Macdonald Stainsby mstainsby at SPAMhotmail.com
Sat Aug 28 23:59:12 MDT 1999

Julio :

>Como dijo Jack el Descuartizador, "Vayamos por partes".  (Possibly this is
>the kind of jokes impossible to translate. I´m sorry but it came to my
>Macdonald dice:
> > however, I believe it is more in service to approach this with an eye to
> > idea of it being far more positive for "Sendero" to have taken state
> > than to be defeated. In the context of solidarity, I extend it to even
> > (like the PCP) who would never dream of extending it to me.
>This is an abstract question. The name in spanish is "ucronia". It means
>more or less: "What would have happened if...? Sendero was defeated and in
>order to continue the struggle the most important is to know how this
         I agree, and the largest (but certainly not only) reason for this
is the policies of the Fujimori clique. You and I are on much the same page
on this question, and much of my reaction is knee-jerk. It is difficult to
discuss the PCP very often without running into weird denunciations. My back
is permanently up on the subject, I guess.

I´m not speaking about solidarity or moral questions. I´m speaking
>about a lost battle that meant thousand of lives, the victory of the enemy
>and a decade of neoliberalism and a virtually despotical government ,
>without opposition. And the provocation of Sendero was one of de causes.

I'm still unconvinced that it was entirely so, but I'm tiring of my own
rants about it. Please give me a breakdown of a particular case, and if
possible, what the PCP said about it if anything. It would help us discuss
it, for a case is easier than a pattern that was hard to describe.

> > Possibly this argument is "nominal" or "declarativo". While I see your
> > as regards the backlash of attacking other left groups, I can not agree
> > socialism vs capitalism is somehow in contradiction with
> > Imperialism-national independance. The argument is false for a
> > like Peru, unless we are preffering Mullahs and other nominally
> > "anti-Imperialists" to the PCP. The defeat of Imperialism will only be
> > with a true defeat of capitalism.
>This last afirmation is abstract too, because the situation in Peru was not
>an election between "socialist"  Sendero and antimperialistic Mullahs.
>Between the democratic imperialism and the Mullahs I am with the Mullahs,
>though the Mullahs are against me, above all if I had not the sufficient
>power for become the head of this struggle.
>But I repeat, this was not the case of Peru. I have tried in other messages
>the nature of Garcia and Apra. I don´t need repeat it. But in short it was
>not a kind of religious fundamentalism.

I was being a smart ass, not calling the gov. obscurantist. My point is only
that Mullahs often take on characteristics of anti-imperialism. This doesn't
make them prefferable to Communists.

>It was Sendero who put in contradiction those alternatives . They began a
>struggle against the government of Garcia (that in this case meant
>"independencia nacional vs. imperialismo") in the name of "socialism vs.
>capitalism". I know, of course, that only the socialism can bring the
>national independance until the last consequences. But in the course of the
>antimperialistic movement, not against it.
I would not agree that Peru should wait around for real change from above,
the state can never remain unchallenged. I would say that it can be a case
of attacking factions of the state, or to put it another way, to draw a
careful distinction between the state and government. Often a government can
be a decent and progressive bunch, such as Allende, but the state kept on
assaulting the miners under Allende. It is a tragedy that they took a
defensive position to it. However, the PCP was not offered either, and chose
not to search it out. This is one of the best things and one of the worst
about such strategy.
If attacking the state is a strategy and not a tactic, it makes simply
evolving into another political party.
    From Regis Debray, although I'm not a focoist:

Paraguay early 1962. Failure of the guerillas of the FULNA (United Front of
National Liberation...) installed in the in the regions of San Pedro,
General Aquino and Rosario. This defeat can be attributed both to military
difficulties and to a change of leadership in the Communist Party, which
abandoned the line of armed struggle for that of a United Front with the
national bourgeoisie and the liberal party.        ("The Long March In Latin
America" New Left Review, September-October 1965.

Abandonment is not a valid option, unless facing annihilation. Blocs can and
must exist at some different levels, but once started, the PCP line prevents
any compromise. As I said, It is one strength and a weakness all in one.

>  > The PCP was a real threat to topple the
> > old regime. It had many different bases that were operating like towns.
> > policed entire villages, across the countryside. As a class principle,
> > have stated before, in this situation I am entirely for the victory of
> > PCP. A bad sectarian is the only example of what would oppose this, to
> > view. Perhaps I should state then that you can't be "Marxist-Leninist"
> > participate directly in the machinations of the state that are under
> > by peasants with guns, etc. This is not pulling together for the sake of
> > national independance either. It is saying that the revolution had
> > perfect, and to hell with what the peasants have fought for. Hate
> > you wish. Remember that it was an indigenous-to-Peru "People's Army"
> > looks defeated. Some "leftists" were busier running for office than to
>Excuse me, Macdonald, but I don´t hate Gonzalo. I don´t roundly agree with
>the politics of Sendero. I think that it is an deep error and this was not
>the responsability of armed peasants, but the responsability of Sendero and
>Chairman Gonzalo´s thought.

Agreed, and again, "knee-jerk".

> > No tiene absolutamente nada que ver con nuestra
> > >tradicion revolucionaria. Los bolcheviques se presentaban a elecciones
> > >la
> > >infame Duma de Nicolas II, mientras Koba asaltaba trenes en el Caucaso,
> > >objetivos financieros. Es una diferencia tactica, no estrategica.
> >
> > Great example, but I draw out a different interpretation as well. Let us
> > that
> > the actual seizure of power was held off for even a month longer than it
> > was, with direct clashes between Bolshevik workers and whites in the
> > streets. Two weeks into these struggles another group of "marxists" run
> > the Duma and openly call for the defeat of the Bolseheviks, fighting for
> > theirs lives. Would it be fair to say that the Bolsheviks would take aim
> > these "mensheviks"? I would have hoped so, rather than give up the USSR
> > quickly.
>I don´t understand exactly what you mean, but I remember that Kamenev and
>Zinoviev denounced in the party press the preparative of the insurrection.
>And it was not Lenin who took aim at them. It was Stalin and a lot of years
>later .
     My question is what would have happened if Kamenev and Zinoviev had
joined in with whites, or had tried to use another method to prevent the
insurrection. I hope and believe that Lenin, Trotsky et al would've dealt
this a quick blow. And there was a revolution going on around them
everywhere, yet certain Peruvians took sides with the state, and people are
surprised and "aghast" that they got whacked! If this is inaccurate, then
tell me so, but some reds that I know of actively support the suppression of
the PCP.
> > >
> > I have trouble believing that the Rondas were armed "by themselves".
> > like the KLA to me.
>Anyway the nature of ronderos is here out of discussion.
I would like you to expand, actually.

> > Funnily enough, I had just struggled (espanol/english dictionary in my
> > though your post to read exactly what I was doing.
>I can recommend you a site: www.spanishdict.com
>Au revoir
>Julio F.B.

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