- Imperialism: "The highest stage of
capitalism," characterized by
- monopoly concentration
- monopoly: one seller
completely controls a market
- oligopoly: a few large
sellers control almost entirely control a market
- colonialism: 16th-20th centuries: literal
colonies (e.g., Algeria)
- political rule
- enforced by military occupation
- neo-colonialism: nominally independent
"semi-colonies" and client states (e.g., formerly S. Vietnam, currently
chauvinism: "Aggressive or
fanatical patriotism, particularly during time of war, in
support of one's own nation (e.g.. government, culture, etc.) versus
"Changing one's political
position in order to exploit certain circumstances for personal
- workers supporting
colonial or neo-colonial policies that benefit them by enriching the
nation over against other nations: siding with their own
national capitalist over against the workers of the world.
- labor unions (and leaders)
supporting accommodation with management rather than expropriation and
- unions dedicated to enriching their members to the neglect of
solidarity with national and international workers' struggles (divide
- organized labor: bought off to neglect organizing the others
- others: underpaid & overexploited (and
unsympathetic with their organized brethren)
- the "bourgeois" leaders of such unions
- salaried "white collar" v. vs.
hourly: "blue collar" workers
- all are proletarians -- "wage laborers":
- "white color" salaried
- count as "management" for
contract and strike breaking purposes
- psychologically: encouraged
to identify with the bourgeois and often aspire "rise from the
masses" to become bourgeois.
- "I don't want to rise
from the masses," said Eugene Debs, "I want to rise with the masses."
- That's the
attitude! The other is
- Reactionary: A political position that
maintains a conservative response to change,
including threats to social institutions and technological advances.
Reaction is the reciprocal action to revolutionary movement. (http://www.marxists.org/glossary/terms/r/e.htm)
dir. Gillo Pontecorvo
- A slight Moroccan reveals someone's hiding place under torture
- They make this poor man put on a French military uniform and lead
them to the hiding place.
- He leads them to a tile wall behind a bed in a room in a building
is the man they seek. He is hiding there with others. A
woman and a child. He has one more chance to surrender.
It's useless to resist they say. The Organization has been
- Opening shot: the European Quarters and the Casbah (the Arab ghetto)
- From the National
Liberation Front (FLN) ... Communique
#1: Declaring their aim of overthrowing the French Colonial
Adminstration and achieving Algerian independence.
- People of Algeria: Our revolt is against colonialism. Our
goal: restore independence to the Algerian State within the framework
of Islamic principles, with respect for the basic freedoms
regardless of race or religion. In order to limit the loss
human life, we propose to the French an honorable discussion on our
people's right to self-determination. It is your duty to restore
your country's independence. Her victory will be yours.
Forward, Brothers. Unite. The National Liberation Front
calls you to battle.
- Omar Ali, alias
- working a street hustle, flees the police, accosted by
Frenchman, then apprehended
- laborer, brick-layer, boxer
- presently unemployed
- draft dodger
- police record
- 1942, Algiers: looting:
1 yr. in reformatory
- 1944, Oran: inciting to
riot: 2 yrs. reformatory
- 1949, Algiers: assaulting
a police officer on duty; 8 mo.
- In Prison:
- sees a man executed -- guillotined -- in the prison yard
- radicalized by this & recruited by the Organization
- Back outside: contacted by the Organization & given a
task: kill a policeman
- the gun he's given is empty
- he punches out the gendarme and runs
- "You betrayed me, you bitch!"
- She takes him to her leader: Jaffar
- he explains why he had to be so tested
- Ali is now a trusted member of the Organization
- explains why the Organization is not yet ready to take action
- FLN Communique No. 24: FLN declares itself as provisional
underground government responsivle for the "civil life" of the Algerian
- People of Algeria, the Colonial Administration is responsible
not only for impoverishing our people, but also for corrupting and
degrading our brothers and sisters, who have lost their sense of
dignity. The FLN is leading a campaign to eradicate this scourge,
and requests the population's help and cooperation. This is the
first step towards independence. As of today, the FLN assumed
responsibility for the physical and moral well-being of the Algerian
people and has therefore decided to ban the sale and use of all drugs
and alcoholic beverages and to ban prostitution and procuring.
Offenders will be punished. Repeat offenders will be sentenced to
- A wino harrassed.
- The Wedding Ceremony
liscensed by the FLN
- June 20: FLN
institutes campaign of low-level terrorism: Police
patrols are attacked. Several police
officers are slain. Violent street scrimishes erupt.
- The Governor General decrees:
The Casbah is sealed off with
access points at which
non-Europeans entering the European quarters are checked and searched.
Guns are smuggled out and the killing of police continues.
French [OAS-like] retaliation: a
appartment building in the Casbah is bombed
where one of the suspects in the attacks lives is bombed, apparently
with police collusion.
Jaffar calls a hault to the street demonstration that Ali is
leading. Jaffar promises, "The FLN will avenge you."
terrorist bombings in the french quarter
- Purchase of medication for the treatment of gunshot wounds must
be authorized by the prefecture.
- Health care institutions must keep the police informed of all
wounded patients admitted for treatment.
Januray 10, 1957: Enter the
- of a resteraunt/bar
- of a soda shop: young-people's dance club
- the offices of Air France
- Colonel Philippe Mathieu (a composite)
- The problem involes
- The enemy
How to destroy him: interrogation
- could be anyone, they blend in [like "fish in the sea" Mao Tse Tung]
plan of organization -- the FLN don't even know
who's one of them outside their own cell
Jan. 28: UN Agrees to take up the
- But interrogation is a method only when
it guarantees a reply
- To succumb to humane
considerations only leads to hopeless chaos (he gestures a graph
showing a rising line of terrorist attacks)
- I'm sure our units will
understand and act accordingly
Conference (Day 4)
Proclaims an 8 Day General Strike
- MATHIEU: "Like rabbits in a cage.
Just as I'd hoped."
- Paratroopers use the strike as a pretext
to interrogate strikers.
- FLN head honcho Ben M'Hidi is in Algiers
directing the strike
- Disadvantage of the strike: if offers an
openning for the French: strikers self-identify as FLN sympathizers
- Necessity of the strike: "neither
wars nor revolutions are accomplished by 'incidents'."
is useful only as a start.
- But then
the people themselves must act.
- That's why we had to have
- To mobilize the people;
- count them ...
- assess our strength.
- ALI: And prove it to the UN
- BEN M'HIDI: It's
difficult to start a revolution ... more difficult to sustain it ...
and still more difficult to win it. But it's later, when we've
won ... that the real difficulties will begin.
- Paratroopers round up suspects for
Mathieu's Methods Starting to Succeed
- REPORTER: The strike seems to have achieved its objective.
- MATHIEU: It's missed its goal.
- REPORTER: Insurrection?
- MATHIEU: Insurrection.
- REPORTER: What would an armed insurrection mean at this time.
- MATHIEU: What it always means. It's an inevitable step in a
revolutionary war. From terrorism to armed insurrection.
From guerrilla war to real war.
- REPORTER: Dien-Bien-Phu
- MATHIEU: Exactly. But in Indo-China they won.
- REPORTER: And here?
- MATHIEU: That depends on you.
- REPORTER: On us?
Do you intend to draft us?
- MATHIEU: Just write and write well. Soldiers aren't lacking.
- REPORTER: What is?
- MATHIEU: Political will. Sometimes it's present ...
sometimes it's not sufficient. What's Paris saying?
- REPORTER: Just another article by Sartre.
- MATHIEU: Why are the liberals always on the other side?
- REPORTER: Don't you like Sartre.
- MATHIEU: I like him less as an enemy.
The U.N. dithers
- Torture is extracting information
- Working their way up the pyramid
Mathieu: Pressing On After the Strike
- The U.N. general assembly not having obtained a majority vote on
the resolutions presented has adopted a resolution ruling out direct
intervention in Algeria.
- But it expresses its hope that in the spirit of cooperaton there
will be found a peaceful, democratic and just solution that conforms to
the principles of the U.N. Charter.
- We must ... pursue our course here relentlessly.
- The tapeworm analogy: FLN will regenerate if we don't cut off
head (the leaders)
- S. Murad
- Ali le Pointe
- HELICOPTER BORNE LOUDSPEAKER: People of the Casbah, the F.L.N.
has lost the battle. Rise against a dying authority.
- The organization is crumbling
- Jaffar says "reorganize": Ali and others urge acton.
- Attack at the racetrak.
March 4 1957
- Ben M'Hidi in custody: press conference
- REPORTER: Isn't it cowardly to use your
women's baskets to carry bombs that have killed so many innocent people?
- BEN M'HIDI: And you? Is it less
cowardly to drop your napalm on defenseless villages, killing thousands
more? With planes, it would have been easier for us. Let us
have your bombers and you can have our women's baskets.
- REPORTER: Does the F.L.N. have any chance
of defeating the French Army?
- BEN M'HIDI: The F.L.N. has a much better
chance of beating the French Army than the Army of changing history.
- Ben M'Hidi's
"Suicide": Mathieu's Press Conference
- REPORTER: The Resident Minister's
spokesman said that Ben M'Hidi hanged himself in his cell
with a rope made by tearing up his shirt which he tied to the bars on
the window, Because the prisoner said he would escape at the
first opportunity it was thought advisable to keep him bound head and
foot. Colonel, do you believe it possible that under such
circumstances a man is able to tear up his shirt, make a rope, and tie
it to the bars in order to hang himself?
- MATHIEU: You better ask the
spokesman. I didn't make those statements. As for me ... I
had the chance to appreciate Ben
M'Hidi's moral strength ... his courage and the faith the man had in
his ideals. Even recognizing the danger he represented ... I must
pay tribute to his memory.
- REPORTER: There is talk not only of the
paratrooper's success ... but of the methods they're alleged to be
using. Could you make a statement on this?
- MATHIEU: The success you refer to is a
result of these methods.
- REPORTER: [Let's be precise. Aren't
we talking about torture?]
- MATHIEU: Then let me be precise.
The word "torture" doesn't appear in our orders. Questioning is
the only valid method in a police operation against a clandestine
- MATTHIEU: The F.L.N. wants to throw
us out of Algeria. We want to stay. I believe that, despite
slight differenes, you all agree we must
stay. ... We are soldiers. Our duty is to win. Since
we are being precise, now I will ask you a question. Should
France remain in Algeria? If your answer is still yes ... you
must accept all the necesary consequences.
- The torture continues: dunkiing,
blowtorch, trussing, electric shock
- Drive by machine gun run.
- August 26, 1957: Ramel surrounded
& killed by the bomb in the basket
- September 24: 1957:
- Ali organizing a "children's crusade"
- Ali & crusaders blown up.
December 11, 1960
- Unrest returns to Algiers in the form of massive street
- Flying their cresent and star flags.
- French use force.
December 21, 1960: Last day of demonstrations
- Still going strong.
- Two more years of fighting.
- July 2, 1962: Independence
Imperialism, the Highest Stage of
by V. I. Lenin
Abstract (LH): Imperialism,
the present stage of capitalism, featuring monopoly ownership and
globalization, is capitalism's highest stage, and its last. In
this stage, the global economy becomes organized -- effectively planned
and controlled -- by monopolistic finance capital. This
transition to planned economic development and production is inevitable
but inconsistent with continuation of capitalism for two reasons.
Firstly, monopoly contradicts the free competitive process at the
heart of capitalism. Secondly, since the global economy fostered
by capitalism serves the interest of global capital, not the masses,
uneven development and a semi-starvation level of existence of the
masses are inevitable conditions of this means of production.
Uneven development allows the proletariat of the economically dominant
nations to be bribed from the exorbitant profits culled from
exploitation of workers in poorer nations; it also leads inevitably to
wars for the control of economic spheres of influence among the
dominant nations. Opportunism among bought-off workers in the
dominant nations seriously, but only temporarily, delays the inevitable
transition to communist forms of organization and control which must,
finally, organize world economic production and distribution for the
benefit of everyone everywhere.
- But if capitalism did these
things [organized world economic production and distribution for the
benefit of all] it would not be capitalism; for both uneven development
semi-starvation level of existence of the masses are fundamental and
inevitable conditions and constitute premises of this mode of
production. (ch.4) [The crucial issue between Leninists and
global free trade advocates
- <>globalized "free trade"
advocates: the rising economic tides
unleashed by globalization will lift all boats.:>
- Lenin: the
rising economic tides unleashed by globalization will only
increase the gap between haves and have-not and increasing oppression
of the later by the former.
- Since we are speaking of colonial policy in the epoch of
imperialism, it must be observed that finance capital and its foreign
policy, which is the struggle of the great powers for the economic and
political division of the world, give rise to a number of transitional
forms of state dependence. Not only are the two main groups of
countries, those owning colonies, and the colonies themselves, but also
the diverse forms of dependent countries which, politically, are
formally independent, but in fact, are enmeshed in the net of financial
and diplomatic dependence, typical of this epoch. We have already
referred to one form of dependence — the semi-colony. An
another is provided by Argentina. (ch. 6)
- Kautsky's utterly meaningless talk about
ultra-imperialism encourages, among other things, that profoundly
mistaken idea which only brings grist to the mill of the apologists of
imperialism, i.e., that the rule of finance capital lessens the
unevenness and contradictions inherent in the world economy, whereas in
reality it increases them. (Lenin, ch. 7)
- Is not American and other
finance capital ... now
engaged in redividing the world on the basis of a new
relation of forces that is being changed by methods anything but
- We have foreshadowed the possibility of even a larger
alliance of Western states, a European federation of great powers
which, so far from forwarding the cause of world civilisation, might
introduce the gigantic peril of a Western parasitism, a group of
advanced industrial nations, whose upper classes drew vast tribute from
Asia and Africa, with which they supported great tame masses of
retainers, no longer engaged in the staple industries of agriculture
and manufacture, but kept in the performance of personal or minor
industrial services under the control of a new financial aristocracy.
- Imperialism has the tendency to
create privileged sections
the workers, and to detach them from the broad masses of the
proletariat. (ch. 8)
- Imperialism, which
means the partitioning of the world, and
the exploitation of other countries besides China, which means high
monopoly profits for a handful of very rich countries, makes it
economically possible to bribe the upper strata of the proletariat, and
thereby fosters, gives shape to, and strengthens opportunism.
- The export of capital, one of the most essential economic
bases of imperialism, still more completely isolates the rentiers from
production and sets the seal of parasitism on the whole country that
lives by exploiting the labour of several overseas countries and
colonies. (ch. 8)
- on October 7, 1858, Engels wrote to Marx:
"The English proletariat is actually becoming more and more bourgeois,
so that this most bourgeois of all nations is apparently aiming
ultimately at the possession of a bourgeois aristocracy and a bourgeois
proletariat alongside the bourgeoisie. (ch. 8)
- the specific political
features of imperialism
are reaction everywhere and increased national oppression due to the
oppression of the financial oligarchy and the elimination of free
competition (ch. 9)
- Imperialism is the epoch of finance capital and of
monopolies, which introduce everywhere the striving for domination, not
for freedom. (ch. 9)
rightly notes the connection between imperialism and the
intensification of national oppression. "In the newly opened-up
countries," he writes, "the capital imported into them intensifies
antagonisms and excites against the intruders the constantly growing
resistance of the peoples who are awakening to national consciousness;
this resistance can easily develop into dangerous measures against
foreign capital. The old social relations become completely
revolutionised, the age-long agrarian isolation of 'nations without
history' is destroyed and they are drawn into the capitalist whirlpool.
Capitalism itself gradually provides the subjugated with the means and
resources for their emancipation and they set out to achieve the goal
which once seemed highest to the European nations: the creation of a
united national state as a means to economic and cultural freedom. This
movement for national independence threatens European capital in its
most valuable and most promising fields of exploitation, and European
capital can maintain its domination only by continually increasing its
military forces." (ch.9: emphasis LH's)
- Monopolies, oligarchy, the striving for domination and not
freedom, the exploitation of an increasing number of small or weak
nations by a handful of the richest or most powerful nations — all
these have given birth to those distinctive characteristics of
imperialism which compel us to define it as parasitic or decaying
- The receipt of high monopoly profits by the capitalists in
the numerous branches of industry, in one of the numerous countries,
etc., makes it economically possible for them to bribe certain sections
of the workers, and for a time a fairly considerable minority of them,
and win them to the side of the bourgeoisie of a given industry or
given nation against all the others. (ch.10)
- the fight against imperialism
is a sham
and humbug unless it is inseparably bound up with the fight against
- it becomes
evident that we have socialisation of production, and not mere
"interlocking", that private economic and private property relations
constitute a shell which no longer fits its contents, a shell which
must inevitably decay if its removal is artificially delayed, a shell
which may remain in a state of decay for a fairly long period (if, at
the worst, the cure of the opportunist abscess is protracted), but
which will inevitably be removed. (ch.10)
NeoColonial & The Global Economy
- Neocolonialism is the stage of development of capitalism
in which colonies are exploited by making them economically dependent
on the imperialist power. Armed force is not used to impose a colonial
government nor to
exclude other imperial powers, though imperialist violence is relied
upon to secure the conditions of domination. (Kwame Nkrumah, Neo-Colonialism, the Last Stage of
- The first recorded use of the term was in the New
in January 1961. Che Guevara used the term in a 1962 speech to the
Union of Young Communists, published under the name ‘To be a Young
Life & Debt
director: Stephanie Black
- The issue is to make globalization
work for the benefit of
all. There will not be a good future for the rich, if there is no
prospect of a better furture for the pure ... poor. (Horst
Kohler: Director, International Monetary Fund (IMF)) [Can
it? What Lenin denies as against various liberal economists &
- "If thou lend money to any
of my people that is poor by thee,
thou shalt not be a usurer to him, neither shalt thou lay upon him
usury. If thou at all, thou shalt deliver it unto him, by that
the sun goest down." [Jah say! Ex. 22: 25]
- To understand the International Monetary Fund it is best to go
back to history. We come to 1944. The war is coming nearer
to an end. The allied were determined not to have the war end and
end up in the mess of the 1930s. The key institution set up was
the International Monetary Fund and the purpose of the fund is to have
a bank they could turn to, for short term borrowing, to serve the short
term trading interests of the winners of the war. At the same
time the set up the World Bank to provide capital for the rebuilding of
Europe. You have to remember, what we now know as the Third World
didn't exist. There were a few major powers, each of which had a
large empire. We had no voice, we had no presence, we just were
part of somebody else's power structure. You ask, "Whose
interest?" I ask the question, "Who set it up?" (Michael Manley:
Former Jamaican Prime Minister)
- Jamaica's independence: 1962
- Michael Manley & Stanley Fisher: Deputy Dirctory IMF: Point
- MM: Countries like Jamaica found that when they became
free, they soon were in every kind of financial problem. Because
they didn't have the economic strength to ... shall we say, make it in
on their own.. They needed time to build economies that could,
then, make it in the world.
- SF: When the private banks won't lend to you, then you've got
to do something if you're leader of a country. And, typically,
what you've got to do is to cut back your spending in some way, and try
and get more money so that the impact of those cutbacks are not as
severe as they otherwise would be. And it's at that point that
you generally come to the IMF.
- SF: And we would say, yup. That's true. We
understand the crisis you're in. And we need to fix the
underlying reasons for that crisis. And, so here is what we think
- SF: Then we reach agreement on the set of measures, on the
budget, on the exchange rate, on monetary policy, on interest rates, on
banks, on maybe privatization, and say, yup, we think this could solve
- MM: And you say to them, "If I do it that way, in two years,
I'm going to be in a bind all over again, because that can't solve my
problems." And they say, "Not our problem."
- The economy today is much
more under the control of foreigners,
not necessarily through direct ownership, but through the mechanism of
debt. In the 1970s we owed 700 millian dollars. ...
Nowadays we owe seven billion dollars. (Dr. Michael Witter, Professor
of Economics, University of West Indies)
- When you sit down to eat your delicious meal, it's probably
better you don't know, that everything in it came on a ship from Miami.
- IMF policies have undermined native agriculture because imports
are so cheap. ... "They are fattening a few people as the expense
of a whole culture. ... Can a machete compete with a machine?" (the
- Anything that led to the more self-reliant use of our resources
was strongly discouraged due to this emerging ideology of
- The end of day result will mean that you have no national food
security, and that when milk powder finds its real cost, when there are
no subsidies in the first world, it will be more expensive than the
milk we produced. What will we do in the meanwhile? We'll
go out of business. (milk man)
- New World Economic Order: No national trade barriers
- No tariffs or subsidies
- Free zones
- law and union free
- "It's like you're working under slavery"
- You know these companies are very aggressive to make profits,
and they're accountable to their shareholders. Their in a
position to move the production to areas that are cheaper for them.
- The government is not paying fitty
two cents out of what it collects for interest payments. That
leaves forty eight cents for everything else. (Witter)
- MM: But private capital is not going to come and help you with
your infrastructure, to help you develop an adequate educational
system, to help you develop a good health system. Private capital
is not going to come and take a chance on developing your agriculture,
so that you can really do a lot of the feediing of yourself. It
is, understandably only interested in how can it make a quick safe
buck, and no quarrel. What else would it be interested?
- The question of where is the power in the IMF? First, the
votes of each country are in proportion, roughly, to its size in the
world economy. ... So in that sense the U.S. is by
far the biggest single voice.
[In fact the US has an effective veto with 18% when 80% is needed to do
- MM: Look at every IMF country today, and tell me which has a
really good hospital service, which has a good educational
system. Which has anything? All of them are trapped in that
old colonial crisis of financing.
- [The IMF and World Bank] were not created by an international
body that included the interests of developing countries. (MM)
- Why do we have today, 1.3 billion
people in the world living with less that one dolllar a day.
- Remember slavery was that the master would get the better part
and the slave would get the refused. (Rasta guy on why there sell
chicken backs down at the mkt.).
- MM: [You may come through but} The country that comes out
is nothing like the country it could have been.
- Eventually the masters left, in a
kind of way. Eventually the slaves were free, in a kind of