What is happening in Ukraine, in Palestine, in Syria, in Iraq... imposes to repeat the basic teaching of dialectical materialism about the nature of countries in the world.
According dialectical materialism, the world is divided in two kind of countries. The first category consists in the capitalist countries, which became imperialist. In those countries, the main aspect is the contradiction between proletariat and bourgeoisie, the task is the socialist revolution. This is not the case elsewhere: in the process of submitting the other kind of countries, those countries have strengthen feudalism, in particular in producing a strict organization of big landowners.
This destroyed the traditional local production and its simple reproduction, giving birth to mass emigration, both to the cities and the imperialist countries. Another aspect was the organization of a bureaucratic capitalist bourgeoisie, submitted to imperialism. The consequence is that in those countries, the first stage of the revolution is democratic, abolishing feudalism and destroying the imperialist domination, and the revolution becomes then, uninterrupted, a socialist revolution, knowing many cultural revolutions.
Of course, the law of contradiction is valid here for each kind of category. The imperialist countries divided themselves in traditional imperialist countries and superpowers, with the Soviet social-imperialism and the United States of America. The semi-colonial semi-feudal countries divided themselves in countries of a traditional kind and semi-colonial semi-feudal expansionist powers. Here, we find very important works about it written in Afghanistan by Akram Yari, in Bangladesh by Siraj Sikder, in Turkey by Ibrahim Kaypakkaya.
This is the basic teaching of dialectical materialism. And of course, the counter-revolution reacts to it with many ideologies, also sometimes pretending to be “revolutionary”. Despite all the variants, all those ideologies consider of course that there are no semi-colonial semi-feudal countries. Trotskyism spreads, like Hoxhaism and others ideologies, the conception that all the countries in the world are capitalist. It means that the socialist revolution would be necessary everywhere, and not one side democratic revolutions, on the other side socialist revolutions.
The consequence is here easy to understand: this counter-revolutionary conception negates the semi-feudal aspect in the oppressed countries. In doing this, it helps to maintain those countries in a backward situation. Even if there are “modernizations”, even if there are modern cities, feudalism is deeply rooted.
For example, we can see how the caste system is still very strong in India's modern cities. Religious superstition is prevalent in the modern cities of the oil gulf states. The factories of Bangladesh are marked by classical feudal authoritarianism, etc.
Trotskyism and others ideologies try so to prevent the democratic revolution, in negating the feudal aspect, in two ways. The first way is the traditional negation of any democratic struggle as reformist, as non-socialist and so as counter-revolutionary. This is for example the position in France of “Lutte ouvrière”, rejecting the principle of national liberation.
The other position is to consider all the feudal or bourgeois bureaucratic movements as bourgeois anti-imperialism. This is the position carried historically by the “United Secretariat of the Fourth International”, where the French “Ligue Communiste Révolutionnaire” played an important role. This position brings confusion and disorientation, helping the feudal forces and bureaucratic bourgeois factions.
When we look at Palestine, we can see the very counter-revolutionary role played by the Hamas against the national liberation and the democratic revolution. In the Gaza stripe, the Hamas worked against any democratic tendency. It spread religious superstitions, it negated the national liberation in favour of an Islamic “reawakening”, etc. All this corresponds to the feudal ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood.
When we look at Iraq, we can see how the “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant“ was produced by feudal forces, and the same happened in Afghanistan with the Taliban factions. In Syria, we can see how the “opposition” to the Syrian fascist state consists in bureaucratic capitalists linked to some imperialist forces (like France, the USA) and feudal forces. In Ukraine, it is also very clear that the struggle is between bureaucratic capitalist factions – one pro-US and European Union, the other pro-Russia.
In fact, in the oppressed countries, unless there is as people's war, the masses are always caught between feudal or bureaucratic capitalist factions, being submitted to an imperialist force in concurrency against other. Any other conception is a negation of the necessity of the democratic revolution. As feudalism is the basis permitting the constitution of a bureaucratic capitalist faction, how can there be any progress without an offensive against feudalism?
As Ibrahim Kaypakkaya expressed it:
“'The contradiction' playing in semi-colonial semi-feudal countries the leading and decisive role on the contradiction between imperialism and the country in question is the contradiction between feudalism and the popular masses.
Imperialism resumes its existence and domination in these countries by sustaining feudalism in the political and ideological fields, by strengthening it and retarding the winding up of feudal ownership and feudal relations.”
(quoted in The relationship between semi-colonialism and semi-feudalism / CPMLM [Bangladesh] - CPMLM [France])
When feudalism is supported by imperialism and semi-colonial semi-feudal expansionist powers, then it is strong and wins the masses through romanticism. This is true in the oppressed countries, but also in sectors of the masses in the imperialist countries. And trotskyism helps the feudal ideology in presenting it as a “resistance”, as progressive.
This is very clear with the demonstrations in western Europe since the new Zionist aggression in Gaza, demonstrations marked by antisemitic events in France, Germany, Belgium, Austria, etc. These demonstrations were notably carried by a collusion of Islamist forces – with the Muslim Brotherhood in particular in the Turkish community – and Trotskyism.
The masses must be aware of this feudal aspect of the reality of the world, and the role of Trotskyism in supporting it.
Marxist Leninist Maoist Communist Party [France]