First Published: In Struggle! No. 99, October 12, 1977
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Malcolm and Paul Saba
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The Central Committee of IN STRUGGLE! recently decided to take up the struggle for the weekly publication of the communist newspaper IN STRUGGLE! What are the reasons for this decision, and what is its importance in the current conditions of the Canadian proletariat’s revolutionary struggle?
More than four years have passed since the creation of the group IN STRUGGLE! Four years during which our group, and with it, the entire Canadian Marxist-Leninist movement, has engaged itself in the historic task of rebuilding our Party, whose absence has been so cruelly felt since the “Communist” Party of Canada betrayed the cause of the proletariat and lined up behind the bourgeoisie and Soviet social Imperialism.
The creation of the proletarian Party is not a long-term goal. it is an immediate goal, precisely because great progress has been made towards the realization of the conditions necessary for its creation since 1972, when a group of militants in Quebec launched the rallying cry of “For the proletarian Party” In the pamphlet Pour le Parti prolétarien, and decided to undertake the publication of a bi-monthly communist newspaper.
Yes, great progress has been made in the realization of these conditions. For example, In 1972-73, the Canadian Marxist-Leninist movement was divided among many groups, collectives and study groups, many of whom were more concerned with preserving their own autonomy than with uniting their forces to serve the revolutionary cause of the proletariat. Today, several progressive and Marxist-Leninist groups in Quebec have dissolved themselves and rallied to IN STRUGGLE!, and no fewer than seven groups and collectives in English Canada have done the same, thus strengthening considerably the political work of Marxist-Leninists in the working-class movement across the country.
Another example: In 1972-73, the Marxist-Leninist movement still had a very academic knowledge of the principles of Marxism-Leninism. Today, the debate in the public organs of Marxist-Leninists, particularly in our newspaper and journal, concerning important political issues is so highly developed that the Canadian proletariat is now about to be equipped with its revolutionary programme. Indeed, the publication of IN STRUGGLE!’s draft programme in a few weeks and the open and honest discussion of this programme will constitute a decisive step towards the creation of the proletarian Party.
Or again: in 1972-73, there were very few communist workers in our country. Today, with the diffusion of Marxism-Leninism by means of the newspaper, the journal, pamphlets and leaflets, there are much better links between the proletariat’s best combatants, the workers most devoted to their class, and the science of Marxism-Leninism. In unions and community groups, on picket lines, n communist meetings – in short, in the struggle against the Canadian bourgeois State communist ideas are discussed, propagated and adopted by many workers, and even by farmers, fishermen and students, to such an extent that the bourgeoisie is beginning to be afraid, and launches anti-communist campaigns in its newspapers, forbids the putting up of posters (as in Montreal, for example), and tries to cut the working class off from those who really defend it, the Marxist-Leninists.
All this clearly shows that the creation of the proletarian Party is a short-term goal. It is a goal to which the newspaper IN STRUGGLE! has devoted itself since it was founded. The working class will soon be able to rely on this indispensable arm it we all fulfill the duties that we are ours, if we all, in our own way and in our own setting strive even harder to carry out the tasks, however small they be, that bring us closer to our goal.
IN STRUGGLE’s decision to publish a weekly communist newspaper is an integral part of the struggle to reach this goal.
IN STRUGGLE!’s fourth anniversary will mark the publication of the 100th issue of the newspaper. It will, at the same time, mark the beginning of the struggle to transform it into a weekly newspaper.
The Canadian proletariat needs a weekly newspaper: It needs a newspaper published as often as possible, a newspaper that defends its programme on all fronts, that knows how to distinguish its friends from its enemies, that can provide it with an orientation enabling it to assemble and unite its forces so as to be able to make the bourgeois State back down.
It needs a newspaper that makes Marxism-Leninism, the revolutionary theory of the proletariat, accessible to the largest number of people, as do, for instance, IN STRUGGLE!’s pamphlets, which have allowed many workers to undertake the study of Marxist-Leninist principles and thus understand how to transform the society of exploitation and oppression in which we live.
But above all, the Canadian proletariat needs a weekly newspaper in order to counter the bourgeoisie’s propaganda as rapidly as possible on as many subjects as possible. The proletariat’s communist newspaper is its regular guide against the enemy. It must appear all the more frequently, as the Canadian bourgeoisie, assisted by traitors like Morris, MacDermott, Rodrigue, Gérin-Lajole, etc, and by all the reformist political parties like the NDP, the PQ and the “C”P, is trying to destroy the emerging unity between the proletariat of Quebec and English Canada, and directly attacking the proletariat to prevent it from struggling, to compel it to submit to the repressive laws of Canadian imperialists. Through its slogans and words, its network of subscribers, its readers’ circles, its correspondents and its massive distribution, the weekly communist newspaper will develop even further links between the workers of our spread-out country a with other exploited and oppressed people. It will develop the links that will unify our combat in the some direction, against the same enemy.
The communist newspaper is an ideological, political and organizational guide in the struggle for the creation of the Party and the overthrow. of the bourgeoisie. Our weekly will be this guide. It will be a much more efficient agitator and organizer, defending the programme of the proletariat on all issues and in all the struggles between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie. It will thus play an important role in the creation of the Party, precisely because it will further widen the understanding, the discussion and the adherence of Canadian workers to their revolutionary programme, all the while continuing to wage resolutely the struggle for the unity of Canadian Marxist-Leninists on the basis of this programme and within a single party.
Comrades, to build our weekly communist newspaper, we must improve many aspects of our work. To do so, we must rely on the collective efforts of all the militants, sympathizers, readers and subscribers that make the newspaper what it is presently. Four years ago the first issue of the bi-monthly communist newspaper IN STRUGGLE! was published. “Foolhardiness! Adventurism! Intellectualism!” said, at that time, the militants of the CAP St-Jacques and Maisonneuve in Montreal, the Agence de presse libre du Quebec and the journal Mobilisation, nearly all of whom are today reassembled in the Canadian Communist League (Marxist-Leninist). Well, our audacity was not blind folly. On the contrary, it enabled the proletariat to win important successes in the struggle to rebuild its Party.
The newspaper had, of course, its flaws, and it still has some today. The political line of IN STRUGGLE!, even if it was correct in its fundamental aspects, was indeed often set forth in a general way. We have certainly often made mistakes, but we have always tried to correct them honestly and firmly.
We are even more audacious today than we were four years ago. Because we are confident of the power of Marxism-Leninism, we are confident of the power of the popular and working-class masses who make communist ideas their own to transform this country, ruled by the bourgeoisie, a minority class of exploiters, into a country where the law will be that of the entire proletariat.
Yes, IN STRUGGLE! was right to rely on the masses in launching the bi-monthly newspaper four years ago. Yes, IN STRUGGLE! was right to rely on the masses in launching a bilingual newspaper on a Canada-wide level in May 1976. For if today workers in Vancouver, Regina, Toronto, Quebec, Hull, Rouyn, Montreal and Halifax take up the newspaper, distribute it, meet together to discuss it, and write to it to make it an ever more correct and living mouthpiece of our struggle, it is because our newspaper is the central weapon of the unity of the proletariat in its struggle for socialism.
This same ardour and this same desire to succeed animate us today, at a time when we must succeed in publishing the first issue of the weekly communist newspaper IN STRUGGLE! in a few months. Because of this same confidence in the masses of our country, we are convinced that our goal will be attained.
What can we do right now to achieve this goal? We must increase the distribution of the newspaper, distribute it everywhere, increase the number of subscribers and correspondents in all walks of life. We must improve the newspaper with letters, criticisms, specific information, and by sending pictures, sketches, cartoons and songs. We must find money and material. We must urge our comrades to volunteer to translate an article, type, or distribute the newspaper in newspaper stands, union halls and the offices of community groups.
Each gesture, added to thousands of others, will make the weekly communist newspaper IN STRUGGLE! a truly living reality, a force able to guide even further the struggle for the creation of the Canadian proletarian Party. It will constitute a new victory for the Canadian proletariat in the struggle for the proletarian revolution in Canada.
Celebrate the fourth anniversary of IN STRUGGLE! by struggling for the publication of, our weekly communist newspaper! Participate one and all in the celebrations around the newspaper in the cities in which we live!