Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

The New Voice

TNV Statement: Welcome Proposal for Unity Committee

First Published: The New Voice, Vol. VII, No. 2, Jauary 23, 1978.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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The Communist Party Marxist-Leninist has called for a Marxist-Leninist Unity Committee (The Call, Dec. 26, 1977). The Committee would be formed around a unity statement, hold meetings and conferences and give each member group an equal say. The CP M-L encourages others to consult with it in drawing up the initial formal proposal and unity statement.

The CP M-L editorial recognizes that there are still many honest and committed Marxist-Leninists in local groups, groups operating in several cities (like The New Voice) and even in the Communist Party USA. Coming only six months after the founding of the CP M-L last summer, this statement of fact and implied self-criticism is welcome to all. For our part, we know there are many honest communists in the CP M-L, despite its incorrect program.

We have the following suggestions for a Unity Committee:

First the unity statement could most effectively exclude revisionists and Trotskyites by simply binding its signers to the need for proletarian revolution in the United States to break up the capitalist state machine and establish the dictatorship of the proletariat for the entire period of socialism until classes have disappeared. This will exclude the CPUSA and other enemies of revolution.

Second, the statement should not take a position on three basic issues that are the focus of struggle among Marxist-Leninists. These issues are 1) the analysis of classes in the U.S., 2) the revolutionary strategy for achieving socialism, and 3) the material foundation of the oppression of black Americans and the fighting slogan against this oppression.

A class analysis is necessary to assess the strength of the working class in the fight for socialism and to see what other forces must be reckoned with in the revolution. The New Voice disagrees with the CP M-L’s class analysis.

TNV’s revolutionary strategy for socialism is to practice the slogans: The Enemy Is Capitalism; The Fight Is For Socialism! and Make the Workers’ Struggles the Party’s Struggles; Make the Party’s Outlook the Workers’ Outlook! This strategy of protracted spreading of class consciousness in class struggles until a revolutionary situation differs in fundamental respects from the CP M-L’s slogan of a united front against imperialism in the U.S.

How to fight the oppression of black people and unite the working class for this task depends on whether Marxist-Leninists accept the theory of a black nation or the class analysis of racist super-oppression. All views on this question should be clarified in polemic and ideological struggle by the Unity Committee.

Third, the Unity Committee should postpone deciding questions which are not fundamental barriers to party unity. Such questions include the woman question, trade union work, various national minorities, the fascist threat, etc. Communists should unite so that the party can learn more about these problems in practice and theory.


If the Unity Committee follows these guidelines–excluding open revisionists sharply but briefly, concentrating on struggle over the basic problems of revolutionary strategy, and solving other questions later through party practice and study–then we feel it will help unite Marxist-Leninists. The New Voice would do all it can to insure the success of this project.

No group should insist that those whom it regards as opportunists be excluded in advance. Then the Unity Committee would be one group’s committee and no more. But by standing on proletarian revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat, we will exclude the CP USA and those whom Marxist-Leninists know to be enemies of revolution. Then we should let the different views of revolutionary strategy contend among all those people who agree on revolution.

One question remains: the defense of socialist China. The New Voice defends socialist China and will always do so. The Guardian, the RCP and WVO attack China more or less openly. But let us ask ourselves this: if the Unity Committee could unite The New Voice, the CP M-L, the RCP, the Guardian and other groups (or significant fractions of them) on the basic strategy for proletarian revolution, would not this be a significant step forward? Then, even if a split existed on the defense of socialism in China, it would be better to have two organizations differing only on this issue than to have the several “parties” of today.

If consultation shows that most disagree with our view on this matter, The New Voice would accept that. But we suggest that it is more effective to seek unity first on problems of revolution in the United States.

To summarize our view on the idea of a Unity Committee: any agreement to struggle over the basics of revolutionary strategy is a good thing.

When the October League called for Marxist-Leninists to discuss its seven points of unity in November 1975, The New Voice accepted and proposed a public debate on one of the three basic issues we list today (TNV, Jan. 12, 1976). The OL never submitted its views to debate. We hope the results this time will be much better. Many times TNV has indicated that it has no organizational interest to preserve apart from revolutionary principle, and we will do everything we can to unite on the basis of such principle.