by Grover Furr
[Originally published in The Montclarion, student newspaper of Montclair State College (now University), Thursday, March 6, 1980, page 8]
US rulers would like us to believe that they are "not as bad" as the Soviet bosses. This is a lie. We must reject their call for "national unity" against the USSR.
Concerning human rights, American rulers have outdone their Soviet counterparts in bloody tyranny. The US props up more fascist dictatorships than do Soviet rulers. In these US satellites -- South Korea, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, El Salvador, Taiwan, to name only a few -- unions are outlawed, wages held to a low minimum, and protests repressed by torture, prison, and death. Soviet-engineered repression had been as bad but not as widespread, since Soviet bosses have controlled fewer client states. They are working hard to catch up.
Nor do anti-Semitic Soviet bosses yet dare support racism as openly as do their American peers. for over a decade, US business, governmental, media, and educational elites have openly pushed "Jensenism," the Nazi doctrine of racial inferiority. TV news and politicians like Senators Byrd and Tower openly call for violence against Iranians in the US. Dissidents are repressed and murdered in America (e.g. the Black Panthers); the US government collaborates with the Ku Klux Klan in racist violence and engages in overthrows, plots and assassinations of foreign leaders such as Mossadegh (Iran), Castro (Cuba), and Allende (Chile).
Hundreds of dissident minorities have been shot down in rebellions against oppression, like the urban "riots" of the '60s, while each year dozens of unarmed minority workers are murdered by police in our city streets.
American rulers tell us, "The Soviets threaten your oil!" However, it was the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), led by "our friends" (meaning: US rulers' friends), the fascist butchers of Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Venezuela, etc., which raised oil prices 400% in seven years, not the USSR. The oil price rise of '73 was started by "our friend", the Shah of Iran, who equaled Hitler in brutality toward his own people. American companies control OPEC oil. Last October, US oil companies reported a 150% increase in profits -- at our expense!
US bosses despise us, the working people and students of America, just as Soviet rulers do their people. American rulers raise college tuition, cut wages, and lay off millions while keeping millions more unemployed. They permit drug addiction, alcoholism, and the Mafia to ravage workers' lives because they get a rake-off. Just this month we learned of 60 years of forced sterilizations of white workers at a Virginia hospital!
Both American and Soviet elites are aiming to kill millions of their own peoples in a war for world supremacy. Between these two gangs of thugs there is no "lesser evil." If we are not suicidal we must oppose both. How? By following the principle of internationalism, which was rejected long ago by Soviet bosses. Working people of all countries, including those of the US, must work for the defeat of their own racist bosses in any war.
Both Soviet and American workers and students have fine traditions of turning against their own rotten rulers. In 1949, as the Tsar's government called for "national unity," millions of Russian youths marched off to war.
By 1917, six million Russian soldiers lay dead. In that year, however, Russian workers, led by the Bolshevik party, overthrew the capitalist bosses and made peace. Russia's "defeat" saved millions of Russian, German and Allied workers' lives; it was a victory for them.
In the Sixties and Seventies, hundreds of thousands of students organized against the Vietnam War and weakened US war efforts. Thousands of American soldiers, mainly working-class youth, refused to fight. Many "fragged" (killed) their own officers, and the military prisons of Vietnam overflowed with rebellious GIs. The defeat of the American government was excellent, saving tens of thousands of American and Vietnamese lives.
Already Soviet soldiers are discovering that they are being used as oppressors, not liberators. Soviet Asian troops have been recalled for fraternizing with Afghani workers. This discontent can only spread, as Soviet workers realize that obeying their rulers is against their own interest.
We too must act according to this truth. We can show unity with the workers of Afghanistan and the USSR, and serve our own intersts, by working to cripple the war efforts of those who oppress us the most -- US rulers and their government. This means organizing to strengthen the fight against racism, cutbacks, war, and oppression here at home.
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