LP's AntiWar Movement and Ours (was Re:Baghdad bombing...)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Aug 28 09:36:17 MDT 2003

David, first a technical note. On the bottom righthand corner of your
monitor, there is time indicator. Yours is an hour or so fast, just as
Walter Lippmann's was a day fast the other week. You need to change this
to the correct time so your email gets sorted properly. Just
double-click the time and reset it.

DMS wrote:
> While LP may think it's fine if Dean speaks as long
> as he's followed by a real "fire-breather," the reality
> is quite a bit different as Dean indeed has a program,
> has the organization to support the program, and fire-
> breathing speeches don't mean anything without a program.

I don't think we have the same understanding of program.

> The anti-war movement in its "student" phase however was
> not organized simply as "End the War."  It was organized
> as end the war through actions and programmatic demands--
> so that the movement against the war itself was built by
> the demands that the university refused further contract
> work the CIA regarding social sciences, that the university
> break all connections with the US Dept of Defense, that
> corporate recruiters be confronted and expelled from the
> university.  Now we can say all those things merely
> reinforce the notion of privilege among college students,
> but that's another issue, and besides, you wouldn't ever
> reach that conclusion unless you first make these sort of
> demands.

There was a powerful radical movement on the campuses and the black
community, but not in society as a whole. You had the very beginning of
a radicalization in the Detroit and Lordstown auto plants (Melvin P. is
a veteran of this) but it never spread very far beyond them. Even when
you had trade union militancy that often pitted people armed Teamsters
against scabs and the National Guard, you never would see Marxist
literature in the homes of truckdrivers while the speeches of Che
Guevara were commonplace in dormitories.

> Now if we can do that and get positive results with a student
> population we ought to be able to translate that into something
> more concrete, more conscious, more socialist among the
> general population.  And if we don't try to do that then indeed
> you will see this movement fade into obscurity as the earlier
> one did in 1972 while the war continues for years, as the
> previous one did.

I wish that were so, but we can't even get students to sit in nowadays
to get the CIA off campus.


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