ATTAC in Germany, Poland and Australia (Re: Comment to Johannes Schneider concerning the Anti-Deutschen)

Einde O'Callaghan einde at
Fri Aug 1 01:28:25 MDT 2003

Johannes Schneider wrote:
> Tom O'Lincoln wrote:
>>Of course the German comrades are right to concentrate on attacking German
>>arrogance. I did however find myself thinking about this passage in the
>>Polish Attac statement (translation below)
>>»Die Konzepte von Vaterland, Staat, Nation und vor allem Patriotismus sind
>>bedroht ... Wir erklären, daß die Verteidigung der ökonomischen und
>>politischen Souveränität von Polen eine notwendige Bedingung für die
>>Mitgliedschaft in unserer Assoziation ist ... Wir betonen, daß ATTAC eine
>>polnische Vereinigung ist, die zuerst polnische Interessen, die
>>Souveränität von Entscheidungen der polnischen Gesellschaft, polnische
>>Kultur und Tradition und genauso wie polnischen Besitz verteidigen will.«
>>"The concepts of fatherland, state, nation and above all patriotism are
>>under threat...We declare that defending Poland's economic and political
>>sovereignty is a necessary condition for membership in our Association. We
>>emphasize, that Attack is a Polish association, which wants to first of
> all
>>defend Polish interests, the sovereignty of decisions of Polish society,
>>Polish culture and tradition..."
> Tom,
> thanks a lot for translating that passage.
>>If an Australian version of Attac took such a stance, it would mean
>>excluding me, because I don't defend "Australian sovereignty" for a
> moment.
> I agree with you, and that is why I am critical of (German) ATTAC. The
> mainstream there will certainly put it in nicer words than their Polish
> brethren, but at the core they think they have to defend Germany (whatever
> this might mean) against the attacks of a world market dominated by the US.
> But there is are obvious differences between Poland and Germany: Poland is
> certainly not an imperialist power like Germany or Australia, but in many
> ways dependant on Germany. To investigate in such a situation as Germans the
> Poles for alleged nationalism is sort of weird. It at least borders at
> beeing the inconcous policemen of German imperialism trying to control
> Poland.
One of teh problems with Attac Poland is that some, note just some - of 
the founders are connected with a magazine that provides a platform for 
German neo-Nazis - e.g. Horst Mahler, the former RAF "terrorist", who is 
now a leading member of the neo-Nazi NPD.

This isn't to downplay the role of various nationalist ideas among 
certain elements in teh leadership of the German Attac. But they're 
reformists after all - and reformists are always handicapped by being 
stuck in an ideological universe that relies on nation states and 
therefore leads directly or indirectly sooner or later to compromises 
with nationalism.

Einde O'Callaghan

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