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Jack Weber

March of Events

(4 January 1936)

From New Militant, Vol. II No. 1, 4 January 1936, p. 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

Undeclared War in East

The guerrilla warfare across the borders of Outer Mongolia between Japanese invaders and the Soviet Mongolia is the prelude of imperialist aggression against the Soviet Union. It is the beginning of an undeclared war. The Japanese are pressing on without let-up to the Siberian border. Inner Mongolia has already fallen prey to the inordinate appetite of the Eastern imperialists. The diplomatic term “incident” is not applicable to a situation in which scores of lorries filled with armed troops stage incursions reaching forty miles into “enemy” territory. This is what the Japanese army is doing – in preparation for the real drive, the great push that will commence the Second World War. Now as never before the workers of all lands must be made to realize that all their hopes for a better world, nay, that the preservation of civilization itself, depend on their successful defense of the Soviet Union against the murderous onslaught of world capitalism. The struggle of the workers for liberation from wage slavery is indissolubly bound up with the fate of the Russian Workers’ Republic. The fight to save the Soviet Union must be waged everywhere, on all fronts, against the system of capitalist exploitation. The enemies of the Soviet Union are the capitalists of all lands. The fight must be waged against them. Only by the revolutionary struggle for the overthrow of capitalism can the safety of the Soviets be assured. The nearer war approaches the greater becomes the urgency for organizing the forces of the proletariat against imperialist war. These forces, at present dispersed and leaderless, can be rallied for new victories only under the banner of the Fourth International.

* * *

Eden Made Secretary

Eden replaces Hoare as Secretary for Foreign Affairs – and nothing changes. Those who talk of the conservative ministry of Baldwin embarking on some new course are merely carrying out their function of deluding the masses. Baldwin’s cabinet, including Eden, have only one task under many forms, the defense of British imperialism. In the carrying out of this task Eden will use cleverly the worked-up sentiment for sanctions and the League of Nations. Already England is engaged in manipulating those pawns of the powers on the chessboard of politics, the Balkan states. These states form at the same time the key to the door of communications with the East and with Africa, and also the means of entry to the backdoors of the European states that may be occupied in warfare on the Western fronts. Eden’s first job is to consolidate a military bloc with Turkey, Greece, Rumania and Yugoslavia under the fake of “exploring” the bases of sanctions. Turkey will probably be allowed to refortify the Dardanelles. Thus with the help of the British Labor Party, which approves of sanctions, British imperialism is making complete war preparations. Sanctions and the League of Nations thus serve as a perfect cover, a protective coloration of “peace” hiding the feverish plans for war. Instead of denouncing the fraud being perpetrated on the masses, the leaders of the Labor Party again show their function of advocating the views of the bourgeoisie in the ranks of the working class and betraying the workers to the ruling class by supporting sanctions. In this period social-patriotism and sanctions become absolutely synonymous.

* * *

Laval Shaky

The Laval government, one that straddles the two major classes in modern society in the attempt to mediate between the two irreconcilables, the capitalists and the workers, has become extremely shaky. Its fall is predicted in a short time. The laws for the disarming of “armed leagues” have been made meaningless by the Senate, if one assumes that they could have had any real meaning even if passed in their, original form The Senate refuses to leave the matter of prosecution and punishment to the ordinary courts. It places the entire matter in the hands of the president and the cabinet. The armed bands are – if you please – to be disarmed and dissolved by decree, with no force to actually carry out the decrees. The farcical nature of the procedure in which the Socialists and Stalinists were led to participate by their eagerness for class-collaboration, stands nakedly revealed in this Senate proposal. Of course, nobody possessing an iota of political sanity could possibly have been led to believe that Lebrun or Laval would take any steps to disarm the forces held in reserve by their masters in case the workers become unmanageable. Far from attempting to disarm the Fascist bands, Laval will turn the attack on the workers and will do everything possible to aid his friend Colonel de la Rocque. Even if there were not direct evidence of the constant seances between Laval and de la Rocque, this course could be infallibly inferred by the most superficial study of the relations between the Bonapartist governments and the Fascist bands, in every country where Fascism has come to power. Without government aid, hidden at first, more or less open later, these bandits could never have grown and become powerful.

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