The Meaning, Consequences and Lessons of Trump‘s Victory: Chapter II. Where is the Trump Administration Heading?

 

Naturally, at this stage – a few weeks after the election – it is still not possible to make a very concrete and precise assessment about the future course of the Trump administration. However, the new government’s main lines of attack, as well as its inner contradictions, are clearly visible.

 

As is widely known, Trump’s election campaign was characterized by rhetoric around a specific number of issues.

 

* White chauvinism, Islamophobia (Trump’s call to ban Muslims from entering the US, etc.); his anti-immigration policy (calling to build a massive wall along the Mexican border, mass deportation of undocumented migrants, etc.),

 

* Economic protectionism (claiming he would impose a 45% tariff on Chinese imports; pull out of free trade agreements like TPP, NAFTA and TTIP; leave the WTO, etc.)

 

* Neoliberal financial liberalization (e.g., reducing corporate taxes from the current level of 35% to 15%; bring about the elimination of Wall Street regulation, including the removal of Dodd Frank Wall Street reform – the anti-bank bailout regulation put into place after the 2008-2009 financial crisis)

 

* His call to immediately cancel the Climate Change Accord as, according to Trump, climate change “is a myth created by the Chinese to harm American Manufacturing” (a quote from the US president-elect!)

 

* Attacks against social and health care programs (his plan to abolish Obamacare, etc.)

 

* Attacks on women’s rights like abortion

 

* Calls to reduce obligations arising from long-term alliances with other states (demanding from the EU, Japan and South Korea to raise their defense budgets so that the US can reduce its military expenditures in these theatres; loosening or even abolishing NATO)

 

* Calls for more military aggression against “Islamic terrorists”

 

However, Trump never elaborated his plans more concretely or detailed exactly how he wants to achieve these goals. Nevertheless, while it is clear that bourgeois governments usually do not implement all electoral promises, these plans give a clear indication of the direction of the Trump’s presidency.

 

 

 

  1. What is the Political Class Coalition behind Trump?

 

 

 

In this chapter we will attempt to determine the specific character of the future Trump administration. While most positions of the administration have still not been publicly elaborated, it is likely that it will contain different currents – reflecting the coalition character of the Trump electoral campaign. It currently appears that the Trump administration currently represents an unstable coalition of three main groups (while we naturally take into account the connections and transitions between them): a) the Trump clan itself which is rather characterized by its absence of strong political beliefs; b) the extreme right-wing conservative Republicans (including Christian evangelical fundamentalists and Tea-Party populists); and c) the white supremacist alt-right movement.

 

The main thrust (and inner contradictions) of the Trump administration will become more vivid if we examine the political coalition behind him. First of all, the Trump family itself is one of the richest families in the country: it has an estimated wealth of $3.7 billion, based on an empire of 515 enterprises focused on real assets! [1] In other words, this clan itself represents a sector of the US monopoly bourgeoisie. Its notorious history of speculation with real assets makes it a prime example of the parasitic nature of America’s big capitalists. Naturally, as president-elect Donald Trump does not entertain for a minute his willingness to separate himself from his wealth, as has been called for by many in the public to prevent conflicts of interest, but is simply taking steps to transfer the management of his financial empire to his children (who also play a central political role).

 

Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law and a crucial player in the inner circle, is another real estate tycoon whose father spent some time in prison for illegal campaign contributions he made, tax evasion, and witness tampering. (As it is typical in the circles of the super-rich, Jared Kushner was admitted to the Harvard University, not long after his father made a large donation of $2.5 million in 1998 to the prestigious Ivy League school. [2]) This background in speculation, together with the fact that no one of the Trump clan has any political experience or any known strong political beliefs – deeper than vulgar racist and sexist prejudices [3] – gives the Trump clan, and hence the whole administration, a strong characterization as adventurists.

 

Naturally, the history of political regimes in capitalist societies knows a number of cases of adventurists who ruled a country. But there are adventurists and then again there are adventurists. Hitler and Mussolini certainly were adventurists, but they had strong (and thoroughly reactionary) political beliefs and a record of political activism for many years before they took power. To a certain degree it seems that the Trump clan considers the presidency as just another “project” which should serve the expansion of the family’s wealth and influence.

 

The dominance of the family clan is also underlined by the fact that 4 of the 16 members of the transition team – responsible for the selection of 4,000 candidates to make up the future administration – are Trump’s three children and his son-in-law.

 

Never before has there been such a close fusion between one capitalist family clan and the central political power in the US. This lends the new regime both strength and weakness. Its strength is derived from its not being based on mere a political power which must regularly ensure for itself the support of the country’s monopoly capitalists. On the other hand, such a constellation weakens the Trump administration because (a) it discredits his credentials as a “leader and a representative of the “entire people” and (b) it will lead to conflicts with other family clans and factions of the big bourgeoisie.

 

Beside the family itself, the Trump administration is basing itself on a various extremely conservative and Christian fundamentalist Republicans. Vice President-elect Mike Pence, who also heads the transition team, is the leading representative of this current. He was a long-time member of Congress and Governor of Indiana, a state of 6.6 million people in the Mid-West. Pence is part of the Republican establishment, albeit its extreme right, Christian fundamentalist wing. He introduced a law which allows shops to refuse serving lesbians and gays, and opposes abortion. He is a typical conservative opponent of public social and health security and has supported all free trade agreements. He also unconditionally supported Bush’s wars of aggression in the first decade of this century. The prestigious political plog FiveThirtyEight rates Pence as the most conservative vice presidential candidate in the last forty years. Given Trump’s zero governmental experience and limited political perception, the vice president may play a more influential role than is usually the case. Pence himself is probably well aware of this as he stated that his role model as vice president would be Dick Cheney, the highly influential vice president who had the ear of his dumbbell president, George W. Bush.

 

Another important figure in this camp – with links to the alt-right movement – is the newly appointed White House National Security Advisor, retired Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn. Flynn is a former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency and an early supporter of Trump. He is an unabashed Islamophobic racist who recently joined the board of Act for America, an alt-right activist group that has helped introduce bills to ban Islamic Sharia law in nearly two dozen US states. [4] He advocates the superiority of “a Judeo-Christian ideology built on a moral set of rules and laws” and openly considers Islam as “a cancer” and a “political ideology that hides behind religion.[5] He has claimed that “fear of Muslims is rational.[6] In his recently published book he states: “We’re in a world war against a messianic mass movement of evil people, most of them inspired by a totalitarian ideology: Radical Islam.” This “world war” is “probably going to last through several generations.” He is an advocate of unconditional support for Israel and its right-wing government, of supporting Egypt’s dictator General Sisi, and of waging war against Iran. [7]

 

He is a strong admirer of Ronald Reagan’s combination of armament and deterrence with ideological warfare based on “American exceptionalism.” Flynn’s influence points to a more militarily aggressive foreign policy which looks less for “spreading democracy” and long-term occupations (as was the case in Afghanistan and Iraq) but more short-term wars instead and installing submissive regimes. At the same time, such a policy will be combined with a more open Islamophobic ideology praising the “exceptional American values” – instead of the more liberal model of praising “human rights,” “democracy” and “civilization” as the ideological rallying point. [8]

 

Jeff Sessions, a Republican Senator from the southern state of Alabama, has been nominated as the president elect’s designee for attorney general. He is another extremely conservative and racist Republican who has supported Trump’s call for a temporary ban on Muslim immigrants and has suggested that a “toxic ideology” lies at the root of Islam. [9] He considers Afro-American civil rights organization like the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) as “un-American” and “Communist-inspired.[10] He is on record as having said that he used to think that the Ku Klux Klan was “okay, until he learned that they smoked marijuana. [11]

 

Another important security figure is Mike Pompeo who has been slated by Trump as the next director of the CIA. Pompeo is a Republican congressman from Kansas who was elected in 2010 as a representative of the right-wing Tea Party. Pompeo is – like the entire Trump camp – an advocate of terminating the nuclear accord with Iran. He also co-sponsored a bill to ban the Muslim Brotherhood, which US right-wing conspiracy theorists have accused of plotting to infiltrate the government! It is hardly an exaggeration to call the Trump administration the most Islamophobic government the West has seen since the crusades in the Middle Ages!

 

Another important figure in this radical conservative wing of the Republican Party is Rudolph Giuliani, a former mayor of New York City and a law-and-order hardliner. Other representatives of this wing of the Republican Party are the former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (who led the campaign to bring down then-President Bill Clinton in the late 1990s because of the Monica Lewinsky affair); John Bolton, the former ambassador to the United Nations under President George W. Bush (the “face of Bush’s unilateralist foreign policy” as a commentator noted); and Tennessee Senator Bob Corker. [12]

 

Reince Priebus, who has been assigned the position of Trump’s White House Chief of Staff, will be an important figure in the upcoming administration. This importance will be due to that of the Chief of Staff position in itself but also because Priebus served as chairman of the Republican Party for three consecutive terms. Hence he is a crucial link for Trump to the party’s establishment. Priebus has “proven” himself in the past by reconciling the party with the right-wing Tea Party movement, i.e., by moving the party to the right as was manifested in the blockade tactics of the GOP against Obamacare which led to the US government shutdown of October 2013.

 

In addition to these right-wing conservatives from the Republican Party, there is also another force in the Trump camp: the “anti-establishment” white supremacist, so-called “alt-right movement.” Its most important representative is Stephen Bannon who was head of Breitbart News, an extreme ultra-right media outlet who became the chief executive officer of Trump’s presidential campaign. Trump has now named him as Chief Strategist and Senior Advisor in the new administration – a highly influential position.

 

Bannon is such an open white supremacist and extreme right-winger that even John Weaver, a Republican strategist who worked for Ohio Governor John Kasich’s presidential campaign, reacted to the appointment: “The racist, fascist extreme right is represented footsteps from the Oval Office. Be very vigilant, America. [13] However, despite his anti-establishment rhetoric, Bannon worked for Goldman Sachs in the past, and has good connections to Sarah Palin, a darling of the Tea Party movement who was the Republican vice presidential candidate in 2012. [14]

 

Despite his anti-establishment rhetoric, Trump has close contacts to various Wall Street bankers from among whom he is considering choosing his treasury secretary. Among the prospective candidates for this role are Steven Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs official who served as Trump’s campaign finance chief during the 2016 campaign, and JPMorgan Chase chief Jamie Dimon, the leader of the largest of the Big Four banks in the United States. [15] Another advisor of Trump is David Malpass, a banker who wrote in the Wall Street Journal shortly before the crash in 2008 that the is no reason to panic about the financial markets!

 

To sum up, we reiterate that the Trump administration appears to reflect the coalition character of the Trump electoral campaign. It contains basically three groups: (a) the Trump clan itself which rather lacks strong political beliefs; (b) the very-right-wing conservative Republicans (including Christian evangelical fundamentalists and Tea-Party populists); and (c) the white supremacist alt-right movement.

 

This character results in the following situation: In the past we have seen a Republican Party which, under the influence of the Tea Party and as an aggressive opposition party to the Obama Administration, shifted to the right. Trump, conducting an extremely chauvinistic and protectionist campaign, alienated the party’s establishment and secured only the support of the extremely conservative wing of the Republicans. However, this right-wing of the party now has to be considered as the “moderate” wing of the administration in face of the alt-right wing led by Chief Strategist Stephen Bannon! True, Trumps is attempting to also win over representatives of the Republican mainstream for his administration (like Mitt Romney). But even if he succeeds in this, it is no exaggeration to state that this is truly the most right-wing government in the modern history of the US!

 

If we attempt to give a preliminary class characterization of the Trump administration, we must say that it is a coalition which has at its top an important family clan representing a minority wing of the monopoly bourgeoisie, as well as extreme right-wing sectors of the political state apparatus which played only a secondary role in the past. These forces have been joined by the extremely right-wing Tea Party movement and alt-right groups which reflect the desperate and racist sectors of the middle class. These middle class sectors, as well as backward sectors of the working class (many former labor aristocrats), both of which are mostly based in the rural-dominated states of the Mid-West, constitute the foot-soldiers of the Trump “movement”.

 

However, the above characterization also means that the Trump administration will represent only a clear minority of the ruling class and openly provokes hostility from other factions of the bourgeoisie, from the liberal middle class, as well as from the mass organizations of the working class and the national/ethnic minorities.

 

It also appears that it will quickly become a highly unstable government, not only because of the opposition of these forces just cited but also because of the tensions between its different composite wings. This has already led to the resignation or purging of several figures linked to the Republican Party’s establishment. Examples for this are former Republican congressman Mike Rogers, who chaired the House intelligence committee, and who left the Trump transition team. New Jersey governor Chris Christie, an early supporter of Trump, was also ditched as the head of the transition team. Eliot Cohen, a senior state department official under George W. Bush, was expelled from the transition team.

 

 

 

  1. Trumpism Both as an Adventure and an Objective Necessity for the Bourgeoisie

 

 

 

Let us finally discuss briefly how it was possible that Trump came to power in a “legal” fashion despite the fact that the majority of the monopoly bourgeoisie as well as the people in general opposed his election? We have already elaborated above the bizarre specifics of the US electoral system which make it possible for a candidate to win the presidential election despite losing the popular vote. Here we want to add some political considerations for this turning point in US and world history.

 

It’s true that the majority of the big bourgeoisie did in fact oppose Trump’s election. However, Trump’s policy of chauvinism and protectionism objectively represents a possible – and in the final analysis even inevitable – response of the US capitalist class to the current and future trajectory of both the world economy as well as US capitalism. As we have pointed out our past analyses of the world economy, globalization has entered a period of decline since the beginning of the Great Recession of 2008, which has manifested itself in the decline of world trade, the rise of protectionism, and the emergence of rivaling trade blocs. [16] Therefore, rather than introducing a completely new development, Trumpist economics is rather accelerating already existing tendencies.

 

Furthermore, US imperialism has been in decline for a long time. As we have repeatedly stressed, the US bourgeoisie simply can no longer play the role of the “world policeman.” Obama tried to cushion this decline by retreating from Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as by strengthening US collaboration with other great Western powers. However, this US decline continues as has become even more obvious with the rise of China and Russia as new great powers. Thus, once again, Trump’s election to the US presidency will only accelerate an already existing tendency.

 

Likewise, Trump is certainly not responsible for re-launching American class polarization. For many years now we have been witness to the process of impoverishment of vast sectors of the black, Latino and white working class (along with sectors of the middle class). Trump’s neoliberal policy of lowering corporate taxes and cutting social welfare and health care – met with enthusiasm by many capitalists [17] – are merely accelerating a process which already began with the Reagan Era in the early 1980s.

 

Similarly, racism leading to the regular killing of unarmed black people by (mostly white) police, and the rapid increase of black and Latino people serving time in prison have been an inherent part of US society for a long time. Likewise, the massive arming of US police forces so that they can act as an occupation force against the citizens of their own local jurisdictions is also a process which has been taking place for decades. So again, Trump’s chauvinism and law-and-order bonapartism is an acceleration of an already existing development.

 

In short, Trump represents the monopoly bourgeoisies’ objectively necessary policy for tomorrow – even though the majority of this class may still not recognize this. Hence, we can say that Trump is, to a certain degree, a “revolutionary” reactionary whose coming to power is in anticipation of the future shocks in store for capitalism and the class struggle.

 

However, the course of the class struggle cannot be determined in advance. Trump’s gamble is very risky. His provocative and adventurist course of aggression, domestically and globally, without sufficient support by the US ruling class, could backfire and create such a storm of resistance in the face of which his administration could simply crumble. In the end, the Trump clan’s highest priority is … the wealth and influence of the Trump clan, and certainly not America’s well-being. Faced with the choice between personal wealth and patriotic interests, without a blink they will choose the former. Hence, an impeachment or early resignation of the Trump administration can be no means be excluded.

 

 

 

  1. Where will the US going under President Trump?

 

 

 

Naturally, at this stage it is only possible to make predictions about the course and the consequences of the Trump Administration within certain limits. Nevertheless, we think it is possible to stress a few trends when taking into account the central political themes of this administration and its leading figures; the class character of the political coalition on which it is based; the objective contradictions of US imperialism both domestically as well as globally; and the responses we can expect against this administration rooted in the class struggle.

 

First, the Trump Administration will most likely follow an aggressive capitalist agenda, while trying at the same time to implement its avowed program at least to a certain degree. This they must do in order to prove the legitimacy of its campaign and its “new road.” According to the New York Times, Steve Bannon, the alt-right representative in the administration and Trump’s official Chief Strategist, has already told people in Mr. Trump’s inner circle that the new administration will only have a short window of opportunity to push through its agenda and therefore should focus first on the priorities that are expected to be the most contentious. [18] Furthermore, if they do not advance the attempt to consolidate the Republican Party around the “Trumpist” platform they will soon lose much support. Such a development might result in the loss of the reactionary forces currently behind the Trump project, without adding new substantial support from other layers. The result could be – depending on the concrete course of the class struggle – either a crisis, even leading to the collapse of the Trump administration, or at least massive defeats for the Republicans in the next mid-term elections in 2018. Such a development would make the government a lame duck for the second half of its term and, in all probability, lead to its electoral defeat in the presidential election of 2020.

 

Naturally, an aggressive pushing through of the Trumpist agenda is a risky strategy. If successful, the administration can at least consolidate its popular support, withstand the first wave of mass protests, and violently put down more militant forms of resistance. In doing so it could convince broader sections of the ruling class that its course of action is the only realistic option. Or, in other words, it can present the rest of the bourgeoisie with a fait accompli. In combination with another Great Recession – which in any case is likely to occur in the near future [19] – it is reasonable to assume that all the other Great Powers will also resort to a protectionist, chauvinist course of action. Under such circumstances, Trump’s strategy will appear as the only realistic option and gain legitimacy among these circles.

 

However, as we previously indicated, such an aggressive course of action will virtually guarantee mass protests and may also fail to consolidate the bourgeoisie around the Trumpist project. For example, mass deportations of hundreds of thousands of migrants in the next few months could may lead to an explosion of civil unrest. The rhetorical promises of various mayors of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, etc., who declared their cities as “sanctuaries” (which, of course, they didn’t mean seriously) could encourage mass resistance against deportations.

 

The US has already experienced a number of important class struggle movements in recent years. The BlackLiveMatters movement, the movement for a minimum wage of $15, the Occupy movement, and more recently the protests of the Standing Rock Sioux against the Dakota Access Pipeline – these are all examples of increasing class struggle during the period of the Obama administration. Now, with Trump´s victory, the masses will have an common, visible and provocative enemy in the person of Trump.

 

If the resistance proliferates and radicalizes – for example, if it is transformed into mass strikes and occupations as well as militant self-defense against police forces trying to enforce deportations, or armed revolts in black ghettos – this could place the Trump administration before a serious crisis. If, at the same time, the administration pushes sectors of the ruling class away from supporting an “irresponsible” and “destabilizing” government policy, it could quickly open a full governmental crisis. The opening of another Great Recession, which would demonstrate the failure of Trump’s demagogic promises, could also hasten such a development.

 

Another possible factor which could bring about a governmental crisis would be a major failure of Trump’s foreign policy – for example a military adventure against Iran or against, let’s say, Al-Shabaab in Somalia if this would result in an embarrassing defeat. [20]

 

Such a development could open a real crisis of American imperialism reminiscent of the late Nixon era in 1974 or even a pre-revolutionary situation.

 

For these reasons – and this seems to us to be a second important characteristic of the Trump administration – we think that it will most likely be an unstable government. Under such conditions of massive pressure – both from the working class and the oppressed, as well as from sectors of the bourgeoisie – it is quite likely that tensions within the coalition which constitute the Trump administration will increase.

 

The looming next Great Recession will accelerate these developments even more. Such a recession will unmask the empty demagogy of Trump by creating even more poverty and unemployment. It will also likely provoke the administration to deflect attention from its domestic failures by either adopting even more outrageous attacks on migrants and black people or by starting another war.

 

In other words, the Trump administration will be a Molotov cocktail waiting to be ignited. It cannot possibly implement its promises and satisfy all of the sectors from which it garnered its victory: the bourgeoisie, the middle class and the working class. Trump came to power by promising to improve the lives of ordinary Americans. But its program of tax cuts for corporations and armament will increase public debt and will lead to massive cuts in social programs and health care. Trump promised to create jobs, but his administration will not prepared to make major investments in public infrastructure (except for the military and the police). Its protectionist policy will make imports much more expensive and thereby raise the cost of living for ordinary people and production costs for capitalists. Trump promised “no more Iraq wars” but his militarist policy will inevitably lead the country into additional wars. Trump’s reactionary policy against migrants will provoke mass resistance, and the reactionary outlook of his administration will, from the start, make it the most unpopular of governments. Trump’s campaign claimed that it wants to make America “great again,” but in fact it will only make more visible the US decline as the leading global power. The Trump government will make the US, ever more than before, the most hated country around the world.

 

[1] Marc Pitzke: Milliardengeschäfte von Donald Trump Beispielloser Interessenkonflikt, Der Spiegel, 15.11.2016. http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/donald-trump-und-seine-geschaefte-beispielloser-interessenkonflikt-a-1121287.html

[2] See Daniel Golden: The Story Behind Jared Kushner’s Curious Acceptance into Harvard, ProPublica, Nov. 18, 2016, https://www.propublica.org/article/the-story-behind-jared-kushners-curious-acceptance-into-harvard

[3] There is a never ending list of vulgar racist and sexist quotes from Donald Trump. While we are aware that this is an incomplete list (not the least because he regularly adds new ones!), here are some links:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/politics/donald-trump-sexism-tracker-every-offensive-comment-in-one-place/; http://www.cosmopolitan.com/politics/news/a44629/donald-trump-insults-women/; http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-elections/donald-trump-sexist-quotes-comments-tweets-grab-them-by-the-pussy-when-star-you-can-do-anything-a7353006.html; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-racist-examples_us_56d47177e4b03260bf777e83; http://newsone.com/3465253/donald-trump-well-educated-black-advantage/; http://tmznewsonline.net/donald-trump-if-black-lives-dont-matter-then-go-back-to-africa/; http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2015/04/28/donald-trump-barack-obama-tweets-baltimore-riots/26500879/; http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/sep/9/donald-trump-black-lives-matter-i-think-theyre-loo/; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/donald-trump-black-voters-slavery_us_57b4bd84e4b0fd5a2f40ee2d.

[4] Joby Warrick and Abigail Hauslohner: Trump’s security picks deepen Muslim worries about an anti-Islamic White House, November 18 2016, Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trumps-security-picks-deepen-muslim-worries-about-an-anti-islamic-white-house/2016/11/18/d7796cc6-add6-11e6-8b45-f8e493f06fcd_story.html

[5] See his speech: RWW News: Michael Flynn: Islam Is A ‘Cancer,’ ‘Political Ideology’ That ‘Hides Behind’ Religion, August 2016, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fzh9b_vo4vs

[6] Thomas Gibbons-Neff: ‘Fear of Muslims is rational’: What Trump’s new national security adviser has said online, November 18 2016, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/wp/2016/11/18/trumps-new-national-security-adviser-has-said-some-incendiary-things-on-the-internet/. On the extreme right-wing views of General Flynn’s son and chief of staff see: Andrew Kaczynski and Nathan McDermott: Michael Flynn’s son and chief of staff pushed conspiracy theories, obscene memes online, CNN, November 18, 2016, http://edition.cnn.com/2016/11/17/politics/kfile-michael-flynn-social-media

[7] See on this Michael T. Flynn and Michael Ledeen: The Field of Fight, St. Martin’s Press, New York 2016

[8] To underline this thesis we reprint the following quotes from a speech of General Flynn in 2015:

The foundation of Reagan’s thinking was a core set of principles founded on a strong commitment to American ideals and recognition of both good and evil.

We should acknowledge now that this fight against Islamic Extremism is a sociological, psychological and cultural phenomenon, and not a military one AND, as I said earlier, we need to tell the American public, this is likely to last for decades, if not an entire generation.

Retreat, retrenchment, and disarmament are historically a recipe for disaster.

We should assail isolationism, any form of American withdrawal, and the fallacy of moral equivalence. But we should also not believe for a second that exporting democracy the world over will work either. However, we should also never be ashamed of our American values.

We need to embrace American exceptionalism.”

Our adversaries around the world are self-described Islamic militants.

For that reason, we must always be ready to deploy what Winston Churchill called “overwhelming power.” This posture will deter most aggressors most of the time and, when even the best deterrent sometimes fails, it will still defeat them at the lowest possible cost and risk.” (Thomas E. Ricks: The text of General Flynn’s speech, January 27, 2015, http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/01/27/the-text-of-general-flynns-speech/)

[9] Joby Warrick and Abigail Hauslohner: Trump’s security picks deepen Muslim worries about an anti-Islamic White House, November 18 2016, Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trumps-security-picks-deepen-muslim-worries-about-an-anti-islamic-white-house/2016/11/18/d7796cc6-add6-11e6-8b45-f8e493f06fcd_story.html

[10] Scott Zamost, Curt Devine and Katherine Noel: Sessions dogged by old allegations of racism, November 18, 2016, CNN, http://edition.cnn.com/2016/11/17/politics/jeff-sessions-racism-allegations/

[11] Amber Phillips: 10 things to know about Sen. Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s pick for attorney general, November 18 2016, Washington Post, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/11/18/10-things-to-know-about-sen-jeff-sessions-donald-trumps-pick-for-attorney-general/

[12] See on this e.g., John Hudson and Colum Lynch: The Top Contenders for Donald Trump’s Foreign-Policy Cabinet, Foreign Policy, November 9, 2016, http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/11/09/the-top-contenders-for-donald-trumps-foreign-policy-cabinet/, Mark Landler: Trump’s Hires Will Set Course of His Presidency, New York Times, 12 November 2016, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/13/us/politics/donald-trump-administration-appointments.html?&moduleDetail=top-news-0&action=click&contentCollection=Opinion&region=Footer&module=TopNews&version=WhatsNext&contentID=WhatsNext&pgtype=article; David Smith: Trump transition team in disarray after top adviser ‘purged’, The Guardian, 16 November 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/15/donald-trump-transition-team-disarray-adviser-purge

[13] Quoted in Ben Norton: “The racist, fascist extreme right is represented footsteps from the Oval Office”: Republicans warn of Trump presidency, Nov 15, 2016, http://www.salon.com/2016/11/15/the-racist-fascist-extreme-right-is-represented-footsteps-from-the-oval-office-republicans-warn-of-trump-presidency/

[14] Jeremy W. Peters: Trump’s Choice of Stephen Bannon Is Nod to Anti-Washington Base, New York Times, Nov. 15 2016, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/15/us/politics/stephen-bannon-white-house-trump.html

[15] David Francis: Main Street Champion Trump Turns to Wall Street to Fill Treasury Post, November 10, 2016, http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/11/10/main-street-champion-trump-turns-to-wall-street-to-fill-treasury-post/

[16] See RCIT: Advancing Counterrevolution and Acceleration of Class Contradictions Mark the Opening of a New Political Phase. Theses on the World Situation, the Perspectives for Class Struggle and the Tasks of Revolutionaries (January 2016), in: Revolutionary Communism No. 46, http://www.thecommunists.net/theory/world-perspectives-2016/

[17] See e.g., Neil Irwin: What the Markets Are Really Telling Us About a Trump Presidency, New York Times, 12 November 2016, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/12/upshot/what-the-markets-are-really-telling-us-about-a-trump-presidency.html; David Francis: Trump’s Impact on the Economy: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. A Trump presidency carries a lot of economic risk. But in some sectors, there’s also quite a bit of opportunity, Foreign Policy, November 9, 2016, http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/11/09/trumps-impact-on-the-economy-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/; Nouriel Roubini : The Taming of Trump, 11 November 2016, https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/donald-trump-pragmatic-policies-by-nouriel-roubini-2016-11

[18] See Jeremy W. Peters: Trump’s Choice of Stephen Bannon Is Nod to Anti-Washington Base, New York Times, Nov. 15 2016, http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/15/us/politics/stephen-bannon-white-house-trump.html

[19] See on this RCIT: Advancing Counterrevolution and Acceleration of Class Contradictions Mark the Opening of a New Political Phase (World Perspectives 2016: Chapter III. The World Economy: Facing the Next (Even Worse) Great Recession), http://www.thecommunists.net/theory/world-perspectives-2016/part3/ as well as RCIT: Perspectives for the Class Struggle in Light of the Deepening Crisis in the Imperialist World Economy and Politics. Theses on Recent Major Developments in the World Situation and Perspectives Ahead (January 2015), in: Revolutionary Communism No. 32, http://www.thecommunists.net/theory/world-situation-january-2015/

[20] It is worth recalling the dramatic consequences of the devastating defeat of the US Special Forces by Somali rebels in Mogadishu in October 1993. This led to the resignation of the then U.S. Secretary of Defense Les Aspin and caused a national trauma reflected in the movie “Black Hawk Down.” On this, see e.g., Matt Eversmann and Dan Schilling (Ed.): The Battle of Mogadishu. Firsthand Accounts from the Men of Task Force Ranger, Ballantine Books, New York 2005; Steven Tuckey: Mogadishu! Heroism and Tragedy, Greenwood Publishing Group 1994

 

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About RCIT Britain

What the RCIT stands for Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) The Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT)is a revolutionary combat organisation fighting for the liberation of the working class and all oppressed. It has national sections in a number of countries. The working class is composed of all those (and their families) who are forced to sell their labor power as wage earners to the capitalists. The RCIT stands on the theory and practice of the revolutionary workers’ movement associated with the names of Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Trotsky. Capitalism endangers our lives and the future of humanity. Unemployment, war, environmental disasters, hunger, and exploitation are all part of everyday life under capitalism as are the imperialistic oppression of nations, the national oppression of migrants, and the oppression of women, young people, and homosexuals. Therefore, we want to eliminate capitalism. The liberation of the working class and all oppressed is possible only in a classless society without exploitation and oppression. Such a society can only be established internationally. Therefore, the RCIT is fighting for a socialist revolution at home and around the world. This revolution must be carried out and lead by the working class, for only this class has the collective power to bring down the ruling class and build a socialist society. The revolution cannot proceed peacefully because a ruling class never has nor ever will voluntarily surrender its power. By necessity, therefore, the road to liberation includes armed rebellion and civil war against the capitalists. The RCIT is fighting for the establishment of workers’ and peasants’ republics, where the oppressed organize themselves in councils democratically elected in rank-and-file meetings in factories, neighbourhoods, and schools. These councils, in turn, elect and control the government and all other statue authorities, and always retain the right to recall them. Authentic socialism and communism have nothing to do with the so-called “socialism” that ruled in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, and which continues to do so in China and Cuba, for example. In these countries, the proletariat was and is dominated and oppressed by a privileged party bureaucracy. Under capitalism, the RCIT supports all efforts to improve the living conditions of the workers and oppressed, while simultaneously striving to overthrow this system based on economic exploitation of the masses. Towards these ends, we work from within the trade unions where we advocate class struggle, socialism, and workers’ democracy. But trade unions and social democracy are controlled by a bureaucracy perniciously connected with the state and capital via status, high-paying jobs, and other privileges. Thus, the trade union bureaucracy is far from the interests and living conditions of its members, based as it is on the top, privileged layers of the working class – a labor aristocracy which has no real interest in replacing capitalism. Therefore, the true struggle for the liberation of the working class, the toppling of capitalism and the establishment of socialism, must be based on the broad mass of the proletariat rather than their “representative” from the upper trade union strata. We also fight for the expropriation of the big land owners as well as for the nationalisation of the land and its distribution to the poor and landless peasants. Towards this goal we struggle for the independent organisation of the rural workers. We support national liberation movements against oppression. We also support the anti-imperialist struggles of oppressed peoples against the great powers. Within these movements we advocate a revolutionary leadership as an alternative to nationalist or reformist forces. While the RCIT strives for unity of action with other organizations, we are acutely aware that the policies of social democrats and pseudo-revolutionary groups are dangerous, and ultimately represent an obstacle to the emancipation of the working class, peasants, and the otherwise oppressed. In wars between imperialist states we take a revolutionary defeatist position: we do not support either side, but rather advocate the transformation of the war into a civil war against the ruling class in each of the warring states. In wars between imperialist powers (or their stooges) and a semi-colonial countries we stand for the defeat of the former and the victory of the oppressed countries. As communists, we maintain that the struggle against national oppression and all types of social oppression (women, youth, sexual minorities etc.) must be lead by the working class, because only the latter is capable of fomenting a revolutionarily change in society . Therefore, we consistently support working class-based revolutionary movements of the socially oppressed, while opposing the leadership of petty-bourgeois forces (feminism, nationalism, Islamism, etc.), who ultimately dance to the tune of the capitalists, and strive to replace them with revolutionary communist leadership. Only with a revolutionary party fighting as its leadership can the working class be victorious in its struggle for liberation. The establishment of such a party and the execution of a successful revolution, as it was demonstrated by the Bolsheviks in Russia under Lenin and Trotsky remain the models for revolutionary parties and revolutions in the 21st century. For new, revolutionary workers' parties in all countries! For a 5th Workers International to be founded on a revolutionary program! Join the RCIT! No future without socialism! No socialism without revolution! No revolution without a revolutionary party!
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