From the Talk with a member of the Political Bureau of the CC of the CP of India (ML) November 14, 1970
Thank you very much for undertaking such a long journey and coming to meet us and talk with us here in Albania. We are a small country in Europe and members of a Party which is also small; you can appreciate what a great need we have for consultations with our comrades from other Marxist-Leninist parties.
We have a great and sincere love for the great and ancient Indian people whose rich history extends over many centuries. Your people have played an important role in the history of mankind and we think that both now and in the future they will play an even greater role in the revolution.
Evil has come to your people from our continent, Europe, which is still the cradle of imperialism and colonialism. Not only have the French, British and other imperialists emerged from Europe, but their successors, who established themselves in North America, where the USA, the most ferocious imperialism in the world, exists today, also have their origin here.
Now the times have changed greatly to the detriment of imperialism and colonialism and in favour of the peoples and the revolution. The enemies of the peoples are in a great crisis, while the revolution is steadily mounting. We shall continue to fight harder and harder against the imperialists, because the imperialist enemies, the bourgeoisie and reaction never lay down their arms peacefully or in a parliamentary way, as the modern revisionists preach. Lenin, as the immortal theoretician and thinker of the world proletariat, teaches that we must fight with all our strength against imperialism and the reactionary bourgeoisie. Between us and them there is not and there can never be peace.
In Europe, the revolution and socialism have triumphed and continue to triumph only in little Albania. The revolution had triumphed elsewhere, too, such as in the Soviet Union and some countries of Eastern Europe, but later counter-revolution was carried out there and capitalism triumphed again as in all the other countries of the world where the bourgeoisie is ruling. Are the Marxist-Leninists going to permit all the peoples of the world, the world proletariat and the heroic peasantry in all the countries that are languishing under savage capitalist exploitation, to be deceived? No, they can neither tolerate nor permit this. In this direction we can take as an example the sufferings of India where hundreds of thousands of people die every year as a result of savage capitalist exploitation. Let Brezhnev, Kosygin and company prattle as much as they like that allegedly socialism will triumph in India in a peaceful way, but the situation in your country cannot be altered without struggle. The Indian proletariat and peasantry cannot wait for Indira Gandhi and the Maharajas and their sons and daughters to voluntarily hand over the land and the keys to their treasure stores. Let Brezhnev, Kosygin and company or their successors shout as much as they like that allegedly the Soviet Union, as a great force, will change the future of the world! No, only the peoples, the revolution, launched arms in hand on the road which Marx Engels, Lenin and Stalin teach us, will change the future of the world. Nothing can be changed with words as the revisionists pretend. With words alone, the Nixons and all the capitalists can go on living as long as they like.
Now, after all this diversion which the Soviet revisionist traitors have created for the revolution, the situation has become somewhat more difficult. For example in India, apart from the support which they give the reactionary government of Indira Gandhi and the Indian bourgeoisie with their betrayal, the revisionists have disorientated the former communist party and split it into three parts of which two are not Marxist Leninist, although they call themselves such, while only the third part, your party, takes a Marxist-Leninist stand.
Faced with the revisionist betrayal, we Marxist-Leninists and the revolutionaries must stand firmly in revolutionary Marxist-Leninist positions, because only on this road will we be able to overcome the attacks of imperialism, Soviet revisionism and social-democracy equipped with all kinds of lies, “theories”, trickery and other such things. We shall withstand their attacks, because we are revolutionaries, because we are guided by the ideology of the proletariat, Marxism-Leninism, the most advanced ideology of mankind, which represents the desire of the most revolutionary masses of the peoples: the working class and the peasantry.
We must go into battle in an organized way because this has great importance for us. Benefiting from the experience of all the Marxist-Leninist parties and the world proletariat, our Party has faced up to the enemies and has triumphed over them in struggle only by being organized and by closing its ranks firmly in a steel unity of thought and deed. While we, today, area granite wall built on the foundations of our revolutionary ideology, the revisionists are like a wall of mud bricks. They are like a basket of crabs tearing at one another.
The Indian proletariat and the Indian peasantry, hundreds of millions strong, hungering for food and thirsting for land through the centuries, have fought consistently against the British, against the reactionary Gandhi ideology of “passive resistance”, against the Maharajas and their government, and today are going ahead like a steam roller which is growing bigger and bigger to flatten the enemies and to smooth the road to the future over which the Indian people will pass.
The history of our people, your people and all peoples of the world teaches us that our forefathers have fought against oppressors, but their uprisings have always been crushed, because each people lacked the main thing, an unyielding leading staff, a strong and capable party, such as the Marxist-Leninist party, the only party that can lead the people resolutely to victory. In the view of our Party, the Marxist-Leninists of the world must bear this lesson of history in mind in order to be able to exert all their strength to create and consolidate their Marxist Leninist parties in the heat of the struggle and according to the real conditions of each country.
For the creation of genuine communist parties, it is important to take account of the concrete, internal and external conditions of each country, recognizing that the internal factor is decisive, while the external factor, however important, remains only an auxiliary factor. The revolution will certainly be launched by the revolutionary masses in each country; it will triumph if it is led by the Marxist Leninist party, otherwise even if independence is won, the social liberation of the working people cannot be achieved and not the people, but anti-popular bourgeois governments, will govern the country.
If the Albanian people themselves had not fought under the leadership of their Communist Party, even if they had won a certain independence without this Party, still they would have remained under the yoke of a monarch. The Albanian people fought, won and took power in their own hands, because they had their own Communist Party at the head. The Soviet army helped us, although not a single Soviet soldier entered Albania; this aid was an external factor of great importance, but if we had not (ought ourselves, we would not have had socialism in Albania today, because there were external forces prowling around, intending to enslave our people again, such as the British and American imperialists, the renegade Tito, etc., all of whom we have fought hard and never bent the knee to.
With precisely this decisive factor in mind, the present Soviet revisionism is making ever effort to fight the Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist) today, that is, to fight you, because it is your Party which will organize the proletariat and the peasantry and lead the whole Indian people in revolution, basing itself on the principles of Marxism-Leninism. In India you are employing different ways of struggle in many directions and you will certainly triumph, because you are not alone. All those who are fighting the forces of imperialism, the Soviet revisionists and their minions are with you.
As far as we know, your Party has laid its foundations and at present is operating in many places through actions against the big landowners and the wealthy. I repeat, we are speaking from what we know from outside, nevertheless we think that the course your Party has chosen is correct. The Indian peasantry, which is very poor, has no possibility to see and judge the secret machinations of the Delhi government which is very remote from the people, but everyday it sees clearly and feels on its own back the heavy yoke of the big landowner who takes the food ‘from it and leaves it to die of starvation. When the land is seized from the landowner and. given to the peasant, he is convinced that this is the road that must be followed and understands what great strength the people have to resist the violence, not only of the landowner, but also of the reactionary government and its army.
We communists, following the Leninist principles, are against individual acts of terror, because we are aware that killing one person does not harm the bourgeoisie which easily replaces him with another, just as suitable or even more suitable than the former. We communists work and struggle with a decided programme, not to kill individuals, but to get rid of the bourgeoisie as a class, in order to seize political, economic and military power from its hands.
You know this yourselves, but from our experience of life we can tell you that the bourgeoisie tries to strike fear and panic among the masses by means of force and attacks, with the aim of oppressing them more and more and paralyzing any movement among them. When we began the war with actions in the cities, the Albanian people were greatly invigorated. It is not their custom to be cowardly, indeed valour is part of their tradition, because they have always lived rifle in hand and have struck merciless blows at their enemies. However the occupiers imposed a great terror in our country by means of their armed forces. At the beginning of the occupation, in order to implant panic, the reactionaries spread rumours such as, Italy is a great power with 45 million people, therefore it is impossible for us to rise against it, etc. But as soon as we began the first actions in the middle of the cities, the news spread like an electric flash among the people. Then we distributed leaflets. We formed the first guerilla units which carried out actions every night, continually, all over the country, such as burning the enemy’s stores, cutting telephone and power lines, killing dangerous, branded spies and traitors, and so on, stepping up the intensity of the fight organized and led by the Party. In this way, the people gradually began to become conscious of their strength and the justice of their cause and increased their participation in the fight. Every home of the poor became a nest of fighters. Thus, the enemy’s slogan that we were allegedly unable to fight a big state like fascist Italy was smashed to smithereens.
However, we always kept in mind the problem that one must go into battle in an organized way. The Party tried to explain this thoroughly to the people. Hence we always had in mind that we must be well organized and that, in the first place, the members of the Party must be organized and conscious of what they were to do. To this end, to make conscious all those comrades who did not understand the line, we used Marxist conviction, first of all. However, faced with the war, the attacks and the danger from the enemy, we did not waste too much time on these people. When they did not march with the Party, we left them to follow the war outside the ranks of the Party. The army, the Front, the youth and the women were firmly united around the Party, which was the spearhead. The problem was to attack the enemy on all fronts in an organized way and with planned measures. I am not raising the question of fighting on all fronts as the main issue, but first of all the problem that it is essential that the whole people oppose the enemy with full consciousness.
From the experience of the Marxist Leninist parties and our Party, I can tell you that the enemies have always tried to attack the party and, first of all, to attack the leadership and unity of the party, while during the war, to attack the most courageous people. Then the enemy’s arrows have always been aimed at the organizations of the masses to disrupt their mobilization by launching harmful propaganda slogans based on old philosophical concepts., in order to confuse the masses in all possible ways, to arouse panic among. the people and to cause the failure of the party’s work. Here is an example. In the past the majority of Albanians were of the Moslem faith, nevertheless the overwhelming majority of them took part actively in the war. Then, in order to smash their unity in the fight under the leadership of our Communist Party the fascists and the local traitors committed provocations, trying to exploit the religious feelings of the masses. You know that the Moslem religion calls the raising of pigs a sin. Exploiting this, the reactionaries smuggled pigs into the mosques by night and next day said to the peasants, “Look what the communists have done”. Thus, the enemies used everything to achieve their aims.
Today the modern revisionists, too, have learned such base, counter• revolutionary tactics and pursue them towards the genuine Marxist-Leninist parties. You are experiencing these things to your cost, because in India you have two parties opposing you, that of Dange and that of the new revisionists, who camouflage themselves with slogans very dear to the genuine communists and the masses, such as Long live Lenin, Marx, Engels!”, etc. They use such slogans all the time and we should not be surprised if they bring out others, too. We know their tactics, because we have revisionists here, in
Europe. But all their manoeuvres and traps will be short-lived, because they are all the offspring of capitalism and imperialism in decay, which is dying, while no sophistry or deceit can stand up to our ideology, which represents the new.
We know that the struggle of the proletariat led by the party has exceptionally great importance as Marx and Lenin teach us, but I think this is especially so in India. I do not know this concretely, but I assume that the Indian proletariat must be very oppressed must suffer greatly and therefore you must have a great field for revolutionary action.
There are great possibilities of work to organize the struggle, to wage a co• ordinated struggle in both town and countryside. We know today that imperialism and world capitalism have concentrated their forces wherever there are the greatest assets. However, that is precisely where there is greater exploitation and, consequently, greater resistance. No doubt, the reactionary Gandhi government dispatches the police to the villages, but it is impossible for it to disperse all the forces of repression it possesses over the whole of India. Thus the possibility exists for your party to organize the peasantry, too, and to strike a blow at reaction in your country from the direction of the countryside. Of course, when you have organized the forces in the cities, too, then the blow can be struck from the two sides, and in these conditions the bourgeoisie and the feudal lords will be caught between two fires.
But we must never forget for one moment that from the nature of his work and his life the peasant is a petty bourgeois who, when he gains something, is satisfied with that and goes no further. He is content once he gets a bit of land. If you glance at the history of the peasant uprisings in Europe, you will see all the ebbs and flows of these uprisings, and they have failed precisely for the reason I stated, whereas the proletariat is quite different. It carries the revolution through to the end, because, as Marx says, it has nothing to lose but its chains. The proletariat knows that the factories and the state power must be seized, and to achieve this, the old state power of the bourgeoisie must be overthrown. Our Party kept this principle in mind and faithfully carried it out in theory and in practice. There were not many workers in our country, because industry scarcely existed, there were only a few small factories and workshops, therefore the working class was small, whereas the peasantry made up the overwhelming bulk of the population. Nevertheless, right from the start, we made the essence of our doctrine clear to our patriotic and militant peasantry, educated them with our proletarian ideology, therefore they were with the Party, joined us in the partisan units and we made them think like proletarians. True, they fought for the land, but they understood that they must also fight for state power as well as for the land, because in this way the bourgeoisie and the occupiers would be defeated and they could be sure of the land they had won. Of course, your Party, too, bears in mine! this Marxist teaching, because our two parties have the one ideology.
The question of how to act with the trade unions is another important and difficult problem for you and for all the new Marxist-Leninist parties of Europe which have been set up in countries like Italy, France, Austria, Germany, etc. In those countries, pretty well the whole working class is included in the bourgeois, revisionist and reformist trade unions. The capitalists have long and great experience of working with these unions, they have entangled the worker in a host of different laws: on economic treatment, social insurance, pay rates, and so on, so that the working class of our continent does not move outside the rules which these trade unions have established and is afraid of individual isolation, because, if a worker sympathizes with and joins the Marxist Leninist party, the capitalist employer sacks him and the existing unions led by the bourgeois and revisionist parties do not defend him.
Now the problem of the trade unions is a problem which every Marxist Leninist party must study thoroughly, must think about how to get around this situation, how to break through this barrier and make the working class conscious so that it will not be deceived by the bourgeois trade unions, the imperialists and the revisionists. This is a very important problem. The question that arises now is whether to work from within the existing unions, or to create our own new unions which will be in militant revolutionary positions and must not fall into the positions of social-democracy either in the political struggle or in the economic struggle, Here in Europe, in the West, it seems as if political and economic struggle is being waged, but in fact, what goes on in the ranks of the trade unions is bargaining between the bosses of these organizations, the worker aristocracy and the bourgeoisie. Even the so-called demonstrations which are held are only to support their negotiations.
Of course, for us the question of the struggle which we have to wage is not put forward in this way. We are for a political and economic struggle by the working class, of course, going beyond the bounds of rules and laws imposed by capital. If we are able to lead this struggle from outside this will be very good, if we are able to lead it from within, without falling into the positions of the capitalists and social-traitors, this, too, is not wrong, but if we can lead it from outside and, at the same time, have our forces inside, then we will defeat the reformists and revisionists, etc., and strengthen our positions in the ranks of the working class.
The victory always depends on the proletariat, therefore it is essential that we make it conscious of its historic role so that it understands ideologically and politically the role of its strength as a class, so that it understands theoretically that it is facing a savage enemy, capitalism, and all its organs of repression, so that it understands that only in unity, united around a party with a clear programme of struggle, firmly guided by the ideology of Marxism Leninism, is it able to face up to cunning enemies of every ilk.
Therefore, I think this problem must be studied. Sometimes we have talked about such problems with the comrades of Marxist-Leninist parties who have come to our country, but we ourselves are unable to say how this work should be carried out, because everyone knows the situation in his own country better than anyone else. Our duty is simply to exchange opinions.
In order to prolong their existence, the capitalists and revisionists employ all kinds of forms and tactics in conformity with the situation and the idea-political level of the working class. In Germany, for instance, a new tactic is being used. What tactic? Appeals are being made to the workers to take part concretely in the “management” of capital. Wherever the capitalists want to build a big iron and steel plant, efforts are made to get the workers to participate in buying shares, but the overwhelming majority of the shares belongs to the capitalists, such as the big capitalist, Thyssen, who may employ tens of thousands of workers in his enterprise. Then to avoid workers’ strikes and demonstrations he puts 95 percent of the shares in his own pocket and distributes only 5 percent among the workers. Formally, the workers have the right to send their representatives to the administrative council of this enterprise in numbers proportionate to the shares they possess. But how are these representatives appointed and who are they in fact? They are the representatives of the worker aristocracy and the operations are manipulated on the basis of the 95 percent, and in this way decisions are taken in an allegedly “democratic” way, some occasional favour is granted the workers, fiery debates are held and sometimes even a “passive strike” in order to give the impression that something is being done, whereas in reality, everything has been decided at the outset by the owner of the enterprise, he decides how much he will give the workers. That is how they are operating in Germany. We know this tactic but there could be others, too.
After the events with the students in May 1968 in France, De Gaulle too wanted to adopt a similar tactic. French monopoly capital was somewhat shaken by all those powerful demonstrations which were held in France at that time. De Gaulle tried to carry through such a reform but the owners of capital did not accept it. Then he threatened them that. he. would resign and that is why he organized the referendum, having forewarned the people that if they did not vote for him he would retire. In these referendum manoeuvres, the present-day president of France, Pompidou, played a role against De Gaulle, not openly of course, a role which brought about that De Gaulle did not receive the necessary number of votes to come out on the top once again and to implement the kind of reform I mentioned. In these circumstances De Gaulle resigned.
In your country, for example, they made great use of Mahatma Gandhi who developed the idea of “passive resistance”. In the conditions of India, your Marxist-Leninist Party has a great role and we think that it takes account of the social experience and history of the workers’ and peasants’ movement of India, of the various states of your country, makes use of the experience of wars against the British and against the capitalists in general, because, in particular, there are and must be specific features that must be kept in mind, since the situation in one state has not been the same as in another, and the situation in one state today is not the same in another. Likewise all the problems of the world outlook must be kept in mind, taking account of religion, the level of economic and cultural development of each state, etc. The correct, consistent, revolutionary stand of the party results . from the study of these special features and conditions and its strategy and tactics are defined on this basis. Unless I am mistaken, it is important that the strategy must be the same, whereas in regard to tactics, these can vary in different states at the same time, bearing in mind the conditions of each state or province. Your Party could use one tactic in Calcutta, another in Bombay, and another again in Bihar, etc.
To say that what the PLA did in the conditions of Albania must be done everywhere is not right, this does not work. In solving the problems which arise for your Party in your country, your judgement alone will be more correct, whereas our judgement may not be correct, because you have to be in India, to be thoroughly acquainted with the situation, have to know the state of affairs or the problem well, and then you can speak with competence.
Nevertheless to exchange experience with one another is very valuable. You may come to Albania whenever you wish and find it possible to do so and we shall welcome you as friends and comrades in the struggle.
Let us drink this toast to the friendship between our two parties and peoples in the struggle against the American imperialists and the Soviet revisionists, to the health of your leadership, to your health!
I wish you a good journey and au revoir! My best regards to all the comrades!
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