The Wenatchee World

Weather:

Weather

The latest extended forecast from The Weather Channel

Remove this weather forecast

Tonight

Lo74° Breezy

Tuesday

Hi98° Hot

Tuesday Night

Lo70° Clear

Wednesday

Hi99° Hot

Wednesday Night

Lo72° Clear

Thursday

Hi103° Hot

Thursday Night

Lo75° Clear

Friday

Hi102° Hot

Friday Night

Lo67° Clear

Independence Day

Hi102° Hot

The Cold War’s final episode?

Send to Kindle
Print This

One hundred years ago this coming Aug. 4, the day Britain declared war on Germany, socialists in the German Reichstag voted for credits to finance the war. Marxists — including Lenin, who that day was in what now is Poland — were scandalized. Marx had preached that the proletariat has no fatherland, only a transnational class loyalty to proletarians everywhere. “In 1918,” wrote Louis Fischer, Lenin’s best biographer, “patriotism and nationalism, born of the ‘subjectivism’ Lenin so disliked, were ideological crimes in Soviet Russia.”

These are history-shaping virtues in Ukraine today. Because the nation-state is the necessary framework for durable political liberty, nationalism is a necessary, although insufficient, impulse sustaining liberty. Marx, whose prophesies were perversely predictive because they were almost invariably wrong, predicted the end of nationalism. Economic forces, he said, determine political, cultural and psychological realities. So capitalism, with its borders-leaping cosmopolitanism, would dilute to the point of disappearance all emotional attachments to nations. Ukraine’s ferment is an emphatic, albeit redundant, refutation of Marxism.

View my options or Sign in