from Guy Debord

To Mustapha Khayati
Thursday [28 July 1966]
Dear Mustapha:

Concerning the Minimum Definition of the revolutionary organization,[1] I think that with difficulty we can make a summary -- for us, at first -- that is less abstract at a certain theoretical level. But, to the extent that we also want to cite, publish and present to the exterior what is a "summary for us" after the conference [of the situationists], can we not envision writing a commentary of, for example, three or four pages that accompanies this text and clarifies it by an historical and political argumentation, in very accessible terms?

I am reminded of something you said one evening about this form in Arab culture. Would this not be a good model to detourn? One could have the conceptual concentrate and its justification in more current language at the same time; and, by their presence together, one could also give a good methodological key for the passage from one level to the other.

This would be an example (on an important point) of an expression parallel to what we have undertaken with the [situationist] dictionary.


P.S. Yes, we have three hundred copies of the brochure ["Address to the revolutionaries of Algeria and all other countries"] with the Arabic cover (that is to say, the title that you know). You can write to Lebanon, and I wait for your instructions for sending the stock. It might encounter problems at the border because, for example, we haven't listed the address of the printer.


P.S. I have seen Donald,[2] whom I have convinced of the seriousness of our current objections concerning Anton [Harstein]. Anton went to see him, spreading a certain smoke over the whole story, and complaining of being unjustly insulted and "liquidated" (almost by a caprice of Rene [Vienet]). Donald responded to him that, if he was unjustly blamed, he certainly can demand the power to explain himself to the SI, according to a more democratic procedure. At this moment, Donald doesn't know all of the suspected contradictions accumulated by Anton over the last three weeks.

This morning, I received a letter from Anton, which exploited the good counsel of Donald. He demands to explain himself in front of the group; he is ready for a veritable self-critique; he reaffirms that not a word of denunciation will be said about our project in the works.[3]

I think that it is beyond doubt that we must accept the source. It appears to me quite clear that he will reveal himself incapable of convincing us that we can trust him again. Finally, this beginning must be materially postponed for a certain period (either the group meets or we have seen the success of our project).

[1] See the text appended to the letter of 1 August.

[2] Donald Nicholson-Smith.

[3] A project touching upon an "operation" concerning the financing of the Internationale Situationniste, which Anton Harstein risked sinking by an indiscretion on the part of his companion.

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 3, 1965-1968. Footnotes by Alice Debord. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! August 2005.)

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