Wednesday, 4 December 2013

On questions of disillusion among Syrian revolutionaries
Michael Karadjis"This is not a socialist revolution, at least not at this stage. Revolutions in the real world don’t usually start this way either. The Russian revolution of November 1917 was the culmination of a broken 12-year revolutionary process began by a preacher. At this stage a revolution to overthrow a vicious family dictatorship involves not just workers in the narrow sense (and considering that Assad sacked 85,000 workers and closed down a huge percentage of Syrian industry when workers began to move in late 2011, we are not seeing a big narrowly defined “workers’ movement”), but peasants, urban poor in the informal economy, small urban and rural petty bourgeoisie excluded by the “secular” Baathist mega-bourgeoisie etc. Many of the leaderships of the rural and urban poor will come from the more educated or connected urban and rural petty-bourgeoisie, and will express themselves in religious terms.
Thus if we exclude the actually reactionary jihadist fringe (al-Nusra and especially ISIS), these mainstream Islamist movements based among the poor will be a major part of the revolution. Building solidarity with the left, secular and working class forces that fight alongside them in the quest to vanquish the tyranny is the best the western left can do to help such forces balance the more traditionalist forces in the make-up of this stage of the revolution."

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