Politics Magazine

Che Speaks

Posted on the 03 November 2014 by Calvinthedog

At the Afro-Asian Conference in Algeria in 1965, Che did something people have been denouncing “pro-fascist leftists” for, for years. He put a plus sign beside countries and movements the US government put a minus sign beside:

“Ever since monopoly capital took over the world, it has kept the greater part of humanity in poverty, dividing all the profits among the group of the most powerful countries. The standard of living in those countries is based on the extreme poverty of our countries. To raise the living standards of the underdeveloped nations, therefore, we must fight against imperialism.

And each time a country is torn away from the imperialist tree, it is not only a partial battle won against the main enemy but it also contributes to the real weakening of that enemy, and is one more step toward the final victory. There are no borders in this struggle to the death. We cannot be indifferent to what happens anywhere in the world, because a victory by any country over imperialism is our victory, just as any country’s defeat is a defeat for all of us. The practice of proletarian internationalism is not only a duty for the peoples struggling for a better future; it is also an inescapable necessity…”

Che Guevara, 1965.

Exactly Mr. Guevara. We put a plus sign beside any country that US imperialism puts a minus side besides, though I would modify that somewhat if we were still fighting fascists as in World War 2.

“If the imperialist enemy, the United States or any other, carries out its attack against the underdeveloped peoples and the socialist countries, elementary logic determines the need for an alliance between the underdeveloped peoples and the socialist countries. If there were no other uniting factor, the common enemy should be enough.”

- Che Guevara, Algeria, 1965.

Thank you very much, Dr. Che Guevara, MD.

Steve Gowans comments:

It should also be pointed out that while some define socialism as the fight for justice in the absolute, others have defined socialism in another way: as a fight for justice, where justice is construed as the liberation of wage workers from exploitation. In some views (including Che’s), this project is furthered by an alliance of wage workers with oppressed nations against exploitation by imperialism. The idea is that if you weaken imperialism, you give socialist countries more room to grow, and make strong socialist movements more likely to arise at home. That means an alliance with people your mother might not approve of.

Thank you Mr. Gowans. The ethics of geopolitics is situation ethics. There are no angels in geopolitics. All countries act bad either sometimes or often. This is the nature of the interstate politics.

The idea of justice as contingent can be seen in how different nations define what is just. Zimbabwe’s governing ZANU-PF party believes that when it redistributes land from the descendants of European settlers to the descendants of dispossessed Africans, it has justice on its side. Descendants of European settlers believe they have justice on their side when they act to oust a government that threatens their property.

Right. People your Mom might not approve of. Like Assad in Syria, Putin in Russia, the Chinese state, Mugabe in Zimbabwe, etc.

I got some news for you. There are no good guys. Just bad guys. Bad guys and worse bad guys.

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