Written/Delivered: May 1970
Source: The Collected Works of Charu Mazumdar
Published: Deshabrati Prakashani, publishing house of the Undivided C.P.I. (M-L)
Online Version: Charu Mazumdar Reference Archive, January 2005
Transcribed/HTML Markup: Basu Acharya and Mike B.
In the present world situation there are two important phenomena.
On the one hand, there is U.S. imperialism's naked aggression against Cambodia. The U.S. imperialists have thrown away all pretences and invaded Cambodia. Their logic is Hitler's logic — the logic of all aggressors. They cannot wait anymore, they can no longer talk of peace. Now they will attack one country after another. So this is the begining of the Third World War.
On the other hand the revolutionary united front of the peoples of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, under the leadership of China, has been built up to fight the U.S. aggressors. The unity of the three Indo-Chinese peoples have been achieved. This is a great thing in the world history, which did not exist when Hitler's hordes marched across Sudetanland. The Second World War was preceded by Munich - by great betrayal. But now the united front of revolutionary peoples under the leadership of China is taking shape. So this is the great begining of the defeat of imperialism and the great begining of the victory of the worlds people.
The same kind of phenomena exists in India also. India's reactionary ruling classes are making frenzied preparations to suit the global strategy of U.S. imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism. They are hatching criminal war plans against China. But the emergence of the C.P.I. (M-L) has changed the internal situation in India. The armed revolutionary peasant struggle led by the C.P.I. (M-L) has become the motive force of history. We must take into account not only the offensive of the ruling classes but also the counter-offensive of the revolutionary people.
Our cardinal tasks, therefore, are: to build up the Party and to get it entrenched among the landless and poor peasants. The building up of the Party means the development of the armed class struggle. And without armed class struggle the Party cannot be developed and cannot entrench itself among the masses.
The struggle between the two lines is there within the Party and will continue to be there. We must oppose and defeat the incorrect line. But we must be on our guard against centrism. Centrism is a brand of revisionism - its worst form. In the past, revisionism was defeated again and again by revolutionary elements but centrism always seized the victories of the struggle and led the Party along the revisionist path. We must hate centrism. On the question of boycotting elections, Naggi Reddy said : "Yes we accept it but it should be restricted to a certain area at a certain period. We will participate in elections where there is no struggle." This is Naggy Reddy's line. This is centrism. We have fought against it and have thrown the Naggy Reddy's out of our organization. Regarding Soviet social - imperialism some say : " The Soviet leaders are revisionists. But how can they be imperialists ? Where is that development of monopoly capital ?" These are centrists. We have fought them and thrown them out of our Party. So the centrists raised the questions of trade unions and "working class based party" when armed clash is to be developed by relying on the peasantry. We fought Asist Sen and company on these lines and threw them out of the Party.
We must not only distinguish between the correct and incorrect line but also find out the centrist position and smash it.
Now the centrist attack is coming from inside the Party. On the question of using fire arms, the dependence on the petty-bourgeois intellectuals and the battle of annihilation, the Party is facing centrist atttacks.
It must be understood that the battle of annihilation is both a higher form of class struggle and starting point of guerilla war. There are two deviations on this question :
1. Some Comrades agree that annihilation is the starting point of guerilla war but they do not agree that it is a higher form of class struggle. It should be borne in mind that only through the development of class struggle can all the problem be solved.
2. There are other Comrades who carried on class struggle — the struggle for the seizure of landlords land and property - but did not wage the battle of annihilation. So the cadres became degenerate, they were lost. The Comrades lost the point that annihilation is the starting point of guerilla war.
Class struggle will solve all other problems — the problem of building liberated bases and the problem of building the revolutionary army.
We have tried to develop the army in some areas without class struggle and have failed. Without class struggle — the battle of annihilation — the initiatie of the poor peasant masses cannot be released, the political consciousness of the fighters cannot be raised, the new man cannot emerge, the peoples army cannot be created. Only by waging class struggle — the battle of annihilation — the new man will be created, the new man who will defy death and will be free from all thoughts of self interest. And with this death defying spirit he will go close to the enemy, snatch his rifle, avenge the martyrs and the peoples army will emerge. To go close to the enemy it is neccessary to conquer all thought of self. And this can be achieved only by the blood of martyrs. That inspires and creates new men out of the fighters, fill them with class hatred and makes them go close to the enemy and snatch his rifle with bare hands.
We have poured much of our blood in Srikakulam and we have spilled much blood of the enemy. Yet the class enemy exists there. Unless we throw the class enemy out of the land, a new consciousness, a new confidence cannot arise. We cannot then go close to the enemy and snatch his rifle. It is the class struggle that can solve this problem of building the peoples army.
The annihilation of the class enemy — this weapon in our hands — is the greatest danger of the reactionaries and revisionists all the world over. So the leaders of world revisionism are trying to contact the various groups which pay lip service to Chairman Mao and the C.P.C. and are trying to unite them to oppose the battle of annihilation of the class enemy. We refuse to unite with this groups because they are opposed to annihilation of the class enemy, to class struggle and so, are enemies of the people.
Why am I against taking up fire arms now? Is it not our dream that landless and poor peasants will take up rifles in their shoulders and march forward? Yet the use of fire arms at this stage, instead of releasing the initiative of the peasant masses to annihilate the class enemy, stifles it. If guerilla fighters start the battle of annihilation with their conventional weapons, the common landless and poor peasants will come forward with bare hands and join the battle of annihilation. A common landless peasant, ground down by age old oppression, will see the light and avenge himself on the class enemy. His initiative will be released. In this way the peasant masses will join the guerilla fighters, their revolutionary enthusiasm will know no bounds and a mighty wave of peoples upsurge will sweep the country. After the initiative of the peasant masses, to annihilate the class enemy with bare hands or home made weapons, has been released and the peasants revolutionary power has been established, they should take up the gun and face the world. The peasant with the rifle will be the guarantee of the continiuation of the peasants revolutionary power.
Comrades the peasants suffering has reached a stage when they can no longer endure it. If we can show them the way, there is not a single point in India where the peasants will not be roused to action. There is the possibility of a tremendous upsurge in India if we consciously work for it. Guerilla war can be waged through the battle of annihilation in every village in India. So, start as many points of armed struggle as possible. Dont try to concentrate. Expand anywhere and everywhere. This is one principle to be followed. The other principle is: Carry on the battle of annihilation of the class enemy.
All the revisionists, all the groups taking the name of Chairman Mao, are attacking us on this issue of the battle of annihilation. So Comrades anyone who opposes this battle of annihilation cannot remain with us. We will not allow them to remain in our Party. One can see how the revolutionary armed peasant struggle is rousing the other classes. Look at Calcutta. The revolutionary struggle of the youths of Calcutta surges forward under the impact of the armed peasant struggle. The working class in Calcutta is also rising. And I hope there will be revolutionary upsurge of the working class not only in Calcutta, but in all other cities of India. This is bound to happen. The situation in the cities will then change completely.
Comrades, let a vigorous armed peasant struggle rage all over India after the victorious conclusion of our Congress. Then a spontaneous mass upsurge in the wake of the armed guerilla struggle will come as an avalanche, as a thunderbolt. It is sure the Red Army can be created not only in Srikakulam but also in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal. With these contigents of the Liberation Army, the Indian Peasants will march forward and complete the revolution. Three factor guarantee the victory of the revolution. First, the revolution that has been delayed by more than twenty years brooks no further delay. Second, the revolution is taking place in the era of total collapse of imperialism and the world wide victory of Socialism, the era of Mao Tsetung Thought. Third, we have been able to hold this Congress despite severe repression.
Comrades, let us march forward. The seventies will surely be the decade of liberation.