First Published: Unity and Struggle, Vol. V, No. 3, March 1976.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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The seeming military “victory” of one liberation movement in the Angolan crisis should not be cause for rejoicing, since what the vicious intrusion of the superpowers into Angola and their contention for world domination, has done is objectively set back real independence and sovereignty until a time when the superpowers can be forced out and a government of national unity put together to politically resolve contradictions between the liberation movements and bring real independence. It was the Soviet Union, who initiated the bloody civil war which has killed more Angolans than the AntiPortuguese Colonial War, and who is the most dangerous of the two superpowers (US and USSR) at this time, since they are “wildly ambitious”, feeling that since the U.S.A. has suffered defeat after defeat to the heroic 3rd world forces, and is known throughout the world as a bloody beast imperialist, the Soviet Social Imperialists, crying “Socialism” to cover their misdeeds, now want to take up where the “old” plunderer left off actually crawling in the back door as Kissinger and Co. get kicked out the front.
What kind of real independence can be bought with 10,000 Cuban troops winning the battles killing Angolans for Soviet Social Imperialism? Will the Cubans have to be stationed in Angola permanently to secure MPLA’s “victory”? What about the certain guerilla warfare that will now drag on, with USSR & USA each taking part in front and behind the scenes? Obviously there is no real independence with Cubans, Soviet “Advisors,” the CIA, South Afrikan nazis in the south hugging the Ruacana Dam, the Soviets having given them an excuse to leap into the situation once they started moving huge loads of new sophisticated weaponry into Angola.
This is a key question that people should ask themselves in summing up the Superpower calling itself “Socialist”’s motives. Why didn’t the USSR give MPLA the MIGs, rockets, tanks, gunboats and 10,000 Cuban troops when they were fighting Portugal Colonialism? UNIT A and FNLA also made clear contributions to the defeat of Portuguese Colonialism. Two agreements were made, one at Alvor, Portugal, Jan. 75, naming the three liberation movements as the receivers of the independence from the Portuguese, and forming a transitional government. And then the Nakuru agreement in Kenya in June 1975 reaffirming the understanding of Alvor, and agreeing again to form a National Unity Government after Nov. 11 independence. But at this point the Soviet Union steeply sharpened its deliveries of heavy weapons, new sophisticated weapons, suddenly seeing a chance to seize hold of Angola, as the Portuguese pulled out, by backing one liberation movement and pushing for military victory.
Now Angola is in reality a battlefield of superpower contention and struggle for world domination. Part of the contention that will lead to World War. The contradiction between Imperialism and Imperialism, most specifically and dangerously, USA vs USSR, is one of the sharpest of the fundamental contradictions of capitalism turned into imperialism that exist in the world today. The other sharp contradiction is between imperialism and the people and nations of the 3rd world. At present these two sharp contradictions (the others being between labor and capital in the western industrial countries; and, between imperialism and the socialist countries) are hung in balance, in contention themselves, as the two sharp trends in the world today are war and revolution. The struggle between imperialism and the 3rd world, being the motor of revolution in the world, the contention between the super powers bringing the danger of war. In the USA the only preparation for either war or revolution is the building of a Revolutionary Marxist-Leninist Vanguard party. A party built by uniting Marxist-Leninists around the correct political line, the application of ideology to real life, and winning the advanced sectors of the working class and other elements to Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought.
The fact that so many erstwhile “progressive” people have taken Liberal or opportunistic lines around Angola, internationally, reveals how important the mastery of the science of MLM is, and how dangerous is modern revisionism, based on Revisionism in power the Soviet Union.
Lenin, in talking about the differences between epochs, their “fundamental distinctive features” pointed out how it is only the knowledge of “which class stands at the hub of one epoch or another, determining its main content the main direction of its development, the main characteristics of the historical situation in that epoch, etc.” and that only by understanding in which historical epoch we are in can we correctly evolve our tactics”. Lenin points out the difference between the bourgeoisie during the period when they were progressive for fighting feudalism and absolutism, and the period in which they came to full domination and began to decline and pass all the way to “ultra reactionary finance capital”. The epoch of imperialism which follows and in which we are still in, the bourgeoisie is in “the same ’position’ as that in which the feudal lords found themselves during the 1st epoch.”
In “the epoch of imperialism and imperialist upheavals” Lenin in demonstrating how incorrect understanding of epochs and their class character leads to totally incorrect conclusions. He says, ”Let us suppose that two countries are at war in the epoch of bourgeois, national-liberation movements (in Europe) which country should we wish success to from the standpoint of present day democracy? Obviously, to that country whose success will give a greater impetus to the bourgeoisie’s liberation movement make its development more speedy, and undermine feudalism the more decisively. Let us further suppose that the determining feature of the objective historical situation has changed, and that the place of capital striving for national liberation has been taken by international, reactionary and imperialist finance capital. The former country, let us say, possesses three-fourths of Afrika, whereas the latter possesses one-fourth. A repartition of Africa is the objective content of their war. To which side should we wish success? It would be absurd to state the problem in its previous form, since we do not possess the old criteria of appraisal: there is neither a bourgeois liberation movement running into decades nor a long process of the decay of feudalism. It is not the business of present-day democracy either to help the former country to assert its ’right’ to three-fourths of Afrika, or to help the latter country (even if it is developing economically more rapidly than the former) to take over those three fourths.
Present day democracy will remain true to itself only if it joins neither one nor the other imperialist bourgeoisie, only if it says that the two sides are equally bad, and if it wishes the defeat of the imperialist bourgoisie in every country. Any other decision will, in reality, be national-liberal and have nothing in common with genuine internationalism. (All quotes from Lenin, “Under A False Flag,” CW Vol/21, pp 143-44)
So the error of supporting the one liberation movement in Angola since this is clearly a situation where Soviet Social Imperialism is marching toward hegemony in Afrika using its bloody act as ”natural ally” of the 3rd world. The Soviet Union is the most dangerous source of war, and a new rising imperialism plummeting headlong toward world war in desperate futile search for domination of the world. The USA and USSR are both Imperialist powers, the culmination and example of “ultra reactionary finance capital.” The liberation movements must unite against imperialism and the superpowers.
A domestic fascist state, and a Social Imperialist state internationally, the Soviet Union still fools many people by its cover story of “socialism.” But capitalism has been restored completely in the USSR, and it is a real tragedy that the “Goulash Communism” of the traitor Nikita Kruschev and his criminal successor Brezhnev and their bureaucrat monopoly capitalist clique still misguides so many people, tho the USSR’s antics in Afrika now and in the future will let people see how Social Imperialism’s furious appetite for world domination makes it charge around the world like Bela Lugosi looking for blood.
All analysis of real facts shows very clearly that the Soviet economy today is completely and definitely a capitalist economy. It is precisely this economy which constitutes the basis of Soviet social-imperialism, which is characterized in the internal field by savage exploitation of the working people, by antagonistic class contradictions, by phenomena of decline and successive crises, unprecedented militarization, etc., while in the external field it is characterized by expansion, not only political and military, but economic; by the exploitation of other countries, and primarily, of the East European “allies.” (“The Soviet Economy – A Completely and Definitely Capitalist Economy,” by Aristotel Pano, p47, Albania Today, July-Aug 1975).
For years the Soviet revisionists, who babble usually about a “peaceful transition to socialism,” refused to support national liberation struggles claiming they would be the “spark to set off world conflagration”, now, and only after the three Angolan Liberation Movements had reached agreement amongst themselves about the formation of a government of national unity, the only natural form in which to solve the normal political differences that exist between all liberation movements, the Soviet Social Imperialists let out their deadly yoddle about supporting liberation movements, declaring one liberation movement “progressive” and shipping in tons of sophisticated arms. When, in fact, they are interested only in annexing Angola and setting up their hegemony in Southern Afrika, like the colonialists before them. The Soviets have also, tragically, agitated some 10,000 Cubans into the civil war.
What is also dangerous about the Soviet Union’s temporary military domination of Angola, is that it will undoubtedly be followed by new attempts at social imperialist annexation, i.e., hegemony and control in other parts of Afrika.
In Zimbabwe in the present situation with ZAPU’s Joshua Nkomo the only “negotiator” with Rhodesian Ian Smith, while the other two leaders of the Zimbabwe national liberation movement, Sithole, ZANU and Muzorewa, ANC (both as leaders of individual organizations, and as part of the unified leadership of the ANC coalition) are excluded from even coming into Zimbabwe for negotiations, and those forces fighting armed struggle are severely set back by Zambia’s acts of hostility toward ZANU and the ZAN.U supreme council, still holding them in prison in Lusaka, promising investigation and an International Commission report on the assassination of Herbert Chitepo, ZANU military commander, but in fact simply obstructing the armed struggle by such openly hostile acts. Nkomo, who was ejected from the ANC coalition has continued to go thru the motions of “negotiation” with Smith, without the other leaders which is highly suspect but now the question arises, that since Nkomo has always had ties with the Soviet Union, that now they might see an opportunity to use the momentum of their rapacious Angolan campaign to press for some advantage of accommodation for forces which they would “back”, as the exclusive “progressive” liberation movement, as in Angola splitting the liberation forces and trying to annex Zimbabwe. AND SO THE NEED FOR REAL UNITY AMONG THE FORCES GENUINELY STRUGGLING AGAINST COLONIALISM! And the real danger that superpower interference, as a result of either their contention or collusion, will allow them to try to turn Zimbabwe into another Angola! The true anti-Colonial anti-racist forces will oppose superpower meddling in Zimbabwe. We must also demand that President Kaunda and the Zambian government release the ZANU supreme council and stop obstructing the legitimate armed struggle of the Zimbabwean people against colonialism, racism and imperialism.
The Soviet Union and USA must be opposed in their attempts to carve up Afrika. Superpowers Out Of Angola! A Government Of National Unity, of all three liberation movements in Angola to move toward real independence for Angola! Afrikan People must firmly oppose Superpower intervention and the new neo-colonialism of Soviet Social Imperialism is especially dangerous as it tricks the unsuspecting. In the U.S. we must wage a’ steel on steel struggle against the revisionists who peddle Soviet hegemony as Afrikan progress, and patiently explain to those who do not yet understand the phoney “socialism” and rapacious ambitious imperialism of the Soviet Union. Having the correct political line on the struggle in Angola is obligatory to Marxist-Leninists fighting against the propaganda of revisionists and the U.S. bourgeoisie, at the same time a matter of principle and an essential factor in uniting Marxist-Leninists around the correct political line and organizing the advanced workers around Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought.