[Marxism] A Socialist Defector | Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist
lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Apr 19 08:22:10 MDT 2019
There are men who struggle for a day and they are good.
There are men who struggle for a year and they are better.
There are men who struggle many years, and they are better still.
But there are those who struggle all their lives:
These are the indispensable ones.
– Bertolt Brecht, “In Praise of the Fighters” (song)
Arriving on a book tour for his newly published “A Socialist Defector:
From Harvard to Karl-Marx-Allee” on April 23rd, Victor Grossman is a
testament to Bertolt Brecht’s oft-quoted lyrics. At the age of 91, he
has never ceded an inch to capitalism and imperialism. Indeed, the sense
of outrage over the way in which East Germany was “liberated” pervades
throughout this most necessary personal history is a reminder that
“youthful rebellion” can be overrated. For that matter, his 68 articles
for CounterPunch over the years are a testament to his undying
revolutionary spirit as well as to CounterPunch’s age as well as
political diversity. Unlike other periodicals on the left oozing
youthful rebelliousness, the editors have a keen sense of the importance
of contributions from our leftwing tribal elders from Ralph Nader to
those who have passed on, like Uri Avnery. With a profound
radicalization on the horizon in the USA, there is no substitute for
relying on the insights of people who have gained hard-earned experience
from earlier historical periods. As someone who was organizing
anti-racist protests at Harvard University in 1947 as a Communist Party
member, Grossman’s experience is essential for young people involved
with Black Lives Matter today. The struggle against capitalism, racism,
and imperialism is an epochal one and connecting the strands between
fighters from different generations cannot be overestimated.
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