Italy, february 2003

The false myth of the european union's opposition to war

War began with private property and social classes, and it is the supreme form of struggle used to solve clashes among social classes, nations, states, political groups, when these clashes have reached a certain development.
"Strategic problems of the revolutionary war in China"
(December 1936)
Mao Tse-Tung

From this statement we have to start, not for the author, but because of its topical interest, to repeat that the war has already begun. The bombing on Iraq is going to be only a stage of this war, that is the spin-off on the Iraqi people of the interest of USA and G.B., which represent a part a of the imperialistic middle class who wants to underline its supremacy on other factions.
What we are seeing today is not an imperial state ruled by one only power representing a middle class faction (the United States one), but it is the increasing discrepancy among middle class itself. These discrepancies create contrast among blocks, USA-U.E.-CHINA-RUSSIA, and they also hit their steadiness. Even inside the NATO, that is the clearing house for imperialist factions' interests, discrepancies are going to increase surely.
This is not something new as regards what we have affirmed before, but certainly it is very new as regards the need to make an analysis about the revolutionary perspective. It is also very important to understand what opportunist or reformist tendencies could stop an autonomous theory and practice by a great part of the antiwar movement.
It will be very important not to lose the imperialist characterization of Europe, and the aim for what it was born and it developed. The present clash among some European middle class factions (those representing the funding and "strong" group of the European imperialist block) and USA's middle class about the war, even inside the NATO, represents the clash between interests and different abilities of intervention among present subjects; and we think that this clash will have not to be a political reference in the struggle against imperialism and war.
We have always spoke about a different military capacity between E.U. and USA, and about a consequent difference on the ground to choose to grant their own interest; and this is the real ground on which we have to put the present clash between E.U. and USA...

"...In fact in a capitalistic regime it is not possible to think about another basis for the sharing out of spheres of influence, of colonies, etc..., which is not the valuation of participants' power, of their general economic, financial and military power. But power relationships change, in participants, differently because in a capitalistic regime it is not possible an equal development for every enterprise, trust, industry, country, etc..."
("Imperialism, the supreme stage of capitalism"- Lenin)

Many European analysts think that Iraq represents the whole of problems yet existing between USA and the E.U. as regards trade and its regulations, and international policy.
Many times those divisions have shown even inside the NATO, in particular because of the American approach to the expansion process towards those countries which are going to be called to be part of the European Union. Let's think to what has happened because of Poland's choose to modernize its aerial military force with USA technology: this act has been interpreted, especially by France, as a change towards Europe, in function of American interests.
Many think that the difficulty of some European governments to support the Anglo-American policy about the war to Iraq, has increased when The E.U. has had to define procedures for the enlargement to ten eastern countries.
In previous issues we have underlined discrepancies which develop inside the NATO, observing how much USA's interest, towards NATO's widening to ex-soviet countries or the widening of partnership agreements, was directed to those countries which could be part of the natural sphere of influence of the E.U. It's clear that this strategy is internal to the American will to grant itself a strong political-military sphere of influence inside Europe itself.
Present threats towards Germany by USA to move its bases in the Eastern Europe ( that is towards those countries which have become members of the NATO a short time ago) don't develop only inside the clash about the "Iraqi crisis". In the present situation there are suitable conditions to put into practice those threats, because they were yet provided inside the American strategy of expansion towards East.
By a middle class point of view , the reasons of subalternity to face that phase, have to be searched in the difficulty by E.U. to have a real European policy about the present international moment.
Therefore, they last choices imposed by some interest or by the opportunity for single countries to impose themselves on the international ground; or even imposed by internal exigency.
On this ground, the antiwar movement has got to pay attention not to be crushed, making middle class' interest, helping in the progress of Europe's unity. Inside the European pole, the revolutionary perspective cannot develop on the ground of steadiness.
Some analysts think that Hungary, Czecha Republic, and Poland, have a complex position about the E.U. They state that these countries think that becoming members of the E.U. they could lose their own sovereignty coming back to a period similar to the soviet one. They tend to prefer a "far master" able to grant their safety, than a "near master" which could impose his model and ties.
It cannot be underestimated the fact that these countries could use the present clash between USA and E.U. to negotiate, at their own favour, economical and financial terms requested to become E.U.' s members.
France represents a leader into the clash with USA and GB. Besides threatening the USA to put a veto on the attack against Iraq, since October it has shown the will to make deep changes into the E.U./USA relationship.
Then , to completely understand why the clash between USA and E.U. is increasing, it has not to be underestimated the refusal by the USA to involve the allies into the attack to Afghanistan. Despite it was invoked the art. 5 of the Atlantic Treaty, the choice not to involve the allies has been seen as the signal of the will to utilize the empire of the September 11th , to determine USA' s superiority on the international ground and in particular in the Arab and Asiatic area.
In February France, during a meeting with Great Britain, has announced a summit in Paris, with the President of Zimbabwe, Mr. Mugabe. The meeting of February was organized to soften the situation after France, in October, had stopped the meeting with Mr. Blair to define reforms of the European agricultural policy. But the result has been a worse relationship
with G.B., because of its disagree for the expropriation of lands and farms to white proprietors.
France, traditionally not inclined to submit to American interests (let's think about the crisis of the Suez Canal and the exit from the NATO since 1966 until 1995), doesn't believe in the necessity of an European superpower, but at the same time it thinks to be necessary the creation of a greatest unity of Europe to break the submission to American interests. Despite the agreement of ST. Malo in 1998, where it was possible to see an approach to Europe by G.B., France has always thought G.B. to be an unreliable ally because too much linked to American interests. G.B., as for it, always has seen negatively the creation of Europe and its political-military structure, as an alternative to the NATO, because this could determine a detachment from USA, with a consequent loss of power by G.B. itself.
The France-Germany alliance is representing, for France itself, an instrument for the building of a strong group to determine the passage to an European decision system based on majority, and not on the unanimity of member countries, without losing its own autonomy; in particular to keep foreign interests (for instance allowing an unilateral intervention as it did in Ivory Coast).
Turkey has always represented one of the greatest discrepancies between USA and E.U. , and if it is not again a member of the E.U. (with which it has trade agreements like member countries) the reason has not to be searched into problems as the rights of minority groups or the lack of democracy. Instead it has to be explained with Turkey's role of loyal partner and "outpost" of the USA. Its great military capacity , the second military force of the NATO, surely could determine a lack of balance into the power hierarchy of Europe itself, in way to favour the USA's ally.
If the Copenhagen summit has defined some steps regarding the entry of 10 countries within 2004, it has not solved the problem of Turkey's entry.
Clearly this situation has influence on the choice of some European countries not to submit to the American imposition to give Turkey military support as preventive form to grant its safety in case of the attack to Iraq. This seems not to be a safety exigency, but only a forcing by the USA towards the E.U. to strengthen Turkey's role, using the instrument through which it can have a greatest force, that is the NATO.
The most intolerant position about Turkey's entry belongs to the French minister which, in a statement during the Copenhagen summit, says that "Turkey is neither for culture nor for geographical position European, and its entry could represent the end for E.U.' s itself".
During a meeting which took place in Washington in December, sponsored by the Institute of strategic and international studies, it was expressed an opposite hypothesis according which Turkey's entry in the E.U. represents a basic element to break the schizophrenic process which is characterizing the European expansion.
In December, during a visit in Istanbul, the American Defence Secretary, Mr. Wolfowitz, stated that the cooperation between USA and Turkey represents the keystone for safety and steadiness in the area, confirming a full support to Turkey's entry.
During one of many interviews given during last months, Bush stated that he's going to do everything to support Turkey's entry into the E.U., describing it and its bases disposability to disarm Iraq, one of basic elements for steadiness and prosperity of the area; and he also confirmed his support to Turkish economy, perpetually hit by financial crisis.
The Turkish government asked the USA president to put pressure on European leaders after the French-German proposal of Turkey's entry not before 2005; a proposal clearly refused by the Turkish government.
While Great Britain and Italy, among the greatest supporters of USA policy and the position of an Europe dependent from the American ally, are asking for Turkey's entry before 2004.
What said, with reference to Turkey's role in function of USA interest, is simply synthesized by what has been written by the Belgian newspaper LE SOIR: "Let's applaud U.E.' s courageous resistance towards USA' s imposition about Turkey's entry".
Into an article on "LE FIGARO", with regard to American pressures, we can read that "Bush called Chirac putting pressure for Turkey's entry in the E.U.. But Chirac has not been the only one to be called; many times other presidents have been pressed...Always Turkey's adhesion has been matter of great importance for the USA because of its friendship with them. It would be as Europeans called Bush to put pressure for the opening of Mexico's borders, and they asked for the return of Mexican areas previously annexed".
Also we have not to forget that Turkey has got agreements with Israel for military production, and their unity has allowed the furniture of electronic systems and airplanes to some new entered countries and NATO partners, able to be future European members.
Instead, in January E.U.' s countries met to implement their efforts to define a strategic development study for an European arms industry, clearly opposed to the USA's technological-military supremacy. The not-declared aim is having their own instruments for penetration and rule, side by side with the ten years old project for an European army.
But, as we are going to face even in future issues, surely the Turkish problem is going to be linked to the clash in the Mediterranean area. Many analysts think that after Saddam's rule, there is going to be a period during which the Mediterranean problem will be fundamental, in particular for the expanded Mediterranean area, which is field of the battle between USA and E.U. , everyone to impose its supremacy.

"Inter-imperialistic or ultra-imperialistic alliances represent a pause among wars, in every form they are, if they are an imperialistic coalition against another, or they are a general league among all imperialistic powers. Peace alliances prepare wars and they originate from these"
("Imperialism, the supreme stage of capitalism"-Lenin)

Some European countries' choice to oppose the war against Iraq represents a point of reference for many opportunist sectors of the antiwar movement, granting to keep (around a perspective belonging to the good face imperialism), the potential of breakdown which could develop into the antiwar movement itself.
Into many meetings about war there is a clear tendency (which makes a tactical valuation of struggle to American imperialism) to see as positive the development of a multi-centred world, which is yet existing as determined by the clash among factions of the middle class, a clash caused by crisis' worsening.
In this moment this kind of debate can make confusion about the possibility of intervention into dynamics of the clash among imperialistic countries, seeing them as possible claim of the antiwar movement.
They could identify a government of over national unity, the European one, to whom unite to oppose the war; but it would be a government linked to the interest of a middle class faction.
The risk is that the vision of a strong Europe independent from American interests, could impose into the Left itself and into the opposition to war, as element of opposition to the war.
This hypothesis has got two destructive elements for a proletarian perspective.
On one side they exclude the essence of Europe and its building. Europe was born and develops for the exigency to create a union of imperialistic countries inside a global competition, in way to create a subject antagonist to other middle class factions. The last years acceleration of the attempt to be provided of an unitary political/military instrument, has got this role. The building of the European Army of the middle class, represents for us an element of opposition and struggle we cannot lose. So we cannot think to rely on that chance. Something better it would be to create in Europe a front against war, a proletarian and antagonist front, able to oblige European governments to conform themselves to popular pressures, on which develop an anti capitalist and anti imperialist perspective (not dividing those sides).
On the other side that hypothesis could create all the prerogatives for a repressive operation against wide sectors which are able to unite the struggle against exploitation inside Europe itself to the struggle against the war: they put the war inside a situation of crisis of capitalism, with its imperialistic stage, standing war, exploitation of workers in the centre as in the periphery, criticizing the system itself.
During last two years European governments yet made a repressive choice, in the name of the struggle against terrorism, and it gave results in many situations.
The present political clash between USA and E.U. is not originated by the opposition to war, structural element of the imperialistic stage, but by the will to give a new definition of their relationships. And if war is the product of the crisis and imperialistic discrepancies the crisis produces, we must interpret what's happening around the war, using these elements to identify correctly the action field for proletariat and its revolutionary vanguards, without losing their own autonomy towards the bourgeois and opportunist sector.
In this situation the antiwar movement will have to find its strategy, and the most aware subjects and groups will have the task to show the path to develop their own autonomy beyond the identification of American imperialism as the enemy to fight. What will develop against the increasing of a stronger imperialistic block in Europe, maybe will be able to determine a step ahead towards a world without wars. This will be possible when the concept of peace will be substituted by the longing for a general liberation from a system which can only generate war, repression and exploitation, not facing consequences but causes of the war itself.