An answer to an ultraleft about Stan Goff

Jose G. Perez jgperez at
Fri Aug 1 16:34:24 MDT 2003

Daru Rateau writes about Stan Goff:

"His movement says support our troops, but until the militarization of
the US federal government and its outsized, rogue foreign policies are
dealt with IN the US, there can be no unequivocal support of the

This is an ultraleft frame-up. This is what "his movement" *actually*

"Not one more troop killed in action. Not one more troop wounded in
action. Not one more troop psychologically damaged by the act of
terrifying, humiliating, injuring or killing innocent people. Not one
more troop spending one more day inhaling depleted uranium. Not one more
troop separated from spouse and children. This is the only way to truly
support these troops, and the families who are just as much part of the
military as they are. 

"Bush says 'Bring 'em on.' We say 'BRING THEM HOME NOW!'"

Where do you see in there "unequivocal" support of the troops in the
abstract, as Daru Rateau presents it? What is *clearly* being done is to
respond to right wing forces that HIDE BEHIND slogans like "support our
troops" to rally support for the war. And the response is, if you are
*really* concerned about the well-being of these workers in uniform,
then you would say, get them out of there.

And then there's the cheap amalgamation of what these folks are saying
with a bunch of garbage from "Good Morning America" about ex-POW
lawsuits and so on. What's the point of that? Fabrications don't get any
hoakier than this. Stan and his friends use the three word sequence,
"support the troops." Others use the same three words, and worse, even
"bring home" therefore ... Stan=imperialist lawsuits and propaganda.

As to the impact of the prewar antiwar movement on the course of the
actual war, I think Goff is right. Washington saw itself forced to
delay, postpone, and delay again, and when push came to shove, they had
neither the northern front from Turkey nor the possibility of staging
large forces out of Saudi Arabia into Iraq, and that was due to the
impact of the antiwar movement. Moreover, Goff was clear-sighted in
warning THEN that no matter how much the Iraqis resisted, the outcome of
the battle in the sense of whether Iraq would be occupied and the Iraqi
army defeated was never in doubt. 

The antiwar movement deepened the divisions in the imperialist camp,
complicating matters further for Washington. That is just a fact. "The
UN and/or the euroliberal efforts of Chirac and Schroeder were but a
smokescreen and succeeded only in taking the force out of the real
anti-war movements," writes Daru Rateau. Like a typical sectarian, he
abstracts completely from the actual interplay of forces in motion.

What he says about the UN could in the same sense be said about any and
every bourgeois deliberative body in the world. It is the same
primitive, infantile anarchist rant about maintaining our purity by not
getting involved in one of the many arenas where political struggle
takes place.

Daru Rateau wants but "the militarization of the US federal government
and its outsized, rogue foreign policies ... dealt with IN the US,"
which is all well and good, and I'm sure that the Daru's movement is in
every way entirely superior to the one Stan and his friends are involved
with, except for one tiny detail: the movement Goff is involved with
really exists, that is *precisely* why it is far from simon pure, and to
judge it you have to BREAK from dogmatism and ultraleftism, and relate
to actual forces in motion and what the actual level of consciousness of
this section of the masses is, what stage they are at and in what way
they are moving towards greater class consciousness. 

Whereas Daru's approach is entirely *sterile* if you want to relate to
the real world as it actually exists right now.


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