Trotskyism and Armed Struggle

MIA: History: ETOL: Bolvia: Trotskyism and Armed Struggle: The Lessons Of Bolivia 1971

Trotskyism and Armed Struggle


Trotskyism and guerrilla warefare are not two terms that are often associated together. While Trotskyism as a distinct current maintained an “orthodox Leninist” perpsective toward organizing the working class in a communist party and opposed variously anarchist and popularist terrorism associated with Russia under the Tsars or the Maoist conception of Prolonged Peoples War, there have been times when currents associated with Trotskyist took up the gun in their own name to fight, varioiusly, fascist occupation, military dictatorships or to participate as a contigent in a larger struggle for national liberation.

While there have been small armed detachments of Trotskyist lead guerrillas during World War II in both Asia and Europe, the focus of this section are those Trotskyist groups that took up the gun under the influence of experience of Che Guavera during the period of the “Foco” in Bolivia in 1966 and 1967 and through the early 1970s when these Trotskyist fighting groups were crushed by the military of the regimes of Argentina and Bolivia.

It is noteworthy to point out that there was a small Trotskyist guerilla group in Guatamala in the 1950s. In 1960 Peruvian Trotskyist peasant leader Hugo Blanco hard organized peasant detachments to defend themselves in a peasant-union militia. Lastly, there was the formation of the Simon Bolivar Brigade in 1979 that intervened in Nicaragua on the side of the Sandinistas during that country’s revolution. This latter group was very publically organized in Columbia by a section of the Trotskyist movement as an International Brigade of Trotskyists from around Latin-America.

The Lessons Of Bolivia Anibal Lorenzo, 1972

Resolutions of the Fifth Congress of the Partido Revolucionario de los Trabajadores Pro-armed struggle perspective of the PRT (Combatiente), 1972

Guerrilla Warfare: The Lesson of China—Letter from a Chinese Trotskyist—December 1972 by Wang Fanxi

Argentina and Bolivia—the Balance Sheet—December 1972