conclusions from historical experience
Maria Weiß December 18, 2011
(October 2, 2011)
This year it was much talked about the various aspects of German unity, the various sides of the former system of the GDR as well as the different sides of the former Federal Republic. But as regards the current situation, one thing is quite clear: capitalism is in its deepest crisis in decades, basically it is in a sort of a century crisis and it is completely open, what will closely result from this in any case in next time. One may even, for example, build on the success or failure of this attempt, in the former German state and a socialist society to realize its different view. In this regard, over all in terms of the current situation in the reunified German state as well as in other countries especially of the so-called West, it would probably be pretty clear: This is not an ordinary, as it were cyclically recurring capitalist crisis, but a very deep and multilayered crisis, which has various causes and their solution is absolutely not emerging, at least not for the bourgeoisie.
There are overlapping several contradictions here. On the one hand, of course, the basic, periodically up- coming capitalist crisis of overproduction and slump of sales, if you will, on the other a heavy debt crisis and state-debt crisis being not without and as third of course a structural crisis, at least in the European and Western countries, the traditional capitalist States, which has to do something with a sort of flight of the ruling class being confronted with the resistance of the masses, a sort of class struggle from the side of the bourgeoisie against the proletariat in those traditionally advanced capitalist states, resulting from capitalism inherent regularity that the development of productive forces ultimately will result in blowing up the (capitalist) relations of production. And fourth, even a speculative crisis, which has also washed itself. All these crises are interwoven and make the ruling classes in Europe and the USA an extreme headache.
What makes the crisis currently particularly controversial is the fact that the debt crises now themselves are seized by speculation which has been expanded into a kind of speculative crisis. Speculating with debt has become common practice for quite some time and this downward spiral ever higher, or you could also say that the bubble is getting bigger until it finally bursts. Something similar is to have been the case already several years ago . But this time it is significant that the core capitalist countries including the United States itself are those being concerned. The fact that the expansion of capital to all parts of the world, keyword "globalization" has longer become a characteristic fact which now one can limit.
A particularly striking feature is the increasing replacement of the special financial capital from the productive and the extension of a special kind of financial, or rather more speculative "superstructure" over the productive base. That is, on what in fact since long has been speculated on is not only the real profit from the results of production, but now one replaces it with fictional speculation values, and even there it does not stop, but now it is already speculation itself which speculates. Even entire states have become the subject of such speculation considering their own population as a hostage for their "protection".
What makes the danger of the current situation is that the mass movement basically
is not really as advanced as it should be. But that may change very quickly.
If the mass movement begins to break up, organized forces will have their hands
full of work to come to cope with the demands of the situation and to develop
the appropriate skills. It will emerge new strength, which is clear. It is therefore
important to unfold the forces of resistance that the experiences of the past,
especially among the organized forces of the Left are not swept under the rug,
but come to discussion in all clarity and ruthlessness.
Wall 50 years and the present situation
Around the wall question also ran an extensive debate on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary. There are a variety of claims about the circumstances of this wall, in most cases being one-sided or sometimes even completely wrong.
It is certainly historically so that the division of Germany has not started by the construction of the wall, but was promoted long before that, initially, especially with the division into different occupation zones by the victorious powers, with a completely different political and economic course in the different zones of occupation and finally, then, first with the founding of the Federal Republic of western Germany. But there are certain statements made by Stalin, which can be taken as those having more the intention, at least temporarily, to hold fast to the unity of Germany and finally in 1952, Stalin himself made appropriate offers. These are facts that can not be denied.
But of course there is another side to the matter, and that's revisionism, which developed in the fifties, especially within the former Soviet Union, which at the time of the Berlin Wall in 1961, with Khrushchev and others, had already progressed quite far and since long have been criticized from the part of the People's Republic of China under Mao Zedong (which was reflected since then in the Great Controversy). This of course is now entirely omitted from both sides. This cannot be omitted yet, because it is originally related to the matter of division and especially the Wall. Basically you have to say today that this division of Germany, and with this also it’s as one could say clearest manifestation in form of the Wall, had have been favored basically from both sides. In the further course it turned out that from both sides, as well from the Western imperialists as also from East German revisionists, who further on entirely threw over boards the goal of proletarian revolution as well as the unity of the nation, as well as the interest of social-imperialists of the former Soviet Union fearing a coming together of people throughout Germany too, especially of the working class and progressive and revolutionary people who criticized the existing regime on both sides, which by the existence of the wall throughout the middle of the city especially this has been hindered massively. And both imperialists and social imperialists have been interested in that. This is what today the accumulated experience has brought to light.
This wall through the middle of Berlin, in fact around the western part, added another dimension to the already existing division, but this is essentially not a big difference, and at a time when the real purpose of such a closing of the border to West Berlin was already outdated in principle and this is already largely followed a different purpose, namely the isolation of themselves, mainly the isolation and confinement of their own people. Today one can almost say that even the latter was the main motivation of this rather late closure of the border within Berlin in August 1961.
For progressive, historically conscious, and above all revolutionary forces, neither the backward-looking, whiny and constantly glossing over the crimes of Nazi fascism, justifying especially the politics of Western imperialism, conduct of certain forces of the West, nor even the forces of the former SED in their different shades, who also constantly try, with their so-called policy of "damage control", to cover up the contradictions and explain away obvious facts, is acceptable in any way, but both, and especially the latter must be strongly criticized. Furthermore, the whole truth must be figured out.
It has to be figured out what was really going on at that time, how this whole affair had been enforced and by whom. This additional splitting occurred actually rather in the interests of imperialist and social-imperialist occupation powers, than in the interests of the communist government. This is suggested by many facts. Under no circumstances one can easily say, the Wall is a result of World War II. The result of the Second World War was the first occupation of Germany and in consequence the division into two states, initially promoted by the Western powers. The Federal Republic was first founded, and the founding of the GDR took them in a row. It was the same with the currency reform as a precursor of the division, which took place in the Western occupying powers in 1948.
However, one can not help but to question whether even on the other side, the side of the Soviet Union they also had an interest to drive this division at this time. There is also strong evidence for that.
It has since become apparent that in those days, the early to mid sixties, it was not just the infiltration from the West in the East, but to a minimum of just such an extent vice versa the infiltration in the West. And that is of course, of special interest, as the then revolutionary forces could not know this, and consequently we had also then certainly seen the construction of this wall as a means, as some legitimate mean, with respect to this subversion of the GDR, to clamp down this deduction of human powers from it, as it had been massively supported by the West and promoted. Yet, as we now know, that was really only one side of the coin.
However, what both sides had in common necessarily, that this was not to be covered as much as possible. This is something that, for example, in hindsight now shows on the occasion of the discovery of the murderer of Ohnesorg, Kurras as a Stasi spy, or as a double agent, in a sense, what was probably well known to the then authorities in West Berlin, but should not be revealed. It was kept secret at all costs, it was not to come to light. And for good reason. What would have been if it had then become known that an SED Agent shot Benno Ohnesorg? That would have confused the whole situation considerably. Someone like Rudi Dutschke would never had assumed such a role, so-called Red Army fraction would have never been able to draw their legitimacy from it to undermine and slow down the revolutionary forces. It would have taken a very different development in terms of criticism of revisionism, and therefore it is absolutely relevant.
Yes, if then it had become known that the socialist power in the East manages to organize killings in the West, so as to drive the movement, so to speak in their favor that would have changed a lot. You can be sure of that.
One sees that the wall has been used, not least to split in the revolutionary potential of the masses on both sides. What to think consequently about of such forces today who want to cover up these findings and distract from them? Whose ministers might they well be?
Had it been known at that time, it would put a huge boost to the revolutionary forces in their criticism of revisionism, and the criticism of the PRC be mainly in the form of the Cultural Revolution would have fallen on a completely different and much broader fertile ground.
Thus, one could draw the conclusion from this construction of the wall that it he has ended up serving as a kind of bracket on the part of all reactionaries against the revolutionary forces and the masses on both sides.
The upheaval in the early sixties
In 1961 a certain turning point, a kind of upheaval on both sides, and the further development has just shown quite clearly that the infiltration and expansion efforts not only from one side went out, but very probably also the other side were our own.
Since the early sixties there also West Germany, the Federal Republic, was in a kind of upheaval by the progressive development and the actions of the superpowers, which was reflected also in domestic politics. This is a fact that you can find on the basis of events and no one can deny that.
The era of Adenauer reaction in West Germany was drawing to a close in 1961, things began to change a lot. The economic development in that partial state of the Federal Republic was such that a large number of laborers back in the factories were working and increasingly since the second half of the fifties workers from abroad had been attracted and added, who at the premises in West Germany, especially after the cessation of the flow of labor from the occupied eastern territories and the GDR took over the simpler jobs. This means that the pressure from the masses grew as a whole. And that pure reaction of this absolutely west-facing Adenauer regime of the early postwar period was over. There were other forces who began to stir, and the whole development in the western part of Germany, the then Federal Republic, went increasingly toward a certain loosening up and thus a new situation emerged. Some adaptation to the system of the superpowers took place in the bourgeois parties of the Federal Republic, as well as with the social democracy in the direction of the later so-called detente. Very significant was also that in spite of separation having existed from the very beginning at least certain things came into the other part, the former Federal Republic, from the GDR, certain progress for the masses that had been achieved despite the existence of defects therein, for example, in the accommodation and especially the education sector, as well as in some other social areas such as the realization of equal rights of women, so that, for example, in 1964 in West Germany they built a number of new colleges and universities, especially in the former industrial heartland of the Ruhr area, and increasingly the trend began to assert itself to give also children from working class families the chance of higher education, which continued to succeed in the following years . The year 1966 was finally the year that the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in China gained first highlights. This had also international impact and has naturally led to an increasing interest on the part of both superpowers (the revisionist Soviet Union and of U.S. imperialism at that time), to entrench existing divisions of various kinds. Thus, the enforcement of the border between the two parts of Germany at that time was not at all inconvenient to them.
The fact is that there have been some arrangements between the U.S. imperialists and Soviet revisionists, not later than the beginning of the sixties, even about what happened in Europe. And that was reflected just in the various following episodes, among other things, in this construction of the Wall in Berlin, not considering that it was far too late for the GDR. There was an interest on both sides, to perpetuate the division of Germany both sides of the superpowers, and not to achieve the opposite, and certainly not to allow the merging of the criticism of the existing systems on both sides. That was very important to them that this was prevented in any case, and naturally this construction of the wall sealed the split for the first, so to speak.
Kennedy has agreed with Khrushchev about the Wall in advance, at least indirectly, and for good reason. Both (the U.S. started) basically by their approach to a respective partial mobilization of its armed forces even speeded up the construction at that time, as in consequence panic like reinforcement of the movement of refugees from East Germany set in at that time, resulting in Ulbricht finally giving the occasion to initiate the construction immediately.
Yet, today it is very interesting to understand what else happened in the world in 1961. Many governments around the world gained their independence from their colonial power. For example, Africa, the Congo became independent and the struggle for natural resources began. And one must still ask, why up to the present day this has not really been continued, the revolution, but has been undermined again and again and has been prevented by the imperialists and social imperialists, and why for so long such stagnation could be maintained in this whole continent.
For example, there was the Pan-African Conference in 1958, two years after
the 20th Party in the Soviet Union and three years before the Berlin Wall.
There is a reason as to why this was so encapsulated then, because, for example, the intense debate around the world, including Africa, the whole question of the communist movement and about the right kind of course was incredibly hampered. Revolutionary China under Mao Zedong, of course, blended into the whole question, and also established contacts with these African countries, and provided support to these newly independent states and issued the slogan: Countries want independence, nations want liberation and peoples want revolution.
Henry Kissinger (former Secretary of the U.S. imperialists) says somewhere in his memoirs that in the time at the end of the forties, the Soviet Union served as an incredible attraction to other states, many, many countries in the world. Even to China, this is well known, but also to many others. (Not without reason Mao Zedong once said that without the October Revolution there would have neither been any victorious Chinese revolution.) This attraction has but then, at least as far as the Soviet Union was concerned, increasingly suffered a significant crash by the complete enforcement of revisionism primarily with Khrushchev and Brezhnev.
We must also see the following: if there had been something wrong from the outset, for example, in the tactics of the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany, here there is probably even more to discover, [Note 1] was not from the outset the development of the GDR also affected?
Also, the following is not insignificant: It is truly a fact that the socialist system after the Second World War under the aegis of the Soviet Union was not designed for a revolution in Germany, or rather in a part of it, which was determined from the outset anyway, but was more or less dictated from the outside. What that means in its full extent, no one of the young generation could have such a sublte understanding of in the sixties, mainly because they lacked detailed knowledge about specific decisions and their consequences. However, you can now in retrospect as we have acquired this knowledge in intensive studies and also in the practical examination, as well as in knowledge of those things that have been revealed, not go back.
Surely, the social order, which was then tried to build up in Germany, in a
part of it, was a kind of attempt at a socialist system. There is no doubt about
that. Yet, how it worked internally and how above all, the debate and the development
and the possibilities could be realized for criticism there that is another
story. But it is important for the further perspective.
The situation in the late 1980s, the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the situation
The fall of the wall 28 years later and simultaneoulsy the repeal of the division of Germany happened at a completely different time. At the time, even in the PRC revisionism had already been enforced for ten years and a kind of revisionist promoted capitalism developed there. The Soviet Union under Gorbachev was disintegrating, and exposed to the infiltration of the U.S. in a certain way. At that time there was collusion, under what conditions the German unification was to take place. One can almost certainly assume that in any case they included the following important element: the further industrial decline, industrial dismantling throughout Germany, of course, the abandonment of the development of nuclear energy on a larger scale and even the installation of a broad "united"green movement - Alliance 90/The Greens, to propagate this direction among the masses. And one must state that temporarily they succeeded in this increasingly. Yet, this is not enough, inspite of the feverish efforts of forces such as Merkel and others that the trend continues in this direction until the political and economic delivery to foreign powers again really has gained a foothold in Germany.
Not for nothing they continued to pursue division extensively in the united Germany. First, in the economic field, in which large parts of the industry of the former GDR, whole areas have more or less been leveled to the ground. Not only have that, for the first they did not even start to build up anything there. Workers have massively been remeoved there, now in the united Germany, without a wall, to the west and south, especially by leaving the eastern parts of the country unexploited. This has an effect to this day. Today, several eastern states have become the nursing home of the reunified Republic. The young people who have stayed there yet, interesting enough, especially males, can bemore easily exploited for any fascist maneuvers, since they have no ground under their feet, and perspective - a fact that is quite the intent of parts of the ruling circles.
The refusal of the so-called Left Party in this country in any of its factions to criticize these things and to really call them by their name forms a sort of supplementary piece to these conditions fabricated by the reaction, thus objectively promoting fascist scenarios.
Even today's Russia, for example, in large part a land of wasted powers - one could express the present condition there - which mainly relies on its raw materials, rather rests on them and the skills and which leaves the potentials of the population unexploited to a great extent. A huge country, in terms of area, the largest in the world to have very different potencies and develop skills rather than occasionally to invite some international companies like Siemens and the German bank to participate in the exploitation of its own people. This is the current ruling clique there, who has merged with closely mafiotic and criminal structures, and it sticks like a bee on honey. The own production existing there, is largely outdated and serves rather as a kind of tokenism. When the Prime Minister, for example, shows up together with workers in a factory, this reminds evidently of local labor aristocrats in Germany, or even some pseudo-left organizations, whose leading people also like to be photographed together with workers. This is not representative because in fact nothing is done for the real advancement of the workers, nothing, so that the forces of emancipation develop in order to make criticism and to connect with other really revolutionary forces internationally. Far from it. That's all fraud. In truth, such people closely fused with the imperialist forces in the dismantling of the country. Truly revolutionary forces there (as here) are brutally suppressed and held down, where they always threaten to be a danger to the ruling system. They are not even allowed to arise.
Yet, things will certainly not prevail in this state, the crisis is too comprehensive,
too deep and global. And this accomplishes the ruling cliques of considerable
concern everywhere. The contradictions of the capitalist system of exploitation
and all its speculative 'superstructure' are objective in nature and their tightening
a law. All those efforts to escape by debt accumulation, for example, these
turn out to be a boomerang, they pounce on a much larger problem. Also known
as a retreat to the nation-state "eigensolutions", whatever you imagine
as such, is not suitable to address this development, on the contrary, it only
leads to even greater contradictions and ultimately to new imperialist wars.
There is really only one way, namely that the masses rise up and take matters
into their own hands, but what requires great effort and political and, above
all, critical thinking and engagement in a very different extent. Finally, there
is no other choice because obviously around the globe the ruling classes are
overwhelmed in solving the problems of contemporary society.
On a historical question
If you look again at certain statements, interviews from the period 1946/47 by Stalin, then you definitely see that certain weaknesses in questions of class struggle, for example, which had existed before, are continued. This is very clear. That is not surprising because what is not combated and corrected, this just continues. And that is why my above statement, that the whole conceptual evaluation of this, if you will, attempt to establish a socialist order in a part of Germany, is surely also fraught of these things, reasonable. Incidentally, it was avowedly not necessarily a priority of trying to establish a socialist order, but above all a democratic and peace loving. That was the overwhelming factor at the time, and that alone is already something that in this exclusitivity contradicts class struggle.
It is true that Stalin emphasized the unity of the German state at various points in several interviews. What about the opposite, however, that on the other hand he permanently stressed in several interviews that with the former coalition forces a peaceful coexistence was possible? Something is wrong there because it was obvious even then that by exactly this coalition of forces there was was a massive boost to the division of defeated Germany.
The following must be also considered: by the conferences of Teheran, Yalta and Potsdam was still basically the division of Germany long since decided, and indeed in agreement first of three, and finally all four victorious powers and the Soviet Union was not the last to agree. [Annotation 2] So, one can rightly ask, what kind of purpose did later expressions of the latter, for example, towards the maintenance of a unified Germany follow.
It is already inconsistent with Stalin on the one hand, he rightly criticizes aggressive and arrogant statements and intentions in the victorious power of Britain and the United States, on the other hand, it is for him, at least according to the captured expressions, beyond question, that of course a "peaceful coexistence" with these is possible. How is this compatible with each other? Where is here taken into account the irreconcilable contradiction between imperialism and the bourgeoisie and the revolutionary struggle of the masses internationally? And it begs the question whether the later so-called relaxation has not already found its precursor in this policy.
In general it is remarkable that the position of the Soviet Union at that time is that of a great power, in all its aspects, which leads negotiations quasi "on an equal footing" with the major imperialist powers. Now one could say, of course, it was not surprising in view of what the Soviet Union has done to contribute to the defeat of Nazism ruled Germany. Here one forgets, however, that these "coalition partners" were precisely those imperialist powers before having just rushed even Nazism straight on the Soviet Union and in the following pursuing indeed their own hegemony advances especially towards the Soviet Union and her associated states. So what about the continuation of class struggle with Stalin and other leaders of the Soviet Union? As well as the defense of revolutionary socialism? Or maybe this had already back then fallen behind? These questions are raised but at such points. And you surely do not believe that this has not become apparent in the socialist building up in the eastern part of Germany dominated by themselves.
Of course you have to judge things in a differentiated way. But a differentiated assessment does not mean that it overlooks the lumpy contradictions.
On the topic: right of the GDR to secure their borders
This raises the question here but, for what purpose this is happening. If this is done as a protection against infiltration of West Germany and the Western zones of occupation in West Berlin or to the inclusion of its own people? Now you may say that the one without the other could not be practiced, that they could not prevent this. Doubts are justified already here. Furthermore, in the whole procedure the following doubt is allowed: Why did they not mainly work on being a role model themselves for the other part of the country, which had fallen prey to capitalism, as an attraction for them? Not so much of it was to remember. Why was it not possible to keep people there without border security, using conviction as a deed? It is said many had agreed to enticements and touts from the West and thus lacked as the manpower for the construction of socialism, whereby the rapid progress had been hampered. That may certainly be true for some part, but if it is to hundreds of thousands for a long time, then this is already too serious. The question arises as to what else might have impeded the progress of the factors in building, what else lacked all of the economy during construction. Here we should definitely scrutinize apart from the open acts of sabotage from the West also the then policy of the occupying power, the Soviet Union
If one tries to make a historical assessment of this whole affair today, one encounters considerable problems.
Basically, for that time this was in the then divided Berlin in a way, a sore point concerning the division of Germany as a whole because this division into sectors within Berlin was of course not as perfect as the military-monitored border, clearly. And the moment when their own border was secured militarrly in this way and was really almost cemented and at the same time gthe West Berlin enclave was almost trapped, then this made a certain qualitative difference in this city. It is quite clear, to deny this is absurd. The revisionists themselves do not even deny this.
Objectively therefore a non-negligible neuralgic moment of additional seperation in this act of building the wall, and not just in the act itself but rather in the problem how to handle it in the future. Effectively in the following practice it was used increasingly for the enclosure of their own people. To what extent pre-existing shortcomings and mistakes played a role in this whole story, remains subject to further investigation.
Why the border was only in 1961 and not previously closed? This question must also be asked.
Of course, the situation of 1961 was still not that of the end by 1967/68. Things, however, had been developing for a longer period. In China, the critique of revisionism did not get stuck at newly developing own bourgeois forces (Liu Shao-chi and others) as well as internationally, at certain points of Soviet policy, and neither in the following they have been spared. There pioneered a new revolution from within, which drew to light these forces in a mass criticism and revealed them. (Cultural Revolution) At the same time, in addition to earlier criticism even before and during the 20th Party Congress in 1956 in the Soviet Union, a public criticism had emerged from the Chinese leaders, especially Mao Zedong, on this policy, represented mainly by Khrushchev, and become known internationally [Annotation 3] All of this accumulatated then further in the situation emerging in Europe, especially in Germany, in the western part, where this criticism, this expression of what happened in China, was spreading and began to bear fruit. What could be better for the imperialists and social imperialists, and can of course also for their dependent and subject to them governments spread in the two German states, as a perfect cleavage, which prevented that this same criticism could spread on both sides of the border?
There emerged a lot more mass movement then as the so-called 68ies only. The goal was far from simply being to prevent that this movement spilled over from the west. There was also criticism in the GDR on revisionism. And this could also have developed into a very different way if just this divsion, this border had not existed. Had not or no longer existed. You could not even think of that at that time though. This was what they made preparations for.
Stalin's analysis seems not to be wrong in one thing, namely that the people were fed up with war. This applies also to Europe, where it has taken effects particularly strongly. But what happened in Asia? First, Japan had had something to do with it. But what happened in China? In China, the struggle continued until the liberation finally succeeded in 1949. And what was the aim in 1946, when Stalin promised Roosevelt Elliott, the co-operation in Asia had been secured? What is that? And anything else that was initialized between the great powers is quite interesting. For example, the question of control of atomic energy. There is an agreement between Stalin and the rest is, in which it has become clear that in this issue international rules would have to be found and international control should be established. One sees that some international organizations such as The IAEA, which is controlled by the United States in particular, have deep roots. [Annotation 4]
One must also reveal why just in the year 1956 (some months after the 20th Congress of the CPSU) the Communist Party was banned in West Germany. That must also have reasons. And these lie entirely in an attempt to prevent that the revolutionary movement and criticism could unfold in both states. That was not to be, not under any circumstances. And at this point, revisionists and bourgeois were in agreement.
Anyone who thinks that in the GDR a real dictatorship of the proletariat has ruled goes wrong. You can not view it like that. It was on the one hand, quite a kind of regime of occupation on the part of the Soviet Union, similar to the West by the Allies USA, Great Britain and France. On the other hand, the so-called "peace-loving and democratic" forces personnel represented by former Communist Party members such as Ulbricht and Pieck and the former SPD member Grotewohl. But to speak of a dictatorship of the proletariat would be quite an exaggeration. A real dictatorship of the proletariat is based on their own, independent military power, and in this partial state there was no sign of this at all. The army there, called the National People's Army (NPA) has played in some ways a similar "approved" residual role played by the army in West Germany for the first. However, one must not consider this only formally and it is still to find out how this has come about because the term National People's Army suggests actually an overall context that then did not really exist any more because the dictatorship of the proletariat was in the Soviet Union itself had been corrupted in essential respects since long by the emergence of a significantly great power conduct, for example, to such countries as Poland. And here a not unimportant role was played also by the so-called non-aggression agreement, we can say a certain pact with Nazi Germany, which even then was to serve ostensibly to prevent the robbery on the Soviet Union, of course, taking still place in the end. There is more yet to be investigated.
It would be very wrong to look at things in a one-sided way. The Soviet masses
have done a great contribution, a great achievement in this war, you should
not underestimate. On the other hand, there are also things that have have failed
in advance, which have taken effects during as well as after the event, and
this may also not be denied. Otherwise you can not understand the result including
its various pages. And above all, it blocks the way to learn from it.
The position of our organization and its development in these questions
If one reads, for example, our position in the "Revolutionary Voice - Front Page of 15 October 1974 ", you realize that there is quite a significant jump from the time of 1971, that things had developed much further and we necessarily had to consider that. And that is exactly done in the right way there. The question is why such a fundamentally superior social system of socialism has not proven itself a magnet for the masses in the West. Why, for example, it did not affect the movement that has been there. This has to asked yet because if that is the more advanced social order, then it also has a corresponding appeal to the masses. But that was by no means the case to any significant extent. On the contrary, hundreds of thousands of people hewed from there, and when people do that, then something is wrong in principle.
Incidentally, it is very interesting that in 1956 in the former Federal Republic the Communist Party, was banned or finally the ban was enforced after several years of trials. This raises the question as to why that was not done immediately, but later.
At the end of 1971 Ulbricht was overthrown and Honecker had been brought to power, that was surely no accident and has massively strengthened this absurd project to prepare for this partial state and this was probably also wanted by certain forces. Only three years later, the GDR adopted a new constitution, in which the effort was highlighted to German unity and the absurd theory was put up that there has now emerged a supposedly independent nation of East Germany, a revolution for the whole of Germany was dismissed. Our statement, in which this was sharply denounced, differed considerably from the one three years earlier. Meanwhile a lot had happened. Meanwhile the blossoming of our movement in West Berlin had emerged and a certain anchorage among the working class and the first of May 1972 as well as the whole maneuvers and persecutions by the bourgeoisie, above all, the judiciary, which became visible in this context. The staging RAF campaign by the bourgoisie, the pressurization and forced flight of our leadership abroad and at the same time the starting and developing of such a criticism of Stalin and other leaders such as Molotov, this should not be ignored. Then the volume "Stalin on Germany and the German labor movement" was published by us in the summer of 1972, but as a specific introduction of an editorial member was deleted because there the policy especially by Molotov was exposed in an uncritical way. And even then a critique of certain approaches and Stalin began to develop. The findings are of course now much deeper, thus you cannot simply go back to the state by 1971 and in a completely non-historical and uncritical way repeat the things of that time simply.
If you look at the script of the 13th August 1971 [Note 5] again by reading, then you notice certain things. In part this is a little hard to understand because the situation has changed so drastically. When you look at how the differentiation had preceded by 1 May 1972, then you notice quite a considerable variation. You can see it clearly once again that we basically do not make any headway, if we do not criticize revisionism. And I think that is a very important point of the whole matter.
This position of the time is not to be detached from the concrete conditions of West Berlin people who already at that time were distinguished by a large sustained swamp, which readily and permanently reproduced fascist and especially favouring the U.S. superpower propaganda. The aim of our then statement of August 1971 consisted primarily to oppose just these elements and their backward and counter-revolutionary intentions, which did succeed fully. There is no doubt that this statement of our organization was to this extent, of course, absolutely justified.
This little script to August 13 looks a bit at the particular situation prior. The May Day of 1972 looks forward. And what is the consequence of both the first May itself and what has developed in the coming time is nothing else but a full confirmation.
Today one cannot ignore things that have now come to light in this regard about the so-called the RAF and their backgrounds as well as various early events of this student movement, for example, the 1967 murder-Kurras. Had it become known then, it would have affected a kind of liberation against the revisionism, also the revisionism of the GDR, which was already then clearly evident at various points. One cannot consider it a coincidence that a number of leading figures from the RAF, all found their shelter in the GDR, if they had not even come from there. Yet, there must have been a tacit agreement on them. (Tactics of infiltration across!)
One cannot, for example, overlook the rise of Brandt, who began about the year 1962 at the latest, and ended with the 1974 Guillaume affair blown up. Whose was this spy Guillaume? And what does it mean then? One cannot simply omit it, that is a fact that has had its impact. It may even be that this Guillaume was primarily a DDR spy and the Soviet revisionists still had very different people behind him, had in store, so to speak, watching the whole thing as to control it and the moment it would get out of control were to intervene. (See Wehner). East German spy or not, the essence of this discovery is, so to speak, there exists a second team of spies, who control the first.
For example, the discovery of the Guillaume affair had taken place before our statement on German unity of autumn 1974. That was in the spring of 1974, and there are reasons for this. And the whole discovery contributed to this statement. This cannot be denied any more and not pretend it has not been the case, not assume the previous standpoint.
Between this document dated August 1971 and the "Great May Day" in May 1972 there is three quarters of a year of intense agitation operating, political agitation among the workers in the factories, which had certainly had its impact.
If you read especially the last part of the Great May Day 1972, then you must establish even today, that it had a revolutionary aura that did not miss its effect and its severity can be measured by the fact that a part of those who took part in this demonstration, have continued this fight for life (if their lives were not taken) and have done so until today.
The discoveries made in the brochure for the 13th August 1971 that the old
front-line city policy failed to some extent in 1961 were correct. Yet, the
change had indeed taken place in principle before, and it is now really the
question of whether all of these policies of submission of this East German
government and the superiors were not wrong and basically represented a submission
to revisionism. And the stewing in the own juice and the ultimate failure were
basically a consequence of this policy. Of course, you can argue that certain
forces have resisted. For example, it is of course correct to add that people
like Gossweiler and perhaps others realized this and felt limited in this respect,
but what did they do for it? Did they make an uprising against it? Did they
criticize the revisionism and the chauvinism of the Soviet Union, which already
then appeared unmistakably, at certain points? No, they did not, they have declared
to perform a policy of "damage limitation" and that is exactly what
led to defeat and then finally to disaster. That is the kind of conclusion we
must now draw from all these things. They have basically given up the proletarian
internationalism even back then and proletarian revolution with it. What is
to an alleged "damage limitation" to effect against a power which
itself unmistakably followed revisionism and social-imperialism?
Nevertheless revolutionary forces today must have the right to raise these issues in all their sharpness. And it is a fact today that the entire so-called Left, who rescued themselves, in environmentalism, i.e. has landed in the most blatant subservience to the decaying imperialism.
The betrayal begins not in 1955, and not in 1940, it begins much earlier, and it is very far-reaching, what Hartmut Dicke criticized in his articles. This betrayal is very much broader and deeper, it is part of the development of the Soviet Union and also the development of the GDR and the socialism which was built there. I would like to present the thesis that the treachery has already been a fundamental part in the whole structure of the GDR. Where once was basic criticism leveled at the entire defeat of the Communist Party, for example, against the Nazi fascism? Little is known to me. It would, however, always been a task. And in this connection, in fact, the position on the so-called border security is, as it was mentioned back then, a minor issue. On the contrary, all this isolation, the single lever, this betrayal of proletarian internationalism is a component that must be criticized and must be eliminated.
Not only has the proletarian revolution, internationalism been flouted, but also the principle of self-determination of nations. And that by a socialist power, which had won on the other hand a great victory over the fascist aggression, the spearhead of imperialism at that time. A more drastic contradiction can hardly be imagined actually.
The counter-revolution knows this very well, and therefore always will maneuver out of his pocket, by exactly counter-copying the consequences of this betrayal, which must necessarily be drawn by any revolutionary movement, should they have really any chance of success at all. The Nazi-fascist pigs have also known why they have killed Ernst Thälmann, "just in time".
Without a continued criticism of the revisionist betrayal in all its consequences, and in all its implications, the European working class has no chance of liberation.
If you remind yourself of the example again what kind of a youth movement emerged
in the year 1966/67 in West Berlin. West Berlin was an enclave, above all dominated
by three occupying powers with U.S. imperialism at the forefront - and still
it broke out. But what about East Berlin? Nothing has been heard that there
something in that respect jumped across, well, it could hardly. And why could
it not? Because there was just this fixed militarily secure border. Had it not
been, but the whole thing would have been very different and the revisionists
would have had a bad hand in the GDR. One need but just to run this configuration
in mind in order to recognize the on the beat. And why was it not seen then?
For example, why did they not try to initiate anything like this? This was because
the GDR was partly regarded as an ally in the struggle against imperialism,
but in reality it was no longer that. The revisionists, and social imperialists,
however, took these youth and student movement in West Berlin gladly as an opportunity
to extend their subliminal influence. And this is supported by certain disclosures
from of recent times. Can you pass this and pretend as if it were not? One would
be ill advised.
On the question of democracy
The question of democracy is a very important question just under socialism, in a dictatorship of the proletariat. If we solve it in the wrong way, the whole situation can reverse to the contrary very easily and very quickly.
It is indeed denied not, that to the GDR, and the leading people there, at least the early days were hard times because from the beginning in some way they were under the thumb of winning power, the Soviet Union, under the military thumb. They had 500,000 men occupying forces concentrated in this part of the state, which considering a population of 17 million people who lived there at that time is an incredible mass. It is believed but not that this has had no effect. To this experiment there to build a kind of socialism was implanted colonialism from the beginning, and namely to the extent that certain great power chauvinistic features had long been established in the Soviet leadership.
Of course, not all in the GDR, not all of leading people agreed to this. They had to give in for better or worse, and those who showed a little more criticism and more will to resist were sacked, and those who did the least were put in charge. See for example the replacement of Ulbricht by Erich Honecker.
Implausible becomes not the one who criticizes all these quirks and shortcomings, this bourgeois politics eventually, but not credible in terms of socialism becomes the one who does not perform this criticism of these conditions, but distracts from them. Upside down. And if you now, in view of what has taken place, anything and everything that has come to light now, do not tear open and schematizes these things, criticize them in their historical context and also in their current context, it makes you look implausible to represent progress at all.
Yet, what represents someone who is trying to put this relationship upside down?
Of course there were, especially in the early days attempts of enticements, massive infiltration and propaganda against socialism from the part of the west dominated mainly by the U.S. imperialists, especially from West Berlin, against the GDR. There is absolutely no doubt about this and is not wiped off the table by what is written here. It is just that on the other side this agitation would not have had to come into play, at least not in such a massive form. One must ask, for example, why was, if was so that they did not cope with this kind of "poaching" of the West, the border not closed a lot earlier? Why not already in the fifties, for example, or before?
After the construction of the wall as it seems they withdrew into their "socialist" corner, under the great shield of the great military power, the Soviet Union. World revolution? What is it? Chinese criticism of revisionism, great controversy? Never heard of that! Let alone that this had been really dealt with anytime. Of course, the revolutionary upheaval around the world is always the goal, which is to apply to communist revolutionaries, also to states by the way, and that must be followed, and the revolutionary developments in the world are increasingly heading for it. What, however, may not be, is to confront this goal in an abstract way with justified concrete criticism? Nobody knows in what kind of forms these changes will prevail in the future, all over the world. For this purpose the conditions in the various states and individual countries are still far too diverse as one could operate there with any abstract definitions.
Nostalgic looking back cannot really convince anyone. This is quite logical if one does not criticize, on the one side, which has taken place then, does not see that very specific faults and their continuation have resulted in it just not being able to develop properly and failing to catch on, especially not as some had imagined, then one is just wrong. Marxism is simply not a dogma, but critical and revolutionary, i.e. it demands, in particular, that things are constantly re-examined in connection with the practice and the right steps are taken. (Idealistic islands in the head, i.e. the acceptance of supposed so-called "axioms" not under-lying change, must be fought.)
I think it is quite possible, and also a lot has become known about that quite a few people among the leading had criticism and that by no means everything that has been imposed on them by the Soviet side suited them. But what should they do, for example, with their criticism of the border demarcation in the East? Because they probably had little chance of finding something for a hearing from the already "super power" that was talking with the U.S. imperialists on one level, but in their own area of democracy occurred in an elementary way underfoot. It shows up when reading the former statements in the interviews today. You can definitely find it there. And just because the political power comes from the barrel of a gun, as Mao says, these people had just then also no chance to get through on the other hand, however much they might have wished to in part. And dismiss this relationship with the remark that it was not a "monolithic block" distracts from the truly forced subservience, which had already been part of the early days of the GDR. What opportunities did the NVA (National People's Army), which was then established there, for example, against the occupiers? The occupying Power was officially legitimized by the Four Power Agreement, even by agreement with the other three victorious powers. Thus what opportunities did the GDR have, not only to make themselves heard in their interests and their views, but if necessary to enforce them? The revisionism began in the Soviet Union in 1956 and certainly not in 1961 or later. This would be nonsense, it had begun long before, gained a foothold and developed. There is above all to study a lot about the thirties. Some of it has also been discussed before and argued also from our part. [Annotation 6] However, there have been repeated attempts - especially from the corner of the former SED revisionists, but also the DKP - to slander this necessary criticism and put into a supposed rightist corner.
One must not forget that there was already one of the main pillars of the criticism of Lenin to Stalin, the question of treatment of nationalities, and that this question is broken up later and to this day it has been a cloven hoof, an unsolved problem in this vast country. In our organization this has been recognized as a significant problem at an early stage and there has been mainly by Hartmut Dicke initiated an edited a volume with writings of Lenin on the national and colonial question in detail, in which this criticism takes effect thoroughly. Also in the article of 2005 "About the importance of addressing Stalin - Trotsky ..:" this point is discussed, namely also as a matter of style. The question of style is a question of dealing with people, and just plays a very significant role here. And this very issue also played a role in the GDR. What we noticed early on how bad the treatment was, for example, by customs officers, border officials of their own people, that is, citizens of the GDR, in part. This is conceived as a negative already back then.
People are the most important thing in society. As a result, the question of
treatment is a non-negligible cultural issue. People are living beings capable
of communication, able to express themselves, to development and realization
of creative development and transformation of themselves and their environment.
Thus one can not simply bypass it as a "cost factor", or "production
factor" or "work force factor" alone. You can not. A socialism
that acts in this way has already lost the fight from the outset.
Draw conclusions from historical experience
Certainly there was some chance, or seemed to be there, and quite a lot of people, a lot of people have certainly conceive of it and accepted it for themselves as such a chance, after all these hardships and horrors of Nazi terror. Yet, how people dealt with it is another matter. Let's not forget who was there at the top. These were just people like Pieck and so on, and they had just their past. One can not say for sure, but that some favoritism was established more or less from the outset would be no surprise considering the history.
Therein lies a problem in a revolutionary dictatorship of the working class
(additional remarks necessary here): How can you solve the problem of control
by the masses? In Russia was opposed to even the extremely low level of culture,
which made it impossible to dispense with the elements of the management of
reactionary political system entirely.
In China, there was this one historical example: the Cultural Revolution. Again, there were several aspects to it. And here it was not (permanently) managed to continue this, especially not after the death of Mao.
This question poses a challenge for any progressive new social order, which is to continue to be solved by the masses, the proletariat, especially, while the international approach represents a chain link. Besides the objectively existing contradictions between the classes, which do not disappear even with a rule of the working classes, of course, but on the contrary even worsen temporarily, especially with the help of still existing international exploiters, the following applies: people are now once again not perfect and the strive for their own benefit at the expense of others is in some ways difficult to overcome. Selflessness does not come by itself, it arises in the fight for something that seems higher than the present one, which seems a crucial one, and where the situation leaves no other choice. To permanently maintain he consciousness developing in this area is a difficulty.
The other side of it and it is very important- is that the possibilities of further development would indeed be immensely greater than in what one leaves behind. If this is not the case, then the problem is cumulative.
These are contradictions at least resulting from objective differences that are reflected in consciousness. And these require a proper treatment.
Of course, also the infiltration by the Western imperialists backed by the West Berlin side played a role naturally driven by these extensively, and corroborated by means of bribery and permanent influence of media by a general campaign against communism. The question is whether this is all there is. The question is whether the people in the eastern part of Berlin and Germany, in the later GDR, have not only seen the possibilities of building a new society, but also whether they actually did have them and were from that time forth also willing to defend these long term. Which would be contrary to a mentality which could be pulled away at the first lure from the other side, as it was obviously also the case with not a few.
For example, an increase in the standards, i.e. to demand more efforts, that has to be conveyed to and understood by the masses as well. Well, a few black sheep will always be there and those who first think only of themselves, but if it is understood in principle, and you realize what you do it for, then it will work.
If on the other hand you neither trust the "new superiors" (have not even voted them yourself), and above all supported by quite a considerable military presence of the victorious power or liberating force Soviet Union then we do not know whether things have always been so clear. That under such conditions a consciousness may develop that one has, so to speak, taken matters into one's own hands and is now working on the building up in the fight against the powers of the backward, the forces of exploitation, is not to believe quite easily, especially if one just before - not too long ago - gone through a kind of pseudo-community at the expense of others with an accordingly catastrophic end. The Nazis had performed a "national community", in various groups and educated these people not only in their racial sense, but had also raised a kind of perverted so-called national "socialism", dominated by arrogance towards all other peoples and by their own hybris, whose fraud and devastating destructive power had not been clear to anyone from the beginning. I do not know if it is possible that this matter is just inversed and those people are now educated in the anti-fascist, anti-racist sense, without any deep and fundamental criticism of the previous example? It would interest me what it was like concretely. People who were in their "prime age" in the GDR and the very young people under the Nazis and had been influenced in their sense. How did they deal with such people in the GDR, how did they judge their perverse and reactionary views? Whether, for example, just a communal singsong really met open hears, there can and must be reasonable doubt. If you watch certain films e.g. "Good Bye Lenin", one gets the impression: no, it was not the case. However, one must also look on the other hand, that exactly this effect is certainly intended by the authors. Films of the early days of the GDR perhaps reflect something different. Sergei Eisenstein, mentioned very often, however, is a Russian film producer. I do not really know any East German film producer from the early days. One cannot cite, for example, any Russian films of the Russian revolutionary period as a testament to the character of the GDR. That is not the same. On the other hand, a whole series of films that were shot in East Germany itself are supposed to have been rigorously suppressed, especially in 1960 and afterwards.
In fact, these things are not easy to assess. Therefore, an assessment of this experiment to realize a socialist society in one part of this country is complicated and makes necessary to go back quite some time in history and to consider quite a number of international factors. It is important that the debate will proceed on these issues and no essential things are neglected.
Certainly people if they feel that they have slipped from one exploiter domination that had oppressed them and inhibited their development to the next, just under a different label, in the long run are not tenable and attempt to escape that or to attack it directly.
This is perhaps a provocative thesis to some, but I guess that maybe in the solution of this question is a key to success. Ultimately, these are the continuation of class struggle under socialism, the continuation of the critique of the bourgeoisie and the revisionists.
One can not consider it in a simple way that capital is expropriated and the production of goods ceases on the spot that is nonsense because there are still many problems that are not yet solved. For example, the question whether the commodity production has yet to take place for a while, but just under a different premises, and with a different perspective. This is one such a problem. And there are certainly quite a few problems that need to be solved when the things have proceeded to this state. You can not see it all in advance, you can not pack everything into beautiful formulas now. That makes you look at the matter in a far too simple way.
I do not know that we can say that this film "Good Bye Lenin" is absolutely no example, certainly it contains positive and negative sides, draws the latter probably somewhat biased to the front, but it recorded at least culturally a certain moment, which actually existed. Indeed, there is also a form of so-called working-class culture, which goes backwards and which contains only very little or not at all any desire for further development, in the sense that it was attempted by the technical and scientific development, by developing the knowledge and skills, to eliminate this brutal and murderous side of hard work, as it was pushed by capitalism towards certain classes, not only in the sense of having the social issue in their own hands, but in the sense that even just progress represents and promotes it extensively, in the sense as to eliminate the backbreaking work just for all of these people ultimately. And this moment is a cultural moment, but what is missing in this culture, as it was above criticized, more or less completely. The whole favoritism of the so-called environmental ideology by various forces within the GDR in this regard speaks volumes.
There are a lot of unresolved issues in terms of socialism. For example, the production of commodities, does it stop entirely? Is there any such thing as a commodity production, really still something of a market? Those are questions that have not been solved yet, not by any single social order. And if there are no more goods, how to organize the distribution otherwise? And since there are a number of negative examples how it cannot work. So we speak, only to "meet the needs." This is something very dreadful, so to speak, what includes the stagnation and the limitation from the outset and where the drive to get ahead, to go beyond their needs to higher possibilities, is simply swept under the table, or is discriminated. This is of course not at all in question. And that, in contrast, capitalism was able to score, so to speak, because of you can at least accomplish something, make something of it by working a lot, which is quite logical if those stagnative believes dominate. It certainly does not work like that, this is an open question. It is not only about meeting the need, it must be possible to go even beyond the needs. A "socialism", postulating self-restraint and self-pruning in any field, from the outset is doomed to failure, ending in the green swamp (the bourgeoisie) - as usual. And that is not the case in the physical (economic) area only, but also in the intellectual and artistic field. "I'm Nothing - and should be everything" - that is exactly the right attitude, which is to spread, but not the opposite. If you start to humble yourself and say, I'm holding my livelihood, then you have already lost because you ignore and trample on, this drive which exists in every human being, in all of humanity, namely to achieve something higher or in other words, not only to pursue the transformation of your environment, but also of your own ability of recognition/to discover.
The GDR as a form of continuation of the class struggle? Well, can you see
it that way? What happened, what was going on so to speak at the end of the
war, the defeat of Nazism, the occupation of Berlin? Where were the resistance
groups then? Have they focused only on the east, or were there no such even
in the West? What happened to those in the West in the coming time? The KPD
ban process got her on the neck, in the east a kind of forced merger between
the KPD and SPD was completed. What is that? It was a very considerable divisive
maneuvers, which, of course, to the forces in the West who wanted to continue
the struggle, was not such a benefit. The entire occupation of Germany by the
victorious allied powers played very well a role in all further development
in the East. And to that extent I think the East is as a (a term of) continuation
of class struggle to be provided (at least) with a question mark. Yet, this
leads inevitably to the further question whether the Soviet Union at the time
of termination of this war and the victory over Nazi fascism can be understood
or not as a substantial power of socialism, or whether the chauvinistic, i.e.
the reactionary elements in it basically dominated already at this point. This
question definitely comes up. Surely it is a very complicated and difficult
question to be decided, but it must be raised, otherwise you do not proceed.
Learning from experience
What stands out in any case at this GDR, in the culture that it has aired, some of an incredible lack of color and imagination. Whether this was because of the people themselves, one may have reasonable doubt. But why it was so obvious on the other side and has remained essentially a long time until the end or rather has been kept up by officials, that is another story.
If you repeatedly hear from several sources that young people who had a desire for further development, to education, "individual development" - a certain kind of "upgrade" so to speak, were blocked in their way, for reasons of their family, e.g. who were not as "estimated" accordingly and were regarded with suspicion and in this case it was not simply they were not allowed to study at the university and the like, which applied to many cases really and not only in the final stage, but more or less from the beginning, and if the latter is not true, then it would be interesting when and where there was a change in this respect, one must not be surprised if a suitably large desire was there, to escape from this individually as a prison perceived structure.
It may sound one-sided, but it makes no sense to give in to illusions, which lead only to the fact that mistakes are repeated.
One cannot say that all of these things are due to Western propaganda. This is nonsense. Things have "turned" long since and a number of those people who still look back now, most of them are also those who had their benefits in this society. Not all, I must say this, but there is a certain part of it.
If you look at the example of other States which then had to eke out their life under the aegis of the social-imperialist superpower, you see that in all these countries there was an urge from the masses to get out of there. How this has urge then confirmed itself in the coming or has not been confirmed and how not few people even today realize that the so awaited "West" is also subject to the same principles of contradiction, that is another story.
A dictatorship of the proletariat, a social power and domination of the working classes hazarding the productive forces- just like of capitalism does - is not an actual socialist dictatorship. Dictatorship in this respect means anyway only dictatorship of the exploiting elements that still exist for a long time and try to get back into power. How this is implemented in detail, could also be a very complicated issue, in need of many experiences to be made, many have already been made and more have yet to be made.
Development of imagination, creative ability is a very original power owned by the human being and a social system that oppresses them, can never last long-term. This is shown by the development of all mankind for thousands of years. And this ability, this essential element of human beings, cannot be precisely described by simple formulas, cannot be pressed into simple formulas and that is a problem, which is still not solved, what Marx has not been completely resolved, but which will surely be solved in the future.
The capitalist system is trying to solve this contradiction in the sense of using it as an additional source of profit. But what does socialism? How does this deal with this important property of human nature?
Why did Deng Xiaoping succeed in China to launch such an explosion as has occurred in recent decades there? He succeeded because the other forces, the forces of so-called Gang of Four, after the death of Mao, neither understood this factor, and therefore also acted against this creative propulsive momentum among the masses. Such an approach has no existence. And if a capitalism that makes this propulsive, creative momentum a point of attack again and trigger and develops it for itself and its profit again, then it has some chance for the first, temporarily, until the development of the contradictions just reverses things and the masses overthrow it again. That will certainly be a spiral development and not straightforward, in no case within a year, not in a hundred years and perhaps cannot be realized in a thousand years to perfection, it will probably never be perfect, but it is crucial in what direction it moves, in which a society moves. And as long as the capitalist system of exploitation is able to offer this factor as a plus point and mobilize, as long as there remains just that possibility. (The latter is of course not absolute, but is to be found in the context of the fact that the total of productive forces, of course, play a role in one society and one cannot regard this from the standpoint of an individual alone. Ultimately, it is always the masses that will force progress.)
Man happens to be the most important productive force, and thus his or her development or non-fulfillment in a society is the most important factor the appropriate (relevant) form of society to cope with. Mao Zedong once said, in the masses lies an inexhaustible creative power. That is right. And it is the task of a progressive society to develop these qualities, this factor as a whole, even in its versatility, in all aspects and not to practice to the contrary. If the opposite is operated, then it is always said that one exploiting class has their fingers in the game. This is true and above all with respect to socialist societies, also in terms of the GDR and the Soviet Union, for example, and of course to the China of today.
In some ways there is always, with every single human being, a kind of dialectical relationship between own - let us call it an individual - urge to development and subordination to the needs of the whole. Both elements are important, and you can not deny the one to the benefit of the other one. If this is done, if you negate e.g. the former in favor of the second, then what develops from this cannot ultimately be correct, not survive, then it is against this very individual, emancipatory aspiration of the people expressed in each individual in the drive for development and development of his skills. Conversely, it is the same. That this ratio is naturally subject to the most various objective requirements is beyond question. That is why the emphasis an individual does himself will also have to be measured against these. In other words, it means: on the one hand I must understand it to be a cog in the wheel in the of the whole, on the other hand this can neither be the only thing I am, but I must be able to find in my own individual area an opportunity to unfold my skills as much as possible
That this is not achieved at one stroke is also clear, because in a certain sense the wheel existence is the product of mass production and mass production is again a first prerequisite for socialism. Because you can already see that an objective dialectical relationship between these two factors must exist, and will exist even for a longer time. But the question is: what are the possibilities of development? In which direction is it developing?
Surely it can even be necessary for some time, to be mostly cog. The question is though: how does it look like, what appears on the horizon, so to speak? Is it apparent that this will change in the extent you fight and how you works or is it apparent, so to speak, once again, as in the rest of the exploiter societies, that things are skimmed off by others who sit in the relevant positions, so that the perspective to come out of the (exclusive) cog-existence does simply not appear?
Today we cannot return from such material evidence and experience that the various socialist societies around the world have gained and gain. We must recognize these and draw conclusions.
The cog-being is by no means to be underestimated, namely it has the advantage of the feeling of being part of a mass, and therein lies a large propulsive force. Everyone who has ever participated in a mass movement knows how to appreciate this. The latter of course has its two sides, there are mass movements that are reactionary. That is why you must never give up your own critical sense, not even as a cog.
One can assume that even in the GDR, especially in the early days there have been initial attempts to realize such things and they have been even partially successful. With increasing concentration solely on herself and the restriction to a world of an alleged "peaceful socialism", which on top of that was not guaranteed by its own strength, but by a foreign (military) power, i.e. with increasing revisionist middle classing and giving up of national and international revolutionary goals these attempts were completely lost, or perhaps were partly suffocated violently.
Originally the Soviet Union herself could have made a different example than
the Western powers, then it would have caused quite a different result, then
that would have represented a very different attraction to the other parts in
Germany. [Note 7]
Currently it becomes very apparent again that the capitalist system by the very speculative excesses visibly reaches its limits globally or in other words, its inherent fundamental contradiction is torn apart in as much as the entire developed wealth, which is objectified in the capital in its various forms, quasi turns against society itself, leading to its destruction. Thus it is somehow in the best interests of this society as a whole to break this system. Thus the matter of the "99-to-one" is not entirely out of the world, especially when you look at it internationally. However, the question arises how to implement it.
The social principle that those who develop the wealth are also the beneficiaries of it, that is correct. So that this can be achieved, the current ownership rules of private property of the means of production must be eliminated and must be replaced by another guaranteeing the social ownership of the means of production and of land and a corresponding new revolutionary political system according to this distribution and that is as long as it is necessary to protect it against the bourgeoisie and the reactionary attempts to restore their power.
What is essential for a socialist revolutionary power, what is absolutely necessary for it to have control of? The key industries, the energy issue and the land question. The latter are of course is especially relates to agriculture and real estate, so two other major areas are covered. Not least, there is the financial system, which must be completely redesigned, and in which the control must be extremely sharp. By this you can see merely that several things in the minds of some people will be transformed to come to terms with these problems.
It is now therefore increasingly urgent, to fundamentally clarify the question of the state, the question of the relation of the proletarian movement, even generally of progressive and revolutionary movements to the state once again. You notice it currently at various forces - that is by no means confined to the so-called Left Party in our country - that there is no clarity on this issue. There is nothing wrong in principle, for example, to demand, for example, the formation of a workers' government, as was recently to be read on a poster here. That is not wrong, but how to come about? That is the question that presents itself. And what is the substance of such a revolutionary state? And how can we achieve it? On these questions the discussion within the left and progressive forces is to be resumed, as has been discussed extensively with all the newly formed revolutionary and progressive people. This is not merely a theoretical, but also a very practical question. The revisionist grip on this issue must be broken.
-----------------------------------[Note 1] See also important analyses and documents on decisive questions of the history of the communist movement in the New Unit 2005, Issue 2, as the article by Hartmut Dicke "Some important aspects of the policy of the Soviet Union."
[Note 2] See, e.g. Stalin's remarks at the conferences in Teheran and Yalta in: "Tehran, Yalta and Potsdam - The Protocols of the Soviet war conferences of the" Big Three "," Publishing Science and Politics, 3rd edition 1985
[Note 3] "polemic", "A proposal for the general line of the international communist movement response of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on the letter of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union on March 30, 1963" - These nine basic comments appeared on July 1964 . The last, entitled "On the pseudo-communism of Khrushchev and the historical lessons for the world.". The whole is usually abbreviated as "polemic", it is the most important and significant reckoning with modern revisionism of this period.
[Note 4] See "To all ..." - Soviet proposals for disarmament from 1917 to the Present, "Pahl Rugenstein-Verlag, 1986, issue of the license Approved Moscow publishing house Progress
[Note 5] See the brochure "The 13th August and the revolutionary perspective of the West Berlin "by Klaus Sender
[Note 6] See "Some fundamental aspects of the policy of the Soviet Union" and "About the importance of addressing Stalin - Trotsky and the entire discussion of the mid-twenties in the Soviet Communist Party - to talk to a still-important question"
[Note 7] We must not forget that people were so sick of this eternal tutelage and paternalism in the end that they paid quite a high price. So some of it is reflected culturally at certain points: in RBB Info Radio (which I otherwise do appreciate) each time (and that means every twenty minutes!) comes "messages for Berlin and Brandenburg"! What? Why is it limited from the outset? Why are these messages for Berlin and Brandenburg only? What nonsense. Or worse, the saying "Everything you need to know, every twenty minutes." Yes, because how do they know what you need to know? Plugged in it still, this tendency to patronizing. )
- "The Polemic on the General Line of the international communist movement", published by Beijing Foreign Languages
- Stalin, Works, Volume 15, published by Red Morning 1979
- "Tehran, Yalta and Potsdam - The Protocols of the Soviet war conferences of the " Big Three "," publisher of science and politics • Cologne, 3rd edition 1985
- "The GDR and China 1949 to 1990 - Politics - Economy - Culture,"
a collection of sources, Akademie Verlag Berlin 1995
- "... To all - Soviet proposals for disarmament from 1917 to the Present," Pahl Rugenstein-Verlag, 1986, issue of the license Approved Moscow publishing house Progress
- Kissinger's memoirs, Volume I, 1968-1979, Goldmann-Taschenbuch 1979
In addition to the theme of interest: Wilhelm Pieck - Records policy for Germany 1945-1953, "Rolf Badstübner; Wilfried Loth (eds.), Akademie Verlag Berlin 1994