Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

El Comité/MINP

First Assembly: Program for the Coming Period

First Published: Obreros En Marcha, Vol. 3, No. 10, November-December 1978.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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On October 27-29, our organization, El Movimiento de Izquierda Nacional Puertorriqueno (The National Puerto Rican Left Movement) held its First Assembly. The Assembly evaluated our social and organizational practice over the past 3 years. It defined our programmatic goals and tasks, established our strategical and tactical line and elected a leadership to guide the implementation of all its mandates. The starting point for the evaluations and projections of the First Assembly was the program agreed to by the Formative Assembly of our organization held in January of 1975.

The Formative Assembly culminated the transition of El Comité–the community organization–into a Marxist-Leninist formation. That assembly approved as our long-term principal objective the destruction of capitalism and the construction of socialism in the United States. It also established as one of our central commitments our responsibility to render concrete support to the national and social liberation of Puerto Rico.

In keeping with our long-term objective, the Formative Assembly recognized the necessity-of building the revolutionary party of the multinational proletariat in this country. Within this context, the Formative Assembly approved a set of minimal objectives and established as our central task the training of dialectical-materialist cadres. This definition of our central task was based on our understanding that without tested and trained cadres equipped with a consolidated understanding of the principles of Marxism-Leninism, the building of a new communist party would be unrealizable.

Since January 1975, our organization has been engaged in a variety of efforts to implement this central task. The First Assembly concluded that our organization has taken a qualitative step forward in consolidating among our cadres a sound grasp of the cornerstones of Marxism-Leninism: dialectical and historical materialism. Our membership has consciously accepted materialism as its philosophical world view and dialectics as the method of studying and interpreting phenomena. Our cadres are deepening their understanding that social being determines social consciousness. This has been reflected in the pages of our principal organ of propaganda, Obreros En Marcha; in the ability of our cadres to sum up and evaluate critically their experiences in order to be more effective in their work; and in the positions our organization has assumed, particularly on the Puerto Rican National Question and party-building. Moreover, our application of materialist dialectics is reflected in our growing influence in mass movements, our presence nationally within the left, our work with respect to Puerto Rico, and in the increased capacity of our cadres to assume leadership in these situations.

In summing up our mass work, the Assembly concluded that we have maintained an active presence, often in a leadership role, within the struggles of the Puerto Rican communities where our organization is present. The Assembly recognized this as one of the main strengths of our work. However, it also identified as one of our weaknesses our failure to develop long-term plans for our community organizing. We have not yet been able to develop or consolidate organizations capable of accelerating the level of struggle and militancy of the people in these communities to fight more effectively for their demands. This planning will enable us to develop the mass organizational forms and the necessary consciousness and militancy that will facilitate effective political organizing.

In addition, we have been limited in the degree to which we have developed class-consciousness among the people. In part, this has been due to our failure to develop independent propaganda which would convey a deeper class analysis of the issues.

The First Assembly also recognized that although we have a strong presence in the democratic struggles of communities, our experience in trade union organizing is still limited, though significant advances have been made in our trade union work, reflected in our leadership roles in some of the shops where we are present. We have fallen short of establishing the correct correlation between organizing in the communities and organizing workers at the work place, at times creating a false dichotomy between the two. We now understand that the task is to establish the relationship between work shop organizing and community organizing and not to create artificial distinctions.

The First Assembly recognized the inroads its cadres have begun to make in the democratic struggles of women. This was reflected in our participation in the Latin Women’s Collective, in various coalitions such as Committee for Abortion Rights and Against Sterilization Abuse (CARASA) and International Working Woman’s Day (IWWD), and in many conferences, forums and demonstrations.

Our growth over the past few years in the area of solidarity work is perhaps most evident in the role MINP has played in its support for the national and social liberation movements of Puerto Rico and Latin America. Our deepening relationships with progressive and revolutionary forces in Puerto Rico have enabled us to more effectively provide direction to the Puerto Rico solidarity; movement in the U.S. As we have grown politically, our increasing understanding and concrete application of proletarian internationalism has been reflected in our work to aid the struggles of Chile, Argentina, Nicaragua, etc. As the anti-imperialist struggles in Africa intensify, we heighten our efforts to provide aid and support to these movements. This has been reflected, particularly in relation to Southern Africa, in organizational forums, demonstrations, coalitions, etc.

The most significant conclusion of the Assembly was the clarity and agreement reached on the implications for our social practice of our position on the Puerto Rican national question which, in brief, views Puerto Ricans in this country as integrally part of the socio-economic life of the U.S. We also understand the pervasive character of racism and national chauvinism in this society and the divisive consequences that these aspects of bourgeois ideology have on the working class. In the next period, our organization will take up the task of developing organizational forms and types of political activity which will facilitate the effective defense of the Puerto Rican national minority as well as their incorporation into the working class struggles in this country. This is an essential aspect of providing the mechanisms to bring about the voluntary unity of the working class. If we are to contribute to achieving the strategic objective of uniting the working class, particularly its most advanced elements, then we must take up the democratic rights struggles of the oppressed nationalities and raise the class content of these struggles. This task is key if the destructive consequences of racism and national chauvinism that maintain the working class divided and the Puerto Rican national minority and other oppressed nationalities subject to oppressive conditions are to be overcome.

Within this framework, our program for the next period calls for our membership–militants, affiliates and sympathizers–to continue to deepen their work among the working class and oppressed minorities, focusing particularly on Puerto Ricans and Latins. This will be undertaken based on a two-pronged strategy, organizing both in the shops and in the communities.

In the shops and service sectors, we will work with like-minded communists and advanced workers in the development of effective workers’ organizations. In communities where predominantly Puerto Ricans and Latins reside, we will aim to develop organizational forms which will aid us in the effective integration of the Puerto Rican national minority into militant and conscious class struggle.

In addition, we will become more involved in the struggles of women, youth and students in defense of their democratic rights.

Besides these tasks, our organization will continue to strengthen its cadres in the areas of ideological formation and theoretical preparation building on the advances we have already made. We will continue to strengthen our ties with the revolutionary left in the U.S. Our efforts to develop these relations will be based on our capacity to reach unity on political perspective and social practice with other formations. Furthermore, consistent with the proletarian internationalist practice of our organization, MINP in the coming period will continue its work of strengthening and consolidating our relations with revolutionary and progressive forces internationally, particularly in Puerto Rico, Latin America, and the Caribbean and Africa. To orient our work in this area, MINP will study the tendencies of imperialist development and foreign policy in order to be able to render effective solidarity to those forces and countries which are in the lead in the struggle against imperialism.

In the pursuit of party building, the destruction of capitalism and the building of socialism in the U.S., the concentration of MINP in the coming period will be to consolidate its cadres ideologically, politically and organizationally, through deepening its roots within the working class, particularly within the Puerto Rican national minority. We are guided in this period by our organizational slogan – “FORGE THE CADRE AMONG THE MASSES”

Movimiento de Izquierda Nacional Puertorriqueno