Qina Msebenzi, Socialist Fight and Communist League of Brazil march with the imperialist agent Gaddafi against the Libyan masses


The June 2011 edition of Qina Msebenzi publishes a highly contradictory statement on Libya- which is jointly signed by other fake trotskyist groups Socialist Fight and Communist League of Brazil.


A few weeks prior to this the Socialist Fight published a document on Libya which declares Gaddafi as the ‘foremost opponent of Zionism in the region’ and declares Gaddafi as not being a strongman of imperialism, he sings praises that Libya is the most anti-imperialist country in the region. (see our answer to him in our statement on Libya of 11.4.2011 on www.workersinternational.org.za ).


However in this June 2011 statement Socialist Fight makes an about turn: suddenly they acknowledge that Gaddafi was indeed implementing the attacks by imperialism on the masses. In other words, they now acknowledge that Gaddafi was the open stooge of imperialism for at least the last decade.


Now here’s the strange thing: these red professors of Qina Msebenzi, Socialist Fight and the Communist League, want us to believe that imperialism wanted to overthrow their strong man in Libya who had banned unions and who was extracting a very high rate of profit for them. In 2009 Hilary Clinton declared Gaddafi as their long term partner in Libya. Gaddafi killed off his opponents- many have ‘disappeared’. Despite these very favourable conditions for capitalist exploitation, Qina Msebenzi wants us to believe that imperialism would jeopardise such exploitative relations by now wanting to topple the Libyan regime. The Gaddafi regime was so highly regarded by imperialism that Libya had a seat on the UN Human Rights Council- a structure which oversees the plunder of the world by imperialism and covers up on its crimes.


The uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt began with the masses smashing the police stations and seizing weapons. The army was kept off the streets. Imperialism was getting jittery. It wanted to nip the uprisings in the bud. In the imperialist centres counter-revolutionary agencies such as the fake left (like Socalist Fight) help keep the masses off the streets and the struggles separated from the struggles in the semi-colonies. But in Libya the bourgeois opposition was weak because Gaddafi had annihilated most of them. At about the same time, in February this year,  imperialism ordered their lackeys in Bahrain, Yemen and Libya to use brute force to put down the mass uprisings. Unfortunately for imperialism, in Libya, the army split and a huge section went over to the masses who were fighting the imperialist puppet Gaddafi. The masses smashed the state institutions in the East (something which caught imperialism by surprise) and were marching on Tripoli when imperialism sent mercenaries from Chad and Niger to prevent Gaddafi from falling. Italian and US imperialism were steadfast in the early days of the uprising in supporting Gaddafi. Only when it was clear that Gaddafi could not crush the masses and he had lost all credibility in their eyes, did they start making noises of being openly ‘critical’ of Gaddafi. Imperialism sent some of their agents, supposedly ‘ defecting’ from Gaddafi to join the uprising, in order to strangle it from within. After a few weeks of manoeuvring, imperialism gained control over the command structure of the uprising. This control is still contested as shown by the clause for a so-called no fly- zone that precludes (on paper) a military occupation by imperialism. This is as much a product of the resistance of the working class in France, USA, Britain as it is of the masses who are rising against the imperialist butcher Gaddafi.


Now comes the real gems of wisdom from Qina Msebenzi- they claim to form a ‘military united front with Gaddafi against imperialism’. Now this is a very strange military bloc- Gaddafi has not fired a single shot or sent a single warship against any imperialist plane or ship. In fact the only thing that Gaddafi has done is launch military attacks against the masses who are trying to overthrow him. On the other hand, the imperialist puppet regime of the TNC has kept the trained soldiers in barracks while dispatching the lightly armed militias against the trained troops of the remainder of the Gaddafi army, to be slaughtered. The Nato planes have bombed the airfields and military hardware both in the East and West of Libya- on the side of Gaddafi and the militias. Nato has forced fighter planes in Benghazi to turn back to base and not to fly against Gaddafi’s forces.  Several times the Nato planes have bombed the militias too. Nato has bombed civilians too. Nato is playing the central role to prevent the insurgency from reaching Tripoli, from defeating the Gaddafi regime. At the same time the TNC is sabotaging the insurgency at the rear, already negotiating a deal behind the backs of the masses to impose a Gaddafi regime without Gaddafi. On balance, the TNC, Gaddafi and Nato are objectively acting to tire the masses- their aim is the same- to smash and eventually disarm the masses.


The military bloc of Qina Msebenzi, despite their high sounding very revolutionary phrases, is a bloc with Gaddafi and imperialism against the Libyan masses. Normally such hot air from the red professors could be simply ignored, but in this case they cannot be, because the Stalinist Young Communist League (YCL) has latched onto the slogans of the Qina Msebenzi and called for the SA government to send troops to Libya to ‘defend Gaddafi and the Libyan people and fight imperialism’. Thus the Qina Msebenzi provides a theoretical cover for a criminal policy to help the imperialism smash the masses. We only have to look at the role of the SA troops in the DRC, where they protect the plunder installations of Anglo American, while around them 6 million people were killed, to see the role of the SANDF in Africa- a tool of imperialist control.  The YCL stands with Gaddafi in much the same way as they would stand with Zuma or any other imperialist puppet regime, against the masses.


To the Qina Msebenzi, there are no other forces in Benghazi besides the TNC. The militias were set up before the TNC and while the TNC had to use all the influence and resources of imperialism to gain control over the militias, such control is not uncontested. The first step the TNC tried was to disarm the masses, under the guise of supposed ‘training’. While there is a petty bourgeois influence in the militias that does support the Nato invasion, there is a left wing that is openly against Gaddafi, against any intervention by Nato and is against capitalism. But to the Socialist Fight, the Communist League and the QM, the militias are just ‘CIA agents’. To them they bloc with Gaddafi against the very ones who are the vanguard of the fight against the brutal Gaddafi regime.


When the mercenaries and troops of Gaddafi were at the gates of Benghazi, it was not a foregone conclusion that they would defeat the masses in Benghazi, who were all armed, having tanks and planes at their disposal as well as a sizeable section of the army who had crossed over to the resistance. If the masses in Benghazi defeated the Gaddafi army on their own, not only would there have been a widespread uprising throughout the country but the way forward for imperialist intervention would have been closed (temporarily). The intervention of imperialism would have been openly against the masses and to support the Gaddafi regime. But also the signal of the masses, with their own organs, conquering power through revolutionary methods would have ignited the masses in Tunisia and Egypt anew with what is required to conquer food and work. It would have inspired not only the masses in North Africa and the Middle East but the working class around the world, including the imperialist centres. This is what imperialism was working night and day to prevent. Thus they rushed through the UN resolution to invade Libya under the pretext of ‘protecting civilians’ but really to save the world capitalist system from socialist revolution.


The very invasion, with funding and all measures of support to the TNC helped support the reaction against the revolutionary wing of the masses. Imperialism is more concerned about crushing the resistance of the masses rather than maintain a loyalty to Gaddafi himself. Imperialism only poses to be against Gaddafi, the better to betray the uprising from within. And betray the revolution from within is exactly what imperialism has, for the moment, achieved in Tunisia and Egypt, through the petty bourgeois youth leaders and through the trade union leaders, with the support of the world’s ‘left’.


Qina Msebenzi and others do not answer the contradiction of why if the resistance are on the payroll of the CIA, did they allow Gaddafi to massacre hundreds of them in Tripoli, without lifting so much as a finger. Those massacred in Tripoli were mainly from the working class neighbourhoods- this is what the Qina Msebenzi covers up, what they want to hide from the world working class. The truth is that imperialism sat idly by while Gaddafi massacred hundreds of the working class and popular masses because their aim was the same- the crush the resistance of the masses.


Qina Msebenzi wants the millions who are suffering because of the pro-imperialist policies of Gaddafi, to just shut up and die in silence, to march with the butcher Gaddafi against the very militias who spearhead the fight against his regime.


The Qina Msebenzi falsify the tactics of Lenin and Trotsky during the Russian revolution of 1917 when the bourgeois Kerensky regime was faced with the Kornilov counter-revolution. The Bolsheviks never called for weapons for Kerensky, rather, they used the opportunity to arm the masses openly to face the counter-revolution and at the same time prepare the ground for the working class to seize power. Gaddafi is not arming the masses- in fact his army directly attacks any section of the masses who have arms, with the excuse that they are with the imperialist backed TNC.


The Communist League of Brasil, on their blog issued a statement on 2 June 2011 where they say that revolutionaries should march with the Libyan army and the armed masses. But the Libyan army is directly fighting against the armed masses, so who do the Communist League support- do they fight with the Libyan army against the masses or with the armed masses against the Libyan army? Or do they join the masses and the Libyan army and fight themselves?


In the section of the Transitional Programme on The struggle against imperialism and war, the following is stated: ‘ a correct policy is composed of two elements, an uncompromising attitude on imperialism and the ability to base one’s program on the experience of the masses themselves.’


Imperialism is using the Gaddafi regime to smash the masses as they are using their puppet regimes in Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, Israel. Imperialism is also using the TNC to attempt to strangle the revolution from within. If we are to march with the Libyan masses, it must be with the militias, against the Gaddafi regime. Day by day the Libyan masses are seeing the reality of what Nato ‘intervention’ means- attempts to take over and hijack the actions of the armed masses to install a capitalist regime (which must mean that at every stage imperialism and its puppets the TNC and the Gaddafi regime, will try to disarm the Libyan masses- the few weapons that imperialism will give, will be only to those who they are sure will push a capitalist agenda). Considering that more than 50% of the workforce in Libya are immigrant workers, the first step should be for the militias to be expanded to include immigrant workers, to march together to defeat the brutal Gaddafi regime. At the same time the call should be for no confidence in the TNC- in fact the call should go further- Down the TNC- all power to the armed masses, expropriate the bourgeoisie and the oil companies in the areas controlled by the insurgency, placing these under workers control; expropriate the bourgeoisie in Benghazi and Misrata to get food and weapons for the fight against the Gaddafi regime and imperialism. There should be mobilisation for workers delegates from the factories and delegates from the militias to elect a central command, subject to instant recall, based on a programme to expropriate the local capitalist class and all imperialist assets, without compensation, under workers control, expelling all imperialist forces immediately. For a workers government in Libya based on workers and soldiers committees and the insurgency militias, to break with imperialism, expropriating the bourgeoisie, abolishing all traces of the Gaddafi regime, based on the defeat of Nato and all its lackeys in the North of Africa and the Middle East. Such a programme would immediately cause the remnants of the Gaddafi army to split and lay the ground for it to come over to the side of the masses. For international worker brigades to join the Libyan masses against the Gaddafi regime and the imperialist invasion.


For factory committees and workers delegates to gather in the squares in Spain, in Syntagma square and across Europe to prepare to occupy the factories and banks, for a Europe-wide general strike- expropriate all the banks without compensation to the capitalist- this necessarily leads to the expropriation of all capitalist industry- for a workers republic of the outraged in Spain, UK, and other monarchies, for a United Soviet Socialist Europe. Generalise the Wisconsin workers uprising to all of the USA- for factory committees- for a general strike in the USA- for factory committees- for preparation to occupy and expropriate the banks without compensation to the capitalists- which necessarily means the occupation and expropriation of all capitalist industry- all under workers control. For workers to paralyze the imperialist war machine all over the world- arms for the Libyan masses. For the building of revolutionary working class parties as sections of an international fraction to refound the Fourth International. Take the revolution to Greece, Europe and the USA, this is the way for Misrata to win and for the Nato forces to be defeated.


The QM and its bedfellows make a call for a Constituent Assembly ‘based on these revolutionary committees’  but remain silent on the key question of who convenes it. Gaddafi and the TNC are both opponents of any Constituent Assembly and they would do anything to weaken and dilute any attempt at an unfettered Constituent Assembly to meet. The only force that can convene it is the working class in power in Libya. And even then, the future Libyan workers government would only convene the Constituent Assembly to show the masses its limits, that the workers government based on workers councils, on soviets are a million times more democratic than a Constituent Assembly can ever be.


The joint statement makes the high-sounding promise of ‘ we advocate the defeat of our own governments’. Yet the constituents of the QM called for a vote for the capitalist ANC in the 1994 elections (thereby tying the working class to the capitalist class instead of pursuing an independent policy of building a revolutionary working class party) ; in 2010 the Socialist Fight no3 called for a vote for the New Labour (the imperialist party that co-headed the invasion of Iraq). This is a rather strange way of ‘defeating’ your own government- by supporting them!


Nowhere in the literature of the FLTI or LOi-CI has there ever been descriptions of the uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East as ‘ Arab revolutions’ or ‘democratic’ revolutions’- this is pure falsification by the QM, Socialist Fight and the Communist League.


Nowhere has there been even a hint of support of the FLTI for the TNC.


The QM, Socialist Fight and Communist League stand for arms for Gaddafi (like they would have been for arms for Kerensky)- objectively they are the ones marching with imperialism against the Libyan masses.


1.7.2011amended 3.7.2011