Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

April 1, 2010

An Iranian socialist replies to Yoshie Furuhashi

Filed under: Iran — louisproyect @ 2:47 pm

Yoshie says in an article titled Jacobinism with Islamic Characteristics on her blog Critical Montages:

The power elite of Iran don’t care about Islam as such (Islam, after all, is diverse, and some varieties of it, as conceived by Nader Hashemi, Mohsen Kadivar, Ahmad Sadri, and the like, are perfectly compatible with liberal democracy). What they care about is their revolution and their republic and their ideology (in which Islam does play a part but an increasingly smaller one). As IRGC General Mohammad Ali Jafari reportedly said:

حفظ نظام جمهوری اسلامی ایران از ادای نماز واجب‌تر است

They love their politico-economic order much more than prayers.

Yoshie tells us that the Iranian ruling class doesn’t care that much about Islam but cares about their ideology, their 1979 revolution, and their republic. Yoshie tells us the ruling class loves their politico-economic order (you bet, especially the economic order).

Yoshie doesn’t know that revolution cannot be restricted to the ruling class. Would caring about the 1979 revolution require the Iranian government to kill those revolutionary citizens who stand up to guns for social justice? Would liking the politico-economic order require the government of Iran to imprison worker-activists such as Mansoor Osanloo or Farzad Kamangar? It’s as if the late Shah, who killed 1979 revolutionaries, had hypothetically claimed that he is restricting political activism and killing activists to take care of the Constitutional Revolution which occurred several decades before 1979 revolution.

The 1979 revolution took place thirty years ago and people from different sociopolitical backgrounds (leftists, secularists, Islamists, Islamonationalists, etc) participated in it and made it possible with their blood and sacrifices. Thus the revolution does not belong to the ruling class as Yoshie or Rafsanjani claim. Rafsanjani and many other political figures of Iran make such statements to justify their financial and political monopolies, and to justify why Iranians are divided to insiders (khodi-ha) and outsiders (gheire-khodiha). The insiders are those who, as Yoshie describes, supposedly care about the 1979 revolution and like the politico-economic monopoly while the outsiders are the second class citizens who are ironically in the streets of Iran trying to use the experiences of 1979 revolution to demand sociopolitical justice similar to what they demanded in 1979 revolution or even before that in the Constitutional revolution.

The revolution took place thirty years ago and was followed by the rise of a counter-revolutionary government. It’s simply fabricated propaganda to call the government of Iran revolutionary: a government that has used international crises such as the American hostage crisis, the Iran-Iraq war, and more recently the fuss around nuclear energy and the Holocaust slogans to confiscate power, imprison and kill political activists, to prevent workers from forming unions, etc. Yoshie naively finds the cause of independent workers like Masoor Osanloo illegitimate because Freedom House published a letter in their support. Mansoor Osanlo sought for his fellow coworkers an independent union and wages equal to the poverty level (instead of one third the poverty line) and as a result is now imprisoned in the notorious Gohardasht jail. Yoshie, could you explain for us why the ruling class of Iran, to protect the “revolution,” imprisons class conscious workers such as Farzad Kamgar and Mansoor Osanloo? Do the workers endanger government’s revolutionary ideals? Could you explain why, Yoshie?

In this video, Mansoor Osanloo, says “I participated in 1979 revolution to have independence, freedom and social justice”.

As we see, contrary to what Yoshie, Rafsanjani, or Shariatmadari tell us, Iranian people claim ownership of the 1979 revolution and often ask what happened to those goals for which they sacrificed their freedom and lives. The government tries to protect itself from the “danger” of workers, human rights and women’s rights activists, non-state journalists, etc. not for the sake of the 1979 revolution but for their financial interests and political power.

Yoshie says “What they care about is … their republic.” Whose republic? The Iranian government’s republic? To save the republic from the citizens of Iran? Is that why many people, such as worker activists, housewives and journalists, are imprisoned to save the republic for the elite? Which kind of republic belongs to the ruling elite and must be protected from people of all social classes? Which kind of republic murders hundred and imprisons thousands in response to peaceful protests against a fraudulent election?

Yoshie calculates from the back of her napkin that 20% of Iranian people are liberal—without providing the napkin or, hell, just a few of her equations. I am grateful that such a super confident person like Yoshie didn’t tell us 21.012% of Iranian people are liberals and she just gave us a rounder number from her back of the napkin calculation. Yoshie’s equations have nothing to do with the sociopolitical events of Iran. For instance, in 1997 almost 80% of the eligible voters participated in the presidential election and 70% of them voted for Mohammad Khatami although Khatami was censored in TV pre-election programs in favor of a principalist candidate named Ali Akbar Nategh Noori. Khatami’s main promises were the liberalization of the country’s political atmosphere, more freedom for the media and the arts, and more social freedom. In 2001, Khatami was again reelected although people lost their faith in the possibility of meaningful reform from within the establishment. The martyrs and imprisoned of the Green Movement are from different social classes and econo-political beliefs but they all meet each other when it comes to sociopolitical justice and freedom. Iranian leftists try to bring economic justice into the agenda of the Green Movement instead of following Yoshie’s suggestion which is asking everyone to be apolitical and wait a couple decades so that the passing of time takes care of the injustices in Iran.

It’s very orientalist of Yoshie to think that it takes the majority of Iranians a couple decades to discover the pain of having a dear one in jail, being tear gassed, being batoned, or knowing someone who has been brutally killed. Would it take a couple decades for Mansoor Osanloo’s wife to feel the pain and injustice of having her innocent husband imprisoned? Would it take a couple decades for the family of Ramin Ramezani, a Green movement protester and working class soldier who was killed during the election protests, to feel the pain of injustice? Would it take a couple decades for the mother of Farzad Kamangar, a teacher, to feel the injustice of having her innocent son in death row? I don’t think so. Yoshie’s mistake is underestimating the Iranian people and thinking only 20% of them have problems with human rights violations, economic disparities and government corruption.

Imposing harsher economic sanctions or invading Iran would be outrageous since it would cause huge human suffering for the people of Iran. Economic sanctions or military invasion of Iran by US-Israel would have a negative effect on the democratic movement of Iran, and would in fact empower the hardliners and destroy the justice and democracy movement of people. The economic sanctions on Iran is meant to remove the regional influence of the Iranian government. It seems that the suffering of the people of Iran has been considered unimportant by the imperialist states. The worst immorality of the “international” community is the transparent lie that harsher sanctions or an invasion would be meant to help Iranian people or members of the Green Movement. The imperialist states fail to explain how the economic hardships caused by the sanctions, or the deleterious results of an invasion (destruction of infrastructure, damaging of environment with hazardous chemicals and loss of human lives) would help Iranian people in their struggle for sociopolitical justice and democracy.

Thus the economic sanctions or invasion of Iran is morally outrageous and strategically disastrous since it ruins the Iranian people’s movement for justice and causes huge human suffering, and not because, as Yoshie says, in a couple decades the percentage of Iranian liberals will grow. The international aggression in the forms of economic sanctions or invasion is unrelated to the growth of liberals in Iran and is not aimed at helping Iranian people with their struggle for justice or liberalization of the politics in Iran. These aggressions are purely based on imperialist motives. Activists need to oppose international aggression against Iranian people without prettifying the domestic violence against the people.

Yoshie tells us that the Iranian government’s ideology is not instilled from above and has organically grown out of Iranian history. Yoshie again makes another hollow claim without showing us the supposed calculations on her napkin. If the ideology of the Iranian government has grown organically out of Iranian history and is not instilled from above, then why has the government needed all sorts of sociocultural restrictions on Iranian people? Why did the government, one year after the revolution, shut down the universities for three years (1980-1983) and exile, expel, and imprison many scholars and students whose ideology differed from the ruling elite? As Asef Bayat explains: “… Iran experienced an ‘Islamic revolution’ without developing a pervasive ‘Islamist movement’ – one that could ‘socialise’, and connect the expectations of the people to the visions of the Islamist leadership. In the absence of such an Islamist movement, ‘Islamisation’ was then inaugurated primarily after the revolution: by the Islamic state, from above, and often through coercion and compulsion. In consequence, from the very first days of the Islamic Republic the process provoked dissent. Today’s crisis is the legacy of that disjuncture over the very meaning of the revolution.”

It’s time to stand firmly behind Iranian people and support them in their struggle against both international and domestic aggression and atrocities, instead of portraying them either as powerless puppets of US-Israel or masochists/senseless ones who enjoy or are numb to the domestic human abuses. It’s time to stop taking away the history of the socio-political struggle of Iranian people and to stop portraying them as blank canvas on which the imperialist states can write their wishes.

51 Comments »

  1. Yoshie is a WOMAN?! :)

    Comment by Naj — April 1, 2010 @ 3:59 pm

  2. Apparently the dissidents and protestors of Communist Eastern Europe (not to mention Gorbachev) didn’t want gangster capitalism, but that’s what they got. What will Iran get if the Islamic Republic is somehow overthrown? No doubt the Iranian bourgeoisie will be better off, with shopping trips to New York. And the Iranian working class? I guess they’ll be able to look for work in Germany and Britain, just like Turkish and Polish workers. We can all be Mexicans!

    Comment by Alex — April 1, 2010 @ 7:30 pm

  3. Speaking of gangster capitalism, this comes from MRZine, the American outpost of the Iranian News Agency:

    Rebellion and corruption on earth and burglary are punished by
    amputation. The perpetrator of rebellion is to be punished either by
    cross maiming of his/her hand and foot, crucifixion for three days,
    banishment or death. According to Iran’s penal code the judge has the
    discretion to decide on the type of punishment. However, the
    administration of crucifixion has not been reported.

    On January 6, 2008, ISNA, Iranian Students’ News Agency, reported the
    imposition and execution of the Hadd of Muhariba on five criminals in
    Sistan, a south eastern province of Iran. One of the criminals was
    convicted of blocking the highway with force and resisting the police
    officers through which an officer was injured; two others were convicted
    of armed robbery, hostage taking, and disturbing public order, and two
    others were convicted of armed theft and disturbing public safety. They
    were sentenced to cross-amputation of the right hand and left foot (ISNA
    2008).

    Comment by louisproyect — April 1, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

  4. Alex,
    You think the Iranian bourgeoisie is not already making shopping trips to New York? And you are assuming Iranian workers have not been flooding borders of Turkey and UAE and Japan and etc for better paying work?! Where on earth do you get these “enlightened” imaginations from? I like to go on a similar dose of the same hallucinogen!

    Comment by Naj — April 1, 2010 @ 7:55 pm

  5. I don’t know if the Islamic Republic is or was a revolutionary regime. There was certainly no communist revolution in Iran. But if such a regime decides to guillotine, shoot, or otherwise terrorize its counterrevolutionaries, then I’m all for it. For example, I think Chavez better start turning his democracy into a dictatorship of the proletariat, if that is he hasn’t started already. Bourgeois human rights are not at all the highest value (certainly not for the bourgeoisie–perhaps not even for the petty bourgeoisie, the intended audience for such things).

    If Iran now is pretty much the same as it will be after the fall of the Islamic Republic, then what’s the point of overthrowing it? I guess the difference is a free hand for Israel and the U.S. in the Middle East.

    Comment by Alex — April 1, 2010 @ 8:46 pm

  6. I’ve lived in Iran since islamic revolution. Islamic state has been one of the most oppressive regimes in contemporary history. Leftists, workers, women, all of minorities,… have been subject to harsh oppressions. Monthly Review already published political isalam in service of imperialism, by samir amin and is aware of islamic despotism. This is the magic of islamist petro dollars that Yushi and others like her defend islamic despots. If you see mrzine you can see advertising of CASMII and other Islamic state lobbyist in U.S. Unfortunately, Yushi and other managers of MRzine are beneficiares of Iran governments. sorry for Yushi and other so called leftists that have become servants of petrodollars of islamist state.

    Comment by pirouz — April 1, 2010 @ 9:29 pm

  7. But if such a regime decides to guillotine, shoot, or otherwise terrorize its counterrevolutionaries, then I’m all for it.

    It depends on how you define counterrevolutionary. In Iran that means offending Islam. Like college students who want the freedom to hold socialist meetings on campus without worrying whether the Basiji will beat them up or worse.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 1, 2010 @ 9:48 pm

  8. Alex,

    Would you say the same about every struggle by the people for justice anywhere in this world? Or you think only Iranians should kiss the hands of their torturers since their future is unknown and possibly will be worse than today? If all the people think like you, then there will be no revolution, no struggle against imperialism or any injustices since the next imperialists or brutal government might be worse than the one people have to deal with today.

    Comment by M.Kh. — April 1, 2010 @ 10:22 pm

  9. I hope I never find myself in a revolution with this Alex…

    Comment by Ben Courtice — April 1, 2010 @ 10:45 pm

  10. Alex,

    Watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0I3_zRBE10c

    It’s in Persian but you can see that Mansoor Osanloo is showing his injured tongue. Could you tell us, who have seen the injustice our sisters and brothers are going though, to be silent since the future is unknown?

    Comment by M.Kh. — April 1, 2010 @ 11:08 pm

  11. Appealing to me with photos or video of mutilated human beings isn’t going to convince me of anything, anymore than pictures of a crucified Jesus will turn me into a Christian. I could hardly care less about moralism and human rights. And I didn’t say or suggest that the future is unknown.

    Comment by Alex — April 1, 2010 @ 11:38 pm

  12. appealing to me with photos or video of mutilated human beings isn’t going to convince me of anything, anymore than pictures of a crucified Jesus will turn me into a Christian.

    What a fucking idiot. Mansoor Osanloo was trying to organize bus drivers into a trade union. Who knows who “Alex” is, some fucking idiot troll. That’s the worst thing about the Internet, it allows cockroaches like “Alex” to sound rrrrevolutionary when for all he knows he spends all his time in the basement apartment of his parents’ house masturbating when he is not posting ultraleft shit on the Internet.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 1, 2010 @ 11:54 pm

  13. Ouch! My poor hurt feelings! But the internet also somehow makes petty bourgeois bloggers feel revolutionary. Or important, anyway. Magical!

    Comment by Alex — April 2, 2010 @ 12:05 am

  14. Propagandist Pirouz: read Samir Amin more carefuly on ‘political Islam’, otherwise get lost:

    The second is that the Iranian nation as such is a “strong nation,” one whose major components, if not all, of both popular classes and ruling classes, do not accept the integration of their country into the globalized system in a dominated position. There is, of course, a contradiction between these two dimensions of the Iranian reality. The second one accounts for Teheran’s foreign policy tendencies, which bear witness to the will to resist foreign diktats.

    It is Iranian nationalism—powerful and, in my opinion, altogether historically positive—that explains the success of the modernization of scientific, industrial, technological, and military capabilities undertaken by the Shah’s regime and the Khomeinist regime that followed. Iran is one of the few states of the South (with China, India, Korea, Brazil, and maybe a few others, but not many!) to have a national bourgeois project.

    Comment by Atash — April 2, 2010 @ 12:17 am

  15. I think it is strange to have a site which is silent on war crimes of an apartheid and expansionist state where is responsible for so many genocide, invasion of many countries including occupied Palestine and crimes against humanity yet DARE to go after Iran, a country who is victim of US imperialism and Zionism for over 60 years. This site does not have even a file under ‘Israel’ but has under Iran, Iraq, and Islam, Japan, so on and so forth. Yet, Iranian stupid come here to write garbage in order to get attention from Zionism and its agents, like many of them who are receiving ‘awards’ for their services for NEN and Mossad on daily basis. Today, 99 percent of Iranian who considered themselves ‘left’ are at the service of NED, EU, and Mossad, coming to Zionist think tank, The Washington for near east policy’ to sell their service and asking for more sanctions in order to destabilize Iran and go to Iran, like Makiya, Chalabi, Zionist servant where Makiya received honorary PhD for his services in Israel because he did not have even a graduate degree but due to his services is ‘professor of the middle east, at Brandies University, a Jewish university. These Zionist servant are active in Iran on behalf of war crimes and go to Israel to kiss the ass of a Zionist mass murder, Shimon Peres to receive ‘award’ in Euro and $$$ like others. It is a tough competition among these sell out and Zionist stooges. No one pays any attention to these traitors. Since this site is silent on an apartheid state then watch the following video. Don’t you want to bomb Israel to bring peace on earth?

    http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2010/halper310310.html

    Comment by Atash — April 2, 2010 @ 12:51 am

  16. Iran is one of the few states of the South (with China, India, Korea, Brazil, and maybe a few others, but not many!) to have a national bourgeois project.

    That might be right, but we are socialists here.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 2, 2010 @ 12:57 am

  17. This site does not have even a file under ‘Israel’ but has under Iran, Iraq, and Islam, Japan, so on and so forth.

    Another moron. Just click Zionism on the right-hand list of categories and you will find lots of articles, including full coverage on my defense of Joel Kovel, who was victimized for his views on Israel just like Norman Finkelstein.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 2, 2010 @ 1:04 am

  18. While wishing to put a large ocean of distance between myself and Alex I think we are currently in a period of mobilisation to war against Iran, ok Obama’s election has temporarily slowed the process down but these are the early days of the project and within the next 4 to 12 years I believe the war drums will sound louder and louder. These I believe are the conditions we on the left find ourselves in, in these conditions the left have to defend Iran from this mobilisation by the imperialists.

    The steady consistent stream of anti Iranian propaganda, the denouncing of the Iranians peoples democratic vote (as also happened in Venezuela) by sections of the left is an historical mistake in my opnion. What we in the West need more than anything is a consistent steady stream of anti imperialist propaganda.

    Comment by James — April 2, 2010 @ 10:14 am

  19. James, condemning imperialist intentions against Iran and condemning the repressive aspect of the Iranian regime are not counterposed.

    Comment by ish — April 2, 2010 @ 2:57 pm

  20. James,

    1- Oppose the war and the economic sanctions and support Iranians in their struggle against the domestic tyranny. The domestic tyrants have caused huge suffering for the people in Iran and leftism is not about fashionism. Apparently it’s more fashionable to only oppose war and economic sanctions and it’s uncool to support the people in their struggle for justice and basic human rights. But this is not leftism, is being irresponsible and obsessed with fashion. Your discourse in Iran can cause young people who are raped, tortured, batoned, imprisoned, etc. to hate leftism. So please keep it for yourself.
    2- And also stop being a colonial-imperialist and respect the common sense of hundreds of thousands of Iranians who stood up to guns, torture, prison rape to protest to an election which they consider fraudulent. Which kind of imperialist you are that, from the US (possibly) with no knowledge of Persian language, you pretend to know the events of a country (like whether the election was sound or not) better than its population?
    3- Why do you think supporting the workers of Iran and raising awareness about innocent prisoners like Osanloo is in contradiction with opposing the war and sanctions against Iran? Should we let the Iranian people suffer and get killed silently because it’s uncool, “unleftist” to accuse a government who has managed to fool many by its empty utilitarian pro-Palestine, anti-Israel and anti-US slogans even if it repeats the atrocities of US-Israel at home against its own people?

    Comment by M.Kh. — April 2, 2010 @ 3:31 pm

  21. M.Kh. you know shit about Iran. The campaign behind Iran nuclear holocaust is not ‘imperialism’ rather zionism and its zionist closet ‘left’ who are behind the election ‘fraud’ hoax, including Proyect, Chomsky, Jacobs, Zunes, and other zionists. The ‘left’ in the west is totally under direction of zionist jews who present all of them are:
    Against one state solution
    Pro independent ‘Kurdistan’, terrorist group, and Israel’s pawn
    Have sided with election ‘fraud’ hoax including Chomsky
    Do not recognize Jewish Lobby’s influence in US foreign policy
    Preach rubbish slogan “No blood for Oil” where in fact Iraq war waged by the neocon Jews for the interest of Israel.
    The main group pushing for war against Iran are zionist Jews and Israel’s fifth column where ‘left’ is part of it. That’s why the ‘left’ destroyed ‘anti war movement’ by shouting a lie “NO blood for oil” but they do not do it because NO ONE BUYS IT ANYMORE.
    Anti zionist must be united against sanction and War against Iran and expse the role of Israel Lobby and its backer, the ‘left’. Don’t be afraid to charge you with different industries they have created to silent the critics. All these destabilization and wars for ‘the new Middle East’ are coming from Oded Yinon’s “the Israel’s strategy in the 1080s” and “clean break”.
    There is no Iranian left and the workers do not trust these traitors who are at the service of zionism and imperialism. The Shah, a zionist puppet, was overthrown by Worker strike where has not happened under this regime so far. No fool can claim the Shah was less brutal, only a traitor and zionist behind kisser may say that. However, you see Iranian traitors who present themselves as ‘left’ are NED agents, Mossad agents and have received many ‘awards’ for their services. No one can deny that. Anyone with Persian skills can read about these traitors in the media. The sell out Iranian opposition are pro neo-liberalism policy and openly support it. The Iranian ‘opposition’ groups have done nothing but joining the neocon and going to Israel spy house, The Washington Institute for near east policy’ to make a connection with Israel Lobby and its stooges, Obama and Clinton. Other opportunists have gone to Israel to kiss Perez’s behind which is supported by one section of Iranian ‘left’ asking Iranian to support Israel against Iranian government. The anti Zionism Iranian people reject these sell out as traitors and are asking people of the region to be united against zionist war criminals and their puppets, Obama, Clinton, and other stooges like Joe Biden, a self claimed zionist.

    Comment by Atash — April 2, 2010 @ 4:42 pm

  22. Good points made by Atash, who I should hasten to mention is none other than David Duke–something I discovered after an investigation of his IP Address.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 2, 2010 @ 5:17 pm

  23. Conclusion: Iranian people should not demand basic democratic rights as long as imperialism exists. Period.

    Comment by Mehmet Çagatay — April 2, 2010 @ 6:15 pm

  24. Louis, you sure do have a hard-on for David Duke. In fact, you’re keeping his (outdated, never important) name alive better than anyone else I know of. What with Ahmadinejad as well, it must be harrowing, but also thrilling, keeping up with all the new Hitlers (even old new Hitlers like Duke).

    Comment by Alex — April 2, 2010 @ 6:55 pm

  25. I guess Alex has run out things to say.

    Here, Alex, let me remind you of what you should say:

    1. How come this blog doesn’t complain about Saudi Arabia.

    2. The NY Times supports the Green Movement. The NY Times supports Israel. Therefore, those who support the Green Movement support Israel.

    3. Leon Trotsky was digging a hole into Russia from Manchuria with funding from Hitler. Louis Proyect supports Leon Trotsky and therefore should get the pick-axe treatment.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 2, 2010 @ 7:02 pm

  26. Ok, since your logic is impeccable, since you successfully read my mind, and since you made me laugh, I now only feel goodwill toward you.

    Comment by Alex — April 2, 2010 @ 7:18 pm

  27. An invaluable advice from Western “anti-imperialists” to Iranian workers: Shoot yourself in the foot before imperialist armies come and shoot you.

    Comment by Mehmet Çagatay — April 2, 2010 @ 7:27 pm

  28. Or should they revolt for the sake of American and Israeli capitalist and imperialist interests? Not at all an enviable position, I admit. But if they can turn the Western-backed bourgeois democratic color-coded (because that’s exactly what it is) Green Movement into a communist revolution, if Mansoor Osanloo really is another Lenin (or even another Morales), then Godspeed! (But let’s not forget that unions have been prominent in the movement against Chavez. And though we may be a state of capitalist crisis, and maybe even rising capitalist-imperialist rivalry, it’s certainly qualitatively different than in the First World War.) I myself see more promise in Venezuela, Bolivia, or Nepal, even if these are less significant countries than Iran.

    Comment by Alex — April 2, 2010 @ 9:48 pm

  29. {Would liking the politico-economic order require the government of Iran to imprison worker-activists such as Mansoor Osanloo or Farzad Kamangar?}
    Iran is a targeted country for destabilization and regime change by Imperialists and Zionists, therefore, cannot afford to stay neutral against all these agitation, beside, Iran never claims is a socialist country. Iranian workers gained many rights after the revolution and their work was more secure compare to before the revolution. Unfortunately, corrupt Rafsanjani, supported by the West and one of the ruling figures behind the election ‘fraud’ hoax who supported Mousavi for his own goal to implement article 44, privatization plan up to 80% of economy including oil and gas which passed during Khatami in 2004. The phony Green demand is only limited to ‘human rights’ issues which is the base of all COLORED REVOLUTION directed from NED in Washington and its sell out agents in Iran. The Green wave never demanded end to neoliberal market economy which has widen the gap between rich and poor in Iran. The sanctions are making middle class and workers poorer and the main base of Green wave unaffected since the main base of Green ware is upper middle classes pro market economy who have benefited most from Rafsanjani and then Khatami’s privatization program. On the contrary, during Ahmadinejad, the speed of privatization was affected and this led to hatred of the rich against Ahmadinejad. One should ask fools why does Greens never talk about the economic policy and has limited itself to ‘human rights’ which is cornerstone of US/Israel destabilization program in Iran.
    Farzad Kamangfar, according to his own writing, is accused of being PEJAK member. PEJA is a Kurdish terrorist organization who is trained by Israel and is used as a terrorist group against the neighboring countries including Iran. Iranian people want the government stand strongly against these terrorists.
    Part of the destabilization plan is to work among all Iranian groups and organize them as pawns to be used at the critical moments. The Iranian workers has been immune from imperialist agents who present themselves as supporter of workers. IASWI is a case in point.
    Many have shown a lot of restraint in exposing International Alliance in Support of Workers in Iran (IASWI), mainly to save further embarrassment for this ‘Alliance’. Many Iranian people view IASWI a CIA agents who are trying to influence Iranian workers. Their name is not known to many. Iranian people do not know that NED is the same as CIA, for example, and are not familiar with these organizations where on behalf of Zionism and imperialism manipulate ‘democracy’ to achieve their goals in the region.
    None of this is new; their soft line on imperialism was publicly exposed in 2004 during open discussions held for setting up a unified campaign in solidarity with Iranian workers and plans for a fund to support them. During those discussion, some of us were adamant that the campaign and the fund should take a principled stance in opposition to imperialist war in the region and that the activities of a campaign in solidarity with Iranian workers should not be tarnished by association with right wing unions such as ICFTU, AFL/CIO, which have a history of

    http://www.jewishlaborcommittee.org/2009/10/aflcio_president_richard_trumk_1.html

    collaboration with successive US administrations. This line was opposed by some of the leading activists of IASWI, who defended ICFTU text and audio files of some of these meetings exist on line and can be verified. Indeed they disrupted all attempts to set up a united campaign and continued with this ‘Alliance’ precisely so that they can continue with such collaborations. At the same time a number of leftist activists in Canada were telling us that ICFTU and the CLC were working closely with Solidarity Centre and we should be weary of approaches by these organizations.

    http://www.iranrights.org/english/newsletter-13.php

    Comment by Azadeh — April 3, 2010 @ 12:32 am

  30. Azadeh: beside, Iran never claims is a socialist country.

    For that matter, nothing you have written here has the slightest engagement with, awareness of, or commitment to socialism. Frankly, you strike me as one of those thugs who would love to smash the teeth of a Marxist student.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 3, 2010 @ 12:51 am

  31. The revolution took place thirty years ago and was followed by the rise of a counter-revolutionary government.

    I think it’s really tiresome when people equate “revolution=good”. the changes the nazis in power put to practice in German society from 33 onwards can only be called revolutionary. the term doesn’t connote positive change, just massive change. trying hard to divide the whole world into 2 neat categories like revolutionary and conterrevolutionary ist just stupid

    different example: Oliver Cromwell. butcher of the Irish & revolutionary!

    Comment by PfromGermany — April 3, 2010 @ 2:55 pm

  32. But if such a regime decides to guillotine, shoot, or otherwise terrorize its counterrevolutionaries, then I’m all for it.

    yeah, that attitude is really attractive to the proletarian multitudes in western democracies…

    Comment by PfromGermany — April 3, 2010 @ 3:14 pm

  33. Azadeh’s comment is full of misinformation(propaganda). I just put this link here for people who don’t follow Iran’s news to learn about privatization under Ahmadinejad and the extremely poor treatment of workers under his presidency– In fact, Ahmadi has the most anti-worker administration after the revolution:

    http://dissidentvoice.org/2009/06/selling-iran-ahmadinejad-privatization-and-a-bus-diver-who-said-no/

    Comment by M.Kh. — April 3, 2010 @ 3:27 pm

  34. M.Kh., you are full of sh*t. You are a liar to deny that Ahmadinejad had nothing to do with privatization of economy, Bill 44, which designed by corrupt Rafsanjani and his upper class supporters, Green, pro West and its broken economic system, neoliberal Market economy which robs the workers all over the world and has created nothing but a IRON CAGE. Why don’t you read the comments where people ridiculed Billy Wharton, he is one of idiots who preaches election ‘fraud’ hoax to help imperialism and Zionism. Ahmadinejad slowed down the speed of privatization and gave workers millions of Edalat shares. Islam is NOT against capitalism. The majority of the Iranian opposition groups have fallen down on side of imperialist and Zionist camp to collect their ‘awards’, yet they call themselves ‘communists’ such as a zionist whore by the name of Maryam Namazi who is the central committee member of the worker-communist party of Iran, a trotskyist group – Hekmatism – who, according to many including the Iranian left are in the POCKET OF CIA AND MOSSAD helping these destructive forces in the region against the interest of the people. These bastards are working the Kurdish terrorist group as well.
    . http://www.etehadchap.org/iasw1.html

    Comment by Azadeh — April 3, 2010 @ 6:15 pm

  35. Islam is NOT against capitalism.

    Gosh, you learn something new every day.

    Anyhow, Azadeh, so why are you trolling a Marxist blog with your bazaari capitalist bullshit.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 3, 2010 @ 6:54 pm

  36. To show people that how vulgar, a closet zionist you are, an ediot.

    Comment by Azadeh — April 3, 2010 @ 7:02 pm

  37. Right, a closet zionist. Don’t you mean dirty kike?

    Comment by louisproyect — April 3, 2010 @ 7:15 pm

  38. “why are you trolling a Marxist blog…”

    The usual approach as I understand it, if you’re not going to ban trolls, is don’t feed them!

    I fully support your right to ban them once their credentials are clearly established as evidenced by the gibberish in form and content on display.

    Comment by meltrc — April 3, 2010 @ 9:16 pm

  39. Generally, I would have thrown somebody like Azadeh off after one or two posts but I think it is useful to allow him to vent with all his “zionist jews” stuff in order to convey the kind of creepy politics this bastardized “anti-imperialism” churns up.

    Comment by louisproyect — April 3, 2010 @ 9:40 pm

  40. Wasn’t it Bebel who nailed this disgusting politics at the turn of the last century : “Anti-semitism is the socialism of fools”

    Comment by meltrc — April 3, 2010 @ 10:35 pm

  41. PfromGermany, I don’t know who you mean by “the proletarian multitudes in western democracies”. Illegal immigrants, maybe. But BMW workers? Surely not. Anyway, workers are not afraid to get their hands dirty. The petty bourgeoisie is a different story. And at least in North America, social democracy has no power whatsoever to politicize and mobilize the working class.

    Comment by Alex — April 3, 2010 @ 10:55 pm

  42. Azadeh,

    You are completely unprincipled to put words into my mouth and accuse people of Zionism without providing any evidence. I never said the privatization started from Ahmadinejad. In fact, Ahmadinejad’s problem, at this point, is not so much privatization but the blood of innocent Iranians on his hands. The victims of Iran seem to be meaningless to you also. Anti-imperialist and colonial movements in Iran have a long history. The people of Iran can manage to oppose domestic-fascist-theocratic despotism while also opposing American-Israeli aggression. Iranians are not immature creatures in need of your lousy protection and Islam-isn’t-against-privatization does not justify the discrimination against workers who haven’t been paid for several months.

    Some Iranians living in North America or Europe think that they are heroic saviors of a bunch of immature childish Iranians who don’t know what is bad or good for them. The way you talk about the Green Movement is not only racist but also reminds me of neo-cons who believe people in the Middle East are incapable of any meaningful uncorrupted movement for justice. You make fun of small wishes of a nation for basic human rights and for the right of workers to get paid each month and have a union. You don’t put yourself into the shoes of a worker who has not been paid for several months. You are a white supremacist who heroically wants the worker to shut up and accept that Islam is not against capitalism and maybe not against killing people either. That might be your way of justifying the killings of innocent Iranians protesting peacefully..

    Comment by M.Kh. — April 4, 2010 @ 1:39 pm

  43. PfromGermany. I think the Post WWII pascifism of the German Left in general and Germans in particular has you out of touch with what American workers are feeling today. It’s not that they don’t vote here but rather WON’T vote, precisely because none of the politicians are talking about chopping off some goddamn heads and kicking some fucking skulls down the street. (That’s how soccer was invented, by the way, by Parisian kids during the French Revolution.)

    It’s an ugly prospect to be sure but there’s a mood growing amongst increasingly dispossessed & unemployed Americans, a lot of it unfortunately coming from the stampeding petty bourgeoisie ruined by the WalMarts, Bank Bailouts & Military Debt, who feel that a whole bunch of bloodletting needs to happen before there’s any kind of meaningful social justice. So on the contrary, rhetoric about violently redistributing wealth would gain a bunch of traction amonst the workers here if only somebody had the balls to articulate it without being sabotaged by the forces of reaction, pascifism and the status quo.

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — April 4, 2010 @ 4:02 pm

  44. And as for Nazism being revolutionary, I say NO! In fact, I call fascism (including Nazism) pseudo-revolutionary anti-communism. Communism stands for revolution, fascism/Nazism stand for war, and revolution and war are opposites, revolution being the supreme manifestation of class struggle, and war being the supreme denial and diversion of class struggle. Of course, “revolutionary” has been thoroughly corrupted. The iPad is said to be revolutionary. In capitalism, every new way of making money (at the expense of others) is revolutionary. Well, fuck that! I’ll always take Ulrike Meinhof over Cherie Blair.

    Comment by Alex — April 4, 2010 @ 6:21 pm

  45. I realize the term “Reagan Revolution” is bandied about by both right & left but I consider that 3rd rate actor Reagan a moron and thus the Reagan Revolution as an oxymoron.

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — April 4, 2010 @ 7:27 pm

  46. “That’s how soccer was invented, by the way, by Parisian kids during the French Revolution.”

    Bullshit and its called Football! Football was played in England in the 14th Century and was banned by King Edward II.

    Comment by Steve — April 5, 2010 @ 9:55 am

  47. Is that so? Maybe King Edward II previsioned footballer hooliganism and tried to nip it in the bud? Too bad the Brits never developed jewels big enough to lop off the heads of their aristocracy and kick some skulls around the streets like the French did.

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — April 5, 2010 @ 1:40 pm

  48. The English civil war, Charles I. Ring any bells? I think you will find we were well ahead of the French in challenging the power of the aristocracy.

    Comment by Steve — April 5, 2010 @ 4:51 pm

  49. “we”? yeah, people from 400 years ago and you really constitute a group. you nationalist dickhead!

    Comment by PfromGermany — April 5, 2010 @ 8:09 pm

  50. Yea, it was certainly challenged, mostly by the peasantry before the industrial revolution really took hold, but heads never rolled, and the monarchy is still disgustingly idolized instead of despised.

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — April 5, 2010 @ 8:36 pm

  51. Nationalist Dickhead! Please spare me the puritanism! I simply mean by ‘we’ the nation of England, of which I am a member.
    You should not infer from this any nationalist ideology on my part.

    Marx himslef said he felf national shame at Germany’s backwardness- was he a nationalist dickhead?

    Comment by Steve — April 11, 2010 @ 3:05 pm


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