Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Documents of the 3rd Conference of Canadian Marxist-Leninists on the International Situation

Montreal, September 9, 10, 11, 1977

Speech by M.A.S.M. (Movement of African Students in Montreal)

Dear Comrades and Friends,

The Movement of African Students in Montreal (MASM) is an organization whose political line is consistent anti-imperialism. For us, this means to struggle against and denounce all forms of imperialist domination wherever it may be found, particularly in Africa. This is why MASM is glad to use the tribune offered here to outline the different aspects of imperialist domination in Africa and of the daily and ferocious struggle that the African peoples have always waged and still continue to wage to definitely liberate themselves from this domination.

Everyone knows that the international situation of our era is deeply marked by the ever growing struggles of the oppressed and exploited peoples of the Third World to conquer their liberty in spite of all the manoeuvres that are stirred up by the imperialist powers, including the USA and USSR, the two great rivals for world hegemony.

In Africa’s particular case, these rivalries are especially sharp today. The history of the foreign domination of Africa clearly indicates that our continent is the only one that has up to now been directly controlled only by powers of secondary order: France, Great Britain, Belgium, Germany, Portugal, etc...

The Second World War considerably weakened these powers. Taking advantage of the situation, US imperialism moved into these Western European countries and soon also found ways of infiltrating their African colonies.

At that time, the USA used all possible means to set foot in Africa, going as far as supporting the decolonization, thus passing itself off as the great defender of liberty and the true friend of the African peoples that it supposedly wanted to “free” from colonialism’s shackles.

But the African masses were never fooled and fought ferociously against the neo-colonial system of domination that American imperialism and its Western allies had installed with the help of the African traitors who, whether they were in power or not, were tied to the imperialists’ interests.

On the other hand, the illustrious victories of the peoples of the Third World, particularly of the Indochinese peoples, clearly revealed to the African peoples the “Paper Tiger” nature of American imperialism. Today, unmasked and denounced everywhere, the American superpower must step back and adopt new strategies. But this recoil is only temporary for an imperialist never willingly abandons its interests, unless it is completely overthrown by a popular struggle. This is why the African peoples are more determined than ever to intensify their unmerciful struggle against American imperialism till the final victory is won, no matter what diabolical schemes American imperialism invents.

Meanwhile, American imperialism’s archrival, the Soviet Union, is taking advantages of this state of things. As are imperialist and neo-colonialist power since the early 60’s, it’s now its turn to try to infiltrate Africa. The scenario is the same as that of the USA at the outcome of the Second World War.

It’s claim to fame? The Great Socialist Revolution of the Soviet people. Hiding behind this mask, the USSR, the “natural ally” of all exploited and dominated peoples, scurries around trying to plant the seed of its own neo-colonial domination.

We have all heard about its attempts to divide the African countries into two camps; the “progressive” and the reactionaries, thus taking heed of the whole colonialist tactic of “dividing to rule”. We also know of its filthy methods of economic exploitation and systematic plunder of natural resources in many countries like India, Algeria, Angola, Guinea, etc.

But a new political phenomenon is less known throughout the world, a political phenomenon increasingly used by the USSR that consists in the ever growing appearance of pseudo-revolutionary regimes in Africa.

What is Pseudo-Revolution?

In most independent African countries, (because of the peoples’ struggles) imperialist domination has had to become indirect and subtile. Imperialist domination is now exercised through a few Africans, traitors of the masses’ revolutionary aspirations, who are closely linked with the dominating imperialist powers. In the classic neo-colonial system, these reactionary and corrupted lackeys of imperialism are usually endowed with gut anti-communism.

But, in many African countries the people has reached such a level of political consciousness and its aspirations for Revolution are so profound, that such obvious pro-imperialist servants are rejected by the masses and are unable to remain in power. Thus, the neo-colonial powers must find a new type of servant if they wish to continue to dominate. And so, new “revolutionary” regimes have sprung up like mushrooms. These regimes, though fundamentally neo-colonial use a revolutionary vocabulary, proclaim “scientific socialism” and swear only by Marxism-Leninism.

Only through terror and repression can these regimes maintain themselves in power since they were put there thanks to the sole will of their imperialist masters. Thus, in the name of “socialism”, of empty and mystifying slogans, terror is legalized, the people’s repression systematized and fascism institutionalized.

In reality, these supposedly revolutionary regimes have three uses:

1. Dull the revolutionary fighting spirit of the masses by pretending that Revolution is already won by using an arsenal of empty slogans matched with pompous declarations that in reality only serve the interests of the neo-colonial companies and of the multinationals.
2. Debase the real revolutionary forces and organizations by branding them as ultra-leftists, anarchists, in order to better liquidate them.
3. Prostitute Marxism-Leninism in the eyes of the masses who have a tendency to identify scientific socialism with the reign of corruption, mistrust and terror that the pseudo-revolutionary regimes inevitably set up due to their neo-colonial and anti-popular nature.

In Africa, we find many such regimes especially in Benin (ex-Dahomey), Congo, Ethiopia, Guinea-Kouakry, Somalia, etc.

There we have a picture of the neo-colonial regimes that the USSR uses to infiltrate our continent, all the while maintaining that it supports the so-called progressive camp of the “revolutionary” African countries. But the African peoples, who live the daily reality of these repressive puppet regimes, are not fooled. And so, everywhere in Africa the real democratic and revolutionary forces are on the rise. Their work is sometimes semi-legal, more often completely underground, always ferociously determined to struggle to the end to abolish all forms of domination, exploitation and oppression of the Africa peoples.

Dear comrades and friends,

Such is the general political situation in the “independent” Africa of today. Our continent and Southern Africa have become the most animated scenes of inter-imperialist rivalries, but even more of the revolutionary struggles of the peoples.

Since the Portuguese Empire was crushed by the peoples of Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde and Mozambique, the long established interests of American imperialism and its Western allies are seriously threatened in Southern Africa as the USSR’s neo-colonial hunger finds a new prey.

Unable to impound the revolutionary wave of the peoples of Zimbabwe and Namibia, struggling to wrench their own destinies from the hands of the racist white regimes, American imperialism and its allies are desperately trying to recuperate the inevitable popular victory. And so, American imperialism’s forces, on the brink of panic, are multiplying their diabolical schemes, their division manoeuvres, to set up at ail costs neo-colonial regimes in Zimbabwe and Namibia. Their ultimate goal is to protect their solid interests in this region but most of all, to safeguard South Africa, the stronghold of international capitalism.

Thanks to its sickening regime of apartheid, the racist Nazi white regimes of South Africa has made our continent into Western capitalism’s paradise. The multinational companies plunder, steal, suck the very blood of the Azanian people. American imperialism and its allies can no longer sit back on their haunches. For they know that the courageous struggle of the spirited Azanian people, under the leadership of the ANC and the PAC, with its successive victories, is opening the door to large perspectives of national liberation in South Africa. The powerful movement of the Black Students of Soweto shook the very foundations of the Vorster regime and has launched the irresistable rise of popular struggle In the country thus clearly pointed out the inevitable victory of the Azanian people.

These strong blows against American imperialism and its allies are making them catch their breath. For the struggle of the African peoples in Southern Africa is a question of life or death for their interests not only in this region but everywhere else in Africa and the world.

As for Soviet neo-colonialism, its aims are quite evident: intoxicated by its temporary success in Angola where it has somewhat succeeded in stealing from the people of Angola the fruits of its victory over Portuguese colonialism, Soviet neo-colonialism is now trying to take advantage of its American rival’s difficulties to infiltrate Southern Africa.

But the African peoples, that have always fought against all forms of domination, will know how to fight and vanquish all the imperialist forces, no matter where they come from. The recent recognition by the Organization of African Unity (OAU) of the Patriotic Front of Zimbabwe as the country’s only liberation movement, is a victory over the division manoeuvres hatched by the imperialist forces and a testimony of the sharp vigilance of the peoples of Southern Africa. Just another sign that proves that though the struggle be long and difficult, the final victory inevitably belongs to the peoples of Zimbabwe, Namibia and Azania.

Just as inevitable is the victory of the people of the Arab Saharan Democratic Republic who, under the leadership of the POLISARIO FRONT, are waging an armed struggle to chase the invaders from Morocco and Mauritania out of their country. These invaders are only a cover-up for international imperialism, especially French and American imperialism. The brilliant military and political successes of the POLISARIO FRONT are proof of the Saharan people’s resolute will to win their right to self-determination.

For over 15 years now, under the leadership of the EPLF (Eritrean Peoples Liberation Front), the Eritrean people is struggling to liberate itself from the oppression of the feudal and now fascist pseudo-revolutionary regimes of Ethiopia, that are backed by Soviet imperialism.

Dear comrades and friends,

With this brief summary, it is easy to see how Africa is presently the stage of important political upheavals. The African Students have organized themselves in MASM (Movement of African Students in Montreal) in order to deepen their knowledge of these political realities and to make the Canadian public, especially the Montreal public, more conscious of them.

It is important that we study and closely follow the struggle experiences of other peoples in order to better contribute to the struggles waged by our own peoples.

Thus, MASM finds particularly important the solidarity of the Montreal and Canadian population in general, with the liberation struggle of the African peoples against international imperialism, US and Soviet imperialism leading the way. The struggle for socialism and the struggle of the peoples of the Third World, particularly those of Africa, against imperialist, colonial and neo-colonial domination, are one and the same struggle.