Max Shachtman

We Are Counting on You for Aid

(January 1933)

From The Militant, Vol. VI No. 1, 7 January 1933, p. 1.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

The danger that we may be compelled to suspend the publication of the Militant as a weekly must arouse the deepest concern of every friend of the Left Opposition in the country and impel him to prompt action. We have thus far been able to maintain the Militant by means of the most strenuous sacrifices. And that was the only way, because while the world crisis has laid bare the bankruptcy of the present social order and given a great impulsion to the revolutionary progress of the working class, it has also deprived it of the financial means with which to sustain it. We are not threatened with this retreat because the Left Opposition is losing ground in the United States. Quite the contrary. Our influence and prestige are greater at the present time than ever before; our views, stubbornly advocated for years in the face of countless obstacles, are verified by the events of every new day. The threat comes from the fact that the ravages of unemployment have so drastically affected our own comrades that those upon whom we could once rely for substantial and systematic contributions are far less, or not at all, able to make them today.

This does not mean for one moment that the situation is hopeless. It only means that the task of preserving the weekly Militant must be shouldered by a much greater number of comrades and friends. When we make the appeal for speedy assistance, it should be borne in mind that the Militant is our principal mouthpiece on a national scale, and not merely on a national scale, for it has been of signal aid to the young and sturdy Bolshevik-Leninist movements in Canada, in England, in South Africa and China. It is our main organizer, for where the weakness of our movement prevents us from sending a suitable comrade for work, we know that the Militant can be relied upon to present the Opposition standpoint to the most distant localities. It is our main educational center, for its columns teach those great historical principles of revolutionary Marxism which have been so dramatically verified by the history of the last two decades, and it teaches them not only in the light of the past, but in connection with the living unfoldment of events week by week. Moreover, the Militant constitutes that hub from which radiate the spokes of our other activities and enterprises: the organ of the Opposition youth, Young Spartacus; the organ of the Yiddish-speaking Oppositionists, Unser Kamf; the organ of our Greek-speaking comrades, Kommunistis. Should the hub be smashed, the spokes would be left hanging limply in the air just as surely as the hub would fail to turn the wheel without well-connected spokes.

We have not been derelict in our efforts to maintain the weekly at all costs, because we are aware of the heavy blow that our movement would be struck by its collapse. We are confident that the same knowledge and spirit will animate all our friends to exert themselves to the utmost, to contribute generously in our present drive to save the Militant. The drive is Point One on the order of the day until the danger to the Militant is overcome. An early contribution is a double contribution, and we are anxious not to protract the campaign. The work that demands doing well will not permit it.

Therefore, every shoulder to the wheel, every comrade to his post. We are counting on our friends to carry us over the hump, to save the weekly Militant from collapse!

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Last updated on 5 February 2015