Left.ru ________________________________________________________________________________
RESISTANCE      June 2002             Dave Silver

Nearly half of the largest companies and banks in the world are U.S.
institutions while world markets are divided among 238 leading U.S. and 153
European multi-national enterprises.   The U.S. has about 50% of the world’s
wealth with only 6.3% of the population.  As sociologist/activist James
Petras notes that these facts define “the imperial nature of the world
economy” characterized by “control of markets, pillaging of raw materials
and the labor they exploit.”  Huge military spending, dependence on massive
flow of funds from overseas, serious budget deficits and greater cuts in
social spending as Petras  points out leads to fiscal and political
instability.  U.S. imperialism attempts to solve the contradiction of
imperial growth and domestic decay (and mass unrest) is to conquer areas
with vital resources; whether it’s the Caspian Sea, Iraq or Venezuelan oil
resources to finance its deficits.

What have been some of the responses of Revolutionary, Left and Progressive
forces both in Europe and the Americas?   At a Marxist Forum in 1997 the
German Communist Party (DKP) states that Socialism is the only historical
alternative to Capitalism.  This vision, if not in the immediate future,
they correctly argue,  that a break with capitalism must mean the abolition
of private ownership of the means of production.  While the working class is
“the decisive force” in the transition from capitalism, “it will seek an
alliance with all classes and strata whose interests or partial interests
coincide with the working class.”  Their Statement notes that a socialist
course does not have a chance for lasting success within a national
framework but rather requires regional and international networks of

The DKP, accurately in my view, points to internal failures and external
counter-revolution to account for the demise of the Soviet Union and Peoples
Democracies.  The socialist countries failed to develop new types of
productive forces adequate for socialist construction, the opportunism and
rejection of a Marxist outlook as outmoded leading to the counter
revolutionary “new thinking” that called for universal human values to
supplant class struggle since capitalism and socialism “was converging.” Of
course the external counter- revolution started in 1917 and continued until
1990.  The struggles for social justice is part of the struggle for
socialism and must be informed by a consciousness of the common enemy of
Transnationals and Banks as well as the need for internationalist

A very different response to the hegemony of global capital can be seen
coming out of the impressive international gathering of the World Social
Forum in Puerta Allegre.  In Movements of Resistance in the Americas, Justin
Podur (In News for Anarchists and Activists)  calls for a “Solidarity
Economics” as an alternative for Development.   The “Alternative” becomes
the seizing of land for the Peasants and the use of a “Participatory Budget”
as the medium to “decentralize power.”  The Philippine economist Walden
Bello  has a slightly different twist when he argues that “orthodox” or
“traditional” Marxism should be replaced by an “ecological socialism” while
equating “centralized socialism and corporate capitalism.”  Thus a new
hybrid is offered neither capitalist nor socialist.

The different analyses leads to differing conclusions and praxis.  The
Zapatistas mistakenly believe that some “land reform and democratization” in
the Province of Chiapas within a dependent semi-capitalist state, is not
only possible but will lead to social, economic and political emancipation.
This is rejected by the Revolutionary EPR whose Marxist analysis sees the
need for overthrowing  the regime in Mexico City and it’s NAFTA
Maquilladores and IMF “structural adjustments.”  I believe that history will
prove the latter approach to be valid.  Any country that tries to escape the
global domination system thereby becomes a threat of an alternative model
such as Cuba, North Korea to a lesser extent Vietnam is dealt with in one of
two ways;  imposition through subversion and warfare a government favorable
to imperialist interests or by destabilizing (blockades and support for
counter revolutionary elements) sufficiently so that an alternative
development path will be too harsh to pursue.

We can’t forget that there is a dialectical connection of class and race.
Of exploitation and oppression embodied in the slogan of workers and
oppressed unite.   Institutionalized racism is used by the corporate rulers
to maintain and preserve a racist colonial world which makes capital
accumulation easier.  A century of military intervention from Wounded Knee,
Panama, Angola and the Congo, Vietnam, El Salvador and Chile to Kosovo and
Afghanistan and the phony war on terrorism were all motivated by the need to
safeguard the constant flow and increase of capital accumulation.
In addition to the consciousness of a global common enemy, an absolute
pre-requisite for building a strong global Resistance movement is the total
rejection of the virus of anti-communism especially in a Left-liberal
disguise.  For one cannot be anti-imperialist or anti-racist and buy into
anti-communism with code words such as democratization, pluralism and on the
cutting edge Stalinism.  They are what Marx called antagonistic

 As the late creative Marxist Ken Cameron notes in his Marxism-A Living
Science that “along with the working classes in developed countries and the
ever explosive third world, burdened by interlocking imperialist and
internal capitalist-feudal exploitation, can rapidly develop a revolutionary
critical mass.”  He concludes with the powerful insight that “it is time to
set our sights on the future, to perceive through the mist of capitalist
obfuscation that the world revolutionary thrust that Marx and Engels
projected and Lenin witnessed is still operating, inexorably, like the giant
forces of nature—with which it is increasingly blended.”  Indeed it is.

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