Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Amilcar Cabral/Paul Robeson Collective
Greensboro Collective

The Greensboro Massacre: Critical Lessons for the 1980’s


This pamphlet is a modest attempt to share with the revolutionary movement in the U.S., an analysis of the Greensboro Massacre and its aftermath. It also puts forward some brief views on the Black Liberation Movement and the tasks of communists in that movement.

We think there is a great need for this pamphlet because revolutionaries around the country although they have firm views of CWP’s opportunism and adventurism, have only had access to accounts of the events carried by the ruling class press or CWP’s lies and distortions.[1] In addition, we think it is rich in lessons in a way far different from other examples of Klan terror. It brings out in vivid detail the danger of “left” (the ultra-left) opportunism, right opportunism and the various forms of revisionism to the Black Liberation Movement in particular, the movement of the other oppressed nationalities and the working class struggle for socialism. These phony communists on both the right and the “left” are a threat to the real liberation of the Afro-American masses and display the essential unity of these trends in opposition to the Black masses. As Lenin pointed out, in times of crisis the essence of political tendencies are revealed in sharper and clearer ways than in normal times. The Greensboro Massacre verifies the truth of this observation.

We have a responsibility to get this out to the movement because we had fairly intimate contact with events, people, organizations and political tendencies described in the following pages.

The pamphlet draws out the nature of the danger of revisionism to the Black Liberation Movement and the heroism of the Black masses in responding to complicated situations while under attack from the state, the Klan, the Revisionists (“left” and right). It demonstrates the underlying strength of the Afro-American people and their Strong sentiments for liberation. Finally, it speaks in an introductory way to the nature of the task of genuine communists in mobilizing and organizing this sentiment to hit at all the enemies of Black Liberation, the chief one being U.S. imperialism.

The first part of this work is in narrative, and we hope, lively form. It covers the Massacre itself, some important events proceeding it, and the aftermath including the CWP Funeral March and efforts to build a demonstration on November 18th. It focuses mainly on the “left” infantile idiocy of the WVO/CWP and the danger it poses to the Black community, the developing Black Liberation Movement and the socialist revolution. Part II is theoretical and addresses some views on the Black Liberation Movement, its relationship to the struggle for socialism in the U.S. and the tasks of communist.

We hope to publish a second pamphlet which continues to examine the general motion that developed out of the Massacre by looking closely at the December 1979 Anti-Klan Conference in Atlanta, the development of the national staff and a local mobilization committee for the February 2nd march and rally. In that segment we will illustrate how the right opportunist, social democrats and liberals undermine the struggle of the Black masses. The work of the Southern Organizing Committee (SOC) and the National Anti-Racist Organizing Committee (NAROC) are examples of this trend. And finally, how the “left” and the right concretely established unity, will be highlighted.

The Amilcar Cabral/Paul Robeson Collective and the Greensboro Collective are Marxist-Leninist collectives with roots in the Black Liberation and African Liberation Support movements. Some members of each of the collectives have had associations with either the RWL, the “Revolutionary Wing”, or the RCP and have generally had practice in the movement to build a genuine communist party in the U.S.; a task that is yet to be completed. The following pages represent the established extent of our ideological and political unity.

We dedicate this pamphlet to the thousands who have given their lives in the fight for human emancipation from oppression and exploitation and those who have been the victims of Klan terror through the years.


[1] With the exception of a newsletter published by the Ray O. Light Organization.