Portside Snapshot - March 11, 2015



Venezuela sanctions: Maduro Fumes at 'imperialists' as US Targets Officials

Sibylla Brodzinsky
The Guardian
In an executive order issued by Barack Obama, the White House said the situation in Venezuela posed an “extraordinary threat” to US national security. Maduro, the Venezuelan president, reacted with anger in a televised address on Tuesday night, calling on his country’s Congress to grant him additional decree powers to “fight imperialism”.

How an International Perspective Changes Our Understanding of the Civil War

Don H. Doyle
History News Network
What value would be added by viewing the war from outside the nation? How does it change our understanding of the war to situate it within a larger international context?
One simple answer is that the war mattered greatly to the world. In newspapers and magazines, in meeting halls, churches, taverns, lecture halls, workers unions, and at posh dinner parties, foreigners followed the war with great interest and they debated what it meant for their future.

Beyond Reform: Essays Call for a Sweeping Reassessment of Incarceration

David Gilbert
In the November, 2014, special issue of Socialism and Democracy, "The Roots of Mass Incarceration in the US: Locking Up Black Dissidents and Punishing the Poor," provides a penetrating analysis of a range of the issues involved and points toward the steps that are needed to turn around these horrors.

Unions Suffer Latest Defeat in Midwest With Signing of Wisconsin Measure

Monica Davey
The New York Times
Democrats assert that Gov. Scott Walker’s real motivation for signing the right-to-work legislation is more about politics than job creation: breaking a dwindling union movement in Wisconsin and boosting his standing as the conservative choice for the Republican presidential nomination next year.

Review: Oscar-Nominated Russian Film "Leviathan" -- Man vs. System

Masha Gessen
The New York Review of Books
The great trial of Job is reborn in Andrey Zvyagintsev’s magnificent Russian film, Leviathan. Compellingly told and stunningly shot, the film is also not subtle. The bad guys—the trinity of the government, the court, and the church—are pure evil. They are Leviathan itself, the Biblical monster that cannot be caught or tamed or killed. The film contended at Cannes, won a Golden Globe, was nominated for an Oscar, but last month was snubbed at the Russian film awards.




Portside aims to provide material of interest to people on the left that will help them to interpret the world and to change it.


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