U.S. Left: Revolution or Reformism (1)

Luis Quispe lquispe at blythe.org
Sun Aug 18 20:44:15 MDT 1996

                         Part 1 of 4

"What is fundamental in Maoism?  Political power is fundamental
in Maoism."  Fundamental Documents, Partido Comunista del Peru
(PCP), 1988.

The Peru People's Movement (MPP), whose ideological basis is
Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo Thought, upholds the Leninist
conception that without state power, all is illusion.
Furthermore, we hold that political power can only be achieved
through the People's War, which will sweep away the old state and
replace it with a new state, the dictatorship of the proletariat.

Towards this end, we uphold the construction of the three basic
revolutionary instruments: The Party, the united front, and the
People's army, with the Party as the axis.  Our conception of the
Party is a Party of a new type, one that is entirely geared
towards the political and organizational developments that allow
the launching of a People's War, and once such a war is
initiated, to develop it until the conquest of power.

In addition, given the long history of opportunism and
revisionism within the working class movement, as well as the
experience of capitalist restoration, we stress the importance of
ideology in guiding the construction of the Party and the waging
of People's War.  We uphold Marxism-Leninism-Maoism (MLM) as the
universal ideology of the proletariat, which must be applied to
the concrete conditions of each country and its class struggle.

Based on the above revolutionary principles, we offer some
initial comments on the document "Revolutionaries Unite!"
proposed to us by Unity & Struggle and its allies as the basis
for political unity leading towards a revolutionary program.

The central slogan "Revolutionaries Unite!" is a fine sentiment,
one which must be immediately followed by the question: Unite for
what? Here hinges our major difference with Unity & Struggle and
its allies.

Our central difference is also on the question of the
reconstitution of the Communist Party, a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist
party in the belly of the beast, which is not even mentioned in
the call: "Build an organization of revolutionaries by putting
out the newspaper Unity & Struggle."  While we realize that a
Communist Party (MLM) cannot be made overnight, and that the
stages of building revolutionary cells, and ultimately an
organization of revolutionaries are important steps, the leading
role of the Party needs to be stressed. Why do you want a Party
for?  To conquer power through armed struggle, or to wage
electoral campaigns to conserve the system?

The document makes several references to democratic struggles,
without distinguishing between mass struggles and democratic
ones.  Furthermore, it states as a central task the construction
of a democratic workers' party, which explicitly endorses an
electoral policy that eventually will lead to reformism and
cooptation. The statement calls to build a united front without a
Party, with the good intentions of uniting the "advanced," thus
falling into the trap of tailing behind reformists, anarchists,
and social democrats, a well-worn path which has been seen time
and time again in the United States, Europe and the semi-colonial
countries.  This political practice may win some crumbs from the
bourgeoisie, and it may let you win some local elections at best,
but it will not lead to socialist revolution.


The New Flag.

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