Phil on Ireland

D OC donaloc at
Mon Nov 18 07:44:20 MST 2002

Phil: "two completely divergent lines were posed: one was that the Provos
needed to consciously adopt a Connolly-type perspective, welding together
the socio-economic and national questions on a 32-county basis, the other
was that the Provos needed to embrace 'pan-nationalism' and try to unite all
nationalists in Ireland, across class lines, to 'convince' the Brits to
withdraw and 'convince' the brits to 'convince' the Unionists of the
benefits of a united Ireland."

This is precisely our difference. You do not appreciate the need for
coalition work with 'impure' elements in advancing the struggle for national
liberation. In effect, you want everyone struggling for a 32 County
Democratic Socialist republic to gang together and try to establish it all
on their own. That's just a recipe for disaster - it's like something the
SWP would advance - a 'vanguard' with the right programme waiting for time
and the working-class to sweep behind them. A truly pitiful strategy - in
fact, the Brits would love it.

We need to build political consensus towards reunification and liberation.
That means working in tandem with a whole bunch of people who don't agree
with many other things we stand for, but not denying those other things but
working to popularise them as well. Very few Irish-Americans have much of a
liking for Socialism, yet many support SF's struggle for Unity. If, during
the long-war, we rejected all armaments bought with 'tainted' money - how
far would we have gone?

I have before pointed out that your position on Ireland is almost in keeping
with the most extreme forms of the theory of 'Permanent Revolution'. You
have denied being a Trotskyist, yet have previously characterised my
understanding of the strategy as 'two-stage'.

Finally, SF doesn't sweep socio-economic positions under carpet - just look
at these links from the same APRN - you're exaggerating to provide a
justification for your own position (and you can't offer a real


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