Red and Black (and Brown) Hypocrisy

Turning a blind eye to right-wing involvement in syndicalist movements.

A few months ago it came out that there were some nazis inside the CGT in Spain. They were expelled after a media scandal, with the CGT claiming it was infiltrated, it didn't know and reacted immediately. Others from inside the CGT complained that people knew, but nothing was done about it. Of course the latter scenario would imply that the union was tolerant of this right wing presence.

In September the Red Black Coordination met and one of the things they decided to do was the fight the right by issuing a common brochure analysing the rise of the right-wing in Europe. This might be a good idea - except one wonders how deep the analysis can go if they refuse to analize right-wing involvement in the unions making up RBC.

Our local RBC affiliate in Poland has had quite a number of incidences, but unlike the CGT, when they are caught out, they aren't even embarrassed about it. Most recently the issue is how the Workers Initiative cooperated with the All-Poland National Movement. Some later joined Workers Initiative and are currently running for election with other WI candidates. In the meanwhile, the WI webpage encourages readers to send donations to these cross-front electoral committees.

Unlike the CGT nazi issue, the cooperation with the All-Poland National Movement is conducted quite openly. (A quick google search of inicjatywa pracownicza ogolnopolski ruch narodowy will show that it is even written openly on the WI webpages.) It is also conducted without any big controversy, as such things are already some type of accepted norm in the organization.

As elections come up in Poland and we are disgusted by the widespread prostitution we witness, the appeal to support the committees set up by WI in two cities caught people's attention, as did the fact that people running could be dual members of WI and the All-Poland National Movement (ORN), It also was interesting that, at least in the situation of Roman Weiss, representative of the ORN and WI, you could also be a small business owner and employer. Interesting but, unfortunately not surprising.

A comrade of mine decided to write a piece of news about it and was careful to be as tactful as possible following a spate of spam from CGT lovers at the beginning of the month and the expected trolling activity that would follow the publication of the story. He called to a WI member
in charge of one of these committees and asked for a comment or explanation. The reason given was rather lame: neither anarchists nor authoritarian communists wanted to work together with them, so they had to find somebody.

When the news about the CGT nazis was published, they went to great lengths to distance themselves from this. By contrast, just after the publication of the news about the right-wing nationalists in WI, openly announcing their dual affiliation, including on the electoral committee site, the Secretary of the WI issued instructions to his flock: do not comment and get into discussions about it. Just go ahead, just go forward!

Despite this, some of his comrades just couldn't resist. Do you think anybody from the organization said that it was a problem that needed to be dealt with? No - again the problem was not the cross-front strategy of certain WI commissions or tolerance of the right - the problem was the ZSP. As one guy put it, the sectarianism of certain people knows no boundaries.

There is no doubt that the RBC folks, upon hearing this latest will again do nothing since it is more convenient for them to believe in plots to discredit them or sectarian zealots than to do anything to deal with the unpleasant truth. Or to claim they didn't know, although not knowing would be a result of not listening.

Posted By

Nov 16 2010 04:30


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