Fred's illusions on Iran

Philip Ferguson plf13 at
Thu May 29 18:34:31 MDT 2003

> The Socialist Workers Party
> (probably in part because it had recruited a layer of Iranians who
> were deeply connected to the revolutionary process, and had no rigid
> prejudices about the role that the mosques and the religious hierarchy
> had played in the revolt)  had a better sense of the importance of the
> revolution than most of the US left at the time -- sorry, folks, that
> is just a fact, not a mere opinion.

Several things wrong with this.

The Iranians that the US SWP recruited were students from well-heeled
backgrounds who were in the US studying and not "deeply connected to the
revolutionary process" in Iran.  In fact, they had no social or
political roots of any depth in Iran.

They did, however, go back to iran after the overthrow of the shah.
Once back in Iran they found the politics they had learned from the US
SWP were virtually useless in the concrete conditions actually
prevailing there and the vast bulk of them broke politically with New York.

The fact that the reality on the ground in Iran was very different to
the view from Barnes' office in New York also meant that Shirvani, one
of the few who stayed loyal to his SWP masters, preferred life as the
cult's "Iranian expert" in the US to life as a revolutionary within Iran itself.

Sorry Fred, but the US SWP has not been involved in anything even
faintly revolutionary for decades.  To quote you, "that is just a fact,
not a mere opinion."  People sitting in the comfort of the cult's
offices in New York have about as much feel for revolutionary politics
in iran as they do for party democracy - ie, none.  Moreover, everyone
in another country who has ever worked with the SWP has ended up
breaking with them *in order to participate in revolutionary politics in
their own country*.

Philip Ferguson

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