SP puts ‘radicalized attic room communists’ out of the party

The Socialist Party has recently expelled six members from the party. According to the Party Summit, these are radicalised communists who โ€œwant to take over the partyโ€. But according to the SP members in question, there is a witch hunt on members who criticize the course of the party.

โ€œ Every discussion is turned around,โ€ says Olaf Kemerink. Like Gus Ootjers, he was disbarred as a member. โ€œBecause of alleged membership of another political party, namely the Communist Platform and Marxist Forum. The party administration says they are political parties, but we do not agree with that.โ€

According to Kemerink and Ootjers, these are โ€œpressure groups with a classic Marxist approachโ€ that operate within the party. โ€œThere should be room for multiple currents within the SP. But by labeling these groups as a political party, there is an excuse to expel people with different opinions.โ€

‘Radicalised attic room communists

The party administration calls the Communist Platform and the Marxist Forum โ€œin all respectsโ€ political parties. โ€œThese groups have their own ideology, programme, governance, meetings and decision-making,โ€ says Arnout Hoekstra, the general secretary of the SP.

The SP says not to accept double membership. โ€œThe statutes are very clear about that. Nor do we accept that a handful of radicalized attic-chamber communists try to take over our party,โ€ says Hoekstra. โ€œIf you want to participate in the elections yourself, you have to create a party yourself.โ€

The Communist Platform has been around for a long time, but according to the SP Board, it has recently taken a different direction. โ€œPreviously, it was a small group of communists who discussed Marxist books. But in recent months they have started organizing themselves more and trying to bind larger groups to themselves.โ€

The views of the group are quite radical, says Hoekstra. โ€œThey say really scary things. They want to arm the population in order to engage in civil war. We do not accept that. We will not allow them to use our party to call for that.โ€

SP willing to take a step to the right

According to the disbarred members, the party administration has another reason to set up the Communist Platform as a political party. This is the criticism of the SP‘s desire to co-rule after the next elections and the fact that party leader Lillian Marijnissen does not exclude cooperation with the VVD.

โ€œ At the General Assembly of Members of RED, the youth department of the SP, a motion was passed against government participation. That’s pretty shocked Marijnissen. It was then attributed to Communist Platform,โ€ says Kemerink. โ€œSubsequently, the eligibility as a party and the royalties followed.โ€

โ€œ The party is ready to take a step to the right for government participation,โ€ says Ootjers. โ€œClassic views are increasingly being pushed away. If this is accompanied by attacks on critical members, it seems clear to me that it is the desire to become salonfรคhig and engage in government participation.โ€

‘My heart is still at the SP’

At this time, the SP board does not expect more royalties to follow. Kemerink and Ootjers are sorry they are no longer members. โ€œMy heart is still with the SPโ€, says Kemerink. โ€œWe prefer to come backโ€, adds Ootjers. The two appeal the disbarment.

Kemerink had a good chance to become a member of the board of ROOD, says the current chairman Arno van der Veen. โ€œIt has a major impact on RED that a serious administrative candidate is suddenly disbarred, without consulting evidence and without adversarial.โ€

As the objection procedure is still ongoing, the board of ROOD considers it too radical to deny Kemerink his candidacy. Therefore, he can still be elected next Sunday if the Red members elect the new board.