vrijdag 21 september 2012

The Folk Community as an alternative for Capitalism

Society is not an abstract phenomenon which stands above the individual, but multiple little inter-relations. Within these relations it is the natural associations and social units that form the absolute basis for a harmonious society. These natural associations and social units take shape in the family, the community and the people. The peoples consciousness can be seen as the collective memory and historic essence of the ancestors from a people. These are tightly rooted in a common language as well as in the psychological nature of each individual, which is shaped by the cultural interaction of the group within her own environment. Each people can be seen as a part of humanity and represents a natural community of peace. So in fact the people and community who grow organically from a certain region become synonymous for the tem "nation".

The nation differentiates itself from the state, because the latter represents a natural "enemy". The nation represents the natural organic society without constraint, whereas the state never voluntarily came about. The state replaces free co-operation, voluntary solidarity and her consciousness (the folk community) by statist systems and laws who represent the social death of power politics and her bureaucracy. The only way to overcome the state is the growth of a true organic structure that exists in the form of family and the folk community.

Therefore our real enemy is the state in which the spirit of humanity finds itself. The abstract thinking, alienation, materialism and the overall submission. Brutal deeds can not bring about a better humanity, because a humane future can only exist if there is a humane present. Abstraction, mechanistic thought and cold blooded logic lies - as we know from capitalism and communism - are the root of the terrorist mentality. The answer to this must be construction instead of destruction: the organisation of an entirely new spirit. We resist the spirit of capitalism and communism, with both her perversions of the exchange and its exclusion of each other human aspect that isn't materialistic.

It’s the development of folk communities and mutual economic alternatives that provide the key for the abolishment of capitalism. Today the social alienation is bigger than ever before. The last remaining folk cultures are under severe attack by corporate life with her Hollywood and McDonald’s mass culture. Despite all this there still exists a pronounced urge within some people to rediscover ones own people, its roots and its cultural and historic past. Especially in an increasingly globalized world, regional and national sentiments become increasingly important. The state doesn't offer solutions but is part of the problem; it participates with the globalization with its continuous stimulation of mass migration, the destruction of small business and small farming in favour of international conglomerates and her submission to capitalist interests. Only by making ourselves as independent as possible from the state by creating our own alternative communities, we can take the first steps towards the revival of the organic folk community.

woensdag 19 september 2012

Imperialism and Capitalism

An often used term within the movement is "imperialism". Usually this word is put in the context of US and Zionist imperialism. But what exactly is "imperialism"? And what does it pursue?

Imperialism is not only the urge to obtain resources, territory and new markets worldwide, but above all the endeavour to export capital to economically disadvantaged areas. If necessary this is enforced and secured through military means. So: Imperialism is the hunger, craving for land and property without a political or material need. A historical example would be the Roman Empire, but also the contemporary USA, Israel and NATO, as the military alliance of Western imperialism, must be considered imperialist actors. However this appearance has an economic origin. First of all we must look at the origin of the word "imperialism":

The term "imperialism" originates from the second half of the 19th century and refers to a political system that is elevated into a policy of conquest. Since 1880 a battle arose between the superpowers for the economic and political division of the world. In this race to gain resources and markets England and France, and later on England and Germany, became increasingly hostile to each other. One of the first criticisms on English imperialism came from Hobson. In his in 1902 published "Imperialism, a Study", Hobson wrote that imperialism had huge economic disadvantages and had a "rotten influence" on social life. The question which of course arose, is why did England conduct imperialist politics, if this was so economically disadvantageous for the country?  

Hobson's answer to this, was that private and commercial interest could be decisive for a non-profitable politics. The decisive factor for the rise of colonial imperia is the need for export of capital, this by the provision of international loans and other foreign credit transactions. This export of capital originated from the need to transfer economic surpluses outside the nation. Because of the unequal incomes within the imperialist States themselves, this surplus couldn’t be internally consumed. For the English people as a whole this imperialism was disadvantaged, but for the English propertied class it became the most important source of income.

Imperialism does know the following objections:

- Increasing militarism.
- Emphasis on the "unity" of the country and the tendency to minimize political indifferences for the sake of that unity.
- Averting internal social problems. This was intentionally used by the ruling classes to aim social and political energy from the inside to the outside. These groups who didn't have any economic interest in imperialism, but who wanted to consolidate their position of power, did get an interest in imperialism. As a remedy Hobson proposed to change the existing income ratios, so that the internal market could be discretionary expanded with which the compulsion for external expansion lapses.    
And so it became clear that capitalism and imperialism were inextricably bound to each other. If we look at Hobson’s theory, we can see that capitalism seeks an outlet for its internal tensions and contradictions. This by means of a global quest for cheap resources, markets and labour, that can be exploited in a previously unprecedented manner. Characteristic of capitalism in its imperialist stage is:

- A separation between capital owners and entrepreneurs, between finance capital and industrial capital.
- The economy becomes monopolistic; fewer companies get a bigger share in parts of the market.
- The middle class in society disappears and becomes proletariat.
- All facets of life undergo a commercialization. Everything becomes a commodity that can be bought for a certain price.
The above mentioned points rest on a small social basis and turn to the State for protection. With this process the State gets a disproportionate influence on the modus of production. By the forced accumulation of companies the former anarchy in production is mostly removed. Monopoly-capitalism becomes State-capitalism. The State and monopolies have a tight grip on the modus of production and maximize profits by the exploitation of the developing world; one example would be the import of cheap workers from outside.    

The internal contradictions of capitalism can be traced back to the fact that imperialism is not based on the export of goods, but on the export of capital to disadvantaged areas. However, the earth is not infinite, so it becomes more difficult to lairage capital surplus elsewhere. The consequence is an increasing battle between different imperialist States. Furthermore; although the internal contradictions of capitalism are somewhat solved by imperialism, they are at the same time exported by the capitalization of the world market. The ongoing expansion of production and the possibilities for a profitable marketing of products becomes caught in an increasingly diverse relationship. In the economic, political as well as in social spheres imperialism has drastic consequences:

- Imperialist States declare war on each other in the ongoing war for the division of the world.
- The proletariat is reproduced in the third world.

This led to two important theories:

1. The theory of uneven development:
Within capitalism two society-types can be indentified. There are societies that are well advanced in the development of a modern production apparatus, and there are societies in which this is not the case. The first will strive to conserve the existing situation and will develop a corresponding ideology to justify this. The last group will in their acting and ideas lean towards a change and subversion. They will try to transcend the leading society or at least try to match it. Against the high grade of economic development with the first group, stands a high grade of political awareness with the second group. These two characters are mutually exclusive. Therefore the revolution will sooner take place in a low developed country instead of a high developed one.

2. The theory of combined development:
In all backward societies the phenomena are bound to each other, which are characteristic for the different stages of development. Social phenomena, institutions, ideologies, classes and technical methods, which in the West belong to different stages of development, are joined together in the third world countries. This has consequences for State policy. Because the above mentioned phenomena is the result of capitalism "breaking into" a society, who's economy is based on agriculture, the State in these countries has to aim itself to the accumulation of capital and a accelerated industrialization. The countries that are (still) undeveloped can only catch up if they impose their people with the same hardships as capitalism imposed its working class during the first decades of the industrial revolution.
It may be clear that this imperialist manifestation, that still plagues the world today, is the biggest danger to mankind that must be definitely overcome. Imperialism is nothing more than rotting capitalism!

This brings us to another question: With or against capitalism?

A clear dividing line must be drawn between the supporters of the Hitlerite "volkgemeinschaft" (folkish community), which was and never will be more than yet another manifestation of bourgeois-nationalism or national-capitalism, and the supporters of the actual anti-capitalist class struggle, who's sole purpose is reaching the only real (national) socialism. We don't accept a "volksgemeinschaft" (folkish community) in which the working class is simply granted some "extra luxuries" like (apparent) participation, nice appointments for functions on the working ground or some more holidays. We demand nothing more and nothing less then the complete expropriation (means of production) of the propertied capitalist minority to transfer the means of production to the proletarian majority!    

It must become clear where we stand as a movement:

Do we take pleasure in a national-capitalist "volksgemeinschaft" (folkish community) with the illusion of more freedom for the working class? With the lie of minimizing large class differences, while in fact keeping the backbone of the current capitalist system in tact? A system in which the means of production are still in the hands of the bourgeoisie in collaboration with the middle class based on money, capital, work and social descent?

No, we choose to fall back on the original workers concept of the national-socialist movement, with which we want to end the exploitation for once and for all. The class struggle of the oppressed proletariat - of which we are all a part of - is an actual reflection of the daily struggle between the owning and the exploiting class (entrepreneurs) and the property less class (the workers). We don't want to be part of a society that propagates a so-called "freedom for workers", but at the same time keeps the reality of employer and employee in tact. We want to guarantee our self-determination with a voice for all in the Soviets! We want to take control over the means of production to produce only the necessary livelihood without any form of unneeded production surplus or extra profits for a small minority! Nice words like "dirigisme", "profit sharing”,” people’s capitalism","participation","small-capital within a non-exploitative framework" are not going to make this harsh class-reality disappear! Only uncompromising class struggle offers the solution!

* Speech held by an ANS/NSA speaker at the anti-imperialist congress of the "Netwerk Nationale Socialisten" (Network National Socialists) on the 13th of August 2011 in Antwerp (Belgium).

zaterdag 8 september 2012

The Cause of the Nation (Part 4/4)

From communism without fatherland to national-communism - the history of a German liberation movement 

National-communism after 1945

After 1945 the KPD and SED took all the practical elements from the national-revolutionary politics of the 20's and 30's and developed them even further:

While the national-social liberation program of 1930 aimed at "all workers, poor peasants and working middleclass” and explicitly emanated from the class society and class struggle, the KPD program of 1952, that was radicalized in a national-revolutionary sense, only knew one revolutionary subject: the nation. The program aimed towards all "fair" and "good willing" Germans. The American puppet and traitor Ardenauer was excluded, as well as the owners of those big concerns "who supported the betrayal of Adenauer", these had to be punished by expropriation. This program marked the preliminary and final climax of the national-communist politics in Germany.      

After a more moderate national phase of the "antifascist-democratic united front" (1945-1948), in which in accordance to a somewhat diagrammatic phase thinking in Germany, firstly the bourgeois revolution had to be accomplished. The politics and theory of the communists from this time on was more and more aimed, in the context of the "Cold war", against the Anglo-American "Fremdherrschaft" (foreign occupation) and the "colonial exploitation" of Germany (KPD conference in Solingen 1949):

"Because of the national treason of our "own" financiers-oligarchy, Germany is caught in a state of national slavery. The USA and other imperialist powers squeeze colonial profits from West-Germany" (Which was proved by the results of a survey, which showed that in the 1241 German companies in 1041 cases participation of foreign capital was present)    

Just like in 1919 Germany was once again caught in a "double slavery" according to the KPD and she proclaimed the unity of Germany to be the "highest and most precious good" (KPD chairman Max Reimann in 1949). To accomplish this, the party called upon the "irreconcilable and revolutionary struggle of all German patriots, with the overthrow of the Andauer-regime as the main goal." This contributed to the prohibition of the KPD in 1956. Shortly before the prohibition a self-criticism was published by the Party, which had nothing to do with the nationalist component of the program, but only with her revolutionary phraseology: The call for a revolutionary overthrow of Bonner’s traitor-regime had hampered the united front of the working class on the decisive moment (declaration of the KPD Party leadership in 1956).  

Lessons for the current situation

After '68 the new leftwing has, in practical as well as in theoretical regard, used many elements from the experiences and theoretical potential of the KPD. For the DKP as well as most other K-groups, the realization of a united, socialist Germany remained absolutely essential. Some among them, like the KPD/ML, the KPD/AO, the MLPD (not the same as the current MLPD!) and the AB (Arbeiterbund for the reconstruction of the KPD), still propagated the national liberation struggle during the '70's and '80's.

However far beyond the action radius of these groups, in big parts of the leftwing, the rock solid believe in the unnaturalness of German division, as well as the conviction that the nationalist "wanderers" among the German people could be easily corrected was present. Remains of this were abound in the reactions of the left about the "re-unification", as well as the increasing "shift to the right" of big parts of society (reactionary "roll back" - the offensive of the bourgeoisie against the leftwing).  

Today the complete leftwing movement is socially marginalized, politically disoriented and has ideologically bled to death. While it thinks it still has some social influence, it tries to adapt to the bourgeois mainstream. What is essentially needed is a reconsideration of those elements of the left-national political formation, as described above in this article. Just as in the '50's and 60's "the cause of the nation" is still on the direct agenda, with the main difference that after 1989 foreign Western capital has ruined East-Germany as well and uses it as a colony. It’s needed in East-Germany, which is brought back to a (semi-) colony by the West-German annexation regime, to create a front for "national unity". It’s about two things:

Social justice - for everyone - and a righteous nation, because the first can only be accomplished by the second!         

Who doesn’t understand this, hasn’t understood Marx’s critique on capitalism! 

The wish for solidarity, the community towards social relations is the worker's own. The (myth of) the nation (myth in a Sorellian context!) ensures the worker a place of security, a true Heimat (homeland). "Luxemburgism" and nihilism in regard to the national question, are mainly responsible for the complete downfall of the left, NOT her essentially and rightly incitement to national politics.    

Nevertheless, decidedly anti-national groups, such as the Luxemburgists and Trotskists, who propagated an "intransigent internationalism" as foundation for proletarian politics, never accomplished  to gain ground within the organized German communist and labour movement (apart from a short period during the 20's). "Luxemburgists" with their sterile and unworldly politics and "denial" of the national question, always stayed Fremdkörper (a foreign body) in the organism of the German labour movement. In that time the German communist and labour movement still were resistant to the germ of "national nihilism". This must be an incentive to once again connect ourselves with a healthy national tradition, the spirit of the German communists and the German labour movement.      

Comrades let us, in the words of Karl Radek, "make the cause of the people, the cause of the nation", so that "the cause of the nation becomes the cause of the people!" 

The Cause of the Nation (Part 3/4)

From communism without fatherland to national-communism - the history of a German liberation movement 

The Schlageter course

The revolutionary wing of the German social democracy was not at all opposed to the patriot ideas of the SPD, but they didn’t want to follow the incorporated course of reconciling national and class interests. Already during the discussion of 1907, the later founder of the Spartakusbund and KPD Clara Zetkin had developed the basis elements of a "revolutionary nationalism", with which the KPD would counter the growing influence of the national-fascist movement in the Weimar republic. In her essay "Our Patriotism" she stated that it was "reserved for the proletarian class struggle to shape the fatherland and its culture from the monopoly of a minority into a homeland (heimat) and possession for all. Because even for the so-called "people without fatherland" their nationality is valuable and their fatherland sacred."      

But nonetheless "their patriotism is essentially different from that of the propertied class". "The patriotism of the bourgeoisie and nobility is reactionary ... The patriotism of the proletariat is revolutionary", because "it wants to break the chains of class domination in which the fatherland is caught."

(Clara Zetkin)

Here for the first time, in 1930, the popular thesis of the "two nations" was formulated by KPD leader Ernst Thälman" - "The nation of the rich and the nation of the poor, the nation of those who starve and the nation of those who live in abundance" -  according to which not only the class domination of the bourgeoisie and bourgeois nation were synonymous to each other, also the class struggle and national liberation were synonymous to each other for those who belong to "the nation of the poor."

The term "revolutionary fatherland" appeared for the first time in the political course of the KPD, when in 1923 French troops marched into the Ruhr area, because the German coal-barons didn’t meet their obligations to the Diktat of Versailles. The national outrage that followed the Entente-occupier placed the KPD for a dilemma:  

On the one hand they saw that the German bourgeoisie had put her bets on nationalist mobilisation to undermine the payments for the Versailles treaty; on the other hand the KPD tried to use the nationalist tidal wave for a revolutionary subversion of the regime of chancellor Cuno. In the slogan “Schlagt Cuno an der Spree – Poincaré an der Ruhr!”  They made their goal clear to expel the French troops from Rhein and Ruhr, while at the same time bringing down the reichs-goverment in Berlin.  

In principle the KPD acknowledged the legitimacy of "national resistance" (in all her facets), like a KPD orator put it on the 8th Party congress in 1923:

"As a class that is aware of the fact that she forms the foundation of the nation, that she represents tomorrow, the German worker will keep his national dignity high against the enemy capitalists, like he keeps his proletarian dignity high against the German capitalists."

Essentially it was about a struggle for mass-influence, which was waged with the goal to connect the question of national liberation with the question of social liberation.

Paul Böttcher, a KPD delegate at the Kommunistische Internationale (Komintern), justly recognized (in his answer to the fear of some in the EKKI, that a mass mobilisation would only be beneficial for the German chauvinists):

"If the German Party in the centre of this accumulation of forces in the Ruhr area would have practiced nihilism in regard to the national question, she would have defeated herself in a catastrophic annihilation."

“Nihilism in regard to the national question" - was for the first time used to publicly define the abstract internationalist and sterile anti-national politics of the former KPD-leadership of Paul Lévy, who’d put the KPD in a disastrous isolation. This was also an indication that the national-revolutionary course was under constant threat of sabotage by sectarian elements from the so-called "leftwing opposition". These problems were mentioned in a legendary speech by Karl Radek before the EKKI in Moscow (20 June 1923), later known as the historically Schlageter-speech": A tribute for the fallen Freikorps officer Leo Schlageter who fell for the cause of the nation, and wanted to subjectively do the right thing - serving the German people - but objectively had done the wrong thing: sacrificing his blood as a fascist for the wrong cause. This speech can till this present day be regarded as a high stand of national-revolutionary politics because it testified of a rock solid belief of the leftwing in a objectively justified, but subjectively misguided rebellion against the social relations, a rebellion that merely had to be directed in different ways:      

"We are convinced that the big majority of the nationalist masses exists of honest and convinced people, who are misguided and don’t understand that not just the Entente is the enemy." (KPD Central, May 1923)  

The means to achieve this was giving the term nationalism a positive content:

"The cause of the people made into the cause of the nation, makes the cause of the nation the cause of the people!" (Karl Radek)

The Schlageter-course didn’t just start a long and intensive rapprochement between KPD cadres and Karl Radek's national-revolutionaries, but also of national-revolutionary agitation from the KPD. In May 1923 the KPD central published a call out titled: "Gone with the government of national shame and peoples betrayal!” in which was claimed that the capitalists didn’t put Germany first, but profit.

With this the nation became a proletarian category, in which the organisation of the exploitation relations along the lines of the national State had no other goal then making maximal profit, which equalled betrayal against "the cause of the nation".  

In publications of the KPD it was emphasized that the goal should be the "national liberation of Germany". This could only be realized by the working class, because the German bourgeoisie was "incapable to defend the nation against French imperialism." (June 1923) The KPD called upon the working class to "make themselves leader of the national struggle for liberation to win over the petty bourgeoisie". (August 1923) Next to the "social outrage" of the working masses the "humiliated national sense" also showed to be a revolutionary impulse. The climax of the national-revolutionary agitation was formed in October 1923 with a KPD motion in the Reichstag to bring Hugo Stinnes and other monopoly-capitalists before court for high treason, because Stinnes and co. had extradited the German economy and German working class to French imperialism.      

While German communists were mobilising the masses against French imperialism, Komintern economist Eugen Varga developed the theory of Germany as an "industrial colony." The by the Entente-imperialism defeated Reich was because of the Diktat of Versailles as "fremdbestimmt" (controlled by foreign powers) and thus not-imperialist.  

Varga in an explanation:

"The most conflicting is the situation of Germany. Her economy shows all signs of imperialism: but she's disarmed, robbed of its colonies, is under foreign control and must pay severe payments."

The German worker had to labour for English and French imperialism under direct control of German fiduciaries, who got a share of the profit from their foreign superiors. Germany was fallen to the level of a "semi-colony", like Arkady Maslow of the KPD central formulated.

The German worker had to bear a double burden - the capitalist accumulation and the reparations of the Versailles treaty. Because of this Germany had become an oppressed nation in a Leninist sense. On this foundations the KPD published her thesis in 1923, in which they claimed to be "the only national Party of Germany" who "had made the Soviet star the sign of national liberation". Here the connection between the national and social liberation struggle was conclusively established. This later on became a determinative for the programmatic declaration of the KPD Central Committee about the national and social liberation of Germany in 1930:      

"The struggle for the liberation of Germany is inextricably linked to the struggle for national liberation. The Party of the dictatorship of the proletariat becomes the Party of national salvation. And because we of the KPD struggle for the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, we at the same time take upon us the obligation to fight for the unification of the Rhine and Ruhr area that was torn by the French, of Bavaria that was cut-off the Reich, to the by Poland threatened East-Prussia with the by Von Seeckt enslaved Northern- and Middle-Germany into a new German empire, the empire of the worker, the free soviet Germany."  

The program of national and social liberation of 1930

Because the communists presented themselves as the representatives of the nation and the people - minus the 10% capitalists and "parasites" - the political primate explicitly became a national-revolutionary aspect, in which the social-revolutionary - the pure class agitation - was put in the background:

"The KPD is the only Party that has the right to claim that they uphold the protection of the nation. The 90% of the working people embody the nation and we fight for their interests."
(Ernst Thälmann in 1925)

The "Program on the national and social liberation of Germany", with which the KPD in 1930 went into the elections for the Reichstag, (again) referred to the national-revolutionary agitation on a moment in which it became clear that the national-socialists could count on a big onrush. Still it wasn’t to be interpreted as a (exclusively) tactical manoeuvre, in the sense that they wanted to tie on into the conscience of the Nazi-proletarians (Naziprolets). The KPD leadership acknowledged the national outrage as principally justifiable and merely suggested that the "national-fascists" (Ernst Thälmann - national-socialist, SDAP) were not really "national", but only betrayed the "cause of the nation".  

Those who in the interest of the State and German capital waged a foreign policy and made concessions while doing this, who made the exploitation by capital and State possible and who could stop the international isolation of Germany - like the SPD (social-fascists), were seen as "voluntary agents in service of French and Polish imperialism. The national-socialists (Nazi’s, NSDAP) who where proponents of a more aggressive German imperialism, were seen by the KPD as the "unfair" opponents of Versailles, because they didn’t do a serious attempt to stop the reparations, to rip Versailles apart.  

The national-fascists agitated on the basis of Real politics and were scared of an open war with Entente.

In the later DDR the "Programm zur nationalen und sozialen Befreiung Deutschlands" of 1930 as "the coherent answer to the fundamental national problem of the German people, like it had developed since Germany entered the age of imperialism. It has elaborated in the spirit of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin the national role of communists in a highly developed imperialist country." (Zur Geschichte der deutschen Arbeiterbewegung, published by the sozialistische einheitspartei in Germany, Dietz Verlag Berlin 1952)

A view that is still cherished within a considerable portion of the leftwing. Not only by the DKP, Junge Welt and MLPD, Arbeiterbund für den Wiederaufbau der KPD, but also important segments of the former SED/PDS (now known as "Die Linke").      

Taking in consideration the major electoral victory of the NSDAP in 1930 (8 times more votes, to 6,4 million votes) and the growth of the German nationalist block in its totality, Thälmann concluded together with the electoral victory of the KPD (2,25 to 4,5 million votes) "that the election in Germany in a way meant a peoples referendum against the Young-Plan and the Diktat of Versailles (he also counted the voted of the NSDAP in this success).”We assume that the victory of the NSDAP for a substantial part is based on those anti-capitalist workers, who on the basis of their hostility towards the capitalist system and its jumble of supporters of the old bourgeois Parties developed themselves into national-socialists. But their radicalisation on the grounds of the crisis is not progressed enough yet, so they can take the step towards the camp of the revolutionary proletariat of communism."

The transfer of national voters towards the proletarian revolution didn’t take place, as we all know.

The Cause of the Nation (Part 2/4)

From communism without fatherland to national-communism - the history of a German liberation movement 

Fatherland with Working class

During the lifetime of Marx and Engels the national question already took a more important place within the German social democracy and got a dominating position within the German Reich and Austria-Hungary. The "people without fatherland", like the bourgeoisie called them, developed themselves into "better patriots" (by their own words), who "were not inferior" if it came to loving their fatherland. In the aspect of foreign policy the original Marxist question "Which State is the biggest enemy of the revolution?" slowly developed to: "Who is the attacker?” This is how  the foundations were formed for the defence of the fatherland.      

In 1880 August Bebel declared, during a speech before the Reichstag, for the first time the preparedness for defence of the German fatherland by the German social democracy:

"Should it come to the point that a foreign power conquers German territory, then the social democracy will take front against this enemy like every other Party."

This was formulated because of the actual threat coming from the East (the Russian tsarism as the embodiment of the most dark reaction), which would deteriorate the demands for revolution: "Because in a war we don’t defend our enemies and their institutions. We defend ourselves and our country, who’s institutions we want to shape and which only forms soil for our efficacy." (Bebel)  

The readiness of the German social democracy to defend the fatherland was already formulated in 1893, in the official report of the SPD fraction in the Reichstag. Five years later Eduard Bernstein Bebels formulated "fatherland" (from a negative sense) into a positive sense, because he made the position of the fatherland dependent on the position of the worker within the State:

"That workers don't have a fatherland, could be at the most applicable to the lawless - ruled out from public life - working class of the '40's. This has already for the biggest part lost its legitimacy and will loose this even more, because under the influence of the social democracy, the worker from the proletariat becomes a civilian. The worker, who is a voter with equal rights in the State and therefore becomes joint proprietor of the united wellbeing of the nation, who's children are educated by the community, who's health is protected, who's insured against invalidity, this worker shall have a fatherland, without stopping to be a cosmopolitan, in the sense that the nations will befriend each other without stopping to lead their own lives."

On the same time the social democracy started a tactical approach towards the elections in the Reichstag with respect to the military budget. They tried to get around the imperative to support the defence of the country from the viewpoint of national interest, by making the yes-vote dependent on the dissolution of the existing army in favour of a peoples militia and by putting the attention on the "unjust" financing of the military budget. Because these demands (logically) have not been approved, the parliamentary fraction of the social democracy was able to vote "no". Therefore it was only consequent when in 1899 Wolfgang Heine on the SPD congress went beyond that and stated that agreeing with military spending could only be just:  

"In my opinion the social democrats should give their permission to these military demands, if in return valuable freedoms for the people would be given as a counterbid. ... Not necessary military expenses should always be rejected. ... However some military expenses are necessary for the defence of the nation and are therefore not an opposition to our ideals and principles."

During the Morocco crisis (1905) August Bebel declared in his speech in the Reichstag:

"Gentlemen, when our fatherland is in danger, you ask the worker to defend the fatherland; however when you don't make sure that the institutions are of a nature that fulfils the workers with joy to fight for their fatherland, then the next time they will ask themselves if they should defend it. Gentlemen, without the working class you cannot wage war, if they remain in default, you're lost."  

Bebel suggested some kind of deal: The defence of the fatherland in exchange for workers rights. He emphasized the inevitability of the working class for the defence of the nation and gave Gustav Noske the keyword for his first speech in 1907 in the Reichstag. Noske formulated for the first time, the willingness of social democracy to defend the fatherland:

"We wish that Germany is as resilient as possible, we wish that the whole German people will have an interest in military institutions, which are necessary for the defence of the fatherland."  

This however could only be reached if the ruling class "together with the social democracy made sure that Germany became as liveable, free and culturally developed as possible." From the utilitarianism in handling the nation by Marx and Engels, the cardinal question "What is the advantage for the revolution?", the theorem at the end of the 19th century became that what was in the best interest of the proletariat was also in the best interest of the nation. Because of this the nation had to do more for the worker. With this the social democracy took its distance from every form of abstract internationalism. From now on class loyalty was only formulated within the framework of the nation-state. The strengthened German social democracy struggled for the national unity "inwards", from the viewing point of participation in the State and its reformist transformation. To end the last social democratic reservations, the Reich reinterpreted the coming war as a national defensive war.    

When Kaiser Wilhelm, in 1914 at the outbreak of WW I, declared to his Reichskansler Von Bülow: "From now on I don't know any parties, from now on I will only know Germans.” the national unity inwards was a fact, with which the assent from social democracy for war credits was reduced to merely a formality.    

Nation and imperialism 

At the end of the century the social democrats redefined the concept of the "nation". Karl Kautsky had defined, in 1887, the nation state as 'the classic form of the modern State" and as a "State that included the entire nation and no other nations next to it". The most important factor for this was the formation of a "closely-knit economic territory" according to Kautsky, which included the existence of a common language, national tradition and solidarity."

The Austrian social democrat Otto Bauer who was confronted with all kind of conflicts between nationalities within the Habsburger empire, placed these emotional elements in 1907 for the first time in the centre of the conceptions of the left according to the nation, which hasn’t lost its validity up to the present day:

"The nation is the totality by means of a community of fate onto a community of character, which binds people together."

This community of fate was not to be interpreted as the shared faith of workers from different nations, because this unity was not enough for the development of a nation. Inherent to the nation was the "traffic community: "The common experience of the same faith in the constant mutual social movement, in a constant interaction of mutual social interaction."

The "community of character" clearly referred to the "national character", which was explained by Bauer in a historic-materialist manner as an organically grown and an exchangeable concept. Therefore he didn’t define socialism as abstract-internationalist, but national: Because more and more people are sucked into the "traffic community", more people will become part of the nation, this would according to the socialist progressive thinking lead to a situation in which socialism would immediately be put on the agenda, because the workers would become the majority of the nation. This also meant that under socialism the nation could expand itself to full extent.  

In 1913 J.W. Stalin developed (building on the theorems of Kautsky and Bauer) his thesis of the nation as "a historically grown stable community of people ... on the basis of a common language, common territories, common economic life and common, in common culture revealing, psychical essential characteristics."

(Marxism and the National Question p 28)

What was the reason that social democracy made such an effort in developing a theory in relation to the nation? The hypothesis of Marx, that the world market would break open the borders between national States, apparently didn’t take place. Although his hypothesis on economy was striking, the agitation of national States in power politics, or better said their imperialism, stood in the way of this – subsequent to this, on the base of the domestic markets in the developed capitalist countries, the monopoly capital and the surplus developed, as well as her expansionism, the acquisition of colonies, the creation of spheres of influence and safeguarding these with war. This was the cause of the competition between mono-capitalist States as well as the mono-capitalists capital, which resulted in WW I. This didn’t lead to the disappearance of the nation state, but to the consolidation of the nation state as a bourgeois project of capitalist rule.          

Within the controversy between Lenin and Rosa Luxemburg this change was critically reflected. The conflict was NOT about a new theory regarding the nation, but it was about the meaning of the nation and nationalism in regard to the socialist revolution. Nationalism, which was a tactical question for Marx and Engels, became a strategic question on the path towards revolution.  

While Luxemburg thought that nationalism in principle was harmful for the class struggle and spoke about a "right on self determination for the working class", Lenin thought that it was necessary to use nationalist tendencies in oppressed states in a revolutionary manner. The right of nations on self determination became a fundamental right in Lenin’s views. Where Luxemburg talked about the relevant political contradiction "internationalism versus nationalism", Lenin talked about "anti-colonialism versus imperialism". The stand still of the world revolution and the victory of the thesis "possibility of socialism in one country" (J.W. Stalin) decided this controversy in the sense that Stalin’s formulated theory of two camps (1924) - that of the oppressive nations and oppressed nations - became decisive in the Marxist-Leninist left (and far beyond!). The real basis of this theory can be found in the existence of the Soviet Union.  

Because of the Diktat of Versailles the former imperialist power Germany, that was beaten in WW I, found itself in the camp of the oppressed nations. On the basis of the "two camp strategy" the KPD realized a theoretic cadre with which she could give a great contribution to the anchoring of national thinking within the German labour movement.

The Cause of the Nation (Part 1/4)

From communism without fatherland to national-communism - the history of a German liberation movement 

With the "Programm der nationalen Wiedervereinigung Deutschlands", which was presented to the public in November 1952, the KPD (Communist Party Germany) completed a development that was already deployed decades before that; namely a development towards a national-communism.

Already in the first paragraph, the text of the program took an unequivocal distance from every abstract internationalism and called upon the national sentiment of the German people:

"The population of West Germany is in need. The criminal war of Hitler-Germany and the defeat, in which this ended, brought millions of deaths and destruction. After the war West Germany was separated from Eastern-Germany under the yoke of slavery by the American, English and French capitalists. It seemed that the three capitalist states - the USA, UK and France – didn’t fight the latest war to liberate Germany from Hitler’s domination, like they stated during the war. Their goal was to destroy Germany as a State, to get rid of a competitor, to conquer her natural riches, to exploit these and to abuse our people and nation in preparation of a new war for world domination."

Seven years after the end of the second imperialist World War the Communist party clearly documented:

1st - The actual victim of the war was the German people.

2nd - In West-Germany the people found themselves under a very bad form of slavery from the side of the USA, France and the UK, who...

3rd - in 1945 in no way intended to "liberate" the German people, but searched to destroy Germany.

The rearmament of Western Germany by the Andenauer-regime in the field of the aggressive military alliance of Western imperialism (in command of the USA) was rightly seen as an attack on the German people, which after two defeats had became wiser:

"Precisely we as Germans know from our own experiences the outcome of wars of conquest."

The separatist Adenauer-regime - responsible for re-militarizing West-Germany - betrayed the national cause, "a betrayal that is unequalled in the German history" (KPD-Programm).

The nationalist KPD program excoriated the "occupation of foreign powers" (the Anglo-Americans), the "alienation of the West-German economy", the fight of the American occupier against "the German national culture", which according to the program was to prefer over the "American way of life" with her shallow and primitive "culture".

This program was launched in 1952. A time in which the vast majority of the German people still thought national, the American "re-education" to suppress nationalist thought was not (yet) completed. Although in 1952 there wasn’t a strong Communist movement in numbers in the part of Germany that was under control of the Western imperialists, the concept of launching a "national liberation movement" that could count on support of the vast majority of the (at that time) nationalist German people, in which the Communist Party would take the role of a "national avant-garde", had a realistic change of success. But what were the underlying causes of this development of Communist politics towards a complete national-communism?  

The workers have no fatherland (Communist manifest)

"The communists are further accused of wanting to abolish the fatherland, the nationality. But the workers have no fatherland. And one cannot take what they don't have."  

This passage of the Communist manifest of 1848 time after time gave the occasion to new interpretations in regard to the relation of communists towards the nation. A later positive definition of the concept of the nation, by another generation of communists (Marxists), was made possible by the relativation found in the same paragraph of the Communist manifest; "Because it’s necessary for the proletariat to conquer the political power itself, it has to elevate itself into a national class, although not in the sense of the bourgeoisie."

Since the beginning of the German social democracy of the 19th century, there were nationalist tendencies (such as Ferdinend Lasalle), that were subordinated to the social question. When in the draftprogramm of the "Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands" (the so-called "Programm von Gotha", 1875) the formulation appeared that the working class "firstly moves within the cadres of the national State", but their main goal was "the international fraternization of the peoples", Marx polemicizes against this in his "Kritik des Gothaer Programms":

"It’s obvious that to struggle, the working class has to organize itself at home as a class and of course it’s obvious that their own country is the direct arena for this struggle. To this extent their class struggle is not national "in content", but "in form". The "cadre of the current national State", for example that of the German Reich, is on her turn economically seen "within the cadre of the system of States." ... And to what does the German labour party reduce her internationalism? To the realization that the result of her efforts would be "the international fraternization of the peoples" - a phrase derived from the bourgeois freedom and peace covenant - that should pass for the equivalent of the international fraternization of the working class in her united struggle against the ruling classes and their governments."

The Communist Manifest had its theorems, with regard to class struggle in relation to the nation state and the proletariat in principle without a fatherland, positioned in the context of an analysis about the formation of nation states as a historical necessary transitional phase of capitalist development.

By this analysis nation states were necessary for the completion of consecutive economic zones, to conquer the "Kleinstaaterei", to centralize production and to create a domestic market and thus never a goal on its own. Therefore "Völkische" nationalists or nationalists emphasizing their own national character can hardly call upon Marx and Engels.  

Marx and Engels always defined the nation in terms of citizenship and saw the nation state as a form of unification of the bourgeois-society within certain territorial borders, of which the heart was not determined by the 'national sameness” but by the State.

Against different tendencies Marx and Engels took a pragmatic and utilitarian attitude: The formation of States was judged by the criteria if these were advantageous for the promotion of the capitalist mode of production and as a result of the proletarian-revolutionary movement. Conflicts between nationalities were seen as the result of economic competition. A principle right of self-determination of nations did not exist in their view. At the same time they saw in the development of the worldmarket a "globalist" tendency:

"The national confinement and contradictions between the peoples disappear according to the development of the bourgeoisie, with the freedom of trade, with the world market, with the similarity of the industrial production and its corresponding living conditions." (Communist Manifest)

Because the revolution in one country could not be successful, already in the stadium of the national struggle of the proletariat in form, the content should already be the "international" struggle of the world proletariat for Socialism, according to Marx and Engels.

zaterdag 1 september 2012

Antikriegstag 2012

Nie wieder Imperialismus! Nie wieder Krieg! 

Wir erleben, daß die 'BRD' sich am imperialistischen Krieg der NATO beteiligt. Die Bundeswehr war beteiligt an dem völkerrechtswidrigen Angriffskrieg gegen Jugoslawien und sie beteiligt sich seit 10 jahren am Krieg gegen Afghanistan. Über die BRD wird ein Großteil der Kriegslogistik der USA und der NATO abgewickelt.

Rund 2 Millionen Tote allein im Irak, eine traumatisierte Bevölkerung, eine weitgehend zerstörte Infrastruktur und zerfallende Staaten: von Afghanistan bis Libyen sind dies die Ergebnisse des imperialistischen US/NATO-Krieges, um für die imperialistischen Oligarchie andere Länder beherrschen und ausbeuten zu können. Syrien, Somalien, Sudan oder Iran – wer ist als nächstes dran?

Das Deutschland beim Kriegstreiben in aller Welt mit von der Partie ist, zeigt die Kontinuität des 'BRD'-Imperialismus, heute als Teil der internationalen, imperialistischen Entwicklung.

Der Rüstungsetat der Bundesrepublik beträgt 2012 31,7 Mrd. Euro und ist damit der zweitgrösste Posten bei den Ausgaben der Bundesregierung. Deutsche Rüstungsfirmen wie ThyssenKrupp, EADS, Heckler & Koch und Krauss Maffei verkauften 2011 Waffen und Kriegsgerät für 2,1 Milliarden Euro ins Ausland – 50% mehr als 2010. Deutschland ist zum drittgrössten Waffenexporteur der Welt aufgestiegen und heizt damit weltweit Krisen und Kriege an.

Militarisierung der Gesellschaft bedeutet neben Krieg und Aggression nach Aussen auch Repression nach Innen.

Die Bundeswehr hat Büros in den Arbeitsagenturen und JobCentern, wo sie Erwerbslose als Kanonenfutter für weitere Kriegsabenteuer in aller Welt anwirbt. Auch unsere Schulen sind vor dem Militär nicht sicher: Längst ist es Alltag geworden, daß die Bundeswehr sich nicht nur auf Jugend- und Jobmessen, sondern auch in den Klassenzimmern als bombensicherer Arbeitgeber mit Zukunft zur Schau stellt.

Was die Offiziere bei ihren Vorträgen lieber nicht erwähnen ist Tod, Zerstörung und Trauma als Berufsbeschreibung.

Schluß mit den Kriegsdrohungen gegen Syrien! Sofortiger 

Abzug der Bundeswehr aus Afghanistan!

Abzug aller 'BRD'- Truppen aus dem Ausland!

Bundeswehr raus aus Arbeitersämtern und Klassenzimmern!

Uneingeschränktes Versammlungs- und Demonstrationsrecht!

Bundeswehr und NATO – raus aus Afghanistan!

'BRD' und NATO – Hände weg von Syrien!