Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Revolutionary Communist League (M-L-M)

ATM & IWK Unite to Form LRS = Take Important Step Toward Party!!!

First Published: Unity and Struggle, Vol. VIII, No. 1-2, February 1979.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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On September II the League for Revolutionary Struggle released a press statement. It began:

“The LRS upholds the necessity for further ideological struggle among Marxist-Leninists to form a communist party in the U.S. upon the basis of a correct Marxist-Leninist line.” The statement also says that, “The central task of the League is to form a single, vanguard party.”

ATM and IWK, together with the Communist Party Marxist-Leninist (CPML), had previously started efforts to form the Committee to Unite Marxist-Leninists (CUML). [For Rcl’s response to the formation of the CUML, see Editorial, U&S, Sept-Oct. 1978 issue] The League will continue in this work. The League is also publishing a monthly newspaper called UNITY.

In the September issue of UNITY, self-criticism by both previous organizations was done. An article headlined “League of Revolutionary Struggle (M-L) Founded” said:

IWK’s main error was narrowness in its work. It downplayed the role it should have played in waging an active ideological struggle in the communist movement to unite Marxist-Leninists, and it did not broadly expand its work as much as it could have at times. Over the past two years, it has struggled to correct these weaknesses. Also: ATM made serious errors of participating in formations initiated by certain opportunist groups. These formations were the National Continuations Committee and the so-called “Revolutionary Wing.” These were errors of metaphysics and idealism, such as adopting for a period of time a “left” line on party building, which pitted mass work against the tasks of party building, (end quote)

Given these self-criticisms, the question arises as to how thoroughly these comrades are carrying out the rectification of their errors. To the extent that the League is based upon a deep and consistent repudiation of past mistakes, its formation is a good thing which leads the anti-revisionist communist movement forward; to the extent that LRS still continue in their shortcomings, progress for communists depends upon struggle against these errors.

The real test of the question is practice. From its practice it is clear that the League must still struggle for rectification. This fact emerged at a public meeting held in New York on October 14 to announce the League. At the October 14 meeting there was no period of discussion in the program in which to carry out struggle over genuine differences. There were speeches of a general kind, revolutionary songs, and a reception over coffee and cake. There was no open clash of ideas to differentiate the correct from the incorrect through two-line’ struggle. But truth has no means of development other than the struggle with error.

Other practical errors included the taking of frontal pictures of the audience by League cadre, and scheduling the meeting in a public school building on a night when it was in use by the Board of Elections so that participants had to enter the meeting through a line of uniformed police.

BUT THE POSITIVE ASPECTS OF WHAT LRS REPRESENTS AS THE COMBINING OF TWO OF THE MAJOR ORGANIZATIONS IN THE ANTI-REVISIONIST COMMUNIST MOVEMENT IN THE U.S. FAR OUTWEIGH ANY SHORTCOMINGS!!! It also raises sharp questions of the other organizations who do not think CPML is “the party”, i.e., the genuine Marxist-Leninist Communist Party in the U.S. as to what are we doing to build that party in practical practicable terms. The formation of LRS is very positive, and so is the proposed Committee To Unite Marxist-Leninists, which so far includes the Bay Area Communist Union, League of Revolutionary Struggle and Communist Party Marxist-Leninist. CUML is proposed as the arena, the framework, in which the major questions obstructing the formation of a single major party in this country might be struggled out! The Left sectarianism that has made it almost impossible for many Marxist-Leninists groups to work together must be actively combatted. (Obviously the police contribute mightily to this sectarianism and isolation!) Organizations like League for Proletarian Revolution (though they are “not speaking to us” and pout childishly when we meet them in the streets) must also take further positive steps in not only making some extensive self-criticism which they are doing, but trying to put some of it in practice, especially the part about being anti-sectarian! Part of this anti-sectarianism would be to seriously consider membership in a forum like the CUML. RCL, of course, must put this question on the top of its agenda, since if we hold MARXIST-LENINISTS UNITE-WIN THE ADVANCED TO COMMUNISM, and we hold the first part of that slogan as principal, we must seriously question what, in fact, practically are we doing to build the revolutionary party of the U.S. Proletariat! Anything that obstruct the building of such a party is an obstruction to revolution, and an obstruction to the destruction of capitalism and the construction of Socialism.