“For ten years we’ve been engaged in wars that have enriched the wealthiest one percent, decimated our economy and left our nation with a generation of traumatized and wounded veterans that will require care for years to come.”
– Joseph Carter, Iraq war veteran. From the Guardian Newspaper.
I began this post quite some time ago and have, for various reasons, found myself occupied with other concerns. I would still like to publish this just for the quote above, while pointing out that it has been a lot longer than ten years that the United States, as indeed many and perhaps all nations, have been engaged in warfare for the enrichment of its upper crusts. As Rosa Luxemburg clearly saw at the dawn of World War I, the war to be fought under the auspices of nationalism, of Fatherland, of heroic efforts against oppression was a reprehensible outcome of devious political machinations. She calls it the international recipe of capitalist statesmanship, and so it is.
Luxemburg decried the party which she had helped birth, the German Social Democrat Party, for failing to see through the obvious guises which, historically, it had the resources to refute. Now, along with Mr. Carter, we must make her cry our own in this time. To fail again to learn from history is inexcusable. More than that it is entirely too devastating a possibility to consider. Carter points to the victimization and wounding of the nation’s veteran enjoining a responsibility upon the national body, and particularly those most responsible for the war in the first place. This is one face of a new occupation. There are others. To paint them broadly we might talk about ecological concerns, food production, indigenous rights and justice, and numerous other concerns. The reason, however, that I feel it appropriate to invoke the legacy of Rosa Luxemburg at this time, is because I think at this time we are seeing the re-emergence of class consciousness in a way that makes possible an internationalist politics.