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3155Re: The Real Lessons from the Vietnam Anti-war Movement in Australia

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  • paperclay_man
    Oct 29, 2003
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      --- In GreenLeft_discussion@yahoogroups.com, Peter Boyle
      <peterb@d...> wrote:

      > I don't buy fake squeamishness about political groups taking
      > political credit. (I think Luke Formiatti and Ben Courtice
      > did totally miss the point about sectarianism and confused
      > it with groups promiting themselves. Someone made this point
      > quite sharply). There is nothing wrong about taking credit
      > where credit is due, either by political groups or
      > individuals. But anyone who argues that it is OK for
      > individuals to claim as much credit as they one but it is
      > somehow not acceptable for groups to claim credit when it is
      > is due has to to be joking.

      There's lot of mularcky that goes around about the 1960's
      and early seventies pictured through rose coloured glasses. Such that
      a lot of individuals claim credit for this and that when the
      actuality was that political positions were being argued for and
      against -- that, rather than any one individual or group of
      individuals, determined what happened. I thought the series by
      Lorimer in GLW achieved what it set out to do: explore the lessons of
      the VMC experience and came up with a perspective which I think is
      still very true today.

      Unfortunately the experience of then is being replayed in 2003 and
      with remarkably similar makeup at that: the ALP's (and its political
      fellow travellers') role in the anti-war movement is consistently
      pragmatic and generally tries to contain mass action and water down
      the movement's demands. This time we have had to experience conscious

      After reading these articles I note how the movement worked hard to
      coordinate its activity nationally. While many more activists were
      involved in organising for the VMC mobilisations than are committed
      against the Iraq occupation today -- maybe the Bush protest in
      Canberra has offered us an opportunity to draw some threads together
      and enrich or organising. In this regard, I suggest that maybe for
      the anniversary of the February 14 mobilisations -- if no rallies are
      planned -- we schedule a national anti war consulation in Canberra or
      Sydney to reboot the movement. Thats;' a good way to start the new

      On the referred to issue of our recent unpleasant debate on
      sectarianism -- I agree with Boyle in this instance and the last.
      Groups can claim their due and should --but the example of the
      Socialist Party as both argued for on this list and proclaimed on
      their web page is an excellent (I would say, "classic")example of
      sectarianism -- primarily toward the movement as a whole, as the SP
      put their own self/party interest way way above that of the movement -
      - even criticising it for being anti war! (eg" the same old anti war
      speeches!!!")Whether they make a habit of this I don't know. But I
      hope the suffering people of Iraq appreciate the SP preference for
      self aggrandisement and a new workerist agenda over the ransacking
      of their country by jackals.

      MT Void.
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