Chris Burford cburford at
Tue Apr 11 07:21:09 MDT 1995

Reply follows:
 > From owner-marxism at Tue Apr 11 00:45:16 1995
 > From: Tom Meisenhelder <tsmeisen at>
 > Subject: Re: nationalism
 > To: marxism at
 > Date: Mon, 10 Apr 1995 16:14:27 -0700 (PDT)
 > Sender: owner-marxism at
 > Reply-To: marxism at
 > Unfortunately I basically agree with your analysis of the failure of
 > nationalist movements in the developing world and its conclusions
 > concerning the power of transnational capital.  But where does that leave
 > us in terms of practical political activity?? Depressing isn't it?
 >      --- from list marxism at ---

I am lost about whether you are agreeing with me, or someone else hanging
on to this thread, but I wanted to link up with you and say, no, it is
not depressing, it is just hard.

In the States especially, the boycott campaigns against capital,
especially the banks, killed apartheid. (Of course in a conjuncture in
which incredible bravery by hundreds of thousands in South Africa was the
leading and decisive factor)

In Britain, though less effectively organised in my opinion for this
purpose, we built up considerable experience. A major British bank,
whose subsidiary was the major South African bank, lost millions and
millions of pounds of custom from students, and potential ex-students,
and surrendered. Shell, the largest company in the world repeatedly had
its Annual General Meetings interrupted in a way it found most
embarrassing, until amazingly they gave a twenty minute slot for a
representative of the ANC (who had been on Robbin Island, and at a time
when the ANC were of course terrorist, and Communists; in fact the
speaker, was and still is, a communist).

Last month in London we held a meeting on transnationals - we being a
coalition of marxists, christians and greens - and Shell decided to send
two representatives on the environment. The interesting thing is that
they came.

In my opinion Shell won on the tactics of the day. We shall win over the

I shall try to write up notes on this for the marxism list over Easter.

Why be depressed?

Why not organise?


Chris Burford

     --- from list marxism at ---


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