China: the Struggle Within: Washington's Escalation and Vietnam's Socialist Allies in the "United Nations"

Washington's Escalation and Vietnam's
Socialist Allies in the 'United Nations'

December 31, 1971

The resumption of massive bombing over North Vietnam is a mad, Hitlerite attempt by the Pentagon and the Nixon Administration to win through air power a war they have lost in ten years of bitter fighting. They are pounding the villages and countryside of North Vietnam in a vengeful action that flies in the face of every diplomatic and political posture assumed by Washington since the Tet offensive brought about the downfall of Lyndon Johnson and the first steps toward supposedly "winding down" the war.

The unpopularity of the war among the masses in this country, as well as all over the world, and the fear within the U.S. ruling class itself that to continue the war could risk explosive revolutionary developments at home and abroad, have long been acknowledged by most of the policy planners in Washington. Why, then, this abrupt about-face that is sure to deepen the disaffection of the masses and further reveal the murderous violence at the core of American "democracy" and "free enterprise"?

Why does Washington feel emboldened to carry out such a dastardly deed, without even manufacturing another Gulf of Tonkin hoax or coming up with any kind of excuse at all?

Part of the answer lies in the unwillingness of any ruling class to accept its own defeat -- a problem that the oppressed are always going to have to deal with in shaping a correct strategy.

But besides this, there is an added reason why the most rabid adventurers in the Pentagon can at this particular time convince the generals of industry and finance that the military advantages of the bombing will outweigh the political drawbacks. They are taking advantage of the open and acrimonious split between the Soviet Union and People's China which imperialism calculates will paralyze these two allies of the Vietnamese people.

This split has nowhere been more openly aired in front of the capitalist world than in the UN during the debate on the India-Pakistan War. The two socialist countries condemned each other in the strongest language but did not, as we pointed out at the time, expose U.S. imperialism either for its long role in exacerbating the situation on the subcontinent or for its hypocrisy in calling for "peace" and a withdrawal of Indian troops from Bangla Desh while it was involved in the bloody Vietnam war.

Now the time has come when People's China could take advantage of its recent admission to the UN, and the Soviet Union could show its firm support of a beleaguered ally, by raising in that forum a resolution denouncing U.S. imperialism for this ferocious aggression. Why hasn't this been done, we ask our comrades? Why have you not branded the U.S. with just a fraction of the vehemence that you showed against each other just a few short weeks ago?

This is the question that is on the minds of the progressive workers and oppressed of the world, and this is what they want to see done by their comrades more than anything else. The main enemy of the revolution, of humanity's socialist future, of the emancipation of all the toilers, is U.S. monopoly capitalism. It has just committed a crime that is foul and cowardly if the representatives of People's China can find the breath to condemn India for aggression, when India is, despite its capitalist character, itself a nation oppressed by imperialism, then why can't you comrades, use the UN to carry on a campaign against the biggest aggressor of them all?

And the Soviet Union, which has sat on the Security Council since the UN's formation, has the power to convene that body whenever a crisis occurs. This is certainly a crisis for the Vietnamese people, and it is moreover a crisis for all whose struggles for liberation are threatened by the B-52s and fighter bombers at the disposal of the capitalist class. What possible justification is there for participating in this imperialist dominated "international" organization and not using the powers at your disposal to aid your class brothers and sisters?

This is not to say that we think the UN should intervene in Vietnam. The record of UN interventions in the Congo and Korea has always been to thwart the revolutionary aspirations of the people But if there is any justification, we repeat, for the two most powerful socialist countries to be in the UN, it would be, at the very least, to use that forum to speak out against imperialist crimes and try to rally the workers' states and the oppressed nations for a united stand in condemnation against their enemy's aggression. If they find it impossible to do this. then they should walk out of this "thieves' kitchen" in protest.

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