Against U.S. Attack on Syria! Against the Assad Regime and Other Reactionary Forces! For the Grassroots Syrian Revolution!

The International Marxist-Humanist Organization

As the U.S. rattles its sabers against the Assad regime in Syria in the wake of an apparent attack on civilians with chemical weapons, the situation remains murky. A number of forces — the U.S.-Britain-France, their sometime allies Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Qatar, the murderous Assad regime, and equally murderous jihadis — are all seeking to stifle the yearnings of the Syrian people to be free of the domination of both local authoritarians and global imperialism – Editors

Against U.S Attacks on Syria! Against the Assad Regime and Other Reactionary Forces! For the Grassroots Syrian Revolution!

We strongly condemn the projected military attack on Syria by the U.S., France, and possibly Britain. This will have nothing to do with human rights/stopping chemical weapons and everything to do with the economic and political interests of the rulers. Paramount among those interests has been the creation of a stable environment for capital accumulation, which has been sorely tested by the last two years of revolution and upheaval in the Arab world.

Another problem for these rulers is that their populations, after Iraq and Afghanistan, are so sick of war that even usually compliant legislators have put up roadblocks.  Thus, British Prime Minister David Cameron suffered a stinging defeat in Parliament over his war plans, which will bars British participation, at least immediately. And what of the deeper opposition from the youth and the working people inside these imperialist powers and beyond, this at a time of deep economic crisis and upheaval?

Nonetheless, it is very likely that within a matter of days, U.S., French, and possibly British missiles and bombs will be raining down upon Syria, inevitably killing some of the very civilians these attacks are ostensibly aimed at preventing.

It is equally likely that the Assad regime will continue slaughtering its own people, as it has been doing ever since the uprising began as a grassroots democratic movement in 2011. Thus, even before the horrific killing on August 21 — allegedly by the Syrian military via chemical weapons — of over between 600 and 1300 civilians, including many children, the death toll in the civil war had reached 100,000, with hundreds of thousands more imprisoned and tortured by the regime, and millions displaced.

The U.S. is not even bothering to claim that its projected military action will help to free the Syrian people from the Assad regime. At the same time, an uncomfortable fact must be acknowledged by those like us, who have been careful to support revolutionary and democratic movements like that in Syria, even when their rulers are ostensibly opposed to U.S. imperialism. That fact is the deterioration of the Syrian revolution, with large inroads being made by the Al Qaeda-linked Al Nusra and other jihadist groups, whose murderous agenda includes both fundamentalist repression of the Syrian people as a whole and the slaughter of its non-Sunni Muslim ethno-religious minorities.  This turn may have played a part in the changing fortunes of the civil war, with the regime gaining some victories as parts of the population distance themselves from the rebels.

There are many other external actors in Syria, none of them supportive of revolutionary democracy of the type that characterized the Arab uprisings of 2011.  Iran and Russia have been funneling large arms shipments and financial support to Assad, even after his regime was condemned by the Arab League.  Iran’s ally, Hezbollah, has also crossed over from Lebanon to help Assad militarily. For their part, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Qatar have been funding Islamist or jihadist elements in the armed resistance to Assad.  These elements seem to have come to the fore for another, more internal, reason as well: the descent of some parts of the Free Syrian Army into warlordism.

Therefore, in affirming our opposition to U.S. imperialist intervention, as well as that of all other powers, from Saudi Arabia to Iran, we also affirm our solidarity with what remains of the genuinely revolutionary and democratic elements of the Syrian uprising. In no way we will allow our firm opposition to a U.S. attack on Syria to lessen our opposition to the Assad’s murderous state-capitalist regime, which stands in the way of the liberation of the workers, women, youth and national minorities in Syria and the region as a whole.


— International Marxist-Humanist Organization, August 30, 2013


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  1. Dan Beltaigne

    Dear IMH Readers,

    Like most in my generation, my radicalization and radicalism was born out of the Civil Rights Movement and the Anti-War Movement of the 1960s. But unlike some, my radicalization continued. I came to see that the world of freedom and its struggles know no country. It is a world that lives in every country on earth, knowing no boundaries; and it is perspective from which we can forge true internationalism. This is why it is difficult for me to understand why so many on the Left today, just as in the sixties, continue to support all kinds of dictators, right-wing reactionaries, and religious fundamentalists just because they are against US imperialism. Since Arab Spring, isn’t it high time to fully confront this myopia of the Left? IMH’s statement seems to me to be a good place to begin.

    Dan Beltaigne

  2. Kevin

    The demonstration against war over Syria drew about 200 to downtown LA today, many of them young, with a significant Latino/a presence. Unfortunately the sponsorship and slogans were established by ANSWER coalition, which meant a totally uncritical stance toward Assad. However, the IMHO Statement was distributed to most of the demonstrators, some of whom agreed with its overall stance, vs. that of ANSWER.