First Published: Canadian Worker, Special, October 1970
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Malcolm and Paul Saba
Copyright: This work is in the Public Domain under the Creative Commons Common Deed. You can freely copy, distribute and display this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit the Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line as your source, include the url to this work, and note any of the transcribers, editors & proofreaders above.
The bosses’ French and English language newspapers, La Presse and Montreal Star, published on August 15 leading articles on two terrorists in their magazines Perspectives and Weekend Magazine. The articles were based on an interview with two former members of the terrorist FLQ (Front de Liberation du Quebec). In April 1969, when terrorist Pierre-Paul Geoffroy was imprisoned,these two young men, “impatient with the unsuccessful bombing tactics of the FLQ, went to Jordan in the Middle-East to get military training and learn the art of “selective assassination” so that on their return to Quebec, they could “really begin by killing the prime minister, but obviously that’s not possible, so we’ll begin by getting some of those who’ve already been aimed at. For example, the head of a syndicate who is really nothing but a stooge for the bosses. We have our eye on a few others who will be tops on the list”.
But these terrorists have nothing in common with Lenin, Stalin and Mao! As early as 1902 Lenin waged a relentless struggle against the “Socialist Revolutionaries” in Russia who wanted to “revise” Marxism and include terrorism as a means of political struggle in their programme, believing that terrorism compels people to think politically, even against their will or that “more effectively than months of verbal propaganda it is capable of changing the views of thousands of people with regard to the revolutionaries and the meaning of their activity. Here is what Lenin said of the ”Socialist revolutionaries”:
The Socialist-Revolutionaries cannot find enough praise of the great “agitational” effect of political assassinations, about which there is so much whispering both in the drawing rooms of the liberals and in the taverns of the common people...
We, however, consider that the only events that can have a real and serious “agitational” (stimulating), and not only stimulating but also (and this is far more important) educational, effect are events which are born of the sentiments of the masses and not staged “for a special purpose” by one organisation or another.
It is against our principles to terrorise the bourgeoisie by means of individual, stealthy acts of violence. Let us leave such “deeds” to the notorious terrorist elements. We must come out openly against the bourgeoisie, we must keep it in a state of fear all the time, until final victory is achieved! And for this we need not economic terrorism, but a strong mass organisation which will be capable of leading the workers into struggle.
It is not surprising that the FLQ bombings did not “mobilise” the working class. On the contrary, it was the working people that got bombed and scared (see Canadian Worker, Vol. 2, No. 5, July, 1970; remember the mail boxes with bombs). Terrorists are isolated from the people; this isolation leads them to despise the working class and resort to individual “combat”. The new gimmick of “selective assassination” will also fail in the same way. The new “justification” that the terrorists make is that their terror keeps the bosses in fear. They are mistaken! The bosses class has the whole army and the police force to protect them from few terrorists. The bosses know where it is at – their real enemy is the working class. Only a powerful, mass, rank and file workers’ movement would be able to keep the bosses in constant fear and finish them once and for all. Terrorism kills the desire for such a movement, robs the workers of the urge to unite and come out independently – since they have terrorist “heroes” who claim to act for them. In this light the terrorists should be treated as enemies of the working class. (To Marxist-Leninists “the people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history”. (Communists integrate themselves with the masses of working people like fish in water.)
The bosses are pushing articles like the ones that appeared in the Montreal Star and La Presse with ulterior motives. These motives are:
(1) More and more workers are seeing through the complete rottenness of the whole capitalist system (witness the Lapalme strike, the attack on the construction workers across Canada, the plight of the fishermen in eastern Canada). In order to divert this discontent and push it under the rug, bosses keep playing up stories like those on the terrorists.
(2) To foster and spread anti-communism among the people by equating the terrorists with Marxist-Leninists or communists, thus suggesting that terrorism is due to some evil communist conspiracy.
(3) To cover up the real cause of terrorism: namely, capitalist dictatorship and oppression of the working class. Remember, there was hardly any mention of the terror they exerted on the Lapalme postal drivers (wiping out their livelihood, destroying their union the,shooting of a Latendresse, Lapalme driver, by the bosses’ goons).
(4) The bosses are scared to death of a real communist organisation closely linked with working people, an organization that leads them towards smashing the bosses’ dictatorship and replacing it with a workers’ dictatorship under which the country will be run for the benefit and needs of the working people and not for the profit of a few hungry capitalists.
LET’S BUILD THE CANADIAN PARTY OF LABOUR INTO THAT FIGHTING ORGANISATION OF THE WORKING CLASS.