[From the Communist Organization of Greece]
The two “camps”
During the past five years a series of ideological and political issues arose, relating to choices, orientations, experiences, dilemmas and hardships faced by the multiform resistance and action of millions of people against neo-liberalism, war and imperialism. It could not have been otherwise, since different opinions, lines and ideological currents always co-existed and fought each other within the mass movements. Consequently, the revival of movements at the dawn of the 21st century brought about or refueled a series of political and ideological issues:
Is the concept of imperialism valid in modern times, or does it belong to the 20th century?
The war; with which line shall we fight against it?
Is Europe a pole opposing the US arrogance? What is “Europe” today?
Are we for or against violence? What is our stance towards terrorism and “war against terrorism”?
Shall we struggle to conquer the political power, or it is possible to change the world without conquering it?
Which can be the better and possible “another world”?
Let what follows be considered as a comment on these issues.
Facts are stubborn
Mass movements and resistances, uprisings, revolutionary processes are the products of the need and of the huge oppression experienced everyday on a worldwide scale by those “underneath”. They never are the result of planning on paper, nor are they ordered by ideological currents. The latter rather preexist (even in the form of small circles), meeting with movements on their course (especially when movements develop).
If we were to make a basic distinction within the mass movements on a worldwide scale, we would have to distinguish two great “camps”. On the one, stand those who do not believe that great, radical and serious changes can take place, those who believe that things will basically remain as they are. On the other, stand those who consider necessary the transcendence of the actual system of social relations and its replacement by another one, even if they do not know clearly what that system is and what its basic characteristics are.
These two big camps are present in almost all movements and their procedures. If we wish to study a little more this level (of “camps”), we shall remark that the first, the conservative one, is more composed, more organized, disposes of more staff and has better footholds. The radical “camp” is more diffused, less organized, and has very little support. Nevertheless, the second one appeared to be stronger during these five years. For two reasons: First, because it could express, and really did so, the rage, the despair and the discontent of popular masses, because it was not concerned by electoralist or other calculations, and because the all-sided development of resistance, movements, uprisings etc. is in its nature and constitutes an essential element of its line. Secondly, because during these five years a “necessary” and inevitable acceleration of the aggressiveness of the system’s basic forces took place. These forces, facing an immense economic crisis, had no other choice but the intensification of the attack against working people through the generalization of the neo-liberal holocaust and the recourse to “infinite” war. Therefore, by aggravating the brutality and the oppression, they left no ground to the ideas and the program of the conservative “camp”. In life the “weak” radical camp won.