Australian Marxist Review


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The editorial board of the AMR has collected some interviews and articles to assist its readers in gaining an understanding of the developments in the international workers movement. The setback to Socialism in Europe with the reclaiming of whole nations by the imperialists and the building towards imperialist encirclement of China is part of the struggle in what we still see as the era of proletarian revolution.

The continued independence of hundreds of nations in the world is a legacy left to us by the heroic sacrifices of the working class of the Soviet Union and its Red Army. The liquidators and bourgeois apologists within the camp of the working class would have us believe that struggle is futile, that the USA and its European and Japanese stooges are the “hope of freedom.”

The opening of a new cold war and the creation of a proxy war in Ukraine is designed to test weapons and to bury the historic memory of the Soviet Union in the hope that a united front of Western-controlled nations can be forged to snuff out national independence and Socialism. The Australian working class had for many years the words “Peace and Socialism” on their banners. The most progressive stood against the crimes of Imperialism and supported the struggles of workers and their allies in the countries of our region.

This AMR goes to print in a period where the militarists of Australia are squandering the wealth of this nation in military equipment designed and developed to crush the progressive forces in this region. In issue No 73 of the Australian Marxist Review we showed how Australia as a middle-sized imperialist power is part of this imperialist network. The new militarist blocs are part of the class struggle: AUKUS, the QUAD, and the other alliances are attempts by the US oligarchs, along with our own oligarchs, to tie our nation to this decaying system. All this is not in the interest of our working people. Instead, they offer new forms of poverty, death, and destruction, seeming to lead towards a world war that has only one purpose: to maintain and establish US dominance over the people of the world. The rhetoric of “democracy” and “freedom” is actually camouflage, which is used to cloak poverty and actual denial of democratic rights. The slavery at the centre of this empire is based on suppression of the interests of the working class through more and more destructive weapons.

The gains won through the success of revolutions and struggle by working people are being overturned to pay for this new war of aggression. The high level of propaganda and mind-numbing “news” cycles, which present right-wing oligarchs as people’s champions and fascist-style regimes as champions of democracy, must be challenged. At each turning point in history the struggle of ideas and the understanding of our reality assumes immense importance.

In this issue we seek to offer some contribution to improving the clarity in understanding events that have led the working people down this dead-end and contributed to the rise of reaction in this world.

We reprint an article first published in 2010 in the journal World Review of Political Economy, under the authorship of our editor David Matters. The article traces the question that arose in the Soviet Union: the concept that the working class surrender its state to a new formation, the state of the whole people. It is argued that this development ran counter to the development of Socialism and developed into a state above the people. Subsequent developments allowed the bourgeoisie with their international connections to seize this state and to dismantle it from within. This left the working class without the mechanisms to defend its own interests.

Much more needs to be done in understanding these developments. So to contribute to this understanding the AMR has interviewed participants in the struggle of our class and our Party to see how these developments had an impact on our class and its Party.

The first interview is with a comrade LC, who grew up in the Party (name not used as the comrade still lives in a rural community). LC describes the experience of growing up in a Communist family, and how their father – despite being a veteran digger from the Kokoda track during the Second World War – suffered the persecution and hardship at the hands of the anti-Communists. Nevertheless, LC also describes the tremendous work carried out by the Party and its members, as well as the wider united-front humanitarian work undertaken by these comrades. LC’s interview also reveals the damage caused to individuals and the Party when factional differences overcame comradely unity. The splitting up of the Party did not strengthen but weakened the Party and its class.

The second Interview was with a veteran Comrade Jim Donovan. Jim gives us some beautiful images of the Party as a grass-roots organisation of our class, and of the stalwarts of our movement as people and not marble monuments. He also shows us the damage done by those who placed themselves above the class and the Party. The basic fact is that the Party was of the class and made very real contributions to the welfare and support of the people. The AMR editorial board thanks Comrade Jim Donovan for his extensive and in-depth contribution which will be published in two parts, with the second part to follow in AMR #75.

The final article is under the name of our editor David Matters, but it was created and developed by contributions from all of the AMR editorial board members, as well as being inspired by study sessions on the fundamentals of Marxism-Leninism. The article seeks to show the continuity of our Party with the struggle for revolutionary change, and to expose the many breaks with revolutionary continuity and the damage that these breaks have caused. It is argued that this continuity and the task of understanding it is fundamental to the process of renewal, which will lead to the unity of the Party and the class. This struggle is essential if we are to lead the class towards regaining momentum in the struggle to replace capitalism with Socialism and thereby end all forms of slavery.

We hope you find this issue of interest and that it provides a small but significant contribution to our struggle.