[Marxism] Revolutionary Guards and the Iran-Iraq War (was Socialist Men, Muslims, and the "Woman Question")

Yoshie Furuhashi critical.montages at gmail.com
Tue Jul 25 09:28:34 MDT 2006

On 7/25/06, Louis Proyect <lnp3 at panix.com> wrote:
> >I give a damn about the internal fights among Muslims (or any other
> >religious group), what I care about is when my own comrades are tortured
> >and murdered by thugs.
> >
> >Yoshie, do you know any Iranian lefist, who took part in the 1979
> >revolution in Iran?
> >
> >Johannes
> I think it is a waste of time to debate these points because we obviously
> differ on what it means to be a leftist or a revolutionary. She includes
> the revolutionary guards, whose open and avowed goal was to remove LEFTISTS
> from the universities of Iran, as part of the left. They certainly didn't
> see themselves as part of the socialist or anarchist or leftist tradition
> broadly speaking, but that doesn't matter to Yoshie. She has a more
> profound Hegelian sense of what it means to be part of the left.

Revolutions are not necessarily leftist in the sense of being rooted
in the socialist or anarchist tradition.  The Iranian Revolution was,
first and foremost, an anti-neo-colonial revolution.  Ideologically,
it's nationalist and populist without being socialist, like what
happened in Egypt in 1952, Iraq in 1958, Algeria in 1962, etc.

The only places in the Middle East where Marxists "won" were Yemen and
Afghanistan, the most backward countries in the region.  They didn't
last long.

In other places, Marxists were defeated (e.g., Iran), became part of
the regime as a junior partner (e.g., Syria), or were repressed at one
time and became a junior partner of the regime at another time (e.g.,

Comparatively speaking, Iran's clerical rulers have been better at
modernizing the country than their secular nationalist counterparts
(with or without Marxist participation) elsewhere, without becoming a
total lackey of Tel Aviv and Washington, like Egypt today, or getting
totally destroyed, like Iraq.  Is it any wonder that many Arabs and
Muslims have no confidence in secularism and socialism?

The still remaining Marxists in the Middle East (bless them), like the
PFLN and the Lebanese Communist Party, mainly work with and support
their far stronger Islamist brothers and sisters, in their ongoing
national struggles.

That is the hard reality of the Middle East.  If you don't like that,
present the region's masses with a fucking, practical alternative!

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