First Published: The Call, Vol. 5, No. 24, October 18, 1976.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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A sham conference on the international situation has been called by opportunist forces who are trying to cover up the growing factors for world war and revolution and to whitewash the crimes of the two superpowers, the U.S. and the Soviet Union.
The conference was announced in the Oct. 1 issue of the newspaper Revolution, organ of the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP), who, along with the centrist Guardian, is the main force behind the sham conference. The third party to this three-ring circus is William Hint on, former leader of the U.S.-China People’s Friendship Association.
A “debate” has been staged among these three forces, which the Revolution article describes as representing the three “main trends” and “three lines” on the questions of “the international situation, war, revolution and the internationalist tasks of the American people.”
But the “debate” is really no debate at all. It has been rigged so that no communist view of the international situation is presented and only those who appease one superpower or the other, especially the USSR, are permitted to speak. As the Revolution article puts it: “The groups discussing the conference agree that it must be tightly structured and debated along the three lines to avoid any forces from taking advantage of the broadness to push then-own group, instead of dealing with the issues.”
The “three lines” of debate, as explained in Revolution, do not include the line that the two superpowers are the main enemy in the world today, while the USSR is the more dangerous of the two and the main source of war.
The Guardian’s line is the open voice of centrism and conciliation with revisionism in the U.S. The Guardian attacked the People’s Republic of China for its principled stand of internationalism and opposition to social-imperialism. The Guardian claims that the U.S. is the only “main enemy” and that the Soviet Union is a “friend” of the third world’s peoples.
They have openly defended the Soviet intervention in Angola and described the permanent occupation of that country as “fraternal aid” and “liberation.” According to these apologists for revisionism, the main blow of the world’s peoples should be directed at U.S. imperialism alone.
The RCP’s line has moved closer and closer to the Guardian’s opportunist position in recent months. Their present joint action around the conference follows a period of joint attacks on the October League, which saw the Guardian reprint RCP slanders against the Marxist-Leninist line of the OL and against the Marxist-Leninist parties of Western Europe. Like the Guardian, the RCP claims that the main blow should be directed at U.S. imperialism and denies that the Soviet Union is the more dangerous of the two superpowers.
Even though Soviet social-imperialism is a superpower on the rise relative to the declining power, U.S. imperialism; even though it is militarily superior to both the U.S. and Western Europe combined; and even though it carries out its aggression under the signboard of “socialism,” the RCP and Guardian both refuse to join with the worldwide movement against imperialism and hegemonism which is directing its main blow at the more dangerous of the two main enemies, the USSR.
The third blind mouse in this trap is William Hinton, who recently used the pages of the Guardian to misrepresent the stand of China on world affairs, claiming that China stood for a “neutral U.S. imperialism.”
Hinton, while correctly viewing the Soviet Union as the main source of a new world war and the more dangerous of the two superpowers, takes it a step farther. He claims that the Soviet social-imperialists are the only “main enemy” and prettifies the position of U.S. imperialism.
Hinton has called for some sort of an alliance with a section of the U.S. imperialists, if not today, then tomorrow. Liquidating the class struggle in the U.S. for socialism on grounds that our potential “allies” will be alienated, Hinton spreads illusions that the U.S. imperialists, who are locked in a life-or-death struggle with their chief rival, can be “neutral” in the coming war.
In fact, all these lines are, in essence, one line. They all in effect conciliate with one superpower or the other and leave the masses of people in the U.S. and around the world unprepared for the future.
The world today is in great turmoil. As Chairman Mao wrote in verse: “The Four Seas are rising, clouds and waters raging. The Five Continents are rocking, wind and thunder roaring.” It is both the contention between the two superpowers and the revolutionary movement against both of them that is determining the course of the peoples’ struggle in the next period. The factors for both war and revolution are on the rise.
It is superpower contention, and especially the aggression of the Soviet Union, that is the main source of a new world war. Everywhere around the world, the Soviet Union is spreading its tentacles, trying to move in through the back door as the U.S. imperialists suffer setbacks. While wearing the mantle of “socialism,” the USSR and modern revisionism are the main prop of imperialism within the international struggle. For all these reasons, the main blow in that struggle must be directed at them. This in no way lessens the revolutionary movement against U.S. imperialism. It will serve to intensify mat movement and heighten the anti-imperialist and anti-revisionist consciousness of the working class.
But the RCP, which claims to be the only Marxist-Leninists in the U.S., goes so far as to say that education of the workers about the role of social-imperialism should be left to the U.S. ruling class (see RCP article reprinted in the Guardian, Aug. 18, p. 9). To RCP, the workers are too backward or not interested in revisionism, social-imperialism or where the real danger of world war is coming from. It is this objective cover for the USSR that lays the basis for the RCP’s growing unity with the Guardian.
To set up a straw man and to attack the OL and the international communist movement, the RCP and the Guardian are using Hinton and propping him up as the “representative of OL’s position,” thereby excluding the real communist view on this question from being heard. But Hinton represents no organization since his break with the RCP, and speaks for neither the OL nor China, no matter what pose he may strike. His line is a caricature of Marxism and resembles more the babbling of the revisionist Earl Browder, who, during World War II and the anti-fascist united front, liquidated the class struggle and the party, and promoted the leadership of the big bourgeoisie.
In the Revolution article, Hinton’s view that the USSR is the only “main enemy” is conveniently lumped together with the correct position that the USSR is the most dangerous of the two superpowers. In this way, RCP makes Hinton a whipping boy for their attack on the October League, which they dare not confront face to face.
But this fraud will never get by. The conference of the RCP, Guardian and Hinton is a three-ring circus in the service of imperialism and the superpowers. It is going against the revolutionary tide.