DPRK-baiting

Gavin Walker gmwalker at club.lemonde.fr
Thu Dec 12 23:15:30 MST 2002


In response to Lou Paulsen's retort to my response with regard to the
DPRK, I will only say the following. This discussion is primed to
become precisely the type of discussion that Louis Proyect has
suggested he doesn't want on the list, e.g. "We're the REAL
revolutionaries! etc..." and it skirts near Stalin-Trotsky territory. My only
response would be that concerned individuals eager to find
information on this situation can do so easily - it is not difficult.

I hope Lou, that you read the rest of my post, wherein I tried to make
clear that while I (and many others) don't share the orientation
towards the DPRK that you have suggested, it doesn't mitigate the
admiration I have for the effective organizational tactics of the WWP in
current conditions. I'm concerned that you read my worry over too-
easy declarations of fealty to Pyongyang as a jab at the WWP - I'm
sure there are members of the WWP who have a far greater
familiarity with these issues. My intention was not to question the
WWP itself but rather a schematic consideration of what I saw as an
important ommission in your original post (namely this equation of
anti-Americanism with pro-Pyongyang viewpoints, and by extension
the possibility that people would assume the only revolutionary
Marxist standpoint on the Korean peninsula to be that represented by
the North's government).

I want to emphasize again that I had no intention to engage in a
bashing of any WWP line - if I seemed to be skirting towards such a
place, I apologize to Lou. I think, however, that this is an important
issue that deserves more attention as long as we can avoid bogging
down in shrill denunciations - exchanging dialogue that has as its
basis the theoretical practice of dialectical and historical materialism
is more than self-defense and sloganeering.

NB: I appreciate Cherie Pleau's email - I will say that my insertion of
the term "socialist states" in quotations was NOT to indicate a citation
of Lou's original email but rather to suggest that the consideration of
the DPRK usually takes place within a framework oriented towards
"statist" frameworks. I should probably have made this clearer and I
acknowledge her astute criticism of the differences between
socialism and a notion of "worker's states." I'm not saying that the
DPRK should not be defended situationally (vis-a-vis the US, for
example), but I am suggesting that the governing forces of the DPRK
should not be "supported." I think there is a serious difference.

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