Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Rationale of the NLSSC


First Published: Arise!, Vol. I, No. 2, April-May 1978.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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What is the National Liberation Struggles Support Committee? Why was it formed? What role does it play in the revolutionary movement in the USA? What sort of work does it do? The purpose of this rationale is to answer these and other questions about the NLSSC. But before we can do so, we must first place these questions in the context of our view of the international situation and its relation to the US.

The International Struggles and the US

We live in a time of great disorder, a time in which both the world situation and the situation here in the US present us with many complex economic and political problems. The general economic crisis, the workers’ struggles against layoffs, cutbacks and speedups in industry, the struggles for the democratic rights of oppressed nationalities, women, youth and students, the fight against police repression and the threat of fascism – all of these are burning issues for the working and oppressed people of the US. They are issues that confront us daily and force us to question the nature of the society we live in and wonder what we can do to change it for the better.

At the same time, all around the world, other peoples of different countries and nations are also struggling against oppression and exploitation similar to what we are fighting here at home. In addition, many of them, particularly in Asia, Africa and Latin America* are also fighting for the independence of their countries, for national liberation and revolution. The ongoing struggles of the people of Ethiopia, Zimbabwe(Rhodesia), Azania (South Africa) and Namibia in Africa; the struggles of the people of the Philippines in Asia; and the struggles of the Haitian, Dominican and Puerto Rican people in Latin America are just a few examples of this process. These are the oppressed people of the third world, the people who have been suffering for long time under the whip of imperialism. And they are the people who are waging the fiercest battles against imperialism, shaking it to its very foundations.

Imperialism is the system in which a small number of the most, powerful capitalist countries divide up the world among themselves and control, bully and rob the great majority of nations which have fallen under their domination, In doing this, the imperialist countries invariably resort to violence. This is directed not only against the oppressed people themselves, but against the other imperialists who are competing for the same prizes: cheap raw materials and exploited labor, and new markets in which to invest capital and sell products. For this reason we say that wars are inevitable as long as imperialism exists.

Today the two main representatives of imperialism, the biggest enemies of the people of the world, are the two superpowers – the United States and the Soviet Union. The United States has a long history as an imperialist power. It came out of World War II as the unchallenged victor, the winner with the biggest share of colonial possessions and the greatest military and economic might. But just as the US was beginning to suffer a series of losses at the hands of the oppressed people (beginning with the Korean War and including Laos, Vietnam, and Kampuchea, among others) a new imperialist power came on the scene to compete with the US, The people of the Soviet Union, the first country in the world to establish a socialist society, had suffered a tragic setback in the late nineteen-fifties, and capitalism had been restored there. Before long the new rulers of the Soviet Union were looking for countries they could grab and turn into colonies of their own. Cuba and Czechoslovakia were among the first victims, and Angola and Ethiopia are more recent examples of countries that are dominated by this new imperialism. We call it Soviet social-imperialism because while it claims to be socialist, its deeds clearly expose it as an imperialist superpower. At present the competition between Soviet social-imperialism and US imperialism confronts us with the very real danger of a new world war.

Because we live inside one of the two superpowers, it is important to understand clearly the link between the national liberation struggles and our own struggles here in the US. The valiant resistance of the world’s peoples against superpower domination and war preparations – and particularly the armed struggles for national liberation, independence and socialism – plays a decisive role in moving forward our own revolutionary struggle. The national liberation struggles are directly weakening the two superpowers and holding up their plans to launch a new world war. In this way, they give the working and oppressed people in the US more time to get prepared, and put us in a better position to carry out revolution against bur ”own” ruling class, as the highest expression of our commitment to wipe out imperialism once and for all.

We should also recognize that the effects of imperialism are felt inside the territorial borders of the US as well. This country was built by the labor of working people who were forced to come here as a direct result of the development of imperialism. The early colonization and plunder of North America, the genocide committed against the native American peoples, and the brutal slave system from which the Afro-American people emerged, were key factors in the development of the United States. The exploitation of Asian and Irish workers in building the extensive railroad system helped the bourgeoisie establish monopoly capitalism. The imperialist annexation of upper California, New Mexico and other parts of the Southwest gave rise to the oppressed Mexican-American, or Chicano people, at the same time imperialist aggression in Asia, Africa and Latin America made conditions so bad that millions were forced to emigrate to the US – the so-called “land of the free,” – only to meet with a full measure of national oppression, racism and chauvinism. Inadequate housing, schools and hospitals, attacks on their language and culture and chronically high unemployment for nationally oppressed people, are all the cruel outcome of imperialism’s ever widening quest for superprofits. But “where there is regression, there is resistance,” and the nationally oppressed peoples of the US have always fought untiringly against oppression and for their democratic rights. They are an important component part of the revolutionary forces in the US.

For these reasons, it is most important that we take up and concretely apply the principle of proletarian internationalism. This means we unite with the workers and oppressed peoples of all lands, study their experiences in struggle, firmly support their revolutionary actions, and regard the cause of their liberation as a most dependable support for our own struggle. The same holds true for the socialist countries, which are our powerful allies and a positive force for revolution and world peace. We have a common enemy – imperialism – and a common struggle!

About the NLSSC:

The NLSSC is a multi-national anti-imperialist mass organization. It was formed in January, 1977, by progressive and revolutionary people who saw the need in this country for a broad-based organization that brings together workers and oppressed people of all nationalities to support the national liberation struggles that are raging all around the world – not just in one particular area. In this way it strives to heighten the unity of the US multi-national working class and to provide a context in which all genuinely progressive and revolutionary people can unite to carry out concrete work based on a correct analysis of the international situation.

The main purpose of the NLSSC is to educate and organize the broad masses of the working class and other progressive forces in the spirit of proletarian internationalism; to support the national liberation struggles and to expose and oppose imperialism – particularly the hegemonism and war preparations of the two superpowers. In doing this, we are marching in step with the overwhelming majority of the world’s people, as part of the world-wide united front against the two superpowers. This is the main trend in the world today: “COUNTRIES WANT INDEPENDENCE, NATIONS WANT LIBERATION, PEOPLE WANT REVOLUTION!”

Principles of Unity of The NLSSC:

We support the struggles for national liberation waged against imperialism, colonialism, hegemonism and all reaction, including feudalism, neo-colonialism, racism and Zionism.

2. We support the struggles of the US multi-national working class, and strive to unite them with the struggles of the oppressed peoples and nations of the world.

3. We resolutely oppose the two superpowers – US imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism – as the greatest enemies of the people of the world and as the source of a new world war.

4. We support the oppressed nationalities and national minority struggles in the US.