[Marxism] Re: Nicaragua 25 years later
l.willms at jpberlin.de
Sat Jul 24 00:02:43 MDT 2004
. Am 23.07.04
schrieb loupaulsen at sbcglobal.net (Lou Paulsen)
in 20040723180624.46326.qmail at web80804.mail.yahoo.com
ueber Re: [Marxism] Re: Nicaragua 25 years later
LP> I think it is a very big mistake to think that any time any little
LP> country engages in an anti-imperialist struggle against the
LP> imperialist colossus, there must somehow be a "strategy of
LP> victory" hidden in the mix of possibilities, as if you were on
LP> level 10 of a video game and had to figure out what the secret
LP> weapon against the boss monster is. Video games are programmed so
LP> that there is a way you can win, but wars against imperialism are
Advancing, defending and leading a revolutionary struggle is
certainly much more an _art_ than playing a video game, but I just
humbly follow Fidel Castro's opinion that a people which has taken its
fate in its own hands cannot be defeated.
LP> Therefore I don't think that you can talk -at all- about "failures"
LP> of strategies, or that the election of February, 1990, "proved" some
in this case, sure one can. When someone says "we did this or
avoided that, in order to avoid defeat", and then the defeat happens
nevertheless, one can with all certainty say, that this course did
_not_ avoid defeat, i.e. that it failed in this regard.
It does not prove, and maybe that is what you are concerned about,
that this tactical or strategic decisions are wrong as a general truth
and in all and every circumstances. But I didn't say that.
LP> unless you first rigorously *prove* that your own favorite
LP> strategy would have beaten the United States.
The proof of the pudding is in eating it, isn't it? No I would not
dare to present "my own favorite strategy" for the Nicaraguan
revolution of the 1980'ies.
This is different from e.g. the fight against fascism in Germany,
where alternatives to the course of the KPD where clearly presented in
a public debate, and where one can assert with certainty that this
alternative to the sectarian ultimatism of the KPD leadership would
not only have avoided the destruction of the largest and mightiest
working class movement outside of the USSR at that time, and even
might have opened the way to taking power out of the hands of the
If in Nicaragua there would have been such a debate, I might say
that the course proposed by this or that current would have proved
more successful, but I prefer to limit myself at this moment to simply
pointing out, that this "we avoided attacking the plantation owners in
order to defend the revolution" has not yielded the intended result.
LP> The election of 1990 was about as fair under the circumstances
LP> as Milosevic's trial,
That is quite a strange statement -- the election took place with
the FSLN in power. What resemblence did this have with Mr. Milosevic
LP> so it's not clear to me what it proved at all.
well, it proved that the revolution did not have a majority at the
polls, didn't it?
LP> Actually, I would be a lot more interested in reading your opinions
LP> about the "failure" of our own strategies that we pursued in the U.S.
LP> and the rest of the imperialist world with the unsuccessful end of
LP> rolling back U.S. intervention in Nicaragua.
That is "ein weites Feld", I dare to say in German, i.e. there is
not one single reason to point at, and it is far too complex to
discuss it in this contribution.
LP> If we had succeeded in this in the early 1980's, then the
LP> Nicaraguans would have had a lot more choices and a lot better
Sure, even the Cuban revolution would be in a bad shape if for
several decades there are not socialist revolutions in other
On the other hand, a successful advance of the Nicaraguan
revolution could have played an important role in the upheavals in
East and Central Europa which brought down the stalinist burocracies;
in East Germany e.g. there had been a Third World solidarity movement
and especially Nicaragua solidarity within the political opposition.
But the defeat of the Sandinistas in the election was seen as another
proof that socialism is not viable, and so played against the
socialist currents in the mass movement.
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