[Marxism] Re: Militant...

Eli Stephens elishastephens at hotmail.com
Fri Nov 28 08:00:38 MST 2003


There are many ways to express rightist sentiment - I found this one, which 
Fred and Jose didn't comment on, telling:

>The anti-Bush protests, however, were smaller than earlier peace actions.

Skipping over the claim that these were "anti-Bush" protests, and not 
"anti-occupation" protests, a point which HAS already been touched on, I 
find the rest of the sentence rather interesting. First is the claim that 
these actions were "smaller than earlier peace actions." Yes, they were. 
They were also somewhere between 100,000 and 300,000 strong, one hell of a 
sizeable action, and quite probably the largest weekday action ever in 
Britain. That certainly makes them a resounding success, and a demonstration 
of the STRENGTH of the British movement, not its weakness.

Second, even if they HAD been a "failure" and, say, only attracted 10,000 
people, the "job" of a supposedly revolutionary newspaper is not to 
emphasize the negative. Whatever happened to "revolutionary optimism"?

And third, I note that use of that word "however." Maybe I'm reading too 
much between the lines, but to me that word indicates a writer who is 
gloating in the fact that the actions were "smaller," rather than regretting 
that fact.

The fact that these demonstrations were organized by the STOP THE WAR 
coalition seems to have been totally lost on the Militant.

And by the way, given this fact included by the Militant:

>London currently has 9,000 troops in the imperialist occupation force
>in Iraq—the largest contingent after the 130,000 U.S. troops.

it is really likely that British revolutionists could end the occupation of 
Iraq by focusing all their fire on their "own" imperialists and forcing the 
withdrawal of the 9,000 British troops? Obviously, that's a laughable claim, 
and I'm going to go further and claim, along the lines of something I wrote 
earlier, that in today's "globalized" world, the concept of one's "own" 
imperialists needs to be stretched a bit, because the actions of the U.S. 
have every bit as much consequence for British workers as they do for 
American workers, and for British workers to somehow be defending "British" 
interests as opposed to American interests or USuk interests is practically 
impossible. So focusing fire on BOTH ruling classes, or even PRIMARILY at 
this juncture on the American ruling class, is ENTIRELY APPROPRIATE, and 
arguably the best contribution the British movement can make.

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