Latin American Marxist writers

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Tue May 16 12:04:01 MDT 2000

Chris Brady:
>I know some people on the Board of NACLA are reds.

Yes, two of them I know quite well. One is Susan Lowes who used to head
Monthly Review books until she began work here at Columbia Teachers College
in the Institute for Learning Technologies. The other is Jack Hammond, who
has written books on education in El Salvador in the liberated zones of the
1980s and on the Portuguese revolution of the 1970s. During the late 80s
Jack was a frequent guest at Tecnica meetings and had considered becoming a
volunteer himself even though he finally made his own connections in
Nicaragua like so many other people.

When NACLA published an article by Mario Murillo last year that falsely
accused the FARC of murdering Indians (it was, according to the a Church
group, paramilitaries in FARC uniforms), I wrote a complaint to NACLA and
cc'd Jack and Susan, who did not bother to respond. When I ran into her
once in the cafeteria, she said that NACLA's problem was that it was too
academic. I replied that being academic does not explain writing slanders.
She grimaced and walked away as fast as her feet could carry her.

I had a long talk with Mark Cook (not to be confused with the horrid Mark
Cooper of the Nation), who was an investigative journalist in Nicaragua
during the 1980s, and a very good one. He now writes for Covert Action
Quarterly. I broached the subject of writing a piece on NACLA but he never
got back to me. I guess they were reluctant to take this head-on. I
wouldn't myself, because I view NACLA's politics a real problem in the face
of the potential Vietnamization of Colombia. Mark cited Judith Butler, who
used to be the editor of NACLA, and who lived on the Atlantic Coast
Nicaragua in the 1980s. Apparently she claims that there was something
sinister about the rightwing change at NACLA, but Mark was not able to give
me any specifics. In any case, as Sam said yesterday, it is good that we
have the Internet in the face of corporate and governmental subversion of
the Nation, Pacifica and NACLA. Nobody would ever consider co-opting me. I
am too obnoxiously leftwing and personally cranky to approach.

Louis Proyect

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