First Published: Alive Magazine: Literature & Ideology No. 42, September 1975
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Malcolm and Paul Saba
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The world is in a state of great turmoil. Everywhere one looks on the map there are eruptions of discontent against the attempts of the United States and the Soviet Union to dominate the world. In the main these eruptions, rebellions and (evolutions are most intense in Asia, Africa and Latin America where the conditions are most clearly present for final conflict between the forces of imperialism and the forces of the people. There are massive lessons to be learned from the struggles ongoing in Cambodia, Zimbabwe (rhodesia) South Vietnam Mozambique, Angola, the Middle East and all the other so-called hotspots.
The main lesson to be learned is that these struggles are hotspots for the two Superpowers. The world’s peoples are making life very hot and uncomfortable for the U.S. and U.S.S.R.
The only solution left for both of the two superpowers is a global conflict – a world war. Under the cover of world war the superpowers see the opportunity to wipe put entire nations with nuclear bombs. Under the blanket of nuclear warfare the superpowers think they see the only possibility of bringing the world’s peoples to heel at their command. The time for such imperialist successes is gone forever, however. All over the map the imperialists are suffering defeats at the hands of nations for whom they have had nothing but contempt A “world war” if the imperialists are successful in marshalling one, will bring on nothing but their own early suicide.
It is in the face of this possibility that the Canadian people have an especially important historic role to play. Here, directly between the two superpowers the Canadian people are positioned to bring the struggle directly to the enemy camp. In his heartland of illusory democracy the Canadian people must expose the corruption at the core and remove the last vestiges of false honour from the backs of monopoly capitalist stronghold.
The main enemy of democracy is the monopoly capitalist system. Monopoly capitalism cannot exist with democracy. It is here, at the heartland, that the illusion of democracy must be identified and stripped away, as a responsibility to the world’s peoples. All democratic minded people in Canada must stand up and expose the government’s continual attempts to blame the people for the crimes of the monopoly capitalists.
The federal government here in Canada has launched a massive attack on immigrants from Asia, Africa and Latin America. The Canadian people who have always stood and fought against nazi and racist policies wherever they came up must now stand and fight the nazi and racist policies which are being born in Canada. The only option open to the monopoly capitalists in the interest of their own survival (which is always their only interest) is to turn the Canadian people against their own countrymen and women and against their class brothers and sisters from other lands, the Canadian people must not allow the federal government, or any other representatives of the monopoly capitalists, to succeed in the time worn tactic of divide and conquer. We must stand up in unity against the imperialist domination of Canada and the world’s people.
Alive magazine: Literature & Ideology represents a practical step forward in building a fighting unity against imperialism. Other practical steps forward are being taken all across Canada. The Canadian people must demand of their writers and artists that they take up the challenge of this massive struggle. We writers and artists must demand of ourselves that we pay attention to the real world and act to clarify it and the enemy’s real nature.
Writers and artists must, in this time, take their abilities and lay them down squarely in the service of the people of Canada and of the world in this struggle against U.S. imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism. This is not the time for complaining about inexpert and clumsy language of those who are fighting in the anti-imperialist struggle – this is the time for throwing “expert” and “smooth” language into the service of the anti-imperialist struggle. This is the time for writers and artists to recognize that the stage of history cries out for action against the imperialists. Anyone who denies the needs of the Canadian people and the world’s peoples will be judged in the same way as those who refused to recognize the danger in the rise of Hitler’s nazism.
The world is in a state of great turmoil – and it does not take a poet or a short story writer or an artist to recognize it. Everyone who goes out to buy a pound of butter knows it! Everyone who has to work for a living knows it. What is demanded of writers and artists in this time is a contribution to clarifying the world and pointing out in clear and concise words and images – this is the enemy, this is what he is doing to you my countrymen and women, this is how he is doing it, this is what we must do to stop this oppression!
If ever there was a time when the writers and artists of any country were called to this task it is now in Canada!
Only uncompromising struggle here near the very heartland of imperialism will give me to the revolutionary upsurge which will destroy the possibility of world war. Only here can the moment be seized which the German people, missed in the 1930’s. We owe it to all our predecessors, to the people of the world and to our very own children to wage a massive struggle against imperialism right here inside the shadow of the heart. The world’s people are literally tearing at the jugular vein of imperialism – we must go for the heart!
To undermine imperialism at the very base is our duty as a people! To lay our talents in the service of this struggle is our duty as writers and artists!
We must oppose artistic chasing of shadows!
We must throw our weight into an anti-imperialist struggle!
We must acknowledge the mortality even of writers and artists!
We must smash the undemocratic monopoly capitalist system!
We must refuse service in illusion building!
We must ensure a place at honour for writers and artists in the new society! We must use our pens with the fury and deadly accuracy of a machine gun so that fhe Canadian and world’s peoples can write the obituary of imperialism!