Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Black Workers Congress

The Black Liberation Struggle, the Black Workers Congress, and Proletarian Revolution


Why We Need a ’New’ Communist Party and the Role of a Black Communist Organization

In this document we have discussed the development of the Afro-American people into an oppressed nation, the development of American imperialism, the changes in the National Question, the present world situation, the role of revolutionary ideology in the Black liberation struggle, and the related tasks of Communists in the Trade Union, Women, Student and Youth movements.

We have said that the United States is a multi-national Imperialist state dominated by one ruling class – the monopoly capitalist – which exploits and oppresses the Afro-American, Puerto-Rican, Chicano, Asian and Native American people, as well as the masses of white working class people. We stated that the Black bourgeoisie is a junior partner of this ruling class and functions along with the Labor Aristocracy in helping to prop-up the capitalist system in the U.S. In order to smash the rule of the monopoly capitalists and their lackeys, the working class has three main strategic tasks. These tasks speak to the organization and development of the revolution, where the leadership must come from and who are the allies of the working class. These tasks are as follows:

First – Building a genuine Communist Party
Secondly – Building a revolutionary United Front uniting all who can be united against our common enemy
Thirdly – Building the mass revolutionary struggle of the working class (political and military) and its leadership in the United Front.

All of these tasks are equally important in the sense that if all are not accomplished the strategic objective (final goal) of proletarian revolution cannot be reached. All must be carried out simultaneously. However, at different times one of these tasks is singled-out, or emphasized as the central or main task which must be concentrated on and which will move forward all three and insure the success of the revolution. Today we say that the central or main task of Marxist-Leninists and advanced workers, is building a genuine Communist Party based on Marxism-Leninism Mao Tse Tung Thought that fights revisionism, Trotskyism, and all forms of opportunism.

WHY WE NEED A NEW COMMUNIST PARTY

The first great step of importance for every country newly entering into the movement, is always the constitution of the workers as an independent political party, no matter how long it takes, so long as it is a distinct workers’ party. – Fredrick Engels (Selected Correspondence)

During the 1890’s in Russia, the labouring masses-the workers and peasants were brutally oppressed and exploited by the tsarist autocracy. This period was marked by widespread strikes and the development of the labor movement and the movement among the peasantry. At the same time, the Marxist movement (or Social-Democratic movement as it was called then), began to grow and develop when Marxist ideas began to spread rapidly among the intellectuals and advanced workers. At that time, the Marxists, or Social Democrats, were organized into “circles” or small groups, whose main work was spreading Marxist propaganda and later, agitation in the workers’ movement. In this period the “circles” in which a few more advanced workers studied Marxism, under the guidance of the intellectuals, were developing by leaps and bounds!

Soon, however, the demands of the movement compelled these circles to come together and form Leagues. The most famous of these was the St. Petersburg League of Struggle in which Lenin himself played a key role. But the need for co-coordinating the efforts of the Marxist organizations on even a larger scale – a national scale – became more and more evident as the labor movement continued to expand. The basic, immediate task of the Russian revolutionaries then was to unite socialism with the working class movement and weld the scattered circles into a workers’ party – an “organization of professional revolutionaries” as Lenin called it.

In 1898, the First Congress of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party, was held, but the newly created Labour Party was immediately annihilated by the tsarist police. The Congress at which the Russian Party was actually created was the Second Congress. “It was at this Second Congress that Bolshevism originated as a political force and as an organized party” (Popov – History of the CPSU)

Before the new party could come into being, however, a dangerous tendency known as Economism had to be defeated. This tendency made headway not only in Russia, but also among many Marxist parties in Western Europe as well. The European Marxist Bernstein, former friend of Engels himself, was the leading theoretician of this tendency. He was the one who said: “The movement is everything, the aim is nothing”. The main thesis of this tendency, economism, was that the task of workers is to fight for improvement in their economic conditions while leaving the fight for political demands in the hands of the bourgeois liberals.

In his book: “What Is To Be Done?”, Lenin sharply denounced the “Economists” for their betrayal of revolutionary Marxism and called on all genuine Marxists to wage a resolute struggle against them, and to establish a political party of the proletariat to fight for the political aims of the proletarian revolution The fundamental error of the “Economists” Lenin said, was their subservience to the spontaneity of the working class movement and belittling the role of theory. Lenin said: “all worship of the spontaneity of the working class movement, all belittling of the role of the ’conscious element’, of the role of Social-Democracy means, quite independently of whether he who belittles that role desires it or not, a strengthening of the influence of bourgeois ideology upon the workers.” (Lenin: “What Is To Be Done?”)

Lenin and Bolsheviks realized that in order to have a proletarian revolution it was necessary to raise the spontaneous consciousness of the workers acquired through trade union struggles to the level of political consciousness, and to subordinate the struggle for reforms to the entire revolutionary struggle for socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat. The “Economist” tendency and the worship of spontaneity was manifested in the subordination of strategy to tactics, and organizationally, in the prevailing disunity and “narrow” outlook of the Marxist groups and in their “amateurishness”.

Since the “Economists” insisted that the only task of the proletariat was merely to wage the economic struggle and build the “mass” movement, they saw no need to establish a national, centralized, revolutionary party, led by the most advanced theory-revolutionary Marxism. Lenin and the genuine Marxists stated that it was absolutely necessary to create a revolutionary workers’ party which would simultaneously conduct the fight for socialism and for the overthrow of the tsarist autocracy. Lenin said:” ...the spontaneous struggle of the proletariat will not become genuine ’class struggle’ until this struggle is led by a strong organization of professional revolutionaries...Give us an organization of revolutionaries, and we will overturn Russia”!

In the process of building a genuine revolutionary party of the proletariat the Bolsheviks (Russian for majority) carried on a relentless struggle against the Mensheviks (Russian for minority, and the “successors to the Economists’ both ideologically and organizationally”) and the opportunists of the Second International. The Bolsheviks went on to lead the working class and oppressed masses of Russia to victory in October 1917. Under the leadership of the Bolsheviks, the working class of Russia smashed the machinery of the bourgeois state, expropriated the expropriators, and proceeded to establish the dictatorship of the proletariat in the form of Soviets while strengthening the fraternal ties and contacts with the proletariat of all countries through the building of a new Communist International, the “Third International”, also known as the Comintern.

Under the guidance of the Comintern, new Communist Parties were born in most of the worlds’ countries-China, Germany, Italy, France, England, and the U.S.A. These parties were parties of the “new type” and were different from those of the Second International in every conceivable way. The parties of the Second International were opposed to proletarian dictatorship and advocated “democracy in general”, they completely departed from the Marxist doctrine of the state. They supported their “own” bourgeoisie in the predatory imperialist war of World War I and abandoned the oppressed peoples in the colonies.

At the time of the founding of the new parties, there were only a few Communists organized into a few communist groups. The most famous of these new parties was to become the Chinese Communist Party. Like the Bolsheviks, the Chinese Communists started from small underground groups and grew through leading the broad masses in several great revolutions and by tirelessly conducting a struggle against opportunism within their ranks. The fifty-three year history of the Chinese Communist party proves that the success or failure of a political party depends on whether its line is correct or not. A wrong line will lead to the loss of political power even if it has been seized, as in the early Hungarian and Western European revolutions. A correct line will enable a party which has not yet attained political power to achieve it. However, a correct line does not come ready-made or drop from the skies, or emerge and develop spontaneously and peacefully – it develops through struggle against erroneous lines and tendencies.

In the United States, genuine American communists formed the Workers Party in 1921. The Workers Party was the outcome of a merger between the Communist Party and the Communist Labor Party. The left wing in the Socialist Party waged a bitter struggle (though often in a confused and incomplete manner) against Gomperism and Hillquitism – the ideological expression of the corrupt bureaucracy and aristocracy of labor, as well as against the syndicalism and anarchism of the militant I.W.W. (International Workers of the World). Then under the guidance of the Comintern, this left wing directed its fight against the policies and practices of the Second International which the Socialist Party had aligned with. This struggle symbolized the fight against imperialism and imperialist war, class collaboration and opportunism.

But the left-wing was unable to get itself together at first. This led to the creation of two “Communist Parties” – the CP. and the C.L.P. referred to above. Around that time also, the working class in the U.S. was in great ferment, some of the greatest strikes in the history of the country (like the Great Steel Strikes in 1919) were occurring. The formation of two Communist Parties, struggling against each other was one of the factors which hindered the leadership of communists in those strikes. The strong sectarian tendencies which prevailed within both parties had worked toward the same end-isolating the communists from the masses. Nevertheless, the U.S. communist movement was unified into one party under tremendous pressure from the Comintern. No sooner was it formed, than it had to withstand the vicious blows of the “Palmer Raids” and the atmosphere of persecution of Communists which followed it. The party did succeed in drawing around itself the advanced and active elements of the U.S. workers’ movement. One of these, William Z. Foster, was a leader in the Great Steel Strike in 1919, and. later became general-secretary of the Party itself. But because of strong opportunist tendencies, the internal consolidation of the party did not fully take place until 1927, when the last organized faction, led by Jay Lovestone was routed from the organization.

After Lenin’s death in 1924, Joseph Stalin developed and enriched Leninism – the theory of the struggle against opportunism and revisionism, the struggle against imperialism, and the theory of socialist construction – by defending it against all the enemies of the working class at that time – the Trotskyists, Bukharinists, bourgeois nationalists and new revisionists. Stalin further developed the teachings of Marx, Engels, and Lenin about the party the revolution and the state, and applied them with persistence and farsightedness. In the struggle against Trotskyism, Stalin outlined Lenin’s theory of organization and gave a precise and clear presentation of what the party is. He said:

1) The Party must be, first of all, the advanced detachment of the working class. The party must absorb all the best elements of the working class their experience, their revolutionary spirit, their selfless devotion to the cause of the proletariat.... The Party cannot be a real party if it limits itself to registering what the masses of the working class feels and thinks, if it drags at the tail of the movement, if it is unable to raise the masses to the level of the proletariat, if it is unable to raise the masses to the level of understanding the class interest of the proletariat. The Party is the political leader of the class...

2) The Party is not only the advanced detachment of the working class. If it desires really to direct the struggle of the class it must at the same time be the “organized detachment of its class”...the Party can only fulfill its tasks only if it is itself the embodiment of discipline and organization, if it is itself the organized detachment of the working class.

3) The Party is the highest form of class organization of the proletariat.
..The proletariat has also a number of other organizations, without which it cannot wage a successful struggle against capital-trade unions, co-operatives, factory organizations, parliamentary groups, non-Party women’s associations, the press, cultural and educational organizations, youth leagues revolutionary fighting organizations (in times of open revolutionary action), Soviets of deputies as the form of state organization (if the proletariat is in power), etc...The question then arises: who is to determine the line, the general direction, along which the work of all these organization which is not only able, because it has the necessary experience, to work out such a general line, but, in addition, is in a position, because it has sufficient prestige, to induce all these organizations to carry out this line, so as to attain unity of leadership and to make hitches impossible? That organization is the Party of the proletariat.

4) The Party is an instrument of the dictatorship of the proletariat.
...The Party is not only the highest form of class organization of the proletariat; it is at the same time an instrument in the hands of the proletariat for achieving the dictatorship when that has not yet been achieved and for consolidating and expanding the dictatorship when it has already been achieved...

5) The Party is the embodiment of unity of will, unity incompatible with the existence of factions.
The achievement and maintenance of the dictatorship of the proletariat is impossible without a party which is strong by reason of its solidarity and iron discipline. But iron discipline in the Party is inconceivable without unity of will, without complete and absolute unity of action on the part of all members of the party...iron discipline does not preclude but presupposes criticism and conflict of opinion within the Party. Least of all it means that discipline must be “blind”.

6). The Party becomes strong by purging itself of opportunist elements.
The source of factionalism in the Party is its opportunist elements. The proletariat is not an isolated class. It is constantly replenished by the influx of peasants, petty-bourgeoisie and intellectuals proletarianized by the development of capitalism. At the same time the upper stratum of the proletariat, principally trade union leaders and members of parliament who are fed by the bourgeoisie out of the super-profits extracted from the colonies, is undergoing a process of decay. “The stratum of bourgeoisified workers, or Labor aristocracy”, says Lenin, ”who are quite philistine in their mode of life, in the size of their earnings, and in entire outlook, is the principal prop of the Second International, and, in our days, the principal social (not military) prop of the bourgeoisie. For they are the real agents of the bourgeoisie in the workers’ movement, the labor lieutenants of the capitalist class....real channels of reformism and chauvinism ..

Our Party succeeded in achieving internal unity and unexampled cohesion of its ranks primarily because it was able in good time to purge itself of the opportunist pollution...Proletarian parties develop and become strong by purging themselves of opportunists and reformists, social-imperialists and social-chauvinists, social-patriots and social-pacifists.

The Party becomes strong by purging itself of opportunist elements. (J. Stalin: “Foundations of Leninism”)

After Stalin’s death in 1954, opportunists who had been hiding within the state and party of the Soviet Union, attacked Stalin with the aim of destroying genuine Marxism-Leninism and replacing it with sham Marxism-Leninism, modern revisionism, and thereby dismantling socialism in the USSR and replacing it with capitalism. Ever since that time, around 1957, the sham Marxists in the Soviet Union led by Khrushchev and later Brezhnev, have resurrected the line of the Second International, the line of class collaboration, of “peaceful coexistence” with imperialism, of abandonment of the national liberation struggles, and the dismantling of the party and dictatorship of the proletariat. The modern revisionists (who are still in power) are the step-children of the old revisionists of the Second International. Just like Lenin and the Bolsheviks waged a bitter struggle against them and defeated their line then, so today, Mao Tse Tung and genuine communists all over the world are waging a bitter struggle against these scoundrels and will ultimately defeat them too.

What happened to the Communist Party of the U.S.? It unfortunately followed the line of the Soviet Union revisionists and hence, betrayed the interest of the American working class and oppressed. Since 1957 (though the tendencies were there all along) it has become a mouthpiece of its class brothers in the Soviet Union, the modern revisionists. Though the CP. showed great potential for becoming a mass party in the 1930’s, it never really became Bolshevized (revolutionary like the early Russian and Chinese parties) and never really ridded itself of its opportunist elements. It thus became easy prey for the modern revisionist line. Since 1957, the CPUSA has tailed miserably after the liberal bourgeoisie – Kennedy, Johnson, etc. – during elections, and have proven to be the class brothers of the labor aristocracy and staunch defenders of the Leonard Woodcooks and the Victor Gothbams and their like, and other enemies of the working class and oppressed.

Although modern revisionism represented by the CPUSA has no strong organized base in the U.S. revolutionary movement, they are maneuvering to get one and definitely have the means and money to do so, as well as support from the imperialists and modern revisionists on a world scale. They constitute the main danger in the revolutionary movement and will play an increasingly treacherous role as the revolutionary workers movement grows and threatens the present system.

PROBLEMS OF THE “NEW” COMMUNIST MOVEMENT IN THE UNITED STATES

Today the movement in the U.S. is in a similar position to that of the revolutionary movements in the capitalist countries following the sell-out of the Second International. Today as then, opportunism has developed into social-imperialism and has joined the ranks of the imperialists. Today as then, revolutionary Marxism is being “revised” to suit the interest of the imperialist bourgeoisie. Today as then, the corrupt trade union bureaucracy and labor aristocracy provides the main social basis of this revisionism in the workers’ movement. Then, the heroic Bolsheviks led the world revolutionary movement in struggle against these scoundrels under the guidance of the great Lenin. Today, the Chinese Communist Party and the Party of Labor of Albania lead the revolutionary Marxist-Leninists in struggle against their off-spring under the guidance of the great Mao Tse Tung and courageous Enver Hoxha. The Albanians say:

In our Party’s opinion, the urgent current problem of the day is not reconciliation and unity with the revisionists, but separation, a clean break from them. Lenin said: “Unity is a great cause and a great slogan. But the workers cause needs the unity of Marxists not unity of Marxists with the opponents and distorters of Marxism. Unity with the opportunists and the revisionists, Lenin said, is “unity of the proletariat with the national bourgeoisie and splitting of the international proletariat, the unity of lackeys and division of the revolutionaries.

In most countries of the world, new Marxist-Leninist parties are springing up to replace the worn-out revisionist ones. Genuine Marxist-Leninists have no reason whatsoever to feel pessimistic or isolated-in the international communist movement there exists today an unbreakable unity of Marxist-Leninists the world over. Still, attempts to build a new communist party in the U.S. since 1957 have so far proven unsuccessful. Most communist in the U.S. know little of the two organizations which first split from the revisionist CPUSA – the Provisional Organizing Committee and the Progressive Labor Party. All most of us know is that the former is no longer with us, still less of how long it existed or what was its strengths and weaknesses, and the later has degenerated into utter bankruptcy and opportunism. There have been attempts at calling Congresses, building “Theoretical Journals” and new ’Iskras’, but we have seen these attempts come and go as well. Though we have not yet really begun to sum-up the history of “Party Building” in this country we do know that one of the main reasons many of these attempts failed is that ideological and political obstacles and problems were not removed and settled first; attempts were made at organizational consolidation before there was consolidation on an ideological basis, before there was an ideological break with the opportunist line, and before there was unity on a given revolutionary political line. Lenin said:

Before we can unite, and in order that we may unite, we must first of all draw firm and definite lines of demarcation. (Declaration of the Editorial Board of Iskra)

THE “MASS MOVEMENT” AND THE SPECIAL IMPORTANCE OF REVOLUTIONARY THEORY AT THE PRESENT STAGE

The major questions facing the new communist movement today, on which current debate is proceeding, concern the relationship of spontaneity to consciousness, the relationship between the Party and the spontaneous movement, and the relationship of theory to practice. These questions have come up time and time again throughout the various stages of the world communist movement, and though they have been answered before, it should be no surprise that in these new historical conditions (in which imperialism is heading for its ultimate collapse and socialism for its victory), that we are once again required to answer them again, to explain the correct Marxist-Leninist position on these questions. When Lenin was struggling for a revolutionary party of the proletariat in Russia, he said: ”without a revolutionary theory, there can be no revolutionary movement.” Lenin was paraphrasing Engels who in 1874, pointed out the “indifference of the English labor movement to all theory which is one of the main reasons why it moves so slowly in spite of the splendid organization of the individual unions.” (Selected Correspondence). Stalin in the ”Foundations of Leninism” said:

Theory can become the greatest force in the labor movement if it is indissolubly bound up with revolutionary practice, for it alone can give the movement confidence, guidance, strength and understanding of the inner relations between events; it alone can help practice to clarify the process and direction of class movements in the present and near future. “You know that theory, when it is a genuine theory, gives practical workers the power of orientation, clarity of perspective, faith in their work, confidence in the victory of our cause.

The English tradition of “dislike for theory” that Lenin and Engels spoke of is also an American tradition. The “dislike for theory” especially the revolutionary theory of Marxism-Leninism, is one of the main reasons so many individuals and organizations slide into the morass of opportunism, and how easily opportunism creeps into our ranks, and how easily we prove at critical times unequal to the tasks which face us. Why does belittling revolutionary theory lead to opportunism and worshipping the “mass movement”? Because worshipping the “mass movement” is also a theory, the “theory” of worshipping the mass movement is the theory of opportunism; as Stalin says, “a theory which actually repudiates the leading role of the vanguard of the working class, of the party of the working class.”

The theory of worshipping the spontaneity of the mass movement raises to a principal the present “narrowness” and “amateurishness” of most of the Marxist-Leninist groups, it is the theory of the “line of least resistance”, of not seeing the importance of raising the masses’ political consciousness, of “belittling the role of the conscious element”, it is the theory of tailing behind backward elements of the class, it is the “ideology of trade unionism”, it is the “logical basis of all opportunism”.

How does this “theory” of “building the mass movement” work out in practice? We are told to go here, now there. The women’s movement arises and we are told to go there. The veterans’ movement arises and we are told to go there. The unemployed movement arises, and we are told to join that one too. The students move in a certain direction, and we communists are told to follow them. Workers go on strike at a given plant, and we are told “rush to the workers”, “hold some meetings with them.” Communists are turned into robots – press the magic button of the mass movement and watch us run! We drift about the revolutionary ocean here one day, there the next, now forwards, now backwards, today to the workers, tomorrow to the students, perhaps the next day to the unemployed, and the day after to the “national minorities”. Why? Because we belittle the role of the conscious element, of theory, and underestimate the need for a revolutionary party of the proletariat.

The “worshippers of spontaneity” in the U.S. distort the Marxist theory of knowledge and fling about the slogan: “to the masses”: “we must learn from the masses”, “knowledge comes from practice”, “we must sum-up “our own” experiences”, “we must not become “armchair” revolutionaries”, “oppose book worship”, etc. They fail to understand what theory really is so they inevitably fail in “practice”.

Stalin says that theory is the experience of the working class movement in all countries taken in its general aspect, or summed-up in other words. He also says that theory can become a lifeless dogma if it is not linked up with revolutionary practice, just as practice gropes in the dark if it is not linked-up and illumined with revolutionary theory. So what should be the Marxist-Leninist stand towards work in the mass movement at this time? Should we only “organize and struggle” as some suggest? What should be our “practice”?

The history of the world communist movement shows that in countries where there is no Communist Party, the need for one is at all times primary.

And what does building the party mean? It means gathering together and uniting the genuine revolutionary forces into one revolutionary party on the basis of a correct political line and the fundamental principals of Marxism-Leninism, and waging a bitter struggle against confused opportunist theories current in the U.S. It means setting a clear “line of demarcation” between the revolutionary and opportunist wing of the movement. It means ideological preparation and theoretical training as well as practical training.

Without question communists must be involved in mass work. We must never strive to narrow down mass actions. The mass movement will not ”wait for us.” But in engaging in mass work, in fighting to win over the advanced to Marxism-Leninism, and fighting for the leadership of the proletariat, we must at all times remember that the wider the movement, the more necessary the building of the Party – for without the Party who is going to lead the mass movement-the bourgeoisie! We enter the mass struggle of the proletariat (and not simply the mass movement in general!) precisely in order to strengthen the proletarian basis of the Party when it comes into being. For if the Party were to come into being without at least some sort of proletarian base, it would still be faced with the task of getting one before it could give leadership to the “mass movement” in general!

We do not deny the importance of “building the mass movement” but we say Party Building is the central, or main and immediate task. Why? Again because it is necessary to grasp the main link which will move forward the others, to concentrate on this one first, and not to scatter our forces, and not to seize on tasks which we are not in a position to carry out and which only wind-up demoralizing and wearing down the already worn-down cadres. We cannot organize everything because we ourselves are not organized! We cannot be involved in every “struggle” because we are still “struggling” too much among ourselves. We communists must get our thing together first, and the first thing we must get together is the Party – the only weapon the proletariat has. We must clearly see what we must do and what we cannot do. Neither communists (nor the Party itself) can take the place of the mass movement, we cannot simply “build it” nor can the mass movement spontaneously bring forth the Party; this must be done consciously, by revolutionary Marxists and the advanced elements of the class. These phenomena must not be confused. In “Political Strategy and Tactics” Stalin says this:

Political strategy, like tactics, is concerned with the working class movement. But the working class movement itself consists of two elements: the objective, or spontaneous element and the subjective, or conscious element.

...The objective or spontaneous element is made up of the group of processes that take place irrespective of the consciousness and regulating will of the proletariat. The economic development of the country the development of capitalism, the disintegration of the old government, the spontaneous movements of the proletariat and the classes surrounding it, the collision of classes, and so forth – al these are phenomena, the development of which proceeds irrespective of the will of the proletariat....” “But the movement has also a subjective, a conscious side. The subjective side of the movement consists in the reflection in the minds of the workers of the spontaneous processes of the movement; it is the conscious and deliberate movement of the proletariat towards a definite aim. This aspect of the movement interests us because, as distinct from the objective aspect of the movement, here, on the other hand, in the subjective sphere, in relation to the conscious aspect of the movement, the field of application of strategy is broad and varied because strategy can accelerate or retard the movement, direct it along the shortest path or divert it into a more difficult and painful path depending on the perfections or of shortcomings of strategy itself...

This is not the place for a definitive proposal on how we see the party coming into being. This is a process that the whole communist movement must be involved in, not just one communist group.

We do feel, however, that there must be ideological unity around a given political line before there can be organizational unity. We don’t mean that every fine point of detail must be decided on and agreed upon before the party can be built, of course, but unity on the fundamental principles of Marxism-Leninism Mao Tse Tung Thought must come first. We also see the immediate necessity for open polemics between the various communists groups and circles as the most expedient means of reaching unity on the fundamental principles for only in this way can the opportunist and revolutionary line be clearly and openly demarcated.

THE ROLE OF THE BLACK WORKERS CONGRESS

As we stated in the beginning sections of this pamphlet, the Black Workers Congress – a national ’communist organization – developed as a result of the ’revolutionary national movement of Black people. Though we are a predominantly Afro-American communist organization, we see the central and immediate task today as uniting all genuine communists and advanced workers into one revolutionary party regardless of nationality.

We arrived at this conclusion because we realized that though there are historical reasons for such a communist organization as the Black Workers Congress – the scattering of communist forces after the revisionist betrayal of the CPUSA, and the national character of the Black liberation struggle, we do not intend to raise this aspect of our history to a principle. After 1957, and through the sixties, there was a period of disunity and isolation among the communist forces the main reason communists played little or no role in leading the mass upsurges of those periods. The spontaneously awakening mass movements (Black liberation, student, youth and women’s movements) thus developed in a period of historically evolved isolation (further increased by our sectarianism and isolation from Marxism-Leninism). Some groups, (like the New Left) elevated this “independence” to a principle – proclaiming this isolation and dis-unity a permanent feature of the U.S. revolutionary movement – ’American Exceptionalism’!

On the other hand, some say because we are a “national form” we cannot be a communist group. They try to compare us to the Jewish “Bund” in Russia. They would like us to liquidate ourselves and join their “multi-national” form or group. Again we would like to make clear we are for the fusion and unity of all Marxist-Leninists into one Communist Party. This is the only basis on which we unite – “multi-national forms” are not the multi-national party. All Marxist-Leninist organizations will have to “Liquidate” themselves (we like the word ”unite” better) if they intend to be members of the party, not just the “national forms”. Prior to the party, no particular “form of communist organization” is higher or “lower” than any other (that is, unless some groups think they are the party already?) – all are affected with the same narrowness and amateurishness. one has, but whether or not one is willing to openly and resolutely admit its short-comings and to move towards genuine unity, away from the path of isolation and sectarianism to the path of uniting on the basis of Marxism-Leninism and the building of a new, genuine, revolutionary Communist Party.

Only such a party (national in scale, Bolshevik-type) can lead the working class and its allies to power and socialism and guarantee the complete emancipation w for the Afro-American, Puerto-Rican, Chicano, Asian, and Native American (Indian) peoples. Only such a party can liberate women from their age-long is oppression and guarantee them full equality with men in the struggle. Only such a party can release the full energies of the youth and allow full-play to their ambitions and talents. In a word, only such a party can bring proletarian revolution to America.

Again we want to stress the importance and decisive necessity for building the new Communist Party now! In the United States today the objective conditions for revolution are more than ripe. The ever deepening n economic and political crisis seen in the “energy crisis” and the ’Watergate’ scandal point to the doom of American imperialism. Massive unemployment, the deteriorating living standards of American working people, the increased repression directed at the oppressed nationalities and working class generally, is a testament to this fact. While the ruling class, mounts offensive after offensive, shifting the burden of their economic and financial crises on the backs of the people, the proletariat is disarmed – without revolutionary leadership and organization. What is worse, some “Communists” would like to enshrine this present state of affairs while they go about saying “we must build this and that mass movement”! Genuine Marxist-Leninists must liquidate this present state of affairs by concentrating our forces, first of all, on building a revolutionary Party and not scattering our forces by seizing on tasks which we are in no position to carry out.

In Party-building we recognize both the ideological and organizational aspects. The ideological unity of Marx-Leninism Mao Tse Tung Thought as the ideological basis for all their actions and integrate it with the concrete situation of their country.

Organizationally this unity may be achieved through the medium of a National Political Newspaper of the Iskra type or some other forms yet unknown.

Ideological unity must eventually take an organizational form, the Party itself; no matter what all the steps that must be taken in advance. One guiding principle should be, QUALITY OVER QUANTITY, at this time, so that when the Party does come into being it will be able to build a closely-knit organizational structure with iron discipline (a minimum necessity given the tremendous tasks that face us and the strength of the enemy) and which will enable it to be closely bound up with the masses and mass movements and organizations. Party building must be closely linked to the political line (or program) for revolution in America.

We unite with genuine Marxist-Leninists in the struggle to build the ’New’ Communist Party. In the interim (Party building is a process of struggle and not a single act), the Black Workers’ Congress has set basic tasks for itself, the successful completion of which will advance the whole Communist movement:

1) Help build a genuine Communist Party of a new type – composed of the most courageous and revolutionary elements of the class – black, brown, yellow, and white, male and female, young and old.

2) Bring Marxism-Leninism Mao Tse Tung Thought to the advance elements in the national-revolutionary struggle of the Afro-American people and black sector of the proletariat (though not exclusively).

3) Fight for the hegemony of the black proletariat in the black liberation movement and the leading role of the proletariat in general, to isolate the treacherous influence of the Black bourgeoisie in the black liberation movement and the influence of the bourgeoisie in the working class in general.