August 17, 2008

Imperialism Meddling in Caucasus

On the US/NATO aggression in the Caucasus

The outbreak of a deadly armed conflict in the Caucasus is not only a
humanitarian disaster which has already cost some 2,000 lives, but
poses a very real threat of wider wars in the region. Imperialism's
preparations and aggressions in Georgia are sparks that can eventually
ignite a much larger conflagration, demanding the sharpest
condemnation of the international labour movement and all peace and
anti-imperialist forces.

Unhindered by a strong socialist bloc of countries, imperialist
countries led by the US in the NATO military alliance are using
Georgia to prepare future aggressions, in violation of the basic
principles of international law such as those in the United Nations

The Communist Party of Canada condemns the Georgian invasion on August
7, including bombing raids on residential areas, hospitals, and
schools in the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali, as an unprovoked
assault which plunged the Caucasus into war. We give full support to
calls from many countries for the complete withdrawal of Georgian
forces from South Ossetia as a first step towards a peaceful solution
to this conflict, which must not be allowed to expand into all-out
confrontation in the Middle East and Central Asia.

We also note that contrary to claims by much of the western media and
by the Bush regime, this is not a case of "Russian aggression." The
source of rising tensions in the Caucasus is not the presence of
Russian troops, which entered South Ossetia in the early 1990s as
peacekeepers after Georgia attempted to forcibly annex the area,
driving much of the population across the border into North Ossetia,
which remained within Russia.

The real origin of this conflict lies in the US/NATO imperialist
policies of expansionism. For decades, starting with the Cold War, the
US has sought to place a military ring around its rival, undermining
allies of the Soviet Union and later Russia, and imposing so-called
"pro-Western" regimes which allow US bases on their soil and rely
heavily on US military cooperation and support. Recalling the Nazi
invasion which cost their country over twenty million lives, Russia
strongly opposes such imperialist encirclement.

This is the case with Georgia, which became a U.S. client state at the
time of the illegal NATO war against Yugoslavia in 1999. Israel, the
main U.S. ally in the region, has also forged close political and
economic links with the Georgian government. The high level of
US/NATO/Israeli/Georgian military integration makes it clear that the
August 7 aggression must have been known in advance and approved by
the Bush and Olmert governments. Bolstering this view is the decision
on August 9 by the United States to provide military transport
aircraft to fly many of Georgia's 2,000-strong troop contingent out of
Iraq to join the fighting at home.

The imperialist drive to plunder oil and other vital resources is a
key factor in destabilization of the region. Notably, the
Baku-Tblisi-Ceyhan pipeline brings oil and gas through Georgia to the
Eastern Mediterranean, including a large part of Israel's oil imports
from Azerbaijan. Controlled by British Petroleum and built with US
support, the BTC pipeline is a vital piece of the military-political
bloc including Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey and Israel, which the US
considers a vital counter-balance against the influence of Russia and
China in the region.

In the wake of the US/UK war against Iraq and the continuing efforts
by the occupation forces to turn over Iraq's vast oil wealth to the
transnational corporations, nobody should underestimate the desire of
the ultra-right clique around Bush, Cheney and other Republican hawks
to use events in the Middle East and Central Asia to further this
strategic push. Seen in this context, Georgia's aggression against
South Ossetia, which quickly met powerful Russian resistance, may have
been a provocation to create better conditions for expansion of the
US/ NATO military presence in the area.

The Caucasus war could also influence the US presidential election, by
tilting voter support towards Republican candidate John McCain. It is
not a stretch to wonder if these events may be intended to help lay
the groundwork for a US strike against Iran, with the long-range goal
of imperialist seizure of that country's oil reserves. Such an attack
would unleash a war of unforeseeable dimensions, costing millions of
lives and spreading far beyond the borders of the Middle East.

In pursuit of its aim of global hegemony, imperialism is playing with
fire, and Georgia's latest aggression is part of this wider pattern.
The Communist Party of Canada urges full support for international
attempts to contain and extinguish this conflict, and for an end to
all imperialist meddling in the Caucasus.

Issued by the Central Executive Committee

Communist Party of Canada

August 14, 2008

August 16, 2008

YCL-LJC Action Update "Give me $2.7 mill" - T18 informant

3. TORONTO 18 - "I WANT 2.7 MILL"


The YCL BC successfully held a weekend summer camp at a beautiful lake
near Merritt. Comrades discussed Reform and Revolution, and action for
the BC YCL over the next year. Comrades came from Vancouver, Burnaby,
the Lower Mainland, and Trail BC. See the facebook group for photos!

The YCL-LJC is in the process of getting a new website. In a few
months we will launch our new site, which will allow for more regular
updates of the main page and other cool features! If you have comments
or suggestions for the new site, please send them to the Central
Executive, c/o

YCL Ontario is organizing a fall school for early September for new
members. The school is planned to be held in Hamilton, at Solidarity
House, a hall run by the Communist Party, working with the FMLN and
friends in the local labour movement and other peoples groups.

This summer Marianne Breton Fontaine, Quebec Organizer, together with
Johan Boyden, General Secretary of the YCL, traveled across the
country visiting most clubs of the league. Marianne gave a short talk
about developments in Quebec student politics since the last issue of
Rebel Youth, when an article appeared discussing this issue.


The World Festival of Youth and students is moving forward -- but it
is a little uncertain where the next festival will be and when the
date is. This is the news from a summer meeting of the International
Union of Students and the World Federation of Democratic Youth. Due to
financial reasons, the youth festival committee in Belarus was forced
to withdraw their application, leaving India as a possible host. Stay
posted! More information will follow.


'Toronto 18' informant Mubin Shaikh ups his price


Original Source:

Two years ago, when Mubin Shaikh first went public with his tale of
anti-terror espionage, he was candid about his compensation. He told
Canadians the RCMP paid him a cool $300,000 to spy on the "Toronto
18," a group of young, tough-talking Muslims who liked to camp in the
snow (and allegedly plot jihad). But Shaikh insisted, over and over,
that cash was not his motivation. He went undercover to protect his
country and his religion, not to line his pockets. "I didn't do it for
the money," he said shortly after the arrests. "I'm not going to
negotiate with the lives of Canadians."

Today, Mubin Shaikh is ready to negotiate. Canada's most famous
informant — the public face of the nation's largest-ever terrorism
trial — is asking for a $2.4-million raise.

In a two-page letter addressed to the Mounties, Shaikh vows to abide
by a long list of conditions in exchange for the hefty, "no tax"
payment ($2.7 million, minus the $300,000 he's already received). His
promises include no more media interviews, no more drug use, and no
book or movie deals. The 32-year-old also pledges to "aggressively
defend the evidence and vocally support the role of the agencies
involved" in the case, including the RCMP and CSIS, Canada's spy
agency. "This document is intended to be a formal request for further
compensation that is 'deserved and proportional' to my involvement" in
the investigation, Shaikh writes.

The note contains no explicit threats. Shaikh, a married father of
five, does not go so far as to say he will abandon the case if the
cops don't cave. However, one of his proposed conditions is a promise
not to "bring any legal action against the RCMP/CSIS."

The authorities have yet to respond to Shaikh's letter, but this much
appears certain: police and prosecutors are growing increasingly
impatient with their prized informant. The timing of his extravagant
demand was especially bold. Shaikh sent his note to the Mounties on
June 9, just days before his widely publicized testimony at the trial
of a teenager charged in connection with the bust. "It certainly makes
a mockery of his 'I'm not doing this for the money' line," says lawyer
Michael Moon, who represents Steven Chand, one of 10 adults still
facing charges. "The Crown's devout, patriotic witness keeps on upping
his price, depending on what trial he's at."

Indeed, this is the second time Shaikh has requested a pay hike. In
the early stages of the investigation, he happily accepted $77,000 to
infiltrate the group. He bugged his minivan, befriended one of the
alleged leaders, and famously joined the suspects on a two-week winter
camping trip that prosecutors now believe was the genesis of a
sophisticated plot to detonate truck bombs in downtown Toronto. But in
June 2006, days after the high-profile raids, Shaikh went back to the
RCMP and asked them to boost his reward to an even $300,000. They

Two years later, it's hard to imagine a repeat outcome. Despite his
undeniable charm and outspoken disdain for aspiring terrorists, Shaikh
is proving to be as much of a Crown liability as an asset. As star
witnesses go, he has become more star than witness. Since the arrests,
he has outed himself on national TV, proclaimed the innocence of some
of the accused, snorted cocaine on the taxpayers' dime, and pleaded
guilty to threatening two 12-year-old girls. During his recent
testimony at the youth trial, he also sparred with prosecutor John
Neander, who took the rare step of declaring Shaikh a hostile witness
and grilling him on some alleged inconsistencies in his statements.
Simply put, the Crown accused its own hired mole of fudging facts to
protect the defendant. A few days later, Shaikh went one step further,
telling reporters the teenage suspect deserves to be acquitted.

And now, after all that, Mubin Shaikh wants more cash — more than 30
times the dollar figure he originally agreed to. "You have to be
concerned about the motives of an informant whose sole source of
income has been taxpayer money," says defence lawyer Dennis Edney,
whose client, Fahim Ahmad, faces more charges than any of the accused.
"And if Mr. Shaikh is asking for more money, then it causes further
concern that his sole motivation in giving evidence is financial

This case, of course, already has a controversial history of financial
rewards. A second informant, an unidentified businessman who is now
hiding in the witness protection program, was paid at least $4.1
million for his covert assistance — and only after the Mounties talked
him down from his original offer of $15 million. At the time, Shaikh
had no idea the other spy existed, let alone the fact he was being
paid millions of dollars. After the raids, when he did find out,
Shaikh claimed to have no regrets. "I've got no complaints," he said
in February 2007. "I'm not thinking: 'Oh damn, I should have asked
them for more.' Nope. I'm happy with everything."

So what changed? Why is he suddenly so anxious to fatten his bank
account by $2.4 million? His answer is typical Shaikh: self-assured,
unequivocal, and rife with references to the Quran. "My response is
simple," he said, when contacted by Maclean's. "This case is huge. It
is history being made — legal history, Canadian history and Islamic
history — and the burden it has on a person is great."

Shaikh insists — again — that money had nothing to do with his
original decision to become a police agent. "A person who does things
for money, money is the number one thing right from the beginning," he
says. "But when I went into the first negotiation I didn't go anywhere
near a lot of a money. At the time, I had no idea what this was going
to entail." Only now, Shaikh says, does he realize the full
ramifications of his co-operation. "This has shaped the rest of my
life. The next 10 years are going to revolve around this stuff. It has
become a full-time job, and I would like to know who in the courtroom
is there free of charge. I'm sure the judge is not there because of
his love for justice. I'm sure the media isn't there because of the
right for the public to know. And the lawyers aren't there because
they're crusading for justice. Everybody is there for a dollar."

Shaikh wants to be clear: he is not giving the RCMP an ultimatum. If
the force doesn't pay him another dime, he'll still show up to testify
whenever the adult suspects reach trial (or trials). "That will never
change," he says. "I am ordered by Allah to do the right thing, to
tell the truth." He still believes in the evidence, and he still
believes that most of the accused deserve to spend many more years
behind bars. But he also believes that his own time and effort — just
not his opinions — should come at a fair price. "I do feel that I
deserve more," he says. "Basically, the money is for me because I
didn't go into witness protection. What if I need to relocate the rest
of my family because my house is known? The cops wouldn't even put a
deadbolt lock in my apartment. What makes you think they're going to
do anything?"

Though he is careful with his words, Shaikh is clearly frustrated with
the RCMP. "I don't think the police take me as seriously as they
should," he says. "I don't think they realize the resource that I am.
I'm only interested in increasing their intelligence-gathering and
crime-prosecuting abilities. That is my goal, because the last thing I
want is for them to not do it properly, get to court, and have it
fizzle out." In fact, Shaikh says he's no longer angry that Neander
attacked him on the stand; if anything, the episode proved he is
committed to telling the truth, not following the government's script.
"I work with the police, not for the police."
Still, Shaikh knows what's coming. He has no doubt that many in the
Muslim community, including some of the suspects' families, will curse
him yet again. The money-hungry traitor needs to buy more coke to
snort up his nose. He smiles at the thought. "Those people are
terrorist cheerleaders," he says. "Frankly, I don't give a rodent's
buttocks what the community thinks — or anybody else. People who do
the right thing should not be swayed by what people say or what people
think, because the right thing is the right thing. And if the whole
community says it's not the right thing, then the whole community is