[Marxism] re: Winning" and "losing" in Iran and everywhere

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Aug 11 08:20:11 MDT 2006


Junaid wrote:
>Thirty years ago some melange of socialists-nationalists allied with USSR
>were leading this charge. Guess what? They fell flat on their fucking faces.
>All of them. So they have no credibility. These variants of Islamism,
>however, have proven more enduring. And why should that surprise any of us?
>Was it the seed of Marxism planted in Arabia and Persia and the world over
>from India to Spain 1400 years ago? People return to what is elemental when
>the ideology their oppressor presents to them - 'modernity' - is shown to be
>one-sided and hypocritical, and when some offshoot of it - socialism - fails
>to deliver and collapses entirely after a few decades.

But this does not describe the Iranian left at all. It made absolutely no 
distinction between itself and Khomeinism. There were only two small groups 
that defended socialism against the clerical anti-imperialist regime. One 
was Peykar, a tiny Maoist group. The other was the Fedayii minority that 
kept splitting over what attitude to take toward Khomeini. In each case, 
the minority of the minority held the position that it was wrong for 
socialists to back a theocracy. Even the tiny Trotskyist party backed the 
clerics.

Basically, the workers of Iran had a choice of supporting Khomeini's 
movement or a movement that defended what it stood for using Marxist 
jargon. Even that was not good enough for the clerics who staged show 
trials where the Tudeh leaders "confessed" to being followers of Satan, 
etc. What an irony that the Stalinists would fall victim to the very same 
kangaroo courts that Stalin himself perfected.

--

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