[Marxism] Em-pah

OpenSentence Type Foundry typefoundry at opensentence.org
Sun Nov 30 10:11:52 MST 2003

> Well, *that's*  a real joke. Here we have the Militant, which is
> *refusing* to demand immediate and unconditional withdrawal of "its own"
> imperialism from Iraq, which counsels Iraqis to rely on "civic"
> organizing, and which denounces the struggles of the Iraqi and
> Palestinian people as "bourgeois," going after the British antiwar
> movement because is has the temerity to do what the SWP *won't* do,
> which is to militantly oppose Washington's war.  
> They're very upset that people are toppling over effigies of George W.
> and torching the American flag. They say it is chauvinism, by the Brits
> against the United States. 
> All the stuff about British nationalism and so on is bull. What's really
> going on here is that the Militant is capitulating to American "great
> nation" chauvinism. Because, is it really true that British chauvinism
> is going to be re-enforced by a mass movement against the very concrete
> expression of that chauvinism, Britain's participation in an imperialist
> war? 

> The only "principles" involved in the SWP's position are national
> chauvinism and white racism. They have decreed that the struggle of the
> Iraqi people and the Arab nation against their European and
> European-descended colonialism, neocolonialism, Zionism, imperialism and
> military occupation is meaningless and bourgeois; that what is really
> important is the fight between the imperialist nations over how to
> divide the Iraqi pie.

The US is not a nation-state, Jose.  Deal, although you can still have a raw 
one if you want.  Britain is not a nation-state, either; it is the remnant 
of an empire, and a far more racist place than the US if you were to ask its 
inhabitants of color; so you'll have to find a different reason for the 
unacceptability of the SWP's position, on pain of not having a reason.  
Furthermore, the person who established that really pretty obvious point 
about the US (Benedict Anderson) suggested on the basis *of South America* 
that nationalism can never be viewed as anything but a post-imperialist 
phenomenon, as nations come into being where divisions of empire once were 
*and not before*.  As for imperialists with funny accents, W. has one 
himself and maybe people in the US really don't feel so good about *that* 
(if they're permitted to have their own problems, that is). 

Jeff Rubard 

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