[Marxism] Post

Greg McDonald sabocat59 at gmail.com
Fri Oct 23 05:04:12 MDT 2009

Ambrose Andrews wrote:

Ruling classes have never in all of recorded human history paid the
slightest attention to pacifist or moral pleadings to peacefully give
up their wealth and power. Pacifists consequently direct their appeals
to the oppressed, which disarms and weakens successful resistance and
contributes to the maintenance of the system which causes war.

This is an ahistorical argument that does not take into account
specific examples of nonviolent resistance as a tactical form of
struggle, which, I would argue, is the closest marxists have ever come
to pacifism as such. In other words, sometimes marxists have supported
tactical non-violence, but not pacifism as an ethic. Just to give two
examples off the top of my head, the refusal to fight among the troops
during the Vietnam War had considerable consequences for the ruling
class, as did the Civil-Rights movement., both of which were in the
main non-violent movements. Of course, there was quite a bit of
fragging by the troops as well, and many Civil Rights organizers kept
weapons in their homes for protection.  In any event, in addition to
the citation provided by Andrews, Caudwell also has a Marxist critique
of pacifism which can be read here:


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