Nationalism: Poison for the Working Class
msbrown at cwcom.net
msbrown at cwcom.net
Wed Apr 10 18:24:06 BST 2002
Meanwhile back on Planet Earth.....
The expressions "ivory tower mentality" & "pissing-in-the-wind" come to mind!
Try telling a Palestinian that they don't have a right to their own national
status & the right to protect their borders from violent incursion by Sharon's
and his fascist compatriots!
OK, I don't totally dismiss you. Anarchist cooperative self determination. OK,
but it can only ever be achieved if devolved but still subject to some kind of
state assembley-central governance - across the world on a national-by-national
Quoting Jan Pole <anticapitalist2 at yahoo.co.uk>:
> Across the world nationalism has been rearing its ugly head again,
> notably in the cockpit of violence that is the Middle East. As we
> Palestinian and Israeli workers continue to butcher one another in a
> senseless round of tit-for-tat atrocities.
> As the shooting of Palestinian children and the suicide bombings aimed
> at Israeli workers in Jerusalem continue, socialists have no
> in stating that this violence is in no way, shape or form in the
> interest of the working class of wage and salary earners.
> Many on the political left will argue that Palestinian nationalism is
> somehow progressive and different to Israeli nationalism and should
> therefore be supported (in a similar way to why they often think Welsh
> and Scottish nationalism should be encouraged in Britain and Irish
> Nationalism in Ulster).
> As socialists, we say that this is a dangerous poison that is being
> spread by the left and that no side engaged in such conflict can
> speak for the working class as a whole or be an example to it.
> History is replete with minorities in existing states using terrorist
> methods so that a new state may be formed or territory transferred
> the ownership of one state to another. The working class of wage and
> salary earners is never in a position to benefit from this process, it
> is only in a position to suffer.
> The working class by definition the class that does not possess any
> significant titles to land or private property, including capital
> quite literally nothing to gain from a situation where one group of
> rulers and owners is replaced by another group.
> In the nineteenth century when the modern capitalist system was
> expanding across the globe national liberation struggles, typically
> led by a local growing capitalist class against the old autocratic
> empires, were part of the process which swept away the old political
> arrangements and opened the way forward for liberal democracy and the
> development of capitalist methods of production.
> It was often argued that it was in the interests of the working class
> during this time to take the side of the capitalists against the old
> autocracies like the Ottoman Empire and the Russian Empire, etc. It
> said that this process would open the way up for working class
> organisation and for the development of an advanced industrial system
> which is a prerequisite for a socialist society of abundance and free
> access to available wealth.
> Since then, the capitalist system has become a world system. The
> alleged justification for the working class taking sides in 'national
> liberation' struggles has now gone if ever it existed and today all
> such struggles are just deadly battles between sections of the
> capitalist class, even though it is the workers imbued with
> nationalist poison that naturally enough end up doing the fighting
> and dying.
> We argue that every nation state is by its very nature anti-working
> class. The nation is a myth as there can be no community of
> between two classes in antagonism with one another, the non-owners in
> society and the owners (the workers and the capitalists).
> And the state ultimately exists only to defend the property interests
> of the owning class at any given point in history which is why
> states across the world send the police and army in to break strikes
> and otherwise seek to protect the interests of the capitalists and
> business at every turn.
> The goal of the socialist movement is not to assist in the creation of
> even more states but to establish a real world community without
> frontiers where all states as they currently exist will be destroyed.
> In a socialist society communities, towns and cities will have the
> opportunity to thrive and people will no doubt feel an attachment to
> places that are real and tangible but the 'imagined communities'
> are nation states will be consigned to the history books where they
> Our message to the workers who call themselves Israeli and the workers
> who call themselves Palestinian is to cease the slaughter. As workers
> you have no real community of interests to gain from your present
> struggle. You do, however, have an imagined community you should
> and an entire world to win instead.
> Jan Pole
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