Re: [OPE] The Financial Times says the Left haven't got a clue

From: paul bullock (
Date: Thu Mar 27 2008 - 18:47:48 EDT


I wasn't prescribing an 'answer'... I asked a question. Nevertheless there 
seems to me no doubt that ww1 and ww2 were inter imperialist wars... for 
germany and japan their own accumulation of capital required huge new 
markets and opportunities for investment.... they saw only one way out.. 
war.. the extension of diplomacy by other means..

You mistakenly infer a automatic and mechanical  form of explanation from my 
question. In the case of Cambodia, no one can forget the statement that the 
USA would bomb it back to the Stoneage for its essentially passive role in 
Vietnamese logistical operations in its national liberation struggle. Why 
was US imperialism commiting genocide in SE Asia? Did that 'system' not see 
the raw materials ( vide Eisenhowers famous comments on Vietnam) , and 
future territoral operations for its accumulation  of capital, as essential? 
Clearly the general shape of conflicts is formed , if not always directly 
specified , by  each of the imperialist powers forcing themselves forward at 
the expense of weaker nations and where necessary other imperialist 

... or should i take refuge in theories of accident, lunatic politicians, 
communications failure, the essentially aggressive nature of homo sapiens, 
and other tripe, for  millions of deaths over huge territories?

Paul Bullock.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Dave Zachariah" <>
To: "Outline on Political Economy mailing list" <>
Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2008 12:22 PM
Subject: Re: [OPE] The Financial Times says the Left haven't got a clue

> paul bullock wrote:
>> why do you think that inter imperialist conflicts including war are not 
>> 'necessary' for the system? What other explanations do you have for  all 
>> the wars of the 20th Century.... types of 'unecessary' causes?
> and Jerry wrote:
>> My point was that a World War is not necessary for the resolution of the
>> _current_ economic crisis.
> To say that imperialist wars are 'necessary' for the resolution of 
> capitalist economic crises is an extreme form of functionalism. I think 
> that the causal mechanisms that it postulates have little evidence. I 
> cannot see any meaningful way to say that World Wars I and II were 
> necessary for capitalist economies. WWI in particular was a result of 
> imperialist rivalries for sure, but it is quite a leap to say it was 
> 'necessary for the system'.
> I agree with Jerry that *all* the wars of the 20th century were certainly 
> not imperialist. In that case the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia that 
> ended the genocidal Khmer Rogue regime would have been an 'imperialist 
> policy', something I find ridiculous.
> //Dave Z
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