SEP (Australia) June 23 online lecture

The ICFI and the war against Pabloism

The Socialist Equality Party (Australia) will hold an online lecture this Tuesday, June 23, on the role played by the protracted struggle against Pabloite opportunism in the development of the socialist and internationalist perspective advanced by the world Trotskyist movement.

The lecture will review the international political context of the emergence of Pabloism, a national-opportunist tendency within the Fourth International. This included the suppression of revolutionary struggles of the working class by the Stalinist bureaucracies in the wake of World War II and a capitalist boom established on the basis of the rise to global preeminence of American capitalism.

Pabloism, named after its founder Michel Pablo, attacked the fundamental perspective that had been advanced by Leon Trotsky and upon which the Russian Revolution had been carried out. Pablo and his supporters rejected Trotsky’s characterisation of Stalinism as counter-revolutionary through and through, instead envisaging a process of “bureaucratic self-reform.”

In practice, this meant the liquidation of the sections of the Fourth International and their entry into the “existing mass movements,” regardless of whether they were led by Stalinism, social-democratic or openly right-wing forces. This program expressed the rejection by layers of the middle class of bedrock conceptions of Marxism, including the revolutionary role of the working class and the necessity for the construction of an independent revolutionary leadership.

The lecture will outline the significance of the “Open Letter” issued by James P Cannon in November, 1953. It rallied Trotskyists internationally to a struggle against Pabloite revisionism and established the International Committee of the Fourth International, which today publishes the WSWS.

The lecture will be delivered by Zac Hambides, a member of the SEP (Australia) national committee.

The event, which is part of a series of six weekly lectures, is on the Zoom platform at 7 p.m. (Australian Eastern Standard Time), June 23. To participate, download the app or join on a web browser, and click on this link before the lecture begins: