|Naomi Klein, Noam Chomsky, Yanis Varoufakis, Katrin Jakobsdottir.|
LAST WEEK saw the launch of the Progressive International, a new global initiative to unite, organise, and mobilise progressive forces around the world. Launched in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic and an economic crisis that has only just begun, Progressive International says that never has international solidarity mean more necessary.
'The Covid-19 crisis is deepening everywhere, hitting hardest among the world’s poor. Meanwhile, disaster capitalism is on the rise, as financial speculators and transnational corporations seek to profit from the pandemic. Standing behind them are the forces of the far right, who exploit the crisis to advance an agenda of bigotry and xenophobia.'
Progressive International says that there is 'a global struggle taking place of enormous consequence. Nothing less than the future of the planet is at stake.'
In 2018, Yanis Varoufakis of the Democracy in Europe Movement (DiEM25) and Jane O'Meara Sanders of the Sanders Institute issued an open call for a new global progressive grassroots effort that would help unify the international pro-democracy movement.
In an official statement announcing its formation last Monday, the Progressive International said it was now taking up that call and would act as an institution for the world's progressive forces, with a mission to 'make solidarity more than just a slogan.'
The Progressive International's council of advisors, responsible for setting its strategic direction, will convene in September - pandemic permitting - for the inaugural summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. It will be hosted by the Prime Minister of Iceland, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, and the Left Green movement.
Katrín Jakobsdóttir is also a member of the council and is joined by such names as Noam Chomsky, Rafael Correa (former President of Ecuador), Naomi Klein, John McDonnell (former Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer under Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn), Varshini Prakash (co-founder and director of the Sunrise movement campaigning for a Green New Deal in the US) novelist, writer and activist Arundhati Roy and economist Yanis Varoufakis.