Advancing the Cause of the International Proletariat

 

 

 I.  BRIEF OVERVIEW OF CURRENT INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENTS

 

            Important changes are taking place in the international situation. In one way or another, they are all  linked to the acute deepening of the general crisis of world capitalism.

            The economic crisis, which lies at the base of the general crisis, has been intensifying and spreading in recent years, from the neo-colonies to the imperialist centers. The economic crisis, a permanent feature of capitalism in its advanced stage of decay, has as its first and fundamental cause in the chronic over-production of commodities. This chronic over-production, accentuated by the advance of technique and the growth of industrialization in the neo-colonies, especially those in Asia and South America, has now spun completely out of control, flooding the world market with goods. However, with a continuous reduction of purchasing power of the proletariat and peoples world-wide, unsold goods are piling up into an enormous glut. These factors have conditioned the continuous shrinking of the world market for both commodity and capital export which is now leading to a curtailment of foreign investment in production, factory shut-downs with the resulting mass lay-offs of workers in many industries, and a decline of international trade.

  The current volatility in the global financial and currency markets is symptomatic of these developments. A number of the recently industrialized neo-colonies in Asia and South America are in the throes of severe economic dislocations due to the drying up of demand for the commodities they produce. In turn, their governments and enterprises are falling behind on payments for huge loans extended to them by the imperialist financial consortiums to set up and expand industry and its administrative branches in their countries. Among the affected banks and industries, stock values are falling and bankruptcies are rising. Governments of countries such as Thailand, South Korea, and Brazil, have been forced to devalue their currencies in hopes that this will cheapen the costs of their commodities for export, thus stimulating sales and reducing the stockpile of goods their industries have amassed. The major Western European imperialist states, which have been languishing in an economic malaise for several years, are now being joined by Japan whose industrial and financial sectors could not avoid being hit by the economic perturbations that are rocking all of Southeast Asia. It is just a matter of time until the bulwark of world capitalism - Anglo-American imperialism - is swept into the maelstrom of the spreading economic crisis.

            The events we are now witnessing in the "global marketplace" all point to the inevitability of  economic crises under capitalism. And what we will witness in the near future is that no policy of the imperialism will succeed in alleviating the deepening and spreading of the current economic crisis. The intervention by the imperialists and their big international financial consortiums like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund can hardly treat the disease of overproduction in the neo-colonies when the imperialist centers themselves are racked by the same affliction. While the imperialist centers have rationalized important sectors of their industries as well as shifted a significant amount of their production to the neo-colonies, they too are facing serious problems of what the bourgeois economists call "over-capacity."

            In the political sphere, the situation is also one of increasing turbulence. The capitalist oligarchies of the big imperialist countries have been forced to secure their dictatorships over the working class by installing new or remaking old forms of state rule which are  even more anti-democratic and repressive. And throughout the neo-colonies, the imperialist powers are attempting to strengthen their quisling regimes and cliques by having them employ even more barbarous acts of  terror to crush the independent currents of labor, democracy and national liberation. While the contradictions between labor and capital and between imperialism and the oppressed countries are intensifying, the contradictions between the big imperialist powers are also sharpening. These latter are becoming increasingly obvious in the struggles over markets, natural resources and spheres of influence as the economic crisis deepens and spreads

            Reaction's propaganda machine, which monopolizes the lecture halls, the print and electronic media, and the "information highway," has been frantically pumping out explanations of these developments to cast imperialism's crises in a favorable light. In the recent past, layer upon layer of convoluted and inane theories about the "miracles" of "globalization," and the "emerging markets," such as the "tiger economies" of Southeast Asia, were heaped upon us to cover-up or distort developments that all pointed to an impending world economic crisis. However, now the consequences of these developments are not so easily hidden or rationalized by imperialism. Nevertheless, reaction's ideologues and economists wage a continuous war to bury democratic and scientific thought and to completely  falsify the socio-political reality with fascist mysticism and metaphysics. But the more "sophisticated" imperialism's propaganda becomes and the more force reaction's ideological machinery exerts upon the masses to have them accept it, the more contempt it is evoking from labor and the progressive intelligentsia. Contempt for rotten theories that defend rotten aims is inevitable. The democratic forces and the working class will never accept explanations that justify or excuse the escalation of imperialism's criminal behavior - its stepped-up exploitation of the laboring classes, its increasing state repression, its expanding savage domination over the nations and peoples - which has long ago entered an extreme stage of madness and savagery to satisfy capital's hunger for maximum profits.

            International developments, which are signaling the end of capitalist "stability" and the beginning of another great crisis similar to the one which occurred in the thirties, can be interpreted by the "experts" to please their rulers. This is how they earn their living. The economists can "analyze" the pros and cons of various "models" of capitalism and the politicians, taking cues from their "think tanks" can sermonize about the "democratic," "peaceful," and "humanitarian" policies of imperialism. But the chaos and misery the moribund capitalist system is dumping on every sector of the globe could not but exacerbate the major class contradictions. World-wide, the working class and its allies are engaging in fiercer and more protracted struggles to defend themselves against the worst effects of their deteriorating conditions. Mass discontent, which has already expressed itself in the imperialist centers as well as in the dependent countries and neo-colonies, will soon grow into a revolutionary upsurge that will rock the present capitalist "stability" to its foundations.

  

II.  REVOLUTIONARY THEORY

 

            The current international situation is unfolding in accordance with definite laws - laws that were discovered and articulated by the principal leaders of the international proletariat during the periods of industrial and monopoly capital and comprise the foundation stones of revolutionary theory. These laws are still operating today, both in the economic and political spheres of all countries and in the relations between all countries. Scientific Socialists strive to assimilate the theory developed by Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin as well as to learn from the contributions made by other outstanding theoreticians of the working class. This theory is the arsenal that provides the powerful weapons the revolutionary proletariat needs for understanding and changing the world. Assimilating the fundamental principles of Scientific Socialism is prerequisite to practically applying the science to the new conditions and developing the theory so that it continues to be an effective guide to action in formulating a correct policy for the revolutionary working class movement.

            In countries like the US, where the revolutionary working class movement has been temporarily dissipated and disorganized, theory must be learned and applied to establish the political trend that will prepare for the movement's rebirth and development. We view the revolutionary working class movement as a mass movement organized and led by a proletarian vanguard party grounded in Scientific Socialist theory and politics, consciously waging the class struggle to end wage slavery and establish a popular democracy - a movement which finds its ultimate expression in the overthrow capitalism and the building of  Socialism. It scarcely needs proof that no revolutionary movement can exist without a revolutionary party or organization. Furthermore, there should be little doubt that a revolutionary party or organization possessing the criteria outlined above is non-existent in this country since the revolutionary theory has not even been assimilated correctly for nearly half a century, let alone applied and developed in conformity with the conditions in the US.   

            The claim that no proletarian party or organization exists can readily be confirmed by any sincere and objective inquirers without them getting bogged down in the ploys used by various pseudo-revolutionary organizations to "win over" the naive, that is, without reading through pages upon pages of "revolutionary literature," engaging in longwinded "discussions," or listening to endless "debates." What is needed is to look at the parties and groups on the "left" today which ostensibly wave Communist, Marxist-Leninist, and revolutionary banners. Where is there one leading a large, organized mass of workers, farmers, and intellectuals? Where is there one which enjoys influence and following among a significant number of trade unions, farmers associations, and progressive organizations?  Where is there one that employs this leadership and influence among the workers, farmers and democratic forces to unite them in their common interests against the big capitalists and their state? In fact, there is none to be found.

            The question comes to the fore: why not?

            Reaction's propagandists have already answered this question and invariably answer this question in ways that delight the fascists and imperialists and dupe the politically unenlightened. Socialism is evil and has failed! Marx was wrong! Communism is dead! Capitalism is divine and is now victorious! The free-enterprise system is invincible and eternal!  We are all either capitalists or aspiring capitalists!

            Aren't these well-known conclusions based upon long-standing "irrefutable" arguments?

            If the Soviet Union was Socialist when it collapsed, then Socialism has proven itself an invalid alternative for the working class and a miserable failure. If Khruschev and his followers were Marxist-Leninists, then Marx and Lenin and the theory they developed were definitely wrong. Furthermore, if capitalism will forever reign supreme, then we all better get with its program.

            Is it not then to be expected that only fools or worse will take revolutionary parties seriously, hence their isolation and  lack of influence among the workers and people?

            But these "arguments" are the products of the most pernicious slander and cretinous reasoning. The fact that they have gained credibility in the US only proves how the intellectual life of the country has been deformed by reactionary thinking in general and  how scientific socio-political theory has been rubbed out by the repressive state in particular. As a result, the most appalling ignorance of Scientific Socialism and the revolutionary working class movement permeates society, allowing any falsification of these subjects to largely go unchallenged. In these conditions, parties and groups that promote themselves as Communist, Marxist-Leninist, and revolutionary but are, in fact, anti-Communist, anti-Marxist-Leninist, and counter-revolutionary freely operate.

            It should neither be surprising nor perplexing why these same parties and groups gain little respect and following among the working class and democratic movements. But this phenomenon hardly supports fascist premises and reaction's arguments to prove that the masses are "anti-Communist." Although these movements are deliberately kept in the dark and confused about their fundamental aims and the means of achieving them, the true forces for progress will not be led by charlatans and saboteurs. What the negative response of the working class and democratic movements toward these bogus organizations prove is that the masses instinctively reject hypocrisy no matter how it tries to promote itself as representing "their interests."  

            Khruschevite, Trotskyite, or Maoist parties and groups do not embody revolutionary theory and politics. Nor do other "workers parties," such as the ones that "oppose" these forms of anti-Communism and sanctimoniously puff themselves up as the new, "modern Marxist-Leninists." No matter what styles of bogus Marxism these impostors don, they are all cut from the same cloth in negating and distorting the theory of Scientific Socialism created and developed by the international revolutionary proletariat. Therefore, they cannot be viewed as constituting any legitimate political trend in the working class and democratic movements.

            What are they?

            In fact many of the "larger" parties as well as many smaller groups on the "left" calling themselves Communist, Marxist-Leninist, and revolutionary have either been subjugated or spawned by agents linked to the internal security forces of the neo-fascist state. They are political-police units hiding behind a socialist facade, manning a cordon erected decades ago by the state machine to prevent advanced elements from assimilating Scientific Socialist theory, thus blocking the building of a real revolutionary party and the development of a true revolutionary movement. The operations of these social-fascist mechanisms have been and continue to be fully coordinated with other activities of the repressive-terrorist state apparatus to "bury Communism." 

            Scientific Socialist has already analyzed this new counter-revolutionary police force in the US as a national contingent of a global army recruited and mobilized by world capitalism during the years immediately following World War II. This army became the lethal weapon in the fascist counter-offensive which was launched in response to capitalism's deepening general crisis. What triggered this deepening? First, the major fascist countries, which had served world reaction as the spearhead against the working class revolution, democracy and Socialism, were put out of commission. Secondly, the major mechanisms of imperialism's fifth column in the revolutionary workers' and national liberation movements - the Social Democrats and Trotskyites - had been exposed as traitors and agents and had become largely ineffective in sabotaging these movements. Finally and most importantly, democracy and Socialism were making significant gains internationally. What was an imperialist to do?

            Obviously the vacuum resulting from the world-wide set-backs of fascism and its fifth column had to be filled. But it could not be filled by "old style" fascism against which the workers and peoples of many countries had spilled rivers of blood to defeat. The proletariat was too conscious, the mass popular movements for democracy, national liberation, and Socialism too powerful, for reaction to attack openly. Nor could the Social-Democratic and Troyskyite parties be utilized as before in disrupting and weakening these movements. Thus, fascism and its fifth column, whose major objectives include the systematic and relentless attacks to crush democracy, enslave the colonial peoples, and liquidate the revolutionary working class movement and Socialism, had to put on different faces. And so imperialism came up with new state forms of counter-revolution that would not only pretend to disassociate themselves from fascism but posture as the greatest champions of democracy in fighting against fascism.  Integral to these new state forms was a new fifth column that would prove to be deadly in carrying out the dirty work of attacking world revolution.

            The two key forms that world reaction designed, neo-fascism and social-fascism, have worked effectively to help sustain and stabilize world imperialism for nearly fifty years. The first has been consistently led by the US while the second was led by the USSR from 1956 until its "collapse" in 1990 and is now in the process of being retooled. Neo-fascism claims to oppose both fascism and Communism in its fight for "free enterprise" and "democracy." It is a rag-picker in the ideological and political rubbish heap left behind by the Italian fascists, German nazis, Social Democrats and Trotskyites, stitching together a crazy-quilt of their rabid anti-Communism, trimmed with most time-worn bourgeois-democratic tenets, and repackaged as the "modern democracy of the advanced industrial states." Social-fascism, on the other hand, generally "distinguishes" itself by purportedly supporting world revolution against imperialism, fighting for democracy against fascism, and by defending and building Socialism. It is the deformed creature of reaction, vulgarizing Marxism-Leninism in every conceivable way to produce Hydra's heads of  different trends, organizations, and parties that, because of their infiltration into the working class and democratic movements, stand as the biggest enemies of revolution and Socialism.  

            For the latter half of this century, the largest organized sections of the international working class and peoples' movements for democracy, national liberation and Socialism have been constantly coerced into aligning themselves with one or the other of these "two camps." Consequently, many of their trade unions and democratic organizations became appendages either of neo-fascism or social-fascism. As a result, these movements have essentially been subjugated into one camp - the camp of imperialism and reaction with their major goals suppressed and manipulated by neo-fascism and its social-fascist collaborators.

            The period beginning in 1956 up till the present has been one of great repression and corruption of Marxism, Socialism, and the revolution. While the most able leaders of the Party of Labor of Albania strenuously tried to change this situation, especially from 1976 - 1985, neither the objective nor subjective factors favored their efforts. Many of the parties and organizations of the International Marxist-Leninist Movement, which the true Albanian Marxist-Leninists led and did everything within their means to assist, were unable to surmount the open and disguised attacks by neo-fascism and its social-fascist fifth column. They too became victims of reaction's corruption, generated by state repression and infiltration. Rampant ideological and political confusion spread by the political-police, who had penetrated into all levels of their organizations, engulfed the Marxist-Leninist forces, causing disorientation and disintegration of their ranks as well as severe isolation from the working class and democratic movements. Chinese social-fascism in the form of Mao Zedong thought figured as the key fifth column mechanism in the IMLM during the seventies. But after its exposure and repudiation by the Albanian Marxist-Leninists in 1976, the agents of capitalism's state internal security mechanisms continued to operate within many of the parties and organizations. Now supporting the call for the "defense of the purity of Marxism-Leninism," they deceptively adapted to the PLA's line while ruining any earnest struggles to rectify and strengthen the revolutionary proletarian theory and politics that were taking place in the individual countries and in the international movement. At the same time, imperialism's foreign espionage services also escalated their internal aggression inside the Albanian Party. Thus the PLA itself was not impervious to the corruption of this period evidenced by the surfacing of the Shehu-Aliate bloc, which ultimately led to the Party's degeneration and total destruction shortly after Hoxha's death.

            In retrospect, we can now more critically evaluate the major thrust of reaction's corrupting influences during this period. Although the Albanian leaders struggle to defend fundamental principles of Marxism-Leninism was an important and necessary one, given the all-sided attacks launched by neo-fascism and social-fascism against the revolutionary theory and practice, it must be also be admitted that this struggle was not without its shortcomings. The key weakness of the PLA's Marxist-Leninist activities on this front and the one that affected the entire IMLCM was not the failure to uphold certain principles and theses of Marxism-Leninism; nor was it the failure to expose and repudiate social-fascist distortions and its collaboration with imperialism. This fight was carried out admirably and well. No. The key weakness on the part of the revolutionary vanguards was their failure to apply and develop the theory in accordance with the contemporary socio-political conditions.

            And what would have this task entailed?

           

 

III.   The Importance of the History of the Revolutionary Proletariat 

 

 

 

It would have entailed the vigorous assimilation and application of Stalinism as the Marxism-Leninism of the contemporary period of the complete degeneration and fascization of world imperialism. Stalinism concretely developed the principles for building Socialism in one country  as outlined by Lenin. Stalinism also advanced the cause of  world revolution by building a new arsenal of strategy and tactics for the international proletariat and the colonial nations and peoples in their struggles against rapacious fascist-imperialism. Far from being the self-serving edicts of a "dictator" as imperialism never tires of blabbering on about, Stalinism was the theory and practice of the CPSU, the Third Communist International, and the Communist Information Bureau.      

            That is why the vanguard forces should return again and again to study the activities and key documents of these Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist organizations. Much can be learned, assimilated, and in turn applied to present conditions in their countries to bring about a Renaissance in revolutionary theory and politics to the proletariat to build a real independent movement that represents its class interests in the historical struggle for the future of humanity.

            It is in this spirit that we republish several key documents from the Cominform, which was to establish the basis of a renewed Communist International before it was wrecked by the Russian social fascists in 1956. In fact, the Cominform can still be used as a model for today in building a new International.