Some of our readers may have come across a text which has been circulating for a few weeks entitled "Prise de position sur l'evolution recente du CCI”. This text, by Raoul Victor (RV), a long-standing militant who broke with the ICC just over a year ago, is a charge-sheet against our organisation. It is prompted by the following considerations: "(...) it is impossible to remain silent in the face of the ICC's extremely serious accusations against one of its long-standing militants, and of the dangerous degeneration of one of the main organisations of the proletarian political milieu".
Given the gravity of such accusations, whose lengthy "proof” is full of lies and distortions while at the same time pretending to give a coherent theoretical and political explanation for the ICC's "degeneration", we have decided to publish this text in full, with our reply, in the form of a pamphlet. We therefore refer our readers to this pamphlet for a detailed response to what we consider a veritable declaration of war on the ICC. It is all the more important that we respond in detail and at length to such a "manifesto", inasmuch as its accusations have an appearance of legitimacy, coming as they do from an experienced militant who claims to explain what has led him to "take his distance from an organisation to whose construction he has devoted more than 30 years of his life". RV is obviously trying to lend some credibility to his thesis of the ICC's "degeneration" by suggesting that there is an analogy between Stalinism and the "persecution" that he has suffered in the organisation. In this brief notice, we simply want to make a few remarks on this text, which is a striking contribution to the present campaign by groups and elements of the parasitic milieu to denounce the ICC1, and more generally to an offensive aimed at discrediting the proletarian political milieu and distorting the heritage of the internationalist Left Communist current2.
As RV says himself, when he "broke with the ICC”, he put forward "ONE essential reason": the fact that during the period preceding this "break", the organisation considered that his positions in the debate within the organisation were dictated by an attitude that made him the "spokesman" for JJ3. On reading his text, we would say the same - in spades. JJ has, with good reason, carefully avoided trying to defend himself against the ICC's supposedly slanderous and false accusations against him, he has succeeded in delegating his ''friends'', RV foremost amongst them, to "shed light" on the "affair", and to denounce the ICC in public. JJ could have no better advocate than RV, a "founding member" of the ICC, a comrade whose reputation for honesty, probity, and militant commitment has spread far beyond the ICC. Having taken him under his influence for years, JJ knew full well that RV would move heaven and earth to formulate the "theoretical and political" reasons to whitewash him. Whether he likes it or not, our ex-comrade RV has proven with his text that he has become JJ's "parrot". His text is essentially an unconditional defence of JJ. RV serves up the "arguments" of JJ and those close to him on the justification for his anti-organisational behaviour, his passion and proselytising for esotericism, the supposed "abandonment by the ICC of one of its fundamental conceptions in favour of a "Lenintst" conception better adapted to the spirit of the sect".
To justify JJ's efforts to spread esoteric ideas, for example, RV adopts the "argument" of JJ (who has always refused to take position clearly on the incompatibility between marxism and any esoteric theory), that "marxism claims neither to have explained everything, nor to exclude all other forms of knowledge". He maintains a complete silence on the mysticism implied by such enthusiasm, which is completely foreign to marxism, not to mention the total condemnation of such "theories" by the workers' movement, especially the left, throughout its history. And once RV has brushed aside the antagonism between marxism and esoteric theory, he can reduce to mere "maladroitness" JJ's half-hidden proselytism within the organisation. He concludes that this is nothing but a "paranoid fable of the ICC”. We should nonetheless remember that during the ICC's 11th Congress, RV voted for the resolution excluding JJ, on the grounds that this element's behaviour had been "unworthy of a communist militant". RV today, under the pressure of JJ, is a turncoat who offers his approval to the behaviour that he himself condemned yesterday.
To defend JJ against the "ICC's very serious attacks against one of its long-standing militants", RV abruptly reveals, in introducing his text, the ICC's hypothesis that JJ may have been a state agent infiltrated into the organisation. We have published this hypothesis neither in the notice in our press on JJ's exclusion, nor in our external interventions on the question. Still less have we made any mention of the concrete facts which led us to such a grave hypothesis. For two years, we have urged JJ to appeal to a jury of honour made up from organisations of the proletarian political milieu, so that they could judge his case and pronounce on the accusations levelled against him; JJ himself has done his utmost to prevent any possibility that such a jury of honour might take place4 We have given our dossier on the JJ case to organisations and to certain individuals within the milieu, asking them for their opinion as to how the ICC had conducted its enquiry, and on some of its conclusions. We have offered to show the dossier to JJ himself - a proposal to which he has made no reply. RV gives not a jot for such precautions. He simply spreads out to public view the most serious aspect of the JJ dossier! Such an attitude says much about the dilapidated state of RV's "political reflection", but the lie that accompanies this attitude says still more. RV presents JJ's passion for esotericism as the basis for the ICC's "fabricating" this hypothesis. Certainly an adherence to and propaganda for Masonic ideology and behaviour do not belong in the workers' movement, and are part of the arsenal of the bourgeoisie. But this was not the only element in the case. We should also point out that within the ICC, JJ engaged in a whole series of manoeuvres, manipulations, and destructive behaviour. Above all, there is the known fact that a person in JJ's immediate entourage has worked, and may still work, for the state services that specialise in the political domain - a fact which JJ kept quiet about for 20 years. RV has nothing to say about this "detail". RV tried from the outset to throw the most disgusting suspicion on the ICC's attitude, by encouraging the rumour spread by some that "the ICC denounces state agents as soon as a disagreement appears"5. Faced with such irresponsibility, the ICC has no choice but to make the whole JJ dossier public, including its most delicate aspects. This we will do in the weeks to come, so that our readers may judge for themselves the validity of the ICC's behaviour in this affair.
RV has chosen to join the camp of those who denounce the ICC and its supposed "paranoia": "this adjective "paranoiac”, which the ICC has so methodically managed to have bestowed on it by all those who have been in contact with it and its press in recent times, and have not fallen for its diseased view of the world". Obviously, it never occurs to RV that not "all those who have been in contact" with the ICC have necessarily found that the ICC is "paranoiac". But perhaps they have "fallen for its diseased view of the world"? This theme of "paranoia", put forward by JJ, is one of the text's most developed aspects, and its recurrent theme, like a litany. A few samples: "a completely crazy conception of the organisation", "collective paranoia", "the wind of madness", "the diseased swelling of insane imaginations", "all this lunatic inquisition", etc. RV even delivers a lesson in psychiatry to puff up his "analysis" by describing very didactically all the attributes of "paranoia". As a worthy disciple of JJ, RV has perhaps become a subtle psychologist, and serves us up the lessons he has learned in the dictionary on the meaning of the words "paranoia" or "sect". At all events, he has become a wretched marxist. He makes a travesty of the facts; he sweeps aside with disdain the theoretical and political arguments of the ICC; he ignores the entire experience of the workers' movement on the organisation question, and takes his arguments from the most banal anti-Leninism; he redefines the proletarian political milieu; he revises the analysis of the present historical period, etc. We will refute RV's "theoretical arguments" in future issues of the International Review.
Where is the militant who defended in writing and in speech the proletarian nature of the Russian Revolution and the Bolshevik party during the years when the ICC regrouped and formed in the 1970s at a time when so many groups still indulged one way or another in an infantile rejection of October 1917, Lenin, and the Bolshevik Party, in the name of the rejection of Stalinism? Disappeared. Where is the unshakeable militant, who declared - in his own terms - that "a crane wouldn't get him out of the organisation"? Gone away. RV has sold his soul to JJ, who has to all appearances become his mental inspiration.
1On parasitism, see "The political strengthening of the ICC" in this issue, as well as our articles in the territorial press.
2See International Review no.8, "Campaigns against "Negationism"".
3See also "The political strengthening of the ICC". The organisation was compelled to exclude JJ two years ago. The exclusion and its reasons were published in the organisation's press.
4See "The Jury of Honour: a weapon for the defence of revolutionary organisations", in World Revolution.
5A speciality of the late CBG in particular, and of its leader Ingram, who only awakes from slumber to pour poison on the ICC.