Letters on the two ongoing wars
Lindsey German, the leader and spokesperson for the Stop the War Coalition, was a member for 37 years of a Trotskyist sect, the misnamed Socialist Workers Party, which believed in dishonestly forming ‘coalitions’ (like the Stop the War Coalition) through which to lead the working class into socialism, rather than engaging honestly and explicitly to win people over.
She was on the pompously titled ‘Central Committee’ of that arrogant and dishonest organisation and only left in 2010 due to factional disputes which she lost, and not because of any change of heart.
She continues to uphold the Russian Revolution as socialist even though it was in fact a minority-led coup to establish modern state capitalism throughout the Russian Empire and a brutal dictatorship by… another ‘Central Committee’. She founded and still leads the ‘Stop the War Coalition’ which has resurfaced on the outbreak of various wars yet kept its misleading title of ‘stop THE war’ as if it was a spontaneous response to this specific war. It’s actually an ‘astroturfing’ body and is run by German as a means of recruiting people to her specific, confused and twisted notion of socialism rooted bizarrely in an obsession with one Russian man who died 83 years ago and who did more to harm the working class and the prospects of genuine socialism than almost anyone in history, Leon Trotsky.
With her decades as a leading member of the SWP and her ongoing commitment to using wars, distress and death as a manipulative means to recruit people into her latter-day, nonsensical, Bolshevism, she is hardly a sincere or straight-acting figure in the current terrifying and cataclysmic crisis in the Middle East. Please bear this in mind as she is now doing the rounds of various big media outlets on behalf of the ‘Stop the War Coalition’ and speaking as if she is an expert on Middle Eastern politics. She’s not, nor is she a pacifist, nor is she a genuine socialist. For her, and her Trotskyist colleagues, the war is a chance for them to recruit people to their very odd brand of ‘socialism’. This is a deeply unpleasant lack of sincerity or honesty. It is unfortunate that none of those who have been interviewing her are aware of any of this. She will certainly not reveal her manipulative motives.
This is a letter I sent to my local newspaper, which they refused to publish. It is in response to an article they published celebrating Ukrainian Independence Day.
Re: ‘Frome honours Ukrainian Independence Day’, and in particular this quote from Iryna Ladyzhenska (Frome Town Council’s social facilitator for Ukrainian refugees): ‘Now Ukraine is fighting for its freedom and values, such as human rights, democracy, and rule of law. It is an existential war.’
Firstly, I am totally against the Russian invasion and bombing of Ukraine. However, Ukraine is one of the most corrupt countries in Europe, and has a well-documented neo-Nazi problem. Sadly, world history has been unfortunate to the Ukrainian people, in that Ukraine is a flag in a tug-of-war contest between East and West.
Most importantly, we must answer the question: what is a country? The answer: countries only exist in class-divided societies, where there is a master class and a servant class. The apparatus of the state exists for the benefit of the former. In the modern world, these two respective classes are the capitalist class and the working class.
When Russia first invaded Ukraine, two cities negotiated to allow the Russian army to take over without armed resistance – Kherson (on the Black Sea coast), and Kupyansk (near Kharkov and the border with Russia). This saved these places from destruction, and their populations from being killed in any crossfire, and was obviously the sensible thing for the local authorities to have done. But it wasn’t to last; last year the Ukrainian military recaptured Kupyansk, and later the Russian army withdrew from Kherson. They were ‘liberated’, but were now in the front line, and both have since been bombarded with large parts of them reduced to ruins.
In a world socialist society, wars will no longer exist, because countries will no longer exist, because social classes will no longer exist. The Earth’s natural and industrial resources will be owned and democratically controlled by the whole of society for the sole purpose of meeting people’s needs (that’s what socialism truly means).