American SWP supports US imperialism By John Barry

05/08/2014 by socialistfight



The SWP appears to be blind to the Bandarite fascist gangs in Ukraine

The former American Trotskyist organisation, the Socialist Workers Party has in the past months abandoned all pretence at revolutionary socialism as it openly backs imperialist forces and fascist gangs in Ukraine. The past 50 years has seen the total degeneration of this organisation from the abandoning Trotskyism in favour of bourgeois nationalism and Castroism to finally becoming a voice for its own imperialist bourgeoisie. This position by the SWP is entirely in keeping with their history, after taking a principled stand against the Shachtmanites in the 1930s they had degenerated two decades later. Principled Trotskyists in the 1960s predicted the political trajectory of the SWP when under the leadership of Joseph Hanson it made an unprincipled merger with the Pabloite International Secretariat of the Fourth International:

Via Castro and Pabloism, Cannon arrived at exactly the point in methodology where stood Burnham-Shachtman in 1939-40. Instrumental in achieving this remarkable transformation was the same ‘radical milieu’ in the United States which had provided the steam for Burnham-Shachtman. To insist on the independent mobilisation of the working class behind a conscious Trotskyist vanguard would draw the accusation from these middle class radicals of ‘sectarianism’ [1]

The SWP today finds itself beyond the Shachtmanite position of sitting on the fence and like Burnham before has gone over completely to the side of US imperialism. Unable to support the mobilisation of workers in the eastern Ukraine against the fascist squads.

In the SWP newspaper The Militant they peddle the fiction that the victims of the Odessa massacre were murdered by Russian separatists and that the supporters if the Kiev junta attempted to save them from the inferno! Video evidence strongly contradicts this claim. Much of the reporting in The Militant is derived from such source’s as the New York Times, hardly unbiased coverage![2] Revealing the SWP’s naïve appreciation of the US propaganda machine. It is therefore no coincidence that they should display such Russiaphobia reminiscent of the McCartherite witch hunt of the 1950s.

No mention is made in its pages of the symbolic fascist style of this massacre in Odessa, the burning of the House of Trade Unions with the anti fascists inside. Instead The Militant triumphantly proclaims: “Armed separatist bands in the east and south never got a foothold or were quickly driven out of the largest cities, including Kharkiv and Drepropetrovsk, as well as Odessa.”[3]

The heroic anti-fascists in Odessa which included the class fighters the Union ‘Borotba’ revolutionary socialist organisation, are described as ‘vigilantes’ who ‘fled into the nearby Trade Union building’. [4]

Critical support is even given to an oligarch who whipped up his wage slaves into strike action in defence of national unity: “Rinat Akhmetov deployed workers from his two steel plants in Mariupol May 14 to join city cops……and oust separatist forces……Thousands of workers signed up.” [5]

The Donetsk Peoples’ Republic has now announced this oligarch is to have his property nationalised. Denying the role of fascist organisations such as Svoboda and the Right Sector, The Militant claims the population has been subjected to a: “Propaganda barrage from Russian media claiming the new government in Kiev was run by a ‘fascist junta’,” [6] Even some bourgeois media such as the BBC have occasionally acknowledged the fascist organisations dominating the Maidan movement which The Militant claims ‘energized working class people all across the country’, [7] terrorised would be the correct word.

The working class has actually rallied around the remnants of the October Revolution, and made progressive calls for expropriating the oligarchs. However The Militant declares the working class protesters as ‘separatist armed thugs’ who are ‘draping themselves with phrases and symbols from the Stalinist era’.[8] These symbols do not just represent relics of Stalinism they also recall to the working class the progressive nature of socialised property relations and planned economy in the albeit degenerated workers state of the Soviet Union. The SWP is of course blinded by Stalinophobia and is incapable of seeing this. The Donetsk and Luhgansk Peoples’ Republics votes for independence from Ukraine is dismissed by these middle class idiots: “The May 11 vote was organised by a small group of heavily armed paramilitary units”[ 9]

This is simply parroting the bourgeois press and its lies! Indeed The Militant quotes The New York Times that in this election there was: “A poster calling for rejection of the “European Jewish Choice” was hung near the ballot box” [10]

They supply no evidence of this claim and even if it is true they fail to mention that there is in Europe now a government which includes fascists in ministerial posts and uses fascist death squads to terrorise the population and especially the organised working class, and that is the Kiev government. It is also directed and abetted by the CIA and Nato forces. Imperialism is backing Ukrainian fascism, the small number of Russian fascists have the backing of no one.

US imperialism and its allies of the North Atlantic bloc are hell bent on exporting their finance capital to Ukraine. Accusations of Russian ‘imperialism’ do not stand up to justification when the world economy is dominated by US finance capital, extracting interest from the majority of the nations on the planet. This is why the American ruling class will back fascists in the Ukraine. As Trotsky explained: “Fascism is the cudgel in the hands of finance capital. The aim of the crushing of proletarian democracy is to raise the rate of exploitation of labour power.” [11]

The SWP has crossed the class lines and joined cheerleaders of its own ruling class, for revolutionary socialists we unequivocally oppose imperialism and fascism.


[1] C. Slaughter, In Defence of Marxism, New Park Publications, London, 1971

[2] , May 26 2014

[3], June 2 2014

[4], May 19 2014

[5], June 2 2014

[6], June 9 2014

[7] ibid

[8] ibid

[9], May26 2014

[10] ibid




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