This is the second of a two-part interview with Resumen Latinoamericano’s Director,Carlos Aznárez. Read the first part here.
Source: Borrokagaraia.wordpress / The Dawn News / April 26, 2017
Boltxe: Some people think that the socialist revolution can’t be achieved through insurrection. Do you agree? What road must the revolutionaries of Our America choose to build socialism?
Carlos Aznárez: Beyond the defections, the watering-down or the ideological decadence of some people, there’s no reason to think that, as all throughout history, all ways are apt to move towards the revolution with socialist unity in mind.
In the same spirit that we reject Fukuyama’s neoliberal formula that proclaimed the end of history in the 90s, and his present-day disciples (those who justify phenomenons like Macri, Temer, Peña Nieto and others), we also have to oppose some who want to convince us of the end of the insurrectional revolutionary struggle, of the way of people up in arms.
Time and the circumstances of imperial oppression will determine the roads we will take to avoid offering the other cheek all the time. Nowadays, we’re seeing everything in the world—some who are allegedly left-wing sing praise to bourgeois democracies, surely to maintain the privilege of resting comfortably in their armchairs, betraying the ideals that brought them to the struggle years ago.
Some others fall into the ideological-strategic trap of “possibilism”, which advocates always settling for what’s at the reach of the hand, and claim that people don’t want to struggle any more. They abandon direct confrontation in favor of sugar-coated slogans and a social-democratic approach.
For all of them, reality itself will be the teacher, which will prove that imperialism and capitalism aren’t destroyed with empty words but with struggle and more struggle. Do these not seem times for epic struggles? Who says so, and from what standpoint? There we have the hundreds of thousands of farmers of the Landless Workers’ Movement of Brazil, fighting for land in every imaginable way, or the farmers of Paraguay (one of the few countries where a new guerrilla is growing, while others are demobilizing) who are organizing huge protests against land hoarders, fighting for their lives with tooth and nail.
Boltxe: What’s your take on Colombia’s so-called peace process between the government and the FARC?
Carlos Aznárez: Much work has been done by the FARC guerrilla to achieve this agreement, to seek peace with social justice, as they said since the very first moment they sat at the table with Santos’ right-wing government. Finally, after the agreements had been signed—of course, with many concessions made by the FARC—, the far-right murdered Álvaro Uribe Vélez leveraged his way in and rewrote them, eliminating many fundamental items.
However, we can affirm without doubt that beyond what’s written on paper, these strategic objectives of the FARC can be achieved with day-to-day militancy, mobilizations and pressure from below.
But, besides that, Santos’ government has no desire whatsoever to fulfill its part of the agreements, nor disarm the paramilitary forces that continue to murder social leaders and sending death threats all across the country, nor liberate the thousands of political prisoners through amnesty, as agreed.
The government also doesn’t make concessions regarding the issue of land, which has been subjected to one of the biggest thefts that the Colombian people have suffered, and, lastly, they try to tie down revolutionaries with the usual strategy: “everything will be solved through elections controlled by us; you can create a party and try your luck”.
As if it was possible to legitimately participate in a territory that the enemy has controlled for centuries, where they know all of the tricks to crush you.
I believe this is a very difficult time for Colombian fighters, and despite the fact that FARC and the ELN —which are still negotiating their terms for demobilization— have proven for half a century that they are two forces with a high degree of political skill and can’t be easily cornered, we have to admit that all of our alarms are ringing.
Everything will depend on the amount of strength and conviction that both insurgent forces are able to muster up to walk through this desert path, and keep united and firm on the foundations set by their predecessors, like Marulanda, Jacobo Arenas, El Mono Jojoy, priest Pérez and many other men and women who gave their lives for the Revolution.
Boltxe: What do you see in the future of Our America regarding the still-pending liberation of its peoples?
Carlos Aznárez: Long struggles await us if we really want to go the right way and not accept the easy one. The history of the peoples moves in big cycles. and currently there are some setbacks but also niches of very tough resistance against the imperialist onslaught.
It will be up to the newer generations to decide whether they want to move forward and destroy bourgeois states and implant socialism, or conform to what’s available, which means paying for death in installments.
Periods of backflow were always followed by popular rebellion. I’m optimistic about the fact that the next insurgent waves are being prepared today. We have to bet on that and nothing else.
Boltxe: We also wanted to ask you for your opinion about what it is happening at Middle East, Israel’s constants aggressions, the imperialistic wars, the attacks on Syria on behalf of the Empire…Carlos Aznárez: At Middle East, as well as in many other regions of the world, imperialism seeks to dismantle territories, slaughtering their populations after invading them with false pretexts, like the use of chemical weapons, to finally restructure the zone and take natural resources, like petroleum, gas and mineral. And also to have an strategic point to advance in a not far future towards Russia and China, USA’s biggest enemies.
In that frame, it is heroic the resistance that the Palestinian people and the insurgent organizations are developing against the Zionist occupation, generating a precise teaching to other similar processes of nations without State: there is no peaceful way to live together with the enemy that invaded your lands, only the resignation to the aspirations of self determination. Palestine is a painful model of revolutionary ethics in that way.
The rest of the region has been practically destroyed through the Ottoman wars that the Bush, Clinton, Obama, and now Trump, have leaded the European countries into. Even with the ideological complicity of some progressive leftists movement that lost their path and invented revolutions at Libya or Syria, and ended being accomplices of those peoples’ massacres.
However, we must say that besides the bellicose potentiality of the imperial aggressors, there will always be resistance. It happened at Iran where the US marines could not stand out and had to appeal to construct monsters, like ISIS, to destabilize even more the populations through atrocities. It now happens at Syria, where people, government and army struggle so that the country won’t fall in the hands of Americans and Zionists, that search to convert it into the new Libya.
As people from the left we should not doubt where to stand in this great anti imperialistic battles, and we should escort with active solidarity the whole Arab world that rebels against the empire, against Israel and against the monarchies of the region. In that scene, Palestine, Syria and Iran are the main outposts of the resistance axis that we should defend.
Boltxe: Now, to start closing this interview, we wanted to ask you about Euskal Herria, the renewed vindications for amnesty, the French-Spanish occupation that continues and the repression against the most combative and compromised youth.
Carlos Aznárez: Euskal Herria causes me a great pain, as the independentist Vasque that I am.
We always knew that the Spanish and French empire were not little things to handle and that with their brutal forms to assimilate and invade our people a soft resistance was not enough. From there on, there has always been resistance, self defence and offensives, that sometimes ended in victories. But at the same time, before any of these variables, both empires have developed annihilation strategies that costed Euskal Herria, years of suffering, blood and death.
Actually, after ETA (Free Basque Country) abandoned the arms, great uncertainty prevails. On one hand, because Madrid and Paris’ denial to negotiate generated the certainty that future achievements would have to made at a high cost of struggle, in that sense we have to bear in mind that it is necessary to construct a revolutionary organization to face the new time without resigning any of the principles that leaded several generations to put their bodies at the vanguard.
I feel part of Euskal herria and still believe that the only solution, to have our Motherland, is to fight for independence to reach Socialism, resigning to any temptation to build reformist shortcuts that end defending capitalism, transforming young and old men and women into marginalized groups.
I think that one of the problems of Euskal Herria is that, like all around the world, there is class struggle, and the Basque bourgeois is one of the main obstacles to achieve a revolutionary unity that leads to the freedom of the Basque people and the vindication of their roots as an originary people.
To end, in this times of peace process, without any apparition of peace; Who can sleep quiet with so many political prisoners in the jails of the empires? We all have to give something so they can give us everything.
Without them at the streets and with the people, without their revolutionary commitment, every initiative shall be sterile. Achieving amnesty is more than a historical objective, is a necessary vindication to build a solid construction, that resists periods of discouragement or claudication.
Boltxe: For the last question, you know that Boltxe is a communist collective and we could not avoid asking at the 100th anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution how do you see the Marxism actuality as a solution to this dead end that capitalism is taking us to.
Carlos Aznárez: I do not come from Marxism but from Latin American revolutionary nationalism, but like many, through years of struggle, I incorporated elements of this fundamental ideology. From there, although some left movements are on the downhill and are making pacts with rightist or reformists parties, I believe these are the times to go back to Marx and Lenin. To learn from their teachings and to pick up the most valuable aspects of their legacy. The 100th anniversary comes well to read them again, debate about their ideas and to help us think, in order to keep fighting against those they marked as our biggest enemies, capitalism and imperialism.
Boltxe: Well, that is all Carlos. Thank you very much for your time and answers. We wish you the best for you and your team and send a big communist hug to the comrades of Resumen Latinoamericano.