CWI accommodation to imperialism

Philip Ferguson plf13 at it.canterbury.ac.nz
Mon Dec 17 20:44:46 MST 2001


Brian Cahill wrote:
>Just to put this one to rest. The Socialist Party is
>the section of the CWI in Ireland. It is organised
>on an all-Ireland basis. i.e. the same party
>operates North and South. Socialist Youth, our youth
>affiliate is also organised on an all-Ireland basis.

Which would be relatively new.

Before the SP, the CWI operated two entirely separate groups - the Militant
Tendency in the southern statelet and the Labour and Trade Union Group in
the northern statelet.

Moreover, as Ed George's post showed, there is still a load of partitionism
on display at the CWI website.

I find it rather ironic that the SP claims to base itself on the best
traditions of Connolly and Larkin when these two great revolutionaries were
*republican* socialists, not gas-and-water socialists of the SP variety.

In fact the SP has absolutely nothing in common with Larkin and Connolly's
*politics* and should cease the pretence.

Ed George quoted some very interesting stuff, moreover from the CWI in
ireland (North) website which said:

>Sinn Fein stand for sectarian division and are a right wing
>nationalist party. They deliberately foment a triumphalist mood in Catholic
>areas and a mood of uncertainty and insecurity in Protestant areas. Their
>attitude to Protestant workers is deeply sectarian, regarding them as
>unthinking dupes of Britain and the unionist leadership. In reality they
>deny Protestants a say by deriding everything they do say; They have nothing
>to offer.

As Ed noted, this is rubbish and could've been lifted straight from some
British gutter press.

Although SF has abandoned most of its left programme since the peace
process, the fact is that throughout the struggle for national liberation
SF stood for a socialist republic, and was not a 'right-wing nationalist
party'.  SF was well to the left of the Irish Labour Party, the CWI's
favoured site of activity for many years.  The fact that in the north, the
CWI section was originally involved in the rotten old NILP speaks volumes
about their lack of revolutionary impulses as well.

Calling SF sectarian towards Protestants is also crap.  Apart from
republicanism's origins being in the Protestant population, SF continually
sought to engage Protestants.  In fact, the original Eire Nua programme of
the 1970s contained major - indeed, unwarranted - concessions to the
unionist population.  These days, the SF leadership bends over backwards to
accommodate Protestant fears and prejudices alike.

Still, I guess the actual rcord of fighting imperialism says it all.  While
British troops occupied part of Ireland for decades, it was the republicans
who did the fighting, suffering and dying, while the social democrats of
the CWI stood on the sidelines attacking them.  What serious rvolutionary
can have anything but contempt for such people?

Philip Ferguson






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