This article appeared in Albania Today, 6 (85) 1985. It was presented in the Scientific Conference dedicated to the Immortal Work of Comrade Enver Hoxha Continue reading
From the Talk with a member of the Political Bureau of the CC of the CP of India (ML) November 14, 1970 Continue reading
The international situation is becoming ever more complicated. In saying this I have in mind that the situation is not tranquil either for capitalism or for the revolutionaries. Capitalism is in a great fever, in crisis.
In my opinion, we Marxist-Leninists, the working class, the revolutionaries and ordinary progressive people in the world must take greater efforts to increase the superiority of the forces of the revolution. Why? Because capitalism, which is experiencing great disturbances at present possesses powerful means and has developed diverse modes of government, action, sabotage and disruption which hinder the advance of the revolution.
I think that our Marxist-Leninist parties and the progressive elements ought to look at this situation realistically and, on the basis of the theory of Marx and Lenin, find such means and forms of struggle that will turn the situation in favour of the revolution. This requires the creation of new Marxist-Leninist parties and the strengthening of the existing ones, of course, adhering firmly to the teachings of Marx and Lenin. They alone are able to make detailed analyses of the situation in the country, the ratio of classes, the strength of the working class, its strong and weak points, as well as the forms and methods which the bourgeoisie employs to subjugate the workers and the people. Such a study will serve each party, in its specific conditions, for struggle, for action, and not for sterile discussions which do not bring the liberation of the working class or the country, but, on the contrary, bring disruption and subjugation.
Let us not forget that while capitalism and the various parties in its service are in deep crisis, they are struggling to find forms, ways and expedients to befuddle and confuse the Marxist-Leninists who stand at the head of the working class, so that they will not manage to make the class conscious of the need to take action and capitalism and its parties will be able to split it while keeping it under their rule. The clear Marxist-Leninist ideas absolutely must be combined with actions; we cannot proceed from the idea that actions should be carried out only when the forces of the party are great, or capable of confronting the military machine of imperialism. But this should not be taken to mean that now the communists must hurl themselves into adventurous actions. Avoiding adventurism should not prevent us communists from acting in a Marxist-Leninist way.
Naturally, our actions must be well calculated. We must foresee the dangers threatening us and the possibilities of victory and always bear in mind that the revolution will have its zigzags. One thing must be clear to all, that the lofty reputation of the communist and the genuine Marxist-Leninist party cannot be earned by tailing behind the situation and remaining at the stage of sterile discussions, without becoming a real example for the working class and the other revolutionaries who want to fight against capital.
In thoughts and in actions, the place of the Marxist-Leninist parties is always in the vanguard. And if thoughts are to be combined with actions, we must not go into battle alone, but at the head of the working class and its allies. In order to go into battle together with them it is necessary to penetrate into the ranks and become one with them. It must be said, however, that in this direction unclear views, hesitation, fear and lack of perspective still exists.
Therefore, the task devolves upon us, Marxist-Leninists, to make good these shortcomings. In order to achieve this we must have a thorough understanding of the situation, know the forms, methods, ways and mechanisms which imperialism and capitalism use today to remain alive. They do not readily down the weapons with which they intimidate and oppress the peoples. Then, apart from weapons, they also use policy, diplomacy and demagogy. We must cope with all these weapons of the enemy without underestimating them, but at the same time, without overestimating them. If we can find the weak points in the strength, thought and actions of the enemy, then we shall more easily find the course we must pursue in our struggle and the most appropriate forms and methods for this struggle.
We have to realize that present-day imperialism and capitalism have adopted new forms of oppression and exploitation which, in essence, do not differ from the forms of the old colonialism. At present the metropolises are applying these forms, which we call neo-colonialist in all those countries which were their colonies in the past, that is, the countries of Africa, Asia, Latin America and other countries formerly under their military occupation, in which to this day they continue to exploit the sweat and blood of the peoples.
This military occupation had the structure and superstructure of the monopoly capitalism of the metropolises, had the same method of exploitation that was used against the people of the metropolis, but in a more savage form. The colonies were the prey of capitalism which oppressed the peoples in the most merciless ways, without hindrance.
After the Second World War colonialism assumed new forms. Many countries, with the exception of the few remaining colonies, are called “free”, “souvereign”, “democratic”, or what you will. Naturally, an “independent” capitalist system has been established in those countries, but they are always dependent on the big capitalist countries.
Our Party and the Marxist-Leninists everywhere in the world must make clear to the working class and the people of their own countries that we ought to exploit the existing revolutionary situation to the full, not only by undertaking political and ideological actions, but also by striking blows when the conditions have matured and when the oppression has become intolerable, and as the people themselves say: “Each must defend himself!” We must explain clearly to people so that they understand that neo-colonialism applies the forms of domination, exploitation and oppression which it uses today not only in the countries in which colonialism and the capitalist monopolies reigned previously, that is in the colonies, but also in the metropolises themselves.
In the metropolises, the working class, students and progressive working people have been and are subject to twofold oppression: that of internal capital, on the one hand, and that of foreign monopoly capital, on the other; they live under the terrible pressure of local monopolies and multinational companies. This is the new characteristic of capitalist society and its highest stage, imperialism, which is quite indiscriminate in regard to its oppression of peoples and the extraction of huge profits from their sweat and blood, both within the metropolises and outside them. Capital has become international, without a homeland.
Thus, the group of international monopolist makes no distinction between peoples and states, provided that the profits are great. Thus, the monopolies and the multinational companies recognize neither the freedom, independence, nor the souvereignity of the peoples, which for them are only formal. In this feverish activity they have made common cause with one another in order to share in the profits. But in capitalism the law of the jungle prevails in every direction: the great fish eat the small. This law prevails also in the division of profits.
Our Marxist-Leninist parties and revolutionaries are aware that the people living in the developed capitalist countries are more favoured than those of the former colonial or neo-colonial countries. It is an indisputable fact that the people are exploited more in the neo-colonialist countries where the big joint companies invest their capital. The actions of capital on the workers in the metropolises are somewhat less burdensome than in other countries, but the aim is the same.
Of course, in the various countries of the so-called third world, or non-aligned world, there are very weak points for big and local capital, but there are weak points, also, for the working class and the revolutionary elements, because of their political and ideological backwardness. Therefore, in order to ensure its financial, commercial and military potential, big capital is strengthening the local capitalist cliques in power day by day in order to keep their peoples in subjection, darkness and ignorance and to drown in blood any attempt at uprising by the people or interference by rival foreign capital in those countries.
The time has come when the mentality of the working class in the developed countries, one of the main obstacles of the revolution is the trade-unions which have been transformed into tools of the bourgeoisie to restrain movements of the working class. The owning class and their agents, one of which is the worker aristocracy which is bound to the various parties of social-democracy and modern revisionism, make the law in the unions.
The social democratic parties and the parties of modern revisionism are reformist parties, opposed to the revolution and for the defence of capital, for reforms of the structure and for a corrupted anti-proletarian superstructure, in order to undermine any revolutionary sentiment and action. Just like the parties of social-democracy which were exposed by Marx and Lenin long ago as lackeys of the bourgeoisie and preparers of the terrain for imperialism, the present-day revisionists are precisely those elements who come to the direct aid of ageing social-democracy against socialist society, in order to quell the uprising of the working class and the peoples, the revolution.
Therefore, the trade-unions in the capitalist countries must be considered as tools of the parties of capital and must be fought as such, but without hurting or damaging the unity of the working class. In my opinion the trade-unions in the capitalist countries will play a major role only if their dependence on parties of the bourgeoisie, whether social-democratic or revisionist, is broken and only if the influence of the worker aristocracy in them is totally eradicated. In other words, the unions will be placed in the service of the working class only if true representatives of that class, educated with the Marxist-Leninist ideology, place themselves at the head of them, mobilize them and hurl them into struggle against the state power of capital. Hence, it must be understood that this power, with all its forms, means, laws and constitution, has nothing democratic and revolutionary about it, as those in its service try to make out. They are the same forms and mechanisms of the old capitalist state, but dressed up with new elements which respond and are adopted to new situations.
Naturally, the development of the economy, the technical progress in the capitalist countries have created overproduction, which has caused the present great crisis, which has become a gangrenous wound for capitalism and imperialism. The broad working masses are impoverished and their life is becoming ever more difficult, while the profits of the capitalists are increasing, but the capitalists sense the danger and are striving continually, every day, to create economic, political and military forms and structures which will withstand any possible opposition or revolt on the part of the oppressed.
For the time being, in the developed capitalist countries we see this revolt expressed in demonstrations, but still peaceful and limited to slogans for economic demands. Such manifestations serve capital as an expedient, in order to create among its own parties the impression that allegedly the working class and the working people of all categories have complete freedom to hold strikes and demonstrations, to make complaints and criticisms, etc. However, as I pointed out above, in reality these movements do not have the results that the working class desires and demands, irrespective of the fact that now and again, when such manifestations become widespread, the bourgeoisie is obliged to part with a few extra crumbs to placate the anger and threat of the working people.
Hence, the working class, with its Marxist-Leninist party at the head, must be capable of understanding when the suitable national moment exists to organize and proceed towards the uprising. In this direction it is precisely the Marxist-Leninists who must be the most capable, the most wide-awake, the best organizers in order to become the subjective factor of the leadership of the revolution. In no way should we proceed from the idea that the conditions are not yet ripe for the revolution, or that the revolution cannot break out in the developed capitalist countries, therefore, we have to wait for it to develop in those states or continents in which the oppression, the forms and methods of exploitation are allegedly different from those in the metropolises. The working class and the Marxist-Leninist parties of the metropolises ought to give the peoples of various countries great aid, should assist their revolutionary movements. The greatest support and aid is to make life possible for monopoly capitalism and the foreign capital which collaborates with the local capital for the oppression of the peoples in the colonial and neo-colonial countries.
The situation in many countries of the world today is like that in Albania in the time of the reign of Ahmet Zog who formed a comic opera kingdom, with beys, feudal lords and reactionaries in order to oppress, bleed and exploit the Albanian people to the bone. Zog, of course, was penniless. He made money when sold the assets of the country to foreigners and when he granted them concessions in Albania. The Serbs and Wrangel’s white guard army helped Ahmet Zog to return to Albania. Subsequently he became a lackey of the Italian imperialists who, before their military occupation of Albania, had, in fact, made it a colony of theirs, or a neo-colony, if we can use the current term. Although fascist Italy invested little capital in Albania, it seized all the key positions in the economy and the strategic points of the country and prepared its occupation.
Therefore, the Marxist-Leninist parties in the capitalist countries will have to work and struggle unrelentingly in order to weaken international monopoly capital, the multinational companies which oppress and exploit the peoples, and make life difficult for them so that the people attack wherever the links in the capitalist chain are weakest, that is they must rise in insurrection to seize power and carry out democratic reforms and then to establish the dictatorship of the proletariat, a socialist structure and superstructure.
In various undeveloped capitalist countries today the people are rising in insurrection and revolution. We see this in Iran, Nicaragua, Central America, in the struggle of the Palestinians against the Americans and Israelis, and to a certain extent, we see it in the still disorganized resistance of the Arab countries against the superpowers, which manipulate this resistance in their own interests. We see people’s movements and uprising in Africa, too. But although the peoples in those countries are rising, fighting, and making sacrifices, the elements of the bourgeoisie, united with the big capital, are still doing everything they can through numerous tricks and intrigues to quell the insurrection, or turn it into a movement in their favour, and in that case, such a movement serves merely to eliminate this or that clique from the political scene in order to bring to power another more moderate but likewise capitalist clique which operates in agreement with big monopoly capital. This happens, of course, because of the political unclarity and the lack of organization of the working class. Thus, the anger and hatred of this class, its political-economic suffering and that of the poor peasantry are thus exploited in favour of the bourgeoisie.
Hence, we communists must analyse this situation in general and in particular, so that we understand it and then act. We analyse the situation in order to understand it, so that we know how to act, eventually in order to understand it and allow this difficult situation for the people to continue as before. We must not underestimate, the fear of war which big capital has created. It is a fact that time after time, when the crisis reaches its climax, partial wars, and perhaps even world war, could break out. Only the revolution on the Marxist-Leninist road can prevent, avert, or defeat world war. Otherwise, the major contradictions that exist between the superpowers, between multinational companies may cause it.
Therefore, since we understand this important problem in this way, we must make every effort to defeat the plans and actions which the bourgeoisie and its lackeys are making in preparation for a bloody, general war. This can be an insurrection which is led only by the working class which has the Marxist-Leninist doctrine as its guide.
The renegade of the Spanish Communist Party, Carillo, preaches transition to socialism through reforms. He says we should not charge the army of the bourgeoisie, should not even alter its ideology, but should introduce elements and cadres of the working class into its ranks and make it a defender of its order! And according to Carillo, this order in which the bourgeoisie, the priests, the police, and so on, are in power, will allegedly be socialist (!).
Hence, if we think as this traitor does, then we will not be able to undermine the attack force of the capitalist bourgeoisie. Therefore, we must not think and act as Carillo advocates, but in order to oppose the army of the capitalist bourgeoisie we must organize the people’s revolutionary forces and make them politically conscious of their great role, make clear to them who are those who oppose their actions to attack the state and achieve victory. Such a thing is highly possible.
We saw that the insurgent people in Iran stood up to the heavily armed forces of the Shah and his terrible security force SAVAK. Until that time it was unimaginable that the uprising of the people of Iran would be able to cope with an army equipped with the most sophisticated weapons and trained by the CIA and American officers. But it happened! Therefore, all Carillo’s prattle that we must infiltrate the ranks of the bourgeois army allegedly to convince the officer caste and the defenders of capital in order to bring them to socialism, is unscrupulous deception.
In this direction the bourgeoisie and capitalism are talking savage measures of suppression. One of these measures is the use of terrorism. Terrorism is the preliminary preparation for fascist military coups of the bourgeoisie, which, at moments of exacerbation of the class-struggle, when it sees that it cannot resists the strength and attack of the people goes on the offensive, launches a coup d´état and the fascist military junta takes power. But in order to succeed this has to be prepared, and it is clear that this preparation is being done through the organization of gangs and gangsters, who are armed and operating, to a greater or lesser extent, in every state, disguised under various “communist” and “Marxist” labels like “Brigate Rosse”, etc., precisely to intimidate and confuse the broad working masses and justify the fascist coup d´état. These gangsters operate by attacking banks, killing people, often attacking directors of big enterprises, taking wealthy people hostage and demanding collossal sums for their ransom. They do all this, first of all, to deceive, but also to terrorize the working class and the broad working masses. We notice that in these disturbances the worker aristocracy and all the social-democratic and revisionist parties do not take any active, militant action against terrorism.
Hence, terrorism is the preliminary preparation for fascism to come to power. Through the action of these gangsters, the bourgeoisie threatens the working class and gives it to understand that the existing order which capitalism has established must be protected, otherwise, with the overthrow of this capitalist state (which itself creates the conditions for the terrorists to thrive and is not afraid that they will overthrow it) the workers will loose even those very limited “rights” they have won through struggle and sacrifices, in the economic field, in social security, etc. Thus, we see that in the demonstrations which are held in the capitalist countries, after each terrorist act, the revisionist or social-democratic chiefs and the worker aristocracy, which rules in the trade-unions, cry out against terrorism, while it continues to develop at the rapid rate.
The anti-Marxist theoreticians condemn terrorism in the forms in which it manifests itself today, but they make no distinction between acts of terrorism and the militant actions towards revolution which the working class, led by a Marxist-Leninist party, has to carry out. Being against the revolution, they are against any action, and the state power of the bourgeoisie and its social-democratic and revisionist defenders call any such action, any attempt in this direction, and any military organization of the working class, led by the Marxist-Leninist party, a terrorist act. Indeed, the revisionists vote in favour of strengthening the police and security organs in order to combat terrorism and anarchism. This means allowing the bourgeoisie a free hand to attack any form of organization and struggle of the working class and its vanguard to liberate itself from the yoke of capitalism.
Therefore, we Marxist-Leninists and the working class must understand this question thoroughly and be able to make the distinction, because there is a great difference between Marxist-Leninists and anarchists and the terrorists. On the other hand, however, this question should not be taken to mean that in order to restrain terrorism, the working class with its vanguard and the progressive people should refrain from acting or even from fighting with arms against this state which oppresses them, as well as against all terrorist, anarchist and revisionist forms that support this state power of the bourgeoisie. If we do not understand this situation correctly, if we equate revolutionary action with terrorism and anarchism, then it will be impossible for the revolution, to advance and the working class will remain for ever at the mercy of capital, under the oppression of laws of the bourgeoisie, and, as a consequence, will tone down all its efforts to liberate itself from bondage. Hence, there are certain moments when it is necessary to delve deeper into the meaning which must be distinct from the meaning and judgement which the revisionists and the social-democracy want to give it in the interests of the monopolies and their state.
At present there are difficulties and dangers for the new Marxist-Leninist parties which emerged after the 1960s, and especially for some that were created under the influence of the Chinese cultural revolution. In some of these new “Marxist-Leninist” parties, especially in certain countries of Europe and Latin-America, their emergence on the scene, the organization and uniting of their ranks was done not by sound elements of the working class, but by isolated elements, who had the experience of the weak, anti-Marxist, reformist work of revisionist parties. On top of this, these parties were formed and developed, so to say, in complete legality, and together with others, many elements who posed as Marxist-Leninists but were not such, entered their ranks.
Some leaders of these parties took the problem very lightly, a thing which, naturally, was reflected in their work. They considered the breaking away from the revisionist parties as a very important act. In fact this really was an important act, but the course they were to follow, the forms and methods of organization of their work, especially the political and the organizational line which were adopted and applied, were to have greater importance. As was seen, on certain international problems and theoretical issues they took more or less correct stands, but still, in some aspects, their political line was developed in the same forms as the line of the revisionist parties were unable to make a proper judgement of the situations within their own countries and in the international field. This was so over major events in the international communist movement, for example, over the struggle against Soviet revisionism and, later, in the analyses which should have been made of the development of the situation in China, the factional struggle which was developing there and the Chinese cultural revolution. In many instances it was clear that they lacked Marxist-Leninist depth in their judgements and opinions, but had sufficient arrogance to consider their actions as indisputable.
In fact, right from the formation of some of these parties it was apparent that among their members there were elements who were not properly tempered with the Marxist-Leninist ideas or whose mastery of them was superficial and rather for sentimental reasons. For example, many of them made no effort to gain a thorough understanding of the major role of the party as the vanguard detachment of the working class and of the major difficulties they would encounter in their work and struggle in the conditions of savage, oppressive and exploiting capitalist regime, a regime hostile, first of all, to Marxist-Leninists.
For these reasons, then, in some of the small parties, right from the start frictions appeared and splits occurred, no measures were taken against factionalists, because the leaders and members of the party were not properly acquainted with the Leninist-Stalinist organizational forms of the party in the dangerous and complicated conditions of their countries. Moreover, they did not foresee that reaction would have the activity of the party and its members under permanent surveillance, and would infiltrate dubious elements, their agents or wavering sympathizers into their ranks.
Performing our internationalist duty, wherever we had the possibility and contacts with some of these parties, we, the Party of Labour of Albania, stressed our experience to them and told them that in its whole line, including the problems of its organizational structure, our Party remained loyal to Marxism-Leninism, which it did not consider a dogma or a theoretical ornament, but applied it in practice with the greatest strictness and seriousness in the difficult conditions of our country, that is, in the struggle against the occupiers of the country and the local bourgeoisie which placed itself in their service.
Thus, in the organizational field, some of these new Marxist-Leninist parties which broke away from the revisionist parties, were organized, so to say, in those same legal forms as the revisionist and social-democratic parties, so the entire political and ideological opinion of the country could not fail to exert an influence within their ranks. To this day there are members of these parties who still think they can militate in legal ways as Marxist-Leninists communists without being disturbed by capitalism and its apparatus of oppression. In these circumstances, then, it can hardly be said that there exists that sound nucleus, as strong as it could be in conditions of illegality, which is able to withstand a sudden attack which reaction is sure to make against the party.
The very dangerous consequences of this work and this practice in some of these parties, especially in Europe, became apparent after the exposure of the Communist Party of China and the ideas of Mao Zedong. Splits occurred, anti-Marxist ideas and opinions emerged, which in some cases were embraced even by their leaders. That explains why some of those small, still unconsolidated parties, which began their activity with correct aims on the Marxist-Leninist road and were for revolutionary actions, deviated. This is what happened with the Communist (Marxist-Leninist) Parties of France, Belgium, Holland, the Scandinavian countries and recently with the Communist Party of Italy (Marxist-Leninist), etc.
In short, some of these Marxist-Leninist parties were split because they did not have a proper understanding of their role in the revolution, because they did not organize themselves for a fierce struggle with organized and armed reaction and the revisionist and social-democratic parties, which have long experience and numerous means to combat any opponents who emerge, to fight and undermine their work, as the tools of capital they are.
Proceeding from the experience of our Party and country, as well as from the experience of the genuine communist parties of the past, I think that the Marxist-Leninist parties must not isolate themselves, that is, they must not stand remote from the broad masses of the people, and especially, from the working class. In this question, we Marxist-Leninists reason and judge proceeding from the fact that the working class in the capitalist countries, or at least the overwhelming bulk of it today, is inspired and organized by the parties of social-democracy, the employers and modern revisionism in trade-unions manipulated by them, and that the bourgeois state has set up a broad network of informers and has brought out a large number of laws in order to implant the bourgeois mentality in this working class, to corrupt it ideologically and politically and intimidate it so that it does not undertake actions that are dangerous to the capital. Therefore, if the members of the Marxist-Leninist parties want to advance, to continue on the course for which the parties were set up, they must get into those big groupings of the proletariat, go among the ranks of the democratic progressive elements who are against the capitalist regime, against the constitution of the capitalist country and economic oppression and exploitation, and against the reactionary ideology which is presented in various forms in order to befuddle the minds of the people.
The new Marxist-Leninist parties cannot content themselves merely with the publication of a newspaper or magazine, which, naturally, have very limited circulation. These means of propaganda have their own importance, but frequently they fail to produce the desired effect among the masses, let alone penetrate and organize the work within big groupings of the masses. Both the Marxist-Leninists norms which organize, temper and make the party coherent and militant, and its penetration, organization and struggle inside the unions or other groupings of the working class, are matters of great importance for the revolution. The Marxist-Leninist parties, especially in Europe, must not remain onlookers behind the barricade on which the working class is fighting. In Latin America, many Marxist-Leninist parties newly formed after 1960 militated in illegality and not only operated correctly, in general, for their own development and education with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, but also accompanied this activity with concrete actions, with attacks through strikes and demonstrations setting their militant example. Of course, they also suffered losses during these attacks, but the party cannot be consolidated on the revolutionary road, cannot be the vanguard of the proletariat and the progressive and revolutionary elements without losses and without setting such a militant example.
Of course, legal work must be carried out, but parallel with this work the party must create its clandestine force which will direct the legal work. Precisely this force of the party is the soundest, most resolute part which will understand the situation thoroughly and correctly and will direct the activities. Some new Marxist-Leninist parties did not bear in mind this teaching of Marxism-Leninism. With their fraudulent propaganda, with allegedly leftist slogans, which in reality were reactionary slogans in the service of capital, the parties of the bourgeoisie deceived the working class and the revolutionary elements, because, as we know, in all their activity the revisionist parties aim to achieve alliances with the bourgeoisie and its parties, contenting themselves with a few concessions granted by the bourgeoisie through reforms. These comrades have been satisfied with some successes they achieved through demonstrations in the streets and meetings and speeches in the squares. But that is not enough to teach the working class how to fight and mount the steps of the revolution one by one until the final step, that is, the decisive attack against the apparatus of capitalist oppression.
Thinking that in the countries in which they militate the situations are such as to create the possibility for their legalization, some parties which now are in illegality have been faced with the question: “How should we act?” I think that the legalization of the party is a two-edged sword: it is good if the reason for, the forms and the limitations of this legalization are understood, but it is very harmful if elements of the bourgeoisie, wavering elements, revisionist elements and agents of the reaction penetrate the ranks of the party in legality. In this way the possibility is created for people trained for sabotage to infiltrate from the legal part of the party into the part working in illegality. While for illegality to serve the party actively, its members must not merely engage in propaganda for parliamentary reforms, as the revisionist parties openly linked with reaction do, but must go among the masses, work with them and organize them in a revolutionary way, winning them away from the influence of capital and its parties. Otherwise, the desired success cannot be achieved.
It is true that that section of the party which emerge in legality will have possibilities to go among the broad masses more easily and to organize joint fronts with them against the power of the bourgeoisie, to carry on propaganda and influence them in action. But the party must influence them in actions not in the revisionist and social-democratic way, because in that case the working class will be unable to distinguish between Marxist-Leninists and revisionists and will not be incited to actions more advanced than those which social-democracy and modern revisionism have taught it. In the contrary, the creation of fronts and the expansion of the influence of that section of the party which is legal, closely linked with the other part which is in illegality, must make the revolt of the people greater and in this way the revolutionary situations which are created will be turned to advantage. It is necessary to know how to utilize the contradictions which exist between the internal capital of the country and foreign capital, between the local bourgeoisie and the proletariat. This work will consolidate the existence of the party and its militant line, will disseminate genuine Marxism-Leninism and will expose revisionism.
It is absolutely essential that the exposures of revisionism and its parties, with their forms, methods and policies should be done, although the exposure through newspaper articles and speeches, but should be accompanied with actions so that the proletariat will clearly see the distinction between its Marxist-Leninist party and the revisionist and social-democratic parties, not just because their political and ideological objectives differ, but especially because the party of the proletariat struggles to put its objectives into practice and thus, it will strengthen its ranks with such elements by admitting them as party members. Only through such work can the Marxist-Leninist parties in the capitalist countries be sure that their ranks will be increased with convinced and disciplined people, loyal to Marxism-Leninism, prepared for the revolution through violence and not through reforms.
It is essential that the members of parties that militate in the capitalist countries understand that they are in stern struggle with the bourgeoisie and its repressive apparatus, especially with its parties, including the revisionist parties. Therefore, they must be clear and always bear in mind that this struggle demands efforts and material and moral sacrifices.
If they do not understand their being members of the party and their work and struggle in its ranks in this way, then the party in which they militate can hardly be called a genuine revolutionary party, but is a revolutionary party only in words. Such a party will fall apart at the first difficult moment, indeed it is likely to do so even before such a moment is reached. Even at moments which are allegedly peaceful, but which are not and never can be peaceful, hangs together simply because it presents no moral, political or material threat to anything.
We Marxist-Leninist parties must work to create the means of propaganda and struggle ourselves, without the material aid of anyone, because there is no one who will help is seriously and without destructive political motives.
It is impermissible for us Marxist-Leninists to work with the forms and methods of work of the permanent bureaucrats of revisionist parties who engage in commercial deals instead of revolutionary work. It is our duty to teach the members of the party and the elements of the working class they mobilize around themselves to make small sacrifices, while preparing themselves for greater sacrifices, up to giving their lives on the fronts of struggle against the bourgeoisie which are being waged and will be waged in the future.
In this sense, the objective of the Marxist-Leninist parties which militate in the capitalist countries is to be parties of the barricades, parties of the capture of factories, of clashes with the forces of the order, and not parties which submit to the laws, regulations and formulas that reaction has created. This is logical and lawful, because all the creations of reaction and capital have the objective of the suppression of the revolution and the genuine parties have the duty not to obey them, but to attack them. In saying this I am not advocating operating in adventurous ways. As I stressed above, we must consider where the weak spots are, although, once again, without ideo-politically sound organizational activity they cannot be exploited.
The important moments through which the capitalist world is passing at present, the moments of the great crisis, are objectively very suitable for launching attacks on capital at its weak points. It is up to us Marxist-Leninists to understand these weaknesses thoroughly so that the struggle and the resistance are developed both in the developed capitalist countries and in the backward countries. The responsibility devolves on the Marxist-Leninist parties of the developed countries to prove themselves up to their tasks and set the example for the Marxist-Leninist parties or the revolutionary elements of the backward countries.
At present we can say that the working masses and progressive elements in the economically backward countries, who suffer the oppression of capital, are more in the forefront, more active, more militant than those in the developed capitalist countries and although there are no Marxist-Leninist parties there, they have proved their superiority by carrying out militant activities against the internal oppression and external interference. This shows that the capitalist bourgeoisie in the metropolises has great experience in oppression and exploitation and, apparently, even though there are Marxist-Leninist parties, people have become accustomed to enduring this oppression and to being mislead by the false democracy and freedom advocated by the allegedly democratic parties.
The conclusion emerges that the metropolises continue to oppress the undeveloped, neo-colonial countries and, logically, that the Marxist-Leninist parties in some oppressor countries are not reacting with the revolutionary force required to prevent this oppression. It can be seen that the necessary internationalist solidarity with the progressive peoples of continents which are in revolt against the double yoke of foreign and local capital does not exist in these countries. This is a major problem of capital importance, which must concern all Marxist-Leninists, and in the first place, the Marxist-Leninist parties in the countries ruled by capital.
Our party is aware of these problems, has them on the agenda, makes every effort and has orientated its whole policy, propaganda and agitation, as well as its own actions, towards internationalist aid for the Marxist-Leninist parties and the people’s national liberation struggle. At this stage, the national liberation struggles of the peoples of the undeveloped countries have extraordinary importance, because they weaken the capitalist order, in general and facilitate the development of bourgeois democratic revolutions and their transformation into proletarian revolutions. Hence, it is up to the communist forces wherever they are, to reflect on their actions and activities and be guided by our great revolutionary theory, Marxism-Leninism, to assimilate it thoroughly and accurately and. through the practical actions, to incite and lead the masses in revolution.
We notice with regret that some Marxist-Leninist parties do not understand this question properly, do not operate actively, that is, they do not accompany their propaganda, however weak, with concrete actions, which they can do only if the militant spirit exists in their ranks. Indeed, in some countries there are occasions when we do not see Marxist-Leninist groups or parties which distinguish themselves with their political actions and give fire to the demonstrations, opposition and protests which the working class makes on the urging of social-democracy or modern revisionism- Such actions would really arouse interest among the workers who would see that the actions of Marxist-Leninists come into conflict with the slogans chanted by the revisionists and social-democracy in strikes and demonstrations. Tens of thousands of workers rally in the squares of various cities, and the Marxist-Leninist parties will strengthen and assert themselves if their representatives take the courage to come out with their own microphones, addressing the masses of the people with their line in order to explain to them how they should turn the strikes and demonstrations they hold into political strikes and demonstrations, and not limited themselves to economic strikes or “peaceful” strikes.
The enemy in power is afraid of such political strikes, therefore he calls them ferocious strikes. The question here is not that we should come out with weapons or fire them, but we must stand up to the repressive organs of the order, the police, the carabinieri, the army and, at the same time, expose the evils of capitalism and the revisionist parties among the people gathers in the streets and in squares. This, for example, is a field in which Marxist-Leninists can mobilize the working masses. But there are other fields and forms of work like this, which prepare public opinion for sterner actions against the wretched existing state of affairs, so the people see more clearly the crisis of the regime, the great economic financial crisis, the great energy crisis, all of which, in the final analysis, are loaded on to the backs of the working class.
The working class cannot follow our people, our Marxist-Leninist groups or parties, if it does not see us in action, because in regard to the means od propaganda which the capitalist bourgeoisie and its parties possess, they are far more powerful the ours. Therefore, the masses of the people have to see us the communists and men of action in concrete actions against the imposed order, against the status quo, against the flabby activity which the propaganda of the bourgeoisie creates.
The purpose of the propaganda of the bourgeoisie is to retain its electorate. By saying that voting for this or that party of the bourgeoisie will alter the situation, each bourgeois party tries to arouse vain hopes among the working class and the working masses, hence, it canvasses for votes. The only result of such propaganda is to lull the revolutionary energies of the masses to sleep, whereas we Marxist-Leninists face the task that we must involve the masses in concrete actions.
Wherever the capitalist bourgeoisie operates, it is striving with all its might to cope with the terrible economic crisis which has gripped it, and which, far from diminishing is becoming deeper, by shifting its consequences on to the shoulders of the masses. The energy-crisis, the financial crisis, the mounting prices, inflation, unemployment and terrorism which day by day is assuming alarming proportions, are arousing the distrust of the broad masses of the people towards the regimes ruling them, but at the same time, they frighten the middle strata of the people, obscure their view of the future, of the ways and means to escape from the crisis, that is, from the regime which has given birth to all these evils. Precisely here and in opposition to this situation, the burden falls on us Marxist-Leninists and our parties to fight the opposing current, to find the ways, means and forms to mobilize the masses.
On many capitalist countries the crisis is great, terrorism, which is supported by capital, is assuming major proportions. In order to emerge from the crisis and crush any possibility of insurrection and revolution by the working class and the people, the reactionary forces in these countries are preparing the terrain for an authoritarian state, for the fascist dictatorship. If the working masses, we Marxist-Leninist parties and the progressive peoples fail to understand that the fascist dictatorship comes as a result of the difficult situation which the power of the capital is experiencing and do not fight it, then,, sooner or later fascism will be established, because the crisis will continue, since capitalism will strive to protect its income at the expense of the working masses who will become more and more impoverished. Being unarmed, because they do not understand why such a thing is occurring and do not fight against it and the other actions of the capital, these masses will accept the bondage of a fascist circle, thinking that it will be a way out of the crisis. In fact it is not a way out for the working class and the working people, because fascism represents the most ferocious dictatorship of capital, which will oppress the masses of the peoples even more than it is doing today. It is the last resort of exploiting capital.
In all the capitalist countries, separately or jointly, in the political, military and economic organism in which they have assembled, there exits a situation of terrible crisis, which has brought about consequences in the economy and in all the other sectors of the life of the country and has aroused the sentiments of the internal disintegration of the capitalist state and nationalism. Thus, in the capitalist and revisionist countries we see the development of profound contradictions, not only between states combined in blocs, but also between individual states. Even in the so-called socialist community at present there is a very great crisis, caused by the relations of dependence on the Soviet Union which is in a major economic-financial crisis itself. The other countries, satellites of the Soviet Union, likewise, are suffering the consequences of the world capitalist crisis. Thus, recently we see a great rise of prices of every sort in those countries, a rise which amounts to 50 per cent. This has already stirred the broad masses of the people to silent revolt, and in some cases, as in the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia and Poland, to open clashes.
The foreign debts of these countries are colossal. They amount to billions of dollars. These states are facing bankruptcy, because they are unable to further develop their economies, or even to pay their existing debts to the Soviet Union and the other capitalist countries. Hence, there is great discontent within this bloc. Wherever ethnic unity does not exist, nationalist groupings have begun to emerge.
I have said on other occasions that modern revisionism created difficult and complicated economic, political, and ideological situations. It disrupts the political unity of the country and incites desperate nationalism. In other words, modern revisionism incites the most reactionary, fascist nationalist elements to create those situations which are in the interest of world capital. Therefore, both in the capitalist countries and in the countries ruled by revisionists, the revolutionary situation, as an objective condition for the triumph of the revolution, has matured. The only thing lacking is the spark to kindle a revolt, organized and led, for the overthrow of the bourgeoisie, whether of the capitalist West or the revisionist East.
We find the most concrete example of this situation in Yugoslavia, where the national question has become as acute as it was at the time of the Second World War. The situation has not yet reached the stage where it bursts into flames, but the fire may break out due to the Titoite regime, which, contrary to its propaganda about “unity and fraternity”, is splitting the nations and nationalities more and more in Yugoslavia. The reactionary circles of the most powerful “krals” are operating for division, fragmentation and domination in Yugoslavia. These circles are the offspring of the anti-Marxist, capitalist-revisionist regime, which is arousing feuds, divisions and enmities among the peoples.
Our people have a wise saying: “Poverty breeds discord”, and this poverty is an outcome of capitalist regimes. The peoples in those countries are impoverished, therefore, in order to escape from poverty, the wretched absolutely must be made conscious and understand the situations, must organize themselves and strive to organize the resistance against oppression, to organize that popular striking force which gradually becomes a terrible force against the rotten capitalist regime, where the situation is ripe for revolutionary activity.
Our Marxist-Leninist theory teaches us: Every revolutionary activity must be guided by the Marxist-Leninist revolutionary theory which the Marxist-Leninist party masters, defends and faithfully applies. The objective of every genuine revolutionary movement must be to establish the hegemony of the working class. This hegemony does not in any way imply that the working class and its Marxist-Leninist party should not link up with all those classes and strata of the population which are very interested in opposing the oppressive capitalist and revisionist order. On the contrary, the hegemony of the working class presupposes alliance with the working peasantry, the progressive intellectuals, etc.
In the ranks of the unemployed in the capitalist-revisionist countries there is a great spiritual force of people revolted because they are short of food. In those countries there is a great force of people revolted because the prospects for a decent life have been closed to them. They cannot find jobs, and made desperate by this situation, they are easily corrupted and misled by the special intensive preparation of the regime to involve them in acts of terrorism. This is the source of the participation of young people in the terrorist “red brigades”. Many of these young people do not see any way out other than through terrorist acts. We Marxist-Leninists must show them that the isolated terrorist acts and gangsterism, in which the capitalist regime has involved them and is trying to involve them ever more deeply, do not bring any improvement of the situation for the people, the youth, or the unemployed, but, on the contrary, bring about the fascist coup of the reactionary bourgeoisie. These groups of youths are nothing but the vanguard detachments of fascism. In the face of these capitalist phenomena, we Marxist-Leninists must not sit idle. We must not permit the masses of the people, to be intimidated by the acts of terrorists, anarchists, on the contrary, we should work so that the people of this or that capitalist country are not afraid of them.
When the Marxists act against terrorism, it is likely that the class enemies will tax them with “taking part in the activity of elements who support the capitalist regime”, but the slanders of enemies must not inhibit the revolutionary activity. The Marxist-Leninists act in two parallel directions: both against the regime in power, against the bourgeois parties, whether social-democratic, socialist or revisionist, and at the same time, also, against terrorism. The revolutionaries cannot wage this struggle, simply by issuing a newspaper, but by carrying out extensive political, ideological propaganda and by acting together with the masses in order to make the truth clear to them and convince them in concrete actions, against the evils of the old society. The enemies must be attacked on all fronts in unity with the masses, otherwise, success cannot be achieved. To do this requires strong organization, courage and many sacrifices from our Marxist-Leninist parties.
At these difficult moments, when capitalism in crisis is seeking to establish its savage dictatorship, sacrifices on the part of Marxist-Leninists, the working class and progressive elements are indispensable, but every revolutionary action requires courage, intelligence and vigorous actions. There must be no retreat in the face of this situation.
The just and heroic struggle of the Palestinian people for the liberation of their territories seized and occupied by Israel is a fine example. Despite the fact that it is not led by Marxist-Leninists we support it. We support it since it is a national liberation, anti-imperialist struggle. In assessing their struggle we must appreciate their bravery in coping with countless difficulties against extremely strong powers, armed to the teeth, such as the American imperialists and the Israeli Zionists. We must also bear in mind the fact that, at the same time, the Palestinians have to fight the reactionary Arab forces, too. They are left without a homeland, but they have the strength of their spirit and the strength of their arms, their courage and honest aims to have their homeland liberated, which keep them alive. They are fighting tooth and nail against the Israeli Zionists, fighting for their existence as a people and for their right to have their own homeland. It is useful for the Marxist-Leninist parties of the capitalist countries to bear in mind this wonderful experience for the organization of their struggle, to draw inspiration from the example of the resistance of this small people who, although displaced and scattered, have been able to rally their energies for a great purpose. They are fighting in the ways which the conditions of bourgeois domination have allowed them for the creation of a Palestinian state in opposition to the great forces of capitalism and imperialism.
Despite some activities of a terrorist character by some groups, an activity which we Marxist-Leninists do not support, the struggle of the Palestinian people, in general, is a liberation struggle and should be assisted.
The tasks which emerge for us Marxist-Leninists in these situations are certainly very great and very difficult, because our enemies are numerous, highly organized and very powerful. These tasks become still greater and more difficult for the Marxist-Leninist parties which militate in the capitalist countries. But profound and correct understanding of Marxism-Leninism, that unerring guide which leads and directs us in every step of our life and ideological line, as well as in the organizational field, the effective co-ordination of illegal with legal activity, the selection of reliable allies and alliances, etc. will make our struggle and the overcoming of difficulties easier and will lead us to victory over the bourgeois-revisionist enemies.
The theoretical journal of the CC of the Italian Communist Party «Rinascita» in issue No. 35, dated September 5, 1964, has published Togliatti’s last writing, which the Western press has dubbed his «testament». The question is about a memorandum «about the problems of the international workers’ movement and its unity», written by Togliatti in Yalta (USSR), in August 1964, which was to have served as a basis in his talks with Khrushchev and other Soviet leaders about the problems which have arisen in connection with the calling of an international meeting of communist and workers’ parties by the Khrushchev group.
The leadership of the ICP headed by L. Longo, who was elected General Secretary after Togliatti’s death, hastened to publish it and to proclaim it as its own platform. «The leadership of our Party,» wrote Longo in a brief foreword to Togliatti’s «testament», «learned with great excitement about the document prepared by Comrade Togliatti, agreed that in it the positions of our Party in regard to the present situation of the international communist movement are presented with great clarity, and adopted it as its own. Therefore we are publishing Comrade Togliatti’s memorandum as a precise exposition of the position of the Party about the problems of the international communist and workers’ movement and its unity».
The publication of this document met with a lively response both among the revisionist circles and in the bourgeois press. While the Khrushchev group maintained a reserved stand towards this document and was satisfied simply to publish it without comment, the imperialists and the Titoite clique hailed it and welcomed it with glee. And this because of the fact that in this document Togliatti not only reaffirmed the hostile anti-Marxist position of the Italian revisionists, but also disclosed the differences which the Italian revisionists have with other revisionists, and with the Khrushchev group in the first place. Togliatti’s whole «testament» is pervaded from end to end by distortion of Marxism-Leninism, by efforts to replace it in theory and practice with modern revisionism. It reflects and boosts the line of «Italian socialism» and the theory of «Italian polycentrism».
As such, Togliatti’s «testament» has great importance for us Marxist-Leninists because the revisionists exposed themselves in it. Through this document the genuine revolutionaries can see the results of their resolute struggle up till now, which has not only seriously hindered the realization
of the hostile aims of the revisionists, but has also caused them great difficulties and has made the contradictions between them even deeper and more acute. At the same time, through Togliatti’s «testament», the Marxist- Leninists can also see more clearly the plans and methods of struggle which the modern revisionists will try to use now and in the future against Marxist-Leninist parties, against genuine revolutionaries, against communism. These cunning revisionist plans must be resolutely and unhesitatingly unmasked. The illusions which the various revisionist groups try to create about their positions must be exposed and destroyed. The genuine revolutionaries must be clear about the present and future danger from those enemies of communism. For this reason it is necessary to carefully analyze the «testament» of Togliatti.
THE MAIN AIM OF REVISIONISTS IS TO FIGHT
In reading the «testament» of Togliatti it becomes clearly apparent that the main aim of this document is not at all to achieve unity in the international communist movement and the socialist camp, but to show the methods, forms, and means which, in the opinion of Togliatti and the whole revisionist leadership of the Italian Communist Party, will make possible a more effective struggle against the Marxist-Leninist parties and their positions, against their ever-increasing influence. Togliatti makes no attempt to conceal this, indeed in his memorandum there is a special chapter entitled precisely, «How the Chinese Positions Can Be Attacked more Effectively». And this is because the revisionists see that their positions are becoming weaker, that nobody is fooled by their demagogy any longer, that revolutionary Marxist-Leninist parties and groups, around which the revolutionary masses of the working class and the people are uniting, are being formed everywhere.
In fact, as is expressed in his «testament», Togliatti is greatly concerned about the fact that things in the revisionist herd, in its struggle against Marxism-Leninism, are not going well, and he sees the main cause of this situation in the «wrong», «dogmatic» and brutal tactics of Khrushchev and his group. He writes:
«The plan which we proposed for a powerful struggle against the incorrect political positions and disruptive activity of the Chinese communists was different from that which was followed in fact… A
different line was followed and I do not consider the results completely satisfactory.»
The Togliatti revisionists are among the most cowardly, but at the same time, the most consistent revisionists.
Therefore they demand, as their dead leader clearly states, that the open polemics against the «dogmatists» must be carried on unceasingly.
With this the Italian revisionists show themselves to be, as they are in fact, sworn enemies of Marxism-Leninism.
They express themselves as firmly opposed to any cessation of the open, public struggle against Marxist-Leninists, even temporarily and for the sake of appearances, because otherwise they cannot carry out their treacherous mission.
At the same time, with this they are telling Khrushchev that his demagogic manoeuvres intended «to stop polemics» are completely in vain and deceive no one, that the polemics cannot be stopped either by the revisionists or the «dogmatists».On the other hand, however, Togliatti demands that
the main direction of the polemics must be shifted. Faced with the bitter experience of the deplorable results of the propaganda of the Khrushchev group, allegedly in defence of principles of creative Marxism-Leninism, he demands that they refrain from theoretical polemics with Marxist- Leninist parties that touch on the vital problems of principleof the revolutionary Marxist-Leninist doctrine and the activity of the communist movement, and that the discussion should be orientated completely towards the confused, unprincipled, and uncontrollable petty day-to-day struggle around the current internal problems of the country, in which, according to Togliatti, the propaganda of the «dogmatists» is «completely disarmed and powerless» and has «no effect at all».
With this proposal Togliatti is launching a very dangerous idea. In the polemics with the Marxist-Leninists over major questions of principle, as Togliatti himself is forced to admit, the modern revisionists have suffered utter defeat, their demagogy has failed and they are not in a position to denigrate the basic principles of Marxism-Leninism. The polemics over principle is certain disaster for the revisionists, because it is demonstrating openly to the masses of communists and working people the revisionists’ flagrant deviation from the fundamental principles of Marxism-Leninism, and bringing to light their real features as renegades.
Consequently, the revolutionary Marxist-Leninists everywhere are organizing, creating new groups and parties, which are fighting with determination against revisionism, in defence of the Marxist-Leninist doctrine. Togliatti is afraid of this situation and perspective. Therefore, to avoid the complete exposure of revisionism, he demands that the polemics must be shifted from questions of principle and concentrated on discussion of second-rate matters, on day-to-day problems. What Togliatti means by this is: let everybody stick to his own ideological views and let there be no polemics over these matters of principle; the communists should not concern themselves about the basic principles of Marxism-Leninism; the process of the creation of new revolutionary groups and parties should be hindered in every way; the revisionist renegades should be left in peace in their activity so that they will have fewer problems and headaches in putting into practice their opportunist line, the line of giving up revolutionary struggle, the line of the liquidation of revolutionary Marxist-Leninists, the line of alliances with the bourgeoisie and imperialism. But for all the efforts of Togliatti and company to divert and quell it, the great polemic which is going on today between Marxism-Leninism and revisionism can never be stopped. This polemics will cease only when modern revisionism has been totally destroyed. The Marxist-Leninists consider it their lofty internationalist duty to carry this
ideological struggle, which has vital importance for the fate of the communist and revolutionary movement, through to the end. Togliatti is dissatisfied, not only with the way in which the Khrushchev group has conducted the polemic against the Marxist-Leninist parties, but also with the practical steps which it has undertaken to put its treacherous revisionist policy into practice. As «positive» but «inadequate» steps in this direction, Togliatti mentions the signing of the notorious Moscow Treaty on the partial prohibition of nuclear tests and the visit of Khrushchev to Egypt. He demands that similar «practical» steps be taken more often, both by the Khrushchevite revisionists and by those of other countries. Thus, Togliatti and his Italian revisionist comrades,
who have capitulated completely to the atomic blackmail of imperialism, are appealing to the Khrushchev group to reject any «senseless hesitation» and to proceed more quickly down the road of rapprochement with and capitulationist concessions to the imperialists, as they did on the
occasion of the signing of the tripartite pact over nuclear tests. But the policy of capitulation to imperialist blackmail, of unprincipled concessions to the imperialists and deals with them has not led to the lowering of international tension and has not averted the danger of war as the revisionists, who are scared stiff, think, but on then contrary, has whetted the appetite of the imperialists and
increased their aggressiveness, as is shown by the aggressive actions of the US imperialists in South-east Asia, their ceaseless provocations in West Berlin, the increase in their piratical acts against Cuba, and so on, during these recent months. Indeed even Togliatti himself is obliged to admit
in his memorandum that the international situation is worse now than it was two or three years ago.
In his «testament» Togliatti urges the revisionists, wherever they happen to be, to step up their efforts against the Marxist-Leninist parties and their authority and influence in the world. He is especially worried about the ever-greater influence of Marxist-Leninists in the countries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America, or the «third world», as Togliatti calls these zones. Therefore he recommends
that the revisionist groups must intervene more actively in these zones, with the aim of combating the positions of Marxist-Leninist parties there and liquidating their influence. He proposes «…an international meeting called by a number of Western communist parties, with a widerange
of representatives of democratic countries of the ’third world’ and their progressive movements, for the purpose of working out a concrete line of collaboration with and aid for these movements.»
Why are Togliatti and his henchmen so worried about the situation in the so-called third world? Is there not a powerful, anti-imperialist national liberation movement developing in these countries? Or perhaps this is just what is worrying them? Now the whole world knows that the Marxist-Leninist parties are the true and most resolute supporters of the national liberation struggles of the peoples
of Asia, Africa and Latin America, dauntless fighters against imperialism for the peoples’ freedom and independence.
Therefore, to rise in opposition to the line which these parties follow, to try to eliminate their influence among the peoples who have risen in struggle against imperialism, as Togliatti demands, means, in fact, to rise in opposition to the peoples’ anti-imperialist liberation struggle. And the facts prove that the aim of the line of all modern revisionists, from Tito to Khrushchev and Togliatti, has always been to use various pretexts and manoeuvres to hold back and paralyze the liberation struggle of the enslaved peoples against imperialism. It is precisely Togliatti who has declared more than once that «the colonial regime has almost completely collapsed» and that «spheres of influence of imperialism no longer exist in the world». It is precisely the Italian revisionists headed by Togliatti who have preached collaboration between socialist countries and the «leading classes of capitalist countries» for the creation of an order «in which all the aspirations of mankind and the peoples for freedom, well-being and independence can be satisfied». It is precisely they who have sought «common initiatives» between states with differing systems, especially in Europe, «to carry out joint intervention to help the less developed regions progress». That is how Togliatti understands assistance for the peoples who are fighting imperialism!
Continuing his idea on how the Marxist-Leninist parties can be combated more successfully, in his «testament», Togliatti expresses reservations about whether a meeting of communist parties, which would have the aim of condemning and excommunicating the CP of China, the PLA, and other parties and the definitive splitting of the communist movement, is useful and opportune. The Togliattists consider such a tactic of the renegade group of Khrushchev wrong and very harmful to the revisionist cause.
Togliatti considers the calling of a meeting to carry through and sanction the splitting of the communist movement very dangerous, because it would enhance the struggle of the Marxist-Leninists against the revisionists throughout the world, would accelerate the process of differentiation in the ranks of the world communist movement and the unification of the Marxist-Leninist forces, and would thus bring the inevitable end of the revisionists closer. «The danger would become especially serious,» writes Togliatti, «if it came to the point of the splitting of the movement, with the formation of a Chinese international centre which would create its ’sections’ in all countries. All the parties,
and especially the weakest ones, would tend to devote the greater part of their activity to the polemics and struggle against these so-called ’sections’ of a new ’International’… It is true that even today the factional efforts of the Chinese are taking place on a wide-scale and in almost all countries. We should avoid turning the quantity of these efforts into quality, that is, into a true, general, and sanctioned split.»
As a veteran of the Comintern, Palmiro Togliatti well knows the strength of the organization of the Marxist- Leninists of the world and he is very much afraid of it. Although he tries to belittle the new Marxist Leninist parties and groups that are emerging, moulding themselves, and becoming stronger everywhere in the world, he is very much afraid of them, foreseeing the grave danger looming for modern revisionism. With this he wants to tell the Khrushchevites, who rely on their arrogance, who are intoxicated and blinded by their «economic and military potential», who rely blindly on the prestige of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, not to forget the lessons of history, the lessons of the experience of the international communist movement, not to forget the ignominious defeat
which the 3rd International inflicted on the opportunists and revisionists of the 2nd International. Hence, Togliatti is telling Khrushchev and his supporters: give up this «meeting», refrain from a definitive split, because we are hastening our own catastrophe, and we can avoid this catastrophe by acting differently!
These two different tactics of the revisionists are dictated by the different conditions in which they are acting.
Khrushchev and his group, who have seized state power in the Soviet Union, think that they can cope with the crisis, which a complete split in the communist movement would cause, by using harsh police methods, persecution and oppression against the revolutionary Marxist-Leninists who are rising and will rise against the revisionists’ treacherous line. While the Togliattists, who operate in a capitalist country and do not have state power in their hands, and consequently cannot prevent the activity of Marxist- Leninists with such methods, oppose the extremist methods of Khrushchev for a complete split in the communist movement, hoping thus to avert the catastrophe, and with other, more flexible and «democratic» methods and manoeuvres to paralyze the organization and struggle of revolutionary communists. But neither the brutal methods used by Khrushchev and his group nor the «refined» tactics which Togliatti proposes can stop the inevitable process of the gathering and organization of revolutionary Marxist-Leninist forces, cannot avert the complete and final defeat of modern revisionism.
The Togliattists come out against the aims of Khrushchev and his group for a final break and cutting off of all relations with the PR of China and other fraternal socialist countries for another reason, too. They are frightened by the ultrareactionary tendencies which are becoming more pronounced every day, both in the USA (Goldwater) and in Western Europe. «We think that we ought to bear this situation in mind in our whole attitude,» writes Togliatti in his «testament». «The unity of all the socialist forces in joint action, overriding the ideological differences, against
the most reactionary groups of imperialism, is an absolute necessity. The exclusion of China and the Chinese communists from this unity is unthinkable.» From what Togliatti says, it emerges that what he is concerned about is not in the least the fact that the communist movement and the socialist camp have been disrupted, nor the finding of ways to overcome the profound differences of principle which have emerged in their ranks.
No, he demands that the polemics against the Marxist- Leninist parties must be carried on ceaselessly, indeed, as we have shown above, he even recommends more effective ways and means to struggle against them. But he is afraid of the «madmen», proposes that a more flexible, more cautious course should be followed, that in view of the difficult days that may come in the future they should not burn all their bridges with 700-million strong People’s China. This is an opportunist stand typical of the Italian bourgeoisie, which has a tradition of swapping its alliances and its «shirts» at decisive moments as readily as a sultan would change his wives. Togliatti’s assertions that he is allegedly concerned about the struggle against the common enemy — imperialism, as well as his proposal to coordinate joint actions together with the PH of China in this struggle, are demagogy from start to finish, calculated to deceive people. What unity and collaboration on the basis of the struggle against imperialism can there be with the modern revisionists, whether Togliattist, Khrushchevite, or Titoite, who have not only rejected the struggle against imperialism, especially against the main citadel of world reaction — US imperialism, but have even tried, and still try in every way, to prettify imperialism and its chiefs, to spread pacifist illusions about it, to turn the peoples from resolute struggle against it, and indeed, have gone so far as to conclude scandalous agreements with the imperialists and various reactionaries, contrary to the vital interests of the socialist countries and peace? There can be unity and collaboration in the struggle against imperialism only with the Marxist-
Leninists and with all the forces that genuinely take an anti-imperialist position, who demonstrate this with deeds and not just with words, but never with the revisionists who are the offspring of imperialism and in its service.
TOGLIATTI SEEKS FURTHER DEGENERATION OF THE
SOCIALIST COUNTRIES AND COMMUNIST PARTIES
The final notes of Togliatti are a clear expression of the differences which exist between various revisionist groupings in connection with the courses and rates of development of modern revisionism in theory and practice. Togliatti heaps criticism on the Khrushchev group
and its followers because they are proceeding at a very slow pace on the course of the «democratic and liberal transformation» of life in the socialist countries. He demands that they should proceed more rapidly, more openly, with greater determination on the course of the degeneration
of the socialist order. Togliatti again raises the old question which he, together with the renegade Tito, had raised in 1956, at the time of the counter-revolution in Hungary, about the «origin of the cult of the individual of Stalin». He writes, «… generally speaking, the problem of the origin of the cult
of Stalin and how it was made possible is considered unsolved. People in the West, and many communist sympathizers among them,» says Togliatti, «do not accept that it can all be explained ’simply with the grave personal vices of Stalin’. Efforts are made to track down what might have been the political mistakes which contributed to the birth of this cult». It is obvious that in raising the issue of the sources of Stalin’s «cult of the individual» in this way, Togliatti is demanding fundamental changes in the very foundations of the socialist order, in the main principles of the organization of this order and the policy of the socialist construction that was followed in the Soviet Union in the time of Stalin’s leadership.
But what does Togliatti want concretely?
This comes out very clearly in an interview which he gave to the correspondent of the American magazine «Time» immediately after the elections of April 28, 1963 in Italy, which was published for the first time after the death of Togliatti* as a document which includes many of the theses developed later in the Yalta memorandum of Togliatti. In this interview Togliatti quite openly criticizes the policy of the nationalization of capitalist industry, the collectivization of agriculture, and the leadership of a single party, etc., in other words, the fundamental line of socialist organization and construction which was followed during the period of Stalin’s leadership in the Soviet Union. He demands that such a line must be rejected and that «Stalin’s mistakes must not be repeated». It is not in the least fortuitous that in his memorandum Togliatti demands the organization of «public discussions » from time to time in the socialist countries, in which «leading figures who have varying viewpoints» about the problems of socialist construction should take part and express their «original» opinions in regard to the ways and methods of development of the socialist economy. It is not hard to see what Togliatti is driving at. It is known that such «discussions» are being held now in the Soviet Union in connection with the ways to introduce the principle of «profit» into the Soviet enterprises, a thing which constitutes a step towards the application in the Soviet economy of the experience of the Tito clique about the so-called workers’ self-administration. This is the road to the capitalist degeneration of the socialist economy. And Togliatti issues the call for more rapid and bolder advance precisely down this road.
But in the first place and above all, for Togliatti, for all the Italian revisionists and those who, openly or secretly, tag along after them, the «process of de-Stalinization» in the countries where the revisionists rule is not satisfactory and is not being carried out as rapidly as it should.
* «Unità», September 18, 1964.
«The problem which commands the greatest attention today, in regard to both the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries,» he says in his «testament», «is especially that of overcoming the regime of restriction and suppression of democratic and personal rights which was established by Stalin… The general impression is that there is a slowness and resistance to returning to the Leninist norms which ensure extensive freedom of expression and discussion inside the party and outside it, in the field of culture and art, as well as in the political field.» Thus, with the process of «de-Stalinization», Togliatti means the radical transformation at accelerated rates, in theory and practice, of the regime, of the system, of the internal and foreign policies of the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries of Europe, with the aim that these countries should be turned from the right road of the construction of socialism on a scientific Marxist-Leninist basis, to countries with a liberal, social-democratic, state capitalist order. In other words, Togliatti demands that the road, which Khrushchev and the 20th Congress of the CPSU opened towards the degeneration of the Soviet Union from a socialist country to a bourgeois liberal country, must not be interrupted, the process must not be slowed down, but on the contrary, must be accelerated. According to the Italian revisionists, for this process
to advance, the Soviet system which allegedly gave birth to «Stalin’s cult of the individual» must be discredited completely, both politically and ideologically, Stalin, who allegedly perverted Marxism-Leninism, «created the most savage dictatorship known to mankind», caused «great
harm» with the «unnecessary» and «barbarous» class struggle, and «made the Soviet Union a fearsome spectre to the world bourgeoisie, to social-democracy,» etc., must be discredited.
In reality, the Khrushchev group and its followers are completely at one in principle with Togliatti, and are proceeding precisely on the anti-Soviet road he preaches. The fact is that in the Soviet Union, in the context of «liberalization» and «democratization» of the social order, the dictatorship of the proletariat and the proletarian party are being liquidated, It is known, also, that in the Soviet Union and in some former countries of people’s democracy, the doors have been opened wide to the spread of all sorts of anti-socialist and decadent bourgeois trends in the field of culture and art. These things are no longer a secret to anyone. But to advance on this course with rapid steps is something very delicate and accompanied with a number of negative consequences for the revisionists themselves, and this is what forces Khrushchev and his group to show more restraint and caution than Togliatti would like. They are obliged to show more caution and restraint because to go at the gallop down the road of liberal-bourgeois degeneration of the socialist order would quickly expose them to the masses as the renegades from socialism who are restoring capitalism, which they are in fact. Apart from this, it seems that the Khrushchev group is afraid to allow the extremist revisionist elements much rope by giving them complete freedom of speech and action, because they will bring troubles upon its own head, as has occurred in fact with a number of writers in the Soviet Union who began to demand an accounting even from Khrushchev himself over the so-called «crimes» of the Stalin era. In the final analysis, the Khrushchev group and its revisionist followers in other countries cannot be for unrestricted «liberalization», because such a thing would face them with the problem of freedom of speech and action also for the sound revolutionary and Marxist-Leninist elements who oppose their revisionist line. But it is known that the Khrushchev group and its supporters have established the
most severe censorship and the harshest police regime against Marxist-Leninists.
Naturally Togliatti and the Togliattists hail the steps undertaken in the Soviet Union and a number of other socialist countries for the degeneration of the socialist order and the widespread introduction of bourgeois ideological influences as «very positive». However, according to them, this process is being carried out very slowly, with zigzags, and stops and starts, and is encountering the resistance of «the old»; they need matters to go more quickly on the road of the complete liquidation of the «harmful consequences of the dictatorship of the proletariat», on the road of the capitalist degeneration in the socialist economy, in the field of culture and art, and all other fields. They
want the process of degeneration in the CPSU, which has now become a «party of the entire people», to advance more rapidly, and demand that it should become completely a party of the type of the ICP, without rules, without discipline, «free», «democratic», with factions and tendencies of every kind included in it. In a word, Togliatti recommends to the Khrushchevite revisionists that the reforms undertaken for the liberalization of the party should be taken further, that the CPSU and the parties of the republics which form it should have great freedom (even the present «dogmatic» forms which the Khrushchevite revisionists use must be rejected) and the best of all possible
blessings would be if they went even from the old «dogmatic» system of one party to the multi-party system.
According to the Togliattists, this would be the culmination of «socialist democracy» (they don’t quite say that «Lenin had long dreamed of this,» but Stalin had hindered the realization of this «dream of Lenin’s» for dozens of years on end! But they may get around to saying it one day).
Togliatti and all the Italian revisionists, who operate in a capitalist country, don’t want to take account of the special conditions and difficulties which the Khrushchevites and the other revisionists run into, which stop them going full tilt down the road of degeneration. The Togliattists want the process of degeneration in the Soviet Union, and consequently also in the other socialist countries of Europe to be speeded up, because only in this way will the capitalist world no longer be afraid of the Soviet Union, of socialism, of communism, because only in this way will the bourgeoisie and the bourgeois intellectuals be convinced that the «devil is not as ugly as they say,» that socialism is: not so unacceptable to them (and even if up till now there have been things in the socialist countries unacceptable to the bourgeoisie, these have been the «distortions» of Stalin!).
Hence it is possible to talk about building a «new system of world socialism» with «Marxists», with «socialists», with social-democrats, with Christian Democrats, with capitalists, on the «peaceful» road, without class struggle, without the dictatorship of the proletariat, without destroying the old state power of the bourgeoisie, but by means of «structural reforms», on the parliamentary road, acting according to the laws of bourgeois Constitutions, etc., etc. But, since the principles of transition to «socialism» in such «democratic» and «peaceful» ways were accepted at the 20th Congress, the Italian revisionists argue, then they should be applied in a consistent manner, not only in words but in deeds, and it devolves on the Khrushchevite and other revisionists to set the example for the whole world, to remove the «democrats’» fears by proving that they are wiping out the «spectre of Stalinism» in deeds and have changed the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries into social-democratic paradises, into countries of «popular socialism», acceptable to all the democrats of the world!
Togliatti also expresses dissatisfaction and pretensions regarding the problems of the development of revisionism in the Western countries. «We have always been of the opinion,
» he writes, «that it is not correct to present the workers’ and communist movement of the Western countries always in optimistic colours. In this world, even although there has been some progress here and there, our development and our strength, to this very day, are inappropriate to the tasks before us.»
This is a truly interesting admission. It is known that in the overwhelming majority of these countries, the leadership of the communist parties is in the hands of revisionist elements who proceed on the same opportunist and anti-Marxist course advocated by Togliatti, Tito, and Khrushchev and company. Togliatti’s admission shows to what a pretty pass the trend of modern revisionism has brought the communist movement. And what does Togliatti want? What does he recommend to pull the communist movement of the Western world out of this unpleasant situation? The most elementary logic demands that the first decisive step in this direction should be the rejection of the revisionist anti-revolutionary line which has dragged the prestige and authority
of the communist and workers’ parties in the West down to ground level and has led to the alienation and isolation of the communists from the masses. However, Togliatti recommends precisely the opposite: he demands that they go even further down the revisionist road of the 20th Congress of the CPSU. «In general,» he writes, «in compiling our policy, we set out, and we are convinced that we should set out, from the positions of the 20th Congress. But today, even these positions require deepening and development. »Concretely he demands that all the forces and efforts of the communist and workers’ parties in the Western countries should be directed towards the «peaceful» and «legal» forms of struggle, following the example of the socalled «Italian road» to socialism (the demand for the working out and putting into practice of an «overall plan of economic development» in the interests of workers «to be counterposed to the capitalist program» which is in the interests of big monopolies, for the «democratization» of the management of economic life in the capitalist countries, etc., etc.). «For example,» writes Togliatti, «a more profound judgement on the theme of the possibility of a peaceful transition to socialism impels us to define more precisely what we mean by democracy in a bourgeois state, how can the limits of freedom and democratic institutions be expanded, and what will be the most effective forms of the participation of the masses of workers and working people in economic and political life. The question arises of the possibility of the working class winning positions of power within the framework of a state which has not changed its nature as a bourgeois state, and consequently, whether the struggle from within for a progressive transformation of this nature would be possible. In countries where the communist movement has become strong, as in our country (and in France), this is emerging as the fundamental question in political life today.»
We have had occasion previously, especially in the article «About the Theses for the 10th Congress of the ICP» published in «Zëri i popullit» on 17 and 18 November, 1962, to dwell in detail on the analysis of the so-called Italian road to socialism, and to prove that it is characterized by flagrant departure from the fundamental teachings of Marxism-Leninism about the class struggle, the socialist revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat, that it is an utterly opportunist and revisionist «road» identical with the preachings of Bernstein, Kautsky, and other opportunists of the past, of the right-wing socialists, the Tito clique, and other renegades of the present time. And it is precisely
the further deepening of this treacherous line of negation of the revolution, of weaning the communist parties and masses of working people away from revolutionary struggle, that Togliatti recommends as the way out of the crisis into which modern revisionism has led the communist movement in the West!
Togliatti also wants them to renounce anything that might hinder the alliances of the revisionists with the liberal bourgeoisie, the bourgeois intellectuals, the Christian Democrats, the social-democrats, and all their other «allies» on the «democratic Italian road to socialism». He mentions as an example the absolute need to renounce the «ancient atheist formula», in other words, the principled struggle against religion and the reactionary policy of the Vatican, as well as the struggle for the principles of Marxism in the fields of culture, art, science and philosophy. In fact, this is the line of the political and ideological degeneration of the communist and workers’ parties in the Western countries, of turning them into parties of the social-democratic type. To complete the picture, we shall add here that at the same time the leadership of the ICP headed by Togliatti has long been following the policy of the organizational degeneration of the proletarian party, changing it gradually from a militant, organized and disciplined revolutionary vanguard of the working class into an amorphous organization, with no clear-cut limits, without a sound party discipline, which anyone can enter or
leave as it pleases him, and where the supreme duty of a party member is considered to be that he gives his vote to the Communist Party in the parliamentary or other elections which are held in the capitalist countries. Thus, willy-nilly, the Italian revisionists regretfully admit that their road of betrayal has brought them no gains. On the contrary, not only are the revisionist parties in the capitalist countries far from taking power through the «parliamentary» road, but they are even losing those seats which they had in the past in the bourgeois parliaments; not only are they quite unable to consolidate their old alliances and create new ones with the Socialists, the Christian Democrats, the social-democrats, etc., but those they have had have fallen apart, by means of their «structural» reforms and covering under bourgeois constitutions, they have not only «failed to marry the priest’s daughter but they are not even accepted in the village». And above all, they see that the resistance of opponents within the party is increasing from day to day, and that outside the
party, Marxist-Leninist groups are being formed which are growing and becoming stronger and will turn into new Marxist-Leninist parties. For the revisionists the outlook is disastrous because they can see their utter defeat as a not distant prospect. With this situation in mind, the cry of alarm which
Togliatti sends out to the other revisionists, especially to the Soviet revisionists headed by Khrushchev, is quite understandable. He demands that the tactics of the struggle against the «dogmatists» must be changed, and at the same time, demands the speeding up of the degeneration of the socialist countries and further rapprochement with the bourgeoisie and imperialism; according to Togliatti, the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries ought to provide the «good example» of the complete liquidation of the «Stalinist anomaly» and the creation of a «democratic» and «liberal» socialism of the type that the right-wing social-democratic chiefs advocate, which they even claim they have achieved in a number of European capitalist countries! Thus, for the sake of the triumph of the «Italian road to socialism», for the sake of their alliances with the bourgeoisie, the social-democrats, the Christian Democrats, etc.; Togliatti and all the Italian revisionists demand that the Soviet Union and the other socialist countries must be sacrificed, that the triumph of the Great October Socialist
Revolution and the people’s revolutions in the other countries, achieved through the struggle and bloodshed of the peoples, must be liquidated. This is a great anti-Soviet and anti-socialist plot, which reveals the real, traitorous features of the Togliatti revisionists. However, as was inevitable, these demands of Togliatti have run into opposition from the Khrushchev group, which now finds itself in a difficult situation. It has gone a very long way down the road of betrayal and is neither willing nor able to turn back, because such a thing would mean utter defeat and complete liquidation for it. But neither can it advance at the accelerated rates that Togliatti demands, because this would speed up its complete exposure and defeat. Faced with this difficult situation, the Khrushchev group opposes the line of Togliatti and tries to impose its own line on the Togliattists, by relying on the power of the
«ruble» and on the military power and authority of the USSR and the CPSU.
All this shows that, although they are all treading the one path of betrayal, between the revisionists there is not and cannot be unity, that the differences among them are incapable of solution, but will become steadily deeper and deeper, disrupting and fragmenting the revisionist front.
POLYCENTRISM AND MONOCENTRISM— TWO ANTI-MARXIST TENDENCIES IN THE RANKS OF MODERN REVISIONISM
The other important question which Togliatti raises in his «testament» is the so-called theory of polycentrism, which is counterposed to the monocentrist line of Khrushchev and his group.
The line of the Khrushchev group is the line of banging the fist on the table, not only towards the Marxist-Leninist parties, but also towards other revisionists, the line of stern dictate to force all to obey the Khrushchev group unconditionally and humbly approve its policy of great-state chauvinism
and the «mother party». Whereas the polycentrist line of Togliatti is a typical expression of a liberal, opportunist, social-democratic policy, which wants to get rid of any imposition from the Khrushchev group, and not only for the ICP but also for all the other revisionists, both in the capitalist world and in the socialist countries. As far as Togliatti is concerned, «Moscow» is no longer, and must not be able to run the international communist movement. The authority of the CPSU should be eliminated, according to Togliatti, because this is an «anachronism», a «dangerous hang-over from the cult of Stalin». The Khrushchev group must give up its leadership and domination of the international communist movement, must give up its monopoly of keeping all the other parties tied to the CPSU, give up the privilege that it, alone, is authorized to maintain links with the small communist and workers’ parties, to have meetings and contacts with them, and to give them orders and advice. Indeed he does not want to allow the CPSU and the Soviet government even the privilege that they alone should have contacts and develop policies with non-communist, nationalist, progressive government
elements from the backward countries. Togliatti demands the existence of a number of centres of political and ideological leadership and activity, especially in the capitalist world. And concretely, in his opinion, these centres should be the Italian, French Communist parties and the Communist Party of Spain. These two lines were expressed with special clarity in the differing attitudes towards the meeting of communist and workers’ parties proposed by the Khrushchev group.
This group has decided to call the international meeting of communist and workers’ parties as soon as possible, and thus sanction the complete and open splitting of the communist movement, and to establish its hegemony, to lay down the law, and dictate its line to the revisionist parties, to subject all the revisionists to its dictate, and impose its own «charter» on them. Whereas the Italian revisionists oppose the meeting proposed by Khrushchev for the above purposes, and are doing everything they can to have their polycentrist thesis accepted, because they do not want to be subject to any dictate, do not want to tie their own hands with any sort of joint decisions, but have the tendency to proceed without any sort of «common charter», even though it may be completely revisionist.
In his «testament» Togliatti clearly expresses these hesitations and tendencies. He says, «in our party we still have doubts and reservations about whether the international conference is opportune…», or «indeed we might even fear that the adoption of rigid general formulae may be a hindrance», «thus we would be opposed to any proposal to create another centralized international organization». Therefore Togliatti suggests that instead of the international meeting «we should proceed with a series of meetings with groups of parties… in the various sectors of our movement (West Europe, the countries of Latin America, countries of the ’third world’ and their contacts
with the communist movement of the capitalist countries, the countries of people’s democracy, etc.).» According to Togliatti, this would be a better way to fight the Marxist- Leninist parties. «Finally,» continues Togliatti, «once our tasks and political line have been thoroughly defined, sector by sector, the international conference might be called off, if this is considered necessary to avoid a formal split,» which, as we pointed out above, the Togliattists fear as the devil fears holy water.
But while expressing his opposition to a general meeting, in his «testament» Togliatti stresses: «Unquestionably, we shall take part, and an active part, in the preparatory meeting.» This apparently contradictory stand of the Togliatti revisionists is in complete conformity with their line and aims. The preliminary, preparatory meeting does not tie the leadership of the ICP to any sort of pledge or obligation, while on the other hand, it gives it the possibility to put forward its own platform, differing from that of the Khrushchev group, in the hope that it might find support, and even convince the Khrushchev group on a series of questions. But such a stand by Togliatti and the leaders of the
ICP to take part in the preparatory meeting is also in the interests of the Khrushchev group and suits their purposes. As the Western press commented, such an «original» stand creates a precedent for those communist and workers’ parties which, up to now, are wavering about whether or not to take part in the meeting of December 15, by «arguing» that you may quite well take part in a meeting with the mission of which you are not in agreement! While they express their opposition to the splittist meeting that Khrushchev is trying to organize, the Italian revisionists are not in the least concerned about the problem of the unity of the communist movement and the socialist camp. On the contrary, like the Khrushchev group, they, too, are for the disruption, indeed for the complete break-up of the communist movement. With their completely opportunist and social-democratic views, the Italian
revisionists have long since sown the seeds of disruption and are cultivating them with increasing care. They have waged, and are continuing to wage a stern struggle against the Marxist-Leninist parties and insist that this struggle must not be relinquished for one moment. The so-called «autonomy» which the Togliattists advocate for the socialist countries and communist parties means, as the writings of Togliatti and various documents of the leadership of the ICP bring out, that the socialist countries and communist parties should be «independent» of any Marxist- Leninist principle, of any general law, that each of them must be «free» to adopt its own «specific» road to follow «different policies», to enter into alliances and collaborate with whoever they like and as they like. The polycentrist line of the Italian revisionists, the line of the creation of different leading centres in the communist movement, is just as blatantly opposed to the ideas of unity as the Khrushchevite line of the «single command». The whole line of the Italian revisionists, who want
to get rid of any domination from the Khrushchev group, not only over the ICP, but also over all the other revisionists, who want to break up the communist movement into separate «spheres of influence», from the one angle, shows their distrust of the Khrushchev renegade group and their fear of the imminent danger of the utter defeat to which this group is leading them, whereas, from the other angle, it is an effort to avert this total catastrophe by creating groupings of revisionist parties, which, by means of various alliances and under various disguises, will save the face and extend the life of modern revisionism. To the «clumsy» tactics of Khrushchev who is endangering the existence of the whole of modern revisionism tied to the Khrushchevite chariot, the Togliattists counterpose the «’refined» tactics of many revisionist centres, so that if one is defeated the others will survive. The polycentrist position of the Italian revisionists greatly interests the imperialists, too, who, although they support the revisionist course of Khrushchev against revolutionary Marxism-Leninism, want to weaken this group even more by assisting the revisionist groupings with the «cavalry of St. George» and the «dollar», so that they go further in the race to win independence from the «ruble» and become dependent on the «dollar», with the aim of forcing the Khrushchevite leadership, in this way, to make new concessions to the imperialists on the road of the degeneration of socialism and the international communist movement.
It is natural that the Khrushchev revisionist group which stands one hundred per cent on the positions of greatstate chauvinism and paternalism in its relations with its revisionist partners, which understands very well that the Togliattists are trying to destroy its «absolute rule» and to strengthen their own positions at the expense of its interests, is fiercely opposed to and rejects the polycentrist line of Togliatti and his followers. Indeed the polemic between them, with allusions sometimes more open and sometimes disguised, has even raised its head in public. Speaking about the question of calling the international meeting of communist and: workers’ parties, Ponomaryov,1 in a speech on September 28, devoted to the centenary of the 1st International, took a stab at
the position of the Togliattists and their supporters and stressed that the independence of communist parties did not mean in the least that they should act according to the proverb, «Each frog croaks in its own pond». «The tendency to interpret the independence of parties as a retreat from the carrying out of common internationalist task’s,» continues Ponomaryov, «as a sort of ’neutrality’ when it comes to the solution of common problems, can never be considered as a sign of independence or a sign of maturity.»*
* «Pravda», September 29, 1964: At that time, secretary of the CC of the CPSU.
The facts prove that the nearer the time of the meeting proposed by the Khrushchev group approaches, the more tempers are lost and the differences among the revisionists sharpen, so much more the two opposing lines in the revisionist front come to light. But both of them are fatal to
revisionism itself. The dogmatic and dictatorial revisionist line of the Khrushchev group contains within itself the seeds of the disruption of the revisionist front because it arouses the protest of the other revisionist groupings and increases their efforts to escape from the brutal dictate of Khrushchev and his group. This line has led and is leading to the isolation of this group from its revisionist partners. The polycentrist, revisionist and liberal line of Togliatti, which advocates the
dispersal of the «single command» of the Khrushchev group in the struggle against revolutionary Marxism-Leninism, also contains the seed of the disruption of the revisionist groupings,
hence of their inevitable defeat and break-up also.
RESOLUTE AND PRINCIPLED STRUGGLE AGAINST ALL
REVISIONIST TRENDS — A SACRED DUTY OF REVOLUTIONARY COMMUNISTS
Togliatti’s «testament» and many other facts testify clearly that the revisionists’ front has been split and that this split is becoming deeper and will become deeper still in the future. The contradictions in the ranks of the revisionists are not something unusual, but entirely natural
phenomena, because the revisionists are people without principle, because whether Khrushchevite, Togliattist, Titoite, or of any other brand, they are lackeys of the bourgeoisie and their theories are variants of bourgeois ideology, hence they contain the seed of contradictions, of nationalism, separatism, and splits. There can be genuine unity of thought and action only on the basis of the Marxist- Leninist ideology and proletarian internationalism, which the revisionists have betrayed and abandoned. Consequently, amongst the modern revisionists, in their overall struggle against Marxism-Leninism, which they will always continue obstinately, there will be forms, nuances, alliances, prompted and inspired by all sorts of general factors, temporary and chance, co-ordinated and disconnected, and there will be various contradictions and differing tactics.
Togliatti’s «testament» brings out that there are now at least two different tactical lines in regard to the struggle against Marxism-Leninism crystallizing in the revisionist camp: the monocentrist line of the Khrushchev group and the polycentrist line of Togliatti. These differences between the Khrushchevites and their associates and the Togliattists and their associates are not new; they came out in the open immediately after the 20th Congress of the CPSU. All the revisionists unanimouslym endorsed the 20th Congress. But while some of them described it as «complete» and «adequate» for that time, the Togliattists showed that they were the «most radical revisionists and wanted and demanded that the «analysis» should go «deeper». For propaganda effect and demagogy, and from fear of a deep and immediate split in the international communist movement, the Khrushchevite revisionists acted in a more cautious manner, tried to quieten things down, but without managing to convince the Togliattists, who, without making this a matter of «conflict», developed their own rightist views, of course, while at the same time supporting and endorsing the 20th Congress and later the 22nd Congress of the CPSU. This relative «silence» of the Italian revisionists, or, so to say, their inclusion in the general «euphoria» among the revisionists, was due to their aim of first consolidating these revisionist positions in the ranks of the international communist movement, to ensure that the «poison pill» was swallowed, and then to take further steps, in theory and practice, on the road of revisionism and degeneration. It can be said that in the method of starting their work of betrayal the Khrushchevite renegades were more restrained, more cautious, more wily, more demagogic, while the Togliattists, in their equally treacherous work, were less cautious and more adventurous. To «quieten down» Togliatti and company, the Khrushchev group used the French «communists» to put pressure on them, which they did in fact, and several times the «fire» of their polemic reached the ears of the public.
Although the traitor group of Khrushchev, who had been working secretly in the ranks of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, were aware that the revisionists’ betrayal would not remain for long without being detected, unmasked and combated, still they showed themselves very naive. The Khrushchevite revisionists believed, especially in the beginning, that everything would go on smoothly, without any great opposition. They had great faith in their demagogy, thought that the prestige of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union would cover their betrayal and they relied on the great economic potential of the Soviet Union, on the others’ dependence on Soviet economic credits and their military alliances. The Soviet leaders, headed by Khrushchev, also believed that their «partners» — the various imperialists, and the US imperialists in the first place, would readily agree to their «peace proposals» to «put the world in order». But the modern revisionists were quite unable to realize any of these aims and others like them as they wished. The principled struggle of the PLA, as well as of all the Marxist-Leninists of the world and of all progressive people seriously hindered them. And the obstacles are increasing from day to day and will go on doing so. The modern revisionists, with the Khrushchevite revisionists at the head, have gone far down the road of betrayal and they will go further. But now they have been exposed in the eyes of the whole world, in the eyes of the international communist movement. The struggle of our Marxist-Leninist parties has become a great and mortal danger to them. Therefore, now they have to take serious account of our struggle which is mounting and becoming very threatening to the revisionists. The great, just and principled struggle of the Marxist-Leninist parties not only tore the mask from the revisionists and ruined their plans, but it also created insurmountable difficulties for them, and also led to the sharpening of latent contradictions and the birth of new ones amongst them. Seeing that their cunning tactics have all failed, including their lies, demagogy, blandishments and threats, their economic blockades, their breaking off of diplomatic relations and their slanderous accusations of being «nationalists», «splitters», «renegades», «agents of imperialism», etc., the Khrushchevite revisionists and their supporters see no other way than to link themselves more closely with imperialism and carry the splitting of the international communist movement to its conclusion. In these conditions, the Khrushchev group wants to call the meeting of all the revisionist groupings in Moscow and there to dictate to them their will as renegade splitters and to incorporate them afresh in the continuation of a «more organized» struggle against revolutionary Marxist-Leninists, using all their means (including the «new weapon of extermination» which Khrushchev mentioned recently against the PR of China and the fraternal socialist countries). This is the desperate and hopeless struggle of a
traitor clique. The acolytes of Khrushchev are in a great dilemma. They do not want to be eliminated and quickly driven from the scene, do not want to stake everything on one card, but want to extend their lives and serve the international bourgeoisie longer. Therefore, differences between the revisionists are emerging and, at these moments of a great and unavoidable crisis for them, these contradictions are becoming markedly more abrasive. The contradictions between the Khrushchevites and the polycentrist Italian revisionists are showing up as the most acute. These two tendencies are confronting and attacking each other over the Khrushchevite plan of calling the international meeting of communist and workers’ parties. The revisionists of various countries are grouping themselves around these two main tactical lines. In fact, the line of Togliatti has caused quite a disturbance in the revisionist frog pond. Some are openly supporting this line of Togliatti, some approve it in a low voice since they have rubles sticking in their throats, some others criticize parts
of it, while supporting it in other directions. On their part, the Italian revisionists have sent delegations to many countries to explain their position, to win the maximum number of allies for their tactics.
It is more than clear that, regardless of what tactics are used by the revisionists of all shades, from Khrushchev to Togliatti, Tito and the rest of them, they all have one aim and concern in common: to intensify the struggle against Marxism-Leninism, against the revolution and socialism, to consolidate the positions of revisionism and extend its life. They are trying to put out the flames of the struggle of the Marxist-Leninists against them, to bring about the cessation of the great polemic over principles which is going on today, to hinder the creation of genuinely revolutionary groups and parties. In this struggle and for these aims they are united, act on the one front. The differences between them are not over questions of strategy, but over questions of tactics, over how to make their struggle against Marxism- Leninism more effective and how to achieve their objectives more easily.
Having no illusions about the tactical manoeuvres of the revisionists, the Marxist-Leninists and all the revolutionaries consider the resolute and consistent struggle against all trends of modern revisionism, the struggle for the unmasking of their counter-revolutionary plans and aims to be their sacred duty. This struggle is guided by the teachings of Marxism-Leninism, which constitute the compass
and the tested weapon for every true revolutionary. In sowing all sorts of illusions about the possibility of resolving the differences, even assuming the pose of enemies of imperialism and opponents of Khrushchev, the pose of fighters for unity, the modern revisionists’ objective is to deceive the communists, to hide their real faces and aims. But these deceptive manoeuvres will not succeed.
Only the communist parties and all revolutionaries who stand firmly on the positions of the ideology of the working class are and can be genuine fighters against Khrushchevite revisionism, for genuine Marxist-Leninist unity. Revisionism cannot be fought from revisionist positions, just as genuine unity cannot be established on a revisionist basis. In this struggle the Marxist-Leninists and revolutionaries also have allies, with whom they are united on a number of issues. But while uniting with them in struggle, the Marxist-Leninists do not make concessions over principles, do not hide their revolutionary line, and have the duty of making this line and these principles clear to all.
It is a different matter with those like the Togliattists and their ilk, who, although they have contradictions with Khrushchev and his associates, remain consistent revisionists whose main aim is the struggle against Marxism-Leninism. Regardless of the contradictions among them, all these revisionists are enemies of the revolution and communism. Undoubtedly, the contradictions amongst the revisionists are in our favour and should be exploited, because they weaken the revisionist front. The continuous, consistent, and principled struggle against modern revisionism will make these contradictions ever deeper and more acute, but the Marxist-Leninists have no illusions about the revisionists, are not deceived by their demagogy and do not fall into the traps they try to set for them.
Modern revisionism is the main enemy in the international communist and workers’ movement. The group around Khrushchev is the head of modern revisionism, and its most powerful detachment. From this group, which has seized the leadership of the party founded by Lenin and of the first socialist state in the world — the Soviet Union, comes the greatest and most serious danger today.
Therefore the struggle against this group, for its exposure and defeat, is the fundamental task of all Marxist-Leninist parties and revolutionary communists throughout the world. Apart from the Khrushchev group, the other revisionist groups, and especially the Togliattists and Titoites also represent a great danger. Titoism is an important part of modern revisionism in power, which has behind it an imperialist great power, which directs and assists it — US imperialism. The voice of the Titoites is the voice of US imperialism, which sings in the ranks of international communism through the mouth of Titoism. By means of the direct activities of its agency, Titoism, which it has bought with dollars, US imperialism tries to sabotage and undermine the camp of socialism, to bring about the degeneration of the whole international communist and workers’ movement. Khrushchev rehabilitated the Tito clique, strengthened it, and somewhat reluctantly, made it a powerful
ideological and political partner which is causing him headaches, because now it is not only the Krushchevites but also the Titoites who lay down the law in the revisionists’ ranks. The Tito clique tries to incite and deepen the contradictions that have emerged in the revisionists’ ranks and to weaken the domination of the Khrushchev group over its partners, in the interests of its own egocentric line. The Tito clique also tries to bring about that the contradictions between the Khrushchev group on the one hand, and the other revisionist groups on the other hand, do not impel
these latter to return to the positions of Marxism-Leninism, but that the dissatisfied should cry on the bosom of Titoism. Tito urges the revisionists within Comecon to gain the maximum possible economic independence from the Khrushchev group. And since he, himself, is not in a position to give the «aid» and credits, he urges them to turn for «aid» to the West, to make approaches to and link up with imperialism and, on the example of Yugoslavia, «to build socialism» with the aid of US dollars!
For the Marxist-Leninists there can be no doubt that the «struggle» of the Titoites, like the «struggle» of the Togliattists against Khrushchev is a struggle amongst traitors for domination, for leadership, a struggle of different groups of revisionists against the peoples of the Soviet Union, against Marxist-Leninists and all revolutionaries, of whom they are afraid. The revisionists of different groups are all part and parcel and representatives of one retrogressive trend — modern revisionism. Whether they are large or small, powerful or weak, disguised or exposed, those who march in the vanguard or those that tag along behind, they all fight against Marxism-Leninism, some openly and with all their batteries, while others throw the stone and hide their hand, according to the situation and circumstances. Sometimes they act separately, sometimes they stick together, sometimes they divide to regroup themselves in factions, depending on the interests of the struggle against socialism or the contradictions between them. Togliatti’s «testament» shows clearly that the modern revisionists are determined to carry the struggle against Marxism-Leninism and all the revolutionary forces of the world through to the end. There is no other road for them. The consistent principled struggle of Marxist-Leninists has exposed their revisionist features, now they can no longer act under the rose but are obliged to come out in the open to defend their revisionist positions and fight the Marxist- Leninists actively. This is a great victory achieved, a victory which must be carried deeper by means of the constant strengthening of our struggle against modern revisionism, under whatever disguise or in whatever form it may present itself. As a result of the struggle of the Marxist-Leninist
parties and the revolutionary communists in the different countries, and as a result of the efforts of the revisionist leaders to preserve their positions at all costs by expelling sound communists from party ranks, the process of differentiation has taken place in the communist movement, new revolutionary Marxist-Leninist parties and groups have been created. This process is still going on and will go on unceasingly. This is another great victory which has been achieved, which should be carried deeper, by defending, assisting and supporting these new revolutionary forces unreservedly in their struggle against revisionism, against all the wily manoeuvres and cunning tactics of the revisionists to smother and paralyse the revolutionary current in the communist movement. The resolute struggle of the Marxist-Leninists, the exposure of the modern revisionists, the defeats they have suffered and are suffering every day in all fields of their national and international activity, have brought about the
outburst and deepening of fierce contradictions in the ranks of modern revisionism. And this is another great victory for revolutionary Marxism-Leninism in action, which must drive forward, deepening the contradictions in the revisionist camp. For this it is essential that the resolute struggle of all Marxist-Leninists against modern revisionism of all trends must be intensified more and more.
These historic victories of Marxism-Leninism will increase and become more thorough-going from day to day.The decisive condition and guarantee of this is the principled, uncompromising struggle of all Marxist-Leninist parties and forces against the treacherous aims and activities of the modern revisionists, to bring about their complete and final defeat. Victory in this struggle inevitably belongs to Marxism-Leninism.
Works, vol. 28
(excerpt from Volume III, Selected Works)
Article published in the newspaper «Zëri i Popullit» November 13, 1964