Today's New York Times editorial on Iran is a perfect example why a new anti-Amerikan military pact is necessary. The editorial of September 27 2007 follows the ages-old New York Times line that "crazy" Third World "dictators" should never have weapons of mass destruction, facts be damned. So the New York Times condemns the United Nations (UN) intervention on atomic energy in Iran.
On August 21, Iran reached an agreement with the UN's IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) regarding its nuclear programs.(1) So of course that is exactly when France and the New York Times started speaking up for more sanctions on Iran. It is a repetition of past instances where cooperation with nuclear and weapons inspectors has resulted in increased belligerence from both the Clinton and Bush administrations in Iraq. Likewise, no sooner do nuclear inspectors show up in Korea that I$raeli spies claim a few months later to have "samples" from Korean nuclear plants. It's almost as if those stupid enough to agree to international inspections have demonstrated their weakness and are ripe for pick-pocketing.
The idealists among us will wonder whether the New York Times learned a single thing from the Iraq War. The answer is no.
The New York Times emits a political frequency of very predictable character. Those interested in diplomacy should be able to write the New York Times in their sleep, the formula being 90% U.$. government officials and 10% comment from Third World officials.
MIM's thesis on the labor aristocracy is crucial to understanding diplomacy and hence war. As reading the New York Times editorial today should demonstrate, it is simply too much to ask MIM or anyone else inside u.$. borders to bail out Iran.
Since the Carter administration, there has been 30% solid support for nuking Iran at any time, and that means a majority in the Republican Party. There is nothing that MIM can do about such an overwhelming disadvantage. Then when the anti-Republican New York Times chimes in, we have reached the stage of hopelessness.
There are some things that anti-militarists inside U.$. borders can be asked to do. Other things are simply beyond their reach at this time in history. Where there is a stout ground war grinding out, the anti- militarist movement has proved it can create news stories on a continuous basis but not end the war. Where the question is a bombing that could send the global economy into tailspin, there is nothing MIM can do in the foreseeable future.
In the case of Iran, it is not that the New York Times is stupid. It is simply far off from reality, because its world is hugely colored by the existence of the labor aristocracy, a.k.a. majority public opinion that intervenes over and over in Amerikan politics. That majority view is stable and hopelessly warped, militarist and off-base.
In the camp of proletarian nations, there is a division between those of moderate method and those of revolutionary methods. Moderates emphasize joining a military alliance while revolutionaries are happy to see U.$. attacks potentially up-end the politics of countries such as Pakistan, Turkey, Palestine etc.
Unfortunately, the international communist movement shot itself in the foot. Likewise, the WARSAW pact was based on a precise but backward Brezhnevite ideology. The anti-Amerikan pact of today needs to be based on class, not the ideologies of the governments involved.
Elections or not elections--it's not important. Chavez is elected. He belongs in an anti-Amerikan bloc. China's leadership is not elected. Yet it too belongs in an anti-Amerikan bloc.
The borderline question is Russia, a country historically poised between East and West. Russia has a substantial labor aristocracy that predisposes it to the Western outlook in Leningrad and Moscow. The current ruling generation has the blood of Afghanistan on its hands, a hatred for Muslim people in general.
The best thing for Russia would be to admit that Brezhnev was not Stalin--not even close--and that Muslim reaction to the USSR was just that-- defensive. So too has Al Qaeda's fight been defensive. Upon swallowing this point, Russia is well-suited to serve as a cornerstone of a new anti-Amerikan bloc.
Russia itself is afraid of Islamic revolution inside Russian borders. That is what makes it well-suited to lead the moderate struggle inside the proletarian nation camp.
We can ask ourselves how far along Al Qaeda would be if a military umbrella had protected Lebanon and Palestine for example. The moderate method has the potential of robbing MIM and Al Qaeda of supporters, if it truly supports national independence. It would be sectarian of MIM to begrudge those who manage a defense of nations by moderate tactics. In actuality, the Islamic population of Russia is also not critical to the Islamic revolution.
The role of the moderate proletarian camp would be unnecessary except for the U.$. labor aristocracy. In the original Marxist theory, in a conflict between the united $tates and Iran, there would be a proletarian or exploited majority in both countries that would serve as a restraining influence. Thus when the imperialist countries landed armies in the Soviet Union after 1917, there was a real fear by the imperialists of where that would lead in an offensive war. The restraints on the imperialists in that context were real. Today it is predictable that a substantial portion of settler states will applaud just about any bombing of Iran. MIM would be derelict not to point it out and ask for help.
Russia needs to assess its interests accurately. True, of all imperialist countries, Russia is best-suited to survive a global economic meltdown caused by U.$. belligerence. However, this sort of overreaching can lead to the misnomered "Dark Ages" and we can guess it will be Russia that goes first.
Russian banking is too inept and its trade too one-dimensional and thin to be hurt in a Western-instigated meltdown. After a series of terrorist incidents, the authoritarian measures imposed at borders and destroying airline traffic for instance hurt the Western countries much more than Russia, which has long learned how to live as "capitalism in one country." When combined with the fact that what Russia exports above all is oil/gas, it's easy to see that Amerikan soft power is more based on Liberalism than Russia's less extensive soft power.
This less extensive degree of Liberal-related soft power is what makes Russia a good candidate for the cornerstone of a bloc. Against MIM, it can be said that the West will lose more from an attack on Iran and like countries than Russia would. This MIM cannot deny and it's also the reason that countries such as Iran end up having revolutionary opportunities. Nonetheless, the degree of unreality to Amerikan politics requires restraining. We are currently in an all-or-nothing dynamic in too many situations. Rational calculation of Western interests vis-a-vis Russia is not the overriding calculation in Western thinking about Iran. The character of the labor aristocracy is much more important to the imperialist politicians waging wars.
We lack the international leadership to impose scientific communist leadership. We are more at a trade union stage of development of the international independence movement of proletarian nations.
The addition of Iran to SCO, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization was appropriate.(1) Perhaps SCO can become a restraining influence on the united $tates.
In the past year, a barrage of CNN propaganda has succeeded in lowering China's favorability rating in the Amerikan public by 10 points. The U.$. labor aristocracy is more dependent on China for its appropriation of labor than ever, but still it complains increasingly:
"A recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed that 65 percent of Americans have little or no confidence that food imported from China is safe to eat. And a Zogby poll shows that 82 percent of Americans are concerned about buying goods from China, with nearly two-thirds saying they would be willing to take part in a boycott of Chinese goods until Beijing implements more stringent safety regulations.Recently Gorbachev is complaining more openly about Stalin in Russian history. Surveys show that a majority of Russian youth has a positive view of Stalin.(3)
"The negative image of China is by no means limited to the quality of its exports. In a Pew Global Attitudes survey released in late June, the percentage of Americans with a favorable opinion of China dropped from 52 percent in May 2006 to 42 percent in May 2007.
"The decline in China's image is worldwide. In Western Europe, where opposition to China's record on capital punishment -- the country executes more people than the rest of the world combined -- is widespread, the Pew poll shows that China's favorability ratings dropped from 65 to 49 in Britain, 60 to 47 in France and 56 to 34 in Germany."(2)
Putin treats Stalin as a patriot. Yet more importantly and accurately Stalin was a global visionary following Lenin. In the event of imperialist war he hoped for Russia's defeat and he also opposed Russian anti-Semitism. Stalin saw challenges both at home and abroad, so merely imbibing patriotism and opposition to Western interpretations is not sufficient to generate young Stalins of the future.
It is always possible to win popularity with the West, by giving it everything. It is no accident that Russia's most inept leaders were also its most Liberal ones. Kasparov is the most competent of the bunch, but only in skills related to chess. These inept leaders only make a fascist uprising of Russians more likely. So we understand Putin's moderately positive outlook on Stalin. There are more extreme alternatives lurking.
We need to go further and understand that Stalin's outlook on the world became more true, in contrast with Trotsky's. In the worldwide clash between the West and its labor aristocracy on the one hand and nations seeking independence, it is much easier to restrain the minority than to repress the majority violently with hateful schemes such as increasingly desperate stories about weapons of mass destruction.
The united $tates is trying to restrain the movement for nations' independence one way. It is doing so in a way leading to greater violence and destabilization--with no point, unlike the violence of a Lenin or Stalin which always went in line with an organizing principle for society. Today if anyone in the State Department started to have an idea about an organizing principle to go with U.$. violence, Ann Coulter would red-bait him out of there in a jiffy. That is why even imperialist British generals called Rumsfeld's plans for Iraq "intellectually bankrupt."(4) If Rumsfeld had had a plan, the callers at Rush Limbaugh's show would have sounded off about socialist planning. Nor is this a question of just making a plan for the sake of having a plan. There is no progressive potential in u.$. imperialism. We ask the Kremlin, where has the united $tates flexed its muscle toward an intelligent end--Iraq, Iran or Palestine? The only example anyone can come up with is Libya, because at least in that case, the united $tates got what it wants--hey by accident. Assault enough countries and by luck, one's ineptitude can be inept. Even in that case, Libya had offered exactly what the united $tates wanted before U.$. belligerence.
If Russia would like to moderate global processes including on its borders, it needs to be able to restrain the united $tates. The labor aristocracy and even pornography exerts increased influence in Western foreign policy since the days of Lenin and Stalin and this must be accounted for, not wished away or fuzzed over in who-oriented intelligence or overly complicated analyses.