- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Popular revolutions have only ever happened in Marxist imaginations.

Posted by: septimus ( Australia ) on October 12, 1999 at 12:41:10:

In Reply to: Another point of view posted by Stoller on October 11, 1999 at 12:32:24:

: Nice points and nice to hear from someone outside the West!

: Respectfully disageeing, however, I adopt Trotsky's famous analysis of terrorism: terrorism---the high-profile, violent acts of a minority group---tend to make the overall population feel powerless against the oppressive state and make the terrorist minority appear as their salvation.

: The (unified) people must be the salvation of the people. That is not to minimize the role of the Party in leading the struggle, but it emphasizes the need to have the participation of the population's majority---from the start. Or else: vanguards who are experts at violence.

I you wait for the support of a unified majority of the general population you will be waiting forever. Unbearable pain is very rarely inflicted uniformly by the state upon the population as a whole, but rather upon scattered minorities. It is precisely because these groups do not have sympathy with the majority that they find themselves in the position where they must find the will to violence if they are to survive.
Who would have heard of the Kurds if they had not resorted to violence? They do not have the advantage of a fashionable creed as is the case with Tibet.
Popular revolutions have only ever happened in Marxist imaginations. Even the Russian Revolution was not the popular revolt of Soviet propaganda. Lenin, Trotsky and a relatively small group of Bolsheviks had the will to make it happen. Only a minority of people ever have what it takes to commit the necessary violence.

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