A Free Retriever’s Digest July-Sept. 2020

From the Editor

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Dear reader,

With this issue we intend to emphasize our aim of stimulating necessary discussions among proletarian internationalists of diverse origins and with often diverging points of departure, views or analyses.

Firstly, we present the special issue of its theoretical organ D-M-D’ by the Istituto Onorato Damen (I.O.D.), which takes a comprehensive approach to the crisis of capitalism, at present famously obscured by the so-called ‘corona-virus crisis’; its manifold consequences and the questions the political minorities of proletarian internationalists are confronted with. ‘The Crisis is not Viral but Capitalist’ introduce their contributions that need translation from Italian for a larger debate. This is followed up by a brief presentation of the Institute’s long term project. The back-cover article ‘The Corona-Virus and the Communists Today’, taken from this special issue, sets forth their vision on the actual tasks and responsibilities of pro- letarian internationalists and their proposition for an open debate.

Secondly, we present several newly emerging initiatives, some of which with an explicitly council communist orientation:
• Correspondence from Iraq and Russia, highlighting the difficulties of recent and actual struggles their realm;
• A critique of two council communist initiatives on the ‘Left-Wing communism’ blog.

As a follow-up to the publications and presentations of G.I.C. texts in this review, we have included the latter’s Theses on revolutionary enterprise nuclei, party and dictatorship (1932) in the historical documents section, showing the vision of the role and function of revolutionary minorities the G.I.C. had arrived at in the course of their critique of the traditional expressions of the workers’ struggle, trade unionism (syndicalism) and the ‘leader-’ (or mass) parties that – henceforth – had become obsolete.

In the same vein, we relate one of the very rare echoes we have encountered on the new language editions of the G.I.C.’s main work ‘Fundamental Principles of Communist Production and Distribution’ (1935) that we have amply announced on the blog and in previous issues of this review. Sadly, the Antonie Pannekoek Archives have testified of their rather defiant stance. Its appeal and a correspondence we had at this occasion are concluded with here by a commentary of ours.

Last but not least, we continue the multipart article apropos of the Corona-virus pandemic ‘Capitalism,Wars and Epidemics’ from the Pantopolis blog, with its chapter on the development and use of pathogens for biological warfare: ‘Imperialism and the War of Microbes’.
Due to an overflow of recent articles and publications, this issue is the first one without its usual Selected Articles & News Feeds section. We hope to make up for this in a supplement, envisaged in the course of this summer.

Hoping this issue provides interesting contributions for discussions, we call upon our readers to send in their appreciations.


Internationalist regards, Henry Cinnamon (editor).

AFRD July-Sept. 2020

A Free Retriever’s Digest July-Sept. 2020

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