Sino-Soviet Split Document Archive
Source: The Polemic on the General Line of the International Communist Movement. Peking: Foreign Languages Press, 1965; pp. 526-86.
The open letter was originally published in Russian in Pravda on July 14,
Transcription: Marxists.org, 2010.
HTML: Adjusted by Juan Fajardo, April 2010.
The Central Committee of the CPSU deems it necessary to address this open letter to you in order to set out its position on the fundamental questions of the international communist movement in connection with the letter of the Central Commmittee of the Communist Party of China of June 14, 1963.
Soviet people are well aware that our party and government, expressing the will of the entire Soviet people, spare no efforts to strengthen fraternal friendship with the peoples of all the socialist countries, with the Chinese people. We are united by common struggle for the victory of communism, we share the same aim, the same aspirations and hopes.
For many years relations between our parties were good. But some time ago there came to light serious differences between the CPC on the one hand, and the CPSU and the other fraternal parties, on the other. At the present time, the statements and actions of the leadership of the Communist Party of China, which are undermining the cohesion of our parties and the friendship of our peoples, are causing increasing concern to the CPSU Central Committee.[*]
For its part, the CPSU Central Committee has been doing everything possible to overcome the differences that have arisen, and in January this year proposed the cessation of open polemics in the communist movement, so that the issues be discussed calmly and in a businesslike manner, and solved on a principled Marxist-Leninist basis. This proposal of the CPSU met with the warm support of all the fraternal parties. Agreement was subsequently reached on a meeting between representatives of the CPSU and the CPC, which is now taking place in Moscow.
The CPSU Central Committee hoped that the Chinese comrades would, like ourselves, display good will and would facilitate the success of the meeting in the interests of our peoples, in the interests of strengthening the unity of the communist movement. To our regret, when agreement was reached on the Moscow meeting of representatives of the CPSU and CPC, when the delegations were appointed and the date of the meeting set, the Chinese comrades, instead of submitting the divergencies for discussion at this meeting, unexpectedly found it possible not only to state the old differences openly, before the entire world, but also to advance new charges against the CPSU and other Communist parties. This found expression in the publication of the June 14 letter of the CPC Central Committee, which gives an arbitrary interpretation of the Declaration and Statement of the Moscow meetings of representatives of the Communist and Workers' parties, and distorts the basic principles of these historic documents. The CPC Central Committee letter contains groundless, slanderous attacks on our party and on other Communist parties, on the decisions of the 20th, 21st, and 22nd Congresses of the CPSU and on the CPSU Programme.
As you know from the statement of the CPSU Central Committee published in Pravda on June 19, the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee, having studied the June 14 letter of the CPC Central Committee, arrived at the conclusion that its publication in the Soviet press at that time would have been inadvisable. Publication of the letter would, naturally, have required a public reply on our part; this would have further aggravated the controversy and inflamed passions, and would have thereby worsened relations between our parties. Publication of the letter of the CPC Central Committee would have been the more untimely since a meeting was to be held between representatives of the CPSU and CPC with the purpose, in our opinion, of contributing, through comradely examination of existing differences, to better mutual understanding between our two parties on the vital questions of present-day world development, and of creating a favourable atmosphere for the preparation and holding of a meeting of representatives of all Communist and Workers' parties.
At the same time, the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee considered it necessary to acquaint the members of the CPSU Central Committee and all the participants in its Plenary Meeting with the letter of the CPC Central Committee, and inform them of the substance of the differences between the CPC leadership and the CPSU and the other Marxist-Leninist parties.
In its unanimously adopted decision the Central Committee Plenum fully endorsed the political activity of the CPSU Central Committee Presidium and of First Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee and Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the U.S.S.R. N. S. Khrushchov aimed at further uniting the forces of the world communist movement, and all the steps taken by the CPSU Central Committee Presidium in its relations with the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
The CPSU Central Committee Plenum instructed the Presidium of the Central Committee unswervingly to follow the line of the 20th, 21st and 22nd Congresses of our party at the meeting with representatives of the CPC, a line approved at the meetings of representatives of the Communist parties and embodied in the Declaration and Statement, a line that has been fully confirmed by life, by the course of international developments. The Central Committee Plenum emphatically rejected as groundless and slanderous the attacks of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on our party and other Communist parties, on the decisions of the 20th, 21st and 22nd Congresses, on the Programme of the CPSU. Expressing the will of the entire party, it declared its readiness and determination consistently to pursue a course to unite our fraternal parties and overcome existing differences. The Plenum declared that our party would continue its efforts to strengthen unity on the basis of the principles of Marxism-Leninism and socialist internationalism, fraternal friendship between the CPSU and the CPC in the interests of the struggle for our common cause.
Unfortunately, recent events have shown that the Chinese comrades interpret our restraint in their own way. They depict our sincere striving to avoid a sharpening of the controversy in the communist movement as little short of an intention to hide the views of the Chinese leaders from the Soviet Communists and people. Mistaking our restraint for weakness, the Chinese comrades, contrary to the standards of friendly relations between fraternal socialist countries, began, with increasing importunity and persistence, unlawfully to circulate in Moscow and other Soviet cities the June 14 letter of the CPC Central Comrnittee, of which a large number of copies were printed in Russian. Not content with this, the Chinese comrades began sedulously to popularize and spread throughout the world this letter and other documents directed against our party, not scrupling to use imperialist publishing houses and agencies for their distribution.
The position has been aggravated by the fact that when the U.S.S.R. Ministry of Foreign Affairs drew the attention of the Chinese Ambassador in the Soviet Union to the impermissibility of such actions, which constitute a gross violation of our country's sovereignty, the Chinese representatives, far from stopping them, declared in a demonstrative way that they regarded it as their right to continue to circulate the letter in the U.S.S.R.
On July 7, when the Moscow meeting had already begun, a mass rally was held in Peking at which the Chinese expelled from the Soviet Union for the unlawful distribution of materials containing attacks on our party and the Soviet government were hailed as heroes by Chinese officials. Seeking to instigate among the fraternal Chinese people sentiments and feelings unfriendly to the U.S.S.R., the Chinese officials tried, at this rally, to prove their right to violate the sovereignty of our state and the standards of international relations. On July 10, the CPC Central Committee issued another statement, in which it justifies these actions and, in effect, tries to arrogate to itself the right to interfere in the internal affairs of the Soviet Union, which the Soviet government, naturally, will never allow. Such actions can only aggravate relations and can do nothing but harm.
In its leading article on July 13, the Peking People's Daily again attacked our party and gave a distorted interpretation of the fact that the Soviet press did not publish the June 14 letter of the CPC Central Committee.
The frankly unfriendly actions of the CPC leaders, their persistent striving to aggravate the controversy in the international communist movement, the deliberate distortion of our party's position, the misinterpretation of our motives in temporarily refraining from publishing the letter, impel us to publish the letter of the CPC Central Committee of June 14, 1963, and to give our appraisal of it.
Everyone who reads the letter of the CPC Central Committee will see behind the fine phrases about unity and cohesion unfriendly, slanderous attacks on our party and the Soviet Union, a striving to play down the historic significance of our people's struggle for the victory of communism in the U.S.S.R., for the triumph of peace and socialism throughout the world. The document contains every manner of charge, direct and veiled, against the CPSU and the Soviet Union. Its authors permit themselves fabrications, unseemly and insulting to Communists, about "betrayal of the interests of the international proletariat and all the peoples of the world," "departure from Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism," hint at "cowardice in face of the imperialists," "a step back in the course of historic development," and even at "organizational and moral disarming of the proletariat and all the working people" tantamount to "contributing to the restoration of capitalism" in our country. How can they say these things about the party of the great Lenin, about the motherland of socialism, about the people who were the first in the world to accomplish a socialist revolution, upheld its great gains in fierce battles against international imperialism and domestic counter-revolution, are displaying miracles of heroism and dedication in the effort to build communism, are faithfully fulfilling their internationalist duty to the working people of the world.
For nearly half a century the Soviet Union, under the leadership of the Communist Party, has been fighting for the triumph of the ideas of Marxism-Leninism, for the freedom and happiness of the working people throughout the world. From the very first days of the Soviet state, when the great Lenin stood at its helm, and right up to the present day, our people have rendered and are rendering tremendous and disinterested assistance to all the peoples fighting for liberation from the yoke of imperialism and colonialism, for the building of a new life.
World history furnishes no example of a country rendering aid to other countries on such a scale in the development of their economy, science and technology.
The working people of China and the Chinese Communists felt in full measure the fraternal solidarity of the Soviet people, of our party, both in the period of their revolutionary struggle for the liberation of their country and in the years of socialist construction. Immediately after the formation of the People's Republic of China, the Soviet government signed with the government of People's China a Treaty of Friendship, Alliance and Mutual Assistance, which is a powerful weapon against imperialist encroachments, a factor for consolidating peace in the Far East and the whole world.
The Soviet people generously shared with their Chinese brothers their experience in socialist construction, accumulated over many years, their achievements in the fields of science and technology. Our country has rendered and is rendering substantial aid to the economic development of People's China. With the active assistance of the Soviet Union, People's China built 198 factories, factory departments and other industrial units equipped with up-to-date machinery. With the assistance of our country, China started such new industries as automobiles, tractors, aircraft and others. The Soviet Union handed over to the P.R.C. more than 21,000 sets of scientific and technical documentation, including more than 1,400 major projects. We have invariably helped China strengthen her defence capacity and create a modern defence industry. Thousands of Chinese specialists and workers have been trained in Soviet higher schools and in our industries. Now, too, the Soviet Union continues its technical assistance to the People's Republic of China in the construction of 88 industrial enterprises and projects. We mention all this not by way of boasting, but only because of late the CPC leaders have sought to belittle the significance of Soviet aid; nor do we forget that the Soviet Union, in its turn, received needed goods from the P.R.C.
It is not so long ago that the Chinese leaders spoke justly and eloquently about the friendship of the peoples of China and the Soviet Union, about the unity of the CPSU and the CPC, giving a high appraisal of Soviet aid and urging the people to learn from the experience of the Soviet Union.
Comrade Mao Tse-tung said in 1957: "In their struggle for national liberation, the Chinese people had the fraternal sympathy and support of the Soviet people. After the victory of the Chinese revolution the Soviet Union has likewise been rendering all-round and immense assistance in the construction of socialism in China. The Chinese people will never forget all this."
One can only regret that the Chinese leaders have begun to forget this.
Our party, all Soviet people, rejoiced at, and took pride in, the successes of the great Chinese people in building the new life. Speaking at a reception in Peking on the tenth anniversary of the People's Republic of China, Comrade N. S. Khrushchov said: "The heroic and industrious people of China demonstrated, under the leadership of their glorious Communist Party, what a people is capable of when it takes power into its own hands. . . . Now everybody admits the successes of the Chinese people and the Communist Party of China. The peoples of Asia and Africa see along which path, under which systern, the talents, the creative forces of the people can be fully developed, so that a nation can demonstrate the breadth and depth of its mighty creative strength."
That is how things stood until the Chinese leaders began to deflect from the general course of the world communist movement.
In April 1960 the Chinese comrades openly revealed their disagreements with the-world communist movement by publishing the collection of articles "Long Live Leninism!" This collection, made up, in the main, of distorted, truncated and incorrectly interpreted passages from wetl-known works of Lenin, contained propositions directed, in substance, against the fundamentals of the Declaration of the Moscow Meeting of 1957, which was signed on behalf of the CPC by Comrade Mao Tse-tung, against the Leninist policy of peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems, against the possibility of preventing world war in the present era, against recognition of the peaceful as well as non-peaceful road of development of socialist revolution. The CPC leaders tried to impose their views on all the fraternal parties. In June 1960, during the Peking session of the General Council of the World Federation of Trade Unions, the Chinese leaders, without the knowledge of the leadership of fraternal parties, arranged a meeting of representatives of several parties then in Peking and launched open criticism of the position of the CPSU and the other Marxist-Leninist parties and the Declaration adopted by the Moscow Meeting in 1957. Furthermore, the Chinese comrades aired their differences with the CPSU and the other fraternal parties from the open tribune of a non-party organization.
Such steps by the CPC leadership aroused anxiety in the fraternal parties. In view of this, an attempt was made at the Bucharest Meeting of Communist Parties in 1960 to discuss the differences that had arisen with the leaders of the CPC. Representatives of 50 Communist and Workers' parties subjected the views and actions of the Chinese leaders to comradely criticism and urged them to return to the path of unity and co-operation with the international communist movement, in conformity with the principles of the Moscow Declaration. Unfortunately, the CPC leadership disregarded this comradely assistance and continued to pursue its erroneous course and deepen its differences with the fraternal parties.
Anxious to prevent such a development of events, the CPSU Central Committee suggested talks with the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. These took place in Moscow in September 1960. But then, too, it was impossible to resolve the differences due to the stubborn unwillingness of the CPC delegation to heed the opinion of a fraternal party. At the Meeting of Representatives of 81 Communist and Workers' Parties in November 1960, the absolute majority of the fraternal parties rejected the incorrect views and concepts of the CPC leadership. The Chinese delegation at this meeting stubbornly upheld its own particular views and signed the Statement only when the danger of its complete isolation became clear.
It is now perfectly clear that in appending their signatures to the 1960 Statement, the CPC leaders were only manoeuvring. Shortly after the meeting they resumed the propaganda of their policy, using as their mouthpiece the leadership of the Albanian Party of Labour. Behind the back of our party they launched a campaign against the CPSU Central Committee and the Soviet government.
In October 1961 the CPSU Central Committee made fresh efforts to normalize relations with the CPC. Comrades N. S. Khrushchov, F. R. Kozlov and A. I. Mikoyan had talks with Comrades Chou En-lai, Peng Chen and other leading CPC officials attending the 22nd CPSU Congress. Comrade N. S. Khrushchov explained in detail to the Chinese delegation the position of the CPSU Central Committee on the questions of principle discussed at the 22nd Congress and stressed our invariable desire to strengthen friendship and co-operation with the Communist Party of China.
In its letters of February 22 and May 31, 1962, the CPSU Central Committee drew the attention of the CPC Central Committee to the dangerous consequences for our common cause that might follow from the weakening of the unity of the communist movement. We then suggested to the Chinese comrades that steps be taken to deprive the imperialists of the opportunity to use in their interests the difficulties which had arisen in Soviet-Chinese relations. The CPSU Central Committee also suggested more effective measures on such questions as exchange of internal political information, co-ordination of the positions of our fraternal parties in international democratic organizations and in other matters.
However, these letters and the other practical steps aimed at improving relations with the CPC and the P.R.C. in all fields, did not meet with a response in Peking.
In the autumn of last year, the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee had a long talk with Comrade Liu Hsiao, the then P.R.C. Ambassador to the U.S.S.R., before his departure from Moscow. In the course of this conversation, the members of the Central Committee Presidium again took the initiative in strengthening Chinese-Soviet friendship. Comrade N. S. Khrushchov asked Comrade Liu Hsiao to convey to Comrade Mao Tse-tung our proposal: "To set aside all disputes and differences, not to try to establish who is right and who is wrong, not to stir up the past, but to start our relations from a clean slate." But we did not even receive an answer to this sincere appeal.
Deepening their ideological differences with the fraternal parties, the leaders of the CPC began to carry them over to governmental relations. Chinese government agencies began curtailing economic and trade relations with the Soviet Union and other socialist countries. On the initiative of the P.R.C. government, the volume of China's trade with the Soviet Union was cut to nearly one-third in the past three years; delivery of complete sets of industrial plant dropped to one-fortieth of the former volume. This was done on the initiative of the Chinese leaders. We regret that the P.R.C. leadership has embarked on such a policy. Now as always, we believe it is necessary to go on developing Soviet-Chinese relations and extend co-operation. This would be mutually beneficial, above all to People's China, which has received great assistance from the Soviet Union and other socialist countries. In the past, the Soviet Union developed extensive relations with China, and today, too, it wants their expansion, not curtailment. One would expect the CPC leadership to be the first to display concern for the development of economic relations with the socialist countries. However, it has been acting in the opposite direction, disregarding the damage such actions cause the P.R.C. economy.
The Chinese leaders did not tell their people the truth about who is responsible for curtailing these relations. Extensive propaganda aimed at discrediting the foreign and; domestic Policy of the CPSU, at stirring up anti-Soviet sentiment, was started among the Chinese Communists and even among the population.
The CPSU Central Committee drew the Chinese comrades' attention to these incorrect actions. We told the Chinese comrades that the people should not be prompted to praise or anathematize this or that party depending on the emergence of disputes and differences. It is clear to every Communist that disagreements among fraternal parties are but temporary episodes, whereas relations between the peoples of the socialist countries are now being shaped for all time.
Every time, however, the Chinese leaders ignored the comradely warnings of the CPSU and further strained ChineseSoviet relations.
Beginning with the close of 1961, Chinese representatives in international democratic organizations have been openly imposing their erroneous views. In December 1961, at the Stockholm session of the World Peace Council, the Chinese delegation opposed the convocation of the World Congress for Peace and Disarmament. In the course of 1962 the work of the World Federation of Trade Unions, the World Peace Movement, the Afro-Asian Solidarity Movement, the World Federation of Democratic Youth, the Women's International Democratic Federation, and many other organizations, was placed in jeopardy by the divisive activities of the Chinese representatives. They opposed participation of representatives of the Afro-Asian Solidarity Committees of the European socialist countries in the third Afro-Asian Peoples Solidarity Conference in Moshi. The leader of the Chinese delegation told the Soviet representatives that "whites have no business here." At the journalists' conference in Djakarta, the Chinese representatives followed a line designed to deny Soviet journalists full-fledged delegate status on the plea that the Soviet Union . . . is not an Asian country.
That the Chinese comrades should have accused the overwhelming majority of the recent World Congress of Women of splitting activities and of following a wrong political line, is strange and surprising, considering that out of the 110 countries represented, only two -- China and Albania -- voted against the Appeal to Women of All Continents. Is it a case of the entire multi-million army of freedom-loving women being out of step, and only two marching in step, keeping the ranks?
Such, in brief, is the history of the differences between the Chinese leadership and the CPSU and the other fraternal parties. It shows that the CPC leaders counterpose their own special line to the general line of the communist movement, trying to impose on it their own dictate, their deeply erroneous views on the key problems of our time.
What is the substance of the differences between the CPC on the one hand, and the CPSU and the international communist movement, on the other? That question will undoubtedly be asked by everyone who reads the CPC Central Committee letter of June 14.
At first glance, many of its propositions may set one wondering: whom are the Chinese comrades actually arguing with? Are there Communists who object, for instance, to socialist revolution, or who do not regard it their duty to fight imperialism, or support the national-liberation movement? Why is the CPC leadership so insistent in advancing such propositions?
The question may also arise: why is it impossible to agree with the position of the Chinese comrades, formulated in their letter, on many important problems? Take, for instance, such a cardinal problem as war and peace. The CPC Central Committee letter speaks of peace and peaceful co-existence.
The essence of the matter is that, having started an offensive against the views of the Marxist-Leninist parties on the cardinal problems of the times, the Chinese comrades, firstly, ascribe to the CPSU and other Marxist-Leninist parties views which they have never expressed and which are alien to them; secondly, they try, by verbal acceptance of formulas and principles taken from the documents of the communist movement, to mask their erroneous views and incorrect positions. To come out openly against the peoples' struggle for peace, against peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems, against disarmament, etc., would expose their policy in the eyes of the Communists and peace-loving peoples of the whole world and would alienate them. The further the polemics develop, the clearer the weakness of the CPC leadership's position becomes, the more zealously they resort to such camouflage. If this method of the Chinese comrades is not taken into consideration, it might appear to the outsider that the controversy has acquired a scholastic nature, that it concerns individual formulas, far removed from vital issues.
In point of fact, however, the controversy centres on issues affecting the vital interests of the peoples.
They are the issue of war and peace, the question of the role and development of the world socialist system, they are questions of the struggle against the ideology and practice of the "personality cult," they are questions of the strategy and tactics of the world labour movement and the national-liberation struggle.
These questions are posed by life itself, by the deep-going changes that have taken place in the socialist countries and throughout the world, the changes in recent years in the balance of strength between socialism and imperialism, the new possibilities for our movement. The communist movement had to, and did, provide the answers to these questions and worked out a general line in adaptation to the conditions and requirements of the present stage of world development.
In the unanimous opinion of the Communist parties, an immense part in this was played by the 20th Congress of the CPSU, which ushered in a new stage in the development of the entire communist movement. This appraisal was recorded in the 1957 Declaration and in the 1960 Statement, the documents of the Communist parties worked out collectively and formulating the general political course of the communist movement in the present era.
But the CPC leaders have now advanced, as a counterweight, a different course; their positions are diverting more and more from the general line of the communist movement on basic issues.
This applies, above all, to the question of war and peace.
In the appraisal of the problems of war and peace, in the approach to their solution, there can be no vagueness or reservations, for this is an issue in which the destinies of peoples, the future of all mankind, are involved.
The CPSU Central Committee considers it its duty to tell the party and the people with all frankness that on the question of war and peace the CPC leadership has cardinal, fundamental differences with us, with the world communist movement. Their essence lies in the diametrically opposite approach to such vital problems as the possibility of averting a world thermonuclear war, peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems, the interconnection between the struggle for peace and the development of the world revolutionary movement.
Our party, in the decisions of its 20th and 22nd Congresses, and the world communist movement in the Declaration and Statement, set before Communists, as a vital and urgent task, the struggle for peace, the struggle to avert a world thermonuclear catastrophe. We realistically appraise the balance of strength in the world and draw the conclusion that, though the nature of imperialism has not changed, and the danger of war breaking out has not been averted, in modern conditions the forces of peace, of which the mighty community of socialist states is the main bulwark, can, through their joint efforts, prevent a new world war.
We also soberly appraise the radical, qualitative change of the means of waging war and, accordingly, its possible consequences. The nuclear and rocket weapons created in the middle of this century have changed former conceptions of war. These weapons possess unprecedented destructive power. Suffice it to say that the explosion of only one powerful thermonuclear bomb surpasses the explosive force of all the ammunition used during all previous wars, including the first and the second world wars. And many thousands of such bombs have been accumulated.
Have Communists the right to ignore this danger? Must we tell the people the whole truth about the consequences of a thermonuclear war? We believe that undoubtedly we must. This cannot have a "paralyzing" effect on the masses, as the Chinese comrades assert. On the contrary, the truth about modern war mobilizes the will and energy of the masses for the struggle for peace, against imperialism -- the source of the war danger.
The historic task of the Communists is to organize and head the struggle of the peoples to prevent a world thermonuclear war.
Prevention of a new world war is a fully real and feasible task. The 20th Congress of our party arrived at a conclusion of the utmost importance -- that in our times there is no fatal inevitability of war between states. That conclusion is based not merely on good intentions; it is the result of a realistic, strictly scientific analysis of the balance of class forces in the world arena; it is based on the vast might of world socialism. Our views on this question are shared by the entire world communist movement. "World war can be averted"; "a real possibility will have arisen to exclude world war from the life of society even before socialism achieves complete victory on earth, with capitalism still existing in a part of the world," the Statement stresses.
That Statement bears the signatures also of the Chinese comrades.
But what is the position of the CPC leadership? What can be the meaning of the propositions they advocate, viz., that we cannot put an end to war as long as imperialism exists; that peaceful co-existence is an illusion, it is not the general foreign-policy principle of the socialist countries; that the struggle for peace hinders revolutionary struggle?
These propositions mean that the Chinese comrades are acting contrary to the general policy of the world communist movement on questions of war and peace. They do not believe in the possibility of preventing a new world war, they underestimate the forces of peace and socialism and overestimate the forces of imperialism, and virtually ignore the mobilization of the masses to fight the war danger.
It turns out that the Chinese comrades do not believe in the ability of the peoples of the socialist countries, the international working class, and all the democratic and peace-loving forces to foil the plans of the warmongers and achieve peace for our and future generations. What is behind the loud revolutionary phrases of the Chinese comrades? Disbelief in the strength of the working class and its revolutionary: capabilities, disbelief both in the possibility of peaceful coexistence and in the victory of the proletariat in the class struggle. The struggle to prevent war unites all peace-loving forces. They differ in class composition and class interests. But they can be united by the struggle for peace, for averting war, because the atomic bomb does not draw class distinctions -- it destroys everybody within the range of its destructive action.
To follow the road proposed by the Chinese comrades would be to alienate the masses from the Communist parties, which have won the sympathies of the peoples by their persevering and courageous struggle for peace.
In the minds of the broad masses; socialism and peace are now inseparable!
The Chinese comrades obviously underestimate all the danger a thermonuclear war would present. "The atomic bomb is a paper tiger," it "is not at all terrible," they contend. The main thing, they say, is to put an end to imperialism as quickly as possible, but how and with what losses this will be achieved appears to be a secondary question. Secondary for whom, it may be asked -- for the hundreds of millions of people who would be doomed to death if a thermonuclear war were unleashed? For the countries that would be wiped off the face of the earth in the very first hours of such a war?
No one, not even a big state, has the right to play with the destinies of millions of people. Those who do not want to exert themselves to banish world war from the life of the peoples, to avert mass annihilation and destruction of the values of human civilization, deserve condemnation.
The CPC Central Committee letter of June 14 has much to say about "inevitable sacrifices," allegedly in the name of the revolution. Some responsible Chinese leaders have also declared that it is possible to sacrifice hundreds of millions of people in a war. There is this assertion in the collection "Long Live Leninism!" which was approved by the CPC Central Committee: "The victorious peoples will create with tremendous speed on the ruins of destroyed imperialism a civilization a thousand times higher than under the capitalist system, and will build a really beautiful future."
It is permissible to ask the Chinese comrades: do they realize what sort of "ruins" a world nuclear and rocket war would leave behind?
The CPSU Central Committee -- and we are convinced that the entire party and the Soviet people unanimously support us in this -- cannot share the views of the Chinese leadership about the creation of "a thousand times higher civilization" on the corpses of hundreds of millions of people. Such views are fundamentally contrary to the ideas of Marxism-Leninism.
It is permissible to ask the Chinese comrades: what means do they propose for the destruction of imperialism? We fully favour the destruction of imperialism and capitalism. Not only do we believe in the inevitable demise of capitalism, but we are doing everything to achieve this through the class struggle, and as soon as possible. Who must decide this historic question? First of all, the working class, guided by its vanguard -- the Marxist-Leninist party, the working people of each country.
The Chinese comrades propose something different. They frankly say: "On the ruins of destroyed imperialism," in other words, as a result of the unleashing of war, "a beautiful future will be built." If we are to accept that then, indeed, there is no need for the principle of peaceful co-existence, for the struggle to strengthen peace. We cannot take such an adventuristic path: it contradicts the essence of Marxism-Leninism.
Everyone knows that under present conditions a world war would be a thermonuclear war. The imperialists will never agree to quit the scene voluntarily, to put themselves into the coffin of their own free will, without having resorted to the extreme methods at their disposal.
Apparently those who describe the thermonuclear weapon as a "paper tiger" are not fully aware of its destructive power.
We soberly take this into account. We ourselves produce thermonuclear weapons and have manufactured them in sufficient quantities. We know their destructive power full well. And if imperialism starts a war against us, we shall not hesitate to use this formidable weapon against the aggressor. But if we are not attacked, we shall not be the first to use it.
Marxists-Leninists strive to ensure durable peace not by supplications to imperialism, but by rallying the revolutionary Marxist-Leninist parties, by rallying the working class of all countries, by rallying the peoples fighting for their freedom and national independence, by relying on the economic and defence might of the socialist states.
We might ask the Chinese comrades, who offer to build a beautiful future on the ruins of the old world destroyed by thermonuclear war: did they consult, on this issue, the working class of countries where imperialism is in power? The working class of the capitalist countries would be sure to tell them: are we asking you to unleash war and destroy our countries in the process of destroying the imperialists. After all, the monopolists, the imperialists, are only a comparatively small group, while the bulk of the population of the capitalist countries consists of the working class, the working peasantry, working intelligentsia. The atomic bomb does not distinguish between imperialists and working people, it strikes at areas, so that millions of workers would be killed for every monopolist destroyed. The working class, the working people, will ask such "revolutionaries": What right have you to decide for us questions involving our very existence and our class struggle -- we too want socialism, but we want to win it through the class struggle, not by unleashing a world thermonuclear war.
The way the Chinese comrades present the question can arouse legitimate suspicion that this is no longer a class approach to the struggle for the abolition of capitalism, but that there are entirely different aims. If both the exploiters and the exploited are buried under the ruins of the old world, who will build the "beautiful future"?
The fact cannot pass unnoticed, in this connection, that instead of the class, internationalist approach expressed in the slogan "Workers of all countries, united the Chinese comrades stubbornly propagate a slogan deprived of all class meaning: "The wind from the East prevails over the wind from the West."
On questions of the socialist revolution our party firmly adheres to Marxist-Leninist class positions, believing that in each country the revolution is carried out by the working class, the working people, without outside military interference.
It stands to reason, of course, that if the imperialist madmen unleash a war, the peoples will sweep away capitalism and bury it. But the Communists, representatives of the peoples, true champions of socialist humanism, must do everything they can to prevent another world war, in which hundreds of millions would perish.
No party that has the interests of the people at heart can fail to appreciate its responsibility in the struggle to avert another world war and endure peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems.
Expressing the policy of our party, Comrade N. S. Khrushchov said: "There will be liberative wars as long as imperialism exists, as long as colonialism exists. These are revolutionary wars. Such wars are not only permissible but even unavoidable, since the colonialists do not grant independence to nations voluntarily. Therefore it is only through struggle, including armed struggle, that the peoples can win freedom and independence." The Soviet Union is rendering the broadest support to the national-liberation movement. Everybody is familiar with the practical assistance our country has given the peoples of Viet-Nam, Egypt, Iraq, Algeria, Yemen, Cuba and other countries.
The Communist Party of the Soviet Union has proclaimed the Leninist principle of peaceful co-existence the general line of Soviet foreign policy and is unswervingly following that line. Since 1953, and particularly after the 20th Congress of the CPSU, the effect of our peace policy and its influence on the course of international relations in the interests of the masses have sharply increased.
The Chinese comrades allege that in our understanding, the concept "peaceful co-existence" exhausts all the principles of our relations not only with imperialist countries, but also with the socialist countries and the countries that have recently broken out of the colonial yoke. They know perfectly well that this is not the case, that we were the first to proclaim the principle of friendship and comradely mutual assistance as the most important principle in relations between the countries of socialism and adhere to it firmly and consistently, that we render all-round and manifold assistance to liberated nations. And yet, for some reason, they find it to their advantage to present all this in an entirely distorted light.
The Soviet Union's persevering struggle for peace and international security, general and complete disarmament, elimination of the vestiges of World War II, negotiated settlement of all international issues, has yielded its results. Our country's prestige throughout the world stands higher than ever. Our international position is stronger than ever. We owe this to the steadily growing economic and military might of the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries, to their peaceful foreign policy.
The CPSU Central Committee declares that we have been following; are now following, and will continue to follow the Lenin policy of peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems. In this our party sees its duty both to the Soviet people and the peoples of all other countries. To ensure peace means to contribute most effectively to the consolidation of the socialist system, and, consequently, to the growth of its influence on the entire course of the liberation struggle, on the world revolutionary process.
The deep difference in the views on war, peace and peaceful co-existence held by the CPSU and other Marxist-Leninist parties, on the one hand, and the CPC leaders, on the other, was manifested with particular clarity during the 1962 Caribbean crisis. It was a sharp international crisis: never before had mankind come so close to the brink of thermonuclear war as it did last October.
The Chinese comrades claim that in the period of the Caribbean crisis we made an "adventuristic" mistake by supplying rockets to Cuba and then "capitulated" to American imperialism when we withdrew the rockets from Cuba.[**]
Such assertions utterly contradict the facts.
How did things actually stand? The CPSU Central Committee and the Soviet government had reliable information that United States imperialism was about to launch armed aggression against Cuba. It was amply clear to us that to rebuff aggression, to defend the Cuban revolution effectively, would require the most resolute measures. Imprecations and warnings -- even if they are called "serious warnings" and are repeated 250 times -- have no effect on the imperialists.
Proceeding from the need to defend the Cuban revolution, the Soviet government and the government of Cuba reached agreement on the stationing of missiles on Cuba, since this was the only realistic means of preventing American imperialist aggression. The delivery of missiles to Cuba signified that an attack on her would meet with a resolute rebuff, with the employment of rocket weapons against the organizers of the aggression. This resolute step on the part of the Soviet Union and Cuba came as a shock to the American imperialists -- for the first time in history they were made to feel that an armed attack on Cuba would be answered by a smashing blow at their own territory.
Inasmuch as it was not merely a conflict between the United States and Cuba, but a clash between the two major nuclear powers, the Caribbean crisis would have developed into a world crisis. There was a real danger of world thermonuclear war.
There were two possibilities in the prevailing situation: either to fall in with the "wildmen" (the appellation of the most aggressive and reactionary representatives of American imperialism) and follow a path that would unleash a world thermonuclear war, or, using the opportunities offered by the delivery of missiles, to take all measures to reach agreement on peaceful settlement of the crisis and prevent aggression against the Cuban Republic.
We chose, as is known, the second path and we are convinced that we acted rightly. We are confident that this is the unanimous view of our people. The Soviet people have on more than one occasion demonstrated their ability to stand up for themselves, defend the cause of the revolution, the cause of socialism. And no one knows better than they how much grief and suffering war brings, what hardships and sacrifices it costs the peoples.
Agreement on the removal of the missile weapons in reply to the United States government's commitment not to invade Cuba and keep its allies from doing so, the heroic struggle of the Cuban people, the support given them by the peace-loving nations, made it possible to thwart the plans of the extreme adventuristic circles of American imperialism, which were ready to go the whole hog. As a result it was possible to defend revolutionary Cuba and save peace.
The Chinese comrades regard as an "embellishment of imperialism" our statement that the Kennedy government, too, displayed a certain reasonableness, a realistic approach in the course of the crisis around Cuba. Do they really think that all bourgeois governments, in all their doings, lack reason?
Thanks to the courageous and farsighted policy of the U.S.S.R., the staunchness and restraint of the heroic Cuban people and their government, the forces of socialism and peace proved their ability to curb the aggressive forces of imperialism and impose peace on the war advocates. This was a major victory for the policy of reason, for the forces of peace and socialism; this was a defeat for the forces of imperialism, for the policy of war gambles.
As a result, revolutionary Cuba is living in peace and is building socialism under the leadership of her United Party of the Socialist Revolution and the leader of the Cuban people, Comrade Fidel Castro Ruz.
When agreement was reached with the President of the United States, and a start thus made on liquidating the Caribbean crisis, the Chinese comrades were particularly inventive in insulting and abusing the Soviet Union, arguing that there was no believing the imperialists' word.
We are living in an age when there are two worlds, two systems: socialism and imperialism. It would be absurd to think that all the issues inevitably arising in relations between the countries of these two systems must be resolved only by force of arms, ruling out talks and agreements. If that were so, there would never be an end to war. We reject such an approach.
The Chinese comrades argue that the imperialists cannot be believed in anything, that they are bound to deceive. It is not a matter of believing, but of sober calculation. Eight months have passed since liquidation of the crisis in the Caribbean, and the United States government is keeping its word -- there has been no invasion of Cuba. We, too, have fulfilled our obligation to remove the missiles from Cuba.
But it should also be remembered that we have undertaken an obligation to the Cuban people too: if the United States imperialists do not keep their promise and invade Cuba, we shall come to the assistance of the Cuban people. Every sensible person realizes that in the event of an American imperialist invasion, we shall come to the assistance of the Cuban people from Soviet territory, just as we would have helped them from Cuban territory. True, in that case the rockets would be in flight slightly longer, but their precision would not be impaired.
Why, then, do the Chinese comrades obstinately ignore the assessment the leaders of the Cuban revolution themselves have given the Soviet government's policy as a policy of fraternal solidarity and genuine internationalism? What are the Chinese leaders dissatisfied with? The fact, perhaps, that it was possible to prevent the invasion of Cuba and the unleashing of world war?
And what line of conduct did the CPC leadership take during the Caribbean crisis? At that critical moment the Chinese comrades opposed to the realistic and firm stand of the Soviet government their own position. Guided by some particular concepts of their own, they concentrated the fire of their criticism not so much on U.S. aggressive imperialism as on the CPSU and the Soviet Union.
The CPC leadership, which had been arguing that imperialism might at any time unleash a world war, at this crucial juncture assumed the role of critic, not of fighting ally and comrade. In those days no one heard statements from the Chinese leaders about their practical actions in defence of the Cuban revolution. Instead, the Chinese leaders were clearly working to aggravate the already critical situation in the Caribbean area, and added fuel to the smouldering coals of the conflict.
The true position of the CPC leadership on the issue of war and peace, its gross underestimation -- more, its deliberate ignoring -- of the struggle for disarmament, has been brought out with full clarity. The Chinese comrades object to Communists even raising this question, going to the length of pleading adherence to Marxism-Leninism, and trying to prove in every way the "infeasibility" of disarmament, on the one hand, and its needlessness on the other. Juggling with quotations, they try to prove that general disarmament is possible only with socialism triumphant the world over.
Must Marxists sit and wait for the world victory of socialism at a time when the world is in the suffocating clutches of the arms race, when the imperialists are stockpiling nuclear arms and threaten to plunge mankind into the abyss of a world war?
No, that would be criminal inaction in face of the imperative needs of the times.
This truth has long been known to all genuine Marxists-Leninists, who are aware of their responsibility to the peoples and who for several years have been waging -- and will go on waging -- a hard and persistent struggle for general and complete disarmament, for prohibition of nuclear weapons and their testing.
In fighting for peace, in advancing the slogan of general disarmament, we proceed from the vital interests of the peoples, take account of the actual situation and do not shut our eyes to the difficulties. The imperialists are naturally doing everything to delay and wreck agreement on disarmament -- they stand to gain by this. They use the arms race to enrich themselves and to hold the people in capitalist countries in a state of fear. But must we swim with the stream, must we follow in the wake of imperialism and refuse to mobilize all the forces to fight for peace and disarmament?
No. That would mean surrendering to the aggressive forces, to the militarists and imperialists. We believe that the working class, the working people of all countries, can force the imperialist governments to accept disarmament, can prevent war. For this they must above all become conscious of their strength and unite.
There must be opposed to the forces of imperialism and war the organized might of the world working class. It now has the advantage of being able to rely on the material power and the defence might of the socialist countries, which stand opposed to imperialism. The time when imperialism held complete sway has gone for ever. The situation has also changed sharply compared with the first decades after the October Revolution, when our country was alone and much weaker than today. In our day there is an entirely different balance of strength in the world arena. That is why to maintain that war is inevitable is to display lack of faith in the forces of socialism, to succumb to moods of hopelessness and defeatism.
One can repeat endlessly that war is inevitable, passing off this view as proof of one's "revolutionary spirit." In actual fact, this approach merely indicates disbelief in ones strength, fear of imperialism.
There are still powerful forces in the imperialist camp opposed to disarmament. But it is precisely to compel these forces to retreat that we must rouse the peoples' wrath against them, force them to comply with the will of the peoples.
The peoples want disarmament and believe that the Communists are the vanguard and organizers of the struggle to achieve it.
Our struggle for disarmament is not a tactical expedient. We sincerely want disarmament. And here we stand four-square on Marxism-Leninism. Way back at the close of the last century, Frederick Engels pointed out that disarmament was possible, describing it as the "guarantee of peace." In our time, the disarmament slogan was first advanced as a practical aim by V. I. Lenin, and the first Soviet proposals on complete or partial disarmament were submitted as early as 1922, at the Genoa Conference. This was in Lenin's lifetime, and he formulated the disarmament proposals.
The struggle for disarmament is a cardinal factor in averting war. It is an effective struggle against imperialism. In this struggle the socialist camp has on its side the absolute majority of mankind.
The Chinese comrades put out the slogan "spearpoint against spearpoint" as a counter-blast to the policy of the other socialist countries aimed at improving the international situation and ending the cold war. This slogan, in effect, brings grist to the mill of imperialist brinkmanship policy and helps the arms race supporters. One gets the impression that the CPC leaders consider it to their advantage to preserve and aggravate international tension, especially in relations between the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A. They apparently believe that the Soviet Union should reply to provocation by provocation, should fall into the traps set by the imperialist "wildmen," should accept the imperialist challenge to competition in adventurism and aggressiveness, that is, to competition in unleashing war, not in assuring peace.
To take that road would be to jeopardize the peace and security of the nations. The Communists, who cherish the interests of the peoples, will never follow that road.
The struggle for peace, for implementation of the principle of peaceful co-existence of countries with different social systems, is one of the most important forms of the peoples' struggle against imperialism, against the new wars it is preparing, against aggressive imperialist actions in colonial countries, against imperialist military bases on foreign territory, against the arms race, etc. This struggle is in the interests of the working class, of all the working people, and in that sense it is a class struggle.
Our party, all fraternal parties, remember, and are guided by, the conclusion drawn in the Statement that the struggle against the danger of a new world war has to be developed without waiting for the atomic and hydrogen bombs to be dropped. The struggle must be waged now, and intensified from day to day. The main thing is to curb the aggressors a in good time, prevent war, not allow it to break out. Fighting for peace today implies maintaining supreme vigilance, tirelessly exposing imperialist policy, keeping close watch on the war instigators' manoeuvres and machinations, rousing the wrath of the peoples against those whose policy is war, enhancing the organization of the peace forces, constantly intensifying mass activity for peace, strengthening co-operation with all states not interested in new wars.
The struggle for peace and peaceful co-existence weakens the front of imperialism, isolates its most aggressive circles from the people and helps advance the revolutionary struggle of the working class and the national-liberation struggle of the peoples.
The struggle for peace and peaceful co-existence is organically linked with the revolutionary struggle against imperialism. "In conditions of peaceful co-existence," the Statement of the 81 Communist parties says, "favourable opportunities are provided for the development of the class struggle in the capitalist countries and the national-liberation movement of the peoples of the colonial and dependent countries. In their turn, the successes of the revolutionary class and national-liberation struggle promote peaceful co-existence."
In conditions of peaceful co-existence, new important victories have been scored in recent years in the class struggle of the proletariat and in the struggle of the peoples for national freedom. The world revolutionary process is developing successfully.
For this reason, to separate the fight for peaceful co-existence of countries with different social systems from the revolutionary fight against imperialism and colonialism, for independence and socialism -- to counterpose them, as the Chinese comrades do -- is to reduce the principle of peaceful co-existence to a hollow phrase, to deprive it of all real meaning, to ignore, in effect, the need for resolute struggle against imperialism, for peace and peaceful co-existence. But that would be to the benefit only of the imperialists.
In its June 14 letter, the CPC Central Committee accuses the Communist parties of extending peaceful co-existence of countries with different social systems to relations between the exploiters and the exploited, between the oppressed and oppressor classes, between the working people and the imperialists. This is a monstrous fabrication and slander of the fraternal parties, which are leading the proletariat in its class battles with capital and which always support the revolutionary struggle and the just liberation wars against imperialism.
The arguments the CPC leaders advance in their struggle against the CPSU and the other fraternal parties are so feeble that they have to resort to all manner of subterfuge. They begin by ascribing to us absolutely groundless propositions of their own invention and then proceed to accuse us, to fight us and expose these propositions. That applies to their absurd allegation that the CPSU and the other fraternal parties have renounced revolution and have substituted peaceful coexistence for the class struggle. Even political-study-group students know that peaceful co-existence applies to governmental relations between socialist and capitalist states. The principle of peaceful co-existence, naturally, can in no way be extended to relations between antagonistic classes in capitalist states. Nor is it permissible to extend it to the working-class struggle against the bourgeoisie for its class interests, or to the struggle of oppressed peoples against the colonialists. The CPSU is resolutely opposed to peaceful co-existence in ideology. This is a truism which all who regard themselves as Marxists-Leninists should have mastered.
There are serious differences between the CPC and the CPSU and the other Marxist-Leninist parties on the question of combating the consequences of the Stalin personality cult.
The CPC leaders have taken upon themselves the role of defenders of the personality cult and peddlers of Stalin's erroneous ideas. They are trying to impose upon other parties the order of things, the ideology and morals, the forms and methods of leadership that flourished in the period of the personality cult. Let it be frankly said that this is an unenviable role, and one that will bring them neither honour nor glory. No one will succeed in persuading Marxists-Leninists, or progressives in general, to take up the defence of the personality cult.
The Soviet people and the world communist movement highly appreciate the courage, boldness, the truly Leninist firmness of principle displayed by our party and its Central Committee headed by N. S. Khrushchov in eliminating the consequences of the personality cult.
Everyone knows that our party did this in order to remove the heavy burden that fettered the powerful forces of the people and thereby accelerate the development of Soviet society. Our party did this in order to keep pure the ideals of socialism bequested to us by the great Lenin and purge them of the stigma of abuse of personal power and arbitrariness. It did this in order to prevent a recurrence of the tragic events that were a concomitant of the personality cult, to help all fighters for socialism draw lessons from our experience.
The entire communist movement correctly understood and supported the struggle against the personality cult, which is alien to Marxism-Leninism, against its harmful consequences.
The Chinese leaders, too, approved. They spoke of the tremendous international significance of the 20th CPSU Congress.
In his opening address at the Eighth Congress of the Communist Party of China, in September 1956, Comrade Mao Tse-tung said:
"The Soviet comrades, the Soviet people, have acted in accordance with Lenin's instructions. They have achieved brilliant successes in a brief space of time. The recent 20th Congress of the CPSU likewise worked out many correct political propositions and condemned shortcomings in the work of the party. It can be said with confidence that in future their work will develop on an exceptionally great scale."
In the political report of the CPC Central Committee, delivered at the Congress by Comrade Liu Shao-chi, this appraisal was further amplified:
"The 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, held in February this year, is a most important political event of world-wide significance. It not only outlined the magnificent sixth five-year plan and a number of most important political directives aimed at furthering the cause of socialism and condemned the personality cult, which had led to serious consequences in the party, but it also advanced proposals for the further promotion of peaceful co-existence and international co-operation and made an outstanding contribution to the relaxation of international tension."
Comrade Teng Hsiao-ping, in his report on changes in the Party Rules at the same Eighth Congress of the CPC, said:
"Leninism requires that party decisions on all important questions be taken by an appropriate collective, and not individually. The 20th Congress of the CPSU convincingly demonstrated the great importance of unswerving observance of the principle of collective leadership and of the struggle against the personality cult. This has had a tremendous influence not only on the CPSU, but also on Communist parties in all countries of the world."
In the well-known editorial in the People's Daily newspaper, "Once More on the Historical Experience of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat" (December 1956), the Chinese comrades wrote:
"The 20th Congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union displayed tremendous determination and courage in eliminating the Stalin cult, in exposing Stalin's grave errors and in eliminating the consequences of Stalin's errors. Throughout the world Marxists-Leninists and those who sympathize with the cause of communism support the efforts of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to correct the errors and wish the Soviet comrades complete success in their efforts."
And that is how things really stood.
Any unbiased person who compares these pronouncements of the Chinese leaders with the CPC Central Committee letter of June 14 will see that they have made a 180-degree turn in their evaluation of the 20th Congress of our party.
But are vacillation and inconsistency permissible on such questions of principle? Of course, they are not. Either the Chinese leaders had no differences with the CPSU Central Committee on these questions of principle before, or all these statements were false.
It is well known that practice is the best criterion of truth. And practice has convincingly proved that realization of the line of the 20th, 21st and 22nd Congresses of the CPSU has produced splendid results in the life of our country. In the ten years since the time when our party made a sharp turn towards restoration of the Leninist principles and norms in party life, Soviet society achieved truly majestic results in economic, scientific and cultural development, in raising prosperity standards, in consolidating its defence potential, in the successful pursuance of its foreign policy.
The atmosphere of fear, suspicion and uncertainty which poisoned the life of the people in the period of the personality cult became a thing of the past. No one can deny that the Soviet people began to live better and enjoy the benefits of socialism. Ask the worker (and there are millions of them!) who moved into a new apartment, ask the pensioner who is well provided for in his old age, the collective farmer who is now well-to-do, ask the thousands upon thousands of people who suffered unjust repressions in the period of the personality cult and to whom freedom and their good name were restored, and you will know what practical meaning the victory of the Leninist course of the 20th CPSU Congress has had for the Soviet people.
Ask those whose fathers and mothers were victims of repression in the period of the personality cult what it meant to have their fathers, mothers and brothers accepted as honest people, and to know that they themselves are not outcasts of our society, but worthy and full-fledged sons and daughters of the Soviet fatherland.
Industry, agriculture, culture, science, art -- no matter where we turn, we witness rapid progress. Our spaceships are furrowing the expanses of the Universe, and this, too, provides brilliant confirmation that the course along which our party leads the Soviet people is a correct one.
Of course, we do not maintain that we have done everything for Soviet man, for improving his life. The Soviet people understand that the achievement of this principle depends not only on our wish. We have to build communist society and create an abundance of material benefits. That is why our people are working with such devotion to accelerate the production of material and cultural values and bring closer the victory of communism. Everyone can see that we are following a correct course, that we clearly see the prospects of our development.
The CPSU Programme maps out a concrete plan of the construction of communism. Its implementation will ensure the Soviet people the highest living standards and will be the start of our gradual transition to the inspiring communist principle: "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs."
The Soviet people find it strange and fantastic that the Chinese comrades should seek to discredit the Programme of the CPSU, that majestic plan of building communist society.
The CPC leaders hint that, since our party has made its aim a better life for the people, Soviet society is being "bourgeoisified," is "degenerating." According to their logic, if people wear bast sandals and eat thin soup from a common bowl -- that is communism, and if a working man lives well and wants to live better still tomorrow -- that is very nearly the restoration of capitalism.
And this philosophy they want to present to us as the latest revelation of Marxism-Leninism! This fully exposes the authors of such "theories" as men who have no faith in the strength and capabilities of a working class that has taken power into its own hands and created its own, socialist state.
If we turn to the history of our country, to the CPSU Programme, we will readily see where we began when, under the leadership of Lenin, we took power into our hands, and what summits the Soviet people have reached. Our country has been transformed into a great socialist power. In volume of industrial production the Soviet Union is first in Europe and second in the world. It will soon surpass the United States and advance to first place. The Soviet working class, the Soviet collective-farm peasantry, the Soviet intelligentsia, are the creators of all our victories.
We are convinced that not only the Soviet people, but the peoples of other socialist countries, too, are capable of great achievements on the labour front -- all that is necessary is correct guidance of the working class and peasantry, and that those responsible for such guidance think realistically and take decisions that direct the people's strength and energies along the correct path.
In an attempt to justify the personality cult, the Chinese leaders have overloaded their letter with allegations about a class struggle in the U.SS.R., and allege that the CPSU Programme proposition on a state of the entire people and a party of the entire people is wrong. These allegations are far removed from Marxism.
We do not intend to analyze all their arguments in detail in this letter. Anyone who reads the CPC Central Committee letter of June 14 will undoubtedly notice that its arguments are utterly helpless and betray complete isolation from Soviet life. We are being taught that hostile classes still remain in Soviet society and the need therefore remains, we are told, for the dictatorship of the proletariat. What classes? From the CPC letter one concludes that they are "bourgeois hangerson, parasites, blackmarketeers, thieves, idlers, hooligans and embezzlers."
The Chinese comrades certainly have a unique notion of classes and class struggle. Since when have these parasitic elements been considered a class? And what class? A class of idlers or a class of hooligans, a class of embezzlers, or a class of parasites? In no society do criminals constitute a class. Even schoolboys know that. And, of course, these elements do not constitute a class in socialist society. These are manifestations of the survivals of capitalism.
You do not need proletarian dictatorship to combat such elements. The state of the entire people can fully cope, and is coping, with this task. We know from our own experience that the better the educational work of party, trade union and other public organizations, the higher the role of the public, the better the work of the Soviet militia, the more effective is the struggle against crime.
There is no refuting the fact that Soviet society is now made up of two main classes -- the workers and the peasants, also the intelligentsia, that no class of Soviet society occupies a position enabling it to exploit other classes. Dictatorship is a class concept; over whom do the Chinese comrades propose to exercise dictatorship of the proletariat in the Soviet Union: over the collective-farm peasantry or the people's intelligentsia? One must reckon with the fact that in socialist society the class of workers and the class of peasants have changed substantially, that the differences and distinctions between them are being steadily obliterated.
After the complete and final victory of socialism, the working class effects its guiding role not through dictatorship of the proletariat. It still remains the front-rank class of society in conditions of full-scale construction of communism. Its front-rank role is determined by its economic position, by the fact that it is directly connected with the highest form of socialist property, and by the fact that it is more steeled by decades of class struggle and revolutionary experience.
The Chinese comrades refer to Marx's proposition that the content of the transition period from capitalism to communism can be only dictatorship of the proletariat. But Marx had in mind communism as a whole, as an integral socio-economic formation (of which socialism is the first stage), the transition to which is impossible without socialist revolution and dictatorship of the proletariat. There are a number of pronouncements of V. I. Lenin, emphasizing with absolute clarity that the dictatorship of the proletariat is needed precisely to overcome resistance of the exploiting classes, organize socialist construction, ensure the victory of socialism -- the first phase of communism. It is clear from this that the need for dictatorship of the proletariat disappears after the victory of socialism, when only working people, friendly classes, the nature of which has changed radically, remain in society and there is no one to suppress.
If we were to extract the substance of the mass of pseudo-theoretical disquisitions on these questions in the CPC Central Committee letter, it would boil down to the following: the Chinese comrades are opposed to the CPSU policy of developing socialist democracy, so forcefully formulated in the decisions of the 20th, 21st and 22nd Party Congresses and the CPSU Programme. It is no mere accident that their lengthy letter does not even mention the development of democracy in conditions of socialism, in conditions of building communism.
It is hard fully to ascertain the Chinese comrades' motivation in upholding the personality cult. In effect, this is the first time in the history of the international communist movement that we meet with open extollation of the personality cult. It should be observed that even at the height of the personality cult in our country, Stalin himself was forced, at least in words, to reject this petty-bourgeois theory, saying that it stemmed from the Socialist-Revolutionaries.
The attempt to plead the authority of Marx and Lenin in defence of the ideology of the personality cult can only evoke surprise. Are the Chinese comrades really unaware of the fact that in the very early days of our party Lenin conducted a vigorous struggle against the Narodniks' theories of the hero and the mob, that genuine collective methods of leadership in the Central Committee of our party and the Soviet state were implemented under Lenin, that Lenin was an extraordinarily modest person and mercilessly castigated the slightest manifestations of toadyism and servility?
Of course, the struggle against the personality cult has never been regarded by our party or the other Marxist-Leninist parties as negation of the authority of party and government leaders. Time and again, at the 20th and 22nd Congresses and on other occasions, the CPSU has stressed that the party values the authority of its leadership, that, while rejecting the personality cult and combating its consequences, the party has a high regard for leaders who really express the interests of the people and devote all their strength to the struggle for communism, and for this reason enjoy deserved prestige.
The next important issue of difference concerns the ways and methods of the revolutionary struggle of the working class in capitalist countries, of the struggle for national liberation, and the ways of transition of all mankind to socialism.
This is how the Chinese comrades depict our differences on this issue: one side -- they themselves -- stands for world revolution; the other side -- the CPSU and the Marxist-Leninist parties -- has forgotten the revolution, even "fears" it and, instead of revolutionary struggle, is concerned with such things "unworthyf of a genuine revolutionary as peace, economic development of the socialist countries and improvement of their peoples' living standards, the struggle for the democratic rights and vital interests of the working people in capitalist countries.
In reality, however, the line of division between the views of the CPC and those of the international communist movement lies on an entirely different plane: the CPC leaders speak of world revolution where necessary and where not, and flaunt "revolutionary" phrases on every occasion, often without occasion, whereas the other side -- those whom the Chinese comrades criticize -- approach the question of revolution seriously and, instead of highfalutin phrases, are perseveringly working to find the most correct paths for the victory of socialism, paths that accord with the conditions of the era, and are devotedly fighting for national independence, democracy and socialism.
Let us examine the principal views of the Chinese-comrades on the problems of the present-day revolutionary movement.
Will it help the countries and peoples to pass over to socialism if, in the name of "world revolution," they abandon the struggle for peace, the policy of peaceful co-existence and peaceful economic competition, the struggle for the vital interests of the working people and for democratic reforms in capitalist countries? Is it true that in advocating peace and pursuing a policy of peaceful co-existence, the Communists of the socialist countries are concerned only for themselves and are oblivious to their class brothers in the capitalist countries?
Everyone who ponders on the meaning of the present struggle for peace and against thermonuclear war will realize that the Soviet Communists and the fraternal parties in other socialist countries are, by their peace policy, rendering invaluable assistance to the working class and working people generally of the capitalist countries. Nor is it merely a matter of averting nuclear war in order to save from destruction the working class and the people of whole countries, even continents, though this is in itself ample justification of our policy.
There is another consideration -- this policy is the best way of helping the international revolutionary labour movement achieve its basic class aims. Is it not an immense contribution to the working-class struggle that the lands of socialism, in the conditions of the peace they themselves won, are scoring remarkable achievements in economic development, advancing from victory to victory in the scientific and technical fields, steadily improving the living and working conditions of the people and developing and perfecting socialist democracy?
In face of these successes and victories every worker in every capitalist country will say: "Socialism has proved in practice its superiority over capitalism. It is a system worth fighting for." Socialism is now winning men's hearts and minds, not only through books, but primarily by its deeds, by the living example it has set.
The 1960 Statement regards as the chief distinctive feature of our time the fact that the socialist world system is becoming the decisive factor in the development of human society. All the Communist parties represented at the meeting arrived at the conclusion that the international working class and its creation, the socialist world system, is the central factor of our era.
The solution of all the other problems confronting the revolutionary movement depends in very great measure on strengthening the socialist world system. That is why the Communist and Workers' parties have assumed the obligation "indefatigably to strengthen the great socialist community of nations, whose international role arid influence on the course of world events are growing from year to year." And it is in the accomplishment of this all-important task that our party sees its supreme international duty.
V. I. Lenin taught us that "we exert our main influence on the international revolution by our economic policy. . . . In this field the struggle is being waged on an international scale. When we solve this task, we shall have won on an internetional scale, finally and for certain." (Works, Vol. 32, p. 413.)
That behest of the great Lenin has been firmly assimilated by the Soviet Communists; it is being followed by Communists in other lands of socialism. But, it appears, some comrades have decided that Lenin was wrong.
What is this, disbelief in.the ability of the socialist countries to win the economic race with capitalism? Or is it the attitude of men who, confronted with the difficulties of socialist construction, are disappointed and do not see the possibility of exerting our main influence on the international revolutionary movement by our economic achievements, by the example of successful socialist construction in our countries? They want to achieve the revolution quicker, by following paths which, in their opinion, are a short cut. But the victorious revolution can consolidate and extend its achievements and prove socialism's superiority over capitalism only by labour, only by the labour effort of the people. True, this is not easy, especially in the case of revolutions performed in countries inheriting underdeveloped economies. But the example of the Soviet Union and of many other socialist countries convincingly shows that, even under these conditions, immense progress can be made and the superiority of socialism over capitalism demonstrated to the world, providing there is correct leadership.
Further: what is more favourable for the working-class revolutionary struggle in capitalist countries -- an atmosphere of peace and peaceful co-existence, or an atmosphere of unrelaxing international strain and cold war?
There can be no doubt about the answer. For everyone knows that the ruling element in the imperialist powers,is exploiting the cold-war atmosphere to instigate chauvinism, war hysteria and rabid anti-communism in order to place in power the most arrant reactionaries and pro-fascists, abolish democracy, make short shrift of the political parties, trade unions and other mass organizations of the working class.
The Communists' fight for peace tremendously strengthens their ties with the masses, their authority and influence and, consequently, helps to create what is known as the political army of the revolution.
Far from hampering and postponing the struggle for the ultimate aims of the international working class, the fight for peace and peaceful co-existence of states with different social systems makes it possible to give that struggle full scope.
It is hard to believe that the Chinese comrades, men of experience who have themselves performed a revolution, fail to appreciate the chief consideration, namely, that today the world revolution develops through the strengthening of the socialist world system, through the revolutionary class struggles of the workers in the capitalist countries, through the national-liberation movement, the strengthening of the political and economic independence of the newly liberated Afro-Asian countries, through the struggle for peace, against aggressive war, and through the anti-monopoly struggle of the masses. It develops along these and many other paths, which should not be counterposed to each other, but united and directed towards the single goal of overthrowing imperialist domination.
The Chinese comrades haughtily and insultingly accuse the Communist parties of France, Italy, the U.S.A., and other countries of nothing less than opportunism and reformism, of "parliamentary-cretinism," even of sliding into "bourgeois socialism." On what grounds? On the grounds that these Communist parties do not advance the slogan of immediate proletarian revolution, though the Chinese leaders, too, should realize that this cannot be done in the absence of a revolutionary situation.
Every knowledgeable Marxist-Leninist knows that it is premature to advance the slogan of armed uprising in the absence of a revolutionary situation, that this would doom the working class to certain defeat. We know with what great care and seriousness V. I. Lenin regarded this problem, and with what political foresight and knowledge of the concrete situation he approached the question of selecting the time for a revolutionary rising. On the very eve of the October Revolution Lenin pointed out that it would be too early to come out on October 24, and too late on October 26 -- everything might then be lost. Consequently, the seizure of power had to be undertaken on October 25. Who can determine the degree of tension of class contradictions, the existence of a revolutionary situation, the exact moment for acting? That can only be done by the working class of each country, by its vanguard, the Marxist-Leninist party.
The history of the international labour movement shows that it is a bad party which, while calling itself a workers' party, devotes itself solely to economic matters, does not educate the working class in a revolutionary spirit, does not prepare it for political struggle, for the seizure of power. Such a party is bound to slide into reformism. But it is a bad party, too, that approaches political struggle out of context with the struggle for improving the economic position of the working class, the peasantry, the working people generally. Such a party is bound to become isolated from the masses. Only correct utilization of all the forms of class struggle in skilful combination enables a party to become a genuinely revolutionary, Marxist-Leninist party, the leader of the masses, a party capable of directing the working class in the onslaught on capitalism, in the achievement of power.
The mortal sin of many Communist parties in developed capitalist countries, the Chinese comrades think, is that they consider their immediate task to be the struggle for the economic and social interests of the working people, for democratic reforms that are feasible under capitalism and improve the conditions of the working class, peasantry, the petty bourgeois strata, facilitating the establishment of a broad anti-monopoly front as the basis for further struggle for the victory of the socialist revolution -- in other words, that they are doing all the things set out in the Moscow Statement of 1960.
In arguing against all the things the Communist parties in developed capitalist countries are now doing, the Chinese comrades fail to display even an elementary feeling of solidarity with the Communists who are fighting capital on the frontline of the class struggle; they fail to display an understanding of the specific conditions in these countries, of the specific paths followed by the working-class revolutionary movement. In effect, they reject, "in the name of the revolution," the very paths that lead to revolution, and are endeavouring to impose a policy that would isolate the Communist parties from the masses, deprive the working class of its allies in the fight against monopoly rule and capitalism.
The Chinese comrades differ with the world communist movement also on the question of the forms of transition of various countries to socialism.
It is generally known that the CPSU and the Marxist-Leninist parties -- and this is clearly stated in the Moscow conference documents and the CPSU Programme -- believe that both peaceful and non-peaceful transition to socialism is possible. Yet the Chinese comrades obstinately affirm that our and other fraternal parties accept only the peaceful path.
The Central Committee of the CPSU restated its position on this issue in its letter of March 30, 1963:
"The working class and its vanguard, the Marxist-Leninist parties, endeavour to accomplish the socialist revolution by peaceful means, without civil war. Realization of this possibility would accord with the interests of the working class and the entire people, with the general national interest of the country. But, at the same time, the choice of the revolution's path of development depends not only on the working class. If the exploiting classes resort to violence against the people, the working class will be forced to take the non-peaceful path of capturing power. Everything depends on the concrete conditions, on the line-up of class forces within the country and internationally.
"Needless to say, whatever the form of transition from capitalism to socialism, it is possible only through socialist revolution and proletarian dictatorship in its various forms. The CPSU highly regards the self-sacrificing struggle of the working class, led by the Communists, in all capitalist countries and considers it its duty to give it every possible assistance and support."
We have time and again explained our point of view, and there is no need to set it out in more detail here.
But what is the position of the Chinese comrades on this question? It is fully apparent in all their pronouncements and in the CPC Central Committee letter of June 14.
The Chinese comrades consider recognition of armed uprising, always, everywhere and in everything, to be the chief criterion of devotion to the revolution. They thereby virtually negate the possibility of utilizing peaceful forms of struggle for the victory of the socialist revolution, whereas Marxism-Leninism teaches us that the Communists must master all forms of revolutionary class struggle, both violent and non-violent.
Still another important issue is the relation between the international working-class struggle and the national-liberation movement of the Asian, African and Latin-American peoples.
The international revolutionary labour movement -- which now includes also the socialist world system and the Communist parties of the capitalist countries -- and the national-liberation movement of the Asian, African and Latin-American peoples -- these are the great forces of our age, and a correct relationship between them is we cardinal condition for victory over imperialism.
How do the Chinese comrades solve this problem? Their solution is evident from their new "theory," according to which the chief contradiction of our time is not, we are told, between socialism and imperialism, but between the national-liberation movement and imperialism. In the Chinese comrades' opinion, the decisive force in the battle against imperialism is not the socialist world system, and not the international working-class struggle but, again we are told, the national-liberation movement.
The Chinese comrades evidently want to use this as the easiest way of winning popularity among the peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America. But let no one be taken in by that "theory." Its real purpose, irrespective of the wishes of the Chinese theoreticians, is to isolate the national-liberation movement from the international working class and its creation, the socialist world system. But that would offer an immense danger to the national-liberation movement itself.
For indeed, could many Asian peoples, notwithstanding all their heroism and self-sacrifice, win through to victory if the October Revolution and, later, the emergence of the socialist world system, had not shaken imperialism to its very foundations and had not undermined colonialist strength?
And today, too, when the liberated nations have entered a new stage in their struggle and are concentrating their efforts on consolidating their political gains and economic independence -- do they not realize that it would be immeasurably harder, if not altogether impossible, to accomplish these tasks without assistance from the socialist countries?
Marxists-Leninists always emphasize the epochal importance and great future of the national-liberation movement. But they believe that one of the chief conditions for its continued advance is firm alliance and co-operation with the countries of the socialist world system, the main force in the battle against imperialism, and with the labour movement of the capitalist countries. That attitude was formulated in the 1960 Statement. It is based on Lenin's idea of working-class leadership (hegemony) as a requisite for victory in the anti-imperialist struggle. Only given such hegemony, can the movement, in the final analysis, acquire a genuine socialist character, culminating in its transition to the path of socialist revolution.
That idea of Lenin, verified by the experience of the October Revolution and of other countries, has never aroused doubt in anyone. It appears, however, that the Chinese comrades want to "correct" Lenin and prove that hegemony in the world struggle against imperialism should go not to the working class, but to the petty bourgeoisie or the national bourgeoisie, even to "certain patriotically-minded kings, princes and aristocrats." And after that the CPC leadership sets out to teach the world communist movement that never, under no circumstanees, must we abandon our proletarian, class approach!
The earnest of future victories, both of the international working class and the national-liberation movement, lies in their firm alliance and co-operation, in joint struggle, dictated by their common interests, against imperialism. In this struggle, the working class, by its selfless dedication to the interests of all the peoples, wins acceptance of its leading part and convinces its allies that its leadership is a reliable guarantee of victory for itself and for them.
Our Leninist party regards the national-liberation movement as a component part of the world revolutionary process, as a mighty force combating imperialism. The great slogan "Workers of All Countries, United", given us by Marx and Engels, the founders of scientific communism, became the battle banner of the international proletariat. In the new conditions of history created by the victory of the Great October Revolution, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, who continued the work of Marx and Engels, especially emphasized the unbreakable link between the socialist revolution and the national-liberation movement.
"Workers of All Countries, Unite!" was and remains the chief slogan in the struggle for the victory of the world revolution. It has acquired wider meaning in the new conditions. We know that Lenin approved the slogan: "Workers of All Countries and Oppressed Peoples, Unite!" Emphasized in this slogan is the leading role of the proletariat and the enhanced significance of the national-liberation movement. Our party strictly abides by this Marxist-Leninist internationalist principle in all its activities.
It might be asked: what is the explanation for the erroneous propositions of the CPC leadership on the crucial issues of our age? The Chinese comrades are either completely divorced from reality and approach the problems of war, peace and revolution in a dogmatic, bookish way, failing to understand the concrete conditions of our era, or behind their clamour about "world revolution" are other aims, aims that have nothing in common with revolution.
All this shows that the policy the CPC leadership is seeking to impose on the world communist movement is an erroneous and fatal one. For what the Chinese comrades propose under the guise of a "general line" is but an enumeration of the most general tasks of the working class, an enumeration, moreover, that does not take into account the times we are living in, the real inter-relationship of class forces, and the peculiarities of the present stage of history. The Chinese comrades fail to notice, or do not want to notice, how the tasks of our movement are changing in accordance with the conditions of the present era. By reducing the general line to general tasks that apply to every stage of the transition from capitalism to socialism, they deprive it of concreteness, purposefulness and efficacy.
In working out their present policy, the fraternal parties concretely analyzed the line-up of class forces in individual countries and on a world scale, the distinguishing features in the development of the two mutually-opposed systems, and the present stage in the development of the national-liberation movement.
A precise analysis of changes in the world situation enabled the fraternal parties of the whole world to work out a MarxistLeninist definition of our era: "Our time, whose main content is the transition from capitalism to socialism, initiated by the Great October Socialist Revolution, is a time of struggle between the two opposing social systems, a time of socialist revolutions and national-liberation revolutions, a time of the breakdown of imperialism, of the abolition of the colonial system, a time of transition of more peoples to the socialist path, of the triumph of socialism and communism on a worldwide scale."
This definition of our era was the basis for a correct approach in working out the strategy and tactics of the world communist movement.
The Marxist-Leninist parties have defined their general line, the basic propositions of which are as follows:
-- the nature and content of the world revolutionary process in our time are determined by the merger into a single stream of the struggle against imperialism waged by the peoples building socialism and communism, the revolutionary working-class movement in capitalist countries, the national-liberation movement of oppressed peoples, and general democratic movements; the decisive role in the alliance of anti-imperialist revolutionary forces belongs to the international working class and its chief creation -- the socialist world system, which exerts its main influence on the development of the world socialist revolution by the power of its example, by its economic progress;
-- due to the prevailing objective conditions of history (extreme sharpening of imperialist aggressiveness, emergence of weapons of vast destructive power, etc.) central among all the tasks confronting the anti-imperialist forces in the present era is the struggle to prevent thermonuclear war. Uniting all the peace forces to defend peace and save mankind from nuclear disaster is the primary task of the Communist parties;
-- the socialist revolution is performed as a result of the internal development of the class struggle in each country, its forms and paths are determined by the concrete conditions of each country. A law common to all countries is the revolutionary overthrow of capitalist power and establishment, in one or another form, of proletarian dictatorship. The task of the working class and the Communist parties is to make maximum use of possibilities now available for a peaceful path of socialist revolution, one not connected with civil war, and, at the same time, be prepared for a non-peaceful path, for armed suppression of the resistance of the bourgeoisie; the general democratic struggle is a necessary component of the struggle for socialism;
-- the aim of the working class and the Communist parties in the national-liberation movement is to carry to completion the tasks of the anti-imperialist democratic revolution, develop and consolidate the national front based on alliance with the peasantry and the patriotically-minded national bourgeoisie; prepare the conditions for forming national-democratic states and for transition to the non-capitalist path of development;
-- relations of co-operation and mutual assistance between socialist countries, solidarity and unity of the international communist and labour movement, faithful observance of jointly worked out positions and appraisals, fidelity to the Leninist principles of party life and relations between parties -- these are necessary requisites for the successful solution of the historic tasks confronting the Communists.
Such, in the present era, are the basic development paths of the world revolutionary process; such are the basic propositions of the general line of the international communist movement in the present stage. The battle for peace, democracy, national independence and socialism -- that, briefly, is the substance of this general line. Its consistent operation is the world communist movement's guarantee of success.
All these key principles of the international communist movement in present-day conditions, collectively worked out by the fraternal Communist and Workers' parties and formulated in the Declaration and Statement, have found expression in the new CPSU Programme, which is based entirely on a Marxist-Leninist generalization of our and international revolutionary experience.
The erroneous views of the CPC leaders on the cardinal political and theoretical issues of our time are inseverably linked with their practical activity, which is directed towards undermining the unity of the world socialist camp and the international communist movement.
In words, the Chinese comrades acknowledge that the unity of the U.S.S.R. and the People's Republic of China is the mainstay of the entire socialist community, but in deed they are undermining relations with our party, with our country in all fields.
The CPC leadership often speaks of its loyalty to the community of the socialist nations. But the attitude of the Chinese comrades to this community refutes their high-sounding declarations.
The figures show that in the past three years the People's Republic of China has cut the volume of its trade with the other socialist countries by more than 50 per cent. For some socialist countries the results of this policy of the Chinese comrades have been especially painful.
The actions of the Chinese leadership stand in glaring contradiction not only to the principles of mutual relations among socialist countries but, in a number of cases, to the accepted rules and norms all states should abide by.
Violation of existing agreements caused serious damage to the national economy of some socialist states. And, understandably, China's own economy is also suffering no little damage from this curtailment of economic contacts.
In an effort to justify its actions in the eyes of the people, the CPC leadership recently put forward the theory of "relying on one's own forces." In general, for each country to build socialism, relying primarily on the efforts of its people and making the best use of its own resources is the correct way of laying the material and technical basis of socialism. The construction of socialism is, in each country, primarily the concern of the people of that country, of its working class and its Communist party.
The Soviet Union, which was the first socialist country, was obliged to build socialism relying only on its own forces and utilizing its internal resources. And although there is now a system of socialist countries, this by no means signifies that the people of any country can sit back with folded arms and rely exclusively on the assistance of other socialist countries. The Communist party of each socialist country regards it as its duty to mobilize all internal reserves for successful economic development. In its direct sense, therefore, the statement of the CPC Central Committee on the construction of socialism mainly by one's own forces would raise no objections.
However, as the entire text of the CPC Central Committee letter and numerous statements in the Chinese press show, this proposition is in effect given an interpretation that is wholly unacceptable.
The: "building of socialism chiefly by one's own forces" formula cloaks the concept of building up self-sufficient national economies with economic relations with other countries restricted to trade alone. And this approach the Chinese comrades are trying to impose on other socialist countries.
Proclamation of the "relying on one's own forces" line was apparently needed by the CPC leadership in order to weaken the bonds of close friendship among the socialist countries. This policy, it goes without saying, has nothing in common with the principles of socialist internationalism. It cannot be regarded otherwise than as an attempt to undermine the unity of the socialist community.
Parallel with the line of curtailing economic ties, the CPC leadership adopted a number of measures calculated to aggravate relations with the Soviet Union.
The Chinese leaders are undermining the unity not only of the socialist camp but of the entire world communist movement, trampling on the principles of proletarian internationalism and grossly violating accepted standards of relations between fraternal parties.
The CPC leadership organizes and supports various anti-party breakaway groups, which oppose the Communist parties of the United States, Brazil, Italy, Belgium, Australia and India. For instance, in Belgium the CPC leadership is supporting the Grippe group, which was expelled from the party at the last congress. In the United States support is given to the subversive activities of the Left opportunist grouping "Hammer and Steel," which has made battle against the Communist Party of the United States its main aim. In Brazil, the Chinese comrades support the factional groups expelled from the Communist Party (as for instance, the Amazonas-Grabois group).
In Australia, the CPC Central Committee tried to organize splitting activities against the Communist party and its leadership with the help of a former member of the leadership, E Hill. Hill, who visited the P.R.C. at one time, came out publicly against the Communist Party of Australia and tried to line up a group of persons of his mind. When the Communist Party of Australia expelled Hill from its Central Committee he demonstratively removed himself to Peking.
In Italy, Chinese representatives are encouraging the activity of the group formed by former functionaries of the Padua federation of the Communist party, who issued leaflets provocationally calling for a "revolutionary" uprising.
Comrades from the CPC are making particular efforts to conduct subversive activities in the Communist and Workers' parties of the Asian, African, and Latin-American countries.
Lauding the renegades and defectors from the ranks of the communist movement, the Chinese leaders reprint in their newspapers and magazines slanderous articles from the publications of these renegade groups directed against the policy of the CPSU, against the course of the entire world communist movement.
In Ceylon, Chinese representatives maintain close contact with the grouping of E. Samarakkody, which is a tool of the Trotskyist "Fourth International."
The Trotskyists from the "Fourth International" are trying to utilize the position of the Chinese comrades for their own ends; they even addressed an open letter to the CPC Central Committee in which they openly declare: "The Fourth International, which from the day of its foundation has been waging . . . a struggle against the ideas you oppose today, stands on your side. . . . The international secretariat of the Fourth International welcomes this discussion you have started within the entire communist movement. It urges you to develop it."
The Chinese leaders level sharp attacks on the fraternal Communist parties and their leaders, who do not want to depart from the general line of the international communist movement. They have published and circulated in many languages articles discrediting the activity of the Communist Party of the United States, and the French, Italian and Indian Communist parties.. There is no term of abuse their authors fail to hurl at well-known leaders of these fraternal parties. "Double-dealing" and "Right opportunism," "revisionism" and "incompatibility with the standards of communist ethics," "social-democratic degeneration" and "faint-heartedness," "irresponsibility" and "parroting," "supercilious and disdainful attitude towards the revolutionary peoples of the Asian, African and Latin-American countries" -- they are all there.
The Chinese leaders accuse the Communist parties of the United States and Western Europe of being "at one with the most adventuristic American imperialists." The leadership of the Communist Party of India is invariably termed a "clique." Levelled against the leaders of the Communist parties of France, Italy, India and the United States is the monstrous accusation of being "concerned for the fate of imperialism and all reactionaries." And in its letter of June 14 the CPC leadership sinks so low as to insinuate that the CPSU too "acts in the role of an accomplice of imperialism." So obvious is the absurdity of this that no one but the Trotskyists has until now ever ventured to make such a slanderous charge against the great party of Lenin.
Is it any wonder that imperialist propaganda rejoices at such actions by the Chinese comrades? It is not by accident that the bourgeois press keeps shouting about a "crisis" in the world communist movement and urges the imperialist governments to exploit in their own interests the differences caused by the stand taken by the CPC Central Committee.
The representatives of the CPC resigned from the editorial board of the World Marxist Review, the collective theoretical and information magazine of the Communist and Workers' parties, and stopped its publication in the Chinese language, seeking in this way to deprive Chinese Communists of an objective source of information about the activities of the world communist movement.
The splitting activities of the Chinese leadership in the ranks of the world Communist movement evoke rightful indignation and opposition of the fraternal Marxist-Leninist parties.
The CPC Central Committee letter says that in any one party's relations with fraternal Communist parties it is "impermissible for it to place itself above the other fraternal parties, impermissible for it to interfere in the internal affairs of fraternal parties. . . ." This is quite a good statement. But it is precisely the Chinese comrades who resort to such impermissible actions. Flouting the interests of the world communist movement, they ignore the standards and principles set out in the Declaration and Statement, and try to bring other parties under their influence and control.
A graphic example of the CPC leadership's special line within the socialist camp and the world communist movement is its position on the Albanian question. As is known, in the second half of 1960 the Albanian leaders openly came out with a Left opportunist platform on the main questions of our time, and began to pursue a policy hostile to the CPSU and the other fraternal parties. The Albanian leadership started an anti-Soviet campaign in their country that led to a rupture of political, economic and cultural relations with the Soviet Union.
The overwhelming majority of Communist and Workers' parties emphatically condemned this anti-Leninist activity of the Albanian leaders. The CPC leaders took a totally different position and did everything they could to use the Albanian leaders as their own mouthpiece. It is known now that the Chinese comrades plainly pushed them into open struggle against the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries and fraternal parties.
In their attacks on the CPSU and other Marxist-Leninist parties, the CPC leaders allot a special place to the Yugoslav question. They try to make it appear that the difficulties in the communist movement are caused by the improved relations of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries with Yugoslavia. Contrary to the facts, they persist in asserting that Yugoslavia is not a socialist country.
As is generally known, in 1955 the CPSU together with other fraternal parties took the initiative in normalizing relations with Yugoslavia so as to put an end to the prolonged conflict, for which the greater part of the blame lies with Stalin. At that time the CPC leaders had no doubts as to the nature of the socialist system in Yugoslavia. The People's Daily wrote then that "Yugoslavia has already achieved important successes in the building of socialism."
Objective analysis of the socio-economic processes in Yugoslavia shows that since then socialism has grown stronger there. Whereas in 1958 the socialist sector in industry amounted to 100 per cent, in agriculture to 6 per cent, and in trade to 97 per cent, today the socialist sector in industry amounts to 100 per cent, in agriculture to 15 per cent, and in trade to 100 per cent. In the period since normalization of relations was initiated, Yugoslavia has drawn closer to the position of the Soviet Union and other socialist states on foreign policy issues.
Why, then, have the Chinese leaders changed their position on the Yugoslav question so radically? It is hard to find any other explanation than that they viewed it as another good excuse to discredit the policy of the CPSU and other Marxist-Leninist parties.
The Soviet Communists know that differences on a number of fundamental ideological questions still remain between the CPSU and the Yugoslav League of Communists. We have told the Yugoslav leaders this openly, and continue to do so. But it would be wrong to "excommunicate" Yugoslavia from socialism on these grounds, to cut her away from the socialist countries and push her into the camp of imperialism, as the CPC leaders are doing. The imperialists would like nothing better.
There are now 14 socialist countries in the world. We are deeply convinced that in the near future their number will be much greater. The range of questions confronting the fraternal parties standing at the helm of the ship of state is growing wider, and besides, each of the fraternal parties works in different conditions. It is not surprising that in these circumstances the fraternal parties may find different approaches to the solution of this or that question. How should Marxists-Leninists act in such cases? Declare that this or that socialist country whose leaders differ with them is no longer socialist? That would be arbitrariness of the first water; such a method has nothing in common with Marxism-Leninism.
Were we to follow the example of the Chinese leaders, we should, considering our serious differences with the leaders of the Albanian Party of Labour, long since have declared Albania a non-socialist country. But this would be an erroneous, subjective approach to the question. Despite their differences with the Albanian leaders, the Soviet Communists regard Albania as a socialist country and, for their part, are taking steps to avert Albania's detachment from the socialist commonwealth.
It grieves us to see how the leaders of the CPC are undermining traditional Soviet-Chinese friendship and weakening the unity of the socialist countries.
The CPSU stands and will stand for the unity and cohesion of the socialist commonwealth, of the entire world communist movement.
Let us recapitulate:
The time since the adoption of the Statement of 1960 has fully confirmed the correctness of the Marxist-Leninist programme of the world communist and working-class movement. The Soviet Union's successes in building communism, the successes of socialist construction in other socialist countries exert an ever more revolutionizing influence on the minds of people all over the world. Revolutionary Cuba has lit the beacon of socialism in the Western Hemisphere. Crushing blows have been dealt the colonial system, which is now nearing its end. New victories have been scored by the working class of the imperialist countries. The world revolutionary movement is steadily advancing.
This shows that the general line of the world communist movement was set out correctly in the Statement of 1960. The task now is to work and act in conformity with this general line, to develop and apply it in reference to the specific conditions in which each given Communist party functions. Any attempt to impose some new general line on the world communist and working-class movement, as in the CPC Central Committee letter of June 14, is therefore unsound and harmful. To accept any such "general line" would be to depart from the Statement of 1960, to accept programmatic propositions at variance with this Statement which was adopted by 81 parties. Our party will not take this course.
Throughout its history, our glorious Leninist party waged an implacable struggle against Right and Left opportunism, Trotskyism and revisionism, dogmatism and sectarianism, nationalism and chauvinism in all their forms both within our country and in the international arena. Our party steeled itself and grew strong in this struggle for the purity of Marxism-Leninism; it does not fear any attacks by latter-day splitters and opportunists, whatever quarter they may come from.
Life shows that, having become a political organization of the entire people, the CPSU strengthened its ties with the masses, and became stronger and more highly disciplined than ever. With the victory of socialism, the ideology of the working class -- Marxism-Leninism -- became the ideology of the entire people, of its advanced part. The aim of the working class -- the building of communism -- has become the aim of the entire people. Marxists-Leninists can only rejoice, of course, in this growth of the influence of communist ideology. Never since the death of V. I. Lenin, it may be said, has our party been so strong, so capable of accomplishing the most daring tasks connected with the building of the new world.
Now, when socialism has won fully and conclusively in our country, when we are erecting, stone by stone, the beautiful edifice of communism, our party, the entire Soviet people, are more convinced than ever that the great ideas of Marxism-Leninism will triumph throughout the world.
Our confidence is shared by the peoples of the socialist countries, by the working people of the whole world. They value highly the Soviet Union's big contribution to the common stuggle for peace, democracy, national freedom and independence, and socialism.
The Communist Party of the Soviet Union has always stood and now stands for close friendship with the Communist Party of China. There are serious differences between us and the leaders of the CPC, but we hope that relations between our two parties, between our two peoples, should be based on the fact that we have that same aim, the building of a new communist society, and the same enemy -- imperialism. The two great powers, the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China, acan, by their joint efforts, do much for the triumph of communism. This both our friends and enemies know well.
At present delegations of the CPSU and the CPC are meeting in Moscow. Unfortunately the representatives of the CPC continue to aggravate the situation at this meeting. Despite this, the CPSU delegation is exercising the utmost patience and restraint so that the talks may have a successful outcome. The near future will show whether the Chinese comrades are willing to build our relations on the basis of what unites rather than divides us, on the basis of the principles of Marxism-Leninism.
Our enemies are banking on aggravation of the differences between the CPC and the CPSU. They are already kinking around to see if then cannot make a good thing of it. Only the other day the U.S. Daily News urged setting Red Russia and Red China against each other so that they might tear each other to pieces. We, Communists, must never let ourselves forget these insidious schemes of the imperialists.
Mindful of its responsibility to the world communist movement, to the peoples of the world, our party urges the Chinese comrades to take the course of resolving the differences and strengthening the genuine unite of our parties on the principles of Marxism-Leninism and proletarian internationalism.
Together with all fraternal parties, our Leninist party has worked and is working for the unity of the working class, of all the working people, in the struggle against imperialism, for peace, democracy, national independence and socialism.
Before the party and the entire Soviet people, the Central Committee of the CPSU declares with all responsibility that we have done and will do everything in our power to strengthen unity with the Communist Party of China, to cement the world communist movement under the banner of Lenin, to cement the countries of the world socialist system, to render effective aid to all peoples fighting colonialism, to strengthen the cause of peace and win victory for the great ideas of communism the world over.
All the working people of the Soviet Union will rally still closer around their Communist Party and its Leninist Central Committee, will devote all their energies to bringing to completion the majestic programme of the building of communism.
of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
[*] The bold-type emphases in this letter are Remnin Ribao's --Ed.
[**] Such allegations were made in the leading article in the People's Daily of March 8, 1963, "On the Statement of the Communist Party of the U.S.A." [Note in the original.]