BRAZIL: Porto Alegre at the dawn of the age of war

In October 1999 I was invited to address the de facto founding conference, in Porto Alegre, of the World Social Forum. There are two items here. The first is a report to the Research Committee of the University of Greenwich, where I taught from 1992 until I left in June 2000 to work at the Greater London Authority under the newly-elected radical Mayor Ken Livingstone. It is of historical interest. The second is a PDF of the slides accompanying my presentation entitled ‘Forward to the past – a return to classical imperialism’. The slides for the most part recapitulate the work of the past decade, except for the final one which includes five ominous and, I think it is reasonable to claim, prophetic bullet points:

  • The problem of China
  • New Arms Race
  • Star Wars in the Pacific
  • Treaty with Japan and the possible inclusion of Taiwan
  • New military intervention in Latin America under the guise of a war on drugs
  • A generalised struggle of the great poweers to control territories and markets.

The same slides (and their bullet points) are available in English in a presentation made in Moscow in November of the same year.

The paper was published in:O Imperio contra-atacou?’ in Carrion, R. and Paolo Fagunes Vicentini, A Crise do Capitalismo na Virdada to Milenio, Porto Alegre: Ed. Universidade UFRGS. ISBN 85-7025-480-2 (proceedings of IIIrd International Forum of Solidarity, Porto Alegre)