Sunday 15 October, Lalit's International Commission had a one-day seminar on the orientation of Lalit's international work, and the responsibility of parties like Lalit to develop forms of internationalism.
Over the 30 year's of Lalit's existence, we have developed links with many of the different left political currents in the world. In particular, we have had working relationships, in terms of shared publications with the Democratic Socialist Party of Australia, WOSA of South Africa, the United Secretariat of the Fourth International, the Open World Conference (in particular its Western USA part), the Lutte Ouvriere current in both France and Reunion and the Socialist Workers' Party in the UK. We have also worked at different levels on the political implications of military bases (hence our membership of the International Organizing Committee of the "No Bases Conference", on political support for the Palestinian struggle, against imperialist wars, and on regional solidarity like through the Asia Pacific International Solidarity Conference.
We discussed the importance of developing a more "political" way of looking at changing the world, especially in the context of the Southern African region, where "social" movements tend to replace the political challenge, instead of re-enforcing it. Just because political organization is extremely difficult in many countries (including South Africa), we discussed, does not mean that we should not always keep in mind the need for political debate, political programs and a political organization. In Other words, we have to continue at the quest of a shared understanding of the political tasks. This also involves inventing new forms of political struggle, that are not just electoral, but consciously political in other ways, in particular, in ways that change the balance of forces. Otherwise, there is a tendency for existing militants (Marxist or other) to see themselves as the last ever, if they fail to take responsibility for organizing the reproduction of the hard-earned traditions of thinking politically and acting politically for change.
We also discussed the importance of convincing other political organizations of the need for an on-going political campaign to close down military bases. This way of attacking militarism is more effective than waiting for war to be declared and then organizing huge demonstrations that can otherwise turn out to be like fire in a cane field, in the sense that they are spectacular and to little effect. We will share with those close to us our political reasons for participating in the "close the bases down" campaign. The use of the base at Guantanamo for otherwise illegal exactions is an indicator of the importance of getting all bases closed.
The strength of the opposition to the US-supported Israeli invasion of Lebanon, should be able to be built on, to prepare international opposition to the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and the crimes against humanity being committed in Gaza.