There is opposition in India to the brutal occupation of Kashmir (many are among my Facebook friends) but there is no organized opposition with any influence, authority, or national scope that can publicly challenge the occupation & stand with Kashmiris although there were solidarity protests in India with Palestinians & with the Rohingya. This lack of an anti-colonial movement is a monumental problem for Kashmiris & for Muslims & oppressed castes in India. Such a movement would decisively alter the relationship of forces so that the Modi regime would be forced to withdraw troops, not send more in & make Kashmir what the NY Times calls “the most dangerous place in the world.” Unfortunately, the lack of such a movement also means there is no powerful political counterforce to the growth of fascism in Indian politics.

Given the corrupt & moribund state of the antiwar, immigrant rights, & other social movements in this country, I do not say that with hauteur & in an accusatory spirit but with deep concern. The Indian progressive movement has sustained some of the same debilitating influences as the movements in the US, Europe, Latin America, & other global regions, most regrettably the amalgam & influence of Stalinism & Assadism with all that “US regime-change operation” & self-determination for a dictator crap.

Understanding this political phenomenon is essential to resolving it. That necessary analysis is not helped by organizational squabbling like that foolish Kautsky vs Lenin debate rather than the politics of war, occupation, genocide. May I remind them that Marx said, ‘the point is not to interpret the world but to change it’? In many ways, social media provides us an opportunity to have these discussions of what went wrong, what are the underlying dynamics of the degeneration, what can we do to reverse it, but they must begin with discussion of what is happening to the oppressed rather than what organizational form is most preferable for Lilliputian grouplets. The only organizational form we should be talking about is how to form a coordinated international movement to stand in active solidarity with Palestinians, Kashmiris, Rohingya, Uyghur, Syrians, Afghans, Iraqis, Yemenis, Somalis, Libyans, refugees from wherever they are, & those suffering inequality & injustice wherever they are. That is not an anti-intellectual or anti-theoretical view but an assertion that what is primary is standing with the oppressed, not looking smarter than everybody else in the room.