First Published: The Call, Vol. 5, No. 29, November 22, 1976.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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At a recent meeting, the Organizing Committee for a Marxist-Leninist Party (OC) discussed the rising trend toward communist unity which is developing within the U.S. Marxist-Leninist movement. The following are the views of the OC on this unity trend.
A trend toward the development of communist unity based on the principles of Marxism-Leninism has emerged and is growing within the U.S. This trend was born out of the struggle of Marxist-Leninists against modern revisionism and its representative within this country, the CPUSA. It has become the dominant trend within the Marxist-Leninist movement today.
This trend toward communist unity is not confined to the U.S. Marxist-Leninist movement. It is an international trend, a product of years of struggle by Marxist-Leninists to apply the science of Marxism-Leninism to the concrete conditions within their own countries.
The general crisis of capitalism, which is sharpening all of the major contradictions in the world and increasing the danger of a world war, has influenced this trend toward Marxist-Leninist unity throughout the world and lent urgency to the task of unification.
Within the U.S., the unity trend represents a rising force towards which increasing numbers of Marxist-Leninists are gravitating. It is composed of Marxist-Leninist organizations, collectives and individuals who see that the basis exists and the current conditions demand that we unite in order to carry out the crucial task of forming a single, unified party based on a Marxist-Leninist line to lead the working class in its struggle for socialism.
The Organizing Committee is the organized representative of the unity trend within this country. The OC party-building plan will raise our movement from its current primitive, scattered and disorganized state to a higher form, the form of a disciplined, centralized, vanguard party based on a correct political line.
The OC has taken the lead in putting forward clear principles of Marxist-Leninist unity which reflect a correct general political line on every major question, enabling Marxist-Leninists to come together to deepen their unity and struggle for the organization of the party.
Within these general principles, there remain many questions which must be struggled out prior to the formation of a party. This process must be concretized, especially through the struggle to write a party program and constitution which will guide the work of the new party.
The efforts of the OC can be contrasted with those of organizations within the Marxist-Leninist movement whose stands on party building have placed them outside the unity trend. These organizations give hp service to the need for a new anti-revisionist party, yet, have unprincipledly banded together to oppose our attempts to forge Marxist-Leninist unity.
Many of these organizations have proposed their own “plans” for party building which lack any clear unity principles capable of drawing lines of demarcation with the revisionists and opportunists. Some of these organizations intend to form parties out of themselves without making efforts to unite genuine Marxist-Leninists around their party-building plans.
Our efforts can also be contrasted with the approach to party building of another organization which has placed itself outside the unity trend, the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP). While calling itself Marxist-Leninist, this party was formed on the basis of an opportunist and chauvinist line which had been the target of sharp struggle throughout the entire communist movement. As a result, the RCP was formed almost entirely out of the forces which had formerly made up the RU.
It is not, nor has it ever been, the position of the OC that the ten organizations and collectives currently represented on the OC are the only members of the unity trend within this country. The unity trend is broader than the ranks of the OC. There are many honest Marxist-Leninists currently studying the different lines and trends within the communist movement out of a genuine desire to build an anti-revisionist party based on the principles of Marxism-Leninism.
These people are also part of the unity trend. We have been approached by a number of these Marxist-Leninists, including former cadre and, in a couple of instances, current cadre of Marxist-Leninist organizations which themselves are presently outside the unity trend. To equate the OC with the unity trend would be a sectarian error and would reflect an incorrect stand on the question of uniting with these Marxist-Leninists.
To ensure that the struggle for a correct political line be fully carried out and that majority and minority positions are aired, the OC functions according to the principles of equality and respect among organizations, large or small, with each organization having an equal vote on the OC.
Because the October League initiated the efforts to form the Organizing Committee and has played a leading role within the unity trend, some have tried to claim that the OC is “an OL front” or that the OL and the OC are one and the same. In this way, they hope to undermine the genuine unity that is being formed and ignore the militant ideological struggle going on within the OC that is leading to a higher level of unity around the party program.
While the OL and The Call have played a leading and initiative role, all of the organizations represented in the OC have made important contributions to the struggle for the party. There is, of course, uneven development in the size and experience and the development of each group’s political line.
Total agreement with the OL is not a necessary prerequisite to joining the Organizing Committee. Our unity has been built on the basis of the statement “Marxist-Leninists Unite” which came out of the May 1976 Unity Conference. Those groups who can unite behind these principles are encouraged to participate in the work of the OC and in the party-building efforts.
The formation of a unified party based on Marxism-Leninism is a crucial question for the working class arid oppressed people of this country. It only serves the interests of the bourgeoisie to have the Marxist-Leninists divided and disorganized. For this reason, the OC sees the importance of intensifying our efforts over the next period of time to increase the ranks of the unity trend and to unite all of the forces within the unity trend into the party-building efforts.
We intend to accomplish this in a number of ways–through polemics which will expose and draw clear lines of demarcation with the opportunist anti-party trends within our movement, through open publication of our draft program and constitution for criticism and struggle, and through increasing our outreach and liaison work.
In the period of party building, all Marxist-Leninists must be judged on their stand for principled unity. We renew our call to all Marxist-Leninists to join with the unity trend and unite with our efforts!