Tag Archives: The National Question

Multi-gender Unity Deals a Blow to the IS

Women guerilla fighters fighting alongside men in an example of multi-gender unity have been able to halt and give the Islamic State its first defeat. This is a blow to both sexism and fascism. Paralleling the first defeat of Napoleon at the hands of black former slaves who became adept guerilla fighters, thousands of veteran female guerilla fighters using small arms and without air support have done what none of the bosses’ forces have been able to do: they’ve halted IS’s advance. They have proven what the Communist revolutionaries in China pronounced, It is the political commitment of the soldier that brings victory, not the technology.

Much like we did during the war of US imperialist aggression in Vietnam, The Progressive Labor Party is taking a principled left position. Just as we supported and were inspired by the heroic Working class in Vietnam to struggle with and eventually defeat US imperialism, but criticized their nationalism and correctly pointed out that it would not lead to Communism, we are doing the same thing with the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK).

The PKK has even given up the pretense of fighting a national liberation struggle for Socialism as a means to achieving Communism, not that Socialism could anyway. They have embraced terrorist tactics and have allegedly run narcotics that enslave and destroy the lives of many workers. They have targeted the working class in Turkey and are currently negotiating the price of their exploitation with the bosses! So, even though they do make a point of fighting against patriarchy, PLP knows the answer to the national question is that all revolutionaries must fight nationalism, a rotten and divisive ideology utilized by the bosses to divide the working class and win us to an all class unity against our own interests. We know that the other side of nationalism is racism. The nationalism for a Kurdistan is racism towards the working class in Turkey. Our comrades in Israel struggle against both Israeli nationalism and Palestinian nationalism just as out friends in Pakistan struggle against nationalism and religious fundamentalism. So, even with the opportunism, revisionism, and watered down Marxism of the PKK, due to their commitment to struggling against sexism, they are still able to be the only force to go toe to toe with the extreme fascism of the Islamic Stare and win.

This struggle illustrates that even such a low level left movement as the terrorist-labeled PKK can be a burst of inspiration in this dark night of capitalism as they struggle against the downright turn to medievalism that the IS represents. Objectively, and ironically, it is better long term for revolutionaries to build PLP where they are than it is for them to go to Northern Syria to join the PKK in armed struggle against IS. They are not a revolutionary Communist organization. We applaud their victory and multi-gender unity and their example of how to defeat fascism, but we know they are running full speed down the dead end of nationalism and will eventually betray the working class. PLP is the revolutionary Communist organization that will end exploitation once and for all.

The multi-gender unity in such intense struggle against IS parallels the multi-racial unity needed to defeat the extreme racism that US capitalism needs in order to survive. Capitalism can survive any crisis except an armed working multi-racial working class directly struggling against racism. Capitalism needs racism, whether the gutter racism in Ferguson or the religious based racism of IS, it still fuels the same machine.

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The National Question Has Already Been Answered

Revisionists, particularly Maoists, love to sound sophisticated with the highfalutin’ language that they cloak their rotten ideas in. They say, “The National Question” when they discuss the reactionary ideology of nationalism. There is no national question. It is obsolete. It has already been answered. It is the definition of absurd and insanity to keep asking a question when an answer already exists or to keep doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different outcome. The current sectarian civil war raging in Syria is a perfect illustration of the obsolescence of the role of nationalism. Because of their fixation on nationalism, Maoists and their ilk have no theoretical method of analysis that will give them an answer to what is going on in Syria or what is to be done. Only PLP’s dialectically based theoretical framework of inter-imperislist rivalry can illustrate the balance of forces that do not have the working class’ interests at all.

The obsolete question these traitors to the Red Flag constantly phrase is, in general, “what is the role of nationalism in the revolutionary movement?” It should be better phrased, “what is the role of reactionary rotten divisive ideology that strengthens capitalism while dividing the working class and inducing them to fight and die for our master’s profits in the struggle for an egalitarian society?” There is no role for nationalism in the Communist struggle for working class liberation. None. All borders must be smashed. Workers must not be led to fight to create artificial borders that divide them. Racism is the filthy underbelly of nationalism. Nationalism will never lead to anything other than a new capitalist state apparatus brutalizing the proletariat — whether it is a Red bourgeoisie like China or Vietnam or brutal dictatorships or bourgeois liberalism. National liberation is future economic, political, and exploitative enslavement by a new set of parasitical bosses who may look, pray, speak or whatever like the local working class, but with clearly different economic interests. Nationalism clearly illustrates two dialectical categories: appearance vs. essence and form and content.

Appearance and Essence

The protests in the Ukraine clearly illustrate several dialectical categories. The most apparent category illustrated is appearance vs. essence. The primary contradiction that has steered these protests is the sharpening inter-imperislist rivalry. Though they have protestors battling cops and taking over buildings, the protestors represent one imperialist camp, and the state represents another, US and Russian imperialism respectively. How can protestors who tore down a stature of Lenin be considered any revolutionary force?  Which is the progressive nationalism? Should we respect a sovereign Ukraine? How absurd is it for people who mouth that they support Communism to support one imperialist camp or another?

PLP doesn’t support the imperialist centered politics of the Ukrainian protests at all. We do not support fascists, instead we smash them when we get the chance.  We do like the fact that angry workers are battling the police, yet we also know that there is a lot of choreography going on in order to manipulate us into seeing a facade of class struggle.

This is also illustrated in Syria. Assad’s regime is a repressive brutal weapon wielded in the interests of the wealthy Syrians and the Russian imperialists. Many on the left herald him. It is absurd to see such a butcher as any kind of pro-working class force. Opposed to him are a gaggle of rotten opportunists and a few secular nationalist militias. The Islamist fascists are all enemies of the working class too, whether they are moderate Islamists or radical Jihadists. They wield the rotten weapons of religious ideology, racism, and nationalism in the interests of one set of bosses or another — rich non-royal Saudis who bankroll Al-Qaida, rich royal Saudi Wahhabis who bankroll Islamist mercenaries, the imperialists in “socialist” led France and the liberal led US, or the Kurds. Not a single one of these myriad forces are aligned in the interest of the working class and none are fighting for Communist revolution.

Form and Content

There are many revisionists who hold up the Kurds as a potential revolutionary force. This is also illogical and wrong. The form of the Kurdish struggle is also shaped by the nations that the Kurds are in — Iraqi Kurds, Syrian Kurds, and those in Turkey. The Soviet Union helped to form, organize, and arm the PKK and it was one of the last Marxist guerilla parties. The political content of their struggle was saturated with the imperialist old line of the Soviet Union that opportunistically took advantage of the old Communist Movement’s fixation on the national struggle.

The Kurds are being coopted by Assad in one area where they have set up an autonomous zone and seized an oil well. They are now actively looking for international partners to develop and sell the oil to. These partners are going to be capitalists that support one imperialist camp or another. They will be parasites that will enrich one minute section of Kurds while the Kurdish working class will be exploited. How would a sovereign Kurdistan be any better for the working class there? Either way, whether the form be a nation or an organization actively engaged in the armed struggle for national liberation, the political content will not allow for the economic emancipation of the working class. The workers in a future Kurdistan can only be truly liberated by Communist revolution. Liberating the nation from the domination of an external force only further indemnifies the workers to a new set of bosses and a new form of exploitation.

There is no longer a national question any more than a law of gravity question, a Pluto question, or a creationism question. Why aren’t the revisionists asking an earth is flat question? The theory of relativity, modern astronomy, and a basic scientific approach negated those anti-scientific questions. The science of Dialectical Materialism applied by PLP to the old movement clearly illustrates the absurdity of maintaining a “national question” when there’s already an answer. The answer is that all Communists must struggle against the rotten ideologies of nationalism, racism, and sexism and smash all of the borders that currently exist. We must fight to build the PLP so that we can end the hell of capitalism once and for all, not just get new capitalists that look like us.

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