Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism: A Review

American progressives have been desperate lately that their cries merely echo through a wilderness, but now comes Andre Vltchek’s latest book, Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism to magnify our voices.

As a Russian born but Western raised ‘professional expat’, Vltchek has spent his life covering the world’s tragedies, in film and word, until he can no longer bear the pain. As revealed by a series of short takes written over the last few years, Vltchek’s only hope is the energetic optimism that animates revolutionaries the world over. I was privileged to observe that phenomena in early sixties Cuba, as was at other periods, Vltchek. But Andre has also seen and documented the horrors of empire across our troubled world, over and over again until cry out he must.

Remembering how Hugo Chavez was vilified in the name of politeness for mocking George W. Bush at the UN in 2006, he warns:

Well, that is not how real revolutions have been ignited. This is not how the successful anti-colonialist wars are fought. When the real battle begins, ‘politeness’ is actually mostly unacceptable, simply because the oppressed masses are endlessly pissed off, and they want their feelings to be registered and expressed forcefully by the leaders. Even the search for ‘objectivity’ is often out of place, when still fragile revolutions have to face the entire monumental hostile propaganda of the regime (of the Empire), as well as foreign sponsored ‘opposition’,…

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