Forwarded from Anthony (NYT)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Mar 30 06:01:20 MST 2003


The New York Times article about the antiwar movement,
and Walter Lippman's remarks about it are disturbing.
[To: "Marxism List" <marxism at lists.panix.com> Subject:
Antiwar Effort Emphasizes Civility Over Confrontation
From: "Walter Lippmann" <walterlx at earthlink.net> Date:
Sat, 29 Mar 2003 THE NEW YORK TIMES AND THE ANTI-WAR
MOVEMENT by Walter Lippmann, Moderator, CubaNews list]

It seems to me that there is a very conscious attempt
to coopt, sanitize, and derail the antiwar movement.
The New York Time's tactical  advice to the movement
is aimed at - in the first place - gaining influence
within the movement. The NYT, and the sector of the
imperialist bourgeoisie it represents, is not against
the war. It is against Bush's strategy and tactics
only. they are very like the French ruling class in
this regard.

Their aim is to to gain support for the war against
Iraq within the movement.

The way the NYT envisions doing this is by replacing
opposition to the war, with opposition to the way the
war is being conducted, opposition to Bush's
unilateralism, etc. The well financed right wing of
the movement is trying to impose censorship on the
left wing of the movement by demanding that speakers
limit themselves to opposition to the war in Iraq, and
some try to go further.

This effort to coopt the movement makes the issue of
the key slogans of the movement, and of democracy in
the movement central. Every revolutionary should be -
in my not very humble opinion - fighting tooth and
nail against the self appointed censors in the
movement.

And they should be fighting for slogans that will
mobilize everyone who is against the war - but which
do not in any way support the war.

"US Out of Iraq Now!" is such a slogan.

"Support the Troops, Bring them home Now" opens the
door to the imperialist effort to coopt the movement.
The next step from this slogan is, "Support the
Troops, Send in More!" (just half a joke).

And, while revolutionaries should put their main
effort into building mass demonstrations that mobilize
as many people as possible, they should not fall into
the traps set for them in this endeavor. Those traps
are all - in one way or another - based on the law of
politics that money is the mother's milk of all
poliltics.

No one should ever accept a pro-imperialist slogan
just because they will get the cash to advertise the
demo. No one should ever accept a pro-imperialist
slogan just because somebody, or some organization
that is important, will endorse the demo if you do.
They are riding on our coattails, not the other way
around.

At the same time we have to walk a very fine line
about militant tactics. Civil disobedience tactics are
legitimate and must be defended by revolutionaries -
they should however be limited to demonstrations in
which all of the people participating agree to them -
They are not tactics for mass demonstrations that
attract large numbers of people who are not already
deeply involved in the movement. Including a well
defined civil disobedience component that accompanies
a mass demo is one good solution.

US Out of Iraq Now!

Fuck the New York Times!

Anthony


Louis Proyect, Marxism mailing list: http://www.marxmail.org


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