The Workers' Advocate




August 10, 1984

Volume 14, Number 9

[Front page: On the debate on the FMLN-FDR's new reformist program

For a revolutionary triumph in El Salvador over U.S. imperialism and the bloodstained regime]


MAP-ML of Nicaragua on social democracy..................... 3
Workers Front of Nicaragua: Against U.S. aggression....... 5
CP of Colombia (ML) holds 12th Congress....................... 6, 8
Report on International Youth Camp.................................. 11
CP of Japan (Left): On the workers' movement................. 14
Condemn repression in the Dominican Republic .............. 17
On the crisis in India's Punjab............................................ 19, 21
Protests against S. African racists....................................... 26
The struggle against Soviet revisionism and the 1957 and 1960 Moscow meetings...................................................... 29

On the debate on the FMLN-FDR's new reformist program

For a revolutionary triumph in El Salvador over U.S. imperialism and the bloodstained regime

MAP-ML of Nicaragua

The Socialist International stands with imperialism and the bourgeoisie against the Nicaraguan revolution

Press release of the Nicaraguan Workers Front on the U.S. aggression

20 years of revolutionary struggle

The Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist) holds its 12th Congress

Political Declaration of the 12th Congress of the CP of Colombia (ML)

Medellin, Colombia

Report on the 7th International Anti-Imperialist and Anti-Fascist Youth Camp

3rd Congress of the Communist Party of Japan (Left)

On the Workers' Movement

Condemn the Repression in the Dominican Republic!

Indira Gandhi Unleashes Terror in India's Punjab

The crisis in the Punjab

While Indira Gandhi brutalizes the Sikhs, both Hindu chauvinism and Sikh nationalism undermine the unity of the toilers

South African racist chief tours Europe

Tens of thousands protest against apartheid ruler

Just who is P.W. Botha?

Only the classic teachings of Marxism-Leninism, not the wrong orientations from the post-World War II period, can provide the foundations for the struggle against Soviet revisionism

On the Moscow Declaration of 1957 and Moscow Statement of 1960

On the debate on the FMLN-FDR's new reformist program

For a revolutionary triumph in El Salvador over U.S. imperialism and the bloodstained regime

[Contents of the article:

An Open Debate Has Broken Out Over the Orientation of the Salvadoran Movement........................................................... 2
The Two-Track Policy of U.S. Imperialism..................................... 43
False Friends Put Pressure on the Movement for a "Political Solution".......................................................................................... 44
Reformist Leanings of the FDR-FMLN Leadership........................ 44
The Role of Carpio and the FPL ..................................................... 45
The Crisis in the FPL....................................................................... 46
The New Program of the FDR-FMLN............................................. 46
Promoting Illusions in the Assassin Duarte..................................... 48
Questions in the Solidarity Movement in the U.S........................... 49]

Over the last five years, the revolutionary struggle in El Salvador has become a center of world attention. The Salvadoran liberation fighters have built up a popular war of an intensity that Latin America has not seen in many decades. Alongside the revolution in Nicaragua, the Salvadoran people's struggle has set Central America ablaze.

The Salvadoran workers and peasants are valiantly fighting against great odds. They are resisting a brutal death-squad dictatorship of the local oligarchy that has murdered 50,000 people in the last several years. And they are defying a growing military intervention from the huge war machine of U.S. imperialism.

Though El Salvador is a tiny country, the revolutionary movement there has sent shock waves through the hallowed halls of Washington and Wall Street. The U.S. government has poured in guns and bullets, warplanes and helicopters, Green Berets and CIA agents, but the insurgency continues to gather strength.

The example of the Salvadoran fighters is an inspiration to all the workers and downtrodden masses who fight imperialism and the tyrants everywhere.

An Open Debate Has Broken Out Over the Orientation of the Salvadoran Movement

There are different political forces involved in the Salvadoran opposition to the U.S.-backed regime. These range from reformists to revolutionaries. The main opposition forces are grouped into two coalitions, the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) and the Democratic Revolutionary Front (FDR). The two fronts work together; the FMLN functions as the political-military arm of the FDR. The FMLN is made up of five political organizations involved in the military struggle, while the FDR is a coalition that includes trade unions and popular organizations of different political tendencies, and also two political parties, the social-democratic National Revolutionary Movement (MNR) and the dissident Christian-democrats of the Popular Social-Christian Movement. Important posts in the FDR leadership today are held by Guillermo Ungo of the MNR, who is president of the FDR, and by Ruben Zamora of the Social-Christians.

For several years now, certain policies have been adopted by the leadership of the FDR-FMLN which have created much concern and unease among militants of the Salvadoran movement and its sympathizers in the solidarity movement abroad. And over the last year an open debate has broken out over a number of these policies.

The controversy centers around the proposals of the FDR-FMLN for a "political solution" to the crisis in El Salvador through negotiations with U.S. imperialism and the Salvadoran government. In this article we wish to give our views on this controversy.

We have serious disagreements with these proposals of the FDR-FMLN leadership. The issue here is of course not one of negotiations in general but what is being sought through negotiations. The FDR-FMLN leadership is promoting negotiations as a shortcut for the revolutionary struggle; they claim that somehow negotiations under the present circumstances will automatically give rise to a favorable outcome for the Salvadoran people. But negotiations cannot lead to an easy victory for the masses. Negotiations cannot create new situations; the outcome of negotiations can only be based on the positions created through struggle. The sad truth is that the FDR-FMLN leadership in its calls for a "negotiated solution" has given up the perspective of seeking a victory for the revolution. Instead it seeks a reformist compromise with imperialism and the Salvadoran oligarchy.

This is today fully spelled out in the recent programmatic call of the FDR-FMLN leadership for a "Broad Provisional Government." This represents a serious vacillation away from a revolutionary stand towards a reformist position. Such a stand holds great dangers for the Salvadoran struggle. If such a plan were to be accepted by imperialism and the Salvadoran regime, it would not achieve what the Salvadoran toilers are fighting for. Rather it would mean a preservation of the existing social order in that country. It would also mean the loss of many of the gains the toilers have won through their arduous struggle; and at worst, it could end by setting up the rebel forces for a dangerous trap resulting in massacre.

So far the U.S. and Salvadoran governments have refused to accept the FDR-FMLN proposals. The Salvadoran fighters are continuing their courageous struggle. Nevertheless, by giving up the perspective of a revolutionary triumph in favor of a reformist solution, the FDR-FMLN leadership is in fact undermining the strength and popular appeal of the Salvadoran movement.

The reformist vacillations of the FDR-FMLN leadership arise because of two reasons. First, it reflects an adaptation to the pressures of imperialism. World imperialism, through liberal Democrats in the U.S., international social - democracy and the bourgeois Contadora regimes of Latin America, have put great pressure on the Salvadoran leadership to accede to a reformist plan. They have been helped in this by Soviet, Cuban, and other revisionist forces who pose as champions of the Salvadoran struggle.

Second, the reformist swing of the FDR-FMLN leadership reflects the growing influence of the reformist bourgeoisie within this leadership. The Ungo's and Zamora's are not interested in the revolution winning victory; they seek to preserve capitalism and the interests of the Salvadoran bourgeoisie.

The Marxist-Leninist Party of the USA ardently supports the revolutionary struggle of the workers and peasants of El Salvador. We work wholeheartedly for an end to the oppression of the Salvadoran people by "our own" imperialist bourgeoisie. We wish to see the Salvadoran people's struggle organized along the strongest lines, along policies that will result in the greatest gain for our fellow proletarians there. It is from this direction that we speak to the policies of the FDR-FMLN leadership.

Moreover, we are also concerned over this matter because it is an issue in the U.S. left and in particular in the solidarity movement with the Salvadoran struggle. Various opportunist political forces in the U.S., such as the Trotskyite Socialist Workers Party, the ultra-opportunist Guardian newspaper and the pro-Soviet Line of March, are strongly supporting the reformist proposals of the FDR-FMLN and are working to impose them on the solidarity movement. And the FDR-FMLN leadership itself is advocating very rightist orientations for the U.S. solidarity movement.

These policies can only lead the solidarity movement to disaster. This is one more reason why we think it is important for us to speak out against the reformist orientations being championed by the FDR-FMLN leadership.

We will now proceed to elaborate our views on these questions in detail.

The Two-Track Policy of U.S. Imperialism

As we have noted, one of the factors giving rise to the reformist vacillations of the FDR-FMLN leadership is the pressures from the maneuvers of imperialism. It is worthwhile taking a look at this phenomenon right at the outset.

U.S. imperialism follows a two-track policy against the Salvadoran revolution. First, it sends the fascist dictatorship all sorts of weapons and prepares to expand its own direct military intervention. And second, it carries out one demagogic maneuver after another to provide the death- squad regime with a "democratic" and "reformist" facelift. This goes by the name of seeking a "political solution" to the conflict in El Salvador. The purpose of these maneuvers is straightforward: to confuse the Salvadoran masses and undermine the mass support for the rebels in order to force them to capitulate. As well, the U.S. government uses these maneuvers to confuse public opinion at home and weaken the movement against U.S. intervention.

Both the Democrats and Republicans carry out such maneuvers. It was Carter who first set up Duarte as a civilian front man for the military junta in 1980. And under Reagan, the CIA has organized two elections farces, most recently bringing Duarte back into the presidency of the country.

None of these "democratic" facelifts have of course changed anything in El Salvador. The brutality and savage exploitation of the masses continue unabated. And most importantly, these schemes have failed to wreck the popular base of the liberation forces.

Under such conditions, some imperialist liberals of the Democratic Party have long held that a "political solution" must go beyond elections to a "negotiated peace" with the opposition forces. By these negotiations they have never meant talks to handle the withdrawal of U.S. forces from El Salvador. No, they mean negotiations to preserve the rule of the Salvadoran oligarchy through undermining the revolutionary movement. As Democratic Congressman Stephen Solarz, a big champion of this scheme, put it in 1982: "We have an interest in a negotiated settlement because in a prolonged military conflict, the junta is more likely to crack than the guerrillas."

To be sure, at present the voices in Congress for a "negotiated political solution" are somewhat muted. The smooth-talking politicians are all basking in the glow of the CIA- engineered election of Duarte. In the name of ''giving Duarte a chance," Congress is avidly approving Reagan's requests for ever-expanding support for the Salvadoran government.

But even if the liberal pet scheme of a ''negotiated solution" were to be put in place, what would this mean? Would it end the repression? Would it end the plunder of the country by the U.S. multinationals? Would it improve the conditions of the workers and peasants?

Not a chance. Such a "negotiated solution" would be an imperialist-dictated solution. It would merely mean some arrangement where the military dictatorship remains virtually intact and the opposition, or some section of it, is given what appears to be a share of power.

This is not that different from the civilian-military junta engineered by Carter in 1979 to replace the regime of General Romero. This junta included some civilians from the Christian-Democratic, social-democratic and pro-Soviet revisionist parties. There were loud declarations about reforms and a bunch of top military officers were retired, but nothing really changed. The repression continued ferociously and every "reform" turned out to be a fraud. In a few months all the civilians in the junta had resigned except for Duarte who continued to be a loyal front man for the colonels.

Thus a "negotiated solution" would only mean a preservation of the status quo. At best it may postpone the inevitable resurgence of the revolutionary struggle; at worst, it raises the danger of disarming and massacring the liberation fighters.

False Friends Put Pressure on the Salvadoran Movement for a "Political Solution"

Besides the liberal Democratic boosters of a "negotiated solution," the biggest champions of this scheme are the West European imperialists and the Contadora group of Latin American governments (Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela and Panama). These governments have pretended to be critical of the Salvadoran military and some, like France and Mexico, even went so far as to give "political representation" to the FDR-FMLN.

But theirs is a false friendship for the Salvadoran masses. These governments do not want the victory of the Salvadoran people. Instead they work to complement the two-track policy of U.S. imperialism. They are all afraid of a defeat for imperialism in El Salvador, and the Contadora group in particular is scared of the prospect of the Salvadoran revolution setting off revolutionary upheavals that may engulf the entire region, including the Contadora countries.

A big exposure of the stand of a number of these governments came with Duarte's election. The earlier pretensions of "coolness" towards the Salvadoran regime have evaporated. Duarte's inauguration was attended by Mexico's foreign minister and officials from France, Spain, the Netherlands and the Scandinavian countries.

The Socialist International of social-democratic parties is closely associated with the crafty maneuvers of European imperialism and the Contadora group. Like France and Mexico, it too has built relations with the FDR-FMLN. But in all these cases, their interest in the Salvadoran movement is not for giving support to its struggle but for the purpose of putting pressure on it towards conciliation with imperialism and the Salvadoran regime.

The Salvadoran movement is also faced with pressure to concede to a "negotiated solution" with imperialism by the forces of international revisionism. The Soviet, Cuban and Vietnamese leaders, etc., all have influential ties with various forces in the FDR-FMLN and they use their influence in favor of a reformist compromise. And in many respects this is the most treacherous pressure of all. Because from the revisionists, the idea of a reformist compromise is presented as a farsighted revolutionary strategy.

The FDR-FMLN leadership also has close ties with the Sandinista government of Nicaragua. Unfortunately this government too has not supported a revolutionary policy for the Salvadoran movement. Being a petty-bourgeois government, heavily influenced by social-democracy and revisionism, it too has used its influence to pressure for a "negotiated" compromise in El Salvador.

Reformist Leaning of the FDR-FMLN Leadership

The FDR and FMLN were formed in 1980, in the midst of the huge revolutionary upheavals that broke out in El Salvador in the 1979-80 period. Their formation reflected two things. First, they reflected the coming together of various currents of the revolutionary left, both the guerrilla organizations and the popular organizations connected to them. Second, they represented the formation of a bloc between the revolutionary left and the reformists of the social-democratic MNR, the Social-Christians and the pro-Soviet revisionist CP. The reformists had joined in the civilian-military junta of 1979, and it was only after illusions about this junta collapsed among them and after ferocious repression escalated, that these sectors took part in the formation of a bloc with the revolutionary left.

However, right from the outset it was shown that this move on the part of the reformists did not mean they had given up their reformism and that they had now become revolutionaries. While giving lip service to the revolution, the reformists used their influence to push class collaborationist policies on the entire movement. Thus, very early on the reformists in the FDR began to press for a "dialogue" with the U.S. government. On February 7, 1981, right at a time when a big offensive of the rebels was being carried out, an FDR spokesman explained, "We want to find a way to end the violence."

The efforts in the spring of 1981 to seek a "dialogue" with U.S. imperialism were closely linked to a campaign by the Socialist International to mediate a "negotiated solution" in El Salvador. However, the effort came to naught because the Duarte-headed military junta and the U.S. government refused to go along.

Since that time, there have been a number of similar efforts, the most recent of which has been spearheaded by the Contadora group. And in response to the international pressure, the FDR-FMLN leaders have repeated various proposals for a "negotiated solution.''

Quite naturally, the most enthusiastic for such proposals have been the liberals and reformists in the FDR, especially the social-democrats like Ungo and Social-Christians like Zamora. Ungo and Zamora were, after all, enthusiastic participants of the first junta set up after the November 1979 coup against General Romero. And although, since they joined the FDR, they have made statements in support of the armed struggle, they have done so not out of conviction that this is the way to make the revolution triumph but in order to use the armed struggle as a bargaining chip for a reformist accommodation. They do not want a decisive victory for the revolution. Thus, Ungo declared in Paris a while ago, "If the military equilibrium is broken, maybe tomorrow, it would already be too late to negotiate.''

The Role of Carpio and the People's Liberation Forces (FPL)

However all these years that proposals have been made by the FDR-FMLN for a "political solution,'' there have also been signs that there were dissensions inside the coalitions about these policies. These dissensions were not strong enough to scuttle the proposals, but they did indicate resistance to them.

This resistance came from within the FMLN, especially from the People's Liberation Forces -- Farabundo Marti (FPL) and its leader Salvador Cayetano Carpio (known also by the nom de guerre Marcial).

The FPL was one of the main political-military organizations in the FMLN. It was founded in 1970 from a split in the revisionist Salvadoran Communist Party over its enthrallment to the Khrushchovite "peaceful and parliamentary road.'' The FPL did not find its way to make a thorough [go]ing break with Soviet revisionism; it continued to have profound illusions in the world current of Soviet revisionism and in its activity and organization continued to show the influence of Soviet and Cuban revisionist ideas. Nevertheless, the FPL did take up important revolutionary positions which helped to further the Salvadoran movement. Shortly after its formation, it launched the armed struggle and in the mid to late 70's it played an important role in the mass struggles of the toilers, both in the cities and the countryside. In 1979, after the coup against Romero, the FPL took the important stand of refusing to fall for the blandishments of the civilian-military junta; this stand helped to prevent other guerrilla forces from capitulating to the new regime.

The FPL's resistance to the scheme of a "negotiated solution" made it a special target of the pressure from imperialism and international revisionism. U.S. government officials repeatedly spoke of the importance of isolating the "extreme left" from the "moderates" of the Salvadoran opposition. And the FPL's illusions in Soviet and Cuban revisionism, in a situation where these treacherous forces were all for a "negotiated solution," had a very negative impact on its political and organizational solidity.

The Crisis in the FPL

Last year a major crisis was revealed in the FPL amidst a number of complex and unfortunate developments. This crisis revealed that the FPL had been undergoing a serious internal struggle. And since then it has become clear that this struggle has been resolved at the leadership level in favor of a new leadership which has endorsed and participated in a sharp turn to the right by the FDR-FMLN leadership as a whole. In the meantime, two new groups have appeared out of the ranks of the FPL and its associated circles, and they have opened up public criticism of a number of the positions of the FPL leaders and the FDR-FMLN leadership as a whole.

The crisis first came into public view in April 1983 when one of the leaders of FPL, Melida Anaya Montes (Comandante Ana Maria), was assassinated in Managua, Nicaragua. Within a few days, Carpio, who had attended her funeral, also died; he was said to have committed suicide. A number of FPL cadre including another leader, Marcelo, were arrested and charged with Ana Maria's murder.

In mid-December, the FPL issued a statement announcing decisions from the 7th Plenary of its Revolutionary Council, its highest body, held last August. This statement condemned Carpio in virulent terms and made the charge that Carpio was the organizer of the assassination of Ana Maria. The FMLN also issued a statement echoing these charges and these were all favorably reprinted by the Cuban and Sandinista leaderships.

We do not wish to speculate on the deaths of Ana Maria and Carpio, although we do not think that the explanations offered so far are satisfactory. There are many unanswered questions. For example, those arrested in the murder of Ana Maria have not been brought to trial or allowed to speak for themselves. And no proof has been made public of the alleged role of Carpio in the murder of Ana Maria.

However our main interest is in the ideological questions involved in this crisis in the FPL. The FPL statement indicates that there was an intense ideological struggle, in which Ana Maria and Carpio represented opposed poles. But the FPL refuses to clarify what the ideological differences were about. For instance, the FPL statement attacks Carpio for holding to "dogmatic and sectarian schemes," but it never specifies what these schemes were.

However two developments have helped to shed further light on the ideological issues involved.

First is the emergence of two new organizations in El Salvador, which have appeared out of the ranks of the FPL and its related organizations. They are the Revolutionary Workers Movement -- Salvador Cayetano Carpio (MOR) and the Clara Elizabeth Ramirez Metropolitan Front of the FPL. Both these groups uphold the legacy of Salvador Cayetano Carpio and are critical of the leadership of the FDR-FMLN and their political positions. It has been reported that both groups are opposed to the FDR-FMLN policies in favor of a "negotiated political solution."

The leadership of the FDR-FMLN has sharply denounced these organizations. They have condemned them as counterrevolutionaries and declared that solidarity with the Salvadoran movement should not be extended to these groups. We strongly condemn these dirty methods. These are the typical dirty methods of reformists who do not want to let the activists judge controversies on a political basis.

Our Party does not yet have much information about these groups and their political positions. However it appears that they are active in the fight against the Salvadoran regime and U.S. imperialism and they are raising a number of important questions about the orientation of the FDR-FMLN leadership.

The full content of the ideological controversy in the Salvadoran movement became further clarified in January-February this year when the FDR-FMLN leadership announced a major new programmatic declaration, "The proposal for the creation of the Provisional Government of Broad Participation and its program." This document indicates a major rightward shift in the program of the FDR- FMLN away from its earlier positions. By coming out with this program, the FDR-FMLN leadership has fully revealed that the content of its proposals for a "negotiated political solution" mean not something revolutionary but a reformist compromise.

The New Program of the FDR-FMLN

This new program is meant to replace the "Platform for a Democratic Revolutionary Government" that the FDR had embraced as its general program in 1980. That document had in fact preceded the formation of the FDR; it had been released on February 23, 1980 by the Revolutionary Coordinating Council of the Masses (CRM), a coalition of the popular organizations of the left that united with the reformist Democratic Front of the MNR social-democrats and Social-Christians to form the FDR.

The new program for a Broad Provisional Government represents the formalization of a sharp rightward turn by the FDR-FMLN leadership. The old program for a Democratic Revolutionary Government had various weaknesses. It was not a thoroughly revolutionary-democratic document. Among other things, it did not stand for a workers and peasants government and held instead to the formation of a coalition regime with certain sections of the bourgeoisie. Nevertheless, the old program did stand for the victory of a revolution in El Salvador and for a series of fairly radical social reforms. The new program abandons these goals.

* Most significantly, the old program stood for the "overthrow of the reactionary military dictatorship of the oligarchy and Yankee imperialism''; it sought to "destroy [the] criminal political-military machine.''

The new program abandons this perspective of the victory of a revolution. The new program seeks a government formed through negotiations with the U.S. government and the Salvadoran regime, mediated by bourgeois governments such as those of the Contadora group. This government is said to be one which will include "political parties, the private sector, representatives of the FMLN-FDR, and of an already restructured national army'' where "no single sector will have control." It talks of excluding the oligarchy but the feet of the matter is that the FDR-FMLN has redefined the representatives of the oligarchy in the narrowest terms as simply the ultra-right ARENA party of Roberto D'Aubuisson. Indeed, when announcing the new program at a press conference in Mexico City on February 9, Guillermo Ungo declared in reference to the ARENA: "This is the only exclusion that we are making." (Guardian, February 22,1984)

* The abandonment of the perspective of a revolutionary triumph is also shown by the change in the attitude to the Salvadoran armed forces. The old program not only talked of destroying the "criminal political-military machine" but it also called for the creation of a new army built on the basis of the revolutionary People's Army and incorporating only certain "healthy, patriotic, and worthy elements that belong to the current army." The vague formulations on who could be incorporated into the new army was a weakness of the old program, as well as the fact that it did not declare for the arming of the whole people.

But the new program goes quite far to the right. It talks merely of a "restructuring of the governmental armed forces" and the formation of a unified national army by merging these with the FMLN forces. The program is vague on the "restructuring" of the present army but earlier FDR-FMLN statements have indicated that what is meant by this is the purging of certain bad elements.

* The old program also stood for taking radical measures against imperialism and the big bourgeoisie of town and country. It talked of putting an end to the "overall political, economic and social power of the great lords of land and capital" and of liquidating "once and for all the economic, political and military dependence...on U.S. imperialism."

The new program gives up this perspective. It merely talks of achieving a government "in which the existence of private property and foreign investments will not be against the interests of society."

* The old program talked of carrying out a series of radical social reforms for the benefit of the toiling masses. These included the nationalization of the big landholdings and enterprises, banking, transportation, and foreign trade, which are now in the hands of the oligarchy and the U.S. multinationals. They also included a thorough agrarian reform to benefit the poor and middle peasants and agricultural laborers. And they included reforms in housing for the masses, taking measures against unemployment, for better wages, social services, etc.

The new program abandons most of these social measures in favor of empty declarations about merely "laying the basis" for agrarian reform, nationalization of banking, reform of foreign trade, and better housing.

These are some of the main differences between the old and new programs of the FDR-FMLN. What the new program reveals in the final analysis is an abandonment of the perspective of a revolutionary government in favor of a reformist accommodation with the bourgeoisie and U.S. imperialism. And it shows a toning down of demands of the toiling masses in favor-of appeals to please various sectors of the bourgeoisie.

Indeed, the proposals of the new program do not go beyond the platform of the civilian-military junta that took power after the November 1979 coup. The similarity of these two sets of proposals suggest that the FDR-FMLN is offering to accede to a refurbished version of the 1979 government. This is a serious retreat for the FDR-FMLN. Not only does it show great illusions among the FDR-FMLN leadership about the Salvadoran dictatorship and U.S. imperialism but it holds out grave dangers for the Salvadoran movement. A new version of the 1979 junta will not be that much different than the previous one. It will not fulfill the aspirations of the Salvadoran revolutionary fighters. And under the conditions where the FDR-FMLN leadership appears to have such great illusions in imperialism and the bourgeoisie, the situation may end up in a monstrous trap for the liberation forces.

Furthermore, the rightward shift of the FDR-FMLN leadership cannot but have a detrimental effect on the Salvadoran struggle today. It is true that since the FDR-FMLN proposals have not been accepted by U.S. imperialism or the Salvadoran government, the people's struggle is continuing. But it is inevitable that the strength of the struggle will be sapped when the masses are led to believe that the goal is not a revolutionary victory but a reformist accommodation. It is inevitable that the popular mobilization of the toilers will be undermined when the programmatic goals of the movement shift away from promising radical social reforms for the benefit of the toilers towards appealing more to the concerns of the bourgeois sectors.

The history of the Salvadoran movement shows that the driving force of the movement has been the class struggle of the toilers. Struggles over the class demands of the workers, poor peasants, and rural laborers have been at the heart of the mass mobilizations throughout the last decade. Indeed, it is precisely because of this strength of the class struggle that the original FDR program included various measures aimed at improving the conditions of the working masses. By abandoning such radical measures, the FDR-FMLN is helping to blunt the class appeal of the movement. This can only harm the liberation struggle.

Promoting Illusions in the Assassin Duarte

The rightward turn of the FDR-FMLN leadership has already been manifested in a conciliatory attitude to the new Duarte presidency in El Salvador.

As we have pointed out earlier, Duarte is a front man for U.S. imperialism and the Salvadoran dictatorship. In 1980-82 he headed up a junta which was among the most repressive in recent times. Under that junta, the death squads and the military forces openly killed some 30,000 people. Under that junta, U.S. military intervention expanded in El Salvador. And there was a massive suppression of the strikes and other movements of the workers and peasants.

Duarte's nature has not changed. He continues the old rhetoric about standing for democracy and fighting the "extreme left" and "extreme right," but in practice he is continuing the savage war against the liberation forces. The conditions of the masses remain the same and the death squads continue to murder with impunity. And for his services at providing a "democratic" facade for the dictatorship, he is rewarded with greater military and economic aid by U.S. imperialism.

The FDR-FMLN leadership however has indicated that they harbor profound illusions in Duarte. Right after his election, the FDR issued a statement on May 26 from Costa Rica offering "unconditional negotiations" with Duarte. Duarte has rejected this offer, declaring that he will negotiate only if the guerrillas lay down their arms.

The FMLN refuses to lay down their arms. And they are fighting on. This is a positive thing. But at the same time they too promote illusions in Duarte. They are holding before the Salvadoran people the idea that somehow Duarte can be transformed into a "progressive." In a May 25 message the FMLN leadership declared:

"However, two very clear and well-defined options still present themselves to Mr. Duarte, and he will have to take up one of them:

1. Either, as part of his present policy, Duarte will end up losing any remaining sense of shame over his growing subordination to the Pentagon's plans and will offer himself as a cover for the entrance of occupation troops;

2. Or he will accept the national starting point of a real negotiated solution.

"Despite the narrow limits of the dependent government presided over by Duarte, and especially despite the negative attitudes he has always maintained against the efforts that we in the FMLN-FDR have made for a political solution, the FMLN General Command does not dismiss the possibility that at some point Mr. Duarte may opt for the national road, the path of a legitimate democratic solution through real dialogue without preconditions, which we have put forward.'' (Intercontinental Press, July 23, 1984, emphasis added)

The promotion of such illusions can only damage the Salvadoran struggle. Mr. Duarte has amply proven what he stands for, through his many services for imperialism and the Salvadoran military dictatorship. The only fitting reply to his taking over the presidency is unrelenting exposure of the criminal reality behind his nice-sounding rhetoric and the continuation of the revolutionary struggle against the regime.

We have come to the end of our discussion of the reformist orientation of the FDR-FMLN leadership for the Salvadoran movement. It is clear from the examination above that there are serious problems with the policies advocated by the FDR-FMLN leaders. However this does not imply that the continued struggle of the fighters in the FDR- FMLN is not worthwhile. No, the fact of the matter is that, despite the reformist appeals of the leadership, the logic of the situation in El Salvador has so far impelled the struggle to advance. The liberation fighters continue to score victories in the battlefield.

At the same time, the fact that the battle continues should not be taken to mean that the reformist policies of the leadership are inconsequential or can be ignored. No, they serve to undermine the struggle today and pose serious questions about the course of the struggle tomorrow. They have the potential of leading to serious fiascos.

The overcoming of these reformist vacillations is vital for the strengthening of the Salvadoran movement. We earnestly hope that revolutionaries inside the FDR-FMLN will be able to shake off the reformism of the leadership. And we hope that the rightward swing shown in the release of the program for a "Broad Provisional Government'' will help to be an impetus to all Salvadoran revolutionaries, whether in or out of the FDR-FMLN, to oppose reformism and uphold a militant revolutionary stand. The fact that today the reformist schemes do not have a complete stranglehold over the organized forces and are being challenged is a positive thing for the future of the movement.

Questions in the Solidarity Movement in the U.S.

As we noted in the beginning, the controversy in El Salvador has also become an issue in the U.S. left and especially in the solidarity movement with El Salvador.

For one thing, a number of right opportunist forces, such as the Trotskyite Socialist Workers' Party, have tried to use the controversy in the Salvadoran movement to flog the straw man of "ultra-leftism" and boost reformism. They have endorsed and vociferously echoed the positions of the FDR-FMLN on the crisis in the FPL and especially the condemnation of Carpio and the revolutionary groups that have emerged outside the FDR-FMLN today. This campaign is connected to a similar campaign from these forces to blame ultra-leftism for the invasion of Grenada by U.S. imperialism. In that case too, they use the tragic events in Grenada to bolster the reformist stands of the New Jewel Movement. (For a discussion of this see the article "What's Happening in Grenada?" in the April 20, 1984 issue of The Workers' Advocate.)

There are also direct efforts to push the rightist orientation of the FDR-FMLN leadership as the general policy of the solidarity movement in the U.S. This is being conducted not just by various reformist forces in the U.S. left but also by representatives of the FDR-FMLN leadership. They demand that the U.S. solidarity movement endorse the program of the FDR-FMLN for a "Broad Provisional Government" and condemn the groups in the Salvadoran movement that are opposing the rightist turn of the FDR- FMLN.

This is closely related to urging a rightist orientation for the solidarity movement itself. They urge that the solidarity movement's responsibility is to pressure the U.S. government to push the Salvadoran regime to agree to a "negotiated solution." And given that they have especially big illusions in the Democratic Party, the FDR-FMLN representatives are asking the progressive masses in the U.S. to line up behind the Democrats in this year's elections.

We strongly disagree with these rightist orientations being asked of the solidarity movement.

The solidarity movement in the U.S. should not line up behind the proposals for a reformist solution in El Salvador. This is a disservice to the people of El Salvador who have given tens of thousands of martyrs in order to struggle for a revolution. Already there is great pressure on the Salvadoran movement to submit to reformism; we do not think that it is the task of the U.S. solidarity movement to add its weight to those of international social-democracy and revisionism to pressure the Salvadoran movement in support of a reformist policy.

The U.S. movement should reject the proposals for a "negotiated solution" also on the basis of upholding the right of the Salvadoran people for self-determination. All the proposals for a "negotiated solution" uphold the right of U.S. imperialism to continue its interference in El Salvador. But what right does the U.S. government have to impose any kind of "solution" on the Salvadoran people? None at all. No, our demand must be -- U.S. imperialism must get out of El Salvador, lock, stock and barrel!

The solidarity movement should also reject the call of turning itself into a tail of the Democratic Party. The Democrats are an imperialist party which is just as guilty as the Reaganite Republicans for the war against the Salvadoran toilers. The weapons that go to the Salvadoran butchers are stamped "Made in USA"; they are the product of bills signed by Reagan and passed by bipartisan majorities in the House and Senate. Lining up behind the Democrats is no help whatsoever to the Salvadoran masses.

No, the most effective way to fight U.S. intervention in El Salvador is to build up a militant struggle against U.S. imperialism. Demonstrations, protests, and other mass actions are required. Instead of looking to the imperialist politicians we must appeal to and organize the workers, youth, oppressed nationalities, etc. We should build up a movement independent of both the capitalist parties, a movement which targets imperialism as the enemy.


1. The Platform of the Democratic Revolutionary Government, 1980, has been reprinted in a number of places. It is available in the NACLA Report on the Americas, July-August 1980, and in the anthology El Salvador: Central America in the New Cold War, Grove Press, 1981.

2. The Proposal for the Creation of the Provisional Government of Broad Participation and Its Program, 1984, is also available from a number of sources. It can be found in Intercontinental Press, March 5, 1984.


[Photo: A scene from a powerful demonstration in San Salvador, January 22, 1980. The banners condemn the military tyranny and oppression of the people, protest the high cost of living and harsh exploitation, and carry the insignia of the revolutionary organizations. The class demands in favor of the Salvadoran workers and toilers have played a major role in mobilizing the masses for the revolution.]

[Photo: Salvadoran guerrillas with the people after liberating a village.]

[Photo: The armed workers and peasants are the backbone of the Salvadoran revolution.]

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MAP-ML of Nicaragua

The Socialist International stands with imperialism and the bourgeoisie against the Nicaraguan revolution

Below we reprint an excerpt from an article on the activity of the social-democratic Socialist International in Latin America that was published in Prensa Proletaria, organ of the MAP-ML of Nicaragua, April 1984. The excerpt below deals mainly with the role of the Socialist International towards Nicaragua.

Social-democracy is an international reformist trend. It is linked to world imperialism generally and serves the bourgeoisie of each country that it is active in. The Socialist International is an international grouping of social-democratic parties and trends around the world. At the same time it is heavily dominated by Western European social-democracy. It is this wing of world social-democracy that the Prensa Proletaria article deals with.

Over the last several years, the Socialist International has launched a major "strategy towards the third world," especially in Latin America. As part of this new drive, the Socialist International gives lip service to the popular struggle against oligarchic tyranny and fascist dictatorships. This has led various apologists of social- democracy to suggest that social-democracy has become a progressive force.

The Prensa Proletaria article exposes the falsity of such a claim. Itshows that social-democracy, with its doctrines of class conciliation, stands for a policy in defense of imperialism and capitalist exploitation. Far from being an oppositional force against U.S. imperialist aggression in Central America, for example, social-democracy works as a complement to the militarist intervention of Washington. As well, the Prensa Proletaria notes that the activation of the Socialist International across Latin America represents an effort to further the economic and political ambitions of European imperialism.

The Prensa Proletaria article thus helps to reaffirm that it is essential to maintain vigilance against social-democracy and to develop the struggle against social-democratic efforts to sabotage the revolutionary struggles of the toilers of Latin America.

[Prensa Proletaria masthead.]

Mr. Pieter Dankert, president of the European Parliament, had occasion to address the State Council of Nicaragua this past January 10. His discourse, clearly within the social-democratic line, gave a glimpse of the origins of European social-democracy's interests in Central America and its "limitations" in giving basic answers.

This social-democratic devotion, which came late for our continent, constitutes an entire political phenomenon; given that U.S. militarism, for its part, intends also to put things in their place. The peoples are confronting, in the middle of the world crisis of capitalism, an enemy with various heads. Social-democracy is one of them....

Why Latin America?

"We have a network of commercial relations with the countries of Central and South America, built up over a long period of time," declared Pieter Dankert, president of the European Parliament, in front of the State Council of Nicaragua on January 10. The European "discovery" of the "new world" of Latin America is being pushed, just as it was in the old days, by the economic necessity of expansion and new markets to secure sources of raw materials and cheap labor.

The generalized and deep crisis which is shaking world capitalism has heightened the inter-capitalist and inter-imperialist competition. Between capitalist countries the competition for productive resources and markets is no less fierce than that between individual capitalists. U.S. and European imperialism are engaged in this conflict....

Social-Democracy and Nicaragua

In the face of the ideological and organizational failure of U.S. imperialism which has appropriately said that it had "burned" its possibilities to intercede directly in the workers' and revolutionary movement, for example with free unionism, world capitalism still counts on the important reserves like social-democracy and its alter ego, revisionism. Both advance, depending on the conditions, in their intention to disorient and to tie up the revolutionary forces of the toilers.

The democratic demagoguery of the Socialist International and its maneuvers become fully clarified with the case of Nicaragua. During years and years of the Somoza dictatorship, social-democracy kept a long and prudent silence. It was not until September of 1978, that the Socialist International began to pronounce itself against Somoza; even then its support was directed towards UDEL and FAO [bourgeois opposition coalitions -- WA]. It was Donald Castillo who officially represented Nicaragua at the meeting in Lisbon during September of 1978. The intensification of the popular struggle and the imminent fall of Somoza obligated the Socialist International to declare itself more clearly in open support for the Insurrectional Tendency, or the "Third Trend" (Tercerista), of the FSLN. It must be mentioned, nevertheless, that the social-democratic government of the German Federal Republic not only never broke relations with the Somoza dictatorship but continued giving it economic support. It even approved a loan of $66 million to Somozaism in May, 1979, just two months before its overthrow. Nevertheless, two weeks after the triumph, an official delegation of the Socialist International headed by Mario Soares (presently a sympathizer of the counterrevolutionary Eden Pastora) was in Nicaragua speaking of mixed economy, party pluralism, nonalignment, etc. This rhetoric has not kept the Socialist International from pressuring with its weapons for a social-democratic alignment of the Nicaraguan revolution, with the help of what Dankert called "the creative force of different ideas on business and diplomacy to counterbalance the force of arms." This "pluralism" was evident in the suspension of the Caracas meeting in February 1982 due to the accusation that one of the invited, the FSLN, was in reality a "Marxist- Leninist" force. 1

This "freedom" is evident in the content of the famous letter that Willy Brandt, Carlo Andres Perez, Felipe Gonzales, and Daniel Oduber directed to the FSLN, where continued support for the FSLN by social-democracy is made contingent on the formation of a constitutional commission to prepare a "western" political system, the promulgation of an electoral law and the restoration of a free press (following the bourgeois concept). This external pressure has strengthened the counterrevolutionary political activity of the local rightists who are capitalizing on each and every one of the political opportunities attained by these pressures. In all this the right wing has taken up, like a banner, the political and penal redemption of the former National Guard of Somoza which has been reorganized by the Reagan administration along the border of the country. A recent decree of the Nicaraguan government recognized political rights "to elect and be elected" for these kinds of fellows who abandon their armed activities and return to the internal "civic" struggle.

In spite of the fact that European imperialism, conscious of its situation in respect to U.S. imperialism, affirms in the words of Dankert that "the methods that the European Economic Community can count on to influence the events of the region in a direct way are limited, nevertheless there is clarity that there are possibilities, principally in the sphere of commerce and developmental aid; even though these require a bit of time to demonstrate results."

In the sphere of commerce, European imperialism has plans for the deteriorated Central American Common Market; it is studying its entrance into the Latin American Economic System and recently has signed an agreement with the countries of the Andino Pact. The particular interest of European imperialism in Central America is shown by the fact that during 1982 it gave to this region 80% of all the European "aid" to Latin America. The countries most benefited were Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

At a political level, Nicaragua is one of the central preoccupations of European imperialism, along with El Salvador and Guatemala -- the Central American countries with revolutionary situations, with a possibility of betterment.

Social-democracy already feels "satisfied" with the success of its criticisms of the Nicaraguan government on the electoral topic. They have shown particular satisfaction with the fact that the institutionalization of Nicaraguan politics includes the right of the political parties to "search for political power, not only the right to participate in the government, "+ and with the official declarations of the Sandinistas that, if eventually defeated in the elections, they are ready to hand over power. This institutionalization of "political pluralism," nevertheless, has left the Marxist- Leninist party of Nicaragua, the Movement of Popular Action (MAP- ML), outside the framework of that institutionalization. This fact can serve as an indication as to how much this same process of institutionalization, whether spontaneous or pressured, is marked by a deeply social-democratic stamp that is striving to throw the revolution off course and onto the track of the Socialist International. That is, to leave intact the capitalist outline of the economic base, and to make a big display with radical speeches for the consumption and disorientation of the masses. This social-democratic danger is the reality of the day for the revolutionary process, given the degree of combined pressures from the Reagan administration, international social-democracy, internal reaction, and some sectors of the masses who are dragged along by the social-democratic illusions that are impregnated with visceral anti-communism.

This is to say, the toilers of Nicaragua and the rest of Latin America confront an enemy with various heads, all of which almost simultaneously will have to be defeated. One of them, social-democracy, trys to attain by "good" means what U.S. fascism looks to accomplish by "bad."...

Just as against U.S. imperialism, it is true that only the organization and the mobilization of the working class, leading the people, can win and overcome this bourgeois offensive. The ideological and political struggle against this bourgeois manipulation can not be conceded, not even for a minute of rest. In these struggles, the organization of the proletariat, independent of and against the bourgeoisie and imperialism, under the guide of the revolutionary theory of the working class -- Marxism-Leninism -- is the best weapon of the toilers....

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Press release of the Nicaraguan Workers Front on the U.S. aggression

The following press release was issued by the Workers Front in April, shortly after the criminal mining of Nicaragua's ports by imperialism. The Workers Front (Frente Obrero or FO) is the trade union center under the leadership of the Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninist party, the Movement of Popular Action/Marxist-Leninist (MAP-ML).

In its eagerness to give a global answer to the sharp crisis that is crossing the world, and the Central American region in particular, imperialism is insisting on its formula of war, economic blockade and political maneuvering to reduce the possibilities of developing the revolution in Nicaragua and to block the triumph of the revolutionary forces in El Salvador.

In the application of this strategy of terror and death, imperialism does not skimp on its efforts and utilizes millions of dollars in acts of sabotage. It organizes the counterrevolutionary groups that operate from Honduras and Costa Rica and it trys to organize an internal political front headed by the rightist parties, bourgeois unions and top hierarchy of the Catholic church.

These acts of sabotage, that have as their objective economic strangulation, show that the financial and military monopolies have decided to move forward with their aggressive plans. Meanwhile, Contadora plays the role of an innocent angel putting on the stage a "peaceful" play whose last act would be the liquidation of the revolutionary aspirations of the masses in Central America.

The mining of the ports in Nicaragua and the aggressive turn in recent days have put in evidence the tactical inter-imperialist and inter-bourgeois contradictions that move between open fascism and social-democracy. One wave of protests have been launched against Reagan for having authorized such actions. But those who have sent these notes of protest have taken good care not to point out the true causes of the aggression. They are very careful not to give the class characterization of the government of the United States or other imperialist countries. Countries like England, which protest the mining of the ports but didn't hesitate a moment to bulldoze into the Malvinas; apart from that, it didn't collaborate in the de-activization of the mines in Nicaragua. Also imperialist countries like France which claims to support the negotiation of Contadora but nevertheless maintains its occupation in Lebanon and sells fabulous quantities of arms to Venezuela and other countries that form part of the Contadora group; or Colombia also part of Contadora, which carries a clever peace policy, meanwhile it arms to the teeth with armaments acquired from the Israelis.

The Workers Front has pointed to all of this in its communiques, bulletins, and above all, in its practice. It has educated the toilers in the fact that true peace for the toilers is built by destroying the cause of war: imperialism and the bourgeoisie.

The Workers Front condemns the mining of the ports of Nicaragua and condemns not only imperialism but all those that in one form or another are spokesmen and artifices of the aggressive war policy against the peoples. At the same time, the Workers Front has issued a call to the toilers, to the working class to put themselves to the front of the historic tasks that they are called upon to realize -- to send to hell the pretensions of imperialism and the pacifist maneuvers of Contadora, shake off the revisionist agents in their midst and dedicate themselves to the building of socialism in transition to communism.

Executive Committee of the Workers Front

April 12, 1984

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20 years of revolutionary struggle

The Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist) holds its 12th Congress

This July, in deep clandestinity, the Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist) held its 12th Congress. This year is the 20th anniversary of the rupture with Soviet revisionism and the reorganization of the Party on Marxist-Leninist lines. Since that time the CP of Colombia has been steeled in two decades of arduous revolutionary battles for the overthrow of the reactionary bourgeoisie and U.S. imperialist domination, and to liberate the revolutionary movement from the influence of modern revisionism and social-democracy. The 12th Congress marks another victory of the Colombian Marxist-Leninists in this struggle.

The 11th Congress of the CP of Colombia (ML) was held in 1980. After extensive inner-party discussion in preparation, the 11th Congress denounced Mao Zedong Thought. The repudiation of a number of Maoist concepts, which previously had influenced the tactics and work of the Party, had a very positive impact. The Party's political prestige and influence in the revolutionary movement has been raised dramatically. The forces of the Party have grown rapidly in numbers and strengthened their positions in both the urban and rural proletariat. And the Popular Liberation Army (EPL), the armed wing of the CP of Colombia (ML), has multiplied its ranks four times over.

In the wake of the 11th Congress there have been further advances in strengthening the ideological foundations of the Party. The Party has undertaken major theoretical work on problems of political economy and on the character of the Colombian revolution. This has been part of overcoming the dogmas of Maoism and putting the revolutionary work on strictly scientific lines. After careful study and discussion the CP of Colombia (ML) has come to the conclusion that it is necessary to adjust the program of the Party.

For the Proletarian Revolution and Socialism in Colombia

The 11th Congress had characterized the Colombian revolution as democratic, popular, anti-imperialist, towards socialism. In the fall of '83, a National Conference of Cadre adopted a number of important theses along the following lines: Colombia has witnessed a major capitalist development in recent decades; the accelerated process of differentiation among the peasantry has meant that alongside the growth of the industrial proletariat there has been a rapid growth of the agricultural proletariat; the industrial and agricultural workers have become the fundamental classes that hold up the economy; and the Colombian bourgeoisie, dominated by finance capital and closely associated with foreign (mainly U.S.) imperialist capital, has become an integral whole with a clear identity. Based on the theses of the National Conference of Cadre the Party came to the conclusion that the characterization of the revolution adopted at the 11th Congress did not conform to Colombian reality.

Now the 12th Congress has adopted a resolution defining the character of the revolution as socialist. At the same time, the Congress holds that, in its struggle for the socialist revolution, the proletariat must be the vanguard fighter in the struggles against U.S. imperialist domination, against the process of fascization, and for realizing the other democratic tasks confronting the Colombian people. And the alliance between the working class and the peasantry has fundamental significance for the socialist revolution.

The changes in the strategic conception of the Colombian revolution have been accompanied with an ongoing process of adjusting and perfecting the tactics and methods of work of the Party.

The Tactics of the Party in the Face of the Demagogic Maneuvers of the Regime

The 12th Congress also ratified the tactics of the Party in relation to the present negotiations with the government for a truce. A few points of background would assist our readers in understanding the issues involved in these tactics.

The present Conservative Party government of Belisario Betancur is working to strengthen the hand of reaction and continues the process of fascization of the regime. The murders and kidnappings by the military and paramilitary forces continue unabated and Betancur has once again proclaimed a state of siege. At the same time, Betancur resorts to nationalist and populist demagogy in service of capitalist reaction and imperialism. Just as he is a central figure in the Contadora Plan to disarm the revolutionary forces in Central America, Betancur has resorted to a series of demagogic maneuvers at home. His aim is to diffuse the powerful impulse of the Colombian people for democratic rights and to pacify the Colombian guerrilla movement, which poses an acute political problem for the bourgeoisie. Even some military generals concede that the guerrillas cannot be defeated by simply military means.

When he first came to office two years ago, Betancur twice offered the guerrillas an "amnesty" which amounted to nothing but a demand for the guerrillas to surrender. After the "amnesty" proposals had been rejected, Betancur has offered to negotiate cease-fires and truces with the guerrilla movements. In May, FARC, which is led by the pro-Soviet revisionist CP and which is also the largest of the guerrilla forces, signed a truce with the government on capitulationist terms. (For example, the truce terms declare that a violation of the laws of the Republic means a violation of the truce, recognize the government's armed forces as the defender of the nation, etc.)

But the fact that the government has agreed to truce negotiations to pursue its own nefarious aims and that the revisionists have adopted a cowardly and capitulationist stand, doesn't mean that the Marxist-Leninists cannot make use of this process for their own revolutionary aims. In order for the government to carry out its deceptive maneuvers it has been forced to open up a number of cracks in its wall of repression and terror against the revolutionaries. The CP of Colombia (ML) seeks to exploit these possibilities to the maximum in order to advance its positions among the working masses; meanwhile it remains vigilant, preserving its clandestine organization, and keeping in mind the limited and temporary nature of the cracks which have been created.

In this complex situation, the CP of Colombia (ML) and its Popular Liberation Army (EPL) believe that it is necessary to enter the truce process. Jointly with the M-19 guerrilla movement, the Party and the EPL are carrying out negotiations with the government for a cease-fire and a truce. It has entered the truce negotiations to ensure that the Party's positions are made known among the working class and people and to advance the mass struggle for its own demands, including democratic freedoms and reforms in favor of the workers, peasants and revolutionary forces, for the fighting unity of the guerrilla movement, etc. The Party considers that by entering the truce process it can more effectively combat the demagogy of the Betancur government, and more successfully undermine the strength of the revisionist leaders of the CP/FARC and the social-democrats and other opportunists.

It should be noted that the CP of Colombia (ML) analyzes that in Colombian conditions a military truce, if it can be achieved, can only be temporary. The 12th Congress emphasized that the armed struggle is "a key part in the development of our revolutionary tactic," and that building the revolutionary army is a "permanent task" of the Party's strategy.

Determination to Overcome the Obstacles to the Unity of the International Marxist-Leninist Communist Movement

The 12th Congress addressed the tasks facing the international Marxist-Leninist movement. The Congress discussed the problems of the unity of the world's Marxist-Leninists and committed the CP of Colombia (ML) to the ideological, political and organizational work to overcome the obstacles to unity. The Party rejects all forms of bourgeois nationalism and social-chauvinism and places great stress on the importance of actively and militantly applying the Marxist-Leninist principles of proletarian internationalism.

The 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist) was an important event in the revolutionary work of the Colombian Marxist-Leninists. Along with the Colombian comrades, The Workers' Advocate celebrates the success of the 12th Congress of the CP of Colombia (ML) and extends a proletarian internationalist salute to all the courageous revolutionaries in its ranks.

Below we have reprinted the Political Declaration of the 12th Congress. We hope to carry further materials from the Congress in future issues. The translation is ours.

[Photo: In defiance of the reactionary government's state of siege, 25,000 workers organized a march 52 blocks long through the streets of Medellin on May First. The CP of Colombia (ML) played a militant role, raising the red banners of the Party and banners of its armed wing, the EPL.]

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Political Declaration of the 12th Congress of the CP of Colombia (ML)

Before the international proletariat and the Colombian working class and people, we present the best celebration of the 20 years of the restructuring of our Party on Marxism-Leninism: the successful, unitary and internationalist realization of our 12th National Congress.

About two hundred delegates named by 18 regional conferences and assemblies and by fronts of work of the Party have met in our highest democratic event, with the participation of the representatives of the brother parties of Spain, Ecuador, France, Mexico, Bolivia, Costa Rica and Upper Volta.

During the month of July of 1984, some place in Colombia, the 12th Congress has reviewed the last four years of work, which have been characterized by the continuous strengthening of the Marxist-Leninist quality of the Party, by its multitudinous quantitative growth, and by the invigoration of its political presence at the head of the revolutionary movement, based on a better foundation in the working class and the popular masses.

The 12th Congress of the CP of Colombia (ML) is a new demonstration of the internationalist character of the Party. We are a proletarian international detachment, because the working class is only one on a world level, with identical objectives and common enemies. We are fighters for the world proletarian revolution and, for this reason, we put in intimate association to this the development of the fight for taking power and socialism in Colombia and we put this at the service of the triumph of socialism and communism the world over.

The world marches towards socialism and communism. The October Revolution marked the beginning of the epoch of the definitive wounding of capitalism and imperialism and placed the proletariat as the class that signals the path of development towards socialism.

The four fundamental contradictions of the epoch do not only maintain their full effect, but they take on special vigor. Before the Marxist-Leninist parties is presented the challenge of strengthening and developing themselves as the only alternatives of power and of consistently applying proletarian internationalism in order to fulfill the mission bequeathed by the Communist International, led by Lenin and Stalin.

The problematical international situation brings out the necessity which cannot be postponed for the proletariat and the peoples, led by their Marxist-Leninist detachments, to intensify the struggle against imperialism, revisionism and social-democracy, and threatening fascism; in no case can this struggle be deviated towards bourgeois nationalism or social-chauvinism. It is imperative to confront and overthrow the reactionary bourgeoisies in power to open the path of the revolution towards socialism.

The danger of a new world war is an evident fact that is born of the expansionist and rapacious nature of imperialism. The Marxist-Leninists, the proletariat and the peoples cannot join the chorus of bourgeois pacifism that attempts to disarm our struggle. We raise the banner of the struggle for peace among the peoples, developing the revolution and preparing ourselves to fulfill the Leninist mandate of transforming the imperialist war into a revolutionary war.

The cry of combat and unity of the proletarians traverses the world. The Marxist-Leninist parties will not be inferior to this sacred commitment. The consistent practice of active and militant proletarian internationalism, as a fundamental principle of the doctrine of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, demands of us to work boldly to strengthen and concretize the ideological, political and organizational unity of the international communist movement.

The road of the unity of the Marxist-Leninists is not easy. The communists are not afraid of difficulties. Our commitment is to overcome all the obstacles and to combat all that is opposed to converting the unity of the Marxist-Leninists into vigorous reality and actuality. The 12th Congress of the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist) commits itself to take all the steps necessary to gain a general strategic and tactical line and to materialize the international organization of the Marxist-Leninists.

We, the Colombian communists, raise our fist of solidarity with.the proletariat and the peoples of the world who struggle against imperialism, the bourgeoisie and all the reactionaries. We support and defend the construction of socialism in Albania, as the heritage of the international proletariat. Our spirit of combat is at the side of the communist fighters assassinated by the fascist regimes, condemned to the dungeons and persecutors, as is happening today in Turkey, Iran, Chile, Venezuela and other countries of the world.

The development of the world proletarian revolution equally demands of the Marxist-Leninists of Colombia to work with tenacity for the ever greater strengthening of our Party as the political head of the revolution. This implies constituting ourselves as a real alternative of power, capable of assuring the dictatorship of the proletariat and the construction of socialism.

For the Party it continues to be a necessity to strengthen itself as a strong and numerous party at the head of a broad revolutionary movement of the masses, and to deepen its ties with the working class, occupying the first place in the struggle for its unity.

The 12th Congress constituted the rationalization of the experience obtained in the class struggle in the national and international arena. Our Party has today a more profound knowledge of the reality of the country and of the world, and has taken a leap in the assimilation of Marxism-Leninism. This has permitted the arrival at unanimous conclusions and the frank disposition of all the militants to carry into practice the adopted decisions.

The 12th Congress praises the role played by all the militants of the Party and values highly the work of the Popular Liberation Army, its loyalty to the Party and its firmness in combat. The Party press has been an instrument of transcendental importance; this Congress has committed itself to continue to strengthen it in all its aspects, in particular the role of the central organ, Revolution.

The CP of Colombia (ML), characterizing the revolution as socialist, does so convinced that it covers a whole stage in which the proletariat must not only itself participate, but lead the battles for democracy. In the struggles against imperialist domination and penetration, against capitalist exploitation and oppression, against the preparations of a new world war and against the process of fascization, the Party must assure the unity of the working class and the masses around its political line, putting into play all of its instruments and applying a correct policy of alliances, in which the worker-peasant alliance plays the primary role.

The characteristics of the insurrection in Colombia indicate for the Party's strategy the permanent task of constructing the revolutionary army. Our tactic of accumulation of forces and of preparation of the general insurrection demands of the communists audacity and flexibility, confronting and destroying all manifestations of conservatism and dogmatism. The forms of organization and of struggle, conforming to their tactical character, must be correctly defined at each moment, paying attention to the correlation of forces, the maneuvers of the enemy and the interests and objectives of the Party. We emphasize the actual effect of the armed struggle in Colombia, a key part in the development of our revolutionary tactic.

The 12th Congress ratifies the just tactics oriented by the central organs of leadership in this period. The slogans of truce, national dialogue and democratic opening, raised by the Party, open the way into the national political reality. Our proletarian organization has been placed in the first plane by the seriousness of its proposals, and its political capacity and clarity. The truth is that we have gained the polarization of the so-called left, unmasking the revisionists and other opportunists and gaining political initiative and growing sympathies.

The impulse of a great political movement of struggle for a democratic opening defines in the present moments our resolutely declared tactic. Taking into account the decisions of the central leadership in regards to the forms of the conduct and presence of the Party, it is a duty of all the communist militants to put themselves in the first ranks of the political struggle, defending the Party lines and the slogans of the moment.

The 12th Congress highly recognizes the leading capacity of the National Secretariat, of the Central Executive Committee and the Central Committee, which guided the Party during this period with ability and skill and outlined the directives that have permitted the Party's advance.

The Central Committee elected at this Congress has before itself the great responsibility of leading and fulfilling the orientations it puts forward, of continuing at the front of the Party, and of confirming with its correct practice the high honor with which it has been entrusted.


We have the commitment to struggle and to win. For this we count on the forces of the international proletariat, on the brother Marxist-Leninist parties, on the iron unity of our ranks, and on the certain and invincible guide of the Marxist-Leninist doctrine. We have the spirit of the Bolsheviks and the confidence that we belong to the future.

We are a party of the vanguard and we demonstrate this in the daily practice of the class struggle. We loyally fulfill the commitment to be the organized detachment of the proletariat and the general staff of the revolution. We continue gaining the confidence of growing sectors of the Colombian working class and people because we interpret and defend their interests. We continue demonstrating that we are worthy combatants of the party of Pedro Vasquez Rendon and Pedro Leon Arboleda.

To destroy the refuse of the capitalist world! To build socialism! This is the challenge that we put forth today and that we accept with militant pride.

Proletarians of all countries, unite!

Fighting united, we shall win!

12th Congress Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist)

July 1984

[Photo: A detachment of the EPL (Popular Liberation Army), which is the armed wing of the Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist).]

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Medellin, Colombia

Report on the 7th International Anti-Imperialist and Anti-Fascist Youth Camp

Medellin, a big industrial center surrounded by mountains, is the second city of Colombia. Between July 1 and 15, on a steep hill outside of the city, the 7th International Anti-Imperialist and Anti-Fascist Youth Camp was successfully held.

Large contingents of the Revolutionary Youth of Colombia from different parts of the country participated in the camp. A big delegation of the Revolutionary Youth of Ecuador and other Ecuadoran organizations also took part. As well, small delegations came from the Marxist-Leninist youth of Upper Volta, France, Spain, Dominican Republic, Denmark, Britain, Canada and elsewhere. Moreover, the MLP,USA, upon receiving an invitation for the first time from the Preparatory Committee, sent a delegation to the International Youth Camp. While there was no official U.S. delegation at the camp, the representatives of the MLP,USA participated fully in the camp's activities and worked to contribute to its success.

The Revolutionary Youth of Colombia

The camp was hosted by the Revolutionary Youth of Colombia (JRC). Several hundred JRC militants took part, coming from schools and work places from all the regions of Colombia. The JRC, the Marxist-Leninist organization of the Colombian youth, was founded only two years ago. Since its founding it has multiplied its ranks and consolidated itself as a national organization built among the student and worker youth.

In their tireless work for the camp, and in countless discussions with the foreign delegations, the JRC militants showed their determined revolutionary spirit and ardent proletarian internationalism. The JRC activists are well schooled in the line and orientation of the vanguard party of the Colombian proletariat, the CP of Colombia (ML), and sheared with the foreign delegations the rich revolutionary experience of the Colombian Marxist-Leninists.

Not surprisingly, for the JRC, as well as for the international delegations, a high point of the camp was the evening event where the Political Declaration of the 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Colombia (Marxist-Leninist) was first made public. (See accompanying report on the 12th Congress.)

In the Face of the State of Siege

From beginning to end, the camp faced the obstacles, threats and pressures of the reactionary Betancur government. The Colombian bourgeoisie rules through the most arbitrary and ruthless violence against the masses. For decades it has maintained an emergency state of siege directed against the political activity of the working masses and revolutionary forces. The police and army massacre the workers, peasants and students with impunity. And political activists and popular leaders frequently "disappear" at the hands of the military and paramilitary forces. In fact, days before the camp began, Rodrigo Pena- gos, a community leader from Itagui, a working class suburb of Medellin, was kidnapped; and participants at the youth camp took part in protests in Itagui to demand his freedom and security.

The pressure of the regime was felt directly on the activities of the camp. Among other things, police with riot shields blocked the start of the international long distance run and while they were at it arrested three participants for good measure. The authorities also refused to grant a permit for the anti-imperialist march that was scheduled to take place in Medellin. But this did not stop the march from taking place.

The anti-imperialist march was launched at dusk at an unannounced location. Taking over the center of the street for several blocks, the marchers raised aloft fighting anti-imperialist banners and the red banners of the Marxist-Leninists and revolutionaries of different countries. In militant and disciplined fashion the demonstration made its way through the crowded streets of Medellin, unmolested by the authorities who had been foiled by the method of surprise. The anti-imperialist march became an important triumph of the camp in the face of the state of siege.

Exchange of Experience and Discussions of Acute World Problems

The 7th International Youth Camp provided an opportunity for the Marxist-Leninist youth to exchange experience. A number of delegates who had participated in previous camps pointed out that one of the successes of the 7th Camp was its greater emphasis on addressing the acute political issues of the day.

Discussions were organized on the revolutionary movement in various countries -- Ecuador, Spain, etc. And commissions were held for the participants in the camp to debate a number of problems: the struggle against imperialist war; the menace of fascism; the capitalist crisis; tasks facing the worker and student youth; women and their participation in the revolutionary movement; problems of culture, etc. For the first time at the youth camps, the commissions not only held discussions but also adopted political resolutions. Among other things, the resolutions on imperialist war and fascism contained militant denunciations of U.S. imperialism, Soviet social-imperialism and the international bourgeoisie as the source of war and fascism; they posed the necessity for struggle against social-democracy and modern revisionism; they condemned imperialist aggression in Central America and around the world; and they expressed solidarity with the victims of reaction and fascism in Turkey, Iran, Chile, Dominican Republic and elsewhere.

The revolutionary struggles of the peoples of Central America were given special emphasis, and the debate in the commission on this question was particularly lively. The resolution adopted gives militant support to the Salvadoran, Nicaraguan and other peoples of this region in their heroic struggles against U.S. imperialism. It also condemns the Contadora Group (made up of the reactionary bourgeois and pro-U.S. imperialist governments of Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela and Panama) and its attempts to disarm the revolutionary peoples of Central America. The resolution also voices support for the proletarian forces in Nicaragua, represented by MAP-ML (Movement of Popular Action/Marxist-Leninist).

In general the discussions were marked by a high degree of militancy and proletarian internationalist solidarity. This does not mean, however, that there was complete unanimity. For example, the delegates from the petty-bourgeois nationalist CP of Canada (ML) and the RCP of Britain (ML) were disgruntled, being unhappy with a number of political developments at the camp, and with the very presence of a delegation of the MLP,USA.

Besides the organized discussions, there was also a good deal of informal interchange among the delegates of the various countries. The perpetual rains (the camp was held in hills known as "Cielo Roto" or ''Broken

Heavens" because of the large number of rain clouds which burst on them) put a little damper on some of the sports and other activities. But they couldn't dampen the revolutionary spirit of the participants,"and if anything, helped create conditions for the countless discussions among the delegates on the tasks facing the revolutionary youth and the Marxist-Leninists in their countries and on an international scale.

From many angles the 7th International Youth Camp was a success.

[Photo: The banner of the JRC (Revolutionary Youth of Colombia) in the midst of a protest of students, teachers and workers, May 1984.]

[Photo: The first national congress of the JRC (Revolutionary Youth of Colombia) was held in Medellin in November, 1983. The congress delegates sing The International, the song of the international proletariat.]

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3rd Congress of the Communist Party of Japan (Left)

On the Workers' Movement

The Communist Party of Japan (Left) recently held its Third Congress. The Political Report of the Central Committee has been serialized in The People's Star, international bulletin of the CPJ(L). Below we reprint an excerpt from Chapter III "Guiding the Mass Struggle, " Section 1 "Unify the Workers' Front" from the June 15 issue.

The working class is the leading class and main force of the Japanese revolution.

Since World War II, the working class has more than doubled in number to exceed 38 million, or 65 percent of the total employed population. The following is the present picture of the working class....

[The text went on to describe the different sections of the working class, including the more than 4 million regular workers in big enterprises and government, the 23.5 million workers in medium, small and petty businesses, and the millions of workers in temporary or part-time work. It then went on to discuss the social basis for reformism in the working class movement and the tasks of the proletarian revolutionaries, as follows:]

The imperialist bourgeoisie has introduced the bourgeois labor movement into the workers through the labor aristocracy. After World War II, the framework of the bourgeois labor movement was set through the labor reforms by U.S. imperialism and, associated with the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, the General Council of Trade Unions was formed. Later on, the Japanese monopoly bourgeoisie grew fat during the period of "high economic growth'' and in this process, adopted a policy to bribe the upper stratum of the workers. Japanese imperialism fostered a specific social stratum within the working class as a prop for bourgeois rule of workers by bribing the upper stratum of the workers and the petty bourgeoisie with a part of huge super-profits, squeezed from the oppressed peoples, and turning them into labor aristocrats who are bourgeoisified in all aspects of the world outlook and life style. The labor aristocracy, whose basis for existence is the super-profits of imperialism, is fanning up chauvinism from the position of Japanese imperialism. The labor bureaucracy, which is based on the labor aristocracy and nests in the leading bodies of trade unions, is turning the trade unions into a new type of the "Patriotic Industrial Association'' or an assistant organization for imperialism. If one coexists with the labor aristocracy without separating and breaking away from it, this means nothing but the desertion to the side of the bourgeoisie and the split of workers. It is incorrect if one does not regard the labor aristocracy as a social stratum but sorts out some specific workers according to job categories and forms of employment, unionized status and earnings, and if he wrongly defines them as the labor aristocracy and excludes them from the movement.

The lower-strata workers represent the overwhelming majority of workers and the main forces of social production. They are unemployed or semi-unemployed, without rights and extremely underpaid. Although some of them are affiliated with trade unions, many remain unorganized. The influence of labor aristocracy is relatively small among them. A large part of lower-strata workers are left outside of the current labor movement. In other words, the proletariat is divided. We must overcome this situation.

The following points are important for the unification of the workers' front.

(1) We must fight upholding the banner against unemployment, wage reduction and fascist-like oppression and for the abolition of wage slavery. We must step up the struggle against unemployment. The relative overpopulation typically signifies the status of workers under capitalism. By exposing this, we must advance the struggle toward the overthrow of capitalism which brings about unemployment. With emphasis on the wage struggle, we must reveal the contradiction between capital and wage labor. We must disclose the oppression of the workers' movement as a road to imperialist war, so as to build up the struggle for democracy and expand the front of the movement. The imperialist bourgeoisie has become barbaric in the deepening crisis of capitalism. The favorable situation is created for the struggle to reveal capitalism and overthrow the wage slavery. For the unification of the workers' front, it is necessary to establish the class viewpoint.

(2) The imperialist bourgeoisie uses the state machinery to promote the conversion of industrial structure and the administrative reform as well as to carry out the plunder of the people and the oppression of the workers' movement. We must consistently face up to the policies of the imperialist bourgeoisie and expose the real nature of the state on the basis of the mass struggle.

(3) We must abide by the revolutionary line. The struggle at Kikutani Clothing Company, which is a struggle waged by workers of a small company against dismissals, has been an experience winning support from broad masses. This is because the slogans of the struggle coincided with the class interests of the large workers' masses and represented their true voice. Despite its particularity, the contradiction at Kikutani Co. between the capital and the workers is an irreconcilable, universal contradiction in the capitalist society between capital and wage labor over the exploitation and anti-exploitation, the oppression and anti-oppression. It is this contradiction where the essence of the capitalist wage slavery is starkly expressed. The struggle at Kikutani Co. exposed it and upheld as slogans the class demands of the workers. The reason why the struggle enlisted a wholehearted sympathy of the broad masses, is that it followed a revolutionary line fundamentally different from the reformist bourgeois labor movement, such as so-called "company reconstruction" line which seeks to improve capitalism in reliance on the bourgeoisie.


(4) While giving full play to the fighting capability of the outside subcontract, temporary and day workers, part-timers, and workers in medium and small companies, we must arouse the regular workers at large enterprises, national public employees, public corporation workers and municipal workers to action and wipe out the influence of labor aristocracy among them. The imperialist bourgeoisie divides and rules the outside subcontract, temporary and day workers, part-timers, and workers in medium and small companies, on one hand, and the regular workers in large enterprises, national public employees, public corporation workers and municipal workers, on the other. We must break down this rule and unite all the workers in a class way against capital. The important thing to this end is that we go down to the lowest stratum of workers to link up with them and generate movements by starting from the actual situation of workers and working out our policies.


(5) We must strengthen the struggle against chauvinism. Opportunism of the labor aristocracy, which has turned into chauvinism and the concept of "defending the fatherland" on the side of its own imperialism at a time of imperialist war, has split the proletariat and broken the unity between the proletariat and the oppressed peoples. But activating the political work among the workers, we must make the Japanese working class advance on the course of fighting in unity with the oppressed peoples against the Japanese imperialist bourgeoisie. The struggle against imperialist war must be intensified. The trade unions under the influence of labor aristocracy play a reactionary role. The trade unions, affected by chauvinism, have turned into an instrument to mobilize the workers for an imperialist war. Nevertheless, we must work in any reactionary trade union whatever, as long as the masses are there. Even when it is hard to turn the whole of a trade union to a class direction, we must fight there against the labor bureaucracy to win the masses.

(6) We must organize the advanced elements of workers so as to promote a class turn in the workers' movement. It is necessary to build up, as an organizing form for them, the struggle committees and the councils of workers' representatives of factories and enterprises. The struggle committees must organize the advanced elements of workers and take deep roots in the masses, by concretely grasping the conditions of the enemy and ourselves and various phases of workers' consciousness at each factory or enterprise. The councils of worker representatives are organizations which unite the struggle committees of separate factories and enterprises on a regional and industrial basis. Therefore, they must combine the struggles at particular factories and enterprises to develop them politically into a class- against-class struggle, and organize class counteractions of the workers by exposing the attacks of the imperialist bourgeoisie through the state machine. When no struggle committees are organized yet at factories or enterprises, it is necessary to conduct such activities as a council of worker representatives will do, by rallying workers from some factories and enterprises. Even in that case, however, these activities must take roots in the class battles at the factories and enterprises and be promoted in the direction of organizing struggle committees.

[Photo: A militant protest in Iwakuni, Yamaguchi Prefecture, against Ronald Reagan's visit to Japan last November. The placards declare: "Reagan go home!'', "Down with the Nakasone government!'', Denounce the imperialist invasion of Grenada!", "U.S. out of Japan and the Iwakuni base!", and "We support the struggles of the oppressed peoples!" Photo from People's Star, paper of the CP of Japan (Left).]

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Condemn the Repression in the Dominican Republic!

Statement of the National Executive Committee of the Marxist-Leninist Party,USA

Below we reprint a statement issued on June 30 by the National Executive Committee of the MLP, USA condemning a recent wave of repression against the left in the Dominican Republic. Since that time, it has been reported in the bourgeois press that those who had been arrested have been released. The arrests appear to have been a form of detention" because the government wanted to forestall a new round of mass struggle against its austerity campaign. The arrests coincided with a decision by the government to raise gasoline prices from less than 90 cents a gallon to $1.76; this was demanded by the International Monetary Fund of the world's imperialist bankers. The statement below clarifies the tense situation between the masses and the Dominican bourgeoisie regarding the austerity campaign of local capital and the IMF.

In mid-June the government of the Dominican Republic carried out a Gestapo-style sweep against the left throughout that country. It arrested a large number of leaders of leftist political parties, trade unions, and peasant organizations. After being imprisoned for several days, the detainees were released. But only for a day or two. On Tuesday, June 19, the police again launched raids to rearrest the left activists. However, they failed to find everyone they were looking for.

Among the targets of the police repression is our fraternal Marxist-Leninist party, the Communist Party of Labor (CPL). The list of original detainees included Comrade Rafael Chaljub Mejia, General Secretary of the CPL. But the police failed to find Comrade Chaljub in their second series of raids. However, early reports from the Dominican bourgeois press indicate that at least one local of the CPL was raided during the June 19 sweep.

The Marxist-Leninist Party of the USA strongly condemns this latest round of repression by the social-democratic government of Salvador Jorge Blanco. These latest attacks come just two months after the mass upsurge of late April, when the Dominican government brutally unleashed its troops against the people who had risen up in protest of huge increases in the prices of food and other necessities. At that time, the Blanco regime murdered over 60 people, injured hundreds, and arrested nearly 5,000 people, including a large number of left activists.

In the current persecution of the left, it is not yet clear what specific charges are being made against the left leaders. But the government has unleashed a propaganda campaign that allegedly the Dominican leftists were involved in an international conspiracy to "undermine the stability of the Republic." A whole slew of lurid tall tales are being spun out about the supposed training of terrorists in Libya and Cuba, sinister trips to the Soviet Union and Viet Nam, the involvement of Basque nationalist fighters, and so forth.

These are nothing but a pack of lies to cover over the naked suppression of the democratic rights of the working people in the Dominican Republic. The conspiracy stories have simply been borrowed from the arsenals of the professional liars of the Reagan administration, which sees the hand of the Soviet Union and Cuba behind every spark of unrest and revolt throughout the hemisphere.

The fact of the matter is that the unrest in the Dominican Republic is not the product of any Soviet-Cuban conspiracy; it is the result of the miserable conditions faced by the toilers of that country. The Dominican masses are savagely exploited at the hands of the Dominican capitalists and landowners and the U.S. multinational corporations. Today upheavals are breaking out there because the country is in the grips of acute economic crisis. The Dominican bourgeois government seeks to make the working people pay for the economic crisis. In order to keep paying tribute to the imperialist bankers, the government is imposing a ruthless program of hunger and austerity at the behest of the bankers' institution, the International Monetary Fund.

With their rebellion last April, the Dominican toilers showed their determination to stand up against the hunger program of the IMF and the bourgeois government. The Blanco government has unleashed its latest wave of repression in order to prevent a new upsurge by the toilers. The government is showing that it is hellbent on imposing the IMF's austerity campaign and that it will not heed the demands of the masses against starvation and misery.

The recent events have again shown that there is nothing progressive about the social-democratic government of the Dominican Revolutionary Party. This is nothing but a regime of hunger and repression, a regime in the service of the bourgeoisie and imperialism.

The Marxist-Leninist Party of the USA condemns the hand of "our own" U.S. imperialist bloodsuckers in the oppression of the Dominican toilers. The American multinationals are among the principal exploiters of the Dominican working people. The Pentagon and the U.S. arms merchants are among the main suppliers of the guns, bullets and other weapons in the hands of the Dominican security forces. And the U.S. imperialists also have a major role in the IMF's dictate to squeeze the Dominican masses.

Indeed, the April price hikes were announced just a few days after Jorge Blanco came to Washington to visit Reagan. Reagan pressed Blanco to enact the new austerity campaign as a condition for new U.S. loans. A U.S. diplomat justified this with the claim that the country's economic problems were due to "an unrealistic standard of living for the lower and middle classes." At the same time, Reagan praised the Dominican regime as an island of stability in the region. But this so-called "stability" was rudely shaken by the upsurge of April.

The Marxist-Leninist Party of the USA is confident that the repression of the Blanco regime will not succeed in stemming the struggle of the Dominican workers and peasants. The toilers who are already so poor and hungry will not sit by and let the international bankers and local capitalists starve them into even greater misery. The working masses have a long tradition of militant struggle. In the course of struggle they gave up many of their finest sons and daughters to the dungeons and executioners of the fascist tyrannies of Trujillo and Balaguer. They will not allow the persecution by the present "democratic" government to suppress the onward march of their revolutionary struggle.

The Marxist-Leninist Party of the USA reaffirms its militant solidarity with the fighting workers, peasants and youth of the Dominican Republic.

National Executive Committee Marxist-Leninist Party, USA

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Indira Gandhi Unleashes Terror in India's Punjab

For several years now, a major crisis has been brewing in the northwestern Indian state of the Punjab. In June the crisis exploded. The central government of Indira Gandhi launched a massive military crackdown against the Sikh nationalist movement. Over a thousand people were killed and the state has been put under military occupation. The blows of the Indian government have fallen not just upon the Sikh nationalists but also against the Sikh masses generally.

The situation in the Punjab is the latest of a series of major crises that India has faced since independence from Britain in 1947. This crisis is yet another indictment of the reactionary character of the Indian government and of the brutal and oppressive social system that exists in India.

The Indian government boasts of having the world's largest democracy and this is said to be able to harmonize the interests of all the different sectors of society. But behind the parliamentary forms lies the oppressive rule of the big capitalists and landlords. And whenever Indian "democracy" is faced with a real test of its professed abilities, it flunks out miserably; the niceties of parliamentary haggling are quickly put aside in favor of the use of the real instruments of bourgeois rule -- the guns of the police and army.

The crisis in the Punjab is the result of the interaction of two major factors. First, the practice of national and religious discrimination by the Indian ruling class. And second, the growth of conflicts between regional bourgeois interests and the central government, and also within various regional interests -- both conflicts being due to the uneven development of capitalism in the different regions of the country.

The Punjab is a state where the people, who are mainly of the Punjabi nationality, belong to two main religious communities, Sikh and Hindu. While Hinduism is the majority religion in India and common to many different nationalities, the Sikh religion is mainly restricted to the Punjabi nationality. The Sikh community is thus an ethnic-religious community, making up just over half of the people of the Punjab today. The class divisions in the state cut across both religious communities. There are both Hindu and Sikh working people and Hindu and Sikh exploiters.

The Indian state has long practiced various forms of discrimination against the Punjabis in general and the Sikhs in particular. The Sikh masses have grown bitter as a result of both these forms of oppression.

The Indian state makes pompous declarations of its alleged commitment to religious and national tolerance, but in fact it is a champion of Hindu chauvinism. Hindu chauvinism promotes a special privileged position for the upper-caste Hindus, for the Hindi-speaking nationality, and for the Hindu religion. It is a bulwark of the oppression by the Indian ruling class of the lower castes and of various minority nationalities and religious communities.

In the course of the current Punjab crisis, the Indian government has helped to bolster Hindu chauvinist bigotry and it has persecuted the Sikh masses. In the eyes of the government, every Sikh whose loyalty it is not sure of has become suspect, a "threat to the integrity of the nation."

Meanwhile the persecution of the Sikh masses has in turn helped to strengthen the influence of the Sikh nationalist movement over the Sikh masses. It has fed the nationalist propaganda about the alleged harmony of interests of all Sikhs, rich and poor alike. But this is a complete fraud. The Sikh nationalist movement is a movement in the interests of the Sikh bourgeoisie and it has nothing to offer the toiling Sikh masses.

The struggle of the Sikh nationalists against the central government is essentially a struggle of the rural and urban Sikh bourgeoisie for greater economic and political powers to enrich itself with. The contradiction between the local capitalists and the central government could have taken the form of a struggle of the Punjabi bourgeoisie as a whole against the central government. But this has not happened; instead it has taken on a communal (religious sectarian) character. The source of this lies in a long history of communal politics among the exploiters of the Punjab, which has today taken on a sharp character because of fierce competition between the Sikh and Hindu bourgeoisie of the state.

The greatest tragedy is that the crisis in the Punjab has led to a situation where both the Sikh and Hindu exploiters, and the Indian government as well, are systematically inciting the Sikh and Hindu communities against each other. Of course the incitement of fratricidal religious violence is not unique to the Punjab; the Indian ruling class regularly takes recourse to this sort of dirty work. Just in the recent period, we have witnessed major outbreaks of communal violence, in Assam last year and near Bombay just a few months ago.

Already in the Punjab great distrust has been created and there have been brutal killings of both Hindus and Sikhs. The stage has been set for even wider fratricidal violence. Such strife hits hardest against the working people of both religious communities. The exploiters, Hindu and Sikh, are attempting to use the toilers as pawns in their sordid rivalries with one another. They are actively promoting distrust between the religious communities in order to enslave the toilers of each community to their "own" exploiters.

The incitement of fratricidal violence is directly aimed against the unity of the workers and peasants. In the recent decades, the Punjab has been the scene of many a militant struggle of the toilers, including the large army of rural proletarians. It is this unity which is threatened today.

It is precisely these traditions of united struggle on class lines that offer hope for the future. The way out of the religious strife lies, above all, in the unity of the toilers across religious lines in revolutionary struggle against all the exploiters, both Hindu and Sikh.

The responsibility for building up such a struggle falls especially on the shoulders of the proletariat of India. It is this class which holds the key to the future, that can lead the way out of national and religious discord and out of the misery and oppression that are the lot of all the toiling masses. The proletariat is the class where the barriers of nationality, caste and religion have broken down to the greatest extent. Among the exploited masses, it is the class that knows best the importance of unity along class lines. It is therefore in the hands of the proletariat to rally its own ranks and the rest of the working people in revolutionary struggle for the class demands of all the exploited.

The proletariat must build up the revolutionary movement also to take up the fight against all forms of special oppression, including caste, national and religious oppression. This is required not only in the interests of elementary democracy but it is also essential to break down the barriers among the people, to win the trust of the specially oppressed sections, to defeat the poisonous influences of the nationalists, and to forge a powerful unity of all the working masses.

An end to all special forms of oppression can only come through a revolution of the workers and peasants. It requires the overthrow of the Indian ruling class and the coming to power of a revolutionary government of the toilers. History has clearly shown that all the bourgeois political forces in India openly defend or conciliate with the politics of caste, national and religious oppression. Only the poor, the downtrodden, the toilers can ensure true equality for all the oppressed sections of the people.

A revolution of the workers and peasants will begin the progress towards socialism. Only the abolition of all exploitation and the construction of socialism can ensure full emancipation for all the oppressed peoples of India. Only such a society can destroy the social foundations of every form of inequality. Only such a society can combat all religious prejudices and obscurantism and develop a scientific consciousness among the masses.

(The above article is reprinted from the last issue of The Workers' Advocate. In the following background article, we examine the crisis in the Punjab in more detail)


[Map: India is a very large and diverse country. It has a population of over 700 million. The divisions in the map above show the administrative divisions of the country; there are 22 states and 9 union (centrally administered) territories.

Many of the states and territories correspond to particular nationalities. The largest nationality, the Hindi-speaking people who make up over 40% of the country's population, are mainly resident in a belt that includes the six states of Rajasthan, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar, and the Union Territory of Delhi. There are in addition 11 other major nationalities with their own language and a host of smaller nationalities and ethnic groups.

The people are also divided into a number of religions. The majority, about 84%, are Hindu while the rest include Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, etc. Several of the religious communities but especially the Hindus are divided into castes. The weight of caste oppression is fiercest on the Dalits or Harijans (the so-called untouchables), who make up one seventh of the Indian population.

The present crisis has broken out in the Punjab, a state in the northwest where the people are mainly of the Punjabi nationality. Punjabis include both Hindus and Sikhs. The Sikhs form an ethnic-religious community among the Punjabi nationality and are today just over half the population of the Punjab. Today there are about 14 million Sikhs in India, mostly in the Punjab.]

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The crisis in the Punjab

While Indira Gandhi brutalizes the Sikhs, both Hindu chauvinism and Sikh nationalism undermine the unity of the toilers

The latest round of agitation by the Sikh nationalist movement in the Punjab began in 1980. This agitation was organized by the Akali Dal, the Sikh bourgeois political party, after it lost the state government to Indira Gandhi's Congress Party in the 1980 elections. The Akali Dal took up struggle for a charter of 45 demands, which were first put forward in 1973. These include special religious demands for Sikhs as well as demands calling for increased economic and political powers for the Punjab.


From the outset, the Congress Party and its governments, both at the state and national (central) levels, took the course of confrontation against the Akali movement. They combined a policy of endless empty negotiations for show with carrying out police repression and promotion of factionalism among the Akalis. Tens of thousands of Sikh activists were arrested and many were killed.

In the meantime, various religious fundamentalist currents grew within the Sikh movement. A section openly demanded a separate Sikh state, to be called Khalistan; this was to be a theocratic Sikh dictatorship where Sikhism would be the only official religion, where the Akali Dal would be the only party, and where non-Sikhs would be legally discriminated against. While this was a relatively minor current, another major faction close to it was organized under the banner of Sikh fundamentalism around the figure of Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

The Congress Party tried to play the different factions against one another. At one point, it showed an interest in using Bhindranwale against the mainstream Akali leadership. For example, Zail Singh of the Congress, today president of India, supported Bhindranwale's followers against the mainstream Akali candidates in the last round of elections to the committees that run the Sikh temples.

As the confrontation between the Sikh movement and the Indian government continued, the government widened its persecution of the Sikh masses generally. For instance, the Akali Dal called for major protests at the Asian Games which were held in Delhi, India's capital, in November 1982. At that time, the Indian authorities, especially the Congress government in the state of Haryana, which lies between the Punjab and Delhi, harassed every bearded Sikh traveling to Delhi; many were arrested or beaten. After this incident, the ranks of the Akali movement swelled with new forces; in December of that year 10,000 ex-servicemen joined in one of the Akali rallies.

Sections of the Sikh movement began to carry out armed attacks against the authorities and against what they considered to be Sikh "traitors." As well, communal strife (sectarian religious violence) began to spread, encouraged by both sides. The Akalis promoted their struggle as a "holy war"; their communal slogans made the Hindu masses the target. Murders and clashes began to take place against ordinary Hindus, as well as against Nirankaris, a dissident Sikh religious sect. The Congress Party and other Hindu chauvinist outfits also geared themselves to mobilize the Hindu masses along communal slogans. Many of the communal killings have taken place in very murky circumstances and it is widely suspected that the hands of the police are deeply involved in the communal violence.

The Crackdown

Last October, Indira Gandhi took a major step towards an escalation of the repression. She dissolved the state government even though it was controlled by her own party, and she declared President's Rule, i.e., direct rule by the central government.

Things moved from bad to worse. Sikh militants continued to fortify themselves in the Sikh temples, especially in Amritsar at the Golden Temple, the seat of the Sikh religion. On June 2, the Indian government imposed a virtual state of martial law in the Punjab. As a result, a 24-hour curfew was imposed; phone lines were cut; transportation was halted; and severe restrictions were imposed on the press. A large number of regular army troops were deployed, adding to the 25 battalions of central reserve police and border security forces already in the state.

On June 5, the Indian army launched an unprovoked military assault on the Golden Temple. They used 5,000 troops backed up by artillery and tanks. The attack was resisted by the Sikh militants and the fighting took some 36 hours to subside.

In the end, over a thousand Sikhs were killed. The dead included not just nationalist militants but also ordinary religious pilgrims. A large number of people were murdered with their hands tied behind their backs -- in other words, after they were captured.

Meanwhile, nearly 40 other Sikh temples were attacked across the Punjab. And after this was completed, a second phase of military operations commenced, as the military began to comb the countryside. This was ostensibly in the name of hunting for "5,000 terrorists" who were said to be still at large. But in fact this was especially meant to suppress discontent in the countryside, which had grown among the Sikhs as they heard of their religious centers being attacked.

On June 5, the Indian army launched an unprovoked military assault on the Golden Temple. They used 5,000 troops backed up by artillery and tanks. The attack was resisted by the Sikh militants and the fighting took some 36 hours to subside.

In the end, over a thousand Sikhs were killed. The dead included not just nationalist militants but also ordinary religious pilgrims. A large number of people were murdered with their hands tied behind their backs -- in other words, after they were captured.

Meanwhile, nearly 40 other Sikh temples were attacked across the Punjab. And after this was completed, a second phase of military operations commenced, as the military began to comb the countryside. This was ostensibly in the name of hunting for "5,000 terrorists" who were said to be still at large. But in fact this was especially meant to suppress discontent in the countryside, which had grown among the Sikhs as they heard of their religious centers being attacked.

The Indian government crowed afterwards that the back of the Sikh nationalist movement was broken. The central government was supported by other major Indian bourgeois parties as well. The imperialists also came out in favor of the Indian government's action; one Western paper after another editorialized in support of Indira Gandhi's crackdown as a blow in defense of "stability" in the South Asian subcontinent.

But they are all congratulating Indira Gandhi much too soon. In fact the situation in the Punjab remains tense. The military continues its occupation. The disenchantment of the Sikh masses with the Indian government has only widened further. The attack on the Golden Temple was greeted by Sikhs taking to the streets in protest, across India and in many foreign cities where there are Sikh emigrant populations. Meanwhile even larger fissures also showed themselves. Five thousand Sikh troops in the Indian army mutinied. This is the first major crack in the stability of the Indian military, where traditionally the Sikh officers and soldiers have been an important component.

Why Such a Crisis Emerges in Indian Society

In broadest terms, the roots of the crisis can be traced to two general features of Indian society today.

First, there is the question of how the Indian ruling class relates to the diverse social divisions within the society.

The fundamental division in Indian society is between the overwhelming majority of workers and peasants on the one hand and the bloodsucking ruling class of the big capitalists and landlords on the other. But intertwined with this basic division are other divisions based on nationality, religion, caste, etc. India is comprised of over a dozen major nationalities, several religious communities, and numerous caste divisions.

The Indian ruling class is an all-Indian class which has absorbed sections of the upper strata of most of the major nationalities and religious communities, including of the Sikhs. At the same time certain groupings occupy a dominant position within the ruling class. It is especially based upon the upper caste Hindus and, in terms of nationality, upon the upper strata of the Hindi-speaking nationality. This is the biggest nationality, making up over 40% of the country's population, found mainly in the six states of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Bihar, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh, and the Union Territory of Delhi.

The Indian ruling class gives lip service to secularism (the idea that the Indian state should be nonreligious) and respects the peoples of the land, but in fact it systematically pursues policies of national, caste and religious oppression and of incitement of peoples against one another. The Indian ruling class upholds the barbaric oppression of the Dalits or Harijans (the so-called untouchables); it has sought to impose Hindi as the official language of the country; it carries out wars of subjugation against the small frontier nationalities such as the Nagas and Mizos; and it promotes Hindu chauvinism and instigates communal violence against minority religions. Such policies are practices in order to super-exploit certain sections of the people and especially to split and divide the toiling masses in order to prevent their class-wide unity.

Such a situation is not new to India. In the colonial period, the British imperialists were notorious for their "divide-and-rule" policies to undermine the national liberation movement. And the Indian bourgeoisie, both in the course of the national struggle and since it came to power in 1947, has pursued policies permeated with chauvinism, communalism, and defense of caste privileges.

The second feature of Indian society relevant to our analysis of the roots of the Punjab crisis concerns the impact of the development of capitalism on Indian society with all its diversities.

Both in the colonial and post-colonial period, Indian society has been undergoing a torturous process of capitalist development. Colonialism simultaneously retarded economic development and engendered the development of capitalist relations; on the one hand it mutilated the pre-colonial economy, tried to make the country into an economic appendage of Britain, and retarded independent development; at the same time it introduced capitalist social relations into Indian society. Capitalism developed in the most painful and brutal fashion. And today while imperialist domination continues to distort economic development in India, the rule of the Indian bourgeoisie has however meant a significant expansion of capitalist development. This has involved the activity of both imperialist and native capital.

On the one hand, capitalist development has helped to break down various national, caste and religious barriers and to create and strengthen certain countrywide classes, most importantly, the ruling bourgeoisie and the oppressed Indian proletariat. On the other hand, the uneven character of capitalist development has helped to create and strengthen various regional bourgeois interests, resulting in competition between various regional interests and between the regional interests and the central government. These conflicts have manifested themselves in different forms, such as in the form of nationalist movements of various kinds, some based on nationality and others based on religion.

The Punjab is one area where one can see how the two above features of Indian society have interacted with one another.

Religious Nationalism in the Punjab

The Punjab is the home of the Punjabi nationality, the nationality common to the speakers of Punjabi in the northwestern corner of the Indian subcontinent. In this region there is a long history of religious communal politics. In the colonial days, the Punjab was comprised of three main religious communities -- Muslim, Sikh and Hindu. In all three communities, the upper strata promoted communal politics and forms of organization. Various economic divisions within the society facilitated this. This was also encouraged by the British colonialists, who were all to eager to set the people against one another.

This communal politics has already led to one major tragedy in the history of contemporary Punjab. When India became independent in 1947, imperialism and the exploiters partitioned the subcontinent on a communal basis, creating two states -- India and Pakistan, the latter a "Muslim state" created on the basis of a political movement spearheaded by the Muslim section of the exploiters. The Punjab was partitioned in two; the Muslim-majority western part became part of Pakistan. The Sikhs and Hindus opted for India. This all took place in the midst of terrible communal violence which took the lives of hundreds of thousands.

From the outset, the Indian state refused to recognize any real rights for the many nationalities in the country. After independence, the government refused to accede to the popular demand that the states in the Indian federation be reorganized along linguistic, i.e., nationality, lines. Instead it sought to preserve the old administrative divisions from the colonial days, which dispersed many nationalities over more than a single state. After years of struggle, most of the states were reorganized in 1956.

The Punjab, however, was one of the exceptions. The government adamantly refused to allow the creation of a Punjab state along linguistic lines. When finally forced to do so, in 1966, the government did so on the basis of inciting and keeping alive a number of contradictions between the Sikhs and Hindus. And both the Sikh nationalists and Hindu chauvinists promoted communal prejudice. The Akali Dal worked to give a Sikh communal character to the demand for a Punjabi state based on language, and the Hindu chauvinists even went so far as to urge the Punjabi Hindus to declare Hindi rather than Punjabi as their mother tongue.

Punjab and the "Green Revolution"

The reconstitution of the Punjab along linguistic lines came alongside a rapid development of capitalism in agriculture, the principal sector of the state's economy. The Punjab became a showcase of the so-called Green Revolution which the imperialists and Indian bourgeoisie boasted of so highly.

This involved a major increase in the use of fertilizers and pesticides, new seeds, machinery including tractors, and irrigation projects. As a result, today 85% of the land is irrigated, while the national average is 26%; there is wider electrification in the countryside; and the state has become the major wheat producer in the country. This expansion in agricultural production took place in the Punjab because of a number of favorable geographical, historical, and economic factors. The Green Revolution did not produce the same kind of result in most other parts of the country.

The Green Revolution did not mean prosperity for the poor. It was the rural exploiters who benefited. Class lines sharpened in the countryside. Many tenant farmers were forced off their land and many joined in the growing population of rural proletarians. Indeed, the percentage of rural laborers has gone up from i7% in 1961 to well over a third of the rural work force. And besides the rural laborers, the remaining owner-cultivators are also in dire straits.

The Green Revolution had its impact in the political sphere as well. The emergent rural capitalist class sought a share of political power; they worked through both the Congress Party and the Akali Dal. Behind their political ambitions lay their interest in getting control of the state government's funds for rural development and in using the government to resist the class demands of the rural poor.

A great majority of the rural capitalists are Sikh and they particularly gravitated towards the Akali Dal. In fact, they succeeded in capturing its leadership away from the urban commercial interests who used to dominate the Akali Dal until the early 1960's.

During the 1960's and 70's, the rural bourgeois leadership of the Akali Dal toned down its Sikh nationalism in favor of a broader Punjabi nationalism. They sought to achieve greater economic and political powers for the Punjab. And they sought and achieved alliances with other parties of the exploiters, including rabidly chauvinist Hindu parties. Yet although the Akalis achieved a coalition government in the state several times, they were unable to achieve anything in the way of expanding the powers of the Punjab vis-a-vis the central government.

The Resurgence of Sikh Nationalism

The 1970's began to see the growth of a number of trends which changed the political climate in the Punjab.

The rural poor were getting more and more restive. The rural toilers included both Sikhs and Hindus, especially from the lower castes and the Harijans. There were struggles which united the toilers across religious lines. Among the Sikh community, the poor began to turn away from the influences of the Akali Dal and the Sikh temple leadership which was connected to the Akalis. The Sikh toilers began to look towards the left and towards various religious-social movements outside the temples. All these things scared the Sikh exploiters.

In the meantime, the expansion in agricultural development began to peter out. Some of the difficulties were linked to the world economic crisis, such as the increase in the prices of fertilizers, machinery, power, etc. Shortages of power affected the supply of water. Government investment in agriculture fell.

In this situation a latent division in the Punjabi society began to manifest itself in a major way. In the Punjab, the Sikhs are a substantial majority in the countryside and have traditionally come from agricultural castes. The rural capitalists are overwhelmingly Sikh. On the other hand, the Hindus are a majority in the cities and the commercial bourgeoisie in the towns is dominated by Hindu traders and merchants. (There is not a great deal of industry in the state.) Under the impact of the economic crisis and the difficulties in agriculture, the Sikh exploiters began to chafe at the dominance of the Hindu bourgeoisie in the commercial sector. Grievances grew among both urban Sikh commercial elements, who had long felt subordinated, and among the rural capitalists, who felt their prospects being thwarted by those who controlled the market.

All this set the stage for the resurgence of Sikh nationalism, particularly after the Akali Dal got dislodged from the state government in 1980.

Just a brief look at a few of the demands of the Akali agitation show the class interests behind this movement.

A major demand is for a greater share of the water from two rivers that run through the Punjab. For decades there have been complicated arrangements for the division of these waters between the Punjab and the adjoining territories, which are poorer in water resources. Clearly this demand, although it is used to incite the farmers generally, is mainly in the interests of the Punjabi rural capitalists, who want to gain at the expense of the rural exploiters of the nearby states.

Another demand is for greater allocation of industrial development funds for the Punjab from the central government. And there is as well the demand for greater economic and financial power for the state government. All these demands are mainly meant for ensuring further enrichment of the bourgeoisie of the state.

There are no demands in favor of the toilers. One demand does call for a vague "reasonable minimum wage" for industrial labor, but interestingly enough, there is no such demand for the rural laborers. As well, there are demands for increasing prices of food-grains, demands that are in the interest of the rural capitalists, and may benefit sections of the peasantry, but go against the interests of the rural and urban wage laborers.

Many of the demands, especially the economic demands, could have been supported by non-Sikh exploiters in the Punjab. And initially there were some signs of this. But the Akali Dal has built its movement on a Sikh nationalist basis, in order to promote the interests exclusively of the Sikh exploiters. In this, the Akalis have been heavily influenced by the various fundamentalist currents. The roots of this lie, as we have noted, in the fierce rivalry between the Sikh rural and urban bourgeoisie and the Hindu commercial bourgeoisie.

Although the demands of the Akali movement are clearly in the interests of the Sikh bourgeoisie, the Akalis have worked to mobilize the Sikh masses behind them. They have made demagogical promises to the toilers and unemployed about prosperity in the future. And they have successfully used the feelings of discrimination and persecution among the Sikh masses to rally them to the nationalist cause.

But the sad fact is that the Sikh toilers are being deceived. They are being turned away from the cause of unity with their fellow toilers among the Hindus. And in the Hindu community, the exploiters there have worked to spread anti-Sikh poison and promote distrust among the Hindu toilers. Both groups of exploiters have worked to set the masses at loggerheads with one another.

The Response of the Central Government

In dealing with various regional conflicts, it is not unknown in India for the central government to arrive at accommodations with various regional bourgeois interests. But in this present instance, so far the Indian government of Indira Gandhi has opted for the course of confrontation. It has chosen to carry out repression of the Sikhs and promote communal strife. And at the present even the empty gestures of negotiations have been put aside.

There are two basic reasons for this. First, the Indian government wants to use its crackdown in the Punjab as an example against all forms of opposition in the country. It is an attempt to intimidate not just various bourgeois opposition currents, but also the workers and peasants of India.

Second, the Congress Party is worried about its prospects at the national elections which are coming up. By clamping down on the Sikhs, the Congress wants to show itself as a defender of the Hindus. It seeks to whip up Hindu chauvinist hysteria upon which to ride to victory. Indeed, for several years now Indira Gandhi and her party have been escalating their promotion of dirty communal politics. And right after the Punjab clampdown, she carried out maneuvers to topple the unfriendly state government in the nearby state of Kashmir. That government was controlled by a Kashmiri bourgeois nationalist party. Indira Gandhi's action against that government was meant to be seen as a sign that the Congress will keep the Kashmiris, who are majority Muslims, "in their place."

For the Unity of the Toilers Against All the Exploiters

The workers and peasants of the Punjab find themselves in a very difficult situation. The unity that the toilers have managed to build in the past in their class struggles is today threatened by the communal strife. Only the bourgeoisie benefits from this.

The interests of the toilers lie with each other and not with the exploiters of their "own" religious community. The conditions of the masses, Sikh or Hindu, cannot be improved by siding either with the Hindu chauvinists or Sikh nationalists. Instead it calls for organizing the class struggle against all the exploiters, Sikh or Hindu.

The way out of communal strife calls for forging class- wide unity in revolutionary struggle for the class demands of the workers and peasants. And in a society where class exploitation is intertwined with caste national, and religious oppression, the toiling masses must also fight for an end to all special forms of oppression. Today in the Punjab, this includes fighting against the persecution of the Sikhs. The Sikh masses should be defended from the attacks of the state and won away from the poisonous influence of the bourgeois nationalists.

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South African racist chief tours Europe

Tens of thousands protest against apartheid ruler

[The West Indian Voice masthead.]

(The following article is reprinted from the August, 1984 issue of The West Indian Voice, newspaper of the Caribbean Progressive Study Group.)

P.W. Botha, the prime minister of the white minority regime of South Africa, recently completed a seven- nation tour of [Western] Europe. His delegation's itinerary included talks with the reactionary pontiff in Rome. This being an election year, Botha was not brought to the U.S. But high-level meetings with U.S. officials took place in Europe as part of Botha's tour.

This tour by the chieftains of the blood-soaked apartheid regime of South Africa was arranged as part of an international campaign to cast the brutal system of apartheid in a "new light." The European imperialist powers jumped at the chance to provide a platform for the apartheid regime and give it legitimacy. The imperialist bourgeoisie o{ these states receive handsome super-profits from the subhuman exploitation of blacks and other oppressed masses under South African apartheid.

Everywhere Botha and his delegation went, they were greeted with the loud and militant denunciation by the working masses and anti-apartheid activists in Europe. In each country there was an outpouring of outrage and condemnation of the imperialist governments for this insult. In general, the protests were the largest anti-apartheid activities ever. Everywhere there were expressions of solidarity with the fighting people and the liberation struggle in South Africa.

In Britain, the imperialist bastion of Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher, and South Africa's third largest trading partner, the mass protests reached the largest proportions. In the biggest anti-apartheid protests in memory, tens of thousands took to the streets denouncing Botha and Thatcher. Demonstrators went to Thatcher's country estate where the talks were held, while tens of thousands staged a four-mile march to Hyde Park, passing in front of the South African embassy in Trafalgar Square and snarling traffic in central London for hours. Thatcher reserved a force of well over 1,000 police to deal with the demonstrations. Police staged attacks and numerous arrests of demonstrators. In Britain as in Bonn, West Germany, demonstrators responded by pelting rocks, sticks and cans at the police. In Bonn, demonstrators engaged the police with their fists and smashed the windows of numbers of business places. From Portugal to Switzerland, from France to Austria to Belgium, thousands more demonstrated.

In Europe, people did not fall for the mask of "moderation" and "reason" worn by these statesmen of apartheid and of white minority rule in South Africa. On the other hand all the governments that received Botha heaped praise on the apartheid regime for the recent agreements it signed with the governments of Angola and Mozambique..Chancellor Helmut Kohl of West Germany described Botha as "courageous" in this regard.

These recent agreements provide the screen being used to promote the Botha regime as a force for "peace" and "good neighborliness" in the southern African region. And the agreements were taken as an opening to test the winds for formalizing and developing more extensive, ties between the Western imperialist states and the apartheid regime, hence Botha's tour.

Aided by the recent agreements the Botha regime has been escalating its ruthless repression in South Africa and Namibia and the savage war it conducts against the liberation movements of these two countries. The chief thing which the recent agreements signified, was the willingness of the surrounding independent states, i.e., the "frontline states," to seek reconciliation with South Africa and help it crack down on the liberation movements. U.S. imperialism, through Reagan's Undersecretary of State for African Affairs, Chester Crocker, had a central role in this. What the European imperialists regard as "peace," is the prospect of preserving the apartheid regime for as long as possible -- the prospect of maintaining a robber's peace.

But the brutality of the apartheid regime and the treachery of the "frontline states" will not succeed in suppressing the revolt that has been developing amongst the workers and all the oppressed of South Africa and Namibia. They were first to come out denouncing the hated apartheid regime's flimsy mask of "reason" and "reform." And the huge and militant protests in Europe which greeted Botha, the butcher, show that the working masses and progressive people everywhere stand in firm solidarity with their struggle.

[Photo: Part of the London protests tens of thousands strong condemning the meeting between "Iron Lady" Thatcher of British imperialism and the fascist prime minister of South African apartheid.]

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Just who is P.W. Botha?

(The following article is reprinted from the August, 1984 issue of The West Indian Voice, newspaper of the Caribbean Progressive Study Group.)

Prime Minister P.W. Botha of South Africa, the statesman of "reason" and angel of "peace," is nothing but the personification of the utter brutality and barbarism of apartheid discrimination and racist terror.

As a youth, P.W. Botha made his debut organizing racist terror gangs murdering and terrorizing blacks in South Africa. There, Botha earned his credentials to later join the Ossewabrandwag, an extreme right-wing pro- Nazi organization. After the Second World War, the ultra-conservative, Hitler-following National Party (organized around the Dutch Reform Church and the Broederbond Society of the Afrikaner elite -- the wealthiest descendants of Dutch, French and German settlers), took office in South Africa headed by the fanatical racist Verwoerd, with Botha as his junior minister and protege. Botha was such a hardened racist that he came out as a leading advocate of 1956 disenfranchisement of so-called coloreds (a classification for people of mixed racial descent) in the Cape. And, as Verwoerd's minister for "colored affairs," Botha signed the notorious 1966 law under which the "colored" area of Capetown was bulldozed and its 60,000 inhabitants transported to the Sandy Wastes.

Botha was rewarded by being appointed defense minister in 1966, a post which he held until 1980. He was made prime minister in 1978. As defense minister, Botha rapidly expanded South Africa's terroristic armed forces and raised its budget twenty-fold within just ten years, amassing a huge apparatus of terror. As prime minister, Botha filled his cabinet with only the most proven, blood-soaked generals as his closest and most valued advisors.

High on Botha's list of credits are the infamous Sharpeville massacre of 1960 and the ruthless suppression of the 1976 Soweto rebellion in which 575 blacks were slaughtered. (Since then Botha has encircled Soweto with a four-lane highway to crush future rebellions more speedily.) Botha was the architect of the 1975 large-scale invasion of Angola. Over the years he directed several other invasions of that country -- the latest being last December -- and supervised countless military raids into Mozambique. At home, considered an expert on population control, Botha greatly expanded a program to eliminate "black spots," ordering the forced uprooting of hundreds of thousands of blacks and their banishment to remote and barren tracts of land regarded as their rightful "homelands." Botha's minister of environmental affairs and fisheries recently reported to parliament: "The statistics show that we must drastically cut population growth -- whether it is in the black man's nature to do so or not."

With the revolt building up amongst the oppressed South African masses, Botha has been seeing the writing on the walls. He has been credited for declaring to his associates that we "Either adapt or die." By this Botha means that ways must be found to forever ensure apartheid and white minority rule.

Botha...has declared "I am in favor of the removal of hurtful, unnecessary discriminatory measures.... But I am not in favor of forced integration and not in favor of endangering the right of self-determination of my own people." For Botha, the "right to self-determination of my own people" is the god-given right of the slave master to determine the fate of his slaves without interference. And conversely, the only right of the black people is "the right" to have the fascist apartheid rulers determine their fate. As for "removing hurtful discriminatory measures" all that Botha means is that apartheid must be put on a somewhat rational footing if it is to get a lease on life.

For instance, Botha's recently devised "constitutional reform" preserves apartheid and white minority rule fully, but it throws out a sop to encourage collaboration among the upper strata of the oppressed Indian minority and those classified as "coloreds." This "reform" allows collaborationist leaders to participate in a parliament segregated into three houses according to race, where the white ruling minority has an automatic veto on anything they wish. As for South Africa's 22 million black majority, they were left out entirely. Botha believes that they have more than enough rights as it is. That is how Botha and his racist regime carry out "reform."

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Only the classic teachings of Marxism-Leninism, not the wrong orientations from the post-World War II period, can provide the foundations for the struggle against Soviet revisionism

On the Moscow Declaration of 1957 and Moscow Statement of 1960

The Post-World War II Period in the International Communist Movement.............................................. 30
The Mid and Latter 1950's........................................ 30
The Assessment of the Moscow Declaration and Statement by the Chinese and Albanians............ 31
Left and Right in the Moscow Declaration and Statement............................................................ 32
On War and Peace..................................................... 34
On Social-Democracy................................................ 35
On the National Liberation Movement and the Situation in the Dependent Countries........................ 35
On the Developed Capitalist Countries..................... 37
On Parliamentary Socialism and Peaceful Transition.................................................... 38
On the Norms of Relations Among Parties............... 39
How Could the Khrushchovites and Anti-Khrushchovites Agree on the Moscow Declaration and Statement?........................ 40
Carry the Struggle Against Soviet Revisionism Through to the End!.................................................. 42

Today there are many burning questions facing the international Marxist-Leninist movement. One of the factors making the situation more difficult is that a tendency has spread in the early 1980's of looking to certain mistaken traditions from the communist movement of the years immediately following World War II for ready-made answers to the problems of revolutionary work, rather than carrying through to the end the struggle against Maoism and Soviet revisionism and studying the classic teachings of Marxism-Leninism. This tendency has been championed by, among others, the Party of Labor of Albania.

Our Party's analysis of the present stands of the PL A is contained in the issue of The Workers' Advocate of March 20, 1984 whose lead article is entitled "Our Differences with the Party of Labor of Albania.'' In this issue we again expressed our revolutionary solidarity with the PLA and the fraternal Albanian people. The PLA has a revolutionary history, and we have learned much from its experience and accomplishments. These include the anti-fascist national liberation war against the Axis occupiers in World War II, the socialist construction, the resolute stand against Yugoslav and Soviet revisionism, its struggle against the "three worlds'' theory and Maoism, and so forth. But proletarian internationalist solidarity includes criticism of weaknesses as well as learning from correct stands. The Workers' Advocate of March 20 showed that, in the early 1980's, the PLA has retreated from its militant stands of the latter 1970's and failed to carry through the struggle against Maoism and the "three worlds'' theory. It showed the grave weaknesses in the current stands of the PLA on world events and in the orientations it advocates for the international Marxist-Leninist movement.

In the issue of May 1, 1984, we further pointed out that, from the theoretical side, one of the sources of the present weaknesses in the stands of the PLA is their taking up of various wrong orientations that were prevalent in the international communist movement in the period from the end of World War II to the death of Stalin in 1953. To a certain extent, the stand of the PLA on what the international Marxist-Leninist movement should be doing following the repudiation of Maoism can be described as trying to reconstruct the world movement on the basis of this earlier experience.

The wrong orientations that flourished in the immediate post-World War II period in the international communist movement are not just a key to understanding some of the mistakes of the PLA. They have wider significance. They also affect other parties, both due to the influence of the PLA and also directly from the influence of the traditions from this period in their own country. Furthermore, these mistaken traditions have had a major influence on the way the entire fight against Soviet revisionism has been waged for over two decades. Khrushchovite revisionism crystallized in the Soviet Union in the mid-50's immediately following what we call the post-World War II period. And both the Maoist leaders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the leadership of the PLA relied heavily on the stands of the post-World War II period in their struggle against the Soviet revisionist leaders.

Thus the PLA's attempts of today to have the parties that have repudiated Chinese revisionism take up the post-World War II model are not the first time that attempts have been made to base the struggle against revisionism on these flawed orientations. When the polemic against Soviet revisionism first broke out over two decades ago, the CPC and PLA made the same attempt. This was the significance of the ardent calls to the world movement to uphold the Moscow Declaration of 1957 and the Moscow Statement of 1960, documents based firmly on the post-World War II orientations. The CPC and PLA condemned the Soviet revisionists for deviating from these documents, which the Khrushchovites had themselves signed, and they put forward these documents as a basically correct exposition of the tasks and orientations for the world communist movement.

In fact, the struggle against Soviet revisionism soon went beyond the bounds of these documents. The Chinese and the Albanians picked up phrases from these documents, while ignoring much of the analysis in them. Eventually these documents were simply set aside, but they were never reexamined. The mistakes in the post-World War II orientations were not rooted out, but ignored. And unfortunately, instead of dying out, these mistaken traditions have had a tendency to surface again at unexpected moments. They have continued to be a factor encouraging petty-bourgeois nationalist deviations, pacifist agitation, liquidationist stands and wrong attitudes to the relations among parties.

This article is devoted to an examination of the Moscow Declaration and Statement in order to help eliminate the influence of the mistaken post-World War II orientations and to thus help remove one of the roadblocks that has been holding back the struggle against Soviet revisionism. The struggle against Soviet revisionism is crucial for the existence of the world Marxist-Leninist movement. The early polemics waged by the Chinese Communist Party and the persevering fight waged by the Party of Labor of Albania were of immense significance in encouraging the worldwide movement of revolutionary Marxist-Leninists against revisionism. These early battles have been studied repeatedly for answers to the questions of revolutionary work. Today, when various setbacks in the struggle against revisionism have taken place -- such as the flowering of the counterrevolutionary "three worlds" theory and the takeover by the ultra-revisionists in China and the weaknesses in the present stands of the PLA -- it is useful to review the history of the struggle against revisionism. This review shows that it is necessary to discard the post-World War II orientations and return to the classic teachings of Marxism-Leninism.

The Post-World War II Period in the International Communist Movement

Our Party has discussed the situation in the world communist movement after World War II in The Workers' Advocate of May 1, 1984, entitled "In Defense of Marxism- Leninism/On Problems in the Orientation of the International Communist Movement in the Period from the End of World War II to the Death of Stalin." Here we will just recall some basic features of this period.

The decade following World War II was a period of world struggle between communism and imperialism. The defeat of the fascist Axis in World War II opened up a gigantic march forward of the working masses. Meanwhile U.S. imperialism did its best to stamp out the fires and rig up its own world empire.

This was a complex period. On the one hand, this was a time of victories which captured people's imagination: the liberation of China, the Vietnamese struggle against French colonialism, the radical social transformations in Eastern Europe, and more.

But there was another side to this period. There were also profound setbacks. This was reflected not just in the defeats of various liberation wars and revolutionary movements, but also in the spread of a dangerous opportunist poison inside the communist movement. This was a time when on many crucial questions the revolutionary teachings of Marxism-Leninism were widely discarded under the pretext of new conditions and a euphoric assessment of the world situation. Wrong orientations on many questions became prevalent in this period: a pacifist orientation to the problems of wars and peace, a hiding of the class struggle under petty-bourgeois nationalist and general democratic phrases, an opportunist attitude to social-democracy, and other dangerous errors.

There have always been those who regard the questions of political line as secondary. "Why worry so much about principles as long as the movement keeps growing in numbers," they say. "Be realistic, go with the flow."

But the example of the post-World War II period vividly shows the importance of adhering to revolutionary principles. The abandonment of Marxist-Leninist principle put in jeopardy the entire communist movement itself. It helped create conditions for the great tragedy which would strike with the crystallization of Soviet revisionism in the mid-1950's.

The Mid and Latter 1950's

It was barely three years after the death of Stalin when the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in February 1956 marked the emergence into the open of Khrushchovite revisionism. The Soviet revisionists would eventually restore capitalism in the Soviet Union, thus eliminating the world's first socialist state. They would not only destroy the proletarian character of the CPSU, but they would also drag down with them a large number of communist parties around the world.

It is dramatic testimony to the bankruptcy of the ideological legacy of the post-World War II period that the Khrushchovite theses of the 20th Congress did not receive an immediate, open, stinging rebuff from the world communist movement. Instead a complicated situation ensued.

The 20th Congress marked the step-up of the corrupting work of the Khrushchovite revisionists and their followers around the world. It also encouraged the ultra-revisionist and ultra-liquidationist forces that had been accumulating in the communist movement. These opportunists wanted to merge with capitalism and reformism even faster than the Khrushchovites, and they wanted to openly trample on Marxism-Leninism.

There was also opposition from the left. This opposition went through a protracted and difficult process before it even crystallized into open conflict with Khrushchov before the eyes of the international communist movement. At first, each party and each communist was on his own with his doubts, suspicions and opposition to certain stands; the Khrushchovites were opposed on individual issues in private, bilateral meetings, but no general anti-Khrushchovite front existed. And it took time for opposition on individual issues to harden into the conviction of the need for all-out war on Khrushchovism.

It was in this situation, before dividing lines had been drawn, that the Moscow Meeting of 12 Communist and Workers' Parties of Socialist Countries met in November, 1957. Controversy did take place on various questions, however, and the Moscow Declaration of 1957 was the result.

By the time of the next Moscow meeting, the situation had changed. The Moscow Meeting of 81 Communist and Workers' Parties of November, 1960, was preceded by a major campaign by the Soviet revisionists against the CPC and by fierce pressure against the PLA. At the Moscow Meeting, the struggle was openly between the Khrushchovites and their opponents. Yet this meeting too culminated in a unanimous declaration, the Moscow Statement of 1960.

Despite the Moscow Statement, the public split in the world movement soon developed. In October 1961, the Soviet revisionists publicly denounced the PLA at the 22nd Congress of the CPSU, and the PLA replied in the press; in December 1961 the Khrushchovites went so far as to break off diplomatic relations with Albania. In 1962-63, public polemics broke out between the CPC and the Soviet revisionists and came to the attention of rank-and-file communists around the world. Thus, in 1961-63, the open struggle against Soviet revisionism began. This crucial step, so essential for the future of world communism, was finally taken.

The Assessment of the Moscow Declaration and Statement by the Chinese and Albanians

In the early years of the public split (and in places for years afterwards), the Soviet revisionists and their opponents often fought over who was the real follower of the Moscow Declaration and Statement. These documents were made into a banner of the anti-revisionist struggle. This was particularly the approach of the Chinese polemics. "Let Us Unite on the Basis of the Moscow Declaration and the Moscow Statement'' declares the title of a Chinese polemic in January 1963. (See the collection of polemics in the Chinese pamphlet Whence the Differences, all of which approach the Moscow Declaration and Statement in this way.)

Perhaps the most famous of the Chinese polemics is A Proposal Concerning the General Line of the International Communist Movement. Point #1 of the 25 points of the Proposal states in part:

"The Moscow Meetings of 1957 and 1960 adopted the Declaration and Statement respectively after a full exchange of views and in accordance with the principle of reaching unanimity through consultation. The two documents point out the characteristics of our epoch and the common laws of socialist revolution and socialist construction, and lay down the common line of all the Communist and Workers' Parties. They are the common program of the international communist movement....

"It has become an urgent and vital task of the international communist movement resolutely to defend the revolutionary principles of the 1957 Declaration and the 1960 Statement."

Point #2 of the Proposal provides a summary of "the revolutionary principles of the Declaration and Statement" and declares that "This, in out view, is the general line of the international communist movement at the present stage." The Proposal is the first article in the Chinese pamphlet The Polemic on the General Line of the International Communist Movement. The next polemic in this series is entitled "The Origin and Development of the Differences Between the Leadership of the CPSU and Ourselves." It gives the glowing Chinese assessment of the Moscow Declaration and Statement in more detail. It expressed disagreement only with two points -- the references to the 20th Congress of the CPSU and the formulation on peaceful and parliamentary transition to socialism.

The Albanian polemics, on the other hand, only occasionally mentioned the Moscow Declaration and Statement. But this was not due to any substantial difference in the assessment of these documents. To this day, the PLA maintains that these documents presented a basically correct program of struggle for the communist movement.

For example, in 1980 the PLA published Comrade Enver Hoxha's book The Khrushchovites, which reviews the process leading to the public split with the Soviet revisionists. Enver states that, at the 1957 Moscow Meeting, the Khrushchovites had to make a temporary retreat and allow the proclamation of a series of correct theses. He states that:

"In the face of the struggle which was waged in the meeting against opportunist views on the problems discussed, the revisionists retreated. As a result, the 1957 Moscow Declaration, in general, was a good document." (Ch. 10, "Temporary Retreat in Order to Take Revenge")

Enver goes on to characterize the 1957 Declaration as follows:

"The declaration which was worked out jointly and adopted at the meeting, summed up the experience of the international communist movement, defended the universal laws of the socialist revolution and socialist construction, and defined a series of common tasks for the communist and workers' parties, as well as the norms of relations among them.

Overall, it constituted a correct program of joint struggle for the coming battles against imperialism and revisionism." (Ibid.)

Enver also expresses a positive opinion of the 1960 Statement in his book The Khrushchevites. However, he says he will not dwell on this question because it has been dealt with elsewhere at length in the PLA's documents. (Ch. 12, "From Bucharest to Moscow") In this regard, it is worthwhile to recall that, at the end of 1975, the PLA published the book Through the Pages of Volume XIX of the Works of Comrade Enver Hoxha, which is devoted to the Moscow Meeting of 1960 and the events leading up to it.

Through the Pages of Volume XIX shows that, as far back as 1960, the Albanians believed that what was needed was a struggle on principles (although they were for, at this stage, a very restricted type of struggle which was basically to be kept within the leading circles of international communism), not another paper declaration. This may explain, in part, why, after the public split with Soviet revisionism, their polemics only occasionally mentioned the Moscow Declaration and Statement; they did not attribute any magical powers to the fact that joint declarations had been adopted. But this work also shows that the PLA felt that the Moscow Statement of 1960 correctly set forth, in general, the Marxist-Leninist stand on the world situation and the tasks of the communist parties.

Thus Enver, reporting to the Central Committee of the PLA on the outcome of the Moscow Meeting of 1960, stated that:

''The fundamental questions about which there were different opinions are presented correctly and interpreted from the Marxist point of view in the declaration. The characterization of the epoch, the problems of war and peace, the question of peaceful coexistence, the problems of the national liberation movement, of the communist movement in the capitalist countries, of the unity of the socialist camp and of the communist parties, find their correct reflection in the declaration. The only fundamental question about which we disagreed but on which, for the sake of unity, (we) were obliged to make a concession was the mentioning of the 20th Congress.

"But one thing should always be kept in mind. There exists the possibility that each will try to give his own interpretation to the theses of the declaration. The 1957 Moscow Declaration, too, was correct but many disagreements arose concerning its interpretation. ' Distortions could be made, not by revising the theses of the (Statement) and replacing them with new theses but by stressing its theses in a one-sided manner, by mentioning only one side of the question and leaving out the other." (Through the Pages of Volume XIX, "Report at the 21st Plenum," p. 296)

Thus both the Albanians and the Chinese assessed the Moscow Declaration and Statement as basically correct expositions of the general line for the international communist movement. Of course the Khrushchovite revisionists had to compromise and put on their most deceptive, pseudo-Leninist posture in the face of resistance from the left, but it still seems surprising that Khrushchov and the anti-revisionists could come to agreement on a detailed exposition of the world situation and the tasks for the communist parties. In order to see how the agreement on these Moscow documents was possible, we must examine the content of these documents.

But first we stress that the weaknesses we will find in the early stage of the struggle against Khrushchovite revisionism do not mean that no real struggle took place. To make an analogy: the fact that an army has weak weapons does not prove it didn't go into battle; it may, however, show why, until it improves its armaments, it takes heavy losses. The fight between the Khrushchovites and, among others, the Chinese and Albanians, was fierce, and the early polemics inspired many to take up revolutionary Marxism-Leninism. Furthermore the struggle against revisionism itself pointed out the path forward: improving the strategy and tactics of the revolutionary Marxist-Leninists by reassessing everything in the light of the Marxist-Leninist classics and the experience of the revolutionary movement. This combining of theory and practice could have led to the step by step overcoming of the weaknesses originally present. It was the failure to carry the struggle against Soviet revisionism through to the end, which included the failure to deal with the mistaken legacies of the post-World War II period, which had tragic consequences. And it is our task today to show courage and steadfastness in carrying the struggle against revisionism through to the end and combining revolutionary struggle with the closest attention to the revolutionary theory of Marxism-Leninism.

Left and Right in the Moscow Declaration and Statement

The Moscow Declaration and Statement are not the type documents that age well. It takes care to read them in the context of the times in which they were written and try to see the significance of various points. On the other hand, the task of studying them is simplified by the fact that they both give the same basic analysis; the 1960 Statement even repeats certain key passages word for word from 1957. The 1960 Statement is, however, far longer and more detailed than the 1957 Declaration. It is an interesting fact that the 1960 Statement simultaneously sounds more militant than the 1957 Declaration and contains more elaboration of rightist theses and even entire new rightist theses.

To begin with, we note that these documents, particularly the 1960 Statement, do contain some left-sounding assertions; they appear more militant and vigorous than the Khrushchovite 20th Congress. But we will also see that the substance of these documents is rightist and thoroughly based on mistaken orientations from the immediate post-World War II period.

First let us examine the more militant aspects of these documents.

* The single most famous aspect of these documents is their declaration that "...the main danger at present is revisionism or, in other words, Right-wing opportunism" (1957) and "revisionism...remains the main danger" (1960). The 1957 Declaration also states that "The existence of bourgeois influence is an internal source of revisionism, while surrender to imperialist pressure is its external source."

* Naturally these documents weren't referring to Soviet revisionism, for the Khrushchovites would not have signed a document condemning themselves. They refer to the ultra-revisionists and to the Yugoslav renegades. The documents also state that dogmatism and sectarianism might be the main enemy in particular communist parties. And the 1960 Statement even contains the astonishing assertion that "The Communist Parties have ideologically defeated the revisionists in their ranks...." But, despite all the qualifications, the denunciation of revisionism as the main danger caught the imagination of the world movement and became a banner of the anti-revisionist struggle.

* Another aspect is the condemnation of U.S. imperialism. The 1960 Statement emphasizes, in italics, that "...U.S. imperialism is the chief bulwark of world reaction and an international gendarme, has become an enemy of the peoples of the whole world." (The 1957 Declaration reserves this position for "the aggressive imperialist circles of the United States" or "certain aggressive groups in the United States.") The documents condemn the other imperialist powers as well. This clashes, to a certain extent, with the typical Khrushchovite attitude of reconciliation with everyone.

* The Moscow Declaration and Statement also uphold the existence of universal Marxist-Leninist laws guiding socialist countries in revolution and socialist construction. This was aimed at opposing the ultra-revisionist elements. But these laws simply receive an inadequate list (1957) or are only referred to (1960). This could thus be of no use in puncturing the Khrushchovite distortion of these laws.

* Both the Moscow Declaration and the Statement show enthusiasm for the national liberation movement and for anti-imperialist struggles in the former colonies and refer to them repeatedly; the "progressive, revolutionary significance of national liberation wars" (1960) is endorsed; and both documents warn that imperialism is trying to enmesh the former colonies in new forms of colonial exploitation. However, this militancy is spoiled by a euphoric, opportunist assessment of the regimes of the newly independent countries and other mistakes. The 1960 Statement even talks of the need for "a consistent completion of the anti-imperialist, anti-feudal, democratic revolution," while apparently interpreting this as the establishment of "independent national democracies," which are described, in essence, as a type of rule of the "national bourgeoisie" and painted in glowing colors. Socialist revolution, at any stage of the struggle, is entirely left out of the picture, and instead the working masses are to dream of a future "non-capitalist development" (1960).

* Both documents set forward norms of relations among socialist countries and communist parties. This part of the Moscow Declaration and Statement was highly acclaimed by the Chinese and the Albanians. But, as we shall discuss later on in this article, the concept of relations set forward in these documents is actually one of their weak points; following the plan set forward in these documents has caused tremendous damage to the anti-revisionist struggle.

Even this short list of some of the more acclaimed points of the Moscow Declaration and Statement shows the eclectic nature of these documents, which combine left-sounding points with other points which partially or wholly contradict them. As well, we shall see that the basic orientation for struggle set forth in the documents is fundamentally flawed, being based on the mistaken traditions from the post-World War II period.

But first let us note that these documents also contained various Khrushchovite catchwords, including formulations taken, word for word, from the 20th Congress of the CPSU. As well, they contained glowing endorsements of the 20th Congress itself. The Chinese and Albanian accounts of these documents might lead one to think that, as the endorsement of the 20th Congress was a concession, it was done in a grudging way. But, in fact, the Khrushchovites made the most out of this compromise; the documents speak of the 20th Congress in the most enthusiastic way and both include the emphatic statement that: "The historic decisions of the 20th Congress of the CPSU are not only of great importance for the CPSU and communist construction in the USSR, but have initiated a new stage in the world Communist movement, and have promoted its development on the basis of Marxism-Leninism."

The repetition of various Khrushchovite catchwords, combined with the ringing endorsement of the 20th Congress, must have meant that no rank-and-file communist who did not otherwise know of the contradictions in the international communist movement would have been able to figure out from the Moscow Declaration and Statement that anyone had any objection to the 20th Congress. This, for the time being, eliminated much of the value of the various amendments, deletions, reservations and supplemental theses added to the Moscow Declaration and Statement in opposition to the original Khrushchovite draft. The Moscow Statement and Declaration could have been read as a militant interpretation of the 20th Congress, as opposed to a soft, "opportunist" interpretation, but it would appear in any case as a militant defense of that Congress. It might well have been used in some cases to sidetrack opposition to the rightism of the 20th Congress by saying "look, here is the 20th Congress endorsed by everyone and interpreted militantly." Perhaps this is part of the reason for the phenomenon noted by Comrade Enver Hoxha, but left diplomatically unexplained, that, following the Moscow Meeting of 1957 and despite the temporary retreat of the Khrushchovites on various formulations, "Khrushchov was to exploit the Moscow Meeting of 1957 as a means to prepare the terrain for the implementation of the diabolic anti-communist plan which he was to carry further." (The Khruschovites, Ch. 10, "Temporary Retreat in Order to Take Revenge")

Once the public polemic with the Khrushchovites broke out, however, then the Moscow Declaration and Statement could be read in a different light. Yet even then they were fundamentally flawed as an anti-revisionist banner. We shall now examine the general line these documents put forward on several fundamental fields of struggle.

On War and Peace

One of the main features of the Moscow Declaration and Statement is their concentration on the question of war and peace. These documents denounce the imperialists for their warmongering. But the general stand is in accord with the pacifist orientation from the post-World War II period, which detaches the struggle against aggressive war from the revolutionary struggle, which subordinates the movement to appeals to the petty bourgeoisie and the liberal bourgeoisie, and which drowns serious work in pacifist schemes.

The Moscow Declaration and Statement hold that, with respect to the "noble urge to prevent new wars" (1960), class and political differences have as little importance as religious ones. The basic question is simply to make the movement as broad as possible. Thus they talk of "the efforts of all states, parties, organizations, movements and individuals who champion peace and oppose war" (1957) and hold that "people of diverse political and religious creeds, of diverse classes of society...are all united by the noble urge to prevent wars and to secure enduring peace" (1960).

This unity was to include the enlightened section of the bourgeoisie in the developed capitalist countries. The 1960 Statement, in a paragraph listing the forces for peace, goes on to declare explicitly that: "The policy of peaceful coexistence is also favored by a definite section of the bourgeoisie of the developed capitalist countries, which takes a sober view of the relationship of forces and of the dire consequences of a modern war. The broadest possible united front of peace essential to preserve world peace."

The Moscow Declaration and Statement are also full of pacifist schemes. This goes from one absurdity to the next. This reaches the point where the 1960 Statement declares that it is possible to eliminate the very possibility of the imperialists waging war by forcing the imperialists to agree to general disarmament. It states that:

"The meeting considers that the implementation of the program for general and complete disarmament put forward by the Soviet Union would be of historic importance for the destinies of mankind. To realize this program means to eliminate the very possibility of waging wars between countries. It is not easy to realize owing to the stubborn resistance of the imperialists.... Through an active, determined struggle by the socialist and other peace-loving countries, by the international working class and the broad masses in all countries, it is possible to isolate the aggressive circles, foil the arms race and war preparations, and force the imperialists into an agreement on general disarmament." (emphasis as in the original)

The 1960 Statement goes on to add: "Disarmament has now become a fighting slogan of the masses, a pressing historical necessity."

To propagate such illusions and false hopes is to divert the working masses from the revolutionary struggle and to harm the real fight against imperialist war. The Moscow documents do not make use of the imperialist rejection of peace proposals to break down illusions in imperialism, but instead argue that the struggle must be waged on the perspective of forcing the imperialists to become peaceful and reasonable.

Both the Moscow Declaration and Statement, after severing the struggle for peace from the revolutionary struggle, declare that "The Communist Parties regard the fight for peace as their prime task."

Both in the post-World War II period and at the 20th Congress of the CPSU, it was argued that the Leninist theses on the anti-war movement no longer really applied. It was claimed that they were outdated by the new strength of the peace forces in the world and they were implicitly ridiculed as the fatalist stand that the working masses should sit on their hands and passively submit because "war is inevitable." The Moscow Declaration and Statement do not explicitly refer to the earlier stands of the international communist movement on this question, but they do repeat the catchwords about the new strength of the peace forces and about war not being fatally inevitable in order to justify their stand.

The Moscow Declaration and Statement, however, both contain the assertion that "As long as imperialism exists, there will be soil for wars of aggression." The Moscow documents have been acclaimed for this assertion, which connects imperialism and the danger of war. However, this assertion and various denunciations of imperialism in these documents cannot cancel out the overall wrong orientation on the question of war and peace. It must be borne in mind that it was typical in the post-World War II period to combine a pacifist orientation on the current problems of war and peace with revolutionary views that are reserved, so to speak, for the ultimate struggle in the unspecified future. For example, Stalin's famous Economic Problems of Socialism in the USSR declared that "To eliminate the inevitability of war, it is necessary to abolish imperialism." But he also endorsed, in the same passage in this book, the prevalent pacifist orientation of the "present-day peace movement"; this was reconciled by noting that this movement "confines itself to the democratic aim of preserving peace" and preventing "particular wars" and will not solve the ultimate problem of abolishing the inevitability of war by overthrowing imperialism. At Khrushchov's 20th Congress, the pacifist mistake was deepened, and euphoric revisionist views on making imperialism peaceful were trumpeted to the world. Yet Khrushchov did not fail to hypocritically declare that "As long as imperialism exists, there will be soil for wars of aggression." Thus the use of the same assertion by the Moscow Declaration and Statement cannot by itself cancel out the pacifist and reformist orientation presented in these documents. The issue is not whether revolutionary views about the fight against imperialist war should logically flow from this statement, but that the Moscow Declaration and Statement did not draw such conclusions.

On Social-Democracy

The Moscow Declaration and Statement are well known, as we have pointed out above, for their declaration that revisionism was the main danger in the world communist movement. These documents are known for their calls against opportunism. Therefore it may come as something of a surprise that these documents upheld the opportunist attitude towards social-democracy that was typical of the post-World War II period.

The 1960 Moscow Statement did have some harsh words about social-democracy, as the Cominform did during the post-World War II period also. But, just as back then, the attack was basically restricted to the "right-wing socialist leaders" and was for the sake of coming to terms with the social-democratic parties as a whole. As for the 1957 Moscow Declaration, its only criticism of social-democracy was that "Although the right-wing socialist party leaders are doing their best to hamper this cooperation, there are increasing opportunities for cooperation between the communists and socialists on many levels." The 1960 Statement was much harsher, but it also contained much more fervent praise of the social-democrats as well.

Nowhere in the Moscow documents, whether in those places that criticize the social-democrats or that call for unity with them, is there the concept of winning the masses away from the social-democratic parties. Instead the plan for restoring the unity of the proletariat that is set forth is ensuring a joint march of the communist and social-democratic parties (and other parties) in the class struggle, in the revolution and right into socialism. Both the Moscow Declaration and Statement give extensive lists of the subjects for cooperation with the social-democrats, which add "and also in the struggle for winning power and building socialism." Both include the social-democrats as an essential component of the plan set forward for parliamentary transition to socialism, a plan we will refer to later in this article.

The perspective put forward is that the social-democratic parties, as a general rule, are all essentially proletarian parties and will work closely with the communists. Both Moscow documents paint a picture of growing successes in the work with the social-democrats. The 1960 Statement is euphoric and talks of major resistance to the right-wing leaders inside the social-democratic parties, a resistance which embraces even "a section of the social-democratic party functionaries."

Comrade Enver summed up the general stand of the 1960 Statement towards the social-democrats in his Report to the 21st Plenum on the Moscow Meeting that we have quoted above. We left off where he talked about the danger of the theses of the 1960 Statement being taken up one-sidedly. In the passage that follows, one example he gives is that ' 'there is the danger that only the policy of the alliance with the social-democrats and the national bourgeoisie may be emphasized and the struggle against, and the criticism of, their reactionary viewpoints and action may be left aside." This correctly notes that the general stand in the 1960 Statement was one of alliance with the social-democrats, even though this alliance was to be combined with certain criticism.

On the National Liberation Movement and the Situation in the Dependent Countries

As we have noted above the Moscow Declaration and Statement greet the successes of the national liberation movement with enthusiasm. They also denounce the imperialist efforts to continue colonial exploitation of the newly independent countries in a new form. They call for struggle against colonialism, imperialist domination and feudalism.

It might thus seem that here the Moscow documents go beyond the post-World War II framework. There is none of the Eurocentrism that was so apparent in the major Cominform statements. Yet the basic approach still owes much to the post-World War II period.

To begin with, the Moscow Declaration and Statement both make euphoric assessments of the role of the regimes of the local bourgeoisie in the former colonies and dependent countries. This is in line with the way the Cominform analyzed these regimes.

The 1960 Statement, however, does go into the internal situation in these countries to a certain extent. It talks of the need for "the complete and consistent accomplishment of the tasks of the national, anti-imperialist, democratic revolution." While calling for a "broad national front" of the "national-patriotic forces," it states that "the alliance of the working class and the peasantry is the most important force" and the basis of the broad alliance.

But the goal of this struggle to complete the revolution turns out to be, in "many countries" at least, the establishment of "an independent national democracy." (There is no definition of what the goal should be in other countries.) This "independent national democracy" is a form of the rule of the local "national bourgeoisie"; it is painted in glowing colors as "a state which consistently Upholds its political and economic independence, fights against imperialism and its military blocs...; a state which fights against the new forms of colonialism and the penetration of imperialist capital; a state which rejects dictatorial and despotic methods of government; a state in which the people are ensured broad democratic rights and freedoms...the opportunity...for participation in shaping government policy."

Furthermore, the way of achieving these "independent national democracies" and completing the democratic, anti-imperialist revolution is unclear. The Moscow Statement will support uprisings against local regimes which have already taken place, but does not call for any such struggle against an existing regime. Instead it specifies that "The Communist Parties are working actively for a consistent completion of the anti-imperialist, anti-feudal, democratic revolution, for the establishment of national democracies.... They support those actions of national governments leading to the consolidation of the gains achieved and undermining the imperialists' positions. At the same time they firmly oppose anti-democratic, anti- popular acts and those measures of the ruling circles which endanger national independence....they work for a genuine democratization of social life and rally all the progressive forces to combat despotic regimes or to curb tendencies towards setting up such regimes." Thus the general approach is critical support of existing regimes and attempts to push these regimes further, although there is the brief reference to "combat(ing) despotic regimes."

The thesis of "independent national democracy" immediately gave rise to opposition. The left wing of the Communist Party of India, for example, while accepting the 1960 Moscow Statement in general, rejected the thesis on "independent national democracy," for it would imply in practice that they would have to capitulate entirely before such a model of "independent national democracy" as the Indian government of the big bourgeoisie and landlords. The Indian government provides an example of the real situation covered up by the fine phrases about "The countries that have shaken off the yoke of colonialism are defending their independence and fighting for economic sovereignty, for international peace" (1957), about "consolidation of political independence," "the creation and extension on a democratic basis of the state sector in the national economy," etc. (1960) These phrases all cover up the fierce class contradictions in these countries and the actual alliance of imperialism and the local bourgeoisie.

All this praise of the regimes of the exploiters is based, from the theoretical point of view, on an utterly wrong estimate of the role of the "national bourgeoisie." The 1960 Statement states that:

"In present conditions, the national bourgeoisie of the colonial and dependent countries unconnected with imperialist circles, is objectively interested in the principal tasks of anti-imperialist, anti-feudal revolution, and therefore retains the capacity of participating in the revolutionary struggle against imperialism and feudalism." It then goes on the qualify this somewhat by saying that the national bourgeoisie is "unstable" and has a "dual nature" and even that "As social contradictions grow, the national bourgeoisie inclines more and more to compromising with domestic reaction and imperialism." These qualifications give the 1960 Statement a more militant aspect. But nevertheless all these qualifications are only given to estimate exactly how progressive the national bourgeoisie is supposed to be; there is no discussion at all of the possibility of struggle against the national bourgeoisie. In this regard, we can again recall Comrade Enver's summation of the 1960 Statement, given above, where he points out that it calls for a policy of alliance with the national bourgeoisie, as well as social-democracy, although combined with some criticism of it.

The 1960 Statement separates the national bourgeoisie from those local exploiters who work with the imperialists. It states "The imperialists' accomplices are the most reactionary sections of the local exploiting classes." This was apparently meant to refer to feudalists, puppets and a bribed section of the bourgeoisie. The "national bourgeoisie" was regarded as a pure section of the exploiters, "unconnected with imperialist circles" -- the true blue patriotic moneybags. This definition of the national bourgeoisie is not even true in those conditions where it makes sense to divide the bourgeoisie into a national bourgeoisie and a compradore bourgeoisie, and it is even more absurd in those situations where the national bourgeoisie, coming to power without a revolution or by stopping it halfway, comes to terms with and absorbs the feudalists, big landlords and reactionary dregs.

As far back as 1920 Lenin declared at the 2nd Congress of the Communist International that:

"...There has been a certain rapprochement between the bourgeoisie of the exploiting countries and that of the colonies, so that very often --perhaps even in most cases -- the bourgeoisie of the oppressed countries, while it does support the national movement, is in full accord with the imperialist bourgeoisie, i.e., joins forces with it against all revolutionary movements and revolutionary classes." ("Report of the Commission on the National and the Colonial Questions to the Second Congress of the Communist International," July 26,1920, emphasis as in the original) Lenin concluded that the bourgeois section of the liberation movement could only be supported under certain conditions, otherwise the "reformist bourgeoisie" must be combatted.

In the following decades, the treachery of the bourgeoisie of the oppressed countries grew with the increasing economic development in these areas and with various political developments. The collapse of old-style colonialism and the rise to power of the local bourgeoisie in many oppressed countries could only aggravate the contradiction between the national bourgeoisie and the local working masses. True, even today it cannot be ruled out that, at certain times in certain countries, the national bourgeoisie, or sections of it, may take on national-revolutionary features; in such a situation, it may be possible for the proletariat to utilize a temporary alliance with the revolutionary wing of the bourgeoisie. But even in the national liberation struggles the national bourgeoisie usually plays a treacherous role, as Lenin described. And the overall situation in the oppressed countries is marked by the increasing sharpness of the class struggle between the working masses and the national bourgeoisie, with the local exploiters in the newly independent countries being the social basis of continued imperialist domination and the hangmen of the revolutionary movement. The assessment of the national bourgeoisie by the 1960 Statement was totally wrong and failed to take account of the actual class contradictions in the newly independent countries.

The Moscow Declaration and Statement also restrict the struggle in the newly independent countries to bourgeois- democratic or national liberation issues. There is no discussion of the socialist tasks facing the communist parties, of uninterrupted revolution from the democratic to the socialist stage, or of any of these countries facing a. socialist revolution. Class issues themselves are played down. Instead, the masses are to dream of a future "non-capitalist development" and there is unrealistic praise of the significance of "the state sector in the national economy."

On the Developed Capitalist Countries

The Moscow Declaration and Statement also present profoundly mistaken ideas concerning the orientation of the working class movement in the Western European imperialist powers such as Britain, France, West Germany, etc., and in other developed capitalist countries. The Moscow documents do discuss certain aspects of the exploitation in these countries and refer to some of the struggles that have arisen. But, in their guidance for the struggle, they hide the class struggle under phrases about the national interest and general democratization, and they set forth the goal of a parliamentary sort of socialism. In these matters, the Moscow documents follow closely the orientation laid down by the Cominform in the post-World War II period.

To begin with, the Moscow Declaration and Statement set forth a petty-bourgeois nationalist approach to agitation in these countries. Talk about defense of their national interests, national sovereignty and national independence is repeated as much as possible. Marxism-Leninism holds that the working class must be trained to see the class interests and class conflicts that are hidden under general talk of the "national interests"; the Moscow Declaration and Statement take the opposite tack of draping the class struggle in petty-bourgeois nationalist phrases.

The pretext for this petty-bourgeois nationalist orientation in the Moscow Declaration and Statement is their complete misunderstanding of the nature of the struggle in these countries against U.S. imperialism. After World War II, U.S. imperialism, in its drive to rig up its own world empire, propped up exploiting classes all over the globe. U.S. imperialism became the head of the world imperialist wolf pack (and today it still is the head of the Western imperialist bloc). Naturally U.S. imperialism gave itself the dominant position, and it bullied and exploited and dominated its allies, but it had neither the intention nor the possibility of turning them into colonies. The mass indignation of the peoples in the capitalist countries against the crimes of U.S. imperialism was (and is) a progressive and positive phenomenon. It is impossible to conceive of a militant fight against world capitalism that doesn't include the most fervent hatred of U.S. imperialism. In this fight, it was the task of the communist parties to show the working masses that this struggle against U.S. imperialism, however, would amount to little unless it was used as a lever to encourage struggle against the local bourgeoisie. Only by fighting against and overthrowing the local bourgeoisie could the working masses seriously undermine the U.S. world empire. But the Moscow Declaration and Statement take the opposite tack, as was prevalent in the post-World War II period, of severing the anti-U.S. imperialist struggle from struggle against the local bourgeoisie and work for socialist revolution and of instead presenting the matter as a national struggle for sovereignty. Thus the 1957 Declaration says that "The aggressive imperialist circles of the United States" are, among other things, "threatening the national independence of the developed capitalist countries," while the 1960 Statement emphasizes that the U.S. imperialists "violate the sovereignty of developed capitalist countries." The 1960 Moscow Statement also sets forth an entire theory of "general democratization" as the task in the developed capitalist countries, a theory which draws together and elaborates on various concepts sketched out in the 1957 Declaration. According to this Statement, not just the working masses, but even the "middle urban bourgeoisie" was "vitally interested in the abolition of monopoly domination." The immediate task was to rally these forces, and democratic measures were the way to accomplish this. Hence all the immediate tasks of the struggle were declared to be "democratic by nature."

Thus the Statement says that:

"Communists hold that this unity is quite feasible on the basis of the struggle for peace, national independence, the protection and extension of democracy, nationalization of the key branches of economy and democratization of their management, the use of the entire economy for peaceful purposes...(etc.) improvement of the living conditions of the working people, protection of the interests of the peasantry and the petty and middle urban bourgeoisie against the tyranny of the monopolies.

"...All these measures are democratic by nature. They do not eliminate the exploitation of man by man. But if realized, they would limit the power of the monopolies,... and facilitate unification of all the progressive forces.... It is the prime duty of the working class and its Communist vanguard to head the economic and political struggle of the masses for democratic reforms, for the overthrow of the power of the monopolies, and assure its success.

"Communists advocate general democratization of the economic and social scene and of all the administrative, political and cultural organizations and institutions."

This theory embraces so many errors it is difficult to know where to begin. First of all, the agitation was not to highlight the proletarian class struggle, but "Peace, national independence, the protection and extension of democracy.'' Where social issues are to be taken up, they are to be presented in democratic colors.

Furthermore, various reformist schemes are suggested in the name of democracy, such as a "democratic'' capitalist nationalization, the fraud of the peaceful use of the economy while the capitalists rule, etc. Indeed, democratization and reformist measures are presented as capable of accomplishing the "overthrow of the rule of the monopolies'' while capitalism still exists. Taken seriously, this means putting forward the pipe dream of abolishing monopoly capitalism while capitalism still exists.

The scheme of general democratization is clearly related to downplaying the proletarian character of the movement in favor of taking on petty-bourgeois colors and even protecting the interests of the "middle urban bourgeoisie.'' Both the Moscow Declaration and Statement stress the inclusion of the "middle urban bourgeoisie" among the allies to be rallied around the working class, and the passage above on democratization calls for the defense of its interests. What the "middle urban bourgeoisie" is supposed to be is not explained. But the impression created is the replacement of class struggle with a formula of "democratic" class collaboration with the liberal bourgeoisie against some reactionaries, a collaboration in which the working class must defend not just the interests of all the toilers, but also the interests of the middle bourgeoisie.

Indeed, elsewhere in the Moscow Declaration and Statement it is suggested that unity goes further than the "middle urban bourgeoisie." We have already pointed out above that the 1960 Moscow Statement holds that part of the bourgeoisie is interested in peaceful coexistence and must presumably be part of the "broadest possible united front of peace supporters...." As well, the 1957 Declaration, while calling for the overthrow of "the rule of the monopolies who betray the national interests," also notes in a separate passage the "sharpening" of the contradiction "between the United States monopoly bourgeoisie on the one hand and the peoples, and even the bourgeoisie of the other capitalist countries on the other."

The theory of "general democratization" in the Moscow Statement appears to be a grab bag of wrong orientations that undermine the class struggle and open the way for reformism and class collaboration with the liberal bourgeoisie.

On Parliamentary Socialism and Peaceful Transition

Finally, the orientation set forth for the developed capitalist countries includes a theory of parliamentary socialism and creates illusions about the likelihood that the capitalists will peacefully) consent to socialism. This passage is repeated word for word in the two documents, and it follows closely the 20th Congress of the CPSU. The key passage reads:

"Today in a number of capitalist countries the working class, headed by its vanguard, has the opportunity, given a united working class and popular front or other workable forms of agreement and political cooperation between the different parties and public organizations, to unite a majority of the people, win state power without civil war and ensure the transfer of the basic means of production to the hands of the people. Relying on the majority of the people and resolutely rebuffing the opportunist elements incapable of relinquishing the policy of compromise with the capitalists and landlords, the working class can defeat the reactionary, anti-popular forces, secure a firm majority in parliament, transform parliament from an instrument serving the class interests of the bourgeoisie into an instrument serving the working people, launch an extra-parliamentary mass struggle, smash the resistance of the reactionary forces and create the necessary conditions for peaceful realization of the socialist revolution. All this will be possible only by broad and ceaseless development of the class struggle of the workers, peasant masses and the urban middle strata against big monopoly capital, against reaction, for profound social reforms, for peace and socialism."

Thus the transition to socialism is to be accomplished by converting parliament into a socialist tool. The bourgeois state machine is not to be smashed, but to receive a socialist baptism. This parliamentary socialism is in line with the program set forth in "The British Road to Socialism" in 1951 in the post-World War II period, and widely promoted at that time.

This plan for socialism depends explicitly on the cooperation of the other parties, presumably the social-democratic parties and liberal-labor parties. For that matter, it refers back again to the "urban middle strata," which presumably includes the "middle urban bourgeoisie," which now is supposed to march with the working class right into socialism.

This plan also removes the perspective of revolutionary violence. It creates the illusion that "in a number of capitalist countries" the bourgeoisie is ready to peacefully agree to socialism. It disarms the communist parties in the face of the ferocious capitalist reaction. It focuses all attention on the extremely unlikely event that the capitalists peacefully submit and removes attention from the most probable development of the struggle.

Both the Moscow Declaration and Statement somewhat modify the picture painted in the above quoted paragraph about peaceful transition by following it with another paragraph that reads as follows:

"In the event of the exploiting classes resorting to violence against people, the possibility of non-peaceful transition to socialism should be borne in mind. Leninism teaches, and experience confirms, that the ruling classes never relinquish power voluntarily. In this case the degree of bitterness and the forms of the class struggle will depend not so much on the proletariat as on the resistance put up by the reactionary circles to the will of the overwhelming majority of the people, on these circles using force at one or another stage of the struggle for socialism."

This paragraph raises the possibility of violent revolution. It is not so bad in and of itself, but, in the context of the rest of the Declaration and Statement, it is not strong enough to erase the general orientation expressed by the preceding paragraph. For one thing, it does not express any estimate as to how likely the possibility of civil war is, while the other paragraph stressed the opportunities opening up for peaceful transition.

As well, this paragraph, and the Moscow Declaration and Statement as a whole, do not draw any conclusions from the possibility of violent revolution. There are no indications at all as to what this means for how the communist parties should be organized, how they should prepare, how they should agitate, or what the stands of the various strata of the population will be. Meanwhile the section on peaceful transition outlined a whole plan, which was the culmination of much of the other material in the Moscow Declaration and Statement on general democratization, the assessment of the social-democrats, the attitude to the "middle urban bourgeoisie," and so forth. Thus the possibility of violent revolution remains a phrase, while all attention is focused on preparations for parliamentary socialism.

Furthermore, in the latter 1950's it would have been widely known that this latter paragraph, as well as the preceding one, is paraphrased from Khrushchov's Report on the Activity of the Central Committee at the 20th Congress. That report, although it said that peaceful, parliamentary socialism was only one possibility among others, was taken as meaning that this possibility was now the guiding perspective for all work, and this was indeed what Khrushchov intended. Hence the repetition of phrases which Khrushchov had already used hypocritically at the 20th Congress could not really remove the bad effect of the section on peaceful transition. A much sharper and stronger statement would have been required.

Earlier in this article we referred to the fact that the Chinese polemic "The Origin and Development of the Differences Between the Leadership of the CPSU and Ourselves," while generally strongly endorsing the Moscow Declaration and Statement, expressed dissatisfaction with the passage on peaceful transition and denounced it as "unsatisfactory." It says, however, that the original passage on peaceful transition that the Khrushchovites proposed in their first draft for the Moscow Declaration of 1957 was even worse. It omitted all mention of any possibility but peaceful transition, and it also omitted any reference to mass struggle outside parliament.

What happened, it seems, is that the Khrushchovites wanted formulations even worse than those at the 20th Congress. At the 20th Congress of the CPSU, Khrushchov, while crystallizing Soviet revisionism and presenting it to the world, nevertheless took some care to include some Marxist-Leninist phraseology. After the 20th Congress, the revisionist theses were then trumpeted to the world in even more blatant and naked form. But, due to the struggle around the Moscow Meeting of 1957, the Khrushchovites were forced to retreat on some formulations. In this case, it meant a return to formulations taken from the 20th Congress.

On the Norms of Relations Among Parties

The Moscow Declaration and Statement have been particularly praised by the Chinese and Albanians for their presentation of the norms of relations among communist parties. In fact, this is a weak point of these documents.

The Chinese and Albanians declare that the Moscow Declaration and Statement stood for the equality of the parties. This is one of the norms that was brought forth, although these documents also declared that the "historic decisions of the 20th Congress" were of relevance to all parties. The 1960 Statement, while declaring that "the Communist Party of the Soviet Union has been, and remains, the universally recognized vanguard of the world communist movement," also declared that "All the Marxist-Leninist parties are independent and have equal rights."

But the Moscow Meetings of 1957 and 1960 also had before them the serious problems confronting the world communist movement. All communists and class conscious workers should have been rallied to the solution of these problems. How did these meetings handle this issue?

Lenin, in his work to build the Communist International, set a brilliant example of the full discussion of the burning questions of principle. Naturally certain things are kept private, but Lenin aired the basic political questions and controversies in front of the communists and revolutionary workers of all countries, not just the leaderships of the parties. This did not mean the maximum gossip from everyone about every party, but principled discussion of the key questions of communist politics -- and such discussion is impossible if no references are to be allowed to existing parties and the vexed questions of the current movement and all criticism is banned.

The Moscow Meetings adopted a different method. They held that the controversial issues should be kept as quiet as possible and restricted to meetings of the leaderships of various parties. Thus the 1960 Statement held that "Whenever a party wants to clear up questions relating to the activities of another fraternal party, its leadership approaches the leadership of the party concerned; if necessary, they hold meetings and consultations." Nor is any other category of controversy on principles discussed other than "questions relating to the activities of another fraternal party."

Thus the conflicts between the Khrushchovites and the others, such as those that the PLA had with the Khrushchovites from early on or that the Chinese developed after the 20th Congress, were aired only in bilateral meetings of the PLA and the CPSU or of the CPC and the CPSU. Even the leadership of other parties weren't supposed to know about them. Everyone was on their own before the Khrushchovite onslaught. And the differences that came out at the multilateral Moscow Meetings of 1957 and 1960 were to be restricted to the party leaderships, while the masses around the world were assured that "The exchange of opinions revealed identity of views...and unanimity..." (1957) and about "the unity of views among the participants on the issues discussed." (1960)

As a result of this method, the rank-and-file communist was held in ignorance for long years while the opposition of the Chinese, Albanians and others to various of the Khrushchovite stands were kept secret. Indeed, as we pointed out earlier, the Moscow Declaration and Statement would appear on the surface to be a ringing affirmation of the unity behind the 20th Congress. Hence the "victories" achieved in moderating this or that formulation in a joint meeting were in this respect hollow victories -- one could win one victory of this sort after the other while numerous parties continued to decay into revisionism.

Furthermore, this method did not even protect weak parties from the interference in their internal affairs by the revisionist chieftains. The Khrushchovites, who benefited from the silence concerning their revisionist theses, themselves were able to spread their views, including negative assessments of their opponents, far and wide, and they were able to tamper with the leaderships of other parties. Violation or not of the rule of keeping differences internal, the Khrushchovite activities flourished under this situation. It seems the rule provides no way to enforce itself. It bound those who were scrupulous and left free those who weren't.

In place of the principled discussion of the burning issues facing the world communist movement, in place of the method of Lenin with his letters to the communists and working class movements of various countries, the Moscow Meetings of 1957 and 1960 substituted "official optimism." It was the "I'm OK, you're OK" style of writing that flourished in the Moscow Declaration and Statement. Everyone was declared to be good fellows, ticklish issues were swept under the rug, everyone was declared to be enriching Marxism-Leninism, and unity was declared. The 1960 Statement, written in the midst of fierce clashes, euphorically declares: Today the restoration of capitalism has been made socially and economically impossible not only in the Soviet Union, but in the other socialist countries as well." (emphasis as in the original)

Perhaps it might be thought that such a principle of keeping the burning issues internal was the best that the Albanians and Chinese could hope for for the time being. It might be thought that the prevailing situation in the latter 1950's was not favorable. But, if this were the case, it would however only verify that the norms laid down in the Moscow Declaration and Statement were not the basic communist norms, but a painful compromise forced by the situation.

However, neither the Chinese nor the Albanians justify these norms on the basis of harsh historical necessities, but instead they support them as the correct norms in principle. In fact, these norms have had great influence on the Marxist-Leninist movement against revisionism. And the results of following these norms has been bad. These norms have neither safeguarded weak parties from interference in their internal affairs, nor encouraged unity within the international Marxist-Leninist movement. They have instead served as a shield for dubious ideas and dubious elements. Repeated experience has shown: either the Leninist method of combining militant and fervent solidarity with wide discussion of the controversial issues of principle, or the law of the jungle under cover of high-sounding platitudes about unity.

How Could the Khrushchovites and Anti-Khrushchovites Agree on the Moscow Declaration and Statement?

Having surveyed the Moscow Declaration and Statement, we can now return to the question of how the Khrushchovites and their opponents, not just in 1957 but even in the midst of the fierce clashes of 1960, were able to come to agreement on a general platform for the world communist movement.

Of course, sometimes revisionists and other opportunists agree to correct statements. It is precisely a characteristic of opportunism to say one thing and do another. Comrade Enver Hoxha claims that the Khrushchovites themselves, while signing the 1960 Statement, were not happy with the document and immediately brushed it aside as a "compromise." (The Khrushchevites, Ch. 12, "From Bucharest to Moscow") But in any case, it would still seem surprising for the Khrushchovites to sign a correct document of a detailed comprehensive nature setting forth the revolutionary stand with respect to the world situation and the tasks of the communist parties.

In fact, this didn't happen. The Moscow Declaration and Statement were not correct documents. Our survey of the content of the Moscow Declaration and Statement show that, despite various militant-sounding phrases, the content was thoroughly based on the flawed orientations from the post-World War II period and also contained various things directly from the 20th Congress of the CPSU. The possibility of agreement between Khrushchov and his opponents on these documents, even if only a temporary agreement, was created by the fact that, for the time being, both sides possessed something of a common language in the wrong orientations from the post-World War II period.

The Khrushchovites took the mistaken orientations prevalent in the post-World War II period, embraced precisely what was wrong with them, systematized and deepened the errors and used this as one of the main sources for crystallizing the reactionary theory of Soviet revisionism. The Chinese and Albanians also embraced the post-World War II traditions, but tried to give a left or militant interpretation to them. They stretched them in the opposite direction. Their disagreement with the Khrushchovites was real and deep, leading to the public split, and the process of the struggle against Soviet revisionism would deepen the differences still further. But, for the time being, there was still a certain common language inherited from the post-World War II period.

These traditions from the post-World War II period, no. matter how spruced up, cannot serve as the foundation for the struggle against Soviet revisionism. The May 1, 1984 issue of The Workers' Advocate, which deals with this period in the history of the international communist movement, shows that it is hard to point to any one or two easy dividing lines between the fashionable theses in the post-World War II period and those of the Khrushchovite revisionists (pp. 11, 20-21). The Khrushchovite 20th Congress took everything further and marked a qualitative change, but it could make great play with concepts from the previous period. The orientation on war and peace, for example, took much from the pacifism of the World Peace Council, the statements of the Cominform, and from the 19th Congress of the CPSU (1952). And the parliamentary road to socialism had already been anticipated in "The British Road to Socialism" of 1951, which was endorsed in the Soviet and Cominform press and propagated widely in the world movement.

The problems of the post-World War II orientations are also related to the similar problems that confronted the Communist Party of China. Mao Zedong Thought has much in common with these orientations, and the Maoist leaders welcomed them. Then they welcomed the 20th Congress of February 1956 and reiterated many of its basic theses in their 8th Congress later that year. At the same time, they also had some contradictions with the Khrushchovites due to the 20th Congress, but this concerned at first only certain points. For example, the Chinese welcomed the criticism of Stalin and criticized him themselves from a Khrushchovite angle (for example, they criticized him from the point of view of wanting to throw aside the Marxist-Leninist teachings on the struggle against opportunism instead of for the denigration of the struggle against opportunism that took place in the post-World War II period). But, at the same time, the Chinese were opposed to the way Khrushchov utterly negated Stalin and threw gross slanders at the history of socialism. Even as late as the polemics in 1963, the Chinese leaders still asserted, however, that: "As for the 20th Congress of the CPSU, it had both its positive and negative aspects." ("Whence the Differences?," a polemic from February 1963, contained in the collection of polemics by the same title)

Even as the struggle against revisionism deepened, the Maoist leaders never overcame various of the mistaken orientations from the post-World War II period and continued to incorporate them into Maoism. This is apparent both in the opportunist "three worldism" of the Maoists in the 1960's and in the fully developed, counterrevolutionary theory of "three worlds" of the mid-1970's. Various features that we have seen in the Moscow Declaration and Statement still remain, even in the period of the 1960's, when the Chinese Communist Party upheld certain revolutionary stands. For example, in regard to the "third world," there is the mistaken assessment of various bourgeois nationalist regimes, the opportunist stand towards the national bourgeoisie, and the denial of socialist revolution in this region of the world.

These weaknesses in the stands of the Chinese Communist Party were not fatally predetermined by the earlier weaknesses. The power of the struggle against Soviet revisionism should not be underestimated. It had the potential of invigorating the communist movement, and it really did invigorate and provide tremendous impetus to the revolutionary Marxist-Leninists. Had the Chinese leaders had a truly serious attitude to the Marxist-Leninist principles they swore loyalty to in the anti-revisionist polemics and had they carried the struggle against revisionism through to the end, they could have step by step rectified their stands. This would, of course, not just have been a question of correcting this or that theoretical formulation, but would also have necessitated revolutionary staunchness in strengthening the Communist Party of China, carrying out a consistently revolutionary stand in socialist construction, foreign affairs and the international communist movement and, in short, revolutionizing all their activity.

But the Chinese leaders did not pass this severe test, and this would eventually put in jeopardy the gains that the Chinese working masses had won at the cost of such heroic struggle. The Chinese leaders vacillated in the struggle against revisionism. For years after the public split with the Soviet revisionists they vacillated on whether to make a clean break or to seek reconciliation and accommodation. And they did not go back to the classic teachings of Marxism-Leninism but instead insisted on developing Mao Zedong Thought and Chinese revisionism. The Maoist leaders had knowledge of various of the weaknesses of the post-World War II period but, instead of drawing Marxist-Leninist conclusions from this, they used this knowledge simply to promote the special merits of Mao Zedong Thought as a new ideology allegedly superior to orthodox Marxism-Leninism. For a time the Chinese leaders tried to give a revolutionary coloring to their theories and did, in fact, support certain revolutionary stands. But the Maoist standpoint proved incapable of supporting a revolutionary stand in the long run and collapsed into outright revisionism, capitalism and social-imperialism.

The Albanians had been skeptical of the Khrushchovites from even before the 20th Congress, and they were opposed to what took place at this infamous Congress. Nevertheless, there is the question of how much of the analysis there they recognized as wrong. Their support for the 1957 Declaration and the 1960 Statement showed that they too had much work to do in strengthening their positions. When the public split took place with Soviet revisionism they never flinched and sought reconciliation, and they resolutely called for pushing the struggle forward. This serious and determined attitude and their revolutionary stand was why they had the strength to initiate the period of worldwide condemnation of the "three worlds" theory and Mao Zedong Thought. But they too have failed to carry the struggle through to the end, and this is one of the sources of the present weaknesses in their stands. It is the task of true friends of the PLA and socialist Albania to render proletarian internationalist assistance to the PLA by supporting their correct stands and providing comradely criticism of their present weaknesses.

Carry the Struggle Against Soviet Revisionism Through to the End!

Once again it should be stressed that the mistaken orientations in the Moscow Declaration and Statement and the narrow ideological basis at the start of the struggle against the Khrushchovites by no means denies the existence of real disagreements and bitter battles between the Khrushchovites and their opponents at the Moscow Meetings. The struggle against Soviet revisionism that led to the public split is not a myth, but was an essential step forward for the international Marxist-Leninist movement. But it does show that the struggle against Soviet revisionism required an utterly determined effort to restore the Leninist traditions and that the ready-made platform from the post-World War II period could not serve this purpose in the slightest.

In fact, the anti-revisionist struggle did go well beyond the Moscow Declaration and Statement in the following years. Indeed, even at the start various principles were upheld, in the name of the Moscow Declaration and Statement, that one is hard pressed to say are really contained in them. But there was never a conscious reassessment of the Moscow Declaration and Statement, nor of the mistaken orientations from the post-World War II period that such a reassessment of the Moscow documents would inevitably call into question.

This is a task that we are carrying out today as part of the work to reassess the history of the struggle against revisionism in order to clear the path of the zigzags and setbacks that have afflicted the anti-revisionist struggle in the past. The purpose is not to tarnish the image of the struggles of the past, but to clear the way for future victories. We must carry the struggle against Soviet revisionism and Maoism through to the end, so as to bring the light of revolutionary Marxism-Leninism to bear on the current problems of the revolutionary movement.

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