What is the Third Square?
The Third Square (Arabic: الميدان الثالث) is an Egyptian political movement created by liberal, leftist and moderate Islamist activists who reject both Muslim Brotherhood and military rule following the 2013 Egyptian coup d’état.
The movement first appeared when the Egyptian defence minister, General Abdul Fattah al-Sisi, called for mass demonstrations on 26 July 2013 to grant his forces a “mandate” to crack down on “terrorism”, which was seen as contradicting the military’s pledges to hand over power to civilians after removing Mr. Morsi and as an indication for an imminent crackdown against Islamists. The announcement by General Al-Sisi was rejected by a number of political groups that had initially supported the military coup, such as the revolutionary April 6 Youth Movement, the moderate Strong Egypt Party, the Salafi Al-Nour Party and Egyptian Human Rights groups.
However, the problem I still have is that if you argue that workers intervnetion is alright up to a point, but given our weaknesses at the moment, there is a limit to what they can achieve, you still end up with the “Something Must Be Done” argument. The point is that sometimes doing nothing other than what you can do, which might simply be saying what should be done if workers had the power to do it, is better than doing something, which is a lesser evil.
For example, a while ago, I wrote some blogs about the AWL’s position taken from Albert Glotzer about the establishment of the state of Israel. Glotzer & Immigration, Glotzer & The Jews As Special, and Glotzer, anti-Semitism and the degenerated workers state. Glotzer argued that the socialist position argued up to that time that nationalist struggles were reactionary and divisive of the working class could no longer hold for the Jews after the Holocaust. Jews could not wait for the working-class to come together and resolve the problem. Only the Zionist idea of creeating a separate Jewish State could address the immediate concerns of Jews. Something had to be done. It was a moral not a Marxist argument. (more…)
Some features from the Alliance for Workers Liberty, some new, some from the archive, below the fold. I have already included some of these in my From the Archive of Struggle series, but, hey, you can’t have too much of a good thing! Also, further down, a small number of other articles, including Eric Lee on Trotsky and some recent pieces from Against the Current.
1. Hal Draper’s piece on Israel posted by angelus novus at Contested Terrain (and linked to here) has prompted a very thoughtful, intelligent response by Mira Vogel, posted at Engage and Greens Engage, two excellent British left-wing anti-racist sites.
2. Larry Gambone has a couple of recent articles of interest, most notably his dissection of the myth of Lenin’s “libertarian” State and Revolution (a myth that Draper contributed to).
3. Via Bermuda Radical (a bit Pabloite for my liking), I came across Sebastian Lamb’s critique of J Sakai and his theory of “settler” racism – useful.
5. Principia Dialectica lay into Amadeo Bordiga and his cult here.
Below the fold: From the archive of struggle, no.22
Yes, I know there are more important things going on in the world today, but here are some tidbits from the history of struggle. From the archive of struggle, no.9.
- UK: Sean Malgamna on Gerry Healey and the failure of British Trotskyism 
- UK/US: Sean Matgamna on Shachtmanism 
- UK: Ray Challinor on class war in the Blitz 
- US/global: Trotsky and CLR James in debate 
- Scotland/Spain: Stan Crooke on Scottish volunteers in the Spanish Civil War (review of Daniel Gray’s Homage to Caledonia 
- US: Norman Birnbaum on C Wright Mills 
- Netherlands: An eyewitness account of Henk Sneevliet’s execution in a Nazi prison 
- US: Fred Hart on Stalinism and Negro intellectuals 
- France/UK: John McNair on the birth of the PSOP [1938, in French]
- Mexico/France/global:Alfred Rosmer on Julian Gorkin’s account of Trotsky’s murder 
- US: Luke Tripp on the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement (DRUM) 
- Spain: Interview with a CNT militant from the Seville shipyards 
Many via Entdinlichung.
Splendid stuff, from Shiraz Socialist
[From the archive of struggle, no.3]
Excellent round-up at Entdinglichung. Highlights:
- Daniel De Leon: Die Prinzipienerklärung der I.W.W. (1905) [MIA]
- Victor Serge: A New International (1944) [MIA]
And, from the reading list:
- James Boggs: The American Revolution: Pages From a Negro Worker’s Notebook
- Hal Draper: Die zwei Seelen des Sozialismus
- Victor Serge: Die sechzehn Erschossenen. Zu den Moskauer Prozessen
- Workers’ Liberty: Factory bulletins in the 1920s and today