Youth activism at a crossroads

Macdonald Stainsby mstainsby at
Fri Feb 15 20:08:06 MST 2002

I really resent when people like this Harden character as well as the Canadian
IS try to get me to identify with a bunch of dissaffected brats from the post
Soviet world who were the offspring of the newly formed bourgeoisie.

The truth is- and this is not neccessarily better-- not many people inside the
anti-globalisation movement (even the anti-capitalists) looked at the Yugoslav
war as a front and centre issue. Many would say that of course they oppose Nato,
but they wouldn't offer much beyond that. Nonetheless, who the Hell the IS,
Harden and other groups think they are, calling it part of the same phenomenon.
Forget the fact they are both laden with students. Let's ask a simple question:
which class is being served by the opposition. It is certainly in the interests
of the global proletariat if we are able to carve a political space in
opposition to the acronyms of death. The radical edge of the anti-globalisation
movement the article speaks of has allowed- by it's flexibility and by having
demands that address the core of the issue-- the return of real political
thinking about ways out of the capitalist system. That is a far cry from the
Otpor! traitors. As I mentioned, it is primarily the local new merchants,
capitalists and would be partners of America and their children who composed
Otpor!. The Yugoslav constitution and was operating democratically at least on a
par with the bourgeois democracies of West Europe. What did Otpor! want? It was
never truly articulated. From utopian anarcho-syndicalist visions right through
to libertarian economic and political principles, many different ideas were put
forth. But the one thing they all aggreed on was ousting him for the American
backed, advised and funded Kostunica and DOS. With that as a "goal", the Serbian
and Montenegrin people were opened up for the IMF recolonisation (which was
brought in by the ultimate Quisling, Djindjic) as well as killing the raison
d'etre for Yugoslavia itself. The multi-ethnic federation is close to a simple
memory, an experiment undone by the forces of Germany, the United States and
groups such as Otpor! at home who, perhaps unwillingly, helped hand over their
homelands to the new Occupiers of the Balkans. I am proud to identify with much
that is part of the anti-globalisation movement. The spirit of anti-capitalism
is indeed still in the air. However, there are few forces on this earth that I
want to stay further away from than Otpor!, who have nothing redeeming in their
actions or ideology. They are on the other side of the class divide.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Louis Proyect" <lnp3 at>
> The confidence arising out of this experience was clearly infectious.
> Otpor! began to mobilize in a serious way, often using the weapons of
> satire and comic theatre to confuse their opponents. Sometimes youth
> would amass in large numbers to play the board games Monopoly or Risk
> in public venues, emphasizing how Milosevic was toying with their
> future. When Milosevic once declared himself a national hero, Otpor!
> printed stickers and badges in mass quantities that read: "I am a
> national hero."

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