Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

The U.S. Leninist Core

Third Worldists in Disarray: THE DIRT COMES OUT!

First Published: Bolshevik, Vol. 9, No. 1, n.d. [1979].
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Back in the fall, with banner headlines, and rah-rah-hailing, the “C”P“M-L” announced the formation of the Gotten Together League[1] (LRS“M-L”), which they “warmly supported”, complete with ads for their newspaper and founding documents and mailing address, as well as the announcement that the GTL was “continuing to take part in the Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists, along with the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist).” (Call, Sept. 25, 1978, pg. 2) At the same time, the first issue of Unity newspaper said: “It (the GTL–ed.) will carry out systematic discussions among Marxist-Leninist organizations to resolve differences through principled struggle (sic), as through the Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists. The League intends to continue recent joint steps taken by ATM, IWK and the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist) (CPML) towards communist unity. ..” (Unity, Vol. 1, No. 1, pg. 15)

Actually, the “Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists” was announced simultaneously in all three newspapers– the Call, Getting Together and Revolutionary Cause – before the stillbirth of the Gotten Together League. Now, a mere 5 months after they Got Together, misjudging our very long memories, we are told by the GTL: “Another important step forward was the announcement of plans by ATM, IWK and the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist) (CPML) to initiate a Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists. This Committee does not yet exist and will be formed this year after consultation and discussion with as many communist organizations and groups as possible in the U.S.” (Unity, Vol.2. No.2, pg.3)

Whoops! GTL, with this re-write of history, hangs out “C”P“M-L”’s dirty linen in public. Of course, these liars are also hanging out their own, though they must think the class conscious proletarians plain stupid if they thought they could get over by pretending now that they never said the ”unity committee” existed in Sept. Of course, much to the dismay of GTL and the “C”P“M-L”, this is not the case. Which version is the lie? That it never existed or that it did? We tend to think this illustrious committee did exist but fell apart for reasons which the GTL and “C”P“M-L” (who has remained silent) are unwilling to disclose, but which we must analyze and draw conclusions from, in the struggle for the one Marxist-Leninist line.

Obviously, all has not been smooth sailing for the “C”P“M-L” in their effort to swallow up the GTL – perhaps they bit off more than they could chew? Perhaps they underestimated their erstwhile partners/rivals in the constant struggle for power that goes on in the revisionist camp. Why haven’t they “united”? What happened to their “committee to unite”? In point of fact both revisionist groups have unity on the revisionist line, unity on the social-chauvinist theory of “three worlds”, unity on their opposition to Marxism-Leninism and proletarian revolution – so what’s the hang-up? As we said in the August-September 1978 issue of Bolshevik: “In the game of scheming with three such professionals as ATM-“M-L”, IWK, and “C”P“M-L”, there is bound to be hegemonic conflicting.

Of course for ATM “M-L” and IWK it amounts to keeping their old forms as long as possible, maybe hoping that the new leadership in China will reconsider its recognition of “C”P“M-L” and then they can rise as sole representative of the ’third world’ peoples in the U.S.” (Bolshevik, Vol. 8, No. 3)

And this is precisely what the GTL has in mind. Of course, they are keeping their “options open”, and just in case the “C”P“M-L” manages to stay alive through the present crisis and keep its recognition from the revisionist “C”PC, then the GTL will be in a stronger position to demand more positions on the Central Committee and the Editorial Board. This is why, at this point, they do not come out in the open with their attacks on the “C”P“M-L”, but rely instead on innuendoes, vague references and snide remarks, combined with the intriguing and conspiring they are carrying on behind closed doors. GTL is feeling pretty haughty at this point, having just swallowed up an anarchist-terrorist-nationalist-social-chauvinist “collective”, “Seize the Time” (true followers of Mao Tsetung indeed!), and so they let loose a few pointed jabs at their rivals, the “recognized” third worldist hegemones in the U.S. the “C”P“M-L”: “A correct revolutionary line and program cannot be just at the level of generalities but must address and answer the concrete questions posed by the mass movements at any particular stage. More work has to be done by the communist forces in forging a concrete and living line for the U.S. revolution.” (Unity, Vol. 2, No. 2). Typical of opportunist maneuvering, their “criticisms” are directed at a nameless entity–we will have to translate this revisionism for our readers since the GTL refuses to speak in plain language. In short, they are saying that the “C”P“M-L”’s line cannot answer the “concrete” questions “posed by the mass movements at any particular stage”, and furthermore, that its abstract and dead. Taking the right opportunist, economist conception of the Marxist-Leninist line one step further to the right, the GTL calls for a “Marxist-Leninist line”, not only for each movement, but for each “stage” of each “mass movement”. Of course, the only “questions” which the “C”P“M-L” are interested in “answering” in a “concrete” way are those connected with how to lead the proletariat into an alliance with the bourgeoisie, how the social-chauvinists can secure more crumbs for themselves from the imperialist banquet table, how they can help their ”own” bourgeoisie continue the enslavement of the colonies and neo-colonies. The biggest share of the crumbs–this is their real and only difference in opinion.

In this struggle, this scrambling for position, for “recognition”, for crumbs of the superprofits, all of their opportunist conniving and scheming comes out in all its ugliness–they embrace with daggers poised–for this is the dog-eat-dog world of the revisionists, and all the talk of “Marxist-Leninist unity” is but so much claptrap. While the GTL says now that there is still no ”correct ideological and political line to unite the U.S. Marxist-Leninists”, back in May, when ATM was apologizing to OL for calling them right opportunists, they said that OL had a “Marxist-Leninist line” all along and only made right errors. Funny how things can change in 7 months! Of course, at that time the “C”P“M-L” was riding on a crest–they had only recently been “recognized” as the “vanguard party” by the revisionist “C”PC, and the GTL had only just Gotten Together, not quite sure of its prospects of replacing the “C”P“M-L” as top hegemones in the third worldist swamp. As we said in Bolshevik, “If IWK and ATM“ML” join “C’P“M-L” too prematurely then they stand a chance of losing the ’individuals’, ’collectives’, ’forces’, other groups of petti-bourgeois nationalists and social-chauvinists, who continue to stand and are consolidated on the treacherous theory of the ’three worlds’, but who at the same time refuse to be swallowed up by the “C”P“M-L”.” (Bolshevik, Vol. 8, No. 3).

So now the GTL has swallowed up one such ”collective”, with their eye on others, as well as the split-off from the “Revolutionary Communist” Party, the “Revolutionary Workers” Headquarters, the split which they call “an important development”, and who they define as “a large (our emphasis – ed.) section of it (RCP – ed .), including parts of the leadership, a new Marxist-Leninist organization” (Unity, Vol. 2, No. 2). So the GTL has played their cards very carefully–building up their forces while demoralizing the “C”P“M-L”. They throw another punch at their rivals: “During this next period of time, we must wage a struggle against sectarian and narrow tendencies which have historically plagued our movement. The single, unified vanguard party we need will not be built through the simple proclamation of any one group as the vanguard or leading center, but by proving in practice a correct revolutionary line, and uniting Marxist-Leninists around that line.” (Unity, Vol. 2, No. 2). Once again, who possesses these “sectarian” and ”narrow tendencies” and has ”proclaimed” themselves ”the vanguard or leading center” remains nameless, but this is really rather thinly veiled, and rather pointed at the ”joint initiators” of “unity efforts”, the “C”P“M-L”.

Meanwhile, the “C”P“M-L” continues to undermine itself, having in mind more long-range goals. This first started when they hailed the founding of the GTL–their scheme being to throw a sop before swallowing up the GTL. But what about Klonsky’s “bold” declaration in 1977? “Yes, the founding of the Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist) is an historic event. It is a time for the working class to be proud, to walk with its chest puffed out (sic!) and to say: ’Yes, we have been held down for so long, but now a new day is dawning. Now we have our Party, the Party of the proletariat.” (Documents of the Founding Congress of the CP(M-L), p. 3) And, “Based on our strengthened unity and on the firm basis of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought we must be able to unite still greater numbers of communists who still remain in some local circles and organizations under opportunist leadership.” (ibid., p. 49)

Anyone with an honest bone in their body is bound to be thoroughly repulsed by the first statement, which contains in a nutshell “C”P“M-L”’s naked contempt for the working class and Klonsky’s unmitigated gall in his rush to proclaim “C”P“M-L” the “vanguard”. The second statement combined with the first reveals the hypocrisy behind the “C”P“M-L’”s hailing of the GTL (were ATM and IWK under opportunist leadership in 1977, but not after they Got Together?) and lays bare “C”P“M-L”’s hegemonic designs in its shaky partnership with GTL in numerous “broad-based coalitions” with “people from all walks of life” (anti-Bakke, United League speaking tour, etc.), which no doubt produced incessant power plays and endless maneuvers by the “C”P“M-L” and the GTL, designed to woo these “people from all walks of life” and the other revisionist groups such as the RWH.

However, plans must have gone awry–the “C”P“M-L” has not succeeded in swallowing them up and has even undermined itself more, publishing in the Call a “self-criticism” for “sectarianism”, in which they apologized to the GTL for saying that the Call was “the only paper that stands firmly with the working class and oppressed peoples”, repudiating this “sectarianism” by assuring the GTL that “There are many other newspapers being published today–by those in the Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists ... which certainly stand firmly with the working class.” In other words, by the GTL we assume. Since “C”P“M-L” doesn’t say who they’re referring to, perhaps the “unity committee” had already fallen apart. Perhaps “C”P“M-L” thought they could maneuver back to the September status quo through this added sop.

“C”P“M-L” has become the target for the GTL and probably the RWH as well. Though all are staunch third worldists, they have their tactical differences which correspond to the factions found inside the “C”PC. Thus, in the dance of revisionist alliances and re-alliances we have the following: “C”P“M-L” represents the Teng faction–those who are champing at the bit to tear off all the covers and openly proclaim the “united front” with U.S. imperialism, as Teng did in his interview with Time magazine of February 5, 1979; whereas GTL and RWH have dutifully reported on Teng’s visit, the “great democratic debate sweeping China”, etc., they are the stricter Maoists–in the traditions of their shrewd “teacher” they see that tactically it is more advantageous to keep some covers on; they must be wincing a bit as Teng falls all over himself to shake Carter’s hand off–Mao was so very much more refined inviting Nixon to China to shake hands and chat in his study. Another manifestation of this tactical difference was seen when “C”P“M-L” came right out with “police are workers” and the GTL had a corresponding article proclaiming that “police are not workers”– without saying, as is their customary practice, who said they were. While the “C”P“M-L” has begun to get in some digs at Mao Tsetung and “the little red book”, etc., reflecting Teng’s bitterness at his humiliation and debunking at the hands of Mao, GTL and RWH are ever-faithful. While Teng is riding around in stage coaches and trying on cowboy hats, and the Call is expanding its coverage of sports and such cultural treats as “Confessions of a Soap Opera Addict”, the GTL and RWH don’t go in for such frivolity, presenting themselves as the more serious of the third worldist forces in the U.S., the true Maoists. Last but not least, the “C”P“M-L”’s blatant great nation chauvinism is bound to conflict with GTL’s bourgeois nationalism. Both of course are variants of the same ideology, but they conflict because all are seeking top dog position and the crumbs that come with it. Another reason for the probable merging of the GTL and RWH is the historic hegemonic infighting that has gone on between Jarvis (the ex-“C”PUSA, ex-“RC”P, now-leader of RWH) and Klonsky. Of course, GTL and RWH will undoubtedly have their hegemonic conflicting too, and another possibility is that RWH will sit on the fence, hoping to come out on top itself, while letting the “C”P“M-L” and the GTL fight it out amongst themselves.

In another corner of the arena we have the gang-of-four adherents, the “Red Guards” of the U.S., “RC”P pulling off their little adventurist acts all over the place (throwing paint and rocks at the Chinese embassy in Washington, fighting the police wherever Teng appears, etc.), decrying Teng’s “betrayal” of the gang-of-four (and Mao makes five, as their book says). All of this is to provide a “left” cover to the revisionist theory of three worlds, while simultaneously giving the state an excuse to repress communism, as well as getting themselves sorely needed publicity in the wake of their split.

Whatever faction of the “C”PC the various third worldist forces in the U.S. take as their favorite, they have no differences in principle. The disarray in the camp of revisionism can and should be utilized to the advantage of the proletariat by the class conscious proletarians, utilizing these contradictions among the enemy, demoralizing them, helping to split them further, while welding our unities in the fight for the one Marxist-Leninist line, building the Party of the proletariat as we deliver smashing blows at the theory of three worlds and all revisionism and opportunism.


[1] We refer to the Leage of “Revolutionary Struggle” as the Gotten Together League as a way to keep fresh in the memory of all class conscious proletarians that the hegemony-seeking IWK, which paints itself as pure as the driven snow, has been the driving force behind the push for “unity”. Since IWK was formed, when they bragged about being a “pre-party formation”, they have represented the liquidationist trend under the outcries for “unity”. So, at first their ragsheet went by the name of “Getting Together”–now it goes by the name of “Unity”.