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Rosa Luxemburg in 1914

Rosa Luxemburg in 1914


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Rosa Luxemburg is gebore in Zamosc, in die Poolse gebied van Rusland, in 1871. Sy verhuis in 1890 na Switserland waar hy Leo Jogiches, Alexandra Kollontai, George Plekhanov en Karl Kautsky ontmoet.

In 1893 werk sy saam met Leo Jogiches om die Sosiaal -Demokratiese Party van Pole. Aangesien dit 'n onwettige organisasie was, het Luxemburg na Parys gegaan om die party se koerant te redigeer, Sprawa Robotnicza (Werkersaak).

In 1898 verhuis Luxemburg na Berlyn waar sy by die Duitse Sosialistiese Party. Luxemburg, 'n toegewyde revolusionêr, het hom beywer vir die revisionistiese idees van Eduard Bernstein. In 1905 stel Bebel haar redakteur van die SPD -koerant aan, Vorwarts (Vorentoe).

Na die rewolusie van 1905 keer Luxemburg en Leo Jogiches terug na Warskou waar hulle gou gearresteer is. Na hul vrylating keer hulle terug na Duitsland.

Luxemburg en Leo Jogiches neem die kant van die Mensjewiste in hul stryd met die Bolsjewiste. Gevolglik begunstig Vladimir Lenin die Poolse afdeling onder leiding van Karl Radek bo dié van Luxemburg.

In 1910 breek Luxemburg met Karl Kautsky toe hy weier om haar pogings om massastakings te organiseer in die strewe na parlementêre demokrasie in Duitsland te ondersteun.

Rosa Luxemburg

1. Was baie krities oor Nikolaas II en die outokrasie.

2. Wou dat Rusland 'n algemene stemreg het.

3. Wou dat die Russiese regering vryheid van uitdrukking en 'n einde maak aan politieke sensuur van koerante en boeke.

4. Glo dat demokrasie slegs in Rusland bewerkstellig kan word deur die gewelddadige omverwerping van Nicholas II en die outokrasie.

5. was sterk daarteen gekant dat Rusland met Oostenryk-Hongarye en Duitsland sou oorlog voer.

6. Het geglo dat as Mensheviks, Bolsjewiste en die Sosialistiese Revolusionêres oorlog sou voer met Oostenryk-Hongarye en Duitsland, die Russiese soldate moes probeer oorreed om hul wapens te gebruik om Nicholas II omver te werp.

Vir die eerste keer in die geskiedenis van die klasstryd het dit (1905 Russiese Revolusie) 'n grandiose besef van die idee van die massastaking bereik en die idee van die massastaking tot volwassenheid gebring en daarom 'n nuwe tydperk in die ontwikkeling geopen van die arbeidersbeweging.

Ons moet nie net die stelsel van werkers- en soldaatrade ontwikkel nie, maar ons moet die landbouarbeiders en die armer kleinboere aanmoedig om hierdie raadsisteem aan te neem. Ons moet die mag gryp, en die probleem van die oorname van mag stel die vraag: wat doen elke werkers- en soldaatraad in die hele Duitsland, wat kan dit doen, en wat moet dit doen?


Onthou Rosa Luxemberg- die marxistiese revolusionêr

Die 48-jarige Rosa Luxemburg was een van die mees uitstaande Marxistiese rewolusionêres van haar tyd. Gebore in 1871 in Pole, het sy as jeug aktief in die revolusionêre politiek geraak. Sy word internasionaal 'n leier van die Sosiaal-Demokratiese Party van Duitsland (SPD) en van die Marxistiese beweging nadat sy gedwing is om deur tsaristies-beheerde Pole te verlaat weens haar politieke oortuigings.

As 'n prominente teenstander van regse opportunisme in die Sosiaal-Demokratiese Party in Duitsland (SPD), het Luxemburg tot die gevolgtrekking gekom dat die party 'n 'stink lyk' geword het na die stemming van die parlementêre groep van die SPD op 4 Augustus 1914. Rosa het gewerk saam met Karl Liebknecht om die Spartakusbund en daarna die Kommunistiese Party van Duitsland (KPD) te stig as 'n alternatiewe leierskap vir die werkersklas.

Beide leiers is gevange gehou vir hul opposisie teen die Eerste Wêreldoorlog en is uit die gevangenis bevry as gevolg van 'n revolusionêre opstand van Duitse werkers in November 1918. Die sosiaal -demokratiese regses het by die regering aangesluit om die Duitse kapitalisme te red en die revolusionêre beweging van die werkersklas.

Die toekenning van oorlogskrediete aan die Duitse regering deur die SPD -parlementêre faksie in Augustus 1914 is 'n reuse -slag vir Luxemburg en die hele sosialistiese werkersbeweging. Met 'n beroerte vernietig dit die opvoedkundige werk wat die party geduldig gedurende die vorige 40 jaar uitgevoer het. Die barbaarse ervaring van die Eerste Wêreldoorlog (1914) lei tot die uitbreek van die Russiese Revolusie in 1917 en politieke onrus in Duitsland in 1918.

Beide Luxemburg en Liebknecht is vermoor op bevel van SPD -leiers op 15 Januarie 1919. Sy is met die kolf van 'n geweer in die voorportaal van Hotel Eden geslaan en na 'n motor gebring waar sy geskiet is. Haar lyk is in die Landwehr -kanaal gegooi, waar dit eers maande later gevind is.

As Luxemburg en Liebknecht in 1919 oorleef het, sou nie net die Duitse geskiedenis nie, maar ook die wêreldgeskiedenis anders uitgedraai het.

'N Oorwinnende sosialistiese rewolusie in Duitsland sou die Sowjetunie bevry het van sy isolasie en daardeur die belangrikste faktor vir die groei van die burokrasie en die opkoms van Stalin verwyder het.

Dit is ook ondenkbaar dat die KPD, onder leiding van die kompromislose internationalis Rosa Luxemburg, sou gebuig het vir Stalin se nasionalistiese koers, of sy beleid van sosiale fascisme ondersteun het, wat die weg gebaan het vir Hitler om in 1933 aan bewind te kom.

Die weiering van Stalin, en sy Duitse gevolmagtigde Thälmann, om te veg vir 'n verenigde front met die 'sosiaal -fascistiese' SPD teen die Nazi's, het die werkersklas verdeel en verlam. Op grond van die korrekte beleid van die KPD, wat honderde duisende lede en miljoene kiesers gehad het, kon die werkersklas verhoed het dat Hitler aan bewind kom.

Luxemberg was een van die eerstes wat die stryd teen die revisionistiese teorieë van Eduard Bernstein in die Duitse Sosiale Demokrasie (SPD) aangepak het. Haar polemiese hervorming of revolusie bly 'n klassieke van die marxisme. Haar revolusionêre sienings het haar in direkte konflik gebring met die regse vakbondfunksionarisse in die Duitse Sosiale Demokrasie, wat haar van hul kongresse verbied het.

Luxemburg het later die stryd aangegaan teen Karl Kautsky (een van die leiers van SPD) se toenemende aanpassing by die regs bewegende Duitse sosiaal-demokratiese leierskap, wat Kautsky se latere verraad van Marxisme verwag het.

In 1905 breek revolusie in Rusland uit. 'N Golf van spontane massastakings versprei oor die hele land. Die Duitse SPD -leierskap, gedomineer deur sy konserwatiewe vakbondvleuel, het defensief gereageer. By terugkeer na Berlyn uit Rusland in 1906, groet Rosa Luxemburg die revolusie. Leidende figure in die SPD voer aan dat die situasie in Duitsland nie ryp is vir die tipe massa -aksies wat verband hou met die Russiese rewolusie van 1905 nie. Selfs die verouderde partyleier van SPD, August Bebel, verklaar: "U kan die Russiese situasie nie met Duitsland vergelyk nie."

Luxemburg erken dat die Russiese rewolusie (1905) 'n uitdrukking is van 'n nuwe historiese era wat die relatief vreedsame tydperk wat 40 jaar geduur het, beëindig het.

Die moord op Karl Liebknecht sowel as Rosa Luxemburg was die bewuste reaksie van die kapitalistiese klas op die lewensgevaar wat dit in die gesig gestaar het. Na die Oktoberrevolusie in Rusland in 1917, bepaal die kapitalistiese klas dat dit die ontwikkeling van revolusionêre leierskap in die werkersklas moet verhoed of die leierskap moet uitroei waar dit na vore kom.

Die Duitse filmregisseur Margarethe von Trotta in haar buitengewone film "Rosa Luxemburg" (1986) handel diep oor die afgelope 20 jaar in die lewe van die uitstaande sosialistiese en revolusionêre, Rosa Luxemburg. Die film bevat belangrike politieke en persoonlike episodes uit die lewe van die revolusionis, wat haar enorme moed en politieke vasberadenheid toon.

Die film bevat tonele wat die hartstogtelike toespraak van Luxemburg tydens 'n werkersvergadering in Frankfurt am Main in 1913 toon, wat selfs vandag baie aktueel sou wees: "Die waan van 'n geleidelike neiging tot vrede het verdwyn. Diegene wat op 40 jaar vrede in Europa, vergeet die oorloë wat buite Europa plaasgevind het en waarin Europa 'n rol gespeel het........ word gevra om die moordwapens teen ons Franse en ander broers op te hef, verklaar ons: Nee, ons weier! "

Von Trotta se film bevat die opwindende toespraak van Liebknecht in die Tiergarten van Berlyn: "Die rewolusie in Duitsland het aangebreek! moeras van die verlede of ons gaan die stryd voort totdat die hele mensdom van die vloek van slawerny bevry word. Lewe die wêreldrevolusie! Lewe Spartacus! "

Die film "Rosa Luxemburg" (1986) maak die saak dat ware demokrasie slegs moontlik is deur mense soos Rosa. Dit moet gebaseer wees op die onafhanklike massabeweging van die werkersbevolking wat polities verlig is deur 'n internasionale sosialistiese beweging. Deur 'n aanklaer beskuldig dat sy 'n openbare vyand is, verdedig Luxemburg haar in een toneel deur te verklaar dat slegs die mense, nie die regering nie, kan besluit oor die kwessie van oorlog of vrede: "Geen oorlog teen ons wil nie."

Rosa Luxemburg het in haar toespraak op die stigtingskongres van die Kommunistiese Party (KPD) op 31 Desember 1918 duidelik gesê:

"Die vordering van grootskaalse kapitalistiese ontwikkeling gedurende 70 jaar het ons so ver gebring dat ons vandag ernstig kan begin om kapitalisme eens en vir altyd te vernietig. Nee, nog meer. Vandag is ons nie net in staat om hierdie taak te verrig nie, maar prestasie is nie net 'n plig teenoor die proletariaat nie, maar dit bied die enigste manier om die menslike samelewing te red van vernietiging ... Vir ons is daar geen minimale en geen maksimum program nie. Sosialisme is een en dieselfde ding - dit is die minimum wat ons moet besef vandag "[Rosa Luxemburg, Ons program en die politieke situasie (1918)].

Honderd jaar na Luxemburg se dood bevestig alle woorde van die teenstrydighede van die kapitalistiese stelsel wat die tydperk 1914-45 die gewelddadigste in die geskiedenis van die mens gemaak het, weer. Nasionalisme, handelsoorlog en oorlog oorheers internasionale betrekkinge. Verregse en fascistiese magte is in baie lande aan die offensief, met die eksplisiete of verborge steun van die staat.

Uit die ervaring van die gruwels van die Eerste Wêreldoorlog (1914) stel Rosa Luxemburg die alternatief vir die werkersklas in haar beroemde aforisme "sosialisme of barbaarsheid". Sy was een van die min leiers van die sosialistiese beweging in Duitsland wat vasgestaan ​​het in hul internasionalistiese beginsels tydens die uitbreek van die Eerste Wêreldoorlog en gekant was teen die steun vir die imperialistiese bloedbad.

Rosa Luxemburg, wat haar lewe lank konsekwent die marxisme volg as 'n wetenskaplik uitgewerkte teorie vir die begeleiding van die werkersklas en sy voorhoede in die rewolusionêre party. Wat ook al die dokument van Luxemburg wat u kies, dit toon duidelik aan dat sy al haar voorgestelde optrede vanuit hierdie basiese perspektief ontwikkel het en dit voortdurend aan kritieke ondersoek onderwerp.

Soos Luxemburg dit in 1918 geformuleer het, konfronteer die samelewing weereens "óf die voortsetting van kapitalisme, nuwe oorloë en die dreigende agteruitgang in chaos en anargie, óf die afskaffing van kapitalistiese uitbuiting." Meer as ooit tevore hang die mensdom se toekoms af van die bou van 'n sosialistiese en internasionalistiese party in die werkersklas op grond van die erfenis van marxisme.In al haar teoretiese werke het Luxemburg groot versiendheid en 'n diepgaande begrip van die probleme van die ontwikkeling van die internasionale werkersbeweging. 'N Studie van haar geskrifte is van kritieke belang vir revolusionêre en studente van Marxisme vandag.

Aangesien dit vandag die 102de jaar is sedert die dood van een van die gruwelikste en gevolglike misdade in die wêreldgeskiedenis, naamlik moord op die beste verteenwoordigers van die Internasionale Marxistiese beweging (Rosa Luxemberg en Karl Liebknecht), moet almal die enorme rykdom aan teoretiese werke deur Rosa Luxemburg en trek die gepaste lesse vir die huidige politieke en ekonomiese krisis.


Rosa Luxemburg en die werklikheid van die revolusie

17 November 2019 - Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal - In hierdie opmerkings wil ek drie dinge doen. Eerstens wil ek 'n benadering tot Rosa Luxemburg voorstel wat vir my sinvol is, terwyl ek ander benaderings noem wat nie. Dan wil ek 'n antwoord gee op 'n vraag wat gestel is oor hoe Luxemburg geneig was om die sosiaal -demokrasie in Duitsland en in die algemeen in die laaste jare van haar lewe te beskou en te kenmerk. Van daar af sal ek advies wil oorweeg oor die politieke strategie wat sy skynbaar sosialistiese aktiviste van vandag aanbied, te vinde in boekdele twee en vyf van haar versamelde werke wat ek gehelp het om te redigeer, terwyl ek terselfdertyd verband hou met 'n breër revolusionêre tradisie.

Ek wil begin met 'n beroep dat ons met Luxemburg gaan op die manier wat sy verdien. Dit het verskeie aspekte. Die een behels dat ons ons gedagtes en harte vir haar moet oopmaak - en vir baie van ons is dit ongelooflik maklik, gegewe haar lewendige gevoelens, haar energie, haar persoonlike en intellektuele animasie en diepte, en die manier waarop sy in haar geskrifte met ons praat. 'N Ander aspek is om te probeer verstaan ​​wat sy eintlik gesê en bedoel en gedoen het (in teenstelling met 'n Rosa wat ons self gemaak het). Ek het gehoor dat mense Rosa Luxemburg in wese beskryf as 'n utopiese radikaal-feminis of as 'n streng "marxistiese" anti-feminis. Ek het mense oor haar hoor praat-en baie positief-asof haar denke verenigbaar is met Emma Goldman se anargisme of Eduard Bernstein se sosiaal-demokratiese reformisme of die burokratiese staatskapitalisme van Deng Xioping. Sy word ook gereeld in die rol van Lenin's Most Magnificent Enemy in 'n kosmiese moraliteit gespeel.

'N Mens kan ook negatief raak. Eenvoudig omdat Luxemburg 'n marxis is, wat in die klasstryd glo en kapitalisme teëstaan, is sy vir sommige aan die regterkant 'n voorloper van Joseph Stalin en 'n aankondiging van gruwelike tirannie. Onder sommige links, word sy daarteenoor gekritiseer as 'n wolhartige 'spontaneis' wat nie die behoefte aan organisasie in die revolusionêre stryd begryp nie.

Luxemburg was kwalitatief anders as en interessanter as dit alles, en sy verdien beter van ons.

In verband hiermee verdien sy van ons 'n poging om gebruik te maak van wat sy ons eintlik bied. Sy was briljant, insiggewend, met aansienlike kennis en praktiese ervaring. Sy het dinge gesê en geskryf wat die moeite werd is om te verstaan, aktief te oorweeg en te toets terwyl ons probeer om die wêreld om ons te verstaan ​​en te verander.

Deur ons betrokkenheid by haar, moet ons haar as 'n persoon behandel, nie as 'n revolusionêre godin nie. Net omdat sy iets dink of sê of skryf, maak die 'iets' nie noodwendig waar nie. Dit is moontlik dat sy verkeerd is. Gegewe haar menswees, is dit onvermydelik dat sy 'n paar dinge verkeerd sou verstaan. Daar is intelligent aangevoer dat sy sekere dinge vreeslik, selfs rampspoedig verkeerd verstaan ​​het - en sulke argumente verdien ernstige oorweging. Ek moet byvoeg dat, uit my eie ervaring, selfs as ek tot die gevolgtrekking kom dat sy verkeerd was oor iets, dit nie die geval is dat sy verkeerd is oor elke aspek van die 'iets' nie - haar gedagtes en insigte is so goed dat u kan leer haar selfs al is sy gedeeltelik of grootliks verkeerd.

Sy verdien om ernstig opgeneem te word. Ons is dit aan haar en aan onsself ook verskuldig.

Nou wil ek aanhaal van een van Luxemburg se kamerade met wie sy soms swaarde gekruis het - Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. Hier is iets wat Lenin in 1922 oor haar geskryf het, wat telkens aangehaal is:

'Nie net sal kommuniste oor die hele wêreld haar geheue koester nie, maar haar biografie en haar volledige werke. . . sal dien as nuttige handleidings vir die opleiding van baie geslagte kommuniste oor die hele wêreld. 'Sedert 4 Augustus 1914 was sosiaal-demokrasie 'n stinkende lyk'-hierdie verklaring sal Rosa Luxemburg se naam bekend maak in die geskiedenis van die internasionale werkersbeweging.

Die verwysing in 1914 verwys na die uitbarsting van die Eerste Wêreldoorlog en die verraad van die leiers van die Luxemburgse party - die Sosiaal -Demokratiese Party van Duitsland (die SPD) - om hierdie imperialistiese oorlog te ondersteun. Daar is inderdaad revolusionêre mense vandag wat 'n vinger waai na diegene wat by die Demokratiese Sosialiste van Amerika aansluit terwyl hulle hierdie Luxemburgse aanhaling herhaal: "Sosiaal-Demokrasie is 'n stinkende lyk."

Sommige van ons wat betrokke is by die redigering van die volledige werke waarna Lenin gevra het, het hierdie formulering gaan soek en kon dit nie in enige van die reeds vertaalde gepubliseerde geskrifte van Luxemburg vind nie. Ons het tot die gevolgtrekking gekom dat dit Lenin se formulering moet wees - miskien sy eie opsomming van haar skerp kritiek op die Duitse sosiaal -demokrasie in byvoorbeeld die Junius -pamflet. En toe ek en Helen deur haar geskrifte van die jare 1910 tot 1919 begin blaai, kon ons nie die presiese woorde kry nie: “Sedert 4 Augustus 1914 was sosial-demokrasie 'n stinkende lyk.”

Net toe ons tot die gevolgtrekking gekom het dat Rosa Luxemburg nooit gesê het wat Lenin beweer het nie - het ons uitgevind dat sy eintlik was het gedoen sê iets baie soos dit.
In 'n stel lang en fassinerende ruwe aantekeninge wat Luxemburg in 1918 geskryf het, om in volume 5 te verskyn onder die titel "Historiese fragmente oor die geskiedenis", kenmerk sy die sosiaal -demokrasie (veral die Tweede Internasionale, maar met inbegrip van die SPD) as 'n & quotcorpse & quot wat sedert 1912, en veral sedert 1914, in 'n proses van "verval" was. In hierdie aantekeninge onthou sy dat geprojekteerde Mei-aksies van 1912 beslis en koelbloedig afgewater is om 'n eskalasie van massa-aksies te voorkom wat uitdagend die status quo uit te daag.

Die betekenis van so 'n terugslag, vir 'n waarnemende en onwankelbare militant soos Luxemburg, het die skerpste vraag gestel oor die revolusionêre vesel van sosiaal -demokrasie. As ek daaroor terugkyk vanaf 1918, was haar gevolgtrekkings ernstig. Hiermee het sy besin, "die Internasionaal was reeds inherent 'n lyk, die spoggerige Baselkongres [van die Tweede Internasionaal in 1912] was reeds, onbewustelik 'n nasleep." Later in hierdie aantekeninge is 'n gedeelte getiteld: & quotDecay Process in Social Democracy & amp the International sedert 4 Augustus 1914. "

Dus nie 'n stink lyk nie - net 'n verrottende lyk.

'N Mens kan redeneer dat hierdie aantekeninge nie betyds vir Lenin se kommentaar gepubliseer is nie, maar beide in formulering en konseptualisering lyk dit te eenders om toevallig te wees. Dit lyk waarskynlik dat Luxemburg in dieselfde tydperk wat hierdie notas saamgestel is, sulke dinge buite hierdie growwe aantekeninge sou sê en selfs skryf, en op plekke waar Lenin toegang tot gehad het. Die verdere publikasie in Engels van Luxemburg's Complete Works behoort dit makliker te maak om hierdie saak op te los.

Die feit bly egter bestaan ​​dat die basiese uiteensettings van Luxemburg se politieke oriëntasie ongeveer 'n eeu lank duidelik was, selfs vir dié wat beperk is tot die Engelse taal. Sy was altyd baie krities oor die toenemend nie-revolusionêre oriëntasie in die SPD-leierskap, en begin in 1914 dubbel en driedubbel. En aan die einde van haar lewe het sy gehelp om die Duitse Kommunistiese Party te stig. Maar die grootste deel van haar lewe-met verskillende grade van geduld en ongeduld-het sy probeer om werkersklasgenote van die sosiaal-demokrasie tot 'n revolusionêre marxistiese oriëntasie te wen. Sy het hulle gewaarsku oor wat sy tweeling -euwels noem. 'N Mens sou hulself afsny van die massa werkers en hul stryd en hul suiwerheid as 'n klein revolusionêre sekte behou. Die ander sou aanpas by geleenthede wat deur skerpsinnige kapitalistiese politici gebied word, wat moontlik 'n beweging van burgerlike sosiale hervorming kan veroorsaak.

In haar stryd teen reformisme het sy geensins die stryd om hervormings gekant nie - veranderinge ten goede binne die raamwerk van kapitalisme. Die probleem met reformisme, het sy volgehou, is dat dit bloot die een na die ander hervorming wil stapel met die doel om geleidelik, pynloos oor te skakel na 'n meer regverdige en menslike samelewing. Luxemburg beskou wenhervormings as noodsaaklik vir die bou van 'n sterk en selfversekerde werkersklasbeweging wat kapitalisme kan omverwerp en met sosialisme kan vervang. Sy beskryf haar benadering en verduidelik: "die stryd om hervormings is die middel van die sosiale revolusie, die doel daarvan."

Luxemburg se ontleding van die ekonomiese dinamika van die kapitaalakkumulasieproses, wat in volume 2 van haar versamelde werke gevind word, dui aan dat die sukses van reformistiese gradualisme onmoontlik is. Sy beskryf kapitalisme se wêreldwye uitbreiding as 'kapitaal se meedoënlose oorlog teen die sosiale en ekonomiese onderlinge verhoudinge' van die mense van die wêreld en 'die gewelddadige plundering van hul produksiemiddele en hul arbeidsmag'. Sy beklemtoon die vernietigende impak van dit alles - wat sy noem “die ywerige hebsug, die gretige begeerte om te versamel, waarvan die essensie is om voordeel te trek uit” menslike en natuurlike realiteite “sonder gedagte vir môre”. Imperialisme, militarisme en oorlog is noodsaaklik vir die kapitalistiese stelsel wat Luxemburg beskryf en ontleed. Ons moet nou bydra tot hierdie agteruitgang van die omgewing. Dit lei, soos sy dit keer op keer stel, tot 'n keuse: "die vernietiging van alle kultuur of 'n oorgang na die sosialistiese produksiemetode."

Die vyfde deel van haar werke beklemtoon die weg wat sy gevoel het tot hierdie laaste, oorgangssege van Sosiaal -Demokrasie kon lei. Dit was oorgang nie net in die sin om van die kapitalistiese na die sosialistiese vorm van ekonomie te lei nie, maar ook oor die manier waarop werkersklasbewussyn en werkersstryd moet ontwikkel, met stryd om hervormings wat eintlik tot die sosiale revolusie kan vloei. Massastryd om die waardigheid en lewensgehalte van mense te beskerm, genereer onder die werkers wat sy '' 'n heerlike waansin '' noem, die visie dat ''n groot poging vol opofferinge' 'tot 'n sosialistiese ordening van die samelewing' kan lei. Luxemburg het 'n beroep op die sosialistiese party en vakbonde van Duitsland gedoen om te help met die voorbereiding van die intellektuele gees en idealisme onder massas werkers wat (in haar woorde) "alle stryd wat ons voer, alle massastakings wat voor ons lê, niks anders is as 'n noodsaaklike historiese fase in die rigting van die uiteindelike bevryding van kapitalisme, op pad na 'n sosialistiese bestel. "

Ek wil afsluit deur perspektiewe voor te stel wat Luxemburg met ander revolusionêre marxiste van die vroeë twintigste eeu gedeel het. By die deurblaai van haar bydraes wat die vyfde deel van haar volledige werke uitmaak, is my opgeval hoe deeglik 'n bekende frase uit die geskrifte van Georg Lukács uit 1924 op haar van toepassing is - 'die werklikheid van revolusie' is die kern van haar gedagte. "Die teorie van historiese materialisme veronderstel dus die universele werklikheid van die proletariese revolusie," verduidelik Lukács. "In hierdie sin vorm die proletariese rewolusie die lewende kern van die marxisme, sowel as die objektiewe basis van die hele tydperk as die sleutel tot 'n begrip daarvan."

In haar voortdurende verdediging en voortdurende uitwerking van die konsep van massa -staking in hierdie bundel, bevorder Luxemburg die idee hoe dit in die werklike klasstryd van haar tyd moet ontvou. 'Bo alles vereis 'n politieke massastaking vasberade leiers wat gereed is vir aksie,' dring sy aan in 1913. Sy betreur die gebrek aan 'n so 'vasberadenheid en bereidheid tot aksie' by die SPD -leierskap, 'het sy aangevoer:' Ons moet heroorweeg en nuwe strydmetodes vir hierdie geleentheid. Die massas beywer hulle vir aksie, hulle wens 'n geveg. Besef dat die vuur wat die massas beslag gelê het, meer is as 'n flits in die pan. Moenie toelaat dat die werkersklas se begeerte om te veg aan die slaap raak nie, want dit sal ons moeilik vind om die massa weer lewendig te maak. ” Ses jaar later, terwyl die Spartacus -liga besig was om voor te berei om die Duitse Kommunistiese Party te help stig, het sy 'die vrot en bankrot tradisies van die ou sosialdemokrasie en sy parlementêre skaduwee' aan die kaak gestel, en beklemtoon dat 'die Spartaciste die weg gebaan het vir die nuwe revolusionêre taktiek: vir ekstra-parlementêre massa-optrede het hulle onvermoeid ... 'n beroep op massa-stakings gedoen totdat die eerste suksesse hul selfvertroue en die werkers se vegmoed versterk het. ” Die een word getref deur die feit dat haar opvatting 'n noodsaaklike wisselwerking tussen organisatoriese leierskap en semi-spontane massa-aksie behels.

Hierdie benadering herinner 'n mens aan Antonio Gramsci, wat in Die Moderne Prins beskou die revolusionêre party as "die deurslaggewende element in elke situasie" wat rewolusie behels, maar waarsku dat daar 'n gevaar bestaan ​​om "sogenaamde 'spontane' oomblikke van massale optrede onder die werkers en onderdruktes te versuim, of nog erger te wees. Trouens, voer hy aan, 'eenheid tussen' spontaneïteit 'en' bewuste leierskap 'of' dissipline 'is juis die werklike politieke optrede van die subalterne klasse, in soverre dit massapolitiek is en nie bloot 'n avontuur deur groepe wat beweer hulle verteenwoordig nie die massas. ” Die essensiële organiese kwaliteit wat nodig is vir so 'n revolusionêre politiek, het Gramsci aangedring, behels (in sy woorde) ''n voortdurende aanpassing van die organisasie tot die werklike beweging, 'n aanpassing van stoot van onder met orde van bo, 'n voortdurende invoeging van elemente wat uit die dieptes van die rang in die vaste raamwerk van die leierskapsapparaat wat kontinuïteit en gereelde opeenhoping van ervaring verseker. ”

As ons hierdie idees van Luxemburg, Lukács en Gramsci ernstig opneem, moet ons besef dat hulle almal verwys na 'n konteks wat nie meer in 2019 bestaan ​​nie. Honderd jaar gelede bestaan ​​daar 'n aansienlike wêreldwye arbeidersbeweging, sterk beïnvloed deur die teorie van historiese materialisme, en met 'n dinamiese en invloedryke linkervleuel met die gevoel van die werklikheid van revolusie. Dit is uitgewis tussen die Eerste Wêreldoorlog en die skemer van die twintigste eeu. So iets moet nog herbou word.

Maar toe ons die tweede dekade van ons eie eeu binnegaan, het 'n hernieude gevoel van revolusie se "werklikheid" ontstaan, te midde van verdiepende krisisse wat ons planeet teister. Opstandige strome van jeugdige aktiviste beweeg weg van 'n anargisme wat skynbaar nêrens lei nie, in sommige gevalle in verbinding met die oorblyfsels Sosiaal -Demokrasie, in sommige situasies wat verband hou met die een of ander oorblyfsel van die ou Kommunistiese beweging. Sommige van diegene wat hieraan besig is, worstel met hoe om nuttige insigte van rewolusionêres uit die verlede te versamel.

Rosa Luxemburg het vir ons gesê, terwyl sy haar revolusionêre oriëntasie van massa -aksie verduidelik het: "Ons kan slegs groei deur stryd, en dit is te midde van stryd waar ons leer hoe om te veg." Dit is die moeite werd om haar woorde ter harte te neem terwyl ons werk aan die heropbou van ons sosialistiese beweging en met 'n heerlike waansin 'n toekoms van vrye en gelyke mense bereik - om te leer veg, deur aan die werklike stryd van vandag en more deel te neem.


Rooi Rosa

Die geskrifte van die gemartelde sosialistiese Rosa Luxemburg gee 'n klagende beskouing van die paaie wat die geskiedenis nie volg nie.

Die uitspraak oor die ideologie van die 20ste eeu word algemeen aanvaar-dat die 'totalitêre' karakter daarvan enige van die oënskynlike verskille tussen die 'linker' en 'regs' weergawes daarvan oorskry-is 'n saak wat min wil betwis. Inderdaad, die einste term totalitêr is waarskynlik geskep deur die andersdenkende marxis Victor Serge, om 'n unieke moderne vorm van absolutisme aan te dui wat in wese die privaat lewe en die individuele gewete wou afskaf. Soos met konsepte, so ook met gevolge: David Rousset se vroeë klassieke, L'Univers se konsentrasieskema, het die beeld van 'die kamp' voorgehou as die plek waar die menslike oorskot van brute Utopianisme weggedoen is, ongeag die beweerde karakter van die regime.

Hierdie konvergensie of simmetrie vertaal nie outomaties in 'n streng morele ekwivalensie nie. Meer mense is moontlik deur die Gulag verteer as deur die Nazi's pils stelsel. Tog het Robert Conquest, die vooraanstaande historikus van Stalinisme, op uitnodiging tot 'n uitspraak bevind dat die Hitleritiese misdade meer verdoemend was. Gedruk om hierop te vergroot, antwoord hy: 'Ek voel eenvoudig dat dit so is.' Ek dink die intuïsie van baie sedelik intelligente mense sou dieselfde wees.

'N Ander manier waarop ons 'n onderskeid kan tref, is die volgende: ons het geen werklike verslag van 'n' andersdenkende 'skryfwerk deur die minderheid intellektuele wat tot fascisme en nasionaal -sosialisme getrek het nie. Inderdaad, as daar nie 'n sekere fassinasie met die pornografie van geweld en rassisme was nie, het dit min sin om die politieke geskrifte van Louis-Ferdinand Céline, wat nog te sê van Alfred Rosenberg, te bestudeer. Martin Heidegger en Giovanni Gentile het moontlik 'n verduisterende spervuur ​​van pseudo-historiese regverdiging neergelê vir die kultus van die hoogste nasionale leierskap, maar dit oorleef hoofsaaklik as 'n nuuskierigheid. Die belangrikste: dit is redelik onmoontlik om enige terme voor te stel waarin hulle ooit 'n kritiek op Hitler of Mussolini sou kon verwoord dat hulle die oorspronklike ideale van hul onderskeie bewegings verraai het. Die ideologieë het so 'n gebeurlikheid heeltemal verbied en uitgesluit.

Daarteenoor selfs Lenin se houttom Die ontwikkeling van kapitalisme in Rusland bestaan ​​uit 'n paar spesies van analise en anatomie, van 'n soort wat bloot belaglik sou wees om te vergelyk met die ravings van Mein Kampf. En van die vele marxiste wat met Lenin die stryd aangesê het, het 'n aantal werke van groot erns voortgegaan, en as u dit nie ondersoek het nie, sou u kennis van die moderne geskiedenis ernstig beperk word. Vir my was die mees briljante-en die mees innemende-van hierdie Marxistiese intellektuele Rosa Luxemburg, die Pools gebore Jood wat die mees charismatiese figuur in die Duitse Sosiaal-Demokratiese Party (SPD) was.

Bertrand Russell se eerste boek (ontwikkel uit 'n reeks lesings wat hy in 1896 gehou het) was oor die karakter van hierdie historiese partytjie. In teorie getroud met 'n taamlik formalistiese marxisme, het die party in die praktyk miljoene werkers en hul gesinne van 'n alternatiewe samelewing in Duitsland voorsien: nie net vakbonde nie, maar welsynsverenigings, opvoedkundige instellings, vakansiekampe en vroueverenigings. Hy was sterk krities oor die Pruisiese militarisme en het in 1912 vol vertroue gevoel om te verklaar dat dit in geval van oorlog stakings en protesoptredes sou vereis, en daarna streef om alliansies aan te sluit met broederlike partye in die ander strydende lande. Oorlogshisterie was in hierdie geval so verregaande sterk dat die meerderheid van die Sosialistiese Internasionaal in Augustus 1914 oorgegee het en gestem het om deel te neem aan die grootste broedermoord wat die wêreld nog ooit gesien het. (Lenin was so shocked by this that he at first refused to believe that the SPD had in fact deserted its position.) Luxemburg was one of the few of the party’s leaders to maintain a stance against the kaiser, and was imprisoned as a consequence. The central tranche of this collection of her letters was written during that bleak incarceration, and that great political relapse. The confusion of the moment is caught in a letter from October 1914, in which she urgently seeks instruction on the best manner of forwarding information by way of Benito Mussolini, entirely unaware that this hitherto anti-war socialist editor had deserted the cause and begun his long swing to the fanatical right.

Slightly lamed since childhood, married only to gain the formalities of citizenship, and famous for the scornfulness of her polemics, Luxemburg was easy to portray as a thwarted and unfeminine personage. But her correspondence shows her to have been an active and ardent lover, as well as a woman constantly distracted from politics by her humanism and her love for nature and literature. In a single letter to her inamorato Hans Diefenbach (whose life was to be thrown away on the western front), written from a Breslau jail in the summer of 1917, there are tender and remorseful reflections on the deaths of parents some crisp appraisals of the style of Romain Rolland a recommendation that Diefenbach read Hauptmann’s The Fool in Christ, Emanuel Quint and some extended observations on the ingenious habits of wasps and birds, as observed through the windows of her cell. Another letter to him earlier in the same year is saturated with their common addiction to the works of Goethe and Schiller, and goes on to offer a spirited hypothesis of a possibly feminist Shakespeare, based on the figure of the unquenchable Rosalind in As You Like It. Her favorite word of opprobrium for the war-makers was barbaric, and it becomes plain that by this she intended no ordinary propaganda slogan, but an intense conviction that European culture itself was being outraged and profaned. She was righter even than she knew.

Her internationalism was so strong that she despised anything to do with lesser or sectarian “identities.” This led her to oppose any nationalist claims made by her fellow Poles and fellow Jews (in retrospect, perhaps, a somewhat questionable position for any German politician to have been taking). To her friend Mathilde Wurm, she wrote rebukingly:

The quotation is from a conscience-stricken German soldier in the army of General Lothar von Trotha, who had in 1904 issued a general “extermination order” against the rebellious Herero tribe in what is now Namibia. One feels another crackle of premonition when reading again about this once-notorious atrocity: the imperial ethnologists in German South West Africa who conducted hideous medical experiments on the Herero included the mentors of Josef Mengele, and the first political governor of the province had been Hermann Goering’s father. Von Trotha himself became a member of a race-myth cult group calling itself the Thule Society, which was one of the seedbeds of the early Nazi Party. For Luxemburg, the hecatomb of the European war was partly a projection of the brutality of empire back into its metropolis. Her prompting was always to the enlargement of the picture: the concept of the “global” did not in the least intimidate her. Indeed, she took it as her point of departure.

A pre-war and pre-incarceration letter to another lover (Kostya Zetkin, son of Clara) is almost entirely devoted to a rhapsodic review of Bach’s Saint Matthew Passion, ending with praise and thanks for some violets and a glimpse of the antics of her cat, Mimi, who features in many more missives. When jailed, Luxemburg decided with immense regret not to take the animal with her, deeming it wrong to imprison a feline. This may appear mawkish or sentimental, but consider this extract from my favorite of all her letters. Written to Sophie Liebknecht from the same Breslau jail in late December 1917, it describes some Romanian buffalo, pressed into service as beasts of burden by the German army. As they dragged their impossibly heavy load into the prison yard, they continued to be flogged with the blunt end of the whip handle by an exceptionally callous soldier:

That dry closing sentence, I submit, acquits the letter of mawkishness and makes its register of animal torture more like that of Dostoyevsky. It also assists in pointing up the deep contrast with Lenin, who famously distrusted his emotions and tried his best to silence the appeals of nature and art. Though he did once refuse to shoot a vixen because “really, she was so beautiful,” he turned away from a performance of Beethoven’s Appassionata lest its haunting loveliness distract him from the requirements of the struggle, and only emerged from an apparent reverie at the summit of a Swiss mountain to exclaim that the damned Mensheviks were hell-bent on spoiling everything.

Ever since the 1905 upheaval in Russia, Luxemburg had suspected Lenin’s faction of what she scornfully termed a “barracks” mentality. A short while after the 1917 revolution, we find her writing a succession of letters, describing the situation in Russia as “abysmal” and the Bolsheviks as deserving of “a terrible tongue-lashing” for their repression of rival parties such as the Social Revolutionaries, and their unilateral decision to abolish the Constituent Assembly. She extends this condemnation to include the police mentality (concerning incessant foreign “conspiracies”) that underlay Soviet foreign policy. She singles out a certain “Józef” as a particular exemplar of this attitude, and with yet another shock of premonition, one discovers that this was the “party name” of her fellow Pole Felix Dzerzhinsky, founder of the Cheka and later considered the father of the KGB. It was during this time that Luxemburg made her imperishable defense of free speech, boldly stating that the concept was meaningless unless it meant the freedom of “the one who thinks differently.”

Still, her general optimism about the tide of revolution that obliterated the monarchs and empires that had started the war can give one a lump in the throat. Writing in December 1917, she exclaimed:

Perhaps aware that she was giving a hostage to fortune, she hastily added, “Anyhow an atmosphere conducive to that prevails here, one of viciousness, cowardice, reaction, and thick-headedness.”

This last premonition was the most sobering of all. Released from prison by the strikes and mutinies that accompanied the abdication of the kaiser, Luxemburg was propelled to the center of revolutionary politics and journalism in Berlin. In January 1919 she was arrested, and her capacious skull splintered by a rifle butt in the hands of a member of the Freikorps, the debased militia that was to form the pattern and nucleus of the Brownshirts. “In her assassination,” wrote Isaac Deutscher, “Hohenzollern Germany celebrated its last triumph and Nazi Germany its first.” Over her corpse—later thrown into the Landwehr Canal—was to step a barbarism even more ruthless and intense than any she had dared to imagine. Had Germany gone the other way, is it completely fanciful to imagine an outcome that would have preempted not just Nazism but, by precept and example, Stalinism too? However debatable that might be, one cannot read the writings of Rosa Luxemburg, even at this distance, without an acute yet mournful awareness of what Perry Anderson once termed “the history of possibility.”


Rosa Luxemburg at 150: a revolutionary legacy

Rosa Luxemburg, one of the great leaders in the history of the socialist movement, was born in Poland (then a province of the Russian empire) 150 years ago this month, on 5 March 1871. Luxemburg cut her teeth in the Polish revolutionary underground, but as an immensely talented political leader, she was drawn to the centre of the European workers’ movement in Germany, where, from the late 1890s, she became the driving force of the revolutionary wing of German socialism.

In the pamphlet Social Reform or Revolution?, the first part of which was published in 1899, she took up the fight against those in the German Social Democratic Party (SPD) who rejected revolution and argued instead for a focus on the gradual reform of capitalism through parliamentary and trade union work.

The leading figure within this “revisionist” current, as it came to be known, was Eduard Bernstein. In The Preconditions of Socialism and the Task of Social Democracy, he argued that, as capitalism developed, the tendency to economic crisis identified by Karl Marx was being overcome, raising the prospect of a permanent and peaceful advance towards universal prosperity.

In response to Bernstein, Luxemburg argued that, far from the contradictions in capitalism and its tendency to crisis being overcome, as the system developed, these contradictions would intensify. The period of growth and prosperity experienced in Germany in the last decades of the nineteenth century was only the calm before the storm. It wouldn’t be long, Luxemburg argued, before the contradictions inherent in the system broke out in the open again. Only this time, with the greater concentration of industry and the heightened competition between states for markets and resources, the crisis would be deeper and broader than ever before.

A little over a decade later, with the outbreak of World War One in 1914, the correctness of Luxemburg’s account was clearly demonstrated. The dream of universal capitalist prosperity was replaced overnight with the nightmare of industrial-scale slaughter in the trenches. Further, the behaviour of the SPD’s parliamentary leaders, who junked all their long-established anti-militarist
principles to vote in favour of funding the war effort, showed the truth of her insight that, rather than changing the system, the reformists would end up being changed by it.

“People who pronounce themselves in favour of the method of legislative reform in place of and in contradistinction to the conquest of political power and social revolution”, Luxemburg wrote, “do not really choose a more tranquil, calmer and slower road to the same goal, but a different goal”. In the face of a renewed crisis of capitalism, of war and brutality on an unprecedented scale, the reformists’ professions of faith in the long-term achievement of a socialist society gave way to a more or less straightforward defence of the existing order.

In her 1906 pamphlet, The Mass Strike, Luxemburg once again assailed the reformist currents of the SPD, this time contrasting their top-down, bureaucratic conception of the socialist movement with Marx’s idea of revolution as “the self-emancipation of the working class”.

The pamphlet was written in the aftermath of the first Russian Revolution of 1905. Events in Russia were greeted with a wave of enthusiasm in the Western European socialist movement. In particular, the central role played by mass strikes of workers in the revolution gave confidence to the radicals within the SPD and the trade unions. For the reformist SPD and trade union leaders, though, the new enthusiasm among workers for the mass strike was a cause for deep concern. It went against all the rules of the game—blurring the boundary between political demands, which they believed were the exclusive domain of the party, and economic demands, which were the responsibility of the unions, and risking the struggle moving beyond the carefully mapped paths of reform.

For many trade union leaders, parliamentarians and party officials, the development of union organisation and the advance of the SPD’s parliamentary activities had become ends in themselves. The attitude of many trade union leaders is summed up nicely in the words of Theodor Bömelburg, a building union leader, who said, “To develop our organisations further, we need peace in the labour movement”.

Strikes were a drain on union funds, and risked provoking the wrath of the capitalist state, which could impose punitive measures that would disrupt the unions’ operations. To the extent that a mass strike might be useful or necessary, it was a tactic to be employed carefully and precisely by the leaders, at the appropriate time and in the right conditions. We can see many of these same attitudes, and worse, in union leaders today.

In contrast to this, Luxemburg considered that the mass, unruly, revolutionary strikes that occurred in Russia in 1905 provided a reminder of where the true wellspring of the socialist movement was to be found. To her mind, the strength of the movement lay, not in the increasingly gigantic bureaucratic machinery of the unions or in the carefully thought-out manoeuvrings of the SPD’s parliamentary wing, but in the self-activity of workers in struggle.

For Luxemburg, the direct involvement of workers in struggle was the key to the advance of the workers’ movement, in both its economic and political dimensions. The relationship between the economic struggles of workers for better wages and conditions, and the struggle to advance the political goals of the workers’ movement, was highly reciprocal: “After every soaring wave of political action, there remains a fertile sediment from which sprout a thousand economic struggles. And the reverse also applies. The workers’ constant economic struggle against capital sustains them at every pause in the political battle”.

To maintain a hard and fast divide between the economic and political spheres, as was the case with the reformists, is to shut off the mutually reinforcing dynamic that gives the movement as a whole its strength. Further, in line with Marx’s insistence that the overthrow of capitalism and the construction of a socialist society can succeed only on the basis of the self-activity of workers, Luxemburg drew out the way in which mass strikes support the political and organisational advance of the working class. The spontaneous emergence of the Russian soviets (workers’ councils) during the events of 1905 provides the clearest illustration of this, showing that even the most astute and engaged party or trade union committee could be no substitute for the experience of the mass of workers in struggle.

The task of a revolutionary party is not, therefore, to set out an ordained path or schema that workers obediently follow toward the achievement of socialism. It is, rather, to be immersed in the everyday struggles of workers, and to develop the political experience, with and alongside workers, that alone provides the foundation for leadership in a period of revolution.

Luxemburg spent the majority of the years from the outbreak of World War One in 1914 to the revolution of November 1918 behind bars, imprisoned for being one of the very few people in Germany with the courage to speak out against the slaughter unfolding in the trenches. In the Junius Pamphlet, written from her cell in early 1915, she painted a vivid picture of the choice she believed humanity faced in those years: “Either the triumph of imperialism and the collapse of all civilization as in ancient Rome, depopulation, desolation, degeneration—a great cemetery. Or the victory of socialism, that means the conscious active struggle of the international proletariat against imperialism and its method of war”.

Luxemburg saw clearly that imperialism was part of the core logic of capitalism and that its inevitable consequence was war. Her words, written amid the carnage of World War One, provide a reminder of the consequences for humanity if the imperialist rivalries of today, such as that between China and the US, break out into open war.

The tragedy of Luxemburg’s life is that, by the time she realised the necessity of breaking with the SPD and of building a clearly revolutionary organisation, it was too late. The weakness of the revolutionary left during the war meant that, in the decisive battles of the postwar years from 1918 to 1923, revolutionaries were always running to catch up, giving the SPD leaders and other reactionary forces in Germany the time they needed to regroup. The true cost of these defeats is shown in subsequent German history, as it rushed headlong toward the catastrophes of the 1930s and 1940s.

Luxemburg herself was murdered, along with her comrade Karl Liebknecht, on the night of 15 January 1919. They were among the main leaders of the insurgent movement of workers, sailors and soldiers that had brought World War One to an end and which was threatening to topple the entire capitalist order of Germany. Captured by a division of the reactionary Freikorps on orders from SPD leader (and professed “socialist”) Friedrich Ebert, Luxemburg’s skull was smashed by a rifle butt and her body dumped into Berlin’s Landwehr canal.

The murders of Luxemburg and Liebknecht were a major blow to the immediate hopes of the German (and by extension, the world’s) working class. But Luxemburg’s legacy as a revolutionary activist and theorist couldn’t be extinguished so easily. Her ideas, whether on the question of reform versus revolution, the significance of the mass strike or the civilisation-threatening barbarism of imperialist war, are as relevant today as ever.

Increasing numbers of young people are being drawn to anti-capitalist politics. But just as in Luxemburg’s time, there are competing understandings of the word “socialism” and suggested strategies for winning a better world. There are many today who argue along similar lines to the right wing of the German SPD in the years leading up to World War One—that we should give up on the idea of revolution and be content simply to fight for a better deal for workers and the poor within the framework of capitalism.

There’s no reason to think, however, that if we follow the advice of today’s reformist socialists, we’ll end up with anything much different to the kind of carnage that overtook Europe from 1914 on. Nothing fundamental has changed about capitalism in the intervening period.

Capitalism’s tendency to fall into crisis remains. In fact, the crises are deepening and proliferating. If imperialist tensions between China and the US were, at some point in the coming decades, to break out into a direct military conflict, the consequences for humanity would be even more devastating than in the case of World War One. And today it’s not only the threats of economic devastation and war we need to worry about, but also the potentially existential threat posed by climate change.

The choice we face today is no less stark than that which Luxemburg saw confronting humanity at the height of World War One. Will we allow the continuation of a system that’s propelling humanity into one catastrophe after another? Or will we range ourselves against this system and its defenders (even those supposedly “on our side”), and set a course for revolution? Do we want merely to win a somewhat friendlier version of capitalism, or will we fight for a society and economy democratically and collectively controlled by workers, in which the vast capacities and resources of humanity are no longer sacrificed on the altar of the market, but can be turned to restoring our damaged relationship with nature, and to providing the things we need to live a decent life?

If we want to overcome the barbarism of capitalism, then the need for the kind of clear, intransigent revolutionary politics that Rosa Luxemburg’s life and thought exemplify is more urgent today than ever.


The Rosa Luxemburg Trials of 1914 and the Emergence of the Ideal Type of the Weimar Party Lawyer

This chapter introduces the reader to the German legal system through a short history of advocacy, focused on the transition of barristers from civil service to free profession. Under competitive pressure and intensified media scrutiny, a new, edgy, and confrontational culture of defence work emerged around the turn of the century. Politically, this combative culture fostered a new generation of socialist lawyers, led by Kurt Rosenfeld and Paul Levi. In sharp opposition not just to the Wilhelmine state, but also to senior lawyers in their own party, these barristers drove a paradigm shift in political defence work. Using Rosa Luxemburg's anti-militarism trial of 1914 as a case study, the chapter demonstrates how the new generation de-legalized proceedings and privileged propagandistic impact over legal outcome, even at the cost of sacrificing the defendant. In so doing, the chapter argues, they forged an ideal type of the party barrister that shaped Weimar political trials.

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Rosa Luxemburg in 1914 - History



ROSA LUXEMBURG
1871 - 1919

Marxist Humanitarian With Guts

Rosa Luxemburg was nicknamed Bloody Rosa, which gives us a hint.

Rosa was a revolutionary and ballsy enough to criticize Lenin en Trotsky , for which she had to take a lot of heat, of course.


There are two things that are fact:

One - Rosa Luxemburg was all-action-no-armchair.

Two - Rosa Luxemburg never moved an inch from believing in humanitarianism.

According to dictionary, a humanitarian is a person who seeks to promote human welfare. In other words, people before rules.

Communism According to Rosa Luxemburg

Luxemburg disagreed with the Polish Socialist Party and hence co-founded the Polish Social Democratic Party, or the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland, which later became the Polish Communist Party.

Rosa's interpretation of Marxism is called Luxemburgism .

Instead of Communists being primarily concerned about their own country, aka nationalism, Rosa Luxemburg wanted all Communists to focus first and foremost on the Socialist world revolution, aka internationalism. This point was one of the main differences between Luxemburgism and Leninism .

Rosa Luxemburg declared the mass strike a solid tool to achieve Communist goals, and was opposed to Lenin's approach which tolerated violence if applied in pursuit of the greater good.

For more interpretations of Marxism, see also Communism - Luxemburgism

Rosa Luxemburg's Political Party

Luxemburg was also co-founder of the Spartacus League (in German: Spartakusbund,) which became the German Communist Party in December 1918.

Together with Karl Liebknecht and others, this group was formed to fight Germany's involvement in World War I , to topple the government, and to start fresh with a working class government. Luxemburg saw it necessary to launch this new faction because the German Social Democratic Party was supporting Germany's stance on WWI. She did not.

Rosa Luxemburg's father was Eduard Luxemburg . Rosa's mother was Line Luxemburg . Rosa's parents were Jewish.

Rosa had four siblings. She was the youngest.

Leo Jogiches became a close friend.

In 1898, Rosa Luxemburg married Gustav Lubeck (L beck) and moved to Berlin, Germany.


When it came to protesting in the streets Rosa Luxemburg took the lead. It all went down the tubes when she and Karl Liebknecht were killed by reactionary troops in the Spartacus Revolt of January 1919 .


Ultra-leftism gets the upper hand

But that line, which won the majority in the Bolshevik party in 1917, did not have the same support among the Spartacists. While the more experienced cadres like Rosa Luxemburg and Leo Jogiches wanted to postpone the formation of the Communist Party in order to win a larger group among the activists of the USPD, the inexperienced majority of the Spartacists pushed with great impatience for an immediate split.

Many of these ultra-left elements where raw youth who had not absorbed the lessons of the Russian Revolution. Impatient with the apparently slow pace of events they looked for shortcuts. They substituted the conquest of the masses with the immediate conquest of power without taking seriously into consideration the then consciousness of the masses.

For the Marxists, it is always fundamental to point out that there are different layers in the working class, the youth and the peasants who learn at different rhythms and draw the necessary conclusions at different speeds. The most advanced sections among the activists of the workers' movement will be aware of the betrayal of the reformists much faster than the workers in the rank and file. In general, workers are quite loyal to the organizations that lead them in their first movements that awaken them to political life. Great events are necessary for the workers to turn their backs on the old leaders and search for an alternative.

In the Spartacist ranks impatience grew by the day. Contrary to the wishes of Rosa Luxemburg and Leo Jogiches, the League decided to form the KPD(S) – the German CP (Spartacist) in December 1918. However, the founding congress was held without a serious preparation and effort to win maximum support. For example, the network of revolutionary shop stewards in Berlin had put forward a number of correct demands for integration into the new party, but found themselves rejected from the beginning. Thus a decisive part of the revolutionary vanguard of the workers’ movement remained outside the new party.

The founding congress of the KPD(S) had the support of the Bolsheviks, who sent Karl Radek as their representative. However, the congress did not approve the same methods as the Bolsheviks had applied in Russia. In fact, the sectarian ultra-left elements won over Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht on the most decisive points rejection of participation in the forthcoming elections to the Constituent Assembly and rejection of work inside the SPD-dominated trade unions.

These questions of revolutionary tactics need discussing by today's revolutionaries. If we were to reject work inside the traditional trade unions and set up “pure” trade unions, we would be condemned to isolation. To reject work in this or that trade union confederation, just because it has a reactionary leadership would be a huge mistake. In the same sense, it would be the height of stupidity to reject joining mass parties, such as the PSUV in Venezuela.

The question of parliament is also important. Marxists, of course, know that fundamental questions are never resolved in parliament but in the streets and the factories. However, we think that the working class must use every means at its disposal to promote the revolutionary message. As long as the revolutionaries do not have the force to bring down an institution, that is to say as long as we do not have the majority of the class won to our programme, we should use every platform to agitate for our ideas and win the maximum number of followers.

Unfortunately, all this was not taken into account by the majority of delegates in the KPD(S) founding congress.


The Life of Rosa Luxemburg

Rosa Luxemburg was born on 5 March 1871 in the small town of Zamość in the Russian-occupied part of Poland, the daughter of a wood merchant. From 1880 to 1887 she attended high school in Warsaw, achieving excellent grades in an environment normally reserved for the daughters of Russian civil servants. She learned four languages fluently, developing her passion for the word both spoken and written at an early age, and soon enough became politically active in Polish left-wing groups.

In 1889 these activities led to the threat of her arrest, and she fled via Germany to Switzerland. At the University of Zurich—one of the few higher education institutions to which women had equal access—she first studied natural sciences, then political science and economics. She obtained her doctorate in 1897, admired and marvelled at as the only woman among the sons of landowners, factory owners, and state administrators. There she also began a passionate love affair with the Polish revolutionary Leo Jogiches.

In 1893 Rosa Luxemburg co-founded a political party: the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland (SDKP), which in 1900 renamed itself the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania (SDKPiL). In August of the same year—barely 22 years old—she made her first major public appearance in the context of the international labour movement. At the third International Socialist Workers’ Congress in Zurich, she fought to obtain a mandate for herself and her new party with a courageous speech. At that point, the mandate was denied. Rosa Luxemburg moved to Germany in 1898. A marriage of convenience enabled her to gain German citizenship. From then on she advocated for Social Democracy at party congresses in Germany, at international congresses, and through her journalistic activities. At the International Socialist Congress in 1900, she justified the necessity of international actions against imperialism, militarism, and colonial policies.

From 1904 to 1914 she represented the SDKPiL in the International Socialist Bureau (ISB). From the end of December 1905 to March 1906 she participated in the revolution in Russian-occupied Poland, where she was arrested and released on bail in June 1906. In Berlin, she worked on drawing conclusions for the German working class from the experiences of the Russian Revolution of 1905–1907, defended the political mass strike as a revolutionary means of struggle, and distinguished herself as the leader of the left-wing current in German Social Democracy.

In 1907, at the International Socialist Congress, together with Lenin and Martov, she developed an anti-war programme for the international workers’ movement. From 1907 to 1914 she worked as a teacher at the Social Democratic Party School in Berlin. She had a love affair of several years with Kostja Zetkin, the son of her close colleague Clara Zetkin.

In the spring of 1914 she was sentenced to prison for her anti-war speeches. Paul Levi was her trial lawyer, and became her new lover. In 1915, under the pseudonym “Junius”, she wrote a pamphlet—the famous Junius Pamphlet—against the brutality of the War which had been raging since 1 August 1914. At the end of 1915 she joined forces with Karl Liebknecht and other Social Democratic opponents of the war to form the “Internationale” group, from which the Spartacus group emerged in 1916.

From July 1916 to November 1918, Rosa Luxemburg was imprisoned in Berlin, Wronki, and Wrocław. In 1917 she supported the February and October revolutions in Russia with articles written from prison. She welcomed the upheavals, while at the same time warning against a Bolshevik dictatorship. On the Russian Revolution, which contained this warning, was not published until 1922, however. In this text she stated that “Without unrestricted freedom of the press and of assembly, without a free struggle of opinions, vitality withers away in each public institution—it becomes a pseudo-vitality.”

After her release from prison on 9 November 1918, she fully committed herself to the German November Revolution. Together with Karl Liebknecht, she published Die Rote Fahne (The Red Flag), campaigned for comprehensive social transformation, and was one of the founders of the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) at the turn of the years 1918–1919.

On 15 January 1919, Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht were murdered in Berlin by officers and soldiers of the counter-revolutionary Reichswehr units.


Capitalist markets would expand through exploitation of Indigenous and oppressed populations

“Each new colonial expansion is accompanied by capital’s relentless war on the social and economic interrelations of the indigenous inhabitants and by the violent looting of their means of production and their labor-power. capitalism strives purposefully to annihilate them as independent social structures.”

Luxemburg saw how capitalism would spin out of local European markets through imperialism. She saw that process taking place around her through the enslavement of African peoples by European nations, French colonialism in Algeria, and British colonialism in India, to name a few. This process remains a fact of life more than a century after Luxemburg’s time, and that is no coincidence. Capitalism must constantly seek new markets to suck up surplus value, a process that often involves forcing indigenous, noncapitalist peoples to participate in market exchange. Today, according to History Is a Weapon author Michael Parenti, North American and European companies have control of more than 75% of the mineral resources scattered across the rest of the globe.

We can also point to how the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was devastating to many small farmers in Mexico, forcing many to abandon their land and seek work in assembly plants known as maquiladoras. In South America, far-right Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, with aid from the World Bank, has helped oversee the accelerated deforestation of the Amazon for agribusiness, dispossessing and disenfranchising Indigenous communities in favor of exploitative global agribusinesses with little regard for climate impact. Here in the U.S., in keeping with our long-standing tradition of settler colonialism, the Dakota Access Pipeline was routed through lands adjacent to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, threatening the community’s water supply and desecrating grave sites. Protests against the pipeline drilling were suppressed by police (think water cannons used to douse demonstrators in subzero temperatures) and key organizers with the cause were contacted by the FBI. Luxemburg’s prediction that a global "war" waged on Indigenous populations would soon "annihilate [them] as independent social structures" is something that still plays out every day.


Kyk die video: 1. Mai Countdown - Rosa Luxemburg (Junie 2022).


Kommentaar:

  1. Adalwen

    Ek het gedink en het hierdie frase verwyder

  2. Khnum

    every day is like the previous one. each post by the author is different from the previous one. conclusion: read the author :)

  3. Kagarn

    Na my mening is hy verkeerd. Ons moet bespreek. Skryf vir my in PM, praat.

  4. Buadhachan

    Na my mening maak u 'n fout. Kom ons bespreek dit. E -pos my by PM.

  5. Jamarick

    Ek vra om verskoning, maar na my mening is u nie reg nie. Ek stel dit voor om te bespreek. Skryf vir my in PM, ons sal praat.

  6. Voodooramar

    Ek is ook bekommerd oor hierdie vraag. Kan u my vertel waar ek hieroor kan lees?



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