Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

See You on the Frontline... Every Two Weeks, Starting in June


First Published: Frontline, Special Pilot Issue, April 11, 1983.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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As readers can see from our masthead, this newspaper has been launched under the slogan “On the Frontline in the Struggle against War and Racism.” The phrase is an apt description of our politics, the audience we hope to reach, and our approach to revolutionary journalism.

Frontline will be a newspaper for activists, for those actually on the frontline of the growing mass movements of the 1980s. These are the people who most keenly feel the need for the news that the bourgeois press ignores or distorts, but even more for a level of analysis of events and trends that draws out the clashing political interests behind the day to day headlines.

Every newspaper–including those claiming “objectivity” or “independence” as their guiding criteria– reports and analyzes the news from a definite political perspective. Frontline is also rooted in a definite set of politics, one which we believe enables us to offer rigorous and accurate assessments of the complex motion of politics in our time.

Our masthead slogan is an attempt to give that political perspective a highly concentrated expression.

No one has ever provided better guidance for analyzing the news than Karl Marx, who uncovered the simple–but not necessarily obvious–fact that class struggle is the motor force of history. In speaking of “struggle,” therefore, we mean in the first place class struggle. Toward whatever events and issues Frontline turns its attention, we will try to uncover the class forces at work and explain how their development and their conflict are shaping contemporary history.

In discussing these conflicts, Frontline will unflinchingly take one of the sides–the side of the working class. In a broad sense, this means that we stand for the overthrow of the capitalist system, under which the working class is exploited, and its replacement by socialism, under which the working class rules. More concretely, this means that Frontline will endeavor to identify the class interests at stake in all questions of politics and explain the issues not from some abstract standard of “fairness” but from the vantage point of the interests of the working class as a whole. It also means that we oppose, not only direct economic exploitation, but each and every form of social injustice growing out of or reinforced by capitalism–whether its direct victims are workers or not. And it means we intend to play a role in helping build a broad based and united working class movement with the power and determination to carry the fight against oppression and for socialism through to the end.

Such a broad vision is needed to build a working class movement which, in taking up every fight against injustice, is likewise preparing itself to take up the ultimate struggle for power. But beyond a broad vision, the working class movement also needs a strategic precision that will give it the capacity to identify the key political axis around which all its struggles revolve.

In the U.S., headquarters of the world imperialist system, that political axis is the deadly combination of war and racism. The U.S. capitalist class cannot rule without waging war against the enemies of imperialism abroad and maintaining the racial division among workers at home. And the U.S. working class cannot maintain a consistent and rigorous defense of itself or ever mature into a powerful revolutionary force without breaking the grip of pro-imperialist patriotism and racism within its own ranks.

We believe this assessment of the vital nerve centers of the class struggle in the U.S. sheds considerable light on the entire range of issues that must be covered by a revolutionary newspaper. However–and this brings us to Frontline’s conception of revolutionary journalism–we do not ask the reader to accept this point, or any other aspect of our politics on the basis of assertion alone; or even because such a view seems to provide a useful way to look “in general” at the political scene. Rather we believe that the responsibility is on us to examine concretely, specifically and in depth each and every event, issue and political trend that makes the news. Thus, although Frontline will contain information, editorial comment and ongoing and lively debate, its core will be the “concrete analysis of concrete conditions” that Lenin called the “living soul” of Marxism.


The analysis that will fill the pages of Frontline has a purpose that goes beyond increasing the political understanding of our readers; it is, at bottom, intended to help build a movement that will act on what it believes. Frontline is not simply another left newspaper, distinguished from others only by its particular political perspective and (hopefully) the quality of its efforts. The launching of Frontline is a carefully considered political step flowing from a particular viewpoint on how best to build the U.S. working class movement in this challenging period.

More specifically, Frontline is an institution of a distinct emerging Marxist-Leninist trend in the U.S. communist movement. That trend, which has been maturing over the past several years, has set two main goals for itself: building a mass working class movement anchored in a consistent struggle against war and racism; and unifying the most conscious forces in that broad movement, the communists, into a single, thoroughly revolutionary Marxist-Leninist party. A regularly appearing revolutionary newspaper, which brings a Marxist-Leninist perspective to bear on the breaking events of the class struggle and is accessible to revolutionary activists all over the country, is an indispensable tool for realizing these goals.

The responsibility for launching and maintaining Frontline rests with the Editorial Board of the theoretical journal Line of March. The political perspective underlying Frontline has been developed and articulated principally in the pages of Line of March, and it is through the network of cadre organized around the journal that the resources to launch this ambitious effort have been gathered.

Of necessity, in the period of preparation to launch Frontline, the number of people who could actively interact with this project was quite limited. Now that we have begun publication, however, we hope to make Frontline a vehicle that will stimulate active discussion and comment far more broadly. Toward that end, supporters of Frontline in local areas will hold periodic public forums on the topics raised in these pages. Our hope is that these Frontline Forums will mature over time into a key site of movement discussion and debate. In addition, we invite readers to submit comments, letters and opinion pieces for publication.