regarding Rakesh's "last message"

Les Schaffer godzilla at
Thu Jun 25 10:35:24 PDT 1998

Rakesh> Charles refers to the heroic battles of the Vietnamese

Rakesh> Stalinists. I suggest that he look at the work of Gabriel

Rakesh> Kolko, who though sympathetic has written a devastating

Rakesh> critique of their failures in power.

A.) We readin the same book, 'Anatomy of a War'????

I just skimmed the body and reread through his Conclusion chapter again. What on earth made you think he wrote a devastating critique of the Communist Party in North Vietnam????????????????

good grief mon... the BRC meeting really got under your skin?

B.) Re/ 'Vietnamese Stalinists':

""" Ho Chi Minh came to Leninism via the colonial question, which Lenin was the first to see as crucial to the world revolution. Ho publicly excoriated the Western European Communist Parties for their indifference to this issue, especially to the imperialism of their own nations. And this stress on colonialism meant adapting to the fact that the colonial masses were so overwhelmingly peasant that the Eurocentric Comintern's exclusive emphasis on the critical role of the proletariat was tactically both irrelevant and inappropriate to the future of the Asian Comunist movement. Stalin, above all, did not sympathize with Lenin's thesis, and to the extent he could relate to the non-Soviet world he was always essentially European. [snip] In the period after 1945 Stalin's suspicion of Ho was certainly open knowledge among leading world Communists. """ (1)

""" The Soviets irrevocably condemned the cult of personality in 1956, and Ho strongly endorsed the decision to demythologize Stalin, attacking any symptoms of the practice in Vietnam. In May 1967, during the peak of the Mao craze and the Cultural Revolution, the Party used the occasion of Ho's seventy-seventh birthday to distance itself from the Chinese events and to define the role of "Leaders and the Masses", and of Ho in particular, in a manner that reflected Ho's own views. History was made by the masses, and the Party practiced collective leadership and self-criticism precisely because of its respect for Marxist laws of history and its need to act, like Ho, as a "servant of the people". To do anything else would ruin the Party's credibility among the masses.""" (2)

(1) Anatomy of a War: Vietnam, the United States, and the Modern Historical Experience, Gabriel Kolko, Pantheon, 1985, p.26

(2) ibid. p. 55

C.) point of reference: how old were you, rakesh, during the vietnam war?

-- ____ Les Schaffer godzilla at ___| ------->> Engineering R&D <<-------- Theoretical & Applied Mechanics | Designspring, Inc. Westport, CT USA Center for Radiophysics & Space Research | les at Cornell Univ. schaffer at |

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