Histomat: Adventures in Historical Materialism

'Historical materialism is the theory of the proletarian revolution.' Georg Luk√°cs

Friday, August 04, 2006

Salma Yaqoob on the new 'unholy alliance'

Just noticed this - an excellent rebuttal of the lies spread by Islamophobic 'left-liberals'. See also here for the hidden history of Hizbollah.

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10 Comments:

At 7:39 pm, Blogger E. Williams said...

Since when is it okay for us to take an un-critical eye towards Islamic despotism? I find it quite worrying that Marxists would rally so vehemently behind a petty-bourgeois organization (Hezbollah) when the organization has a track record for murdering workers and suppressing strikes. I'm not saying that we shouldn't support the resistance, but we must support a workers' alternative even more. The SWP line that all resistance is acceptable is not acceptable. If the United States or Britain were invaded, should Marxists vehemently support KKK or BNP resistance? Now, I give you, Hezbollah is not comparable to the BNP or the KKK but what it is comparable to is supporting the Republicans or the Labour party when there are workers' alternatives.

 
At 7:07 pm, Blogger Snowball said...

Edward, your blog is called 'Reading Lenin in America'. I suggest you read what Lenin said at the time about the nationalist Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916:

'To imagine that social revolution is conceivable without revolts by small nations in the colonies and in Europe, without revolutionary outbursts by a section of the petty bourgeoisie with all its prejudices, without a movement of the politically non-conscious proletarian and semi-proletarian masses against oppression by the landowners, the church, and the monarchy, against national oppression, etc.-to imagine all this is to repudiate social revolution. So one army lines up in one place and says, "We are for socialism", and another, somewhere else and says, "We are for imperialism", and that will be a social revolution! Only those who hold such a ridiculously pedantic view could vilify the Irish rebellion by calling it a "putsch". Whoever expects a "pure" social revolution will never live to see it. Such a person pays lip-service to revolution without understanding what revolution is.'

Moreover, Lenin argued the role of nationalism and the national question in general is crucial for socialists: 'The dialectics of history are such that small nations, powerless as an independent factor in the struggle against imperialism, play a part as one of the ferments, one of the bacilli, which help the real anti-imperialist force, the socialist proletariat, to make its appearance on the scene'.

 
At 7:42 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quoting Lenin from 1916 for a situation in 2006? This is one group, Hezbollah, not Lebanon.

 
At 9:30 pm, Anonymous mohammed gascoigne said...

don't you have an opinion of your own though?

 
At 12:57 am, Blogger E. Williams said...

Hezbollah is far from embarking on a 'social revolution'. Hezbollah is the landowners, the church, and the monarchy [caliphate]. I agree with the anonomyous poster. The essence of Leninism is the dialectic, the 'concrete analysis of each specific historical situation'. The current situation of Lebanon dictates that neither Zionist occupation nor Islamic despotism is the way forward. The last anti-colonial Islamic revolution that restored the caliphate, the Iranian Revolution, resulted in 30 years of Islamic despotism. What is need is the an anti-colonial proletarian revolution. However, Lebanon is not in the position for such a revolution. The progressive way out is a union of proletarian and petty-bourgeois forces with a constant proletarian eye on the petty-bourgeosie.

 
At 9:06 am, Blogger Snowball said...

Edward - sorry for not getting back to you properly before- I have had a busy weekend with various protests etc and only had time to point out what Lenin thought about those resisting imperialist occupation.

You seem confused. Firstly you tell us there is no need for Marxists to critically support Hizbollah as they are like the 'Republicans', murder workers and suppress strikes, and there are 'workers alternatives' in the region.

Then you tell us that actually, there cannot be an anti-colonial proletarian revolution (what proletarian revolution would be pro-colonial?) in the region as the working class is not strong enough to make one.

You are mistaken on both counts. Muslim supporters of Hizbollah - ie millions of working people across the Middle East- are not only capable of making socialist revolutions in the region - Iran in 1979 raised that possibility - but Hizbollah are doing more currently to inflict a defeat on imperialism without the need for a 'proletarian eye' watching their every step. Moreover such a defeat for israel in the region would be a boost for everyone wanting an alternaive to the rule of capital in the region. But now I have to go to work...more later

 
At 7:49 pm, Blogger E. Williams said...

I've taken a more serious look at the Lebanese situation lately but I still have to say that I cannot muster up the support to say "I am Hezbollah". I undestand that Hezbollah is doing something progressive now but in a future were Hezbollah succeeds Islamic rule will prevail in southern Lebanon. What does this entail? Sexism and anti-semetism and the continual push towards a caliphate. This is 'better' than Zionist ethnic cleansing but it still isn't the optimal solution to the problem.
---Firstly you tell us there is no need for Marxists to critically support Hizbollah as they are like the 'Republicans', murder workers and suppress strikes, and there are 'workers alternatives' in the region.

I said we should critically support Hezbollah.

---Muslim supporters of Hizbollah - ie millions of working people across the Middle East- are not only capable of making socialist revolutions in the region - Iran in 1979 raised that possibility - but Hizbollah are doing more currently to inflict a defeat on imperialism without the need for a 'proletarian eye' watching their every step.

I cannot understand why a Marxist would call Iran's Islamic despotism socialism. Personally, I think an anti-fascist, anti-sexist, anti-racist progressive action is far better than execution of raped women, murder of homosexuals, caliphate, etc. The defeat of imperialism can bring something worse than imperialism itself. In this situation? Probably not. A victory for Hezbollah will probably mean a temporary victory for Lebanon. However, if there was an anti-imperialist war in my country [the US] I would rather devote more support to leftist resistance than the armed wing of the Party of God.

If we don't watch petty-bourgeois organizations, they will turn on us.

 
At 3:58 am, Blogger DJN said...

Hi Edward - In regards to Iran, I believe Snowball is referring to the development of factory councils in the 1979 revolution. I don't think he was referring to the outcome of the revolution, but rather the short-lived experiments in workers' control during the period.

An essential read on this topic, aside from Lenin's writings on the Easter Rising, is Chris Harman's The Prophet and the Proletariat. It includes a section on the Iranian revolution which highlights the rise and fall of the left.

 
At 9:05 am, Blogger Snowball said...

Thanks Doug - yes, I was referring to the workers councils in the revolution.

Edward- I perhaps overstated things above when I talked about the possibilities for successful socialist revolution in the region - there is the possibility for democratic revolutions though. Victorious socialist revolution will always need a Bolshevik style party to be formed.

 
At 10:41 pm, Blogger Redaspie said...

If Edward is really concerned about the supposedly uncritical support that is being offered to Hezbollah then I might suggest that he reads the articles by John Rees and Bassern Chit in this week's Socialist Worker. I can assure you that support for Hezbollah is far from uncritical.

 

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