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Afterword – Once upon a time there was an appeal for an international meeting in Kurdistan
by CW
Monday Nov 5th, 2018 9:08 AM
Two months ago we published here an appeal for an international meeting in Kurdistan signed by “Militants in Kurdistan, Iraq” in relation with the increasing and intensification of the class struggle in the region of Middle East and especially in Iraq and Iran.
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But one thing is to translate and/or publish and spread materials from militant groups as a practical task to develop together the proletarian community of struggle and critics, another thing is to agree (or not) completely on the content of the text.

Since then an international discussion developed around and about this appeal. Following lines are a reflection of this discussion, discussion which was also the basis for development of our critics of the text.

When we received this appeal we considered it as an initiative of our class, a militant effort to get centralized and to centralize proletarian direct action in the Middle East region, even though it may not correspond to all of our criteria, even if we would not have written it in this way, even if its milestones and many points remain unresolved or unclear, even very vague, and require a deepening, a clarification…

The class struggle in the region has been since these last years and months more and more intensive: demonstrations, riots, occupations, burning down of governmental and militia buildings, proletariat arming itself, reorganising its forces… struggle against exploitation and the global dictatorship of the value that prevents the developing and imposing of the dictatorship of human needs.

Therefore it seems to be logic that the local proletarian groups try to get organized, develop our class associationism, and try to share and centralize their activity and all this not only in the framework of a national state but (what is important) also internationally. We can only greet such attempts as they are crucial for the continuation, development and spreading of the class struggle, moreover when they grow up from the local reality of class struggle as it is the case in Iraq.

Without falling into the trap of an excess of optimism and overvaluation, we did not want to dismiss (and there has never been any question for us to dismiss) this initiative, what would have made us sinking into an irresponsible indifference and liquidationism or in self-centred complacency… Yesterday, today and tomorrow, communists have been, are, and will still be confronted with dozens, hundreds of initiatives with few clear criteria, with blurry and evasive perspectives, that it has been necessary, that it is necessary, and that it will still be necessary for the most determined elements of the proletariat in struggle to direct, clarify, deepen, coordinate, centralize… to uproot the counterrevolution poison from our ranks…

From time immemorial, the communists (and we insist once again here on the fact that the formal name we give ourselves is neither a guarantee nor the most decisive element in the development of our struggle), so the communists have always had to fight hard to criticize, denounce, break down, annihilate, eradicate any Social Democratic tendency that is distilled within our struggles, our militant structures, in our texts, appeals, manifestos… like a poison for emptying them from their subversive substance, diverting them from their final goal: the abolition of wage labour and therefore of capital (and vice versa), of the present state of things and its State…

These are basically the reasons why we decided to publish and spread the appeal.

But on the other hand, we were and we are of course aware of the important weaknesses of this appeal.

It is notably the lack of clear criteria for possible participants. An international and internationalist meeting is not an open debate (a conference) where everything can be discussed and put into question! If the issue of the international meeting should be to discuss such important questions as how to centralize proletarian forces, how to turn the weapons against our own bourgeoisie, how to turn an inter-bourgeois war into a civil war…, it is necessary to clarify with whom we want to centralize and on which basis. Who we consider to be revolutionary, internationalist, communist? Those who claim it or those whose practice proves it? We believe that an internationalist discussion can be hold only with those groups who share the basis of communist positions – internationalism, revolutionary defeatism, against wage labour, against state, against capital…

We have to refuse also a kind of fetishism of armed struggle as it appears in the appeal. If we insist on the fact that proletariat has to arm itself, if the situation in Kurdistan puts it as a pure necessity for the proletarians to survive, we can hardly defend or praise any kind of militia or self-defence unit as such, neither we can consider it as a qualitative leap as such in the class war. Armed struggle is not revolutionary as such. Armed struggle can be revolutionary only as a result of a revolutionary social practise of the proletariat. And it is this social practise that determines the forms of the (armed) struggle. What makes the difference between any armed core and the red army is its content – the class content, proletarian programme that is assumed by it.

We also want to insist on the critics of gradualism in grasping the class struggle that appears in the appeal. We would like to point out here that class struggle is not developing gradually – from little demonstration to the insurrection, from a small proletarian group to the proletariat organised as a party world widely, but on the contrary through series of organizational ruptures, programmatic clarifications that will inevitably take violent forms. Communists are not loyal to any organisation, group or party, they are loyal only to the communist programme and if the given structure diverts from it, communists should not only leave it, but to organise outside of it and against it. Once again it is the revolutionary content that prevails.

We have no doubt that there is a need to centralize the proletarian activities in the region of Kurdistan. But there is of course also the question of feasibility of such an international meeting, especially concerning the security of participating militants. Are the comrades “Militants in Kurdistan, Iraq” able to assume such a responsibility in a region riddled with military forces and secret services of all possible colours?

If a debate on these questions develops in the internationalist milieu, if there are attempts of clarification of above presented problems, we have to admit, that there are not a lot of replies provided by the “Militants in Kurdistan, Iraq”. Is it due to hard repression or technical problems? Or were we mistaken to take their appeal seriously?

Whatever will be the reply, it doesn’t change anything on the fact that the communists should continue to deal with decentralization of direct action, of local and regional initiatives, of the regrouping of militant forces and attempts to spread the struggle, on one hand, and “political”, programmatic, centralization through clear central guidelines that determine and define the overall goal to be achieved and the enemy to destroy, on the other hand… That is to say centralization and decentralization not as a contradiction, but as a part of the same process, the same movement, in Kurdistan, all over the world.

Class War – 24/10/2018.