Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Workers’ Viewpoint

ALSC: RWC Paves Way for RCP Takeover

First Published: Workers Viewpoint, Vol. 2, Nos. 2-3, March-April 1977.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Following a series of opportunist maneuvers, the Revolutionary Workers Congress (RWC) “majority bloc” brazenly changed the African Liberation Support Committee (ALSC) principles of unity at the February Executive Committee meeting. This undoubtedly is an attempt to make the ALSC principles of unity compatible for the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP), paving the way for an RCP takeover.

Prior to the February Executive Committee meeting, the RWC:

(1) sent out a draft call for a proposed conference on the international situation, which contained not a word concerning Soviet Social Imperialism as the main danger and main source of war in the world today.
(2) sent out the following list of the ALSC principles of unity that were completely different from those adopted by the ALSC National Conference: (a) oppose the two superpowers, U.S. and U.S.S.R (b) support for the national liberation struggles of the Third World, with special focus on southern Africa (c) actively expose our own bourgeoisie (d) support the just struggles of oppressed national ties and national minorities.
(3) in the name of the national ALSC, the Atlanta chapter (RWC) endorsed the Revolutionary Student Brigade’s (RSB) South-wide mobilization, “March for Freedom for Southern Africa,” in which RSB said nothing about Soviet social-imperialism as the main danger to the struggles of the African peoples, and as the main source of war in the world today.
(4) the Atlanta ALSC chapter itself published a leaflet in support of the RSB mobilization which also reversed the verdict on Soviet social-imperialism.

In the February Executive Committee meeting, the Workers Viewpoint Organization and others accused the RWC of underhanded line maneuvering, reversing the verdict on Soviet social-imperialism in order to pave the way for the RCP to appropriate the ALSC banner, and promoting its reactionary influence in the Afro-American national movement.

In classic elusive maneuvering, the RWC, in response to the charges, first raised that their omissions in the Atlanta ALSC leaflet were an oversight! The RWC raised that it also held the view that the Soviet social-imperialists are the main danger to the struggles of the African peoples and are the main source of war in the world today. But, when pressed to affirm its unity with the ALSC principles of unity as presented by the WVO and adopted at the September ALSC National Conference, the RWC changed its tactic, and stated that the September Conference only united with the thrust of the WVO position, and not its exact wording. Producing the minutes of the September meeting (kept by the RWC chairperson), the RWC said that the minutes only affirmed unity against the 2 superpowers, not the exact wording of the principles of unity presented by the WVO.

Then, in a vote to affirm what was the thrust of the September Conference, the RWC changed its tactic again and put forward that the current principles of unity should not condemn Soviet social-imperialism as the main danger to the struggles of the African peoples and main source of war in the world today, because that night keep certain forces out of ALSC, and prevent ALSC from being built as broadly as possible. This was clear and treacherous opportunism, designed to open ALSC to the RWC’s right opportunist cousins, the RCP. The RWC “majority bloc” then proceeded to strip and change the original principles of unity.


In the September ALSC national meeting, the Conference adopted the principles of unity as put forward by the WVO. They were:

1. Resolutely support the national liberation movements in Africa against imperialism, colonialism, hegemonism, Zionism, racism, and against all reaction.
2. Oppose the two superpowers. Expose the Soviet social-imperialists as the main danger to the independence of the Third World peoples and the peoples of the world, and as the main source of war in the world today, (emphasis – Ed.)
3. Forge militant solidarity with the struggles of the working class and oppressed nationalities of the U.S. with the oppressed nations, countries, and peoples of the entire world.
4. ALSC should be a multi-national organization, focused in the working class and oppressed nationality and minority communities and workplaces. (Reprinted from WVO Newspaper, Vol. I. No. 6. p. 9)

The entire body adopted the principles of unity put forward by the WVO since they were in unity with the various other positions advanced at the Conference. Nearly every group at the Conference condemned Soviet socia1- imperialism as the main danger and main source of war! As was reported in the WVO newspaper sum-up of the Conference (“Build ALSC Into a Mass Fighting Organization,” Vol. I, No. 6, Sept/Oct 1976), the main struggle concerned whether “revolution Is the main trend” or “two contending trends” (either world war will give rise to revolution or revolution will prevent world war) characterizes the present international situation, because it was around this question that major differences existed. In addition, the ALSC National Conference adopted as a principle of unity “support the democratic rights of oppressed nationalities and national minorities in the US.”

The Conference’s adoption of the principles of unity put forward by the WVO, including the condemnation of Soviet social-imperialism, is something no honest person that attended the Conference can deny.


The current ALSC principles of unity are an important line of demarcation with opportunist forces like the RCP; who are betraying the U.S. proletariat and revolutionary people the world over by reversing the verdict on Soviet social-imperialism (see “RCP: Reversing Verdict on SSI is Total Treachery” in this issue).

The RWC, thoroughly right opportunist, kith and kin of the RCP driven into a frenzy by the WVO’s supposed “leftism,” and lately more “chummy” with the RCP; is attempting to make the ALSC banner compatible for the RCP. NO! The RCP has once again picked up a rock only to drop it on its own toes. The RCP, running dry from lack of theory, has recently flipped to making overt appeals to all types of retrograde elements under the guise of “now it’s the period to organize the petty bourgeoisie.” This was the essence of the RCP’s call to the masses to debate the international situation. Running on the same track, the RCP praised and trumpeted Roots to the skies in hopes that it would lull the masses into forgetting their historically chauvinist line on the Afro-American national movement and give the RCP new life. Surely the revolutionary and progressive people will reject this latest maneuver by the RCP, and RWC’s “running interference” for them.


The arrogant RWC “Majority bloc” did not stop at changing the principles of unity on the Soviet social-imperialists, but also changed the principles of unity from supporting the liberation struggles in Africa to supporting the Third World struggles in general, with special focus on Africa. RWC advanced the position that southern Africa was a current hotspot, which could change anytime. This, line was opposed on the basis that ALSC is a manifestation of the historical spontaneous proletarian internationalist sentiment of the Afro-American people for the struggles of the African peoples, which should be utilized, broadened, deepened, and raised to a higher level – proletarian internationalism with the just struggles of peoples all over the world!

This of course would not restrict ALSC from carrying out support work for other Third World struggles – which it historically has done. In addition, the principle of unity that said “forge militant solidarity with., the oppressed nations, countries, and peoples of the entire world” covered all other struggles.

The RWC was in fact charged with attempting to sneak in RCP’s liquidationist line on the Afro-American national movement. Having no grasp of the Afro-American national movement, the RCP can never understand the progressive and anti-imperialist aspect of why throughout the history of the Afro-American people, the striving to unite with the African peoples continues to manifest itself in numerous forms, from the various Pan-African Conferences called by Dubois, Nkrumah, and others; Back to Africa movements; the African Liberation Support Committee itself, etc. The RCP’s chauvinism and 1iquidationism (all nationalism is nationalism) blind it to grasping how this “revolutionary kernel” can be turned into a powerful force against imperialism in support of the struggles of the revolutionary peoples the world over. No, the RCP has no intention, nor is it capable, of building ALSC into a mass fighting organization that can once again win the advanced elements from the Afro-American national movements, and play an essential role in the struggle against the 2 superpowers. Pragmatists to the bone, and opportunists that they are, the RCP only views ALSC as one of a list of organizations that endorses its opportunist activities. RCP hopes that the ALSC’s respect and tradition amongst the masses will promote their influence in the mass movement. Unable to build it up, they certainly can wreck it!

The RWC’s opportunism, knowing no bounds, even voted in a proposal that this year’s ALSC National Conference, held along with the national African Liberation Day (ALD) demonstration, not be characterized by debate or struggle.

This is clearly a right opportunist, obstructionist line under the cover of “propaganda is not ALSC’s chief form of activity.” The RWC lacks any grasp of how ALSC developed in the course of struggle, in the course stimulating, drawing the advanced and masses into the struggle, raising their level, winning them deeply to the ALSC program,. This is the only correct way to rebuild ALSC. Instead, following the RCP, the RWC wants this year’s (a most crucial year due to ALSC being in a rebuilding stage and the new life given to Trots, revisionists and bourgeois nationalists of all sorts by the RWL’ s wrecking of ALSC) Conference to be characterized by dry presentations only. This is obviously an attempt to liquidate line struggle, and not draw the masses into it. For the RWC “majority bloc” wants their opportunist maneuvering to be kept inside the “executive committee meetings.” This is pure cowardice, and an opportunist disdain toward the masses.


From 1972-75, the African Liberation Support Committee, as an outgrowth of the Pan Africanist movement of the late 60’s and early 70’s, organized demonstrations of tens of thousands in support of the national liberation struggles in southern Africa, against Portuguese colonialism, the racist regimes in Azania and Zimbabwe, and U.S. imperialism’s complicity in the oppression and exploitation of the African peoples. The U.S. multinational proletariat, and the Afro-American people in particular, have a great and glorious history of supporting the struggles of the African peoples. In recent years we have seen the boycott of Zimbabwean chrome by dockworkers, the boycott of Azanian coal, demonstrations of Polaroid workers against Polaroid’s connection in making pass books for the Vorster regime in Azania. These were all examples of the kernel of proletarian internationalism that were manifested in these movements.

The ALSC developed out of a tradition of struggle against bourgeois nationalist lines in the Black Liberation Movement, “left” and right opportunist lines in the communist movement, and forged militant solidarity between the Afro-American and entire U.S. people and the struggles of Third World and working people the world over. Many advanced elements from the Afro-American national movement were attracted to ALSC’s program and tradition of struggle, and came to Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought through the developments in the ALSC.(Read or write in for WVO pamphlet “African Peoples’ Struggle Will Surely Triumph. Build the Communist Leadership of the African Liberation Support Committee” for a history of the development of the ALSC)

Nearly wrecked by the “left” opportunist line of the Revolutionary Workers League, the ALSC can once again be a vital mass fighting organization which carries out correct support for the national liberation struggles in Africa, and around the world. It once again, under correct leadership, can be a vital formation that can win the hearts, souls and commitment of advanced elements and workers from all movements, particularly the Afro-American national movement. But presently, the ALSC is under serious threat of being wrecked by the RCP and its treacherous chauvinist line toward the national liberation struggles around the world, and chauvinist line on the Afro-American national movement in the U.S.

Running interference for the RCP, the thoroughly right opportunist RWC has embarked on a road that can only lead to smothering the African Liberation Support Committee, preventing it from continuing to play a historic role in support of the revolutionary struggles in southern Africa and elsewhere, preventing it from continuing to be a formation that has attracted and united advanced forces from the Afro-American national movement.

With the defeat of the wrecking activity of the left opportunist RWL which left ALSC in shambles, the RWC emerged as the dominant influence in the national leadership of ALSC. From its position as a “majority bloc,” on the National Executive Committee of the ALSC, the RWC has carried out the thoroughly right opportunist activity of purging Nelson Johnson from the National Executive Committee, obstructing the dissemination of essential propaganda necessary for rebuilding ALSC, and underhandedly changing the ALSC principles of unity. All of this – in order to make ALSC compatible for its right opportunist cousins – the RCP.

Since the September ALSC National Conference, which set itself the task of rebuilding the ALSC, a most important two-line struggle has been raging within the ALSC. As the majority bloc in the national ALSC Steering Committee, the RWC has been employing a thoroughly right opportunist political line and style of work. Characteristic of right opportunism, RWC has not been bold and forthright with its line. Instead the RWC has maneuvered and bid behind the guise of fighting the “left” danger of the WVO. Even though the RWL has been roundly criticized by local ALSC chapters and by other communist organizations, the “majority bloc” has become more arrogant, stepped up its obstructionist activity and has jumped out clearly as a front organization of the RCP.

This struggle involves the most basic question of what kind of organization ALSC is to be: more precisely, it will determine whether ALSC develops as a mass anti-imperialist organization, accumulating revolutionary forces, pushing forward the consciousness of the national movements, within the U.S., particularly the Afro-American national movement. Whether it unites the national movements and the U.S. multinational working class as we support the liberation struggles in southern Africa, fighting resolutely against imperialism, particularly the superpowers and the danger of world war, or whether ALSC’s tremendous potential and rich tradition of struggles becomes prisoner of the thoroughly bankrupt right opportunist line of the RWC which was clearly exposed at the February Executive Committee meeting as a front group for the RCP.

In the Sept/Oct 1976 issue of the WVO newspaper, (Vol. I, No. 6), we said:

With the defeat of the ’left’ opportunists, the work of rebuilding ALSC can go forward, but only in a staunch and resolute struggle against the rightist influence of the RWC and the RCL (the main danger in our movement being right opportunism), which has achieved temporary dominance in the ALSC rebuilding efforts.
The main points of struggle at the recent national ALSC meeting concerned the international situation, the chief form of work for ALSC (propaganda or agitation), and the principles of unity. The voting and various positions put forward on these issues clearly reveal that in the current effort to rebuild ALSC under communist leadership, the right will be the main danger to accomplishing this task.


The WVO calls on all progressive and revolutionary-minded people, concerned with the direction of ALSC, to step up the struggle and exposure of the RWC’s maneuvering, obstructionism, liquidation of line struggle and reversal of the verdict on Soviet social-imperialism, which will only mean treachery to the revolutionary peoples. All ALSC chapters should soundly expose the RWC “front” For RCP. All progressive people currently not active in ALSC work should join ALSC committees and help to defeat the current right line so essential to rebuilding ALSC and carrying out correct support work. This struggle must be taken out of the “Executive Committee Meetings” dominated by the RWC “majority bloc.” and out to the masses. The RWC’s obstructionism and smothering of the ALSC can no longer be tolerated! We call on all progressive and revolutionary-minded people to attend the upcoming ALSC national demonstration and conference, and make the conference a “show-down” to defeat this most reactionary attempt by the RWC to pave the way for an RCP take-over.

Defend the September Conference Principles of Unity!