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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 4/9/12

Rosa Luxemburg: The Case for a Mass Workers' Strike

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Message Lenore Daniels



The situation to state it briefly is this: The [SPD] Executive and the General Commission [of the Trade Unions] have already considered the mass strike, and after lengthy negotiations it was defeated by the resistance of the General Commission"The masses themselves ought to decide, but it is our duty to present the pros and cons, the general line of argument. I therefore am counting on you to give your support here [in this matter] and to run the articles without delay.

Rosa Luxemburg, "Letter to Konrad Haenisch," [Friedenau, before March 14, 1910 ], The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg, 2011


When it came to class struggle, Rosa Luxemburg was uncompromising. She did not use her position within the German Social Democratic Party (SPD) for social or material advancement. She was no opportunist seeking political inclusion in the German government as was the case with several key leaders of the SPD. Luxemburg was Luxemburg--no pantsuits or a seat on the right (or Left) hand side of State power.


Critical critiques examining the motives of contemporary socialists (Marxist) was for her part of being an engaged citizen (let alone activist) as opposed to a robot with the mentality of the Freikorp soldiers who followed orders, arrested and eventually shot her dead in January, 1919.


Before the "fateful question" of the First World War arose in which Luxemburg witnessed Germany socialism and international socialism undergoing a crisis of commitment to the principles of Marxism ("Letter to Karl Moor, [Sudende], October 12, 1914," The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg, 2011). [1] Luxemburg warned of the SPD's turn away from the class struggle. The workers, suffering, are agitated and they want to see change by their own actions--en-mass.


Where is the SPD?


Where, echoes Rosa Luxemburg, is the SPD?


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Dr. Lenore J. Daniels, Black Commentator, Editorial Board and Columnist, Doctorate in Modern American Literature/Cultural Theory
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