zaterdag 26 september 2015

A 'National' Anti-Capitalism?

This document was originally published as a discussion piece to deepen the debate about a 'national' anti-capitalism in the scene. 

Recently distributed agitprop-material from the comrades from Hessen and aimed at (mostly finance-) capitalism (leading up to the campaign against the ECB) carries the slogan:


But is this truly the case? Can the struggle against capitalism really only be fought 'national', i.e. within a (limited) national context? At first instance we can only reject this proposition. Mainly because we believe that capitalism has long breached this (geographically limited) 'national context' and has become so intertwined with the capitalism of other countries, that the classic nation-state has become passé. However, because the struggle for national liberation and the right of self-determination are essential parts of our worldview, we want to clarify how the term 'national' relates to 'anti-capitalism'.

We have taken note that the comrades of Hessen are oriented on the "left" within the Nationale Widerstand. Ideologically this brings us to the anti-capitalist wing of the movement of Gregor Strasser and Dr. Goebbels during the Kampfzeit. With several quotations from the well-known pamphlet of Dr. Goebbels, Der Nazi-Sozi’ (1930), we will try to clarify our position. The question must be:


An answer to this question can be found among others within the anti-capitalist wing of the German movement of Gregor Strasser and Dr. Goebbels during the 'Kampfzeit' (1919-1933). On the basis of several quotations from the well-known pamphlet 'Der NaziSozi' (1930), written by Dr. Goebbels, we will try to elucidate our position. In this pamphlet Dr. Goebbels examines the question about the position of the nation in relation to internationalism. After he clarified that he wanted to replace the Marxist movement of internationalism by a German socialism, Dr. Goebbels continues by claiming that the enemy (in this case the [Jewish] finance-capital) has long nested themselves in all nations of Europe: "Today there are hardly any national-capitalists in Germany anymore: "Railways, mines, factories, money, gold, the Reichsbank, everything is merged into shares and lies in the treasuries of Jewish banks in London and New York. But shares are worthless, they don't roll over railways, don't provide coals, don’t produce bread or goods and make, nor give money. They are only good for interest." (Dr. Goebbels - ‘Der Nazi-Sozi’, facsimile Hanse Buchwerkstatt 2014, p. 58).

Thereafter Dr. Goebbels concludes that only a truly revolutionary German state, "a government of national labor", can undo all of this. Considering Germany at that time only existed as a Dawes-colony*, there could be no question of national capital. "All is under the control of international bankingsyndicats. It is not national capital that moves international, but international economic hyenas move international together with national capital" (ditto, p.59). Therefore the "struggle against this world power" needed to be international, which meant that "all those movements in those countries", which "struggle in our frontlines", needed to be supported. However, not the "World republic of Socialism” had to be the final goal, but the establishment of new national, socialist states" (ditto, p. 59). So 85 years ago Dr. Goebbels already had recognized that the struggle against global capitalism could only be fought by breaching the limited national context, i.e. 'international'.

Until today nothing has changed! In 1916 Lenin also analyzed that the capitalist nation-state was on retreat, because of the growing unification of the classical (national) industrial-capital on one hand, and the (international) banking and trading capital on the other. In this development (the creation of capitalist monopolies) Lenin saw one of the essential characteristics of imperialism (in his vision 'imperialism' was not just the urge to conquer markets and raw materials anywhere in the world with any means necessary, but FOREMOST the urge TO EXPORT CAPITAL TO ECONOMICALLY UNDERDEVELOPED AREAS (Lenin Werke, Bd 23, p. 102-103)). Friedrich Engels already determined in 1847 (!) that the "grand scale industry", which was created by the world market, interconnected peoples, especially those from the developed parts, to such a degree that every people was dependent on what happened to another people (MEW, Bd 4, p. 374). Therefore he concluded that a (in his vision communist) revolution (or of any other sort) cannot be successful, when it is carried out on merely a limited national scale.

Although our struggle is fought on an international scale, this of course does not mean that the national liberation and the right of self-determination of nations are dead words to us. As Stalin stated during the 19th Party Congress of the CPSU in 1952: "In the past the bourgeoisie was at the head of the nation, it acted out of the name of justice and the independence of the nation, they were at the top of everything. But today nothing is left of 'national principles'. Now the bourgeoisie has sold out justice and the independence of the nation for dollars. The banner of national independence and national sovereignty has been thrown overboard. Undoubtedly, the representatives of the communist and democratic parties will take up this banner, if they want to be the leading force of the nation. Because there is nobody else left who can take it up" (Stalin Werke, Bd 15, p. 393/394). This is a thesis we fully support. We recognize the proletariat as the only force that is able to overthrow world-capitalism, while at the same time being able to keep up the banner of national independence. In this context KPD-leader Thälmann in the '20's already pointed out that the working class does have a fatherland, however, that the nation of the proletarians is fundamentally different than that of the bourgeoisie (Thälmann – Zwei Nationen: Die Nation der Kapitalisten und die Nation der Proletarier).

The current situation in Greece is a good example of the struggle of the masses for a national and social liberation from the dictates of finance-capitalism. However, the SYRIZA-government (which represents a certain fraction of the Greek 'national' bourgeoisie) has sadly capitulated to the dictates of French and German banking-capital. Now it is the task of the Greek working class - unfortunately until now under the inhibitory influence of the outer leftwing of reformism (the KKE and its Union front PAME) - to bring not only the social, but also the NATIONAL liberation to a successful end, since the 'national' bourgeoisie (SYRIZA) so shamefully capitulated to finance-capital. For this it is necessary that the Greek proletariat detaches itself from the baneful influence of the 'extreme Left' (the reformist KKE/PAME) and acts as an independent class-force (i.e. away from any bourgeois hegemony).

Struggle for national liberation - YES, but from the revolutionary perspective of the proletariat. Because: The consistent struggle for the liberation of the nation is these days only possible from the perspective of the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat! All incitements to wage the national liberation struggle from another perspective (*namely non-proletarian) are deemed to fail and only serve the interested from the (no longer 'national') bourgeoisie. Our efforts to build an 'international' (i.e. European) anti-capitalist network must be seen in the context of the above mentioned perspective. In this we follow Stalin his definition of the nation (the nation not as a racial community, but as a community which is characterized by linguistic kinship, common geography and space, economy and shared cultural and psychological aspects [Marxismus national Frage und Stalin Werke bd 2, p. 268-272). However, we are not under the illusion that one single nation can be truly free in a further capitalist world. Therefore the militants of the ACN in one capitalist country must be solidary with the anti-capitalist struggle of other militants in their own respective, also capitalist countries. And vice versa.

With this we hope to give a start for a deepening of the debate in the scene concerning a 'national' anti-capitalism.


*Dawes-Plan: In 1924 designed aggressive plan by Charles G. Dawes** in order to capture the payment imposed to the German Reich by the Versailles dictate for reparations after the war. As a consequence Germany was forced to pay between 1 and 2,5 billion Goldmark to the Entente each year for an indefinite period of time. This in return for 800 million Goldmark in foreign loans to restore the market. The Entente also controlled among others the German railways with this plan.
** Dawes, Charles Gates (1865-1951) Architect of the plan which carries his name. Was Vice-President of the USA in 1925-1929. Received the Nobel Prize for Peace in 1925 (->because of the Dawes-plan).

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