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First Worldist “left” hacks the 2016 US Presidential Election for Donald J. Trump

First Worldist “Left” hacks US presidential election for Donald J. Trump

by Jacob Brown

(llco.org)

How the First Worldist “left” united with Obama-Clinton regime to bring Trump to power:

One of the more blatantly reactionary examples of pseudo-feminists in action.

With the current “#J20” US Inauguration Day protests against Donald J. Trump, a First Worldist pseudo-feminism is presenting itself as the protests’ main ideological engine, and allowing the CIA, anti-Russian narrative pushed by the US imperialist Democratic Party to buttress questions of “illegitimacy”. (1, 2)  Of course, the purported protection of the reproductive health choices of First World women, while signing onto rhetoric about the supposed necessity of US Marines to help “fight for the global sisterhood” in the Third World has rendered itself hollow to the world’s masses after 15 years of the imperialist “War on Terror”.  Imperialist patriarchy packaged as liberation has produced the worst of both patriarchal worlds for the majority of Third World women, both with the proliferation of misogynistic Western gender culture and with its mirror opposite of imposition of traditional patriarchal gender roles and gender apartheid. It would appear that a repeat of the 2006 US International Women’s Day protests is upon us on “J20”. The 2006 IWD protests saw alleged “communists” marching with the likes of Zionist “feminist” Phyllis Chesler to denounce the Iranian state while NATO troops were imposing imperialist patriarchy in Afghanistan and Iraq. (3) With the current rhetoric being used by First Worldist activists who take their cues from the CIA and Democratic Party, perhaps Russia is the next target for “regime change”. The utilization of “Cold War” militarist rhetoric and pseudo-feminism by the imperialists are but only two dimensions of what these kinds of imperialist politics produces in the real world.

The 2011 Wisconsin protests injected First Worldist economism into the “Arab Spring” as it was beginning in Egypt, following the demonstrations in Tunisia. An example of this includes the infamous photo depicting the false statement “One World, One Pain.” (4) Pretending that the First World majority populations were a natural friend of the Third World had its genesis in this First Worldist fallacy. When the “Arab Spring” found its way into Libya just one month later, this First World “solidarity” was extended to mean NATO providing a free air force for anti-Qaddafi neocolonialist Jihadists. The fall of the Jamahiriya in Libya gave both a material and morale boost to NATO and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which would fuel the “pipeline wars” in Syria for the next 5 years. (5)  “Occupy Wall St.”, and the First Worldist networks that followed it, were advancing First Worldist populism with a vengeance. They continued the social-chauvinist thrust of the Wisconsin protests with anti-imperialist politics given less priority or mostly silenced altogether. A kind of false internationalism was supposedly bringing together social-democrats, anarchists, “left communists”, Maoists, Trotskyists, environmentalists, the EZLN, the social-imperialist parties in Greece, and various “rebels” associated with the US-backed Muslim Brotherhood, based on a rather nebulous idea about “tears in the fabric of history”. (6) These First Worldists, so enthusiastic for the “Arab Spring” in Egypt, were silent on the 2013 mass revolt that overthrew the US-backed stooge Mohammed Morsi (7), with numbers that dwarfed the Tahir Square protests by a factor of 7. (8)

If any population within First World borders was sharing “one pain” with Egyptian masses in either the 2011 or 2013 protests, it would have been the migrants who participated in the May 1, 2006 “Day Without An Immigrant” strike. (9) However, many of those migrants ended up getting deported by the Bush administration in the millions, and by the Obama administration by even greater numbers. First Worldists missed the mark on that issue as well, because too many of them were putting all their energy into pseudo-feminist posturing in tandem with the US State Department and the Zionist entity just 2 months before, or otherwise complaining about the presence of Mexican flags as “nationalist” and “divisive”!

The imperialist pseudo-feminism we saw deployed against Iran in 2006 was also utilized in Libya in 2011, with bogus reports of “Viagra-fueled mass-rapes” advanced by Susan Rice and Hillary Clinton. (10)  Of course, no evidence exists to support such claims, but there is ample evidence and testimony of sub-Saharan migrant African women being kidnapped and raped by the very “Libyan Revolutionaries” hailed as anti-patriarchal heroes in the West. (11) In addition to the pseudo-feminist propaganda track in the prelude to the NATO/GCC aggression against Libya, we had a First Worldist “false nationalism” coming from neocolonialist Libyan exiles that was selectively applied in an attempt to silence any non-Libyan supporter of the Jamahiriya with a potent voice. The “authentic voice of the subaltern” was used to justify NATO’s neocolonialist false “liberation narrative” (12), where juxtapositions such as “Muammar Qaddafi = Bad Dictator / Mahatma Gandhi = Good Liberator” were passing for a theoretically solid approach. (13)  Adding the false narrative of the “impending massacre of Benghazi’s population”, and the list of phony justifications for NATO intervention start to gain support in the realm of First World public opinion.

Matthew VanDyke, the American “Freedom Fighter” mercenary in Sirte during the NATO “revolution” Libya  in , would ask the various manifestations of “Occupy” in the First World for donations to continue his imperialist activity in Syria on the side of the neocolonialist “Free Syrian Army”.  He still breathes in 2017.

As the calls for NATO/GCC/Turkish intervention in Syria were increased, the pseudo-feminist angle was used to less of a degree, with some bogus propaganda about “regime rape rooms” being recycled from the last imperialist adventure in Libya. This time however, the false nationalist narrative was more heavily relied upon. The narrative spinning involved equating the imperialist-backed Muslim Brotherhood in Syria with the legitimate indigenous and African anti-colonial struggles (14), or variably by tokenizing Kurdistan liberation forces as a “Third Camp” (15). It is curious that the loudest voices claiming that the Kurdistan liberation forces were on a “long march to Damascus” to topple the Assad regime were doing so in tandem with the US State Department rhetoric about how “Assad must go”, not unlike what transpired in 2006 with the anti-Iran protests.

To understand why purportedly “anti-war” activist scenes around the First World gave space for neocolonialist identity politics to sell the NATO “revolution” in Libya and ramp up the call for NATO intervention in Syria, we can look at the populist and “critical race theory” trends coming into conflict with each other within formations like Occupy. The deliberate First Worldist populism mostly driving the message of Occupy was bound to come into conflict with other forces in and around the Occupy movement calling for decolonization, the politics of which is inherently at odds with the mantra of “We Are The 99% [of the First World]”, regardless if the particular decolonization politics presented is Leninist, anarchist, bourgeois liberal, or something else purportedly “beyond labels” in content. (16) As the “decolonize” rhetoric in the First World activist circles began to congeal, the populist politics of Occupy waned and ended with the Occupy brand itself becoming defunct. The people involved put away their Guy Fawkes masks and copies of Alinsky’s “Rules For Radicals”, and started to pick up art and/or poetry and Fanon’s “Wretched of the Earth” instead (often to the exclusion of other anti-colonial classics). It became easy for these “radical” First World protest scenes to tokenize pro-Muslim Brotherhood migrants from Palestine, Egypt, and Syria, and accept their neocolonial bogus “decolonial” narratives with unquestioning submission, in tandem with US imperialist “regime change” objectives.

With the uptick of police and paramilitary terrorism against the African diaspora in the United States between 2012-2016, alongside the already existing criminalization of generations of Black youth by the state, the First Worldist activist void left by Occupy was filled with the “Black Lives Matter” network.  This network came together at the same time rebellions were picking up in US cities affected by high profile incidents of police terror like Ferguson, Missouri and Baltimore, Maryland. Many well meaning veterans of the anti-colonialist movements within the United States had mistakenly believed the myth that the revolutionary spirit of the 1960s was coming back. (17)  As the Democratic Party’s presidential primary elections approached, the original militant anti-colonial thrust of those involved with the Black Lives Matter network was being put on hold in exchange for engaging with Democratic Party candidates over reformist policy issues, and a First Worldist confining of the issue of reparations to the African diaspora within the United States exclusively. (18)   It did not matter what any “official” BLM statement said at that point about refraining from electoral politics, as the horizons of BLM at that point had been limited by both reformist illusions and First Worldist chauvinism. This had practical implications as well, with the noticeable rift causing some around the BLM network to initiate an armed struggle without the material support of a large portion of the network busy with reformist politics.

An example of some weenie First Worldist “communist”  hack that helped pave the way for Trump, like the pseudo-feminist hacks pictured above.

At the same time that BLM was proliferating around the United States, nominally “communist” First Worldist forces were politically capitalizing on conceptions of group identity embraced by the increasingly college student base of the BLM network, smashing several layers of formal and informal First Worldist male dominated leftist groups in the United States and England in sometimes quite public ruptures. However, breaking the hegemony of historical oppressor groups over First Worldist formations did nothing to break the hegemony of First Worldism and social-imperialism in their general orientation. Indeed, even purported “Third Worldist” formations in the First World managed to sneak First Worldism through the back door by denying that most First World women and non-men constitute an enemy gender aristocracy (but use the opposite logic to justify the idea of a labor aristocracy!). (19) In all cases, the results of these social-chauvinist “communist” forces whether they consciously knew it or not, was to slow the progress of building New Power and preparing for Global People’s War. This is even the case when “Global People’s War” or “Third Worldism” is mentioned by these posturing First Worldists, as their penchant for bourgeois identity politics, navel-gazing, and tokenization betrays their true nature.

A parallel First World decolonization movement drawn from indigenous peoples in North America had emerged to confront domestic oil drilling and pipeline construction on indigenous lands. The relatively smaller population size of the indigenous internal colonies (20, 21) in comparison to the African diaspora in the US made for some interesting contrasts in political trajectory. This smaller sized force of mostly indigenous peoples consciously struggle for decolonization before it was trendy in activist circles, to emphasize the preservation of culture in opposition to Euro-American settler-colonialism.  The element of cultural preservation is more pronounced than other historical internal colonies in the US.  How this has played out on the ground, from “Idle No More” to the Keystone and Dakota Access Pipeline blockades has been almost the mirror opposite of the trajectory of BLM. Unlike the social movement network that originated with BLM, the indigenous protests tended to start out essentially with reformist politics and liberal, settler-imperialist boot-licking, and then more militant and uncompromising anti-colonial Native forces followed and increased the militancy (and may continue to do so, winter weather permitting, as of the time of this article’s publishing). It is not clear with a Trump administration allied with the non-Rockefeller wing of the US oil industry (inclined towards domestic oil drilling / piping in the US) (22), and with those identifying as indigenous people in North America at less than 5% of the total US and Canadian population, that anything besides Global People’s War will be able to stop any new settler-colonial “domestic drilling” agenda under the new regime. At the very least, the Native Warriors at Standing Rock have found themselves outside the capacity for First Worldist “Marxists” or the US Democratic party to co-opt them at this time. However, it isn’t likely that these social-imperialists will give up trying to do so, as their public fawning over US military veterans as some kind of “anti-colonial force” to oppose DAPL attests to. (23)

In 2006, the USA was at the lowest point in global public opinion it had been in decades. (24) There was no Leading Light Communism as an independent system operating in the world at that time. If there were, there may have been a basis to “globalize” the anti-imperialist left under Leading Light Communist leadership. Instead, genuine imperialists were stuck with a dogmatic ideological framework that prevented them from “thinking and acting globally”. Rather, many genuine anti-imperialists and friends of the Third World never escaped the left-liberal horizon of “think globally, act locally” for many years.  Only Leading Light Communism provides any real basis for genuine communist politics independent from First Worldist chauvinism promoted by “mainstream” social-imperialist political parties in the First World, and neocolonialist parties selling First Worldist fantasies to the masses of people in the Third World. The First Worldist “left” offers sometimes-true promises to First World bourgeois majority for more imperialist loot, and always-false promises to the world’s majority in the Third World of attaining First World status by adopting imperialist maldevelopment programs. What these First Worldists of all stripes like to ignore is that such false “proletarian internationalism” actually serves to corral people into pro-imperialist politics. This by default includes electing imperialist politicians for US president, despite any pretense by First Worldist “communists” of opposing electoral politics in principle! When First Worldist “communists” confine their notion of “mass line” to First World peoples exclusively, they are forced to essentially come to a synthesis with social-imperialist electoral politics, regardless of their stated inclinations towards some fantasy of “preparing the masses People’s War” in the First World.

The US social-patriot Michael Moore saw all this coming. (25) The white populist movement that started in 2010 as the “Tea Party” politically evolved into the anti-migrant and economic protectionist force that was to be the social base for Trump’s electoral victory, which Trump’s strategic adviser Steve Bannon coined as the “Alt-Right”. Traditional anti-labor, plus free trade conservative politics was turned on its head with Trump’s hostile takeover of the GOP during the Republican presidential primaries, with Donald Trump himself calling for the Republican Party to become an “American Workers Party”. (26)  The identity-based political patchwork combined with the cynical “middle class centrism” that the likes of Bill Clinton and Tony Blair has used to great effect in First World since the fall of the Soviet Union politics were utilized by the Hillary Clinton campaign.  However, the old Democratic Party electoral strategy could not stop Donald Trump’s campaign in a contest for US electoral votes. Along with Michael Moore, surrogates of the US Democratic Party like Van Jones, most of Hollywood, and even Barack Obama himself could not make the liberal politics of the past 25 years work for Hillary Clinton. As Donald Trump himself said many years ago in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, he would only run for president if he thought he could win. (27) Well, the First Worldist “left” set up this whole scenario for Trump to achieve electoral victory.

Without a doubt, the First Worldist “left” worked with Barack Obama and the Democrats to hack the election for Donald J. Trump. It is the nature of their politics, as they have been social-imperialist “hacks” for over a period of 15 years with zero credibility, even amongst their own bourgeois First World social base! The First World “masses” prefer Trump’s new GOP “workers party” to the fantasy “communist” outfits of the First Worldists.

“Daddy Donald wants a big kiss, you precious little First Worldist “leftist” weenies!  You did such a good job at not making revolution, that my ascendancy to USA Emperor was a piece of cake!”

How Leading Light Communists should operate during the ascendance of Trump, Marine Le Pen, Brexit, and the general First World nationalist political trends:

Both paramilitary, white nationalist violence and state repression against Third World migrants in the First World could increase. This could be a catalyst for an explosive May 1st within First World borders.  While their demands are likely to be confined to reformist and First Worldist politics, the connection that migrants have to the Third World masses might make for some great potential Leading Light Communist leaders.  This does not mean that Leading Light Communists should be leading some significant “anti-colonial movement” within First World borders, and such notions will need to be quashed both inside and outside the organization if these ideas find expression.  All that aside, it does mean that there are new opportunities to expose the global capitalist-imperialist system, and put Leading Light Communist politics in command of an emerging anti-imperialist united front.

Current efforts to oppose Trump and other hard right nationalists in the First World are dominated by the “left” First Worldist populists, pro-imperialist pseudo-feminists, and neocolonial and individualist fake posturing around “decolonization” connected to the liberal “globalist” wing of the imperialists.  This is unlikely to change beyond a general “washing out” of the more overtly liberal imperialist forces within such an anti-Trump, unorganized, left leaning coalition.  The commitment to building independent institutions of Dual Power within the First World itself is a noble but ultimately fruitless gesture, with no mass social base for revolution. The same gesture to “not allow US imperialism to go unchallenged” is equally noble yet fruitless if not linked up with the New Power of the Leading Light, based on uniting the world’s exploited in their billions as the driving force for a genuinely militant, material challenge to US/NATO imperialism. Nevertheless, Leading Light Communists in the First World should stay engaged with all people who seek an alternative to the current system, and be ready to impart political education and engage in ideological struggle. (28)

Outside of the First World, the First Worldists have failed terribly at supporting the international united front with their acquiescence to Western imperialist taking points since 2001. Ironically, it is now the right-wing nationalists who have taken up a pretense of “anti-imperialism” and “internationalism”.  Theirs is based entirely on a pan-nationalist framework devoid of any historical perspective on colonialism. (29)  This is why we are faced with the ugly and tenuous First World populist unity of anti-migration and anti-interventionism. This is also why Leading Light Communist politics in command can prevent us from becoming surprised by turns towards fascism from those we once believed were firmly in the progressive anti-imperialist camp. The fact that Donald Trump is very popular among the Egyptian, Syrian and Libyan masses (30, 31, 32) for his anti-NATO/anti-interventionist and anti-Muslim Brotherhood rhetoric during the US presidential campaign, even when often couched in a generalized reactionary anti-Muslim chauvinism suited for Trump’s electoral base in the United States, should be an indication that the First Worldist “left”, especially the “antiwar left” has lost its way on genuine anti-imperialism from a communist perspective. Consider this a wake up call to First Worldist so-called “communists”: These vulnerable populations you claim to represent, chose Donald Trump over you, most likely because of your adherence to outdated social-imperialist programs that puts them last, and not first.

Leading Light Communists can combat both the fake First Worldist “leftists”, and the right-wing usurpers of the anti-imperialist movement. We don’t have to defeat both camps simultaneously, but we need to understand that there cannot be strategic unity in coalition with either of these enemy forces within the anti-imperialist united front. Both the white nationalist imperialist camp and the phony “left wing” social-imperialist camp alike advance a politics that demand more for the First World and less for the Third World. The former wants to build border walls and fences to keep Third World migrants away from the value stolen from them. The latter call for a $15 minimum wage for First World workers exclusively, paid for by the international proletariat. Same politics, but different packaging. As long as the political line of the First Worldist “left” remains fundamentally indistinguishable from the line of white nationalists on questions of global value transfer, superficial differences between the two lines on gender and nation will not matter to the world’s oppressed and exploited majority.

Stopping US imperialism begins with Leading Light Communist politics in command!

The only silver lining about the impending Trump regime would be a temporary pullback of the imperialist military from the Global South early in his term (with the exception of some “hotspots” where there is talk of cooperation against Daesh), as well as a reshuffling of existing First World military alliances like NATO and trade agreements like NAFTA. This could potentially allow an opening for the New Power to expanded into places where it has yet to be built, and to deepen the roots of the New Power where it currently is being built. There is much that Trump is keeping close to his chest, so comrades should be mindful if his international policy rhetoric starts to lean less on making deals and more on stealing resources. This could be an indication that US imperialism is seeking to reimpose itself on the world’s oppressed and exploited majority in a rapid and expansive fashion. (33)  Such an aggressive move by Trump and Exxon’s Rex Tillerson could indeed be the catalyst for unleashing Global People’s War in the future, if the international defense of the New Power of the Leading Light is under such an aggressive imperialist attack.

Help us prepare for the best and worst case scenarios alike, by joining with and donating to the Leading Light Communist Organization! A New Power is being born in this dark world! Cherish and nurture it to total victory with your material solidarity!

Notes:
1. http://heatst.com/culture-wars/womens-march-falling-apart-because-racism-white-privilege/
2. http://www.blackagendareport.com/no_tears_for_john_lewis
3. https://www.prisoncensorship.info/archive/etext/gender/iwd06h.html
4. http://twitpic.com/419nfm
5. Oil & Energy Insider; “IRAN-IRAQ: Pipeline to Syria Ups Ante in Proxy War with Qatar”;
February 22, 2013
6. http://www.humanite.fr/monde/alain-badiou-des-printemps-aux-revolutions-554069
7. https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2013/07/01/on-the-wrong-side-again-inegypt/?utm_term=.d198d11f3235
8. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-protests-idUSBRE95Q0NO20130630
9. https://www.prisoncensorship.info/archive/etext/mn/mn335.pdf
10. https://levantreport.com/2016/01/04/new-hillary-emails-reveal-propaganda-executions-covetinglibyan-oil-and-gold/
11. http://www.miamiherald.com/latest-news/article1938633.html
12. https://kasamaarchive.org/2011/03/04/libyan-exception-dont-tear-the-sails-of-inspiration/
13. Tidal; “General Strike!”; Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak; December 2011
14. https://bayareaintifada.wordpress.com/
15. https://ncplc.wordpress.com/2014/10/09/neither-assad-nor-nato/
16. https://bayareaintifada.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/video-decolonization-is-not-a-tendency-2013-seattle-anarchist-book-fair-panel/
17. http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/Image_1_20161014_TPP.jpg
18. https://policy.m4bl.org/reparations/
19. https://anti-imperialism.org/2014/11/17/patriarchy-is-not-secondary-rethinking-gender-oppression/
20. http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-10.pdf
21. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/130508/dq130508a-eng.htm
22. http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2016/12/donald-trump-finally-admits-he-wants-builddapl-pipeline
23. http://abcnews.go.com/US/2000-veterans-arrive-standing-rock-protest-dakota-pipeline/story?
id=43964136
24. http://www.pewglobal.org/database/indicator/1/survey/7/response/Unfavorable/
25. http://michaelmoore.com/trumpwillwin/
26. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/06/us/politics/as-trump-rises-reformocons-see-chance-toupdate-gops-economic-views.html?_r=0
27. http://www.oprah.com/oprahshow/what-donald-trump-told-oprah-about-his-presidential-hopesvideo
28. https://www.ungovernable2017.com/
29. http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/02/10/dugins-occult-fascism-and-the-hijacking-of-left-antiimperialism-and-muslim-anti-salafism/
30. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/egypt/2016-11-29/egypts-unlikely-ardor-trump
31. http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/16/opinions/donald-trump-speech-syria-reaction/
32. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/libya/2017-01-10/trumpian-peace-deal-libya
33. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySdhGyqGCZk

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Fidel Castro, Leader of Cuban revolution, passes away

fidel-castro-obituary-slide-p9cb-superjumbo-v6

Fidel Castro, Leader of Cuban revolution, passes away

llco.org

On Friday the 25th of November, 7pm local time, Fidel Castro, the former leader of Cuba, passed away. Fidel Castro served as the leader of Cuba from 1959 to 2008, when he stepped down due to health issues and his advanced age.  Fidel Castro was born on August 13th 1926, and experienced his youth through a period in which Cuba was a neo-colonial asset, a mafia state, and puppet regime of the United States. Although having failed a previous focoist uprising against the Batista dictatorship, with a only a handful of fighters, he led a successful guerrilla war against the Batista regime, with patriotic forces capturing the Cuban state in 1959. He led his country through the turmoil of the “Cuban Missile Crisis” period, and also during the so-called “special period” following the breakup of the social-imperialist USSR in the 1990’s.

We should not sugar coat, or have illusions about the nature of the Cuban state. Although it may share many similarities with past socialist experiments, Cuba is not a socialist society today. The socialism of the Cuban revolution stagnated following its embrace of the “international socialist [sic.] division of labor” of the then social-imperialist Soviet Union under Nikita Khrushchev. Throughout the Cold War, many nationalist and national-liberation forces claimed the “Communist” label, and used communist rhetoric in order to secure support from the Soviet Bloc. It is questionable whether Cuba was ever a socialist state, or whether it was a patriotic regime with social-democratic reforms backed by Soviet aid.  Where Che Guevara embraced the Maoist emphasis on independent socialist development and moving society away from the Law of Value, Castro unfortunately embraced the development model promoted by the revisionist-led Soviet Union.  It was Castro’s leadership during the so-called “special period” that partially corrected this error after the end of Soviet aid in the 1990s.  While this prevented Cuba from economic collapse and maintained its independence from the United States, it did not place Cuba on a path towards communism.

Regardless of the class nature of the Cuban state, Castro’s leadership kept Cuba mostly independent despite the full weight of US imperialism bearing down on him in the form of the Bay of Pigs invasion, naval blockades, and CIA assassination plots. His role as Leader of Cuba, especially during the post-Soviet period was not easy. He led the Cuban people on an anti-imperialist, internationalist path during a time of tremendous turmoil for left wing nationalist regimes in the third world. Although not a communist, he was a brave and principled friend of oppressed people around the world, especially on the African continent. In a pointed historical rebuke to the mistaken foreign policy of Maoists in China after Lin Biao’s demise, it was Fidel Castro’s Cuba that materially defended the MPLA in Angola against the reactionary UNITA/FNLA, who were backed by the United States and China. Leading Light Communists see the socialist development model of Maoist China as superior to Cuba’s integration with the Soviet empire. Nevertheless, there were key instances where Castro and the Cuban regime had a better record of international solidarity with the masses of the Global South than with China in the 1970s.

We hope that the Cuban people will stay true to the anti-imperialist path laid out by Castro during his leadership. Leading Light Communists salute Fidel Castro, and stand with the Cuban people in mourning his loss and celebrating his legacy.
Notes:

1. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/26/world/americas/fidel-castro-dies.html?_r=0

2. http://llco.org/summations-questions-answers/

 

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Molotov, MIM, Dogma, and Stalin’s support for Israel

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Molotov, MIM, Dogma, and Stalin’s support for Israel

(llco.org)

Stalin was a great socialist leader, but it is important to tell the truth about his mistakes. Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov was a high-ranking, important member of Stalin’s regime. Today’s Stalinists occasionally choose him as their favorite candidate to have succeeded Stalin in  “what if” fantasy histories. “What if Molotov had led the Soviet Union rather than Beria or Khrushchev?” they ask. One of the biggest questions about both Molotov and Stalin is why they supported an apartheid state like Israel. Decades later, Molotov states in his memoirs:

“Everyone objected [to recognizing the State of Israel] but us — me and Stalin. Some asked me why we favored it. We are supporters of international freedom. Why should we be opposed if, strictly speaking, that meant pursuing a hostile nationalist policy? In our time, it’s true, the Bolsheviks were and remained anti-Zionist… Yet it’s one thing to be anti-Zionist and anti-bourgeois, and quite another to be against the Jewish people. We proposed, however, an Arab-Israeli union, for both nations to live there together. We have supported this version if it could have been arranged. Otherwise we favored an Israeli state… Israel has turned out badly. But Lord Almighty! That’s American imperialism for you.”  (1)

The Maoist Internationalist Movement (MIM) extrapolates on Molotov’s defense of Stalin:

“Stalin has been criticized for his recognition of Israel. There is a limit to what the revolutionary forces are capable of. In the case of the existence of Israel, the progressive forces were not able to stop its creation as a separate, exclusive state. Once created, the question became whether or not to recognize it. From Molotov’s quote above, it is clear that Stalin would not recognize the right to self-determination of only those nations with progressive impact, and that he said Molotov thought that not recognizing Israel would have been ‘against the Jewish people.’ They believed they should not oppose the fait-accompli in Israel, though they would have preferred a different outcome.” (2)

These are good examples of how not to approach political errors and history. In his memoirs, Molotov washes his hands of responsibility for Israel even though he had a big role in policies that aided Israel’s creation. Rather than accepting his errors, Molotov obfuscates. He shifts the blame onto United States, who subsequently became the main supporter of Israel’s genocide of the Palestinian peoples and wars against the Arabs. The genocide and wars continue to this day. MIM does not confront Molotov on his dishonesty. MIM articulates Molotov’s excuse better than Molotov. According to MIM, Stalin’s power was limited and he had no choice but to recognize Israel. Since the Zionists had won their war, what is gained by an infantile refusal to recognize them? This might make sense if all you had to go on was Molotov’s word. However, the reality is that Molotov is lying by omission. And MIM doubles down on the lie.

Stalin’s regime did more than extend de jure recognition to an already victorious Israel on May 18, 1948, they were the first. Several Eastern Bloc countries followed suit, extending de jure recognition to Israel before the United States, which only got around to de jure recognition by January 31, 1949. Golda Meir, one of Israel’s founding elders and Israel’s Fourth Prime Minister, wrote in her memoirs:

“… [T]he Soviet recognition of the State of Israel on May 18 was of immense significance to us.  It meant that the two greatest powers in the world has come together, for the first time since World War II, to back the Jewish state, and although we were still in deadly danger, we knew, at last, that we were not alone. It was in that knowledge – combined with sheer necessity – that we found the spiritual, if not the material, strength that was to lead us to victory.” (3) *

Stalin’s recognition of Israel gave a tremendous morale boost to the Zionists. It also boosted their international legitimacy and gave them diplomatic cover. What Molotov and MIM fail to mention is that  Stalin’s support for the Zionist movement goes back prior to the Israeli victory. The Eastern Bloc played a key role in the victory of the Zionists.

The Jewish Agency, an organization that later became the state of Israel, between June 1947 and October 31, 1949, began seeking weapons for Operation Balak. Weapons were procured using communist help in Czechoslovakia. As the communists became more influential after World War 2, material support for Zionism increased. The communist coup increased Czechoslovakia’s support for the Zionists. The Soviet Bloc arms shipments were very significant. Most of the arms were of German design. They were either leftover arms from World War 2 or new arms manufactured in Czechoslovakia using German designs. The arms shipments up to October, 1948 included: 34,500 P-18 rifles, 5,515 MG 34 machine guns with 10,000 ammo belts, 10,000 vz.24 bayonets, 900 vz. 37 heavy machine guns, 500 vz. 27 pistols. Other infantry weapons: 12 ZK-383 submachine guns, 10 ZK 420 semi-automatic rifles, 500 vz. 26 light machine guns (shipped, yet delivery not confirmed in Czech sources). Ammunition: 91,500,000 7.92×57mm Mauser cartridges, 15,000,000 9mm Parabellum cartridges, 375,000 13mm cartridges for MG 131, 150,000 20mm cartridges for MG 151, 375,000 7.65mm cartridges for vz. 27 pistol. Aircraft: Israeli Avia S-199, 1948, 25 Avia S-199 fighters, 61 Supermarine Spitfire Mk. IX fighters. (4) The Israelis continued to receive arms and support after 1948. In addition, the Soviet bloc provided weapons and tactical training the the Zionist insurgency. Eighty-one pilots and 69 crew specialists were trained. Some of these later formed the first units of the Israeli air force. The equivalent of a brigade of Jewish-Czech volunteers were trained on Czechoslovakian soil from August 20, 1948 until November 4, 1948. The Czechoslovakian codename for the operation was “DI,” an abbreviation for “Důvěrné Israel,” which means “Classified Israel.” A motorized brigade was also trained, but the war had been won before they were deployed. (5)

Golda Meir was especially appreciative of Stalin’s help, which saved their movement:

“Had it not been for the arms and ammunition that we were able to buy in Czechoslovakia and transport through Yugoslavia and other Balkan countries in those dark days at the start of the war, I do not know whether we actually could have held out until the tide changed, as it did by June, 1948. For the first six weeks of the War of Independence, we relied largely (though not, of course, entirely) on the shells, machine guns, bullets – and even planes – that the Haganah had been able to purchase in Eastern Europe at a time when even the United States had declared an embargo on the sale of shipment of arms to the Middle East. ” (6)

Elsewhere, she states:

“I shall always remember the profound understanding shown by the Russian authorities to the many problems of our young state.” (7)

Stalin’s aid to the Zionists is not some big secret. On May 14, 1947, before the Zionist victory that led to the Israeli state, the Soviet ambassador Andrei Gromyko announced:

“As we know, the aspirations of a considerable part of the Jewish people are linked with the problem of Palestine and of its future administration. This fact scarcely requires proof…. During the last war, the Jewish people underwent exceptional sorrow and suffering… The United Nations cannot and must not regard this situation with indifference, since this would be incompatible with the high principles proclaimed in its Charter…The fact that no Western European State has been able to ensure the defence of the elementary rights of the Jewish people and to safeguard it against the violence of the fascist executioners explains the aspirations of the Jews to establish their own State. It would be unjust not to take this into consideration and to deny the right of the Jewish people to realize this aspiration.” (8)

Although the Soviets said they preferred the partition, they also supported an Israeli state. So the Soviet support for Israel was not because Israel was a fait-accompli, as MIM claims. The socialist bloc had been giving moral, diplomatic, and material support to the Zionist insurgency long before its de jure recognition of Israel.

It is easy to see how the dishonest historical narrative arose. MIM approaches history as other dogmatic revisionists do. Their method is to construct a narrative in favor of their pantheon of revolutionary icons, then gather information that appears to support it, ignore what does not support it, make excuses, avoid political responsibility for errors. In this case, they present a small tidbit from Molotov that appears to the uneducated to sound reasonable. MIM leaves out the rest of the story because they are not interested in truth. The are not interested in the genuine historical record, they are interested in deflecting criticism from Stalin. They do not practice historical science, they practice apologetics. Truth does not matter. Defending Stalin on all things matters most, even if it means sacrificing truth. MIM uses this same method in their work on the Maoist era. All the more damning is that two of MIM’s cardinal points of unity involve historical claims about when the Soviet and Maoist revolutions were reversed. Either MIM was demanding unity about historical eras it did not understand or MIM was consciously misrepresenting these eras in an effort to be in line with Maoists internationally. Whether MIM was sloppy and ignorant or dishonest, their approach was not scientific. Unfortunately, MIM’s “cutting the toes to fit the shoes” approach to history is all too common among revisionists that claim to be communist. By contrast, the scientific, true communist historian goes where the data leads. He does not begin with picking good guys and bad guys, then proceed to cherry pick data to support the good guy and defame the bad guy. A serious historian looks at and presents all the data, even data which goes against his political instincts. A serious historian examines all possible reasonable narratives, weighing them against each other and the data. A serious historian integrates his narrative with what we know about systems of oppression. A serious historian is out to discover truth, even if truth goes against his political instincts.  We must uphold what is good in all things, all leaders, and reject the bad. We must uphold what is good in Stalin and come to terms with what is not. Writing history should not be like writing a novel.

Several factors led to Stalin’s support for Israel. After World War 2, the Soviet policy continued to be based on Lenin’s idea of continuous intra-imperialist conflict. Stalin thought that the Western allies of World War 2 would break down. As the imperialists sought more and more expansion, they would inevitably lead the world into another great war. Stalin saw the British empire as the strongest of the European powers after World War 2. The Zionist insurgency could be used to weaken British rule over Palestine. In addition, the British still wielded power and influence over those lands neighboring the Soviet Union’s southern flank. The Soviets had their buffer zone of satellite states in Eastern Europe, but were encircled in the south. The Zionist war against the Arabs was also a war against the British who had restricting migration and enforcing an embargo on Palestine in hopes of keeping the peace with the indigenous Palestinians. The British did not want to see their colonial possession destabilized or fall into sectarian conflict. Stalin was hoping to fan the flames of the conflict between the Zionists and the British. Golda Meir states, “There is now no doubt in my mind that the primary Soviet consideration was to get the British out of the Middle East.” (9) Furthermore, the Zionist movement had a strong pole that was perceived as leftist, socialist, anti-capitalist. The Kibbutz movement and Golda Meir herself represent this trend. Golda Meir and Molotov’s wife briefly discussed collective property in 1948:

“I had a much more interesting and rewarding encounter with another Soviet citizen at the reception given by Mr. Molotov on the anniversary of the Russian Revolution, to which all the diplomats in Moscow are invited each year… After I had shaken hands with Molotov, his wife, Ivy Molotov, came up to me. ‘I am so pleased to meet you, at last,’ she said with real warmth and even excitement. Then she added, ‘I speak Yiddish, you know.’

‘Are you Jewish?’ I asked in some surprise.

‘Yes,’ she said, answering me in Yiddish, ‘Ich bin a yiddishe tochter.’ (I am a daughter of the Jewish people.) We talked together for quite a long time. She knew all about the events at the synagogue and told me how good it was that we had gone. ‘The Jews wanted so much to see you,’ she said. We touched on the question of the Negev, which was being debated at the United Nations. I made some remark about not being able to give it up because my daughter lived there and added that Sarah wa with me in Moscow. ‘I must see her,’ said Mrs. Molotov. So I introduced Sarah and Yael Namir to her, and she talked to them about Israel and asked Sarah dozens of questions about kibbutzim, who lived in them and how they were run. She spoke Yiddish to the girls who were overjoyed when Sarah answered in the same language. When Sarah explained that everything in Revivim was owned collectively and that there is no private property, Mrs. Molotov looked troubled. ‘That is not a good idea,’ she said. ‘People don’t like sharing everything. Even Stalin is against that. You should acquaint yourself with Stalin’s thoughts and writings on the subject.’ Before she returned to her other guests, she put her arm around Sarah and, with tears in her eyes, said, ‘Be well. If everything goes well with you, it will go well for all Jews everywhere… after that conversation with us, Ivy Molotov had been arrested, and how earlier that day, we had watched the military parade in Red Square. I had so envied the Russians all those weapons on display – the tiniest fraction of which was beyond our means – and, as if he read my thoughts, Molotov had raised a glass of vodka to me later and said, ‘Don’t think we got those in a single day. The time will come when you, too, will have these things. It will all be all right.” (10)

Because there was some perceived ideological overlap between parts of the Zionist movement and the Soviet Union’s ideology, there was a hope that Israel might emerge as not just friendly to the Soviet Union, but as a satellite country, similar to the Eastern European people’s democracies. In this way, Israel could help not only break up the imperialist encirclement on the Soviet southern flank, but an Israeli people’s democracy could also become a southern buffer against imperialist attack.

The Arab world suffered in more ways than one. The Zionist war led to the racist, apartheid state of Israel. The genocide against the Palestinians continues. Israel has become the right hand of imperialism in the Middle East. Israel is on the front lines suppressing resistance movements and regimes on behalf of the First World. Israel is a kind of permanent, giant aircraft and troop carrier in the troubled region, always ready to do battle with the people. Recently, Israel has been called on to check Iran’s growing power in the region. In addition, in  almost every large region of the Third World there have been communist or nominally communist parties that seized state power: Asia, Latin America, Africa, all had genuine Marxist or nominally Marxist movements seize power. Even though the Arab world is very large, spreading over the whole of northern Africa and much of the Middle East, very few Marxist or nominally Marxist movements have gained any real significance. Conditions there are not fundamentally different than in other Third World countries. In the Middle East, nationalism, Baathism, and Islamic movements have, for the most part, led the concrete anti-imperial struggle, not Marxists nor revisionists. There was South Yemen’s pro-Soviet regime and forces in Oman connected to Yemen, but, on the whole, both real Marxism and revisionism have lacked strength in the Arab world. Even though Stalin changed his policy toward Israel in the following years, the international communist movement suffered from Stalin’s error.

During World War 2, Stalin’s regime had to resurrect Russian nationalism as a way of motivating the people to fight the Nazi invader. This carried over into the post-war years. Stalin’s Israel policy placed Russo-Soviet national or imperial interest above the interests of the global proletariat, including the Palestinians who were suffering an invasion by a racist enemy that eventually led to occupation and depopulation. Stalin placed the narrow geopolitical concerns of the Soviet Union as a country above the international proletariat. Even if Stalin was able to win Israel to his side on a more permanent basis, it should have been obvious that support for such an invasion and occupation would taint communism in the eyes of the Arab people. Stalin’s approach does not calculate in the agency and potential of the Arab people, a poor and colonized people. Instead of the masses making history, in such a worldview, geopolitical machinations by powerful states make history. Stalin was looking too much to powerful states, not class struggle as the motor of history. In the case of Israel, the Soviet outlook does not seem totally different from those of the Western imperialists. No matter what superpower won, the Arabs lost.

Other changes were afoot in the Soviet Union. The Soviet regime edged toward traditionalism in gender and culture during and after World War 2. Traditional roles were recommended to women again in Soviet art. After World War 2, for example, a genre about overambitious wives who neglect their children develops in Soviet literature. The Soviet support for Israel is another indicator of regression. Soviet foreign policy seems to be operating, in this case, according to the national interests of the Russo-Soviet state, not the global proletariat. The fight for communism appears to be taking a back seat both domestically and in foreign policy.

Maoist China split with the Soviet Union over its imperialist policies after Khrushchev delivered his famous “secret speech” criticizing Stalin at the Twentieth Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union on February 25, 1956. Mao used Stalin as a battering ram against Khrushchev’s domestic capitalism and imperialist foreign policy. However, these tendencies that Mao so criticized pre-dated Khrushchev’s rise to power. Even though Mao posed as an orthodox Stalinist to criticize Khrushchev, the reality is that the these tendencies began to arise under Stalin’s watch. Interestingly, Stalin’s inner circle – Molotov, Malenkov, and Beria – all moved for a less confrontational Soviet foreign policy after Stalin’s death. At Stalin’s funeral, Malenkov unveiled a “peace initiative.” “There are no contested issues in U.S.-Soviet relations that cannot be resolved by peaceful means.” (11) The idea of “peaceful coexistence” between the Soviet bloc and the United States was mainly blamed on Khrushchev by the Maoists. This was one of the main reasons for the Sino-Soviet split. The claim that the contradiction between socialism and imperialism is non-antagonistic is thoroughly revisionist. Thus the Maoists correctly identified Khrushchev as a social imperialist. By the Khrushchev era, the Soviet state was really imperialist even if claimed to be socialist. When Mao’s own revolution went off the rails in the 1970s, Mao too began to place China’s narrow interest above that of the international proletariat. This is why Mao began to align with the West. This is why Mao aligned with the West in Angola, Bangladesh, Chile, etc. Just as such policies discredited the Soviet Union as it slid into revisionism, they also discredited Mao in the 1970s. Nationalism has proven a big danger to socialist regimes.

Leaders often play important, decisive roles. Leaders are often representatives of and concentrations of  great social forces. Great leaders, great geniuses, great warriors, can be indispensable. Even so, the analysis of history has to go beyond leaders. We should not organize our analysis of revolution and counter-revolution around a hero and villain. To do so is really just a version of what Marx criticized as the Great Man Theory of History. A truly scientific, materialist approach to history is looks beneath the surface. It is important to be honest with the masses. It is important to tell the truth, to have a real scientific attitude, about past revolutions. We are initiating the next great wave of revolution. It is important that we go further than all past revolutions. It is necessary that we achieve total revolution, Leading Light Communism. Only through a scientific account of the history of revolution can we really understand the errors of the past so that we can avoid them the next time we have power.

Friedrich Engels stated, “without theory, practice is blind.” Dogmatism blinds the people. It keeps the masses ignorant. Those who espouse dogma show a basic lack of trust in the masses. The masses can handle the truth. They are waiting for it. They demand it. Leading Light Communism is about rejecting all dogma. It is about advancing the science, pure and simple. It is about advancing the science in an all-round way, in history, in political economy, in aesthetics and culture, in power struggle, in military science, in constructing communism, in epistemology, and on and on. The proletariat must be given the weapons they need to liberate themselves, not dull knives, but sharp blades. Open your eyes. There is a new breakthrough, a new science, a new organization, a new leadership capable of leading us to victory. It is not about individuals. It is about the science, the masses, and the Earth.  There is a way to victory.

Notes

1. MIM. MIM Theory: The Stalin Issue. MIM. 1994 p. 43

2. ibid. p. 45

3. Meir, Golda, My Life. G. P. Putnam’s Sons. New York, USA: 1975 pp. 230-231

4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_shipments_from_Czechoslovakia_to_Israel_1947%E2%80%9349

5. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_shipments_from_Czechoslovakia_to_Israel_1947%E2%80%9349

6. Meir, Golda, My Life. G. P. Putnam’s Sons. New York, USA: 1975 pp. 230-231

7. Syrkin, Marie. Golda Meir: Israel’s Leader. G. P. Putnam’s Sons. New York, USA: 1969 p. 234

8. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_Union_and_the_Arab%E2%80%93Israeli_conflict

9. Meir, Golda, My Life. G. P. Putnam’s Sons. New York, USA: 1975 pp. 230-231

10. Meir, Golda, My Life. G. P. Putnam’s Sons. New York, USA: 1975 p. 254

11. Zubok, Vladislav and Pleshakov, Constantine. Inside the Kremlin’s Cold War. Seventh Printing. Harvard University Press. USA: 2003 p.155

* Golda Meir mentions, contrary to most accounts, that the Soviet recognition occurred after the US recognition. She may be confusing de jure and de facto recognition.

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PF interview: Plato’s cave, First and Third World, science and epistemology

platocave

Plato’s cave, First and Third World, science and epistemology

(llco.org)

1. Thank you for taking time from your important work. Let me start by asking this: You write a lot about the “First” and “Third World.” Can you explain what you mean?

We are not the first to divide up human society into “worlds” or similar entities. When we talk of “worlds,” we are using a shorthand. It’s a kind of functionalist category that we use to explain human behavior and potential behavior at the global level. It is not unlike how we use the concept of “class” to describe the behavior and potential behavior of human aggregates.

There is the view that informed the outlook around the time of the Bandung Conference in 1955 and after. It is a view that divided the world into the Western imperialists, which was a kind of “First World.” Then there was the “Second World” of the socialist camp. Then there was the “Third World” of the colonies, neo-colonies, and poor post-colonies. Later, there is another outlook of the Chinese Communist Party of the Lin Biao era. This outlook divided the world into a “global city,” which was made up of the rich countries and Russia, and a “global countryside,” of the poor countries, including the many of the Russian colonies in Eastern Europe. This was the official outlook of the Chinese Communist Party from about 1965 to 1970. This was when Lin Biao was riding high as Mao Zedong’s successor, vice-Chairman, “closest comrade-in-arms,” “best student,” and so on. Lin Biao was being positioned as the high priest the Mao cult. He, and I am using “he” as a shorthand to really mean “his team,” was to be the main interpreter of Maoism. For various reasons, Lin Biao was murdered as a result of a political struggle. Mao wanted to pull back the revolution in the 1970s. Mao began to align with the West. So, then, there is the outlook of Mao’s “Three Worlds Theory” of the 1970s, after Lin Biao’s death. This was a view that divided countries up by military strength. The “First World” was made up of the powerful imperialists, the United States and Soviet Union. The “Second World” was made up of lesser powers like the European powers and Japan. The “Third World” was made up of the colonies, neo-colonies, and post-colonies. Sometimes people mistakenly think Mao’s main error was his “Three Worlds Theory” because it led to the alliance with the West. This really mistakes things. “Three Worlds Theory” was not guiding Chinese policy. China was shifting rightward in foreign policy years before the theory was introduced. Mao began shifting rightward on this issue even as early as 1968 and 1969, as he was ending the Cultural Revolution. Rather, the theory was a prop. This theory was a kind of window dressing that was used to give the appearance of justification to Mao’s anti-Soviet, pro-Western geopolitics. It was used to run interference on critics from the left. In any case,  all these kinds of views are often mixed up with each other, but they are very different. They have very different policies associated with them. And, historically, they were often in opposition to each other.

Our concept of the “First World” and “Third World” is different than all previous usages. Of the previous views, Lin Biao’s is the most accurate, but it still has deficiencies. Firstly, we do not simply apply the concept to just countries. It is because of  traditional colonization and the national liberation struggles that many have tended to regard single countries as the basic units of analysis. We see this as not always accurate or the best way to go about things. Some have criticized such a view on the basis that the country borders are artificial. Such borders were often drawn by the imperialists themselves. Some micronationalists have advocated that single nations, not multinational countries, ought be the basic unit of analysis. For example, they will say that the “Black Nation” inside the borders of the country of the United States belongs to a particular world.  Or they will say the Maya in Mexico belong to a particular world. Almost all countries today are multi-national ones, so they push the analysis down a level. They tend to think that revolution should happen on a micronational basis, with each nation having its own leadership, perhaps even its own ideology. Their view of a perfect world is one in which all micronations are independent, do not step on each others’ toes, and do not interfere with each other. It is the view associated with racial separatists movements. David Duke, the ex-Klan leader-turned-congressman, has such a view. Some Black and Chicano nationalists have similar views. They may disagree about how the borders are to be drawn or which nation has the right to exist here or there, but the ideologies are similar in their stated goals. It is a view also associated with the fantasy of northern Korean life, although, in reality, northern Korea is very dependent other countries despite its Juche rhetoric of independence and self-sufficiency. It is a view sometimes associated with Third Positionism and “left” fascism. We could call this view “pan-nationalism.” Our view is very different. It does not break humanity down into either countries or micronations. Our view is more in-line with the original Marxist aspiration to overcome artificial barriers dividing humanity. Our ideal is one humanity united by one ideology, revolutionary science, all-powerful, awesome Leading Light Communism. Tactically, we may have to work on a micronational or country-wide basis, but we should always aspire to make revolution in the biggest geographic area as possible at any given time. Thus for us, our basic unit is the Third World as a whole, although we divide that into zones on a practical basis. However, a zone in not based on anything except that it is the biggest area we feel comfortable managing at a particular time. Thus a zone is not as static as a country or nation is. A zone is based more our capabilities than anything else, although, naturally, social geographies play into it that. Our main area of operation is the Bangla Zone, but when we feel comfortable expanding beyond that, there is no reason not to extend our reach into say, Myanmar or the Hindi regions of India. We are also setting up zonal operations elsewhere, but that is deep politics.

Secondly, we base our view on standard of living of a population as a whole. Things like income, consumption levels, etc. give us a good idea about this. In this sense, even though the United States as a whole may be militarily and politically more powerful than, say, Switzerland, the latter is more First World. This is a big difference between our concept and Mao’s, for example. Also, our concept is not necessarily tied to economic or political independence or development, whatever that means. For example, imagine a country whose population is very wealthy, but also very small so that its economy was only based on oil  such that it could not defend itself without outside help. So, it was still dependent in important respects. On our view, such a country, perhaps not unlike some Arab Gulf states, is still First World. Thus our view departs a bit from the Bandung inspired view, which tended to lump the one-time colonies, even the wealthy ones, into the same category as their poorer neighbors. Our view is that the Saudis are more similar in terms of interest to the people of the United States than either are to the Palestinians. This is true, even though pan-Arabists will argue that the Saudis and Palestinians are really one nation. This is what we have discussed earlier about how national liberation and similar outlooks were tied to the classic model of colonization that has long since broken down. Thus, we must find new ways to understand the emerging Empire and resistance to it. This is one of the main breakthroughs of  today’s revolutionary science, Leading Light Communism.

Thirdly, the traditional concepts of worlds were sharply defined. We do not look at things through the lenses of traditional Aristotelian categories. This also ties into another question. People always ask us about the “Second World.” Our view is that when we talk about the First World and Third World, we are talking about poles on a continuum. Think of a spectrum, a single axis from right to left, with a “1” on the left and a “3” on the right. Some countries, micronations, regions, geographic areas, zone are more First World than others. They fall closer to the “1.” Others are more Third World. They fall closer to the “3.” If one must have a concept of a Second World, then it could occupy a position, perhaps equidistant, between to two poles.

We might represent the United States by a “U” and place it nearer to the “1” than Portugal, which we represent with a “P.” Or, we might represent Switzerland with an “S,” and place it closer to the “1” than the United States. Similarly, we could do the same thing with “C” for Chile, “M” for Mexico, and “B” for Bangladesh.

[1]-S–U————————————-P—-”2”—–C—————–M——————–B–[3]

This model can also be used to compare any unit. It is not limited to countries. Countries can be compared to nations to regions to zones, all can be compared to each other. The model is based on the simple idea of immiseration, those geographic populations closer to the “3” have more potential in terms of being mobilized against the system for revolutionary, socialist, Leading Light Communist change. Those closer to the “1” and farthest from the “3” have less possibility of making revolution. Of course, we aren’t saying that being near “3” is the only factor in play or that other factors like strong leadership can’t make up for some deficiencies in objective considerations. However, at a certain point, objective deficiencies simply cannot be realistically overcome. That’s part of what falling on the First World part of the continuum implies. We could even add that certain regions of this continuum are more prone to traditional fascism, which we see as a radical reorganization of society along traditionalist or crackpot lines to save capitalism. For example, those societies closest to the “1” probably are going to be stably integrated into the liberal Empire. Those somewhere between the “1” and “2,” but closer to “2,” like Russia, for example, will have a tendency toward fascism because they aren’t as well served by the liberal consensus as those closer to the “1.” Over time, Russia will probably be more integrated into Empire, but this is not written in stone. This model fits with the old saying that “liberalism is the face of capitalism when it is not afraid, fascism when it is afraid.” Remember what Karl Marx said: “The proletariat has nothing to lose but their chains.” This is also why we have focused our efforts toward the “3.”

2. You are definitely breaking new scientific ground. You mention science often. You’ve written a lot on the topic lately. Why is your theory of worlds more scientific than others?

This kind of theory is one of behavior and potential behavior of human aggregates at the global level. Sometimes we call it “Global Class Analysis.” This is why we use the terms “First World” and “Bourgeois World” interchangeably, similarly with “Third World” and “Proletarian World.” If people want, replace the “1” in the chart with a “B.” Change the “3” with a “P.” What makes one theory better than another? More scientific? As I have said so many times, it has nothing to do with metaphysics, even in its dialectical varieties. It isn’t some “dialectical method” or “dialectical underpinning” that makes one theory better than another. It has to do with a theory being a good tool with predictive power and explanatory power. These are not the same things exactly, although there are sophisticated approaches to try to reduce these two things down to one measure, but this is far too advanced for this interview. Imagine another graph with a horizontal axis labeled “PP” for “predictive power” and a vertical axis labeled “EP” for “explanatory power.” For this discussion, we’ll say they are not the same thing. The classic example of why they are not the same can be seen in the competition between the Copernican model, the heliocentric model, planets going around the sun, of the solar system verses the pre-Copernican model, the geocentric model, celestial bodies going around the Earth, with its epicycles. The epicycle model had been refined over a long period of time, so it mapped out the motions of the solar system very well. It had a higher degree of predictive power. In fact, when the Copernican model was originally introduced, the pre-Copernican model had more predictive power than the Copernican model. This was because the Copernican model had not been refined as much. The Copernican model was initially using circular, not elliptical orbits. So, it was generating more false predictions. So, strictly speaking, there would be no basis to switch paradigms to the Copernican model if predictive power was our only measure for a theory. However, as we all know, the Copernican model of planets going around the sun won out. This is what we use today. This is because science is not just about prediction, it is about meaningful prediction, it is about explanation too. Science is also about explanatory power. The pre-Copernican approach, the epicycle model, may have mapped the motions of the heavenly bodies more accurately, but there was no rhyme or reason to their motions. Their motions were simply mapped. And, if there was some new motion that was observed that had not been known before, they simply posited an ad hoc epicycle to account for it. So, even though the pre-Copernican model generated more correct predictions, it had no real explanatory power. One reason it evolved as it did was it cohered with the medieval intellectual view inherited from Aristotle. According to this view, the cosmos was like an onion with the Earth being the center. That was said to be why objects fell when dropped. They were said to go toward the center, where they naturally belonged. Cohering with this broader view was seen to have some explanatory power. However, in reality, cohering with a false, but widely accepted worldview, does not add to a theory’s power. To choose it over the Copernican model violates one of the main laws of explanatory power, Occam’s Razor. Simpler theories, those that say more with less, account for more with less, generate more correct predictions and exclude more incorrect predictions with less, are better than complicated ones. Even with its initial predictive weakness vis-a-vis the earlier model, the scientific community realized that the Copernican model had more potential. And the Copernican model was eventually refined to have both more explanatory and predictive power. When a theory has both more predictive and more explanatory power than another, saying it is “more scientific” is always more justified. However, there are hard cases. A theory can have more predictive power, but less explanatory power than another. A theory can have more explanatory, but less predictive than another. Say we have two theories. One has the coordinates of 6 on the PP-axis and 7 on the EP-axis. The other has a 7,6 position. Or a conflict between a 5,6 and a 4,8? There are many times when there simply is not enough information to choose between theories. They are too close in terms of overall virtue. When theories are too close to each other, the scientific community simply has to continue its work gathering information, testing, weighing evidence until one theory comes out on top. This happens all the time in science. A new, but not as refined, theory comes onto the scene, but it takes time for it to gather enough strength and refinement to shift the paradigm of the scientific community. In reality, things are a lot more complicated than what I have presented here. Nonetheless, even understanding this basic outlook would be an epistemological advance for those revisionists claiming to be Marxists today. There are other, higher, more advanced models all-powerful, awesome Leading Light Communism has developed, but we need to take things step by step.

In any case, our Global Class Analysis predicts and explains why revolutions have occurred where they do. It explains why certain populations will be more revolutionary than others. It predicts which populations will have potential to make revolution and which ones do not. Our analysis fits with everything we know about the experience of real revolutions and events like the non-revolution in Paris, May 1968. People went back to work for raises, despite the rhetoric. The Paris, 1968 ending was entirely predictable. Our analysis also predicts and explains the motions of the enemy classes that we see everyday in the media’s coverage of current events. We explain the sweep of history in a more accurate and refined way, drawing on Marx and others, obviously. All-powerful, awesome Leading Light Communism is the key to the past, present, and future.

3. You were talking about worlds, zones, and so on. You seem to be introducing a geographic dimension to class. Can you elaborate?

“Who are our enemies? Who are our friends?” are the first eight words of Mao’s Selected Works for a reason. Mao called this the “first question of revolution.” Class analysis, understanding friends and enemies, is the first task. Since Marx, the our understand of friends and enemies has become more and more geographic. What I mean is that friends are enemies are not just separated by wealth and social position, the proletariat has become more and more physically separated from the bourgeoisie. By the time of the Maoist revolution, revolution itself is seen as a people’s war that procededs geographically from the countryside to the city. Similarly with Lin Biao, the global revolution moves geographically from the global countryside to the global city. This is because human geography is reorganized around modern production and wealth. Within a country, wealhy people live here, poor people live there. Globally, wealthy people live here, here, and here. Poor people live there, there, and there. You can see this very dramatically in some of the cities in countries like Brazil. You might have an outpost of the First World, a wealthy residential community,  a business district, etc. walled off from the outside, which is still very Third World. It’s like a little First World fort from which to dominate and control the surrounding territory. You see this in Palestine with the Zionist settlers. They set up their guarded outposts, where they have a higher standard of living, while hostile Palestinians surround them. It reminds me a bit of pioneer commuities in North America. One sees a similar pattern in wealthy communities in China. In any case, even when there is close proximity of the First and Third World, the barrier separating them is often very pronounced. In these cases, it is a physical wall where guards patrol with automatic weapons. How should we see these wealthy communities in, for example, Brazil or China? Should we see such a community as simply a community of the Brazilian bourgeoisie who can be either patriotic or comprador? Such is the old Maoist type analysis. My contention is that this may be part of the story, but it isn’t the full story. Capital is more and more global, nation matters less and less, country matters less and less. Rather than seeing those who populate such communities as just the Brazilian bourgeoisie, we can see them and the communities themselves as outposts of the First World, part of the First World Empire. An extreme case of this would be the Green Zone in Iraq, where the Empire has literally built a city with a higher standard of living inside a Third World, occupied community in order to control and manage them. The nationalist, patriotic bourgeoisie is becoming less and less relevant. More and more, the world is not a collection of many empires with colonial possessions. Rather, power is mostly a single Empire that benefits, this First World includes populations of the old empires, but also First World outpost communities, military bases, management zones, financial zones, etc.  in poorer countries. These communities, regardless of their national or racial makeup, are loyal to their First World way of life, and the global imperial institutions that create it, first. They are part of the First World system of control first and foremost, usually nationalist loyalties, if they exist at all, are very secondary. This is partially a consequence of a more unipolar geopolitics. The patriotic bourgeoisie is becoming less and less relevant because the wealthy people in the poor countries have less ability to maneuver, they have less bargaining chips when there is only one imperial choice.

There are exceptions of course. Things are never set in stone. This is an emerging picture, the overall tendency is toward Empire. There are still remnants of the old world that Vladimir Lenin described. Some think an emerging Eurasian alternative, a Russia-China alliance, will block the emergence of global Empire for a time.  Thus, they think, the traditional categories will still have scientific utility. Sometimes people frame it in terms of Kautsky verses Lenin, but this is way too simple. Lenin was exactly correct when he was writing. The scramble for Africa, the cycle of world wars, and so on. And it would be a mistake to see the emerging Empire as anything Kautsky could have foreseen. It would be wrong to project current reality backwards. In fact, it was, in part, the tremendous damage done to capitalist by the breakdown of the system, the world wars that Lenin predicted, that has forced the bourgeoisie to reorganize. The Bolshevik revolution was partially a result of the systemic breakdown of World War 1. Similarly, the Maoist revolution and decolonial struggles emerged because the old empires had so weakened themselves through their massive bloodletting. They could no longer hold onto their colonial possessions since they were so weakened. Partially as a result of world wars, the capitalists lost control of massive parts of humanity, they faced the emergence of socialism that challenged their rule at the global level. Just as revolutionary science – Marx, Lenin, Mao, Leading Light – advanced to meet new realities, so too did the science of oppression. The capitalists have reorganized their economies and power to try to avoid catastrophic wars of the past. The most obvious artefacts of this advance in capitalist science is the promotion of social democracy and international institutions like the United Nations. In any case, it boggles the mind that you have these revisionist dogmatists talking about 2014 as though it were 1917 or 1949, as though adherence to Leninist or Maoist dogma is the solution to the current problems the people’s movement faces. Of course, I understand that the opposite problem exists where there are loudmouths and egomaniacs promoting themselves as worldclass leaders but without really providing any real scientific answers. There are plenty of snakeoil salesmen claiming to have their own unique “new synthesis.” They are a dime a dozen. There is a big difference between proclaiming a scientific advance and really making one. And contrary to popular misconception, the loudmouths are not all white.  However, just because there are fools in new clothing telling us to follow them does not mean we should follow the fools in outdated fashions and vice versa. Luckyily, our choice is not simply one between old fools and new fools, old dogma and new dogma. There is a real choice, a real road to the future, but it is not always easy to find or walk.

Anyone who honestly looks at all-powerful, awesome, glorious Leading Light Communism cannot in good faith say that we have not done our work. I have done exactly what I promised I would many years ago when we first began. We have done exactly what we said we would do. It boggles the mind that some Maoists extended support to us when we were just talking about things, as soon as we really did it, they withdrew their support. Sometimes I want to point at our work and say “here it is on a silver platter, we have carried out the principal tasks as you defined them without any support from you. Where is your support now that we have been proven right? Who was it who used to talk about parlour pinks?” In any case, Leading Light Communism is a genuine scientific advance over the Marxist-Leninist and Maoist traditions. I have done exactly what I have always done. We really are integrating the most advanced science in every area of human knowledge into an all-powerful weapon that can be wielded by the masses. There are plenty of opportunists and careerists who will continue to mock us. There are some who do not like me personally who have let their personal dislike of myself or other leaders transform themselves into liars, wreckers, virtual and real state agents. There are some who have become jealous, bitter, little wannabes and second-rate gossip mongers. Others become ostriches who cowardly bury their head in the sand to avoid seeing the sunlight of truth. Others have produced attacks, very similar to those of COINTELPRO in the United States, except more pathetic and inept. They are big into gossip directed at Leading Lights. In general, we have more to worry about: State agents have tried to disrupt our logistical networks domestically inside Bangladesh. It is an old story. Many will try to raise themselves up by tearing down great leaders, Leading Lights. There are plenty of people on the wrong side of history. Talking to them is like talking to a brick wall. We have a saying: “let the yappers yap.” Yes, we have advanced science. When have we ever walked away from the challenge of proving it? If you want a good laugh, go and ask one of these dogmatists why they think their dogma is more scientific, then compare and contrast with our discussions.

There is always going to be more false paths than the  one true path. In class society, there will always be more liars than speakers of truth. It takes time. It’s a protracted struggle, as Mao taught. We have to have proletarian attitude about all of this. No quick victories. We have to be long marchers, day in, day out. In a mere few years, under very bad conditions, with little money, we have established a new global revolutionary movement. This is just based on the pure science, on the idea. Imagine how it’s going to take off once we solve more organizational and logistical issues. We are just getting started. This is an exciting time to be alive. We are writing history as others write plays.

4. Those who are awake, the serious people, congratulate you on all you have accomplished. It is astonishing when you think about it. Some are always going to bring it back to one issue: You are rejecting Marx’s categories for your own. Are you?

There is always a doubting Thomas. And if I am moving beyond Karl Marx, so what? Marx should be seen as a scientist, not as a religious figure. Even Marx said “I am not a Marxist” on his deathbed. Most of those who claim to be Marxists today should not be seen as real Marxists. Rather, they are people who worship Marx, or Lenin, or Mao as one would worship God or a saint. No leader or writer is infallible. People are not perfect. Real Marxism is one and one thing only: the best science applied to the task of reaching the communist ideal, ending all systematic oppression. Science evolves. The best science is a science that is always evolving, advancing, becoming more powerful, able to solve more problems. Now contrast this with how dogmatists regard Marxism, Leninism, or Maoism. Their ideology is a metaphysics. It is stagnant, frozen. No innovation. Now, contrast their work to all-powerful Leading Light Communism.

Some people confuse innovation with revisionism. If all innovation were revisionist, Lenin would be a revisionist who ruined Marxism. Mao would be a revisionist who deviated from Marxism and Leninism. Even late Marx would be a revisionist who deviated from early Marx. This is a completely incorrect understanding of revisionism. Revisionism is not just about changing or updating Marxism. It is about revising the revolutionary heart out of the science. Revisionism can come in many forms. It does not always present itself as an innovation. It can also present itself as preservation of the orthodoxy. When it comes down to it, revisionism is really just about deviating from the science, which means deviating from Leading Light Communism. Updating, advancing, is necessary for a science to survive, to say relevant, to not ossify into dead, frozen metaphysics.

This reworking of basic categories is not exactly new. The Maoists were some of the biggest critics of revisionism. Yet Mao himself offered a new theory of class in his analysis of China. By the time of the Cultural Revolution, or the last years of Mao’s life, Maoists began to introduce the concept of the “new bourgeoisie.” This became applied to people like Deng Xiaoping or Liu Shaoqi by later-day Maoists. Did Liu Shaoqi or Deng Xiaoping own the means of production in the same way a traditional capitalist does? Could Deng Xiaoping sell a shoe factory to anyone he wanted? Could he give it away of his wife as a wedding present? Could he turn any factory in China into his personal swimming pool? Of course not. There were some similarities between the higher levels of the Chinese bureaucracy and the traditional capitalists, but also some differences. Hence the adjective “new” was used in describing this new bourgeoisie. The point here is that the Maoists had begun to separate class from the point of production in the strict sense found in Marx. They began to have a more complex view of class to match shifting realities. Similarly, in the United States, there is a situation where the old categories do not fit. A person in the United States might earn a wage in one job, yet might have an online-trading business to make extra money. They might also technically own the means of production through the ownership or stocks or through their retirement plan. On top of that, they partake of all kinds of public institutions that feed off of exploitation in the Third World. Some of these institutions they have some limited control over through the democratic process. Others they benefit from, but have less control over. At the same time, these ordinary people in the First World share the bourgeois way of life. Even if they do not own capital, they have access to it if they chose to liquefy their assets or take out loans. Just as the Maoists implied that the ownership of China’s productive capacity by the reactionary bureaucracy is collective, a similar process can be seen to have happened with ordinary people in the First World. They have complex relationships to production and distribution, but that relationship to production is less and less important. They partake of the benefits of being in the First World, the role of exploiter has been collectivized across whole strata and across whole geographic regions. It doesn’t really matter if they earn a wage or not. What is key is that they siphon off value unjustly from others or from the system as a whole. Whether that value ends up in their pockets through a wage or salary, in their pockets from a benefit payment, or a flow from a private sale, or if it ends up in an institution that they have a say in running or are benefiting from, of if they get a benefit by simply living in a geographic area, is not the main thing. The main thing is that they are exploiting others, what superficial form the value transfer takes is not as important. There are all kinds of ways exploitation happens, that value gets shifted around. And much of it is hidden from us. Just as it may not be immediately apparent how a man like Deng Xiaoping who earns a salary can be a part of the bourgeoisie, it may not be immediately apparent how a US worker can be. However, it is very important to look beneath surfaces. Just as Marx exposed a reality obscured by commodity fetishism, it is important to expose the reality obscured by dogma and privilege. Updating the science is fine, introducing new categories or changing old ones is fine so long as the new categories are better tools in terms of making revolution, as long as they have more predictive and explanatory power. Those who read Leading Light closely will know that Global Class Analysis not only updates our understanding of the First World, but also the Third World. Leading Light Communism also pioneers the theory of the New Proletariat and understanding the revolutionary demographics of the slums of Third World megacities. Again, this is a departure from the tradition that feels it is necessary to link class to the point of production. “But Marx said” is not a compelling argument against reality.

Today, when the people’s movement is at such an impasse, it is the time for great leaders to come forward with  real, true scientific advances, with Leading Light Communism. This is also why Leading Light Communism has been more well received in the Third World. The real proletariat in the Third World faces obliteration at the hands of empire. The impasse of the people’s movement has real consequences for them. Their sons and daughters are dying. Their land is poisoned. Finding a way out of the stagnation matters. Science matters. To put science back in the forefront of the people’s movement is to take back the future from those who have stolen it from us. This is why we say “our future is our own.” Now that the scientific breakthrough has been made, armed with the all-powerful sword of Leading Light Communism, nothing can stop us. Destiny is ours.

5. You said you were breaking things down in a simpler way in this interview so that you could be understood. Do you mean to say that what you are proposing here is a simplification? Because it is all very challenging.

I’m simplifying things a lot here. We’ve introduced the conception of high and low science in my writings. There are different audiences for different ideas and presentations. Different people need to hear different things depending on where they are in the learning curve. Some people are more advanced than others. Some people are even more advanced. Some lights illuminate. Some blind. There is high and low science. Then, there is really really high science, science that is part of our deepest politics. It’s just not helpful to expose people to it at this point. People are not ready yet. Plus, it could expose the organization to attack. When people are ready, we’ll introduce higher levels when their eyes adjust a bit to the current light being shined in their faces, when they are ready.

Someone recently described Leading Light as “Search and Rescue Team, Plato’s Cave.” This is very funny because she was not the first person to guess the other name of our organization. The allegory of the cave in The Republic is probably the most famous scene in all of philosophy. Socrates describes a scene where people are strange prisoners in a cave, chained to a wall. Because of the position of the light source, the prisoners only see themselves and objects as reflections on the cave walls. They mistake shadows for reality. All their lives they are mistaken. Imagine how difficult it would be trying to explain the outside world to one of the prisoners. Mao talks about the frog stuck in well. He looks up and mistakes the small patch of sky for the world. Imagine trying to educate someone who had somehow survived in a well their whole life about all the wonders of the world. Socrates points out that if one of those prisoners who had grown up his whole life in the cave suddenly was exposed to the outside world and sunlight, it would hurt his eyes, perhaps even blinding him until he adjusted. He would not immediately understand what was going on around him. Pain was the experience of Neo when he first woke up in the Matrix movie. All the world is a cave, illusions created by mind and class society. And leaving this cave can be blinding. This is how it is with truth, with real science, all-powerful, awesome, glorious Leading Light Communism. Some prisoners are still all the way in the deepest pit of the cave. Others are fumbling their way out. Some sit on the edge of darkness and light, like the Buddha of myth, refusing to embark to paradise before rescuing everyone else. Maoists used to say, “you cannot break every chain but one” In other words, all chains have to be broken to achieve true freedom. Similarly, Leading Light states that “nobody is free until we all are.” Socrates said those trying to rescue the prisoners would even risk their own death because of the ignorance of the prisoners themselves. And, Socrates did eventually meet that fate at the hands of the Athenian state. As Leading Lights, we, pledge everything in this great cause, even our lives.

Six Points on Third World Unity: Smaller Nations within Multi-National Formations

Six Points on Third World Unity: Smaller Nations within Multi-National Formationsjewelry

(llco.org, originally published Oct. 4th, 2008)

1. Ultimately, Leading Light Communism promotes global unity of all nations as a step toward achieving communism. Communism is defined as the elimination of all oppression of groups over other groups. This is the only way to true world peace.

2. Leading Light Communism promotes Third World unity. In order to challenge and defeat the First World, it is desirable to have Third World multi-national formations that are as large as possible. These formations have historically taken the form of multi-national states.

3. Within the context of Third World multi-national formations, provision should be made so that smaller nations are protected from physical and cultural annihilation. This means providing full protection of smaller nations: preserving their rights, arming the population, etc. Regarding culture, this means that, unless utterly reactionary, cultural traditions of the small nations should be protected and preserved within the larger formations. This means that local languages should be used for official purposes. Legal protections should be in place to preserve and encourage the flourishing of local culture. The administration of the smaller nations should be left to members of the smaller nations within multi-national formations. If land and reparations are owed to smaller nations, then land should be returned and reparations paid by the larger Third World formations.

4. Leading Light Communism pushes for maximal self-determination for all exploited nations. Self-determination, including the right of secession, is upheld except in cases where secession has a direct adverse effect on the self-determination of other exploited nations. Another way of stating this is that Leading Light Communism pushes for the right of maximal self-determination, including the right to secession, for nations except when the self-determination of a particular nation works against advancing the principal contradiction between exploited nations and imperialism. A single exploited nation should not advance its self-determination at the expense of other exploited nations.

For example, Leading Light Communism does not support phony “national liberation” or secessionist movements that are backed by US imperialism. In cases where secession directly, significantly and demonstrably increases the hegemony of imperialism or curtails the self-determination of other nations, Leading Light Communism rejects the right of secession in such instances. Imperialism is a bigger enemy than instances of national chauvinism. Making a deal with the imperialist devil is not a road to true liberation and self-determination.

5. Leading Light Communism, while promoting Third World unity, aims to break up First World unity in order to destroy the First World entirely. Those who seek to break up Third World multi-national formations as a matter of principle can end up aiding imperialism, especially US imperialism.

6. Leading Light Communism supports the self-determination of oppressed nations (that may not necessarily be exploited) under First World occupation. In particular, it supports the self-determination of the First Nations occupied by the US and Canada, the Aboriginal nations under White occupation in Australia, the Maori nation of occupied Aotearoa, the Black nation under US occupation, occupied northern Mexico,/Aztlan Boricua, and Hawai’i, among others.

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Notes on today’s Maoists who uphold Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge

Notes on today’s Maoists who uphold Pol Pot and the Khmer RougeMTIwNjA4NjMzOTQzOTgzNjI4

(llco.org)

The Communist Party of India (Maoist) is one of many democratic, progressive, anti-imperialist, groups fighting the Indian state, a part of the global empire. They are one of many movements fighting for the liberation of the poor in the second most populous country on Earth. They are a movement that deserves our critical support even though, as of today, their organization has refused to give up the dogmatism of the past. One example of this dogmatism is their continued embrace of the Khmer Rouge as the last genuine communist movement with state power.  And, for Maoists, upholding Mao’s theories is the dividing line between Marxism versus revisionism. So, since, according to the CPI (Maoist), only fellow Maoists are communists in the present era, it stands to reason they also regard the Khmer Rouge of the past and Democratic Kampuchea as Maoist. Around 2002, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) highlights the Khmer Rouge in key documents, including their basic course on Maoism for their cadre:

“After the death of Mao in 1976, the capitalist roaders who had remained in the party staged a coup under the leadership of the arch revisionist Deng Tsiao-ping and took over the control of the party under the nominal leadership of Hua Kuo-feng, a so-called centrist. As Mao had often taught, with political control going over to the hands of the revisionists the socialist base had gone out of the hands of the proletariat. At the same time the leadership of the Albanian Party of Labour switched over to an opportunist line attacking Mao Tse-tung Thought and projecting Mao as a petty bourgeois revolutionary. Though the Khmer Rouge continued to hold power in Kampuchea they were waging a constant struggle against the internal and external enemies of the Revolution and were yet to emerge from the economic ravages of war and consolidate their rule when they were defeated by the Soviet backed Vietnamese Army.” (1)

According to the CPI (Maoist), the Khmer Rouge were the last remaining communist organization with state power:

“The mid-70s saw the final overthrow of many long standing colonial regimes after long guerrilla wars. Thus the US and their puppets were thrown out of Vietnam, Kampuchea and Laos in 1975. In Africa the republics of Mozambique, Angola, Ethiopia, Congo, and Benin were formed in this period. However most of these countries were taken over by puppets or satellites of the new imperialism – Soviet social imperialism. A prominent exception was Kampuchea, where genuine communist revolutionaries – the Khmer Rouge – remained independent until invaded in 1978 by Vietnam on the behest of the Soviet imperialists.” (2)

On the anniversary of Mao’s birthday, December 26,  2006, the Central Committee of the CPI (Maoist) further stated at an international conference:

“Many communist movements were ruthlessly crushed as in Kampuchea. Now, after over 150 years of the communist movement we can count the number of genuine communist movements with some mass base on our finger-tips. ” (3)

Furthermore, according to some of their critics, People’s War Group,  the main predecessor group of the CPI (Maoist), did not just praise the Khmer Rouge in print, but distributed Pol Pot badges. Thus they promoted Pol Pot’s cult of personality.  An editorial in Dalit Voice reports:

“If DV can also get hold of the erstwhile PWG’s literature boasting of how it distributed Pol Pot badges, our savarna maoists (in this context, a reference to the CPI (Maoist) and its predecessors – ed.) will be totally exposed globally.” (4)

The CPI (Maoist) are not the only Maoists who express for their admiration of the Khmer Rouge. The Khmer Rouge are popular amongst some of the smaller Gonzaloist and Gonzaloist-influenced sects. For example, a Panamanian Gonzaloist-influenced blog reproduces a document that states:

“The experience of the Khmer Rouge revolution is unprecedented and it shows that young people can also do great revolutions and these are not huge heritage of countries or world leaders. There are also ‘small’ leaders who acquire greatness but their victories pretend to be ignored and maligned worse.” (5)

The Panamian blog reproduce a video entitled “Kampuchea :Honor and glory to the beloved Comrade Pol Pot, a communist steel and his gift to his beloved Kampuchean people!”  (6)  Brazilian Gonzaloists also celebrate Pol Pot:

“Today, we celebrate the 87th birth anniversary of the historic cambodian communist leader, Comrade Pol Pot (1925-1998).” (7)

Thus there is a strange convergence of opinion on this point between the CPI (Maoist), some Gonzaloist and Gonzaloist-influenced sects, and the imperialist media. The former praise the Khmer Rouge as “communist.” At the same time, the imperialists pin the “Maoist” and “communist” label on the Khmer Rouge as a way to taint Maoism and communism as a whole. For example, the reactionary media used to refer to the Communist Party of Peru as “the Khmer Rouge of Latin America.”

Several points must be made:

1. Imperialism, not the Khmer Rouge, was the main perpetrator of violence against the peoples of Kampuchea. More bombs were dropped on Indochina during the years of the Vietnam War than were dropped in every country in World War 2. The violence inflicted by imperialism on the peoples of Kampuchea, Vietnam, and Laos reached genocidal levels. Millions were killed by the imperialists. By 1975, already an estimated 10% of the Kampuchean population– 600,000 had died as a result of the Vietnam War. (8) When the Khmer Rouge took power in April in 1975, the country had been devastated. The cities had swelled from refugees fleeing the bombing of the countryside. Food production was disrupted. The Khmer Rouge inherited a crisis situation where they had to attempt social transformation in a country that was ruined and in a country that was under constant threat by imperialists. We must never forget that imperialism caused the most harm to the Kampuchean people, not the Khmer Rouge.

2. The Khmer Rouge were an extremely opportunist movement. They only claimed to be “Maoist” after Mao had died. And they only claimed to be “Maoist” to get aid from the post-Mao, revisionist regime in China. In fact, the Khmer Rouge did not claim to be Maoist in their internal documents or to their domestic audience. Furthermore, the Khmer Rouge denounced the “Gang of Four,” arguably the last remaining leftists in the Chinese Communist Party, as “counter-revolutionary.” Furthermore, the Khmer Rouge praised the revisionist leadership of Hua Guofeng and Deng Xiaoping in an effort to secure support. (9)

3. Despite their rhetoric of independence and self reliance, the Khmer Rouge always aligned politically with whatever forces would give them aid. This opportunism led them into supporting the revisionists in China when the Chinese were giving them support. Later, this opportunism led them into an alliance with Western imperialism. The United States delivered aid to the Khmer Rouge and other anti-Vietnamese and anti-Soviet forces after the Khmer Rouge were driven from power in 1979. It was the United States that was instrumental in keeping The Coalition Government of Democratic Kampuchea, which included the Khmer Rouge, as the official representative of Kampuchea at the United Nations up until 1993. As part of their opportunism, the Khmer Rouge quickly dropped the communist label after they were deposed in 1979. In his last interview before his death, Pol Pot was honest about his disregard for communism:

“When I die, my only wish is that Cambodia remain Cambodia and belong to the West. It is over for communism, and I want to stress that… When I say Cambodia {should} be part of the West, I mean that if you belong to the West, at least there is no fascist regime.” (10)

The reality is that the Khmer Rouge were never a real communist organization. Rather, they were a nationalist organization that opportunistically used communist rhetoric and symbols to secure aid. And, when China no longer cared about communist rhetoric, the Khmer Rouge dropped the communist rhetoric altogether in an attempt to befriend Western imperialism, especially the United States.

4. The way that the Khmer Rouge understood socialist construction was not unlike some of the Chinese revisionists. They placed extreme emphasis on economic development carried out by a terrorized, disciplined, and docile population. They embraced a version of the revisionist Theory of the Productive Forces, which overemphasizes economic and technological development at the expense of class struggle. They embraced crackpot schemes to propel Kampuchea forward that ended in disaster. Although their developmental schemes failed miserably, their model put development and economic prosperity at the forefront, not class struggle that would prepare the masses for taking power.

Even though they used rhetoric from China to describe their model, they modified Chinese slogans to suggest their approach would outdo even the Chinese. Thus they claimed to outdo the Chinese “Great Leap Forward” with their own Khmer “Super Great Leap Forward.” They claimed that their Khmer revolution was unprecedented. There is an underlying nationalist chauvinism in this bombast, in their false claim to have outdone previous revolutions, especially the revolutions of their Chinese, Maoist neighbors. Thus like many other movements nationalism accompanied developmentalism at the expense of revolution.

5. The communist movement had always placed great emphasis on ideological education. This was especially true of Mao’s revolution, which elevated the importance of ideology to a whole new level. Ideological education is one of the main forms of class struggle. However, not all ideological education is the same. At its best moments, the Chinese Maoist efforts of ideological remolding were ones that actively involved the population. The masses were not simply told what was right and wrong. Rather, the masses were motivated to actively question many aspects of the system. Top leaders, even President Liu Shaoqi, were forced to answer questions before the masses during the Cultural Revolution. Big debates on the nature of the revolution, history, aesthetics, and other topics were published in the Chinese press. The Chinese masses were encouraged to discuss and debate the issues. Although the Chinese experience was not perfect, at its best moments, it promoted Socratic questioning, open and free criticism, and science over the blind obedience of Confucianism. Along with this, the Chinese Communist Party was patient with masses. The Communist Party of China criticized the errors of commandism and Confucianism, both of which denied the ability of the masses to think for themselves and lead themselves. In its best moments, the Chinese Communist Party recognized that it was necessary to understand that to transform the masses, it is necessary to take a gradualist approach. This principle is also behind the Maoist leadership method of mass line. Communist leadership must be humble and patient enough to meet the masses where they are. Only by coming to the masses with patience and humility can the trust of the masses be won so that the masses become open to transformation by communist leadership. This principle is also behind the gradualist approach of Maoist collectivization of agriculture, which happened in stages: New Democracy, collectives, then People’s Communes. This is part of the meaning behind the most famous Maoist slogan: “Serve the people.”

By contrast, in an effort to outdo the Chinese and previous revolutions, to re-establish a golden age of Khmer greatness, the Khmer Rouge did away with Maoist gradualism. The most infamous practice of the Khmer Rouge was the emptying of cities. Whole populations of cities were labeled as “new people,” and treated like class enemies. They were stripped of their possessions and marched from the cities to the countryside where they labored at bayonet point. Violence and control of the food supply were two ways they motivated the population. One Khmer Rouge slogan stated: “Hunger is the most effective disease.” (11) The Khmer Rouge were also known to persecute minorities. The Khmer Rouge seemed more interested in obedience than transformation of the population to prepare it for active leadership. This is reflected in the Khmer Rouge’s descriptions of themselves. Even after they had taken power, the Khmer Rouge, for a long time, did not even tell the population that they claimed to be a communist party. Instead, they referred to themselves simply as “Angkar” or “Organization.” Also, they described themselves as omniscient, invincible, immortal. This high-handedness  is reflected in some of their slogans:

“Let Angkar pour truth into your head.”

“Angkar has [the many] eyes of the pineapple.”

The Khmer Rouge’s attitude toward dissent was much different than Mao’s. The Chinese Cultural Revolutionaries emphasized “big debates,” protests, power seizures, criticism, etc. By contrast, the Khmer Rouge looked on dissent very critically:

“You can arrest someone by mistake; never release him by mistake.”

“Better to kill an innocent by mistake than spare an enemy by mistake.”

The terroristic aspect of the Khmer Rouge is reflected in several slogans that threaten death upon the population:

“He who protests is an enemy; he who opposes is a corpse.”

“If someone is very hungry, the Angkar will take him where he will be stuffed with food.”

“If you wish to live exactly as you please, the Angkar will put aside a small piece of land for you.”

“No gain in keeping, no loss in weeding out,” (also rendered: “To destroy you is no loss, to preserve you is no gain.” – ed)  (12)

Think of how different the Khmer Rouge’s approach is to Mao’s approach. Written in April, 1956, Mao’s “Ten Major Relationships” was produced amid reports of excessive executions during the Stalin era in the Soviet Union:

“We must keep up the policy which we started in Yenan: ‘No executions and few arrests’. There are some whom we do not execute, not because they have done nothing to deserve death, but because killing them would bring no advantage, whereas sparing their lives would. What harm is there in not executing people? Those amenable to labour reform should go and do labour reform, so that rubbish can be transformed in something useful.

Besides, people’s heads are not like leeks. When you cut them off, they will not grow again. If you cut off a head wrongly, there is no way of rectifying the mistake even if you want to.

If government departments were to adopt a policy of no executions in their work of suppressing counter-revolutionaries, this still would not prevent us from taking counter-revolution seriously. Moreover it would ensure that we would not make mistakes, or if we did they could be corrected. This would calm many people.

If we do not execute people, we must feed them. So we should give all counter-revolutionaries way out of their impasse. This will be helpful to the people’s cause and to our image abroad.

The suppression of counter-revolution still requires a long period of hard work. None of us may relax our efforts.” (13)

This injunction by Mao against summary executions reflects how the Chinese revolutionaries emphasized the importance of “uniting all who could be united,” “big debates,” mass line, populism, patience and humility when dealing with not only the masses, but even many enemies.

Serve the people truth, not falsehood

In the 1970s, during and after Mao’s death, the Chinese press referred to the Khmer Rouge in glowing terms. However, the Chinese press referred to numerous states and movements in a similar way. For example, numerous Eastern European and national liberation movements were labeled “socialist” by the Chinese even though such regimes and movements would not be considered as such by Maoist nor Leading Light standards. When examined closely, the Khmer Rouge has never deserved the label. Just as there are communist movements that have adopted national liberation as a means of advancing communism, there are also nationalist movements that have adopted communist rhetoric and policies as a way to gain support in the pursuit of purely nationalist goals. The Khmer Rouge are the latter, not the former. Although the Khmer Rouge was once an anti-imperialist movement that drove the United States out of Kampuchea, like other narrowly nationalist movements, they later opportunistically aligned with the imperialists and revisionist anti-communists when it suited their purposes.

It is important today to come to terms with the real history of revolutionary and national liberation movements. Just because a movement claims to be “revolutionary” or “communist” does not make it true. There is a long history of movements that “wave the red flag to oppose the red flag.” Revolutionaries in China used to warn: “Be careful not to board a pirate ship.” Just because Beijing Review in the 1970s identified the Khmer Rouge in such a way does not mean they were. If today’s Maoist movement is ever going to advance scientifically, then it must deal honestly with history. One of the irony of ironies is that many of the same Maoists who uphold Pol Pot denounce Lin Biao as a Confucian and authoritarian with no real evidence at all. Such dogmatism would be funny if it weren’t so sad, if lives were not on the line.

Mao himself noted the importance of the correct, scientific line:

“The correctness or otherwise of the ideological and political line decides everything. When the Party’s line is correct, then everything will come its way. If it has no followers, then it can have followers; if it has no guns, then it can have guns; if it has no political power, then it can have political power. If its line is not correct, even what it has it may lose. The line is a net rope. When it is pulled, the whole net opens out.” (14)

The correct, scientific line is the key to victory. The incorrect line only leads to defeat. It is a sign of the weakness of the Maoist movement today that even though they claim to be scientific and materialist, the reality is that they are dogmatic, metaphysical, idealists that share much in common with religious sects. The dogmatic embrace of the Khmer Rouge by a Maoist organization so prestigious as the CPI (Maoist) reflects the sad state of affairs. Thus the claim by Maoism that it is the highest stage of revolutionary theory rings hallow today. Of today’s Maoist bombast, perhaps Mao would repeat his famous words: “It is an empty drum that beats the loudest.”

We can do better. If we are to initiate the next great wave of revolution, it is necessary to articulate a truly liberating vision of the future. It is also necessary that our vision of the future be based on genuine science, not old dogma. Those who uphold the Khmer Rouge today set themselves at odds with the advances of revolutionary science. We hope that those Maoists who continue to uphold the Khmer Rouge correct their line on this and other questions. We encourage the remnants of the Maoist movement to advance to the next, highest level of revolutionary science, Leading Light Communism. The masses deserve the best.

Notes

  1. https://ajadhind.wordpress.com/marxism-leninism-maoism-basic-course/
  2. ibid.
  3. The Worker, #11, July 2007, pp. 39-47. http://www.bannedthought.net/India/CPI-Maoist-Docs/Nepal/CPIM-Paper2007W11.htm
  4. http://naxalrevolution.blogspot.com/2006/10/dalit-voice-naxalism-gets-complicated.html
  5. http://nuevademocraciapanama.blogspot.com/2010/11/kampuchea-democratica.html
  6. http://nuevademocraciapanama.blogspot.com/2015/04/kampuchea-honor-y-gloria-al-querido.html
  7. http://nuevademocraciapanama.blogspot.com/2012/05/blog-grande-dazibao-quando-os.html
  8. www.prisoncensorship.info/archive/etext/faq/polpot2.html
  9. ibid.
  10. http://natethayer.typepad.com/blog/2011/10/second-thoughts-for-pol-pot-fallen-tyrant-defends-his-brutal-regime-but-now-wants-cambodia-tied-to-west-the-washington-pos.html#sthash.ZS5DE2zj.dpuf
  11. Locard, Henri. Pol Pot’s Little Red Book: The Sayings of Angkar. Silkworm Books, Chiang Mai, 2004
  12. ibid.
  13. Mao Zedong, “On Ten Major Relationships,” April 1956
  14. https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/selected-works/volume-9/mswv9_88.htm

Revolution in the Third World; Resistance in the First World

Revolution in the Third World; Resistance in the First Worldpwxsm-1

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The First World currently has no significant social base for revolution. This means that in the United States there is no social group that as a whole can be consciously mobilized along its class, gender or, generally speaking, even national interests to support the revolutionary proletariat of the Third World. Although there may be conflicts within the First World, and within the United States, the US populations find more unity with each other than they do with the revolutionary proletariat of the Third World. When the populations of the First World are aligned for their immediate and mid-term interests, when push comes to shove, they unite against the revolutionary proletariat of the Third World. Even if some communities are better recruiting pools, this does not mean there is a significant social base for revolution in the United States.  This does not mean that these contradictions within the First World can’t be exploited at times by Leading Lights and popular forces. This does not mean that we should give up on the First World. On the contrary, it means that we have to be even more intelligent and creative in our approaches inside the “Belly of the Beast.” Leading Lights should take the following into account, in no particular order:

1. Crisis. Capitalism is inherently unstable. The capitalist system is crisis ridden. Cycles of boom and bust are part of the system. Capitalism is constantly generating its own grave diggers, as Marx pointed out. Stability in one area is a result of crisis in another just as comfort in the First World is a result of suffering in the Third World. The system is constantly creating the conditions for its own destruction. By shifting the burden onto poor peoples, onto the Third World, capitalism creates those who will do away with the system. Also, as the process of globalization continues, a crisis in one area spreads more rapidly to other areas. A local crisis can become global very quickly. The process of globalization has strengthened capitalism, but also brought about a situation where its crises is not as easily localized or managed. This can be exploited by Leading Lights.

2. Global People’s War. Oppression creates resistance. The imperialist system has consigned the vast majority of humanity to grueling poverty. The median income worldwide is under 3 dollars a day. This means half of humanity is barely surviving from day to day. As resources are exhausted, the First World tightens the screws on the Third World to maintain its privilege. Famines, lack of water, genocide, ecological catastrophe, crises all increase. People of the Third World fight back in various ways. Like anything else, learning to fight is a process. People learn from successes and failures. This is the nature of science. Eventually, the exploited majority will pick up revolutionary science, the most powerful weapon available in the task of liberation. The next wave of revolution is coming. The world will be set ablaze with people’s wars that will merge into a single global people’s war of the Leading Light. The global people’s war will begin in the global countryside and global slum of the Third World. It will cut off and encircle the global city of the First World. Finally, the First World will be conquered by revolutionary forces from within and without. The exact contours of the global people’s war cannot be known in advance. In many places it will take the shape of classic Maoist people’s wars, moving from rural areas in poor countries to the cities. However, new technologies and changing demographics open up more and more possibilities.  It will involve re-proletarization of the First World. It may involve a people’s war that spills over into the United States. For example, a people’s war in Mexico could spill over into the southern areas of the United States. There may be literal invasions of the First World by peoples of the Third World. Parts of the First World could find themselves conquered in the same way that the Soviet Union destroyed fascism and imposed a new system on Nazi Germany.

3. Re-proletarization. Currently, social tension within US borders is lessened, contradictions made non-antagonistic, due to imperialism. The United States receives so much value from the imperialist system by exploiting the peoples of the Third World that economic, gender, and even national struggles within its borders have been transformed in important ways in the United States. The First World way of life is propped up by the massive exploitation of the peoples of the Third World. Economic conflict within the United States, generally speaking, has become less and less antagonistic because the burden has been so shifted onto Third World peoples. Gender conflicts, generally speaking, also become less and less acute because of the relative autonomy that is available to First World individuals. Even conflicts between oppressed nations in the United States and their oppressor nations become less antagonistic. As more and more oppressed nation peoples receive the benefits of their status as First World peoples, there is less and less desire to assert themselves as distinct nations, generally speaking. The relative peace of First World, and US society, is created by shifting the exploitation onto Third World peoples. However, this system is unstable. Capitalism is unstable, crisis ridden. People fight back. As more and more people become organized in the Third World, as Leading Light and anti-imperialist struggles beat back the imperialists, more and more Third World peoples will conquer state power and de-link their economies from the capitalist-imperialist system. Thus the First World, including the United States, will be denied access to their labor and resources. The imperialists will have to fight more and more wars to defend their privilege. They will have to tighten the screws on other Third World peoples, which will cause more resistance. They will need to dedicate more and more value and resources toward fighting the Third World peoples. They will, ultimately, have to turn inward, to cannibalize their own First World people, to maintain their power. In other words, as Third World peoples become free, the imperialists will need to begin exploiting their own populations again to make up the difference. This will mean that First World peoples will become poorer and poorer as Third World peoples become free and prosperous. As this process happens, some First World populations will break right and embrace fascism and social fascism in order to try to protect their privilege as First World peoples. Others will break left and begin to stand with the vast majority of humanity in the Third World. At first, the majority will break right, but eventually, the process of re-proletarization will spread. Eventually, a proletarian class will arise in what was the First World. This class can then be organized by the Leading Light to overthrow its capitalist overlords. This class will be part of the international proletariat.

4. Balkanization. The United States has a long history of brutal oppression of oppressed nations within its borders. The United States was founded on White supremacy and racism. The United States waged the greatest genocide in history when it exterminated most of its indigenous population. The land was cleared of indigenous peoples to make way for westward expansion.  Indigenous peoples were herded into prison camps that later became reservations. Social tensions of early capitalism were lessened because European-descended peoples, and later Blacks, Asians, and others could graduate from workers to land owners, from proletariat to bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie. The frontier was a safety valve for social tensions not only in North America, but also Europe. The marginalized of Europe and elsewhere made their way to North America to settle on Indigenous land. In addition, slavery played a key role in the early development of the capitalist system.  Africans and Blacks were brutally enslaved to grease the wheels of early capitalism. Even after slavery was formally abolished, the Black population of the United States found itself living under the constant terror of an apartheid system.  Slavery’s legacy remains. Deep racism still exists in US society. As the United States is weakened by Third World resistance and economic crisis, it is possible that national contradictions will once again become heightened. As Third World people gain their freedom, the White population may try to maintain its privilege by shifting the burden onto oppressed nations within US borders. As their First World lifestyle is eroded and as they face more racism and national oppression, oppressed nation peoples may strike out on their own. The result could be wars of national liberation, wars between national populations, and a Balkanization of the United States. Other kinds of Balkanization can occur. If capitalism enters a big enough crisis or there is a catastrophe of some kind, the federal government may not be able to maintain its power. Warlordism could arise in the United States in a big enough crisis or catastrophe. Remnants of the federal government, governors, mayors, military officers, police agencies, criminal organizations, religious organizations, and the Leading Light could battle for power under extreme crisis conditions.  Balkanization will weaken the system, help destroy the First World, and allow greater opportunities for the Leading Light to maneuver.

5. Catastrophe. Ecological and other mass catastrophes could play a key role in bringing about the conditions for revolution in the First World. Capitalism is based on infinite growth. However, there is a finite amount of resources. As those resources are depleted, there will be more and more ecological crisis. Ecological crisis and catastrophes weaken and impoverish the First World, thus speeding up the revolutionary process, speeding up re-proletarization, speeding up Balkanization, etc. As the ecological crisis deepens, greater numbers of both Third and First World peoples will mobilize against the system in their own interests and interests of their children.

6. War, nuclear and mass destruction. Similarly, nuclear or other forms of war could also weaken the state and other institutions and create conditions for revolution in the First World.  In general, wars weaken economies. However, the use of nuclear weapons by state or non-state actors against the United States has the potential to quickly weaken imperial power. Nuclear conflict is one possibility that revolutionaries need to prepare for.

7. Resistance and subversion of the First World. Weakening the First World from within can play a role in the revolutionary process. Lenin used the crisis of World War 1 to transform that war into a revolutionary war. Lenin sought to bring down the empire of the Czar and, later, revisionists. The Bolsheviks advocated a policy of revolutionary defeatism. They aimed to defeat their own imperial country. Similarly, the Leading Light extends its power within the First World in order to subvert from within the heart of empire. Leading Light gathers those anomalies in the First World who will fight against their First World interests. Leading Light gathers those who will truly stand with humanity. Leading Light creates the institutional structures needed for when conditions change in our favor, when re-proletarization and global people’s war advance to higher stages. Leading Light seeks to neutralize and ideologically transform as much of the First World population as possible. As capitalist crisis, ecological crisis, and global resistance deepen, more and more First World resistance is possible. At this stage of development, Leading Light’s line can be summed up “Revolution in the Third World; Resistance in the First World!”

Our world is much different than Lenin’s. It is much different than Mao’s. Dogma is not going to create the next great wave of revolution. Cheerleading will not. Only the most advanced revolutionary science in the hands of the people can create a new future. Leading Lights can handle the reality of today’s world. There is nothing more radical then reality itself. The Leading Light is for the most advanced. Leading Lights don’t sit on the sidelines.  Surrender is First Worldism. Surrender is not an option for Leading Lights. Communism is not a spectator sport. Science, organization, leadership are key to victory. Lead.

Comments on Labor Theory of Value, Productive Labor, Method, Orthodoxy, MIM

Comments on Labor Theory of Value, Productive Labor, Method, Orthodoxy, MIMbook

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The following discussion is taken from our discussion on mass line, lumpen organizing in the First World, etc. (1)  The comments are slightly edited:

“2001 MIM Congress: Again on the subject of the ‘masses’ in the imperialist countries by MC5, April 19, 2001

Most calling themselves ‘Marxist’ continue to misapply Marxism to today’s conditions. There are opportunists changing the definition of “proletariat” and abandoning the labor theory of value–usually without explicitly saying so. There are also dogmatists who quote from Lenin more than 75 years ago in Russia on conditions in imperialist countries today, when Lenin himself never quoted someone from 75 years prior to him on conditions in Russia in his day.

One of the trickiest forms of opportunism and dogmatism stems from the concept of the ‘masses.’ Many opportunists use this word to turn Mao into a bourgeois democratic populist. Others use it to justify failing to analyze conditions of today, since the masses everywhere must be revolutionary and exploited forever, or so the dogmatist reasons, and so we do not even have to apply the definition of ‘masses’ today.

In contrast, MIM has said that in the imperialist countries, the population cannot be the principal source of rational knowledge of proletarian politics. This should be obvious from the lack of socialist history or revolutionary class struggle in the imperialist countries. Nonetheless, MIM finds itself having to defend itself against those who do not know how carefully Marx, Lenin and Mao defined the words ‘proletariat’ and ‘masses and how they used them in their context. In particular, there are no timeless ‘tactics’ that apply to the ‘masses’ for all times and places. In this essay, we will distinguish between ‘population’ and ‘masses.’

It is not a mistake that a more ‘top-down’ approach to rational-knowledge is more necessary the higher the percentage of parasites in a population. That is only another way of saying that when behind enemy lines, we communists do not simply ape the enemy in all ways. We are not fish in the sea seeking to blend in with the enemy population when we are behind enemy lines.

Historically, in Mao’s China, there were people who did have to work behind enemy lines, to fight the Japanese or Chiang Kai-shek. There were two main communist complaints about those people who worked behind enemy lines. First, of course, was that such people became so muted that they became indistinguishable from the enemy, the basic problem of working behind enemy lines. (See for example, Mao’s 1944 essay, ‘Our Study and the Current Conditions’)Secondly was that once victorious in revolution, the communists who worked behind enemy lines continued to use the same methods they used when behind enemy lines–excessive conspiracy, lack of reliance on the population and even a lack of outspokennness.

In explaining the Bolshevik differences with Menshevism, Lenin says that worker ‘masses’ are only in the ‘thousands’ in ‘One Step Forward, Two Steps Back.’ In fact, Lenin says that in the beginning of the revolutionary movement, the reference point of the struggle in the use of the word ‘masses’ is only a few thousand people! The following very long quote from a Comintern speech at the Third Congress addressing many imperialist country comrades mentions all the key issues:

‘We must prepare for dictatorship, and this consists in combating such phrases and such amendments. (Laughter.) Throughout, our theses speak of the masses. But, comrades, we need to understand what is meant by masses. The German Communist Workers’ Party, the Left-wing comrades, misuse this word. But Comrade Terracini, too, and all those who have signed these amendments, do not know how the word ‘masses’ should be read.

‘I have been speaking too long as it is; hence I wish to say only a few words about the concept of ‘masses’. It is one that changes in accordance with the changes in the nature of the struggle. At the beginning of the struggle it took only a few thousand genuinely revolutionary workers to warrant talk of the masses. If the party succeeds in drawing into the struggle not only its own members, if it also succeeds in arousing non-party people, it is well on the way to winning the masses. During our revolutions there were instances when several thousand workers represented the masses. In the history of our movement, and of our struggle against the Mensheviks, you will find many examples where several thousand workers in a town were enough to give a clearly mass character to the movement. You have a mass when several thousand non-party workers, who usually live a philistine life and drag out a miserable existence, and who have never heard anything about politics, begin to act in a revolutionary way. If the movement spreads and intensifies, it gradually develops into a real revolution. We saw this in 1905 and 1917 during three revolutions, and you too will have to go through all this. When the revolution has been sufficiently prepared, the concept ‘masses’ becomes different: several thousand workers no longer constitute the masses. This word begins to denote something else. The concept of ‘masses’ undergoes a change so that it implies the majority, and not simply a majority of the workers alone, but the majority of all the exploited. Any other kind of interpretation is impermissible for a revolutionary, and any other sense of the word becomes incomprehensible. It is possible that even a small party, the British or American party, for example, after it has thoroughly studied the course of political development and become acquainted with the life and customs of the non party masses, will at a favourable moment evoke a revolutionary movement (Comrade Radek has pointed to the miners’ strike as a good example[135]). You will have a mass movement if such a party comes forward with its slogans at such a moment and succeeds in getting millions of workers to follow it. I would not altogether deny that a revolution can be started by a very small party and brought to a victorious conclusion. But one must have a knowledge of the methods by which the masses can be won over. For this thoroughgoing preparation of revolution is essential. But here you have comrades coming forward with the assertion that we should immediately give up the demand for ‘big’ masses.

‘They must be challenged. Without thoroughgoing preparation you will not achieve victory in any country. Quite a small party is sufficient to lead the masses. At certain times there is no necessity for big organisations.

‘But to win, we must have the sympathy of the masses. An absolute majority is not always essential; but what is essential to win and retain power is not only the majority of the working class — I use the term ‘working class’ in its West-European sense, i.e., in the sense of the industrial proletariat — but also the majority of the working and exploited rural population. Have you thought about this?’

Historically as a concrete reference point, in 1894, Lenin was giving tactical respect to an enemy that had no army but commanded a few thousand readers and some libraries! Lenin said, ‘However, it should not be forgotten that these slanderers command all the material means for the most widespread propaganda of their slanders. They possess a magazine with a circulation of several thousand; they have reading-rooms and libraries at their disposal.’ (‘What the ‘Friends of the People’ Are and How They Fight the Social-Democrats’)

Concretely, MIM is fortunate to have Lenin’s writings to know that MIM does indeed surpass Lenin at his earliest stages organizationally, while we too would have to give tactical respect to the type of enemy that faced Lenin in 1894. While Lenin in his day and MIP-Amerika both have large territories to cover, MIM today distributes articles in the five and six digits every month just on its web site alone. Lenin did not have this and his newspaper in the early 1890s was not physically superior to MIM’s in quantity; although we may certainly surmise that his literature gathered greater passion from the population, and perhaps more people handed his newspapers on than MIP-Amerika’s, thus meaning more readers per newspaper. Furthermore, MIM’s prison struggle and prison readership alone is reminiscent of Lenin’s reference point of a few thousand people in early stages of struggle. Hence, anyone comparing MIM with Lenin on the ‘masse’” and finding MIM lacking just did not read Lenin very carefully.

Lenin remembered bitterly in his ‘Lecture on the 1905 Revolution,’ the ‘reformists’ who called him ‘sectarian’ for having only a few hundred organizers and a few thousand people as a reference point. The Liberal leader Struve led the attack along these lines; yet today, people continue to attack MIM along the exact same lines. Lenin stood his ground and believed even such a small element constituted ‘revolutionary people.’

Even in 1915, two years before the revolution, Lenin says he only had 40,000 subscribers. He made a point of saying that the tzar could repress 5 or 10 times that number and still the 40,000 would not be annihilated in influence. (‘What has been revealed by the trial of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Duma Group’)

MIM points to Lenin’s precise conception of masses to refute those trying to pull us in a bourgeois populist direction about what our real political roots are and how science is actually applied. It goes without saying that a party of millions can address hundreds of millions of people, but at earlier stages of revolutionary development the word ‘masses’ can be demagogy, a kind of god that supports nihilism or reformism.

Somehow, with the international proletariat’s luck in drawing enemies in imperialist countries, the Trotskyists and crypto- Trotskyists such as Avakian criticizing us ‘Lin Biaoists’ manage to foul up the word ‘masses’ from another angle, by denigrating the exploited and oppressed masses of the Third World. Against these Trotskyists, the term ‘masses’ must be defended. On the other hand, within the imperialist countries we get the social-democrats and other left-wing elements of parasitism trying to have us worship the enemy population as ‘masses.’ Both ultra-purist Trotskyists and reformist left-wing elements of parasitism use the term ‘masses’ only to denigrate the Third World oppressed and exploited while glorifying the labor aristocracy.

Mensheviks have made too much of Lenin’s and Stalin’s relative distrust of the population compared with Mao’s. Lenin said in ‘What Is To Be Done?’ that Russia was a ‘politically enslaved state, in which nine hundred and ninety-nine out of a thousand of the population are corrupted to the marrow of their bones by political subservience.’ For this reason, he thought it might be defensible to have a communist party which commanded loyalty and obedience to itself instead of the state. Thus, some Mensheviks think that for Lenin to say what he did about the labor aristocracy is not surprising, while Mao was more friendly to the ‘masses,’ which includes the labor aristocracy by this line of Menshevik reasoning.

Yet, we must remember that Lenin lived in a semi-imperialist country, one that had ‘Great Power’ status at the time Lenin lived. Mao lived in a country that once had “Great Power” status but was in fact super- exploited and oppressed. Hence, we can say Mao was correct to have more reliance on the population of China than we have on the population of the United $tates or Lenin had in Russia’s population.

This is to leave aside the fact that Mao was careful in defining the word ‘masses.’ When he says ‘mass line,’ it is not an excuse for spontaneity or bourgeois democratic prejudice. Mao’s ‘mass line’ is universally correct, but only if it is universally correctly defined and applied.

Here in the imperialist countries we often fail from step one–defining friends and enemies based on the appropriation of surplus-labor, which is the connection between Marx’s Das Kapital and the political theories of Lenin and Mao. Political theorizing and strategizing in a void without Marx’s labor theory of value is rank opportunism, creating a bourgeois political philosophy of a pre-scientific sort, whether or not it is in the guise of Marxism. There is no meaning to political steering or tactics without the labor theory of value, so any discussion of ‘ultraleft’ or ‘right opportunism’ is completely sterile without an understanding of concrete conditions first. There is nothing permanently politically ultraleft or right opportunist without first defining classes and hence friends and enemies.

Mao himself defined the classes in Chinese society, and specifically Chinese society, in order to define ‘friend’ and ‘enemy.’ In his ‘Analysis of the Classes in Chinese Society’ in 1926, Mao talks about many things that are specific to China and even more things that are specific only to semi-colonial and semi- feudal countries. He did not talk about all masses in all countries being the same at all times.

Even in the essay ‘On New Democracy,’ which is not relevant for imperialist country oppressor nations, Mao said, ‘No sooner had the strength of the proletariat and of the peasant and other petty bourgeois masses brought the revolution of 1927 to victory than the capitalist class, headed by the big bourgeoisie, kicked the masses aside, seized the fruits of the revolution, formed a counter-revolutionary alliance with imperialism and the feudal forces, and strained themselves to the limit in a war of ‘Communist suppression’ for ten years.’ Here, Mao contrasted the masses and the enemy. Most references to the ‘masses’ by Lenin, Stalin and Mao speak of ‘exploited,’ ‘toiling,’ ‘working’ or ‘oppressed’ masses–not masses that include substantial enemy sections.

During the Cultural Revolution in China, the ‘Little Red Book’ said the following: ‘The broad masses of the workers, peasants and soldiers and the broad ranks of the revolutionary cadres and the intellectuals should really master Mao Tse-tung’s thought.’ Again, we do not hear the term ‘masses’ used to refer to enemies.

In another context, in his essay, ‘Speeches at a National Party Conference’ in 1955, Mao said, ‘We often say that we should not become conceited because we have done well in our work and that we comrades should remain modest and learn from the advanced countries, from the masses and from each other so as to make fewer mistakes.’ Again, as MIM has always said, there is a distinction to be drawn here. Mao did not lump ‘the advanced countries’ with ‘masses’ here. Let’s also keep in mind he could have said, ‘learn from the masses of the advanced countries’ and he did not. It’s not so simple. There are things to learn from enemies, but we do not refer to it as part of the ‘mass line,’ with ‘from the masses’ and ‘to the masses.’

In truth, if once in a while, ‘masses’ referred to people that included enemies it would not be so bad–if the enemy component of ‘masses’ is the minority. Such was the case in times during the war against Japan led by Mao. Both Mao and Chiang Kai-shek spoke of the ‘entire nation’ opposing Japan–and for a decisive period of time the conflict with Japanese imperialism was the principal contradiction for the Chinese Revolution. Yet, contrary to the image some would like to foist concerning Mao, Mao was even more precise than just counting a few enemies as ‘masses.’

In ‘Is Yugoslavia a Socialist Country?’ Mao said in 1963 what he would later say about the USSR. Some people do not realize that Mao never counted the ‘labor aristocracy’ as anything but enemy: ‘It shows us that not only is it possible for a working-class party to fall under the control of a labour aristocracy, degenerate into a bourgeois party and become a flunkey of imperialism before it seizes power.’ Furthermore, Mao said, ‘Old-line revisionism arose as a result of the imperialist policy of buying over and fostering a labour aristocracy. Modern revisionism has arisen in the same way. Sparing no cost, imperialism has now extended the scope of its operations and is buying over leading groups in socialist countries and pursues through them its desired policy of ‘peaceful evolution.” Hence, Mao always said the question of labor aristocracy is linked to the question of the restoration of capitalism. For a supposed Maoist to ignore the ‘labor aristocracy’ of the imperialist countries is revisionism. For people to talk about upholding the Cultural Revolution and opposing Soviet revisionism without opposing the labor aristocracy as enemy is just pure hogwash.

In this regard, we must note the revisionist efforts of many to smuggle the labor aristocracy into the ‘masses,’ and then the ‘mass line,’ as an excuse for tailing parasitic demands by the imperialist country parasites. MIM follows the ‘mass line,’ but the population does not get to define whether or not it is ‘masses’ or not. MIM uses the definition of ‘proletariat’ and ‘masses’ laid down since Marx and Lenin. Belonging to the ‘masses’ or the ‘proletariat’ is not a question of self-identification. We do not mean conditions are the same as in the days of Marx and Lenin, but it does mean we have no reason to change the very definition of these words, since capitalism and semi-feudalism continue to dominate the world. People who believe MIM is wrong are free to argue that the proletariat of 2001 is less relevant than in 1901, but our critics should not be allowed to change the definition of proletariat and ‘masses’ to include a majority of enemies.” (2)

I do not have time to give a full analysis of every quote in the document. The document seems to have some problems and muddle even though I obviously support the overall sentiment. Some issues though:

In the beginning, the document alludes to MIM’s use of their version of the labor theory of value to paint large segments of the First World as parasitic. The same theory ends up painting large segments of the Third World that do not technically produce value as also parasitic. It seems to me that MIM was so out to prove the First World as parasitic using a certain kind of orthodoxy that they did not look at the implications of that analysis on the class structure of the Third World. Are the rising slum dwelling classes of the Third World also parasitic because they do not create value? Are refugee populations dependent on aid parasitic? Are Palestinians? Landless, declassed ex-peasants? There are also cases where productive laborers in some Third World countries form a relatively privileged sector that will not be the leading force of the revolutionary movement. MIM used to represent its views as orthodox on this topic, but MIM usually forgets to add that Marx assumed commodities are traded for equivalents in order to show that the origin of profit was from unpaid work. If you throw out this assumption, then it kind of undermines Marx’s whole argument for unpaid labor being the source of profit. You don’t need the idea of unpaid labor as a source of profit if you throw out the assumption that commodities trade at their values. And if you don’t throw out that assumption, you are kind of stuck with accepting that First World productive workers are exploited. Or, you have to throw out the orthodoxy and move toward a concept of net-exploitation as myself, Serve The People, Rebel1 explored in the IRTR period. Or, you have to set a bar for exploitation by assigning a full value of labor ala comrade Serve the People, something Marx himself opposed in at least one place — although I don’t have the reference off hand. Or you move in directions I have suggested in numerous articles, abandoning the labor theory of value altogether. IRTR and LLCO explored these directions in order to address some of this. I will also add that I am not saying there might not be uses for the labor theory of value, I am just saying is that it is not without problems and it is not a dividing line between Marxism and revisionism.

My point is that the appeal to orthodoxy (sometimes false orthodoxy) that pervades the document is not only the wrong way to go, but it also misrepresents. For example, it says that Mao defined words like “proletariat” and “masses” in their contexts, when everyone knows Mao and Maoist publications made numerous references to the “proletariat” and “masses” in the First World. MIM often invented all kinds of strange arguments to try to explain away these famous quotes by Mao. My personal favorite MIM argument was when MIM said Mao’s First Worldism was an innocent mistake because Mao did not have experience with the First World, as though the leader of a state that ruled over a quarter of the world’s people was living in a cave with no intelligence on the First World, as though Mao was totally dependent on First World micro-sects for his information on the First World. Any quick look to Beijing Review reveals how disingenuous MIM’s claim was. MIM had access to Beijing Review, but they used to cherry pick and selectively quote articles to make it appear as though Maoist China was more Third Worldist than it was. However, if you actually read the magazines, you will find First Worldism pervasive in Chinese Maoist literature. MIM was counting on people not having access to the original magazines, so they misrepresented the contents. This is just one thing that popped out immediately as problematic. I do not have time to examine every single quote in the article in context or look up quotes by the same authors that may suggest other things. The bigger issue is the methodological problem in part of the document. It seeks to pile up quotes as a way of increasing the legitimacy of its claims. And, in an attempt to do this, it misrepresents things on at least the occasion of Mao. Perhaps it misrepresents elsewhere, I don’t know. The method of seeking to represent oneself as the orthodoxy, misrepresent history, cherry pick, selectively quote, etc. is not a scientific one. It is fine to quote previous communists, it is good to supply information, but there is a kind of appeal to authority going on here too.

MC5 seems to make a good point about how as the level of parasitism increases, so too does the need for a “top-down” approach. I agree with the sentiment here, but not the literal claim. If MIM’s political economy is taken literally, large segments of the poorest sections of the Third World are also parasitic since they consume value, but do not produce it. Do we require a “top-down” approach with them too? Obviously not. Again, this is a matter of MIM painting with too big a brush. In their attempt to paint the First World as parasitic, they failed to look at the implications of their arguments as they applied to Third World populations. I think a better way to say this is simply to say the higher standard of living of a  population, the more of a “top-down” approach is needed.

I like MC5’s line when he discusses the revisionist attempts “to smuggle the labor aristocracy into the ‘masses,’ and then the ‘mass line,’ as an excuse for tailing parasitic demands by the imperialist country parasites.” I am not completely comfortable with the wording, but the assertion is correct. However, then I wonder why MIM focused on the First World oppressed nations? Why did MIM stick to the dogmatic formulation that the principal contradiction is between imperialism versus oppressed nations? It seems like MIM, with its intellectual emphasis on the First World lower strata and oppressed nations, is guilty of exactly what MC5 claims the revisionists do. The conclusion of a more consistent political economy, such as our own, is that the principal contradiction is between the First World versus Third World, the Bourgeois World versus Proletarian World, Exploiter World versus Exploited World. This is the muddle that seemed to pervade in MIM. They had one foot in Third Worldism and one foot in First Worldism with First Worldist practice, tailing of national liberation, pantherism, gender spellings, etc.

Again, I do not have time to give a full analysis of the document. It allowed us to demarcate some differences between MIM Thought and Leading Light Communism. However, these are just a couple of the differences between MIM Thought and Leading Light Communism. Leading Light Communism is a whole package of scientific advances that span everything from epistemology to political economy to history to “deep politics,” etc. Leading Light Communism is the future.
Notes

1. http://llco.org/no-magic-key-to-unlock-the-first-world-mass-line-or-otherwise/
2. http://www.prisoncensorship.info/archive/etext/wim/cong/onmasses01.html

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Settlerism, Global Empire, and American opinions about Gaza

Settlerism, Global Empire, and American opinions about Gaza

(llco.org)

A new poll by the Pew Research Center was released on US opinion about the conflict in Gaza. The results were interesting. Only a quarter, 1 out of every 4, Americans believes that Israel had gone “too far.” The figure is basically unchanged since 2006 when Israel invaded Lebanon in its war against Hezbollah. This seems to indicate that much of the pro-Palestinian activism over the last decade has done little to shift US public opinion broadly. Even though it seems like there is more opposition to Israel’s actions now, this is probably more the result of a shift in the opinions of the elite, journalists, etc., not a shift at the grassroots. This may suggest agitation and propaganda aimed at First World media makers, intellectuals, and policy makers is more effective than aiming at the grassroots. The poll also suggest that youth and people who identified as Democrats are more evenly divided on the issue:

“Democrats split almost evenly on which side bore the greater responsibility for the current violence, with 29% blaming Hamas and 26% Israel and 18% citing both.”

“Among those who identify as liberal Democrats, 44% said Israel’s actions have been excessive, while 33% said they had been about right and 7% said they had not gone far enough. Among conservative Republicans, only 10% said Israel had gone too far, 51% said its actions had been about right, and 21% said Israel had not gone far enough.”

What is especially interesting is that 22 percent of whites responded that Israel had gone too far. And  36 percent of Blacks and 35 percent of Latinos responded similarly. The African diaspora and Spanish-speaking populations in the US were better on the question of opposition Israel’s genocide, but not that much better.

There is a myth amongst one segment of the First Worldist left that understanding the origins of the United States as a “settler society” is the most important aspect in understanding the United States today. The idea is that leftover social divisions from the origin of the United States as a settler society still run so deep that they are the key to making revolution today. This is connected to the view that the United States is a white apartheid state, that a white nation rules over all the others in the same way apartheid South Africa ruled over its African population or the same way Israel occupies Palestine. Revolution, according to this myth, is a matter of encouraging national liberation amongst the non-white “internal semi-colonies” or “captive nations” in order to topple the white nation. It is true that the United States originated as a European-settler invasion of North America, and it is true that white supremacy and its terror still afflicts the captive nations within the United States, as mass incarceration rates and police repression of Black and Brown people clearly indicate. What is not true is that this is the main thing in understanding US social dynamics, including the lack of revolutionary potential in United States or the First World generally. And it is also not true that national liberation of internal semi-colonies within US borders is playing or will likely play a significant role in the defeat of capitalism and imperialism under current conditions. It may be useful for traditional activists to agitate as through these myths are accurate, but the advanced will recognize that this kind of rhetoric is, at best, a “noble lie,” a front for more serious revolutionary work. At worst, the rhetoric is simply delusion or a front for opportunist gain or police work of various kinds. This kind of analysis, if taken seriously, is one of the last bastions of First Worldism.

These myth makers correctly point out proletarian consciousness does not exist amongst white laborers because they are not a proletariat. What they fail to point out is that national consciousness barely exists amongst most of the populations of the internal semi-colonies, and proletarian consciousness does not exist. Here it is important to point out that differences do exist amongst non-white populations. For example, national consciousness is much more a reality amongst many indigenous peoples than those of the African diaspora in the United States, where it is negligible. National consciousness remains more in force amongst the migrant Mexican population than the Chicano population, where it is also negligible. It is a kind of chauvinist outlook that reduces the diverse situations of non-white populations to a single analysis of internal semi-colonies as “people of color”. It is a kind of chauvinism, naivety, or both that fails to recognize the contradictions between various non-white populations, which, in everyday life, can be experienced more sharply than the conflict with the white population. Such an analysis is often more rooted in white guilt and the projection of a romanticized “other” than reality. Someone recently joked that such an analysis amongst white “anti-imperialists” is the revolutionary equivalent of “the magical negro” in film and literature who saves the day. (2) (3)

The poll numbers suggest that there is slightly more solidarity expressed by those in the African diaspora than whites in the US regarding Palestine. The Latino populations in the US also shows slightly greater solidarity. However, the degree of solidarity shown in the poll is not that much greater among the non-whites than the whites. One would expect it to be much greater if the myths were accurate. One would expect a much greater degree of solidarity if the relationship of non-whites to whites in the United States was basically the same as the relationship of Palestinians to Israelis. The poll numbers indicate self-identification as a “Democrat” and “liberal Democrat”  are far better predictors of opposition to Israel’s actions than “race” or “nation” in these cases. Youth is also a better indicator than “race.” The reason so many Americans, white and non-white, support Israel is because they perceive it is in their imperial interest to do so.

The reality is that the United States has integrated many diverse populations into its multi-racial, multi-national society. There is a long history of this. At one point, Jews were migrants at the bottom of US society. Irish migrants too experienced terrible racism. So did other populations. These populations first “became white,” then they were allowed a privileged position within US empire. Some claim this transformation is seen in language itself. Some historians claim that the word “honkey” was originally a derogatory term for Hungarians and Eastern Europeans generally, who were not seen as properly white. Today, the term is aimed at whites generally. However, to share in the spoils of empire today, it is not necessary for a population to become white. Today, Asian populations within the United States have a higher per capita income than whites yet are still not perceived as fully white in the same way Irish-Americans are, for example. The people of the indigenous nations (latino and non-latino alike) and the African diaspora within the US, for the most part, share the spoils of empire, without being perceived as fully white. White national consciousness does not have anything like the power or influence it once did over white society. There is a residual idea of “race” that exists. This is based on phenotypical differences, stereotypes, some cultural differences, history, and speaking styles. Social and economic position still play a role, but not the role they once did. The United States has integrated many of its non-white populations into its multi-racial, imperial society. However, not every population has been equally integrated, which is why national consciousness amongst the Lakotah, for example, is greater than national consciousness amongst Chicanos or those of African descent. This is an ongoing process. And there is no guarantee every population will be integrated this way. For example, will the United States be able to absorb the massive migrant populations from Latin America? In any case, it is the massive exploitation of the Third World that allows for the integration of these populations into the United States and into the First World generally.

This process of the United States emerging as a multi-national empire should also be seen alongside the United States playing a leading role in an emerging multi-racial, trans-national First World, a kind of global empire. In any case, the old formulation of oppressor verses oppressed nation inherited from national liberation movements of the 1960s and 1970s does not apply as it once did. Instead, what is happening is the development of a global imperial system, but at the same time the First and Third Worlds are still preserved, even if the borders of these spheres do not always correspond to the the borders of countries.  Just as imperialism is globalizing, so too is resistance to it. As the Bourgeois World continues its barbarous brutality, the Proletarian World responds with new methods of resistance. Armed with all-powerful Leading Light Communism, the Proletarian World is beginning to organize a Global People’s War to liberate humanity and the Earth. Our sun is rising. Our day is coming.

Notes

1. http://www.latimes.com/world/middleeast/la-fg-israel-hamas-poll-20140728-story.html

2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magical_Negro

Summing up "Black Lives Matter" and the rebellions against police terror in the USA

Summing up Ferguson USABuyjzAxCUAENMa6

(llco.org)

On August 9, 2014, Michael Brown, an unarmed, 18-year-old Black man, was fatally shot by Darren Wilson, a 28-year-old white police officer, in Ferguson, Missouri, USA, a suburb of St. Louis. The evidence suggests that the shooting was unwarranted and, in part, racially motivated. As a result, protests occurred throughout the United States highlighting the problem of police brutality  and racism. In Ferguson itself, protests have been continuous since the shooting. A militarized police department occupied the streets there, occasionally harassing and arresting protesters in the mostly Black community. And, after the grand jury chose not to indict Darren Wilson, riots broke out. This resulted in many arrests and much damage to property. Cars and businesses were seen burning in the media. On social media, a new phrase began to find its way across peoples profile pages: “Black Lives Matter”, which then became a loose network of activists across the US seeking to end police terror of Black communities in the United States. While the phrase “Black Lives Matter” was originally coined during the acquittal of self-styled “neighborhood watchman” George Zimmerman in his trial for the murder of 17-year old Black youth Trayvon Martin, the phrase didn’t become widely used until the death of Mike Brown at the hands of Darren Wilson.

It goes without saying the the resistance to police should be supported and strengthened. It goes without saying that national oppression and police terror must be opposed by any means necessary. Those who stood up and spoke up against injustice deserve support. We salute all those who took to the streets against injustice. Leading Light has advanced the line of “resistance in the First World; revolution in the Third World.” Standing against the police terror, white supremacy, and internal colonialism certainly counts as resistance. Even so, we must be materialists about the facts on the ground.

Some First Worldists see the events of Ferguson as heralding some great, new wave of discontent that can be channeled into First World revolution. They embrace ridiculous rhetoric about the Ferguson riot being a people’s war or the beginnings of a new anarchist world. There is even a meme floating around that borrows an image of an Irish Republican woman with a gun that states “arms up, shoot back.” Even with virtually the entire “far-left” of the United States focused on Ferguson, sending activists, etc., it is significant to note that the reports of shots fired on police from the resistance in the past couple years has been few and far between. This is in a country where firearms are legal and easy to acquire. There is a big reality gap between “far-left” rhetoric of First Worldists and conditions on the ground. Ferguson is not the Third World. It is not even Northern Ireland, as the meme suggests. There also is a big reality gap between the rhetoric of the First Worldist “far left” and what they are really prepared to do. This kind of over-the-top rhetoric, guerrilla pornography, might have some limited use at the level of low science, it may work to recruit the unadvanced, but we should not mistake this kind of myth making for reality.

Police terror and mass incarceration exists, and the most directly affected have been overwhelmingly Black and Brown people. National oppression is still an issue in the United States, although the contradiction between the white nation and these internal colonies is not nearly as acute as it once was. As scientific revolutionaries, we have to understand long-term trends, not get swept up in what happens to be in front of us at a given moment. There are very real, material reasons that national liberationist politics do not resonate in the United States nearly as much as they once did. The long-term trend is toward integrating the African diaspora of the United States into a multi-national First World. National oppression will continue within the First World. Every so often, these colonial contradictions may even lead to rebellion and resistance. However, the contradictions are not so great that they will lead to revolution at present. Nor are the contradictions within the First World so great that they can sustain a people’s war. To think as much is simply delusional utopianism.

All things being equal, having people resist the system inside the United States is better than having them not resist. This is true even if the First Worldists doing the resisting are delusional about the revolutionary possibilities within the heart of empire. For those who are not particularly advanced, this kind of resistance can be a healthy way to learn. It can also be a learning moment for others about what is possible at present. Resistance is a good thing. Even so, the most advanced, should not lose sight of the real task. The Global People’s War of the Leading Light will not emerge from within the First World. Our people are the real proletariat, the masses of the Third World. Our duty is to the global poor. Those who are advanced enough to be channeled into real revolutionary work should not get distracted from the main task, even as we offer our material support for such resistance within the United States. We must concentrate our forces against the weakest links of the imperial system. This means our battle is principally in the Third World.

Our future is our own. Long live the Great Strategic Plan! Follow the Leading Light! Be the Leading Light! Long live the Leading Light! Our sun is rising. Our day has come.