Issue No. 14 of the RCIT’s journal Revolutionary Communism (RevCom) both deals with several important developments which have taken place in the recent past as well as with crucial theoretical questions. In fact, this issue has to be seen as one half of a de facto double issue of our journal. The other “half” is issue RevCom No. 13 which appears at the same time as this issue.
Issue No. 13 is a special issue dedicated to the recent crucial events in Egypt. The dramatic ups and downs of the Revolution in Egypt and the recent advance of the Counterrevolution since the military coup on 3rd July are probably the most important single feature of the present world situation. The Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) has therefore intensively analyzed the contradictory development of the class struggle in Egypt. We have elaborated a program for the working class to defend the democratic gains against the dictatorship of General al-Sisi and to turn the defensive struggle into an offensive towards permanent revolution. A part of this extensive material of analyzes and programmatic articles has been already published in RevCom No. 12 and the latest documents are contained the Egypt special issue No. 13.
In fact the process of revolution and counter-revolution in Egypt is immensely rich in lessons and conclusion. This is obviously true for the Arab revolution but also for the understanding the process of permanent revolution in general. Those lessons include but are not limited to the nature of the democratic revolution, the meaning of democratic demands, the relationship of the democratic and the socialist revolution, the understanding of the contradictory developments of the political consciousness of the masses, the concept of the united front and the role of the revolutionary party.
What we have seen in the past months is a colossal failure of huge sectors of centrism – not to speak about the treacherous Stalinists who hailed the military coup in Egypt! – to understand the meaning of the democratic question and the revolutionary approach to it. Lenin once reminded revisionists that they: “… fail to appreciate the significance of democracy. For socialism is impossible without democracy because: (1) the proletariat cannot perform the socialist revolution unless it prepares for it by the struggle for democracy; (2) victorious socialism cannot consolidate its victory and bring humanity to the withering away of the state without implementing full democracy.“ (V. I. Lenin: A Caricature of Marxism and Imperialist Economism (1916), in: LCW 23, p. 74)
We have dealt with this and related crucial questions in various documents and hope to come back to it in the near future.
As our readers can see from reports and pictures in the journal as well as on our website, members of the RCIT have been active not only in terms of propaganda and theory but have also dedicated themselves in organizing rallies and demonstrations in solidarity with the resistance against the military dictatorship in Egypt.
Issue No. 14 – the other “half” of the double issue so to say – deals with other important questions beside Egypt. This is first and foremost the issue of the Syrian Revolution. Since more than two and a half years the workers and peasants in Syria are fighting against the murderous dictatorship of Assad. The RCIT has supported this democratic revolution since the beginning and called the workers and peasants to organize in action councils and militias independent of bourgeois and petty-bourgeois, secular and Islamist forces in order to achieve their freedom. This is only possible if the workers and peasants take the power and install the dictatorship of the proletariat which means to undertake the expropriation of the bourgeoisie, the replacement of the old state apparatus by the democratically centralized rule of popular councils and the advance towards a socialist transformation of the society.
We have warned at the same time against the interference of imperialist powers. This is obvious in the case of the Eastern imperialist powers (Russia and China) without whom the Assad regime would no longer be in power. This is however also true for the Western imperialist powers – first and foremost the USA, Britain and France. While they have no interest to bring the rebels to power – as leading representatives of the Obama administration openly admit – they want to advance their influence in the region at the cost of Russia and China.
The RCIT – as readers can see from this as well as from past issues of RevCom – always combined the unconditional support for the Syrian Revolution without giving political support to its leaderships with a clear rejection of any imperialist interference.
As in the case of Egypt, members of the RCIT have also been involved in internationalist activities in solidarity with the Syrian Revolution as well as against any imperialist interference and aggression. We call the international workers movement to mobilize in support for the Syrian rebels and popular committees with everything from medicine to arms. At the same time the working class must oppose NATO airstrikes and obstruct as much as possible all efforts of Russian and Chinese imperialism to support the reactionary Assad dictatorship.
We also document in RevCom No. 14 some outcomes of the recent international work of the RCIT. This includes the call for solidarity with the Greek Trotskyist Savas Michael-Matsas who has been put on trial by the fascist party “Golden Dawn”. Another example is a letter of greetings which we have been asked to send to the annual anti war conference organized by the LRCL in Japan.
We are particularly glad to report another advance of the RCIT’s efforts to build a powerful international Bolshevik organization. As readers of our journal and our website will know, we have been collaborated with the Brazil blog El Mundo Socialista for some time. Our discussions have led to substantial agreements and as a result we have established fraternal relations.
Finally we present in this issue of RevCom a contribution from the RCIT to deepen and advance the Marxist theory of imperialism. As our readers will know, we have published some month ago a comprehensive book THE GREAT ROBBERY OF THE SOUTH. Continuity and Changes in the Super-Exploitation of the Semi-Colonial World by Monopoly Capital. Consequences for the Marxist Theory of Imperialism. The author, Michael Pröbsting, deals with the developments in the forms and nature of imperialist super-exploitation and oppression of the semi-colonial world. In this journal we reprint the final chapter of the book which is a summary of its main conclusion.
We hope that this issue contains a number of interesting documents for our readers and look forward for responses, criticisms and suggestions.
29nd August 2013, Editorial Board