The ICC: One more Step Towards the Abyss

Two pages of number 256 of Revolution Internationale (May 1996) are devoted to the "defence of the revolutionary milieu." However, what the International Communist Current (ICC) terms 'defence,' we consider to be a serious attack on that very same revolutionary milieu. In particular, we denounce the use of a concept, fraught with dangerous implications for the proletariat, namely, ‘parasitism’. The manner in which this term has already been used by the ICC in its publications, and in the positions it has taken at its public meetings, shows that the link between parasitism and the bourgeoisie is clearly asserted. Its use of the term is one more example of the ICC's political and theoretical degeneration.

In a resolution adopted by its congress, the ICC provides us with a definition of "parasitic groups":

As a result, the ICC concludes, quite naturally, that such groups a not a part of the revolutionary milieu. Therefore, it is quite logical to find in this same resolution, the following assertion:

Thus, in line with these ideas, the ICC has launched a campaign of public denunciation of some of its former comrades, following the logic of the Stalinist purges.

At the time of its own formation, and the elaboration of its theoretical arsenal, the ICC had developed the idea of "class lines." For it, this totality of political positions clearly defined who belonged to the revolutionary camp, and who to that of the class enemy. This distinction has always been, and today remains fundamental, for the working class and the development of its consciousness, as well as for the processes which will lead to the creation of a class party. These class lines, therefore, define the contours of a revolutionary milieu, within which a confrontation between antagonistic positions, a theoretical deepening, and an eventual common intervention within class movements, can occur. These three elements are vital to the process of development of the class consciousness of the proletariat.

Little by little, however, this concept of "class lines" has become, for the ICC, a purely theoretical idea, while in practice, for it, other criteria shape the debate within the revolutionary milieu, and within the ICC itself. Thus, in 1984 the characterization of ideas, and organizations, as 'centrist' or 'opportunist' was reintroduced into the revolutionary milieu by the ICC. These terms, these designations for political currents, whatever they had been historically, became for the ICC types of behaviour. Thus, militants accused of 'hesitation' or 'oscillation' were designated as centrists. Political organizations which had openly betrayed the revolutionary camp were redefined as hesitant or oscillating - not counter-revolutionary - on the grounds that they still counted revolutionaries in their midst. The German USPD thereby re-aquired the status as a proletarian group thanks to the magic of the ICC's own historical revisionism. This surrender of political criteria, by the ICC, can be explained by the degeneration and sclerosis which afflicted that organization, little by little replacing theoretical activity and political analyses by subjectivity and psychological analyses. Already, in June 1985, several months before our own expulsion from the ICC, our comrade, M. Lazare, wrote:

This diagnosis has proven itself to be all too correct with respect to the implications of the ICC's method for its political analyses. Today, the ICC is an organization totally cut off from reality, incapable of recognizing the movements of its own class, solely fixated on the Machiavellian strategies and conspiracies of a bourgeoisie in full decomposition. In particular, when in the Autumn of '95 the French working class unleashed its most important strike movement since May '68, the ICC denounced the movement, seeing in it only a vast undertaking of trade union provocation. The ICC thereby demonstrated its total incapacity to grasp reality, to provide a sound analysis and, what is still worse, orchestrated an intervention which went counter to the development of the potential of that movement, and, therefore, of the general interests of the proletariat itself.

In such a context, where the revolutionary milieu is experiencing a crisis, one of whose principal causes is its lack of theoretical tools, political debate and analysis must constitute a permanent and overriding concern for every revolutionary. Nonetheless, far removed from such a preoccupation, the ICC can no longer even envisage such a debate. Whether in their press, vis-a-vis their old comrades, or in their interventions at public meetings, the militants of the ICC make no other "contribution" than programmed reiterations of the correctness of their positions and a systematic denunciation of any divergent analysis, culminating in a call for the pure and simple disappearance of opposing organizations. As a result, we can only conclude that the ICC has excluded itself from all political debate.

Today, throughout the world, the proletariat is rediscovering the path of class struggle. This path is marked by the difficulty of providing itself with a clear perspective. In that context, the revolutionary milieu has an important role to play, by virtue of its capacity to offer the class a global perspective on the present situation, and of the historic stakes that flow from it. We can, therefore, only denounce the inquisitorial practices of the ICC which are in direct opposition to the historic interests of the proletariat; practices consonant with a sect only concerned with the defence of its own existence, rather than being driven by the need to reflect on the general political situation and to intervene in the life of the working class.


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