976 with the launching, under his leadership, of In These Times newspaper. (Unfinished; Also see Epstein p. 289 for brief assessment of the magazine’s initial articles and basic project; Aronowitz; Guardian, March 7, 1970)

      February 9: Robin Morgan’s “Goodbye to All That” is printed in an all-women’s issue of New York’s underground Rat. (Gitlin; Weather)

      Early February: Young Workers Liberation League, CP-initiated youth group is formed; of 400 registered for the founding conference, over 40% were people of color, over half were blue collar workers and only a quarter were college or high school students. (Fighting; O’Brien)

      February 14-15: 3.400 activists - called the largest gathering of student activists in the history of the antiwar movement - meet at the Student Mobilization Committee (SMC) conference at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, issue a call for nationwide campus strikes and rallies April 15. (Guardian, February 26, 1970)

      February 19: Five of the seven Conspiracy defendants are convicted on one count of incitement (but acquitted on the conspiracy count), John Froines and Lee Weiner are acquitted on all counts. Even before the verdict, over the weekend of February 14-15 while the jury was deliberating, the defendants are sentenced to jail on contempt charges, though they are granted bail on these later. The five who were convicted are sentenced to long periods in jail on the main charges by Judge Julius Hoffman on February 20. “TDA” - The Day After - actions take place in many cities across the country on February 20-21.. The convictions were overturned November 21, 1972 (Sale; Spoke; Reunion, which erroneously says the convictions are overturned November 1, 1972; Guardian, February 28, 1970 & November 29, 1972)

      February 24-27: Fierce clashes pit students and young people vs. police in Isla Vista near UC Santa Cruz after the arrest of a Black former student; protesters burn the Bank of America on February 25 and one student - who was trying to defend the bank - was killed by police bullets. The National Guard is called in to quell the rebellion. Conspiracy lawyer William Kunstler spoke to a crowd of 3,000 on the campus February 25 and refused to condemn the student violence, and he was accused by Governor Reagan of a conspiracy to cause riots. (Gitlin - who erroneously says the confrontation is February 4; Guardian, March 7, 1970; Katsiaficas)

      February 27: First issue of off our backs “a women’s news journal” is published in Washington, D.C. It is the “first national feminist newspaper to emerge on the East Coast during the Vietnam era.” (Douglas and Moira, and Webb, in Underground; Gitlin)

      March 6: Townhouse explosion in New York kills Weathermen members Diana Oughton, Ted Gold and Terry Robbins; Cathy Wilkerson and Kathy Boudin escape. (Sale)

      March 8: International Women’s Day actions in scores of cities organized by the women’s liberation movement and some groups from the mixed revolutionary left; according to the Guardian “For the first time in recent history, the annual March 8 celebration of International Women’s Day received its due in the U.S. (Guardian, March 14, 1970)

      March 9: SNCC members Ralph Featherstone and William H. (Che) Payne are killed by a bomb in their car the day before the trial of Rap Brown on federal charges is due to start in Bel Air, Maryland. Brown does not appear for his trial, and is in exile in Canada and in hiding until October 16, 1971 when he was wounded in the shoot-out with New York police after allegedly robbing a Manhattan cocktail lounge. Brown is convicted or armed robbery and sentenced to five to ten years in prison in March 1973. (Carson; Gitlin; Guardian, October 27, 1971 & March 21, 1970)

      March 18: Women’s liberation activists, mainly radical feminists, sit in at the offices of the Ladies Home Journal; after negotiations the agreement reached (on only one of 14 original demands) to publish a special women’s liberation supplement is regarded as a sell-out by many activists. (Echols)

      March 18: Right-wing coup by Lon Nol, backed by the U.S., topples Sihanouk regime in Cambodia, the country is then immersed in full-scale war. The Soviets recognize the Lon Nol regime, which costs them a great deal politically especially vis-*-vis China among aspiring revolutionaries and in particular in the U.S. New Communist Movement. (SF Chron June 14, 1997 in BMOV-5; Revolution Rescued; Second Cold War; Szymanski; Schurmann)

      March 28: Anna Louise Strong dies in China at 84. (Guardian, April 4, 1970)

      April 7: California governor Ronald Reagan speaking to the Council of California Growers says “If the students want a bloodbath, let’s get it over with.” (Reunion)

      April 12: Failed physical takeover attempt at the Guardian by supporters of “Weatherpolitics” (loosely speaking) after the paper becomes more explicitly critical of small group violence. Staff majority maintains control of the paper, continues uninterrupted publication, and reaffirms its commitment to Marxism-Leninism and its intention to contribute to building a mass, working class-based revolutionary movement. Dissidents go on to publish the Liberated Guardian for roughly a year, after which it becomes the New York City Star. (Guardian April 18, 1970, in BTr-3, & Guardian April 25, 1970; Smith in Underground; Bennion; Outlaws of Amerika pamphlet in BREV-3)

      April 13: Famed composer Mikis Theodorakis is released to the custody of French Radical Party leader Jean-Jacques Servan-Schreiber, he had been arrested a few months after the Greek Colonel’s coup in April 1967. (Guardian, May 9, 1970)

      April 22: Rallies for the country’s first Earth Day. (Spoke; Gitlin; Sale; Weather; Freed)

      April: Polls taken before the invasion of Cambodia show the number of students terming themselves “radical or far left” has grown to 11%, from 8% in spring 1969 and 4% in spring 1968. On the statement “the war in Vietnam is pure imperialism” 41% of students agree - up from only 16% in spring 1969 - and only 21% strongly disagree - down from 44% the year before. And note a June 5 poll of African Americans about the war conducted by Muhammad Speaks, showing 90% opposed to the invasion of Cambodia, 10% favoring immediate withdrawal and 73% favoring withdrawal as soon as possible; 81% consider the Vietnam war racist. (Gitlin; Guardian, June 13, 1970)

      April 22-30: Week of protests to Free Bobby Seale, Ericka Huggins and other Panthers in New Haven kicked off by a student strike at Yale April 22, culminates in 20,000-strong demonstration Sunday May 3. Yale President Kingman Brewster says in a widely quoted statement that he doubts that a Black revolutionary “could get a fair trial anywhere in the U.S.” Lonnie McLucas pleads to charges in August 1970, other New Haven Panthers are freed, the charges against Seale and Huggins are eventually dismissed (May 25, 1971) after a trial results in a hung jury in May 1971. (Reunion; Boyd; Mitchell in Triple Jeopardy March-April 1973; Weather; Freed; Guardian June 2, 1971)

      April 24-25: Leaders of North Vietnam, the NLF, the Pathet Lao and the National United Front of Kampuchea meet in southern China and announce the formation of a united Indochinese front to resist U.S. imperialism. Zhou Enlai goes to the meeting on April 25 to express China’s support and announces that on April 24 China had launched its first earth-orbiting satellite, giving China the equivalent of an ICBM delivery system. Immediately following the Chinese achievement, the Soviets launched a satellite that let loose eight other satellites, worrying Washington that the Soviets had mastered MIRV (Multiple Independently Targeted Re-entry Vehicle) technology. And at the same time it is reported widely in the press that Soviets are flying Egyptian planes in the Middle East, threatening to upset the heavily pro-Israel and pro-U.S. balance of power in the region. (Schurmann)]

      April: Takeover of Lincoln Hospital in New York by activists led by the Health Revolutionary Union Movement (HRUM) and the Young Lords; the long fight over conditions at Lincoln wins the establishment of the Lincoln detox program to treat heroin addicts and, in 1976, a newly rebuild hospital. (Torres; in another essay in the book the date of the takeover is given as July)

      April 30-May: Nixon announces Cambodia Invasion on April 30; immediate protests, especially on campuses; a call for national student strike comes from a mass meeting of students at the Panther protest in New Haven at Yale, from student newspaper editors and from the National Student Association, and also from the (now defunct, having announced that it would disband on April 19) Moratorium. The next weeks saw the largest and most violent campus/student protests in U.S. history. Four killed at Kent State on May 4, 2 killed at Jackson State on May 14. (Six African Americans are also killed May 11 in Augusta, Georgia when police fire on a protest-riot against the beating death of a Black man in prison.) On May 10 a National Strike Information Center at Brandeis announced that 448 campuses were either striking or shut down. Reagan had closed the entire California university system for a week. During the first week in May 30 ROTC buildings were burned or bombed and National Guard units were mobilized on 21 campuses in 16 states. A hastily called national lobbying and demonstration action brings tens of thousands to Washington for a May 9-11; the march of 130,000 is held May 9. Katsiaficas estimates that some four million students and 350,000 faculty take part in the campus May strike, which he terms a “general strike” against the war. The day before the May 9 march in Washington, Nixon fires Lewis Hershey as head of the Selective Service system and agrees to withdraw U.S. troops from Cambodia within 30 days. The invasion, meanwhile, was a military farce, failing to accomplish any of its stated goals, such destroying the NLF’s headquarters or “sanctuaries” in Cambodia. In the U.S. there is a massive explosion of “work-through-the-system” peace organizations tapping student energy to work to elect peace candidates in the fall 1970 elections. There is also a visible split in labor on the war, with opposition now going beyond a handful of leftish unions and (mainly local) individual leaders. On May 7 AFSCME endorsed a statement calling for immediate withdrawal; the same day Walter Reuther (killed in a plane crash two days later) sends an antiwar telegram to Nixon endorsed by the UAW leadership; on May 24 the president of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers denounced the war at the union’s national convention. 451 labor leaders also sign an antiwar ad in the SF Examiner on May 18. On the other hand, construction workers in New York (later revealed to have been paid) assault antiwar demonstrators on May 8 and there are confrontations and pro-war demonstrations sponsored by the NY Building and Construction Trades Council (whose head later became Secretary of Labor under Nixon) over the next two weeks. One hundred art galleries and several museums closed to protest the war, and 43 Nobel Prize winners (75% of all U.S. winners) sent a joint letter to Nixon urging an immediate end to the war. In the military, according to the Wall Street Journal, at least 500 GI’s deserted every day of May. The “establishment” is split as 250 State Department employees sign a statement against administration policy and Henry Kissinger is quoted as saying later “The very fabric of government was falling apart.” In the wake of the Cambodia crisis, the Senate repeals the 1964 Tonkin Gulf Resolution and passes the Cooper-Church Amendment on June 30 barring aid to Lon Nol without congressional approval (but it dies in House-Senate conference). (Spoke; Sale; Reunion; Gitlin; Guardian, April 25, May 2, May 9, May 23 & May 30, 1970; Katsiaficas)

      June 27-28: 850 union members and sympathizers form the National Coordinating Committee for Trade Union Action and Democracy at a Chicago “National Rank-and-File Action Conference” initiated by Labor Today, a CP-linked publication. (Guardian, July 4, 1970)

      June: The New Mobe suffers a final split, largely over “single-issue/single-tactic” vs. “multi-issue/multi-tactic,” with the SWP-led forces forming the Peace Action Coalition (later National Peace Action Coalition, NPAC) June 19-21 in Cleveland and a looser grouping including radical pacifists, independents, NWRO and CP-oriented people meeting at a “Strategy Action Conference” June 26-27 in Milwaukee, soon forming the National Coalition Against War, Racism and Repression, renamed the People’s Coalition for Peace and Justice (PCPJ) in late February 1971. The Mobe technically exists for a time but is never revived as such. (Spoke; Guardian, December 19, 1970)

      June 30: Penn Central, largest railroad in the country, goes bankrupt. (Guardian, July 11, 1970)

      July 26: Carl Hampton, 21-year-old chair of Houston’s People’s Party II is killed by police firing from ambush; seven others are wounded, including white activist Bartee Haile a leader of the John Brown Revolutionary League. (Southern Patriot, September 1970)

      July 29: César Chávez of the UFW signs contracts with 26 grape growers, concluding the long and bitter strike and boycott that began in September 1965. (Goines chron)

      July 31: Uruguay’s Tupamaros “the most sophisticated guerrilla movement in Latin America” kidnap CIA agent Dan Mitrione; before he is executed he reveals a wealth of detail about the extent of U.S. interference in Uruguay’s government and affairs. The Tupamaros - technically, the Movement for National Liberation/MLN - had been founded in 1962 and engaged in extensive mass political organizing as well as armed activities. The period from 1967 until they are devastated by military repression at the end of 1972 is one of intense struggle in the country. (MR Feb. 1972; Frontline March 18, 1985; NACLA Nov-Dec 1984 & Sept-Dec 1986; Moss; Guardian, August 15 & August 22, 1970)

      Summer: Formation of El Comité in New York City, originated as a group of Puerto Ricans and other Latinos on the upper West side fighting urban renewal and taking part in a squatters movement. El Comité will later becomes M.I.N.P.-El Comité (MINP; Torres)

      Summer: Four persons are killed and hundreds wounded by police fire during street battles in ten cities over two weeks in the end of July and beginning of August. (Guardian, August 8, 1970)

      August 5: Huey Newton released on bail, 10,000 people greet him as he stands on a car with his shirt off. He offers to send the entire BPP to fight alongside the Vietnamese, who graciously decline. (Brown; CrossRoads No. 53)

      August 7: At the Marin County Courthouse, Jonathan Jackson takes hostages in an attempt to win freedom for the Soledad Brothers (his brother George. Jackson, Fleeta Drumgo and John Cluchette). Jackson, prisoner James McClain and a judge are killed when State Troopers open fire. Angela Davis is charged with supplying the guns, she cannot be found and nationwide police search for her gets underway. (Fighting; Weather; Guardian, August 22, 1970)

      August 24: The Army Mathematics Research Center at the University of Wisconsin, Madison - target of a long campaign by antiwar activists - is destroyed by a large bomb placed by The New Years Gang (three of whose members are later caught and serve time, one is never found); a graduate student is accidentally killed. (Rads; Gitlin)

      August 26: Women’s Strike for Equality, on the 50th anniversary of woman suffrage, turns out the largest demonstration for female equality to that point in U.S. history, with 35-50,000 women marching in New York City alone. (Echols; Guardian, September 5, 1970)

      August 29: Chicano Moratorium against the war in Vietnam, drawing over 20,000 to Laguna Park in East Los Angeles, the largest antiwar march ever held in this city. L.A. county sheriffs attack the demonstration and kill three people, including journalist Rubén Salazar who is sitting quietly in the Silver Dollar Bar. Protesters respond by fighting back against the police and burning businesses on Whittier Blvd. (Muñoz; Chicano; CrossRoads No. 55; Guardian September 5, 1970)

      August: Atlanta becomes the first U.S. city to license a fight by Muhammad Ali since 1967. (Marqusee)

      September 3: Eldridge Cleaver, who had gone underground and fled the U.S., surfaces in Algeria opening the “International Office” of the Black Panther Party. (Boyd; Brown)

      September 4: Electoral victory of the Popular Unity (UP) coalition of the Socialist and Communist Parties in Chile in a three-way contest with the Christian Democrats and the far right, UP candidate Salvador Allende wins a plurality of votes and, after considerable tensions, is selected President by the Congress. The MIR is not part of the UP coalition but takes independent initiative on the left sometimes in informal alliance with UP forces and sometimes not. (MIR History; Guardian, September 19, 1970)

      September 6-9: Founding Congress of the Congress of Afrikan Peoples (Congress of African People) in Atlanta draws 3,500 people. The same weekend in Washington, D.C. the Black Panther Party-initiated Revolutionary People’s Constitutional Convention is held, drawing 6,000 people. (Forward No. 3; Guardian, September 19, 1970)

      September 8: Opening of Third Non-Aligned Summit in Lusaka, Zambia, with 53 nations participating (up from 25 in Belgrade in 1961 and 42 in Cairo in 1964); the Movement expresses solidarity with liberation movements. (Black Scholar December 1976; Century)

      September 15: Jordanian army attacks PLO militants, there is heavy fighting as well as a number of massacres by the Jordanian army in what comes to be called “Black September.” The attack is a corollary to Jordan accepting a U.S. plan (the “Rogers Plan”) for “peace” in the region. King Hussein continued his military pressures after a cease-fire period and by July 1971 he drives the PLO out of the country. The period before the fighting was one of rising Palestinian activity, both within Israel and in a number of airline hijacking by the PFLP through 1968-1970. (Roots; MR May 1975; Century)

      September 28: Nasser dies, the more moderate, Western-oriented vice-president Anwar Sadat becomes president of Egypt, consolidating his power in May 1971. (MR May 1975; Century; Storm)

      September: Weather Underground plans and carries out the escape of Timothy Leary from a minimum-security prison in San Luis Obispo, California, where he was serving time on drug charges, and helps him flee to Algeria. (Sale; Gitlin; Weather)

      October 1: Rebellions break out in four New York City jails involving thousands of Black, Puerto Rican and a few white prisoners, the rebellions take on an explicitly political character and one demand raised is freedom on bail for Afeni Shakur. (Guardian, October 10, 1970)

      October 13: Angela Davis is arrested in New York City. (Guardian, October 24, 1970)

      October 16: Faced with rising socialist and pro-independence activism in Quebec the Canadian government uses the pretext of a kidnapping by the Front de Liberation du Quebec (FLQ) to apply its War Measures Act, partially suspend democratic liberties, send in the army to occupy the province and repress the FLQ and other radical groups. Trials for sedition follow in 1971 and a broad movement against the trials takes shape throughout Canada. The FLQ is dissolved at the end of 1971 and key leader Pierre Vallieres calls for people to support the non-socialist but pro-independence Parti Quebecois (PQ), which had been founded in 1968, and wins a majority in the Quebec provincial parliament in 1976 and from then on the relationship between Quebec and English-speaking Canada is a front-burner controversy in the country. On the far left, many revolutionary organizations form in Canada during 1970-1972, including Maoist groups with various relations to U.S. New Communist Movement. The largest, In Struggle, begins to form in 1972, holds what becomes known as its founding congress in November 1974, and dissolved at its Fourth Congress in May 1982. (Jxxx; IS-Bulletin No. 3; Guardian, October 24, 1970 & January 12, 1972)

      October 30: March to the U.N. to demand Puerto Rican independence on the 20th anniversary of the Nationalist uprising on the island. Spearheaded by the Young Lords, the demonstrations brings together the full breadth of the Puerto Rican movement with 10,000 marching. (Torres)

      Fall: Harris Poll reports first drop since 1965 in the percentage of students calling themselves “radical or far left”: from spring’s 11% to 7%. But, a Yankelovitch poll just after the spring Cambodia protests found that, in the universities alone, more than a million people considered themselves revolutionaries; and also a New York Times story in early 1971 said that four out of ten students (nearly three million people) think that a revolution is needed in the U.S. (Gitlin; Katsiaficas)

      December 6: Self-critical “New Morning” communiqué from the Weather Underground saying it had been mistaken to view armed struggle as the only legitimate form of revolutionary action, but not altering basic contours of the group’s strategic line. (Weather; self-published material in BREV-3; Guardian, December 26, 1970)


      BARU expands nationally to become RU; it also becomes a multinational (inter-racial) organization after Panthers make a big ultra-left turn under Cleaver’s influence and RU no longer advises Black contacts to join Panthers but rather to join RU; Red Papers 2 and 3 published (dates from internal evidence; Hamilton implies 1969 publication). RU’s line at this time is that party building is not yet the central task; the central task is “building the struggle, consciousness and revolutionary unity of the working class and developing its leadership in the anti-imperialist struggle.” The Venceremos group, whose most prominent figure is Bruce Franklin, splits from RU at the end of the year; Venceremos dissolves in late summer 1973. (Hamilton; May 1974 issue of Revolution reprinted in Red Papers 6; review of Red Papers 1-5 in PBRANDOM R53; Burning; Franklin)

      IS moves its national headquarters to Detroit, renames its newspaper Workers Power and pushes its members to “industrialize.” (O’Brien)

      Release of the film Finally Got the News about the League of Revolutionary Black Workers. (Georgakas)

      Formation (possibly in 1969) of the Motor City Labor League (at first, Motor City Labor Coalition), prodded by leaders of the LRBW. (Georgakas)

      Student Organization for Black Unity (SOBU), which later becomes Youth Organization for Black Unity (YOBU), publisher of The African World newspaper and a key organization of the early ‘70s Black Liberation Movement in the South, is formed. Nelson Johnson, later a leader of the WVO/CWP, served as YOBU chair. (Ahmad in Black Scholar May-June 1978)

      Paredon Records is founded by Irwin Silber and Barbara Dane; first releases are FTA! Songs of the G.I. Resistance, sung by Barbara Dane with active duty G.I.s; Cancion Protesta: Protest Songs of Latin America; Huey Newton Speaks; and Angola: A Vitoria e Certa. (Southern Patriot January 1971)

      Most of the SP’s “Debs Caucus” - which supported traditional SP positions against working with the Democrats, and included members more inclined to oppose the war in Vietnam - leave the SP or become inactive after the 1970 convention, and with them gone a split soon develops between a Harrington-led group (taking the name Coalition Caucus) and the Schachtman-led Realignment Caucus; the Coalitionists are anti-Vietnam War (to an extent anyway) and want to work with the emerging McGovern wing of the Democrats rather than the Realignment-, AFL-CIO-leadership-backed Henry Jackson wing. (SDHx)

      Rebirth of worker militancy: after a high pitch in 1969, when there were more work stoppages than any year since 1945 (Guardian, July 18, 1970), 1970 was even hotter: more workers went on strike in 1970 than in any year since 1952, with the highlights being a long General Electric (GE) strike stretching over the winter of 1969-70 (it began in October 27, 1969 and ended January 30, 1970, and there were support actions on many campuses); a Post Office walkout in late March which included the calling out of U.S. troops allegedly to sort the mail in New York City - more a publicity stunt and attempt at intimidation than a reality (again, there were solidarity actions on campuses), Teamster wildcats (including a seven week wildcat in L.A. ending June 2 supported by students, see Guardian June 6 & June 13, 1970) forcing renegotiation of the master freight agreement, a miners wildcat involving 60,000 workers in June (Guardian, July 4, 1970), a one-day railroad strike in December (Guardian, December 26, 1970), and a two-month strike against General Motors (the longest auto strike since 1946) beginning September 14 (Guardian, September 26, 1970). There are 381 work stoppages involving more than 1,000 workers, for a total number of workers involved of 2,468,000. This number has not been equaled since 1970 (a year which also saw a mild recession). In fact, no year since has come even close, 1970 was the “crescendo” - Mike Davis’ word - in almost every respect; Stanley Aronowitz even wrote in the Guardian April 11 that “the smell of a general strike is in the air.” The percentage of the workforce organized in unions is also in steady decline: In 1953, 32% of the eligible workforce were union members; in 1958, 24.2%; in 1974, 21.7%; in 1984, 18.8% and by 1992 the number is down to 16.1%, and even this figure is reached only because of the gains in public sector unionization. (O’Brien; Almanac; Davis in NLR #143; Weather; CrossRoads No. 24; Taft-Hartley; Guardian, November 8, 1969 & February 7, 1970 & April 4, 1970)

      The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) is established. (Green)

      Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) begins in Arkansas as an experimental project of the National Welfare Rights Organization. Expands to three states by 1975 and 20 by December 1979. The “citizen’s movement” (including neighborhood, senior, consumer and farmers groups - including organizations of Black farmers, aided by the Sharecroppers Fund, the Southern Cooperative Development Fund, and the Federation of Southern Cooperatives - among others) becomes a prominent feature in the 1970s, with 20 million people belonging to some form of neighborhood group and several million taking part in some kind of picket or protest on behalf of their neighborhood. There are local groups (see entry on San Antonio’s COPS in 1974 below), Statewide groups, such as Massachusetts Fair Share formed in 1975 or California’s Citizens Action League founded in 1974, and nationwide networks: ACORN in the ‘80s is one of the four major national community organizing networks, the other three being the Industrial Areas Foundation (the oldest, founded by Saul Alinsky in 1940), National People’s Action (formed in March, 1972), and Citizen’s Action. A number of organizer-training institutes are linked with these networks, including the National Training and Information Center (linked to National People’s Action), the Mid American Institute and the Midwest Academy. (Delgado in Unfinished; Boyte; CrossRoads No. 55; Radicals)

      The Gray Panthers - formally “The Consultation of Older and Younger Adults for Social Change” - are founded in Philadelphia by activist Maggie Kuhn a few months after being forced to retire at age 65 from her job with the United Presbyterian Church. During the 1970s the “mainstream” senior groups - the National Council of Senior Citizens and the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) - grew rapidly and more aggressively press their interests through lobbying and other political action. (SF Chronicle September 26, 1997 and Bay Guardian September 24, 1997 in BMOV-3; Boyte)

      U.S. begins construction of a major communications facility on British-owned Diego Garcia island near the center of the Indian Ocean; the project is part of preparations to secure U.S. military capacity to intervene in this part of the world. (Klare)

      CPC publishes the pamphlet “Leninism or Social Imperialism?” in which Mao ZeDong is quoted as saying the “Soviet Union today is under the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, a dictatorship of the big bourgeoisie, a dictatorship of the German fascist type, a dictatorship of the Hitler type.” Formulations about the CPSU being a fascist party and the Soviet system being “fascism of the Hitler type” appear in CPC statements and articles through the 1970s. (Disney)

      Formation of the Organization of Iranian People’s Fedaii Guerrillas and also the Organization of the People’s Mojahedin (Islamic-Marxist). (NLR #166)

      Progressive elements split off from ELF and form Eritrean People’s Liberation Front, after some years of fighting between ELF and EPLF they declare a cease-fire in 1974 (MR June 1978)

      Another decade of major demographic and social changes: world population is now 3.6 billion (up 18% since 1960; U.S. is 203.3 million (up 12%) and California is 19.9 million (up 22%). (Goines chron)

      Publication of Philippine Society and Revolution by Amado Guerrero (in mimeograph form; book form reaching the U.S. follows in 1971).

      Also published: a number of important books in the rise of the women’s liberation movement (the first three listed here for the radical feminist current in particular): Sisterhood is Powerful: An Anthology of Writings from the Women’s Liberation Movement, edited by Robin Morgan (Vintage Books Edition, September 1970, Random House, New York); Sexual Politics, by Kate Millet (Doubleday edition published 1970, Avon Books/New York edition in 1971); and Shulamith Firestone, The Dialectic of Sex (New York, William Morrow and Co. - Bantam Books paperback in 1971); and The Black Woman, by Toni Cade (New York, Signet);

      Also: Soledad Brother: The Prison Letters of George Jackson, by George Jackson (New York, Coward-McCann); The Black Panthers Speak, Philip Foner, Ed. (Philadelphia, Lippencott); Seize the Time: The Story of the Black Panther Party and Huey P. Newton (Random House, New York); David Dellinger, Revolutionary Nonviolence (Bobbs-Merrill, Indianapolis); Harold Jacobs ed., Weatherman (Berkeley, Ramparts Press); Jerry Rubin, Do It! (New York, Ballantine Books, and/or Simon and Schuster); Racism and the Class Struggle by James Boggs (Monthly Review Press, New York); Conversations with Eldridge Cleaver-Algeria, by Lee Lockwood (McGraw-Hill, New York); Monthly Review Press re-issue of China Shakes the World by Jack Belden, originally published in 1949; The Myth of Black Capitalism, by Earl Ofari (Monthly Review Press, New York); Labor Radical: From the Wobblies to the CIO, by Len De Caux (Beacon Press, Boston); The Military Art of People’s War: Selected Writings of General Vo Nguyen Giap, edited by Russell Stetler (Monthly Review Press, New York); Vietnam: The Endless War, essays by Sweezy, Huberman and Magdoff from MR (Monthly Review Press); The Second Indochina War, by Wilfred Burchett (International Publishers, New York); Edgar Snow, Red China Today: The Other Side of the River (Harmondsworth); Kim Il Sung: A Political Biography, published by the Guardian, New York, by special agreement with the DPRK; Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee: An American Indian History of the American West, by Dee Brown (Holt, Rinehart and Winston); The Price of My Soul, by Bernadette Devlin (Alfred A. Knopf, New York); The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn (University of Chicago Press, Chicago); Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed (New York, Herder and Herder); Class Struggle in Africa, by Kwame Nkrumah (International Publishers, New York); Charles Reich, The Greening of America (New York, Random House) - in the vein of Theodore Roscak’s Making of a Counterculture from the previous year; Todd Gitlin and Nanci Hollander, Uptown: Poor Whites in Chicago (New York, Harper and Row); Standing Fast, novel by Harvey Swados (Doubleday, New York); Editors of Fortune Magazine, Challenges for Business in the 1970s (Boston, Little Brown); How People Get Power: Organizing Oppressed Communities for Action, by Si Kahn (New York, McGraw-Hill); and Labor’s Untold Story, by Richard O. Boyer and Herbert M. Morais, originally published in 1955, is republished.

      Also: American translation of The Society of the Spectacle, published in French in 1967 by “situationist” Guy Debord, appears in Radical America July 1970, and has a significant impact on the (fading but still alive) New Left and the Underground Press. (Buhle in NLR #180/March-April 1990)

      Also: The major works of Louis Althusser, written in the ‘60s (For Marx, Reading Capital, written with Etienne Balibar), begin to appear in English. (see MR January 1979); his polemic against social democratic/humanist/rightist versions of Marxism and also against Stalinism finds an audience.

      Release of Constantin Costa Gavras film The Confession and also Burn! starring Marlon Brando and directed by Gillo Pontecorvo.

      End of Part Two

      Part One, 1967-1970

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Five, 1981-1992

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

    3. #3
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Lightbulb Chronology Part Three, 1971-1974

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!

      January: Idi Amin comes to power in Uganda via a coup supported by Israel and tacitly by Britain; a few years later - especially just after the Angolan liberation and Soweto in 1976-77, the Western media will make a great deal of fuss about his brutal rule. (NLR #156; Black Scholar October 1977)

      January: Twelve members of the National Student Association, denied entrance to South Vietnam, go to Hanoi and sign a “People’s Peace Treaty” with representatives of student groups from North and South Vietnam. The Treaty becomes a widely used organizing tool for subsequent antiwar mobilizations in the U.S. (Wall Flyer; Weather)

      February 8: South Vietnamese troops heavily backed by U.S. air power cross into Laos in an attempt to “cut the Ho Chi Minh trail”; it’s a dismal failure, with heavy ARVN casualties, a huge number of supporting helicopters shot down and rapid retreat; quickly organized protests within the U.S. turn out 50,000 in cities across the country. (Spoke; Fact Sheet)

      Spring: Eldridge Cleaver publicly declares that there is a split in the BPP, terming the other wing reformist. Tensions between the Cleaver and Newton factions (the New York 21 are in the Cleaver faction) have been escalating for months; the decisive rupture comes when a February 1971 phone conversation between Cleaver in Algeria and Huey Newton - intended to be broadcast and serve as part of the buildup for a rally - becomes an occasion for Cleaver to criticize BPP actions. Violence now breaks out between the two sides; Huey moves into guarded penthouse in Oakland. BPP Newspaper distribution coordinator Sam Napier is murdered, allegedly by the Cleaver faction. Elaine Brown becomes editor of the BPP newspaper. Huey begins to talk about "revolutionary intercommunalism.” The Newton-faction Panthers begin to pull back from nationwide work, consolidate in Oakland and emphasize “survival programs” such as breakfast for children, and from about this time the BPP declines as an ideological influence on the nationwide left. (Brown; Boyd; Guardian April 17 & June 16, 1971)

      March 8: Small group of Catholic leftists break into the FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania (outside of Philadelphia), steal and then leak to the press documentation of the FBI’s counterintelligence program against the movement; COINTELPRO is “officially” ended in April. (Spoke)

      March 25: Pakistani dictator Yahya (Ayub) Khan unleashes his military in East Pakistan, killing up to 600,000 Bengalis and driving millions of refugees into India. This step broke off negotiations that had been underway since just after December 1970 elections had been won by the Awami League in East Pakistan under the banner of regional autonomy. The elections were won by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party in West Pakistan. The repression and massacres set off armed resistance, some under the leadership of the bourgeois Awami League and some under the leadership of various left and communist groups. (Century; Unite the Many; China Alliance; MR September 1971, October 1971 and March 1972)

      March 28: Republic of New Africa (RNA) “consecrates” “the first African capitol in the northern hemisphere since Columbus” on some land in Hinds County, Mississippi; the RNA’s president, Imari Abubakari Obadele (Richard Henry) is arrested on August 18, 1971 stemming from a police raid and shoot-out at RNA headquarters on that date in Jackson, Mississippi; he is imprisoned for many years and finally released on parole January 18, 1980. (Black Scholar February 1972 & October 1978; COINTELPRO; Burning Spear February 1980)

      March 29: Lt. William Calley is found guilty of murdering 22 Vietnamese civilians on March 16, 1968 at My Lai 4, sentenced to life imprisonment; he serves very little actual time in prison - he is released on bond and his sentence is reduced - and he is finally released on parole in September 1975. (Spoke)

      March: Conference initiated mainly by El Comité brings together close to 1,000 people to demand freedom for the Five Nationalist Prisoners; from then until their release September 10, 1979 (see below) the campaign to free the Five is a central issue on which the entire Puerto Rican left unites, and also wins support from many non-Puerto Rican groups. (Torres)

      March: First issue of Amerasia, journal to disseminate social science research relevant to Asian Americans, which will serve as a resource for Asian American Studies Departments now being established at various universities. Bridge magazine, also focusing on Asian American issues, is also launched in 1971 out of the Basement Workshop, an important community institution in New York’s Chinatown. Bridge lasts to 1985 and Amerasia is still being published, by UCLA’s Asian American Studies Center. (Wei)

      April 5: Unsuccessful insurrection led by revolutionary organization JVP in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) begins, government follows with severe repression, U.S., USSR, Britain and India all send support to the government, China also sends a message congratulating the government and denouncing “foreign spies” among the rebels. (Unite the Many; MR January 1972)

      April 11: The U.S. table tennis team is warmly welcomed in China: “ping-pong” diplomacy breaks the public ice in relations between the two powers. On June 10 Nixon ends the 22-year embargo on trade with the People’s Republic. On July 9, Henry Kissinger flies secretly from Pakistan to Beijing and holds 20 hours of talks with Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai; the groundwork is beginning to be laid for a U.S.-China rapprochement and, later, informal alliance. On July 15 Nixon announces that he has accepted an invitation to visit China before May 1972. (Century)

      April 22: Francois “Papa Doc” Duvalier, dictator in Haiti for 14 years, dies, and is succeeded by his son Jean-Claude “Baby Doc,” 19 years old. (Century)

      April 24-May 5: Half a million attend antiwar rally in DC jointly sponsored by NPAC and PCPJ. During the week leading up to the march, Vietnam Veterans Against the War conduct “Operation Dewey Canyon III” in D.C., which included Lt. John Kerry (later a Senator) testifying before Congress and culminated Friday April 23 with nearly 1,000 veterans throwing their medals over the Capitol steps. By this time VVAW has 11,000 members and 26 regional coordinators. In the ten days following the joint march there are further actions sponsored by PCPJ, constituent groups and the “Mayday Tribe.” The main event is the Mayday attempt to “shut down the government” through civil disobedience, which results in the largest number of arrests (many improper) in U.S. history, 12,614. Years later a class action suit brought about $10,000 in damages to each improperly arrested person. (Spoke; Goines chron; Ramparts July 1971; Almanac; Guardian May 5, 1971)

      April: Meetings between U.S. and Vietnamese women in Toronto and Vancouver. (Douglas and Moira in Underground; Guardian April 17, 1971; Wei)

      May 1-2: First of the many annual May Day Rallies organized by RU in Bay Area (Hamilton).

      May 11: Three dozen protesters arrested for trespassing as they sat atop the last unbulldozed house in rural Kalama Valley on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. The attempt to defend the land rights of local people was the spark that ignited the modern Hawaiian movement of land struggles which, by 1980, becomes a full-scale struggle for native Hawaiian autonomy. (Hawaii)

      June 7: Armed Forces Journal publishes Col. Robert D. Heinl’s article “The Collapse of the Armed Forces.” After conducting a month-long tour of U.S. military bases in Vietnam, he reports “by every conceivable indication, the U.S. army in South Vietnam is approaching a state of total collapse, with individuals and units avoiding or having refused combat, murdering their officers, drug-ridden, and dispirited, where not near mutinous.” He adds that “the morale, discipline and battle-worthiness of the U.S. armed forces are, with a few salient exceptions, lower and worse than at any time in this century and possibly the history of the United States.” See also April 1969 entry above. (Gitlin; Fact Sheet says this report is in August) This is also a record year for desertion rates in the U.S. armed forces: during 1971, nearly 100,000 servicemen and women desert (MR October 1988)

      June 7: New York City bridge workers leave 28 of 29 drawbridges locked in an open position when they walk off their jobs Monday morning, “a few thousand striking workers did what 15,000 demonstrators had failed to accomplish in Washington a few weeks before: immobilize all traffic in and out of the city.” The strike by District Council 37 of AFSCME is settled two days later. (Guardian June 16, 1971)

      June 13: New York Times begins publishing the Pentagon Papers exposing the governments secret deliberations over Vietnam policy; other newspapers follow; Attorney General Mitchell tries to halt publication but on June 30 the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 for the Times and publication resumed. A month after publication of the Pentagon Papers, in August, a majority of Americans in a Harris poll said the war was “immoral” and in a Gallup poll 61% favored complete withdrawal. Daniel Ellsberg and Anthony Russo, who had taken the Papers from the Rand Corporation and leaked them, were indicted but eventually freed on a mistrial because of government misconduct. June 30 was also the day the 26th amendment to the Constitution took effect, giving 18-year-olds the vote. (Spoke; Reunion)

      June: First issue of Kalayaan newspaper, published by the Kalayaan collective of Filipino activists in the Bay Area, which initiated and led the process towards creation of the KDP in 1973. Period of Filipino youth conferences, first Pilipino People’s Far West Convention (August 1971), and formation of Filipino collectives and left groups in San Jose, New York, San Diego, Seattle and other cities and college campuses. (Toribio)

      August 11: The National Women’s Political Caucus (NWPC) is founded at a DC conference drawing 300. (Guardian, August 11, 1971)

      August 15: Nixon announces his “NEP” with 90-day wage, price and rent freeze, and also frees the dollar from its tie to gold effectively ending the “Bretton Woods” world financial system set up after World War II. Many commentators see this as a watershed, marking (or recognizing) a downshift in U.S. ability to dominate other capitalist powers - an increasingly assertive and united European Community, and a rapidly developing Japan, and unleashing an era of greater inter-imperialist rivalry: “the end of U.S. hegemony...the end of one phase of postwar global capitalist history and the beginning of another.” Related: in 1971 the U.S. faced its first trade deficit in the 20th century. (MR, October 1971; Viewpoint Vol. 1. No. 2; Boyte; Second Cold War says at this time Nixon only devalued the dollar vs. gold, and suspended convertibility of the dollar to gold in March 1973)

      August 21: George Jackson murdered in San Quentin. The next morning, at least 700 inmates at Attica prison in New York, most wearing black armbands, refused to eat breakfast out of respect for Jackson. A few weeks after Jackson is killed, six prisoners - the “San Quentin Six,” Fleeta Drumgo, Johnny Spain, Hugo Pinell, Willie Tate, Luiz Talamantez and David Johnson - are indicted for the deaths of two inmates and three guards during the episode; a major defense campaign is conducted on their behalf. They - like Drumgo and Cluchette in the Soledad Brothers Case, who are acquitted March 27, 1972 - are acquitted. This was a period of prison rebellions (at least 16 in 1970, including a one-day rebellion August 10, 1970 in the “Tombs” - Manhattan House of Detention - by Black and Puerto Rican prisoners), a large prisoners rights movement and the formation of revolutionary political organizations by some prisoners. (Abron in Underground; Freedom; Bennion; Burning Spear January 1980; Guardian, April 5, 1972; Torres)

      August 23: Another product of U.S.-Soviet detente, the Four Power Agreement on Berlin is reached, which allows unhampered Western traffic to the city and ends one of the original issues at stake in Cold War I. (Second Cold War)

      Labor Day Weekend: Conference of southern organizers, mostly white, in Greenville, South Carolina draws 100; presentations made by the CPUSA, NCLC and Georgia communist League. (Southern Patriot, October 1971)

      September 9: Attica uprising, 1,281 inmates seize control of half the prison and take hostages; negotiations are unsuccessful, Governor Rockefeller refuses to come to Attica, and on September 13 state troopers and corrections officers begin their assault on the liberated prison yard. 29 inmates and 10 hostages are killed, all by gunshot wounds inflicted by the attacking police. The McKay Commission later concluded: “With the exception of Indian massacres in the late nineteenth century, the State Police assault which ended the four-day prison uprising was the bloodiest one-day encounter between Americans since the Civil War.” (Freedom; Bennion; Torres)

      September 11: Nikita Khrushchev dies, the CPSU/government announces his death but offers “no obituary, no blame, no praise.” (Nove; Century)

      September: Founding national meeting of Black Workers Congress (BWC) in Gary, in preparation since late 1970, 400 delegates attend, with the concept of Black including all peoples of color within the U.S. The LRBW and United Black Workers from Mahwah New Jersey, expected at one time to be the pillars of the group, do not affiliate; Ken Cockrell, Mike Hamlin and John Watson had resigned from the League earlier, as of June 12, 1971. By the end of this year many of the members who were left in the League, including key leader General Baker, had joined the Communist League (Georgakas; self-published material in BNCM-1).

      September: Fall of Lin Biao; after supposedly trying an unsuccessful coup, he is killed in a plane crash September 12 perhaps trying to flee to the USSR. The context is the developing relationship between Washington and Beijing and specifically plans for welcoming Nixon to Beijing. Mao and Zhou are apparently winning the internal CPC fight to decisively move China toward alliance with the U.S. against the USSR. An editorial in the CPC’s People’s Daily on August 17, 1971 indicates that the CPC now regards the Soviet Union as its principal enemy. (Trial; Century; Schurmann).

      September-October: The Third World Women’s Alliance, which had formed earlier in the year (or in late 1970) when the Black Women’s Alliance (see December 1968 entry above) expanded to include non-Black Third World women, issues Vol. 1 No. 1 of Triple Jeopardy newspaper. (TWWA; CrossRoads No. 29; Beal in Sisterhood; Carson; Triple Jeopardy Vol. 1 No. 1)

      October 9-11: First national meeting of the New American Movement held in Chicago, after a more than a year period of organizing by a national interim committee. A national conference on program is held in November, and the formal Founding Convention in June 1972 (SR No. 8; SDHx)

      October 25: U.N. seats People’s Republic of China and expels Taiwan regime. (Almanac)

      October: Formation of the Third World Front Against Imperialism, a coalition of New York area Third World organizations to work against the Vietnam War and U.S. intervention in the Third World generally. Participating organizations include Asian Americans for Action, Asian Coalition, Asian Women’s Coalition, Black Organization of Students at Rutgers, Black Panther Party, Black Workers Congress, Black Workers Council, El Comité, Republic of New Africa, SNCC, Third World Women’s Alliance, Third World Youth Movement and Union Latina. Similar formal and informal coalitions take shape in other areas, at least for a brief period. This is also the period of active Asian American antiwar coalitions in several cities, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, Sacramento and elsewhere. (Triple Jeopardy Vol. 1 No. 3; Wei)

      November 19: Opening of the Founding Convention of the Puerto Rican Socialist Party (PSP), the group is formed mainly out of the earlier Pro-Independence Movement (MPI), amid a rise of new, militant trade unionism. (Puerto Rico; Mari Bras in Black Scholar December 1976; Guardian December 1, 1971 in BTr-5; Torres)

      November 28: Elections in Uruguay: the Broad Front (Frente Amplio), which groups the Uruguayan left, including the Tupamaros, sees its presidential candidate Gen. Liber Seregni get 19% of the vote; the Colorado party’s Jose Maria Bordaberry wins the presidency. (MR Feb. 1972; Frontline March 18, 1985; NACLA Nov-Dec 1984 & Sept-Dec 1986; Almanac)

      Late November-December 16: After months during which resistance in East Bengal had grown steadily against the West Pakistani occupation, regular Indian troops begin to enter East Bengal in late November. India and Pakistan are at war officially by December 4, by mid-December Indian troops control East Bengal and turn over power on December 16 to a new government they install led by the Awami League - the new independent nation of Bangla Desh is born. The Indian troops also carry out repression against the left in both Bangla Desh and West Bengal, an area of considerable left strength in India. In the aftermath of Pakistan’s defeat Yahya Khan is forced to resign and Bhutto forms a new government. The U.S. had backed Pakistan (and doesn’t recognize Bangla Desh until April 4, 1972, after 50 other countries already had), the Soviets supported India, there was considerable controversy over China’s role. (Century; Unite the Many; China Alliance; MR September 1971, October 1971 and May 1972)

      November-December: Workers at the Lordstown, Ohio GM plant, the company’s most productive plant in the U.S. - mostly young and white, with many Vietnam veterans - react to intense speed-up with slowdowns and what amounts to an “in-plant strike.” In February 1972 the battle becomes more open and the workers vote 97% to go out on a strike which lasts 23 days and receives nationwide publicity. Many in the emerging New Communist Movement take the strike as another indication of the spread of radicalism within the working class. Reinforcing the mood, Studs Terkel’s book Working, in which many workers recount their experiences of alienation on the job, comes out about this same time. (False Promises; Green; Guardian, March 22 & April 5, 1972)

      December: Jesse Jackson leaves SCLC to establish his own organization, Operation PUSH, along the lines of the SCLC’s Operation Breadbasket, which he had headed. (Marable)


      Georgia Communist League formed out of RYM II remnants there. (Costello; O’Brien says 1970)

      I Wor Kuen formed as a national organization out of merger of Bay Area Red Guard Party (or sections of it) with New York I Wor Kuen collective (IWK Journal No. 2; Costello; Louie)

      Philadelphia Workers Organizing Committee (PWOC) is founded (self-published material in BTr-1; BAWOC Political Reports in BTr-6)

      Guardian newspaper, continuing the political trajectory that provoked the breakaway of the Liberated Guardian, identifies more and more with the left tendencies in the international communist movement. The main tilt is to support the positions of the Chinese Communist Party in the Sino-Soviet split, but the paper does not fully follow the Maoist line as it strongly supports the Cuban party, continues to refer to the USSR as a socialist country, and calls for a world united front, including “the socialist countries,” against the main enemy, U.S. imperialism. (Guardian issues throughout 1971, especially editorials in August 4, 1971, September 22, 1971, and then May 17, 1972 issues in BTr-5)

      Workers World Party takes a more working class emphasis, setting up local groups under the name Center for United Labor Action (O’Brien)

      Formation of the “People’s Party” alignment, a loose affiliation of some 25 state and local electoral-oriented socialist and radical parties, including Peace & Freedom in California, Liberty Union of Vermont, Human Rights Party of Michigan. The People’s Party ran Benjamin Spock for President in 1972 and in 1976 ran Margaret Wright; published Grass Roots newsmonthly. (Strategy; People’s Party sheet in SDHx; Grass Roots in D-9)

      Los Tres, three activists working to stop drug pushers in a Los Angeles barrio, are sent to prison for the alleged shooting of an undercover police agent posing as a pusher. A major campaign to “Free Los Tres!” is conducted. (Chicano)

      In the wake of the Attica uprising and upped repression within prisons, a campaign is mounted against New York State’s effort to introduce behavior modification programs complete with electric shock treatments. Leading the campaign within the prisons is Martin Sostre, a Black Puerto Rican who managed a radical bookstore in Buffalo and was imprisoned on false drug charges. The Sostre case is a focus for many left activists who campaign for his freedom. (Left-Encyclopedia; Guardian April 24, 1971 & June 19, 1974)

      The first issue of Asian Women journal appears, published by a group of women who met at UC Berkeley. (Wei)

      I.F. Stone’s Weekly ceases publication at the end of the year, with a circulation of 70,000, the highest it ever reached. (Guardian, December 22, 1971)

      Reconstruction of the French non-communist left in the new Socialist Party (PS, successor to the former SFIO) under Francois Mitterand’s leadership. In 1973 legislative elections the PCF slightly outpolls the new PS, but not by much and for the last time. (NLR #171)

      Publication of influential article in Radical America Vol. 5, No. 2 (March-April 1971) by Harold Baron: “The Demand for Black Labor: Historical Notes on the Political Economy of Racism”; also issued as a pamphlet by New England Free Press.; Also The Pentagon Papers (in several book forms as well as in the New York Times); John Kerry and Vietnam Veterans Against the War, The New Soldier, edited by David Thorne and George Butler (New York, Macmillan); Away with All Pests: An English Surgeon in People’s China, 1954-1969, by Dr. Joshua S. Horn (Monthly Review Press, New York); The Yenan Way in Revolutionary China, by Mark Selden (Harvard University Press, Cambridge); The Enemy: What Every American Should Know About Imperialism, by Felix Greene (Vintage Paperbound, Random House cloth may have been out in 1970); Bruce E. Franklin, From the Movement Toward Revolution (Van Nostrand Reinhold Co./Litton Educational Publishing, New York, Cincinnati); Roy Medvedev, Let History Judge (Alfred A. Knopf); Mass Communications and American Empire, by Herbert I. Schiller (Beacon Press, Boston); Richard M Scammon and Ben J Wattenberg, conservative Democrats, publish The Real Majority (Coward, McCann and Geoghegan, New York); Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, by Hunter S. Thompson (New York, Popular Library); Rules for Radicals, by Saul Alinsky (New York, Random House);

      Also published: first of four radical textbooks in political science - “the most conservative of the social sciences” -where “up to then there had been none” (see MR October 1977). Kenneth Dolbeare and Murray Edelman, American Politics: Policies, Power and Change (D.C. Heath, 1971, 1974, 1977); Michael Parenti, Democracy for the Few (St. Martin’s, 1974, 1977); Ira Katznelson and Mark Kesselman, The Politics of Power (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1975); and Edward Greenberg, The American Political System, a Radical Approach (Winthrop 1977).

      Release of Melvin Van Peebles film Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song.


      January 28: Anti-Radical Decree jointly proclaimed by the West German Chancellor and provincial (“lander”) premiers banning “extremists” from public service, known in popular usage as the Berufsverbot. Chancellor Willy Brandt of the SPD later admits the measure, enforced against the left but not against ex- and neo-Nazis, was a mistake. (Socialist Register 1984)

      January 30: Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland, 13 unarmed Catholic demonstrators shot and killed by British troops; one more dies later.(Student Generation). On March 24, Britain dissolves the Northern Ireland government and takes over direct rule. (Almanac)

      January: The Furies lesbian feminist collective begins published The Furies newspaper, carrying articles by collective members Rita Mae Brown (“who probably did more than any other individual to raise feminists’ consciousness about lesbianism”-Echols) and Charlotte Bunch. During 1970-73, the women’s movement is wracked by conflicts around sexuality (the “gay-straight split”), class and elitism, and, to a lesser extent, race. (Echols)

      February 15: Edgar Snow, author of Red Star over China, dies in Geneva at 66. (Century)

      February 21: Nixon arrives in Beijing for eight-day visit to China. Final communiqué promises a gradual increase in U.S.-China contacts and includes the Chinese formula “Countries want independence, nations want liberation and the people want revolution.” Nixon also admits that “Taiwan is part of China.” The trip is hailed as a victory for China and anti-imperialism by the forces of the emerging New Communist Movement, even those like the Guardian that do not fully agree with every aspect of the CPC’s international line. While China maintains its support for Vietnam, on a global scale Beijing is now maneuvering to form an at-least-tacit alliance with Washington against the USSR. (Karnow; Century; Schurmann; Guardian, March 8, 1972; Peck on China)

      February: Raymond Yellow Thunder from the Pine Ridge Reservation dies after being beaten and thrown into the cold by whites in Gordon, Nebraska. A mass protest by Pine Ridge residents, assisted by AIM which they invite to help, ensues, and the campaign begins to make a dent in the pattern of racism in the towns around Pine Ridge. AIM gains prominence as well as links with traditionalists on the reservations. (Hurricane)

      March 10-12: National Black Political Convention in Gary draws 8,000, forms National Black Assembly (or National Black Political Assembly/NBPA) whose first “seating” is October 21/22 in Chicago. Amiri Baraka is Secretary General of NBPA until 1975. Gary convention approves a National Black Political Agenda, among other things to be taken to the Democratic and Republican conventions to obtain as much commitment to its principles as possible. One week after the Agenda is released, in May, the Congressional Black Caucus, dissatisfied with its anti-busing and anti-Israel provisions, issues its own document, the Black Declaration and the Black Bill of Rights which Ron Walters called “a watered down version of the Agenda.” Marable terms the Gary Convention “the high point of Black nationalist agitation in the post-World War II period.” The second convention, much smaller with 1,700 present, is held March 14-17, 1974 in Little Rock. (Freedom; Forward No. 3; Walters in Black Scholar October 1975; Marable; Guardian, June 21, 1972 & April 3, 1974)

      March: Monthly Review publishes a major article, “Imperialism in the Seventies,” for the first time the editors use and emphasize the term social-imperialism to refer to the USSR, though the article is “soft-Maoist” in overall thrust, in that it mainly focuses on U.S. and Western imperialism and does not take a “two superpowers are equal dangers” position. (MR March 1972)

      March: Vietnamese students in the U.S. take over the Vietnamese Consulate in New York for an afternoon to protest the war and the South Vietnamese government; the occupiers are arrested but all charges are dropped to avoid further bad publicity for the Thieu government. (Triple Jeopardy April-May 1972)

      March: Congress approves the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and it is sent to the states, where it eventually dies after a major anti-ERA campaign by the right, despite a priority focus given to passing the ERA by NOW, which is widely criticized as too narrow an agenda by more radical forces in the women’s movement. (Echols)

      April 13-15: Conference of 200 in Madison, Wisconsin forms the Committee of Solidarity with Chile to oppose increasing U.S. de-stabilization attacks on the Allende regime. (Guardian, April 26, 1972)

      April: Conference of students/activists from Asia, Africa and Latin America who are living in the U.S., held at Princeton, forms the anti-imperialist Third World Peoples Coalition. (self-published material in “Reports to NY 1973” folder in DTW-1)

      April-May: Large-scale offensive by NLF in South Vietnam scores major gains as many units of the South Vietnamese Army desert or defect. The Nixon administration escalates its bombing of both the South and the North, and on May 8 Nixon announces he had ordered the mining of all North Vietnamese ports. U.S. planes then launch the most massive raids in years against North Vietnam, hitting dikes in the Red River Delta. There are widespread protests in the U.S., including a campus strike April 21 called by the NSA and many student governments and demonstrations April 22 drawing a total of 120,000 in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco; in the latter city the Anti-Imperialist Coalition, with emerging NCM forces in the center, is the prime sponsor. An Emergency Moratorium follows on May 4 and then a nationwide demonstration in Washington, DC May 21 follow. The protests are broad-based and significant, but do not bring out nearly the numbers of the huge April 24, 1971 action the year before or the November 15, 1969 mobilization. Despite the escalation, preparations for the U.S.-Soviet Summit two weeks away are still proceeding. (Century; Fact Sheet; Guardian, April 26, May 3, May 10 & May 17, 1972)

      Spring: George McGovern antiwar & reform candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination, which he wins. McGovern had chaired the commission on reform of Democratic Party delegate selection process and other rules following 1968, and the inner-party reforms instituted by his commission made an insurgent candidacy possible. These reforms are a major response to the movements of the 1960s and play a pivotal role in pulling many of the protesters and activists of the 1960s movements - especially the white activists - back into “traditional channels.” At the same time, they are an opening to greater women’s participation, peace activist participation and to some extent greater participation by people of color in the Democratic Party and official political life. These reforms are resisted and eventually largely reversed by the party hierarchy in alliance with the more conservative elite Democratic elements and the AFL-CIO and its Coalition for a Democratic Majority (via the Winograd Commission in 1976 and the Hunt Commission in 1981). The McGovern nomination, and four years later Carter’s winning the nomination and then the presidency, are at least in part the result of the temporary ascent of the new party rules. Re: the 1972 elections, there is a reasonable amount of debate on the left, and even within parts of the emerging NCM over what stance to take toward this campaign (see Should the Left Support McGovern? pamphlet in BNCM-1, reference in Hamilton to thinking in RU, and Guardian; also, see interesting viewpoint in Monthly Review September 1972). Note: this is also the year of Shirley Chisholm’s bid for the presidency, the first such effort by an African-American woman in a major party (by the first Black woman to be elected to Congress). (Davis in NLR #143 & 155; Black Scholar October 1975; Reunion; Frontline, July 18, 1988)

      Spring: Strike by 210,000 public and semi-public workers in Quebec by a common front of different labor federations, big impact on the Quebec and Canadian left. (Guardian, February 28, 1973)

      Spring: A group of gay men from Argentina, Cuba and Puerto Rico begin a literary magazine Afuera, and around the same time a group of working class and poor gay Latinos form Hispanos Unidos Gays Liberados (United Liberated Hispanic Gays) but the two groups do not cross paths. (Torres)

      May 2: J. Edgar Hoover dies (Spoke)

      May 3: Beginning of a walkout by 4,000 mainly Chicana women at Farah Co. in Texas and New Mexico; Farah was at the time the largest U.S. manufacturer of men’s and boy’s pants. The RU takes up strike support as a major priority and the Farah Strike Support committees it established in many cities are able to have a substantial impact. This campaign was a key effort for the RU, and the NCM generally and broader left forces as well. The strike ends with the workers winning union recognition, their main demand, in February 1974. (O’Brien; Red Papers 6; Triple Jeopardy September-October 1972; Chicano; Bob Farah obit from NYT 3/12/98 in D-3; The Call, March 1974; Guardian, March 6, 1974)

      May 22: Nixon arrives in Moscow - the first visit by a U.S. President to that city. On May 26 the SALT I agreement is signed, for the first time putting limits on strategic nuclear warheads. The treaty is the first U.S. recognition that the Soviets have achieved strategic nuclear-military parity - which they accomplished some time in the late 1960s/early ‘70s - though the U.S. retains a big technological and also a quantitative edge, having at the time of the treaty 6,500 warheads to the USSR’s 2,200. This is the major public sign of the opening of the “detente” period in the Cold War, which came to an end in 1979. In the Nixon-Kissinger view, detente involved “linkage” with Soviet “good behavior” in the Third World, and an informal “code of conduct” calling for “mutual restraint” in the Third World was signed in Moscow along with SALT I. The U.S. actual interpretation of “mutual restraint” was immediately indicated when Nixon flew from Moscow to Tehran where he reached a secret agreement with the Shah on covert action, using Kurdish guerrillas against the Soviet-supported government of Iraq. (Medvedevs in NLR 130/Nov-Dec 1981; Century; Goines chron; Second Cold War)

      May 27: 60,000 demonstrate at African Liberation Day marches, 30,000 in D.C. The action is initiated following a summer 1971 trip of Black activists, including Owusu Sadauki, then director of Malcolm X Liberation University in Greensboro and later chair of ALSC, to Mozambique in 1971. Following the first ALD, the African Liberation Support Committee (ALSC) is launched by the organizers and others at a Detroit conference in September. (SalesJr., Forward No. 3; FM January 1982; ALSC)

      May: October League (OL) founded as national organization via merger of the October League (Los Angeles) and the Georgia Communist League. In October 1972 the OL publishes the first issue of its monthly newspaper, The Call/El Clar*n. (Costello; OL-TU; self-published material in BNCM-6).

      June 4: Angela Davis is acquitted on charges of aiding Jonathan Jackson’s effort to free prisoners in 1970. The extensive campaign to free Angela had been a major boost to the CPUSA, and the party launches the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (NAARP) coming out of the Committee to Free Angela Davis; its founding meeting is May 11-13, 1973 in Chicago, drawing 700-800; Angela Davis, Burt Corona, and Carl Braden of SCEF are chosen co-chairs. (Fighting; Weather; Southern Patriot, April and June, 1973; Guardian, May 23, 1973).

      June 17: The Watergate burglars are apprehended by police. (Karnow; Almanac)

      June: Official Founding Convention of the New American Movement (NAM) in Minneapolis, with 300 delegates from 30 chapters. (SDHx)

      June 22-23: Labor for Peace conference in St. Louis, convened and led by the antiwar forces in labor including ILWU and 1199 leaderships. (Guardian viewpoint May 17, 1972; personal recollection; background of Labor for Peace network in Aronowitz)

      June 30-July 3: Young Lords Party holds Congress, sums up its history, adopts Marxism-Leninism Mao ZeDong Thought and changes its name to the Puerto Rican Revolutionary Workers Organization (PRRWO). The RU-centered National Liaison Committee of RU, PRRWO, BWC and IWK is formed by delegates from these organizations to the Congress. During 1972, the Puerto Rican Student Union merges with the Young Lords/PRRWO. (Costello; IWK Journal No. 1 & No. 3; Palante July 21, 1972; Communist/RCP Vol. 2 No. 1; Torres)

      June: Amid rising protests against the death penalty, especially its role in perpetuating racism and its racially unequal application, the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down the death penalty for its “inconsistent application” by a narrow 5-4 vote. As the legal fight unfolded, no one has been executed in the country since 1967. State legislatures in 20 states quickly pass new statutes to restore the death penalty that they hope will gain the Court’s approval. (Guardian, November 7, 1973; Almanac)

      Summer: Tom Hayden and Jane Fonda and other activists form the Indochina Peace Campaign (IPC) to “take the antiwar message into the mainstream” because they believe there is an opening up going on: “the system is beginning to respond.” They barnstorm the country through the summer and fall, and conduct a 25 city tour beginning September 16, 1973, and IPC remains active through 1974. Just prior to this initiative Fonda had been attracting large crowds of GI’s at bases in the U.S., Okinawa and the Philippines with the FTA Show, whose troupe features liberal and radical performers and a strong antiwar message. She also visits North Vietnam - in July 1972 - where among other things she was photographed wearing a helmet and looking at an anti-aircraft gun, sparking immense hostility from many sectors in the U.S. (Reunion; Gitlin; Guardian, June 21, 1972 & October 10, 1973)

      July: Volume 1, Number 1 of Ms. Magazine appears, featuring a “Wonder Woman for President” graphic and a sign “Peace and Justice in ‘72” on its cover. A preview issue had been issued at the end of 1971/January 1972. (Ms. Magazine July/August 1997)

      July: Associated Press exposes the facts of the now infamous “Tuskegee Study” a syphilis experiment started in 1932 by the Public Health Service in which Black men were denied treatment with at least 28 dead as a result. (Guardian November 1, 1972)

      August 18-October 5: Seven-week wildcat at Mead Packaging Corp. in Atlanta, with most of the Black workers (who were two-thirds of the workforce) staying out and extensive community support. Sherman Miller of the OL is head of the strike committee, and retains the position with near-unanimous worker support in face of furious red-baiting campaign promoted by the Atlanta Constitution among others. The strike wins limited gains. The experience is crucial in building the OL internally and projecting it nationally. For example, Sherman Miller is a key speaker, and a film about Mead a main feature, of a conference on “Communist Work in the Factories (drawing 100) sponsored by the OL in Atlanta over Thanksgiving Day weekend 1972 (a second such conference drawing 250 is held Thanksgiving weekend 1973 in Chicago); and Miller goes on a nationwide speaking tour in late 1972 and early 1973. (O’Brien; OL-TU; Guardian, October 18, 1972, December 13, 1972 & December 5, 1973; Southern Patriot, November 1972; The Call, January 1974)

      August 21-22: Several thousand people protest the war at the Republican Convention in Miami which nominates Nixon for re-election. (Guardian, August 30, 1972)

      August: Asian Law Caucus is founded. (Wei)

      September 1-4: First national convention of La Raza Unida party in El Paso with 3,000 in attendance. The party is divided and declines shortly afterwards, however, all but ceasing to exist by 1975. (Muñoz; The Call, October 1972; Guardian, September 5 & October 17, 1973)

      September 5: Eleven Israeli athletes killed at Olympics in Munich. (Almanac)

      September 21: Facing a growing insurgency led by the CPP and NPA, Ferdinand Marcos declares martial law in the Philippines. A month later the National Coalition for the Restoration of Civil Liberties in the Philippines (NCRCLP) is formed by Filipino activists in the U.S. Despite increased repression, Martial Law does not halt the spread of the insurgency in the Philippines; in April 1973 the CPP-led Preparatory Commission for the National Democratic Front in the Philippines issues a manifesto with a draft program; (Toribio; Next Vietnam; People’s War and other self-published material in BREV-2)

      October 1: Japan and the People’s Republic of China establish diplomatic relations and Japan severs relations with Taiwan. The same day the CPC’s People’s Daily publishes an editorial clearly signaling that the CPC regards the Soviet Union as its principal enemy. (Trial; Century; Schurmann)

      First week in October: Caravans launching the Trail of Broken Treaties campaign leave Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles, arriving in St. Paul Minnesota October 23. The caravan continues to Washington, D.C., arrives there on November 1, and after a series of confrontations and misunderstandings with government officials, occupies the Bureau of Indian Affairs building and renames it the Native American Embassy. The occupation ends November 8, the day after the presidential election, without the bloody violent confrontation that had threatened to occur several times during the stand-off. (Hurricane)

      October 18: Key editorial statement published by the Guardian on the occasion of beginning its 25th year of publication explicitly stating that “the major task before us is to assist in bringing to birth a new revolutionary political party, based in the working class, armed with the science of Marxism-Leninism...”. The paper compares its taking up the fight against revisionism with other unpopular but principled stances taken in the past (on the Rosenbergs, the Middle East). Sending an unmistakable signal that it intends to play a more overtly ideological role in laying the groundwork for a new party, the paper also begins two new columns in this issue: “Fan the Flames” by Irwin Silber and “From the Bottom Up” by Earl Ofari, both taking an explicit Marxist-Leninist posture - and starts the Jack Smith series on China’s foreign policy which will later be published as a pamphlet. Issues just before and after this one put forward the same theme: in the September 20 issue a polemic with the CPUSA stated that the “last two years has seen the growth of anti-revisionist, Marxist-Leninist consciousness among certain sectors of the U.S. left. The Guardian has been part of this process.” The October 25 issue reprinted an article on the La Raza Unida Party conference from the first issue of The Call, which had just been launched by the OL, giving a boost to that new publication; and in the same issue Carl Davidson, in another new column titled “Which Side Are You On?,” sharply criticizes the RU’s position on busing. November 1 issue offers a Marxist-Leninist critique of NAM and one of Michael Harrington’s views. And “Fan the Flames” November 29 reiterated the idea that the newspaper had identified building a new party as the primary political task. (Guardian September 20, October 18 in BTr-5 & November 29, 1972 in BTr-4)

      October 26: Vietnamese issue a statement that a draft peace agreement was agreed to by the U.S. on October 20, to be signed on October 31, but Washington reneged on October 23 citing “difficulties encountered in Saigon.” (Fact Sheet)

      October: RU publishes Red Papers 5, “National Liberation and Proletarian Revolution in the U.S.” arguing that Black people in the U.S. constitute a “nation of a new type.” (Red Papers 5, Hamilton)

      October: First issue of The Call/El Clar*n newspaper published by the October League. (The Call, October 1972)

      October: Grailville (Cincinnati) Ohio conference of 200-300 “independent” Marxist-Leninist activists and collectives - Sojourner Truth Organization (STO) in Chicago played a leading role - that is unsuccessful at forming a national organization; some remnants from this conference form the short-lived “Federation” or “Midwest Federation” later, about 1974. (Dowling in CW#3; O’Brien)

      October: Ben Chavis and the other members of the Wilmington 10 are convicted on charges of firebombing a grocery store and conspiring to shoot police and firefighters responding to the blaze in February 1971 in Wilmington, North Carolina. They are sentenced to lengthy prison terms which, after a major campaign which is a priority of the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (NAARP), are reduced by North Carolina Governor James Hunt. Ben Chavis, the last of the 10 released, comes out of prison December 14, 1979. (Southern Patriot, June & November 1972; Black Scholar January-February 1975; Burning Spear February 1978 and January 1980; Guardian, May 10, 1972)

      November 4: Antiwar demonstrations in a dozen cities sponsored by coalitions with New Communist groups at the center; the first coordinated nationwide actions in which NCM folks took this kind of initiative. Largest turnout is 5,000 in New York, a few hundred to a couple of thousand gather in other areas, the march in the Bay Area is November 5. (Guardian November 15, 1972)

      November 4: Max Schachtman dies. (Guardian, November 22, 1972)

      November 7: Nixon swamps McGovern in presidential race. (Almanac)

      November 21: Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturns the Chicago Conspiracy convictions and the government announces it will not retry the case. After several years of political trials on conspiracy charges the government fails to win a single case, being defeated each time by a jury or on appeal. (Reunion)

      December 12: Teamsters President Frank Fitzsimmons attacks the UFW as a “revolutionary movement” and two days later the Teamsters end their two-year truce with the UFW and “renegotiate” earlier sweetheart agreements with growers instead of following the truce agreement which would have meant those farmworkers would have joined the UFW, which is in the midst of a lettuce boycott and sharp struggle. The confrontation between the UFW and the Teamster-grower alliance heats up the next summer, when on July 29, 1973 the largest Delano grape growers break off negotiations with the UFW and move toward agreement with the Teamsters. (Guardian, February 7 & August 8, 1973)

      December 15: Arnold Miller wins presidency of the United Mineworkers on a reform Miners for Democracy platform, MFD candidates for vice-president and secretary treasurer win as well. (Green; Guardian, December 27, 1972; Southern Patriot, September 1972 & January 1973)

      December 18-29: Nixon’s “Christmas bombing” of Hanoi and Haiphong, with extensive damage to hospitals, schools, densely populated areas and thousands of people killed. 81 U.S. aircraft including 34 B-52s were shot down. Heavy losses and worldwide condemnation forces a halt to the bombing. The attempt to intimidate the Vietnamese into accepting changes in the October 20 draft peace agreement fails. (Karnow; Fact Sheet)

      December: Socialist Party Convention changes its name to Social Democrats-USA, the even-further-rightward shift of the SP has been accelerated by the merger into the SP in March 1972 of the Democratic Socialist Federation (needle trades labor leaders headed by David Dubinsky). About this time the remaining “Debs Caucus” folks and Harrington-led Coalition Caucus folks leave - Harrington resigned his post as co-chair in October and left the SP a few months later - and begin concrete steps toward reconstitution of SP and formation of DSOC in 1973 (which see). (SDHx; Guardian, November 1, 1972)


      I Wor Kuen adopts Marxism-Leninism Mao-ZeDong Thought. (IWK Journal #3)

      Only issue of Proletarian Cause ever published appears, with Bill Epton - who had been expelled from PL in 1970 - as a central figure. (Epton/BLM)

      A new crop of rank-and-file worker-oriented radical papers appears, most at the initiative of the RU or smaller, local Marxist-Leninist collectives; these include The Bay Area Worker, Rocky Mountain Workers Voice, Strike Back! (New York), Movin’ On Up (Cincinnati), The Insurgent Worker (Chicago) and at least a dozen others. (Guardian, September 6, 1972)

      People’s Translation Service founded, had to cutback operations in 1974 and folded somewhat later. (Berlet in Underground)

      Jack Barnes assumes the post of National Secretary of the SWP after being groomed for leadership for five years by the older generation of party leaders. Along with Barnes a broader team of ‘60s generation activists take central roles, marking a major generational shift in the SWP’s core, in sharp contrast to the CP’s approach to its younger recruits. (Inside the SWP)

      African People’s Socialist Party (APSP) is formed by three Florida groups with the core coming from the state’s Junta of Militant Organizations (JOMO); APSP restarts The Burning Spear newspaper (started in 1969, folded 1971) in 1974. (Burning Spear, January 1978)

      Coalition of Black Trade Unionists (CBTU) is founded “to enhance Black power and influence in the labor movement.” (Green)

      Antonio Gramsci’s work begins to become widely accessible to the U.S. left: extensive English translation of his Prison Notebooks appears in 1971: Selections from the Prison Notebooks, edited, translated and with an introduction by Quintin Hoare and Geoffrey Nowell-Smith (Lawrence and Wishart in Britain, International Publishers in the U.S.); articles in SR No. 11 & 12 by Carl Boggs, conference on Gramsci’s Marxism at Washington University draws 100-plus in February 1973. A smaller and less widely circulated selection of Gramsci’s writings had appeared in 1968: The Modern Prince and Other Writings (New York, International Publishers) (Cboggs; NLR #176/July-August 1989)

      The Business Roundtable is formed, with over 160 of the largest corporations as members, to influence government policy. It plays a key role in shaping the pro-business agenda and rightward backlash of the 1970s. See also note on conservative groups taking initiative in 1974 below. (Viewpoint Vol. 1 No. 2; Boyte)

      Anwar Sadat expels the Soviet military presence from Egypt, which at the time was the only substantial Soviet deployment outside of the Warsaw Pact states. The expulsion is hailed by the Chinese as a blow to Soviet social-imperialism, and the Chinese begin talking about the USSR as the “more dangerous” superpower in the Middle East. (Second Cold War; Disney)

      Michael Manley and the People’s National Party (PNP) win election in Jamaica on a left-social democratic program. (NLR #128)

      The Situationist International, having undergone many splits since its formation in 1957 and declining after its short prominence in 1968, is dissolved. (NLR #174/March-April 1989)

      West Germany’s Red Army Faction, also known as the Baader-Meinhof gang after founders Andreas Baader and Ulrike Meinhof, conducts violent actions against U.S. military installations in Germany, and through the 1970s more general armed actions. The RAF is eventually broken up by fierce, often illegal government repression; Meinhof is executed in her prison cell in 1976, Baader is killed along with two other RAF members in 1977 in actions the government labels “suicides.” (Breakthrough Vol. 2, No. 1)

      Publication of James Forman, The Making of Black Revolutionaries (New York, Macmillan); China! Inside the People’s Republic, by the Committee of Concerned Asian Scholars (Bantam Books, New York); Daily Life in Revolutionary China, by Maria Macciocchi (Monthly Review Press, New York); Joseph Starobin, American Communism in Crisis, 1943-1957 (University of California Press); To Die for the People: The Writings of Huey P. Newton, (New York, Random House); Frances Fitzgerald Fire in the Lake (New York, New American Library-Signet); David Halberstram, The Best and the Brightest (New York, Random House); Vietnam Veterans Against the War, The Winter Soldier Investigation, (Boston, Beacon Press); Walter Rodney, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa (Bogle-L’Ouverture Publications, London & Tanzania Publishing House, Dar es Salaam); Anchor Books edition of International Communism in the Era of Lenin: A Documentary History, edited by Helmut Gruber; originally published in 1967 by Cornell University Press and Fawcett Publications (paperback); The Essential Stalin: Major Theoretical Writings, 1905-1952, edited by Bruce Franklin (Anchor Books, Doubleday, Garden City New York); Strictly Ghetto Property: The Story of Los Siete de la Raza, by Marjorie Heins (Ramparts Press, Berkeley); Guitar Army, by John Sinclair (New York, Douglas Book Corporation); In the Name of Profits, by Robert Heilbroner et al (New York, Doubleday); War Without End: American Planning for the Next Vietnams, by Michael T. Klare (Alfred A. Knopf, New York); The Love of Possession Is a Disease with Them, by Tom Hayden (Holt, Rinehart and Winston); Joyce and Gabriel Kolko, The Limits of Power, The World, and United States Foreign Policy, 1945-1954 (New York, Harper & Row); The Disinherited, Fawaz Turki (Monthly Review Press); Studs Terkel, Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do; Sheila Rowbotham, Women, Resistance and Revolution (New York, Pantheon Books); Strike! The True History of Mass Insurgence in America from 1877 to the Present, by Jeremy Brecher (Straight Arrow Books, San Francisco);


      January 20: Assassination of Amilcar Cabral, founder and leader of the African Party for the Liberation of Guinea-Bissau and the Cape Verde Islands (PAIGC), by agents of the Portuguese colonialists in front of his home in Conakry, Guinea. (Cabral; Return; MR March 1976; Triple Jeopardy Jan-Feb 1973)

      January 20: Hundreds of thousands protest the war on inauguration day in many cities despite rumors of an impending peace agreement. (Guardian, January 31, 1973)

      January 22: Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling that a woman’s right to choose abortion was protected by the U.S. Constitution. (Guardian, January 31, 1973; Line of March No. 9)

      January 27: Paris Peace Agreement signed, on paper ending the Vietnam War, longest war in U.S. history. The Agreement is essentially the same as the October 20th draft, and for that matter essentially the same as the Vietnamese have pressed for since the 1950s. The U.S. and South Vietnamese regime immediately begin systematic violations of the agreement. In Laos, a cease-fire agreement calling for a new coalition government and an end to U.S. bombing of that country, which had gone on since 1964, was signed February 21; again, Washington violated the accord and continued bombing. (Almanac, Karnow; Fact Sheet; MR various; Guardian, January 31, February 7, March 7, April 11 & April 25, 1973). The same day, the Draft is ended and U.S. goes to an all-volunteer armed forces. (Karnow)

      January: Publication of Guardian Pamphlet on China’s foreign policy, Unite the Many, Defeat the Few by Jack A. Smith, which had run as a series in the Guardian from October 1972 to January 3, 1973 issues. Prime example of a carefully-threaded “soft-Maoist” line: pro-China, but avoids dealing with the capitalist restoration thesis or the Cuban or Vietnamese positions, and takes criticisms around China’s policy toward Pakistan/Bangladesh (and others) seriously even if refuting them. Written before the coup in Chile. Later in the year (beginning March 28) the Guardian publishes a series by Carl Davidson on Trotskyism, which in late 1973 is issued as a pamphlet entitled Left in Form, Right in Essence: A Critique of Contemporary Trotskyism. (Unite the Many; Guardian, January 17, March 28 & December 19, 1973)

      January: Monthly Review now says “The New Left, which grew so rapidly in the second half of the 1960s, collapsed and practically disappeared in the last two years,” along with disparaging remarks about old and new sects, with “no reason to believe that any of them is on the way to acquiring mass influence, let alone a mass following.” Contrast with May 1969 exuberance about the advanced elements of the New Left. (MR January 1973) But despite the decline of the New Left, enough rebelliousness is underway inside and outside the U.S. for the New York Times to run a series on its op-ed page through the spring titled “Capitalism, for Better or Worse”; the articles, plus additional ones including a contribution by Paul Sweezy, are published by Quadrangle in 1974 as a book, Capitalism: The Moving Target (MR February 1974)

      January: A lesbian couple in Kansas City, Barbara Grier and Donna McBride, launch Naiad Press, which by the 1990s becomes the country’s largest, most successful and oldest lesbian publisher. Part of the initial base for Naiad is the subscription list of The Ladder, which had folded in 1972. (BAR January 1, 1998 in BMOV-1)

      February 27-May 8: 71-day siege of Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota; Oglala Sioux assisted by AIM members - an alliance of Indian youth with traditional elders who had been the militants of the 1930s and ‘40s - resist troops, tanks, helicopters and planes. The struggle catapults AIM into the center of public attention and leadership of the mass Indian movement. (Hurricane; Dunbar; Guardian, March 14, 1973 and following issues)

      March 8: New Communist groups initiate International Women’s Day actions in many cities for the first time, Guardian headline is “March 8 actions see entrance of new forces.” (Guardian, March 21, 1973)

      March 11: Peronism returns to power in Argentina after the military steps aside and the Peronist candidate wins presidential elections. Perón himself becomes president in September after new elections; he dies July 1, 1974 and his wife Isabel becomes president. (MR January 1976; Guardian, May 9 & June 6, 1973 & July 10, 1974)

      Late March: At the Academy Awards ceremony, Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather wins the Best Picture Award for 1972, also Best Actor for Marlon Brando, which he refuses, sending Native American actress Sacheen Littlefeather to the podium to protest “the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry.” Brando had planned to be at the Wounded Knee occupation then underway during the ceremony, but his effort to get there failed. (Hurricane; Academy)

      March 23: Third and largest in a series of six forums sponsored by the Guardian newspaper entitled “What Road to Building a New Communist Party? draws 1,200 in New York City to hear Michael Klonsky of the October League, Don H. Wright of the Revolutionary Union, Mike Hamlin of the Black Workers Congress (BWC) and Irwin Silber of the Guardian. Besides the large crowd at the event the tape and transcript of the evening are heard and read by thousands of activists around the country. The event marks the height of optimism about uniting the various groups of the New Communist Movement in a single party. Earlier forums had drawn 500 each (February 9, “The Role of the Anti-Imperialist Forces in the Antiwar Movement” and February 23, “The Role of the People’s Republic of China in World Affairs”); other forums followed on the “Women and Class Struggle,” “The Question of the Black Nation” and “Roads to Building a Workers Movement,” also drawing 500 each. Speakers in the series included leaders from additional NCM groups, including Harpers Ferry (linked to STO), PRRWO and IWK, and also two revolutionary but non-NCM groups, the Third World Women’s Alliance and PSP, as well as individuals such as William Hinton and Sidney Peck of PCPJ. But by the end of the forum series differences rather than unity had come to the fore. (Guardian April 4, 1973 and following issues, in BTr-4; February 21, 1973)

      March 29: The Steelworkers (USW) under I.W. Abel sign the Experimental Negotiating Agreement (ENA) which prohibits industry-wide strikes and promises productivity increases, it fuels the existing rank and file opposition - groups such as the Ad Hoc Committee of Concerned Steelworkers (a Black caucus movement formed in the mid-1960s), RAFT/Rank-and-File Team, and National Steelworkers Rank and File Committee, leading later to the 1976-77 Ed Sadlowski reform campaign for the union presidency; on the regional level, Sadlowski won election for director of District 31 in October 1974. (Green; Fighting; Guardian, April 18, 1973 & November 27, 1974)

      March 30-April 8: First U.S. Congress of the PSP draws 2,000-plus in New York City. (The Call, April 1973; Guardian, April 18, 1973; Torres)

      March-August: Height of Nixon’s “secret” and illegal bombing of Cambodia, with densely populated zones subject to bombardment almost equal to the total bombardment used in World War II. The bombing had begun in March 1969 while Sihanouk was still in power. (Cambodia; Mandel in NLR 141; Coates in NLR #145; Gitlin)

      April 1-8: Nationwide consumer meat boycott protests rising meat prices. (Guardian, April 11, 1973)

      April 30: Watergate crisis heats up, Nixon accepts resignations of top aides H.R Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, and fires John Dean as counsel. (Almanac)

      April 24: James Forman is expelled from BWC, charged with elitism and resisting the process of consolidating the organization with working class politics in command. The BWC now accelerates its movement toward an orthodox version of Marxism-Leninism Mao-ZeDong Thought. (Georgakas; self-published material in BNCM-1).

      April: Bobby Seale, chair of the Black Panther Party, runs for mayor of Oakland getting 43% of the vote (36% according to Marable), registering large numbers of Blacks and paving the way for the victory of Oakland’s first Black mayor, Lionel Wilson, in 1977. (Abron in Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1986; Abron in Underground; Marable)

      April: Vietnam Veterans Against the War adds Winter Soldier Organization to its name becoming VVAW/WSO, and becomes an explicitly anti-imperialist organization. (VVAW/WSO)

      April: National Caucus of Labor Committees launches “Operation Mop-Up,” physical attacks on CPUSA activists and others on the left which continue until the early part of 1974. A key step in the shift of NCLC from a nominally left (if cult-like) organization into an openly right-wing group, with internal psychological terror, cooperation with police agencies, propagation of anti-Semitism and racism, etc. During late 1973 and through August 1974, members of the Centers for Change group led by Fred Newman ally with LaRouche and join the NCLC. Newman’s group had started as the “If...Then” collective in 1968; after leaving NCLC they formed the International Workers Party and, in 1979, the New Alliance Party, which remained nominally on the left while using psychological-control methods and operating as a cult. A third group allied with NCLC during the Operation Mop-Up period was led by Gino Perente. It too late split and, using various names including the National Labor Federation (NATLFED) and Communist Party Provisional Wing, operated as a cult with nominally left politics. (King; Berlet; “Shadow Politics” Express article in BMIS-1; Guardian, April 25, May 2, May 9 & May 16, 1973)

      May Day: Anti-imperialist coalitions initiated by New Communist forces hold May Day celebrations and rallies (mostly on Sunday April 29) in over a dozen cities, the largest in New York draws 2,000. (Guardian, April 25 & May 9, 1973

      May 2: Assata Shakur (Joanne Chesimard) linked to the BLA is arrested following a shoot-out on the New Jersey turnpike in which Zayd Malik Shakur and a New Jersey State Trooper were killed. She is convicted of murder on March 25, 1977. Sundiata Acoli, also in the car, initially escapes but is captured two days later and subsequently convicted of murder and imprisoned. (Black Scholar April 1978; Breakthrough Vol. 1 No. 2)

      May 24: CL-centered National Continuations Committee/NCC formed at “Conference of North American Marxist-Leninists” that issues resolutions published under the title Marxist-Leninists, Unite! For a time the NCC included BWC, PRRWO and ATM. (see Costello, Chart, Refutation; self-published material in D-4)

      May 26: ALSC marks African Liberation Day with demonstrations in more than 30 cities, mobilizing 100,000. In June 1973 it holds the Frogmore (South Carolina) Conference - its “First International Steering Committee Meeting” - which adopts a statement of principles as an “anti-imperialist, anti-capitalist Black United Front” and “encourages Black workers to take the lead.” (Guardian, June 6, 1973; ALSC; SalesJr., Forward No. 3; FM January 1982)

      May: Former Debs Caucus people reconstitute the Socialist Party USA at a conference in Milwaukee. (SDHx)

      June 15: Massive demonstration supporting French workers at the Lip watch factory who had taken over the factory rather than see it close down. It is the high point of a struggle that concludes with a substantial though not complete workers victory in 1974. (Guardian, March 13, 1974)

      June 17: Earl Browder dies (Jaffe)

      June 27: Military dictatorship in Uruguay imposed by President Bordaberry; in the mid-1970s Uruguay had more political prisoners per capita than any other country. (MR Feb. 1972; Frontline March 18, 1985 - says coup is in March; NACLA Nov-Dec 1984 & Sept-Dec 1986; Guardian, July 11, 1973)

      June: Brotherhood Caucus at the Fremont, California GM plant, within which the OL works, sweeps local union elections, with the caucus’ leader winning the shop-local presidency and then distancing himself from left supporters. Another widely publicized and analyzed workplace experience for the NCM. (O’Brien; OL-TU; the Call, March & July 1973; Guardian, August 29, 1973)

      July 9-11: Al Richmond and Dorothy Healey resign from the CPUSA, Healey soon becomes a leader of NAM and Richmond also joins that organization. (Dennis; Healey; Guardian, September 19, 1973)

      July 18: The SWP files its suit against government surveillance, leads to release of thousands of pages of evidence of the government’s COINTELPRO activities. Ruling in favor of SWP issued August 25, 1986, and government drops appeal in March 1988, there is a large cash settlement for the SWP. (O’Brien; interview with John Durham. Nov. 12, 1997; Guardian, January 23, 1974; The Militant, March 22, 1999; Pathfinder Book The FBI on Trial)

      July 24: Most dramatic of many wildcats that take place in Detroit this summer, when Isaac Shorter and Larry Carter, two Black workers, one a member of CL (check), seize an electric power control cage and shut down the assembly line; they are protected by fellow workers, Chrysler capitulates, and the picture of the two of them being carried out of the factory on the shoulders of workers is widely published, including in the mainstream press. (Georgakas; Guardian, August 8, 1973)

      July 27-28: Founding Congress of the Union of Democratic Filipinos/Katipunan ng mga Demokratikong Pilipino (KDP) as a revolutionary mass organization supporting national democratic revolution in the Philippines and socialism in the U.S. KDP begins publication of Ang Katipunan newspaper (AK) in October 1973, replacing Kalayaan which ceased publishing in August. (Toribio; self-published material in BREV-2)

      July: Founding meeting of the Trilateral Commission, a Rockefeller-initiated “forum/pressure group” of “transnationalists” largely organized as a response to Nixon’s “economic nationalist” moves when he initiated the NEP in August 1971. The Trilateralists (who get accused of being some kind of grand anti-American conspiracy by the far right) do play a large role in U.S. politics in the next few years, especially in the election of Jimmy Carter and his administration. (MR December 1977)

      August 13-28: Rival “Conference of North American Marxist-Leninists” to the CL-sponsored version forms the Central Organization of U.S. Marxist-Leninists (COUSML). (Chart; Refutation; O’Brien)

      August 24-29: Tenth Congress of the CPC, dominated by central cadre led by Zhou Enlai. Officially, CPC still puts forward united front against the two superpowers line, and hits the “collusion and contention between the two superpowers,” but fighting “hegemonism” (that is, the USSR) is increasingly the more prominent point. Zhou Enlai and Wang Hungwen (later of the Gang of Four) give the main reports. (Trial; Tenth) Deng is back in a high post. According to the NYT2/20/97 and Deng, Deng first appeared in public again at a banquet for Sihanouk in April. (NYT2/20/97; Deng; Guardian, September 12, 1973)

      August 31: Jury acquits 8 VVAW members and supporters in Gainesville, Florida - the Gainesville 8 - on charges of conspiring to stage on armed attack on the 1972 Republican Convention in Miami. (Guardian, September 12, 1973)

      Summer: Conference of the “underground” press in Boulder changes the names of the Underground Press Syndicate to the Alternative Press Syndicate, a “watershed” in two eras of non-mainstream journalism. (Berlet in Underground)

      September 11: Bloody CIA-organized coup in Chile topples the Popular Unity government of Salvador Allende, who is killed while resisting the military assault. Thousands of leftists are rounded-up, disappeared and executed. Large-scale protests in the U.S. and around the world. China quickly recognizes the new Pinochet dictatorship and at a U.N. meeting in Geneva is the only government (except for the U.S.) to abstain from voting for a resolution to aid Chilean refugees. Generally China develops warm relations with the junta and does not join the widespread international protests. A substantial movement in solidarity with Chilean resistance takes shape in the U.S., including groups such as Non-Intervention in Chile (NICH) and others. (Maitan; China Alliance; solidarity material in NACLA various issues and BMOV-4; Guardian, September 19, 1973).

      September 21-23: UFW holds first convention, approves a constitution, elects director César Chávez president, amid new grape boycott and lettuce boycott. On April 8, 1974 the AFL-CIO backs the grape and lettuce boycotts April 8, 1974. (Guardian, October 3, 1973 & April 24, 1974)

      September 23: Pablo Neruda dies in a hospital in Santiago Chile, reportedly of heart collapse resulting from cancer, amid the Chilean coup and its murderous aftermath. (Guardian, October 3, 1973)

      September: The Fourth Non-Aligned Summit meets in Algiers, with 75 participating nations (up from 53 in Lusaka in 1970); the Provisional Revolutionary Government of South Vietnam and the Royal Government of National Union of Cambodia are included as full members, having been accepted at the Non-Aligned Conference in Georgetown, Guyana August 8-12, 1972. The meeting formulates a proposal for a “New International Economic Order” - adopted by the U.N. special session in May 1974, see entry below - and takes initial steps toward a proposal for a New Information Order. Fidel Castro of Cuba plays a large role, among other things explicitly opposing the tendency to “lump the Soviet Union together with the U.S.” in the “Superpowers Thesis.” (Black Scholar December 1976; Fact Sheet; Guardian, April 24, 1974)

      October 1: Celebrations of China’s National Day in two dozen cities sponsored by the U.S.-China Friendship Association, with 5,000 attending programs in New York and San Francisco. (Guardian, October 10, 1973)

      October 6: Beginning of “Yom Kippur War” in Middle East. Israel briefly runs short of planes and ammunition; U.S. rushes supplies but European countries do not allow U.S. planes to use European airfields in the effort, except for Portugal, and the supplies are sent via the Azores. And, to intimidate the Soviets and prevent them from aiding Egypt, the U.S. puts its worldwide military on Defcon III alert on October 24, high readiness involving deployment of nuclear weapons. An outpouring of support in the Third World for the Arab side. (Black Scholar November 1973; Almanac; MR May 1975; Hobsbawm; Coates in NLR #145; Guardian, October 17 & 24, 1973)

      October 8-15: Week of Solidarity with Chile sees actions in 35 cities across the U.S. (Guardian, October 24, 1973)

      October 10: Spiro Agnew resigns as vice-president and then in federal court in Baltimore, pleads no contest to charges of evasion of income taxes, fined and given three years probation, He is replaced by Gerald Ford. (Almanac; Guardian, October 24, 1973)

      October 10: USSR changes position and officially recognizes the Sihanouk-led Royal Government of National Union in Cambodia. (Guardian, October 24, 1973)

      October 12-14: Official founding conference of the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee-DSOC in New York City under the leadership of Michael Harrington, Irving Howe, Jack Clark among others; 200-300 members. (SDHx)

      October 15: Trial of Karl Armstrong, admitted participant in the bombing of the Army Math Research Center in Madison in 1970 in which a researcher was killed, begins; it will be a week of testimony by antiwar activists explaining Armstrong’s motives in acting against the war. On November 1, Armstrong is sentenced to 23 years in prison. (Guardian, October 31 & November 14, 1973; personal papers in D-1)

      October 16: Nobel Committee announces it had awarded the 1973 Peace Prize jointly to Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho; a week later Le Duc Tho declined the prize saying “peace has not yet really been established in Vietnam. (Spoke)

      October 20: “Saturday Night Massacre” firings of top officials, a turning point in the Watergate scandal. enveloping the Nixon administration. Following the Massacre, the grassroots National Campaign to Impeach Nixon is founded. (Almanac; Glick)

      November 16: Unsuccessful popular uprising against the Greek junta, suppressed by violence and declaration of martial law. (MR February 1974)

      December 14: U.N. votes 104 to 5, with 19 abstentions, to “reaffirm the inalienable right of the Puerto Rican people to self-determination and independence”; there is a virtual news blackout on the vote in the U.S. press. (Triple Jeopardy September-October 1974; Guardian, December 26, 1973)

      Second half of the year: National Liaison Committee collapses; IWK leaves in the fall (IWK Journal #3); BWC and PRRWO break some time later, and many RU members quit the RU as well. During 1973 the RU launched its nationwide monthly newspaper, Revolution. (Hamilton, Costello; Chart; IWK Journal No. 1 & No. 3; Communist/RCP Vol. 2 No. 1; Revolution May 1974).

      Late in the year: China ends all aid to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Oman which had been fighting the feudal Omani regime and its main backer, the Shah of Iran. Throughout this year and the ensuing ones China supports Iran “strengthening its defenses” and opposes the slogan “No Arms to the Shah,” which is advanced by the Iranian left and the activist Iranian Student Association in the U.S. The October League in the U.S. also opposes the slogan “No Arms to the Shah” in The Call October 1974. The Omani guerrillas are essentially defeated by Anglo-Iranian forces in 1975 (China Alliance; Second Cold War; Disney says support for the PFLO is dropped in 1972)

      Late in the Year: “Energy Crisis”: Following the 1973 Arab-Israeli war the Arab oil-producing nations cut back production and conduct a “selective embargo” of the U.S. and a few other countries; OPEC (which had been founded in 1960) raises prices. These acts are partly responsible - but not as much as manipulation by major oil companies - for the “energy crisis” which hits headlines and gas pumps in winter 1973-74, and is also a factor in the big recession of 1974-75 (see below). The left and NCM groups conduct extensive propaganda in relation to the “energy crisis,” e.g. RU’s United Front Press pamphlet on the topic. There is also a large “citizen movement” response around utility rates and other issues, and a 1974 Ralph Nader-initiated “Critical Mass” conference focusing on the issue of nuclear power, a gathering which is a factor in the anti-nuclear power movement’s rise later in the decade - see Clamshell/Seabrook entry June 1976 below. (CrossRoads No. 23; MR January 1974 and April 1974; Seventh Summit; reference to RU pamphlet in self-published material in D-10; Black Scholar November 1973; Second Cold War; Boyte)


      Asian Study Group formed by Jerry Tung, who had left PL in 1971 (Road; Communist/RCP Vol. 1 No. 2; Wei)

      By early 1973 the RU is organized in 15 cities; by late 1974, it has collectives in about 25. Beginning in 1972 the RU also initiated the formation of the Attica Brigade as an anti-imperialist student organization - specifically to fill the vacuum left by the demise of SDS - under its leadership, an Eastern regional conference drew 250 from 31 campus chapters to New York March 31-April 1, 1973. The group changed its name to the Revolutionary Student Brigade at a national conference June 15-17, 1974 and officially became the RCP’s youth group after the RCP founding congress in September 1975, at a November 8-10, 1975 national convention. During this time RU also initiated local worker monthly papers in about 20 cities and tried to build “intermediate workers organizations,” including Unemployed Workers Organizing Committees. (O’Brien; self-published material in D-10; Revolution May & July 1974 & November 15, 1975; Guardian, April 11, 1973 & June 12, 1974)

      Open Letter calling for a Mass Party of the People by Arthur Kinoy appears in the December issue of Liberation magazine, after circulating in various forms since its initial drafting in summer 1972. A “National Interim Committee for a Mass Party of the People” - later the Mass Party Organizing Committee (MPOC) - was also formed and several regional and national meetings about the proposal were held through 1973. The group continued through the 1976 Hard Times Conference and July 4 Coalition and then de facto dissolved into the newly formed “People’s Alliance.” (see below) though MPOC is still listed as Arthur Kinoy’s ID tag at least through the 1979 meetings that gave rise to the Coalition for a People’s Alternative. Also, the “Revolution and Democracy” article by Harry Boyte and Frank Ackerman appears in issue No. 16 of Socialist Revolution (late 1973 or early ’74), also published as a pamphlet by NAM. (Open Letter; R&D; People’s Alliance folder in D-9)

      Jamaica Plain Tenants Action Group (TAG) formed, one of the most successful of the small Marxist but not-party-building collectives of ex-student activists. TAG changed its name to City Life in December 1978. (RA January-February 1979)

      Young activists mobilize to help build Agbayani Village in Delano; the Village is a UFW-sponsored project that will house retired farmworkers, especially veterans of the 1965 Grape Strike that launched the UFW. KDP coordinates the activist mobilization. The formal dedication of the Village is June 15, 1974. (Agbayani; TWWA Report 1974 in DTW-1)

      A Grain of Sand cultural group releases A Grain of Sand: Music for the Sturggle by Asians in America, the first Asian American album. The trio of Chris Kando Ijima, Nobuko Joanne Miyamoto and “Charlie” Chin frequently sang at demonstrations and activities around the country. (Wei)

      The National Black Feminists Organization (NBFO) is founded in New York but does not survive long. Smaller collectives, such as the Combahee River Collective, were more successful. (Radical America, Vol. 18, Nos. 2 & 3)

      First issue of Working Papers on the Kapitalistate issued by an international group of “Marxian theoreticians and researchers studying the advanced capitalist and imperialist state.” (Kapitalistate 2/1973)

      Wages for Housework campaign/organization makes its presence felt in the women’s movement, taking its theoretical inspiration from Mariarosa Dalla Costa’s article “Women and the Subversion of the Community” in The Power of Women and the Subversion of the Community, by Mariarosa Dalla Costa and Selma James (Falling Wall Press) which is published this year. (Fragments)

      The Heritage Foundation is set up by Joseph Coors. (Second Cold War)

      Reflecting the new congressional aggressiveness in trying to put limits on unilateral presidential conduct of foreign policy, as well as sentiment which will become the “Vietnam Syndrome,” Congress passes the War Powers Act trying to limit the President’s ability to unilaterally commit troops and wage war. The following year, 1974, it passes the Hughes-Ryan Amendment limiting the power of the CIA. (Reunion; Second Cold War)

      Hip Hop - including break dancing, rap and graffiti - begins to take shape as a street movement in the heart of the Bronx ghetto. The most immediate influences on the new style-genre-subculture-movement include Gil Scott-Heron, the Last Poets and James Brown’s hard-core funk; key figures in the new movement are Afrika Bambaataa, Kool Herc and Grandmaster Flash. The movement soon spreads to Puerto Rican as well as Black youth, but is not “noticed” by the mainstream until the very late 1970s and early ‘80s - see 1979 entry below. (RA Vol. 18, No. 6; CrossRoads No. 13).

      The height of post-war prosperity (seen only in retrospect of course): in 1973 real wages reach their highest level post-World War II and have been declining ever since. Median household income, corrected for inflation, is also no higher in the early 1990s than in 1973, despite the fact that almost 60% of families rely on two incomes in the ‘90s compared to just over 40% of families in the early ‘70s. The GNP begins to fall in the first quarter 1974 (see below). In historical retrospect, 1973 is generally seen as a “turning point” year in post-war history, and it is worldwide: from 1960 to 1973 industrial output in the OECD states rose by 6% per year, from 1973 to 1980 it rose by only 2% a year. (For the list of the 21 OECD member states, see Hobsbawm page 361) Stanley Aronowitz opens his 1996 The Death and Rebirth of American Radicalism “since the great break in the world economic and political environment in 1973”; Eric Hobsbawm (The Age of Extremes) divides the “short 20th century” into three periods, 1914-1945, 1945-early 1970s, and “early ‘70s-1991, and most often uses 1973 as the dividing line between the last two periods, as in “the decades since 1973 were to be once again an age of crisis.” (CrossRoads No. 23; Hobsbawm; Aronowitz; Second Cold War)

      The Polisario Liberation Front is founded to fight for the independence of the Western Sahara, first against Spanish colonialism and after 1975 against Morocco. (Frontline, November 24, 1986 & January 18, 1988)

      Publication of Al Richmond, A Long View from the Left: Memoirs of an American Revolutionary (Houghton Mifflin, Boston) - issued in 1975 as a Delta paperback; The Puerto Rican Papers: Notes on the Re-Emergence of a Nation by Alfredo Lopez (New York); Ramsey Clark and Roy Wilkens, chairmen, Search and Destroy: A Report by the Commission of Inquiry into the Black Panthers and the Police (New York, Metropolitan Applied Research Center, Inc.); Revolutionary Suicide, by Huey P. Newton (Harcourt, Brace and Jovanovich, New York); Kirkpatrick Sale, SDS (New York, Random House) - issued as a Vintage paperback the next year; Stanley Aronowitz, False Promises; The Shaping of American Working Class Consciousness (New York: McGraw Hill); Them and Us: Struggles of a Rank-and-File Union, by James J. Matles and James Higgins (Prentice-Hall); Richard Sennett and Jonathan Cobb, The Hidden Injuries of Class (New York, Vintage); Robert F. Williams, Negroes With Guns (Chicago: Third World Press); The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia, by Alfred W. McCoy (New York, Harper Colophon Books); My War with the CIA: The Memoirs of Prince Norodom Sihanouk, by Norodom Sihanouk as related to Wilfred Burchett (Pantheon Books, New York); The Consumer and Corporate Accountability, edited by Ralph Nader (New York: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich); Corporate Power in America, by Ralph Nader and Mark Green (New York, Grossman); Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent, by Eduardo Galeano (Monthly Review Press, New York); The New Socialist Revolution, by Michael Lerner (Delacorte Press, New York); The Marxism of Che Guevara: Philosophy, Economics and Revolutionary Warfare, by Michael Lowy (Monthly Review Press, New York); Nicos Poulantzas, Political Power and Social Classes (London, New Left Books); James O’Connor, The Fiscal Crisis of the State (St. Martin’s Press, New York); A Theology of Liberation, Gustavo Gutiérrez (Maryknoll, N.Y., Orbis) - first published in Peru in 1971, and considered the “classic presentation of Liberation Theology” - see MR July-August 1984) and related, The Cry of the People put out by Brazilian Bishops (see NLR #154); Cleveland Sellers, with Robert Terrell, The River of No Return: The Autobiography of a Black Militant and the Life and Death of SNCC (New York, Morrow); Nicholas von Hoffman, We Are the People Our Parents Warned Us Against (Greenwich, Connecticut, Fawcett Publications); Donald Freed, Agony in New Haven: The Trial of Bobby Seale, Ericka Huggins and the Black Panther Party (New York, Simon and Schuster); Africa Information Service (Editors), Return to The Source: Selected Speeches by Amilcar Cabral (Monthly Review Press, New York & London, with Africa Information Service);

      Publication also of two important “Marxist Feminist” books, by British authors, which have a strong influence on the development of U.S. socialist-feminism over the next few years: Women’s Estate, by Juliet Mitchell (Vintage Books, New York) and Women’s Consciousness, Man’s World, by Sheila Rowbotham (Penguin Books, London). Other later books in the largely non-U.S. Marxist Feminist current include Michele Barrett’s Women’s Oppression Today: Problems in Marxist-Feminist Analysis (Verso, London, 1980). (Source: “The Impossible Marriage: A Marxist Critique of Socialist Feminism,” Line of March No. 17, Spring 1985)

      Release of Constantin Costa Gavras film State of Siege, based on the Tupamaros’ struggle in Uruguay (NACLA May-June 1974 says the film opened in 1972), and Perry Henzell film The Harder They Come.


      January 3: Ron Kovic and others found the American Veterans Movement, call for Nixon’s impeachment and increased benefits for veterans. (Guardian, April 17, 1974)

      January 6: Mexican muralist David Alfaro Siquieros dies at age 77. (Guardian, January 16, 1974)

      January 21: Landmark unanimous Supreme Court decision in Lau v. Nichols, a suit filed by San Francisco non-English speaking Chinese students against the S.F. School Board, mandating bilingual education to ensure equal educational opportunity under the Civil Rights Act of 1964. (Wei)

      February 1-3: ALSC Steering Committee Conference in Greensboro with 51 local committees in 27 states and 6 countries represented. The meeting reaffirms a Marxist-oriented Statement of Principles. The influence of Marxism in the organization had risen especially after several ALSC members visited Africa in 1973 and held extensive discussions there with Marxist-Leninist-oriented militants from FRELIMO among others; they returned and began the study of Marxism-Leninism. Over the next period political differences heighten within the organization between Marxist and nationalist-oriented tendencies. A pivotal event in the struggle is the conference held at Howard University May 23-24 - see below. Meanwhile, just the month before the Steering Committee meeting, in January 1974, many of the leading activists in ALSC from Malcolm X Liberation University, People’s College, Youth Organization for Black Unity and others secretly formed the Revolutionary Workers League (RWL) as a cadre organization. (ALSC; SalesJr; Forward No. 3; Hutchings; Alkalimat/Johnson; Bolshevik No. 1; Baraka in Black Scholar January-February 1975 and Black World July 1975; Debate in Black Scholar in various issues of Vol. 6)

      February 4: Patty Hearst is kidnapped by Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA), which had earlier (November 6, 1973) assassinated Marcus Foster, Black Superintendent of the Oakland public schools. On May 17 (Weather incorrectly says May 4) authorities besieged most of the SLA at a house in Los Angeles and killed six people in a fiery shoot-out. Patti Hearst, who had apparently gone over to her captors and participated in several bank robberies, and other SLA members were captured on September 18, 1975. (Bennion; TWWA 1974 report in DTW-1; Almanac; Rolling Stone)

      February 13: Soviet Union strips Alexander Solzhenitsyn of his citizenship and deports him. The most immediate cause seems to have been publication at the end of 1973 of his book The Gulag Archipelago in Paris, it is issued in spring 1974 in the U.S. by Harper and Row. Among other things, the Solzhenitsyn affair kicks off the rightist,, anti-Soviet crusade of the “new philosophers” in France, largely ex-Maoists and former participants in the upheaval of 1968; reaching its height in the late 1970s, the campaign transforms the political contours of the French intelligentsia. (Guardian January 30, 1974 and February 27, 1974; NLR #171)

      February: Huge British miner’s strike - following the successful nationwide strike in 1972 which had been the first since 1926 (“1972-74 marked a high tide of trade union élan within the British working class”/NLR #161) - is the concentration point of several years resistance to the anti-labor policies of the Tory Heath government. Heath calls elections and the Tories are ousted in the balloting on February 28, these elections being “more clearly a class confrontation than any previous elections since the Second World War”; essentially the British miners brought down the Heath government. (Radical America Vol. 8 No. 5/Sept-Oct 1974; Aronson in NLR No. 152/July-August 1985)

      February: Fourth World Congress (since reunification in 1963) of the Fourth International. (Fourth)

      February: Abbie Hoffman goes underground to avoid drug bust charges, becomes an organizer on environmental issues in upstate New York under the name Barry Freed. He turns himself in September 4, 1980 after being interviewed on Barbara Walters the night before. (Jezer)

      February: Four groups of Latin Americas armed left - the MLN-Tupamaros of Uruguay, the National Liberation Army (ELN) of Bolivia, the MIR of Chile and the People’s Revolutionary Army (ERP) of Argentina - announce the formation of a joint revolutionary council - the Junta for Revolutionary Coordination - to coordinate the struggle against imperialism throughout Latin America. (NACLA March 1974)

      March 24-25: Founding meeting of the Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW) with 58 unions officially represented. (O’Brien; Southern Patriot, April 1974)

      April 10: Deng Xiaoping’s speech at the United Nations putting forward the “Theory of the Three Worlds.” (Mao Makes 5; Speech Text in BICM-5; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 1; Deng)

      April 25: Portuguese Armed Forces Movement overthrows Portugal’s fascist regime led by Marcello Caetano, who succeeded Antonio Salazar on his death July 27, 1970. Period of mass struggle and upheaval follows, with the working class and left-wing of the AFM often having significant initiative. After internal struggles within the immediate post-April 25 regime, a reorganized government announced August 4 that it was recognizing the independence of Guinea-Bissau, Angola and Mozambique. Left especially has some initiative after defeating rightist coup attempt in March 1975. The pro-China Portuguese Maoists side with the right and the pro-Western “Socialists” against the left and the strong CP, a more divisive issue in European Maoism than in U.S. Maoism. Unfolding revolutionary process is stopped by November 25, 1975 declaration of martial law and crackdown on the left by the Socialist Party’s Mario Soares. (Burchett in Guardian May 5, 1976, reprinted in Background; NCM-MS; MR September and October 1975; CRSP; Century; Revolution June 1975; Guardian, May 8, 1974 & August 14, 1974)

      April 27: Rallies calling for Nixon’s impeachment organized by the left-led National Campaign to Impeach Nixon occur in several cities, 10,000 turn out in D.C., there is significant New Communist Movement participation - others on the left are active in the coalition as well. In the buildup to the demonstrations, on April 19, 21 members of the Attica Brigade took over the Statue of Liberty for a weekend and attract substantial press coverage. (Guardian, May 1 & May 8, 1974)

      May 23-24: ALSC Conference at Howard University on “Which Way Forward in Building the Pan African United Front?” (sometimes referred to as “Which Way For the Black Liberation Movement?,” or “Conference on Racism and Imperialism”) draws 700-800 people. The conference is a key point in the ideological struggle between Marxist-oriented and nationalist-oriented activists, with the Marxist position argued by Abdul Alkalimat, Owusu Sadauki, Nelson Johnson, Amiri Baraka (who announces a change in his previous ideology to the surprise of many) and others prevailing over the nationalists led by Stokely Carmichael and the AAPRP. The day after the conference, on May 25, over 10,000 march on ALD in Washington, D.C. (ALSC; SalesJr; Forward No. 3; Hutchings; Alkalimat/Johnson; Bolshevik No. 1; Baraka in Black Scholar January-February 1975 and Black World July 1975; Debate in Black Scholar in various issues of Vol. 6; Triple Jeopardy Summer 1974)

      May 22: 6,500 Alabama coal miners walk off their jobs to protest imports of South African coal; UMW says it is opposed to the imports from the apartheid regime. (Guardian, June 12, 1974)

      May: RU announces that “the communist movement and the mass movement” have “come to the end of a period in their development; the central task is no longer “building the struggle, consciousness and revolutionary unity of the working class and developing its leadership in the anti-imperialist struggle.” Rather, “for a brief period” Party Building is now the central task. Major national speaking tour of leadership is organized that summer to promote this position; work to put together a “Draft Party Programme” and circulate it is begun. (Hamilton; May 1974 issue of Revolution reprinted in Red Papers 6)

      May: August Twenty-Ninth Movement (ATM), a mainly Chicano Marxist-Leninist organization, is founded at a Unity Congress. (Costello; Revolutionary Cause January 1978 in NCOBD file in BLM-4)

      May: Sixth Special Session of the U.N. General Assembly adopts Declaration and Programme of Action on the Establishment of a New Economic Order. The “New International Economic Order” concept is pressed by Third World countries at the U.N. and through the Non-Aligned Movement, where it had been formulated at the Fourth Summit in Algiers in 1973, see above. (Seventh Summit; MR May 1978)

      Spring: Issue No. 1 of Latin American Perspectives: “Dependency Theory: A Critical Reassessment” (Ad in MR November 1980)

      Spring: National Committee to Reopen the Rosenberg Case is set up. (Guardian, June 5, 1974)

      June 1: First nationwide strike of clothing workers in 53 years when 110,000 members of ACW walk out in 30 states. The strike ends with some wage gains after one week. (Guardian, June 12 & June 19, 1974)

      June 15-17: About 450 students from 80 campuses and form a nationwide student anti-imperialist organization, changing the name of the sponsoring Attica Brigade to the Revolutionary Student Brigade. (Guardian, June 26 & July 3, 1974)

      June 18-21: Sixth Pan-African Congress (Six-PAC), the largest ever and the first held since 1945, is held in Tanzania, U.S. African-American delegation is the largest. (SalesJr; Forward No. 3)

      June: International Indian Treaty Conference convened by AIM - which has been the target of severe repression since the Wounded Knee siege - at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Several thousand Indians from North America, along with representatives from Latin America and Hawaii, form the International Indian Treaty Council. (Dunbar)

      July 1: Isabel (Evita) Perón becomes Argentine president after the death of her husband. Government moves rightward, right-wing death squads kill hundreds, the beginnings of what later will be called the “dirty war” - see March 24 1976 entry below, the aboveground left is being decimated, guerrilla groups still operate. (MR January 1976)

      July 4: 8,00 rally against racist and political repression in Raleigh, North Carolina is an action called by the NAARP, Angela Davis and Ralph Abernathy are main speakers. (Guardian, July 17, 1974)

      July 15: Jung Sai garment workers in San Francisco go out on six-month strike, IWK and Wei Min She, linked to RU, are active in strike support and have sharp conflicts with one another. (Wei; IWK Journal No. 2)

      July 23: Resignation of the “colonels” right-wing junta in Greece, followed by the first civilian government since 1967. (Second Cold War; Almanac)

      July 24: Weather Underground Organization issues Prairie Fire: The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism; copies “mysteriously” appear at the doors of bookstores and left institutions, within a year or two, 25,000-35,000 copies are in circulation. In the wake of PF’s publication, the Prairie Fire Distribution Committee, later the Prairie Fire Organizing Committee, is formed as an “aboveground” organization; and in Spring 1975 WUO puts out the first issue of Osawatomie magazine. (self-published material in BREV-3; Weather; Guardian, October 9, 1974)

      July 31: Issue of El Malcriado, the UFW paper, says that “illegals must either be granted full democratic rights, or they must go.” UFW position, which in practice often emphasizes the call to deport “illegals,” is a source of major controversy within the Chicano movement and the left during this period. (Guardian, August 21, 1974)

      Summer: Study group of women in the Bay Area take the initial steps in forming a Marxist-Leninist group first named the Workers Party for Proletarian Socialism, later to become the Democratic Workers Party/DWP. (Lalich; DWP History; DWP Dissolution)

      August 8: Nixon announces he will resign effective noon the next day; succeeded as president by Gerald Ford, who pardons Nixon on September 8. (Almanac)

      August 19-23: AFT Convention elects Albert Shanker President over incumbent liberal David Selden. (Guardian, September 4, 1974)

      August 27: White guard at the Beaufort County Jail in North Carolina is found dead, naked from the waist down; eight days later Joann Little, a Black woman inmate who had fled, turns herself in saying she had killed the guard in self-defense as he attempted to rape her. A major national defense campaign for Little is launched and she is acquitted in August 1975. (Triple Jeopardy January-February 1975; Guardian August 27, 1975 in BTr-5)

      August 28: After 11 years of efforts to get a foothold at J.P. Stevens, the Textile Workers of America wins its first representation election at a Stevens mill, in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, the company’s largest single plant. Along with the Harlan County victory the next day, this victory seems to herald a new union upsurge in the South, but from there little progress is made, despite a long campaign against and boycott of J.P. Stevens (Guardian, September 18, 1974; Democratic Left September 1979)

      August 29: Duke Power Co. signs agreement with UMW, ending bitter 13-month long miners strike in Harlan County, Kentucky with a miners’ victory. New Communist activists have been active in strike support work and among the miners. (Guardian, September 4 & 11, 1974; Democratic Left September 1979).

      August: Police charge Huey Newton with assault on Preston Callins, a tailor, and murder of prostitute Kathleen Smith; Newton flees to Cuba, Elaine Brown becomes Panther Party chair - Bobby Seale having been driven out of the party by Huey Newton before he fled - and the BPP concentrates all its work in Oakland. After Lionel Wilson is elected Oakland mayor in 1977, with Panther support, Huey returns to Oakland and faces trial, the results are mistrials and charges are eventually dropped. But Huey quickly clashes with Elaine Brown as he reassumes power in the party and she flees Oakland. (Abron in Underground; CrossRoads No. 53; Brown)

      August: CIA begins sending aid to FNLA in Angola led by Holden Roberto. (Second Cold War)

      August 31-September 2: 250 delegates meet in Los Angeles and found the National U.S.-China Peoples Friendship Association, already more than 35 local Friendship Associations have been organized since the effort began in summer 1971. (Guardian, September 11, 1974 in BTr-4; and Guardian August 4, 1971 & October 10, 1973)

      September 9-10: Guinea-Bissau declares independence from Portugal after many years of armed struggle; the PAIGC, which had been founded in 1956, assumes power. Cape Verde declares independence later on July 5, 1975 and joins with Guinea-Bissau. Sao Tome becomes independent July 12, 1975. (Guardian July 7, 1975 in BTr5; MR December 1975; Almanac; Second Cold War)

      September 12: Following devastating drought and famine, worker and student strikes and mutinies in the armed forces, and the outbreak of revolution in February, the Haile Selassie regime crumbles in Ethiopia - Selassie is deposed September 12 - and the self-proclaimed Marxist military council known as the Dergue assumes power and declares a “socialist revolution.” Many industries are nationalized in December 1974 and a land reform program announced in March 1975. There is also repression against popular leaders and critics on the left, which reaches its height in a “red terror” of 1977-78. The Dergue allies with USSR and Cuba, fighting between regime and Eritrean ELF-EPLF continues despite various (including Cuban) attempts to mediate. (MR June 1978; Second Cold War)

      September 16: Judge Fred Nichol dismisses all charges against Wounded Knee defendants and AIM leaders Dennis Banks and Russell Means after an 8-month trial on grounds of government misconduct. There are a large number of trials of activists as the government persecutes those who had participating in the 1973 uprising; Washington’s strategy is to bring as many people to trial as possible irrespective of the possibility of conviction, in order to keep the Indian movement politically on the defensive and attempt to bankrupt it financially. Four insurgents are convicted of conspiracy October 17. (Guardian, October 2 & October 30, 1974; Hurricane)

      September: CL and other smaller groups in its National Continuations Committee hold the Founding Congress of the Communist Labor Party (CLP) of North America, Nelson Peery is selected chair. (self-published material in D-3, Costello; O’Brien)

      October 7: A white student is shot and killed during one of many confrontations surrounding desegregation of a high school in St. Charles Parish, Louisiana. A Black youth, Gary Tyler, is framed and convicted of murder (his appeal goes to the U.S. Supreme Court and is denied January 24, 1977), and a “Free Gary Tyler” campaign is a focus of anti-racist activism in the South for the next several years, especially taken up by both revolutionary nationalist and NCM activists. Prominent among the NCM activists are members of MLOC and of SCEF, which during 1975-76 comes under the control of the OL - see entry for September 4-5, 1976. (Unite! Vol. 2 No. 4; Greensboro; Southern Patriot, February, September & November 1975 & June-July & September 1976, January & November 1977)

      October 11: RU leads a delegation of 50 to “meet with” the Guardian staff but overloads the building elevator, which sinks to the bottom of the building; they set up a picketline instead. The Guardian staff terms the action a “strong-arm” tactic and attempt at physical intimidation. The incident, the same month as RU’s “Smash the Boston Busing Plan” headline in Revolution, marks a definitive break between the RU and the Guardian, as well as many others in the NCM. (Guardian, October 23, 1974 in left folder, BTr-4; Guardian, November 20, 1974)

      October 27: Day of Solidarity with Puerto Rico, massive 20,000-plus rally at Madison Square Garden organized principally by the Puerto Rican Socialist Party (PSP), which from 1974 to 1976-77 has substantial influence within the Puerto Rican community and also in the broad U.S. left. There is controversy within the New Communist Movement over the event and the September 5-8, 1975 conference in Havana on international solidarity with Puerto Rican independence (see below) with the main Maoist organizations attacking the prominence of “revisionists.” At the Madison Square Garden rally, Jerry Tung of Workers Viewpoint Organization puts forward this line by calling for “superpowers out of Puerto Rico” and is drowned out by the crowd’s shouts of unidad. (MINP; Puerto Rico; Guardian September 24, 1975 in BTr-5, November 6 & November 13, 1974)

      October: CAP adopts Marxism-Leninism Mao-Zedong thought at its General Assembly. (Forward No. 3)

      October: Congress limits campaign donations by individuals and opens the door to the surrogate system of Political Action Committees (PACs) with passage of the Federal Election Campaign Act. (Second Cold War)

      October: Publication of Red Papers 7 by the RU, How Capitalism Has Been Restored in the Soviet Union and What This Means for the World Struggle. This was one of the two main attempts by U.S. Maoist groups to prove the capitalist restoration thesis; the other is Martin Nicolaus’ book published by OL in 1975. Also see Bettleheim’s writings on the subject, which appear in various works (Red Papers 6; Myth, page 101.)

      November 13: Karen Silkwood is killed in a mysterious automobile “accident” on the way to a meeting with a union official and New York Times reporter to reveal safety violations at the Kerr-McGee nuclear plant near Oklahoma City. The long lawsuit over the contamination of her home ends May 18, 1979 with a huge jury verdict against Kerr-McGee. (Organizer, July 1979; Green; Rolling Stone)

      November 13: PLO chair Yasir Arafat opens the U.N. debate on Palestine with a speech to the General Assembly after the U.N. had voted 106-4 to invite the PLO to speak “as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.” At the conclusion of the session the Assembly votes to affirm Palestinian rights “to a national independence and sovereignty” and to give the PLO Permanent Observer status at the U.N. (Triple Jeopardy January-February 1975; MINP; Shots; Roots; Guardian, November 27, 1974)

      November 14: Jane Alpert surrenders to authorities four-and-a-half years after going underground, her lawyer announcing her “renunciation of radical activities and her conversion to the feminist movement” and the FBI announcing that she was cooperating fully with them. One of the activists she had been underground with, Pat Swinton, was captured by the FBI March 12, 1975. A sharp debate over Alpert’s actions breaks out within the women’s movement, whose radical feminist wing is at this point in decline in favor of a far less activist “cultural feminism.” The women’s movement controversy is further heightened when fugitive Susan Saxe, who participated in a 1970 bank robbery in which a policeman was killed and became lesbian while underground but refused to renounce the “male left,” is captured on March 27, 1975 and not supported by many of the feminists who supported Alpert. (Echols)

      November: First issue of Dollars and Sense, initially a monthly bulletin on economic affairs published by URPE. Between September 1974 and mid-1975, URPE chapters and collectives organize nearly 100 “teach-ins and teach-outs” on the U.S. economic crisis. (URPE/Crisis)

      Fall: Boston busing crisis, which continues through 1975. Judge Garrity’s initial desegregation order - won after a decade-plus struggle over segregation and inferior education - is issued June 21, 1974; demonstrations and confrontations begin in September just before school opens on September 12; after schools open there are boycotts by whites and violence against Black students. Haitian Andre Yvon Jean-Louis is beaten October 7, with much publicity. There are sharp differences within the NCM over what approach to take to the controversy, with the RU particularly isolating itself: the October issue of RU’s newspaper Revolution carried the headline “People Must Unite to Smash Boston Busing Plan.” December 9, 1975 Judge Garrity puts South Boston High in receivership. (Freedom; It’s Not the Bus; RU material in D-10; Hunter-Green; Guardian, October 2 1974 and following issues through the fall)

      Second half : Official onset of the worst economic downturn in the U.S. since the great depression, as all four quarters of 1974 show a drop in GNP. This follows mounting inflation through the early ‘70s. (President Ford held a summit conference on inflation in September). Drop in the GNP in the last quarter of 1974 is the steepest of any quarter in 16 years. Official unemployment hits 9.2% in May 1975, the highest since the 1930s. Official recovery begins when the GNP starts to go up for the second quarter of 1975 after five consecutive quarters going down. This recession is especially important in connection with the point made in 1973 above: that 1973 was in fact “the height of post-war prosperity” with real wages at their highest level post-World War II. On the left, this recession, and the capitalist attacks on workers’ wages and benefits that preceded it (for example, Nixon’s 1971 NEP “wage-price freeze”) and accompanied it, are frequently referred to as marking “the end of the post-war social contract” or the “end of the post-war labor-capital informal agreement.” (O’Brien; Guardian articles in National Politics set in BTr-5; CrossRoads No. 23; Davis in NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985; Line of March No. 5)


      The military and executive proclaim “counter-force” (use of nuclear weapons to win a war, in this case particularly “tactical” nukes, as opposed to “massive retaliation”) as a major option of U.S. strategy; not the first time the idea had been ballooned, but in the wake of Vietnam and amid detente and rough parity with the USSR, it assumes a new significance. (Second Cold War)

      Campaign to free Inez Garc*a, a Chicana who is sentenced to prison for killing a man for rape. (Chicano)

      The Haymarket Peoples Fund is started by radicals with inherited wealth in Boston. During the early 1970s a number of similar funds are launched across the country, Vanguard Public Foundation in San Francisco is among the first. In 1979 six of these foundations joined together to form the Funding Exchange, which by the early 1990s has some 15 member Funds. (Haymarket Fund Website; North Star Fund 1991-92 Annual report in DCR-3)

      The Committee on the Present Danger, a group of 141 anti-detente Republicans and Democrats first established during Cold War I and growing out of the “traditional right” is reassembled. Hooking up with this motion is the rising “neoconservative” group of Democrats and former Democrats (Henry Jackson, Daniel Moynihan, Norman Podhoretz, Jeanne Kirkpatrick et al), some of whom were dovish during the Vietnam War but all of whom are intensely hostile to the USSR and focused on the issues of Israel and Soviet Jewry. This current is a major force behind the 1974 passage of the Jackson-Vanik Amendment linking trade with the USSR to the Soviet’s allowance of Jewish emigration. Note also that top AFL-CIO leaders were prominent members of the Committee on the Present Danger, consistent with the Federation’s longstanding support of Cold War policies not least through direct anti-left action via its American Institute for Free Labor Development (AIFLD). At the same time, the New Right Committee for the Survival of a Free Congress Committee is founded by Joseph Coors, Paul Weyrich and direct-mail wizard Richard Viguerie). Meanwhile, prodded especially by the downturn of 1974, the “business community” makes a major turn right, typified by Business Week October 12, 1974: “Some people with obviously have to do with will be a hard pill for many Americans to swallow, the idea of doing with less so that big business can have more....Nothing that this nation, or any other nation has done in modern history compares in difficulty with the selling job that must now be done to make people accept the new reality.” A host of other business publications and organizations attack the “explosion of expectations” and preach the “era of limits” theme between 1974 and 1976. (Second Cold War; Boyte)

      Communities Organized for Public Service (COPS) formed in San Antonio by Alinsky-model IAF organizer Ernie Cortes; by 1976 it is the largest urban community group in the U.S., its fall ’76 convention drawing 6,000 delegates. Cortes then goes to East L.A. (Boyte)

      Anwar Sadat initiates “open door policy” and further moves Egypt out of a pro-Soviet alignment into a pro-U.S. stance, abrogating Egypt’s treaty with the USSR in 1976 and consummating the shift with the essential entry of Egypt into the U.S. military alliance through the Camp David Accord in 1978. Egypt’s shift to a pro-U.S. stance, along with China’s, is one of the two main U.S. gains regarding the “world balance of forces” vs. the USSR and national liberation revolutions during the 1970s. (Storm; Second Cold War; Magri in MR 131/Jan-Feb 1982; Hobsbawm; Disney)

      Publication of Harry Braverman, Labor and Monopoly Capital: The Degradation of Work in the 20th Century (Monthly Review Press, New York); Weather Underground, Prairie Fire: The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism (see above); Revolution and Evolution in the Twentieth Century, James and Grace Lee Boggs (Monthly Review Press); Charles Bettleheim, Class Struggles in the USSR, First Period, 1917-1923 (Paris, Seuil/Maspero); Comrade George: An Investigation into the Life, Political Thought and Assassination of George Jackson, by Eric Mann (New York, Harper & Row, Perennial Library; published earlier, in 1973, by the Red Prison Movement and Hovey Street Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts); Lessons from the Damned, Class Struggle in the Black Community, by “The Damned” (Times Change Press, New York); All God’s Dangers: The Life of Nate Shaw, by Theodore Rosengarten (Random House); The Modern World-System, by Immanuel Wallerstein (Academic Press, New York); Joyce Kolko, America and the Crisis of World Capitalism (Boston, Beacon Press); Arlene Eisen-Bergman, Women of Vietnam (Peoples Press, San Francisco); Soviet Russia Masters the Comintern, documents, edited by Helmut Gruber (New York); The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, by Victor Marchetti and John D. Marks (New York, Dell); Working Women and Their Organizations: 150 Years of Struggle, 33-page booklet from Union Women’s Alliance to Gain Equality/Union WAGE, (Berkeley); Paul Cowan, Nick Egleson and Nat Hentoff, with Barbara Herbert and Robert Wall, State Secrets: Police Surveillance in America (New York, Holt, Rinehart and Winston);

      Also, especially important in analyzing the Sino-Soviet split: Franz Schurmann, The Logic of World Power (Pantheon, New York), and John Gittings, The World and China, 1922-1972 (London);

      End of Part Three

      Part One, 1967-1970

      Part Two, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Five, 1981-1992

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

    4. #4
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Lightbulb Chronology Part Four, 1975-1980

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!

      January: Second half of El Comité-M.I.N.P.’s Formative Assembly (first half in June 1974), which transforms the organization into a Marxist-Leninist group. El Comité-M.I.N.P. (El Movimiento de Izquirda Nacional Puertorriqueño/Puerto Rican National Left Movement), later adjusting its name to M.I.N.P.-El Comité, establishes fraternal relations with the Movimiento Socialista Popular (MSP) in Puerto Rico, which held its first Congress in November 1974. (MINP; MSP)

      January 10-12: National Planning Conference for the “Year to Pull the Covers Off Imperialism Project” at Fisk University in Nashville (Abdul Alkalimat of People’s College and Fisk plays a key role) draws a range of Black intellectuals and activists and issues its “Declaration Against Imperialism.” About this time RWL, or a faction of RWL led by Alkalimat, launch the February First Movement as to “build the anti-imperialist Black student movement.“ (Black Scholar January-February 1975; Bolshevik No. 1)

      January: Fuerzas Armadas de Liberacion Nacional-Armed Forces of National Liberation (FALN), in one of its earliest actions, takes responsibility for bombing New York City’s Fraunces Tavern in reprisal for a right-wing bombing in Puerto Rico in which two independentistas were killed. Four people died in this bombing which was condemned by the bulk of the Puerto Rican and U.S. left. (Torres)

      January-February: The Organizer newspaper (Vol. 1, No. 1) is launched by the Philadelphia Workers Organizing Committee (PWOC). (self-published material in BTr-1)

      February 12: Dessie Woods, an African American woman, is sentenced to 22 years in prison for killing a white man who tried to rape her. A campaign to Free Dessie Woods is conducted throughout the 1970s and into the ‘80s, it is a special priority for the APSP. (Burning Spear February 1978 and other issues)

      February: Third World Coalition Council at the University of Michigan leads a 3-day takeover of the administration building to demand fulfillment of commitments made to the campuse’ Black Action movement five years earlier; the university agrees to negotiate but the demands are not met. (Wei)

      March 1-2: Founding Convention of the Puerto Rican Solidarity Committee (PRSC), outgrowth of a loose network of committees and individuals who had organized the Madison Square Garden rally for Puerto Rican independence in October 1974. (Guardian, March 19, 1975 in BTr-4)

      March: Challenges arise to the anti-gay line which is dominant in the New Communist Movement. This month a group of gay communists publishes The Political Perspective of the Lavender & Red Union. This group publishes Come Out Fighting newsletter and later joins a Trotskyist organization. Earlier, in fall 1974, the Guardian received a host of negative mail when it published an openly homophobic letter. Also published in 1975 are: Toward a Scientific Analysis of the Gay Question, by the Los Angeles Research Group, “a group of ten communists who are gay women” critiquing the RU’s position paper on homosexuality which is included as an appendix; and An Open Letter to the New Communist Movement On Homosexuality, published by a group of communists in Washington, D.C. (pamphlets and open letter in BMOV-1; Guardian, October 9, 1974)

      March-April: Break between the OL and the Guardian, bitter private meetings and internal staff struggles; an exchange of public polemics on foreign policy, International Women’s Day actions/”no united action with revisionists” line; finally OL pulls its cadre out of the staff - Renee Blakkan, Martin Nicolaus, Nancy Nikcevich and Rod Such resign; Carl Davidson is also associated with the OL position but does not resign at this time/check this. (self-published material in BTr-3; Guardian, April 16, 1975 in BTr-4)

      April 12: Expulsion of a major section of Vietnam Veterans Against the War/Winter Soldier Organization (VVAW/WSO) crystallizes long-simmering internal battle between forces in or close to the RU, who control the national office, and a loose “anti-imperialist caucus” which includes many activists close to the Prairie Fire perspective. The organization rapidly declines in size and influence, with the RU-dominated group maintaining a slightly more than paper existence. (VVAW/WSO)

      April 26: Jobs demonstration in D.C. called by the AFL-CIO leadership, featured speaker Hubert Humphrey is booed off the stage in a mostly spontaneous outburst of worker anger. (2,3-Many, p. 37; Revolution February-March 1980; Workers Viewpoint May 1975)

      April 30: Final defeat of U.S. and puppets in Vietnam, with dramatic pictures of the helicopter escape from the roof of the U.S. embassy. U.S. puppets are also ousted that spring in Cambodia (April 17), where the Khmer Rouge take power, and Laos (May 9), when the Pathet Lao take over state power. (Spoke; Revolution Rescued; Second Cold War)

      May 24: Local ALD demonstrations in several cities called by ALSC in May 1975, but they are smaller than in 1972-1974 as the organization has been badly damaged by internal factional battles. By the end of 1975 most non-Marxist-oriented folks have left, ALSC is made up almost exclusively of Marxist-Leninist groups and then it goes out of existence, although the WVO tries to rebuild ALSC as an affiliated mass organization in 1977. (ALSC; SalesJr; Forward No. 3; Bolshevik No. 1; Workers Viewpoint No. 5, August 1978; The Call, June 21, 1976)

      May: Culmination of a four-way split in BWC produces the Revolutionary Workers Congress, Revolutionary Bloc, Workers Congress (holds its founding convention in August 1975), and the largest group, the Marxist-Leninist Organizing Committee (MLOC), which initiates publication of Unite! newspaper in August 1975 and in 1978 founds the CPUSA/ML. (Unite! Vol. 1 No. 1 & accompanying letter; Costello; 2-3-Many; Red Dawn No. 1; Bribery; Blessof)

      Spring: The October League publishes the first issue of its new theoretical journal, Class Struggle. (Class Struggle No. 1)

      June 8: Prisoners rights activist Wilbur “Popeye” Jackson is murdered amid faction fighting within the prisoners rights movement in San Francisco. There are a number of shootings and killings in this milieu and the related Peoples Food System in the Bay Area in the late 1970s, including the shooting of former San Quentin Six defendant Willie Tate April 26, 1977, the shooting of liberal white prison lawyer Fay Stender in Berkeley, and the murder of former Soledad Brother and San Quentin Six Defendant Fleeta Drumgo November 24, 1979. (Burning Spear January 1980)

      June 9-13: Meeting of Communist Parties of Latin America and the Caribbean in Havana, all 24 parties in attendance approve a statement condemning the Chinese CP and endorsing a Soviet proposal for a world conference of CP’s, making this group the only regional bloc unanimously to support the CPSU in its efforts to read the CPC out of the international communist movement. (Guardian August 13, 1975 in BTr-5)

      June 25: Mozambique declares independence, 13 years after FRELIMO had taken up armed struggle against the Portuguese colonial regime. (An agreement with Portugal the previous September 20 had provided for the formal transfer of power on this date.) FRELIMO’s Samora Machel becomes president. (Guardian July 7, 1975 in BTr5; MR December 1975; Almanac; Second Cold War)

      June: Indira Gandhi declares state of emergency, repression against opponents on right and left, declaration supported by USSR. (MR September 1975; NLR #159)

      July 15: Beginning of a month-long “legal wildcat” at GE’s River Works Plant in Lynne, Massachusetts, a center of radical including NCM activism in labor during the 1970s and 80s. (RA Nov-Dec 1978/Vol. 12 No. 6)

      July 26: Shoot-out provoked by FBI agents at the AIM camp on the Pine Ridge reservation leaves two agents and one Indian dead. AIM activist Leonard Peltier - for years on the FBI hit list - is convicted April 18, 1977 of the murders in a case fraught with misconduct by the FBI. He is imprisoned for two life terms and a long campaign in his defense is waged. (Frontline, March 16, 1987; Crazy Horse; Breakthrough Vol. 1 No. 2; Hurricane)

      July 29: Organization of American States votes to end its 11-year embargo of Cuba; the U.S. trade embargo continues. (Guardian August 13, 1975 in BTr5)

      July: Conclusion of the Helsinki “Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe” - which included 33 European countries, Canada and the U.S., meeting since July 1973 - with the Helsinki Agreement or “Final Act” recognizing the 1945 boundaries throughout Europe. The Final Act was signed August 1. In the Kissinger strategy of detente these were intended to provide leverage to influence the political systems in Eastern Europe, but this approach does not succeed. (Second Cold War; Johnson; Soviet-Germany)

      Summer: First National Conference on Socialist-Feminism in Yellow Springs, Ohio draws 1,800, socialist-feminism at this point is a strong pole in the women’s movement. But many of the autonomous women’s unions who were the backbone constituency of the conference dissolve over the next two or three years. The Chicago Union - CWLU - the first, disbands in April 1977. By the early 1980s socialist-feminism as an organized political trend has dissipated, though many individuals, especially in the academy, still identify themselves in that tradition. (Red Apple in SR No. 38; SR No. 73; Women Organizing in SDHx)

      Summer: Formation of the Conference on Alternative State and Local Public Policies, a forum-network for progressive elected officials and local activists (largely veterans of the 1960s who had gone into “mainstream politics”) proposed by several staff at the Institute for Policy Studies. The first national meeting was hosted by Paul Soglin, former antiwar activist now mayor of Madison, Wisconsin. (Boyte)

      August 7-10: Fourth National Convention of the New American Movement in Oberlin, Ohio; a Marxist-Leninist Organizing Caucus emerges within the organization. (Guardian, August 27 and October 1, 1975 in BTr-4)

      August 30: Sgt. Leonard Matlovich’s picture appears on Time magazine’s cover with the words “I am Homosexual” - he is the first out gay man to be so featured. A decorated serviceman and Catholic who had campaigned for Goldwater in 1964, Matlovich came out to his superior officer and March and after extensive hearings and media attention he is given a general discharge. In 1980 an Appeals Court rules his discharge illegal but Matlovich accepts a monetary settlement rather than continue the fight, citing dim prospects when the case reaches the Supreme Court. (Bay Area Reporter August 28, 1997 in BMOV-1)

      September 5-8: Conference of Solidarity with the Independence of Puerto Rico held in Havana, with 290 delegates from 78 countries present, including the leading left forces in the Puerto Rican Independence Movement - PSP and the MSP - and a broad-based U.S. delegation. Many NCM groups denounce the gathering and argue for “no united action with revisionism.” (Guardian July 9 & September 24, 1975)

      September 11: Chilean delegation sent by Pinochet regime visits China on the second anniversary of the bloody coup (Maitan)

      September: RU holds Founding Congress to become the Revolutionary Communist Party, (RCP). Bob Avakian is chair. (Costello; O’Brien, who says founding congress is in October; self -published material in D-10; Revolution October 1, 1975)

      Fall: New York City financial crisis (Guardian articles in BTr-5)

      Fall: First formal “school term” sponsored by the School for Marxist Education in New York City, later the New York Marxist School/Brecht Forum. The School was initiated by the Marxist Education Collective which had come together in September 1973. (self-published material in folder in D-9)

      Fall: Height of Angolan crisis, a major turning point for southern Africa and the New Communist Movement. Key events: August 1974: CIA begins sending aid to the FNLA led by Holden Roberto. Jan 10, 1975: Alvor Agreement between MPLA, UNITA, FNLA and new Portuguese regime calling for transitional three-party coalition government until independence to be declared in November; the agreement stemmed at least in part from unity proposals put forward by the OAU; March: Troops of Zaire’s regular army invade Angola and establish the CIA-backed Holden Roberto of the FNLA in nominal power in northern Angola; the CIA is now sending secret shipments of arms to FNLA and UNITA; August-September: South African troops cross into Angola from bases in illegally occupied Namibia, coordinating the attack with an invasion from Zaire; October 23: South African troops drive north 1,000 miles before being halted by MPLA forces at the Queve river; November 7 & 10: Zaire troops backed by Portuguese mercenaries and South African armored cars push within 15 miles of Luanda before being driven back each time by MPLA troops; November 11, 1975: MPLA declares independence in Luanda and requests Cuban and Soviet help, after which Cuban troops start arriving and drive back the South Africans, FNLA and UNITA. Fighting continues into 1976 and beyond. Within South Africa Blacks gather and cheer for every victory of the MPLA over South Africa, and the MPLA victory is a key factor in fueling the Soweto uprising in June 1976 and the 18 months of mass upheaval which followed. (Second Cold War says a small number of Cuban troops - 700 - arrived in October.) China backs the FNLA and UNITA, as do most almost all the main Maoist groups in the U.S. and around the world. This is the trigger for an overall split in the U.S. New Communist Movement, as the Guardian and other, mainly local-based forces who had functioned within the Maoist current, break with China’s line to support the MPLA. (Burchett in Guardian May 5, 1976, in Background; MR December 1975; Fidel in Black Scholar September 1978; Second Cold War; Frontline, November 11, 1985; Guardian May 17, 1978 reviewing John Stockwell’s In Search of Enemies, in BTr-5)

      Fall: The “Revolutionary Wing” takes shape as an alignment of WVO, PRRWO, RWL and ATM, at least partly in opposition to the OL’s issuing its call for Marxist-Leninists to unite and build the party (which culminating in forming CPML in 1977) in November 1975. The Second Conference of RWL in January 1976 “placed the RWL in the revolutionary wing of the communist movement.” By the time of International Women’s Day in March 1976 it has split apart, with WVO and ATM breaking away, internal splits & purges in PRRWO & RWL, and especially intense hostility between PRRWO/RWL vs. their ex-members and WVO, including incidents of physical violence and abuse along with widespread accusations of police infiltration. PRRWO and RWL maintain “the wing,” dissolving themselves into it (Palante ceases publication in December 1976), and in 1977 announce the intention to form a “U.S. Bolshevik Party,” though this group appears to be stillborn as I cannot find any published material from it or referencing its existence. (Chart; Forward No. 3; Bribery; Palante March, April & May 1976; Heat; Bolshevik No. 1; Perez letter in BNCM-1; Blessof; The Call, September 13, 1976)

      November: OL founds the Communist Youth Organization (CYO), which publishes The Young Communist and then Speak Out. (The Call, December 20, 1976)

      November 25: Rightist “coup” - declaration of martial law by Socialist Party’s Mario Soares - halts advance of Portuguese left-wing workers movement; many leaders of the armed Forces Movement, including Otelo de Carvalho, are arrested; the turn is hailed by orthodox pro-China groups as a “victory over social imperialism.” (NCM-MS; MR March 1977; CRSP)

      November: Eldridge Cleaver returns to the U.S. to stand trial; by 1976 he is out on bail and a professed “born again” Christian on the right-wing lecture circuit. (Boyd)

      November: Dictator Francisco Franco dies in Spain, followed by the country making a slow negotiated transition to a representative-democratic form of government, with the PCE playing a very conservative role in negotiating the specific terms. The new constitution completing the process is adopted in early 1978.(Hobsbawm; NLR #156)

      November: U.N. General Assembly passes a resolution condemning political Zionism as a form of racism and racial discrimination. The resolution is repealed December 16, 1992 under tremendous pressure from the Bush administration. (Shots)

      December 17-22: First Congress of Cuban Communist Party. Among other things, Fidel at the closing session December 22 says “We will never renounce our solidarity with Puerto Rico or Angola.” (Guardian December 24, 1975 in BTr5)

      December 27-28: OL-initiated National Fight Back Organization is formed at a Chicago conference with 1,100 in attendance. Organizing had begun earlier in 1975 when, as the recession stretched into this year, OL cadre begin to form local and regional Fight Back committees. (O’Brien; OL-TU; Southern Patriot, January 1976)


      Harry Haywood’s For a Revolutionary Position on the Negro Question (first written in 1957 - see above) is published and heavily promoted by the October League (as Liberator Press); a second edition comes out in 1976. The OL also publishes Martin Nicolaus’ Restoration of Capitalism in the USSR; the book had first appeared as a series in the Guardian with a disclaimer saying the Guardian was not convinced capitalism had been restored in the Soviet Union. After the formation of the CP(M-L) in 1977 and the expulsion of Nicolaus for alleged rightist deviations, the CP(M-L) repudiated his book for containing too many negative comments about Stalin and for being too positive about the USSR as it existed in the 1960s while capitalism was, according to the book, still “being restored.” (Haywood pamphlet and Nicolaus book in BNCM-6; Sarkis)

      IS makes a “turn,” accelerating already-underway industrialization and making its newspaper, Workers Power, an agitational weekly; they state that :within three years we would be a workers’ organization of at least a thousand members, the small core of a party...or we would be set back.” Group more closely aligned with British Tony Cliff group (IS, later SWP) splits to form International Socialist Organization/ISO. (Solid-IS History; NCM-MS; Finkel in Party Problem)

      Ramparts magazine - in the late 1960s and early ‘70s possibly the most popular magazine-expression of the radical movements - ceases publication. (RA Vol. 19, No. 6)

      Formation of New York BiForum, followed the next year by San Francisco’s Bisexual Center; a movement of bisexuals is taking shape related to but distinct from the lesbian/gay liberation movement. (CrossRoads No. 42)

      First U.N. Decade for Women Conference held in Mexico City approves a World Plan of Action, with 125 of 133 countries voting in favor and the U.S. voting against, especially because of a sentence condemning Zionism. At the Second Conference in Copenhagen in 1980 the U.S. was similarly isolated. (Frontline, June 24, 1985)

      First annual summit of the heads of government of the Group of Seven major capitalist powers - the U.S., Canada, West Germany, Britain, France, Italy and Japan. The Summits reflect the new economic power balance, with Europe and Japan having more clout within the capitalist world than during the 1950s and ‘60s. (Frontline, August 28, 1989)

      Publication of Dan Georgakas and Marvin Surkin, Detroit: I Do Mind Dying: A Study in Urban Revolution (St. Martin’s Press, New York); Robert L. Allen, Reluctant Reformers: Racism and Social Reform Movement in the United States (Anchor Books, New York); James Weinstein, Ambiguous Legacy: The Left in American Politics (New York, Franklin Watts); David Cortright, Soldiers in Revolt (Garden City, N.Y. Doubleday [Anchor Press]); Alec Nove, Stalinism and After (George Allen & Unwin, London, Boston); Fernando Claudin, The Communist Movement: From Comintern to Cominform (Monthly Review Press, New York - Spanish edition published in 1970, British also in 1975); Inside the Company: CIA Diary, by Philip Agee, (Stonehill, New York); COINTELPRO: The FBI’s Secret War on Political Freedom, by Cathy Perkus (New York, Monad Press); The Iron Fist and the Velvet Glove (Berkeley, Center for Research on Criminal Justice); With the Weathermen: The Personal Journey of a Revolutionary Woman, by Susan Stern (Garden City New York, Doubleday);

      Theoretical work advocating socialist-feminism becomes widespread, initially in article-length works in Radical America, Socialist Review and various feminist publications. This year (1975) the first collection of such articles appears, Toward an Anthropology of Women, Rayna R. Reiter, ed. (Monthly Review Press, New York). Many others follow in the next several years, the most important being Capitalist Patriarchy and the Case for Socialist Feminism, Zillah Eisenstein, ed. (Monthly Review Press, New York, 1979); and Women and Revolution: A Discussion of the Unhappy Marriage of Marxism and Feminism, containing the influential essay by Heidi Hartman, “The Unhappy Marriage of Marxism and Feminism: Toward a More Progressive Union” (Boston, South End Press, 1981). A history and critique of socialist-feminism - published later - is Marxism and the Oppression of Women: Toward a Unitary Theory (New Brunswick, Rutgers University Press, 1983) This is also the year of a controversial book from the women’s movement, especially its view of race and rape: Susan Brownmiller, Against Our Will: Men, Women and Rape (New York, Simon and Schuster) - see the critique of it by Angela Davis in Black Scholar April 1978, and my recollection is that there was also a widespread critique in the NCM.


      January 6: Zhou Enlai dies. Hua Guofeng is compromise choice for premier. Abortive counter-offensive against the Gang of Four led by Deng Xiaoping culminates in demonstration in Tienanmen Square April 5. The demonstration is suppressed, Deng is purged again. (NYT 2/20/97; Mao Makes 5; Trial)

      January 23: Paul Robeson dies. (Influential)

      January 30-February 1: Hard Times Conference in Chicago draws 2,200 but fails to produce a durable follow-up. Activists in and around PFOC play a central role in organizing the gathering, PSP and CASA play the most positive roles at the conference and the gathering does serve to build for the PSP-initiated Bicentennial event in July. (PFOC material in BREV-4; various material in BTr-3; Guardian February 11, 1976 in BTr-4)

      January: Founding Conference of the Northern California Alliance, after over a year of discussion of the “mass intermediate socialist organization” (or mass revolutionary socialist organization) framework as an alternative to “pre-party communist” or social democratic forms. (self-published material in BREV-2)

      March: RCP publishes pamphlet Cuba: The Evaporation of a Myth, From Anti-Imperialist Revolution to Pawn of Social Imperialism, article which had first appeared in its Revolution February 15, 1976 (pamphlet in D-10)

      March 24: Coup in Argentina brings military government to power, accelerates rightward policies already underway in last years of the Peronist government, launches the “dirty war” against dissent in earnest, and completes a series of counter-revolutionary victories in Latin America’s southern cone. SF Chronicle August 25, 1997 says that “during the ‘dirty war’ of 1976-1983 at least 9,000, and possibly as many as 30,000 people, were ‘disappeared’” - also see SF Chronicle of December 7, 1997. (SF Chron clips in BMOV-4; MINP; MR April 1977)

      April 9: Folk protest singer Phil Ochs - who wrote “Love Me, I’m a Liberal” and “Cops of the World” among other songs - commits suicide. (SF Weekly September 17-23, 1997 in D-3)

      April: Final report of the U.S. Senate “Church Committee” investigating intelligence activities, reveals the details of COINTELPRO program. (Abron in Underground)

      May 1: The October League changes its newspaper, The Call, to a weekly, claiming a circulation of 25,000. In a later retrospective, Carl Davidson says that at its peak, the paper had a circulation of 12,000, though most were single-copy sales by a membership mobilized to sell the paper rather than subscriptions. (Bribery; Davidson; Call May 1, 1976)

      May-September: Sparked by Angola controversy, the Guardian opens up debate on China’s foreign policy. Important piece by William Hinton in May 5 issue saying China has shifted its line to “Soviet Union more dangerous of the two superpowers” - the alliance with the U.S. is out in the open to the U.S. left (though some still deny it exists). The same issue has an article by Wilfred Burchett arguing that China has made grievous misassessment in Angola and southern Africa. Wrap-up piece in the Guardian’s long series is in Viewpoint in the September 8 issue. During the series, Guardian executive editor Irwin Silber goes on a nationwide speaking tour focusing on the international line of the U.S. left, aimed at rallying support for the paper’s views, which draws its largest crowd in New York June 4, 1976 - 950 people(Guardian issues in Club Study folder in BTr-3; The Call, June 28, 1976)

      Spring: Faced with the defeat of their FNLA, UNITA and South African allies in Angola, many top Washington policy-makers - led by then-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger - wish to intervene directly, but less than a year since Washington’s defeat in Vietnam opposition is too strong. Instead, Congress passes the Clark Amendment prohibiting any U.S. aid to forces trying to overthrow the Angolan government. The “Vietnam Syndrome” first shows its force. (Second Cold War; Frontline, November 11, 1985)

      Spring: National Black Political Assembly effort to recruit and run an African American independent presidential candidate, supported by the Interim Committee for a Mass Party of the People and others. Congressman Ronald V. Dellums from California, the leading figure mentioned, decides in the end not to accept the NBPA's attempted draft; the NBPA finally nominates Rev. Frederick Douglass Kirkpatrick and runs a small-scale campaign in eight states. (Glick; Grass Roots July-August 1976 in D-9)

      Spring: “Outsider” Jimmy Carter wins the Democratic nomination mainly via the primary route, and Gerald Ford beats back a challenge from Ronald Reagan to win the Republican nomination. The New Right (the term is first used in 1975), though it cannot yet win Reagan the nomination against incumbent Ford, has become a national power. By this year the Committee for the Survival of a Free Congress together with other New Right PACs is raising more money than the Republican National Committee and its House and Senate campaign committees combined. They are now joined by the National Conservative Political Action Committee, formed by a number of staff from the Reagan 1976 campaign. This period also sees the rise of Jerry Falwell’s Moral Majority, Anita Bryant’s and others anti-gay crusades, Phyllis Schlafly’s anti-ERA Eagle Forum and a host of organizations pushing the anti-abortion “Right to Life” crusade. Thought it will experience ups and downs over the next 15 years, the New Right will remain a powerful political force down to the present. (Davis in NLR #128; Second Cold War; Boyte)

      June 7: Peggy Dennis resigns from the CPUSA. (Dennis)

      June 8: Tom Hayden, in his first bid for public office, loses the California Senate primary to incumbent John Tunney 54%-36.7%. In the fall general election, S.I. Hayakawa, reactionary former president of San Francisco State University, defeats Tunney. Later in 1976, the Hayden-for-Senate network forms the Campaign for Economic Democracy (CED), which later became Campaign California. (Reunion)

      June 9: First Letter from the Committee of Five, predecessor of the OCIC, discussing the formation of an “anti-dogmatist, anti-revisionist (later, anti-dogmatist, anti-left opportunist) trend.” (self-published material in BTr-2)

      June 16: Soweto uprising in South Africa sets off 18 months of continuous mass action, propelling thousands of youth toward activism and the ANC. The recent MPLA victory in Angola fuels the resistance. (Frontline Supplement January 19, 1987 & Frontline, November 11, 1985)

      June 29-30: Conference of European Communist Parties in Berlin, ideological battles between Eurocommunists and the CPSU; see entry on Eurocommunism at end of 1976 section below. (Second Cold War; Viewpoint Vol. 1 No. 1)

      June: Formation of the Clamshell Alliance in New Hampshire after approval of a license to build the Seabrook nuclear power plant on the New Hampshire Coast; beginning of the large-scale anti-nuclear non-violent direct action movement of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s that also included the Abalone Alliance and the Livermore Action Group. In August 1976 177 Clamshell demonstrators are arrested trying to block Seabrook construction and in May 1977 1,414 are arrested. (Epstein; Gitlin-World)

      July 1: The Supreme Court rules that the death penalty is not cruel and unusual punishment and is acceptable under the Constitution. Under new state statutes deemed consistent with the Court’s 1972 decision against the death penalty’s arbitrary use, executions begin again,; the first state-sanctioned killing since 1967 took place January 17, 1977, when Gary Mark Gilmore was executed by shooting in Utah. (Almanac)

      July 4: July 4th Coalition demonstration anchored by PSP “For a Bicentennial without Colonies”; large build-up convention had been March 27-28 in New York. The sponsoring coalition continues (in low-activity mode) as the “People’s Alliance,” which holds its official founding conference March 19-20, 1977. Shortly afterwards the PSP begins a period of decline after putting its main emphasis on the November 1976 elections in Puerto Rico and doing poorly. The PSP’s student group, FUSP, dissolves itself in November 1977 and in 1979-1983 the PSP undergoes serious loss of membership. Yet for a time the Puerto Rico Solidarity Committee (PRSC) - formed in March 1975 (see above) - remains an important focus of left activity, and various campaigns are launched including appeals to the U.N. A smaller July 4 action by RCP draws 3,000 in Philadelphia. (MINP, O’Brien; Glick; July 4 Coalition folder in BTr-3; MPOC Bulletin Vol. 2, No. 10; Black Scholar October 1977; Puerto Rico; Torres)

      August 16-19: Fifth Non-Aligned Summit meets in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with 86 participating nations (up from 75 at Algiers in 1973). The new Socialist Republic of Vietnam attends (this is the SRV’s first major international meeting), as does Angola led by the MLPA, Laos, Kampuchea and North Korea; the large socialist bloc pushes the Movement toward stronger anti-imperialist positions. The proceedings among other things attack Western domination of the media and press UNESCO to change its communication concept from “free flow of information” to “balanced flow of information,” provoking fierce attack in U.S. (Black Scholar December 1976)

      September 4-5: SCEF Board meeting consolidates OL control over the organization, passes resolutions terming the USSR a social imperialist superpower and changing the name of the SCEF newspaper to Southern Struggle beginning in 1977; the character of the paper also changes conspicuously to reflect the OL, then CP(ML), line and include explicit left polemics) and the CPUSA is explicitly a focus of criticism. OL writes that “a little over a year ago the CP was driven out of SCEF.” At its September 1977 meeting SCEF adopted a resolution supporting “self-determination for the African American Nation” and changed its organizational structure to function as a membership organization. By 1980 the organization is in conspicuous decline, with circulation of its newspaper dropping 80% from 1975. (Southern Patriot, February, September & November 1975 & June-July & September 1976, January & November 1977, November 1980; The Call, September 27, 1976)

      September 9: Mao Zedong dies; appointment of Hua Guofeng as chair of CPC. In Hua’s initial speech eulogizing Mao he praises Mao for smashing the schemes of Deng Xiaoping, among others, for capitalist restoration. The Gang of Four are arrested on October 6, along with a number of Mao’s relatives; public campaign against the Four begins on October 10. In practical terms, this ended the Cultural Revolution and marked the beginning of a major turnaround in Chinese government and party policy. (Trial; MR July-August 1978; Mao Makes 5; Revolution October 1, 1976).

      September 21: Orlando Letelier, former ambassador of Chile’s Popular Unity government, and Ronni Moffitt assassinated by a car bomb later proved to be planted by an agent of the Chilean junta. (MR September 1977)

      September 16: California Supreme Court finds for Allen Bakke in key “reverse discrimination” ruling; the U.C. Regents, Bakke’s nominal opponents, had argued a weak case - offering no evidence of past discrimination - and now, against the advice of many progressives, they appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. Different sections of the New Communist Movement anchor rival coalitions to mobilize mass action and support for overturning the decision: forces from the emerging anti-revisionist, anti-dogmatist trend initiate the National Committee to Overturn the Bakke Decision (NCOBD) in April 1977; Maoists organize the Anti-Bakke Decision Coalition (ABDC) in June. (Allen in Black Scholar September 1977; NCOBD, NAROC, IWK/ATM and related material in BLM-4 and BMOV-2)

      October 6: Cuban civilian jetliner with 73 on board is brought down with no survivors by a bomb that explodes just after the plane takes off from Barbados; it is planted by individuals with links to anticommunist terrorist groups and the CIA. The bombing is in the context of heightened hostility from the U.S. and a series of bombings and violent incidents because of the Cuban role in southern Africa. (Black Scholar December 1976)

      Fall: Split in the Weather Underground Organization, information becomes public about the group’s “inversion” strategy to come back aboveground. A key aspect of the inversion strategy is the film Underground, which is released in 1976. PFOC sides with the “Revolutionary Committee”; and, with Osawatomie discontinued, begins publishing a journal, Breakthrough, in March 1977. The advocates of inversion - the former WUO Central Committee and its supporters - disintegrate as an organized group. (WUO Split and other self-published material in BREV-3; Weather)

      November 2: Jimmy Carter beats Gerald Ford in the presidential election (Almanac).

      November 13: 14 Black marines attack a Ku Klux Klan meeting at Camp Pendleton Marine Base in San Diego-Oceanside, the Black marines are aggressively prosecuted by the military, a (divided) defense movement forms with activists who will soon leave PL (see April 1977 entry below) prominent in one of the factions. (Black Scholar April 1977; Five Retreats)

      November 20: Large conference (2,300 in attendance) in New York City sponsored by the RCP: “Conference on the International Situation, Revolution, and the Internationalist Tasks of the American People.” Preparatory material includes position papers from Guardian, OL, RCP and William Hinton, who argues the “Soviet Union is now the main danger” line. (Background; Revolution December 1976)

      November: Albanian Party Congress, remarks by Enver Hoxha that seem to be critical of Chinese policies (confirmed in July ’77 with open attack on Theory of the Three Worlds - see below).

      November: In These Times newspaper is launched. (SDHx)

      December: “Rectification network,” later to become Line of March, is formed in secret in the Bay Area by core activists in KDP, the Northern California Alliance and the Third World Women’s Alliance. (self-published material in BLM-1; personal recollection)

      December: Rubin “Hurricane” Carter and John Artis are convicted for the second time on murder charges, having won a new trial after a long campaign - including support from Muhammad Ali and a song by Bob Dylan - against their initial conviction in 1967. in their new trial. (The Call, January 10, 1977)


      CAP changes its name to the Revolutionary Communist League (Forward No. 3)

      Founding Convention of Teamsters for a Democratic Union/TDU, which grows out of Teamsters for a Decent Contract, a rank and file group organized to fight for a good master agreement in the 1976 negotiations. During the mid-1970s another rank and file group is also active - PROD/Professional Drivers Council, formed after a conference on truck safety organized by Ralph Nader. PROD and TDU merge November 3, 1979, the expanded group keeps the name TDU. (Inside the SWP, p. 36; Organizer, July 1979; The Call, November 16, 1979)

      Congress passes the Hyde Amendment, forbidding use of Medicaid funds for abortions, and this Amendment will continue to pass year after year. (Frontline, July 17, 1989)

      Mother Jones magazine is launched. (Mother Jones Vol. 23, No. 1, January-February 1998, bookstore shelves)

      Eurocommunism at its height. In June, Santiago Carrillo, Enrico Berlinguer and Georges Marchais meet to plan a common perspective. Ross and Jenson in NLR #171 say the “most important specific event was the Eurocommunist coalition’s resistance to Soviet strategic goals at the June 1976 Berlin Conference of European Communist Parties.” Also in June, the PCI records important advances in the Italian general election, getting 34.4% of the vote, a total never exceeded before or since. At the end of 1976 Carillo’s Eurocommunism and the State is published, even as the PCE is playing a relatively conservative role in the negotiated transition to democratic rule following Franco’s death. Then there is decline: in the Italian June 1977 (local?) elections PCI loses half the gains of 1976, the PCI is supporting (but not inside) the ruling Christian Democrats in a government of “national solidarity.” In France, left unity (on the basis of the first “Common Program” which had been signed between the Socialists and Communists in June 1972) collapsed in September 1977 (it is officially called off by the PCF, which suffers and declines for the step) and the left subsequently loses the March 1978 elections. At the PCF’s 23rd Congress in 1979 party begins its shift away from the Eurocommunist positions it had partially adopted for a time. In Spain, the PCE - legalized in April 1977 - which had the highest prestige on the left during the Franco years, is rapidly eclipsed by the resurgent Socialists (PSOE), and by 1983 the party is split three ways. Through this period Eurocommunism gets a lot of attention in the U.S. left, mostly critical from the NCM groups, the Guardian and MR, mostly positive in SR - see for instance No. 29 or No. 33 - and later in TR. (TR and SR various issues; see also Guardian various articles in BTr-5; and debate in Monthly Review June 1977, November 1977, February 1978; NLR #171, #155 & NLR #153/Sept-Oct 1985; Second Cold War; Viewpoint Vol. 1 No. 1; Line of March No. 11)

      Meanwhile, in Italy, the far left is in decline: Lotta Continua is immersed in fierce internal battles at its Rimini Congress, which is followed by the relatively rapid collapse of the group. A more gradual disintegration of Avanguardia Operaio begins. In the 1976 general elections, the far left, grouped under the banner of Democrazia Proletaria, gets only 1.5% (Anderson/Europe; NLR #153/Sept-Oct 1985)

      “Reinvigoration” of the Socialist International under Willy Brandt’s chairmanship; he serves as president of the International from 1976-1992. (NLR #145; CrossRoads No. 27)

      RENAMO (or the MNR), counter-revolutionary group in Mozambique, formed by the director of Rhodesia’s Central Intelligence Organization, and over the years is backed by South Africa and the U.S., especially after Zimbabwe becomes an independent, majority-ruled state in 1980. (Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1987)

      Publication of 450 Años del Pueblo Chicano/450 Years of Chicano History in Pictures, edited by Elizabeth Mart*nez (Chicano Communications Center of Albuquerque) - an expanded and updated edition titled 500 Años del Pueblo Chicano/500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures is published in 1991 by the SouthWest Organizing Project (see CrossRoads No. 18); Ron Kovic, Born on the Fourth of July (New York, Pocket Books); Santiago Carillo’s Eurocommunism and the State (Lawrence Hill and Co. paperback in the U.S., perhaps appeared later than ’76 here); Considerations on Western Marxism, by Perry Anderson (London, New Left Books); Roots, by Alex Haley (Doubleday); Jonathan Katz, Gay American History: Lesbians and Gay Men in the U.S.A., A Documentary (Avon/Thomas Y. Crowell);


      Last week in January: 13-hour, 8-part, controversial treatment of Alex Haley’s Roots is broadcast by ABC television over the course of the week; an estimated 80 million people watch all or part. (Black Scholar May 1977)

      January: First issue of Seven Days magazine appears, the publication does not last. (Seven Days Vol. 1, No. 4 in D-9)

      February 8: Steelworkers election pitting reform candidate Ed Sadlowski against outgoing president I.W. Abel’s hand-picked candidate Lloyd McBride. (Official results not announced until May 1; at this time the USW is the largest union in the AFL-CIO with 1.4 million members). Sadlowski wins in basic steel but loses in other divisions, getting 44% of the vote overall. Sadlowski’s effort is backed by most of the left, but during the campaign in 1976 the OL criticized its earlier trade union work for “rightism” and specifically denounced Sadlowski’s bid as a trick by the bourgeoisie to “channel the revolutionary aspirations and strivings of the masses into reformism.” (Green; O’Brien; Seven Days Vol. 1 No. 4 in D-9; The Call, December 27, 1976)

      March 10: Jurisdictional agreement to last five years between the UFW and Teamsters is announced by the presidents of the two unions. (The Call, March 28, 1977)

      March: New American Movement (NAM) launches its own magazine, Moving On (Viewpoint Vol. 1 No. 1)

      April 30: Fight for the rights of people with disabilities: Victorious end to the longest sit-in at a federal building in U.S. history: 25-day occupation of the HEW building in San Francisco. For years disability rights activists had been demanding that the Secretary of HEW sign regulations implementing Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; sit-in in S.F. and shorter ones in D.C. and seven other cities had begun April 5, Secretary Joseph Califano signed the final regulations April 28. There is a direct line from this victory to the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, signed into law by President George Bush July 24, 1990.(504 Commemoration)

      April: Belgian and Moroccan troops, with French logistical support, intervene in Zaire and save the Mobutu regime amid “invasion” of copper-rich Shaba province by Katangan rebels of the Congolese National Liberation Front which had begun on March 8. The Western action is hailed as “unity of the second world and third world against social imperialism” (that is, against Soviet-backed Angola and the rebels who were allegedly supported by Angola) by many Maoists. There is a second episode of major fighting between Katangan rebels and the Mobutu regime, again with Belgian support, in April or May 1978. (NCM-MS; Fidel in Black Scholar September 1978; Second Cold War; Almanac; Guardian June 21, 1978 in BTr-4)

      April: 70% of the Bay Area chapter of PL, just about the only remaining one with significant mass work, leaves the organization and leaders of the breakaway faction soon publish The Five Retreats: A History of the Failure of the Progressive Labor Party (by Sumner, D.S. and R.S. Butler - these are pseudonyms for H.D. and J.D.); the majority of the Boston chapter had left in 1974 (Five Retreats, O’Brien)

      May 11: Charles Bettleheim resigns as chair of the Franco-Chinese Friendship Association in protest of post-Mao policies in China (mainly domestic policies, but to a degree international line as well), and, in response to a defense of the new regime, writes “The Great Leap Backward” in March 1978, which includes a specific attack on the Theory of the Three Worlds. This is an important statement by perhaps the most prominent Western intellectual proponent of Maoism and represents the perspective of one of the main Western sub-currents of Maoism. Meanwhile, the fourth national convention of the U.S.-China Peoples Friendship Association September 2-5 draws 500 delegates representing 90 chapters, with China’s foreign policy an undercurrent of discussion. Robert F. Williams - who had lived in both China and Cuba and said he considers them both socialist - gives a keynote. (MR July-August 1978; Guardian, September 14, 1977 in BTr-4)

      May: Publication by PUL of Two, Three Many Parties of a New Type? Against the Ultra-Left Line (United Labor Press, New York) (2-3-Many)

      May: First issue (May-June) of Viewpoint, a short-lived publication mainly of ex-CPUSA members oriented toward Eurocommunism, most of whom later join DSOC/DSA. (Viewpoint various issues)

      June 4-5: October League holds founding convention of Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist) - CP(ML); Mike Klonsky is chair. (Costello; Davidson; O’Brien; self-published material in BNCM-6; Soviet-Germany; The Call, June 20, 1977)

      June: Guardian Supplement “On Building the New Communist Party” followed by formation of the Guardian Clubs in September; “rectification network” activists play important roles in the Clubs.(Guardian material in BTr-3)

      July 5: Military coup in Pakistan brings General Zia-ul Haq to power, ending a brief interlude of “democratic” government under Zulfikar Ali Bhutto following the 11-year reign of dictator Ayub Khan. his pro-U.S. dictatorship will rule for 11 years. (Frontline, September 26, 1988)

      July 7: Albania runs long article explicitly criticizing China’s “Theory of the Three Worlds.” Guardian runs excerpts in July 27 issue. China “responds” with Chairman Mao’s Theory of the Differentiation of the Three Worlds Is a Major Contribution to Marxism-Leninism pamphlet first appearing November 1. (Guardian, July 27, 1977; pamphlet in BNCM-5)

      July 13: Power failure in New York City leaves the city without electricity for 24 hours; police guard businesses and there are spontaneous rebellions in parts of various people of color communities. (The Call, July 25, 1977)

      July 22: Deng Xiaoping named a vice-premier at the Third Plenary Session of the 10th Central Committee of the CPC; he is back in leadership for the third time and he will stay there until his death in 1997. (NYT2/20/97; Trial; Almanac; ALR March 1978; The Call, August 1, 1977)

      July: Debate between Vernon Jordan and President Jimmy Carter at the Urban League National Convention, it is already clear the administration is not responsive to Black and progressive constituencies and is headed rightward. (Black Scholar October 1977)

      Summer: A few months after the severing of U.S.-Ethiopia military ties, Somalia (encouraged by the U.S.) invades the Ogaden region of Ethiopia, and Cuban troops and Soviet arms are deployed to defend the Dergue. The U.S. denounces the Soviet and Cuban moves - key Carter administration hawk Zbigniew Brzezinski later says Detente “lies buried in the sands of Ogaden”; the height of the crisis is reached in February 1978. (Second Cold War)

      August 4: Tenants at the International Hotel in San Francisco are finally evicted at 3:00 a.m. after a nine-year struggle to save the Hotel; defense of the Hotel was a major focus of work for New Communist forces in the Bay Area, including RCP, IWK and KDP. (I-Hotel folder in BREV-2; Frontline, August 3, 1987; Wei)

      August 12-18: Eleventh Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. Mao and the Cultural Revolution are given positive assessments but the Congress officially declares the Cultural Revolution ended. That same month, CPC chair Hua Guofeng and U.S. CP(M-L) chair Mike Klonsky exchange toasts at banquet for CP(M-L) leaders in Beijing; this is effective recognition of the CP(M-L) as the semi-official pro-China party in the U.S. The June founding of the CP(ML) had been hailed by a top CPC leader as a “new victory of the Marxist-Leninist Movement in the U.S.” (Call, August 1, 1977, cited in Bribery) (O’Brien; Viewpoint Vol. 3 No. 1; ALR March 1978)

      August 16: Elvis Presley dies. (Top 40)

      September 12: Steven Biko, leader of South Africa’s Black Consciousness Movement, is murdered in prison. (The Call, September 26, 1977)

      September-October: First issue of Theoretical Review magazine, sponsored by the Tucson Marxist-Leninist Collective and the Ann Arbor Collective, promoting the “primacy of theory” party building line. (Theoretical Review No. 1 and following)

      October 8: National Day of Protest Against the Bakke Decision marks the advent of a nationwide grassroots anti-Bakke protest movement. (NCOBD, NAROC and related material in BLM-4 and BMOV-2)

      November 8: Louis Farrakhan announces that he breaking with Wallace Muhammad and the changes he initiated in the Nation of Islam after his father in 1975; Farrakhan and his followers move to “re-establish the NOI on the principles established by Elijah Muhammad,” and his Nation of Islam soon eclipses the group led by Wallace Muhammad. In the mid-1980s the Farrakhan-led NOI launches The Final Call newspaper. (Farrakhan; Woodford in Underground)

      November 10: Capture of José Mar*a Sison - accused of being Amado Guerrero, chair of the CPP - by the Philippine military. Released from prison in 1986 and relocates to the Netherlands. (Sison; Rocamora)

      November 12-13: DSOC-initiated Democratic Agenda Conference in Washington, D.C. draws 1,000, Michael Harrington is the keynote speaker. Democratic Agenda plays a role at the Democratic Party’s mid-term convention in 1978 in Memphis (where ACORN also holds a major demonstration) and in spurring Ted Kennedy’s unsuccessful primary challenge to Jimmy Carter in 1980. In a similar vein, see the Progressive Alliance October 17, 1978 entry below. (SDHx; Delgado in Unfinished; Revolution Magazine September 1979; RA Jan-Feb 1979/Vol. 13 No. 1)

      November 18-21: First National Women’s Conference held in Houston, organized by the government, with 20,000 attending. (The Call, November 21 & December 5, 1977; Wei)

      December 6: Beginning of the longest coal strike in UMW history that stretches into 1978 as the rank and file reject contract proposals that would take away medical care guarantees won in 1946. Conflict between the leadership of Arnold Miller and the rank and file over Miller’s reluctance to try to shut scab mines or organize the miners who work in them. Carter invokes Taft-Hartley in March, and finally the strike ends March 24 when miners ratify a new contract. Miller resigns the UMW presidency November 16, 1979 and is replaced by vice-president Sam Church. (Green; The Call, December 12 & December 19, 1977, March 20, 1978, December 24, 1979)


      Farmworkers in Texas start a “March for Human Rights” and demand an Agriculture Labor Relations Act, which is introduced in Texas for the first time in 1977 and again (unsuccessfully) in 1979. As of this year California and Hawaii are the only states with legal protections for farmworkers to organize. (Appeal Vol. 5 No. 4)

      South End Press is founded in Boston (various South End Press books)

      Mobilization for Survival is founded, a coalition/network of 170 local disarmament, anti-intervention and progressive groups, plays a significant role in the left wing of the anti-nuclear and other movements of the late 1970s and 1980s, published The Mobilizer, disbanded some time in the 1990s. (Peace Resource; personal recollection; self-published material in BMOV-7; Frontline, December 3, 1984)

      Maximum Rock N Roll, a San Francisco-based international punk fanzine, starts a radio show on Pacifica Station KPFA; the punk movement/subculture is beginning to take off in the U.S.; the origins of the punk movement are in Britain and there the movement is largely working class and intertwined with progressive and anti-racist struggles; here the movement is more middle-class - and almost completely white - and less politically involved or progressive. (RA Vol. 18, No. 6).

      New round of student protest in Italy, but the politics are more amorphous and detached from the working class than in the late 1960s; this is also the period of the rise to prominence of the Red Brigades, who kidnap and kill leading Christian Democrat Aldo Moro in 1978 amid a dramatic rise in state repression. (NLR #153/Sept-Oct 1985)

      Publication of the first of four books from “anti-revisionist” circles that critique the capitalist restoration thesis, Jonathan Aurthur’s Socialism in the Soviet Union (Workers Press, Chicago). It is followed two years later by Al Szymanski, Is the Red Flag Flying?: The Political Economy of the Soviet Union Today (Westport, 1979; & Zed Press 1979, London); Michael Goldfield and Melvin Rothenberg The Myth of Capitalism Reborn (Soviet Union Study Project, Line of March Publications, 1980) and Jerry Tung’s The Socialist Road (Cesar Cauce Publishers & Distributors, New York, 1980). These accelerate the already proceeding demise of the pro-Maoist wing of the New Communist Movement and boost the fortunes of those moving toward more pro-Soviet positions. Also, PUL’s Two, Three Many Parties of a New Type? Against the Ultra-Left Line (noted above); and, interestingly, A Critique of Soviet Economics by Mao ZeDong is brought out by Monthly Review Press at the very end of the year.

      Also published in 1977: Frances Fox Piven and Richard A. Cloward, Poor People’s Movements: Why They Succeed, How They Fail (New York; Random House); Peggy Dennis, The Autobiography of an American Communist: A Personal View of a Political Life, 1925-1975 (Westport, Lawrence Hill); Vivian Gornick, The Romance of American Communism (New York, Basic Books); Grasshoppers and Elephants, Wilfred Burchett (New York, Urizen Books, Inc.); Our Roots Are Still Alive: The Story of the Palestinian People and Puerto Rico: The Flame of Resistance (Peoples Press, San Francisco); Essays in Self-Criticism, by Louis Althusser (Humanities Press, Atlantic Highlands, NJ)


      January: Split in the RCP: after over a year of internal controversy, over the assessment of what happened in China (the leadership centered by chair Bob Avakian supported the Gang of Four) as well as strategy in the U.S., about 40% of the RCP membership, mainly in the East and Midwest, led by Mickey Jarvis and Leibel Bergman, split off to form the Revolutionary Workers Headquarters. RCP consolidates around pro-Gang of Four line, issues many documents, and organizes major Mao ZeDong Memorial Meetings on second anniversary of his death in September. (Red Papers 8; Revolution September 1978; Mao Meeting Press Release & Program in D-10; Guardian March 22, 1978 in BTr-4 )

      February 6: A flotilla of fishing boats stop NATO warships from firing off the coast of Vieques, Puerto Rico, beginning a five-year campaign waged by the local residents against U.S. Navy use of the area for a firing range. The effort is also a focus of the Puerto Rican solidarity movement in the U.S. largely through the nationwide Vieques Support Network; a settlement - with some concessions by the government which are not adhered to - is reached in 1983. (Torres)

      February 11: Organizing Committee for an Ideological Center (OCIC) is founded in Detroit. Clay Newlin, central figure in the PWOC, is chosen chair of the steering committee. (self-published material in BTr-2)

      February 18: 2,200 (according to The Call; Guardian says 1,000) march for Jobs or Income Now in D.C. culminating a major campaign of the CP(ML)/National Fight Back Organization. (The Call, February 27 & March 13, 1978)

      February: First session of China’s Fifth National People’s Congress adopts the Four Modernizations as the general line guiding socialist construction. It also adopts a new Constitution with the Three Worlds Theory defined as the basis for China’s foreign policy in the preamble. Deng is back in charge. (Trial; Mao Makes 5; Viewpoint Vol. 3. No. 1, which says Session is in March rather than February) NYT/2-20-97 says Deng becomes “paramount leader” in December 1978. William Hinton says the “Chinese Thermidor occurred in late 1978 when the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee dominated by Deng Xiaoping...switched policies and began the ‘reform.’” (MR November 1991) Harding collection p. 62-63 says the turning point was the November-December 1978 central work conference where Deng succeeded in making the Four Modernizations the top priority and framework for all the CPC’s work, and that the decisions of the work conference were embodied in the communiqué of the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee Hinton refers to just above. (Harding)

      March 3: “Internal Settlement” in Zimbabwe: under pressure from ZANU and ZAPU armed struggle, the Ian Smith apartheid regime makes concessions to “moderates”; the agreement is denounced by ZANU, ZAPU - now allied in the loose Patriotic Front - and also by the OAU, armed struggle continues. (Black Scholar September 1978)

      April 15: More than 20,000 turn out in Washington DC for national demonstration against the Bakke decision sponsored by National Committee to Overturn the Bakke Decision (NCOBD). (NCOBD, NAROC and related material in BLM-4 and BMOV-2; The Communist April 24, 1978)

      April 18: Treaty mandating the return of Panama Canal to Panama in the year 2000 is approved by Congress after a bitter fight. Some of the figures who finally agreed to this Treaty make this “the last compromise” and strongly oppose the SALT II Treaty which is scuttled the following year. (Almanac Halliday in NLR 141)

      April 27: Mass actions in conjunction with a military revolt brings the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan to power in the “April Revolution.” (Afghanistan; Organizer, February 1980; Second Cold War)

      April: Northern California Alliance splits, with the “transformation” faction supplying a portion of the core building the “rectification network”/Line of March. (self-published material in BREV-2)

      June 6: California voters approve Proposition 13 (“Jarvis-Gann”) and catapult the “tax revolt” onto the national agenda and leading to at least 19 states enact legislative or constitutional limits on property and/or income taxes. Over 90% of Blacks vote against the measure, 75% of whites vote in favor; some term the revolt “the Watts riot of the middle classes.” (Black Scholar October 1978; NLR #143)

      June 28: Supreme Court hands down its decision in the Bakke case, admitting Bakke, thus validating the concept of “reverse discrimination,” but saying that race could be taken into account in admissions decisions. Many activists who have fought to defend affirmative action now focus on the Weber case, in which a white steelworker is suing to overturn a “voluntary consent decree/affirmative action program” in a contract between Kaiser Aluminum and the USWA after longstanding discrimination prevented Blacks from upgrading into the skilled trades. Lower courts found in Weber’s favor in 1976 and 1977 and as of the date of the Bakke decision the case is now going to the U.S. Supreme Court. (Freedom; NCOBD, NAROC and related material in BLM-4 and BMOV-2)

      July 7: China cuts off all aid to Albania and brings back all advisers escalating further the ideological dispute between the two former allies. In December the Albanian Party issues Enver Hoxha’s book Imperialism and the Revolution with a full-scale broadside against the CPC including not only the 1977 attack on its Theory of the Three Worlds but an attack on Mao ZeDong Thought as an anti-Marxist theory and a claim that the CPC has been revisionist for many years. (Hoxha; The Call, August 7, 1978)

      August 2: New York State Health Department declares a health emergency in the Love Canal section of Niagara Falls, New York; the step is taken under pressure of residents organized in the Love Canal Homeowners Association, the problem is due to leakages from an abandoned dumping ground of the Hooker Chemical Company. The homeowners eventually win compensation for relocation to new homes elsewhere and the extended battle puts the issue of toxic wastes in the national spotlight. The fight is a factor in passage of the “Superfund” cleanup bill in 1980. Lois Gibbs was the most visible activist in the Love Canal fight and she goes on to play a central role in the National Clearinghouse for Toxic Waste Problems. (RA Vol. 17, Nos. 2 & 3; SR No. 66)

      September 17: “Camp David” Accords signed by Anwar Sadat and Menachim Begin under Carter’s tutelage, decisively breaking up the (always shaky) Arab unity against Zionism, consummating Egypt’s entry into the pro-U.S. military and political camp and changing the balance of forces in the Middle East. (Storm; Second Cold War; Almanac; PFLP)

      September: U.N. Security Council passes Resolution 435 calling for a cease-fire and free elections in Namibia, but implementation is constantly stalled by South Africa and the U.S. (Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1987)

      October 17: Initial planning meeting in Detroit’s Cobo Hall for the “Progressive Alliance” coalition initiated by UAW President Douglas Fraser. In the summer Fraser had resigned from the Labor Management Group, a non-governmental committee, denouncing the business community’s “one-sided class war” against working people. The formal founding meeting of the Alliance was in January 1979. Neither the Progressive Alliance or the DSOC-initiated Democratic Agenda, which shared many similar perspectives (see November 12-13, 1977 entry above), survives to play a noticeable role after 1980/81. (SDHx; Delgado in Unfinished; Revolution Magazine September 1979; RA Jan-Feb 1979/Vol. 13 No. 1)

      October 18: Publication by the Guardian of the “State of the Party Building Movement” paper, which leads to a split between the Guardian staff majority vs. Irwin Silber, who resigns as Executive Editor but remains on the staff until he is dismissed in spring 1979, Fran Beal, and the vast majority of the Guardian Club membership. Official separation of the Clubs and the Guardian is January 19, 1979. By February 1979 the Guardian embarks on a new “external relations” effort and is moving away from a specifically party-building orientation toward a broader left orientation. (Guardian, October 18, 1978 and “Guardian/Trend” and “Internal Fight” folders in BTr-3)

      October: League of Revolutionary Struggle (LRS) formed via merger of IWK and ATM LRS begins publishing Unity newspaper after the staffs of IWK’s Getting Together and ATM’s Revolutionary Cause produce at least one joint issue of Getting Together in August 1978. (Forward No. 1; Getting Together August 1978 in NCOBD file in BLM-4)

      November 7: Anti-gay Briggs Initiative which would have barred anyone “expressing support for homosexuality” from teaching defeated in California. (RA Vol. 13 No. 4)

      November 18: More than 900 People’s Temple followers of Rev. Jim Jones, most of whom are Black, commit mass suicide in Guyana. (Abron in Underground; Guardian December 6, 1978 in BMOV-2)

      November 25: United League of Mississippi, first organized in 1967, comes to national attention after organizing a demonstration of 3,000 in Tupelo to protest the rise of Klan activity. ABDC activists promote fundraising tours for the League in other parts of the country in 1978-79. (Black Scholar March-April 1979; League Fact Sheet in BMOV-2; Guardian, December 6, 1978 in BMOV-2; Southern Struggle November-December 1978)

      November 27: San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk, arguably the best-known and most outspoken openly gay elected official in the country, and Mayor George Moscone are assassinated at City Hall by disgruntled former Supervisor Dan White. (Shilts)

      November: After an abortive invasion of part of Tanzania, Idi Amin’s regime is overthrown by Ugandans and Tanzanian forces, and a new government led by former head of state Milton Obote comes to power. (NLR #156)

      Late in the year: The U.S. breaks off talks with Vietnam on recognition and establishing full diplomatic relations, talks on Washington fulfilling its pledges of economic aid had been broken off earlier and the promised sums were never paid. The reason for breaking off these talks was stated candidly by top U.S. officials: it was to strengthen ties with Beijing and advance the “common cause” against the USSR. (Second Cold War)

      December 23: Founding Congress in which the MLOC, one of the groups originating out of the four-way split in the BWC in 1975, transforms itself into the Communist Party USA (ML), (CPUSA-ML). Barry Weisberg is chair, greetings are sent to the Congress by the Communist Party of Albania, the new group pledges to participate in the campaign to make 1979 “the year of Stalin.” (Unite! Vol. 5, No. 1)

      December 25: Vietnamese troops invade Kampuchea in support of Heng Samrin-led revolt, overthrowing the Pol Pot regime; fall of Phnom Penh announced January 7, 1979. This followed the lengthy period of Pol Pot-instigated genocide within Kampuchea and a steady build up of Kampuchea-Vietnam-China tension including border fighting, conflicts over ethnic Chinese in Vietnam (including the flight of many ethnic Chinese “boat people” from Vietnam), China cutting off all aid to Vietnam and Vietnam joining COMECON and signing a friendship/military assistance treaty with the USSR in late 1978. (Second Cold War; Karnow; Indochina; Almanac)


      Socialist Revolution changes its name to Socialist Review (Unfinished)

      IS in decline: publication of Workers Power is halted, replaced by a monthly magazine entitled Changes; by the end of the year all but a handful of the Black members of the organization had left. In early 1977, perhaps the numerical height of the organization, it had 300-plus members - 500 according to Aronowitz - of whom 50 were Black. By the next year the organization is “shattered” and undergoes a split, the rank and file caucus breaking off to form Workers Power (see June 1979 entry below). (Solid-IS History; Finkel in Party Problem; Aronowitz in SR #67)

      Harry Haywood’s autobiography, Black Bolshevik, published by Liberator Press (CP/ML)

      The Carter administration steadily moves rightwards; besides abandonment of detente and decision to escalate the arms race (see June and December 1979 entries below), there is “the firing of Andrew Young [in July 1979, for meeting with a representative of the PLO, see August 1979/Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1988 and Second Cold War], the savaging of the domestic budget, the abandonment of health reform, the curtailment of urban jobs programs and the defeat of labor law reform.” (Davis in NLR #155; Second Cold War)

      Chinese Communist Party Chair Hua Guofeng visits Yugoslavia and declares Yugoslavia a socialist country and that relations between the CPC and League of Yugoslav Communists are based on Marxism-Leninism; friendly relations are opened between the two countries and parties. Formal diplomatic relations had existed since the exchange of ambassadors August 27, 1970 after a 12 year lapse. The next year, 1979, the CPC reopens fraternal ties with the Italian CP. (As early as 1971, the CPC had re-established some level of bilateral relations with the Spanish CP, according to the Guardian, February 23, 1971) During 1982 and the several years following, the Chinese CP reopens fraternal ties with numerous non-ruling “revisionist” CP’s (ties with the French party were reopened in 1982) as well as the ruling parties of Poland and the GDR. (NCM-MS; Century; Problems September-October 1988; Line of March No. 3; Guardian October 11, 1978 in BTr-4; Fields)

      Conference titled “Feminist Perspectives on Pornography” sponsored by Women Against Violence in Pornography and Media; over the next several years the issue of pornography will move central to debates in the women’s movement. Women Against Pornography groups are formed, in 1981 Andrea Dworkin’s book Pornography: Men Possessing Women is published, Dworkin and Catherine MacKinnon advocate ordinances banning pornography sometimes allying with right-wing Christian fundamentalists, opponents gather under both civil liberties and “pro-sex” banners, a 1982 conference at Barnard sees a major polarization between the sides, and the issue remains a topic of major controversy within the women’s movement through the 1980s and beyond. (SR No. 75/76; Frontline February 17 and March 17, 1986; Echols)

      Marxist Perspectives magazine is launched; it fails in a few years and one of its editorial collectives affiliates with Socialist Review (Unfinished)

      Beginning of 1978-79 strike wave in Brazil that forces the military regime toward a limited democratic opening, including amnesty for exiled oppositionists and elections set for November 15, 1982. Out of this ferment, the Brazil Workers Party (PT) is founded in 1979, anchored by metal workers in the Sao Paulo industrial area and their leader, Luis Ignacio da Silva (Lula). (MR February 1984 & April 1993; CrossRoads No. 19)

      Reactionary Karol Wojtyla becomes the first Polish-born Pope, taking the name John Paul II. (Hobsbawm)

      Rise of the Newly Industrializing Countries (NICs) is widely noted. During the 1970s “slump decade” for the advanced capitalist countries, whose industrial output 1970-78 rose by 3.3% per year, the industrial output of the Third World rose 8.6% per year and the output of eight NICs grew by 15% per year. These eight included the “four tigers” of Asia - Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and Singapore; Mexico and Brazil in Latin America; and (not always categorized as NICs in other surveys, which instead include India, and sometimes Pakistan, Thailand, Malaya or the Philippines) Portugal and Yugoslavia in Europe. This decade is also the time observers start to note a “new international division of labor,” and a division in the “Third World” between developing countries and “low income developing countries,” a euphemism for countries that we4re being marginalized in further impoverished in the world economy. (Second Cold War; Hobsbawm)

      Publication of G.A. Cohen, Karl Marx’s Theory of History: A Defense (Princeton) - major opening public salvo in the rise of “analytical Marxism/rational choice Marxism”; And Mao Makes 5, Raymond Lotta (Banner Press, Chicago); The Alternative in Eastern Europe, by Rudolf Bahro (New Left Books, London); In Search of Enemies: A CIA Story, by John Stockwell, (W.W. Norton and Company, New York) - Stockwell was former head of the Angola Task Force; Something to Guard: The Stormy Life of the National Guardian, 1948-1967, by Cedric Belfrage and James Aronson (Columbia University Press, New York); William Julius Wilson, The Declining Significance of Race (University of Chicago Press); The Poverty of Theory, by E.P. Thompson (London) - essays including especially his attacks on Althusser);

      First wave of serious films about the Vietnam War, including Michael Cimino’s essentially pro-war The Deer Hunter, which wins best picture and best director, and the antiwar film Coming Home, which yielded the best actress award for Jane Fonda and best actor for Jon Voight. Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now follows the next year. (Almanac; Reunion)


      January 1: U.S. recognizes the People’s Republic of China and the U.S. and China open full diplomatic relations. Deng visits U.S. immediately afterwards, and in an interview with Time magazine he says without qualification that he views the U.S. as part of the “united front against hegemonism.” He also encourages the U.S. to play more of a role in dealing with the “trouble” in Iran, to “punish” Cuba, etc. Also a communiqué from the recently concluded plenary session of the Chinese CP talks only of progress in building the “international united front against hegemonism” - thus dropping even the formality of the formulation of a “united front against the two superpowers” in which the Soviet Union has been, at least since 1975 or so (see Hinton in May 5, 1976 Guardian cited above) the “most dangerous superpower” or “main enemy.” During Deng’s visit, the RCP sponsors militant protests in Washington and their January 29 action result in felony charges against 17 demonstrators, including RCP chair Bob Avakian, who flees and goes underground rather than face jail; he goes to France arriving there December 21, 1980. (Organizer, February and March 1979; Against Left Internationalism OCIC pamphlet published December 1979, see page 56, BTr-2; Revolution October-November 1979; Harding p. 157 cites authoritative CPC defense of China’s strategy of a united front with the U.S. from Red Flag, November 29, 1978; Fields)

      January 16: Shah of Iran flees after a year of mounting rebellion; on February 1 Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returns from exile; there is heavy fighting between both Islamic and left rebels and the Shah’s troops in early February, as well as huge demonstrations of millions. The old government is overthrown and Khomeini’s government is installed February 11, though for a time a situation of semi-dual power emerged briefly, between the Provisional Government and the Islamic Revolutionary Council, which in fact is dominant. In a series of steps through 1979 and the spring of 1980 (including the hostage-taking at the U.S. Embassy November 2-4, 1979) the Khomeini-led forces consolidate political power, and repression steadily intensifies against the left. Especially after the Iraqi invasion of September 1980, the regime gains even more initiative and in a “mini-civil war” which peaks in spring and summer 1981 most of the left is physically and politically decimated, the final blow coming in 1983 when the Tudeh party, which had been largely supportive of the regime, is repressed with many executed. (NLR #166; Organizer March & December, 1979; Almanac; Second Cold War)

      January: Commandantes from the three factions of the Sandinistas (Proletaros, Guerra Popular Prolongada, and Tercistas) form a united nine-person directorate and prepare for the final year’s struggle against the regime. (Central America)

      Late January/early February: China invades Vietnam to “punish” the Vietnamese for their victory in ousting Pol Pot and their alliance with the USSR, but China’s forces are beaten back and dealt a military defeat by the Vietnamese. The U.S. had been informed ahead of time - on Deng’s visit to Washington - that China was planning such a move. (Second Cold War; Karnow)

      February 11: Wilfred Burchett resigns from the Guardian over their stand on Vietnam-China-Kampuchea and the way they edited his articles on the topic. (letter of resignation in BTr-3)

      February 24: Publication of The War in Indochina pamphlet by Irwin Silber; first independently published material by the emerging but still secret “rectification network” that will later become Line of March. (self published material in BLM-5)

      February: Carter resumes arms sales to Morocco, the weapons are used in the war against the Polisario guerrillas fighting for the independence of the Western Sahara. (Second Cold War)

      March 13: The New Jewel Movement, which had been founded in 1973, takes power in Grenada amid a popular uprising against the Eric Gairy regime. (James; NLR #131/Jan-Feb 1982)

      March 25: According to the SCEF newspaper Southern Struggle, a shoot-out takes place on this date when members of the RCP allegedly fire on SCEF members and tenants at the Capitol Homes housing site in Atlanta. (Southern Struggle, March-April 1979)

      March 28: Tories win British election and Margaret Thatcher becomes Prime Minister. (Almanac)

      March 28: Radiation release at Three Mile Island. Pennsylvania is worst nuclear accident in U.S. history. (Epstein)

      March 30: Founding of the National Network of Marxist-Leninist Clubs by the former Guardian Club membership; Pamphlet Developing the Subjective Factor is published by NNMLC in May, first public statement of the “rectification” party building line. (self-published material in BLM-5)

      March 31: First of three regional conference held by the OCIC to debate and affirm its demarcation with ultra-leftism over “Point 18”: “ U.S. imperialism is the main enemy of the peoples of the world.” This West Coast conference is followed by an East Coast regional on April 7 and a Midwest conference on April 14. There is sharp struggle with PUL-linked groups but the delegates representing the vast majority of the OCIC vote to uphold Point 18 as a key point of demarcation. (“Point 18” & other self-published material in BTr-2)

      May: The RCP initiates a weekly newspaper, the Revolutionary Worker, consolidating 19 local workers papers such as The Milwaukee Worker and others of that type. (Revolution April 1979)

      May (June?): Second session of China’s Fifth National People’s Congress rehabilitates Liu Shaoqi and explicitly evaluates the Cultural Revolution as a bad experience and disaster for China, even termed a “feudal fascist dictatorship of the most corrupt and sinister kind.” (Trial)

      June: "Rank and File Caucus” of IS leaves, arguing that “the IS is shattered as an organization”; forms Workers Power, and then launches first version of Against the Current magazine in 1980. (Solid-IS History)

      June 27: Supreme Court overturns lower court rulings in the Weber case and affirms the legality of the affirmative action program/consent decree in this narrow situation where there is extensive proof of “traditional segregation.” it is a limited victory. (NCOBD, NAROC and related material in BLM-4 and BMOV-2; Organizer, July 1979)

      June: Presidents Carter and Brezhnev sign the SALT II agreement in Vienna, but it is soon clear the U.S. Senate will refuse to ratify the treaty, with huge propaganda outpouring about a “Soviet Combat Brigade” “discovered” in Cuba among other items. Also in June Carter flies to Seoul to toast dictator President Park Chung Hee (who is assassinated four months later), reneging on his pledge to withdraw all U.S. ground forces from the Korean Peninsula. These and other developments, such as the decision this same month to develop and deploy the MX missile, but especially the decision by NATO to “re-equip” or “modernize” in December (including decision to accept new U.S. nuclear missiles - the Euromissiles - on West European soil, before the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, covered by the smokescreen of a “two-track” policy offering negotiations with the Soviets for a “zero-option” - no U.S. or Soviet intermediate nuclear missiles at all in Europe), indicate that the U.S. has abandoned “detente” with its reluctant acceptance of military-nuclear (strategic) parity with the Soviets, in favor of another attempt at superiority. In any case, the Soviets appear to be convinced that this is the case. The Medvedevs identify these steps as the end of the second of the “interludes of comparative sanity” in the Cold War, “both initiated on the Soviet side,” this one “Brezhnev’s strategy of detente (1971-79).” Halliday identifies this period as the beginning of the U.S. mobilization of “The Second Cold War” (Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; Appeal, Autumn 1979; Magri in NLR #131; Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; NLR #168/March-April 1988; Coates in NLR #145; Second Cold War)

      July 19: Sandinistas take power in Nicaragua; Somoza had fled to Miami two days earlier. Fourteen months later, Somoza is assassinated in Paraguay September 17, 1980. The first two years of Sandinista power show impressive social gains: in 1980 a mass literacy campaign reduces illiteracy from 50 to 13%, in 1981 a health care campaign reduces infant mortality 40% from pre-revolutionary figures. There is also political conflict within the broad front which had united against Somoza, and non-FSLN members of the original post-July 19 junta leave to go into opposition, forming the Nicaraguan Democratic Coordination (CDN) in 1980, which brings together several political parties, the Superior Council of Private Enterprise (COSEP), La Prensa newspaper and important sections of the Catholic Church hierarchy. The CDN maintains a de facto but unacknowledged alliance with the armed contras who are soon organized by the CIA. (Central America; Intervention)

      July: China closes the Voice of People’s Thailand radio station on its soil as part of its diminishing support for Asian Maoist movements; the station continues with a weaker transmitter in Thailand. In June 1981 the Voice of the Malayan Revolution station undergoes the same fate. (Harding)

      August: 30th National Convention of SWP adopts a resolution directing “a large majority of the membership” to find industrial jobs: “the turn.” Resolution on Cuba begins the open shift of the party from orthodox Trotskyism toward what it’s critics called “Castroism.” and over the next four years big struggles break out that result in major splits and expulsions - leading to the 1983-1984 formation of Socialist Action, the Fourth Internationalist Tendency, and a circle of activists who will help initiate the North Star Network - and severely diminishing the size of the SWP. The membership decline had actually begun in 1977, and the SWP went from its post-World War II height of 1,690 members in that year to 885 in 1984. See also November Congress of Fourth International below. (Inside the SWP; also fact sheet on SWP membership in D-5)

      August: Vice-President Walter Mondale visits Beijing and the U.S. and China sign a secret agreement under which China permits the U.S. to install an electronic listening facility in Sinkiang Province on the Soviet frontier. Defense Secretary Brown follows with the visit in January 1980 to discuss further military agreements. (Second Cold War)

      September 1-3: OCIC’s Second National Conference, which sums up the OC’s first year and lays the groundwork for the “Campaign Against White Chauvinism.” (self-published material in BTr-2)

      September 10: The four Puerto Rican Nationalists still imprisoned - Lolita Lebron, Rafael Cancel Miranda, Irvin Flores and Oscar Collazo - leave prison unrepentant after Carter commutes their sentences to time served; one of the original five, Andres Figueroa Cordero, had been released earlier due to having cancer and had died March 7, 1979. (The Call, September 17, 1979)

      September: BACU merges into the RWH. (RWH/BACU Merger Statement in D-10)

      September: Sixth Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement held in Havana, successfully defeating efforts of U.S., China and pro-Western countries within the movement to cancel or undermine the meeting and particularly to prevent Cuba from playing the pivotal host role. The U.S. propaganda barrage about a “Soviet Combat Brigade” “discovered” in Cuba was part and parcel of this effort (and the general effort to build support for a second cold war. But the Camp David Accord is condemned, Pol Pot regime is not seated (neither is the new government), and Fidel becomes chair of the Movement for the next period. (Singham in Black Scholar July-August 1980; Seventh Summit; Second Cold War)

      September: Congress, with the Senate at this point “the most hawkish body in government,” passes a defense appropriations bill for FY 1980 which adds $35 billion to the sum requested by Carter. (Second Cold War)

      September: Revolutionary Communist League (RCL), up to 1976 the Congress of Afrikan Peoples-CAP, merges into LRS. (Unity, October 5-18, 1979; Forward No. 3).

      September/October: Conference called by SCLC in Norfolk, Virginia leads to the formation of the National Anti-Klan Network (NAKN) in a period of rising Klan activity and racist violence, including a Klan march in summer 1979 from Selma to Montgomery under the slogan “Turn the Clock Back.!” Many left and communist activists participate in the new group. (Southern Fight-Back Vol. 4, No. 4 in NAKN file BLM-4; ERC)

      October 14: First National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights ten years after the Stonewall uprising draws up to 100,000. (CrossRoads Nos. 30 & 42)

      October: The National Committee to Overturn the Bakke Decision - which after the Bakke decision evolved from a coalition into a smaller activist group - merges with a few local anti-racist committees centered by activists in and around the “rectification network” to form the National Anti-Racist Organizing Committee/NAROC. (NAROC material in BLM-4)

      October: WVO holds Congress to found Communist Workers Party; Jerry Tung is general secretary. (Blesoff; Road; self published material in BNCM-6)

      October: Military junta takes power in El Salvador with an agenda of full-scale war against the growing popular insurgency and its supporters. The civilian members of the junta resign in January 1980 due to increased repression. The repression and civil war led to the largest migratory wave in Salvadoran history as over the next decade one-fifth of the Salvadoran populations leaves the country; by the early 1990s there are one million Salvadorans in the U.S., 90% arriving after 1979. The initial wave of immigrants in the early 1980s are key motive force in the solidarity movement, with their first national action being a 17-day Walk-a-Thon from New York to D.C. in summer 1983. (Intervention; CrossRoads No. 40)

      November 2-4: Iranian student militants seize the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and hold hostages. (In October, the Shah had been allowed to come to the U.S. from his Mexico exile for medical treatment, though U.S. officials knew this would provoke Iran.) Two days after the students seized the embassy, the Barzagan government resigned and Ayatollah Khomeini and his Revolutionary Council took direct control of the country. Khomeini proclaimed support of the students and demanded the return of the Shah and billions in money he had stolen. (Almanac; Organizer December 1979)

      November 2: Assata Shakur escapes from the Clinton Correctional Institution for Women in New Jersey, allegedly with assistance from BLA members and white supporters from the PFOC/May 19 milieu. She goes underground and surfaces in Cuba, where she still lives. (Weather; May 19 material in BREV-3; Patterson; Burning Spear December 1979)

      November 3: Greensboro massacre: Jim Waller, Cesar Cauce, Bill Sampson, Sandy Smith and Mike Nathan, CWP members and supporters, are killed by police-assisted Klansmen and Nazis. Widespread protests, and conflicts within the protest movement over the ultra-left slogans and tactics of the CWP: “Avenge the CWP 5” slogan and carrying unloaded weapons at the funeral procession the week after the murders. (CWP self-published material in BNCM-6; NAROC and other material in NAROC folder in BLM-4)

      November 6: Announcement of the formation of the Workers Party - soon called the Democratic Workers Party - as a merger of the Workers Party for Proletarian Socialism and an affiliated mass organization, the Rebel Worker Organization. Marlene Dixon is general secretary of the group, which is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has a history of sharp, sometimes violent, conflicts with other activists. The announcement is held on election day in San Francisco when a Tax the Corporations Initiative of the DWP-s main front group, the Grassroots Alliance (GRA) is on the ballot. The 1978-1980 period, during which the GRA puts three initiatives on the SF ballot, is the height of the DWP’s mass activism after which it begins to decline. (DWP History; DWP Dissolution; self-published material in BNCM-3 & BNCM-4)

      November 7: Founding of the Bolshevik League of the U.S. by the U.S. Leninist Core and Demarcation, small circles whose roots go back to the “revolutionary wing”; the new group condems all other parties and trends (pro-Soviet, pro-China, or pro-Albania) as revisionist and social chauvinist. In summer 1980 an international meeting of six parties of this tendency is held. (Bribery; Bolshevik Revolution No. 1; self-published material in BNCM-2)

      November: Fifth World Congress (since reunification in 1963) of the Fourth International. In main report Mandel says: “the central idea in our that there has been a change in the overall class relationship of forces after 1975 to the detriment of imperialism.” The majority decides that new opportunities are opening up in the industrial proletariat and calls for a “turn” toward industry. Positions of SWP re: Nicaragua (& implicitly, Cuba) are not in the majority. See also August SWP convention above. (Fourth)

      December 12: NATO decision at its Brussels meeting to “modernize” including deployment of cruise and Pershing II missiles in Europe while offering a “two-track” negotiation smokescreen to the Soviets - see June entry above. (Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; Appeal, Autumn 1979; Magri in NLR #131; Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; NLR #168/March-April 1988; Coates in NLR #145; PCI)

      December 27: Soviet troops go into Afghanistan, remove strongman Hafizullah Amin (who had ousted and executed former head of state Taraki in September), and begin battling anti-government insurgents. In his State of Union message January 23, 1980 Carter proclaims the “Carter Doctrine” justifying U.S. military intervention wherever needed “to protect Middle East oil” and marking a major public turn in U.S. foreign policy (which head been shifting less publicly for some time - see above), putting the nail in the coffin of the already all-but-officially-dead period of “detente” and beginning the “Second Cold War” and the attempt to “put the Vietnam Syndrome behind us.” (Afghanistan; Organizer February 1980; Hobsbawm; MR September 1981; Medvedevs in NLR #130/Nov-Dec 1981; Second Cold War; Bolshevik Revolution No. 2)


      China establishes fraternal ties with the “Eurocommunist” Italian CP (NCM-MS)

      Beginning of crisis and collapse of CP(ML): Daniel Burstein report in spring, posing “crisis of Marxism” idea; following his 1978 trip to China and Kampuchea (see The Call, May 22, 1978 for his glowing report of the situation in Kampuchea, where he and three other Call journalists were the first U.S. people to visit since the Khmer Rouge took power; Burstein visits Kampuchea again in early 1980 - The Call, March 10, 1980), there is accelerating criticism of leadership from the base - first self-criticism for sectarianism is in The Call November 13, 1978. and The Call June 11, 1979 writes of “inner-Party struggle that has been going on for several months” (cited in Bribery). A Nationalities Conference is held in spring 1978 (according to The Call, July 17, 1978 - with articles from it in Class Struggle #11 published Winter 1979), with some success, but the criticisms continue. Divisions in the leadership, Dan Burstein resigns repudiating Marxism-Leninism in the second half of 1980. There is an Emergency Conference in 1980 or 1981 where more Central Committee members resign; Klonsky resigns as chair in January 1981; a formal Second Congress is held some time in 1981 - NCM-MS says spring. By the end of 1981 the organization is dead, though The Call is published erratically for another year with the help of folks from the RWH. At some point early in the development of the CP(ML)’s crisis, the CP(ML) tried to put more energy into the idea of a “Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists (CUML)” (which it had first suggested in December 1977, when it held the initiative within the pro-China wing of the NCM) and held occasional discussions about unity with LRS and its predecessor groups (see The Call, May 8, 1978), BACU (before it merged into RWH) and RWH, but the CUML never got off the ground. In early 1979 there was also a trip to China by representatives of CP(ML), LRS, RWH, PUL, BACU and other “pro-China” collectives as part of the efforts to build unity among all those who supported the CPC and the Three Worlds Theory, but the Chinese do not press the groups to unite although they effectively withdraw the idea (as does CP(ML) itself) that the CP(ML) is “the” party in the U.S. (Davidson; Forward Nos. 1 & 5; Burstein; NCM-MS; Bribery; RWH Merger Statement; PUL article in Class Struggle #13; Fields; The Call, May 1, 1978).

      U.S. Peace Council, with CP activists in pivotal positions, is founded. (Myerson/Peace)

      UAW contract with Chrysler is the watershed in entering the “era of concessionary bargaining” by U.S. trade unions. (NLR #145)

      Striking workers at Coors Beer in Denver call a boycott because the company refuses to negotiate. Coors, a big backer of right-wing causes, becomes a major boycott and propaganda target of labor and also the lesbian/gay community over the next several years. (Appeal Vol. 5, No. 4)

      FLOC, led by former migrant worker Baldemar Velásquez, leads a walkout from the Ohio tomato fields that becomes the largest agricultural strike in Midwest history. After a six-year boycott against Campbell Soup Co. and Libby’s, FLOC wins decent contracts. (Chicano)

      Lane Kirkland succeeds retiring George Meany as head of the AFL-CIO (Green; NLR #155)

      Hip Hop begins to get nationwide and “crossover” attention: the Sugar Hill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight makes #4 on the R&B charts selling two million and catapulting rap into broad popular culture. Afrika Bambaataa and the Soul Sonic Force’s Planet Rock rap album (1983) and Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five’s The Message (1982) are especially influential in the wave of rap that follows, and Run-D.M.C. release the first million-selling rap album in 1984. In the same period break dancing and Hip Hop culture generally are featured in the low-budget independent film Wild Style by Charlie Ahearn (1983) and the blockbuster Flashdance directed by Franca Pasut (1983), and then in Beat Street, directed by Stan Lathan but put together by Harry Belafonte (1984) and Breakin’ directed by Joel Silberg also in 1984). (RA Vol. 19, No. 6; Rock & Roll)

      Publication of Al Szymanski’s Is the Red Flag Flying?: The Political Economy of the Soviet Union Today (Westport; & Zed Press, London) (see note in 1977 section). Also, the RCP publishes a spoof issue of The Call: People of the World Unite to Defend U.S. Imperialism mocking the CP(M-L)’s stance toward Iran, NATO, European action in Zaire, etc. (spoof in D-10)

      Publication of Michel Aglietta, A Theory of Capitalist Regulation (New Left Books, London) - key work of the “French Regulation School.”; Sara Evans, Personal Politics: The Roots of Women’s Liberation in the Civil Rights Movement & the New Left (Alfred A. Knopf, New York); Dick Cluster (Editor), They Should Have Served That Cup of Coffee: Radicals Remember the ‘60s (Boston, South End Press); Vida, a novel by Marge Piercy (Simon & Schuster)

      Release of anti-nuclear power film, The China Syndrome, directed by James Bridges, a few months before the Three Mile Island disaster in March; also Martin Ritt’s Norma Rae, for which Sally Field won best actress Academy Award.


      January 1: COUSML sponsors the Founding Congress of the Marxist-Leninist Party (MLP). (self-published material in BNCM-2)

      January: Formal founding of the West German Green Party after several years of local and regional electoral and other efforts. Petra Kelly chairs the party from 1980 to 1983. (NLR #152/July-August 1985; CrossRoads No. 27)

      February 2: 8,000 demonstrate against Klan/Nazi violence in Greensboro, North Carolina after a nationwide mobilization centered by the NAKN, despite major government efforts to prevent the action. There is considerable conflict within the NAKN and anti-racist movement over the tactics of the CWP, which is eventually expelled from the executive committee anchoring the march. There are smaller demonstrations in other cities. (NAROC and other material in BLM-4)

      February 23-29: Fifth Plenary Session of the CPC 11th Central Committee rehabilitates Liu Shaoqi and deepens criticism of the Cultural Revolution. (The Call, March 17, 1980)

      March 14: Allard Lowenstein is shot and killed in his law office in Manhattan by Dennis Sweeney, who had been one of the founders of the Resistance and had later gone insane. (Spoke)

      March 24: Archbishop Oscar Romero is assassinated by a right wing death squad in El Salvador. One week later the U.S. approves $5.7 million in military aid. The next month, more than 50 organizations join together in the Democratic Revolutionary Front (FDR). (CISPES; Central America)

      April 15: Jean-Paul Sartre dies at age 74. (The Call, May 5, 1980)

      April 17: Victory in Zimbabwe as the country becomes formally independent from Britain under the leadership of Robert Mugabe and his ZANU-Patriotic Front party, which had won the elections of February 29. The result of a long armed struggle by ZANU and ZAPU allied in a Patriotic Front, formally independence comes through a Commonwealth-negotiated agreement. (Second Cold War)

      April: Kwangju massacre in South Korea, the dictatorship killing hundreds after demonstrations against oppressive rule, with the U.S. commander in the region releasing Korean troops under his command to assist in repression against the insurgent population. (Second Cold War)

      April: Appeal for European Nuclear Disarmament launched in London, a step toward the huge anti-nuclear mobilizations which will sweep West Europe in fall 1981 through 1983. Likewise, E.P. Thompson’s influential essay and call to action, “Notes on Exterminism, the Last Stage of Civilization,” appears in the May-June 1980 New Left Review (#121) and is reprinted in the collection Exterminism and Cold War, edited by New Left Review (London, Verso, 1982). (NLR #168/March-April 1988)

      Spring: Ted Kennedy conducts a major but unsuccessful challenge from the left to sitting president Jimmy Carter in the Democratic primaries. And reflecting the heightened power of the New Right, Reagan sweeps to victory over George Bush (whom he later chooses for vice-president) and others on the Republican side. (Line of March No. 3; Glick)

      May 18-19: Mass uprising in Liberty City, Miami’s major Black ghetto, after the acquittal of police who had beaten to death Arthur McDuffie, a Black insurance executive, the previous December. Arguably the “most devastating social uprising” to that point in U.S. history, with $50-100 million in property damage, many killed, vigilante actions by whites and police, etc. Background of unprosecuted police killings (Janet Reno was Dade County DA) and also gross disparity in treatment of Cuban vs. Haitian refugees. (Marable in Black Scholar July-August 1980)

      May: Intensification of mass and armed struggle in the Philippines. NPA shifts from “early” to “advanced” stage of “strategic defensive”; May 1 Movement (KMU) workers organization formed in Manila with over half a million members; NDF is the main pole in anti-Marcos activity in cities and the countryside. (NDF..Lead in Domingo-Viernes School folder BREV-2)

      May: Honduras assumes its appointed role as U.S.-supported and financed bulwark of the counter-revolution in Central America. The Honduran Army carries out its first joint operation with the Salvadoran Army, closing the border and allowing 600 refugees to be killed by the Salvadoran military. Honduras also acquiesces as a large force of former Somocista National Guardsmen, the core of the future contras, set up camps along the country’s southern border with Nicaragua. Meanwhile, U.S. Maoist groups continue to denounce “Soviet expansionism” in Central America: “the growing independence of the Latin American countries is being endangered by the expansionism of an aggressive and ascending new imperialist power, the Soviet Union. Soviet penetration of Latin America is quite widespread...Cuba remains one of the chief vehicles for Soviet infiltration...the Cuban-backed 1979 coup in Grenada...Cuba is trying to subvert the Nicaraguan revolution...”(Intervention; Central America; Unity, March 14, 1980 quoted in Frontline, January 21, 1985)

      May-June: First issue of Line of March journal; activists in the “rectification network” begin to be known by the name Line of March. (Line of March No. 1)

      June 13: Walter Rodney, cofounder of the Working People’s Alliance in Guyana and author of How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, an opponent of the repressive regime of Forbes Burnham, is assassinated. (James; Black Scholar July/August 1980)

      June 26-29: The National Black United Front (NBUF) is formed at a conference in New York City which draws over 1,000. The core of the new group are activists in existing local Black United Fronts especially in New York; Cairo, Illinois; the United League of Mississippi; Philadelphia; Boston; Portland; the Bay Area, and elsewhere. Rev. Herbert Daughtry of New York is chosen chair. (FM January 1982; NBUF/RO; BL-BL)

      July 8: Cathlyn Platt Wilkerson, former leader of the Weather Underground and present at the townhouse explosion at her parents house in 1970, turns herself in to authorities in New York. Mark Rudd, who had drifted away from the WUO, had surrendered in September 1977 and other lesser known WUO members had done so during 1977 and 1978. Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers turn themselves in December 3, 1980. Jeff Jones and his partner Eleanor Raskin are arrested in October 1981. Most heavy charges against these activists are dropped and they serve little or no time in jail. Meanwhile, in 1978-79, a different tendency within the WUO/PFOC milieu forms the May 19 Communist Organization. (New York Times July 9, 1980 and other material in BREV-3; Weather)

      July: Carter signs Presidential Decree 59, ratifying the “counterforce” approach to nuclear strategy (preparation to fight and win a “limited” nuclear war, especially by targeting “military targets” rather than cities, as opposed to the “Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD)” or deterrent strategy). First enunciated as a possibility by then-Defense Secretary Robert McNamara in 1962, officially propagated by then Defense Secretary James Schlesinger in 1974, this signing makes the approach official policy, though not the sole policy shaping military planning. (Second Cold War)

      August 2-3: Final Conference of the “transformed” Northern California Alliance, which over the next year becomes the scaffolding for the Line of March Labor Commission officially formed in summer 1981. (self-published material in BREV-2 and BLM-1)

      August 9-10: “Peoples Convention” held on Charlotte Street in the Bronx just before the August 11 opening of the Democratic National Convention at Madison Square Garden, sponsored by the “Coalition for a Peoples Alternative (CAPA)” initiated by the People’s Alliance. It endorses "The Declaration of Charlotte Street." CAPA succeeds the Peoples Alliance but also develops no momentum (Glick; CAPA folder in D-9)

      August: Third World Women’s Alliance, linked to the emerging Line of March, sets its task as “reforging the U.S. women’s movement on the basis of anti-racist and anticapitalist politics,” admits whites to membership and changes its name to the Alliance Against Women’s Oppression. (AAWO; Frontline, July 25, 1983)

      August: Gdansk shipyard strike and formal agreement between the striking workers and the government August 31 marks the beginning of the open rise of Solidarity in Poland and the lengthy Polish crisis, temporarily resolved with declaration of martial law and banning of Solidarity in December 1981. The AFL-CIO, Vatican and many right-wingers in the West give material and ideological support to Solidarity, as do many elements of the left. The crisis in Poland obviously adds to the strains in U.S.-Soviet relations as well. This crisis in particular also served as a pretext for the U.S. to intensify pressures on West European countries, especially Germany, to back out of an agreement to build a new pipeline to ship Soviet natural gas to the European Economic Community (EEC), which would increase European dependence on Soviet resources and also weaken the position of U.S. energy companies in Europe. (Inside the SWP, p. 171; MR November 1980; Second Cold War)

      Summer: Summer issue of Class Struggle, theoretical journal of the CP(ML), carries an interview with chair Mike Klonsky in which he states that the U.S. has a role to play in the worldwide anti-hegemonic front. During this year the CL(ML) newspaper The Call writes about a Soviet “master plan for conquest.” Going even further, a pamphlet published this year, Sooner or Later authored by the Communist Unity Organization (New Outlook press, Cambridge, Massachusetts), makes the most explicit Maoist call yet for an alliance with U.S. imperialism in the “world anti-hegemonist front,” with opposition to “appeasement” or withdrawal of U.S. bases from the Philippines or Puerto Rico, support for a strengthened U.S. military, etc. (Sooner or Later; Class Struggle No. 13; Line of March No. 2).

      September 19: Iraq invades Iran, beginning of long and bloody Iraq-Iran war, which will end in 1988. Iraq is encouraged - and armed - by the U.S. and other Western powers who hope to weaken the Iranian revolution. (NLR #166; Almanac; Frontline various issues)

      October 14: Large anti-union march in Turin amid a major employer offensive forces a big defeat on the Italian labor movement: “The epoch that began with the Hot Autumn of 1969 ended in the autumn of 1980,” Fiat and other corporations reassert the control over the labor force and production process they had lost in 1969. A similar confrontation and outcome to the Thatcher government’s defeat of the British miners strike in 1984-85. (NLR #153/Sept-Oct 1985)

      October: Final issue of The Black Panther newspaper. (Abron in Underground)

      October: Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES) is founded. The next month El Salvador’s five revolutionary organizations (FPL, PCS, PRTC, ERP, RN) unite to form the Farabundo Mart* National Liberation Front/FMLN. Many expect the “Salvadoran Revolution” to be a matter of weeks or months at this point. Instead, the struggle is stalemated and becomes a main axis of hemispheric and U.S.-solidarity-foreign-policy politics for the next decade. At its height, CISPES consisted of over 300 chapters and affiliates around the country; in 1988-89 it had 100 paid and unpaid full-time organizers and at one time or another it had 72,000 donors. (CISPES; CrossRoads No. 40; Central America)

      October: Edward Seaga outs Michael Manley (“the Socialist International’s most important representative in the Third World”) and the PNP from power in Jamaican elections. (NLR #128)

      November 4: Reagan beats Carter as well as John Anderson - and Barry Commoner of the short-lived left-wing Citizen’s Party - in the presidential election. The period soon becomes characterized as the “rise of Reaganism,” paralleling the rise of “Thatcherism” in Britain following the 1979 election there. Reagan’s openly announced program is to launch an all-out offensive to “increase America’s strength” - meaning to seek strategic superiority over the USSR, stop and roll back revolution in the Third World, and increase corporate profits by a full-scale assault on peoples of color, labor and the poor at home. (Almanac; various Line of March, Monthly Review, New Left Review et al; Second Cold War)

      November 21-23: Founding Convention of the National Black Independent Political Party. (NBIPP), which grew out of the long dormant National Black Political Assembly, with 1,300 in attendance. The first regular conference of NBIPP is held in August 1981. (NBUF/RO; NAROC material in BLM-4; FM January 1982; Guardian external relations material in BTr-3; Workers World Nov. 28, 1980 in BNCM-5)

      November: Trial of the Gang of Four and seven others begins in China; they are found guilty and sentenced on January 25, 1981. (Trial).

      December 5-7: “Eurosocialism and America: An International Exchange” conference held in Washington, D.C. with Willy Brandt, Francois Mitterand, Olof Palme and Tony Benn among others. “It is the first time in the history of this country that leaders of democratic socialism in Europe have come to the U.S. to discuss common problems” says Michael Harrington. A major boost to DSOC and “democratic socialism” in the U.S. (SDHx)

      December 4: Four U.S. church women murdered by right wing death squad in El Salvador; the killings are a spur to a large faith-based solidarity movement in the U.S., especially among Catholic religious. (CISPES; Intervention; CrossRoads No. 40 - which says killings are December 2)

      December 8: John Lennon assassinated in New York City (Almanac)


      OCIC begins self-destructing with its “Campaign Against White Chauvinism.” Key paper “Racism in the PWOC” is dated May 8, 1980; Sharp struggles at regional and conferences and in local areas through the summer and fall of 1980; “Open Letter to the Party Building Movement” by dissidents is dated October 1, 1980; OC Steering Committee issues pamphlet “Racism in the Communist Movement” in December 1980. (self-published material in BTr-2)

      Earth First! a militant, anarchist-oriented environmental group is founded by Dave Foreman a dissident staff member of the Wilderness Society. (Radicalism)

      The Center for Third World Organizing (CTWO) is founded by former ACORN organizer Gary Delgado and Hulbert James. The CTWO-linked Applied Research Center is set up in 1981. (CTWO Times September-October 1985 in DB-3)

      Josep Broz Tito dies, succeeded by a rotating “collective presidency” in Yugoslavia. (Yugoslavia)

      Military coup in Surinam led by Lt. Col. Bouterse takes the country leftwards (at least initially) and is regarded as a danger by the U.S. (Halliday in NLR #141)

      Recession of 1979-1982 begins, this is the most severe recession since World War II, even deeper than the “turning point” downturn of 1974-75. It is worldwide and has a big impact on the ability of the debtor countries to deal with their debt and the ensuing “debt crisis” (for which see November 2, 1982 entry below). In the U.S., 1980 saw a GNP growth rate of zero, inflation was over 9%, unemployment was up to 7.5% and the average purchasing power of a U.S. family was 8.5% lower than 1976. On taking office in January 1981 the new Reagan administration’s policy aimed to “deepen the recession and at the same time launch a fierce attack on the trade union movement, thus bringing down the rate of inflation, greatly strengthening the position of capital vis-*-vis labor. Then the economy is stimulated by a huge peacetime military buildup and tax policies favoring the rich.” This recession and government policies initiate a new (or accelerated) period of corporate restructuring: downsizing, mergers, capital flight to the cheaper labor market areas & upped anti-labor campaigns; a pivotal step is Reagan’s naked busting of PATCO. (CrossRoads No. 23; MR October 1989; Davis in NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985; Gordon in NLR #168/March-April 1988; Second Cold War)

      Yet another decade of major demographic and social change: Confirming the rise of the Sunbelt, which was a power from the late ‘60s on, for the first time the population center of the U.S. lay west of the Mississippi River. (Wolfe in NLR #128) And there is a major shift in economic power from the Northeast and Midwest to the South, Southwest and West: “The 70s witnessed the most rapid and large-scale shift in economic power in American history.” (Davis in NLR #128)

      Southern African Development Coordination Conference (SADCC) is formed by nine African states to end economic dependence on South Africa. (Black Scholar, Nov-Dec 1987; Frontline, April 13, 1987)

      Publication of Michael Goldfield and Melvin Rothenberg The Myth of Capitalism Reborn (Soviet Union Study Project, Line of March Publications, 1980) and Jerry Tung’s The Socialist Road (Cesar Cauce Publishers & Distributors, New York), which marks the CWP’s repudiation of the Capitalist Restoration Thesis. (also see note in 1977 section above); Post-Revolutionary Society, a collection of essays by Paul Sweezy (Monthly Review Press, New York); Todd Gitlin, The Whole World Is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the New Left (Berkeley, University of California Press); Gary Delgado, Organizing the Movement: The Roots and Growth of ACORN (Temple University Press, Philadelphia); Harry C. Boyte, The Backyard Revolution: Understanding the New Citizen Movement (Temple University Press, Philadelphia); also, the egregious “Cold War novel” Spike by Robert Moss and Arnaud de Borchgrave (London) and the non-fiction “call to anticommunist arms” by Norman Podhoretz, The Present Danger (New York); Environmental Defense Fund, Malign Neglect (New York, Vintage)

      End of Part Four

      Part One, 1967-1970

      Part Two, 1971-1974

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Five, 1981-1992

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

    5. #5
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Lightbulb Chronology Part Five, 1981-1992

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!

      January 18: U.S.-Iran agreement ends the hostage crisis. (Almanac)

      January: M.I.N.P.-El Comité splits into M.I.N.P.-EC and the Summation Collective, which becomes the Revolutionary Left Movement (MINP; MINP-2)

      January: U.S. military aid - restored in the final days of Jimmy Carter’s presidency, and temporarily suspended after the murder of the four church women - helps the Salvadoran junta beat back an overly ambitious FMLN “final offensive.” Shortly thereafter new President Reagan announces that the U.S. is “drawing the line” in El Salvador and sends military advisers. El Salvador over the next decade became the site of the largest U.S. counterinsurgency war since Vietnam. The next month the new administration takes the first concrete step to launch a “covert” military operation against Nicaragua, and the CIA is given the go-ahead to begin organizing in Honduras, Miami and elsewhere for a contra army under the banner of the Nicaraguan Democratic Front (FDN). Publicly, the U.S. suspends aid to the Nicaraguan government alleging that Cuban arms are passing through Nicaragua to the rebels in El Salvador. (CISPES; Intervention; Central America)

      March: The Movement of the Revolutionary Left (MRL) publishes The New Communist Movement: An Obituary pamphlet, written by though not credited to Al Szymanski. The pamphlet reflects a much wider sense among many party building veterans that the NCM has reached exhaustion. This particular pamphlet calls for some kind of loose national federation of left activists, “regroupment” becomes the most common term for this or some other kind of “left-unity-across-previous-lines-of-demarcation” strategy, which gathers support from different directions in the wake of the NCM’s decline. Besides MRL and other spin-offs from the OCIC (including a bit later Theoretical Review), different factions of the collapsing CP(ML) advocate this approach (B.L. paper in BNCM-6); IS’s magazine Changes (Dec. 1982, after several internal papers, in Solid-IS History) publicly advocates “unity on the left”; Sojourner Truth takes some steps in this direction (see February 1982 below); the Guardian, which moved away from a specifically party building strategy quickly after its split with the Clubs in January 1979, gives favorable signals but as yet takes no initiative. While not calling for regroupment, PUL publishes (in 1982) What Went Wrong? which, from a very different angle than Obituary, analyzes the “open crisis” of the NCM. From a somewhat different ideological perspective the book Beyond the Fragments: Feminism and the Making of Socialism by Sheila Rowbotham, Lynn Segal and Hilary Wainwright - published in England in 1979 and then an expanded edition published in the U.S. in 1981 - looks at the fading of the most influential British party building groups of the late 1960s and ‘70s, though in Britain these are Trotskyist rather than Maoist. Meanwhile those few party building organizations which are intact or even growing (LRS, CWP, Line of March) attribute the NCM’s disarray to the errors of others and intensify their party building efforts. (Obit; NCM-MS; Fragments; Sarkis; various materials in D-3)

      April: Founding meeting of the National Congress for Puerto Rican Rights. (Torres)

      April: Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine holds Fourth National Congress (though documents aren’t published in English until 1986) Third Congress was in March 1972. The meeting focuses on transformation of Front into a Marxist-Leninist organization and assessing the emergence and development of the Camp David process. Includes a denunciation of the policies of the Chinese Communist Party (“revisionism”) and self-criticism for having long held a very positive attitude toward the CPC; also a sharp critique of Eurocommunism. (PFLP)

      May 3: 100,000 demonstrate in Washington, D.C. against the U.S. war in El Salvador and domestic attacks on living standards in particular those of communities of color. The successful march sets a pattern for the large antiwar nationwide mobilizations of the 1980s. It is organized by the Peoples Anti-War Mobilization (PAM) initiated by the Workers World Party, which holds tight to the reins thus leading many other forces to leave following the demonstration. The same pattern takes shape as Workers World and PAM follow up by building for a large gathering to found the All-Peoples Congress (APC). The Congress takes place in Detroit October 16-18 and draws several thousand, but APC never recaptures this initial momentum and, like PAM, gradually narrows to a Workers World Party front. (packet in BNCM-5)

      May 22-25: Line of March-initiated National Conference on Racism and National Oppression, including a major section on the OCIC’s “Campaign Against White Chauvinism” (conference papers in BLM-5)

      Spring: Second Congress of CP (ML), last gasp before full collapse of the organization. (Davidson; Forward No. 5; NCM-MS)

      June 1: Murder of Filipino labor activists Gene Viernes and Silme Domingo in the office of Alaska Cannery Workers Local 27 ILWU in Seattle by gang members later proved to have been hired by the Marcos regime. Viernes, Local 37 dispatcher, and Domingo, secretary-treasurer, were also members of KDP and (less publicly) Line of March; a month earlier Viernes - returning from a trip to the Philippines - and Domingo had been instrumental in pressing the ILWU to pass an anti-Marcos resolution at its international convention in Hawaii; ILWU membership in Hawaii is largely Filipino. A major “Justice for Domingo and Viernes Campaign” ultimately successful, follows the murders. (Toribio; CJDV)

      June: First national conference sponsored by Labor Notes, a new publication initiated by members of International Socialists (IS), draws 500 trade union activists to Detroit. The second Labor Notes conference, November 12-14, 1982, is titled “Organizing Against Concessions” and draws 700. (Solid-Is History; Labor Report)

      Summer: National Labor Committee in Support of Democracy and Human Rights in El Salvador is formed with presidents of UAW, IAM and ACTWU as formal co-chairs and backing from AFSCME, OCAW, UFW, Molders, IUE, bakery workers, and NEA. The NLC’s formation at this stage of the Salvadoran conflict, with such broad support within labor, is in marked contrast to the role of labor during the Vietnam War. (Dyson in CrossRoads No. 40)

      August 4: PATCO strike begins; Reagan fires all the strikers and fills their jobs with “permanent replacements.” (Almanac; Davis in NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985)

      September 19: Solidarity Day rally called by AFL-CIO leadership, huge turnout of 400,000 (Organizer October 1981; Workers World September 25, 1981 in BNCM-5)

      Fall: Mass peace movement begins to swell in Western Europe, as mobilization begins against the initial decisions of NATO and European governments to accept the U.S. Euromissiles, and in the context of new U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s warlike rhetoric. “Five million people demonstrated in the capitals of Western Europe in the autumn of 1981 and again in the autumn of 1983.” (Changes in Solid-Is History; Magri in NLR #131/Jan-Feb 1982; Kaldor in NLR #180/March-April 1990)

      October 20: Robbery of a Brink’s truck in Rockland County New York goes awry, a guard and then two police officers in Nyack are killed. Kathy Boudin, David Gilbert, Judy Clark and BLA member Sam (Brother Sol) Brown are arrested at or near the scene, other activists allegedly involved are arrested later. Kuwasi Balagoon, Clark and Gilbert are convicted in one trial; Boudin is also convicted; Sekou Odinga (Nathaniel Burns), Silvia Baraldini and others are convicted as well in the first trial to use racketeering-conspiracy charges against activists. (Weather; material in BREV-3 including NYT article February 16, 1982; Paterson; Gitlin)

      October: October issue of PWOC’s newspaper, the Organizer, admits the “near-collapse” of the OCIC with functioning local areas reduced from 18 to 6 and 80% of the membership resigned. Once-central OCIC leaders Dave Forrest and Tyree Scott issue a paper with others in October criticizing the “Campaign Against White Chauvinism” as ultra-left and proposing a direction for those still holding the “fusion” party building line, which does not come to anything. PWOC is also in near-collapse with 80% of its membership resigned, and the next issue of the Organizer (Vol. 7, No. 10, December 1981/January 1982) is its last (need to check this; there may have been one or two more) (Organizer, October 1981 and December 1981/January 1982; Forrest et al in BTr-2).

      November: First Seminar on the Situation of the Black, Chicano, Native American, Puerto Rican, Caribbean and Asian Communities in the U.S. held in Havana (might not have been the exact title of this gathering), bringing together progressive intellectuals from the U.S., especially from the people of color communities, with Cubans. A second similar Seminar is held December 4-6 1984. (Black Scholar January-February 1985; Line of March No. 18)

      December 9: Journalist and activist Mumia Abu-Jamal, long a target of Philadelphia police for his exposures of racism, is arrested and beaten by Philadelphia police and charged with the murder of an officer that night; he is convicted on July 3, 1982 and sentenced to death. (Death Row)

      December: PUWP crackdown on Solidarity in Poland: declaration of martial law, arrest of many Solidarity leaders, etc. Following the crackdown, a December 29 Resolution of the Executive Committee of the Italian Communist Party declares in regard to the USSR that “this phase in the development of socialism, that began with the October Revolution, has exhausted its driving force, as was the case of the phase that followed the rise and development of the socialist parties of the trade unions close to the Second International. The world has gone on....” Following that statement, the PCI and engages a sharp, open polemic with the CPSU. (Line of March No. 10 & 11; Problems September-October 1988; PCI)

      Winter 1981: Agreement between Nine to Five (9 to 5) and other independent feminist organizations of clerical and white collar workers and the SEIU on a collaborative unionization campaign, the first such partnership. (Aronowitz in SR #67)


      AIDS - the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome - is first identified, and AIDS rapidly becomes a major health and political issue in the country. By fall 1986, 28,000 people had been diagnosed with AIDS, half of whom had died (and many more are HIV-positive). The Reagan administration takes a do-nothing and fund-little approach to the crisis, homophobia surges forward, Haitians are scapegoated, the racial disproportion in who is affected (which will rise through the decade) begins to be seen, big political fights are waged over discrimination, confidentiality in testing, suggestions of quarantine, etc. The gay community especially organizes to provide services and fight back. (AIDS)

      Formation of Black Workers for Justice in Rocky Mount, North Carolina (BWFJ brochure in DCR-3)

      The SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP), which becomes in key force in the fight against environmental racism, is founded in Albuquerque. (Chicano)

      Bernie Sanders running as an independent socialist is elected mayor of Burlington Vermont by 10 votes and goes on to serve four terms before leaving to run for higher office. (MR May 1986; CrossRoads No. 25)

      Publication of CPC’s Resolution “Some Questions Concerning the History of Our Party” with re-evaluation of Mao Zedong: “mistakes in his later years [meaning the Cultural Revolution].”

      Socialist Francois Mitterand wins the presidency of France with the support of the PCF on an ambitious left program; after an initial period of intense reformist action, by spring 1983 the government retreats to an austerity/centrist policy, the PCF withdraws from the government, and the last experiment in aggressive social democratic radical reformism is over. (NLR #171)

      Andreas Papandreou and PASOK win governmental power in Greece with 47% of the vote; altogether almost 60% vote for left-wing parties. (NLR #131/Jan-Feb 1982)

      Publication of Protest and Survive, essays edited by E.P. Thompson and Dan Smith (Monthly Review Press, New York), including Daniel Ellsberg’s “Call to Mutiny” - reflection of the rise of the new anti-nuclear war movement; The Road to Gdansk, by Daniel Singer (Monthly Review Press, New York); Beyond the ‘Vietnam Syndrome’: U.S. Interventionism in the 1980s, by Michael T. Klare (Institute for Policy Studies); Soviet Policy in the Arc of Crisis, by Fred Halliday (Institute for Policy Studies); Beyond the Fragments: Feminism and the Making of Socialism, by Sheila Rowbotham, Lynne Segal and Hilary Wainwright (Alyson Publications, Boston; British edition was published in 1979); African Socialism or Socialist Africa? by A.M. Babu, (Zed Press, London); Clayborne Carson, In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening of the 1960s. (Cambridge, Harvard University Press); David J. Garrow, The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr.: From Solo to Memphis (New York, W.W. Norton and Company); The Forward March of Labor Halted?, edited by Eric Hobsbawm - his own lecture of the same title from 1978 is included (Verso/Marxism Today, London) - Hobsbawm’s alleged “farewell to the proletariat” often lumped together with other “farewells” from Andre Gorz, Rudolf Bahro, Laclau & Mouffe, among others; Women, Race and Class, by Angela Y. Davis (Random House, New York); Ain’t I a Woman: Black Women and Feminism, by bell hooks (South End Press, Boston); This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color, edited by Gloria Anzaldúa and Cherr*e Moraga (New York, Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press - founded after a 1980 conversation between Barbara Smith and Audre Lorde, see Guardian June 5, 1991; also cited as published by Persephone Press, Watertown, Massachusetts) - this anthology includes “A Black Feminist Statement,” an influential 1977 position paper from the Combahee River Collective; Andrea Dworkin, Pornography: Men Possessing Women (New York, Perigee Books)


      February 28: Small meeting in New York called by Sojourner Truth Organization and North Star Socialist Organization to attempt a left regroupment; invited were TR-New York and the Guardian and Workers Power among others. The meeting did produce any new left alignments, and did not result in any broader sponsorship of what became the “No Easy Answers” conference sponsored in 1983 by STO - see below. (report from the meeting in BNCM-5)

      March 20: DSOC and NAM officially complete a more-than-two-year-long merger process and found the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) at a joint convention in Detroit. A faction of NAM -resisting the shift from the organization’s earlier revolutionary stance to DSOC-style social democracy - had split off before the merger (before the 1981 convention - see NAM 1981 Convention Resolutions in D-8) to form the short-lived group “Solidarity - A Socialist-Feminist Network.” By 1980 DSOC had 5,000 members, by 1981 NAM had 1,500. By the time of the merger, DSA represented the largest and arguably most influential tendency on the socialist left. (Democratic Left April 1982 in SDHx; Solid-IS History; Davis in NLR #155; Aronowitz in SR #67; Moving On September-October 1980, September-October 1981 & March 1982)

      April 2-June 15: Britain defeats Argentina in the Falklands/Malvinas War, the first war after World War II between an advanced capitalist country and an anticommunist Third World state. (Almanac; Second Cold War).

      April: Four senior members of the U.S. foreign policy establishment - McGeorge Bundy, Robert McNamara, George Kennan and Gerard Smith - call for the U.S. to proclaim a “no-first-use” of nuclear weapons policy in the article “Nuclear Weapons and the Atlantic Alliance” in Foreign Affairs. They acquire the nickname the “Gang of Four” for their open opposition to Reagan administration policy, and add fuel to the growing mass anti-nuclear movement. (Second Cold War)

      June 4: Israel invades Lebanon, long siege of Beirut, Sabra and Shatillah massacre on September 15, huge demonstrations within Israel against the invasion and massacres. (Almanac)

      June 12: Huge (750,000-1,000,000) demonstration for disarmament in New York City, at the U.N Special Session on Disarmament, with radical presence in the form of the Third World and Progressive People’s Coalition (TWPPC). The demonstration is a highlight of the Nuclear Freeze and general anti-nuclear/disarmament movement of the early Reagan years. It accompanies the huge mass peace movement that has been taking off in West Europe (see fall 1981 entry above). (Changes in Solid-Is History; Magri in NLR #131/Jan-Feb 1982; Kaldor in NLR #180/March-April 1990; Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1986)

      June 18: Vincent Chin is beaten to death by two unemployed white Detroit autoworkers who “think he is Japanese.” Amid widespread anti-Japanese sentiment as Japan is blamed for the decline of the U.S. auto industry, the two killers are allowed to plead guilty to manslaughter and are sentenced to probation and a $3,000 fine. A major campaign is conducted to demand federal charges against the killers for denying Chin his civil rights. (Frontline, August 8, 1983; Wei says June 19)

      June: Khmer Rouge (amid statement disavowing communism and locating themselves “on the side of the West”) join with two other factions, one led by Sihanouk in the “Democratic Kampuchea” coalition, with Sihanouk as President, which is recognized by the U.N. as Cambodia’s government and supported by Thailand, China and the U.S. (SF Chron June 14, 1997 in BMOV-5; Revolution Rescued)

      June-July: Soviet government cracks down on the Group for Establishing Trust Between the USSR and USA, an eleven-member unofficial body. (Second Cold War)

      August 13: Mexico announces that it cannot make interest payments on its obligations, essentially going into default. This is the period (1982-87) of the intense “Debt Crisis” or “Third World Debt Crisis” during which major Latin American countries especially (Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Peru) which had borrowed heavily during the 1970s were in constant danger of default. Between 1978 and 1982 debt service for the Third World grew at an average rate of 23.3%. Illustrating how seriously the crisis is taken, on November 2 the Wall Street Journal prints on its front page a fictitious scenario of international financial panic and collapse, which it says “could happen.” There is talk of forming a “debtors cartel” and jointly refusing to pay the debt, many negotiations between the Third World debtor countries, the IMF and World Bank, and governments of the advanced capitalist countries. In fall 1984 Mexico reaches an agreement with international bankers to reschedule its debt; in 1984-85 Fidel travels throughout Latin America pressing for an indefinite moratorium on debt payments; U.S. Roman Catholic Bishops also argue for a moratorium, and there are various plans by U.S. ruling circles to manage the crisis, especially the “Baker Plan” (Treasury Secretary James Baker) presented in October 1985. Through ‘85-‘88 the crisis (though not the debt’s burden on the Third World) begins to ease. (MR February & March 1985, February 1987; Seventh Summit; NLR #145; Second Cold War)

      September 14-17: Ferdinand Marcos “state visit” with Ronald Reagan greeted by major protests (AK October 1982)

      September: U.S. opens a Space Command Center as part of extending its military programs into outer space. (Second Cold War)

      September: Twelfth Congress of the Chinese Communist Party. In foreign policy, the CPC is unhappy with the Reagan administration’s upped support for Taiwan and once again condemns U.S. “superpower” policies and formally criticizes Washington as well as Moscow as a threat to peace. There is a slight thaw in relations with the USSR, and ideologically since 1980 China has stopped calling the USSR either capitalist or social-imperialist, only “hegemonist.” China also tacitly endorsed the 1981 crackdown on Solidarity in Poland. Domestically, the new Constitution promulgated for China in 1982 removed the right to strike from its provisions. (Second Cold War)

      November: The Nuclear Freeze proposal is on the ballot in nine states and passes in eight of them. (Second Cold War)

      November 10: Leonid Brezhnev dies; Yuri Andropov chosen his successor as General Secretary of the CPSU on November 15. (Almanac)


      Congress passes the “Boland Amendment” prohibiting U.S. aid to groups trying to overthrow the Nicaraguan government, systematically violated by the Reagan administration. ((Intervention)

      Bobby Rush, former second in command of the Illinois Black Panther Party, is elected to the Chicago City Council; he is later elected to Congress. (Boyd)

      Battle waged by the African American community in Warren County, North Carolina “widely recognized as the watershed event in the environmental justice movement.” More than 500 residents are arrested blocking trucks carrying the toxic chemical PCB to a landfill in their community and receive support from national civil rights leaders. (CrossRoads No. 15)

      Conferences of “Red Diaper Babies” to discuss their experiences are held this year and in 1983. (RA, Vol. 19, No. 5)

      Publication of Exterminism and Cold War, with selections by E. P. Thompson, Raymond Williams, Roy and Zhores Medvedev et al, edited by New Left Review (London, Verso); The Fate of the Earth, by Jonathan Schell (New York, Knopf); Farewell to the Working Class, Andre Gorz, (London and Boston); The New Class War: Reagan’s Attack on the Welfare State and Its Consequences, Frances Fox Piven and Richard A. Cloward (New York, Pantheon Books); Wini Breines, Community and Organization in the New Left, 1962-1968: The Great Refusal (New York: Praeger Publishers; also cited as Hadley, Massachusetts, J.F. Bergin Publishers); Maurice Isserman, Which Side Were You On? The American Communist Party During the Second World War (Wesleyan University Press)


      Early January: The heads of state of Mexico, Venezuela, Panama and Columbia meet on a Panama resort island and initiate the Contadora process for peace in Central America. (Frontline, February 3, 1986)

      January: Final issue of Theoretical Review, with assessment that a substantial anti-dogmatist/renovationist trend in U.S. communism no longer existed. (Theoretical Review No. 30 in BTr-1)

      February 22: Harold Washington, running on a progressive program and mobilizing the grassroots of Chicago’s Black community, scores a dramatic victory over Jane Byrne and Richard M. Daley (son of the late mayor) in the Democratic primary. (Line of March No. 15; Marable)

      Winter-spring: First major offensive against Nicaragua by the contras, who now number over 4,000 troops in Honduras plus 3,000 Misura Indian troops on the Atlantic Coast. By summer the attack is a dismal failure, the contras fail in their objective of holding sufficient ground to form a provisional government. But hit-and-run raids take a terrible toll on the Nicaraguan economy. In late spring renegade Commander Eden Pastora opens up a southern front on the Costa Rican border. Meanwhile Honduras is steadily more militarized; and the FMLN is displaying increasing military sophistication, especially in its four-month offensive begun in October 1982 which inflicts many defeats on the Salvadoran Army and captures many weapons, including the FMLN’s first artillery. (Intervention; Central America)

      March: Greens cross the 5% hurdle and win representation in West Germany’s national parliament for the first time. (NLR #152/July-August 1985)

      April 1-3: “No Easy Answers Left” conference in New York sponsored by Sojourner Truth Organization, about the last initiative from the group that I can locate so far. (self-published conference material in D-9)

      April 11: Pilot issue of Frontline newspaper issued by the Line of March. First regular issue appears on June 27. (Frontline April 11 and June 27, 1983)

      April 12: Harold Washington is elected mayor of Chicago over Bernard Epton in a close and racially polarized context, a milestone in the upsurge in electoral activism in the Black community. This same year, Mel King, supported by the Boston Rainbow Coalition, came in first in the Boston mayoral primary October 11, though he lost in the runoff to Raymond Flynn on November 15. These campaigns, especially Washington’s, paved the way for Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow campaigns of 1984 and 1988. This Rainbow electoral motion anchored in the Black community - along with the movement against U.S. intervention in Central America and the movement against U.S. backing for apartheid - are the main poles of popular resistance to Reaganism in the 1980s. (Marable; Line of March No. 15; Glick; Frontline October 31, 1983)

      May 19-22: RCP-sponsored conference in New York on the “The Soviet Union: Socialist or Social-Imperialist?” there is a debate at the conference between Raymond Lotta of RCP and Al Szymanski, moderated by Anwar Shaikh. Conference is well-attended (1,000-plus). RCP publishes two volumes of material for the conference, one before and one after. (self-published material in D-10)

      June 8: Rudy Lozano, Mexican community leader, trade union organizer and a key figure in the Harold Washington Coalition, is assassinated in his home in Chicago. (Marable; Frontline, June 27, 1983)

      June: The Communist Party USA(ML) (CPUSA-ML) dissolves itself at its Second Congress. (self-published material in BNCM-2)

      July 4 weekend: Alliance Against Women’s Oppression holds its first national congress. (Frontline, July 25, 1983)

      July 1: Workers, largely Mexican, go on strike against Phelps-Dodge copper mining company in Arizona in one of the main labor fights of the early ‘80s. The strike is hard-fought but lost in 1986. (Chicano; Frontline various issues 1983-1986)

      August 9: French troops arrive in Chad to bolster the government against Libyan-backed rebels in the north. (Frontline, August 22, 1983)

      August 21: Benigno Aquino slain at Manila airport upon his return to the Philippines; sets off new wave of mass protest. Period (off and on since 1978, and through 1987) is also characterized by debate over strategy and even international line in the CPP. (Rocamora; Toribio; Almanac)

      August 27: 350,000 turn out for a March on the 20th Anniversary of the August 1963 March on Washington in D.C. 40,000 more march in S.F. and Seattle. The theme is “Jobs, Peace and Freedom,” and the “peace” aspect in particular causes some more conservative figures (Bayard Rustin) and the AFL-CIO to stonewall the effort. The sponsoring group is the broad-based “Coalition of Conscience.” Jesse Jackson receives the warmest response from the crowd and is greeted with chants of “Run, Jesse, Run!” (Marable; Frontline, September 19, 1983)

      August 30/September 1: Soviets shoot down KAL 007 (Almanac; Frontline September 19, 1983)

      Summer: DWP founds USOCA (U.S. Out of Central America) which plays a controversial role in the Central America solidarity movement. For the first time DWP also tries to expand its activities beyond the San Francisco Bay Area. By the end of the year the DWP is moving away from Marxism-Leninism and adopting the view that no revolutionary practice other than solidarity or anti-militarist work is possible in the conditions prevailing in the U.S. (DWP History; DWP Dissolution; self-published material in BNCM-3 & BNCM-4)

      September 5: Labor Day is “Solidarity Day III” and over 400,000 unionists and supporters gather at “Across America - We Will Be Heard” marches and rallies across the U.S., including 200,000 turning out in New York City. (Frontline, September 19, 1983)

      September 27: Wilfred Burchett dies at age 72 (Frontline, October 17, 1983)

      Fall: AFL-CIO (and the NEA) gives an “early endorsement” to Walter Mondale in an effort to regain labor influence within the Democratic Party (against forces both to its right - John Glenn - and its left - Jesse Jackson and the Rainbow constituencies). The move pulls some of the more progressive unions back into the COPE fold, and labor does increase its clout at the 1984 convention and on the National Committee. And labor’s role is crucial in Mondale squeaking through several primaries. (Davis in NLR #155; Frontline September 19 & October 3, 1983, March 19 & July 23, 1984)

      October 22: Over two million people - Kaldor says five million - take to the streets in Europe to protest the imminent deployment of 572 new U.S. cruise and Pershing “Euromissiles” in West Europe scheduled to begin in December - one of the largest protests in world history. The protests fail to swing any West European government into refusing the deployment, although many are shaken, and the deployment takes place on schedule, marking a major escalation in “Cold War II” and, along with Reagan’s growing campaign for the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI/Star Wars) is a clear indication of the U.S. desire to break parity and seek nuclear strategic superiority. (Frontline, October 31, 1983; Kaldor in NLR #180/March-April 1990)

      October 23: Suicide bomb attack kills 247 U.S. marines in Lebanon who are there as part of an effort to shore up the Phalangist regime of Amin Gemayel. In February Gemayel’s army is ousted from West Beirut by progressive nationalist forces, Washington and Tel Aviv’s strategy in the country fails, Syrian troops remain in the country and U.S. forces withdraw. (Frontline, November 14, 1983 and February 20, 1984; Almanac)

      October 25: U.S. invades Grenada, taking advantage of the crisis involving the split in the New Jewel Movement and assassination of Maurice Bishop on October 19. Widespread but not massive protests in the U.S. greet the invasion. (Frontline, November 14, 1983; Black Scholar March/April 1987)

      October: Elections replace the “dirty war” military regime in Argentina, which had to go in the wake of the failed Falklands/Malvinas war. (MR February 1984)

      November 3: Jesse Jackson officially announces that he will be a candidate for the Democratic Party nomination for president in 1984, before 3,000 supporters in D.C.. (Frontline, November 14, 1983; NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985)

      November 10: Federal Judge vacates the 1942 conviction of Fred Korematsu for challenging the executive order that mandated the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, reversing a 1943 Supreme Court decision and marking a major victory in the long struggle of the National Committee for Redress formed by the JACL in 1978, the National Coalition for Redress/Reparations, a broad coalition founded in 1978, the National Council for Japanese American Redress (founded May 1979) and other groups for vindication and reparations for those interned. An official Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians held hearings in 1981 and 1982 and concluded that the Executive Order was not justified and recommended an official apology to the former evacuees and a payment of $20,000 to each. Congress eventually acts and a reparations bill is signed into law August 10, 1988 - see entry of that date. (Frontline, November 29, 1983; Resolution from the Fall 1991 Convention of the Northern California District of the CPUSA in D-7; San Francisco Chronicle August 9, 1998 in BMOV-2; Wei)


      Annual Socialist Scholars Conferences, a few of which were held in the 1960s, are revived by DSA-linked folks at the Graduate Center of CUNY (MR May 1985)

      Seventh Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in New Delhi, the occasion for Fidel Castro’s widely distributed report, The World Economic and Social Crisis: Its Impact on the Underdeveloped Countries, Its Somber Prospects, and the Need to Struggle If We Are To Survive, Report to the Seventh Summit Conference on Non-Aligned Countries, (Seventh Summit; Frontline, December 7, 1987; CM No. 7)

      Roundtable Cavtat ’83, the International Conference on Socialism in the World, held in Yugoslavia, latest in an almost-decade-long annual series, draws 140 intellectuals including representatives of the Soviet and Chinese CP’s, West European social democratic groups, Third World revolutionary groups, Perry Anderson from New Left Review, the DWP from the U.S. The topic is “Is There a Crisis of Marxism.” (CM No. 9).

      Publication of Maurice Bishop Speaks: The Grenada Revolution 1979-83, by Bruce Marcus and Michael Taber (Pathfinder Press, New York); The Making of the Second Cold War, by Fred Halliday (Verso, London); The World Economic and Social Crisis: Its Impact on the Underdeveloped Countries, Its Somber Prospects, and the Need to Struggle If We Are To Survive, Report to the Seventh Summit Conference on Non-Aligned Countries, by Fidel Castro (Havana, Publishing Office of the Council of State); In the Tracks of Historical Materialism, by Perry Anderson (London, Verso) - a defense of Marxism mainly against the rising tide of French post-structuralism, soon to flower with the rise of post-modernism - see Aronson in NLR #152/July-August 1985); The Economics of Feasible Socialism, by Alec Nove (Allen & Unwin, London); How Capitalism Underdeveloped Black America: Problems in Race, Political Economy and Society, by Manning Marable (South End Press, Boston); In the Spirit of Crazy Horse: The Story of Leonard Peltier and the FBI’s War on the American Indian Movement, by Peter Matthiessen (The Viking Press); Sexual Politics, Sexual Communities: The Making of a Homosexual Minority in the United States, 1940-1970, by John D'Emilio (University of Chicago Press); Communists in Harlem During the Depression, by Mark Naison (University of Illinois Press); Home Girls: A Black Feminist Anthology, edited by Barbara Smith (New York, Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press); Stanley Karnow, Vietnam: A History (The Viking Press, New York)

      Release of Wild Style, directed by Charlie Ahearn, and Flashdance, directed by Franca Pasut (see note on Hip Hop 1979 above); and also The Big Chill, directed by Lawrence Kasdan.


      January 9-12: Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang is given the red carpet treatment in a state visit to Washington; the U.S.-China alliance has cooled a bit since its height in 1977-1981, but is still operative, held together mainly by common opposition to the USSR. (Frontline January 23, 1984)

      January 11: Kissinger Commission report on Central America is released, it targets “Soviet meddling” and aims to forge a bipartisan consensus behind U.S. intervention, AFL-/CIO head Lane Kirkland is on the Commission and his role provokes some criticism within the labor movement. (Frontline January 23 & March 5, 1984)

      January 13-15: Split in Spanish Eurocommunist Party, a new party is formed with the blessings of the Soviets. (Frontline, February 6, 1984)

      February 9: Yuri Andropov, CPSU general secretary dies; Konstantin Chernenko is chosen new general secretary. (Frontline, February 20, 1984)

      February 11-12: Initiated by the handful of folks who had continued the Coalition for a Peoples Alternative, and amid the momentum of Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow campaign, the founding conference of the National Committee for Independent Political Action (NCIPA) (which succeeds CAPA) at Howard University draws 200 activists. (Glick)

      February 28: Supreme Court rules in Grove City College v. Bell that federal assistance to colleges that discriminate is okay as long as the money doesn’t go to the specific programs that discriminate, reversing many years of practice. This ruling gives rise to the Civil Rights Restoration Act which is stalled in Congress in 1985 and 1986. This is also the period of a major government attack on Black voting rights activists in Alabama and the South. (Black Scholar May-June 1986)

      February-June: Jesse Jackson’s first Rainbow presidential campaign galvanizes the Black community and progressives across the country. It is the main reference point for the left (though not the entire left supports it) up to the Democratic Convention in summer 1984. (Marable; Frontline, issues throughout spring 1984; NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985)

      March 1: Announcement by the British Coal Board that it is closing the Cortonwood Colliery sets off year-long national miners’ strike which ends a year later in a major defeat for the miners and a bitter debate and rifts in the British left. (SR #93/96 May-August 1987; Frontline March 18, 1985)

      March: U.S. continues escalation in Central America. The biggest contra offensive to date is launched against Nicaragua, 8,000 troops invade from Honduras. CIA role in mining Nicaragua’s harbors becomes public and causes substantial outcry, even among some Reagan administration supporters. Meanwhile U.S. escalation continues in El Salvador in the wake of rigged elections, first round March 25, second round won by Jose Napoleon Duarte in April. (Frontline, April 16, April 30, & May 28, 1984)

      April 3: Jackson’s best showing yet in the New York primary: 26% of the vote statewide, 34% in New York City, 87% of the Black vote. (Frontline, April 16, 1984)

      April: First issue of Socialist Politics magazine, oriented toward a “third space” on the left. (self-published material in D-9)

      April 11: Guardian Opinion & Analysis column carries significant piece by Harry Haywood: “China and Its Supporters Were Wrong About USSR.” Haywood dies less than a year later, on January 4, 1985. (Haywood Opinion; Frontline January 21, 1985)

      May 1: Maoist group, in the orbit of the RCP but not members, which began as RADACADS and changed its name to Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM) in 1983, changes its name to and founds the Maoist Internationalist Movement (MIM). (MIM Website)

      May 28: Vietnamese solidarity leader Nguyen Van Luy and his wife Pham Thi Luu gunned down in front of their San Francisco home, she is killed and he is seriously wounded. A group calling itself the Vietnamese Organization for the Extermination of Communists and the Restoration of the Nation claims responsibility. (Frontline, June 25, 1984)

      May: Salvadoran president-elect Duarte’s visit to U.S. sparks large-scale protests, with CISPES anchoring them. (Frontline, June 25, 1984)

      June 12: Supreme Court 6-3 decision in the Memphis Firefighters case declares that affirmative action in layoffs - superseniority - violates Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. (Frontline, June 25, 1984)

      June 23-29: Jesse Jackson travels to Panama, El Salvador, Cuba and Nicaragua denouncing U.S. policy in the region. (Frontline, July 9, 1984)

      July 13-16: Democratic National Convention in San Francisco nominates Mondale and Ferraro, Jackson delegates inside the convention press unsuccessfully for several minority planks, major “Vote Peace in ‘84” rally outside the hall draws 30-40,000-plus on July 16, Lesbian/Gay Rights march draws 40,000-plus on July 15, Labor March draws 25,000 the same day. Jackson’s nationally televised speech July 17 is the convention’s high point. (Frontline August 6, 1984; Jackson; NLR #149/Jan-Feb 1985; Wei)

      October 13: Edward Cooperman, founder and chair of the U.S. Committee for Scientific Cooperation with Vietnam, is murdered in his office at California State University-Fullerton. (Frontline, October 29, 1984)

      October 31: Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is assassinated amid sectarian Hindu-Sikh strife. (Frontline, November 19, 1984)

      November 6: Reagan easily wins re-election over Walter Mondale. The electorate is racially split: whites vote for Reagan 66-34%, while Blacks oppose him 90-10% and Latinos (even including the Cuban-American community) oppose him 65-35%. But he has short coat-tails; the Democrats lose only 14 seats in the House and retain a 70-seat majority, and they gain two seats in the Senate. (Frontline November 19, 1984)

      November 6: Administration officials “leak” a report that advanced MIG fighter jets are on their way to Nicaragua, which is reported amid U.S. election night tallying. Washington’s provocative charges - quickly proven false - are meant to heighten tensions, and undermine the Nicaraguan election held November 4, won by the FSLN with 68% of the vote over right and left wing rivals, and in the face of a U.S.-sponsored boycott strategy implemented by Arturo Cruz and the CDN. (Frontline, November 19, 1984)

      November 21 (Thanksgiving eve): In response to heightened mass struggle inside South Africa, a campaign against apartheid and U.S. policy toward South Africa is launched with arrests of prominent individuals at the South African Embassy in Washington, D.C. The Free South Africa Movement (FSAM) is formed. A wave of anti-apartheid protests lasting several years begins. (CrossRoads No. 50; Black Scholar Nov-Dec 1985)

      November 25: Under mass pressure, the Uruguayan military permits elections and a civilian, Julia Sanguinetti, assumes the presidency, with the military ending its rule in March 1985. Political prisoners, including members of the Tupamaros and the Broad Front of the late 1960s and early 1970s, are released and begin to resume political activity. (Frontline March 18, 1985; NACLA Nov-Dec 1984 & Sept-Dec 1986)

      November 26: World Court, in a 15-1 vote, rejects Washington’s claim that it has no jurisdiction to hear Nicaragua’s suit against the U.S. and reaffirms its preliminary injunction against the U.S., issued in May, to halt efforts to mine or blockade Nicaragua’s ports and cease military attacks. Meanwhile the Contadora group (Mexico, Venezuela, Columbia, Panama) continues to work toward a detailed proposal for peace, while Managua endorses the Contadora process and Washington works to undermine the Contadora process. On January 18, 1985 the Reagan administration declares it will boycott proceedings in the World Court suit and that it is ending any further direct negotiations with Managua. (Frontline, December 17, 1984 & February 4, 1985)

      December 3: Thousands killed and hundreds of thousands injured by a lethal gas leak at the Union Carbide chemical plant in Bhopal, India. (Frontline, December 31, 1984)

      December 8-9: North Star Network holds national founding convention in San Francisco after starting as a mainly Bay Area network in summer 1983. It draws 100 activists. This reflects regroupment motion from activists with roots in both Maoism and Trotskyism; central to the new group are activists from the Bay Area Socialist Organizing Committee, with roots mainly among New Communist Movement activists, and a circle of ex-members of the SWP. In 1985 the Network initiates publication of The North Star magazine. (self-published material in D-9)

      December 17-18: A hundred-plus selected activists meet under Jesse Jackson’s leadership in Chicago to begin formalizing a structure for the National Rainbow Coalition, Inc. (Frontline, December 31, 1984)

      December 22: Bernhard Goetz shoots four Black teenagers on a New York subway alleges he was being threatened; his racist vigilantism polarizes the city and country. He is acquitted on all but one minor charge on June 16, 1987. (Frontline, July 6, 1987)

      December 24: Jesse Carpenter, a decorated World War II veteran and homeless person, dies of exposure in Washington, DC on Christmas eve. His death follows a long fast by the Community for Creative Non-Violence demanding funds for shelters. Over the last several years homelessness has exploded as a nationwide problem, a direct product of the austerity policies of the Reagan administration. (Frontline, January 21, 1985)


      First internal papers outlining CWP’s transformation into the non-Leninist New Democratic Movement; formal name and program change takes place the next year. (self-published material in BNCM-6; Frontline, October 28, 1985)

      Publication of the Vatican’s counterattack on liberation theology under Pope John Paul II: Instruction on Certain Aspects of the ‘Theology of Liberation’ (Dublin, Veritas Publications); also, Shenfan: The Continuing Revolution in a Chinese Village, by William Hinton (Vintage Books, New York); Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches, by Audre Lorde (Trumansburg, New York; Crossing Press); Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, Indians of The Americas (New York, Praeger); Sayres, Sohnya (Editor), along with Anders Stephenson, Stanley Aronowitz and Fredric Jameson, ‘60s Without Apology (University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis; corresponds to double issue of Social Text, Vol. 3 No. 3 and Vol. 4 No. 1, Spring-Summer 1984); The Sixties Papers: Documents of a Rebellious Decade, edited by Judith Clavir Albert and Stewart Edward Albert (Praeger, New York-Westport-London)

      Release of Beat Street directed by Stan Lathan and Breakin’ directed by Joel Silberg (see note on Hip Hop 1979 above);


      January: LRS Publishes Forward No. 4 “after an absence of five years.” Interview with Bill Gallegos states “we are now the only intact, functioning anti-revisionist communist organization in the U.S. today.” It is now a “Journal of Socialist Thought” and not officially an organ of LRS, as opposed to the earlier version which was a “journal of Marxism-Leninism-Mao-ZeDong Thought.” (Forward No. 4)

      January 19: Sandy Pollack, director of international solidarity for the U.S. Peace Council, is killed in the crash of a plane flight from Havana to Managua. (Black Scholar, January-February 1985)

      January 23-26: First national conference of sanctuary church representatives and activists; the faith-based movement to give sanctuary to refugees from U.S.-sponsored wars in Central America is a major component of opposition to Reagan administration policy. (Frontline, February 4, 1985)

      February 4: New Zealand Prime Minister David Lange announces that his government will not permit a U.S. naval vessel to make a port call because the U.S. refuses to declare that the ship is not carrying nuclear weapons. (Frontline, March 4, 1985)

      February: Democratic Leadership Council, dedicated to moving the party to the right and which becomes the springboard for Bill Clinton’s ascendance, is founded. (Davis in NLR #155; Frontline, April 15, 1985)

      February: AFL-CIO executive council issues “The Changing Situation of Workers and Their Unions” after two and a half years work on the report; the report acknowledges labor’s membership decline and reflects a slight shift leftwards by the top leadership. (Frontline, April 1, 1985)

      March 3: Year-long British miners’ strike ends in defeat for the miners with bitter debates and rifts in the British left. (SR #93/96 May-August 1987; Frontline March 18, 1985).

      March 10: Author and New Communist Movement activist Al Szymanski commits suicide at age 44. (Frontline, April 1, 1985)

      March 11: Mikhail Gorbachev chosen General Secretary of CPSU one day after the death of Konstantin Chernenko, beginning of perestroika and glasnost. (Frontline, April 1, 1985; Almanac)

      March 17: Washington Post Magazine carries an essay by David Horowitz and Peter Collier titled “Goodbye to All That” in which they repudiate their radical pasts and declare themselves Reaganites. Horowitz and Collier then organize a “Second Thoughts” movement among former radicals, which draws only limited support. (Wald)

      March: “The Soviet Union is a socialist country and now we can say so,” says Chinese Vice-Premier Li Peng after meeting with Gorbachev in Moscow, where he attended Konstantin Chernenko’s funeral. Further signs of a thaw in Sino-Soviet relations come in July with a new trade agreement. The Chinese send a letter to the Hungarian ruling party addressed “Dear comrades,” and references to the USSR as a socialist country have become commonplace. (FEER/Revisionism; Frontline, August 5, 1985)

      April 14: Alan Garcia’s social democratic APRA party wins Peruvian election (48%), the Left Unity coalition behind the Marxist Mayor of Lima Alfonso Barrantes does not do as well as expected (23%), the conservative ruling party is badly beaten (5%). The call of the Maoist Shining Path guerrillas - who are becoming notorious for violence against left activists as well as the regime - receives little response. (Frontline, April 29, 1985)

      April 20: Demonstrations for peace, jobs and justice focusing especially on opposition to U.S. policies in Central America (the upcoming contra aid vote) and South Africa. Broad coalition sponsorship turns out 50,000 turn out in D.C. where Jesse Jackson is the key speaker; 20,000 turn out in San Francisco and smaller numbers in Los Angeles and Houston. (Frontline, April 29, 1985)

      April 24: Congress narrowly rejects Reagan’s request for contra aid; but on May 1 Reagan announces a trade embargo against Nicaragua. April 24 is also National Anti-Apartheid Protest Day on campuses, and actions for divestment and against apartheid are held at over 100 colleges and universities. (Frontline, May 13, 1985)

      April: First Green Party candidate elected to office in the U.S., Frank Koehn wins a seat on the Bayfield County Board in northern Wisconsin. Green organizing on a local basis had been underway for several years by this time; they first form as a national network in the “Committees of Correspondence,” then “Green Committees of Correspondence,” then as “The Greens/Green Party USA.” (CrossRoads No. 20)

      April: “We Are the World” single benefiting African famine relief is on top of the Billboard records charts, the “USA for Africa” album including the single went gold within 48 hours of its April 1 release. Later in the year the “Sun City” anti-apartheid single, album and video, much more political and hard-hitting, makes a splash. (Frontline, April 15, October 14, & November 25, 1985)

      May 3-5: National Stop the Arms Race in Space (STARS) convention mobilizes 400 delegates from 50 peace organizations to heightened activity against Reagan’s Star Wars program. (Frontline, May 27, 1985)

      May 5: At Helmut Kohl’s urging, Ronald Reagan on a trip to Germany visits Bitburg military cemetery which includes graves of Nazi SS men arousing widespread protest. (Radical America Vol. 19, No. 5)

      May 13: Philadelphia police drop a bomb on the MOVE Compound during a siege of the group, killing at least 11 people inside and burning down 61 houses and an entire city block. (Frontline, May 27, 1985; Nationalism)

      May 17: Democratic National Committee, making rules changes following the party’s 1984 defeat, votes to end the official status of the Asian Pacific Caucus, the Gay and Lesbian Caucus and some other caucuses in a shift to the right. (Wei)

      May 25-27: CISPES first national convention with over 500 present consolidates the group as a cohesive nationwide organization (CISPES; Frontline June 24, 1985)

      May: CWP holds a congress to transform itself into the non-Leninist New Democratic Movement. (self-published material in BNCM-6; Frontline, October 28, 1985)

      June-July: In various measures, the House authorizes funding for Reagan’s “low-intensity warfare” programs in Nicaragua (June 12), Kampuchea and Afghanistan, and also repeals the 10-year old Clark Amendment banning aid to UNITA & other contras in Angola. (Reed in Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1986; Frontline, June 24 & August 19, 1985)

      July 6: First deadline for Navajos (Diné) to leave their land at Big Mountain; large-scale resistance to the government order for years both before and after the deadline. (Frontline May 27, 1985)

      July 15-26: U.N. Conference to Review and Appraise the Achievements of the U.N. Decade for Women and accompanying NGO gathering (July 10-19) meets in Nairobi. Maureen Reagan heads an extremely right-wing U.S. official delegation that is largely isolated at the conference, though explicit condemnation of Zionism is avoided and the conference document “Forward Looking Strategies” is passed unanimously. (Frontline, June 24 & August 19,1985)

      July: Saturn plant agreement between GM and UAW is a milestone in instituting worker-management cooperation on the shop floor, threatening “Saturnization” of the labor movement widely protested on the left. (Frontline, October 13, 1986)

      August 6: On the Anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing, the Soviet Union begins a six-month (and then frequently extended) unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing, a cornerstone of the new Gorbachev-led Soviet peace offensive. The step responds to an initiative of six nations (Argentina, Mexico, India, Tanzania, Sweden and Greece - the “Delhi Six”) who had met in New Delhi earlier in the year. (Black Scholar March-April 1987 & Jan-Feb 1986)

      August 17: UFCW Local P-9 in Austin, Minnesota goes on strike against Hormel, kicking off one of the longest and most hard-fought labor battles of the 1980s; the UFCW international is not behind the strike, and controversies over the strike fill the labor movement and the left. (Frontline, February 17, March 3, March 17, April 28, 1986)

      September 16: Business Week runs a cover story entitled “The Casino Society” which focuses on the explosion of the U.S. financial system, which in October 1987 becomes visible to all with the “Bloody Monday” stock market crash. (MR December 1985)

      September: Cannery workers, mainly Mexican women, strike in Watsonville, California and win a contract with medical benefits after an 18-month battle. (Chicano; various issues of Frontline)

      October 11: Alex Odeh, Southern California Regional Director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee is assassinated by a bomb blast at the ADC office. The same week U.S. planes intercept and force down an Egyptian airliner carrying the hijackers of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro with the death of a 69-year-old wheelchair bound U.S. Jew; after a standoff with the Italians, the hijackers remain in Italy. (Frontline, October 28, 1985)

      October 28-31: First AFL-CIO convention in decades to hold an open debate on foreign policy - re: Central America - and resolution approved in mildly critical of Reagan’s emphasis on a military solution. (Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1986; Frontline November 11, 1985)

      October: Meeting of remaining members of the DWP dissolve the organization and expel general secretary Marlene Dixon. (Lalich; Frontline, August 3, 1987)

      November 19-21: Reagan-Gorbachev Summit in Geneva, first meeting of Soviet and American top leaders in six years. Jesse Jackson takes nuclear freeze petitions signed by 1.5 million in U.S. to Summit, gets a meeting with Gorbachev but not with Reagan. (Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1986; Frontline, December 9, 1985)

      December 6-8: Conference on Socialism and Activism in New York draws 1,000, sponsors are the Guardian, the Nation, the Progressive and WBAI Radio, with the Guardian playing the key role. The Guardian is generally playing a larger role in promoting left unity/regroupment efforts, after recovering from its party building phase, which ended in 1979-80. See the special supplement “Building a Movement” published in spring 1985 and the John Trinkl series in the Guardian a few months earlier - August & September 1985 - “Where Have All the Party Builders Gone?” (Guardian series in D-3; North Star No. 4; Frontline, December 23, 1985)


      Freedom Road Socialist Organization is formed via merger of PUL and RWH and holds first Congress. The Organization of Revolutionary Unity (ORU), itself a merger of a number of smaller collectives on the West Coast, is the third group involved in forming FRSO, but it appears to have joined in 1986 rather than at the 1985 congress. (Self-published material of the groups in D-10 & BNCM-1)

      West European nations, concerned about losing economic ground to the U.S. and an especially vibrant Japan, adopt the Single European Act to strengthen the European Community (EC) and form a “single internal market” by December 31, 1992. (Frontline, July 17, 1989)

      Publication (see March 17 above) of David Horowitz and Peter Collier’s essay “Goodbye to All That” in the Washington Post Magazine.

      Rise of “left (and not-so-left) post-modernism” and its critique of Marxism & socialism: Publication of Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a Radical Democratic Politics by Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe (Verso, London, 1985), articulating main elements of the critique, especially denial of the revolutionary role of the working class. Laclau and Mouffe had been putting forward these ideas in briefer forms for several years; see, for example, their interview in Socialist Review No. 66, Nov-Dec 1982 (reprinted in Unfinished). The works of Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida and Jean-Francois Lyotard and the “post-structuralists” also gain in prominence. The Marxism-post-modernism debate is hot through the mid-80s and into the ‘90s, with Marxism steadily losing ground especially in the academic left. Among the works that became important in the U.S. that grappled with the discussion from the Marxist end (to varying degrees) were Fredric Jameson, Postmodernism (Duke University Press, 1991); David Harvey, The Condition of Postmodernity (Blackwell 1990); Ellen Meiksins Wood, The Retreat from Class: A New “True” Socialism (Verso, London, 1986) - also a response to folks like Hobsbawm and Gorz who are not in the post-modernist camp; Alex Callincos, Against Postmodernism (St. Martins Press, 1990). More from the post-modern side are Steven Best and Douglas Kellner, Postmodern Theory published in 1991; Barry Smart, Modern Conditions, Postmodern Controversies (London, Routledge) in 1992; and Ernesto Laclau, New Reflections on the Revolution of Our Time (London, Verso) in 1990. (Sources: Costello, Rothenberg and Epstein in CrossRoads Nos. 36, 37 and 40; also, Postmodern Age)

      Also published in 1985: Communists in Harlem During the Depression, by Mark Naison (Grove Press, New York); The Rise and Fall of an American Army: U.S. Ground Forces in Vietnam 1965-1973, Shelby L. Stanton (Presidio Novato, California; Presidio Press); Black American Politics: From the Washington Marches to Jesse Jackson, by Manning Marable (Verso, London)

      Release of The Killing Fields, directed by Roland Joffe. This is the year Sylvester Stallone’s Rambo is a box office smash, but this is also the year of Haskell Wexler’s anti-contra film, Latino.


      January 20: Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday is celebrated as a national holiday for the first time; it had taken a 15-year fight in Congress to pass the bill, and under pressure Ronald Reagan signed it. (Frontline, February 3, 1986)

      January-February: "New" Against the Current launched (Solid-IS History)

      January-February: Ugandan National Resistance Army led by Yoweri Museveni takes Kampala and assumes power in Uganda; Museveni had worked with FRELIMO in Mozambique and had been fighting the Amin and Obote regimes on an anti-imperialist basis since the early 1970s. (NLR #156)

      Early February: Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier is flown out of Haiti on a U.S. Air Force jet in the wake of rising popular protests; he is replaced by a six-person junta hand-picked by the U.S. in an attempt to put a cap on further popular revolt. But mass actions continue against “Duvalierism without Duvalier.” (Frontline, February 17 & April 14, 1986)

      February 7: “Snap” election in the Philippines, Marcos claims victory but massive upsurge and then desertion of military leaders Juan Ponce Enrile and Fidel Ramos and withdrawal of U.S. backing leads to the fall of the regime and ascension to the presidency of Cory Aquino. CPP had boycotted the election and was sidelined in the upsurge; period of (tactical) self-criticism and some re-evaluation afterwards, shut down (temporarily) by a return to orthodoxy in mid-1987. (Rocamora; Frontline, February 17, March 3, March 17, & July 7, 1986)

      February 28: Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme assassinated by unknown assailants. Palme had come to prominence in the U.S. when he marched with the Vietnamese to protest the U.S. war in Vietnam while prime minister during the 1960s. Ousted from power in 1976, he led the Social Democratic party back to government in 1982, and continued to take strong peace and anti-U.S. positions in world affairs. (Frontline, January 30, 1989; Almanac)

      March 9: NOW-initiated March for Women’s Lives to defend abortion rights which are under heavy attack from the Reagan administration and the right draws 100,000 to DC and, on March 16, 30,000 in Los Angeles. (Frontline, March 31, 1986)

      March 20: Reagan fails to win House approval of his proposal to aid the Nicaraguan contras with $100 million, the vote is 222-210 after a major political struggle. Still, part of Reagan’s defeat is that a later compromise was promised by anti-contra congresspeople in which Reagan will get much of what he wanted under other guises. (Frontline March 31, 1986)

      March 21: Agreement signed in Beijing to send Soviet technicians to China. (FEER/Revisionism)

      March: Solidarity founded, from Workers Power (publishers of Against the Current), International Socialists (publishers of Changes) and Socialist Unity, a split-off from SWP which briefly passed through the Socialist Action group. A result of the “regroupment” motion within a variant of Trotskyism. (self-published material, especially Solid-IS History, in D-6)

      March: Spanish referendum on NATO affiliation passes by a narrow margin, after the governing Socialist Party reversed position to back Spain’s membership. (NLR #156)

      April 9-13: Italian Communist Party’s 17th Congress, by this time Luciana Castellina and Lucio Magri and others from the once-expelled Manifesto group are back in the PCI. (NLR #158)

      April 14-15: U.S. bombs Libya in an (unsuccessful) attempt to kill Moammar Khadafy, which does kill two of his young children. There is widespread criticism of the attack in Western Europe, and the assault is also criticized by former President Jimmy Carter. During this period “from 1983 through 1985 and 1986, ‘terrorism’ claimed public attention on a scale hitherto unknown.. the Secretary of State elevated terrorism to the status of ‘number one’ foreign policy problem...”; the discourse of labeling all opposition movements terrorism is spearheaded by the U.S. and Israel. (NLR #171; Frontline April 28 & May 12, 1986; Almanac)

      April 17-19: “Founding Convention” of the Rainbow Coalition in Washington, DC draws 850 delegates and observers from 43 states. The gathering is mostly Black but including large contingents from other communities of color, numbers of white farmers and white progressives and the presidents of three major unions. (Frontline, April 14 & April 28, 1986)

      April 26: Nuclear disaster at Chernobyl, the world’s worst nuclear reactor accident to date. According to Kagarlitsky, this event also has a large impact on the process of perestroika and the political battles within the USSR. (MR June 1988; Kagarlitsky in NLR #169/May-June 1988; Medvedev in NLR #157; Frontline, May 12, 1986)

      Spring: Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence (CAAAV) is formed in New York City. (Wei)

      May 2-4: New Directions conference of liberal and progressive Democrats, with heavy labor representation and Jesse Jackson invited to give one of the keynote speeches, trying to check the party’s rightward drift; Michael Harrington and DSA are the initiating force. (Frontline, May 26, 1986)

      May 8: UFCW president William Wynn announces that he is putting striking Local P-9 in trusteeship; the strike and nationwide support work, including a boycott of Hormel, continues. (Frontline, May 26, July 21, 1986)

      May 27: Reagan administration announces it will no longer honor the SALT II Treaty, immediately coming under fire from European allies as well as the Soviets and the peace movement. The Soviets continue their new “peace offensive”; on August 18, Gorbachev announces that the USSR is extending its year-long unilateral moratorium on nuclear tests until the end of 1986 and again calls on the U.S. to join in. (Frontline, June 9 & September 1, 1986)

      June 3: CPUSA launches the People’s Daily World, which appears five times a week, combining the Daily World and the West Coast-based weekly People’s World. (Frontline, July 7, 1986)

      June 16: ANC-led Freedom Movement, with the above-ground United Democratic Front (UDF) in the forefront, shuts down South Africa in a one-day strike in the face of massive repression on the 10th anniversary of the Soweto Uprising. The movement has unalterably seized the political initiative in the country. (Frontline, July 7, 1986)

      June 27: Stephen Bingham is acquitted of charges of supplying the gun for an alleged escape attempt from San Quentin in 1971 in which George Jackson was killed. Bingham had had authorities in 1971 and turned himself in to face trial in 1984. (Frontline, July 7, 1986)

      June 30: Supreme Court upholds state “anti-sodomy” laws as constitutional in Georgia case Bowers v. Hardwick by a 5-4 vote, “the Dred Scott case for the gay rights movement.” The Georgia Supreme Court ruled this same law unconstitutional 12 years later, November 23, 1998. (Frontline, July 21, 1986; B.A.R. November 26, 1998 in BMOV-1)

      July 25-27: West Coast Conference on Socialism and Activism, a follow up to last December’s Conference in New York, draws 750 in Berkeley. (North Star No. 4; Frontline, August 18, 1986)

      July: In the wake of changed circumstances caused by the overthrow of the Marcos dictatorship in the Philippines, the KDP is dissolved, with some members playing a more active role in the new round of debates within the Philippine revolutionary movement and others, largely through the Line of March Filipino Commission, focusing their work within the Filipino community in the U.S. The Ang Katipunan newspaper is reorganized, renamed Katipunan and issued as an independent publication beginning in September-October 1987, and continues publishing until October 1991 when financial pressures force its closure. (Toribio)

      August: China’s first securities exchange with a national reach set up by the Shenyang Trust Investment Company. Shareholding had begun in 1982 but selling shares outside a firm itself did not begin until 1984 when equity markets were first opened. Following the Shenyang Company’s step, Shanghai, Beijing and other cities set up fixed sites for the transfer of shares and bonds. The “marketization” of China’s economy is well underway. (Problems January-February 1989; “The Chinese Road to Capitalism” from New Left Review #199, PNT #188 in D-1; Frontline, November 10, 1986)

      September 1-8: Eighth Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Harare, Zimbabwe, on the 25th Anniversary of the Movement. 101 nations participate; the location is chosen to statement of solidarity with the “Frontline States” and liberation movement in South Africa amid heightened confrontation with the apartheid regime. (Black Scholar March-April 1987 & Nov-Dec 1987; Frontline, September 29, 1986)

      September: Striking and employed workers at Hormel’s plant at Austin approve a new contract effectively ending the long and bitter strike there. The core of activists from P-9 term the contract a sell-out, especially since many strikers do not regain their jobs, and they form a new union, the North American Meatpackers Union, to try to continue the struggle. (Frontline, September 29 & October 27, 1986)

      September: Article by Gordon Chang - ideologically linked to LRS - in the September issue of Monthly Review “Perspectives on Marxism in China Today”: Says there is a revival of theoretical work and is mostly an interview with the head of the Institute of Marxism, Leninism, Mao ZeDong Thought, who says: “Lenin’s theory of the inevitability of wars between imperialist countries is no longer valid”; “in the past we once said that the Soviet Union had restored capitalism, but now we think that was wrong” and “Revisionism is a special terminology designating only Eduard Bernstein.” (Chang)

      October 2: Congress hands Ronald Reagan a major foreign policy defeat by overriding his veto of the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act of 1986 imposing limited sanctions against South Africa. (CrossRoads No. 50; Frontline, October 13, 1986)

      October 5: Sandinistas shoot down a CIA plane over Nicaragua and capture one crew member, Eugene Hasenfus; the incident dramatizes the extent of U.S. support for the contras sidestepping restrictions passed by Congress. (Frontline, October 27, 1986)

      October 11-12: Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev meet in Reykjavik, Iceland for their second Summit. Sweeping disarmament proposals from the Soviets put Reagan on the defensive, Star Wars/SDI is the main block to a wide-ranging arms control agreement, which is almost reached to ban all nuclear weapons over 10 years, tantalizing the world. Fred Halliday has argued that the Second Cold War ended with “the Iceland Summit of 1986,” and Eric Hobsbawm writes that “for practical purposes, the Cold War ended at the two summits of Reykjavik 1986 and Washington 1987.” (Frontline, October 13, October 27 & November 10, 1986; Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; Hobsbawm)

      October 19: Samora Machel, first president of the People’s Republic of Mozambique, dies in a suspicious plane crash in South Africa, his plane was en route from Zimbabwe to Maputo. (Black Scholar March-April 1987; Frontline, November 10, 1986)

      Fall: First issue of Rethinking Schools, a periodical mainly produced by public school teacher-activists dedicated to radical educational reform, is published. (Schools)

      November 2: The Lebanese magazine Al-Shiraa breaks the story of secret U.S. arms sales to Iran. On November 13 Reagan acknowledges on national television that such sales have gone on for the past 18 months but denies they are an “arms-for-hostages” trade off. On November 25 Attorney General Ed Meese reveals that profits from the arms sales were illegally diverted to the Nicaraguan contras. Further facts about the covert network run by Colonel Oliver North out of the White house basement come to light. All this kicks off the long-running Iran-Contra/Contragate scandal. Over the next few months, facing a vigorous Soviet peace offensive, strong popular struggles in Central America and South Africa, and increasing protest at home, it (temporarily) appears to many that the Reagan offensive has reached its limits. Meanwhile, in hearing the next spring and early summer Oliver North becomes a hero of the right and Congress refrains from seriously pressing its inquiry or taking steps against administration officials. (Frontline, November 24, December 8 and December 22, 1986, April 27, July 20, August 3 & November 23, 1987)

      November 4: Democrats regain control of the Senate - largely on the strength of Black votes for conservative Democrats in the South - and keep control of the House in mid-term elections. Chief Justice Rose Bird is ousted in California after a right-wing campaign against her rulings condemning the death penalty. (Frontline, November 24, 1986)

      November 6: Reagan signs the anti-immigrant Simpson/Rodino Act (formerly Simpson/Mazzoli, and officially the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, or IRCA) after it was passed in the final moments of the congressional session. Passage followed a long battle (since 1982) which saw nationwide mobilizations of a growing immigrant rights movement. The centerpiece of the law is upped border control and employer sanctions; included also are “legalization” provisions for undocumented immigrants now in the U.S. and watered down anti-discrimination provisions. Protests continue when the law goes into effect the following May. (Frontline, October 27 and November 24, 1986, May 25, 1987)

      December 5-7: Nuclear Weapons Campaign Freeze Campaign convention approves a merger with the Committee for a SANE Nuclear Policy (SANE); the new organization, SANE/Freeze, which is formally founded at a Congress November 20-22, 1987 attended by 1,000 activists, is by far the largest peace organization in the U.S. (Frontline, December 22, 1986 & December 7, 1987)

      December 13: Henry Winston, chairman of the CPUSA, dies at age 75. (Frontline, January 19, 1987)

      December 16: In a personal phone call to Andrei Sakharov, Mikhail Gorbachev tells the banished Soviet physicist he is free to return to Moscow, indicating the extent of Soviet reforms. (Frontline, January 19, 1987)

      December 20: Murder of 23-year-old Michael Griffith in Howard Beach by a racist mob - following the highly publicized killings of Eleanor Bumpers and Michael Stewart - sets off a period of anti-racist protests in New York. (Frontline, January 19, 1987)

      December: Sixth Congress of the Vietnam Communist Party targets major economic problems, criticizes one-sided focus on big industrial efforts, overcentralization, etc., and initiates period of “renovation” with greater utilization of market mechanisms, the private sector, foreign investment, etc. (Frontline, March 14, 1988)


      First edition of The Year Left from Verso, titled “An American Notebook” (NLR 175/May-June 1989)

      Former New Left activist Michael Lerner launches Tikkun: A Quarterly Jewish Critique of Politics, Culture and Society. (Frontline, September 1, 1986)

      Publication of Intervention. How America Became Involved in Vietnam, by George McT. Kahin (Alfred A. Knopf); Mike Davis, Prisoners of the American Dream (Verso)

      Oliver Stone’s film Platoon wins Academy Awards for best picture and best director


      March: ACT-UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) is formed and its first action is civil disobedience on Wall Street. (Bay Area Reporter, March 13, 1997; clip in BMOV-1)

      March 31: The FMLN displays its continuing strength, political and military, with a devastating surprise attack on the supposedly impregnable El Para*so garrison. (Frontline, April 13, 1987)

      April 7: Harold Washington wins re-election as Chicago mayor, beating Ed Vrdolyak who ran on the “Solidarity Party” ticket; he had earlier defeated Jane Byrne in the February 24 Democratic primary. And the Washington coalition wins a firm council majority as well. (Frontline, March 16 & April 27, 1987)

      April 25: March and Rally for Peace and Justice in Central America and Southern Africa, with central initiative from the Coalition for a New Foreign Policy and the National Labor Committee. More than 100,000 turn out in D.C., including 35,000 trade unionists. The AFL-CIO top leadership had (unsuccessfully) attempted to coerce many union presidents into withdrawing their support or participation. The same day 30,000 demonstrate in San Francisco. (Dyson in CrossRoads No. 40; Frontline, April 13, April 27 & May 11, 1987)

      June 11: Thatcher and the Tories win third straight general election victory in Britain. (NLR #164)

      June 23: Jobs with Justice campaign is launched by leaders of several unions, to be coordinated by the AFL-CIO’s Industrial Union Department, projected as a coalition of religious, civil rights, women’s, consumer and community groups led by trade unions. (PA January 1988)

      August 7: Presidents of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua sign Central America peace agreement in Esquipulas, Guatemala, witnessed by representatives of the Contadora nations (Mexico, Panama, Columbia and Venezuela) and the four-nation Contadora Support Group (Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and Peru). Costa Rican president Oscar Arias is a key player. There are still many hurdles to overcome before any kind of peace is reached, but the historic accord badly undercuts Reagan administration policy in the region and Washington sets out immediately to undermine it. (Frontline, August 17, August 31 & September 28, 1987)

      August: Miners strike in South Africa shakes the regime. (Frontline, August 31, 1987)

      September: Line of March enters period of crisis and re-evaluation, formulated a few months later as “Re-examination, Re-direction and Democratization/RRD” (self-published material in BLM-3)

      October 9-11: First regular convention of the Rainbow Coalition draws over 1,200 delegates and observers from 38 states, puts the Coalition on a seemingly firm organizational and political foundation. And in contrast to 1984 there is a significantly broadened “white stripe” in the Rainbow. On Saturday evening October 10 Jesse Jackson makes his formal announcement that he is running for President in 1988. Ron Daniels, a long-time activist prominent in the National Black Assembly, NBIPP and other groups, is the Rainbow Executive Director, having been chosen for that post in the spring.(Frontline, September 28, October 12 & October 26, 1987)

      October 11: National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights is one of the largest civil rights demonstrations in history, with perhaps half a million attending. The Names Quilt, displayed for the first time on the Mall, is a dramatic symbol of the toll AIDS has taken. (Frontline, October 26, 1987; CrossRoads No. 30)

      October: In the wake of the National March for Lesbian and Gay Rights, Boricua Gay and Lesbian Forum, the Puerto Rican (as opposed to Latino) gay and lesbian organization is formed in New York City. (Torres)

      October 19: “Bloody Monday” stock market crash; Dow-Jones loses 508 points, largest single-day drop in history. Anticipated for some time, the “crash” marks a new period of financial instability. (Frontline November 9, 1987; MR June 1987)

      October 26-29: AFL-CIO readmits the Teamsters at its 17th biennial convention. (Frontline, November 9, 1987)

      October: Beginning of battle of Cuito Carnavale in Angola, which lasts until June 1988. In the “fiercest conventional battles on African soil since Erwin Rommel was defeated at El Alamein,” the Angolans, Cubans, SWAPO and ANC defeat the South Africans and UNITA backed by the U.S. The victory is decisive in winning the agreement providing for Namibian independence signed December 22, 1988 (see below). (MR April 1989; Brittain in NLR #172/Nov-Dec 1988)

      October: Boris Yeltsin comes to prominence after causing an uproar with a speech criticizing the leadership’s approach to perestroika at a CPSU central committee meeting. The next month is removed from his posts as head of the Moscow CP and member of the Politburo. He began to appeal to the population by advocating an end to special perquisites for leading officials and more rapid democratization. (Kotz/Weir)

      Late October: Nomination of Robert Bork to fill the vacant seat on the Supreme Court fails to win approval in the Senate, as the mobilization against it brings a very broad civil rights/anti-Reagan coalition. (Frontline, August 31, September 28, October 26 & November 9, 1987)

      November 4-5: “Meeting of Representatives of the Parties and Movements Participating in the Celebration of the 70th Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution” in Moscow, an unprecedented gathering of 178 delegations with speeches by socialist and social democratic parties as well as communist and national-liberation parties; the event marks Gorbachev’s effort as a new “culture of mutual relations” among progressive forces. (Meeting)

      November 24: Tawana Brawley is abducted from her home in upstate New York and is found four days later, setting off a long political, legal and racial battle. (Frontline, March 28, 1988)

      November 25: Chicago Mayor Harold Washington dies of a heart attack; the Washington coalition breaks up in the aftermath as several council members go back over to the machine. (Frontline, December 7 & December 21 1987)

      Winter (end of the year): First issue of North Star Review, a merger of Socialist Politics and The North Star. (self-published material in D-9; Frontline, February 1, 1988)

      December 8: Gorbachev and Reagan sign the INF Treaty eliminating medium and shorter-range nuclear missiles on first day of their third Summit in Washington, DC; Hobsbawm among others identify this (and the previous Summit in Reykjavik in 1986) as “for practical purposes” marking the end of the Cold War (MR July 1988; Hobsbawm; Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; NLR #168/March-April 1988; Frontline, September 28, November 9 and December 21, 1987)

      December 9: Four Palestinians are killed in Gaza when an Israeli tractor-trailer collides with their vehicle. mass protests and repression follows, the protests spread to the West Bank, a general strike December 21 shuts down the Occupied Territories and Arabs within the pre-1967 borders of Israel join the strike. Though protests had been escalating since September, these events mark the beginning of the Palestinian uprising - the intifada - whose virtually continuous mass protests for the next two years energize and unite the Palestinian movement (Frontline, January 18, 1988)


      Publication of Perestroika: New Thinking for Our Country and the World, by Mikhail Gorbachev (New York, Harper & Row)

      The Commission for Racial Justice of the United Church of Christ releases its landmark report Toxic Wastes and Race in the United States, a spur for the environmental justice movement. (CrossRoads No. 51)

      Publication also of the major volleys promoting the “good [early] sixties, bad [late] sixties” school of thought: Todd Gitlin’s The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage (New York, Bantam); James Miller, “Democracy Is in The Streets”: From Port Huron to the Siege of Chicago (New York, Simon & Schuster). An earlier less promoted volley was Wini Breines, Community and Organization in the New Left, 1962-1968: The Great Refusal. in 1982 - see above. And more generally, the upcoming 20th anniversary of “1968” means a large number of books about the ‘60s appears. Besides Gitlin and Miller, 1987 also sees the publication of Maurice Isserman, If I Had a Hammer: The Death of the Old Left and the Birth of the New Left (Basic Books, New York); Mary King’s book about the Civil Rights Movement, Freedom Song (William Morrow and Company, New York); George Katsiaficas, The Imagination of the New Left: A Global Analysis of 1968 (South End Press, Boston); Tariq Ali, Street Fighting Years: An Autobiography of the Sixties (William Collins Sons & Co., London); and (including the ‘60s and more), Paul Buhle, Marxism in the United States: Remapping the History of the American Left (London, Verso). The next year, 1988, David Caute’s The Year of the Barricades: A Journey Through 1968 appears (Harper & Row, New York); Reunion: A Memoir, by Tom Hayden (Random House, New York); 1968: A Student Generation in Revolt, an international oral history edited by Ronald Fraser (Pantheon Books, New York); and A. Belden Fields, Trotskyism and Maoism, Theory and Practice in France and the United States (Autonomedia, Brooklyn). Meanwhile Michael Harrington looks back at his role in the antagonism between the New Left and social democracy (more specifically, SDS and the LID) in “Between Generations” in a symposium on the 25th anniversary of the Port Huron Statement in Socialist Review 93/94, May-August 1987. And this is also the year of a frontal ideological assault on the New Left and its legacy by the neoconservatives: publication of Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind: How Higher Education Has Failed Democracy and Impoverished the Souls of Today’s Students, foreword by Saul Bellow (New York, Simon & Schuster) - it’s on the New York Times best-seller list for more than 38 weeks. (see NLR #169); and from a somewhat different direction but in a way contributing to the assault, Russell Jacoby, The Last Intellectuals: American Culture in the Age of Academe (New York)

      Also in 1987: Cause at Heart: A Former Communist Remembers, by Junius Irving Scales and Richard Nickson (Athens, Georgia; the University of Georgia Press); The New York Intellectuals: The Rise and Decline of the Anti-Stalinist Left from the 1930s to the 1980s, by Alan Wald (Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press); Prisoners of the American Dream: Politics and Economy in the History of the U.S. Working Class, by Mike Davis (Verso); And the Band Played On: Politics, People and the AIDS Epidemic, by Randy Shilts (St. Martin’s Press); Taking on General Motors: A Case Study of the UAW Campaign to Keep GM Van Nuys Open, by Eric Mann (UCLA Institute of Industrial Relations) - the Los Angeles Labor/Community Strategy Center, which plays an important role in ‘90s progressive activism in L.A., had its roots in organizing covered in this book. (Frontline, May 9, 1988)

      Broadcast of PBS award-winning series Eyes on the Prize, on the civil rights movement; and publication of the accompanying book by Juan Williams, Eyes on the Prize: America in the Civil Rights Years, 1954-63 (Viking Penguin, New York). (Black Scholar Jan-Feb 1988; Prize); Release of Richard Attenborough’s film Cry Freedom.


      January 1: Gorbachev’s perestroika is at a turning point as new laws take effect that are intended to shift the economy to a new form of planning and decentralized management. Over the next few years perestroika’s economic reforms will fail to bear fruit even as Soviet society opens up with glasnost and democratization. (Perestroika)

      January: Files indicating the extent of FBI infiltration of and spying against CISPES are made public. (CISPES)

      January: First issue of Z Magazine, sponsored by South End Press. (Frontline, February 15, 1988)

      January-June: Jesse Jackson’s second presidential campaign gets seven million votes, the highest ever for a non-nominee, and galvanizes the Black community and progressive movement. The AFL-CIO does not endorse any Democratic candidate (as in its early endorsement of Mondale in 1984) and there is a strong Labor for Jackson movement and he wins the endorsement of many unions. (Black Scholar January-February 1989; Frontline spring 1988 issues)

      January-November: The New Alliance Party runs Lenora Fulani for president, conducting much of its operation through a “Rainbow Lobby” often misrepresented as part of or “the real” Rainbow Coalition. Many exposes of NAP and its history are circulated on the left, including a statement by NAP’s 1984 presidential candidate Black labor activist Dennis Serrette who denounces NAP as a manipulative cult. (Berlet; Frontline April 11, 1988; Serrette statement in BMIS-1)

      February 3: The House narrowly (219-211) votes down a $63 million contra aid package. (Frontline, February 15, 1988)

      February 8: In his latest initiative on withdrawal from Afghanistan, Gorbachev offers a Soviet troop pullout date beginning May 15 and to be completed in 10 months. (Frontline, February 29, 1988)

      February 24: In the most sweeping restrictions enacted since the early 1960s, the South African government bans the United Democratic Front (UDF), the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and 15 other organizations, implementing the repressive side of its repression/cooptation strategy to preserve apartheid. (Frontline, March 14, 1988)

      February: Large student activist conference at Rutgers draws 700 from 130 campuses, which Abbie Hoffman played a prominent role in pulling together. He had been arrested with Amy Carter protesting CIA recruitment on campuses November 24, 1986. The conference is racially and politically divided; a follow-up meeting during the summer at Chapel Hill in North Carolina forms the Student Action Union. (Jezer; Wohlforth in NLR #178/Nov-Dec 1989))

      March 8: “Super Tuesday” with 20 states holding primaries or caucuses, originally the brainchild of conservative Democrats to front-load the primary schedule with conservative, mostly southern states, backfires with Jesse Jackson’s strong performances. Jackson wins 5 states and finishes a strong second in 11 other primaries or caucuses; his 27% of the popular vote puts him slightly ahead of Democratic insider favorite Michael Dukakis and remaining major candidate Al Gore. In delegate totals Jackson is virtually neck and neck with Dukakis. (Frontline, February 1 & March 14 & March 28, 1988)

      March 10-13: Annual Convention of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, held as the intifada gathers steam and unites previously divided Palestinian factions draws 2,000 to Washington, DC. Through the intifada, Arab American protests and the Jackson campaign, the Palestinian and Arab causes are gaining a first ever serious (if later proven temporary) foothold in U.S. political life. (Frontline, March 28, 1988)

      March 23: Agreement signed by the Nicaraguan government and the contra leadership for a cease-fire, in a key step in implementation of the Esquipulas Central America Peace Agreement signed the previous August. (Frontline, April 11, 1988)

      Spring: First issue of the new magazine Rethinking Marxism, “especially committed to a non-determinist Marxism.” (Intro to Postmodern Age)

      Spring: Supporters of the Morning Star newspaper in Britain form a new party, the Communist Party of Britain, organizationally consolidating the years-in-the-making split with the Communist Party of Great Britain leadership, who are identified with the concept of “New Times” and publishing the magazine Marxism Today. (Frontline, October 10, 1988)

      April 14: U.S., USSR, Afghanistan and Pakistan sign agreement in Geneva, providing for Soviet troop withdrawal to begin May 15 and be complete before the end of the year; the U.S. pledges to cut off aid to the Afghan contras only when the Soviets cut off aid to the Afghan government. (Frontline, April 25, 1988)

      April 19: Dukakis wins the New York primary, Jesse is second and Gore, a poor third despite aggressive support by New York City mayor Ed Koch, suspends campaigning. Dukakis also wins Pennsylvania on April 19 and with upped support from party insiders is now considered the “inevitable” nominee. George Bush is meanwhile locking up the Republican nomination. (Frontline, May 9, 1988)

      June 11: 100,000 demonstrate in New York City at the U.N.’s Third Special Session on Disarmament. (Frontline, June 20, 1988)

      June 28-July 1: Extraordinary 19th All-Union Conference of the CPSU meets in Moscow and focuses on political reform. The unprecedented contested election of delegates to the conference and the open proceedings are a high point of glasnost the democratization efforts. But the conference contains warning signals that perestroika - economic restructuring - is being “smothered.” (Frontline, July 18 & August 29, 1988)

      July 6: Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas, National Democratic Front candidate backed by almost the entire Mexican left, breaks open the long period of one-party-PRI rule in Mexico with a dramatic showing the presidential election; he almost certainly wins, but the election is stolen through fraud and the PRI’s Carlos Salinas de Gortari takes office. The candidate of the rightist National Action Party (PAN) also garners many votes. In the months following the election, most of the progressive and left forces in Mexico move to unite in a new party, the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), officially launched in February 1989. (Frontline, July 18 & December 5, 1988)

      July 19: Jesse Jackson’s nationally televised speech, “A Call to Common Ground,” is the high point of the Democratic National Convention, which selects Lloyd Bentsen as Dukakis’ running mate angering many Jackson/Rainbow supporters. (Black Scholar January-February 1989)

      August 10: Congress has acted on the recommendation of the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians that the government apologize to the people of Japanese descent interned during World War 2 and pay each evacuee $20,000; on this day Reagan signs the reparations bill into law and payments began October 1, 1990. (Resolution from the Fall 1991 Convention of the Northern California District of the CPUSA in D-7; San Francisco Chronicle August 9, 1998 in BMOV-2)

      August 17: Pakistani dictator General Zia-ul Haq dies in a plane crash. (Frontline, September 26, 1988)

      August 20: Cease-fire ends the Iraq-Iran war. (Almanac)

      September 17: UFW Vice-President Dolores Huerta is beaten by police at an anti-Bush demonstration in San Francisco, her spleen is ruptured. (Frontline, September 26, 1988)

      September 30: Following up on the CPSU’s 19th Conference, the Central Committee conducts a sweeping political shake up to try to break the log-jam obstructing perestroika reforms, amid a growing sense of alarm among the populace that Gorbachev’s program is not producing results. The next day Gorbachev is elected president by the USSR, a post which will acquire more authority under the political reforms mandated by the 19th Extraordinary Conference. Soviets continue to take initiatives in their “new thinking” foreign policy attempt to settle regional conflicts. (Frontline, October 24, 1988; various issues in late 1988-89)

      October 21: James Aronson, one of the three founders of the National Guardian in 1948, dies at 73, just a few hours after he, and other founders Cedric Belfrage and the late John McManus were honored in absentia by the current staff of the Guardian at the paper’s 40th anniversary dinner in New York City. (Frontline, November 21, 1988; MR February 1989)

      November 8: After a lackluster campaign in which the Dukakis camp gives Jesse Jackson only a minimal role until very late in the effort, and in which Bush plays the racist “Willie Horton” card, Bush beats Dukakis in the presidential election (Frontline, October 10, October 24, November 7 & November 21, 1988)

      November 11: 1,200 activists and academics attend a conference entitled “Anticommunism and the U.S.: History and Consequences” at Harvard, sponsored by the Institute for Media Analysis. (Frontline, December 5, 1988)

      November 15: Speaking at the 19th “Intifada Session” of the Palestine National Council in Algiers, PLO chair Yasir Arafat reads a Palestinian Declaration of Independence and declares Statehood. Arafat is invited to speak to the U.N. General Assembly but the U.S. denies him a visa and the Assembly moves to Geneva for a one-day session. But then on December 14, Secretary of State George Shultz announces that the U.S. will open talks with the PLO, a major shift in U.S. policy resulting from the intifada and (technically) the PLO’s recognition of U.N. Resolution 242 accepting the existence of the state of Israel and calling for a “two-state” solution. (Frontline, December 5, 1988 & January 16, 1989; Shots)

      December 22: Agreement signed by Angola, Cuba and South Africa providing for elections and independence in Namibia, withdrawal of Cuban troops from Angola. (MR April 1989)

      December 22: Francisco “Chico” Mendes, a rubber tapper, union organizer and defender of the Amazon rainforest, is murdered in Brazil, setting off an international outcry and underscoring the threat to the Amazon Basin; this is the year Time named “our fragile environment” Man of the Year. (Frontline, January 30, 1989)


      Formation of the Student Environmental Action Coalition-SEAC. SEAC’s first national conference, “Threshold,” in October 1989 drew 1,700 and its second, “Catalyst” in 1990 at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana attracted 7,600, the largest student activist gathering in U.S. history. The 1991 SEAC conference drew 2,000. (CrossRoads No. 20)

      National Toxics Campaign is formed as the grassroots organizing partner of the National Toxics Campaign Fund, whose roots go back to a 1984 campaign against toxics hazards in New Hampshire. For the next few years NTC and NTCF are very prominent in the environmental movement but the organization is torn apart in a major struggle over racism and also sexism in 1992-93. (NTC)

      Publication of A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam, by Neil Sheehan (Random House, New York); Taylor Branch, Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954-63 (Simon and Schuster, New York) - a Pulitzer Prize Winner; Richard Flacks, Making History: The American Left and the American Mind (Columbia University Press, New York); Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall, Agents of Repression: The FBI's Secret Wars Against the Black Panther Party and American Indian Movement (Boston: South End Press - “corrected edition” published 1990)


      February 4: Ayatollah Khomeini condemns author Salman Rushdie for “spiritual treason” and pronounces a death sentence upon him for authorship of The Satanic Verses, a book insulting Islam that becomes the center of a global-cultural controversy. (Black Scholar March-April 1989)

      February: P.W. Botha resigns as head of South Africa’s ruling National Party and is replaced by F.W. de Klerk. The effort to repress the freedom movement has failed. Government representatives begin to meet openly with representatives of the ANC. (CrossRoads No. 50)

      March 3: The National Rainbow Coalition Board of Directors adopt a set of changes in the Rainbow’s by-laws that concentrate authority in the center and diminish the power of activist members, on the grounds that this will make the organization broader and more inclusive and will limit the ability of “small groups of people” to have undue influence. The changes are highly controversial and, for many activists, mark the beginning of the erosion of the Rainbow as a vehicle for grassroots progressive activism. (Frontline, March 27 & April 24, 1989)

      March 25: Worst oil spill in U.S. history when the Exxon Valdez pours 12 million gallons of crude into Prince William Sound in Alaska. (Frontline, May 8, 1989)

      March: First contested elections in the USSR in decades as 89.8% of Soviet voters go to the polls to choose a new 2,250-memberCongress of People’s Deputies, which in turn would select a 500-550-member Supreme Soviet from within its ranks. The results were a major setback for the CPSU establishment as many officially backed candidates were defeated. Boris Yeltsin makes his comeback, he is elected to the new Soviet and becomes a leader of the rapidly coalescing opposition movement. (Kotz/Weir)

      April 4: Richard M. Daley wins special mayoral election in Chicago, defeating Timothy Evans of the Harold Washington Party, recapturing city hall for his family and the traditional power structure and decisively ending the progressive years of the Washington Coalition. (Frontline, April 24, 1989)

      April 9: Half a million or more march in Washington in the NOW-sponsored March for Women’s Equality/Women’s Lives, as a major Supreme Court decision on abortion looms. (Frontline, April 24, 1989)

      April 12: Abbie Hoffman commits suicide. (Jezer; Frontline, May 8, 1989)

      April 25: Lawyer and activist Ken Cockrell, one of the leading figures in the League of Revolutionary Black Workers in the late 1960s, dies at age 50 of a heart attack. (Frontline, May 22, 1989)

      April 28: Dennis Rivera wins the presidency of New York’s Hospital and Health Care Workers Local 1199, which will soon close the books on eight years of bitter internal struggle within the union; over the past two years the Local has re-emerged as a leading force in the area’s labor and progressive movements. (Frontline, May 22, 1989)

      April-June: Upheaval in China and the Tienanmen Square massacre: April 15 Hu YaoBang, former General Secretary 1982-1987 purged for being too sympathetic to liberalization, dies; 2 days later students take to the streets; May 16-19, one million protest in Beijing; May 20 martial law declared; June 3,4 troops clear Tienanmen Square killing an undetermined number. Zhao Ziyang, who succeeded Hu Yaobang as Deng’s apparent successor, falls from power for apparently being too sympathetic to the students. Massive publicity in the West about the use of force against demonstrators. During the upheaval in China, from May 15-18, Mikhail Gorbachev is in Beijing for his scheduled summit with Deng, where Sino-Soviet relations are officially “normalized”. Part of the background to the summit is that the Chinese view of the shape of global politics has changed: “By early 1989, Chinese statements began to argue that ‘peace and development have replaced war and revolution as the main themes in the contemporary world.’” (Problems September-October 1989; Frontline, June 19, 1989)

      May 31: C.L.R James dies at 88. (James)

      June 18: I.F. Stone dies of a heart attack at age 81. (Frontline, July 3, 1989)

      July 3: Supreme Court - the new “Rehnquist/Reagan Court” - upholds sharply restrictive Missouri abortion law in Webster v. Reproductive Health Services, though it stops short of reversing Roe v. Wade. The ruling sparks a new round of activism in defense of abortion rights. (Frontline, July 17 & October 30, 1989)

      July: Wave of strikes by Soviet coal miners - the first episode of mass labor unrest in the USSR since the 1920s. There is another one-day strike in October, and a second major strike wave in March-April 1991. The miners’ leadership gradually move into an alliance with Yeltsin against the CPSU and Gorbachev during 1990-91. (Kotz/Weir)

      July 31: Michael Harrington, founder of DSOC, chair of DSA, author and activist, perhaps the most well-known “out” socialist in the country, dies of cancer at 61. (Frontline, August 28, 1989; Left Encyclopedia)

      August 22: Huey Newton, founder of the Black Panther Party, is murdered in Oakland. (Clips in D-3; Frontline, September 25, 1989)

      September 12: David Dinkins defeats Ed Koch in the New York City Democratic primary to end his 12-year grip on city hall; Dinkins goes on to beat Republican Rudolph Giuliani in the general election November 7 to become the first African American mayor of the nation’s largest city. (Frontline, September 25 & November 27, 1989)

      September 17: Coal miners in Carbo, Virginia seize and occupy a production plant for three days during their bitter strike with Pittston Coal. The strike is the focus of a nationwide solidarity campaign. On October 4, the Mineworkers and AFL-CIO announce that the UMW is reaffiliating after 42 years outside the federation. (Frontline, October 9 & October 30, 1989; CrossRoads No. 1)

      September 26: Last Vietnamese troops leave Cambodia , though a comprehensive international peace agreement for the country is not signed and the Cambodian government still faces the Khmer Rouge armed insurgency. (Frontline, October 30, 1989)

      October 7-9: Line of March disbands at first delegated conference, reorganizing as the short-lived Frontline Political Organization; votes to initiate the process that leads to the launching of CrossRoads in spring 1990. (self-published material in BLM-3; Frontline, October 30, 1989)

      October 8: 100,000 people march on Washington for “Housing Now,” to end homelessness and provide affordable housing. (Frontline, November 13, 1989)

      November 9: East Germany’s ruling Socialist Unity Party (SED) announces an end to travel restrictions and people flock to the Berlin Wall, which comes down (sources giving the exact date as November 9, 10 or 11); this is the most dramatic event in the rapid collapse of communist rule in Eastern Europe this fall. “Between August 1989 and the end of that year, communist power abdicated or ceased to exist in Poland [on August 17 President Jaruzelski invited Solidarity to form and head a new cabinet], Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and the GDR - without so much as a shot being fired, except in Romania. Shortly thereafter, the two Balkan states which were not Soviet satellites, Yugoslavia and Albania, also ceased to be communist regimes.” (Hobsbawm; Almanac; MR April 1992; Frontline, August 28, October 30, November 13, & November 27, 1989). The Soviet Union is also in economic turmoil and inter-ethnic/inter-nationality strife within the USSR is rising. Hobsbawm also argues this is the “point of no return” for the collapse of the USSR: “The economic breakdown [in the USSR] became irreversible in the course of a few crucial months between October 1989 and May 1990.” (Hobsbawm; Frontline, September 25, 1989)

      November 11: Tet-like offensive by the FMLN in El Salvador begins, after an ARENA government had come to power in fraudulent elections, rejected FMLN peace proposals and stepped up death squad activity, especially against the Salvadoran labor movement. The FMLN occupied parts of San Salvador for weeks, the Salvadoran military bombed working class neighborhoods and massacred 6 Jesuit priests and their 2 housekeepers. In the U.S., protest against the killings and the U.S. role turned out 50,000 in over 100 cities. Evident stalemate in the war leads eventually to peace agreement signed in 1992 (which see). (CISPES; Frontline, November 27, 1989; CrossRoads No. 40)

      December 8: Special Congress of the Socialist Unity Party in East Germany transforms the party into the Party of Democratic Socialism (PDS) and picks a new, reform leader Gregor Gysi. Over the next two years the PDS stabilizes itself as a substantial political force in the former GDR. (CrossRoads No. 18)

      December 15: Uprising in Romania overthrows the regime; Nicolai Ceausescu and his wife are killed on December 25. (Almanac)

      December 20: After a long political campaign that began in July 1987, whose aim was to install a Panamanian government that would allow Washington to keep effective control of the Panama Canal despite the Panama Canal Treaty, U.S. troops invade Panama. Resistance collapses on the 24th, Gen. Manuel Noriega surrenders on January 3, 1990. (Almanac; Frontline, March 28, 1988)

      December: After a lengthy campaign which had convicted Marcos agents along the way, Ferdinand Marcos was found guilty of ordering the murder of anti-martial law activists Gene Viernes and Silme Domingo in Seattle June 1, 1981 and ordered to pay $15 million to the families of the victims. (Toribio; Frontline, November 27, 1989; CrossRoads/Frontline Sustainer Notes January-February 1990, in DCR-2)


      In the first direct presidential election in Brazil in three decades, Lula of the PT comes very close to winning, getting 47 percent in the runoff against Fernando Collor de Mello. The stunning campaign followed years of slow growth for the PT and big victories in 1988 in the mayoral races in three state capitals, including Sao Paulo. (MR April 1993)

      Publication of Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History?, originally a RAND paper, then published first in the periodical The National Interest in summer, then as a book - The End of History and the Last Man (London; Hamish Hamilton); in a similar vein, but from a very different source, Robert Heilbroner’s “The Triumph of Capitalism” in the January 23, 1989 New Yorker. Such articles flood the mainstream media in this period.

      Publication also of The Thinking Reed: Intellectuals and the Soviet State from 1917 to the Present, by Boris Kagarlitsky (London, Verso); Revolution from Above: Where Is the Soviet Union Going?, by Tariq Ali (London, Hutchison); Voices of Glasnost: Interviews with Gorbachev’s Reformers, by Stephen Cohen and Katrina vanden Heuvel (W.W. Norton & Company, New York, London); An Injury to All: The Decline of American Unionism, by Kim Moody (London, Verso); Oxford University Socialist Discussion Group (Editors), Out of Apathy: Voices of the New Left 30 Years On (Verso, London-New York); Dennis King, Lyndon LaRouche and the New American Fascism (Doubleday, New York); Alice Echols, Daring to Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America 1967-1975 (University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis); Richard Flacks and Jack Whalen, Beyond the Barricades: The Sixties Generation Grows Up (Temple University Press, Philadelphia)

      Release of Spike Lee’s film Do The Right Thing.


      January: After Levi Strauss & Co. closes a plant in San Antonio with 92% Latina, 86% female workers; the workers launch Fuerza Unida (United Force) to fight the layoffs and it becomes a militant, ongoing organization. (CrossRoads No. 29; Chicano)

      February 11: Nelson Mandela is freed after 27-and-a-half years in prison. (CrossRoads No. 50)

      February 25: Sandinistas are defeated in the presidential election in Nicaragua after an intense U.S. effort culminating a decade of “low-intensity warfare.” “This counter-revolution was distinct from those in Chile, Guatemala and Indonesia, not because it was peaceful, but because the massacres occurred before, not after, the overthrow of the revolutionary regime. (Halliday in NLR #180/March-April 1990; Frontline, July 17, 1989 & March 1990-transition issue #2)

      March 18: Proposal for rapid reunification with West Germany wins in elections in the GDR; the GDR ceases to exist on October 3 when it is absorbed into the FRG. (MR April 1992; CrossRoads No. 18)

      March 21: Namibia becomes an independent state under SWAPO government. (Almanac)

      March: Extraordinary Congress of the Italian Communist Party (1.4 million members) votes to initiate discussions leading to an assembly and the founding of a “new” organization, resulting in the majority (700,000) forming the Party of the Democratic Left (PDS) and a minority launching the much smaller Communist Refoundation (150,000), with many former members joining neither. (Castellina in Future; Magri)

      April: “People of Color Regional Dialogue Activist Dialogue for Environmental Justice,” initiated by the SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP) and held in Albuquerque, forms the Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice. The step follows January and March open letters from activists of color to the “Group of Ten” mainstream environmental organizations criticizing them for racist and anti-working class policies. (CrossRoads No. 1)

      April: The first Queer Nation group, in New York City, is founded. Generally this period sees the rise of a queer politics and queer identity, intended to both to defuse the pejorative meaning of the word queer and to defy classifications and embrace all sexual persuasions, lesbian, gay, bi, transgender, etc. Most Queer Nation groups lose momentum as organizations by the end of 1991 though the term and identity “queer” continues to gain influence. (ATC No. 43)

      May 23: Republic of Yemen established by merger of North and South Yemen, North and pro-Western forces soon become dominant, among other things via winning 1994 civil war. (Almanac; for background see Frontline, February 3, 1986)

      May 24: Bomb explodes in the car of Earth First! activists Darryl Cherney and Judi Bari. The FBI tries to frame the activists for “bombing themselves inadvertently” though evidence points to timber companies who target these activists for trying to build links between the environmental movement and labor, especially for the upcoming summer 1990 “Redwood Summer” which brings several thousand people to northern California. (CrossRoads No. 4)

      May 29: Yeltsin continues his rise: he is elected chair of the Russian Republic parliament despite Gorbachev’s warning that he was abandoning socialism. He is aligned with, but not a member of, the Democratic Russia bloc organized by sectors of the intelligentsia and becoming a dominant force in Moscow and Leningrad. Two months later, in July, Yeltsin dramatically resigns from the CPSU. (Kotz/Weir)

      June 15: LAPD beats and arrests scores of janitors and supporters engaged in a peaceful protest for a contract. The beatings are broadcast by the national media and the contract is won. The SEIU’s Justice for Janitors efforts, underway since the mid-1980s, is one of the more dynamic union campaigns of the period, especially mobilizing immigrant workers, and organizing 20,000 janitors by 1994. (CrossRoads Nos. 33 & 43)

      June: CrossRoads magazine is launched; core of the effort is a merger of Frontline newspaper and North Star Review magazine. (CrossRoads Nos. 1 & 62)

      June: World Marxist Review, Prague-based publication of the World Communist Movement, which had become interesting reading in the Gorbachev era, folds. (MR January 1993)

      June: During an 11-day, 7-city trip to the U.S., Nelson Mandela becomes only the fourth private citizen in U.S. history to address both houses of Congress (CrossRoads No. 50)

      July 7: “Socialist Upheaval and the U.S. Left” conference draws 800 in Berkeley; one of many well-attended “left dialogue” conferences this year and next, see below for further entries. (CrossRoads No. 62; & CrossRoads pamphlet with proceedings)

      July 31: The leadership of Mozambique’s ruling FRELIMO Party announce they abandoning the one-party state in favor of a multi-party system. (Guardian, August 15, 1990)

      July: Foro de Sao Paulo (Sao Paulo Forum), initiated by the Brazil Workers Party (PT), brings together left parties and organizations from throughout Latin American for dialogue and cooperation. The Declaration approved by the meeting promised “to renovate the left’s thinking and socialism, reaffirm its emancipating nature, correct erroneous conceptions, overcome all types of bureaucratism and the absence of truly social and mass democracy.” The Foro becomes on ongoing institution, meeting in 1991 in Mexico, in 1992 in Nicaragua, and planning its 1993 meeting for Cuba. (CrossRoads No. 25)

      July: “First Continental Meeting of Indigenous Peoples-500 Years of Indian Resistance” gathering in Quito, Ecuador brings together indigenous peoples from throughout the hemisphere to plan activities for a 1992 “Year of the World’s Indigenous Peoples” to counter celebrations like the U.S. official Quincentenary Jubilee Celebration.” (CrossRoads No. 3; Chicano)

      July: 28th Congress of the CPSU, major steps are taken to separate party and state functions. Officially, Article 6 of the Soviet Constitution mandating the CPSU’s leading role had been repealed four months earlier, in March. “Hard-liners sharply criticize Gorbachev and Foreign Minister Shevardnadze but when it comes to voting, their standard-bearer Yegor Ligachev is defeated by Gorbachev’s favored candidate for Deputy General Secretary. (CrossRoads No. 2)

      August 2: Iraqi troops invade Kuwait setting off Gulf Crisis. By August 7 Bush has sabotaged efforts for an Arab solution to the crisis and manipulated an “invitation” from Saudi Arabia to send U.S. military forces. He also goes to the U.N. and uses every bit of U.S. muscle there to win international backing for his tough approach. An antiwar movement begins to take shape within the U.S. (Storm; CrossRoads No. 9)

      August 25: Thousands march through Los Angeles for the 20th anniversary of the Chicano Moratorium. (Chicano)

      September 8: LRS disbands. (LRS Dissolution)

      September: New Liberation News Service (NLNS) begins publishing newspackets every three to four week, serving progressive campus and community newspapers. (CrossRoads No. 34)

      October: “The International Conference on the Future of Socialism,” sponsored by Monthly Review and the New York Marxist School, draws 800 people in New York. (In a related effort, Monthly Review Press publishes The Future of Socialism: Perspectives from the Left edited by William K. Tabb.) That same month, the first Midwest Radical Scholars and Activists Conference draws over 1,000 in Chicago. (Crisis/Rethinking)

      November 1-4: International Conference on Malcolm X: Radical Tradition and a Legacy of Struggle draws 2,000-plus to New York City; initiated by the Malcolm X Work Group; this is the 65th anniversary of Malcolm’s birth and the 25th anniversary of his assassination. The Conference is part of a general resurgence of interest, scholarly and popular, in Malcolm. Earlier in the year - May 19-25 - the symposium Malcolm X Speaks in the ‘90s is held in Havana. In 1992, Spike Lee releases his film Malcolm X. (Legacy; SalesJr; CrossRoads Sustainer Notes July/August 1990; CrossRoads No. 28; Crisis/Rethinking)

      November 6: Democrats make modest gains in House, Senate and state elections. The threat of U.S. military action in the Gulf is not made an issue in the balloting by either party. Bernie Sanders wins election to the House of Representatives from Vermont as the first independent socialist elected to Congress in over 40 years. (CrossRoads Nos. 5 & 9)

      November 8: Two days after the mid-term elections Bush announced that he was sending 200,000 more troops to the Gulf making military action imminent. This sparks major debate within the U.S. establishment and the growth of grassroots antiwar actions. (CrossRoads No. 9)

      December 9: Lech Walesa elected president of Poland in run-off election (Almanac)

      December 17: Jean Bertrand Aristide elected President of Haiti in the first democratic election in the country’s history (Almanac)


      Four conferences highlight the new contours of 1990s student activism: The D.C. Student Coalition Against Apartheid and Racism (DC-SCAR) National Days of Racism Awareness and Anti-Racist Action Conference during Black History Month; the Jackson/State Kent Commemorative Conference marking 20 years since the killings at those colleges; the Student Call to Washington June 17 with a march on Washington; and the SEAC Catalyst conference - see 1988 note on SEAC above. (CrossRoads No. 21)

      Publication of The Great Reversal: The Privatization of China 1978-1989, by William Hinton (Monthly Review Press); The Encyclopedia of the American Left, edited by Mari Jo Buhle, Paul Buhle and Dan Georgakas (Garland Publishing, New York); The Future of Socialism: Perspectives from the Left edited by William K. Tabb. (Monthly Review Press, New York); Yearning: Race, Gender and Cultural Politics, by bell hooks (South End Press, Boston); City of Quartz: Social Struggle in Postmodern Los Angeles, by Mike Davis (Verso); Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall, The COINTELPRO Papers: Documents from the FBI’s Secret Wars Against Domestic Dissent (Boston, South End Press); Has Socialism Failed?, pamphlet by Joe Slovo of the SACP


      January-February: The Gulf War: Congressional resolution authorizing use of force against Iraq is passed January 12; The “deadline” passes midnight January 15 and George Bush’s shooting war starts with the bombing of Baghdad on the 16th; the ground war is launched on February 23, Baghdad radio announces unconditional Iraqi surrender on the 25th and U.S. air power is conducting a virtual massacre of fleeing Iraqi soldiers but Bush waits until midnight on the 27th to declare a cease-fire in effect. There are major antiwar actions in the U.S., at least in the early stages of the war, sponsored by two different coalitions, The Coalition to Stop U.S. Intervention in the Middle East, initiated mainly by the Workers World Party, and the National Campaign for Peace in the Middle East. On January 19 over 150,000 people turned out in San Francisco, D.C., L.A. and other cities in the action called by the Coalition; on January 26, some 300,000 demonstrated with close to 200,000 in D.C. in the demonstrations anchored by the Campaign. (Storm; CrossRoads No. 9)

      February 25: Warsaw Pact military alliance is dissolved; the full Pact is dissolved on July 1. (Almanac)

      April 26-28: “Toward a New Majority for Justice and Peace: A Conference for Activists of Color” draws 300 in the Bay Area (CrossRoads No. 11)

      May 17: SWP paper the Militant announces that the SWP has disaffiliated from the Fourth International and states that they no longer consider themselves Trotskyists. (Inside the SWP)

      May: Eritrean People’s Liberation Front drive Ethiopian troops out of the country winning independence; the same week, Ethiopian leader Mengistu Haile Mariam flees the country and the capital Addis Ababa falls to troops of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front, anchored by the Tigrean People’s Liberation Front whose leader, Secretary-General Meles Zenawi, becomes head of the interim Ethiopian government. (Guardian, June 26, 1991)

      May 31: Formal end to the long war in Angola with an agreement signed between President Jose Eduardo dos Santos and UNITA head Jonas Savimibi. The pact calls for multi-party elections in fall 1992; but fighting continues. (Guardian, June 12, 1991)

      June 4: Albanian communist government resigns. (Almanac)

      June 4: Jiang Qing (Chiang Ching), Mao’s widow and central figure in the Gang of Four, commits suicide (Almanac).

      June 5: Apartheid laws repealed in South Africa (Almanac)

      June: Yeltsin is elected president of the Russian Republic winning 57.3% of the popular votes; his running mate is popular military figure and veteran of the Afghan war Alexandr Rutskoi. Leaders of Democratic Russia win the mayoral races in Moscow and Leningrad. A situation of dual power has essentially developed in Russia. (Kotz/Weir)

      Summer: Large-scale fighting between Croatians and Serbs mostly in Croatia, promoted by leaders of both governments, Slobodan Milosevic (who had assumed Yugoslav/Serbian presidency in 1988, and Franco Tudjman, who had become president of Croatia in 1990. (Yugoslavia)

      Summer: Riot Grrrl, a movement/organization combining women’s issues with the punk movement, begins in Washington, D.C. (CrossRoads No. 49)

      August 19: Coup by in an “Emergency Committee” in the USSR, one day before a new Union Treaty was to be signed putting the USSR on a different, more federated basis. Besides the Union Treaty, another spur to the coup may have been a looming special congress of the CPSU in the fall, where a new party program proposed by Gorbachev and departing in numerous ways from communist tradition was to be debated and voted upon. At the start of the coup Gorbachev was placed under house arrest. Opposition to the coup is centered by Yeltsin and the forces around him who gather in front of the Russian Parliament building. The coup soon collapses and Yeltsin, in what amounted to an equally illegal but successful counter-coup, effectively takes power from Gorbachev, who resigns as General Secretary of the CPSU on August 24 while proposing that the Central Committee dissolve and transferring the party’s property to the USSR Supreme Soviet. The Baltic Republics declare their independence August 25. (CrossRoads Nos. 13 & 14; Kotz/Weir; Almanac)

      September 30: Military coup in Haiti overthrows President Aristide. (CrossRoads No. 15)

      October 16: Clarence Thomas is confirmed as Supreme Court Justice by the Senate 52-48 after the “Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas” hearings put the issues of sex, race, sexual harassment, and what are the Black and women’s agendas in front of the media spotlight. A statement of 1,603 Black women opposing the Thomas confirmation and denouncing the Senate’s treatment of Anita Hill, “African American Women in Defense of Ourselves,” appears in Black newspapers throughout the country and, on November 18, the New York Times. (CrossRoads Nos. 16 & 28; Powerful)

      October 27-30: National People of Color Environmental Summit held in D.C., a milestone in the growing environmental justice movement/movement against environmental racism. (CrossRoads No. 20)

      Fall: Dissent magazine’s fall issue publishes a sort of manifesto: “Democratic Vistas: A Statement for the Democratic Left,” as an attempt to articulating a social democratic vision for the left. Solidarity tries to get broad support for an alternative statement that would be “democratic, revolutionary and visionary” but cannot get enough support beyond its close supporters so the effort is abandoned. (Solid-Is History)

      December 6-8: CPUSA’s 25th National Convention: the culmination of a bitter internal clash that had been brewing for some years, with differences especially sharp over Gorbachev’s role and perestroika, democracy within the CPUSA, and the party’s stance toward the Jackson campaigns, the Rainbow Coalition and the Black Liberation struggle. Dissidents who are excluded from all leadership posts by the grouping around chair Gus Hall announce the initial formation of the Committees of Correspondence. (Crossroads No. 17; self-published material in D-2 and D-7)

      December 13: Ron Carey, supported by TDU, wins the Teamster presidency and his slate wins all 16 leadership positions it had contested in the first ever one-member, one-vote balloting in the union’s history; a stunning victory for the reform movement. (ATC No. 43; Guardian December 25, 1991)

      December 25-31: Formal break-up of the Soviet Union. Following many steps by Yeltsin since August to dismantle the structure of the Soviet state, Gorbachev resigns as Soviet President December 25 and the USSR officially ceases to exist as of December 31. The U.S. and other countries recognize the newly formed and very loose “Commonwealth of Independent States” set up by Yeltsin and his allies in other Republics. (CrossRoads No. 18; Kotz/Weir; Almanac; Guardian December 25, 1991)

      December: European Community (EC) member nations - looking beyond the end of 1992 when all trade barriers between them are to be eliminated in a “single internal market” - sign the Maastricht Agreement providing for a single currency by 1999 and delegating more power to the European Parliament; the treaty also has a Social Charter attached as a protocol with some concessions to labor. (Guardian, December 25, 1991)


      Founding of the University Conversion Project to promote peace activism and investigative journalism on campus; UCP is soon transformed into the Center for Campus Organizing (CCO) which acts as a clearinghouse and resource center for campus activism in the ‘90s; it publishes Infusion bulletin. (self-published material in DCR-3)

      PC-bashing - attacks on so-called “political correctness” allegedly dominating the universities, which have been gathering steam since the late 1980s - reaches a peak with George Bush’s attack on PC at his spring commencement address at the University of Michigan, ads in campus and other newspapers across the country by the National Association of Scholars, major scare articles in Time, Newsweek and other popular media, and the publication of Illiberal Education: The Politics of Race and Sex on Campus, by Dinesh D’Souza (New York, Free Press). (ATC No. 35; CrossRoads No. 21)

      Formation of the New Zealand Alliance, comprising NewLabour, the Greens, the Democrats and Mana Motuhake; the new formation prepares to contend for governmental power in elections. (Links No. 2)

      Peace agreement signed by all factions in Cambodia, leads to 1993 elections and a government including the Sihanouk and People’s Party forces; the Khmer Rouge quickly goes back into opposition and continues armed struggle against the government. (SF Chronicle June 14, 1997 in BMOV-5)

      Publication of David R. Roediger, The Wages of Whiteness: Race and the Making of the American Working Class (Verso, New York); Jonathan Kozol, Savage Inequalities: Children in America’s Schools (New York, Crown Publishers); Robert B. Reich, The Work of Nations: Preparing Ourselves for 21st Century Capitalism (Alfred A. Knopf, New York); Stalin: Triumph and Tragedy, by Dmitri Volkogonov (Grove-Weidenfeld Press, New York); Unfinished Business, 20 Years of Socialist Review, edited by the Socialist Review Collectives (Verso, London, New York); The Global City: New York, London, Tokyo, by Saskia Sassen (Princeton, Princeton University Press)

      1992- (through mid-August)

      January: Accords between the FMLN and Salvadoran government ending the long civil war are signed. (CISPES)

      January: Release of the first draft of “Reaffirm Our Basic Principles and Rectify the Errors” by Armando Liwanag (Joma Sison/Amado Guerrero); the document sets in motion a purge and upheaval in the CPP that by 1993 has resulted in an effective split. (Rocamora)

      January 15: European Community recognizes Croatian independence (it had recognized Slovenian independence earlier). Then on April 6 the EC and U.S. announce recognition of Bosnia-Herzegovinia, which had become an armed camp, and large-scale fighting begins there, with Serbian and Croatian forces working to carve up the country and the Muslim-led Bosnian government fighting (at least nominally) to preserve a “democratic, multi-ethnic” state. (Yugoslavia)

      February 1: George Bush and Boris Yeltsin proclaim a formal end to the Cold War (Almanac)

      April 29: Acquittal of four officers in the Rodney King case sets off massive outpouring of popular anger from the Black and Latino communities. The uprising is met by harsh police repression: 55 people are killed, 18,000 arrested. There is $770 million in property damage. Many Asian American owned businesses are a target and Black-Korean tensions are especially sharp. An immediate contributing factor was African American anger over the sentencing of Korean store owner to probation (just ten days before April 29) for shooting and killing Black teenager Latasha Harlins and being convicted of second degree murder. (CrossRoads No. 22)

      April 30-May 2: Founding Convention of the Asian Pacific Labor Alliance brings together 500 Asian Pacific labor activists in Washington, DC (CrossRoads No. 24)

      April: The “New Party,” for which activists had been laying the groundwork for two years or so, is now “the beginnings of reality,” setting up a national office, incorporating as a party, organizing in about a dozen cities and states. Other third party efforts are at various stages of development as well. Labor Party Advocates, initiated by Tony Mazzochi formally in 1990-91, is organizing unionists to support the future formation of a Labor Party. Ron Daniels is taking steps toward an independent run for President in 1992 with the Project New Tomorrow - later Campaign for a New Tomorrow - as his core support. NOW activists are working toward a founding convention for the 21st Century Party to be held August 29-30, 1992 (the convention is held with 150 people but the organization never gets off the ground). The Boston Initiative, convened by Nobel Laureate George Wald, holds its second meeting May 2-3 (the first was in 1991) attempting to unite pro-third Party groups. A larger such effort is anchored by Daniels working closely with organizers from NCIPA: the National Progressive People’s Convention, which will draw 300 and found the National Progressive People’s Network (NPPN; later the Independent Progressive Politics Network/IPPN), is slated for August 21-23 in Ypsilanti, Michigan. (New Party folder in D-9; IPA folder in DCR-3; CrossRoads No. 25; BIDOM No. 92; NCIPA Bulletin Nos. 8 & 9)

      June 3-14: “Earth Summit” in Rio de Janeiro, the Bush administration is isolated for its stance on the main items: a biodiversity treaty (refusing to sign) and a pact on global warming (refusing to agree to effective timetables and targets). The Global Forum environmental conference organized by NGO’s alongside the official conference draws up to 20,000 activists. (Guardian June 10, 17 & 24, 1992 & ATC No. 42)

      July 1: Bill Clinton, key leader of the Democratic Leadership Council, after defeating Al Gore, Jerry Brown and other candidates in the primaries, wins the Democratic presidential nomination at the party’s national convention. (CrossRoads No. 27; Almanac)

      July 17-19: First National Conference of the Committees of Correspondence draws 1,300 to Berkeley to discuss “Perspectives for Democracy and Socialism in the ‘90s.” The event is from one angle the largest and broadest organizational culmination of “regroupment” efforts stretching back to early 1980s; from another, related, angled, the result of the reform effort, upheaval and then collapse in Eastern Europe and the USSR 1985-1991 and its particular impact within the CPUSA. (CrossRoads No. 22; self-published material in D-2)

      July: Meeting of 11 parties united “in defense of Marxism-Leninism and Mao ZeDong Thought,” anchored by the Sison-led CPP, including the PAC and 9 other very small groupings (Rocamora)

      August 12-19: Final issue of the Guardian, Volume 44, Number 39; first domestic news story, placed on page 3, is coverage of the Committees of Correspondence first national conference. (Guardian August 12/19 in D-9)


      Asian Immigrant Women Advocates (AIWA) - one of a number of immigrant worker organizations launched in the ‘80s including the Chinese Staff and Workers Organization in New York, Korean Immigrant Workers Advocates in Los Angeles, and La Mujer Obrera in El Paso - launches a “Garment Workers Justice Campaign” that becomes a nationwide boycott of Jessica McClintock, Inc. after a subcontractor of McClintock failed to pay money owed employees. (CrossRoads Nos. 29 & 56; Chicano)

      Lesbian Avengers are launched in New York City. (CrossRoads No. 49)

      Audre Lorde dies after a long battle with breast cancer at 58. (CrossRoads No. 28)

      The Women of Color Reproductive Health Rights Coalition is founded by the National Black Women’s Health Project, National Latina Health Organization, Native American Women’s Health Education Resource Center, National Asian Women’s Health Organization, National Coalition of 100 Black Women and International Coalition of Women Physicians. (CrossRoads No. 39)

      Publication of Elaine Brown, A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story (New York, Pantheon Books); America: What Went Wrong? by Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele (Andrews and McMeel, Kansas City) - expanded version of a 9-part series which had appeared during October 1991 in the Philadelphia Inquirer; Hardcover version of Two Nations, Black and White, Separate, Hostile, Unequal, by Andrew Hacker (Charles Scribners Sons); Reconstructing Marxism (another major effort in the analytical Marxism school) by Erik Olin Wright, Elliot Sover and Andrew Levine (London); Rads: The 1970 Bombing of the Army Mathematics Research Center at the University of Wisconsin and Its Aftermath, by Tom Bates (HarperCollins, New York); Marty Jezer, Abbie Hoffman: An American Rebel (Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick)

      Release of Malcolm X, directed by Spike Lee.

      The growth of poverty and the rising polarization between wealth and poverty: In 1960, 22% of all persons were below the poverty level; by 1973, this dropped to 11%, but by 1992 it is back up to 15%: in absolute numbers this is 37 million people, more than in 1960. The 1992 poverty rate for children in 1992 is 22%. There is a stark racial inequality in poverty as well: one-third of all Black persons are below the poverty level in 1992, and 29% of Latinos. More than half of all poor families are headed by women. In 1973, the fifth of households making the least income received 4.2% of total income, but in 1992 the figure had fallen to 3.8%. Meanwhile the fifth of households making the highest income now made 45% of the total, compared to 41% in 1992. On a global scale, the extent of poverty and the gap between the wealthy few and the poverty-stricken many is even worse. (CrossRoads No. 50)

      End of Part Five

      Part One, 1967-1970

      Part Two, 1971-1974

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Six, Source Reference Guide

    6. #6
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      Lightbulb Chronology Part Six, Source Reference Guide

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      2-3-Many: PUL, Two, Three Many Parties of a New Type? Against the Ultra-Left Line

      20th Congress: Report of the Central Committee, CPSU to the 20th Congress of the CPSU, given by N.S. Khrushchev, New Century Publishers pamphlet

      504 Commemoration: Pamphlet commemorating the 20th anniversary of the victorious 504 sit-in for disability civil rights

      AAWO: Alliance Against Women’s Oppression, Our History and Political Line 1980 pamphlet

      Academy: The Academy Awards Handbook, by John Harkness (Pinnacle Books-Kensington Publishing Company, New York, 1994)

      Acid: Acid Dreams: The CIA, LSD and the Sixties Rebellion, by Martin A. Lee and Bruce Shlain (Grove Press, New York, 1985)

      Afghanistan: pamphlet by Irwin Silber, Afghanistan: The Battle Line Is Drawn

      Agbayani: Flyer about building Agbayani Village, in “Reports to NY 1973”

      AIDS: pamphlet, The Politics of AIDS, by Nancy Krieger and Rose Appleman

      AK: Ang Katipunan newspaper, issue date cited with reference

      Alkalimat/Johnson: Toward the Ideological Unity of the African Liberation Support Committee: A Response to Criticisms of the ALSC Statement of Principles Adopted at Frogmore, South Carolina June-July 1973, pamphlet by Abdul Alkalimat and Nelson Johnson

      Allen: Robert L. Allen, Black Awakening in Capitalist America

      Almanac: 1996 Information Please Almanac

      ALR: Australian Left Review, issue date and/or number given with reference

      ALSC: African Liberation Support Committee, Statement of Principles pamphlet

      Anderson/Europe: Peter Anderson, Crisis of the Revolutionary Left in Europe, from the British group Big Flame, maybe 1980.

      Apology: Sayres, Sohnya (Editor), along with Anders Stephenson, Stanley Aronowitz and Fredric Jameson, ‘60s Without Apology

      Appeal: Appeal to Reason, theoretical journal (succeeding Proletariat) of the CLP; various issues, issue number or date given with reference

      Aronowitz: Stanley Aronowitz, The Death and Rebirth of American Radicalism, Routledge, 1996

      ARC45-50: “Anti-Revisionist Communism in the U.S., 1945-50”, TR #11

      Asians Unite!: Asians Unite! publication from Asian Studies and Asian Strike Committee UC-B issue number given with reference

      ATC: Against the Current, journal sponsored by Solidarity, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Background: Some Background Articles for a Discussion of the International Situation from RCP-sponsored conference

      Barnet: Richard J. Barnet, Intervention and Revolution: The United States in the Third World

      Bennion: Pamphlet by Adam Bennion, Recent Developments in the Prison Movement, with appendices

      Berlet: Chip Berlet, Clouds Blur the Rainbow: The Other Side of the New Alliance Party, topical report from Political Research Associates 1987

      BIDOM: Bulletin in Defense of Marxism, from the Fourth Internationalist Tendency (FIT), issue number cited with reference

      Black Scholar: The Black Scholar, various issues, volume and number, and/or date, given with reference

      BL-BL: Black Liberation and Proletarian Revolution pamphlet from the Bolshevik League

      Blesoff,: Paper on history of CWP and New Communist Movement in general by CWP member Mark Blesoff

      Bolshevik: Bolshevik, organ of the Revolutionary Workers League (ML), issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Bolshevik Revolution: Bolshevik Revolution, published by the Bolshevik League of the U.S., issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Boyd: Herb Boyd, Black Panthers for Beginners, Writers and Readers Publications, 1995

      Boyte: Harry C. Boyte, The Backyard Revolution: Understanding the New Citizen Movement

      Braunthal: Julius Braunthal, History of the International, Vol. 1, 2 or 3

      Breakthrough: Breakthrough journal of the PFOC, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Bribery: Committee of U.S. Bolsheviks, Imperialism, Superprofits and the Bribery of the U.S. “Anti-Revisionist Communist Movement” 1979

      Brown: Elaine Brown, A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story (New York, Pantheon Books, 1992)

      Burning: Burning Questions of Party Building, a pamphlet issued by the Marxist-Leninist Education Committee

      Burning Spear: The Burning Spear, newspaper of the APSP, issue date cited with reference

      Burstein: Draft report of Dan Burstein to Second CP(ML) Congress - unpublished in my files

      Cabral: Unity and Struggle: Speeches and Writings of Amilcar Cabral

      Call: The Call, newspaper of the OL, then the CP(ML) issue number and or date cited with reference

      Cambodia: Cambodia 1973 fact sheet from Indochina Resource Center

      Carson: Carson, Clayborne. In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening of the 1960s. Harvard University Press. 1981

      Central America: Central America Fact Book, Tom Barry and Deb Preusch

      Cboggs: Carl Boggs, Gramsci’s Marxism, Pluto Press, London, 1976

      Century: A Century of World Communism by George J. Prpic

      Chang: Gordon Chang article in Monthly Review, September 1986

      Chart or chart: Graphic chart of New Communist Movement organizations on the “back” of text portion of Forward No. 3 by the Communist Workers Group (Marxist-Leninist) 1977

      Che: Che Guevara and the Cuban Revolution: Writing and Speeches of Ernesto Che Guevara, especially the chronology

      Chicano: 500 Años del Pueblo Chicano/500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures, edited by Elizabeth Mart*nez

      China Alliance: pamphlet, China’s Alliance with U.S. Imperialism, by the Spartacus Youth League

      China appendix: Appendix for China Paper by Hari Dillon

      CISPES: CISPES: 15 Years of Solidarity, booklet for CISPES 1995 Sixth National Convention

      CJDV: Committee for Justice for Domingo and Viernes material

      Class Struggle: OL and then CP(ML) journal, issue number cited with reference

      CM: Contemporary Marxism, journal from DWP, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Cohen: Voices of Glasnost: Interviews with Gorbachev’s Reformers, by Stephen Cohen and Katrina vanden Heuvel (W.W. Norton & Co., New York, London, 1989)

      COINTELPRO: The COINTELPRO Papers: Documents from the FBI’s Secret Wars Against Domestic Dissent, by Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall (South End Press)

      Communist: The Communist, newspaper of Workers Congress, issue date cited with reference

      Communist/RCP: The Communist, theoretical journal of the RCP for a time, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Communist Voice: Communist Voice, publication of the Communist Voice Organization, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Costello: “A Critical History of the New Communist Movement by Paul Costello in Theoretical Review #13

      Crazy Horse: In the Spirit of Crazy Horse: The Story of Leonard Peltier and the FBI’s War on the American Indian Movement, by Peter Matthiessen

      Crisis/Rethinking: “Crisis, Rethinking and Regroupment on the U.S. Left” 1990 working paper by executive committee of the Frontline Political Organization

      CrossRoads: CrossRoads magazine various issues, issue number cited with reference

      CrossRoads Sustainer Notes: various issues, issue date cited with reference

      CRSP: Discussion Bulletin No. 1 from the Committee for a Revolutionary Socialist Party (CRSP) 1978

      Cultural Revolution: “The Cultural Revolution in China: A Socialist Analysis” by Leo Huberman and Paul Sweezy from the January 1967 Monthly Review, reprinted as a REP pamphlet

      CW: Collective Works, journal from the “Federation,” issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Davidson: “Lessons from the Collapse of the Communist Party (ML), in Forward No. 4

      Death Row: Live From Death Row, by Mumia Abu-Jamal (Avon, 1995)

      Demarcation: Demarcation journal from group of the same name; issue number and/or date given with reference

      D’Emilio: John D’Emilio, Sexual Politics, Sexual Communities

      Democratic Left: Democratic Left, publication of DSOC, then DSA, issue date cited with reference

      Deng: Teng Hsiao-Ping: A Political Biography (written before style switch to Deng), by Chi Hsin, Cosmos Books, Hong Kong, 1978

      Dennis: Peggy Dennis, The Autobiography of an American Communist: A Personal View of a Political Life 1925-1975

      Denver: Denver Forum pamphlet on Party Building: The Overall Situation published by the Colorado Organization for Revolutionary Struggle

      Detroit Lives: book Detroit Lives, compiled and edited by Robert Mast

      Disney: Nigel Disney, “China and the Middle East,” in MERIP Reports No. 63 December 1977

      Dunbar: Indians of The Americas, by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz (Praeger, New York, 1984)

      DWP History: Democratic Workers Party, History Committee of the Central Committee, The History of the Democratic Workers Party

      DWP Dissolution: The History and Dissolution of the Democratic Workers Party, by Peter Siegel, Nancy Strohl, et al 1987 manuscript later published in SR

      Echols: Alice Echols, Daring to Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America 1967-1975 (University of Minnesota Press, Minneapolis) 1989

      Epstein: Barbara Epstein, Political Protest and Cultural Revolution

      Epton/BLM: Bill Epton, The Black Liberation Struggle (Within the Current World Struggle), Black Liberation Press

      ERC: pamphlet from Equal Rights Congress in 1980, We Won’t Go Back: The Rise of the Ku Klux Klan and the Southern Struggle for Equality

      Evans: Sara Evans, Personal Politics: The Roots of Women’s Liberation in the Civil Rights Movement & the New Left

      Fact Sheet: Vietnam Fact Sheet, 1845-1973, from Indochina Solidarity Committee

      Fage: A History of Africa, by J. D. Fage (1978, Routledge, London and New York)

      False Promises: Stanley Aronowitz, False Promises; The Shaping of American Working Class Consciousness 1973

      Farrakhan: In the Name of Elijah Muhammad: Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, by Mattias Gardell (Duke University Press, Durham, 1996)

      FEER/ Revisionism: “Revisionism Revisited” article in Far Eastern Economic Review, April 10, 1986

      Fields: A. Belden Fields, Trotskyism and Maoism, Theory and Practice in France and the United States

      Fighting: Highlights of a Fighting History: 60 Years of the Communist Party USA by the CPUSA, Philip Bart chief editor

      Fire: Fire, or Fire Next Time, brief SDS/Weatherman publication succeeding New Left Notes, issue no. and/or date cited with reference

      Five Retreats: The Five Retreats: A History of the Failure of the Progressive Labor Party, by D.S. Sumner and R.S. Butler (pseudonyms for Jim Dann and Hari Dillon), 1977 Reconstruction Press

      FM: Forward Motion, magazine sponsored by PUL, then Freedom Road Socialist Organization, issue date cited with reference

      Forward: Forward, journal sponsored by LRS, various issues, issue date cited with reference

      Fourth: Resolutions and Reports from the 1979 World Congress of the Fourth International

      Fragments: Beyond the Fragments: Feminism and the Making of Socialism, by Sheila Rowbotham, Lynne Segal and Hilary Wainwright

      Franklin: Bruce E. Franklin, From the Movement Toward Revolution 1971 anthology

      Freed: Agony in New Haven: The Trial of Bobby Seale, Ericka Huggins and the Black Panther Party, by Donald Freed (New York, Simon and Schuster, 1973)

      Freedom: Voices of Freedom: An Oral History of the Civil Rights movement from the 1950s through the 1980s, Harry Hampton and Steve Fayer, (Bantam Books, New York, February 1990)

      Freedomways: Freedomways magazine, issue number and or/date cited with reference

      Frontline: newspaper of Line of March, issue date/number cited with reference; sometimes cite is from a Frontline Supplement packet

      Future: Monthly Review Press book, The Future of Socialism: Perspectives from the Left, edited by William K. Tabb

      Gabriel: Andrea Gabriel, Getting a Grasp on the Situation: A Women’s Perspective on the USSR, China, Albania and the Theory of the ‘Three Worlds’ 1978 pamphlet

      GCW: Global Class War, a pamphlet by Communist Cadre

      Georgakas: Detroit I Do Mind Dying: A Study in Urban Revolution, by Dan Georgakas and Marvin Surkin

      Gitlin: Todd Gitlin, The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage

      Gitlin-World: Todd Gitlin, The Whole World Is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the New Left

      Glick: Prologue to in-progress book by Ted Glick, in my computer, seemref\glick.doc

      Goines chron or Goines: Extensive chronology at the end of, or citation from the body of, Goines, David; The Free Speech Movement: Coming of Age in the 1960s. Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, 1993

      Goodwin: Richard Goodwin book, Remembering America

      Gosse: Van Gosse, Where the Boys Are: Cuba, Cold War America and the Making of a New Left

      Green: James R. Green, The World of the Worker: Labor in Twentieth Century America (Hill & Wang, New York, 1980)

      Greensboro: Amilcar Cabral/Paul Robeson Collective & Greensboro Collective, The Greensboro Massacre: Critical Lessons for the 1980s pamphlet 1980

      Guarasci: Richard Guarasci, The Theory and Practice of American Marxism, 1957-1970 (University Press of America, Lanham, Maryland, 1980

      Guardian: Guardian various issues, issue date cited with reference

      Hall-S: Stuart Hall essay “The ‘First’ New Left: Life and Times” included in Oxford University Socialist Discussion Group (Editors), Out of Apathy: Voices of the New Left 30 Years On, Verso, London-New York, 1989

      Hamilton: “On the History of the Revolutionary Union” by Steve Hamilton in TR #13 & 14

      Handbook: World Communism: A Handbook 1918-1965, edited by Witold Sworakowski, Hoover Institution, 1973

      Harding: Harry Harding (Editor), China’s Foreign Relations in the 1980s (Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1984)

      Hard Times: Hard Times (originally Mayday) newsletter, issue no. cited with reference

      Haunted: I.F. Stone, The Haunted Fifties

      Hawaii: The Birth of the Modern Hawaiian Movement, Haunani-Kay Trask

      Hayden: Trial, by Tom Hayden

      Haywood: Haywood, Harry Black Bolshevik: Autobiography of an Afro-American Communist, Liberator Press, Chicago 1978

      Haywood Opinion: Harry Haywood, “China and Its Supporters Were Wrong About USSR,” published in the Guardian April 11, 1984

      Healey: Interview with Dorothy Healey from Radical America May-June 1977

      Heat: Puerto Rican Revolutionary Workers Organization, Party Building in the Heat of Class Struggle 1976 pamphlet

      Heins: Strictly Ghetto Property: The Story of Los Siete de la Raza, by Marjorie Heins

      History-Vietnam: Outline History of the Vietnam Workers Party

      Hobsbawm: Eric Hobsbawm, The Age of Extremes

      House Divided: A House Divided: Labor and White Supremacy, book by Roxanne Mitchell and Frank Weiss (United Labor Press, New York, 1981)

      Hoxha: Enver Hoxha, Imperialism and the Revolution, reprinted in COUSML’s journal Proletarian Internationalism, February 1979

      Hunter-Green: Influential article “Racism and Busing in Boston” by Allen Hunter and Jim Green, Radical America Nov-Dec, 1974

      Hurricane: Paul Chaat Smith and Robert Allen Warrior, Like a Hurricane: The Indian Movement from Alcatraz to Wounded Knee

      Hutchings: Phil Hutchings, “Radical Forum” in the Guardian summer 1974

      Ignatin: “The POC: A Personal Memoir,” Noel Ignatin, TR #12

      Indochina: The War in Indochina, pamphlet by Irwin Silber

      Influential: Columbus Salley, The Black 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential African-Americans Past and Present (Carol Publishing Group, New York, 1993)

      Inside the SWP: In Defense of American Trotskyism: The Struggle Inside the Socialist Workers Party 1979-1983, edited by Sarah Lovell (Fourth Internationalist Tendency, New York, 1992)

      Intervention: The Politics of Intervention: The United States in Central America, edited by Roger Burbach and Patricia Flynn

      IS-Bulletin: Liaison Bulletin for the Fourth Congress of the Canadian organization In Struggle!, bulletin number given with reference

      Isserman: Isserman, Maurice, If I Had a Hammer

      It’s Not the Bus: It’s Not the Bus: Busing and the Democratic Struggle in Boston, 1974-1975, pamphlet from PUL written in 1975

      IWK Journal: Journal of I Wor Kuen, issue # cited with reference

      Jacoby: Russell Jacoby, Stalin, Marxism-Leninism and the Left, pamphlet from New England Free Press

      Jaffe: The Rise and Fall of American Communism, by Philip Jaffe

      James: C.L.R.. James: A Political Biography, by Kent Worcester (State University of New York Press, Albany)

      Jericho: web-based post about Jericho-free political prisoners demonstration March 28, 1998

      Jezer: Marty Jezer, Abbie Hoffman: An American Rebel (Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, 1992) Walden Pond Books, not in my library

      Johnson: Paul Johnson, Modern Times: The World from the Twenties to the Eighties (Harper & Row, New York) 1983 Walden Pond Books, not in my library

      Jxxx: Unpublished packet of materials by Dave Jxxx about his experiences in the Canadian counterpart to the U.S. New Communist Movement in the early 1970s

      Kapitalistate: Working Papers on the Kapitalistate, issue number/date cited with reference

      Karnow: Stanley Karnow’s Vietnam: A History (The Viking Press, New York, 1983)

      Katsiaficas: George Katsiaficas, The Imagination of the New Left: A Global Analysis of 1968

      Keep Strong: magazine of the Intercommunal Survival Committee, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Kelley: Robin D.G. Kelley and Betsy Esch, Black Like Mao: Red China and Black Revolution

      King: Mary King, Freedom Song (1987, William Morrow and Company, New York)

      Klare: Michael T. Klare, War Without End: American Planning for the Next Vietnams

      Kotz/Weir: Revolution from Above: The Demise of the Soviet System, by David Kotz with Fred Weir (Routledge, London and New York, 1997)

      Labor Report: Line of March Labor Commission 1981 Report, published in “Frontline” activists’ bulletin No. 1 (this publication was later retitled Notes on the Class Struggle and Communist Practice after Frontline newspaper was launched)

      Lalich: “The Cadre Ideal” in Cultic Studies Journal, by Janja Lalich

      LaRouche: Dennis King, Lyndon LaRouche and the New American Fascism (Doubleday, New York, 1989)

      Latin American Radicalism: Irving Louis Horowitz, Josué de Castro and John Gerassi (Editors), Latin American Radicalism: A Documentary Report on Left and Nationalist Movements

      Left Encyclopedia: The Encyclopedia of the American Left, edited by Mari Jo Buhle, Paul Buhle and Dan Georgakas, first edition (1990, Garland Publishers, New York)

      Legacy: Perspectives on Black Liberation and Social Revolution: Malcolm X: Radical Tradition and a Legacy of Struggle Conference Proceedings, edited by Abdul Alkalimat (Twenty-First Century Books and Publications, Chicago, 1991)

      Leviathan: Leviathan magazine, issue date/number cited with reference

      Liberation: Liberation magazine, issue dated cited with reference

      Line of March: Line of March theoretical journal, various issues, issue number cited with reference

      Links: Links: International Journal of Socialist Renewal, issue number cited with reference

      Louie: Miriam Louie, “Yellow, Brown & Red”: Towards an Appraisal of Marxist Influences on the Asian American Movement paper 1991

      LRS Dissolution: Dissolution statement of LRS

      LSM News: Journal of the Liberation Support Movement, issue number cited with reference

      Magri: Lucio Magri, “The European Left: Between Crisis and Refoundation” - a talk given at a seminar sponsored by the Brazil Workers Party in September 1991, later published in New Left Review

      Maitan: pamphlet September 20, 1975 by Trotskyist Livio Maitan, On the position of Lotta Continua: from Chile to Portugal, nature and implications of Chinese International Policy

      Mao Makes 5: And Mao Makes 5, Raymond Lotta (RCP) book defending the Gang of Four (Banner Press, Chicago, 1978)

      Marable: Black American Politics: From the Washington Marches to Jesse Jackson, by Manning Marable

      Marqusee: Mike Marqusee, Redemption Song: Muhammad Ali and the Spirit of the Sixties

      Meeting: Collection of the speeches from the parties at the “Meeting of Representatives of the Parties and Movements Participating in the Celebration of the 70th Anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution” in Moscow

      Mesa-Lago: Revolutionary Change in Cuba, Carmelo Mesa-Lago, editor

      Miller: pamphlet, Against Revisionism, by Michael A. Miller

      Mime: The San Francisco Mime Troupe: The First Ten Years by R.G. Davis

      MINP: A Summation on the Development and Split of MINP-El Comité, pamphlet by the Revolutionary Left Movement

      MINP-2: “Statement on the Division in MINP-EC,” published in Obreras en marcha and as a separate pamphlet by MINP-EC

      MIR History: What Is The MIR? Notes on the History of the MIR pamphlet BMOV-4

      MLQ: Marxist-Leninist Quarterly, journal from PL, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Monthly Review or MR: Monthly Review magazine, issue vol./no. and/or date given with reference

      Moss: Robert Moss, Urban Guerrillas: The New Face of Political Violence (Temple Smith, London, 1972)

      Movement: The Movement newspaper, issue date and/or number cited with reference

      Moving On: Moving On, magazine of the New American Movement, issue date cited with reference

      MPOC Bulletin: MPOC Bulletin, published by the Mass Party Organizing Committee, Vol. and No. and/or date listed with reference

      MSP: Pamphlet from MSP: The MSP of Puerto Rico

      Muñoz: Carlos Muñoz, Jr., Youth, Identity, Power: The Chicano Movement

      Myerson: Unpublished paper by Michael Myerson, “The Crisis In Our Party”

      Myerson/Peace: Speech by Mike Myerson to 1983 convention of U.S. Peace Council

      Myth: Michael Goldfield and Melvin Rothenberg, The Myth of Capitalism Reborn: A Marxist Critique of Theories of Capitalist Restoration in the USSR (Soviet Union Study Project/Line of March Publications, San Francisco, 1980)

      NACLA: NACLA newsletter, then NACLA’s Latin America & Empire Report and later NACLA Report on the Americas. issue date and/or number cited with reference

      Nationalism: Modern Black Nationalism: From Marcus Garvey to Louis Farrakhan, edited by William L. Van Deburg (New York University Press, New York and London, 1997)

      NBUF/RO: The Founding of the National Black United Front and Its Revolutionary Potential, pamphlet from Ray O. Light

      NCIPA Bulletin: NCIPA Discussion Bulletin published by the National Committee for Independent Political Action, issue no. and/or date cited with reference

      NCM-MS: Manuscript of untitled book on New Communist Movement, not sure of author (PH; Phil Hill?), and also not sure if it was ever published

      New Left: James O’Brien, A History of the New Left, 1960-1968 pamphlet 1969, originally a three-part series in Radical America in 1968

      Next Vietnam: Pamphlet: Philippines: Next Vietnam, Kilusan Publications

      NLR: New Left Review, various issues, # and/or date cited with reference

      Noia: Robert F. Noia, Sparticist: A Zinovievite Sect

      Nonviolence: The Power of the People: Active Nonviolence in the United States, edited by Robert Cooney & Helen Michalowski 1977

      North Star: Magazine published by North Star Network, issue number cited with reference

      Nove: Alec Nove, Stalinism and After

      NTC: The National Toxics Campaign: Some Reflections, Thoughts for the Movement, by Peter Cervantes-Gautschi et al

      NYT/2-20-97: New York Times coverage of Deng Xiaoping’s death

      Obit: The New Communist Movement: An Obituary pamphlet, by Al Szymanski writing as the Movement for a Revolutionary Left

      O’Brien: Jim O’Brien, American Leninism in the 1970s, a New England Free Press pamphlet, originally published in the Nov. 1977-Feb. 1978 issue of Radical America

      OL-TU: Building Class Struggle Trade Unions: A Communist View, pamphlet from the October League 1977

      Open Letter: Arthur Kinoy’s Open Letter for a Mass Party of the People

      Organizer: Newspaper of the PWOC, various issues, date cited with reference

      Osawatomie: magazine from the Weather Underground Organization, issue number and/or date given with reference

      PA or Political Affairs: Political Affairs, journal of the CPUSA, issue cited with reference

      Palante: newspaper of the Young Lords Party and then PRRWO, issue date cited with reference

      Palestine: Palestinian Rights, Affirmation & Denial, edited by Ibrahim Abu-Lughod (Medina Press, Wilmette, Illinois, 1982)

      Parting the Waters: Taylor Branch, Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954-63

      Party Problem: The Problem of “the Party,” regroupment-oriented 1984 pamphlet with opinion pieces by Mel Rothenberg, David Finkel and Steve Zeluck

      Paterson: pamphlets Trial Statement of New Afrikan Revolutionary Kuwasi Balagoon and Sundiata Acoli’s Brink’s Trial Statement, published by the Paterson Anarchist Collective

      PCI: Italian Communist Party Resolution of December 29, 1981 and Statement in L’Unita January 26, 1982

      Peace Resource: Peace Resource Book, Institute for Defense and Disarmament Studies

      Peck on China: Article by J. Peck “Why China ‘Turned West’ from May 1972 Ramparts, reprinted in Socialist Register 1972

      People’s Democracy: journal from Revolutionary Review Press, issue date and/or number cited with reference

      Perestroika: Perestroika: Gorbachev’s Program for Socialist Renewal and a New Way of Thinking, packet of Frontline reprints

      PFLP: Political Report of the PFLP’s Fourth Congress

      Pillar: Taylor Branch, Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years 1963-65

      Piven/Cloward: Frances Fox Piven and Richard A. Cloward, Poor People’s Movements: Why They Succeed, How They Fail

      PL: PL/Progressive Labor magazine, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Point 18: OC pamphlet, Against “Left” Internationalism, The Struggle for Point 18

      Polemic on the General Line or Polemic on the General Line/Whence the Differences?: Two collections of polemics published by the CPC: Whence the Differences? and The Polemic on the General Line of the International Communist Movemen

      Postmodern Age: Marxism in the Postmodern Age, collection of papers from conference sponsored by Rethinking Marxism in 1992

      Powerful: Powerful Black Women, by Jessie Carrey Smith (Visible Ink Press, Detroit, New York, Toronto, 1996)

      Prize: Eyes on the Prize, by Juan Williams, Penguin, 1987-88

      Problems: Problems of Communism, magazine of the USIA, issue date cited with reference

      Puerto Rico: Puerto Rico: The Flame of Resistance book by Peoples Press

      R&D: Revolution & Democracy article by Harry Boyte and Frank Ackerman, in SR #16 and a NAM pamphlet

      Radical America or RA: Radical America various issues, number and/or date cited with reference

      Radicalism: The Radicalism Handbook: A Complete Guide to the Radical Movement in the Twentieth Century, by John Button (1995, Cassell, London)

      Radicals: Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky

      Rads: Rads: The 1970 Bombing of the Army Math Research Center at the University of Wisconsin and Its Aftermath, by Tom Bates

      Rxxx: Letter about the disbanding of the Marxist-Leninist Party, supplied to me by M. Rxxx

      Ramparts: Ramparts magazine, issue date cited with reference

      Raskin/Fall: The Vietnam Reader: Articles and Documents on an American Foreign Policy Crisis, edited by Marcus Raskin and Bernard Fall (Vintage/Random House, 1965 and revised edition 1967)

      Ray O. Light: The Present Party Building Movement in the U.S.A. and the Materialist Conception of History, 1976 pamphlet from Ray O. Light

      Rectify/Rebuild: Rectify Errors, Rebuild the Party, documents from the CPP’s 1968 Re-establishment Congress

      Red Dawn: periodical issued by Red Dawn Committee (ML), issue number cited with reference

      Red Papers: Pamphlet series by RU/RCP and one by the RWH; issue number cited with reference

      Refutation: Dialectics of Development on Nelson Peery’s Head: Refutation of the Communist League, by the Central Organization of U.S. Marxist-Leninists

      Return: Return to the Source: Selected Speeches of Amilcar Cabral MR Press 1973

      Reunion: Reunion: A Memoir, by Tom Hayden

      Revolution or Revolution Magazine: monthly newspaper of the RU, later “organ of the Central Committee of the RCP” in newsprint and then magazine form; issue date and/or number cited with reference

      Revolution Rescued: Kampuchea: The Revolution Rescued by Irwin Silber (also issue No. 19 of Line of March journal)

      Richmond: Richmond, Al. A Long View from the Left

      Road: The Socialist Road by Jerry Tung

      Rocamora: “The Crisis in the National Democratic Movement and the Transformation of the Philippine Left,” by Joel Rocamora, Debate-Philippine Left Review

      Rock & Roll: The New Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll, edited by Patricia Rowanowski and Holly George-Warren, (Rolling Stone Press, Second Edition 1995)

      Rolling Stone: 20 Years of Rolling Stone: What a Long, Strange Trip Its Been, Jann S. Wenner Editor (1987, Straight Arrow Publishers/Friendly Press, New York)

      Roots: Our Roots Are Still Alive: The Story of the Palestinian People (Peoples Press, San Francisco, 1977)

      Rorabaugh: W.J. Rorabaugh, Berkeley at War: The 1960s

      RWH/BACU Merger Statement: Announces merger of BACU into RWH

      Sale: Sale, Kirkpatrick, SDS

      SalesJr: Sales Jr., William W. From Civil Rights to Black Liberation: Malcolm X and the Organization of Afro-American Unity. South End Press, Boston, 1994

      Sarkis: What Went Wrong?: Articles and Letters on the U.S. Communist Left in the 1970s, collection from PUL, edited with an introduction by Charles Sarkis

      Schools: Rethinking Schools: An Agenda for Change, edited by David Levine, Robert Lowe, Bob Peterson and Rita Tenorio (The New Press, New York, 1995)

      Schurmann: Franz Schurmann, The Logic of World Power: An Inquiry into the Origins, Currents, and Contradictions of World Politics

      SDHx: Folder with miscellaneous published and unpublished material on social democracy/democratic socialism/NAM/DSOC/DSA/SP history

      Second Cold War: Fred Halliday, The Making of the Second Cold War

      Seventh Summit: The World Economic and Social Crisis: Report to the Seventh Summit Conference on Non-Aligned Countries, by Fidel Castro

      Shilts: Randy Shilts, The Mayor of Castro Street: The Life and Times of Harvey Milk (1982, St. Martins Press, New York)

      Shots: Phyllis Bennis, Calling the Shots: How Washington Dominates Today’s U.N. (Olive Branch Press, Brooklyn, 1996)

      Sison: Pamphlet entitled José Mar*a Sison, by the Alliance for Philippine National Democracy

      Sisterhood: Sisterhood Is Powerful anthology

      Sixties Papers: The Sixties Papers: Documents of a Rebellions Decade, edited by Judith Clavir Albert and Stewart Edward Albert (Praeger, New York-Westport-London) 1984

      Socialist Register: The Socialist Register, annual collection edited by Ralph Miliband and John Saville year given with reference

      Solid-IS History: Folder with sources on the history of IS, Workers Power, ISO and then the re-merged Solidarity

      Sooner or Later: Sooner or Later, pamphlet by Communist Unity Organization 1980

      Southern Patriot and then Southern Struggle: Southern Patriot, newspaper of SCEF, after January 1977 renamed Southern Struggle, issue date cited with reference

      Soviet-Germany: The Soviet Union: Is It the Nazi Germany of Today? Chicago Communist Committee, pamphlet 1977

      Spoke: Who Spoke Up? - American Protest Against the War in Vietnam, 1963-1975, Nancy Zaroulis and Gerald Sullivan

      SR: Socialist Revolution/Socialist Review, various issues, issue date or number cited with reference

      Starobin: Starobin, Joseph. American Communism in Crisis, 1943-1957

      Stonewall: Stonewall by Martin Duberman

      Storm: Beyond the Storm: A Gulf Crisis Reader, edited by Phyllis Bennis and Michel Moushabeck

      Strategy: Draft Report of the Wisconsin Alliance Strategy Commission, issued July


      Street Fighting Years: Street Fighting Years, An Autobiography of the Sixties, by Tariq Ali

      Streets: James Miller, “Democracy Is in The Streets”: From Port Huron to the Siege of Chicago

      Student Generation: 1968: A Student Generation in Revolt, an international oral history edited by Ronald Fraser

      Szymanski: Al Szymanski, Is the Red Flag Flying?: The Political Economy of the Soviet Union Today

      Taft-Hartley: Repeal the Taft Hartley Slave Labor Act, A Workers Press (CLP) pamphlet

      TasksIS: The Period and the Tasks of the Revolutionary Left, pamphlet by International Socialists

      Tenth: Documents from the Tenth National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC)

      Theoretical Review or TR: Journal advancing “primacy of theory” position, 1977-1983, various issues, issue number cited with reference

      Top 40: The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, Joel Whitburn (Billboard Books, 1992)

      Toribio: “We Are Revolution: A Reflective History of the KDP” by HC Toribio, to appear in Amerasia magazine, yet-to-be-published draft in my files

      Torres: Andrés Torres, and José E. Velázquez, (Editors), The Puerto Rican Movement: Voices from the Diaspora

      Trial: “The Trial of the Gang of Four and the Crisis of Maoism”, by the Line of March Editorial Board, in Line of March #6

      Triple Jeopardy: Triple Jeopardy, newspaper of the Third World Women’s Alliance, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Ture: Special introduction to 1992 edition of Stokely Carmichael (now Kwame Ture) and Charles V. Hamilton, Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America (New York: Random House, originally published in 1967)

      TWWA: Pamphlet titled Third World Women’s Alliance: Our History, Our Ideology, Our Goals, pamphlet in “National Reports from NY 1971”

      Underground: Voices from the Underground: Insider Histories of the Vietnam Era Underground Press, Volume I

      Unfinished: Unfinished Business, 20 Years of Socialist Review, edited by the Socialist Review Collectives (Verso, London, New York, 1991

      Unite!: Unite!, newspaper of the MLOC/CPUSA-ML, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      Unite the Many: Guardian pamphlet, Unite the Many, Defeat the Few, by Jack Smith

      Unity: Unity, the newspaper of LRS, issue date cited with reference

      Untold: Labor’s Untold Story, by Richard O. Boyer and Herbert M. Morais, UE-United Electrical Workers & Cameron Associates, New York, first edition 1955

      URPE/Crisis: Radical Perspectives on the Economic Crisis of Monopoly Capitalism, a Union for Radical Political Economics Political Education & Action Publication 1975

      Utopia: Chapter from Utopia and Dissent by Richard Candida Smith

      Viewpoint: Viewpoint, short-lived periodical of Eurocommunist-oriented ex-CPers, issue number listed with cite

      Viorst: Milton Viorst, Fire in the Streets: America in the 1960s (Simon & Schuster, New York) 1979

      VVAW/WSO: Northern California VVAW/WSO In a Time of Struggle: An Open Letter to Anti-Imperialist Forces 1975 pamphlet

      Wald: Alan Wald, The New York Intellectuals

      Wall Flyer: Handout from Milwaukee anti-war movement 1971

      Way: pamphlet, The Failure of the Left to Create a Mass Movement and the Way Forward, by The Way Forward Collective

      Weather: Ron Jacobs, The Way the Wind Blew: A History of the Weather Underground

      Wei: William Wei, The Asian American Movement

      Workers Viewpoint: Workers Viewpoint journal, then newspaper, publication of the WVO and later CWP, issue number and/or date cited with reference

      WUO Split: The Split of the Weather Underground Organization, early 1977 from the John Brown Book club

      Yugoslavia: “Yugoslavia’s Wars: Notes on Nationalism,” by Jasminka Udovicki, in Radical America Vol. 24, No. 3 published February 1993

      End of Part Six/End of Chronology

      Part One, 1967-1970

      Part Two, 1971-1974

      Part Three, 1971-1974

      Part Four, 1975-1980

      Part Five, Source Reference Guide

    7. #7
      Burningspear's Avatar
      Burningspear is offline Warrior

      Join Date
      May 2004
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 0/0
      Given: 0/0
      Rep Power


      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      I was fortunate to hear Huey live that chilly night in Washington DC propound his theory of " revolutionary intercommunalism ." The president of Howard University would not allow Huey to speak on campus and the many thousands of warriors restrained themselves , though many weapons were brandished . I recorded that speech and in 1972 gave it to a 18 year old brother who had been sentenced to life in the shadows . This young brother was a great pugilist and styled himself after Muhammad Ali , he escasped from captivity in 1976 and lived with a dedicated sister for two years in NY. And then came the day of reckoning , the pigs attempted to capture this beautiful brother but he sent two of them to hell before he met his maker . I can still see him blasting his stereo to maximum volume with Huey or Malcolm rapping away . And the prison guards knew damn well not to fuck with this brothers stereo .
      Last edited by Burningspear; 10-24-2004 at 10:04 AM.
      " Wherever death may surprise us , let it be welcome , provided that this , our battle cry , may have reached some receptive ear and another hand may be extended to wield our weapons and other men be ready to intone the funeral dirge with the staccato singing of the machine guns and new battle cries of war and victory " CHE

    8. #8
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      This post Im bumping up is one of the most popular ones visited by guests and search engines..
      Thirty eight years ago on 12/04/2009 the united snakes murdered Fred Hampton & Mark Clark, this date also marks the 6 year anniversary of the launching of this site in solidarity of these martyrs.

    9. #9

      Join Date
      Sep 2004
      Chicago IL
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 0/0
      Given: 0/0
      Rep Power

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Brother Jacuma I posted all this info on another site medasse pa, I made sure to get everything and all the credits and your name as author
      formerly known as Kwaku

      Aiye loja Orun Nile O
      Earth is a marketplace Heaven is home

    10. #10
      Jacuma's Avatar
      Jacuma is offline Forward To PanAfricanism

      Join Date
      Aug 2004
      Atlanta, Georgia
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 15/1
      Given: 15/0
      Rep Power

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Bro Im not the author... Max is the author he can be reached at
      Thirty eight years ago on 12/04/2009 the united snakes murdered Fred Hampton & Mark Clark, this date also marks the 6 year anniversary of the launching of this site in solidarity of these martyrs.

    11. #11

      Join Date
      Sep 2004
      Chicago IL
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 0/0
      Given: 0/0
      Rep Power

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      I emailed him and let him know what and where Asante Sana Brother Jacuma
      formerly known as Kwaku

      Aiye loja Orun Nile O
      Earth is a marketplace Heaven is home

    12. #12
      DJ RBG's Avatar
      DJ RBG is offline S1W-Insurgent

      Join Date
      Jan 2004
      Right Behind You
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 0/0
      Given: 0/0
      Rep Power

      Thumbs up

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      This a pretty detailed book... I printed it out for my next bathroom session
      " Fried, Baked, Grilled, Boiled Or Smoked, The Only Good Pig, Is A Dead Pig...Fuck The Holice!!!"

    13. #13
      Im The Truth's Avatar
      Im The Truth is offline Organizer

      Join Date
      Jan 2004
      Atlanta, GA by way of Afrika
      Blog Entries
      Thumbs Up/Down
      Received: 12/1
      Given: 7/0
      Rep Power

      0 Not allowed! Not allowed!
      Classic from the archives!
      "If the enemy is not doing anything against you, you are not doing anything"
      -Ahmed Skou Tour

      "speak truth, do justice, be kind and do not do evil."
      -Baba Orunmila

      "Cowardice asks the question: is it safe? Expediency asks the question: is it political? Vanity asks the question: is it popular? But conscience asks the question: is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor political, nor popular - but one must take it simply because it is right."
      --Dr. Martin L. King

      Get Involved!

    LinkBacks (?)

    1. 04-29-2012, 12:36 PM
    2. 01-27-2012, 05:18 PM
    3. 08-27-2011, 04:21 PM
    4. 05-04-2010, 01:11 PM
    5. 12-24-2009, 09:50 AM
    6. 12-21-2009, 08:56 AM
    7. 11-18-2009, 09:38 PM
    8. 03-14-2009, 10:52 AM
    9. 03-14-2009, 10:36 AM
    10. 03-14-2009, 09:46 AM
    11. 03-14-2009, 09:21 AM
    12. 03-14-2009, 07:10 AM
    13. 03-14-2009, 06:33 AM
    14. 03-14-2009, 05:58 AM
    15. 03-13-2009, 07:39 AM
    16. 03-13-2009, 06:35 AM
    17. 03-13-2009, 05:22 AM
    18. 03-13-2009, 04:55 AM
    19. 03-13-2009, 04:43 AM
    20. 03-13-2009, 04:22 AM
    21. 03-12-2009, 06:58 AM
    22. 03-11-2009, 09:45 AM
    23. 03-11-2009, 09:41 AM
    24. 03-11-2009, 06:17 AM
    25. 03-10-2009, 10:06 AM
    26. 03-10-2009, 10:04 AM
    27. 03-10-2009, 06:58 AM
    28. 03-10-2009, 05:23 AM
    29. 03-10-2009, 04:55 AM
    30. 03-09-2009, 04:54 AM
    31. 03-09-2009, 04:11 AM
    32. 03-08-2009, 01:26 PM
    33. 03-08-2009, 12:56 PM
    34. 03-08-2009, 12:27 PM
    35. 03-08-2009, 11:52 AM
    36. 03-08-2009, 11:38 AM
    37. 03-08-2009, 09:57 AM
    38. 03-08-2009, 06:34 AM
    39. 03-08-2009, 05:55 AM
    40. 03-08-2009, 05:12 AM
    41. 03-08-2009, 04:49 AM
    42. 03-08-2009, 04:37 AM
    43. 03-08-2009, 04:21 AM
    44. 03-07-2009, 05:16 AM
    45. 03-07-2009, 03:40 AM
    46. 03-06-2009, 04:24 AM
    47. 03-06-2009, 04:16 AM
    48. 10-13-2008, 05:24 AM

    Thread Information

    Users Browsing this Thread

    There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

    Similar Threads

      By XXPANTHAXX in forum Breaking Down and Understanding Our Enemies
      Replies: 0
      Last Post: 05-18-2013, 12:09 AM
    2. Chronology Of Ancient Egypt
      By Mosi Ngozi in forum They All Look A like! All Of Them!!!
      Replies: 2
      Last Post: 09-25-2011, 08:53 AM
    3. Replies: 2
      Last Post: 10-27-2007, 10:28 AM
    4. Chronology of the Bible
      By Fine1952 in forum Judaic/Christian
      Replies: 3
      Last Post: 09-14-2007, 10:25 PM
    5. Chronology of the History of the Slavery
      By Warrior Princess in forum Pan-Afrikanism & Afrocentricity
      Replies: 0
      Last Post: 09-07-2005, 12:27 PM

    Thread Participants: 4

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts


      Assata Shakur Speaks is an Forum Devoted To Assata Shakur And All Political Prisoners Around The World.
      Assata Shakur Speaks Is An Oasis Of Pan African Information Geared Towards The Liberation Of Afrikan People.

    Follow Us On

    Twitter Facebook youtube Flickr DavianArt Dribbble RSS Feed