Um, Stalinists Run US Peace Movement? Would that be bad?

Right-wing Frontpage Magazine reporting on extreme left-wing Stalinists allegedly running the peace movement.

As much as I believe in everyone’s right to speak and protest - it is equally incumbent upon me to question the wisdom of anyone extolling the virtues of Castro, or especially, Kim Jong Il.

The United States may sometimes make boneheaded mistakes in foreign policy. But, c’mon, Kim Jong Il. He makes Castro look reasonable. Huge army, missile technology, nuclear weapons (Or not, according to SK). Yet, NK has a starving population, giant gulags, and human rights abuses that are some of the worst in the world.

With such epic bad judgment and analysis allegedly permeating these particular organizations, especially regarding the whole Cuban and North Korean situations, why should I listen to these people?

Note: you personally may have wonderful reasons for opposing the war, and are probably not a Stalinist. Can we just take that as a given? I’m not trying to associate the anti-war posters on the SDMB with these folks. Unless, of course, you would like to be associated with them. That would probably make a better debate anyway.

I don’t think that trying to associate opposition to the invasion of Iraq with support for North Korea is gonna get very far.

You shouldn’t listen to “these people.” Rather, you should consider the merits of the invasion and make up your own mind, like any other thinking person.

What makes her a Stalinist? Few Communist have any sort of affection for Stalin. The only Stalinists you’ll find nowdays are extreme Russian nationalists who want facism- not communism.

Oh, I forgot to mention. Saddam studied Stalin. Which is weird. The first time I saw the guy I thought he was a Stalin knock off.

She, meaning Leslie Cagan the planner of the Feb. 15 peace rally in front of the UN, is a Marxist-Leninist who supports Fidel Castro. The Worker’s World Party, catalyst of earlier demonstrations, is the organization that has a soft spot for Stalinists like Kim Jong Il.

Like father, like son.

This is hardly new. Didn’t the World Peace Council of the 70s and 80s get a lot of its funding from Moscow?

My cite is What about the Russians- and Nuclear War?, a book I have at home and whose authors I can’t recall at the moment.

I would expect most organizations that oppose the US government to be reflexively anti-war with Iraq. Along with others, of course, but the further left you are, the more likely you are to be anti-pretty much everything a Republican-led government wants to do.

I have never been to their websites, but I would bet the Socialist Workers Party, the American Communist Party, and so forth, to oppose the war with Iraq.


Mr. Aburish on the Stalin - Saddam link.

Yes, most of those sites call for stopping the war and for mobilizing for Peace on 2/15. I was wildly curious about this because it seems like I should be against whatever it is that they are for…so I looked for explanations.

From the Communist Party of Canada

In fact, the anti-war movement and the fight against capitalist globalization are one and the same battle, against the same enemy – imperialism, the highest and most reactionary stage of capitalism.

From the Socialist Party, UK

The Socialist says
Build for the mass demonstration in London on 15 February as part of the international day of protest against war with Iraq.

Build anti-war groups in every school, college, university, workplace and community.

Develop sustained and organised mass civil disobedience - walkouts, protests, blockades and industrial action.

Campaign for an alternative to global conflict and war - for a socialist world!

Best one, International A.N.S.W.E.R.

There’s a lot of -isms in there…

Protests of this sort are very loose coalitions. The Trotskyites, the International Socialisists and the Communists always think they are “the” organisers because their ideologies tell them that they are the vanguard party.

It’s your choice to listen to whomever you please on issues like the war on Iraq. What this article is trying to do is discredit the whole anti-war movement because one large event is being organized by a Stalinist group. These groups - UFPJ, International ANSWER, and the like - aren’t running the anti-war movement any more than the International Socialist Organization or the American Friends Service Committee are. So it’s facile - no, dishonest - to single out one group and trash the whole anti-war movement because they’re at the head of organizing one event.

So if I went to an anti-affirmative action rally sponsered by the KKK that would be fine with you? The sponsorship by a group of disgusting violent thugs would be meaningsless, as long as they are fellow travellers in a good cause?

Olentzero, It depends on the definition of “run”?

I agree actually. Strictly speaking, as a debate topic, the weakness of the affirmative position is the definition of run. OK, I’ll concede that. But, on the broader issue of one group of Stalinists supporting a Stalin wannabe and having, let’s say, “a significant role in organizing peace demonstrations,” I think the case has been made.

You know, as much mud - much unsubstantiated - as gets thrown at the United States and GWB by the far left, it is amazing to see how thin their skins can be.

[sub]Beagle’s Correlary to Godwin’s Law

In 10…9…

“You are a McCarthyite…”[/sub]

Hey, did anyone hear the story that after Gulf War II: Unfinished Business ---- available on a 24 hour news channel near you, the US is going to pull out of Saudi Arabia? That is #1 on the International A.N.S.W.E.R. list. OHMIGOD, they’ve infiltrated, let’s reopen the HUAC. Jes’ kiddin’.

I’ve thought pulling out was a good idea for a long time. The Saudi’s don’t want us there, it inflames the radical Muslims (Holy Land, etc), and we can’t use them for anything.

No, because I oppose the KKK and I support affirmative action.

The case has been made for what? The whole anti-war movement being Stalinist?

Premise 1: Saddam patterns himself on Stalin. See above link.

Premise 2: The WWP idealizes the Stalinist regime in NK. See above link.

Premise 3: Leslie Cagan supports Fidel Castro. See above link.

Premise 4: Castro, Saddam, and Stalin might reasonably be termed “very repressive,” “very, very repressive” and “perhaps the most repressive in history.”

Premise 5: Cagan and the WWP, what did I say?, "(have),let’s say, “a significant role in organizing peace demonstrations.”

Conclusion: Many of the US anti-war movement’s visible demonstrations are generated by people with a preference for some of the worst governments I can imagine. Talk about unclean hands.

So you simply ignore my point. OK, suppose the Klan gave a anti-war rally, and went on and on about how the Iraq war was a plot by the Jews and ZOG against the white man. I believe that most white supremacist groups actually hold this view. Would you consider attending an anti-war rally sponsored by the KKK, or Stormfront, or WAR? After all, fellow travelers…

And therefore what? I’m not arguing that International ANSWER isn’t Stalinist - though I don’t know a whole lot about UFPJ so I won’t make a statement either way about that.

So the groups that have called for demonstrations, publicized them, and organized the programs at the front (speakers and such) are Stalinist. Now what?

Lemur, I’m not defending Stalinism by any stretch of the imagination. But I don’t use “opposition to the war” as the sole yardstick for deciding which rallies to attend or which groups to support, either. I certainly don’t consider anyone who opposes the war on the basis of the “Jewish conspiracy”, and whose solution to preventing other similar occurrences is probably some form of the Final Solution, to be a ‘fellow traveler’.

International ANSWER, for all their major faults, rightly see this war as an imperialist move by the US and oppose the war on that basis. Refusing to participate in a demonstration they organize simply because they’re Stalinists will leave groups like the ISO isolated from the people who oppose the war, who aren’t Stalinists, and who comprise the audience we’re trying to reach with our ideas.

It will be interesting to see how the oil trust idea works out, if it should come to pass. I would not be surprised if a US victory over Saddam made Iraq billions more dollars, oh, besides freeing them from the hands of a Stalinist madman. Moreover, I see the US attempting to withdraw troops ASAP after any war. Of course, that’s just my opinion…

That’s as may be. I’m still interested in hearing what further conclusions you draw from noting that three demonstrations, attended by thousands people who oppose the war, were organized by Stalinist groups.