Forwarded from Nestor (reply to Lou)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Thu May 17 15:38:19 MDT 2001

Lou, please post this too. I couldn´t have imagined that I had to debate
with you, of all people, on this point. You say on the Mugabe issue and
Jared´s positions on countries attacked by imperialism the world over:

"The left should not set itself up to be cheerleaders. The MDC in Zimbabwe
is deeply flawed by reformist elements. But we should have no illusions
about Mugabe:


The Guardian (London), April 22, 1988

Mugabe comes to terms with capitalism


When Zimbabwe became independent under Robert Mugabe eight years ago,
socialist aspirations seemed high on the agenda, despite the terms of the
Lancaster House Agreement, but those hopes have been scaled down - for the

Am I a cheerleader also, Lou? Because on the issues raised by Jared, we
think exactly the same things!

Well, the kind of analysis that Lou is suggesting here is exactly what I
was warning against on my previous posting. We have all the right, and even
the DUTY, to criticize steps taken by national movement leaders that we
consider self-defeating, yes. But we should not MECHANICALLY derive from
their retreat from socialist aspirations towards an accomodation with an
overwhelming world power the conclusion that they are already dead. The
concrete situation in Zimbabwe is: on one corner, Mugabe and the retreating
national movement, on the other corner another movement, the anti-national
movement (I can provisionaly surrender the position that this is a
pro-imperialist movement, because in the minds of those who form it this is
DEFINITELY NOT the case). If Mugabe is defeated by this anti-national
movement, tragic days will come for Zimbabwe. So that we should "cheerlead"
for the "good bad boys" although we can comradely and even ruthlessly point
out their failings.

It is very different to state the general theoretic truth that "national
movements that don´t take the socialist path are crushed or distorted out
of recognition, or simply lose their original meaning" and to rush to
conclusions on the "social death" of such a movement when it is under
strong offensive by imperialists and local populations who -unknowingly in
many cases- are preparing the terrain for imperialist takeover. The MDC is
NOT deeply flawed by reformist elements. I would say, on the contrary, that
the BEST elements in the MDC consider the national movement of Zimbabwe in
the actual face it has today their main enemy, au pair with imperialism.
And the worst elements, which are the ones that will get to power if the
MDC wins, simply don´t care about imperialism and in fact are serving it.
It is not a problem of "reform or revolution" (the central issue in an
imperialist country) but of "nation or colony" (the central issue in a
semicolonial country). On this issue, the lines in Zimbabwe are today
somehow blurred, but it is my opinion that they are still clear.

I am afraid that this difference between Lou and yours truly stems out from
the different understanding that we have of the national movements. Maybe
not. But will try to deal with the issue on further posts.

Lic. Néstor M. Gorojovsky

Louis Proyect
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