First Published: The Guardian, September 5, 1973.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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EROL Note: This letter was sent to the Guardian in regard to a series of forums it organized in 1973 on party building and other issues. Materials from these forums are presented in the EROL section on the New Communist Movement and the Party Building Campaigns, 1973-1977.
We wish to congratulate the Guardian for sponsoring the Forums which have recently been held. We feel that it is extremely important for Marxist-Leninists to speak to and hear one another. There are at present many views here in the heartland of imperialism on what constitutes the proper organizational approaches and theoretical formulations. As many as possible must be heard in order that the correct road may be found.
We would at this time like to set forth our views, briefly and concisely, on the issues of the Black nation and the multi-national party which were taken up in two recent forums for they are inextricably tied together. First, we believe that Blacks do constitute a nation within the U.S. As we have argued in the past, it would be dogmatic to apply blindly the Stalinist formulation for nationhood in the U.S. where the territories of the oppressed and oppressor nations are coterminous and where systematic racism imposed by capitalism has altered conditions from those existing in Stalin’s time. The uniqueness of the Black experience and the buying off of large sectors of the white working class with super-profits expropriated by imperialism overseas has resulted in Blacks being in the revolutionary vanguard. Black nationalism, if guided by proletarian ideology, will contribute greatly to the struggles of all peoples.
Second, we feel that the time for building a multinational party has not yet come. Since Blacks are more advanced politically than whites (as are Latins, American Indians, etc.), the amalgamation of all groups in one party would result in fragmentation, disunity and the rapid dissolution of such a party. Racism is still so strong as to separate all but the most revolutionary of comrades. Our practice in Chicago has taught us that only the most politically advanced comrades, both Black and white, can work together organizationally while at the rank-and-file level parallel structures are necessary. Blacks must work with Blacks, Latins with Latins, whites with whites.
We realize that the points presented above are greatly condensed, however, we felt a short letter to summarize our views preferable to a lengthy polemic. We invite criticism and dialogue, with all those interested in unifying the left under Marxist-Leninist principles and who desire to know our views in greater detail.