Joint statement on Iraq

PO global at
Sun Sep 15 18:51:57 MDT 1996

Reply to Jorn

I would like to make a few points about this important question.

While we do not have to agree that the communist international under lenin
and trotsky were correct in all their thinking, we should consider their
position as a factor.
This question whether zionism is the same as arab nationalism was debated in
the second congress and the position of the left zionists was rejected.
zionism and arab nationalism are not the same. only people who think in
absolute categories would argue that nationalism= nationalism. In relaity
diffrent nationalism  express different social relation

The nationalism of the arbs express the nationalism of the opressed, while
the nationalism of the zionists express the nationalism of the opressor.
Arab nationalism has progressive and reactionary elements. It is progressive
in relationship to opposition to imperialism, and national opression. It is
reactionary when it comes to aspects like explotation of workers and
opression of minorities. Zionism is reactionary through and through.
The argument of class against class  while ignoring the reality of
particular opression was the method of Debs not of lenin.
Of course we have to struggle to free the israeli working class from zionist
ideology and practice, but this can be done only when the israeli workers
support their palestinians brothers and sisters against the zionist state,
not in abstact as a class against class.

No question that kuwait rurles are reactionaries yet israel is the stronger
in service of imperialism in the middle east. To compare Kuwait and Israel
is to equte the elephant with the fly.

>---------------Original Message---------------
>Jorn Writes;
>>Excuse me that I interfer - but I don't agree with you on this, Robert. I
>think it is too simple to just say "class against class" when we talk about

>Palestinian right to self-determination. The problem is that it underplays
>the role of imperialism in the creation and upholding of the Israeli state.
>Hej Jorn, Det var langre sen!
>No not really Jorn. The problem is that nationalists on all sides use the
>slogan of the extermination of the other side as the solution to the
>problem. Naturally Communists do not raise the slogan of the "right to self

>determination" for Israeli,s in the day to day struggles but as communists
>we recognize that they have this right. It cuts across the nationalist
>on both sides who keep saying that the otherside has to be wiped out! In
>fact reversing the terms of Zionism will not make thing better.
>>I would not reject the *possibility* that Israeli workers could be won for

>revolution. But as with white South African workers under apartheid the
>chances are very small that it will really happen. The problem is that
>zionism and material privilegees are tying these workers very close to the
>Israeli state. Much closer than elsewhere.
>I think that unless a revolutionary party in the middle east does not win a

>substancial part of the Israeli proletariat to it would be not just because

>they have written them off to a zionist system but forgettting that the
>Israeli Proletariat will be a decisive part of the future battles in the
>region. And by not raising a position on their right to exist as a people
>plays right into the hands of the Zionists and arab nationalists.And the
>last about "material privilege" smells almost like the MIM arguement Jorn.
>Jorn writes;
>>I don't think that's the same. Marxists should fight for the right to
>self-determination for *oppressed* countries - not any country. That does
>not mean that I think the Israelis should be thrown into the Mediterannian,

>but I think that as long as the Israeli state exists it will be an
>imperialist watch-dog. I think we should stick to the slogan of a secular
>state, which used to have a broad support amongst the Palestinians.
>This is almost like saying that the Israeli,s are the main imperialist link

>in the area. I doubt that! In fact the Saudi's and Kwait not only are the
>main imperialist link, but own by this time half of London and a whole lot
>of other shit. They are imperialists by their own right. In fact as of late

>it is the Saudi's and Kwait that are putting up the bases for the stelth
>bombers isn,t it? And in the present imperialist jockeying these countries
>can wind up just about anywhere. But more then likely because of historical

>factors and if push comes to shove I think the Israeli,s will never be
>pro-German, but the saudi,s and Kwait certainly could. In the preperations
>for the next imperialist showdown it is very important to realize that the
>main enemy is at home. Class against class, not Arab against Jew in this
>>>Naturally for Bolshevk- Leninists the ultimate goal must be that
>>>of a United
>>>Arab and Jewish Proletariat which fight under its own banner for a
>>>Federation of States in the Middle East under the Dictatorship of the
>>Agreed on this one :-)
>>Jørn Andersen
>>Hedebygade 17, 2. tv.
>>DK-1754  København V
>>Tlf. +45-33250818
>>E-mail: jorn.andersen at
>>     --- from list marxism at ---

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