THE CRISIS IN THE PCP-SL

Robert Malecki malecki at algonet.se
Sat Oct 12 00:58:12 MDT 1996


>THE CRISIS IN THE PCP-SL
>
>One year after his capture, Gonzalo made a U-Turn. He decided to make the
>"new great decision" and to advocate the end of the people's war and a
>"peace agreement" with Fujimori.
>
>He justified that shift writing that the PCP-SL without Gonzalo's leadership
>is not capable of winning the war. For Gonzalo, only he himself could lead
>his party to the victory and because he was in jail for all his life and he
>was
>incapable of leading the party in the war, the PCP-SL needed to avoid a
>serious defeat.
>
>He understood that the PCP-SL couldn't win the war and that the priority
>was to protect the life of thousands of political prisoners and of most of
>the PCPSL leadership in jail. He offered Fujimori a deal.
>
>The destruction of the APRA, the United Left and "revisionism" is something
>that Gonzalo was happy with and he congratulated Fujimori for achieving
>these and some reforms. A very secret deal is on the agenda. The
>pro-Gonzalo forces
>are progressively being liberated from prison and in the mass organisations
>they are becoming "left" supporters of the regime.
>
>Gonzalo's shift is a complete contradiction of what he said in his speech
>when he was showed in a cage. Until 1992 the PCP-SL considered that they
>achieved "strategic equilibrium" and that they have to prepare a war of
>movements and the military occupation of Lima and other cities. Before his
>capture Gonzalo moved to Lima and he led a constant bomb campaign. Nearly
>every day the PCP-SL put bombs in many places. They put bombs even in
>places in which many ordinary workers were walking. In Tarata (Miraflores)
>they kill more than ten innocent workers and street sellers. In the road
>between Callao and Lima they put bombs which injured or killed innocent
>passengers.
>
>These actions created a panic in society and many ordinary people were
>becoming alienated from the PCP-SL who have a record of killing workers and
>popular leaders and of destroying electricity plants and factories. Gonzalo
>over-estimated the influence and capacity of the PCP-SL. His move to Lima
>to prepare the final assault was  an adventure and he paid for it with his
>capture.
>
>One year later he realised that he could do nothing in jail and that his
>party was defeated. The PCP-SL didn't achieve the "strategic equilibrium"
>and it was very unpopular amongst the workers and poor people. The shanty
>towns were the bastions of the left and the PCP-SL always wanted to expel
>the United Left from them. The PCP-SL managed to help the army and Fujimori
>to destroy the left in the shanty towns and since the 1990s the
>overwhelmingly majority of the shanty towns became supporters of Fujimori
>who is giving them some order and some crumbs.
>
>Gonzalo's shift created a big problem amongst his comrades outside the
>jail. They didn't want to end the war. Some of them established a lucrative
>power base in the Huallaga river area (world's main cocaine producer). Some
>of them were genuine fighters which wanted to continue the struggle.
>
>The Central Committee outside the jail (the so-call Feliciano wing) decided
>to continue the "people's war". Gonzalo made several presentations on TV
>and sent many of his handwritings everywhere showing his new position.
>Gonzalo's father and mother in law supported his new position. All the main
>PCP-SL leaders in jail (Miriam, Morote, Meche, Cox, etc.) and more than 90%
>of the PCP-SL political prisoners openly supported him. On TV Gonzalo's
>lawyer (Crespo), Morote and other leaders gave presents to the Fujimorists
>and tried to be nice to the people that before they condemn as "fascist
>rats which have to be killed". There are many pictures in which Gonzalo
>appears with many of these leaders. In Europe many pro-PCP-SL Solidarity
>committees decided to support the "new great decision".
>
>The PCP-SL's Central Committee couldn't accept Gonzalo's betrayal but they
>also couldn't denounce him. The PCPSL has a feudal structure. Gonzalo is
>consider a living god and the only basis of party's unity. For the PCP-SL, its
>ideology is "Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, Gonzalo's thought and principally
>Gonalo's thought". Initially the Central Committee denied Gonzalo's
>capitulation. It wrote that this was a farce or that Gonzalo was probably
>under drugs. Nevertheless, the pro-people's war Central Committee had to
>admit that there is a "black clique" around all former PCP-SL leaders in jail
>(except Gonzalo) who have to be smashed because they are advocating a peace
>agreement with Fujimori. The Central Committee cannot try to ignore reality
>and cannot cover the sun with a finger.
>
>So, the Central Committee is trying to separate Gonzalo's thought from
>Gonzalo's person. This is a kind of religious exercise. Gonzalo's thought
>could live for ever no matter if the real individual could renounce it.
>
>Gonzalo's capitulation created the first significant split of the PCP-SL.
>From 1970 to 1993 Gonzalo was able to expel factions which didn't have any
>later importance (like the Bolsheviks in mid-1970s or New Democracy
>in the early 1980s which opposed a premature and "Hoxhaite" starting of the
>people's war). The "Great Decision" was the first big explosion.
>
>Nevertheless, the explosion continues.
>
>The Revolutionary Internationalist Movement (RIM), a Maoist international
>created around Aavakian's RCP (USA) which was the main international
>supporter of the PCP-SL, adopted a contemplative position. For the RIM there
>was a battle of two lines. At the end the RIM decided to side with the
>faction which was continuing the war.
>
>The pro-Feliciano supporters became very upset with these oscillations. The
>Maoist Internationalist Movement (a clandestine USA-base group) took the
>opportunity to oppose the RIM. The MIM have a lesbian symbol and are trying
>to became the best defenders of the PCP-SL's Central Committee while it
>is killing homosexuals as part of increasing the morals of the PCP-SL's
>"liberated areas".
>
>The Peruvian supporters of Feliciano's PCP-SL are divided between the
>pro-RIM, the pro-MIM and the "Red Flag" which is against both US Maoist
>internationals.
>
>The "Red Flag" claim to be the only representative of the PCP-SL's Central
>Committee abroad. It is in charge of the PCP Web Page. It criticised the
>pro-MIM for fighting for the defence of Gonzalo and the political prisoners.
>They are against the defence of most of the PCP-SL prisoners because they are
>supporting the "peace agreements". They are trying to separate Gonzalo
>thought from his body. The importance thing is to stress the militarist
>Gonzalo thought and the Central Committee which is now the only living
>incarnation of that thought. For the "Red Flag" the Maoists who are
>supporting the people's war but also have some illusions in Gonzalo's living
>person could end in a new peace agreement. The "Red Flag" accused Olaechea
>and Arce Borja as leaders which are trying to use the PCP-SL struggle to
>build their own popularity.
>
>The MIM and El Diario Internacional are denouncing the "Red Flag" as a CIA
>plot like they denounce the rest of the left. Olaechea and Arce Borja are
>trying to be the only authority outside Peru in supporting the "people's
>war". They are trying to build a World Mobilisation Committee, which is in
>fact an attempt to create a new Maoist international around the MIM and some
>pro-Feliciano committees.
>
>The wars between all these factions are based on slanders, accusations and
>verbal and physical violence. The pro-Feliciano forces openly congratulated
>their comrades when they killed members of the Gonzalo's pro-peace agreement
>faction. The different pro-Feliciano groups attack with any kind of slander
>or dirty accusations. Many supporters of the PCP-SL are demoralised and
>outside these wars.
>
>The PCP-SL is in a terminal crisis. Gonzalo decided to became a new Haya de
>la Torre. Haya was the founder of a mass petit bourgeois anti-imperialist
>party in 1924. In the early 1930s the APRA organised terrorist attacks and
>putches.  Nevertheless, in the 1940s and 1950s it became an imperialist
>puppet. In the late 1950s and in the early 1960s Haya initiated
>super-coexistence with Prado and Odria, right wing anti-communist
>dictators which persecuted the APRA when they were in power.
>
>Gonzalo's capitulation is even worst than the terrible "convivence" of
>Haya de la Torre. Gonzalo wants to be like "Comandante Rolando", the leader
>of Bolivian Maoism who launched a popular war against a left bourgeois
>nationalist regime in 1970, who became part of the establishment and
>minister of labour of very anti-working class regimes in recent years.
>
>Today there is a dirty game between the two factions of the PCP-SL (the
>pro-people's war and the pro-peace agreement). Gonzalo is playing with both.
>He use the militarist wing and its violent attacks to push Fujimori to make
>concessions to him. And he tries to press Fujimori to allow more freedoms
>for his pro-peace comrades with the aim of stopping the militarists. When a
>significant pro-Feliciano militarist is captured, the army sends him to
>talk with Gonzalo and he would convince him or her to abandon Feliciano and
>to support him.
>
>This is creating problems among Feliciano's supporters. Some want
>a complete breakdown with the possibility of having any link with the peace
>agreement. Some want to continue in armed struggle until Gonzalo could
>achieve more concessions from the regime.
>
>None of these factions would lead a workers and peasant revolution. The
>PCP-SL strategy is based on a complete rejection of Bolshevism. Only a
>proletarian revolution made by workers and peasant councils and militias
>and lead by a MASS leninist-trotskyst party could abolish capitalism. The
>PCP-SL is against the workers and peasants organisations, councils and
>militias because they are "fascist" or "revisionist". The PCP-SL is against
>the building of a mass party using the electoral tribune and united front
>tactics. The PCP-SL is against general strikes, soviets and insurrections.
>They wanted a private war with the army in which the working class is a
>subordinate entity which has to abandon its programme and class interests
>and to follow the militarist petit bourgeoisie.

<snip>

I support this document. It is a very good description of the demise of the
PCP both in Peru and Internationally after the fall of the great leader
Gonzalo. And the stuff about keeping the halo of Gonzalo by all of the wings
of the PCP is just incredible while at the same time the great leader is
selling out to the generals!

Bob Malecki




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