Democratic reconstruction in Yugoslavia - intro

Chris, London 100423.2040 at
Tue Dec 26 01:59:34 MST 1995

I would agree with Bryan that the NGO's are more on the side of the 

This message is a warning that I am going to post a long file, which is 
a complete submission for a project for democratic reconstruction in Gornji-
Vakuf. I would point out in our mental battles over Yugoslavia, I never called
for intervention by imperialist armies. When I say it is a reform to be *accepted*
that the imperialist international peace-keeping force has gone in, I have been 
clear in the face IMO of ultra-left criticism, that 

a) it is pragmatically
preferable for the possibility of the working class unity, that the 
lawless bodies of armed men under the partial control of social fascists 
should be replaced by more accountable bodies of armed men under the control
of other power structures which are less likely to evict, rape, torture and 
murder people on the grounds of their surname, religion, or language.

b) the touchstone of a profoundly revolutionary position is not whether you 
accept a reform at times but whether you use it. It would be a rightist error
to tail behind the imperialist peacekeeping force. Hence the forthcoming post.

Although this project does not mention the words "working class" or "socialism"
and is about democratic values, in content it is about strengthening the unity
and abilities of working people in one divided town. It is bottom up.

At the risk of length it is not out of order IMO for once to illustrate 
how a democratic aid project is put forward. This is a submission for money. 
The authors have been brave enough to share their approach on the yugo-antiwar
list, although it might give ideas to rival bidders. 

A touchstone of a revolutionary
approach to reconstruction in former Yugoslavia is that the billions of dollars
from Europe etc, which were part of the Dayton peace package should not go into
a high-tech aluminium smelter or whatever, purely for export, "giving" jobs to 
only 100 people, but should go to this sort of work, enabling the natural 
living economy based on people's lives, to start shooting up again. Note in 
the proposal the work done not only on material practical co-operation but
also on psychological and social repair of trust, however tenuous at first.

Marxists should give unqualified support to this sort of stategy.

Chris B. (obviously in personal capacity)


PS I am posting this a few hours ahead of the long document because it is the only 
way I can think to reduce the possibility that the demons of the internet, will 
randomly invert the order and give you the introduction before the long text. 

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