Internationalist Workers Group | Leftcom

Internationalist Workers Group

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What’s in our name?

We are internationalist in that we support and call for a world revolution. We are workers. We are a group.

Our political tendency comes from those groups on the left of the Communist International that were expelled forming the first opposition in struggle against the counterrevolution today embodied in Stalinism or “Marxism-Leninism”.

Internationalist Notes was originally taken as a name from an IBRP publication in Farsi. The International Bureau for the Revolutionary Party grew out of a series of conferences that began in the late seventies, called the International Conferences of the Communist Left. The conferences initiated by Partito Comunista Internazionalista (Battaglia Comunista), known by their paper Battaglia Comunista and their journal Prometeo.

The International Bureau hearkens back to the original International Bureau of Fractions of the Communist Left, which was based in Brussels and whose theoretical journal was Prometeo. The term International Bureau for the Revolutionary Party is a way of indicating that we are not a “fraction” of a communist movement that ceased to exist when the centrists around Stalin killed the last remnants of it off. Our preamble and positions can be found in the back of each issue.

Platform of the IWG/GIO - Who we are

In April of 2002 the publishers of Internationalist Notes (US) and Notes Internationalistes / Internationalist Notes (Canada) decided to unify their efforts and constitute themselves as the Internationalist Worker’s Group/Groupe Internationaliste Ouvrier. The IWG is currently the organizing committee of the International Bureau for the Revolutionary Party in the US and Canada. This came as the result of years of contact and familiarization with the positions of the IBRP. The comrades of Battaglia Comunista (Partito Comunista Internazionalista) in Italy and the Communist Worker’s Organisation in Britain came together in 1984 to form the IBRP and were joined by Bilan et Perspectives (France) in 2000.

What defines us as Internationalist Communists

We believe that the world revolutionary party is indispensable for the overthrow of the dictatorship of capital. This party must be the product of worker’s struggles and represent the most conscious vanguard elements of the working class. This vanguard is not in any sense an elite group standing above and apart from the struggles of the class. It is not a party of generals giving orders rather it is on the frontlines of the class struggle. The party draws out the lessons of these struggles and points the way forward for the class. It has always been our position that the emancipation of the working class is the task of the workers themselves. It is a task that cannot be delegated, not even to the most conscious and prepared revolutionary party. The foundations for this revolutionary party must be prepared for, before the revolution arises; when the revolutionary crisis arises it will be too late. History teaches us that there will be no successful revolution without a revolutionary party in the vanguard of class struggle. This revolutionary party will not arise spontaneously. It requires the conscious effort of the most conscious layers of the working class to bring it into being. Although the IWG-GIO supports laying the groundwork for a world revolutionary party of the proletariat it does not claim to be that party. We work, within the common framework of the IBRP, towards this goal.

Bourgeois Parties

All parties and groups that have claimed to be parties and organizations of the proletariat (Social Democrats, Stalinists, Maoists, Trotskyists, etc.) are enemies of the proletariat and today act as the left arm of the bourgeoisie. They pose as defenders of the working class when in fact they are precisely the opposite. All states that call themselves “socialist” or were once called “socialist” were in fact state-capitalist formations. The organizations that supported these states or cooperated with those that supported those states supported a highly centralized form of state-capitalism. However, the Russian Revolution of 1917-1918 still remains a brilliant inspiration to us. This revolution represents the only overthrow of the capitalist class that achieved any degree of success. This revolution was crushed through civil war (1918-1921) imposed from without and destroyed through counterrevolution from within. As yet there have been no socialist “states” in the world.

Imperialism

Capitalism is imperialism and imperialism means war. From its very outset, the rule of capital began to penetrate into every sphere of social life, into every corner of the globe. This process cannot be altered or reformed. Imperialism represents the most advanced stage of development reached by capitalism, it is not a political or military policy carried out by a government. The imperialist phase of capitalism opened with the outbreak of the First World War. This signified that the division of the world among the centers of imperialist power was finished. From this time onwards the bourgeoisie could only expand at the expense of their rival capitalists in a brutal struggle for the re-division of the planet. Hence, we as revolutionaries do not side with any imperialism great or small. We do not enter into united fronts with bourgeois parties nor do we mix the interests of the proletariat with any faction of the bourgeoisie.

National Liberation Movements

We do not call for the support of national liberation movements or for national selfdefense because these movements mix the interests of the proletariat with the interests of their oppressors. Any calls for the support of movements of national liberation serve the capitalist class by mobilizing workers in the support of the re-division of the world in favor of one faction of the bourgeoisie or another.

Anti-fascism

Anti-fascism is an ideological tool the capitalists use to get workers to defend one faction of the bourgeoisie over another. Fascism is a form of the rule of the bourgeoisie, like Stalinism or Democratic Capitalism. The support for and defense of democratic capitalism will not help workers in their task of overthrowing the rule of capital regardless of the political cloak that the capitalist class wears. We fight capitalism in whatever form it takes.

Elections

Elections serve to suck workers into voting in a system created by the capitalists which gives their oppressors the appearance of a popular mandate. Elections cannot be used to win reforms on the behalf of workers nor can they be used as a platform for spreading revolutionary propaganda.

Unions

In the epoch of imperialism unions have been transformed from organizations for the defense of workers immediate interests into organizations for the control of workers by the bourgeoisie. They serve the interests of capital by disciplining workers and sabotaging their struggles at every turn. Unions cannot defend workers nor can they overthrow the capitalist class. They cannot be made revolutionary through a change of leadership nor can they be reborn as revolutionary unions.

Bourgeois Issue Movements

We stand against the petty sectionalism and self-absorbed narrow-minded focus of pettybourgeois issue movements. The many facets of capitalist oppression must be understood in their proper historical-material context. We stand against all forms of exploitation and oppression but without the overthrow of the capitalist class the system that breeds exploitation and oppression will remain intact.

Our tasks

As Internationalist Communists our primary tasks are to agitate among workers wherever and whenever possible, to develop and spread the revolutionary press and to lay the groundwork for a theoretically prepared and centralized revolutionary organization. It is through debate and confrontation, the clarification of theory, that revolutionaries are defined from the left swamp. Our theoretical positions arise from our historical experience as a political tendency. Organizationally we draw our experience from the Internationalists of the Italian Communist Left in its struggles against capitalist counterrevolution - Stalinism, fascism and democracy. This political tendency provides us with a theoretical perspective that is unique when compared to the sterile political tendencies that many of us are familiar with. In the pages of our press we shall attempt to clarify our positions. We ask that you support us in this work.

Publications