by MIM(Prisons) Dimitroff wrote that fascism "is medieval barbarity and bestiality, it is unbridled aggression in relation to other nations and countries." (1) This is opposed to the civilized and professional manner in which healthy imperialism exports finance capital and extracts profits from the majority of the world that is proletariat and peasants. We write this both in relative terms and tongue-in-cheek. Of course, imperialism kills millions of people, more than any other political system to date, including fascism because of its length of existence. Yet, the day-to-day operations of healthy imperialism pass as reasonable professional activity. Fascism, in contrast, fools no one. It is for this reason that the imperialists do not favor fascism under normal conditions, they do not want their brutality and exploitation exposed bare for the world to see. To do so heightens the class struggle. Some influenced by the writings of J. Sakai et al. today repeat the line that fascism is a movement of the petty bourgeoisie, or outside the contradiction of proletariat vs. bourgeoisie, which Dimitroff attacked in his essay cited below. Sakai goes so far as to put oppressed nation organizations at war with the imperialists in the fascist camp. This is a critical error in this line. So if fascism is so bad for the imperialists, how can they be behind it? As Stalin said, it is forced upon them. Specifically, the contradiction is found in the declining rate of profit that Marx exposed as an inherent characteristic of capitalism even before imperialism was well-developed. While imperialism expanded the means of extracting profits from the laboring classes beyond the simple model explained in the beginning of Capital by Marx, the imperialists are still limited by the inherent contradictions in capitalism. These contradictions include the class struggle of the proletariat who seeks to free itself from imperialist exploitation. When profit rates approach zero, production slows to a stop, and imperialism resorts to what Marx called "primitive accumulation." Therefore, we expect fascism to raise its head again, probably doing more damage than in the 1930s and 40s, as the class struggle heightens. MIM Thought more fully developed the theses of Engels and Lenin that whole nations are bought off by imperialist plunder. These nations' vast majority are allies of imperialism, though not actually part of the imperialist class. This class will feel the crunch of imperialist crisis more acutely than the imperialists themselves, as the imperialists pass the costs along to the majority of the oppressor nations. It is for this reason that the labor aristocracy are on the streets calling for oppression, forced exploitation, occupation and even extermination of oppressed nations, and therefore appear as the initiators of the movement for fascism. But in the fundamental contradiction of capitalism, between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat, the petty bourgeoisie has always been seen by Marxism as an impotent, vacillator between the two sides. This has not changed, but the concentration of the petty bourgeoisie as whole nations that are parasitic on the world has increased their visibility as a class. A class that too many dogmatists still wrap up in the proletariat camp. Fascism is a mass movement in the First World. It is not so in the Third World. The mass support in oppressor nations is indicative of their alliance with imperialism, not their opposition to it. MIM(Prisons) upholds the MIM line on fascism as defined in the congress resolutions that follow. We also provide an article below on the role of the imperialist country working class and petty bourgeoisie in Nazi Germany by the Leading Light Communist Organization (LLCO). We preface this article with our assessment of LLCO at this time. For more on the history of fascism, also see MIM Theory 6: The Stalin Issue and Arms & Empire by Richard Krooth. notes: 1.Georgi Dimitroff. Working Class Unity - Bulwark Against Fascism, 1935.
2002 MIM Congress
"Theses on fascism in 2002"
1. The victory of fascism in our times by filthy scum that rose to power in Italy and Austria, the commemorations of Nazis and Nazi collaborators in the Baltic countries, Le Pen's run-off victory for president in France in 2002, and the fascist surge in Belgium and Denmark demonstrates that contrary to bourgeois propagandists, the capitalist countries did not learn any lessons against fascism during World War II. Rather fascism arises as a sign of the decay of imperialism that the world continues to suffer under, because capitalism as a system is incapable of learning the true lessons of peace.
The pivot for fighting fascism and anti-Semitism is grasping the global pattern and local dynamics of parasitism. Those political leaders and movements which seek to increase imperialist country parasitism whether from the "left" or the "right" are feeding the flames of fascism. Whether stirred from the "left" or "right," parasitic movements give birth to ultra-nationalism as a simple answer to alleged immigration "problems" and oppressor nation joblessness. It hardly matters what exact program stirs these fascist forces to life, because fascist activists and supporters are not politically conscious in a detailed way in most cases anyway. Today, those contending for parliamentary power, including fascists, are more or less synonymous with parasitism and for this reason there is a special meaning to opposing "democracy," by which we mean majority rule within imperialist countries. It is in "democracy" where outsiders like Le Pen can posture their way into power only by offering more parasitism than the current elected officials like Chirac or Jospin.
Since neither Chirac's nor Le Pen's coalition in France opposes parasitism, the question of who to side with if anyone can only be strategic or tactical. It is not a question of ideological principle to support either. The proletariat of France should seek advantage however it can in the struggle between Le Pen and Chirac.
During World War II, siding against fascism automatically was part of a larger calculation of the global balance of forces. Today, if France and much of Europe goes fascist but the United $tates does not, there may be positive or negative impacts overall for the proletariat. Opposing fascism in the united $tates is perhaps more urgent strategically for the international proletariat than the rise of fascism in Europe.
2. MIM approves the following resolution for release as part of Congress documents. A more detailed analysis will appear in MIM Theory.
Imperialism has been overthrown in one country. It was not France in 1968. It was in the Soviet-occupied zone of Germany in 1945. In the imperialist countries, it is not general strikes, large wage increases or "30 for 40" that should be studied. It is the example of the downfall of Nazi Germany that is still the most relevant example of revolutionary history in the imperialist countries. It is a measure of the chokehold of revisionism in the imperialist countries, that the Soviet occupation of a zone of Germany is not widely upheld as an example of the road forward.
Although the German communists aided by the USSR during World War II set up anti-militarist and anti-Hitler committees, anti-militarism never took hold amongst a majority of Germans and the vast majority of the German population had to be persuaded by weapons instead of reason. Although Stalin considered the idea that the war should slow down in order to give the German people yet another few months to change their minds, in the end the only correct decision was to hasten the military conflict and thereby bring an end to much genocide.
3. In the essence of U.S. Government activity outside U.$. borders, the united $tates carries out a combination of genocide against the people and bribery of local ruling class lackeys. It is elementary that any proletarian movement in the imperialist countries must oppose their own governments' oppression in the Third World, not least of all because any peaceful world will require that genocide be relinquished as a tool of "foreign policy." Today there remain a majority of elected "democratic" politicians in the imperialist country who are too spineless or backward to say openly that those who commit genocide in the Third World will find that the oppressed people will "kill them back." It is the duty of communist parties in the imperialist countries to cultivate the truth that contrary to the Amerikkkans who killed almost all the Native peoples in North America and contrary to Hitler who systematically killed many peoples and planned to kill many more, genocide does not bring lasting peace. Even in the killing of the most militarily defenseless victims as in the white settlers who killed Indians, the history of violence lasts to this day to produce the likes of the Columbine tragedy, where serial killers run amok spraying bullets everywhere--at a frequency not seen in countries without that history of genocide by gun-toting cowboys.
Today, the proletariat must be merciless to any politician who continues like the ostrich with its head in the sand to believe that modern weapons of militarism will not spread to the victims of genocide. Quite the contrary, the profit-system guarantees that where there is demand, there will be supply.
Whether it is Iraq, Afghanistan or the West Bank, it is clear that without openly adopting fascism, the essence of u.$. imperialism and its allies today is genocide and any tally of the victims of U.$. imperialism will show that it has implemented much more of Hitler's genocidal plans than Hitler did.
4. For tactics of opposing fascism, it is important to cultivate the scientific non-voter, who is often maligned by so-called "democratic" forces as "apathetic." The scientific non-voter is often conscious that s/he has not investigated a political situation and therefore does not vote--and in this way believes he or she is demonstrating minimal responsibility. The scientific non-voter is often disgusted by politicians who posture for votes and bribery. In contrast with "democracy" activists who believe that the votes of willfully ignorant but decadent people will somehow add up to social progress, the scientific non-voter is one reason why we communists should not pander to those who want "majority rule" in the imperialist countries. If communists do not make it clear that they believe politics requires strong scientific and leadership efforts, the scientific non-voter is liable to turn to hard-line fascism.
As communists we should already know that there is no way to prevent a general distrust and disgust regarding parliamentary politics. The only question is whether those disgusted with politicians posturing for votes without standing for principles and difficult solutions will be diverted by fascists, brow-beaten by parliamentary cretins or won over by communists. We communists are here to say that politics is like any other area of life in that science really does matter and it is not a matter that the truth will arise through a majority vote of those who know very well that they do not pay much attention to the subject at hand. Majority input can only be helpful in most times in imperialist countries when the majority recognizes that it does not put in enough effort to be worthy of deciding whether someone should live or die in the West Bank for example. When the majority has realized clearly that only in exceptional political turmoil do the people themselves study political and social matters closely, the majority may decide to fall behind principled scientific leaders and support them in those areas where the majority does have knowledge and other kinds of power.
5. [Passed as amendment] Since U.$. imperialism is enemy #1 in the world, various tactical or strategic alliances cannot be ruled out as being contrary to proletarian interests, although each has limited usefulness to the international proletariat. One related road of conflict will involve the European Union (EU) in opposition to the Amerikkkan New World order, with the EU speaking as a whole. We suspect that this would be an imperialist reform movement within the New World Order; although other forces could also hide behind an EU conflict with the United $tates. Since overthrowing European imperialism entirely is not on the agenda, for now, MIM is pro-EU as a matter of opposing extreme European nationalism and old-style fascism. We point out that the New World Order can never be unified or peaceful.
2002 MIM Congress
"Relationship between fascism in oppressor and oppressed countries"
The fight against fascism for the world's majority of people is principally advanced by the fight against U.$. imperialism. Even though Unkle $am may not implement fascist measures against the exploiter majority within U.$. borders, the United $tates is the main prop for fascism in the oppressed nations. The U.$.-led New World Order holds that Amerikkkans have the right to arrest nationals of other countries, including government leaders such as Manuel Noriega of Panama. The Amerikkkan New World Order regularly violates the sovereignty of other nations through bombings, invasions and assassinations. In various countries in the Third World, the United $tates arms, trains and otherwise aids fascists in power who suspend parliaments, carry out coups and execute opponents. Within U.$. borders, the rulers imprison the lumpenproletariat which it treats in the same way roughly speaking as the Third World. For the majority of people within U.$. borders, U.$.-style fascism is happy to allow the candidates of their choice to contest for seats in the Congress. It will be a measure of the success of the Third World proletariat when Unkle $am feels compelled to suspend the currently meaningless "democratic" contests held within the Amerikkkan majority, because it would mean that the class struggle has created a crack in the social base of imperialism. Things such as the "proliferation of weapons of mass destruction" mean that the rulers will indeed face challenges from the Third World proletariat that may go so far as to change economic conditions in the United $tates, some day. Likewise, I$rael may not suspend parliament for the exploiter majority, but it certainly seeks pro-I$rael puppets amongst Palestinians and desperately wishes for fascist puppets who would kill their own people on behalf of I$rael, to quell the intifadah.
2002 MIM Congress
"Definition of fascism"
Here MIM culls some of the defining characteristics of fascism from classic texts of the Third International: Dimitrov's report to the 7th world congress of the COMINTERN (1) and Dutt's "Fascism and Social Revolution."(2) Applying these principles today, we can say that even though the imperialists have not implemented fascist measures against the exploiter majority in First World countries, the imperialists are the principal prop of fascism in the oppressed nations. This is why MIM wages a concerted fight against nationalist social-democracy and fascism in Europe. Both are strains of militant parasitism; both support the status quo of oppression in the Third World.
1. Fascism is "the open terroristic dictatorship of the most reactionary, most chauvinistic, and most imperialist elements of finance capital."(Dimitrov, p. 2)
2. Fascism is an extreme measure taken by the bourgeoisie to forestall proletarian revolution; it "expresses the weakness of the bourgeoisie itself, afraid of the realization of a united struggle of the working class, afraid of revolution, and no longer in a position to maintain its dictatorship over the masses by the old means of bourgeois democracy and parliamentarianism."(Dimitrov, p. 2) "The conditions [which give rise to fascism] are: instability of capitalist relationships; the existence of considerable declassed social elements, the pauperization of broad strata of the urban petit-bourgeoisie and of the intelligentsia; discontent among the rural petit-bourgeoisie, and finally, the constant menace of mass proletarian action."(Dutt, p. 88)
3. Fascism concentrates each imperialist bloc into a single economic unit while at the same time increasing between-bloc antagonisms and advancing towards war. (Dutt, pp. 72-73)
4. Fascism promotes chauvinist demagogy (e.g. reducing the problem of parasitism to the "Jewish Question") and anti-science obscuratinism (e.g. Dutt, pp. 54-58 or any Jerry Bruckheimer film). Fascism hypocritically adopts Marxist critiques of capitalism, and bourgeois democracy.(Dimitrov, pp. 6-7) It does this to "utilize the discontent of the petit-bourgeois, the intellectual, and other strata in society."(Dutt, p. 89)
5. Still, fascism may not completely dispense with bourgeois democracy--e.g. banning revolutionary parties or even competing bourgeois parties--depending on "historical, social and economic conditions."(Dimitrov, p. 4)
6. Both bourgeois democracy and fascism are forms of the class dictatorship of finance or comprador capital (in imperialist and semi-colonial countries, respectively)--that is, both use organized violence to maintain the class rule of the oppressors over the oppressed. Hence, any differentiation between bourgeois democracy and fascism is a strategic or tactical matter--not a matter of Marxist principles.
7. The difference between bourgeois democracy and fascism is a matter of quantitative changes leading to a qualitative change. The qualitative differences are relevant to us in terms of their effect on our policies towards non-proletarian classes. "The accession to power of fascism is not an ordinary succession of one bourgeois government by another, but a substitution of one state form of class domination of the bourgeoisie--bourgeois democracy--by another form--open terrorist dictatorship. It would be a serious mistake to ignore this distinction, a mistake liable to prevent the revolutionary proletariat from mobilizing the widest strata of the working people of town and country for the struggle against the menace of seizure of power by the fascists, and from taking advantage of the contradictions which exist in the camp of the bourgeoisie itself. But it is a mistake, no less serious and dangerous, to underrate the importance of, for the establishment of fascist dictatorship, of the reactionary measures of the bourgeoisie at present increasingly developing in bourgeois-democratic countries--measures which suppress the democratic liberties of the working people, falsify and curtail the rights of parliament and intensify the repression of the revolutionary movement."(Dimitrov, pp. 4-5; emphasis in the original)
8. Social democrats of the Second International ilk paved the way for the fascists by closely identifying itself with the national interests of their respective imperialists states, denying internationalism, placing their faith in bourgeois democracy and scuttling the extra-legal struggle for state power. Hence they earned the epithet "social fascists."
9. The COMINTERN United Front policy was based on its assessment that "[f]ascism is the most viscious enemy of the working class and working people, who constitute nine-tenths of the people in [the] fascist [and proto-fascist] countries."(p. 12) Furthermore, the working class in these countries constituted a unified proletariat. Fascism was eroding the material basis for differences between communist and social-democratic workers.(E.g. Dimitrov, pp. 24-34)
10. The labor aristocracy is majority in the imperialist countries and not proletarian. The fact that the imperialist allow the labor aristocracy bourgeois democracy is an example of the alliance between these two classes and consistent with the following observation from Dutt: "Fascism strives to establish political and organizational unity among all the governing classes of capitalist society (the bankers, the big industrialists and the agrarians), and to establish their undivided, open and consistent dictatorship."(Dutt, p 89; emphasis added)
2. R Palme Dutt, Fascism and Social Revolution, New York: International Publishers, 1934.
Osama Bin Laden and the Concept of "Theocratic Fascism"
Osama Bin Laden or his followers are not just scaring the wits out of the bourgeoisified people of the imperialist countries. He and his followers are also winning the praise of Third World peoples. At this particular point in history, it is a given that the imperialists are going to demonize someone in the Mideast. We have to ask ourselves why it is that an Arab, African or Iranian Maoist leader did not obtain this honor now given to Osama Bin Laden.
A bourgeois research organization found that the peoples of Indonesia, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan and the Palestinian Authority regard Osama Bin Laden as one of three leaders they most trust to "do the right thing."(1)
The people of Jordan (71%) and Indonesia (66%) also view Osama Bin Laden as more peaceful than the united $tates.(2) It goes to show that attacks on U.$. interests will be supported by the Third World masses and even the foreign policy bourgeoisie of u.$. imperialism knows it. It's an important lesson to take a materialist approach to the masses and ask them who they trust more, their Maoist leaders or the u.$. imperialists.
A motley crew of counterrevolutionaries, labor bureaucrats and centrists calling themselves "Marxist-Leninist" are responsible for Islamic militants' outflanking the communists in the minds of the exploited of many Third World countries. We have two choices in this matter: 1) we can believe the Islamic scriptural hocus-pocus and that it is somehow God's will. 2) we can realize that communists in many Middle East and Third World countries surrendered nationalist credentials in the Third World the way a Mao or even a Ho Chi Minh never allowed. The Islamic movement is becoming the preferred expression of the struggle against imperialist super-exploitation in many countries while the "Marxist-Leninists" and "Maoists" lose the battle to represent the super-exploited, by their failure to concretely expose super-exploitation and target the super-exploiting enemies.
The bourgeois press made it no secret that after September 11 2001, the CIA landed in Afghanistan with paper bags full of money to buy off political leaders.(3) This sort of thing has gone on throughout the Mideast and even many of the most stupid and reactionary pseudo-Marxists ranging from Trotskyists to neo-Hoxhaites have figured out that much along with the fact that NGOs (non- governmental organizations) are playing a similar role throughout the Third World.
Along these lines the Iraqi "Communist Party" volunteered to serve in George Bush's occupation regime in Iraq. It's important to understand that this goes against not just "MIM Thought," but also the universal teachings of Lenin, Stalin and Mao. This is so obvious that it is almost not worth mentioning.