How to explain the Nazi obsession with Jews

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alibadani
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Dec 13 2005 01:02

If history has taught us anything, it is that the the bourgeoisie doesn't support class struggles in enemy countries. It will however support anything that derails the class struggle into a dead-end. For example, the western ruling classes supported the Solidarnosc trade union but not the Polish strike committees.

The Polish class stuggles of 1980 were massive, and far more advanced that anything that was taking place in the democracies at the time. That experience shows us that the class struggle is the best response to the most repressive regimes, that democracy is not a precondition for class struggle. Democracy is certainly not worth dying for.

How did the Western bourgeoisie react to the situation in Poland at its height (before Solidarnosc disarmed the workers)? The IMF granted Poland cheap loans. Campaigns of ‘assistance for Poland’ were started. West German social-democratic Chancellor Helmut Schmidt and the arch-stalinist GDR leader Erich Honecker met to discuss a common strategy to defeat the movement. Basically, the rivals of the cold war put aside thier differences in response to the mass strike in Poland.

The rivals of the Franco-Prussian war did the same in response to the Commune, as did the rivals of WW1 as a response to the German revolution. Heck even the U.S stopped it's war against Saddam in response to the soviets and mutiny in Kurdistan. As widespread as it was, the resistance had no such effect on the rival camps of WW2. That alone is telling enough.

alibadani
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Dec 13 2005 01:16

Why does revol get away with flaming so much?

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Alf
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Dec 13 2005 08:46

Response to Revol68 again

Thousands of “communists” went to the hills to join the partisans? Again, be specific. The second world war was only possible because of a gigantic defeat of the working class in the 20s and 30s. The Communist Parties were integrated into capitalism well before the war and the Trotskyist groups during the war. The numbers of actual communists - ie, internationalists - were reduced to tiny minorities, and they rejected the politics of the Resistance, so who are you referring to exactly?.

Yes, of course the class struggle has a military dimension. It exists in embryonic form in the immediate struggle, when workers have to organise their self-defence against capitalist cops and goons. It exists on a higher level when the struggle goes from the defensive to the offensive and the question of the armed assault on the capitalist state is posed.

But not every armed struggle that workers take part in – even with sincere convictions – is part of the class struggle. The Resistance groups took thousands of workers onto the terrain of patriotism, ie away from the class struggle. They were fiercely hostile to any talk of fraternisation and international solidarity. Lazlo’s idea that the Resistance could be both for the class struggle and for the war makes no sense at all imperialist war and class war are utterly antagonistic.

Maybe you can find examples of groups who tried to square the circle and combine joining the Resistance with maintaining an internationalist position. That would be interesting, but it wouldn’t change the basic point, precisely because it was an impossibility to defend both positions at the same time.

As for epithets, neither “twat” nor “cock” bother me that much, although it does look a bit like Revol68 has a special licence to flame, as alibadani also notes. On the other hand, calling me a “life-stylist” really cut me to the quick.

Still it makes a change. Forget the 80s back in the 70s already World Revolution was banned by one “politically correct” libertarian print shop because we published an article which attacked feminism as demanding “equal mystifications for women”. I don’t think we have gone soft on feminism et al. since then, although we have written a few more in-depth articles on the attitude of Marxism to the real problem of the oppression of women, which is not be confused with the bourgeois ideology of feminism.

baboon
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Dec 15 2005 13:49

Although it's not directly transposable we can use the example of the Australian race attacks to illustrate the question of the "lesser evil" and anti-fascism.

In Australia in the last week or so racist mobs have attacked any olive-skinned people they have come across or hunted down, beating some up and threatening the lives of others. Some of these victims have been saved from the mob by the police, the latter, in a couple of televised encounters, showing some degree of concern and courage in helping the victims. Certainly the police, doing more than you, I and everyone else on this post, to practically help those being attacked and assaulted because of the colour of their skin. Were I a victim in this situation, I would welcome and be grateful for the police saving me.

Should we be supporting the police because "they are doing something", because "they are saving people", "they at least are a lesser evil". These arguments haven't been used in relation to Australia but they have been used by many on this thread in relation to WWII. If one were to support the police (or elements of them) as "a lesser evil" in relation to a racist mob, one would have to be supporting the Australian state whose agents they are; a state, which like all capitalist states, has racism woven into its very fabric. Like all others, the Australian state promotes racism, anti-immigration and xenophobic propaganda on a daily basis. Anti-racist fronts with any number of lesser evils will do absolutely nothing to eliminate racism; in fact it can only strengthen it by sowing illusions in the state from where it "naturally" emanates. Only the autonomous action of the working class can even begin to address the question of racism, its real roots and the way to confront it.

In order to be against the murders of innocents in Germany during WWII, a number of posts on this thread have supported - by default, through the lack of a coherent position, by putting forward half-baked partial "positions" - and this is where is hasn't been exlicitly stated, have supported murderous, capitalist gangsters that have slaughtered an even greater number of innocents - a so-called lesser evil. It's not suprising that this is done as the weight of the anti-fascist campaign is one of the bourgeoisies' most massive campaigns ever. It is not suprising, but that doesn't make this position any the less anti-working class, ie, the support for capitalist factions in an imperialist war. In this case, democracy and stalinism.

The idea that something, some regime or other, is vaguely "better in the circumstances" under a capitalist system that is decaying fast, is a very weak basis for trying to put forward a working class position. In fact on this basis (supported by any number of posts on this thread) you have already been diverted away from a proletarian postion and must end up supported the bourgeoisie. This whole approach trivialises and individualises the question of imperialism and revolution to the point of abstractin and fantasy and, as this thread has amply demonstrated, leads to explicit or implicit support to one imperialist camp or the other.

A lot more innocents are going to be slaughtered (are being) by capitalism, that's the nature of all its regimes which are expressing the terminal decay of the system. It is essential that the working class holds on to and defends its positions even (especially) those that have come out of the terrible depths of counter-revolution. Anti-fascism can only end up supporting one faction of the bourgeoisie or the other.

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jef costello
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Dec 16 2005 00:12

Didn't you just complain about a comparison to a particular instance on this topic. keep your rhetoric together.

Capitalist states are NOT based upon racism, they CAN be but it is not necessary. Capitalist states are based upon the oppression of the working class and while racism is a useful method of carrying out this oppression it is not the only one.

Many of the resistance organisations in France at least were communist, by shortening the duration of the war they saved proletarian lives (which are lost at a higher rate during war) thus helping to maintain the mass strength of the proletariat in anticipation of a fine useful and not at all irrelevant organisation like the ICC unleashing it.

In support of our female comrades I think revol should stop using the words cunt and twat.

In support of our male comrades he should stop using the word cock.

In support of our comrades who have made a choice to renounce the capitalist construct of the family he should stop using the word wanker.

I suggest a new post to think up new insults, I'm sure you're up to the challenge revol.

JC for the JCC

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Alf
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Dec 16 2005 09:52

Jeff I welcome your regular concern to hold a proper discussion and avoid gratuitous abuse.

Baboon however did not say that capitalist states are based on racism. As you say they are based on the exploitation of the working class. He said that racism is 'woven into their fabric', which is not the same thing. Nationalism is the ideological cement of the nation state, and nationalism, especially in this epoch, is inseparable from racism.

Again, you claim that the resistance groups were 'communist', but what does that mean? They were dominated by Stalinism, but Stalinism is the negation of communism. That's why I have asked those defending the Resistance to be concrete about which of the resistance groups they are putting forward as 'communist' or proletarian.

Lazlo_Woodbine
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Dec 16 2005 14:22
Alf wrote:
I have asked those defending the Resistance to be concrete about which of the resistance groups they are putting forward as 'communist' or proletarian.

You want a 'group' to be proletarian and communist? That basically means, due to your narrow understanding of the terms, that you want me to point to a group that was, from top to bottom, in line with your own variety of left communism.

As I've said, the resistance groups were contradictory, containing tendencies towards useful working class self activity and harmful tendencies towards centralisation and authoritarianism.

This is similar to my analysis of UK unions, which are likewise often made up of good grassroots activity and harmful bureaucratic consensus politics.

alibadani
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Dec 16 2005 18:36
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You want a 'group' to be proletarian and communist? That basically means, due to your narrow understanding of the terms, that you want me to point to a group that was, from top to bottom, in line with your own variety of left communism.

If you took the time to read what the ICC has said on this forum, you'll know that proletarian doesn't mean a certain variety of left communism. It does mean internationalist however. As such there were anarchists during WW2 who did take the proletarian line and rejected the resistance. There were anarchists who refused to take sides in the Spanish conflict as well.

Today the same can be said. There are groups like the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Federation based in South Africa, the Moscow based Revolutionary Anarcho-syndicalist Group, and the Hungarian Anarcho-communsit group Barikád Kollektíva. These are not marxist or left communist groups but they are definitely in the proletarian camp.

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OliverTwister
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Dec 16 2005 19:08

Hi

Well it's true innit? The Friends of Durruti wanted to place all the bourgeoisie, from Garcia Oliver to Franco, up against the wall.

Love

Oliver

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jef costello
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Dec 17 2005 08:57
Alf wrote:
Jeff: I welcome your regular concern to hold a proper discussion and avoid gratuitous abuse.

...Nationalism is the ideological cement of the nation state, and nationalism, especially in this epoch, is inseparable from racism.

Again, you claim that the resistance groups were 'communist', but what does that mean? They were dominated by Stalinism, but Stalinism is the negation of communism. That's why I have asked those defending the Resistance to be concrete about which of the resistance groups they are putting forward as 'communist' or proletarian.

The Front National, was set up by the PCF in 1941, its military wing Francs tireurs et partisans was the largest and most efffective resistance group. It is true that this organisation began after the german invasion of the USSR, it was solidarity that inspired this, whether misguided or not. I don't think that makes them Stalinist in the sense that you use this word. There was less information about what Stalin was up to available then, there was still a hope that the 1917 revolution would be brought to fruition, while it is easy to look back and sneer at their mistakes I prefer to respect their courage and intentions. I don't think any form of working class struggle against authority is meaningless. Don't believe the Gaullist hype.

And ffs why spell my name Jeff? why does everyone on the internet assume I cannot spell my own name?

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Alf
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Dec 19 2005 09:16

Jef apologies for the spelling. But I don't see how an organisation set up by the PCF during the war - a period when it was openly Stalinist, as opposed to the shame-faced Stalinism of later years; an organisation which had its explicitly nationalist aims enshrined in its very name, could be anything but Stalinist. Certainly the strength of the Stalinist organisations in that period was the widespread belief and hope among many workers that the USSR still stood for the ideals of October 1917. But this was a total falsehood, and it's not just hindsight on our part. Genuine revolutionaries were saying precisely that at the time - and they worked hard to convince sincere workers that they should leave the Communist Parties and join the ranks of the internationalists.

Lazlo_Woodbine
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Dec 19 2005 13:41
Alf wrote:
an organisation which had its explicitly nationalist aims enshrined in its very name

lol, weren't the bolsheviks officially called the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (bolsheviks)?

baboon
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Jan 12 2006 15:24

By way of a conclusion...

- The rise of Nazism, the whole of WWII was an expression of the decadence of capitalism, events which took place on the back of the defeat of the revolutionary wave of the working class.

- The crimes of democracy were at least those of Nazism - that's when the former wasn't directly complicit with the latter. The victors wrote the history of WWII.

- Anti-fascism doesn't exist in fantasies, but in the real, material world and could only be support for one imperialism against another. Anti-fascism was the democratic\stalinist alliance against another imperialist contender.

- The Resistance were nowhere an expression of the working class but a tool in the hands of competing imperialist factions.

- There were expressions of humanity from many individuals during the war (including some Nazis) and the working class, as a class for humanity, must applaud such expressions. However, these individual actions count for nothing against the numbers of innocents slaughtered.

- Anti-fascism has been supported as doing "something" as against doing "nothing" by people who are calling themselves communist or revolutionaries. But who supports "doing nothing"? Not the ICC and its sympathisers. To call oneself communist or revolutionary one must agree that there is a revolutionary perspective. It's been drowned on this thread by support for anti-fascism.

Lazlo_Woodbine
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Jan 12 2006 18:21

Why do you think that that is a 'conclusion'?

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Lazy Riser
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Jan 12 2006 18:53

Hi

Quote:
But who supports "doing nothing"?

I wonder. Why can't it be like a fascist killing festival of fun, why do Internationalists always have to make politics so boring?

Love

LR

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Alf
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Jan 12 2006 23:03

Lazy Riser interesting that you consistently call us "the Internationalists". Of course we agree with that - but what does that make those we are arguing against?

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Lazy Riser
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Jan 12 2006 23:15

Hi

Quote:
but what does that make those we are arguing against?

I think I will call them "unInternationalists". Why can't we just kill fascists for fun? Apart from being a bit clumsy, what's wrong with accidentally defending the left of capital as a consequence of something performed for our own fickle amusement? Nothing.

Love

LR

alibadani
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Jan 13 2006 05:36

Revol,

Here's an article you may have seen, that was recently added to the libcom library that delves somewhat into the activities of internationaists during WW2.

It's called Third Camp internationalists in France during World War II

It is from Echanges et Movement and defends the internationalist position. It might clarify things somewhat.

stilllooney
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Jan 19 2006 00:04
alibadani wrote:
I used to be a Trotskyist. embarrassed Their (the WSWS's) explanation of the Nazi obsession with Jews goes something like this: The real hatred of the Nazis was towards the working class who had dared to make a revolution in 1918 that ended Germany’s great patriotic war. However the lowly workers themselves couldn’t possibly have done this without all those damn Marxists. There were quite a few Jews among the union leaders and in the social democracy. So it was not the Rothschild-style bourgeois Jews that bothered Hitler but the Luxemburg-style Marxist Jews. Eventually an entire ideology emerged about race and nation. Add to this, the low cultural level of lumpen, peasant, and shopkeeper elements; the panic and desperation of the petty-bourgeoisie on the verge of ruin and looking for scapegoats, and the decadence of capitalism as a whole; and you get a nasty brew.

That’s the closest thing to a decent explanation I’ve ever heard on the subject. I still don’t really get Nazism's and its obsession with the Jews. Does anyone?

Man what a load of crock.

The Jews made the perfect scapegoat. They where an easy target for him to use so people would ignore how bad their own lives were.

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jef costello
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Jan 19 2006 00:17
stilllooney wrote:
alibadani wrote:
I used to be a Trotskyist. embarrassed Their (the WSWS's) explanation of the Nazi obsession with Jews goes something like this: The real hatred of the Nazis was towards the working class who had dared to make a revolution in 1918 that ended Germany’s great patriotic war. However the lowly workers themselves couldn’t possibly have done this without all those damn Marxists. There were quite a few Jews among the union leaders and in the social democracy. So it was not the Rothschild-style bourgeois Jews that bothered Hitler but the Luxemburg-style Marxist Jews. Eventually an entire ideology emerged about race and nation. Add to this, the low cultural level of lumpen, peasant, and shopkeeper elements; the panic and desperation of the petty-bourgeoisie on the verge of ruin and looking for scapegoats, and the decadence of capitalism as a whole; and you get a nasty brew.

That’s the closest thing to a decent explanation I’ve ever heard on the subject. I still don’t really get Nazism's and its obsession with the Jews. Does anyone?

Man what a load of crock.

The Jews made the perfect scapegoat. They where an easy target for him to use so people would ignore how bad their own lives were.

exactly.

It doesn't matter which group is chosen as long as they can be victimised, and if you can appropriate their assets and labour wholesale then more's the better from a capitalist point of view.

baboon
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Jan 19 2006 12:00

So it's OK to support the left of capital ("By mistake"). This is the tenor of all the anarchist type postings, ie, support the nation, support the capitalist state.

When these so-called radicals are confronted with real, radical concepts - I'm thinking about people like Imafuckingrevolutionaryiam68 - they immediately go back to defend the status quo. There's no discussion of the radical concepts ("going to the root of things", as Marx said) but a complete rejection and abuse of those proposing them. Why is this?

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Lazy Riser
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Jan 19 2006 16:51

Hi

Quote:
they immediately go back to defend the status quo

Rockin' All Over the World, Marguherita Time. Genius.

Love

LR

alibadani
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Jan 19 2006 19:56
revol68 wrote:

infact one thing that really gets my back up is national liberation bullshit.

Well that's a start. But you see you have to be practical. I mean the foreign rulers could be a bunch of genocidal maniacs like, say, Nazis. Then we must join national liberation movements. You know, for practicality's sake.

baboon
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Feb 3 2006 15:20

I'm glad that revol68 agrees that to be radical means going to the root of things. In at least one previous posting from him there's explicit support for British democracy based on the argument of the "lesser evil".

Anti-fascism itself, which he seems to wholeheartedly support, implicitly supports democracy or stalinism (its two components). Going to the root of fascism, exposes it as another expression of capitalism. It is evident that all expressions of capitalism, particularly in its decadent phase, will not be uniform, will not have absolutely the same characteristics. Such a vision (which puts nazism outside of capitalism) is a vulgar, schematic view and a dangerous trap for the working class.

On the other hand, terror itself doesn't just exist with jackboots - whether nazi or stalinist - but exists in a much more insidious form in the democratic state.

In further response to Revol68, no partisan groups (he said there were "plenty") were independent from the allies. Most, if not all of them, were under the aegis of Britain, America, Russia, Poland, etc. etc. It's back to the empty argument about "doing something" to fight the nazis, which itself leads to direct support for the democratic or stalinist state. I notice that these posts that go on about the resistance fighting the nazis, never, like the democratic states that were instrumental in setting up nazism in the 30s, mention the tens of thousands of German workers and communists who fought and were killed by the regime in the 1930s.

Again, further to revol, if internationalists intervened to attack one side in an imperialist war they would cease to be internationalists but supporters of one side of capital against the other. This is not "fucking absurd", as revol puts it, but a fundamental principle of the workers' movement.

Con Carroll
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Feb 3 2006 15:50

thatcher

Donald rumsfeld

Bush-omen

Griffin

progressive democrats right wing party minister for justice in Dublin with links to ku klux klan

does this explain nazism enough for you

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Steven.
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Feb 3 2006 18:34
Con Carroll wrote:
thatcher

Donald rumsfeld

Bush-omen

Griffin

progressive democrats right wing party minister for justice in Dublin with links to ku klux klan

does this explain nazism enough for you

confused confused

Lazlo_Woodbine
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Feb 4 2006 00:03
baboon wrote:
if internationalists intervened to attack one side in an imperialist war they would cease to be internationalists but supporters of one side of capital against the other. This is not "fucking absurd", as revol puts it, but a fundamental principle of the workers' movement.

So in order to be truly 'internationalist' a group would have to carry out armed attacks on all powers simultaneously? Sounds a bit hard, logistically-speaking. Maybe the groups in Poland could have attacked the nazis, and the USSR, whole those in France could have attacked the nazis, and the Allied forces... no, that's not really good enough, they're not attacking everyone, everywhere... Maybe some kind of trading of proletarian armed tokens could have gone on, possibly via Swizerland, to help things even out, properly?

i really hadn't thought this all through, sorry.

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jef costello
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Feb 4 2006 00:12
Lazlo_Woodbine wrote:
i really hadn't thought this all through, sorry.

That's why you're not in the ICC. They have all the answers, they told me so themselves.

alibadani
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Feb 4 2006 08:10

I think the interntionalist position in WW2 was absolutiely crucial for the future. Do we think Naziism is as bad as the bourgeoisie can get? In Rwanda they Hutu elite had thier followers massacre a million people. The typical weapon: the machete. Gas chambers almost seem merciful by comparison. At least the killing was somewhat "sanitized." When the Tutsi gained the upper hand in Rwanda there was not the same insanity.

There will always be a bourgeois camp that is particularly monstruous. And there will always be a bourgeois camp that opposes the particularly montrous camp by claiming to be less fucked up. If workers are forever chosing the lesser evil, even as the evils both greater and lesser get worse and worse, when will the workers ever overthrow the system?

That's why the internationalist posotion on WW2 is so crucial. It was the ultimate test of the main principle of the proletariat.

But like I always say the anti-fascism of Anarchism is obsessive. There is simply not the same obsession with anti-stalinism even though the stalinists killed far more people, while claiming to be communists. That is far more insidious yet anti-fascism is still so central to the anarchist movement. Its weird.

Jeff, Baboon isn't in the ICC. And when did the ICC tell you they had all the answers?

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Rob Ray
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Feb 4 2006 19:28

Surely the idea is to fuck up the worst form of capital first and then turn to the weaker form after you've won? I don't see anyone here saying that you have to continue to support the allies simply because you fight alongside them against the fascists except you. This surely was the reasoning behind the bolshevik crackdown after they won against the whites - they couldn't be sure of the continued loyalty of the anarchists.

Tactically speaking it makes a hell of a lot more sense to let others do some of the fighting for you than to take on everyone at once, even Hitler recognised that the two front war is an invitation to failure.

Incidentally a little off topic perhaps, but as the ICC seem to be around on this thread, I can't help but post that genius response to the Zanon petition of last year again:

Quote:
We are writing to explain briefly why, despite our solidarity with the workers of Zanon in the face of provocations and attacks by the Argentine ruling class, we do not think that your petition is the way to express this solidarity...

Incidentally dunno if you guys at the ICdeadpeople noticed, but they won the court case. Such a waste of good revolutionary potential. Really what they should have done is fight to y'know, force the government through mass revolutionary warfare...