On the ‘Arab Spring’ and its links with the 99% movement – A must read!

Here’s the edited transcript of a TV International interview I did with Hamid Taqvaee on the Arab Spring, broadcast during October 2011. He’s leader of the Worker-communist Party of Iran.

Interview with Hamid Taqvaee

Maryam Namazie: Is the Arab Spring linked to the global 99% movement?

Hamid Taqvaee: Of course it is linked! First of all, they are linked because the roots of both movements are the same and that’s the economic situation or crisis worldwide. Some of the main slogans of the revolution in Egypt were about bread, unemployment, and poverty and you see the same thing happening in the West. That’s one thing that connects the two. The other is that the form and method of protest is similar. The whole idea of occupying Wall Street comes from Al-Tahrir Square in Egypt. And it’s not only Egypt and New York of course.  In every other place in the world we had seen the idea of occupying the streets and reclaiming the streets for ourselves. With the idea of occupation, comes the idea of control. We have to take control, we the people, the 99%, have to take everything into our own hands. You can say that the idea is a new one, and it is the basic idea of the Arab Spring, the Middle East revolutions and the protests in the West. It’s not only demonstrations; it’s not about a one day protest and then going home. It’s about taking to the streets, remaining there, and taking control. [Read more…]

On the 99% movement: It is not just about bankers and greed

I have begun my weekly TV programmes again broadcast via New Channel TV to the Middle East and other countries via satellite after a long hiatus. For my first programme back, I speak with the brilliant Hamid Taqvaee on the 99% movement. Here it is:

A TV International interview with Hamid Taqvaee on the 99% movement broadcast on 20 October 2011.

Maryam Namazie: The world-wide 99% protests have been amazing to see. We keep hearing, though, that it has to do with greed. Will things improve if there is less greed?

Hamid Taqvaee: Greed is what people refer to because that is what they are told. When the financial crisis began, mainstream media and politicians spoke of greed as if there were a bunch of greedy executives, bankers and major stockholders on Wall Street who had created the entire problem. That was the image people were given – that there may be something wrong with the system that needed modification but the real problem was greed and greedy people. Obviously, greed is not the reason behind the situation we find ourselves. I mean, even if you say it is greed, the system needs greed. In reality, the problem we faced has been created not by greedy people but by a greedy system. And if you want the system to work you need greed and that greed is personified in bankers and other capitalists. The problem is the system, however, not some greedy people. [Read more…]