Some observations on the final unitary resolution of the FIT-U Latinamerica and U.S conference
by Michael Pröbsting, International Secretary of the Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) 3 August 2020, www.thecommunists.net
The Latin America and U.S conference organized by the Argentinean alliance FIT-U (composed of the four Trotskyist parties PTS, PO, IS and MST) has ended with the adoption of a unitary resolution. As we reported, the RCIT could not attend this conference with the right to speak. Our participation was supported by one part of the organizing parties but opposed by another part. 
In this commentary we will limit ourselves to make some observations on the final resolution. We will refrain from elaborating in detail our positions on all the issues which the unitary resolution deals with and refer readers to our extensive literature. (See the footnotes)
First we note with satisfaction that the resolution does not only make a general assessment on the crisis of capitalism, the tyranny of imperialist super-exploitation, the necessity of an independent working class position on the basis of an anti-capitalist strategy, etc.
The statement also takes a fundamentally correct position in a number of important conflicts and class struggles. Among them we note the defense of Cuba and Venezuela against imperialist aggression without lending any political support to their bourgeois-populist and Stalinist regimes.  It takes the same principled position in Bolivia where it denounces the reactionary coup against Morales without lending political support to him and his MAS. 
However, it is impossible to ignore the profound weaknesses of the unitary statement. It is urgent to openly name these weaknesses as this is the only way to overcome them in the future. Again, we note that we limit ourselves at this place to briefly outline what we consider as the most glaring deficits and refer to a more detailed elaboration on this issue to the extensive literature of the RCIT.
Regional-centeredness instead of internationalism
First, we note that the resolution suffers from a profound regional-centeredness. It lacks an internationalist approach to the political events and the class struggle in the Americas. By this criticism we do not mean that we consider it as inappropriate that the statement focuses on the Americas. No, our criticism is that the statement assumes that the political events and the class struggle in the Americas are basically caused by specific American factors. The statement gives the impression that the Americas exist in isolation of the world. However, in fact, this is not the case. The developments in the Americas – like in all other continents – are fundamentally part of a world process. This serious flaw becomes evident by the fact that several of the most important global developments which determine the class struggle in the Americas are simply ignored in the statement.
First, it is astonishing that the statement – despite some length (more than 2.200 words) – does not mention with a single word the COVID-19 pandemic and the reactionary state bonapartist offensive of the ruling class. Everyone knows that this is a crucial issue both of Latin American as well as of U.S. politics. So why is the statement silent on this question? Can it be the case that some of the organizing parties which shamefully support the reactionary and anti-democratic Lockdown policy felt embarrassed to mention this issue? 
Secondly, the statement does not spend a single word on the Great Power rivalry between the U.S. and China. This is all the more astonishing because this rivalry is a crucial factor in the process of decline of U.S. imperialism which, in turn, is key to understand the systemic domestic crisis and the profound division within the ruling class in the U.S. This inter-imperialist rivalry between the two largest Great Powers is not only a central factor to understand world politics. It also has strong influence on the political and economic developments in Latin America. The huge increase of foreign investment of Chinese monopolies, the support of Moscow and Beijing for the regimes in Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, etc. - all this undermines the long-standing hegemony of U.S. imperialism in Latin America. Again, the question arises if this silence might have been caused by the fact that one of the organizing parties (the Argentinean PO) is an undisguised supporter of Chinese and Russian imperialism and other parties hesitate to recognize the imperialist character of these two Great Powers? 
Silence on the Arab Revolution
Third, the statement talks a lot, and rightly so, about the upswing of the class struggles in the Americas. However, it fails to mention that these struggles don't take place in isolation but are part of a global wave of popular uprisings which started in 2019 and which swept from Hong Kong to Ecuador, from Iraq to Chile, from India to Lebanon and from Sudan to Catalunya. Again, this creates the wrong impression that the class struggles in the Americas are a specific American phenomenon and not part of a global process. 
Related to this unfortunate silence is the failure to mention with a single word the ongoing Arab Revolution – which began in 2011 and which has been the most profound revolutionary process of the 21st century so far.  No word about the Syrian Revolution – the longest-lasting revolutionary event in recent history where the workers and poor peasants fight against the Russian-Iranian-Assadist occupation forces since more than nine years.  No word about the liberation struggle of the heroic Palestinian people who face the unrestricted aggression of the Zionist state. Again, how can such an astonishing silence be explained? It is difficult to avoid the impression that such silence is related to the fact that a sector of the FIT-U parties shamefully refuses to support the Syrian Revolution and other liberation struggles in the Arab world since many years.  Furthermore, this silence also brings to our mind the scandalous vote of three FIT-U deputies (belonging to PO and PTS) on 18 June for a pro-Zionist bill - a vote which was only reluctantly “rectified” nine days later after strong protests by many militants. 
We think that such a regional-centeredness, which characterizes the statement of the FIT-U conference, is in fundamental contradiction to Trotsky's theory of permanent revolution. It is a key mark of this Marxist conception to view national and regional developments not in isolation but as part of an international process. 
Finally, we want to draw attention to another important weak spot in the statement. Talking about the struggles in the U.S. and in Latin America, the declaration rightly condemns the brutal repression by the police. However, it fails to call for the formation of organized self-defense units armed with whatever is necessary to fight back against the capitalist repression forces. Such self-defense units are highly urgent to fight back against the killer-cops in the U.S., Chile and other countries and could constitute a first step towards workers and popular militias. However, without such militias any socialist revolution – which the FIT-U parties proclaim as their goal – remains a useless day-dream.
These are, in our view, some of the most important mistakes in the statement of the FIT-U conference. We hope that it will be possible on future debates to discuss and overcome them. This is crucial in our view because it is the firm belief of the RCIT that is impossible to elaborate a revolutionary strategy for the current period without a correct approach to the fundamental issues of world politics and the global class struggle.
 See on this: RCIT: An Opportunity To March Forward – An Opportunity Which Should Not Be Missed! Open Letter to all participants of the virtual Latin American and US conference organized by FIT-U (Argentina) on 30 and 31 July and 1 August, 30 July 2020, https://www.thecommunists.net/rcit/open-letter-to-all-participants-of-the-virtual-fit-u-conference/; Open Letter to the FIT-U: https://www.thecommunists.net/rcit/open-letter-to-fit-u-for-an-international-conference-on-the-struggle-against-the-global-capitalist-crisis/
 See on this e.g. RCIT: Venezuela: A Failed Imperialist Plot. Defeat the U.S. aggression! Lift the sanctions against Venezuela now! But no political support for the Maduro government! 12 May 2020, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/latin-america/venezuela-a-failed-imperialist-plot/; Michael Pröbsting: Cuba‘s Revolution Sold Out? The Road from Revolution to the Restoration of Capitalism, https://www.thecommunists.net/theory/cuba-s-revolution-sold-out/
 See on this RCIT & PRT: Bolivia: Defeat the Right-Wing Coup! Build democratic popular assemblies and self-defense committees! For a broad anti-coup united front! But no political confidence in Morales! 12 November 2019, https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/latin-america/bolivia-defeat-the-right-wing-coup/
 See on this RCIT: COVID-19 Counterrevolution and pandemic: https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/global/collection-of-articles-on-the-2019-corona-virus/
 See on this RCIT: Great Power Rivalry: https://www.thecommunists.net/theory/china-russia-as-imperialist-powers/
 See on this RCIT: The Global Popular Uprising against Racism and Police Violence: https://www.thecommunists.net/worldwide/global/the-global-popular-uprising-against-racism-and-police-violence/
 See on this Michael Pröbsting: Syria and Great Power Rivalry: The Failure of the „Left“. The bleeding Syrian Revolution and the recent Escalation of Inter-Imperialist Rivalry between the US and Russia – A Marxist Critique of Social Democracy, Stalinism and Centrism, 21 April 2018, https://www.thecommunists.net/theory/syria-great-power-rivalry-and-the-failure-of-the-left/
 See on this e.g. Michael Pröbsting: The Struggle for Democracy in the Imperialist Countries Today. The Marxist Theory of Permanent Revolution and its Relevance for the Imperialist Metropolises, August 2015, https://www.thecommunists.net/theory/democracy-vs-imperialism/