Why Do Marxists defend Wikileaks ?

Posted: February 9, 2016 in Political Views

On 4th February 2016, the UN’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention of Julian Assange was announced. Once again the case of Assange has come to centre of International news. The following interview  which was done 7 December 2010 is re-published to debate this important issue.

Why Do Marxists defend Wikileaks ?

The issue of leaking of documents by Wikileaks has been at the centre of the attention of millions of people all over the world. The leaking of controversial documents of US administration, though not very “new” amongst many of the opponents of western governments, has drawn the attention of millions of ordinary people all over the world towards their elected “leaders”. At the same time, the personal attacks (smearing campaign) against the founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, by US administration and Interpol, has clearly shown the sensitive of western governments towards this issue. Under these conditions it is evident that the Marxists should take a clear stand on this central international issue.

On Democratic Rights

The Marxists defend the democratic right of Wikileaks and its founder Julian Assange, to publish any documents regarding the “secrets” of Imperialist states. This democratic right is defended regardless of the political or ideological affiliation, or the motives of the founder of Wikileaks to leak these documents. This is a democratic right, because the elected bodies of people in different countries in the world should keep no secrets from the people who elected them. The governments should not hide anything form those who have elected them to power. The knowledge about the contents of documents is the right of the people! Anyone who has in any way attained the contents of the documents, has the right to publish the details. If there are documents which have been hidden from the people, it means that they have been stolen from them. Anyone who leaks them, is returning the stolen goods to their true owners. This cannot be a criminal or dishonest action. This activity has to be defended.

Is the US administration ‘defender of Democracy’?

The opponents of Wikileaks, in the US administration, argue that, by leaking the documents, Wikileaks has endangered the lives of some people. This is far from the truth. There has not been one document indicating that the life or lives of any person has been endangered by the leaking these documents. In fact it is the leaders of US administration are the ones who in the past have endangered the lives of their CIA agents by exposing their true name and field of activities, for the reason of internal political differences with them (refer to case of Valerie Plame Wilson and Dick Cheney).

The issue of Wikileaks, in fact makes a mockery of all the US administration’s talk about bringing “democracy” to the “underdeveloped” countries by its military interventions (recently in Iraq and Afghanistan). How can a state bring democracy to others when it cannot tolerate the democratic rights of citizen for publishing some documents (which after all have been well known facts and according to reports some 3 million US citizens have had access to it)?

Lets expose all secret dealings

The 250,000 documents which are going to be ‘leaked’ by Wikileaks is a positive move and must be defended. But it is not adequate. These are mainly known documents and evidence on diplomatic relations between the US administration and other states. What is needed by millions of people all over the world, is not only transparency on the diplomatic level, but also complete openness of international economic and commercial levels too. The people of the world want to know why the European governments which have imposing “austerity” measures by cutting most of the social gains in the societies (education, pension, health etc), spend millions of dollars on wars? Where that money comes from and who decides which country has to be occupied and which state has to be helped or which to be toppled? The people of the world want to know why these governments helped and bailed out the major international banks, after their disastrous performance two years ago? Why there is money to save the banks, but there is no money to safeguard a pensioner or to provide a decent education for the children of working class?

The working class need to know why their factories close down and they become unemployed? Why the states do not resolve the unemployment problem by reducing the number of working hours? Unless all documents, and economic secrets are not transparent and open, there is no justice.

What is the alternative?

It is obvious that the present western states will not open the commercial and economic books. It is obvious that they do not even want to see some general and harmless diplomatic comments to be published by sites such as Wikileaks. By attacking Wikileaks they are trying not only to punish Julian Assange, but to teach the others a lesson who may dare to do similar activities in future. They are not afraid of people like Assange, their main concern is when these demands become generalized by millions of the workers all over the world. They are scared of the increase of level consciousness and the growth of discontent in the world scale amongst the working masses of people. These objections by the masses could certainly lead to upsurges and even revolutions to topple these leaders who are not really the representative of the people.

It is clear that the alternative is the replacement of these states by genuine democratic states. In our epoch the fight for democracy is not separated from the struggle for socialism. Preparation for the socialist revolution is the only alternative way forward!

Maziar Razi
7 December 2010

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