Indonesia and state strategy

Zeynep Tufekcioglu zeynept at
Wed Aug 7 09:13:46 MDT 1996

Hugh writes:

>This is interesting, but sounds as if it could be formulated in a way that
>doesn't so one-sidedly flatter the strength and skill of the bourgeoisie.

General disclaimer for my one-sided flattery:

I think that this is the epoch of transition from capitalism to socialism,
that the imperialists capitalists are doomed, and no matter how skilled they
are, and how strong they are we are the future, we have the means and skills
and people to overthrow their system. They can only prevent us by ending
human life on this planet, which, although not impossible, would not serve
them well either.

Capitalism sucks, bourgeoisie sucks!

Now, may I humbly point out to a few things they have the upper-hand at (for
a short time, to be sure), so that we may speed up their inevitable overthrow?

>Besides 'Low Intensity Warfare' the strategy can also be characterized as
>'Bourgeois-Democratic Counter-revolution'.

What I am pointing out is that the "counter-revolution" methods have evolved
since the 1970s. All out war on the populace has been replaced by
low-intensity, sinister warfare. Highlights include increased clandestine
operations, careful use of selective violence, refined propaganda and
misinformation, emphasis and development of the mass media to "opiate" the
masses (where religion does not serve, though the two may mix). Decreased
control and jurisdiction of parliaments, increased extra-parliamantery
control of the state-machinery (this is done not in coups or military
takeovers, but while the parliament seems to operate, that's a difference
with 70s). Etc. etc.

>But I think in general 'containment' could describe the strategy pretty
>well, as opposed to 'crushing' or 'elimination', and when you ask what is
>being 'contained', it would have to be the growing political strength of
>the working class and its organizations. This would give the openings you
>point to the character of *concessions* to our movement.

Concessions, comrade? What concessions? Pray tell me. The only strength we
have is that we keep the numbers coming for those they kill or "lose".
Anti-union, anti-worker bills and budgets around the world. Welfare state
*was*  a concession, earned through the struggle of the working class,
conceded as it fit the accumulation regime, and cold war politics. Not
containment, "crushing" and "elimination", by whatever means possible. Often
out-of-sight, out-of-heart subversive and sinister methods. Hugh, the
potential of current era is great, *because* they have *no room* for
concessions. Dearer price to pay for us, but the opportunity is also great.

>An awareness of this would make a lot of difference in strengthening the
>confidence and conviction of our comrades. The scepticism in relation to
>our own strength and potential reflected in the flattering
>characterizations of the imperialists does just the opposite.

Hugh. Gee. Loss for words. Deep breath.

Skepticism in relation to our strength? No, realism to be able to better
utilise the great potential of the working class for true emancipation. If
we never point to our weaknesses and their strengths, neither our weaknesses
nor their strengths will disappear. We'll have helluva reason to be
pessimistic when it hits us, in real life.

Low Intensity Warfare is working. But, it is also a double-edged sword for
them. If we understand its methods better, we will fight better. Just as the
fact that neo-liberal policies *are* being implemented around the world.
Incredible potential for the working class movement if we organise according
to the need of the times.

>>Btw, I think, that theoretically, the last decade has made obsolete and
>>proven wrong the previous structralist debate about the role of the state
>>(Poulantzas/Milliband et al.) and the communists need to develop their
>>analysis of the state if they hope to avoid being drowned, (usually in their
>>own blood).
>Could you be a bit more specific about the points you're thinking of?

Yes, possibly later today, though. Preview; I think the state must be
analysed in relation to its role in capital accumulation. I argue against
Poulantzas, Milliband, and what-was-once Laclau.


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