[Marxism] Two wrongs...

Walter Lippmann walterlx at earthlink.net
Tue Apr 6 20:39:39 MDT 2004

My fourth grade teacher, Miss [we didn't say "Ms." in 1954]
Frances Bucellato, used to say "two wrongs don't make one 
right" and she had a point. In Iraq right now under the US
occupation regime, "civic space" is pretty much restricted
to those who are willing to say "How high?" when told by
the US occupiers to "jump". Just last week we saw the US
shut down a Shi'ite newspaper which had come out against
the US occupation. Later the supporters of that newspaper,
who had no way to express their viewpoint in print or in
other legal ways, took the law into their own hands and
killed and mutilated the four mercenaries they were able
to grab hold of. It was indeed a terrible sight to see
and the media makes sure to show it to us repeatedly.

What we've seen is a horrible, grisly spectacle and no
one who calls themselves a Marxist can approve of such a
repulsive tactics. But when people feel they have no way
to make their voices heard, they do things that people in
normal circumstances don't do. Naomi Klein, one of the
leading writers of the anti-globalization movement is in
Iraq now and she describes the desperation so many Iraqi
people feel now under the so-called liberation regime:

Of course, what's needed in Iraq is a broad, united front
type of coalition in which the different groups which are
opposed to the occupation could call for peaceful, legal
mass demonstrations demanding immediate, unconditional
withdrawal of the foreign soldiers of occupation from 
their country. This is the model which some of us like
myself learned back in the 1960s when I belonged to the
Young Socialist Alliance and the Socialist Workers Party.
These were good models in their time and remain good ones.

Nevertheless, we in the SWP and YSA were operating within
a certain historic context in the United States which is
not the same thing as Iraq where the local government of
the country was overthrown by a military invasion just a
year ago. None of the civil rights and liberties which in
the United States are taken for granted exist today in 
occupied Iraq. If the Iraqi resistance fighters don't play
by the Marquis of Queensbury rules, it's not really very
meaningful for activists from the invading and occupying 
country, to lecture them on how they should fight for 
their own countries to be freed from foreign occupation. 
That's for them to decide. As the old saying still goes,
"people don't like liberators who come bearing bayonets."

Our most important job is here (I'm in the United States,
most readers of these mailings live in those so-called
"advanced" capitalist countries. Our job is to actively
oppose the intervention of the rulers of our countries
who are meddling in the affairs of other peoples and 
their countries. Our guiding thought and them should be
the simple and obvious: BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW.

Walter Lippmann

I don't understand how we, who claim to want peace, could
possibly Rally on" al-Sadr or ANYone or anything who would
call another human being "scum and evil" as he does. I do
not believe in the Occupation, but I cannot accept that two
wrongs can possibly make a right. I believe that supporting
such horrific acts of violence is below us. Surely there's
a better way...


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