from Guy Debord

To Toru Tagaki[1]
28 October 1963
Dear Toru

We will be very happy if you can publish translations of several of our texts in the Japanese journal that you've mentioned to us. Thank you.

On the subject of your campaign against the positions of the Chinese: I think that you, like us, have determined that the strongest argument that reveals China's anti-revolutionary position is the recent official declaration (against Moscow) in which the Chinese government boasts that it obliged the Rusians to intervene militarily in Hungary in 1956.

I attach to this letter several items on the recent strike by Spanish miners (in the coal mines of the Asturian province). This[2] is certainly the most important event of the year for the workers' movement in Europe. (Pardon the "basic English" of this translation.)

A kind of armed opposition movement against Ben Bella has been organized in Algeria, supported by the Kabylie population, for whom the economic situation is very weak. It is difficult, without direct information, to define this movement. It is certainly founded on a popular opposition and on the discontent of many Algerian militants. But, at the same time, it is totally devoid of revolutionary programme and is controlled by several political leaders who have ambitions that are suspect (Ait Ahmed). Meanwhile, the war at the Moroccan frontier appears to be a useful diversion, in relation to the internal difficulties, as much for the reactionary power of Morocco (which this summer has thrown the entire opposition into prison) as for the "socialism" of Ben Bella. Thus, we see that, if the Arab states aren't neighbors of Israel, they directly constitute for each other the same external menace, with the same political function.

In Paris, there is a new schism (after the schism with Socialisme ou Barbarie) in the P[ouvoir] O[uvrier] group. A majority lead by Vega and [Jean-Francois] Lyotard (also Pierre Guillaume) have broken with Edouard [Taube] and Valois, for very obscure reasons, and according to procedures that are hardly democratic. My friends and I are naturally favorable to the intentions of Edouard and Valois, and in all cases absolutely against the methods and archaic conceptions of Vega. I don't believe that these comrades have lost many [militants] on the numerical plane, because it is, on the contrary, an advantage to be disencumbered by Vega and the hestitants. The loss is larger from the point of view of the struggle against the well-known conceptions of Socialisme ou Barbarie. The Edouard-Valois group can't be considered as important from this aspect of the question (from the point of view that we think that they are wrong).

Unfortunately, the comrades of this group haven't yet published a single text. But they have started to work in the direction of the workers.


[1] French text of a letter [originally] sent in "basic English."

[2] The Asturian strike.

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 2, 1960-1964. Footnotes by Alice Debord. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! April 2005.)

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