Democratic Left

Closing Military Bases, Opening a New World

Why does the United States maintain troops in at least 175 countries? In a day and age when many of us are taught to overcome prejudice and behave respectfully toward all, mainstream U.S. media and school texts still habitually portray U.S. lives as the only lives that really matter. A plane crash that kills dozens…

Huge NY State Tenants Rights Victory: How It Happened

The rent reform legislation that passed the NY State Assembly and Senate June 14 was a major victory for millions of tenants across the state, especially in New York City. It was also a super-sweet organizing success for DSA and its allies, who formed the core of the Upstate-Downstate Housing Alliance that made it happen.…

Book Recommendations from DSA’s International Committee

We asked the members of DSA’s International Committee to provide a short write-up on the books that had the most impact on them or most changed their way of thinking regarding foreign policy or international affairs. Their recommendations and thoughts are below. -Eds.  Ethan Earle on An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire by Arundhati Roy…

Adolescent Dreams, Adult Nightmares

Rosa del Duca’s Memoir Traces a Path Through and Out of the Military “He was one of the hottest guys I’d ever seen—walking into our American Government class with catlike precision, his shoulders filling out his pressed uniform.”  That sentence could have been  taken from a romance novel, the kind with lots of sex scenes.…

To Fight Imperialism, Organize Soldiers and Veterans

Perhaps the unspoken central question of this issue of Democratic Left is: “How can we as socialists do effective work against war and imperialism?” By organizing those who are the victims of America’s Poverty Draft, Jonathan Wesley Hutto tells us below. In this open letter, Hutto mobilizes his own autobiography and the tradition that has…

Stop those gangsters of capitalism

Smedley Butler’s oft-cited War is a Racket, based on a speech he gave to veterans at the 1932 Bonus March, has become almost a cliché in the world of antiwar activism. Yet, his incisive critique of perpetual war is still as good an indictment of our times as any. Butler served in a variety of…

Peace, Palestine, and Me

I grew up near Tel Aviv and came of age in the years before the First Intifada began, in 1987. Looking back on over 30 years of activism in support of peace between Israelis and Palestinians, you’d think that I’d know better how to advise comrades about Palestine. But these days, while I have plenty…

Socialism, Internationalism, Feminism: A 50-Year Journey

Vivian Rothstein was a Mississippi Freedom Summer volunteer in 1965 and later a community organizer in Uptown Chicago. In 1967, she participated in a peace delegation to North Vietnam to bear witness to the U.S. bombing of civilian targets.  Upon returning to the United States, she helped organize the Jeannette Rankin Brigade, which, in January…